Only the Brave Need Apply...


September 19, 2012, 11:55 PM
...As you'll be facing the scrutiny of internet memes far and wide.

But I do have a serious question: Does anybody carry a .22 pistol for self defense? A semi? Maybe a revolver? Why? I'm not talking about out an about in the woods where you'll encounter laser zombie bears and the like. Just in every day life for SD carry.

I ask everybody else to keep this civil since we've all been to the negative end of this discussion and nobody is likely to bring anything new in that regard. In fact, I'll just puke up a poll for anominities' sake and lack of faith in my fellow man :)

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September 20, 2012, 12:01 AM
Sure, but not as my only gun.

Old Dog
September 20, 2012, 12:23 AM
Gosh, I don't even own a .22 handgun anymore. Kid got the ol' Taurus 94 (she likes plinking with it). I will confess that as a young man, I did carry a .22 S&W in the tackle box when fishing (and even then had thoughts about if I'd shoot the bear with it, or just throw it at the bear).

September 20, 2012, 12:28 AM
Never in life

September 20, 2012, 12:31 AM
Some times, walking the dog in the park or getting the mail. I carry a 40S&W primarily and a 357mag most other times but a little gun is better than no gun.

September 20, 2012, 12:33 AM
Yes I do, most of the time............

September 20, 2012, 12:42 AM
Not at this time. I wouldn't hesitate to carry a .22 revolver if I had a reason, but .22 autoloaders just aren't reliable enough for my taste.

A .22 would certainly be better than nothing at all, IMO.

September 20, 2012, 01:26 AM
I voted YES even though the answer is no.


At the time of the L.A. riots I chose to carry concealed in spite of the law. For about two weeks I carried a Beretta 21a, because it was the only gun I owned then. With a ten day wait I figured that if I bought a gun the trouble would be over before I could take possession of a new gun.

September 20, 2012, 01:31 AM
Not right now I don't. But at age 20, my wrists are already bad enough that doing a push up causes me some pain so I might get there at some point...

September 20, 2012, 01:58 AM
Not me. I regard the 32 ACP as the absolute minimum. Of course, if all I had was a pocket 22, my attitude might change.

September 20, 2012, 02:14 AM
Only if .22Mag counts. Use it as a backup gun or gym gun only. I have always considered .22LR too small for SD.

September 20, 2012, 02:38 AM
I don't even own a .22...
Never have. Probably won't until I have kids.

September 20, 2012, 02:44 AM

September 20, 2012, 02:52 AM
I carried a Beretta 21A in a pinch for a month when I worked in a sketchy place. Finicky guns, and in .22, so I don't think it would have done much much good. Comforting though.

Now that I have an LCP there's no reason to. A thin, tiny, light carry package I can shoot decently well with a round only a smidgen weaker than 9x18 Mak.

Coal Dragger
September 20, 2012, 03:00 AM
Nope, I have other handguns I trust far more than a .22LR with my life. I have objections both on suitability, and reliability. Rimfire ignition is not nearly as reliable as centerfire, and that rules it out for me. Since a self defense gun has to go bang when called upon.

If I feel the need to carry I will probably stick with my SIG P229 in .357SIG even though it is a bulky SOB. I am also partial to 1911's and have carried those too.

For outdoor carry and field carry I am a revolver guy, and tote along a Freedom Arms M83 6" .454. It should flatten just about anything I will ever need it to, and with the right ammunition shoots pretty flat giving some useful extended range with power to spare. I think of it as a hip carried rifle.

Now all that said, would I carry a .22LR for self defense if I had too? Sure, if I had no other choice I would carry one with the most consistently reliable ammo I could find. It beats a sharp pointy stick!

September 20, 2012, 03:02 AM
No. I have a few, but they are for practice and tree rats.

September 20, 2012, 04:13 AM
I answered yes because there was no 'sometimes' option.

My EDC is a .45auto
When I carry a backup gun it's a Beretta Tomcat .32auto.

