Seriously, .22LR as BUG?


November 1, 2006, 08:45 PM
I'm looking at the NAA Mini revolvers as a conversation piece, fun little range gun and a back up gun, in that order.

I would probably be carrying it in an ankle holster with a Kahr PM9 + extra mag on me. This would mean either my Kahr would have to malfunction, or I would have to shoot 14 rounds before stopping the threat.

Only at that point would the NAA come out. My question is how lethal is a .22lr round? Obviously it is about the smallest round you can carry aside from a .22 short, and by the time this gun would come out is a super close quarters fight that could basically put the barrel right on the perp.

Would you guys trust it? Is it worth the $200 or so just to add to my collection? Think I would be better off w/ a P3AT?

Any insight would be helpful. They seem like a fun little gun that could serve a decent BUG purpose, just wondering what you guys think, as I've never shot or held one.

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Baba Louie
November 1, 2006, 08:51 PM
In a life or death situation I'd hate to have to fumble with cocking the hammer and pulling the trigger against an adversary that had me down to an NAA mini and is on top of me...

If I was going to go w/ a .22 as a BUG, I'd want 8 or 10 rounds in a DA snubby revolver that I could unload in a second or two using one handed up close and personal (belly type gun) and would probably prefer something a little larger (say .38 spl type) and maybe down to 5 rounds...

But that's just me.

But they (NAA mini) sure are cute and fun to play with now and then... aren't they?

November 1, 2006, 08:57 PM
Yeah, those were my thoughts as well.

I'm also looking at the S&W 638 Snubbie. Alloy frame, 5 shot .38SPL.

Only problem, is the S&W is about the same size as my primary and holds less rounds of a "lower" caliber. I just want a wheelgun. :)

I'm still debating on what to buy. I'm going to get a Kahr autoloader as a primary, either a PM9 or a CW9(which is just a hair bigger than the PM9).

Ahhhh...decisions decisions. I don't think I would really want to trust my life to that NAA, but it would be a fun gun to add to a collection. I suppose to should focus my energy (and funds) towards a gun that I can rely on to stop a threat should I ever need it.

November 1, 2006, 10:29 PM
Go get a KT in 32 or 380 the new ones are relieable. Lots better than a 22. Also ankle a really bad place to carry unles your sitting a lot.

November 1, 2006, 11:58 PM
i love the .22, im a huge fan and mostly only shoot and collect them almost exclusively.

if i had the .22 LR as a back up and it came to very close quarters this is what i would try to use it for in close combat: i would try to hit a place that would weaken or damage my apponent to give me an edge over them. in effect, i would put it up to his right shoulder and fire, incapacitating it, shoot him in the knee-cap so i could make a break for it, hit him in the mouth cause if he's choking on blood, he'll pay less attention to you.

it more than likely wont drop anyone on the spot, but it can be used to weaken an opponent before it gets up-close and personal. -Eric

November 2, 2006, 12:07 AM
If you really want a .22LR, why not the S&W 317 ( Eight shots, absolute featherweight, and pretty accurate. I have one as a 'training gun' for my 442 and 642. Put a set of Crimson Trace laser grips on it, and you can take out an eyeball at 50 feet. Not a bad choice, particularly if recoil tolerance is an issue.

EDITED TO ADD: It's also available in a kit-gun version (

November 2, 2006, 10:22 AM
I've got one of the little NAA .22's and it's really a lot of fun and suprisingly accurate for something so small. While certainly not my first choice and not an option if I knew something was going to happen, it does indeed satisfy rule number onein a gunfight. Have a gun! I actually have carried mine a few times and it is at least some measure of comfort.

November 2, 2006, 02:14 PM
I mostly agree with the above coments, but, occasionally, a J-frame revo is just a little to big (for some people) to carry 'quietly.' That's why I have an NAA Mini Revolver in 22Mag. For those occasions where even my Model 60 is too much. Especially since I'm a small guy and can't seem to hide even a J frame that well.

Too, can't a Single Action NAA be fired with one hand? If the cowboys could do it with the Model 1873 why can't we??

"Fanaticism consists of redoubling your effort -- when you have forgotten your aim."
-- George Santayana

"In the beginning was the word, and the work was hydrogen…"
-- Harlow Shapley

November 2, 2006, 02:18 PM
Already said about the first rule of a gunfight. Sure why not, but if .22, why not 22mag? Pump up the volume. I like the idea of that NAA Mini in 22mag.

