View Full Version : The allure of the .22 ....... am I crazy?

December 21, 2010, 07:27 PM
So I feel like I'd progressed backwards in my shooting....

It seems like most people start with .22's then progress up to bigger calibers.

When I first started shooting, I was BLAMing away with 45acp, 10mm, 7.62x39 and 5.56.

Now I've found as I grown older, I'm enjoying shooting .38sp and a LOT of .22....Both in handguns (Buckmark or my S&W 17-6) and in longguns (10/22, S&W MP15-22, and soon-to-add .22 lever-action).

And its not just because its cheaper (which, of course it is), but I just find myself gravitating towards the .22.

Dont get me wrong, I love my glocks and my M4, but they arent getting nearly as much love at the range....

Am I like the guy who started as an old man and ended up as a small kid?

Hog Hunter
December 21, 2010, 07:33 PM
Im only 23 and I love shooting my Browning lever action 22. I have all types of other guns that range from 9mm to 7mm mag and my little browning has got to be one of my favorite to shoot. Dont get me wrong I love shootign them all but the 22 is sooo fun to just plink with. I also do a good bit of squirl huntin with it and can wear em out. By the way thats the only time yall ever hear of me owning anything browning. Not even boots!!:barf::barf:

December 21, 2010, 07:35 PM
I bought a S&W 15-22 this year and I have shot it more the all the others combined.


December 21, 2010, 07:55 PM
In the last few months I've bought/traded for:

2 10/22's
1 77/22
1 MK I Target
1 MK II Target

You are not alone............

Check out the Ruger Rimfire series matches in your area. Lots of cheap fun!

December 21, 2010, 08:06 PM
I've bigger calibers also but have always gravitated to the .22LR for some range fun,also like the 38SPL too.Also been playing around with airguns the past coupl'a years [mainy Crosmans].
I've bought/sold/traded MANY RF's over the years currently just have these:

Marlin 60
Ruger Charger
Sig 522

Been eyeballing a older S&W K22 at the local G store and looking into a NAA Mini Master or Earl Convertable [.22LR/M].The NAA's will be for can killing only.

December 21, 2010, 08:09 PM
I own 4 .22s, two rifles and two handguns. They are my favorite guns to shoot. I'm just like you, the older I get them more I like the old .22lr.

Also, it's very cost effective. :D

December 21, 2010, 08:10 PM
I can say that my father has many guns, but when he plinks with a .22 he always seems the happiest.

December 21, 2010, 10:12 PM
I am with you. My first pistols were 45's and a 357 mag. First long gun was a 12 Ga. and a SKS. And 13 years later of my last purchases 4 out of 5 were 22 lr's. I love my 308's and 223's but I have the most fun with the 22's. I bought a Ruger MKIII a few years ago and now have 3 MKIII's and a Charger and a 10/22. I hope to add a few more. So, NO you are not crazy.

December 21, 2010, 10:19 PM
.22lr is a favorite round of mine! I have a 10/22 and am thinking about a .22lr pistol but most get such bad reviews I don't know what to do.

December 21, 2010, 10:35 PM
The finest gun you own should be in 22 rimfire, you'l shoot it the most after all.

December 22, 2010, 02:34 AM
22LR is the beginner's round, and the expert's cartridge. I love my 22s, I own several of them (we'll just leave it at that), and have plans for several more.

December 22, 2010, 02:46 AM
Funny you should mention this, i was just about to start a thread like this. I have a 10/22. I'm purchasing .22bolt carrier for my AR-15 as soon as there back in stock :mad:. I've been looking into a tactical precision .22 bolt gun. And I'm always on the look out for a good old .22 single six. Your not alone, .22 cals are cheap to shoot, fun, and just well easy.

Ignition Override
December 22, 2010, 04:23 AM
Well, the ancient Savage .22 which was built in the 30s or 40s has no aperture but has a nice tiny bead sight.

