Home > Firearms Forums > Rimfire Forum > .22 pocket guns:what load?

.22 pocket guns:what load?

  1. I have friends who habitually carry .22 pocket guns (I know & the arguments are ongoing).Given the short barrels (+/- 3") the question of what ammo come up. Stingers vs MiniMag vs standard? HP vs solid?
  2. :outtahere:None of the above?
  3. Better than nothing. Actually, a whole lot better than nothing. CCI 40 Grain HP's. Probably sting like Hell. Carry a TX22 and shoot 16 times.

  4. What functions in his .22LR?

    Does the gun maker of his gun recommend against HV loads, like Stingers?

    With loads that are approved for his gun, and which actually reliably function in his gun (notwithstanding the potential rimfire ignition issues), what loads can your friend actually shoot accurately in his gun?

    I tend to favor Stingers and MiniMags in my NAA .22LR. Not sure it's going to matter much whether solids or HP's are used in such short barrels and reduced velocities.

    NAA used to have a page on their website where they'd tested various LR & MAG loads out of their guns, for velocity averages.
  5. Stingers are overrated. They consistently penetrate far to shallowly. If you want a hollow point, go with a velocitor.

    Out of a short barrel though, I'd recommend just HV LRN for maximum penetration.
  6. My choice would be a 40 gr solid, high velocity.
  7. Another vote for Velocitors over Stingers. You're only going to get so much velocity from a 2" barrel so I'll take the extra mass.
  8. Recently inherited a Beretta 21A Bobcat and have thought about dropping it in a jacket pocket as a backup.

    In for the info.
  9. FWIW, I like the Stingers in my .22's because they're tack-drivers in my guns. (A couple Rugers and a couple NAA's.)

    I have some other assorted CCI .22's, and may have picked up some Velocitor when I was rebuilding my .22LR inventory and buying whatever I could find of the CCI line when the ammo was scarce (but I'd have to look), but if so, I haven't yet test-fired them for practical accuracy.

    I was very satisfied, borderline amazed, at how well the Stingers grouped out of the 2" barrel of my NAA Black Widow, using the LR cylinder.
  10. CCI Velocitor 1435 fps Available in HP and SP
    Aguila Interceptor 1470 fps Available in HP and SP

    both 40 grain
  11. Cool gun, but check the penetration at say 10 feet. I bought a PT22 and a friend bought a 21A for our Wive's. After picking the spent rounds out of a half inch sheet of plywood with our fingernails we re-thought using short barreled .22's. S&W Bodyguard were tried next. His Wife liked it, mine chose a CZ 82. Don't ask me why.
  12. I would not carry a “pocket rimfire pistol” for any serious defensive purpose. But if I had to, my personal choice would be Aguila 40gr Interceptor HP for its superb reliability of ignition and consistency. If that is not available, I would go with Winchester Super-X 40gr Hyper-Speed HP, followed by CCI Stinger. Unfortunately I have not had luck with CCI Velocitor...

    [This is all based on shooting them from my LCP-II 22LR. Other guns my work well with CCI Velocitor.]
  13. Gold Dot short barrel .22wmr for the NAA Pug.
  14. Minimags is a good choice. I like me some hyper velocity ammo as well. But a 22mag is always good.
  15. After owning a number of tiny .22s over the years, I'm sticking to revolvers because rimfire ignition is not especially reliable, esp as the guns get smaller with less hammer or striker mass.
    All that crap aside, I like 40gr mini mag solids or velocitors.
  16. IF I carried a pocket sized 22, it'd probably be loaded with mini-mags. The solid one. Very few, if any, 22LRs will expand at snub barrel velocities.

    IMO, Ruger killed any use that I have for a tiny 22. Their LCP (now joined by several manufacturers) gives a bigger bang in a truly tiny form.

    The one exception for 22s in a SD role for me is when age or infirmity make shooting centerfire guns problematic. I have a Ruger 22/45 that could one day become our HD gun. Very accurate and reliable with most quality ammo. It's also easy to load/unload with limited grip strength. Trigger pull is almost 1911 weight.

    We may never get there. As I get older, I work on maintaining strength. Keeping a reliable 22 "on deck" still seems prudent though.

