Reviews

Review: Rossi Gallery .22 LR Pump-Action Rifle

Rossi gallery pump action .22 LR with wood stock and forend

If there is any firearm I enjoy shooting, it is the humble .22 caliber rifle. The first shots I fired as a child were with a single-shot .22, and I fired quite a few of the classic rifles growing up. They were well made and while different from rifles on the shelf today modern rifles are more accurate on average and offer excellent value for the money. I grew up hunting with average affordable rifles.

Today, I still enjoy affordable .22 rifles. For hunting, I am happiest with a manually-operated rifle such as a lever-action or bolt-action. I recently added a pump-action .22 to the mix. The Rossi Gallery rifle has standard features that older rifles just didn’t have.

Rossi Gallery pump action .22 LR rifle, black, right profile
The author’s personal rifle proved reliable with a wide range of ammunition.

Rossi Gallery Features

The best of these are features are fiber-optic contrast sights, front and rear. The rear sight is fully adjustable for windage and elevation. This pump-action rifle features black synthetic stocks. The front stock has three cutouts that may be used to stabilize the grip. The forend is well designed for gripping and leverage.

An under-the-barrel magazine tube holds 15 rounds of .22 Long Rifle ammunition. I really like the green rear, and red front, contrasting fiber-optic sights. Just the same, if I wish to mount a scope it is simple enough with the rifle’s 3/8-inch scope dovetail.

The barrel is 18 inches long — plenty for maximum velocity and accuracy for small game. As an example, the CCI Mini Mag 40-grain load clocks just over 1,240 fps. The superbly accurate Federal Hunter Match 40-grain load breaks 1,202 fps.

I rely on the hammer for safety, with an exposed hammer, pump-action or lever-action rifle. The Rossi Gallery also features a cross-bolt safety near the trigger. A lever in the trigger guard may be pressed to unlock the bolt when the rifle is cocked and loaded.

The receiver is finished in some type of epoxy finish. It is evenly applied and should prove durable. The trigger guard is generous. If you are hunting with gloves, this trigger guard should accommodate all but the bulkiest gloves.

Grooved lever in the front of the trigger guard
A grooved lever in front of the trigger guard operates as a bolt release.

The trigger is consistent and breaks at 6 pounds and six ounces. It is heavier than I like but par for the course in an economy rifle. It did not impede accuracy overly much.

The movement of the bolt is very short. It doesn’t have to travel much to cycle a .22 Long Rifle cartridge. This means the effort to operate the rifle is slight. If you are familiar with a pump-action shotgun, this may seem odd at first. The action moves with very little effort. A lever in front of the trigger guard is pressed to unlock the action. In dry fire, I learned to manipulate the action quickly. The pump action uses a single-action bar.

Accuracy and Handling

Firing the rifle is a joy. After testing many rifles — which if not hard kickers, kick harder than a .22, and paying for centerfire ammunition — it was nice to dip into the .22 cache and have some fun. Loading the cartridges was simple enough. Open the action for safety, and then unscrew the inner magazine tube. You don’t have to remove the tube simply move it to a position that clears the loading port.

Under barrel magazine for a .22 LR rifle
An under-barrel magazine is easily loaded.

Drop 15 cartridges into the loading port (base first), and you are ready to go. Moving the action forward loads a cartridge. Press the trigger to fire and rack the action to fire again. When hunting, you may wish to simply lower the hammer by carefully grasping the hammer with the thumb and lowering the hammer as you press the trigger.

The rifle is great fun when plinking. Tin cans and reactional targets are its natural prey. The rifle proved reliable with a wide range of ammunition including standard velocity, high velocity, shotshell, and target loads. I didn’t have any .22 Short to test.

Rossi Gallery .22 Specifications

  • Manufacturer: Rossi USA
  • Type: Pump-action repeater
  • Caliber: .22 LR
  • Magazine capacity: 15 rounds
  • Barrel: 18 in.
  • Overall length: 36 in.
  • Weight, empty: 5.3 lbs.
  • Stock: Synthetic
  • Length of pull: 13.5 in.
  • Finish: Polished blued barrel, black epoxy coat receiver
  • Sights: Green fiber-optic rear, red fiber-optic front

The rifle is plenty accurate for hunting small game. The front sight is a bit thick, which is fine for most uses as the fiber-optic front sight is easily picked up quickly by the eye. Firing for accuracy, I used a solid rest and took my time, firing three-shot groups at 20 yards.

Fiber optic rear sight alignment markings
With alignment markings just behind the fiber-optic rear sight, and two easily used adjustment devices, the Rossi offers pinpoint sighting in accuracy.

CCI Mini Mag and CCI Stinger produced several three-shot 1.6-inch groups. The Federal Hunter Match went into 1.5 inches. The rifle is best suited to informal target practice and teaching young people to shoot. It will take game. I think a bedded rabbit or a squirrel in a tree would be easy game.

I like something with more energy for coyote but a .22 caliber Stinger, between wind and water, would anchor a coyote with good shot placement. As I said, I am used to using the hammer for safety on a lever-action rifle. I like the Rossi safety system and may adopt a different safety mode. When the cross-bolt safety is applied, both the trigger and hammer are locked. With the hammer cocked, it may seem ideal to sit while waiting for game to appear and moving the cross-bolt to fire rather than cocking the hammer. The cross-bolt isn’t silent, but the sound of the hammer cocking is slightly louder.

