Hammerli 100 free pistol: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Hammerli 100
Hammerli model 100 free pistol.

A history of airguns

  • Hammerli or Haemmerli?
  • Hammerli 100
  • What’s free about it?
  • Martini action
  • The side lever
  • Trigger
  • Special grips

Hammerli or Haemmerli?

Before we dive in to today’s report, a word about the spelling I have used. It is incorrect. The correct spelling of the Swiss firm uses an umlaut (two small dots) over the letter a (ä). Since the English alphabet doesn’t have umlauts, in our language the letter e follows the a — sometimes kerned closely to it. The umlaut sounds like a diphthong (aha! caught you napping in English class, didn’t we?) that most native English-speakers have difficulty pronouncing. The letter e forces our way of saying it as close as English speakers can normally come to the correct German pronunciation. That’s okay, though — most Germans cannot pronounce Connecticut, and Brits all get aluminum wrong. And, this discussion is superfluous, since almost all American shooters pronounce it Hammerelli, anyway.

Hammerli 100

Today’s pistol is a single shot .22 rimfire target pistol that’s used in world cup competition and in the Olympics. Nearly all Hammerli’s are chambered for .22 long rifle cartridges, but a few were chambered for .22 extra long — an obsolete rimfire cartridge that was longer than a long rifle and a little more powerful in the 19th century, when the cartridges were loaded with black powder. Production of that cartridge ceased in 1935, making anything chambered for it a collectible rather than a shooter.

The first free pistol Hammerli made was the model 33. Actually, the model 100 we are examining today is the same gun. The company changed hands and the model number was changed at that time. This model is widely considered to be the Holy Grail of all free pistols.

The gun has London 1948 and Helsinki 1952, plus the Olympic rings inscribed on the right side of the action. Hammerli swept the podium both years. And, in 1956, American Huelet (Joe) Benner won the only U.S. Olympic gold medal ever in free pistol with a Hammerli 100.

Hammerli 100 inscriptions
At the 1948 Olympics in London, Hammerli 100 free pistols swept the Olympic podium. They did it again in Helsinki in 1952.

What’s free about it?

It’s called a free pistol. So why do they cost over $1,000, and often over $2,000? There’s nothing free about that! The word free refers to the design parameters of the pistol. The pistol must be held in one hand, only, and no other body part may touch it while shooting. The design of the grips is unrestricted, other than they cannot extend back beyond the hand. They can wrap around your hand and hold you so securely that you have to shake hands with the pistol to get into the grip. The sights must be non-optical and lasers are not permitted. Other than that, these guns are fairly free from restrictions.

The barrel length is unrestricted. The barrel on my pistol is 11-1/8-inches long and is octagonal. They did come in other lengths, but each length has a different weight associated with it and a different balance. The weight of the gun is unrestricted. This is a pistol built for just one purpose — shooting the highest score in a 60-shot offhand match at 50 meters in two hours. Compared to a free pistol a 10-meter air pistol has a greater number of restrictions that limit the design.

Martini action

The Hammerli has a Martini action, which is generically called a falling block. The breech block is pivoted at the rear and drops in the front to allow a single cartridge to be loaded. But the lever for the block is not the one I thought. On the left side of the action is a lever that moves down to do something, but it doesn’t have anything to do with the breech block or with cocking the gun.

Hammerli 100 action
The Martini action tips down in front to gain access to the breech. You can see the pivot pin on the right side of the picture. The breech open like this is the normal condition for the pistol — the striker is then uncocked and the breech is open and exposed for examination.

The action remains open (breech block down so you can see into the breech) when the gun is uncocked. A lever beneath the grip is pushed back to raise the breech block and cock the striker. If you want to uncock the action, this lever has a locking tab built into its back. Restrain the main lever and push the locking tab forward and the breech block will lower under the striker spring tension. Once the block is all the way down, push on the back of the locking tab (towards the muzzle) and the extractor slides back, removing the cartridge from the chamber.

