I was eyeing those Heritage Rough Rider revolvers that sell for just above $100, and they come with replaceable cylinders just like the Single Six.
In a 3" barrel, they make for a handy little gun. So, would .22 winchester magnums be good for self defense?
If you enjoyed reading about "Would .22 wmr make a good self defense round?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
May 21, 2003, 10:23 PM
Probably not the best choice but I would not feel unarmed with a .22mag revolver.
May 21, 2003, 11:03 PM
A .22 magnum out of a 3" barrel will probably make less energy and fps than a .22 long rifle out of a 19" rifle barrel.
That said, it will do better than out of a NAA .22 mag mini revolver that alot of folks use for CCW.
Also keep in mind quality .22 mag rounds are generally MORE expensive than decent 9mm or .38 special.
May 22, 2003, 12:27 AM
CCI MaxiMag +Vs (or the TNT variant) will pull 1,200fps from a 2" tube, 1,400fps from a 4".
But, I'm not a fan of the Rough Rider. It's rough all right :rolleyes:. And that bizarre safety is just...what the hell were they thinking?
I guess you could carry it "cocked and locked" :eek:.
May 22, 2003, 02:45 AM
Hey, I also have the Heritage Rough Rider 22lr/22mag. I wouldnt use it for selfdefense. Its more of a plinker and pest control gun. Mine has been very fun to shoot. If I were to be forced to use it in a selfdefense situation I woundnt feel under gunned either. These babies pack a punch & hits very hard. But its a single action cowboy type gun. Heritage also makes a 9mm called the Stealth which is cheap but very good for self defense. I would recommend the Stealth.;) Have fun with the Rough Rider.
May 22, 2003, 06:16 AM
The thing about the Heritage is that for carry, your best bet is to load five-up with an empty under the hammer, and leave that bizarre manual safety OFF. The only time you'd engage the safety would be during loading, to prevent the "going off half cocked" problem.
The other carry option would be six-up, safety on, but then to fire you have to both cock it and sweep the safety off. OR go cocked'n'locked (carry it *cocked* but with the safety on, sweep safety off to fire) but that's just nuts.
The Ruger system using an internal, automatic safety is far better for defensive carry of an SA.
May 22, 2003, 07:03 AM
In general I would suggest anything bigger than the .22. There are quite a few cases of it bouncing off people's heads. Though on the bright side it can do the same inside someone. Still, it's so... small. It is better than nothing but if you can afford it go bigger.
May 22, 2003, 11:19 AM
Go for it. You could get two Rough Riders and carry the extra cylinder for quick reloads . Then practice, practice, practice ;) . I've got one and love to take it out for squirrels. Easy to carry and with the magnum option makes it fun to shoot.
I've seen where they've come out with one in .17. Nice starter if you're looking for something fun to shoot. Needs longer grips though.
May 22, 2003, 03:00 PM
The better 22*MAGNUM* rounds will not bounce off of somebody's skull.
May 22, 2003, 03:06 PM
Having owned(briefly) a Rough Rider, I'd have to say that trying to swap loaded cylinders would be significantly slower than conventional reloading with the cylinder in place. Plus, I've read of at least one NAA mini-revolver owner who had an AD when his loaded spare cylinder fell out of his shirt pocket and landed base-first on a rock, setting off a .22LR round.
That said, I'd think that a .22WMR rifle would be a dandy home-defense piece for the elderly or physically frail, especially if it had a 10-rd magazine that could be removed/replaced more quickly than, say, that of the Ruger 10/22M. I think that Grendel(the predecessor of Kel-Tec) used to make a pistol-gripped, plastic-framed carbine that fed from 30-rd mags - something like that should do nicely.
May 22, 2003, 03:10 PM
My question is focused more on the round than the gun. I would think .22 wmr would have some advantages over centerfire calibers like the .32, .380, and .38 Special (non +P) in that it is smaller, and have less recoil. Also, does anyone know if the .22 magnum is actually more powerful in muzzle energy than the above listed centerfire rounds?
If the Rough Rider is too clumsy for self defense shooting, I might think about a Smith and Wesson .22 magnum revolver instead.
May 22, 2003, 06:58 PM
NAA has done extensive velocity testing and publishes the results, in 22LR, 22Mag, 32ACP and 380ACP.
To understand the data, you need to know that a Black Widow is always a 2" revolver and the MiniMaster is a 4" revolver.
Other tests over the years have shown that NAA's numbers in general are very honest. Even if you don't have one of their guns, this page is still a prime resource for mousegun ammo performance:
You'll also find a table of bullet energies linked from there, or jump to it at:
This will tell you that a 30grain round doing 1,200fps has 96ft/lbs of energy and at 1,400fps from a 4" barrel, 131ft/lbs. You'll get even more from most Rough Riders or Ruger Single Sixes.
The 32ACPs out of Guardian/Kel-Tec class barrels, are generally around 70grains pulling 850fps for 112ft/lbs energy. The hottest involve a 73grainer at 900fps, for about 130ft/lbs.
