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When we asked which classic firearm Colt should reintroduce a few years ago, a plurality of y’all voted for the Woodsman. While Colt hasn’t made one since 1977, Standard Manufacturing has taken the helm and is now producing absolutely gorgeous, high-quality target/hunting pistols of the same style and build, which they call the SG22.

Available at the time of this review in five different finishes, TTAG got its hands on the case colored model and we won’t be letting go of it.

Needless to say, this is an incredibly beautiful gun. In keeping with my experience with other color case hardened guns, though, it’s also immensely frustrating to photograph well.

The case colored SG22 is one of those things that you simply must see in person to appreciate, as the depth and intrigue and complexity of the CCH is flattened and deadened by the camera. All of the shifting colors and “life” of the finish disappear when the gun is frozen in time.

The entirety of the frame and slide are case hardened, but the barrel is blued. It holds its own against the CCH, though, as it’s also done to old fashioned looking standards when they used to blue with animal bone and whale oil in a furnace to achieve a black-blue, highly-polished finish with amazing depth and uniformity.

Granted I have no idea how the bluing or CCH is actually achieved on the SG22, but they’re both stunning.

Likewise, the machining is great. Clean, straight, crisp lines, flats, and curves with no machine marks in sight and it’s polished to perfection.

Made of real steel — no aluminum or polymer here — the SG22 has the heft, feel, and build of a gun made just like they used to make ’em.

The target-style walnut grips are designed for a right-handed shooter, with a “flat” panel on the right side and a thumb rest-equipped panel on the left. They’re fairly nicely figured walnut and on most guns they’d look fancy, but the rest of the case hardened SG22 is so freakin’ beautiful that I find myself craving some bougier grips.

In keeping with the target/hunting style theme, the black rear sight is adjustable for both windage and elevation.

Up front is a prominent, fixed front blade. Though it’s also all-black, it’s large and crisp and easy to see, with just the right amount of light showing on either side of it when sighted inside of the rear notch for precise alignment.

Also blued to a deep luster are the thumb button magazine release, the slide lock, and the manual safety. In its down position as seen above, the thumb safety is on “fire.”

Up for “safe,” where a hook on the safety indexes into a slot in the slide and locks it in place.

I really dig the thin trigger. It’s machined, with nice serrations on the front and clean, rounded edges, but that sort of sheetmetal styling tickles my retro lust.

The Standard Manufacturing SG22 is a straight blowback design. Nearly the entire upper portion of the firearm is the slide, reciprocating on precisely-fit rails like a 1911.

There’s the breech face. It offered another excuse for me to take a photo of this beautiful gun. Extractor on the right, ejector on the left, empty brass ejected consistently and confidently off to starboard.

On the range, I found the magazine a bit tedious to load. While similar in just about every way to a Ruger Mk-series magazine, the bullets liked to stick in the front of the mag unless I held it in a particular orientation that helped the pills go down.

Aside from that minor annoyance, the SG22 was a joy to shoot. The grips are comfortable and the all-steel and -wood .22 LR shoots nice and soft.

While it breaks at 3.5 pounds, the trigger could use some refinement. It has a touch of grit that I believe would mostly work out on its own over the course of 500-plus rounds or could be addressed with a little stoning on the sear surfaces, but it also has some creep that surprised me.

It isn’t bad, generally speaking, I just suppose that given the level of care and refinement apparent in the rest of the gun I was expecting a totally clean, crisp, creep-free trigger.

Okay, one more trigger nitpick. There’s no perceptible reset. The trigger goes forward until it stops, but at no point during that travel do you hear or feel a click or other indication that it has reset. Realistically this is a non-issue for target shooting or hunting, but it’s such an anomaly to me nowadays that I felt it worth noting.

On a scale of 1 to 10 for semi-auto pistol triggers I’d give it like a 6. I was just expecting an 8+ is all.

I shot four brands of ammo through the SG22, all different bullet weights and velocities, and it fed, fired, and ejected all of it save for one dud round.

At 25 yards I was shooting 1.5- to 2-inch groups off a sandbag, which, truth be told, is as good as I’m capable of shooting with iron sights.

Not bad, right? The Standard Manufacturing SG22 is an heirloom piece that also happens to be a fantastic shooter. It’s smooth, it’s accurate, it’s fun, it’s reliable. It’s quite the looker.

They don’t make ’em like they used to . . . except when they do.