Hammerli 100 lever
Pull this lever back (to the left) to close the breech block and cock the striker. Push forward on the tab (arrow) to unlock the lever and uncock the action. Push the lever all the way forward to move the cartridge extractor.

Hammerli 100 extractor
When the lever is pushed forward, the extractor moves back.

There is no ejector. The empty cartridge is removed from the action by hand and the pistol may be reloaded or left with the breech block down, which is a safe condition. It can then be laid on the shooting table where the range officer can easily see that it is unloaded and safe.

The side lever

The lever on the left side of the action cocks or sets the trigger. You can load the pistol and cock the striker by moving the lever at the bottom of the grip to the rear, but even then (cocked and loaded) the gun will not fire until this lever is pushed down. The trigger must be cocked or set by pushing down on the lever until a small click is heard. I say “set” because that is what the process reminds me of — the setting of a single- or double-set trigger. This is also how the pistol is dry-fired.

When the pistol first arrived I fiddled with this lever, trying to discover what it did. I discovered the breech block lever pretty quick, but even when the breech was closed and the action obviously cocked the gun would not fire. Also, I couldn’t make the gun go into a dry-fire mode, and free pistol shooters do as much dry-firing as 10-meter air pistol shooters — at least 5 shots dry for every shot with a live round.

Then I tried pushed the side lever down with a little force. Voila — the trigger clicked and was set. Setting it and leaving the breech block open is for dry firing. When you want to fire the gun, load a cartridge and close the breech. Then set the trigger and the gun will fire. Not only is this setup fantastically safe and ergonomic, it is designed to work with the gun gripped in the right hand for shooting. Did they make them for lefties? I don’t really know. If they did, they are probably extremely rare.

Hammerli 100 side lever
This is the lever that I thought was used to cock the gun. It’s actually used to set the trigger. Push the lever down until you hear a soft click.

Trigger

The single-stage trigger is adjustable to break from 30 grams to 150 grams, if my research is correct. The trigger on my pistol is currently set at 60 grams, which is about as light as most fine European 5-lever double-set triggers. Don’t think of the double-set triggers on Kentucky rifles. They are coarse by comparison. This trigger is in a class by itself. In fact, it would be too light for me to operate safely if not for another brilliant innovation.

No doubt you have noticed that the trigger has a small screw in the center of the blade. I have wondered about this screw for over a half-century. Why is it there? Do you just press on the screw or is the rest of the blade involved? Now that I own the pistol I finally understand this design. Not all Hammerli free pistols have a trigger like mine, and of those that do, not all of them have the special grips that go with it.

Hammerli 100 trigger
The trigger has an adjustable screw in the center of the blade. Notice that the wood of the right grip panel extends past the rear of the triggerguard almost as far as the trigger. This is intentional, and its purpose is described in the text.

Special grips

Yes, I said special grips. They have more wood on the right panel where the trigger finger goes. They make the finger contact the trigger at its tip. And the finger doesn’t contact the trigger blade. It contacts just the head of the small screw. You can feel the trigger this way but not apply much force. After dry-firing the pistol a few dozen times I learned that this is intentional and gives me extremely fine control over the trigger. Not all Hammerli 100s have the screw in the trigger blade, and fewer still have a grip like this. This was made for a shooter who wanted the last word in trigger control.

Hammerli 100 trigger finger
The right grip places just the tip of the trigger finger against the head of the screw in the blade. The control you get from this arrangement has to be experienced to be fully appreciated.

There is no trigger stop, but with this grip you don’t need one. The trigger stops at the release point. It’s difficult to explain, but this trigger is much superior to the trigger on a 10-meter air pistol.

Summary

I have read all I can find on the Hammerli 100 pistol in every resource available to me. I have put more factual information about the gun and how it works in this one report than I have been able to find in all those other sources. I have heard of German books on target pistols and free pistols that probably have everything you see here and a lot more, but I haven’t examined them yet.