I like the Gallery rifle. It has proven reliable and useful, costs but little, and provides solid recreation and utility.

For plinking, few guns are as fun or cool as a pump-action .22 LR, and the Rossi Gallery is no exception. What’s your favorite .22 LR and which action type does it sport? Share your answers in the comment section.

  • Safety showing the red stripe on the Rossi Gallery rifle
  • Rossi gallery black, quartering away, left
  • Rossi gallery black, right profile
  • Under barrel magazine for a .22 LR rifle
  • Rossi gallery black, quartering away, right
  • Rossi gallery black, left, profile
  • Fiber optic rear sight with adjustment wheel on the Rossi Gallery rifle
  • Right side view of the Rossi Gallery rifle's receiver
  • Short throw of the bolt on the Rossi gallery .22 LR rifle
  • Side view of the hooded fiber optic front sight on a rifle barrel
  • Fiber optic rear sight alignment markings
  • Rossi gallery pump action .22 LR with wood stock and forend
  • REceiver and trigger guard on the Rossi Gallery pump action .22 LR rifle
  • Top view of the fiber optic rear sight on the pump action Rossi Gallery .22 LR rifle
  • Grooved lever in the front of the trigger guard
  • Rossi Gallery pump action .22 LR rifle, black, right profile

About the Author:

Bob Campbell

Bob Campbell’s primary qualification is a lifelong love of firearms, writing, and scholarship. He holds a degree in Criminal Justice but is an autodidact in matters important to his readers. Campbell considers unarmed skills the first line of defense and the handgun the last resort. (He gets it honest- his uncle Jerry Campbell is in the Boxer’s Hall of Fame.)

Campbell has authored well over 6,000 articles columns and reviews and fourteen books for major publishers including Gun Digest, Skyhorse and Paladin Press. Campbell served as a peace officer and security professional and has made hundreds of arrests and been injured on the job more than once.

He has written curriculum on the university level, served as a lead missionary, and is desperately in love with Joyce. He is training his grandchildren not to be snowflakes. At an age when many are thinking of retirement, Bob is working a 60-hour week and awaits being taken up in a whirlwind many years in the future.


Published in
Black Belt Magazine
Combat Handguns
Handloader
Rifle Magazine
Handguns
Gun Digest
Gun World
Tactical World
SWAT Magazine
American Gunsmith
Gun Tests Magazine
Women and Guns
The Journal Voice of American Law Enforcement
Police Magazine
Law Enforcement Technology
The Firearms Instructor
Tactical World
Concealed Carry Magazine
Concealed Carry Handguns



Books published

Holsters for Combat and Concealed Carry
The 1911 Automatic Pistol
The Handgun in Personal Defense
The Illustrated Guide to Handgun Skills
The Hunter and the Hunted
The Gun Digest Book of Personal Defense
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911 second edition
Dealing with the Great Ammunition Shortage
Commando Gunsmithing
The Ultimate Book of Gunfighting
Preppers Guide to Rifles
Preppers Guide to Shotguns
The Accurate Handgun
The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (6)

  1. I recently inherited my great-grandfather’s Winchester 1890 gallery gun in .22 short. I researched the serial number and it appears to have been manufactured in 1894. It’s a real beaut with mother of pearl inlays and has a neat takedown screw to seperate the stock from the action for easy transport. It’s been well taken care of over the years. There’s few signs of wear and tear and the action runs smooth. It’s really a neat, fun little firearm. I wish it was given to me at age 9 instead of age 39 but I’m delighted to have it nonetheless. It will continue to be passed down the generations.

  2. My favorite is an inheritance from my wife’s deceased Uncle. A 1948 Winchester Model 61 that is in beautiful condition. Over it’s life someone (her Uncle) took poly-urethane and put a coat on the stock. First thing I did was to strip that crap off the rifle and then hand rubbed boiled linseed oil into the beautiful wood. It is quite the conversation piece at the range when I dust it off and go shooting. I love the way it shoots short, long, and long rifle.

  3. To take the time to write such a detailed review and not shoot a .22 short. That would be main reason for me to purchase it? Please do a complete article next time. Do you need a few .22 shorts shells? WOW

  4. I’ve owned two of these one .22 and one .22 mag. Wonderful guns. Mine were on the old Winchester design though.

  5. The first gun I shot (late 1950s) was my dad’s old Remington 22 semi-auto, designed by Browning, and still sold under the Browning brand. I also remember finding these Remingtons at shooting galleries that were common at county fairs.
    Then around 1964 I bought a Winchester semi-auto that I still have, and it is very accurate at distance.
    Now I find lever action .22 about the most fun to shoot, and have a couple of Henrys also used to train grandkids in shooting. Non semi-autos are safer for new shooters as a jumpy trigger finger won’t fire an unexpected followup shot before they learn safer trigger control.

  6. My favorite .22 is my Belgium made Browning auto which has a Leopold Compact mounted on it. It’s been my favorite .22 for years. I had a pump action .22 when I was a kid and it was a fine gun and if I remember correctly made by Remington. But that was over 55 years ago so I don’t remember much about it except its accuracy! I believe it was a model 572. I believe it was modeled after the 870 pump shotgun that Remington has made for years. I bagged a squirrel with that little .22 at roughly 40 yards with a good clean shot.

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