Why couldn't the Ruger designers discover this technology (or from the old Enfields, Garand) when they installed the thick front post sights on the
Mini 14 and 30?

phil mcwilliam
December 22, 2010, 04:39 AM
I did the same thing 12 months ago & purchased a CZ 22 & topped it with a 2-7x32mm Leupold. After 30 years of mainly hunting with centerfire rifles I enjoy using this 22.
I use this 22 for head shooting feral goats. I figure it helps my deer hunting as you have to stalk really close to the goats to drop them with a single head shot with a 22.

December 22, 2010, 04:40 AM
I own 4 .22LR log guns and enjoy the heck out of shooting them. I setup my targets 75 top 100 yards away and then plink with the little .22s. I generally have a centerfire rifle with me as well, but the .22s are lot of fun to shoot especially at ranges they aren't necessarily intended for.

December 22, 2010, 07:14 AM
22LR is the beginner's round, and the expert's cartridge.

Well said Scorch. I always bring a .22 with me to the range regardless of what I plan on doing that day with other firearms. A quality .22 rifle is a must have for anyone's rifle collection. I suggest getting several....LOL

December 22, 2010, 07:55 AM
There is a tremendous amount of satisfaction in going to the range, putting down a shooting mat, setting a target at 100 yards, slinging up a good .22 rifle, getting into prone and then shooting those MOA or sub-moa groups. You learn a lot about shooting, about wind and about concentration. A nice way to spend part of a day..

December 22, 2010, 08:11 AM
I have a Ruger 10/22 (it's about 15 years old) that I put a Tapco stock and a Butler Creek target barrel on. It's a tactical target gun, which is kind of heavy due to the barrel. I'm thinking about switching back to the target stock and selling the Tapco stock though.

I think I would enjoy shooting .22lr through my DPMS Sportical better, so I may get the .22 bolt carrier conversion and some Black Dog mags from Spikes.

My favorite .22 is my Savage Mark II bolt rifle. I have a 4x 33mm Bushy scope on it, got an extra 10 shot mag from Savage and it's just about the most perfectest field gun I own; it's light weight (I swear it feels like about 5 lbs to me) and I can hit everything I aim at nearly dead center out to 50 yards.


December 22, 2010, 08:40 AM
I too have lots of centerfire rifles and really enjoy shooting them, but I also have five 22 rifles (Cooper 57 M, Sako Quad, Kimber SVT, and two modified 10-22s) and two pistols (Ruger Mark II and Beretta NEOS U22). I love to shoot the .22s, even more than the bigger, louder centerfires.
The Cooper is my favorite probably because its great accuracy is matched by its stock, fitting and finish. I averaged under .385 inches for 293 groups across 7 different ammos with a best group size of 0.023 inches.
The Sako Quad was a surprise being very accurate for a changable barrel rifle. It almost matches the Cooper with an average of 0.389 for 84 groups of 6 different ammos.
The modified 10-22s are a real trip because I did the mods and made them into accurate shooters but they are really fun rifles to shoot.
My grand kids really love to shoot 10-22s and after using their standard triggers they really started to appreciate accuracy when I let them try one of mine.
The Kimber, although a nice rifle, was a disappointment. I probably would have loved it if I didn't have the Cooper and Sako to compare to it. It isn't inaccurate, just not up to their standards.

The Ruger Mark II is a Competition Target model and has shot 5 round groups under 1/2 inch at 50 yards and under 1 inch at 100 yards off rests with a 6x scope. I normally can't hold it that steady so it probably averages twice those groups sizes.
The NEOS is a fun plinker that isn't in the same class. I got it because my wife bought one and I got one because it was fun to shoot.

December 22, 2010, 09:21 AM
I'm trying to find a good Marlin 60 or Ruger 10/22. Prefer the Marlin w/the tube feed and higher capacity, though. Ideally, though, I'd like to find the pump .22 that my brother traded for a .38 snub nose about 30 yrs ago. It belonged to my father and was a tack driver and I'd love to get it back. I've got a lead on where it was last and I'm gonna make a call. Wish me luck. Sorry, not intending the thread jack.

December 22, 2010, 10:13 AM
I've gone the start with a .22 then build to large calibers,,,
Then find myself gravitating back to the double-deuce.

Even if I had the money to afford all the centerfire ammo I want,,,
An afternoon at the range is pleasant with a low recoil gun.

