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Walther PPK/S in .22 LR: Range Report

Discussion in 'Rimfire Forum' started by libarts.tech, Feb 17, 2014.

  1. libarts.tech

    libarts.tech Charles Wagoner

    281
    14
    May 15, 2012
    Norman, OK
    Note:
    I'm well aware that Umarex makes the PPK/S in .22 LR for Walther. Every time I see a forum post on this gun, someone always stops by and loses their sh** about this fact. I knew that when I bought this gun. I feel no special bond to the Walther brand and I don't care about the long-term value of a gun that will be used for plinking.

    Anyway, I got my new Walther PPK/S in .22LR last week and took it to the range today to break it in. I put about 300 rounds of assorted brands and types through it to see what it handled best. Here are my observations.

    Unsurprisingly, CCI Mini Mags and Stingers (I have tons of these) all cycled reliably, every time. I shot 100 rounds of 40gr CPRN, 100 rounds of 36gr CPHP, and 50 rounds of Stringers. All ran flawlessly. I was especially surprised at just how powerful the Stingers felt when they went off. All that extra pressure led to a brighter flash and heavier recoil for a .22.

    Winchester ammo sucks. I consistently had about 3 to 4 FTEjects in just about every loaded mag. I've had a lot of issues with this stuff even out of my hearty Ruger 10/22, so it didn't surprise me here.

    I shot a small box of American Eagle 40gr lead round nose ammo, and it was mostly reliable. Maybe a FTEject or two, but nothing to the tune of what the Winchester ammo produced.

    Interestingly, I shot a box of 45gr CPRN American Eagle subsonics and every single one shot reliably. They have way less velocity than the Mini Mags, so it makes me wonder if it was the 5 extra grains that made them run so well. And they shot super soft, while managing to cycle the gun every time.

    Lastly I shot some CCI shotshells just for kicks. It felt like I was throwing sand at the targets. They of course won't cycle any gun.

    The only thing I don't like about the PPK/S-22, aside from that God awful DA weight, is the slide bite. I ride my Glock pretty high and have never experienced slide bite. But this thing sliced me open one tiny nick at a time. I can see how someone with less hand meat (i.e., someone not so fat) wouldn't have a problem. But for me my only hope is to either decrease my body fat index or develop a nice callus so I can withstand the slicing. Let's face it, the latter option is more likely to happen than the former.

    Also, the sights suck. I put some bright orange nail polish on the front sight, but the entire sight picture is so tiny that small variations in position lead to much wider misses by the time the bullet hits the target. Of course, I was shooting in a relatively dim indoor range against black reactive targets, so it was difficult to see the space between the front sight post and the rear notch. Maybe when I take it with me to shoot my steel targets I'll paint them white and have better luck.

    Overall, I like this gun. It is for plinking, plain and simple. And I think it will serve me well for that purpose.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2014
  2. martin-curtis

    martin-curtis

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    Feb 21, 2009
    Minnesota
    Nice write up.
    I have been thinking about getting one. I used to own an original Walther PP .22lr.
    One gun I definitely wish I never sold.
    Oh, the memorable Walther PP/PPk slide bite, an attribute many have to be weary of.

    What were you thoughts on the overall build quality?
     

  3. libarts.tech

    libarts.tech Charles Wagoner

    281
    14
    May 15, 2012
    Norman, OK
    The frame and slide are made from a zinc alloy, but the barrel and all the internal twiddly bits are made from steel, probably much of it MIM. Even so, everything feels very tight and smooth. When you cock the hammer and move the slide back and forth, it feels like it's moving on ball bearings. I have the nickel version, so this could be the result of a slicker surface. But I'm very pleased at how tight and smooth and solid it feels. I think Umarex/Walther got it right if their goal was to make a moderately priced plinking gun with some serious cool factor.

    And in all honestly, I do feel a tinge of regret for not having bought a Ruger instead, but I liked the style and feel of PPK/S so I went with it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2014
  4. bac1023

    bac1023

    103,993
    3,467
    Sep 26, 2004
    PA
    Hey, if it works and you have fun with it, who cares who builds it or what its made from.

    I just wish they were a little cheaper to purchase. The price seems a little steep to me. :dunno:
     
  5. RonS

    RonS Millennium Member

    13,124
    2,960
    May 27, 1999
    Oh, USA
    I think one would be fun to play with, always loved the looks of PPKs and PPK/Ss.

    How is the single action trigger pull?
     
  6. libarts.tech

    libarts.tech Charles Wagoner

    281
    14
    May 15, 2012
    Norman, OK
    The single action trigger pull isn't bad. The specs say 6 lbs., but the pull is so short that it feels lighter.
     
  7. libarts.tech

    libarts.tech Charles Wagoner

    281
    14
    May 15, 2012
    Norman, OK
    Well, after being the proud owner of the PPK/S 22 for a whole two weeks, I sold it and bought a Ruger 22/45 LITE. The PPK/S is a nice little gun, and (mostly) a joy to shoot, but I sold it for three reasons:

    First, the slide bite was just unacceptable. Persons with lesser meat on their hands would have no problem with it, but I couldn't take it anymore. I'm still bearing a nice thick scar after shooting 500 rounds through it.

    Second, the PPK/S is way more picky about ammo than I would have liked. My buddy's Ruger Mark III eats through anything he gives it and asks for more. With the Walther, the only rounds that I know for certain will cycle properly are higher velocity CCIs and a select few lesser brands.

    Third, and perhaps most importantly, was the second-guessing. Ever since that slick-looking Ruger 22/45 LITE with wood grips and a fluted barrel came out, I've had it near the top of my gun buying list. But some James Bond nostalgia hit me hard when I was at the gun store. I liked the light feel and small size of the PPK/S, so I got it. But this whole time I couldn't shake the feeling that I shoulda' got a Ruger.

