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Old May 8, 2013, 10:39 PM   #1
.38Catt
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.22 v .22 mag?

Is there any advantage to having a .22 WMR v. a .22 Long out of a 6" barrel?

Intended use: target, small varment, possible self-defense while using for trail gun in single action platform.

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Old May 8, 2013, 10:54 PM   #2
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Yes, there's definitely an advantage. However, out of a shorter handgun barrel the advantage .22 magnum has over .22 long rifle (.22 long is a different round; I'm guessing you meant .22 long rifle) is relatively small. And .22 LR is a much more plentiful and cheaper cartridge (under normal circumstances) so many people prefer .22 LR to .22 Mag. You can shoot .22 LR out of a .22 Mag revolver, but it's not ideal. However, you mentioned you were looking for a single-action revolver, in which case something like the Ruger Single-Six that has two cylinders - one for .22 Mag and one for .22 LR - might be perfect for you.
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Old May 8, 2013, 11:33 PM   #3
newfrontier45
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300-400fps with a heavier, real jacketed bullet. It's not that the shorter barrel kills .22Mag performance, rather that the .22LR gains very little in rifle length barrels. With most high velocity loads reaching maximum velocity in 12-14".
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Old May 9, 2013, 05:01 AM   #4
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I've never thought so. I've never seen any use at all for a 22 magnum. If I want more than a 22 LR, I'll use a 38/357. I can reload those.
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Old May 9, 2013, 07:40 AM   #5
.38Catt
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Theohazard,

Yes, I did mean .22 Long Rifle.

Thanks,

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Old May 9, 2013, 10:20 AM   #6
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The reduced cost of .22 LR ammo should lead to more practice, and increase levels of skill. That, in my opinion, would negate any minor ballistic advantage of the .22 Magnum.
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Old May 9, 2013, 10:57 AM   #7
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I've had 22 mags, both revolver and rifle. Not worth it to me. In a handgun there are better options. I haven't priced 22 mag ammo in a while, but I used to be able to buy 223 ammo cheaper than 22 mag. If I needed more power than 22LR I'd use a 223 in a rifle, 38 in a revolver.
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Old May 9, 2013, 11:12 AM   #8
newfrontier45
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To say that the .22Mag has no advantage over the .22LR is to say that the .357 has no advantage over the .38Spl. It features a heavier, tougher jacketed bullet at 300-400fps higher velocity over the .22LR's swaged lead. That's a significant step up. No, it doesn't make much difference if all you're doing is punching paper or tin cans but it makes a big difference in hunting small game and varmints. Last time I bought .22Mag ammo it cost me the same $8/50rds that it costs me to reload .38Spl and the .22Mag shoots a LOT flatter. Not to mention the time I don't have to spend at the reloading bench. IMHO, the .22Mag definitely has a place but some people are too closed-minded to realize it.
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Old May 9, 2013, 11:58 AM   #9
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Both platforms can use a light hollow point to explode squirrels and such. And both platforms have heavier round-nose ammo too for two legged creatures too. Win / win on either one really.

Only hangup being that hollow points might not open up or fragment from the lower velocities from a pistol though. The WMR rounds have the advantage here if a couple fps makes the difference.
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Old May 9, 2013, 12:06 PM   #10
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I've never bought 223 for less than 22mag. I'm not too crazy about it out of a snubbie but with a 5"+ barrel it really like the magnum. Another plus is the ability to fire 22WRF in a mag, a nice round in itself.
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Old May 9, 2013, 12:39 PM   #11
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Since the OP is talking about SA with a 6" barrel I'm assuming he's thinking about a revolver.

If so, the regular .22 has many options ranging from the CB Short all the way to the formidable 40gr Long Rifle Mini-Mag, and beyond for the brave of heart. IOW, more variety and easier to find something that will work with the gun.

With the .22 mag you're pretty much "stuck" with .22 mag ammo.

