One of the most important elements of having a fun and successful Appleseed (and earning that coveted patch!) is having a rifle that you’re comfortable with and that works well.
That doesn’t mean you have to go out and spend a ton of money on custom build or fancy ammo, it just means you need to be familiar with your rifle and take care of it.
There are two “recommended” rifles for Appleseed:
– Ruger 10/22
– Marlin 795
The above two rifles are great — inexpensive, reliable and perfect for Appleseed nearly right out of the box. No matter which rifle you bring, you’ll want to make sure you have a proper sling for it. I recommend the sling from the Appleseed Store and some Uncle Mike’s sling swivels.
Notes and thoughts on the sling itself could take up pages and pages of info, so I’ll leave that to the experts but rest assured, you’ll learn plenty about how to use it at the event. Just make sure you can attach it to your rifle.
For known-distance shoots, many folks bring AR-15s, M1 Garands or other centerfire rifles. All the skills you learn at 25 yards translate directly to hits at 200, 300 and 400 yards. Bring whatever you want to shoot (so long as it’s allowed at the range!).
When I decided to attend my first Appleseed, I went out and picked up a used 10/22 at a local store. As luck would have it, the last owner had already installed Tech Sights on it, which saved me from having to do that myself. If you buys yours new, I’d definitely recommend the Tech Sights. It can be a bit of a pain to remove the factory sights but there are plenty of tutorials available on YouTube.
You’ll also want to pick up a handful of spare mags. Don’t go nuts and buy big ones (they’ll screw you up in prone and are unreliable), the 10 rounders are perfect. I’d recommend a minimum of 4, but 5-6 is ideal.