    So enough was enough. I put it up on Armslist for the exact amount that I originally paid, threw in the two extra mags that I bought for it and a couple hundred rounds of ammo for free. It sold almost immediately, and on the same day I got my new Ruger, which was about $50 cheaper.

    Thus ends the tale of my first case of gun buyer's remorse.

    [​IMG]

    Also, you'll notice the fiber optic sights on my 22/45. There are currently no aftermarket sights available for the PPK/S, and the stock sights are horrible.
     
  8. samarai

    samarai

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    Mar 27, 2007
    NJ
    About 20 years ago I came across an advertisement for a walther ppk/s in .22 LR that was in Shotgun News. It was made in West Germany and assembled in France, marketed under "Manhurin". I will never sell this thing, it is that awesome. Fires hyper velocity rounds like the stinger all day long w/ hardly any recoil, and, being that it's all-steel frame & slide, I never worry about any issues with this gun. Really a fun gun to shoot and with the bonus of being extremely accurate. I think I paid about $250.00 for it back then. I'm glad that I never sold it and no, it's not for sale...
     
  9. Gregg702

    Gregg702 Gold Member

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    May 1, 2010
    Las Vegas
    I have one I got from my grandfather. I haven't had a chance to shoot it yet, but you can feel how high quality. It is a shame what the new ones have become.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2014
  10. bac1023

    bac1023

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    Sep 26, 2004
    PA
    Very nice

    There's a huge difference between that and the new Umarex replicas.
     
  11. Bill Keith

    Bill Keith

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    Jan 3, 2006
    Humble, TX
    You did a nice write up and I thank you...you saved me some money because I have been thinking about this pistol. :wavey:
     
  12. bac1023

    bac1023

    103,993
    3,467
    Sep 26, 2004
    PA
    Congrats!

    Sounds like an upgrade to me...
     
  13. Congrats on the new Ruger!

    FWIW I think you made a good move.
     
  14. Bluescot

    Bluescot

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    Apr 11, 2012
    Idaho
    I bought a Firestorm by Bersa in the same format as the PPK/S. I had read about the the PPK/S since a wee boy and knew that one day I would try to own one and shoot all kinds of birds and rabbits with it, after all, the gunwriter was doing that with his and I thought I would do the same.

    The German PPK/S soon phased out of the picture for me due to the price and the fact that I already had 4 Ruger .22 handguns. A couple of MKII's, a Single Six and a Bearcat so the PPK/S moved to the very back burner.

    Then on a whim I bought a Bersa .380 CC shooter and was pleasantly surprised with the reliability and accuracy. I carried it CC for a couple of years but then a son needed a CC shooter and I gave it to him, only to replace my CC needs with a Glock 27. I had read about Bersa/Firestorm offering a traditional looking PPK/S lookalike in a .22LR offering and starting searching for one. Man those were hand to find but eventually I came across one and picked it up for around $275 which is probably higher than they are going for now but then again..........

    I was a little set back, as you were, by the sensitivity to ammo that this shooter had and eventually found out that 40g loads functioned better than 36g loads. After about 400 rounds through it with a lot of FTF from experimenting with ammo I've settled on CCI and American Eagle 40g stuff and then darn thing is pumping away on those rounds. Accuracy is so so but it's a fun shooter.

    If I want to hit something with a .22LR pistol my current inventory choices are in descending order are:

    1. Ruger MKII Competition Target with 6.75" barrel.....sweetness in a Ruger.

    2. Ruger MKII 22/45 with a TacSolutions barrel and a very lightweight package that shoots just fine.

    3. Ruger Single Six 6.5" barrel with a tuned action - very accurate for a revolver.

    4. Firestorm .22lr the subject of this post

    5. Ruger Bearcat - cute looking little bugger that shoots patterns at 15 yards. Best use is to shoot it six times at the target then throw the thing at the target. Best results so far have been in the throwing.

    Sad to hear about your exploits with your PPK/S adventure but looks like all is well now with the Ruger.
     
  15. Very interesting review, and outstanding photography, too. I really like the sights on your 10/22.
     
  16. I have a rimfire Walther made in Zella Mehlis around 1936 and it is still going strong. I love the gun and have fired it extensively before I gave it to my oldest son. My kids love it but do not dare to shoot it a lot, despite my encouragement.

    About buyer's remorse: my youngest son had bought a Ruger SR22 for his girl friend for Christmas and the gun did not group. Upon inspection, I found the rifling being extremely shallow and the muzzle crown poorly finished. He replaced it with a Ruger 22/45 Lite, just like libarts.tech's and him and his girlfriend are happy.
     
  17. crawdad480

    crawdad480

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    Apr 18, 2014
    I just bought a Ruger SR22P. I sure hope I have better luck than you! Probably I wont if the problem is in the rifling. I plan on shooting it next Tuesday, so wish me luck!
     
  18. Crawdad,

    is your rifling extremely shallow? On my son's pistol you had to look twice to see it, the crown had a nick, too, and was not well finished. It was an early model that he bought and I cannot imagine that all SR22s have that problem.

    My son also has pretty high expectations when it comes to accuracy. He is spoiled by shooting my guns.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. stockyardblues

    stockyardblues

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    Mar 20, 2014
    I put those sights on my 22/45 lite as well. Loved the pistol but had to sell it. Had a SR22 when it first came out. Couldn't get it to group well so I sold it at a gun show. For a loss :'(
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2014
  20. libarts.tech

    libarts.tech Charles Wagoner

    281
    14
    May 15, 2012
    Norman, OK

    Thanks, bud.