View Full Version : .22lr Carbine for hd

February 9, 2012, 09:32 PM
Ok, dont start just yet with how crazy I must be, hear me out. I read a posting here and a reply to it had a couple valid points.

A. The object of a self definse weapon is not to kill, its to incapacitate.

B. A .22lr carries less risk of over penetration

C. The most effective weapon is the one your most roficient with, profincy comes from practice and training, rimfires cost next.to nothing to shoot, and are gentle on less seasond shooters

D. A rimfire makes multiple rapid hits on target easier then any other weapons system Im aware of

E. Rimfires produce minimul muzzle flash and report compared to traditional hd weapons (shotguns and centerfire handguns or carbines)

My gf lives in an apartment with 2 little girls in a pretty populated area. She has no defensive training or experince, and next to no firearms training. Obviously, the best anwser is train train train train, and the train more (hoo rah Marine Corps lol) but realisticly, she enjoys shooting because its a fun way for us to spend an afternoon with some or all of the kids together. She is not a warrior, she can however make rapid center hits with a rimfire, and its fun enough that she does it. So here is the question.

With a light equipped (so she doeant shoot me by mistake) m4 rimfire clone or even a 10\22 be as good a choice as it seems to me? Or did I read that stuff and go goofy as hell lol

February 9, 2012, 09:43 PM
We have had several message strings discussing the 22Lr for self defense in a handgun. There is no Ultimate Truth but there are several Smaller Truths.
1st Rule of Gun Fighting per Jeff Cooper-"Have a Gun."
2nd Rule-Only the hits count. A hit with a 22 hurts a lot worse than a miss with a 357 or 45.
3rd Rule-A gun-any gun-beats fists, feet, and foul language.

February 9, 2012, 09:53 PM
A .22lr carries less risk of over penetration

You might be surprised at how far a 22 LR will penetrate building material. I've seen one go through five 1" boards.

It wouldn't be my first choice, but I actually think they would work better than many would give them credit for. Having a gun, knowing how to use it and being comfortable with that gun is important. In this case, for now, it may not be a bad choice.

As your GF gets more experience with firearms she may decide to move up to something a little better one day. But having something now, is better than nothing, or something that she finds intimidating.

February 9, 2012, 09:55 PM
the best gun for the situation is the one you have with you. a solid hit with a 22 is better than a clean miss with a 45 pistol or a 308 rifle. ya pays yur money and yas takes yur chances.

Frank Ettin
February 9, 2012, 10:16 PM
...The object of a self definse weapon is not to kill, its to incapacitate....Actually, in that regard the object is to stop, or, if you prefer, to incapacitate very quickly. In that regard, consider --

There are four ways in which shooting an assailant actually can stop a fight:

psychological -- "I'm shot, it hurts, I don't want to get shot any more."
massive blood loss depriving the muscles and brain of oxygen and thus significantly impairing their ability to function
breaking major skeletal support structures
damaging the central nervous system.

Depending on someone just giving up because he's been shot is iffy. Probably most fights are stopped that way, but some aren't; and there are no guarantees.

Breaking major skeletal structures can quickly impair mobility, but someone with a gun can still shoot. And it will probably take something bigger than a .22 or .32 to reliably break a large bone.

Hits to the central nervous system are sure and quick, but the CNS presents a small and uncertain target. And sometimes significant penetration will be needed to reach it.

The most common and sure physiological way in which shooting someone stops him is blood loss -- depriving the brain and muscles of oxygen and nutrients, thus impairing the ability of the brain and muscles to function. Blood loss is facilitated by (1) large holes causing tissue damage; (2) getting the holes in the right places to damage major blood vessels or blood bearing organs; and (3) adequate penetration to get those holes into the blood vessels and organs which are fairly deep in the body. The problem is that blood loss takes time. People have continued to fight effectively when gravely, even mortally, wounded. So things that can speed up blood loss, more holes, bigger holes, better placed holes, etc., help.

So as a rule of thumb --

More holes are better than fewer holes.
Larger holes are better than smaller holes.
Holes in the right places are better than holes in the wrong places.
Holes that are deep enough are better than holes that aren't.
There are no magic bullets.

The bottom line is that a lower power cartridge with a smaller caliber bullet will make smaller holes and may not be able to as reliably penetrate to where those holes need to be to be most effective. On the other hand, a small gun that you have trained with and can manage well will serve better than the larger, more powerful gun that is so powerful you can't shoot it accurately.

And another possible option for home defense might be something like a 20 gauge shotgun with, say, number 4 buckshot.

February 9, 2012, 10:32 PM
I think if she is comfortable with it and will use it then its a great option. A mag dump of .22LR on target from a 16" barrel of a S&W M&P22 would be darn effective. Especially at HD distances that rarely exceed 20 yards.

February 9, 2012, 10:36 PM
All very valid and serious points, thank you all.

On the bird shot point, Ive argued for a long time that at normal hd ranges light bird shot will not spread to a pattern much larger then say a large mans closed fist. If you slam (how many pellets?) of that shot charge into the chest cavity (or allowing for crappy conditions, adrenaline and basic normal holly crap Im afraid bad shot placement) I think those many many many small holes in a tightly concentraded area might and probuably would be profoundly devistating to soft tissues. And the mass impact would be devistating to a sternum or ribcage, and even if it didnt break the pelvic saddle woukd cause massive tissue damage, the pelletz that didnt break and.penetrate none woukd carry enough energy to deflect into surrounding soft tissue and cause that rapid blood loss.

February 9, 2012, 11:18 PM
A litte off the subject but, I sent her a link to this thread via text, she said "wow, thats just like facebook" anyone else have good reasons that this site IS NOTHING LIKE that horrible ruination of mankind website? Lol

February 9, 2012, 11:32 PM
As has been noted, you want both penetration and expansion out of your self defense choice. A 22lr, even from a carbine, doesn't get you both. If she enjoys a 22lr carbine it shouldn't be much of a jump to get to a 9mm, 5.56, or 30 carbine platform. Yes, rule one of a gunfight is to bring a gun, but there is no good reason to not stack the deck in your favor as much as possible.

February 9, 2012, 11:49 PM
You have already stated this, but she needs to get proper training. Also make sure the kids are trained in how firearms can be dangerous - they are not toys.

One concern that has not been mentioned is a .22LR is more prone to misfires. Rimfire is not as reliable and centerfire. That said, I would prefer a .22LR to a .25ACP.

Another concern is a .22LR semiauto may experience feeding issues.

Doc TH
February 9, 2012, 11:58 PM
I don't believe your concept is "crazy", for reasons other posters have already elaborated. However, you should consider some additional factors. Ammo reliability: CF ammo is more reliable than 22LR except perhaps for some of the more expensive 22 ammo designed for competitive shooters.
Action: a good pump action 22 will likely be, in the long run, slightly less susceptible to malfunction than most semiauto rimfires.
Caliber differences: One poster above is correct when he/she noted that in a carbine 9mm has not much more recoil than 22. If I were offered both, I'd still take the 9mm. .30 carbine has minimal recoil, but is very penetrative in FMJ and probably also in soft point; remember the MV is 1800-1900 fps.
Birdshot: While it is true that at very close ranges a charge of shot does not spread very much, it is also true that each small pellet has very little energy and limited penetration. These tend to produce ghastly, but shallow wounds that may not have much effect on deeper organs or blood vessels. Remember, it was designed for birds.

Bill DeShivs
February 10, 2012, 12:38 AM
A .22 lr carbine has much more engergy than a .22 lr handgun. Several quick .22 shots from a carbine would stop most any aggressor-experts notwithsanding.

February 10, 2012, 02:21 AM
Your reasons are valid. If she's comfortable it'd be great for her. I wouldn't want to be shot with a 22.

