The TOZ-78-04M and TOZ-78-15 are both down-to-earth, workmanlike utility .22 rimfires designed for small game hunting, plinking, and varminting as well as informal target work.
Russian firearms are generally regarded as being strictly utilitarian and there’s no doubt that they are rugged and reliable and made to last. This is a certainly the case with the TOZ-78-04M Sporter and the TOZ-78-15 Target/Varmint models sent for review by the Australian distributor Parabellum Imports.
When the rifles arrived, they were dripping with light oil, wrapped in oilpaper, and sealed in a plastic envelope.The Russians sure weren’t taking any chances with rust! The preservative oil the Russkis use must be pretty bland because it was slathered over the stock as well. The boxes also contained a owners manual which amongst other things contained instructions for dismantling, cleaning and lubricating the rather complicated 8-piece bolt, as well as the four polymer magazines supplied with the rifle. Yes, you actually get three 10-shot and one 5-shot magazine with each rifle!
Neither rifle could be called beautiful, but the sporter is rather stylish and both it and the Varmint have well dimensioned stocks. The blond eastern European birchwood stocks, have been stained to resemble walnut. The simple, classic sporter’s shape with slim, schnabel-tipped fore-end and straight comb is shaped for use with iron sights or a scope. The grip features checkering in a point pattern on the grip and fore-end that’s been crudely hand cut with flat diamonds and runovers at the borders. The stocks display some hand-fitting and wood has been chiseled from under the front guard screw and been left raw white. Surely the stocker could have applied some stain in this area?