So out of a Rough Rider, Ruger or MiniMaster, the 22Mag is clearly in the same ballpark as the *best* 32ACPs, better in the 6" or longer tubes. In the Single Six 9" barrel, guesstimate 1,600fps and you're at 171ft/lbs - 38Spl territory. Even out of a 2", it's inside of the 32ACP performance range.
May 25, 2003, 03:10 AM
Altho I have no doubt that a .22 Mag round would work as a SD round in a pinch I wouldn't choose it for that.
Here's why. Hearing damage. The .22 mag is very ear splitting loud. Inside a building where a SD situation would likely to to occur you would be deafened.
Some might say that in such a situation you wouldn't notice it, but I disagree.
I have severe hi-frequency hearing loss. A good portion of it from shooting .22 mags from a Colt Peacemaker in the late 70's. I did have hearing protection, but it did not provide adiquate protection against the severe crack of the .22 mag.
For SD, usually done without hearing protection, I would choose a non- magnum of sufficient power.
May 25, 2003, 04:19 AM
What......? Just kidding.;) They are loud little boogers arent they?:)
May 25, 2003, 11:40 AM
For home defense, I absolutely agree. My bedside gun is a 38.
But as a deep-cover, last-ditch-and-always-on-you backup for street carry, the Black Widow or similar really fits the bill.
And you can practice with it in 22LR subsonic :).
May 25, 2003, 12:58 PM
I think this falls into the "better than a busted bottle, not as good as a cheap hatchet" catagory...:what: I really believe I'd want something a lot more...ah...exuberant. And that I could reload faster.
May 25, 2003, 01:22 PM
So, would .22 winchester magnums be good for self defense?
Yes--out of a rifle.:D
Seriously, I think the .22WMR is optimized for rifle-length barrels (which is why it is so loud in short-barreled handguns). If someone came out with a .22WMR round with a faster-burning powder optimized for short-barreled handguns, it might be a better choice.
May 25, 2003, 04:39 PM
So, would .22 winchester magnums be good for self defense?
Compared to what?
I think this falls into the "better than a busted bottle, not as good as a cheap hatchet" catagory...
Now as a 3rd gun, or as the alternative to a boot knife, or if it was THE ONLY firearm which would fit inside my four cigar case,
this page is still a prime resource for mousegun ammo performance:
but why mousegun at all ??
Remember, guns are supposed to be COMMFORTING, not comfortable.
In my world, the WORST thing would be to actually have to shoot someone, and have it not work!!
Double Naught Spy
May 25, 2003, 10:45 PM
It is a superb SD round for animals 4 kg and less.
May 26, 2003, 12:09 AM
The way I see it, having even a NAA .22 WMR with a
1-1/8" barrel is better than having NO gun at all!
That's what I carry as a back-up to my much beloved
.45 caliber West German SIG-Sauer P220A.:uhoh:
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member
May 26, 2003, 01:00 AM
If it can blow through skull bone most of the time, it's a real gun. Doesn't matter how small it is.
The number one best use of a mousegun is as a "front pocket surprise". Some idiot wants your wallet, you pull the "wallet" out and give him a 67th trimester abortion with it, before he even realizes it ain't a wallet.
It's also a last-ditch "get the hell offa me" backup, if necessary while screwed into his ear or nostril.
It's not a long-range plinking tool, with the possible exception of the MiniMaster, which groups better than a lot of service autos :).
May 26, 2003, 02:02 AM
The number one best use of a mousegun is as a "front pocket surprise". Some idiot wants your wallet, you pull the "wallet" out and give him a 67th trimester abortion with it, before he even realizes it ain't a wallet.It's also a last-ditch "get the hell offa me" backup, if necessary while screwed into his ear or nostril.
Cant think of any other scenarios when you would need a gun! I have it with me 24/7 in my pocket, no matter how big the pocket!
May 26, 2003, 10:45 PM
After seeing what .22 mag/.22 hornet do to a vest, I would use them in self defense.
However, I also saw what .41 mag/10mm does to a vest (and it's backstop!!), and it's very comforting.
May 26, 2003, 11:27 PM
I prefer something bigger. When I can, a .357 is with me. There are many times that I need to carry very discretely. That is when I carry a NAA .22 magnum with a 1-5/8" barrel. Feel comfortable with the .22 magnum as a close up defense gun.
May 27, 2003, 01:49 PM
You've demonstrated both knowledge and interest in the .22 mag so I was wondering what you thought. If you recall, my fiance has one as her home defense piece. We loaded it with Federal 50 grain which is shown on their website as moving at 1650 fps. I believe I was told their tests were either out of 4" or 6" barrels (can anyone confirm this?). I was wondering your thoughts on the heavier/slightly slower bullet vs the lighter/slightly faster bullet. The platform is a Taurus Tracker with 6.5" barrel.
"Cant think of any other scenarios when you would need a gun! I have it with me 24/7 in my pocket, no matter how big the pocket!"
Are you trolling, unimaginitive, ignoring real events, or just never have lived in a city?
