Springfield Armory’s Model 2020 Classic Bolt Action .22 caliber rifle is one of the finest traditional .22 caliber bolt-action rifles I’ve handled in recent years and should be added to your personal shooting stable.

I am a firm believer that every new shooter should be introduced to the world of firearms by learning to shoot a .22 caliber manually operated repeater, as I did. The .22 caliber encourages a slower rate of fire, promoting the development of essential shooting skills such as proper sight alignment and trigger control. This foundational training is crucial and unparalleled by other firearms.

My experience with Project Appleseed earlier this year reinforced the importance of marksmanship and rifle skills. Project Appleseed’s mission to educate Americans about the Founders’ vision of rifle proficiency is more relevant than ever. In light of recent events, owning a reliable .22 rifle like the Springfield Model 2020 Classic is a wise choice for anyone looking to hone their shooting skills and embrace the tradition of American riflemen.

About the Springfield Armory 2020 Series

The Turkish-made 2020 Classic rimfire rifle series is available in two models: Target and Classic. The four versions of the Classic model range in price from $529 to $1,099 based on the grade of Turkish walnut stock used. The select satin walnut used on the baseline model of my test rifle is flat-out gorgeous, and the wood appearance gets even better with each successive model and wood grade.

The stock on Classic .22 models is beautifully diamond checkered on the grip area and forend, providing a non-slip grip that traditionally styled checkered wood can’t offer. There is a protective screwed-in endcap at the end of the pistol grip for additional protection. The buttstock has a rubber recoil pad that prevents the stock from slipping off the shoulder while firing. The 2020 was designed to use Ruger 10/22 rotary magazines, which makes obtaining additional magazines easy and keeps reliability high. The manual safety lever is positioned on the receiver behind the bolt in a traditional position and can be easily deactivated by the thumb of the shooting hand (assuming you are right-handed).

The action is very smooth and slick, and there is a good reason for it. The 4140 stainless steel bolt has a high-polish white chrome coating, which not only protects the metal from rust but also provides a natural slickness during operation. The trigger is an adjustable Remington 700-style trigger with a wide, smooth trigger face that must be felt to be believed. There is no trigger safety to interfere with the feel.

My trigger gauge showed the trigger weight to be between 3 pounds, 10 ounces and 3 pounds, 13 ounces, with zero creep or slack. The trigger guard is large enough to accommodate gloves and/or large hands.

The barrel and action throughout the series of rifles are matte-blue finished. It is free floated for accuracy. The 20-inch barrel on the 2020 Classic does not have fixed sights and features a #1 Sporter Contour. The thinner barrel helps maintain the rifle’s weight at an ideal 6 pounds, 3 ounces without affecting accuracy. On top of the receiver is an interrupted Picatinny rail mount that spans the length of the action, allowing you to mount any telescopic or optical sight of your choice.

The balance of the Springfield 2020 Classic bolt-action rifle is excellent, even with the weight of a large scope mounted on top. Its weight is well-distributed, and it shoulders smoothly. Sling swivel studs are already in place; all you need are swivels and a nice leather sling.

Firing the .22 Rifle

For optics, I mounted the Lucid L7 riflescope that I had tested earlier this year. I brought my son Owen with me to test the 2020 Classic at the indoor barn range. I also had a Bog-Pod shooting rest, rifle mat, some Springfield Armory Splatter Shot sighting targets, and a box of CCI Mini-Mag .22 LR 36-grain hollow-point loads with a copper-plated hollow point and 1,260 feet per second of muzzle velocity.

We set up a target at 50 feet. Bret, who owns the range I use, joined us to assist in the testing.

Loading the included 10/22 style magazine was just as easy as loading any factory Ruger 10/22 magazine, and it inserted into the magazine well just as easily. I set the rifle in the Bog-Pod rest and chambered the first round.

I have no other way to describe the 2020 Classic’s trigger other than magnificent. The Springfield Armory Splatter Shot target is made up of five diamonds: one large center diamond surrounded by four smaller ones on each corner of the target. Resting the rifle on the Bog-Pod, I began firing, aiming for the bottom left diamond target. I saved the center target for my son, though it turned out that he didn’t need a larger target with this rifle and scope combination.

Impressive Accuracy with the Springfield Model 2020

My first 10-shot group tore a single ragged hole 2 inches below my point of aim and 4 inches to the right. The blue reticle of the Lucid L7 scope stood out vividly in the skylight illuminated barn, which made me realize that the selection of blue was a stroke of brilliance on the part of the folks at Lucid. Not only was it more vivid in general, but it didn’t fade into the background of the red diamonds that were the primary point of aim within the larger yellow diamond framing. That first 10-shot group measured ¾ inch.

For the next series of shots, I ran a couple of five-shot groups and moved the zero up and left until the Lucid 7 was dialed in. Then it was Owen’s turn. It is amazing how quickly kids can become skilled with a .22 rifle if they are provided with the proper equipment and instruction. Owen loaded his first magazine with five rounds and began firing at the lower right diamond, resulting in the best prone-rested group he’s shot so far. His shots formed essentially a ¾-inch ragged hole. He then fired a few more groups, all of which tore up the center diamond.

Bret took his turn and fired a five-shot group on the top left diamond, which also resulted in a one-hole group measuring ½ inch. This level of accuracy is impressive, especially considering that it was achieved with a $529 off-the-rack rifle with a sporter barrel.

The Springfield Model 2020 Classic .22: A Lifetime of Precision and Enjoyment

The Springfield Armory Model 2020 Classic .22 rifle is an outstanding, heirloom-quality bolt-action .22 that will provide a lifetime of wonderful service and enjoyable shooting. It is solidly built, operates smoothly and handles well, making it an ideal firearm for helping fulfill Project Appleseed’s mission of building a nation of skilled marksmen. If you are looking for more precision at a reduced cost, consider checking out the 2020 .22 Rimfire Target models, which come with synthetic target stocks and have an MSRP of $499. The Target models are guaranteed to achieve 1-inch three-shot groups at 50 yards. Based on my experience with the Classic at 50 feet using .22 LR game loads, I have no doubt the Target model is capable of delivering its guaranteed accuracy. Additionally, 2020 precision centerfire models are also available.


Springfield: SpringfieldArmory.com
CCI Ammunition: CCI-Ammunition.com
Bog: BogHunt.com