Sometimes, rarely but sometimes, I'll know ahead of time that I'm going somewhere where I will find it difficult or impossible to conceal a full size pistol without someone finding out. Last time it was a friend's wedding, other times are like when I visit my folks. They aren't 'anti' but they don't want to see guns in general (my dad was shot in the past). In situations like this, I'll consider my .32 my primary, and a pocket-sized 6 shot .22lr as my "New York Reload." Both in home-made pocket holsters. I've put many rounds through both guns and trust them to be reliable. The .22 has never failed to function when using CCIs. I know I wouldn't want up to 6 .22s hitting me in the throat/face/anywhere... I wouldn't count on it as an instant man-stopper, but it's a gun.

September 20, 2012, 07:43 AM
I answered yes because there was no 'sometimes' option.
As did I.
I have carried a .22LR, 22Short, .25acp, etc on occasion. I like to take each of the many little guns that I collect out for exercise now and then.
Heck, for giggles I've even CC'd a .67 smooth-bore flintlock pistol (loaded with 00), hung on a belt hook!

September 20, 2012, 07:55 AM
I have carried my walther tph only when on a run into the IGA grocery store.It usually goes bang and makes a loud noise when that happens.

September 20, 2012, 07:58 AM
Walking my dog on the road a Beretta Bobcat has been know to sneak into my pocket. Do not expect to see bears on the road but better a 22 than being completely unarmed.

September 20, 2012, 08:20 AM
As a BUG to my 45 or 357 or 9 in the truck.

September 20, 2012, 08:43 AM
I voted no. I bought a Beretta 21a with the idea that I would occasionally pocket-carry it. I carried it once or twice in my pocket just to have it on me to show friends my new gun, but I think my Ruger LCP is one of the best guns ever built for this role. I couldn't convince myself to carry the .22 instead of the 380 that was smaller, lighter and flatter with a better SD cartridge. I would not consider one for belt carry for the same reason; too many other better options. I will (hopefully, probably) never be without one or a couple of .22's, but would only use them for SD as a last resort.

7.62 Nato
September 20, 2012, 09:06 AM
Yes I have, and would again. But probably as a BUG now. My EDC is a 1911, they don't fit in a pocket so good. Some people are good with tools while others aren't. Although there may be "better" tools for different jobs I'm not so anal as to insist "no tool" is better than "a tool". You use what you have.

September 20, 2012, 09:15 AM
No. Although I'm confident that I could make the shots count, I am not confident that the rounds will actually discharge. All my rimfires have unacceptably high rates of failure for defensive purposes. They are fine for hunting and plinking, but nothing else...

September 20, 2012, 09:17 AM
I haven't - Nothing against rimfire really, but my .22s are all bigger than my EDC guns, but it brings to mind an interesting sidebar - hollowpoints vs. solids for .22 carry since the HPs probably don't have a lot of penetration.

So do you go for a long bleeding channel or marginally wider and significantly shorter?

September 20, 2012, 09:23 AM
Do I? No.

Would I? Sure. I have as a matter of fact.

I'm not sure which to click in your poll.

September 20, 2012, 09:34 AM
When my 1911 was getting upgraded my main gun was a Ruger MK 1. 8)

Vern Humphrey
September 20, 2012, 12:20 PM
As I have said before, most disasters happen because people plan to have disasters.

If you find yourself in a life-or-death situation armed only with a .22, it's because you planned to have only a .22.

It's just as easy to plan to have a .38, .357, 9mm, .40 S&W or .45 ACP.

September 20, 2012, 03:10 PM
I like to take each of the many little guns that I collect out for exercise now and then.
Heck, for giggles I've even CC'd a .67 smooth-bore flintlock pistol (loaded with 00), hung on a belt hook!

Duuuuude, that is just ridiculously awesome :D
You'd only get the one shot but boy what a shot

September 20, 2012, 03:25 PM
Voted no but have in the past at certain times, still have my little flip up barrel .22

September 20, 2012, 03:36 PM
Yes I have, and would do so again if/when the situation dictates.

September 20, 2012, 04:39 PM
I'd call it more of a discreet OFFENSIVE weapon.:D ...............
I don't carry it too often, but it is small and light enough to pack concealed.

Jim, West PA
September 20, 2012, 05:09 PM
Why not ?
A .22 bullet can kill just as well as any other bullet.