There is much more to cover on just the overall characteristics of the pistol, so Part 2 will be a continuation of the description.

90 thoughts on “Hammerli 100 free pistol: Part 1


  1. B.B.,

    It’s been years since I studied linguistics, but the IPA phonetic symbol for the vowel sound in “cat” and ‘bat” is æ . The archaic alphabetical letter of that shape appeared in earlier versions of English, although I do not recall seeing it in Chaucer, so perhaps it wasn’t present in Middle English. I do remember for certain that it was pronounced the same as cat or bat. So Hæmmerli is every bit as correct as Hämmerli.

    Also, that is one strange looking grip, but I’ll bet it feels as if it were an extension of your hand.

    Michael


    • Michael,

      When I speak to a European about the Hammeri I pronounce it HAY mer li. The sound is different than the soft “a” in cat. And I have been told by Germans that I don’t quite pronounce it correctly, even with that.

      I will have a lot more to say about the grip of this pistol! It was what intrigued me the most about the gun.

      B.B.


      • B.B.,

        Sorry about getting into all of this, but this is one of the things I periodically do at work. I am drawn to subjects such as this as a moth is drawn to a flame.

        The correct sound in Hammerli is likely the same as in “hammer,” black,” “snack,” shack” and “hack.” I would (and do) pronounce Hammerli as “HAM-er-lee / hammer-lee.”

        Michael


  2. Hello BB and Fellow Airguners
    Thank you so much for bringing these spectacular target pistols to our attention. As I gaze in wonder at the shear beauty of design, I can’t help wondering how the gunsmiths of the day delivered form, and function into one classic package. There is no denying that the most modern makers of target shooters today offer superior accuracy thanks to computer designed triggers, sound baffles, etc. However, these guns are pure function, with very little thought given to eye pleasing lines. I suppose I could learn to love them after proving their modern design gives me a far better chance of a podium finish. After all, winning medals is what these guns are designed to do. They really have no other purpose. Perhaps my prejudice for the Hammerli 100 free pistols comes from a nostalgic point of view. I haven’t given a thought to the scores they are capable of shooting. For me, it is purely a case of love at first sight. Not likely to be a popular view point with the target shooters reading this blog. But I must add in my defence, I would also prefer a 55′ Chevy Belair 2 door hardtop over any 2016 model of Cadillac. Mind you, the Chevy must contain a few upgrades strictly for safety, and reliability sake. Brakes, suspension, blue printed motor, etc, etc.
    Ciao
    Titus


    • Titus,

      I will have a lot more to say about the ergonomics of the Hammerli 100 in future reports. Now that I own one and can compare it to the Morini 10-meter pistol I have recently tested, my eyes have been opened much wider.

      B.B.


    • I might suggest the ’56 as (if I recall correctly…and I may well not…) it had the added attraction of a V8 option and the blessed retraction of the color “Coral” option to the paint job. Don’t ask me how I know this…just accept my remembrance of being subjected to early teen (sensitive) years with a “Pink” car representing myself and the family.
      But it got worse. The story of painting the house trim and the garage to match is a story for another day.


  3. B.B.,

    Congrat’s on your new toy. I loved your description of all the how and whys of the unique design features. 60 shots in 2 hours and at 50 meters,…wow. That sounds slow, but when I thought about it,.. it seems about right and in fact I can imagine that 10 shots in and it would start to feel like a Marathon. That is a long time to hold extreme concentration, while fighting off mental and physical fatigue.

    I would imagine that shells were/are hand loaded with specific/custom powder charges and bullet weights that suits the individual shooter?

    Chris


    • Chris,

      This pistol is a .22 long rifle. There is no possibility to handload a rimfire cartridge. You are 100 percent at the mercy of the ammunition makers. That’s one reason why free pistol scores will never be as high as air pistol scores.

      I will have more to say about that in future reports.

