There’s a common thread in the shooting sports media and related social media that says, essentially: Real gun people don’t go for the flash. Real gunners are traditionalists, want the tried and true, and as far as a gun’s looks? The original is and was the best.
End of discussion.
Guess I’m not a real gun guy, then, because the first time I viewed a photo of the new Buck Mark Plus Vision UFX .22 caliber rimfire, from Browning North America, saw the red and black color pattern, the side cuts on the barrel sleeve and the long muzzle break, all I could think of was Star Wars–and I immediately loved the pistol!
Then I received a Plus Vision UFX to review and loved it all over again. It was extremely accurate, comfortable in hand, and just so damned much fun to shoot, and all of this wrapped up in the coolest looking pistol I’ve seen in forever.
Full disclosure: I’m tired of black-on-black rifles, the never-ending stream of concealed carry semi-auto clones, and the whopping firearm color options of black and brown and tan (the latter usually out of stock). In fact, I’m damned bored with it all. Give me some color and some flash, and, yes, also make sure it shoots lights out.
Browning provided all of this in the Buck Mark Plus Vision UFX.
The semi-automatic Buck Mark Plus Vision UFX is blow-back operated. The pistol is built on a precision machined aluminum frame, and that frame plus the alloy-sleeved steel barrel reduces the weight of this pistol by nearly nine (9) ounces compared to a similar model Buck Mark with a steel barrel.
The pistol features a TRUGLO/Marble Arms fiber-optic front sight and a 16-click adjustable Pro-Target adjustable rear sight. The combination came right to my eye and put me on target quickly. But the new Buck Mark also features an integrated optics rail ideal for adding a red dot sight.
The UFX in the model designation, by the way, refers to the UFX rubber over-molded grips, which are very comfortable and provided a really solid grip even when my hands were wet with perspiration.
The included muzzle brake reduces the already-tame 22 LR muzzle jump to almost nothing. Remove the muzzle brake and a suppressor can be attached to the pistol. The new Buck Mark comes with two magazines, single stacks that hold 10 rounds of 22 LR. And those rounds go into (and come out of) the magazines easily thanks to the handy loading tab on the left side of each mag.
At my range, I started off shooting the pistol using the open sights, and they were nicely visible even on overcast days. The rear sight clicked on target within a magazine’s worth of ammunition, while the Buck Mark’s nearly six-inch barrel provided a long sight radius of just over eight inches.
I shot and shot, over 500 rounds worth of 22 LR ammunition, and had one jam up when the pistol didn’t eject a spent rimfire brass all the way and it got held up in the chamber. One failure out of 500-plus rounds? I’ll take that.
Especially since I must admit I never cleaned the pistol. All I did was oil the bolt a couple of times.
The 22 LR ammunition I ran through the pistol included: Browning Ammunition BPR loaded with 40-grain black-oxide coated bullet; CCI Ammunition Clean22 Target and its red-tipped, polymer-coated bullet; Federal Premium AutoMatch with a solid, 40-grain load; and Winchester Wildcat with a copper-plated bullet rated at 1,300 feet per second at the muzzle.
I also tried out two 22 LR self-defense loads that appeared on the market recently: Federal Punch, loaded with a flat-nose 29-grain bullet; and, Winchester’s Silvertip sporting a 37-grain segmenting hollow point bullet.
All of the ammunition did fine in the Buck Mark. Some of my best groups included:
–Five shots at eight yards offhand at .75-inches with the Winchester Silvertip;
–Six shots at ten yards offhand at .80-inches using Federal Punch;
–And, six shots at 13 yards from a rest, a .74-inch group, with the Federal AutoMatch.
I concluded that any shooting at ten yards or less, offhand or rest, that didn’t produce a group of 1.0-inch or under was on me the shooter, the gun was so ridiculously accurate.
Curious to see what the pistol and I could do at somewhat longer distances, I mounted a Bushnell RXS-100 reflex sight onto the Buck Mark, which was easily done thanks to the pistol’s Picatinny rail.
The RXS-100 sat up high enough that I didn’t have to remove the open sights. The 1x25mm optic’s 4 MOA red dot reticle featured 1 MOA elevation and windage controls, plus eight (8) brightness settings. Very lightweight at just 1.3 ounces, the RXS-100 came with a Weaver-style low-rise mount that attached right to the Buck Mark’s rail. The optic itself sports the DeltaPoint footprint for direct mounting, too.
The RXS-100’s red LED illumination is powered by a single CR 2032 battery that loads through a side gate, too. For just under $100 suggested retail? It turned out to be a hell of a nice little optic for the Buck Mark.
At 25 yards and shooting from a rest, the AutoMatch, Browning, and CCI all scored five-shot groups of 2.25 inches to 1.75 inches.
The absolute winner at 25 yards was the Winchester Wildcat with five shots pegged right at 1.0-inches. I shot at a Birchwood Casey PreGame Coyote target, aiming right between the eyes. Had that been a real yote, he would’ve dropped where he stood.
The Bushnell helped make that shot possible, no doubt. But the Buck Mark and the Winchester performed like champions, too.
My Lyman Electronic Digital Trigger Pull Gauge measured the pull on the Buck Mark at a crisp 1 pound 14 ounces on average. The trigger had the slightest bit of take up to it. The trigger face was nice and wide, too, for a smooth and sure squeeze.
By the way, if you are a black-on-black traditionalist, the Browning Buck Mark Plus Vision UFX is also made in that color pattern. Me? I’ll stick with my Star Wars Red!
Specifications: Browning Buck Mark Plus Vision UFX
Caliber: 22 LR
Operation: Semi-automatic, single action, straight blow-back
Frame: Precision Machined Aluminum
Barrel Material: Steel
Barrel Finish: Anodized Red
Receiver Material: Aluminum Alloy
Receiver Finish: Anodized Red
Magazine Capacity: 10
Magazine Type: Single Stack, with Loading Tab
Rear Sight: White Outline Pro-Target
Front Sight: TRUGLO/Marble Arms Fiber Optic
Barrel Length: 5 7/8″
Weight: 27 oz.
Sight Radius: 8 ¼”
PLUS: Lightweight alloy sleeved steel Vision barrel, Picatinny optics rail, suppressor-ready threaded barrel, muzzle brake, UFX over-molded grips, and ships with two magazines.
For more information visit Browning North America