Vern Humphrey
September 20, 2012, 05:22 PM
Why not ?
A .22 bullet can kill just as well as any other bullet.
If killing -- as in assassination -- is your goal, the .22 can be a good choice. The Israelis supposedly use .22s for "wet stuff."

But if stopping an attack is your goal -- especially when you may be suddenly attacked by surprise -- I'd not choose a .22.

September 20, 2012, 06:14 PM
Not at the moment but have in the past.

September 20, 2012, 06:14 PM
Yep, regardless or what else I'm carrying, I always stick my NAA mini in .22 mag in my pocket.

Ideal for self defense, no. But, it's better than no gun at all.

September 20, 2012, 06:57 PM
I don't own, haven't owned, and will never own a .22. Unless of course you're talking .22-ish caliber in which a .223/5.56 is in my semi-distant future.

September 20, 2012, 09:18 PM
I did not vote. I have carried one before, but not very often. Now, I never do, simply because I have other choices readily available. Even my smallest, most-easily pocketed gun, is in a bigger caliber (.32ACP.)
But, as I have said before, there are few bad guys who would run or otherwise cease to be a threat when encountering a centerfire defense, but would stick around and continue their assault if the intended victim countered with only a .22. Most of us could live ten lifetimes and still not meet any of them.

September 20, 2012, 10:25 PM
As a BUG only and then usually its the THIRD gun in the line up of S/D .

The list has been the Beretta 70S .22 LR [ used by the Mossad ]

North American arms .22 LR/.22 mag.

High Standard O/U .22 mag 2 shot.

S&W 317 8 shot .22 LR.

September 20, 2012, 10:43 PM
No, the only .22 pistols I own are a Buck Mark and a 21a Bobcat.

The Buck Mark is a little large to carry.

I would not carry the Bobcat, even as a backup. Since it has no extractor, if I get a dud or jam that leaves the empty brass in the chamber, there is no way to get it out other than popping the barrel and trying to pick it out with a fingernail or pushing it out from the muzzle end with a rod.

September 20, 2012, 11:01 PM
When all I had what a Ruger 22/45, that was my carry/HD/Range/Pest control/ (insert purpose) gun. I have since upgraded my CCW and HD guns to 9mm. But like they say, something is better than nothing. On a side note. I wouldn't feed your .22lr auto pistol a steady diet of it, but I felt mostlly comfortable when I stocked it with 10+1 rounds of CCI Velocito: 40gr Gold Dot JHP moving at 1056 out of my Little Ruger. While .22lr is not ideal, it is better than nothing, and those Velocitors are about as good as you can do.

September 20, 2012, 11:03 PM
22 and even 25

September 20, 2012, 11:31 PM
Sure have and will again. I have more confidence in the little S&W snubby revolver than the Berretta 25 auto Mod 20. My usual CC is a Sig 230. I don't care how bad someone thinks they are, your not going to stick around and get shot even if it is a liitle .22.

September 21, 2012, 09:50 AM
Nope. As other's have said, if it were all I had, I would carry it out of necessity. BUT, it's not all I have.

I have service caliber weapons for service type jobs. It's all about the right tool for the job. The .22lr can stop an attack and has probably done so numerous times. But service calibers can do it more reliably.

You can hammer things with the back end of a screw driver, but a hammer is a much better tool for the job.

September 21, 2012, 12:01 PM
I often carry my 351pd S&W or my 651 S&W or my NAA in .22 MAG. Do I use it as a daily gun, no. But have I used it when needed, absolutely!

September 21, 2012, 12:20 PM
I voted no although I have in the past and may in the future if my arthritis gets bad enough that 148gr 38 target loads are too much. I did carry my 1908 Colt 25 ACP as a BUG to see the movie Lawless the other day.

September 21, 2012, 01:21 PM
I carry a NAA 22 mag in my pocket. It's not ideal but it is better than just a knife. In my current line of work it's hard to carry anything bigger.

September 21, 2012, 01:31 PM
No, because I have small guns chambered in larger calibers.