The two-cylinder conversion guns would be a good option.
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Old May 9, 2013, 05:16 PM   #12
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Two companies (Hornady, and ???) have within the past year introduced .22 WMR loads specifically tailored to use in handguns. These new rounds have gotten excellent reviews, and they are a significant boost over any .22 LR loading in a handgun.
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Old May 9, 2013, 11:16 PM   #13
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field/hunting

I think NewFrontier is on the right track. The mag is a better hunting/field round, a better killer on small game. I'm not sure if the WMR will gain 300-400 fps from revolver length barrels though, comparing equal or similar bullet weights.

I didn't have any use for the .22mag either, but stuck the mag cylinder in my Dad's Single-6 as a novelty and began shooting pests w/ it, mostly armadillo's, a few feral cats, possum, rats, the kind of critters that show up and make a nuisance of themselves around a country place. The mag is a far better killer on that size varmint, and it was apparent right off. The load is the W-W 45 gr JHP.

Mags are expensive, it is not a plinker. And as pointed out, .38's of all description, are a significant step up in power and utility. But, .38 and especially .357 revolvers can be a good bit heavier than a similar .22. My long barreled Ruger Single6 .22mag is significantly lighter than its cousin the .357 Blackhawk w/ the shorter 4-5/8 tube that is in my safe. I've taken to carrying the long barreld .22 mag on scouting jaunts and walks in the woods for opportune type shots on coyote, 'dillos, etc. Fifty rounds weigh nearly moot, but I will never shoot that many on a walk.

The .22mag fills a small niche, but I like it anyway.
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Old May 10, 2013, 04:37 AM   #14
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22 Mag

I have a single six that has cylinders for 22 LR and 22 Mag. Even though I had the revolver for over 20 years, I had never used the mag cylinder and one day I was just curious to see what it would do. Now this was my silhouette gun so it had the 9.5" barrel but I was surprised how fast the mags were so to say a 300-400 fps gain over a 22 LR is very believable. YMMV.

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Old May 10, 2013, 07:15 AM   #15
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I think that a lot of people who discount the .22mag have not had the opportunity to shoot the same gun with the two different ammos. My wife has a revolver with the two different cylinders and I can tell you that there is a substantial difference. No, it's not like jumping up to .380 or .38spcl, but it is noteworthy and does secure its place for those who understand it. Out of a shorter barrel, I'm not sure as I don't have a chrony and I haven't done any testing on it. But, I will say that the higher end ammo for the .22mag does inspire much more confidence than anything the .22lr has to offer.

If I needed ultra deep concealed carry I would probably take a 22mag over any other caliber. Just my unsupported feelings.
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Old May 10, 2013, 08:27 AM   #16
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The mag. does have increased performance and effectivness. But, for the high price I don't see much advantage. My Ruger Single Six has seen only about 100 rounds of mag. through it in over 40 years compared with countless in long rifle. If I needed more performance I would consider a round that can be reloaded.
I will say, the .22 mag. with shotshells has been useful for me. We had a house that was infested with chipmunks, the shot rounds dispatched them very effectively. For that the extra cost was justified.
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Old May 10, 2013, 10:37 AM   #17
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I have two .22mag revolvers and a .22LR semiauto ...

One thing I have noticed is that the .22LR fails to fire frequently, maybe once in every 30 rounds or so, while I have never had a .22mag fail to fire. Perhaps the revolver is a better way to touch off a rimfire round ... in any case, I love the magnum round a lot. One huge advantage to me is that my wife dislikes recoil and will only shoot .22s ... with a .22mag, I feel she has a distinct SD advantage over a .22LR, especially given Hornady, Speer and one other maker are producing 40-45 grain JHPs designed to work best in short barrels, IE, handguns ... there's a Ruger LCR in .22mag in her nightstand, loaded with 45-gr Hornady Critical Defense rounds ...
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Old May 10, 2013, 11:56 AM   #18
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Carmady,

22WRF is a good valid choice in a 22Mag.
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Old May 10, 2013, 12:53 PM   #19
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There's a saying you hear around here; "More deer have been killed with a 22mag than anything else." (usually at night from a truck seat). There is some truth in that statement. Anyone who discounts it's effectiveness has never used it much. If I could have no other weapon a 22mag would do about everything I require in North America. As always accuracy is paramount. One shot in the right place will do it every time.
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Old May 10, 2013, 01:30 PM   #20
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Guv: "Carmady,