      B.B.


      • B.B.,

        Ok. For those not familiar with re-loading, could you please explain why? (rim fire re-loading).

        As with airguns, weighing and sorting, I would think that this would be the ultimate (option) in free style.

        Still new, still learning, thus the question.

        Thanks, Chris


        • Chris USA
          The primer charge is in the rim of the cartridge. That’s why it’s called a rimfire.

          Look at a 9mm cartridge for example. See the primer in the center of the back of the cartridge. Also known as a centerfire round. That primer will come out of the primer cavity. And can be replaced with a new primer. Shot gun shells are the same. That’s why them type can be reloaded.

          But that’s why you can’t reload a normal rimfire cartridge. There is no way to put a new primer charge in the cartridge.



            • Chris,

              That could work, but the danger of running a rimfire case through a reloading press where the mechanical force might set off the priming compound is too great. Centerfire primers are very safe, by comparison.

              Also, you lose the economy of the reused cartridge case.

              B.B.


        • 0h, but yes, rim-fire cartridges can be reloaded. The problem is, the term “successfully” needs to be defined.
          In my (not entirely recorded) travels in Southeast Asia during the late 1960’s, if one were look for reloaded .22 rim-fire ammunition, one was directed to the local merchant with the least amount of remaining fingers. That would be the most experienced reloader of rim-fire ammunition.
          Clear?


        • Chris,

          To reload a cartridge, you have to be able to replace the primer. In rimfire cartrdges, the priming compound in in the rim of the cartridge. It is a one-time proposition — like flashbulbs used to be. One and done.

          B.B.


  4. BB,

    Now THAT is a .22 pistol. It is also obvious that it is every bit as old as I am.

    The Martini action has always been one of my favorite actions. I have been kicking a big bore air rifle design around in my head for some time that would use this style action.

    Nice. 🙂


    • RR,

      When my shooting buddy, Otho, saw this action he wondered where he could get a barrel full of them for projects.

      If you like Martini actions, you should look into the .310 Cadet. It uses a small action for pistol sized cartridges.

      B.B.


      • BB&RR, Enjoyed this blog today, and are glad that you included it although it is a firearm. You don’t seem to discuss topics like this much these days here and I miss that. IMO,The blog was much more active than now ,when we had those discussions. I wonder what happened to your quest with the Ballard? Your friend Otho’s comment that he’d wished that he could get a barrel full of those Martini actions , takes me back to the late 1960’s when you could buy them for as little as $5, and whole guns for $25. Of course money was worth more then. If you look around today there are now brand new guns ,airguns included , that will be collector guns to buy now, to sell later to obtain other guns you may want in the future, and project mules that will become unobtainium in the future. In airguns , the crosman pistols , and surplus finds like the Luznik Walther LP-53 clones that were briefly available five or six years ago for cheap come to mind. The Benji, pumpers ,used and new are others…


        • Robert,

          Nice to hear from you!

          I gave the Ballard away. Edith and I had designated it for someone, and she was to give it to him when I passed away. Well, that didn’t go according to plan. Since I can only do something while I am here on Earth, I decided it was time to give it to him. I got my enjoyment from it and hopefully he will now have time to do the same.

          As far as doing more firearm reports, I completely agree with you. I do need to do more of them, because they help me ex[lain things in a different way that carries through to airguns very well. They also attract new readers who then discover how wonderful airguns are. So, look for more firearms reports.

          B.B.


      • BB,

        I used to have one quite a few years back that had been rechambered for 32-20 and like a fool I sold it. I would really like to have one of those again.


  5. B.B.

    Thanks for a great article on a VERY interesting gun. Why is this trigger so much better than a 10 meter air pistol trigger. I would think that if it was so much better that they would “reverse engineer”/ copy it! The screw in the trigger is fascinating. Do you think that many air gun shooters would benefit from setting up their triggers this was. I really can see how it would give better finger feedback. Are there any diagrams of the trigger?