February 10, 2012, 04:55 AM
With good ammo and a ruger 25 round mag, I would trust my 10/22 for home defense. I don't have to use it for that because I have a shotgun. I would keep it clean and keep it loaded with quality rimfire ammo like CCI.

February 10, 2012, 05:07 AM
A rimfire carbine isn't a bad choice for someone with little training, skill, or experience, or for someone who requires low recoil. There's a lot to be said for reliable hits.

It's not optimal, but it sure is better than a baseball bat.

Half or a whole magazine applied to center of mass should be reasonably effective.

February 10, 2012, 05:34 AM
If all I had was my 10/22, I'd use it for HD, yep. 50 round drum should hold off the BG's for a few minutes:)

Sent from my PB99400 using Tapatalk

February 10, 2012, 07:41 AM
I think if she is comfortable with it and will use it then its a great option. A mag dump of .22LR on target from a 16" barrel of a S&W M&P22 would be darn effective. Especially at HD distances that rarely exceed 20 yards.

Agreed. Something with a nice 30 round clip could be quite effective.

Someone please correct me if I am wrong, but Keltec just came out with a .22WMR pistol with a 30 round clip, one use of which is for SD. Although .22LR is not a WMR, would not a higher velocity .22LR fired from a longer (aka rifle) barrel have a similar velocity to a .22WMR fired from a 5 in pistol barrel?

Plus, and I hate to be gruesome, but, with a 30 round clip, if the BG doesn't go down, she could reliably keep shooting until he does. After all shoot enough and its equivalent to a shotgun blast.

I say all this, as after seeing both the Wife and daughter blast away with happy glee rapid firing a .22LR rifle i've thought about that use as well.

Maybe I am completely off. :confused:

February 10, 2012, 08:34 AM
Why I believe .22 Carbine makes a poor HD weapon:

1. not enough stopping power; poor expansion properties of bullet
2. rim-fire .22 is more prone to jamming in semi-autos.
3. rifle/carbine is cumbersome for home defense
4. Capacity is usually less than the average 9mm or .40 handgun.
5. .22 will over penetrate, especially in drywall - but so will most anything, except .25 ACP.
6. Just because someone is skilled at shooting a .22 carbine outside in lighted conditions doesn't mean those same skills and confidence transfer to a Home Defense situation.

Double Naught Spy
February 10, 2012, 09:02 AM
1st Rule of Gun Fighting per Jeff Cooper-"Have a Gun."
2nd Rule-Only the hits count. A hit with a 22 hurts a lot worse than a miss with a 357 or 45.

I see these repeated time and time again and they just aren't really true. Cooper's rule only pertains from the sense that it isn't a gunfight if both parties don't have guns. If only one does, then it is just a shooting. However, infinitely more important is not getting shot.

As for the second rule, strangely it isn't true either. As has been shown time and time again, misses turn out to count in many fights much in the same way that hits don't always seem to matter one iota. Here recently, this mom stopped 2 home invaders with just one shot and secured her own safety and that of her child. The shot was from a .22 and missed. http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=478480

Why I believe .22 Carbine makes a poor HD weapon:

3. rifle/carbine is cumbersome for home defense
5. .22 will over penetrate, especially in drywall - but so will most anything, except .25 ACP.
6. Just because someone is skilled at shooting a .22 carbine outside in lighted conditions doesn't mean those same skills and confidence transfer to a Home Defense situation.

skans, 3 of your 6 reasons against .22 lr are reasons that disqualify every other caliber in similar circumstance. If a .22 rifle/carbine is too cumbersome for HD, then larger caliber rifle/carbines and shotguns would be poor choices as well, but yet we see them being used sucessfully over and over. Virtually any round that does not hit the bad guy may overpenetrate something. And, just because you are skilled at shooting any gun outside in lighted conditions doesn't mean those same skills and confidence transfer to a HD situation.

Onward Allusion
February 10, 2012, 09:07 AM
22LR - rimfire - for SD/HD? Definitely not my first choice in an autoloader. In a revolver with at least a 6" barrel - yes, I would. Again, not my first choice for all the reasons listed in previous messages.

February 10, 2012, 10:06 AM
"If she enjoys a 22lr carbine it shouldn't be much of a jump to get to a 9mm, 5.56, or 30 carbine platform"

this is where the self defense argument snowballs. someone asks about a 22 and people try to upgrade you to a larger gun. if you upgrade from a 22 to a 9mm someone will tell you you should have got a 40cal and then someone will say you need nothing less than a 45. the same goes for rifles. next will come the brand argument, you will say you have x brand and everyone will tell you they wouldn't trust their life with anything less than a y or z brand gun. then comes the cost argument. they will tell you they wouldn't trust their lives to a $200 or $300 or $500 gun and you need to spend $1000 or $2000 or..well you see where this is going.

whatever you choose someone will be a critic. as i said earlier a solid hit with a 22 is better than a clean miss with some super duper gun and cartridge. stick with a respected reasonably priced brand gun of your choice. buy a respected premium brand of ammo and then practice. one great advantage of a 22 is the low cost of ammo compared to any centerfire. typicaly 22 ammo is aprox 1/5th to 1/10th the cost of larger calibers. the lower cost allows more practice, more practice means more accuracy and more confidence.

is a 22 the best caliber for self defense? for some people the answer is yes. there are more powerful calibers available but if the person can't handle the noise or the recoil or the cost then they wouldn't be the best choice for that person. some people who start with a 22 want to move up to a larger caliber at some time. many people that start with too powerful a gun get turned off immediatly and will never touch another gun. then the self defense value of any gun is zero.

February 10, 2012, 10:23 AM
Good points Dalegribble. I can understand the opposing opinions and respect the, but the view that this is something she is comfortable with carries the day for me.

February 10, 2012, 10:44 AM
A .22 lr carbine has much more energy than a .22 lr handgun.

Thank you, Mr. DeShivs, for making a valid point that many people seem to want to ignore: we aren't talking about .22LR handguns. Longer barrel, more acceleration, better performance can be reasonably expected.

As for reliability: My experience may be better than some, but my .22LR plinker is highly reliable, and ammo issues have been fewer than 1 per 1000 rounds in the last couple of years.

If a .22 carbine is her choice, I would rather she have that than nothing, but I would still encourage training so that she handles and uses it safely and thoughtfully.

February 10, 2012, 11:04 AM
skans, 3 of your 6 reasons against .22 lr are reasons that disqualify every other caliber in similar circumstance.

Carbines are cumbersome - I don't like them for home defense. What the heck do I need a carbine for at distances of less than 20 feet? This is just a personal opinion.

If a .22LR will over penetrate drywall, then why use .22LR? Step it up to something that has a little more punch.....or find a round that won't over penetrate if that's your primary concern.

My last comment was just basically saying that outdoor target/varmint shooting is quite different then indoor HD shooting - just because someone is comfortable with a gun in a particular setting doesn't mean its a good choice in a different setting. To me, using a 22 carbine/rifle for HD is a poor choice. But, if that's all you have and for whatever reason you don't want to or can't buy a .45, .40, or 9mm hand gun, then the OP will have to make due with it, that's all.

February 10, 2012, 11:22 AM
A 22 for HD is asking for trouble. Shooting a goblin in low light while they are charging you is not the same as a lazy Saturday at the park.

There are no easy answers, either you are prepared, or you are not.

Bird shot is for birds.

Get a youth 870 20 gauge and load it with 00 buck. Put a lite on it and teach her to shoot at 10 yards from the hip.

Tennessee Jed
February 10, 2012, 11:37 AM
Sometimes, especially with significant others, it's possible that the only gun she will shoot and attain any level of familiarity with, is a 22 rifle. An AR, shotgun, Glock, etc. that she won't shoot regularly is useless. Maybe worse than useless. And if she doesn't enjoy shooting the gun in question, you can probably forget about attaining any level of familiarity.