I love busting a few cylinders of .44 Magnum out of my 629,,,
I also love sending some .357 Magnum downrange,,,
But the noise and recoil do get tiresome.

If I'm shooting for enjoyment of shooting,,,
My .22 handguns and rifles get used.

It just so danged leisurely and serene,,,
I almost want to wear a white suit and drink mint julips :)


December 22, 2010, 10:37 AM
My first handgun was a .45ACP. My first rifle was a 5.56mm/.223.

The .22lr came later and it's been with me ever since. I cannot 'NOT' have a .22lr in my collection. Fun to shoot, inexpensive, and easy for non-shooters or youngsters to get into when I'm trying to indoctrinate them to the joy of target shooting. It'll also put small game in the pot and if need be, be pressed as a last ditch self-defense cartridge. When I'm in my '90s (if I live that long), the .22lr will probably be the only cartridge my old hands will be able to handle. Can't go wrong with this cartridge.

December 22, 2010, 11:17 AM
"A quality .22 rifle is a must have for anyone's rifle collection. I suggest getting several....LOL"

There's nothing finer or more useful than a good squirrel rifle. Or pistol. There are a bunch of them in my family.

Several??? Do you know how much fancy quality costs these days? I got this for my dad's 80th birthday I think it was. They were cheaper nearly ten years ago. It's a Cooper Custom Classic and not really that red...blame the cheap flash.


December 22, 2010, 11:24 AM
Every one should own a .22lr. It's affordable, easy to practice with and can certainly take game in a pinch.

December 22, 2010, 11:53 AM
I've had many 22s over the years. I started with a Marlin model 60 that I bought and Kmart for $39.99 right now I have 6. A Ruger single six convertible that was my father’s first handgun, a S&W model 17.5, S&W model 41, Ruger 10/22 & 77/22 and an old Simpson single shot that my father sent back from Germany during WWII

December 22, 2010, 12:08 PM
I have more .22LRs than centerfires and that's always been the case for 55 years of shooting.

My .22LR handguns: Ruger Bull-Barrelled 5" (with scope, red dot, irons), a K-22 6", a Beretta Mod 87 Cheetah, and a Bersa Mod 223.

Rimfire Rifles: Marlin 39A, scoped; Remington 504, scoped; Winchester 69A (Receiver Sight); Rem 521 custom (RS); custom Rem. 581/Lilja bbl/Fajen stock; Modified Ruger 10-22 Deluxe (Shilen bbl); Rem 40X Benchrest with Lilja heavy bbl, 36X Weaver, Jewell 2 oz. trigger, McMillan stock, and Harrel tuner.

Everything gets shot fairly often. I can even shoot most of them at the club's indoor range. Can't do that with most centerfires, unless we use lead bullets.

December 22, 2010, 12:20 PM
In the early 60's my Dad got me a Browning .22 semi auto take-down for Christmas. Elegant, handy, and way accurate, it's still my favorite rifle to shoot and my most precious firearm possession.

December 22, 2010, 12:27 PM
I love my .22 also, but I bet deep down its still the price of ammo that has most of you gravitating toward the .22. Its just hard to admit being cheap...lol

December 22, 2010, 12:46 PM
but I bet deep down its still the price of ammo that has most of you gravitating toward the .22. Its just hard to admit being cheap...lol

No it's not,,,
I freely admit I love the low expense.

It's the reason I am so fond of .22/centerfire companion guns,,,
I shoot 50 out of my Model 18,,,
And 6 out of my Model 15.

Same with my Colt Troopers,,,
And my S&W J-frames,,,
And my CZ-75's.

Less cost for more trigger pulls is a Good Thing. :)

But it's like I stated before,,,
Nothing is as pleasant as an afternoon shooting,,,
And a big part of the pleasantness is low noise and no recoil.

I'm a real laid back kind of guy,,,
I was an adrenaline junkie back in my youth,,,
Now I'm into going slow and easy with my shooting hobby.

