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Old January 6, 2013, 04:12 PM   #1
bonefamily
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Bobcat ammunition

New Bobcat owner here and I'm looking to know what people are finding success with in their Beretta 21A .22lr pistols. I read that CCI ammunition is well liked in these, but I would like to know of other alternatives in the event my LGS' don't have any CCI. Is it just the fact that the Bobcat prefers high velocity rounds? Is it the grain count that makes a round high velocity, or is it something else? Perhaps fps? I see Winchester makes some noted higher velocity rounds in .22lr in bulk. Thanks for the help.
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Old January 7, 2013, 03:50 PM   #2
carguychris
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I can't help with the Bobcat-specific questions, but I'll take a stab at the general ammo-related questions.
Quote:
Is it the grain count that makes a round high velocity, or is it something else? Perhaps fps?
At the risk of slightly oversimplifying the matter, high-velocity or HV ammo is simply loaded with a more powerful or "hotter" powder charge. The more powerful charge results in higher velocity in most cases.

In the USA, velocity for bullets is almost always measured in feet per second or fps; 1 fps = 0.682 mph. The grain count on the package refers to the weight of the bullet. Grains in this context are a somewhat archaic English unit of weight that is seldom encountered outside the realm of firearms; there are 7,000 grains to a pound.

Most HV and standard-velocity (SV) .22LR loads use either a 40 grain (40gr) round-nose bullet or a 36gr hollow-point bullet, although hollow-points are seldom used for SV loads today.

Most modern SV ammo is intended for high-accuracy target shooting; it's better suited for high accuracy for reasons that probably go well beyond the intended scope of your question. I'll assume that you didn't buy the Bobcat for high accuracy target shooting; that said, unless the owner's manual specifically says you should avoid HV ammo for durability reasons, there is little reason for you to even bother trying to use SV ammo. Many smaller semi-auto pistols designed for HV loads will malfunction frequently when fed lower-powered SV ammo. (OTOH HV ammo will prematurely wear out or damage some older semi-autos that were designed around SV ammo, but about 95% of consumer-grade .22LR semi-autos built after WWII were designed to live on a diet of HV, and most of the exceptions are either very high-end target pistols or really cheap guns that aren't very safe to fire regardless of the ammo used. )

One last note: do NOT expect most .22LR ammo to even come close to the manufacturer's rated velocity figures out of your Bobcat. Most .22LR ballistics tables were compiled using an 18"-20" rifle barrel; I've seen some that used a 6" pistol barrel, but these are the exception, not the rule. There is NO magic formula for determining the exact velocity loss due to your very short Bobcat barrel, but IMHO if you figure you're getting about 3/4 of the rated velocity, you're probably not too far off.
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Old January 7, 2013, 04:52 PM   #3
bonefamily
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Thanks for the detailed information, carguychris!! I had no idea of all the details and you explained it very well. Much appreciated.
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Old January 7, 2013, 05:38 PM   #4
carguychris
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Actually, I'm not quite done.

The reason many shooters like CCI Mini-Mags- their most common .22LR HV product- is that the bullets are well-made and uniformly shaped, the powder burns clean, and they generally suffer few misfires, but the ammo is widely available at a reasonably low price. Also, they use plated bullets with a shiny protective metal coating that picks up less dirt than uncoated lead. (Some people erroneously refer to them as "jacketed", but this properly refers to a much thicker bonded metal coating used mostly on centerfire ammo and almost never on .22LR.)

Other manufacturers aren't oblivious to CCI's success, and several offer very comparable ammo, often packaged in remarkably similar 100-round clear plastic boxes. A common near-equal is Winchester Super-X.

Cheaper ammo that's sold in little cardboard boxes will probably shoot OK for the most part, but they may be less reliable and less accurate, and will probably shoot dirtier, which may cause functioning problems with categorically dirt-sensitive pocket pistols like the Bobcat. However, .22LR ammo is cheap enough that you can try a variety without breaking the bank. Try several types, then decide.
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Old January 7, 2013, 06:54 PM   #5
bonefamily
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Thanks again, ccc. Yes, it is the Mini Mags that I read so much about with the Bobcat, along with the Velocitors and Stingers. Thanks for the tip on the W Super-X, I'll surely give them and others a go.
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Old January 8, 2013, 05:08 PM   #6
RGPM1A
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Have had one for almost 30 years. Always used Stingers or Velocitors in it - nothing else works as reliably. Especially after you have been carrying the thing in a pocket for a while. They tend to pick up lint so take it easy with lube.

The few FTFs I have had with the gun were on the first shot DA. For the record the second DA strike always fired the round.
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Old January 8, 2013, 06:55 PM   #7
bonefamily
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Thanks for the tips, RGPM1A.
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