If that is your situation (and it is my situation, too), then I see nothing wrong with a 22 semi-auto carbine. If she shoots the carbine well, it sure beats a can of pepper spray. If she shoots it really well, then she would be a very scary person to cross in a hallway. I know some women who are fiercely accurate with 22's.

February 10, 2012, 11:52 AM
Yep. She Who Must Be Obeyed can pop shot gun shell cases at 25 yards. :eek:

February 10, 2012, 11:56 AM
I have seen some posts recomending a shotgun, and recomending gauge and load, so I thought I'd post this.

Firearms Tactical Institute report recomends #1 Buck

For personal defense and law enforcement applications, the International Wound Ballistics Association advocates number 1 buckshot as being superior to all other buckshot sizes.

Number 1 buck is the smallest diameter shot that reliably and consistently penetrates more than 12 inches of standard ordnance gelatin when fired at typical shotgun engagement distances.

A standard 2 ¾-inch 12 gauge shotshell contains 16 pellets of #1 buck. The total combined cross sectional area of the 16 pellets is 1.13 square inches. Compared to the total combined cross sectional area of the nine pellets in a standard #00 (double-aught) buck shotshell (0.77 square inches), the # 1 buck shotshell has the capacity to produce over 30 percent more potentially effective wound trauma. In all shotshell loads, number 1 buckshot produces more potentially effective wound trauma than either #00 or #000 buck. In addition, number 1 buck is less likely to over-penetrate and exit an attacker's body

The full report:



I'm not saying she should get a 12ga, I'm just putting the info out there for #1 Buck.

I do think however that there are better options out there for her than the .22LR carbine.

Bill DeShivs
February 10, 2012, 12:03 PM
Rifles are easier to shoot than pistols. Rifles have higher muzzle velocity than pistols-especially .22 rifles. Bullet expansion from the .22 lr (from a 16" barrel) is good, as is penetration. The muzzle energy from a .22 carbine is as good as (or better than) most pistol cartridges up to .38 special.
With reliable, tested ammunition a semi auto .22 carbine is a formidable weapon-especially in the hands of an experienced shooter. No gun is better suited for informal target shooting-which makes the user ultimately familiar and comfortable with the weapon. You don't need 25 or 50 round magazines, either.
I have built a couple of Marlin 60s with 16" barrels and shortened stocks for home defense over the years.

serf 'rett
February 10, 2012, 12:13 PM
A .22 carbine style rifle should be in everyone's home defense and bug out kit. Perhaps it will be secondary or even third choice for many of us, but it's still a good item. I would prefer the handgun for close quarter, if room clearing is the need and cover is limited; however, if the situation is a sit in cover and wait for 'em, a .22 carbine or 20 guage youth pump or 12 guage should work if cover is available a reasonable distance from the entry way.

February 10, 2012, 12:42 PM
Lots of good points here. If you're not afraid of the rifle you are using you actually shot it more often and able to make better placement shots. I found this out when I was a kid and the low cost of .22lr helped. With this in mind and being in a apt and at 63 I'm tired of high powered rifles. So I bought a 10/22 and ten magazines and call it my poor man's assault rifle. At close range you can put a bunch of rounds in a good group. I need some 25 round magazines too. As mentioned the important thing is that she is enjoying shooting, enjoying being with friends and family and I'd be glad to have her family as my neighbor any day. Hopefully another NRA member. Congrats and enjoy.

February 10, 2012, 12:52 PM
tc, here are some of my real life experiences of mine. they are fact:

well first watch this, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xEDo_PbAvJc. the 22LR CCI 40gr velocitor are amazing. checkout the "fart" from the entrance wound. the bullet went to the ten inch mark. rotate those with some hot round nose for extra penetration and you are good to go.

my real life experiences:

please don't buy a ruger 10/22 for home defense. i have a couple and they are great .22lr rifles but the malfunction rate is way too high for sd/hd. i used them for years and years but would never want to depend on them.

i finally found a couple semi auto .22lr rifles that i can depend on. the sig 522 and the s&w 15-22. buy new ones, the first models of both rifles had bugs to work out.

i own the sig 522 and my brother in law owns the 15-22. i had 4 failure to feed in the 522 within the first 3 mags shot through it. that was using wal mart federal bulk, winchester 555, cci, remington bulk, and that mexican stuff.

and that was it. over 8,000 rounds of wal mart federal bulk later my sig 522 had 0 malfunctions. except for maybe 5 or so dud rounds. quite impressive for bulk ammo. the only problem is with the black dog mags, not the 522 its self. the spring in the mags are weak and if the insides aren't lubed it will hang up sometimes resulting in no round for the rifle to feed.

thats the main reason i recommend the s&w 15-22 over the 522. the newer 15-22s are flawless and have the mags to match. i would bet my life on it. i took brother in law's 15-22 to the shooting range. it was filthy dirty. i shot two boxes of the wal mart federal bulk(550 pack) with 0 malfunctions and only one round sounded under powered but cycled fine.

the 15-22 is super fun to shoot and easy to load the mags. everyone who owns one will become an expert with it. the 25 round mags are $15 at midway. i want a 15-22 and 20 mags. it will be one of my hd firearms as well as a truck gun. tbh if i had to shoot a threat at 25 to 50 yards i would much rather the 15-22 than a handgun or shotgun. it pattern much better.

if i remember correctly the 15-22s with a "D" in the serial number are the improved ones.

i brought my s&w 22a(.22lr pistol) gator hunting last year. first two gators where around the 7 foot range. i had to shoot them through the scull 5 to 7 times with round nose before they stopped. i then put wal mart federal bulk with hollow points in the mag. it was one shot stops from then on. through the scull, not the soft spot. i do not believe the human scull or rib cage will stop a .22lr.

i would keep a little headlight with the low red light(to see sights) with the gun or maybe night sights.

the 15-22 is the hd firearm i recommended to my grand mother, great aunt, and cousin's wife.

that is all.

February 10, 2012, 12:56 PM
The main problem i can see with using a .22 semi-auto rifle is unreliability. Trying to clear a stoppage can take a bit of time especially if its dark.

February 10, 2012, 03:02 PM
Thats interesting. I have a Marlin auto (I assume one would use an auto). When cleaned and using good ammo, I don't have any problems with it. Combined with no recoil and the weapon can empty a ten round magazine on a saucer plate at 15 yards faster than I can pull the trigger.

February 10, 2012, 03:15 PM
.22 LR is certainly better than nothing. But nothing is a pretty easy standard to beat. If it's all she has or can handle, it's better than relying on the mercy of her attacker but there is a lot of room for improvement.

February 10, 2012, 03:16 PM
like i said the sig 522 and 15-22 are very reliable. as with any long gun a backup handgun is a good idea. i have no experience with the new ruger lcr 22(8 shot .22lr) but it seems like a good backup gun for her. plus it would be fun to shoot and practice. only down side is the sub 2" barrel, not sure how much penetration the .22lr would get in that case.

im actually thinking of getting this for when i don't want to ccw:

4" barrel, .22lr to plink with, .22mag to ccw with. this naa revolver would be for backup or when i don't want to ccw my glock 19. im also thinking its great for my boat survival box incase i break down i have a .22lr to get a bird or something. i always keep 200+ .22lr rounds in that box.

February 11, 2012, 12:32 AM
this is where the self defense argument snowballs. someone asks about a 22 and people try to upgrade you to a larger gun. if you upgrade from a 22 to a 9mm someone will tell you you should have got a 40cal and then someone will say you need nothing less than a 45. the same goes for rifles. next will come the brand argument, you will say you have x brand and everyone will tell you they wouldn't trust their life with anything less than a y or z brand gun. then comes the cost argument. they will tell you they wouldn't trust their lives to a $200 or $300 or $500 gun and you need to spend $1000 or $2000 or..well you see where this is going.