    Thanks again,

    -Yogi


    • Yogi,

      You are asking a question that will take several more reports to answer. The reason this trigger CAN be better (lighter) than a 10-meter air pistol trigger is because this is a FREE pistol, as in free from restrictions. The air pistol trigger can be set no lighter than 500 grams for a match. This trigger can go down to 30 grams. Even if a trigger this fine could be put on a 10-meter air pistol, And I am certain that would be possible, it would not be allowed in matches. So the point is moot.

      But the design of the grip that positions the tip of the trigger finger against the screw head of the trigger is what gives you fabulous control. That probably wouldn’t work on a 500-gram trigger.

      B.B.


  6. This article once again made me think about one of my hero’s, Károly Takács. Please look him up!
    So how is this gun different from the ones that they will be using in Rio?
    -Y


    • Yogi,

      I looked him up. Apparently, he was the man who won the gold in London and again in Helsinki with a Hammerli 100. The inscription on the gun is partly due to his shooting. He finished eighth in 1956. So, they did make a left-hand version of the gun.

      B.B.



  7. What a beautiful piece!!! Trigger better than on a ten-meter pistol? Now that is impressive!

    Would love to have something like that for target shooting. Unfortunately, any pistol over 500 fps is classed as a restricted weapon in Canada and subject to all kinds of stupid regulations.

    Judging by the gang shootings reports on the news these days, the pistol regulations that have been around over 50 years and have done nothing to prevent criminals from getting pistols – it just restricts ownership by the law-abiding citizens.

    Very nice pistol B.B.! Looking forward to hearing more about it.

    Cheers,
    Hank


    • Vana2
      You know the old saying “When guns are outlawed only outlaws will have guns ”

      Still true today if not more so in fact.

      You know my thoughts on that subject.

      BD


  8. BB,
    Neat pistol. I love getting a new to me airgun and then doing all the research to read everything I can get my hands on about the gun. It is probably my favorite part of airgunning. I can see you are enjoying the same thirst for information on this pistol. Very cool. Do you know any of the ancestry or history of your particular pistol? It is fun for me to find out all the people that have owned a particular gun. It isn’t very often, but sometimes I can trace a gun through several hands and tuners.

    David Enoch


    • David,

      I don’t know any history about this gun. All I can tell is it was never used by a serious competitor, because the grips are still pristine. A competitor would have carved them and filled them with wood putty to fit his hand. That makes this pistol a more serious collectible, as it is still in 96 percent condition.

      B.B.


  9. Beautiful!! Just looking at it says “Sexy”! I’ll bet it calls to you to pick it up and just slide your hand into its grip and feel the way it just belongs there! WOW! Do you think I could convert that trigger to my Discovery? It could use a little a little help.
    Bruce



      • BB,
        The pleasures we get from our “toys” is what makes it so enjoyable to get your hands on pieces like this! I recently got a chance to shoot an FX Cyclone and it just felt ” right”. It’s the kind of thing that always keeps you striving to shoot up to the full potential of your guns!
        Bruce


  10. BB
    You mentioned a while back you were getting this pistol and showed a picture of one. I said I had a few questions back then about the pistol but said I would wait to the report. Well here they are.

    First you answered this one already. How to load and cock the gun. The next was the trigger. In the picture of the pistol you showed a while back I couldn’t see the whole trigger. Only what I thought was a pin. Which now I can see is the screw. What a excellent way to control your trigger finger. And last question for now. You mention 50m. I know your not to that point in the report yet of you shooting it. But what kind of groups was expected from this type of pistol in competion?


  11. That would be a great pistol to try some Wolf Match Extra ammo in. Ninety nine percent of the rimfire bench rest shooters I know use it or the same type of ammo under the Lapua name.

    Mike


  12. BB,
    Do you plan to do any more articles about your bugelspanner dart gun? Last article I was able to find was a part 2 where you had it all torn down. I’d be interested what kind of velocity that you could get out of darts and pellets.