I have noted in my will who gets my guns,,,
But I'm seriously tempted to be buried with my Model 18,,,
No one will love Didi as much as I do so she might have to go with me. ;)


December 22, 2010, 12:57 PM
"but I bet deep down its still the price of ammo that has most of you gravitating toward the .22"

Not me. Not my uncle or my father either. We're just small game hunters and plinkers. It was that way when I was born in 1950 and it's still that way.

My uncle gave me a Marlin Mountie in 1963. A handful of years ago I repaid the favor by giving him a Nylon 76 lever action he'd mentioned.

Ten years ago he bought back my father's Savage 23AA that he'd sold while my father was somewhere between New Guinea and the Philippines during WWII. He kept track of who had it all those years until he got it back finally. The list goes on, but I'll skip the .22 handguns.

I'd wanted his old Browning Auto 22 for a couple of decades, but he traded it to a cousin for a Remington 541-S... which I now have.

I even have a new-in-the-bag Jewell trigger for a Sako Finnfire and a Jewell trigger that's on a Finnfire. Why? The guy had 2 for sale, so I bought both.


December 22, 2010, 01:01 PM
22LR is the beginner's round, and the expert's cartridge.

Well said, Scorch!

The .22 has the beauty of efficiency (superbly efficient in its abilities compared to its size, cost, and recoil) and history (it's probably older than any other cartridges you own, dating back to 1887 (or to 1845 in an earlier form), which is pretty cool.

There's nothing that sums up the best of the "gun culture" than a late afternoon stroll across the fields with a bolt-action .22 in hand.

I like a single shot .22 because that's what I started with as a kid... it taught me to choose my shots carefully. Although I later got (and enjoyed) a Ruger 10/22, I have come full circle back to the bolt action.

December 22, 2010, 01:15 PM
I like a single shot .22 because that's what I started with as a kid... it taught me to choose my shots carefully.

I agree completely.

My favorite .22 rifles are:
Henry Accubolt single shot bolt action,,,
H&R Sportster break-open action single shot.

But when I was a kid my first rifle was an old 189? Winchester pump .22 short only,,,
I bought it somewhere around 1960 at a farm auction for a whopping $5.00,,,
My Dad didn't want me to have a repeating rifle at all,,,
He liked the fact it only chambered .22 shorts,,,
But he wanted me to have a single shot,,,
So he hid the magazine tube.

Man was I angry at him,,,
All of my buddies had repeaters of some kind,,,
And here I was stuck loading one measly .22 short at a time. :mad:

I did become a better shot because of it though,,,
And it didn't take long to appreciate that my box of shorts lasted longer.

My only real complaint was that Dad hid the rod too well,,,
After we moved one time it was misplaced (lost) never to be seen again.

Dad always said he lost it,,,
I secretly think he threw it away.

I do have one nice semi-auto .22 rifle,,,
I bought an inexpensive but surprisingly sweet,,,
Mossberg 702 Plinkster so I could do an Appleseed shoot,,,
It just doesn't get brought out to the range as much as my single-shots.


December 22, 2010, 01:19 PM
....a .22.

Not just any .22 mind you, it's a 541-S with a custom one inch bull barrel and a trigger job. I got an Elite 4200 6-24x scope for it since the rifle is capable of one hole groups at 50yds.

It hasn't hit the dealer yet, it will Friday, so I'll have a ten day wait.

In the last three years I've gotten two Volquartsens, one with a tensioned carbon fiber barrel on a Remington 597, several Remington 597 HBLS because friends wanted one just like mine, Remington 504 and the 504-T.

The Remington 504 bolt action is a tack driver of a really sweet high quality rifle that can be had for about $400, and the 597 HBLS (Heavy Barrel Laminate Stock) is way better than the Ruger 10/22's and I've had several of those. I even like the 597 better than the 10/22 Volquartsen and it's as accurate.

This says it all about my attitude about .22's. I keep an array (43 now) on hand to determine what each rifle really likes.


December 22, 2010, 01:30 PM
i shot my .22 so much part of it melted and warped. it was a cheap gun but i don't think it should have done that lol.

December 22, 2010, 01:31 PM
I "dispatched" a feral cat with one shot from my red dot scoped Buckmark.
It was about a 25 yard shot...