Except you neglect the law of deminishing returns. There is a very large difference between the 22lr and 9mm out of a carbine. While there is a measurable difference between a 9mm and a .45 cal from a Carbine, the result is more often the same. You cannot say that for a 22lr vs 9mm. As far as the cost vs quality argument, i won't address that. A 9mm hipoint carbine that is reliable works for me.

As far as to the performance of a 22lr from a rifle? See here

The result was plenty of penetration (13-15") but fairly pitiful expansion (.028"). Since the both really are desired the 22lr isn't the best first choice. Even 9mm ball starts out bigger than the expanded 22lr and a 9mm HP only gets bigger.

Is a 22lr better than a sharp stick? Absolutely. Would I use it if it was my only firearm -- yup. If I had a choice would I pick a different firearm, yes I would.

February 11, 2012, 12:46 AM
Just to throw my non expert two cents in here. I once tested some of those 60 grain Aguila Super Snipers or whatever theyre called in wet phonebooks. From my Bearcat, they penetrated about 6 inches of books, yawing after about a half inch and the ensuing path looked like I had stabbed the book with a very thick bladed knife. I'd guess the dimensions of the hole at 5/16ths by an inch or so. From a 10/22, nearly identical "wound", but it went right on out the back of 10+ inches of books. I was quite impressed and I find myself keeping them in my .22s now. Not that there aren't better choices as far as armament goes, but I wouldn't feel unarmed with these.

February 11, 2012, 05:23 PM
A 10-22 with a 25-rd. mag of Velocitors would be far from useless as an intruder attitude-adjustor......

You may also see he well she handles a .410 shotgun....the buck and slug loads are quite effective for SD.....

February 11, 2012, 06:31 PM
Better then nothing and no bad guy will advance on her if she's getting constant hits in his face,neck and upper chest area with it.

About ten years ago,there was a young kid in Texas,I believe ,that repelled and killed two burgulars from his home with a lowly tube fed magazine 22 rifle.

If the kid was unarmed,it would not have gone well for him.

The bad guys were known for being real dirtbags.

Double Naught Spy
February 11, 2012, 10:42 PM
Better then nothing and no bad guy will advance on her if she's getting constant hits in his face,neck and upper chest area with it.

As noted above, "nothing" is an awfully low standard against which to compare something for self defense.

As for getting constant hits in the face, neck, and upper chest area, you know, we just don't seem to see that result occurring with much frequency.

Yeah, people successfully defend their homes and themselves with .22s. They have also managed the same feats with BB guns and unloaded firearms.

February 11, 2012, 10:47 PM
a 12ga 2-3/4" loaded with #4 Buck (27 pellets) in my mind almost the same as the 18 shot of a Marlin 60.

As other poster indicate: First have a gun.

May I suggest an alternate? Consider the M1 Carbine with soft nose ammo and a lightly polished feed ramp to minimize stuttering. With a butt pouch attach, you can keep three 15 round magazines with it and loaded as desired, all 15 or less.

Good luck and get her to practice any time she can.

Doug S
February 11, 2012, 11:21 PM
If what I had was a 22, I'd use a 22. My primary concern would be reliability, as 22lr tends to jam every now and then.

February 12, 2012, 12:48 AM
As for getting constant hits in the face, neck, and upper chest area, you know, we just don't seem to see that result occurring with much frequency.

I find everyone's confidence in their marksmanship rather refreshing. We all know that anyone we want to shoot is just going to stand there and let us pump rounds into them. 20 rounds between their eyes? No problem!

Along those lines, even police officers and soldiers who train for a living with firearms do, in fact, miss. However, those of us civilians just can't miss.

Add all that to how every badguy just stops what their doing immediately the moment that first round strikes them, and a 22lr with 30 rounds sounds like a great solution. Hea, it's just like a shotgun, right?

Let's get real here. No one holds still so you can shoot them. Under stress accuracy greatly diminishes, and counting on an attacker to choose to stop attacking is instead of incapicating them is also roll of the dice I want to avoid.

Because of all of this your goal should be to stack the deck in your favor as much as possible. This includes choosing a carbine in a service caliber.

February 12, 2012, 10:50 PM
does anyone make a .223 home defense round? a round that won't penetrate several walls is what im talking about. low flash. ect.

February 12, 2012, 11:25 PM
If it comes down to it, my 10/22 will figure in a large way.

Doc TH
February 13, 2012, 12:02 AM
Agree with DeShivs.
Brassfetcher website gelatin tests w. 10-22 rifle showed penetration of 12.6 in to over 16 inches with CCI Velocitor, Federal hi vel HP, and Aquila 60 gr subsonic.
These all exceed the FBI recommended minimum penetration.

February 13, 2012, 04:48 AM
Yeah, great penetration, but with teeny-tiny holes. Better than a sharp stick, but a 9mm, 40 or 45 carbine would make bigger holes.

With centerfire reliability.

And it would still be easy to handle. It's not a 22, but even an 8 year old could still handle it easily.

Obviously, if she doesn't want to do it, it doesn't matter. But there's no reason she can't do it.

February 13, 2012, 07:29 AM
Rifles have higher muzzle velocity than pistols-especially .22 rifles.

The velocity gain from a long barrel is not as much as you might think. My chronograph reveals that a long rifle barrel only adds about 100 fps to the velocity achieved by a 7 inch pistol with .22 LR ammo. Once you go over 15 inches or so, the velocity actually goes back down, the powder is burned up and the rest of the barrel only tends to guide the bullet to the target. A TC Contender with a 12 inch barrel might actually have a higher muzzle velocity than a rifle with a 22 inch barrel when shooting .22LR ammo.

Bill DeShivs
February 13, 2012, 09:05 AM
HV .22 lr achieves maximum velocity in a 13"-16" barrel.

Bartholomew Roberts
February 13, 2012, 10:47 AM
Can it work? Sure. However, if it worked reliably on a consistent basis with training and practice, you would see people who fight with guns professionally use it. The fact that you really don't see that anywhere is a good clue that there are some significant drawbacks to .22LR for that purpose.

It seems to me like your question has more to do with whether those drawbacks are severe enough that it would be better to substitute another platform for your girlfriend. Part of the answer to your question is what the two of you can afford to buy, afford to shoot, and will actually go out and shoot and become familiar with. And as you probably already know, plinking on the range is good for familiarity and weapon manipulation; but it isn't the same thing as training for a gunfight.

It is hard to answer your question because none of us are really in a position to evaluate those last factors. A .22lr rifle that she knows how to use and shoots for fun is going to be better than 20ga shotgun with buckshot that she never shoots and is uncertain how to use. You are probably in the best position to evaluate where she is at on that stuff; but look at your criteria again - if a .22LR met all of those criteria well, you'd see it used a lot more often in a lot more places.

Bubba in c.a.
February 13, 2012, 10:44 PM
.22s don`t have much stopping power. Simple fix, shoot him more times! BUT, what is safer for you and bystanders: 10 shots of 22 or 1 shot of buckshot?

Not to mention the risk to you because of the time it takes to shoot 10 times.
Same argument for almost all handgun ammo: shoot him till he falls down, or shoot him till you run out of ammo and then pistol whip him until one of you wins the fight. Or just go get shotgun with some buck.

Incidently, i have a very dear friend who I recently set up with a Ruger single six 22 for HD. Why? Because after much experimentation it is the only gun she is strong enough to cock and shoot. That`s pretty much the only reason for picking a 22 for HD. I would have preferred a 410 single shot with buck, but she coundn`t handle it.

