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Amt 25-.22 lighting carbine.

* Arcadia Machine & Tool, Inc. (AMT) has, under the leadership of Harry Sanford, brought out a number of different firearms over the years. The first such item was the famous Auto Mag pistol, which was featured in the latest "Dirty Harry" film, Sudden Impact. This was fully covered in the June 1984 Guns & Ammo.

The latest creation from AMT is a bit more prosaic: a stainless steel, auto-loading .22 LR rifle that seems to have a more than nodding acquaintance with the Ruger 10/22 carbine.

Unlike the Ruger, the AMT 25/.22 Lightning is constructed of stainless steel and sports a skeletonized metal folding stock that is mated to a fore-end that's fabricated from a Nylon-like material. In short, it's a rimfire version of many of the centerfire, assault-type semi-autos that are so popular today. This illusion is further heightened by the banana-style extended magazine that holds a full 25 rounds of .22 Long Rifle ammunition.

As a matter of fact, the magazine furnished with the test rifle would accept an additional round for a 26-cartridge capacity. A provision has been made so that two of these magazines may be snapped together in imitation of the original taping of the magazines used in the old .30 M-1 and M-2 carbines of WWII and Korean War fame. Thus you could have two mags stored "butt to muzzle" with a total firepower of a full 50-round box of .22 ammo.

The magazine functioned flawlessly, which was rather refreshing, as not all such large-capacity magazines are as forgiving when crammed with rimfire rounds. Hollow points, solids and truncated cone Federal Spitfires fed without a bobble.

The top of the frame is grooved for standard .22 rimfire scope mounts and a Beeman 2-1/2X scope was clamped in place with no difficulties. This is quite a compact scope which looked in proper proportion with the Lightning carbine, even with the stock in the folded position.

At the range, the rifle printed its first 25-yard shot one target high and off to the left, despite the fact that a collimator was used to zero the scope. However, without a collimator, it is doubtful if the first round would have hit the target at all. With a .22 rimfire, using relatively inexpensive ammunition, this is not really more than just a vexing problem. However, when you are trying to sight in with centerfire ammo costing a buck a bang, it is another matter. At any rate, the Beeman scope had more than enough internal adjustment to bring the rifle to zero.

The carbine was soon sighted in, but accuracy testing was virtually impossible. Desert winds were gusting at more than 30 miles per hour and the groups were adequate but not exceptional. No wonder! Those conditions were obviously not suitable for testing the mild-mannered .22.

Even so, it was possible to score hits on a 125-yard gong, provided that a lot of "Kentucky" windage and elevation were tossed into the sight picture.

Issue sights, in the standard version, consist of a fixed, blued rear sight with a square-cut notch that is mated with a ramped, blued, flat-topped front sight. An adjustable rear sight is available as an extra-cost option.

The 25/.22 Lightning carbine is a compact 26-1/2 inches in the stock-folded configuration and 37-1/2 inches overall with the stock extended. The vertical height is just 6-1/2 inches and weight--unloaded and without a scope--is 6 pounds. It is a handy, compact .22 rimfire rifle that should appeal to the plinker, casual shooter and survivalist. Its stainless steel construction will be especially appreciated by those who live in humid areas, close to the ocean, or just want a .22 that is as care-free as possible. It is priced at $260 including a handsome zippered cloth carrying case. The adjustable sighted version goes for an additional $20. For more information contact Arcadia Machine & Tool, Inc., Dept. GA, 536 N. Vincent Ave., Covina, CA 91722.
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Title Annotation:evaluation
Publication:Guns & Ammo
Date:Mar 1, 1985
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