22WRF is a good valid choice in a 22Mag. "

I didn't know that, thanks.
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Old May 10, 2013, 07:42 PM   #21
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It's pretty obvious to anyone with half a brain that the .22M is more powerful. But what do you really gain? Moving up to a .22M in a handgun is pretty much equivalent powerwise to shooting a .22lr rifle. A decent jump. But with all the gains in the world you're still talkin a squirrel and bunny gun just like a .22lr rifle. It ain't a hog gun, it ain't a coyote gun. It'll do a bit better than that .22lr handgun on largish varmints but smaller ones will die all the same.

Now all that's not to say that I wouldn't carry a .22m handgun over a .22lr if I had one. Like stated, a decent jump. But I would never ever consider buying one for it's gains. I prefer the .32H&R but for most the .38sp makes much better sense. Ammo isn't much of a price increase, capabilities are.

So, do you already have the gun?

Note: A major disadvantage of the .22M is volume. I have sensitive ears and it doesn't take much to get em ringin. As such, I'm very religious about wearing ear protection when shooting any handgun. But in the field I can get away with it IF I HAVE TOO with a .22lr. Not a chance in hell with the .22M. That one issue alone would make my decision.
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Old May 11, 2013, 10:59 AM   #22
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NewFrontier 45,

If you are spending $8 per box of 50 to reload .38 special, you really should cast your own bullets.

I load .38 and .357 magnum (full power loads, BTW) for less than $4 per 50..
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Old May 11, 2013, 03:03 PM   #23
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If you are in a cost craze over .22 rimfire ammunition, I do not understand why you would spend money on a gun ? Geeze Louise, if you cannot afford to shoot a gun, don't buy one. If you can, why quibble over pennies ?

I have a Ruger Super Single Six (two cylinders). The revolver is more accurate with the magnum rounds, as I guess the bullet-barrel fit is better. As others have said the .22 magnum is a different round when compared the .22LR. It is a light weight revolver to take with me camping, or hiking and the two cylinders/two boxes of ammo are not a weight problem. I can plink with the .22 LR and set up for some serious small game shooting with the .22 Mag. I like the combination. This is not like buying another gun, the .22 magnum cylinder comes with the Super Single Six. I choose to use it. Your mileage may vary, but that is none of my business.
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Old May 11, 2013, 03:20 PM   #24
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Quote:
I have a Ruger Super Single Six (two cylinders). The revolver is more accurate with the magnum rounds, as I guess the bullet-barrel fit is better. As others have said the .22 magnum is a different round when compared the .22LR. It is a light weight revolver to take with me camping, or hiking and the two cylinders/two boxes of ammo are not a weight problem. I can plink with the .22 LR and set up for some serious small game shooting with the .22 Mag. I like the combination. This is not like buying another gun, the .22 magnum cylinder comes with the Super Single Six. I choose to use it. Your mileage may vary, but that is none of my business.
I have the same set-up with my Heritage Rough Rider. I can plink and practice with the LR and then use the magnum for hunting critters. Accuracy is easier to attain by just switching cylinders than changing guns. I also think the magnum is more accurate. The magnum is at least twice as loud as the LR so be sure to protect your ears.
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Old May 11, 2013, 03:23 PM   #25
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j
May 8, 2013, 11:33 PM #3
newfrontier45
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300-400fps with a heavier, real jacketed bullet. It's not that the shorter barrel kills .

i
more so about 200-300 fps in s 6 + inch barrel. My ruger 22/45 5.5 inch barrel was chronoed @ 1175 fps with cci velocitors and 1298fps with cci stingers. 5 shot string average results. Also- .22mag is usually 40 grains. the heavier bullets that end @ 50 grains produce slower velocities by up to - -150 fps difference. thus meaning, that when your dealing with beans worth of grains- there isn't a world of difference between the .22lr and the .22 wmr out of a hand gun within 5.5- 7 inches

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