February 14, 2012, 03:47 PM
First of all, no commonly available firearm will negate the risk of overpenetration. The interior walls of most modern homes and apartments are little more than pine 2x4's spaced about a foot apart and covered over with drywall. Nearly any common firearm, including a .22LR can easily penetrate two sheets of drywall.

As far as the terminal ballistics of a .22 are concerned, why not simply look at how they perform in ballistic gelatin?


Now, what do we want in a self-defense bullet? Most people prefer a bullet that will expand as much as possible while still penetrating somewhere between 12" and 16" in order to ensure that it can reach the vitals of a very large attacker or one shot at an oblique angle. In the brassfetcher link, only three .22 Long Rifle loadings meet this criteria: the CCI Velocitor (13.3" penetration and .335" expansion), the Federal 36gr JHP (14.3" penetration and .308" expansion), and the Remington Golden Bullet JHP (11.9" penetration and .340" expansion). Between these three, my choice would be the CCI Velocitor as it seems to deliver the best balance of penetration and expansion.

So, how do the Velocitors stack up against other common firearms? Again looking at brassfetcher, we see that a Fiocchi .32 Auto 73gr FMJ fired from a Kel-Tec P32 penetrates slightly more than the CCI Velocitor at 13.8" but does not expand so final diameter would be approximately .311".


A .380 Auto 95gr FMJ, when fired from a Kel-Tec P3AT penetrates in excess of 16" but does not expand so final diameter would be approximately .355". Also, the .380 FMJ may yaw somewhat depending on the shape of the bullet (TC vs. RN).

Unless very specific organs are hit, the moderate amount of energy produced by these cartridges will have minimal, if any, effect on terminal performance. Even so, energies can be fairly easily compared. CCI advertises the Velocitor as a 40gr bullet at 1435fps for 183 ft lbs energy, Federal advertises their .380 FMJ loading as a 95gr bullet at 980fps for 203 ft lbs energy, and Fiocchi advertises their .32 Auto FMJ as a 73gr bullet at 980fps for 155 ft lbs energy.

Therefore, in just about every measurable way, the best .22 LR loading available, from a rifle, gives us performance in between that of a .32 Auto FMJ and .380 Auto FMJ.

Ballistics aside, there are other factors which must be considered as well. On the plus side, a .22 rifle is one of the very easiest firearms to shoot because both recoil and report are very mild. Also .22 Long Rifle ammunition is the least expensive available which makes high-volume practice quite affordable. Finally, quality .22 rifles are less expensive, by and large, than comparable firearms in other calibers.

The downside to a .22, besides ballistics, is reliability. The relatively long, skinny rimmed cartridge is one of the most problematic when it comes to feed reliability in a repeating firearm. The outside-lubricated heel-based bullet also presents problems in and of itself. Because the bullet lube is on the exterior of the cartridge, dirt is more attracted and the lube itself will more quickly foul the gun. Also, heel-based bullets do not seal the powder and primer from contaminants such as oil and moisture as well as inside-lubricated bullets do. Rimfire primers are more susceptible to misfire due to quality-control issues (the centrifuge that spreads the priming compound must be run for a certain amount of time to spread it evenly) than centerfire primers and, because .22LR ammo is usually marketed for non-critical applications such as plinking, target-shooting, and small game/pest control, QC issues seem to be more common.

IMHO, a .22 rifle isn't the worst possible choice as I think it would be preferable to a .22 or .25 Handgun. However, unless a more powerful centerfire gun simply is not a viable option due to recoil sensitivity or finances, I think that something more powerful and more reliable such as a pistol-caliber carbine or .410-20 gauge shotgun would be a better choice.

February 14, 2012, 07:43 PM
About .22LR and wall penetration, I stacked up some scrap pine 2X4 lumber to see how many a .22 would penetrate. A .22 High velocity shot out of an 18 inch barrel will go through four of them.

February 15, 2012, 03:45 PM
All this talk of over pentration makes my head hurt. Unless you all live in brick house all guns will penetrate. While I don't want to go sending a bunch of FMJ's around the neighborhood I'm gonna use what's best at the job and hope I don't overcome lotery like odds of hitting a bystander.

As for the .22 carbine. I'm a firm beleiver in the first rule of gunfighting is to have a gun and the caliber/cartridge comes in a VERY distant second. Most gun fights can/will be ended with anything and the rare BG's that are all tough are gonna be all tough much of the time even if hit with better calibers.

That being said ask your self what you want in your hands if you absolutly have to stop him now. I spend almost zero time thinkin about HD guns but I think I'd choose a single shot 12ga over a .22 carbine and eitehr is far from my first choice.


February 15, 2012, 03:50 PM
sounds to me like you need a calico, 100 rounds of .22lr is nothing to be messed with:D

I only recently heard of the gun when someone from here in NJ was arrested on assult weapon charges for posessing one. after some quick research it seems like a pretty damn cool gun

February 15, 2012, 09:23 PM
When a .22 was what I had, it felt good. I was, and still am, very practiced and proficient.

Since those days two (maybe more) .22LR rounds have come out that improve the ballistics of the round for SD. CCI's Velocitor and the Winchester's 40 grain Hyper Speed HP. They do hit noticeably harder on flesh.

February 16, 2012, 11:06 AM
I can't raise any powerful objections to the idea. Better to be armed with even as few as 10 rounds of .22 lr than to be equipped with a weapon that is even more inappropriate.

I'd much rather see her armed with a better, harder hitting choice, for example, any 9mm or .30 caliber carbine.

Would you fire a .22 lr at a rottweiler, pit bull, coyote, or even black bear, and expect it to disable that animal? if not, why would you expect it to work on a human? Any large mammal would require probably between 5-10 solid body shots with .22 lr to incapacitate, except in the very best case scenarios.

That is my objection. If heart/lung/vital nerve centers are missed, a .22 will not cause enough damage and trauma to put the bad guy into shock or bleed him out quickly.

Another consideration is reliability. Rimfire ammo has a tendency to fail. .22 rifles, in my experience, tend to jam. you can't allow that.

Speaking plainly, will she die tomorrow just because you put a 10-22 in her closet? Not likely. Will she survive a gunfight with a 10-22? Most likely.

Would her chances of survival, and the chances of her two children be better if she had 14 rounds of good 9mm ammo at her disposal? I'm pretty sure that they would be.

Now, analyze how much risk you are willing to take with her life, and the lives of her children.

February 16, 2012, 03:21 PM
I am a little bit irritated that everyone expects an intruder to ignore that someone is armed with a firearm and shooting at him. I am no expert but I believe the average intruder will prefer to leave as quick as possible as soon as he detects resistance with the potential of death and not investigate what caliber is flying around him.
If you have an intruder that ignores that fact you have a major problem that I believe will not be solved with a major handgun cartrige. In that situation I would hope to have a major rifle cartrige firearm in my hand.


February 16, 2012, 06:25 PM

At that point you are hoping that the person attacking you chooses to not continue to attack. I, for one, want to take all elements of choice out of the equation if I can.

Lots of gunfire sounds the same when your on the receiving end. If you miss, the intruder may say "fudge this noise" and leave. Goal met, but by his choice, not yours.

If you hit with a small round the likelihood of an immediately incapicating injury is low. At that point you are hoping he again says "fudge this noise" and chooses to leave. Goal met, but at his choice.

The larger the round you put into an intruder (all other things being equal) the more likely he will be unable to make the choice to continue.

With handguns there is a constant compromise between caliber, weight, size, recoil, and capacity. Since we're talking carbines here almost all of that is moot.
A 22lr carbine isn't much heavier than a 9mm, 5.7, or 30 carbine platform. While there is more recoil they are all very manageable for almost everyone. Size is again similar since they all have 16" or larger barrels. All of these carry enough rounds to defend yourself.

