I want a good .22 revolver.


November 15, 2006, 10:41 PM
Right now in our shop we've got a Smith 617 6" in .22 that's just... awesome. Price is mid-$500s.

I don't have a .22 handgun (other than an NAA mini), and being an instructor, I think that I actually can justify calling a purchase like this a "need." Isn't that great? :D :evil:

I would actually prefer the 4" barrel, but right now I'm looking for reviews on the above gun(s), and suggestions for other, comparable guns that are in a similar or lower price range.

I don't want a crappy or teensy-weensy .22, I want something that is high quality, durable, and well-balanced. I prefer a revolver for .22, as well as for starting out beginners (less bells and whistles to overwhelm them with).

Any help, as always, is much appreciated!

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November 15, 2006, 10:51 PM
for double action, i like the 617. good feel, shoots well. i don't own one, but i've put quite a few rounds downrange with my buddy's 617.

my personal .22 revolver is a Ruger Single-Six, which i adore. of course, not everyone wants a single action, but i prefer a single action .22 revolver for various reasons. for me, since a .22 pistol will only be used for hunting and target shooting, a single action trigger pull is perfect for me. i also like it for teaching new shooters, since the trigger pull is so light, recoil is barely existant. i learned to shoot on a single action .22 revolver, and maybe someday i'll teach my kids on one too.

it has the added bonus of coming with cylinders for both .22 LR and .22 WMR which can be swapped out in a matter of seconds.

as far as durability is concerned, my father owns a Single Six with a longer barrel (his is 8 1/2", mine is 6 1/2"), and he has not cleaned his in at least five years. it shoots every bit as reliably and accurately as mine which has been cleaned after every shooting.

and shouldn't everyone own at least one cowboy gun?

November 15, 2006, 10:58 PM
That is a great gun!
You know I believe in starting new shooters with a .22 revolver.

I think the gun is too big and heavy for teaching new students. I do not know the age, or types of students you are most likely to encounter, my experience has been a K Frame, like the Model 18 with a 4" barrel is a better revolver to teach with.

It fits more hands, not too heavy, but has "heft". The barrel is not too long, but more "balanced" in the hands, and in overall handling.

Medium frame with 4" barrels IMO/IME are better teaching guns.

Now the old "kit guns" meaning the J frame sized (smaller frame guns) in a .22 lr, fits even smaller hands. I do not believe in starting a person out with a J frame snubby in .38spl. Now this frame size, in a .22 lr and 4" barel is great.

Honest, if the gun is in great shape, you can get it right - get it. These older classics are getting harder to find and get.

Have the shop order some Speer Plastic training bullets in .38spl and use a Model 10 for a new student shooting these too.

A Wheelgun in .22 lr will show up.

Model 18 at the Tulsa show the fellow was asking $385.

November 15, 2006, 11:47 PM
Steve, this one is in .22 with a 10-shot cylinder :) not the .357/.38. It's really cool. It's actually brand new, so not much to worry about with the condition. Lockup is tight. I can have them get a 4" 10-shot model in for me with no problem, so I'm thinking awfully hard about it.

This is the one I want: http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10001&storeId=10001&productId=14748&langId=-1&isFirearm=Y


November 16, 2006, 12:15 AM
Wes, I believe Steve is talking about the weight of the gun. 41oz is an awful lot for a youngin or a smaller framed person to hold out at arms length. I know my girlfriend has a tough time holding my 686 (43oz w/o ammo) out. Would be a fine firearm to own though. Id be lyin' if I said I didnt want one!

November 16, 2006, 12:23 AM
My mistake.
I think I am confused.
I am thinking the one in the shop for $500 is the older blue one. The one I am thinking of is heavy for most new shooters.

Humm, I are old. .22 revolvers come in 5, 6 or 9 shots, not shot one with 10 charge holes yet, not that I remember, then again I can't count, and do wear bifocals :p

What is the weight on these guns? Oh and you do realize that thing ain't blue? :D

Wes, get what YOU want! Keep eyes peeled for a Model 18.

New Students...oh heck, call Larry Across town and borrow his Model 18 ,or send these folks to Kathy's site for "What first Gun to learn on" and let her mess with 'em.
<ducks> ;)

Important thing is YOU getting what YOU want.