    For the Tiny role? I'd likely pick a small revolver in 38 special. Steel, loaded with medium velocity wad-cutters. Generally, a 38's trigger can be tuned better than a rimfire revolver. A few extra ounces to carry is the trade off for accuracy with follow up shots.
  17. Thanks for the heads up Terry.
  18. In rimfire SD, I'd put reliable ignition as my #1 priority by a long shot. I'd then want a high velocity solid round nose for penetration, I suppose...but I'm in no way an expert, so my input isn't even worth 2 cents.
  19. You only use the round that allowed your gun to function best. .22 cal is #1 hit man round. must work ok at minimum.
  20. I wonder how they got all the hitmen to answer the poll.
  21. The ammo quest guy on you tube has already figured this one out, testing in a NAA mini revolver

    Some meet the FBI minimum penetration
  22. CCI used to make a 50 gr Gold Dot for the 22 Magnum. From the mini revolvers, it always expanded to 40 cal in the gel.

    For 22lr, the 60 gr SS goes in about 12 inches and tumbles making a larger wound channel. That round from my Ruger 22/45 short barrel was accurate to 50 ft.
  23. Statistics from mob hits over the years.
  24. The load that cycles the most reliable. Nothing else matters if it doesn't go bang and cycle.
  25. I agree 100%. Which is why I would recommend CCI MiniMags with a 40 grain RNL bullet. There are exceptions but as a general rule if a 22 semiauto won't run well with that ammo it won't run well with anything. I am assuming that someone who buys a 22 for self defense is not the sort of person that is going to run 100 rounds of 8 different types of ammo through it to find out what type works best. If they cared that much they wouldn't be carrying a 22.

    That ammo would not be a bad choice for a revolver either. A 22 is not going to have enough expansion or penetration regardless of what type of ammo is used. I would rather emphasize penetration.

    Right now the best type of ammo would be whatever type they can find.
  26. Just an FYI,

    Particularly in 22, rated velocities don't hold true with shorter barrels.

    I recently tested 15 brands of 22lr ammo through my chronograph in guns with barrel ranging from 3.5"-10", specifically 3.5, 4, 5, 6, 8 & 10".

    Not one of the 40 grain HV ammo did over 1000 FPS until you got up to a 6" bbl. Some of the 36 gr stuff topped 1K fps at 3.5" bbl but just a few.

    Stingers did 1110 fps out of 3.5" bbl.

    The Ruger LCP II 22 has a 2.75" bbl (which I didn't test) but you'll do less than that and less the 1K FPS with just about everything else.

    A good balance between velocity and penetration might be a HV solid point 36 gr bullet. Hollow points aren't going to open up under 1K fps anyway so you may as well use a solid point with a little velocity behind it.

    On the other hand while stingers may not penetrate deeply, few people could withstand a swarm of them. I tend to fall into the bigger and heavier is better camp but I wouldn't be too concerned if all I had were stingers.
  27. Recently tested these for accuracy, reliability, and grip. I found that all shot ammunition with a listed velocity of over 1200 FPS with complete reliability. The Ruger MKII was just thrown in to compare it's accuracy against the shorter barreled guns. IMG_3715 (3).JPG
  28. With an autoloader your first consideration should be reliability. Everything is going to hurt like hell, provided it makes it out of the barrel. Getting a 22lr to run reliably is difficult enough in a normal sized pistol, not to mention a pocket gun. I have a Walther TPH, pretty much the Cadillac of pocket 22lr's -- fully stainless, precision machining, cleaned and smoothed up for the best reliability and I still have to be careful how I grip it with most types of ammo to prevent failures.
  29. Stingers, or Velocitors, but I won’t carry it. My minimum is a 9mm.
  30. I would never carry a .22 as a self defense round. But if I did, I have often wondered if .22 birdshot might be the way to go. Hard to miss and it would surely cause some pain to the attacker. Maybe almost a non-lethal? Serious post, I’m curious.
  31. I seldom carry one of my NAA's, too.

    I couldn't before I retired, once they'd restricted off-duty calibers to no less than .32ACP and above.