Since almost everything with these carbines is equal (except cost) there is no compelling argument to pick a 22lr for anyone who is not über recoil sensitive.

February 16, 2012, 08:34 PM
Would you fire a .22 lr at a rottweiler, pit bull, coyote, or even black bear, and expect it to disable that animal? if not, why would you expect it to work on a human? Any large mammal would require probably between 5-10 solid body shots with .22 lr to incapacitate, except in the very best case scenarios.

Well.... I've acheived one shot stops on 3 out of those 4 examples with a .22 carbine.... What do I win? ;)

February 16, 2012, 09:19 PM
Me and my shootin buds did some chronographing with 22 LR ammo and we found that the most efficient bbl length is 10". What I don't know is if this info is a good indicator of performance across the board, or just in our guns. :o

CCI Stingers
980 FPS (FA Mini-Revo 1-1/8")
1192 FPS (Ruger Bearcat 4")
1516 FPS (Ruger MK II 10")
1550 FPS (Ruger 10/22 18")

CCI Velocitors
1126 FPS/ 34 AD/ 165 ES (Ruger 10/22 18") :(

As for the stopping power or lack thereof, I think that it's more how you wield it than the actual caliber (perhaps in most cases at least). In a raging firefight of course I would want a larger caliber that has more penetration, but for most of us, a 22 would be enough to make most evildoers back down. I'm looking real hard at Rugers Charger pistol right now. I think it'd make a dandy house gun with a red dot and a fat Mag.

February 17, 2012, 04:20 AM
@ kinoons

The situation is rather bliss if the attacker prefers to continue his attack although resistence is evident. Having a handgun caliber rifle only improves your chances marginaly. Improvements have been made with modern bullet construction, but still there are countless reports of failure to stop someone/something with multiple rounds fired. If this situation ever happens to me, I hope to have a highpower riflecaliber or shotgun firearm in my hands.
Emptying a 10/15/17/33 round magazine into someone might be frowend on by the law depending on where you live. And proving you needed all that firepower to stop one assailant won't be easy.
This whole discussion arises from the typical fear of people that zombie like hords will run down your perimeter to steal your can of campells soup. I belive that not to be the norm for homedefense.

If I am wrong please correct me.


February 18, 2012, 01:41 AM
sleeper --

having a handgun caliber carbine only marginally improves your odds? How do you come to this conclusion, and compared to what? A carbine vs a handgun in the same caliber?

from Ballistics by the inch -- 9mm test
(steyr s9 vs keltec sub 2000)
FHS 147 grain, my personal favorite -- 931fps vs 1086fps or 155fps to the carbine

Corbon 125 grain +P gets you 1178fps vs 1387 fps or
209fps to the carbine

if a 5.7x28 is your preferred cartage (fiveseven pistol vs ps90 carbine)
46grain Protector III -- 1850 fps vs 1400fps -- 350 fps to the carbine
40grain Protector I -- 2092fps vs 2650fps -- 558fps to the carbine

a 30 carbine (110 grain) leaves an m1 carbine at 1990fps. It goes 1440fps from a revolver (a 7.5" barrel revolver). again advantage carbine at 550fps

So, as we would expect, you get a lot more energy from a carbine. This frequently equates to deeper penetration, but may not get you larger expansion.

from http://www.shootingillustrated.com/index.php/6626/pistol-caliber-carbines/

Terminal Performance Comparison
Load EXP (inches) RW (grains) PEN (inches)
9 mm 124-grain Speer Pistol .71 124 13.25
9 mm 124-grain Speer Carbine .45 107 17.50
9 mm Federal 115-grain JHP(P) .57 114 14.50
9 mm Federal 115-grain JHP(C) .50 70 16.00

This is why I advocate for the heaviest round your pistol or carbine will reliably cycle. Out of the longer barrel you get more velocity but remain closer to the best performance for your ammo. The heavier ammo also will penetrate deeper since it conserves its momentum longer.

I was unable to find any specific tests comparing any 5.7x28 or 30 carbine rounds from a pistol vs carbine. I would venture to guess (I hate guessing) that since both the 30 carbine and 5.7x28 were designed first as carbine rounds they will perform well from their respective platforms.

back to the point, since I can ramble. A carbine offers many advantages compared to a pistol -- longer sight radius, electronic sights if you desire, larger ammunition capacities, easier to train and become proficient with. The only drawback is the larger size may limit usability with one hand.

Your premise that we are preparing for a zombie hoard is a false one. The simple truth is that a carbine is a more effective tool for incapacitating an attacker than a pistol is. Because of this, given the option to choose, I would pick my ps90 over my walther PPS for a firefight. In the context of this thread, I would choose my ps90 over a ruger 10/22.

February 18, 2012, 04:41 AM
@ kinoons

Thanks for the info and the link. No offense ment with my little provocative/ironical zombie comment. :D

What I find disturbing in all of the comparative tests I have seen sofar is that there is no mentioning of at what penetration depth the expansion began in 1.handgun 2. carabine. Further the pics of nice "naked" gelatine is always impressive but it doesn't corrolate to reallity. There have been quite a few tests that I read of where "plugging" of the cavity of the hollowpoint, by clotheing put before the gelatine block, have been described, transforming the hollowpoint to a "roundnose" projectile. So what are we doing with a "full metal jaket" round in selfdefense? Many of us know how effective it is to hunt with full metal jacket. [Yeah I know the only option for brain shoots on elephant, rhino, etc.] (Just throwing in some provocative ideas to hopefully get some scientifically done results that I have not been aware of. Hearsay is not an option when life is on hand.)
My comment on handgun vs. carabine was from the fact that many survivors of firearm conflicts still have the projectiles imbeded in their body. So it comes down to shot placement as the major factor to killing your opponent. Bullet design and caliber improve your chances, but having someone die later on because of tissue damage done to the intestines will not satisfy your mourning relatives.
My whole comment derives from the fact that intruders are seldom totally stupid(even crackheads). They all posses an instinkt for survival. That is also the reason why they are intruding your home. So if you awake early enough to prepare your firearm and warn them that you are armed, I donot believe that the majority will be willing to neglect their survival instinct. Something has gone wrong anyhow if you are at home and the intruder is trying to come in. The majority wants to intrude undisturbed so they will choose moments when you are not at home. That is a statistical fact.
I totaly agree that a hollowoint will probably improve your survival and firing it from a carabine will make it even more impressive. But if it has come sofar your preventive measures have not been sufficient.


February 18, 2012, 09:49 AM

I agree that gel isnt the perfect test medium, but it is a consistent one allowing round performance to be compaired on equal footing.

This all boils down to exactly how prepared we want to be. I agree with you that 99% of conflicts will be resolved by the presence of a firearm and it's first shot. The question then becomes how well do you want to equip yourself for that 1% chance. When limited to a handgun, such a during daily concealed carry, there becomes a major limitation between size, weight, caliber, and capacity.

Since this thread started as a home defense carbine thread those limitations are not present. In the overwhelming majority of instances a 22lr carbine will end a conflict. However, since the difference between a 22lr carbine and a larger caliber carbine is negligible, I advocate a larger one. That doesn't mean that a 22lr is junk, just that there are better options to cover the remaining 1% of conflicts.

I also agree that there are many factors to a successful defensive shooting. With the round used being only a single variable, it is important to train so that shot placement and follow-up shot times are not the limiting factors.

February 19, 2012, 01:54 PM
No one sugested a RUGER CHARGER .I know it is a PISTOL not a CARBINE .But it is on my short list for this year .

February 19, 2012, 03:47 PM
Ditto on the Ruger Charger.