On this semi-auto bit for a student. The Standard Model of Ruger MKI, MKII is great, again not too heavy and grip fits most. Just that 4 and something inch tapererd barreled one
Run as far as can from a MKIII
Buckmarks - smaller one, lighter one - whatever it is called - great for new shooters.

Hey I like folks getting what they want...

Humm, seems I got Larry and Kathy standing in my PM box with arms folded and want a word with me...can't imagine why?

November 16, 2006, 12:29 AM
i have a Taurus 970 Tracker .22 LR,
Before the scope:

After the 2X42 Red Dot scope:

its a fine, solid, accurate gun for half the price of a Smith. All i had to do was "dry fire " it with my thumb on the hammer to soften the blows 100- 200 times over a few days to take the grit out and smooth the trigger pull. bought the stainless for $330 last year, saw a blued one at Gander Mnt store for $240 or so. im shooting CCI Velocitors outta mine with great results. Good luck -Eric

johnny blaze
November 16, 2006, 01:13 AM
We have a 617 in the 6 inch barrel and the 8 3/8. They are fantastic shooters.
The only complaint is the weight. I like the 6 inch, the 8 3/8 is a little barrel heavy for me, but I can manage it.
I think that the 4 inch would be a great shooter to train on. It does not feel barrel heavy like the 6 and 8 3/8.
I looked at alot of 22 revolvers before buying these, and these are by far the best revolver in stainless that you can buy. Forgot to mention - these are both pre lock models.
The older model 17's are really good, and lighter. Depends on if you want stainless or blue.

November 16, 2006, 11:40 AM
10 shots? In a revolver? Heresy! Six for sure! :neener:

Listen to Steve. You know you want that classic blued steel and walnut M18. Even better would be a pre-17 K-22. The old K-22s, M17s, and M18s are the best 22 revolvers on the market. You just don't get that level of fit & finish anymore, and the triggers are incredible. Prices aren't too bad either. Get an old Smith.

Brian Williams
November 16, 2006, 12:14 PM
I prefer a S&W 35-1, Jframe goodness with a 6" barrel. I have 2 daughters that fight about it just about everytime it goes to the range with them.

November 16, 2006, 12:20 PM
I wouldn't give up my ten-shot 617 for both love AND money.

If you want something "high quality, durable, and well-balanced" you need look no further. Not to mention the "fun factor" is off the scale.

The Real Wyatt
November 16, 2006, 02:46 PM
I had given up on Taurus guns ... until a cuppla years ago when I got my CCW. The instructor provided a 9 shot Taurus .22 for us to use on the range. Sweet little gun that gets upwards of 200 rounds per day shot thru it. He said it had about 40,000 rounds thru it. I put 20 out of 20 in the 10 ring from 21' that day with that little Taurus.

I've bought many guns since that day, including 4 from Taurus. The Taurus guns have proven dependable, rugged and reliable. You could do a lot worse than a .22 revolver from Taurus.

November 16, 2006, 03:18 PM
I hear a lot of negative about Taurus .22s. Good to here something positive. I have two Taurus revolvers, .38 and .357, that I like a lot. My .22 revolver is a Rossi and it's very accurate and fun to shoot. It's a little kit gun, no longer in production, J frame size six shot with 4" barrel and adjustable sights.

I like the Single Six. Heck, I like Rugers, period! I don't own a single six, do have a couple of Blackhawks. Ruger also makes the SP101 in .22LR, but it isn't elevation adjustable. I've always thought the little Bearcat was a handy sized little .22, also, for the trail.

November 16, 2006, 03:43 PM
Brian reinforces I was sharing, in regard to hands and weight to fit more shooters. J frame and K frames between these two guns fit everyone.

We cannot, should not forget, we have folks that are learning. It does not matter if a kid, teenager or adult. Stamina , hand, wrist, forearm strength is not developed yet. We have folks with arthritis, that have had surgery for various reasons, say Carpal Tunnel.

Ever assisted a Physically Limited person? Ever have one born without a arm below the elbow? Ever assisted with an amputee that lost hand, forearm, or just a bunch of fingers? I have, and not the only that has and does around here.

Gun fit encompasses a lot! I have nothing against folks having guns they like, fit them and everything, still I feel we forget and do not have the proper tool (firearm) for new shooters.

Semis for a second. Ruger MKII Target with 5 1/2" bull barrel, I can do this fine!
Kids, teenagers, adults had problems with it being too heavy.

