Which .22 Auto?


May 17, 2011, 01:33 PM
As some of you may know or remember, I royally jacked up my hand a couple months back... Two broken and displaced metacarpals that never got reset as the result of being bounced around from doctor to doctor. Regained all the mobility and most of the strength in my hand... Now I need to learn to shoot again! So I've been looking around, trying to find the best autoloading .22. I'm really looking for something configured similarly to a "regular" handgun, so that rules out the Ruger Mk1/2/3. The .22/45 is definitely a possibility. I'd say the Buckmark and the Neos are out. So as far as I can tell, that narrows things down to:

GSG 1911
Walther P22
Chiappa 1911
A whole mess of subcompact direct-blowback autos.

Of the bunch which is the best bet? Visiting local shops and looking online seems to be an exercise in futility, at best. With any gun I ask about I have just as many people saying "I can feed that gun ANYTHING and have yet to have a problem!" as I do people saying "That gun's a piece of junk. It jams/guide rod broke/won't feed at all/falls apart!"

So, make some recommendations, please, and give your reasons. If I'm missing a model, by all means, let me know. Thanks!

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May 17, 2011, 01:36 PM
my bersa thunder .22 is sweet. it was less than $300 and looks exactly like the .380 just smaller caliber. as a side note i use thunderbolts and wildcats in mine.

also a friend has a p22 and loves it as well its about the same quality and reliability of the bersa same ammo is fed to it aswell

May 17, 2011, 02:09 PM
I guess I don't understand what a "regular handgun" is. I wouldn't rule out Rugers and Buckmarks myself.

high country
May 17, 2011, 02:40 PM
I agree, why rule out the buckmark? Similar layout to a "regular" handgun, similar grip angle, great reliability and accuracy, parts are easy to find, and there is good aftermarket support if you are in to that.

It is worth noting that the buckmark grip is quite a bit different in width than a double stack centerfire, and I find that I have to change to my hand positioning a little when transitioning between the two. Not a lot, but just enough that I don't find that practice with the buckmark doesn't translate directly over (this is just me and my oversized paws though, many people find them very similar). If I cared, this issue could be remedied by changing grip panels. As between the 22/45 and the buckmark, which basically mimic the 1911 grip angle, only some of the new 22/45s and all the buckmark (as far as I know) have replaceable grip panels, so if you are trying to replicated the feel of a specific other handgun, it would be best to get a gun that has the option of changing the grip.

Good luck with your recovery, and return to shooting!

May 17, 2011, 02:51 PM
I also wouldn't rule out the Ruger Mark I/II/III and Buckmarks. I like the feel and grip angle of steel frame Ruger .22s much better than their polymer frames. And the Mark III does have a more standard magazine release than the earlier versions.

May 17, 2011, 03:04 PM
I have a sig mosquito that I really like, feels good and is layed out the same as their full size autos. My gun feeds bulk ammo with no jams but the last two people who shot my gun and went and bought one got guns that wont run, one is really bad and wont even feed minimags which is what the factory recomends. I also have a 22/45 and it is a much better gun, and more accurate, but even though it was made to mimic the 1911 it still doesnt feel as good as the sig.

May 17, 2011, 03:10 PM

I can't really tell you what is the best .22 handgun to replicate others, but I can tell you that I have owned my Ruger 22/45 for about 12-13 years now and it is a very enjoyable gun to own and shoot.

good luck

May 17, 2011, 03:21 PM
Save yourself some headaches and get a 22/45. Sigs, Walthers, etc. have had many an owner swearing. I'm only recommending the 22/45 because you seem to have an aversion to the Browning, although I do think that it is a fine rimfire pistol. Of the two, I'd still prefer the Ruger, to be honest. The only thing that I don't like about the newer ones is the magazine safety that doesn't allow the mags to drop free. I suppose this could be a perk in the woods though.