February 21, 2012, 07:01 AM
imho i think that for hd a 12 gauge with birdshot works fine in a pump 18.5" platform, a 22lr in carbine platform is good too, but accounting for the possible jambing that might happen at worst possible moment, but also considered the kel-tec pmr-30(if you can get your hands on one:D) is a good option aswell because of it's 30 round magazine and being a 22 wmr giving a little more power than 22lr.

Onward Allusion
February 21, 2012, 10:18 AM
For those recommending the Ruger Charger, here is a major caveat.

Get rid of the OEM wood laminated stock that it comes with and drop it into an Axiom stock.

The problem with the OEM wood stock is that it isn't a true pistol grip. The Charger, although technically a pistol isn't meant for pistol styled shooting, especially in its OEM form. BTW, the Charger is probably one of the better choices (after a 9 or 10 shot wheel gun in 22LR) for home-defense if the user is only comfortable with 22LR.

February 21, 2012, 10:52 AM
Our local Sportsman's Club has had a 2-Gun Match for several years. We have also had a Rimfire Division for several years. We started out with lots of 10-22's in various configurations in the Rimfire Division. The equipment evolution has most shooters in Rimfire Division shooting some form of an AR15-22 now days. M&P-22, Sig 522, and various Rimfire uppers on AR15 lowers. Weapons sights are all over the place also. We have open sights, Eotec's, UltraDot's, Low Magnification Scopes, etc.

As a Match Official I am also involved in Scoring, and Pasteing the targets. What we see with rimfire is normally both shots are very close together center mass in the targets. We Double Tap all targets. It is very common to paste both bullet holes with a single target paster. I also see very good accuracy, and shot placement with rimfire. The malfunction rate also seems much better with the AR style rifles.

Lets look at a few points.
The 22 rimfire is very economical to train/practice with.
The 22 rimfire has a very low recoil impulse, so the new shooter will not develope a flench while learning to shoot.
The 22 rimfire by nature is great to plink with. With the low cost of practice ammunition any shooter can get in enough trigger time to get good.
I like the 22 rimfire as a training tool, for all the above reasons. With any centerfire, ammunition cost is going to be a limiting factor in the amount of live fire practice/training that can be done.

The young fellow getting his girlfriend to shoot at all is a huge step in the correct direction.
I am a firm believer in being prepaired. I also think the 22 LR has a place in prepairedness. It has the advantage of being the only cartridge most folks can stock enough ammunition in to last for a long period of time without a significant drain on your daily resources for a long period of time. It is not a big drain for most of us to add another 550 pak to our supply every week or two.

A 22 carbine while not the ideal home defense weapon, can get the job done. In an AR Platform it can be upgraded with a weapons light down the road. Additional magazines can be added to your supplies. A weapons mounted Laser Sight can also be added if needed. Sights can be upgraded from Open, to a Red Dot, or Eotec as time passes. If you are working with a weapons system like a Tactical Solutions AR15-22 Upper, you can add a centerfire Upper Assembly at a later date. At this point you can still get in lots of quality trigger time with the 22, and in less than a minute switch your rimfire upper out to a centerfire. Also all the add ons like the weapons light will mount on the centerfire. And best of all everything is pretty much identical. The stock is the same, the trigger is the same, everything feels the same. No issues with transition. And a really great advantage, you can keep building on the AR15 platform over time. You do not need to invest in everything at once.

In my opinion the 22 carbine will keep her well enough armed until she is ready to move up to more power. The most important thing at this point is getting in enough trigger time to feel comfortable with what she is using. The 22 rimfire is the best solution to getting in that trigger time.


February 21, 2012, 06:24 PM
This is my point of view -

Any gun is better than a sharp stick. I've had a 10/22 since my dad gave his to me 20 years ago, and it was at least 10 years old then. I can count the number of reliability issues I've had on one hand, so FWIW, there you are.

My girlfriend wanted a HD gun, what did we decide on?

A short barreled Mossberg 20 gauge pump, with number 6 shot and cylinder choke.

Here's why:

Relatively inexpensive
Little training to become proficient
A slide racking is the universal noise for go away.

After three trips to the range and a few boxes of shells, she can reliably hit an area about the size of a paper plate at 7 yards, from the hip. I epoxied a straight line down the receiver (right above the trigger) so she can feel it in the dark and point pretty consistently. Further than that, and she is comfortable shouldering the gun properly. 6 shot will go through one wall like a slug at any kind of interior range. It's non unreasonable to hope a few walls will stop or slow it down to the point of impotence. It will certainly do the job through an interior hollow core door. I think any argument about the ballistic capabilities of a shotshell that isn't buckshot are pretty pointless at HD ranges. Walk your GF's place...I'd be surprised if there is longer than a 10 yard uninterrupted run.

I'd gladly take a .22 over nothing (if the SHTF my .22 would be my go to gun) but as a purpose owned weapon, there are just better options.

Irish B
February 21, 2012, 06:44 PM
I don't think a ballistics argument at hd range is pointless. Even at point blank range a 20 gauge with 6 shot is not going to be fatal. We had a patient once who had taken #7 shot from a 12 gauge at less than ten feet to the chest. Only 2 bbs penetrated into the lungs. He was in a lot of pain but it was far from a life threatening injury. Had that been buck shot or a slug it would have killed him. I think I'd rather take a good knife or a wooden bat over a .22lr in an hd setting. But that's just me.

Doc TH
February 21, 2012, 10:16 PM
Again, look at the Reagan shooting. While 22LR is not my 1st choice for HD/SD, a 22 LR handgun (revolver) immediately took 3 out of action - 1 SS agent hit in the abdomen, 1 police officer hit in the neck, and Brady, struck in the head. All of them hit the ground unable to rise again. Reagan became dyspneic (short of breath) soon after he was put in the limo and taken to GWU Hospital where he collapsed just inside the front door. So I have great respect for the potential of the often-dismissed 22 LR cartridge.

February 21, 2012, 11:43 PM
My wife (who grew up in an anti-gun family) was extremely fearful of a firearm when she met me. The first time she ever handled a firearm was with me and its been a long time since that first time. She started shooting just my 10/22 - wouldn't touch anything else for fear of recoil and report. She wouldn't even consider a firearm for HD at that point. After a while I managed to convince her to try my AR with my CMMG .22LR upper on it. At that point in time she decided that she'd be willing to go for that if she needed to use a weapon for HD.

After a couple years of that she hesitantly moved to a handgun in .22LR. Then after some time after that she moved to a .380acp. Now she owns a Ruger LCP and practices with it twice a week. She's telling me that she's considering moving to the Ruger LCR in .38sp... so now its time to take her gun shopping again. I think eventually she'll move on to a 9x19. Do I expect her to ever move on to a .40 or .45? Absolutely not. Do I think that eventually I'll have her reaching for a 9mm pistol of some sort for HD and PD? Absolutely.

For a couple of years though I was happy just to know that she'd at least reach for A gun for HD rather than just hiding in the bedroom and being a victim (or worse yet allowing our children to be victims) while she's got loaded guns all around her.

In a case like this - a .22LR carbine is better than nothing. Is it the best option? Of course not but its definitely not the worst.

Bill DeShivs
February 22, 2012, 01:18 AM
Your comments are irresponsible. One shooting (that we don't know the circumstances of) is not an indicator of effectiveness.
I would think the case you cited would be the exception, rather than the norm. Most 20 gauge shotgun blasts to the chest within 10 feet would prove fatal.

Bartholomew Roberts
February 22, 2012, 09:14 AM
It will certainly do the job through an interior hollow core door. I think any argument about the ballistic capabilities of a shotshell that isn't buckshot are pretty pointless at HD ranges. Walk your GF's place...I'd be surprised if there is longer than a 10 yard uninterrupted run.