May 27, 2003, 01:57 PM
Sure, if you're ever attacked by a squirrel. :D
May 27, 2003, 01:59 PM
I'm surprised by the anti-.22 mag crowd. Its like people don't want to like a round that doesn't fit into the standard definitions of "big bullet, big wound." Yeah, the wound channel is smaller, but the energy of a good .22 mag is in the same neighborhood as a .38 snub and sometimes superior. Why all the .22 mag hating?
May 27, 2003, 02:24 PM
Energy of a .22 mag from a rifle may equal/be superior to .38 spl snubbie, but isn't the energy from .22 mag when fired from a pistol more akin to a .22lr?
May 27, 2003, 04:03 PM
Energy of a 22Mag from a handgun is somewhat akin to a 22LR from a rifle, yes. In barrels above 6", the advantage may go to the 22Mag.
MJRW: NAA's data stops at 4", but the trends are pretty clear:
The best loads are the 30grainers in handgun barrel lengths. And even then, the CCI +V is just head'n'shoulders past anything else.
OK, here's the NAA 4" barrel (MiniMaster) 22Mag velocity data:
Now granted, they only test one 50grain load and yours might be better but...the trends are REAL clear here.
Compare to the 2" data:
You're going to get about 1,600fps from the CCI 30grainers from that Tracker barrel. That's gonna HURT, at 171ft/lbs energy. I recommend the "TNT" variant if you can find it, or the regular +V otherwise.
According to the energy table, you'll have to get 1,250fps from a 50grain to get as much energy. It seems highly unlikely you'll get anywhere close, but then again, you could always chrono it...your 50 might be a lot hotter than the one 50 NAA testedOOOps, no, just checked, they tested the Federal Classic 50. Federal's rating of "1650" is from a rifle, not a handgun - in my experience, and the NAA tables bear it out, Federal is "wimping out" on the powder charge or at a minimum, not tuning the charge for handguns at all.
If you are able to get 1,100fps or so, you'll get good penetration and it might be worth running 50s over the 30s, but I personally wouldn't. At 1,200, hmmm...tough choice, I'd pick based on accuracy, but ALL of these will be plenty accurate enough for home defense.
May 28, 2003, 04:40 PM
Heap-big fun to shoot, but not stop charging buffalo (or cracked smoking B.G.) in its tracks ... "Bigger is better"!
May 28, 2003, 05:21 PM
I disagree - that Tracker in 22Mag with *good* ammo is a fine home defense choice, esp. if the lady of the house is comfortable with it.
Recoil will be close to zero. She'll be able to dump six of those little screamers in a goblin's upper body faster than MMMers rushing to get Hillary autographs. Or put one right in his snotlocker.
Either way, that's gonna be one very seriously screwed up goblin.
May 29, 2003, 06:14 AM
"But, I'm not a fan of the Rough Rider. It's rough all right . And that bizarre safety is just...what the hell were they thinking?"
I love my rough rider. And whats so bad about the saftey? I kinda like it...
Anyway, lets remember that we are talking about .22 WMR here, not .22 LR, and that .22 WMR is SIGNIFIGANTLY more powerful. That said, it is also more of a rifle round. I hardly ever feel the urge to use my .22 WMR cylander. Whats the point? I use the pistol mostly for it's "anti-popcan" value. If you are looking for a cheap defense handgun, I'd recomend somthing bigger. You won't find anything good in the $100 price range, but $150 is another story.
The best gun I've seen for under $300 is the Makarov. They go for about $150, are 100% reliable, and they come in fairly powerful calibers (compared to the .22 LR and .22 WMR anyway). You can get them in .380 auto or 9mm Makarov (aka 9X18 ). I have a 'Mak' in 9X18 that I use as my primary carry handgun.
This is slightly off topic, but for about the same price as that rough rider, you can get one of these:
I got one of these for Christmas last year, and man is it accurate. I put a wide-angel 3-9X40 scope on it, and it sure is fun to shoot. It averages about 3/10 of an inch groups at 50 yards. I can take a head shot on a squirrel at 100 yards with this baby. I can't do that with the rough rider. That said, I still like the handgun, it's a GREAT plinker...
May 29, 2003, 07:12 AM
As a plinker/toy, the RR makes sense.
For "serious social work", the weird manual safety and it's position is just...bizarre :). Yes, you could carry it six-up, safety on, hammer down, and then on draw use the strong-side thumb on the hammer and weak-hand on the safety - as long as you're a "righty". But that's a LOT of finagling when it's life or death :eek:. Gimme a Single Six with a transfer bar any day of the week.
May 31, 2003, 02:09 PM
22s are fun guns to shoot but have dismal stopping power. The purpose of a defensive weapon is to stop your attacker as quickly as possible to end the life threatening aggression. A 22 has a poor track record in this respect. Will a 22 kill your attacker? Absolutely. But perhaps several hours later in an ER across town. The question is did he take you with him before he went? Most professionals believe that the 380 or 38 spl. should be considered the minimum caliber in a self defense weapon with premium ammo.
If I've got a choice for a home defense weapon I'll take a shotgun or a carbine over a handgun anyday! Remember, stopping power!