May 17, 2011, 03:37 PM
+1 on the 22/45.
The only thing that I don't like about the newer ones is the magazine safety that doesn't allow the mags to drop free.
The gun is hardly worth having with that safety in place, but it is easy to remove if you know how to detail strip the pistol. See posts by Bullseye57, and check out his website here: http://www.guntalk-online.com/2245detailstripping.htm#m3FSdisassembly

May 17, 2011, 04:51 PM
taurus pt22/25, with the flip up barrel, is nice for limited mobility...if you do the berretta, you get SA/DA also...gary

May 17, 2011, 08:44 PM
Don't rule out the Smith and Wesson model 422. You will have to buy used and the under barrel may seem strange at first...till you shoot it :) look for an alloy framed model and check out the magazine release, its ambidextrous and located in the middle of the front of the grip frame, by the way mine almost shoots the mag out the bottom.

They do have a mag safety but I don't mind it on this gun at all, it reminds me not to pull the trigger on an empty .22 chamber. 422's use the same magazines as the venerable model 41. If you prefer stainless they made a model just for you. They can be had fixed sight (field model) or with Smith adjustable sights. 4 1/2 or 6 inch models you choose.

I will save you some time and trouble about ammo...CCI standard velocity. Mine shoots that most reliably and accurately. You can get 10 or 12 round magazines and they have a small loading assist knob or invest in a loader if it's easier on your hand.

All the above are great guns but I like something a bit different especially when they shooots good!

May 18, 2011, 02:18 PM
I would recommend against the Chiappa, it is a bit more hassle than a rimfire semi should be. The full slide 22's are not as reliable IME. That probably has a lot to do with ammo inconsistancy and under-power.

The MK II is a much more consistant and accurate. Quality construction and materials as well.

A 22/45 is in my future. If I can find a sucker the chiappa won't be.

May 18, 2011, 03:24 PM
the cz75 kadet in .22lr or buy a cz 75 in 9mm or 40s&w, and add the kadet conversion. hands down the best .22 psitol for the money i've ever shot.

i also like the walther p22, but they aren't super accurate and some have issues from the get-go. for the style and money i feel it's a better choice than the sig diasterama mosquito. ymmv though.

lastly the newish s&w m&p22 pistol...not the ar looking one, the umarex made version pistol. although it's umarex and we all saw how the introduction of the p22 went...not so great, but maybe they have worked out some of the bugs with their experience with the p22?

i prefer combat pistol looking .22lr pistols to rugers or buckmarks, but that's me. for accuracy the rugers and buckmarks blow my choices out of the water, except for the cz kadet...that thing is super accurate.

May 18, 2011, 03:25 PM
The Buckmark was specifically designed to mimic the 1911 and/or Browning Hi Power. And most pistols today mimic those styles to one degree or another.

So, unless you're shooting something like a Glock, I'd say the Buckmark or the 22/45 are your best bets.

May 18, 2011, 03:29 PM
Get a conversion unit for a pistol you already own.
I have and shoot a Marvel, S&W 41, High Standard. I can't chose which one I like best and I'll shoot two of them today.

May 18, 2011, 03:58 PM
Buck Mark or 22/45...the others are crap in comparison

May 18, 2011, 04:52 PM
Classic Colt Woodsman series guns are nice if you can find one...

May 18, 2011, 05:35 PM
S&W 6" 422 or 622 with adjustable sights. I had both until my son pre-inherited the 622. Accuracy is comparable with my Buckmark from a sand bag rest and they are quite steady freehand for such a lightweight pistol. Easy to field strip. If forced to give up one I would keep the S&W 422 for my use.

May 18, 2011, 07:17 PM
New ... another vote for the CZ Kadet, . All steel, accurate. Great feel. I have the conversion kit. I can switch between 9mm and .22 in 15 seconds. It's great to practice with .22 on the same platform that you shoot 9mm. Not cheap but worth it.

Used... High Standard. There are two grip styles, the military grip has the same (or close) angle of the 1911. Again, an all steel accurate pistol with the heft of a steel 9mm. Several models, I believe "The Victor" is considered the most accurate but all of these pistols are really accurate. Buy only those made in Hamden or Hartford Ct.. My dad left me a Supermatic, it can make anyone look like dead eye Dick:) Also not cheap, but unlike other more recent .22 pistols, these are appreciating in value.