They aren't pointless at all and #6 shot is a poor choice for a variety of reasons. It seems to me that you are measuring your weapon's effectiveness based on what it can do to a hollow core dore. I'm willing to bet a grown man could probably put his fist through a hollow core dore. Never seen a grown man put his fist through another man's sternum.

As we've discussed here numerous times, there are three ways a firearm stops somebody from continuing an attack:

1. It stops the upper central nervous system from functioning through direct damage.

2. It causes unconscious by reducing the blood flow to the upper central nervous system via massive blood loss which can only be achieved by poklng holes in large, blood bearing organs.

3. Through pain or fear, it causes the attacker to choose to discontinue the attack.

The first two are physiological - no matter what choice your attacker makes, he will stop attacking because his body is not physically capable of functioning. The third is psychological - it relies on the attacker's mental state to be effective.

If you are seeking to stop an attacker via #1 or #2 above, the targets you are trying to reach are usually surrounded by bone, muscle, fat and ligament that can be significantly tougher than a hollow-core door in an apartment or a piece of drywall. Light birdshot will often be inadequate to reach these structures - this is one reason why less-lethal ammunitions like beanbags are basically #9-#7.5 shot encased in a cloth pouch - because this size shot has very poor penetration and you don't want less lethal ammo to penetrate.

Moving up to #6 shot and cloth casing increases penetration; but you are still looking at around 5" of penetration in BARE JELLO on average. Put a hollow core door, piece of drywall, appliance or even a jacket in front of that and your margin for error is gone.

Your comments are irresponsible.

I disagree, probably because he is making the same point I am - #6 birdshot doesn't have enough penetration to be reliably achieve stops via #1 or #2 above unless you get a perfect profile:

1. Average sized male
2. Unobstructed chest shot from front or back only
3. Light clothing or no clothing at all
4. Range less than 15'

And as IrishB's anecdote indicates, even then birdshot will still occasionally fail to do the job. So I don't see how that comment is irresponsible.

Most 20 gauge shotgun blasts to the chest within 10 feet would prove fatal.

IrishB's anecdote is by no means the only one out there where shotgun blasts to the chest or head at 10 feet were not only not fatal; but failed to stop the person shot from running, fighting back, or continuing to function. Can it immediately stop people? You bet. Can it kill people, even through walls? Again, it sure can. Will any heavier shot have a better chance of stopping someone immediately? Yes, it will. How muich margin for error does #6 shot have before it stops being effective? Not a whole hell of a lot.

February 22, 2012, 09:52 AM
I will note that the original poster was asking about a .22 carbine for HD.

I invite anyone who thinks 6 shot from a 20 gauge at 10 feet is not a viable defense round to stand in front of one. My anecdotal experience is that being shot with a small caliber bullet really didn't hurt too much at the time, and didn't really stop me from functioning.

If you don't like it, if you aren't comfortable with it, by all means, use buck shot. The point is this: I'd take a small, light, reliable shotgun over a .22, for the OP.

Double Naught Spy
February 22, 2012, 10:11 AM
I invite anyone who thinks 6 shot from a 20 gauge at 10 feet is not a viable defense round to stand in front of one.

That is pretty big talk considering nobody has suggested 6 shots from a 20 gauge at 10 feet isn't viable defense.

Being "viable defense" and being a reliable stopper are not the same thing. Besides, what in the world makes you think you would get a chance to fire all six shots? If you want to based defense on the cumulative effects of repeated shots, then a Daisy Red Rider BB gun can be a viable defense as well.

And I bet you aren't willing to stand in front of one to be shot multiple times either, so then obviously the Red Rider is every bit as good of a reliable defense as you 20 ga. shotgun, right?

Silly and stupid criteria give you silly and stupid results.

Challenging folks to stand in front of a weapon and letting them be hit with it is not a valid challenge to substantiate the viability of that weapon for self defense.

February 22, 2012, 11:00 AM
DNS, I agree with your overall point, but I believe the post to which you are replying refers to #6 shot, as in birdshot, rather than 6 shots from the shotgun.

Bartholomew Roberts
February 22, 2012, 11:04 AM
I invite anyone who thinks 6 shot from a 20 gauge at 10 feet is not a viable defense round to stand in front of one. My anecdotal experience is that being shot with a small caliber bullet really didn't hurt too much at the time, and didn't really stop me from functioning.

Wow, I've never heard that argument before. It TOTALLY changed my mind this time. :rolleyes: I don't want to be kicked in the balls; but kicking me in the balls isn't going to cause me to physiologically shut down regardless of how much I dislike it.

#6 shot from a 20 gauge at 10' could cause you to physioglogically shut down if we meet all the conditions stipulated earlier, it just is less likely to do that than heavier shot and is more susceptible to failure if not all of those conditions are met.

Look at your own words. You said about your chosen defense load "It's non unreasonable to hope a few walls will stop or slow it down to the point of impotence." - If 2-4" of powdered gypsum backed by paper slows down your chosen defense load to the point of impotence, what does that say about your chosen defense load? To me it says that there are lot of commonly occuring things in a house that will make that load impotent. Since I don't use lethal force for self-defense unless I think there is an immediate and serious threat of death or serious bodily injury, I don't want to use a load that is easily rendered impotent by commonly encountered materials.

You apparently, don't have a problem with that and that doesn't bother me in the least. However, you also don't seem to have a problem with recommending that solution to other people without any qualfiers - even when they didn't ask about shotguns at all in the initial post. So I just wanted to make it clear to someone who might read your advice what exactly they are getting into - and I also wanted to respond to Bill Deshivs, who normally has good advice; but with whom I disagreed in this particular instance.

February 22, 2012, 11:45 AM
I know this is just an anecdote that doesn't tell us much about the stopping power of shotguns but my oldest cousin told me a story while he was interning at a hospital in Memphis back in the 1980s.

A homeless fellow was brought in that had been hit in the lower abdomen with a shotgun blast. I don't know the gauge or the shot size but I was told the Xray showed almost 100 pellets that were stopped by the skin on the fellow's back after passing through from the front. My cousin said he worked for twelve hours on the fellow before the man finally died.

It seems like there was a Canadian study of birdshot penetration that considered sizes and distances and it wasn't impressive. I don't think any came close to the recommended 12 inch minimum.

February 22, 2012, 12:25 PM
My 2 cents worth. While not ideal, a Ruger 10/22 properly maintained/cleaned and fed good HP ammo such as CCI Stingers while not the best HD weapon would certainly be better than only dialing 911.

Short light, replace factory sites with a set of fiber optic sites or red dot type. Cheap easy to practice with, which leads to ability to shoot without fear and make reliable accurate hits. If you have a good 25 round Ruger mag that is lubed and runs cleanly even better. Teaching a novice to use one is very easy, even clearing a failure to fire should it happen. Again wouldn't be my first choice but certainly would hate to meet up with someone who has a loaded Ruger 10/22 at her shoulder and pointed at me.

Bill DeShivs
February 22, 2012, 02:53 PM
Another Memphis 1980s anecdote:
I personally know both the shooter and the person shot.
Victim was shot in chest with a Rem 100 12 ga. with #8 birdshot at <10 feet.
Victim had consumed quite a bit of alcohol and cocaine. Victim ran 35 yards before collapsing from blood loss. Gunshot required removal of 1/2 of right lung, and shell wadding was removed from his spine. Shooting happened within 1/2 mile of ER.
Buckshot would have made no difference. Shot placement might have made a difference.

February 22, 2012, 03:14 PM
yeah, I didn't mean to start anything. The sad fact is nothing is a guaranteed show stopper with no drawbacks.

When he mentioned an apartment with kids, that was part of the same situation my gf was in, so we went into it thinking not only about the defense, but the other people and thin interior walls factor.

I have a bat and a .45 myself.

Anyway, yeah.