    Brent


  13. Present perfect continuous “that’s used in world cup competition and the Olympics”? This pistol isn’t still competing is it? If so I would expect it to cost a lot more than $1000.

    Matt61


  14. B.B.,

    And then there is me, still calling it Hammereli (hammer-ellie) in spite of being informed a couple of times I was mistaken.

    Thank you for another interesting report.

    ~ken


  15. As you have noted,, this is a “collector” piece. But you own it,, and have been a competitive shooter at a high level. How difficult is it for you to refrain from doing the carving and filling needed to make it a perfect fit for your hand?? Or are you satisfied to leave it as is, the better for admiring ( and resale value)?
    Ed


  16. Hi Everybody, I shoot a Morini 84E in 50M pistol; It too has a falling block action..
    It also has Morini wrap around grips that provide a completely different experience
    than the anatomical grips common to ten meter APs. Also, don’t be fooled into thinking
    a less than one ounce trigger yields the best shooting advantage. My Morini 84E can
    be adjusted down to 20 grams; but for me it is unsafe because it is uncontrollable.

    I have the pull set to release at 100g. 22lr ammunition is something to be tested at
    50 meters. I have found that even the discontinued Eley Sport will group into the
    ten ring but not into the inner ten ring….That’s right, there are two ten rings on both
    10M AP and 50M pistol targets. I use Eley “Target”(yellow box) for free pistol match
    shooting. My son uses a Pardini PGP 75(35 year old Free pistol) and some impossible
    to get Czech 22lr ammunition; and he always out scores me. It is always the shooter that
    is a greater factor in precision pistol shooting.

    If anyone is curious what the Pardini PGP 75 and Morini 84E look like, just search Google.
    I love shooting 10M air pistol, but I prefer shooting Free Pistol. B.B. I wish you great
    enjoyment with your Model 100.

    Tony G


  17. Aluminum/Aluminium is an oddity, it was actually a deliberate decision to pop in the extra “i” to make it trip from the tongue better when listed with other metals, a slight arrogance really given it is actually an American word.
    That said, given the maiming you colonials have given my mother tongue, one small slight is poor redress (the spell check on anything I write on here ordinarily has half a dozen italicised (note lack of zed, note that’s zed not zee) “corrections” to American English. This would be more forgiveable if the British hadn’t invented both the computer and the very internet that now seeks to surreptitiously destroy our language 🙂
    I assuage my annoyance by telling myself that language is an ever changing thing and all of us would baffle someone from the 19th century.



      • Only in with my tongue in my cheek
        Though if you could retract the phrase “gotten” from the English pantheon I’d be delighted…an Americanism so insidious I find myself using it.
        As for the modern phrase “can I get a Cappacino etc” as a request….I froth worse than the machine.
        May I have?, is the correct question, sure you can get a Cappacino, you can get them all day….if you work behind the counter….
        Aaaah an ageing reactionary’s lot is not a happy one.
        Just as well English is an illogical hodge podge of Nordic, Occotan, Gaelic, French, Latin and Greek otherwise you’d get precious about it 🙂 .



    • Dom,

      “Before you lot”,…..who speaks like that???? 😉 Really though…… I admire anyone that can speak more than one language. And,…. I do find it very interesting as to how other people in other country’s speak/write English,…. at least the U.S.A. version of it,…. with your own unique “twist”. 🙂

      As for the correct pronunciation,…… I won’t even touch that!



        • GF1,

          Sooooo,…. that would kind of be like your smart phone? You type in one thing,…and it spits out something altogether different than what you intended to say. 😉

          Really, I do admire the differences in languages. Thanks for the info. I did not know that something like that existed.







                    • I threatened to get rid of mine and get a new one. It just don’t care. It does what it pleases when it wants.