Lefty Wright
May 18, 2011, 08:59 PM
Browning just released a 7/8 scale 1911 in .22. Looks like the perfect choice!

May 19, 2011, 01:04 AM
Not sure about the others on that list but I know that the Walther P22 works flawlessly for me and always has. Only thing I've heard about them is the zinc slides have a limited lifespan.

May 19, 2011, 01:52 AM
Out of the list you gave, the 22/45. I gotta say though, the grip angle is FAR better on the Mk2/3 series. No clue on why you'd want to exclude those. They're about the best .22lr handguns out there IMHO.

May 19, 2011, 03:01 AM
What about this one:

May 19, 2011, 03:41 AM
I would go with a Ruger or Browning.

I had no luck with my Walther.

May 19, 2011, 12:51 PM
I just had this debate myself: it comes down to the Ruger or the Buckmark. Period. (IMHO).

Both will be more accurate than you probably.

Positives for the Buckmark: better trigger out of the box, perhaps slightly easier to take down. Does require a tool for take down. Trigger can be lightened by flipping the spring (Heggis flip).

Negatives for the Buckmark: less aftermarket support. Might be a little more ammo-sensitive.

Positives for the Ruger: LOTS of aftermarket support, drop in trigger kits, extractors, etc all available from Volquarsten, lots of grip choices from Hogue to full wood target grips. Does not require tools to take down, other than a quarter or zip tie or screw-driver or very strong finger to pull out the main-spring latch. Tends to be less ammo-sensitive than the Buckmark.

Negatives for the Ruger: The take down is a bit harder, and reassembly is a little bit challenging, but its nothing that can't be over-come with watching a few videos and understanding the relationship of the parts. The first time you take it down it will be hard, but the 4th time it will be easy. The stock trigger out of the box is not that good.

My take: If you can spring for a VQ trigger kit, go with the Ruger. You will have a nice platform that you can continue to customize.

May 19, 2011, 01:30 PM
I think for the time being I'll just suck it up and deal with the Buckmark. There's something... odd... about the grip, IMO. Then again, one of the bones in my hand got shifted down (toward the palm) and never reset. So that could be it. The Ruger caught my eye at first but I don't much feel like dropping THAT much money on getting a decent-functioning trigger. Thanks, guys.

May 19, 2011, 02:05 PM
The Buckmark grip is the same angle and general width as most common defense pistols. I wish they came from the factory without that thumb rest and all of that, but you can buy flat aftermarket grips.

May 19, 2011, 07:17 PM
I've got a ruger standard model 22 that I bought when I was 8 that has been thru hell in the last 52 years and it still shoots and does a better job than I do. I have a ruger target 22 that I bought in 1976 that is the most accurate pistol that I own. So I guess that I'd recomend a ruger 22 of what ever style you like best.

May 20, 2011, 06:10 PM
S&W 22a Large frame 22 with an excellent grip and trigger. Just my 2 cents worth.

Ala Tom
May 20, 2011, 08:41 PM
I also have an S&W 22A but so far I have mixed feelings. It doesn't like HP and sometimes the slide gets stuck. It blows smoke in your face because the smoke comes out both sides of the gun. I'd say most Rugers would be better. It's a good match for my MP in many ways but anyone not interested in that could do better.

May 21, 2011, 06:47 AM
The Ruger caught my eye at first but I don't much feel like dropping THAT much money on getting a decent-functioning trigger.

Most of the Buckmarks I've seen in gun stores recently were well over $400, and pusing $500 for the most part. And these aren't the target models.

The Rugers are under $400, with many being closer to $300. My four Ruger MK II's had good, out of the box triggers. When I wanted one with a better trigger, I installed a Volquartsen trigger for around $50. Even with the full VQ accurization package, (hammer, trigger, sear) you'd still be under the price of most Brownings, with a Ruger.

The Brownings are pricing themselves out of the market, except for the Camper model which I wouldn't touch due to its plastic parts.

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