Specifications: Standard Manufacturing SG22 Case Colored

Caliber: .22 LR
Barrel Length: 6 5/8″
Sights: Fixed Front & Adjustable Rear
Grips: 2 Piece Walnut
Finish: Case Colored
Engraving: None (also available in an engraved version)
MSRP: $1,399

Ratings (out of five stars):

Overall  * * * * 1/2
Clean up that trigger and it’s a solid 5-star gun. This is the total package right here; quality, reliability, accuracy, and head turning good looks.


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      • Thank you, Dan. It probably isn’t for sale in CA. I used a Woodsman in my youth. This thing looks real good and seems to function just fine.

        Colt and High Standard both made really sweet shooting .22’s in the day.

    • If it were Made in Turkey it would be just as good if not better and you could afford it like the Made in China device you are using. Or side with jr. who tried to justify his bigotry towards Made in Turkey by claiming his device was Made in Japan…unfortunately the lame brain jr. forgot all about Pearl Harbor.
      It’s been a year and I’m still waiting for jr. to produce a firearm that can beat the Sar9 price and performance. The only weak spot a Sar9 has is parts availability which can be solved by buying 2 or 3.

      Otherwise the Woodsman copy is a nice piece.

      • Call it bigotry if you like, debbie. I give no f%cks at all for your opinion. All I know is Turkish made guns have a foul rep. I’ve seen it in real life and on the interwebz.

        Just one example. Look at the TFB tv meltdown trials. Turkish shotguns do very badly. And you are not sure which plant in Turkey is making your gun.

        I stay away from such crap. And tell me a phone or pc made in America and I’ll buy it.

      • I’ve never needed parts for a Ruger SA.
        So where is the savings?
        You have to buy three gunms to keep one gunm working.
        I dont care were a firearmn is made as long as it doesn’t break.
        China sux however Norinco made some damn reliable armnent.

  1. So close!

    A threaded barrel would have made it *perfect*.

    It’s really nice to see someone re-introducing the classic Hi Standard models, and that deep CCH finish sets it off nice…

  2. jethro…Pull your head out of your behind and look up Bigotry in a Dictionary…It’s not an opinion f-mouth.

    Clearly all you know about Made in Turkey is what bigots who take firearms out of a box, shoot it and feed their results to useful idiots like you. If you visit sites that actually sell Made in Turkey to people who understand the firearms will most likely need sweat equity to run well most of the reviews including mine indicate money well spent.

    Futhermore I have forgot more about firearms than you’ll probably ever know, no brag just fact. That means if I give a firearm a thumbs up you can hop on your tricycle and take it to the bank. That also means my challenge to jr. to produce a better firearm based on price and performance than a Sar9 applies to you.

    • If you have to work on a factory fresh gun to get it to run right…….kinda proves my point about Turkish guns.

      Sweat equity? You said that about a new in the box gun? And you wonder why we have a low opinion of Turkish?

      • jethro…Your reply proves the point only a complete firearm ignorant dumbazz would expect “any” budget priced firearm to run out of the box like Les Baer, etc. Surely you jest?

        • I know I’m wasting my effort. You seem to be stuck on stupid. So be it. I buy a new gun I expect it to work. Glock. Ruger. Both budget guns and both work like champs straight out of the box.

          If you’re foolish enough to buy a new gun expecting to have to work on it to make work have at it. Most folks are not that stupid with their money.

          But you do you, boo.

        • jethro…Your replies have backfired on you. You are a do it for me credit card gun purchasing buyer. Your purchases are based on what you hear and not on your abilities to stand on your own two feet, examine the firearm ingredients and determine quality and potential for yourself.

        • debbie. You have a rich fantasy life. Or you’re paid to shill for the Turks.

          Either way. Bless your heart.

        • jethro…Again you can only talk out your spinning behind…you should join a circus jethro.

        • (eyeroll) You believe you win an argument because you say so, don’t you.

          A lot like dacian in that regard.

        • “A lot like dacian in that regard.”

          *Snicker*… 🙂

        • I purchased a Pietta and figured I was buying a not so quality firearmn that I would be working on. So far so good @550rnds and a bunch of practice dry fires. I cut out a piece of leather washer so the hammer dont slam the firing pin instead of snap caps.

    • You’re confusing bigotry with principles. Not so long ago, Turkey was a secular democracy where the rule of law prevailed. These days, not so much, so I’ll be spending my dollars elsewhere until they improve (if ever).

      • ho…After all of that dribble it’s probably time to charge your Made in China device. On the other hand there is zip nada, nothing to be proud about joe biden’s democRat Party controlled america…so cease with the finger pointing and go fix it principled azzhat.

