I obliterate an orange chunk of clay pigeon, then knock an empty shotgun shell down the berm, seeking and destroying bits of junk at about 35 yards with an Aimpoint sight.

There are still a few of the magazine’s 20 rounds left, and I look for more things to obliterate. This is a blast. It’s a great way to spend a Thursday. And it sure looks like I’m shooting a real-deal Heckler & Koch G36. But, of course, I’m not.

The rifle in my hands at the range is a little enigmatic. The box and receiver are both stamped with the famous Heckler & Koch logo, and the model “HK G36.” The box also says “.22 Tactical Rimfire,” and below that, “Made by Carl Walther, Germany.

It is imported by Walther Arms of America, which sells a vast array of rimfire replicas, including officially licensed models from Heckler & Koch and Israeli Weapons Industries (IWI), as well as its own series of centerfire pistols. In other words, you can get a Walther PPK like James Bond or a rimfire replica of an Uzi carbine with a 16.1-inch barrel.

The G36 .22 looks exactly like its identically sized, identically proportioned centerfire counterpart. In hand, it feels a bit more like Walther’s rimfire guns. It’s light. Its construction is primarily polymer, encapsulating the steel components that comprise its dedicated firearm workings. Its sights are polymer, its magazine is polymer and its safety switch is polymer (externally, anyway). But inside, it’s a proper firearm with a steel barrel and bolt, built with a very clever design and beefed up to take plenty of abuse.

So while it looks authentic, it feels like a recreation, and while it is a dedicated recreation (of the 5.56mm G36), this G36 .22 stands completely on its own merits. Before shooting the rifle, I took it apart to understand it better.

To read the entire story on the Walther HK G36 .22 Replica Rifle, please visit

This story was taken from the 2015 Complete Book of Rimfires. To subscribe, please visit For more information, visit or call 479-242-8500.

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