For field use and all around carry, I would much prefer the 6" barrel to the 9". I never saw a Browning anything that would not shoot----If I wanted it, I would say go for it. I have not personally shot Buckmarks---my dealings in 22 semiautos is with Ruger---mine is 4" barrel in their 22-45. I would actually prefer the 4" over the 6" for ease of carry since it still shoots good, but that is to each his own. You may find the 6" to be a good compromise---Good luck in whatever you decide.
I have a 6", they are accurate for sure... My cousin has one as well, he has had problems with the screw in the rear sight coming loose, (you take thos loose to break it down as well) and then accuracy goes poop... It was a bad flaw in the making in my opinion, other than that and the little plastic recoil buffer/stop breaking I have not seen any problems with them
a friend owned the silhoutte and I have the 5.5 one. I shot both and mine kept up with his until we got out beyond 25 yards and I must say at 50-75 I was very impressed with his. I think his was a 10-12 inch barrel though.
with the 5.5 slab sided bull barrel. Haven't shot it in 10 years, but I always liked the way it shot. It preferred Federal Hi-Power and CCI Mini Mags. The Federals shot cleaner. Wax on the bullets seems to collect dirt in the entire action.
Bbl length in a pistol is related to accuracy basically from a sighting
standpoint. The longer sight radius will allow a mathematically finer "hold". Ransom resting pistols reveals zero difference in 50 yd accuracy in relation to bbl length. Bullseye shooters (Camp Perry types) use a longer bbld pistol once they reach a high level of ability to gain the sighting advantage. The long sight radius will drive a new shooter nutz as this is a one handed, unsupported discipline.
If you are in the woods and obviously not competing by the Marcus of Queensbury Rules, carry whatever bbl length you want to put up with. If you are going to use some form of optics and not shoot "irons", then accuracy because of bbl length is a moot point.
The best thing you can do for accuracy is to buy a half dozen brands/styles of ammo and see which ones 1) funcion reliably and 2) give the best groups.
As you have realized by now, every bbl is different. Some find the cheapo will shoot as well in their particular pistol as a box of Eley costing 2-3x as much. Some are more highly lubed (waxed) and that can create problems so you pays your $$ and takes your chances.
I am still sorting out my Mod 41 as to reliability feeding and it seems that there are about 2-3% FTfire because of lack of priming compound - indexing them 3 times and still not going bang. Going to try some CMP ammo next and see how it fares. I have personally found the Rem bulk and Subsonic to be pretty dismal quality control wise.
I know this rambled, just can't quite get all the synapses firing in order this AM.
TAJ45, there is another benefit of having a longer barrel
I think that when using more powerful hunting type ammo, having a longer barrel allows for a more complete and consistent burn of the powder.
That said, having a 10 or 14" barrel on a handgun makes things so awkward that I think it kind of defeats the whole purpose of using a handgun. After all, why not bring a light rifle, if the handgun is going to be that bulky?
My 53 year old eyes are not what they used to be. Although they have never been all that good, since my vision went downhill in the 4th grade. Anyway, I would definitely recommend using an electronic sight or scope for any serious handgun hunting. Sighting is just so much easier.
I don't use iron sights anymore on any guns other than self-defense pistols. On my shotguns, i've installed fiber-optic sights, mainly the excellent EasyHit from Sweden.
Love mine and here she is. BTW hey Clint, regarding your cousins with a loose rear sight... I had the same deal, called Browning and they said we will look into it. They redesigned it, admitted problem, redid rear sight design and gave me a freebie. Can't beat that with a stick and all it took was a pic from me and a phone call. Browning has their stuff together. Good firearms.
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