November 2, 2006, 02:35 PM
When I was in LE many years ago, I operated knowing that I had no backup most of the time.

I had a pocket sewed into the left front shirt tail of each of my uniform shirts.
The gun was located right beside my fly and just below my gunbelt.

Hoping that no one would search me close enough to discover that tiny gun in that particular location, I carried a Freedom Arms .22 there for a last ditch situation..

If I was ever taken prisoner or hostage, the theory was at some point I would say. " I don't care if you shoot me, I gotta go!!"

IF I was allowed to go to the bathroom, I could reach in and get the little .22 and if lucky, maybe shoot the BG in the eye.

Hitting him anywhere else would probably really p** him off.

Fortunately I never needed it.

Ben Shepherd
November 2, 2006, 02:47 PM
Redneck back-up. I have one. It's the freedom arms 22 mini-mag 4 shot. Goes on a belt buckle. Better than no gun at all. Good barbecue piece.

And there have been a few, albiet very few, times that that little jewel went with me slipped in a pocket, as anything larger would have been noticed and frowned upon.

And as posted above, I'd use it as a *shoot to slow down* gun. Not really viable as a *shoot to stop* gun.

November 2, 2006, 04:24 PM
The NAA .22Mag mini revolver fits nicely into the phone/knife/accessory pocket on the right front of a pair of Royal Robbins 5.11s ... :D

November 2, 2006, 04:41 PM
The little 351PD is an interesting gun -- not a .22LR, but a .22 rimfire nonetheless.

.22 WMR, 7 shots, in a tiny little 10.6 oz. package.

Pretty steep, though.

Double Naught Spy
November 2, 2006, 05:33 PM
While the oft cited first rule of a gun fight is to have a gun, Double Naught Spy's first rule is to NOT GET SHOT!!

A .22 lr as a BUG is fine, but realize that if you have to go to your BUG in a fight, the situation is already critical enough such that your primary is no longer available to you. In such a situation that has already reached that point, do you really want a .22 lr?

If you do go with a NAA mini, then become proficient with it. Keep in mind that when you power down to such a small gun, the need for well placed shots becomes that much more critical and a gun like the NAA Mini is not that easy to shoot precisely.

If you get one with the little bird's head grip, be prepared for it to hop around in your hand a bit when you fire it. If you get the larger grips, then you lose a lot of the concealability of the gun, but it will be easier to shoot because you will be able to hold it better.

Suffice it to say that the sights on the smaller minis suck. It is really more of a point and shoot gun. Mine actually has the tritium front dot sight that turned out to be too big for the gun and all it does is tell me that the gun isn't pointed toward me while in the dark. Besides, with a 1-2" sight radius and the size of the sights, just how precise are you going to be? The gun may be accurate for its size, but they aren't terribly accurate compared to larger guns. Here, the point is that every shot counts when you are down to such a puny form of defense with such cruddy little sights and needing every shot to count.

November 2, 2006, 05:45 PM
Your Kahr is sorta a backup gun to begin with. Maybe you should buy a full-sized auto instead?

November 2, 2006, 09:45 PM
I wont be able to conceal a full size auto on myself very well at all. In the winter months I plan to carry a Glock 19, but in the summer and especially at work it just isn't very productive for me carry a full size gun.

I've decided against the NAA. If anything, I'll buy a Kel Tec .380 and keep that on me. I work in a button down shirt and tie and a pair of very thin dress pants. A pocket or ankle holster are my only options.

I do sit at a desk for the better part of my day, in which case an ankle holster would prove to be very effective. Likewise, it would work well in my car.

I'm heading to the range next week, I'm going to try out a J frame and a Kel Tec and go from there.

To the guy who said the Kahr is already a backup gun- I agree and disagree. While it is a small firearm, it is the biggest gun I can really carry and have with me at all times. With two clips and one in the pipe it gives me 14 rounds of +P 9mm, that should handle most situations should I need it.

I like the fact that the Kahr could also be carried in an ankle holster should I want it to.

I'm going to concentrate on getting my primary first and worry about a backup after that. The Kahr PM9 will more than likely be mine very soon.