December 22, 2010, 01:46 PM
Feral Cats. :D

December 22, 2010, 03:13 PM
I've never gone to the range without taking at least one .22. They get shot the most since they deliver maximum bang for the buck.

December 22, 2010, 03:48 PM
Furthermore, a nice .22 rifle is one of the best ways to introduce a new shooter (or an anti-gun friend) to the sport. Lack of recoil means better shooting, and recoil is what most new shooters are unsure about. When they start hitting targets, they start smiling.

It's good to keep an accurate bolt action or single-shot .22 rifle around for those occasions.

Buzzard Bait
December 22, 2010, 04:02 PM
I like to shoot 22 rifles and pistols. I started with a bb gun then 22 then center fire and shot gun then pistols then progressed back to 22s both rifle and pistol.

December 22, 2010, 04:06 PM
One thing I wish is that I had a decent outdoor range to shoot at.

I definitely lose out on one of the pleasures of shooting .22 (the sound) when shooting indoors with 20 other folks rapid firing their AKs and M4's....

December 22, 2010, 04:27 PM
For Christmas I bought myself a 1972 S&W 34 snubbie. It's got some honest wear and is a shooter, not a collector piece. It will be a good training gun for my carry snubbies. I'm also hoping that it will fit my wife well enough that she will enjoy shooting and want to go.

December 22, 2010, 04:33 PM
I bought one of those little gems early this year,,,
You are correct about it being great practice.

I am now much more accurate with my model 36,,,
Because I can afford to practice more with the cheaper .22 ammo.

Here are Velma and Velda,,,
Velma (the .38) after my lovely sister,,,
Velda (the .22) after Mike Hammer's secretary.



December 22, 2010, 04:38 PM
No matter what my "handle" is, it is definitely the #1 caliber of all time. I want to shoot most of these handy little handguns and rifles alike before I feed the worms.


December 22, 2010, 07:21 PM
btw, speaking of .22 disease....

Just picked-up a mint Marlin 39M today. Had just about given up on finding one and it suddenly appeared- 5 miles from my house no less!

ANOTHER mouth to feed, helping to burn through walmart bricks of .22!

December 22, 2010, 07:34 PM
You know, my .22's resided quietly in the back of my safe for many years while I played around with their large caliber cousins. Now since the prices of ammo went nuts they have worked their way to front again. I've sort of re-discovered them and am enjoying them more than ever.

One of my favorites is my first firearm that I got when I was 10 y.o. from my Dad. It's a 1942 Remington 512. What a great old gun! :)

http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/3619/rem512015.jpg (http://img153.imageshack.us/i/rem512015.jpg/)

December 22, 2010, 08:13 PM
Heh, take up shooting 4-position smallbore. Then you won't be shooting .22LR because it's cheap! :o

Seriously, as I have become more interested in position shooting (Highpower matches in my case), the allure of the .22 has grown very strong. It's much easier to practice the fundamentals of sight picture, trigger squeeze and follow-through with a gun that doesn't bounce off target in recoil, crush your collarbone or ring your eardrums with every shot. And the .22LR will show you every mistake you make and let you know you need to pay attention in school.

December 22, 2010, 09:23 PM
I can't believe no one has mentioned the finest semi-auto made, the Remington 552 speedmaster. The Browning is close but won't handle s,l,and lr.

Combine the Speedmaster with a S&W 18 and you've got it made.

January 8, 2011, 10:51 AM
It just seems like its so easy to grab a couple hundred rounds of .22 and send them down range, and so much cheaper.

January 8, 2011, 12:30 PM
Here's my first love, Charter Arms AR7 (literally, my wife bought it for me just before we got engaged) and my latest Marlin 39A Which she bought me for our 25th. Did I marry right or what?

January 8, 2011, 12:47 PM
The finest gun you own should be in 22 rimfire, you'l shoot it the most after all.

Advice taken:D


5 shots at 50 yards


January 8, 2011, 01:03 PM
I too have been going backwards. I go to the range I take 260AI. 300 win mag, 338 edge and a plain jane ruger 10/22 I have more fun shooting steel at 200 yards with the 22 than shooting the big guns at 1000-1700 yards.