Will do! Wanted to get some Federal target auto fodder but read some bad things about it. Will probably try some anyway and give it a fair shake. Looking at Tandemkross comp. Only thing I don’t like about it is the diameter is .920 and the barrel is .900 (yeah I’m a little anal about things like that but from what I’ve read it a great comp). The other is tactical solutions. They have a comp at .900.The Federal Auto Match used to be the bargain of the century. When it was first introduced it was accurate, clean, functioned well and generally good quality ammo at a low price. Since it’s introduction the quality has gone down. Along with the quality the accuracy and functioning has gotten worst. I bought a few boxes of the early release from YG for $18.95. Then a year later I saw it on sale at YG again for $24.95. I bought a bunch of it at that time because .22 was starting to get hard to find. I always try out new batches of .22 when I get it because different lots can and does shoot differently. Even the best and most expensive ammo is this way. This second batch was crap. I thought I must have made a mistake with the first batch I bought. Went to the range and compared the two and the first batch was far superior to the second batch. Not just different, but even visually there was a huge difference. And as you found, I am not the only one who found this out. However, like with any .22 ammo and gun combo, you never know how a certain ammo shoots out of a particular gun until you try it. As much as I cringe when I am writing this, I will even recommend trying the worst of the worst Remington Golden Bullets and Thunderbolt ammo. Remington has a very poor reputation with their .22 ammo. Dirty, poor quality, not consistent between shots, etc. But lately I have been reading that some very credible people in the firearms industry have been getting excellent results with Remington bottom of the barrel .22 ammo. So it looks like they have raised their QC on their .22 ammo. So try this as well. The Golden Bullets come in a bucket and are cheap when packaged this way. I also recommend you try CCI Mini Mags and Standard Velocity ammo. These two seem to shoot really well out of most guns. If you find CCI Blazer I suggest you try this as well. It has a good reputation like Mini Mags and SV. I finally standardized on Blazer (low cost) for plinking, CCI SV (moderate cost) for target practice and SK and Eley (expensive) match ammo for when I want to get the most out of my guns that can shoot. I own way too much .22 ammo.
As for optics will prob run irons for now. I did get a cheap optic awhile back. Might try it out on the buckmark and see what happens. If I like the optic route will invest in a Burris fastfire or equivalent......