Review: Marlin Glenfield Model 60 .22 LR Classic

by Tommy Grant

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The Marlin Glenfield Model 60 is revered by many rimfire enthusiasts as one of the most accurate and affordable semi-auto .22 rifles made. This is especially true for those made before 1983. If you can get your hands on one, don’t pass it up.

Marlin began manufacturing the Model 60 in (you guessed it) 1960. It quickly became known as an affordable, reliable, and accurate rimfire rifle enjoyed by small-game hunters and .22 plinksters alike. Over the next 60 years, well over 11 million of the rifles were produced and sold. Model 60s were sold under the Glenfield name until 1983; and were sold under private-label names for JC Penney, Montgomery Ward, Western Auto, and others. Only the legendary Ruger 10/22 eventually surpassed the Model 60 in sales.

Marlin was acquired in 2008 by Remington Arms Co. Inc., which is a subsidiary of Freedom Group Co. of Madison, N.C.  Remington went bankrupt and was fully liquidated in September 2020. This halted production of the Model 60 for the first time. Later in 2020 Ruger announced the purchase of all of the Marlin Firearms assets from Remington Outdoor Company, Inc. Ruger President and CEO Chris Killoy assured that the Marlin brand and its products would live on, and word on the street is that Ruger will begin manufacturing the Model 60 again in the future.

Gun Specs

There were several features that attributed to the Model 60’s excellent accuracy. First, the Model 60 originally boasted a 22-inch barrel. Second, it included Marlin’s “Micro-Groove” rifling. Third, it was designed to only shoot .22 LR ammo. All of these factors combine to make the gun a true tack driver. Dad tells of shooting groundhogs in the head at 100 yards with the rifle, and I remember hitting crows at well over 100 yards with it.

Another popular feature in the original Model 60 is the tubular magazine that holds 18 rounds. (Author note: Marlin later reduced the magazine to 15-rounds in the late 1980s due to New Jersey state legislators.) There’s a certain nostalgia from loading the tube that evokes memories of my Daisy BB gun as a youngster. On top of that, firing 18 rounds of .22 from a semi-auto rifle will make any shooter smile with joy. It’s just plain fun to shoot.

Included are open rear and ramp front iron sights that are accurate enough for most .22 applications. With that said, I topped mine with a Bushnell 3x9x32 scope to maximize the rifle’s accuracy potential. Bushnell scopes are known as budget-friendly scopes with clarity comparable to scopes that cost double or more. This made it seem like a great match for the rifle.

The trigger is one downside of the gun. I haven’t measured the pull weight, but those who have say it clocks in at 5-7 pounds. The travel is long and gritty, and stacks as you pull it. With that being said, the trigger blade is ergonomic with a wide surface and ample curvature. With enough practice it can be learned and managed for excellent results.

If you’re looking for an affordable semi-auto .22 rifle that is a blast to shoot, the Marlin Glenfield Model 60 .22 LR rifle is an excellent choice. It’s surprisingly accurate and is a classic you’ll want to keep in your collection for a long time. For ammunition testing data, check out ShootingSavvy.com.

Factory Specifications

Caliber: .22 long rifle (will not accept .22 short or .22 long)
Barrel: 22 inches; includes Marlin’s patented “Micro-Groove” rifling
Overall Length: 40.5 inches
Weight: 5.8 pounds
Action: Semiautomatic
Sights: Open rear sight, adjustable for elevation and windage; ramp front sight. Receiver grooved for scope mount.
Finish: Blued steel barrel, black coated receiver
Capacity: 18-shot integral tubular magazine
Price: No longer in production. The Model 60 is worth an average price of $445 if you can find one new and around $250 used.

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