Now the Standard Model , with the Four and something inch tapered barrel, fixed sights, either MKI or MKII was Great! So was the High Standard Duramatic.
I had a S&W 422 that was real easy for new shooters. The simple, .22 semi, in blue, that the barrel was "underneath". Light gun, accurate, and folks did not tire out for sure shooting that one. Only reason I bought the gun, was for new shooters.
Colt Woodsman, Huntsman , Browning Buckmarks in lighter smaller sizes.

I personally feel, we responsible firearm owners need to have the right tools (firearms) when we introduce new shooters.

We get money burning a hole in our pockets, and nothing really strikes our fancy - go look at the .22 rifles, think about nieces and nephews , get a kid/youth single shot Marlin, or something. See a 422 , Standard MKI or MKII think about the girlfriend, wife, Sister in law, Mom, co-worker, that older gentleman that said he'd like to go to shoot , when arthritis is not flaring up.

Keep it simple, good fixed sights, bone stock, so they can learn the bone stock gun, how it works and everything.

Here is something else we forget. Ever been hurt, recover from surgery, and had physical limits imposed? Real nice to have a simple, light gun in .22 to shoot. Might be back surgery, neck surgery, shoulder surgery, and more serious here to have a light gun, you can shoot. If you pick up that heavy gun, with heavy recoil, you can cause permanent damage.

Quite a few folks have been real grateful to have a Marlin 60 and Standard Ruger MKII for even home defense, say what you want, but go have back , neck, shoulder surgery, or detached retina fixed and get back to me.

Heck I have fun shooting a single shot .22 in a kid/youth size , new, or pawn shop buy.

November 16, 2006, 04:58 PM
I agree with sm. The full-lug barrel, especially 6" or longer, seems a bit much for a .22. I recently bought a model 18, 4" blue and it's about the nicest .22 I've ever shot. (OK, I've only shot 5 - but it's still the nicest!) Handles really well and looks great, too. (Classic K-frame) Obviously out of production so you can't get a new one if that's what you want but a great gun if you'd settle for used. Not as easy to find as a 617, either, but worth looking for in my opinion. Bought mine at "gone-broker" and came in just under $400 total including shipping and local FFL transfer.

Good luck. Be safe.

November 16, 2006, 05:16 PM
I am in the "collect the whole set" camp remember? :D

I think you should get what YOU want, just keep in mind these Model 18's as shared above. [told ya so didn't I? :neener: ]

Also act dumb, be stupid, and be ready to pounce on any of these classics.
I do not charge for giving lessons on acting dumb or being stupid, just hang around me for a day, I come by this 'talent" natrually...:p

Old Fuff, and others can better advise on the Old Colt .22 revolvers.

Two more guns, that can be had "right".

H&R 999 Sportsman. Very "pointable" 9 shot revolver. Two things to watch on this break-top.
1.hinge need replacing
2.rear sight works looks being part of break-top.

High Standard Sentinel 9 shot revolver. This is steel and aluminum alloy.
*sniff* I am personally very sentimental about this gun. Someday, when I can , I will have a 4" to replace the one I grew up with. Real Sentimental to me.
Oh I will shoot it, I will hug it, hold it, and cherish this gun.

November 16, 2006, 07:42 PM
I've been teaching new shooters on a Heritage Arms Rough Rider for about a year, now. Never failed me, and someone on this board has made repeated 50yd shots with it. :)

November 18, 2006, 01:42 PM
Being a recently new Single-Six owner I second the Single-Six motion. I took my 12-yo daughter to the range and she thoroughly enjoyed it. It didn't take too long for her to grasp the entire operating concept. The only difficulty she experienced was opening the rather stiff loading gate. The only difficulty I had was getting my turn to shoot it as it was brand new and the first time out with it.

November 18, 2006, 02:43 PM
Best .22 revolver I've seen is the old Smith 17. I've seen 'em in 6-inch and 4-inch and the bluing was beautiful. If you can get one in primo condition, the quality is not something you see in today's guns.

November 19, 2006, 12:07 AM
The kit guns are the way to go. There's the modern one, and it's grandfather, the model 43 airweight.


November 19, 2006, 12:21 AM
I looked and looked found what I wanted. Dan Wesson 22. They are very accurate they did well in the long range shooting games. you can find the pistol paks under 500.00 which gives you 2 inch, 4 inch 6 inch and 8 inch barrels.

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