November 2, 2006, 10:19 PM
I used to carry a USA made Walther TPH in .22. As a back up.
More trouble then it was worth. Keeping it clean, keeping ammo fresh, shooting it often enough etc.
My thought is have a primary that works when you pull the trigger.
Practice with the primary. If your job involves firearms, don't mess with lots of differant actions, trigger types such as DA, SA or DAO.
I'd rather carry two J frames then a big service pistol and A little bug.
If you must carry a service pistol, and A back up, have a similer action type for both. Big Glock and A little Glock or what ever.

November 2, 2006, 11:06 PM
"Is it worth the $200 or so just to add to my collection?"

I think so...

November 3, 2006, 02:13 AM
Maybe you could get a second Kahr PM9? Or the 3.5" P9. One in a pocket, one on the ankle, or something. That way you could get either as the situation dictates (ankle if sitting, pocket if standing, etc.). It usually makes sense to have your backup piece and primary carry be as similar as possible. Glock 17 and Glock 26, big wheelgun and snubby, 1911 and Mustang, P11 and P3AT, etc.

You may have a brain-fart under stress and find yourself running the gun as if it were the one you have the most trigger time on. If you're holding your primary carry, no problem. But, just as an example, if you were a 1911 shooter and found yourself holding a snubby when the S hit the F, you'd probably end up pulling your shots way high, and short-stroking the trigger. The differences between a PM9 and P3AT aren't nearly as extreme, but are still there.

Two identical guns would also mean you could continue to carry your reload in the same place, without having to worry about needing a completely different magazine, and then train yourself to always go for the correct one when holding a certain pistol. Or to always drop a certain pistol when it runs dry, and get the other one.

erich w
November 3, 2006, 02:45 AM
if you want it as a back up and being you seem to be looking at the smaller end of firearms I'd recomend a derringer da, it only has 2 shots but in a close quarters fight that should be more then enough plus you wouldn't be limited to 22lr/magnum, if you want somthing with more shots though you'd be better off with a snub nose revolver, the dixie is a cool gun and wounderful to play with and use as a conversation piece but I wouldn't put my life on it.

Double Naught Spy
November 3, 2006, 09:24 AM
Given the size and weight of some derringers, such as Bond Arms derringers, you can have something like a Kahr PM9 with more rounds on board and better reload ability. Maybe there are some other actuall small derringers being produced, but I have not seen any or not seen any that would be sufficient and small enough for me to select them over a small revolver (e.g. Airweight) or semi auto.

Joe Demko
November 3, 2006, 10:06 AM
If you buy one, get the wooden "boot grips" that NAA offers at their website. The give the grip the shape of a miniature SAA. It makes the piece dramatically more shootable than the bird's head grips without too much reduction in concealability.

November 3, 2006, 11:38 AM
I currently own a naa in 22lr that I inherited from my Grandpa. I love the gun and carry it almost all the time. I know that it isn't the best for self defense but it is better than no gun. I figure I will carry the naa when I wouldn't carry a bigger gun. I always have more firepower back in the car though.

If you are going to carry it shoot it alot. They take some practice to control. They are also more acurate than you would think.


"Is it worth the $200 or so just to add to my collection?"

I think so...
I think Ultraman has an interesting fetish.

November 3, 2006, 12:08 PM
I dont Think a NAA mini revolverw ould be that great.

As sugested abouve, why not go with one of the .22 caliebr J-Frames? A Ruger Bearcat wouldnt be too bad either.

November 3, 2006, 03:52 PM
Just a final thing, for the people that have suggested a .22 J-frame. That makes absolutely no sense. At all.

A Kahr PM9 is 5.3" long, 4.0" high, .9" wide. A S&W J-frame is 6 1/4" long, 4 3/8" high, and about 1.25" across the cylinder. Why would you want a backup that's over 30% bigger than your primary, yet less than 1/10th the power?

Oh, you may also want to look into the Kangaroo Carry holster . That will let you conceal a Glock 19 sized gun under a button down shirt fairly easily.

November 3, 2006, 11:32 PM
RyanM, I think you've got this wrong.