        • Samsung phones are no longer made in China. They are made primarily in Viet Nam, with design work in Korea. Viet Nam isn’t a paragon of human rights either, but they’re not planning on knocking over Taiwan and sinking as many of our ships as necessary to do it. Besides, the Vietnamese actually like us, despite all the crap that went down a few decades ago.

        • “Besides, the Vietnamese actually like us, despite all the crap that went down a few decades ago.”

          To the point our Navy is invited and a regular visitor in Cam Ranh bay :

          “Hanoi is not ready for a formal alliance with the U.S., and America does not need another base in Southeast Asia at the moment. Nevertheless, a regular rotational American presence in Cam Ranh Bay would constitute another signal to Beijing that Washington will not be simply a passive observer of China’s efforts to cow its smaller neighbors.”

  3. Wow! I had given up hope that really quality classic firearms could be built and sold today. A couple of years ago my son tripped over a Colt Woodsman 4 1/2″ Match Target. Fired, but in the box with paperwork. He sent me a pic. I scooped it up before you could say, “Don’t do it!” The Woodsman was/is a great handgun. If this thing is even close it will great for a new generation of shooters. Or, for those of us that missed out the first time around.

    • What I miss from my youth and one of these days I will get another is the old H&R 999 .22.

      It was a great woods running gun. Not as smooth as the Colt, Few things were. But my old man was willing to send me off with the 999 unsupervised. Not the Colt.

      • jethro, a good friend of mine had a 999. I used to kid him it was the antichrist revolver only upside down. Seriously, those were good working revolvers. Nothing more useful in the woods than a good centerfire rifle, a good .22 LR handgun and a two good knives. Don’t forget the matches.

    • Yes! Standard Manufacturing should create a modern classic version of the Woodsman Match Target. Since the S&W Model 41 is still produced, then all we’ll need is a new version of the Browning Medalist and a company to properly revive the High Standard line (emphasis on properly).

  4. Debbie, I don’t have a dog in the Turkish firearms thing. I never owned one, but I’ve had shooters arrive on the range with them for a CCW class. Know a couple of guys that bought Turkish shotguns to shoot quail with. They were inexperienced bird hunters. In my opinion the shotguns were serviceable. The handguns would have made serviceable trotline anchors. In a slow current. No thanks.

  5. waiting for me to respond, that’s funny.
    cz has their shottys made in turkiye; i’ll give ~them~ the botd.
    enjoy your sars (sounds like a virus), i shitepost and don’t actually really care.
    my 75c cost (me) less and it doesn’t need a thing.
    hirohito is long gone. shinto extremists do not want to see me and my country destroyed.
    if i need any lip from you i’ll rmz.

  6. Almost. This is nice looking pistol – but not the best woodsman iteration to make (IMO)

    If they make the original Woodsman with rounded grip and more graceful lines – I will buy it.

    No squared grips with thumb rest for me.

    They could make it with fixed or adjustable sights and with or without case hardening.

    Lusterous blue if fine with me.

    And Jeremy – Reset? Seriously? On a 22 nostalgia pistol? Let go of the trigger and it will reset. If not, it needs some work.

    • Yeah, it’s target, not tactical. I’ll give them a break on no reset.

      On a pistol you may need to save your life with, it’s a valid complaint. On this gun, it isn’t. IMO, of course.

      Your miles may vary… 🙂

  7. Nice to see a really nice pistol.

    Should have cloned the original woodsman with the rounds grip – I’d buy that.

    Fixed or adjustable – lustrous blue would be preferred to CCH.

    Jeremy – reset? Seriously? On a nostalgia pistol? Let go of the trigger – it will reset. If it doesn’t it needs some work.

  8. it is nice. lots of .22’s is good, there’s still around half a dozen i’d have, kadett, super pratic, 41, buckmark, a swing out naa, more.
    for me i’d find a decent used woodsman, should be similar in price.
    i like those grips, my pellet pistols both came with them, i put similar on the gov’t bull barrel 6 7/8″.

  9. I agree case coloring is beautiful but alas is fades quickly when the sun hits it over a period of time and its generally inadvisable to get it re-case colored because the intense heat will warp the frame and slide. Re-bluing is out of the question because the finished result will be a purple color.

    My question is this: Is the frame a junk casting or a well made forging, and ditto for the slide.

    Are the internal parts bar stock or forged or are they junk MIM castings?

    If all of the above are made of bar stock or forgings then yes the price is not unreasonable at all.

    I must say the people at Colt continue to be idiots by not bringing back the Woodsman. After all they brought back their .32 acp WWII style 1903 auto pistol.

  10. Fourteen hundred bucks for a blowback operated .22 LR pistol. Pretty, but nope.

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