                      Maybe I should let my teenage daughters get ahold of it for a while. If anybody can.They are sure to be the ones to get it straightened out.


                    • Reb
                      Got to use a better paddle than a 2240 for these new smart phones since they probably put the hard cover book in their pants before they go to the office for the whipping.

                      BD


                    • Reb
                      I got a three year old IPhone 5 that has been in a life force case since I got it and has seen coolant, oil, and water plus concrete and metal impacts and dunking’s and is still going strong. I have to admit the life force case is no longer water or liquid proof anymore since the rubber seal on the ringer/vibrate switch has torn and fell off but I don’t work in the repair fields anymore either so have not had it fall out of my top pocket into drain pans of oil or coolant either.

                      BD


                  • GHF1
                    Yea I did not think about giving it to your girls as I am sure they can get it behaving in no time. See you have the luxury of in house tech gurus 24/7, I have just me and my old skool hope and a prayer try everything I know how to and hope it still works when I am done strategy.

                    My smart phone works for what I want it to do so I just don’t over work it and it does not complain.

                    Really don’t need a smart phone as all I do is talk, text and take pics but you cannot get the plain Jane phones anymore that will last more than a few months being dropped like I do mine all the time, thank goodness for a life force case.

                    BD


                    • My HTC has proven to be durable.
                      I’ve seen lots of broken screens and that was a major selling point for this model because I knew I’d be dropping it.



  18. B.B.

    That pistol is so beautiful. I would need to wear gloves to touch it. You are lucky to have it.

    The only gun I have with a light trigger is a Thompson Center Hawkins black powder. It has double-set triggers. I shot it in a black powder club in the late 1970’s. I polished and set the trigger as light as I could. That was one trigger that I did not pull. It was more like a light touch. I never set the trigger till I was on target and never take the gun off target until shot or put back on half cock.

    The double-set triggers made it a good target gun but not for hunting. I took it pig hunting one time and did not feel safe setting the trigger in an uncontrolled environment. The trigger could be pulled without the set. I figured that would work. It would have if I had not shot the gun so much on targets. I got a sight on a pig and stood there touching the trigger until it ran away. After that if I took it hunting I would increase the pull and take some practice shots. Never did get much hunting with it though. And so much work to clean. But what a sweet trigger.

    Can’t wait to see how you match up the two pistols.

    Don



  19. Tom,

    I enjoy your writings much, here and elsewhere. I’ve always coveted the Hammerli 100, but never found one I could afford to buy. People don’t sell them, and why would anybody? A few years ago, CDNN imported a few minty Russian TOZ 35 pistols, which are a virtual clone of the Hammerli 100. I bought one, with wood case, and then duplicated all the accessories which were missing from the inside. I know that many will moan that they are not the same quality, but I would beg to differ. I have a few hundred guns, sometimes build them, and have been reloading/shooting for over 60 years. I am also into high end PCP air guns, which are far more accurate than most firearms. So quality is always what I am looking for, and I am not easily satisfied.

    That being background for my comments, I am confident that no serious target shooter, or anybody who appreciates fine firearms, would be dissatisfied with either the Hammerli 100 or the TOZ 35. They are simply in a class apart from all other pistols. They are the final word. If you miss, it is your fault, or that of the ammo. To find out how skilled you are, you must be using a pistol that is at least as good as you are, or better. Either of these will do that, and the TOZ costs a lot less…if you can ever find one.

    My TOZ 35 does have one more trigger adjustment which is lacking on the Hammerli. The TOZ trigger face’s left/right angle can be adjusted to fit your finger tip exactly.

    But until you own one of these two models (or preferably both), you will not know what a truly fine target pistol is. Nope, they ain’t “tactical”, don’t have 47-round magazines, and won’t appeal to those who like pickup trucks with 50″ tires, high risers, and blue neon lights on the underbody. But who cares? They shoot into the same hole, over and over and over. If not, there is something wrong with your machine rest. 🙂

    Phil


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