    Nowadays, I only slip my .22LR or one of my .22MAG NAA's into a pocket for those times I feel like having an "Onion Field", last-resort "hide-out" CQ gun.
  32. I would carry a solid and hope for enough penetration to do the job. I'd also hope the gun doesn't jam if it was a semi. A .22 semi is not the most reliable gun around. I have a new M&P .22, a little over 300 rounds thru it(mostly CCI) and it already has 3 jams.
  33. Thank you one & all for your feedback. After this & info from other sources one is looking at a J-frame S&W & the diehards are buying 40gr MiniMags.
    A couple are considering alternating solids with HP for carry (assuming function). Opinions?
  34. Another vote for Aguila Interceptors. My wife has an LCR .22lr, and I have and LCP II Lite Rack. They're not carry guns, but we assume that any gun we own might potentially be pressed into service for whatever reason, so we keep a couple bricks of the Interceptors on hand. You just never know.

    My LCP has had a few light strikes with Mini Mags, but it's been 100% with Interceptors.
  35. I'm told that Mini mags and CCI Blazers are the same ammo, made on the same line. The difference is Mini mags are quality inspected more frequently to remove dud rounds thus insuring more reliability, thus more expensive.

    IMO, HPs aren't going to do anything out of short barrel J frame. Best to go with a 40 gr solid point
  36. If I recall correctly Blazers aren't copper washed and have wax lube on them, unlike Mini Mags. They may be otherwise identical, though.
  37. I wouldn’t bother. Like mac66 wrote, you’re not going to get sufficient velocity for expansion out of a 1-7/8” barreled revolver. Your best bet is to go with 40 grain solids and hope for sufficient penetration, in my opinion.
  38. I carried a pug in .22mag for a while until I figured out it was the same size, actually thicker than my LCP...
  39. I'd go with the CCI Velocitor also, or the Remington Vipers. With a short barrel, the box velocity is never realized anyway.
  40. I would highly recommend high velocity rounds for any semi-auto 22lr. Standard velocity usually won't cycle a semi-auto pistol reliably. SV is usually around 1000fps claimed. HV is usually 1200fps. Hyper-velocity is usually above 1400 claimed. Stingers are not recommended for many firearms because the extra power can damage the firearm. I have a few boxes of Velocitors that I originally got thinking that I could use it as HD/SD rounds. I shot a bunch and never had any failures in my 22lr AA conversion which is usually very picky with ammo despite fine tuning it by polishing every possible contact point and a few other stuff.

    I've heard the same about Blazers and bought a few bricks when they were on sale for $25/brick. They seem to be as reliable as CCI MMs.

    I would not rely on or recommend Remington, Federal or Winchester ammo for HD/SD. Ever.
  41. never mind.....
  42. A keltec P-32 is just as easy to carry and any pocket 22 and holds 8 rounds and is double action as opposed to some of the NAA revolvers and is a far better choice. They don't cost much and your life is worth more than couple hundred bucks.

    A 22 rimfire is deadly all out of proportion to it's size when fired out of a RIFLE. and people often confuse rifle effectiveness with short barrel handgun effectiveness.

    A 10/22 Ruger with a 25 round mag loaded with velocitors wouldn't be a bad choice for home defense for someone who couldn't handle a more powerful handgun. But when fired out of a short barrelled pistol it loses it's magic. Stingers trade mass for velocity and velocity is reduced out of a short barrel. And hollowpoints don't expand at those reduced velocities.
  43. The Kel-Tec P-32 is my pocket gun. If they come out with a P-22 I will probably buy one.
  44. The LISTED velocity of 1200 fps is out of a rifle barrel.
  45. Absolutely. But I have found if the listed velocity is over 1200 FPS the ammunition will operate the semi-automatics reliably. Standard velocity, also out of a longer barrel, will not. My gauge is the BERSA M23 and T22. All metal guns, they are the pickiest about ammunition even more so than the AA G21 kit and the CZ Kadet Kit. If the BERSA's shoot it reliably it will work in anything I own.
  46. When I carry my Beretta 21 or even my SR22 Ruger, I load Velocitor or Stinger. As was mentioned, not because I expect rifle velocities, but for solid and brisk blowback action. In the Beretta Bobcat, the short barrel makes for a pretty impressive fireball with the Stinger. Nothing says to a bad guy three feet away “I’m being shot” like a bright white baseball sized flash.
    In any case, my pocket carry is the aforementioned KelTec P32. Really a terrific little pistol. I put 50rds of hot S&B FMJ through it a couple days ago. For carry, I load an Hornady XTP in the chamber, and one as first out of the mag. The rest all FMJ.
  47. My Beretta 21 likes Mini Mag solids, so that's what I use. If I had a LCP .22 I'd try Velocitor & Interceptor solids and choose the one (if either) that was most reliable.