The point of a defensive weapon - any defensive weapon, firearm or otherwise - is that it's got to provide the following:

1. Be able to be wielded or used effectively;

2. Be adequate for its purpose (i.e. to defend yourself);

3. Be reliable and trustworthy;

4. Be as concealable and 'carryable' as possible if and only if points 1, 2 and 3 have been satisfied.

A bludgeon or knife can be very reliable, but useless against a BG with a gun. If you have physical limitations, you may not be able to use anything very effectively. You choose your weapons based on all these criteria.

Now, as to the effectiveness of use, I submit that a very small gun is harder to use effectively than something bigger. I've found that I really can't manipulate the single-action hammer on a little NAA mini-revolver with any speed, or get fast, accurate hits to a precise target (and with a .22LR, you'd better be hitting an eye-socket if you want to stop a knife-wielding BG at halitosis range!). On the other hand, a J-frame or something similar, in a reasonable caliber, is much simpler to manipulate.

As for the Kahr and Kel-Tec, some folks swear by them, and I'm happy for them. Personally, I've owned five Kel-Tecs (three P32's and two P3-AT's) and three Kahrs (a MK-9, a P-9 and a PM-9) and I've never been able to get any one of them to pass the two-hundred-round test (two hundred rounds of one's chosen defensive ammo, through that gun, using those magazines, without a single bobble or failure of any kind). That being the case, none of them remain in my battery of carry-guns.

If you're considering a .22LR weapon as a BUG, I think the little J-frame S&W has a great deal to recommend it in terms of ease of use, reliability and effectiveness (the latter enhanced with a Crimson Trace laser grip, which lets one take out ping-pong balls at medium ranges every single time, with practice). It certainly makes sense to me. I'm not going to use a .22LR as anything but a training or plinking gun, but if someone wants to use that caliber for their own reasons, they'd best choose the simplest, most reliable, most effective platform for it . . . and the S&W has it all over the NAA mini-revolvers, IMHO.

November 4, 2006, 12:12 AM
I'm not sure I get your point, Preacherman. No offense, but you said yourself

and with a .22LR, you'd better be hitting an eye-socket if you want to stop a knife-wielding BG at halitosis range!

Also, the poster seemed to be saying he was considering .22 LR only because it was available in the NAA mini platform. If he can handle a PM9, he would certainly not be required to use a .22 due to disability or other reasons. But people seemed to think he was looking for a .22, any .22, for a backup, just to use that caliber. Which TFin04's posts do not seem to imply. He was simply asking for opinions as to whether the NAA mini would be an adequate backup gun.

.32 H&R magnum is about as small a caliber as is logical for the J-frame platform, for self defense purposes. .32 long wadcutters would have almost no recoil or blast, but still have stopping power which is acceptable to some (about the equivalent of .380 ball), and the option of moving up to .32 magnum JHPs (about the equivalent of a .380 +P JHP). You also get an extra shot compared to a .38. If someone cannot handle the recoil of a .32 long wadcutter, I honestly do not think they would be able to squeeze the trigger on a J-frame either, and thus would probably be limited to some type of single action target shooting type .22 autoloader.

Now, I'd take a .22 over a pointy stick any day, but I could not, in good conscience, recommend a .22 of J-frame size to anyone as a primary or a 1st backup piece, unless they really were forced to use one due to poor health. And I'd say that .22s, particularly NAA minirevolvers, would be best left to the role of extreme deep concealment, to be used if abducted and stripped of all other weaponry. They could be of particular use to people for whom being kidnapped is a realistic concern. But they aren't very useful for other defensive purposes; even for the role of third gun, there are better choices.

The standard bird's head grip is very compact and makes the gun easy to hide anywhere, but also makes it almost impossible to maintain a firing grip on it in a standup fight, or even worse, while in the clinch or on the ground. The oversized rubber grips (which are only available for the magnum frame models) make the gun immensely easier to use and control, but they increase size consiberably. A 1 1/8" magnum frame mini with the oversized grips would be 5.0" long, and 3.625" high, and weigh a bit over 6 oz. unloaded. In comparison, the P3AT is 5.2" long and 3.5" high, the same size as the NAA. At that point, the mini loses its size advantage, and you'd be much better off with a P3AT, P32, or Colt Pocketlite. Even the .22 LR model with the oversized wooden grips fitted, would be only marginally smaller than a NAA Guardian in .32 or a Seecamp in .32 or .380. 4" x 3.125" for the mini vs. 4.4" x 3.3" for a Guardian vs. 4.25" x 3.25" for either Seecamp.

