What's the Story on .22 WRF?


December 1, 2006, 04:13 PM
Well, Thanksgiving this year was a blast (in more ways than one). Aside from gorging myself with about 40-45 family members, a good portion of us went shooting. Found out that I'm a crack shot with an iron-sighted Win '94 .30-30, a rifle I've never considered buying. Also found out that a Marlin (Glenfield) 60 can run for 40 years without cleaning, but not very well. :eek: And if someone has lost the keys to the safe, B-12 ChemTool, an old toothbrush, 5W-30, and an air compressor can clean and lube a gun pretty decently. :)

The best part, though, was when my crazy (in a good way) uncle showed up. His first words were, "Hey, you like guns, right?" He proceeds to pull an older-than-God case out of his trunk, inside which is something I never knew existed.

It was my grandfather's Remington Model 12 pump-action rifle in .22 Remington Special (.22 Winchester Rim Fire). Octagon barrel, tiny sights, straight stock (like on an M1903), and smooooooooth action and trigger. Needless to say, the thing's not in immaculate condition as it was bought back during the Depression and used heavily, but according to J.K. (the gunsmith) at Outdoor America, it's safe to use, and in perfect working order. :D

So, I ordered three boxes of CCI .22 WRF from Cabela's, which should be arriving today. The thing is, I'm not sure where this stuff falls on the ballistics scale (no pun intended), nor what it's best used for.

I plan on just doing light plinking with it a couple times a year, merely to prove to myself that I'm taking good care of it in case my own grandkids might want it. :D

P.S. Anyone have any idea how to disassemble one for cleaning?

If you enjoyed reading about "What's the Story on .22 WRF?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
December 1, 2006, 04:25 PM
A friend of mine in high school (LONG time ago) had a .22 WRF. Did pretty much anything a .22LR would do, just tough to find ammo locally. Got to the point where I'd loan him a gun for hunting. But, IIRC, his was some kinda autoloader, but I could be wrong, as I said its been a long time.

But in short, not much different from "standard" .22LR loads ballistically.

December 1, 2006, 05:00 PM
Case is a little longer than .22LR. Looks pretty much identical to .22 Mag, but DO NOT SHOOT .22 Mag in it!

I have a Winchester 1890 in .22 WRF. Basically the same gun as yours, but Winny instead of Remmy.

P.S. Anyone have any idea how to disassemble one for cleaning?

They came in break-down and non break-down styles. Mine breaks down in half with a little screw on the side of the receiver. Very simple. I've never disassembled one of the other styles, but I can't imagine it's too complicated.

December 1, 2006, 05:22 PM
Little screw, my foot! :eek: The head on mine's gotta be ~.5" in diameter! :D Guess it's a takedown, then. What about all the extra stuff inside? How can I take a good portion of it out without doing much damage?

Something I just noticed--the last patent date on the barrel is April 16, 1912. Two days after the Titanic sank, and exactly 72 years before I was born. Kinda makes you think... :)

December 1, 2006, 08:04 PM
Also, should I re-blue this gun, or leave it as is?

December 1, 2006, 08:09 PM
leave it as is...you reblue it, you ruin ANY value it has now...

its actually supposed to be a step up from 22 Long....which is a bit diffrent from 22 Long Rifle...this is off of memory so don't quote me on that...

in essence it was the "22 WMR" of its day...

Winchester still makes ammo for it on a limited basis so you should be okay.


December 1, 2006, 08:26 PM
The bullet and case diameter are the same as the WMR (.22 magnum) and the WRF can be used in magnum firearms for a quieter, accurate small game load - greatly increasing the flexibility of magnum guns. I regular use CCI 45 grain hollow point WRFs in my scoped Smith and Wesson 648 .22 magnum when hunting for squirrels. Is is very accurate and shoots to the same point of aim as 40 grain magnum rounds do. The WRFs have a slight power boost over the .22 long rifle, but are much less powerful than the magnum.

A point of interest, the CCI wrf box has 'not recommended for revolvers' printed on the box. Through a series of e-mails I had with CCI, they indicated their main concern was the use of the modern wrf cartridges in older, cheap wrf revolvers that were often made undersized long rifle diameter barrels that may presently be in poor condition.

There was a good article in one of the shooting magazines last year about successful use of WRFs in magnum rifles.

December 1, 2006, 08:38 PM
db_tanker: Leave it as is--you reblue it, you ruin ANY value it has now.
Well, I plan on never selling it, only passing it on through the family. Truth be told, a re-blue would functionally work wonders for it, since original finish is at ~40%, realistically. Rust is beginning to creep up in a few places.

'Sides, even if I did want to sell it, the general price is only about $350, tops.

December 1, 2006, 09:14 PM
I shoot lotsa .22WRF. I use in magnums, BUT also in an 1890 Winchester , and a Colt Police Positive Target, both chambered for .22 WRF. Evewryonce and a while Winchester makes a run of it. I bought a case 15 years ago, and a few bricks of the 2 different jacketed offerings in the last 10 years. CCI told me they were worried about their bullet jackets sticking in revolver bores. The Winchester plated lead ammo has no such warning or worries.:)
WRF seems to have quite alot more "smack" to it than .22LR Minimags in my experience. It is right there with Stingers in performance with alot less noise and better penetration.

December 1, 2006, 10:22 PM
I doubt the stuff would work the action of my auto, a Remington M597 magnum. However, Winchester Dynapoints are down loaded magnums and they function it. If I find some WRF, I might try 'em. Might be a good small game option for squirrels in that rifle.

The Dynapoints are about half way from .22 LR to .22 mag in energy. I figure they're good 'nuf for a light load in the rifle. They're cheap and available.

Bwana John
December 2, 2006, 09:29 AM
I used to have a Colt Police Positive pistol in .22 WRF.

All I knew was it said 22 on the side and 22 shorts were cheapest at the time.
You would not believe how the cases balloned out and split!!! :what:

Later I used the pistol for "wax wars" where we took the projectile off a 22 lr and replaced it with birthday cake candles and shot them at each other. :eek:
The extra big chamber made more shots before fouling possible:cool:

If anybody has a 22 WRF Colt Police Positive what dosent work double action anymore (due to my 13 y.o. gunsmithing skills :banghead: ) I would love to get it back, it was my first "real" pistol.

December 3, 2006, 01:34 AM
After looking at load data, I came up with the following:

1300 fps, Muzzle; 45gr JHP, 169 ft-lbs energy

from CCI's website (http://www.cci-ammunition.com/ballistics/detail.aspx?loadNo=0069)

So... I guess it's about the same as standard/high-velocity .22lr, but with a slightly heavier bullet.

On a side note, I was fiddling around with the rifle last night while watching Demolition Man, and the bolt just kinda fell out. :eek: After figuring out how it all went back together, I proceeded to clean at least 50 years' worth of fouling from the bolt, trigger mechanism, and the inside of the receiver. Don't have a .22 rod or BoreSnake, so the barrel's still a little gunky, but I think that now the thing'll run even better than when the gunsmith tested it. :)

I really can't wait to get it to the range to see what it can do. :D What can I expect?

If you enjoyed reading about "What's the Story on .22 WRF?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!