Anschutz 54.18 MS-ED

Just a bit of Anschutz Metallic Silhouette history you may not know. Here is an article published in the March-April 1986 edition of 'Rifle' by Layne Simpson. It's a very detailed description of my rifle.

54-18MS-ED Anschutz.PDF

I bought my 54.18, new, in 1989. I wanted the most accurate factory .22 single action rimfire rifle I could afford. I lusted  after the heart-the 5018 trigger (lock time 1.7 milliseconds), and the soul-the Model 54 action from the then top of the heap Super Match 1813.  

I don't shoot position. I wanted to have a benchrest rimfire ammo tester. This package, the 54.18MS-ED, was a great compromise. The 5018 trigger and Model 54 action in a silhouette package! Decent stock (I love the Wundhammer swell); and great barrel, for a good deal less. I wasn't paying for the adjustable ergonomics of the 1813. How could this be wrong?

My friend Gary, he of the Dan Wesson custom 44 mag - (click here 'WidowMaker' )   project, made the delrin sleeve. It provides a 3" benchrest width. The slip-on sleeve adds good weight, enhancing the stability and rigidity of the whole shooting platform.  I need all the help stabilizing and shooting for accuracy I can get. I ended up not shooting it much. 

I left it in the safe until about 2007/08. I then decided to seriously test to see what 22 ammo it liked. Probably due to modern ammo this rifle shoots a lot better groups than the one Mr. Simpson tested. You can see from the excel I use a minimum of 3 targets, 15 groups, for each ammo test, to get a better comparative average.

 I broke the stock. To read about its repair go here - Stock Repair - excellent artisan.

My Anschutz 54.18MS-ED 22 rimfire rifle.








Ammo Testing

The whole point here is to determine what specific ammo (how accurate) this particular rife loves,  shot @ 50yards.

Here is a compilation of ammo testing I did in the fall of 2007. I know it's old but it had good methodology. I used high quality, European Olympic quality match ammo. I indulged my passion, not a fortune. I had wanted to continue the 07 tests using a one-piece rest, getting as much of me out of the equation as possible. The designer/builder/machinist/benchrestshooter really let me down. He is without honour.

For this rife - fifty yards only.    I shoot 5 shot groups.    Five groups on a target.    I average the targets to get an accurate average/aggregate, per ammo type.

This testing is ongoing. I take every target, date, label, measure, enter into excel, and physically file the target, by ammo type, by date. I have a complete record of every group/target, in a 3 ring 3" binder, for this rifle. 

To derive my centre to centre I'm subtracting .20" bullet diameter from the group max diameter. That is the actual diameter of the hole in this weight of target paper I'm printing with my laser. Tried different weight paper to get the cleanest hole I could. Hard to accurately measure raggies. I also staple directly to the cardboard & clean off the old stapled targets to get better crispness. I give some away to the .224" folks but I feel I'm more accurate in my circumstance and I need accurate measurability through consistency and standards. 

You can see that I've shot a minimum of 15 groups, up to a max of 35 groups, per ammo test, to determine the 54.18 potential. There are 'tests' done and published, that use only one group. That is not representative. My excel spreadsheet really crunches the numbers to help me interpret the data and provides excellent comparative results. I believe I have a very controlled experiment. 

I use a Leupold 36x on this rifle.  I can't read the wind so I am either indoors or on bench, 1 or 16, tucked against a berm. 

After early testing I ended up buying a bunch of the Lapua Master M as my everyday fodder (house plonk). Before I tested the Eley.  
I will get my 54.18 out, 2013, for some experiments with some of the new generation Lapua. I have saved enough of the Lapua as the reference/benchmark against modification.

 Here is a jpg of my excel consolidation worksheet.

 I know that there are many rifles that make these groups look very large. I think the fun of this experiment was in showing the true differences of ammo within my baseline environment.

Here is a copy of one of the ammo data worksheets


Here are a couple of 50yard targets - Lapua Master M

I never 'chase' conditions, but hold each shot on the box centre.  I need to standardize my custom targets so I can at least get an idea of my score for comparison for ARA or 50x50.


.2373"  - Target 50yd - Average


.2628" - Target 50yd - Average

Please contact me with any questions or comments.  Happy to share - e-mail

for my latest rf accuracy experiment, non Anschutz,  please visit -


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