Now, with the bird's head grip, an LR Mini is probably the smallest useful firearm out there. But the poor retention, poor functional accuracy, and single-action operation would realistically limit it to point-blank discharge behind the ear or at the base of the skull of an non-resisting person; i.e., shooting a kidnapper when they least suspect it. You could certainly get very lucky and hit someone in just the right spot in a stand-up fight, but using a gun with functional sights and better ergonomics would increase your chances exponentially.

So in short, .22s are great for small game hunting, great for target shooting, good for disabled shooters, and good for extreme deep concealment. For primary carry or backup for a person of average health, there are far better choices out there.

I should add that I actually own an NAA mini, plus oversized rubber grips. It's a fun gun, and it does go bang and put holes through stuff. I'm accurate enough with it to put all 5 in about a 4" group at 10 yards. And I have carried it a few times where pointless rules (but not any actual laws) forbade concealed carry, simply because the only other guns I own are too large to go undetected while wearing the required clothing. And also because I'm a hypocrite. :) When I do carry the NAA, I consider it to be a backup to a small sap and medium sized folding knife which I also carry. Honestly, the only situation I can think of in which I would use the NAA over the sap or knife would be something like a shooting spree, if I were behind the perp and close to cover. If I were willing to own a Kel-Tec, I'd be using that instead. I'm currently trying to save up for a Colt Mustang or Pocketlite to rectify my sans-tinygun status, after which the Mini will be honorably retired from concealed carry duty (if it's not sold for Mustang funds first).

erich w
November 4, 2006, 02:23 PM
I was sugesting the deringer as an ankle gun, if you plan on getting it for hiding it in your pocket or anywhere else for that matter stick with a small revolver with da

November 6, 2006, 09:19 AM
I have no problem with it.

Then again, I am an annonymous person on the internet with questionable firearms knowledge. :)

November 6, 2006, 02:51 PM
I had one of those .22 Mag NAA minis.
First of all you have to take out the cylinder to reload it.
It makes a hell of a lot of noise for the size of it, and I don't think it is all that safe with the hammer sitting on the notch they give you. I also could not hit the side of a barn with it but that may be just me.

November 6, 2006, 04:19 PM
Why not carry the NAA? It's so friggin' easy to carry, I carry mine folded in its "holster grip" in a large watch pocket! If you can't carry this thing, you can't carry anything. You don't need no stinkin' ankle holster. I carry the thing everywhere. I hope I don't have to use it in a gun fight, it's never my primary except on rare occasion I've gone to the store or something and forgot my 9mm (hardly ever happens, but once in a while it does). It's so tiny and light and pocketable it goes everywhere with me.

The one thing I've learned to do is dump the ammo every month at least and stuff some fresh loads in it. If you leave it loaded with the same ammo for a long time, you get some failures to fire. With fresh ammo, it's 100 percent. I've never seen a .22LR auto loader I could say that about.

It's pretty amazing the amount of accuracy the little gun has, too. I have made head shots on feral dogs out at 25 yards with it, it can be done, and that was off hand. It's also killed rabbits at 25 to 30 feet and head shot snakes where people on this board say you need "snake loads" (ie shot). :rolleyes: It is perhaps the handiest and for sure the most carried firearm I own. If I needed back up for some reason, and by that time I'd better be behind cover, I'm pretty confident I can place my shots if the target is close enough, in the eye socket or somewhere about the head. If I'm within 25 yards, I can do it. If I don't have that little gun and something happens to my primary, I'm in deep do do, or at least deeper than with it. I don't carry a traditional (read large) back up. Heck, my primary is either a Kel Tec P11 or a Taurus M85UL, what most people consider a "back up". Thing is, on rare occasion I may carry a .45 IWB, my KT in a pocket, I STILL have the NAA on me because it's so easy to have it there, I'm never without it! I can actually carry this gun folded in the palm of my hand and you won't see it there. No, it's not a primary self defense gun, but it's a very carriable little revolver and very useful as a tool when you really need it. It's no bigger or heavier than a good pocket knife and the quality of workmanship is amazing. It's built like a little Rolex, maybe better.

November 6, 2006, 10:20 PM
MCgunner, what a gifted educator you are, preach on brother!

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