September 21, 2012, 01:40 PM
No I have never carried a .22 l.r. gun for self defense. I tend to use a .22 for what it was designed for small game, target work, plinking and fun. I have used it to finish off a deer I shot with a long gun.

For self defense I tend to prefer rounds designed for that purpose and better suited to stopping an attack.


September 21, 2012, 02:03 PM
Sure. Often. But it is always when I can't carry more power for any number of reasons.

My usual EDC is one of three: .44 Special (Charter Bulldog), .45ACP (Para-Ord LDA), or 9mm. (Kahr PM9).

But, sometimes, there's only room for the NAA Mini .22short.

Even disappears in my shirt pocket ;).


September 21, 2012, 02:56 PM
I voted yes. but only when Mowing the lawn and doing hard work. it's smaller, lighter and. cheaper than my g30. in case a rabid fox or skunk comes around. been seein a lot of rabbies cases in dogs from skunks and foxes around here.

September 21, 2012, 03:18 PM
Apply for what, a toe tag?

September 21, 2012, 04:20 PM
Yeah I've carried a .22 on occasion. It was more of a "in a pinch" type thing but I'd do it again.

September 21, 2012, 04:36 PM
not even a chance. i value my life and my safety too much to trust it to one of the absolute worst defense calibers available.

September 21, 2012, 08:40 PM
You bet I do. When its hot outside the Beretta 21a slips into the shorts pocket and away we go. It eats stingers all day long so I have no issues with reliability. It's slim, lightweight and easy to deploy. Recoil is minimal and getting back on target is a breeze. I have no issues with the .22 in a close range SD social work situation.

September 21, 2012, 10:48 PM
I do not carry a .22 LR handgun for defense. I do indeed shoot my one .22 handgun, an S&W Model 17, quite a bit, but it is the same size as my Model 19, and actually quite a bit heavier, due to more steel in the barrel and cylinder. I carry the Model 19 .357 sixgun.

September 21, 2012, 11:01 PM
Yes I have, but usually 380. If it was all I had I wouldn't feel unarmed. Safety is an illusion no matter where you are, no matter what you carry.

September 22, 2012, 04:07 PM
I do carry a S&W-M 61-3 in my pocket for a run to the store or to pick up a taco or sub sandwich, pretty low risk stuff...I've never really used one for daily carry, but if that's all I had I would rather that than nothing to be sure.

September 22, 2012, 05:08 PM
If it was all I had, I wouldn't freak out about it. From what I've learned off the interwebz, a 40 grain solid bullet with a hot .22 load does significant damage against soft tissue at close range.

Would I want to use it in a firefight against armored enemies? No. For personal protection, and most practical self-defense purposes, it's probably fine. In a rifle, even better.

September 23, 2012, 10:27 AM
I've carried an H&R 922 2.5" from time to time. 9 shots and great accuracy. My dad carries an NAA .22LR as a backup-backup everywhere he goes. I have a Jennings that gets some pocket time as well. We both load our "double deuces" with some old school copper jacket spitfire hollow points.

September 23, 2012, 08:26 PM
...As you'll be facing the scrutiny of internet memes far and wide.

But I do have a serious question: Does anybody carry a .22 pistol for self defense? A semi? Maybe a revolver? Why? I'm not talking about out an about in the woods where you'll encounter laser zombie bears and the like. Just in every day life for SD carry.

I ask everybody else to keep this civil since we've all been to the negative end of this discussion and nobody is likely to bring anything new in that regard. In fact, I'll just puke up a poll for anominities' sake and lack of faith in my fellow man :)
At close range for OFFensive use .22LR subsonic solid is very hard to beat.

Vern Humphrey
September 23, 2012, 08:49 PM
All this theory is fine -- I recall some gun writer (Wiley Clapp, I think) who reviewed a S&W snubbie in .22 LR and talked about "putting one in the bad guy's tear duct.'

Somehow I suspect that's not easy to do while he's putting 9mms in your torso.

September 23, 2012, 08:52 PM
At close range for OFFensive use .22LR subsonic solid is very hard to beat.
Like with a stick? A stick does come in handy freeing up a hind teat. lolz

September 23, 2012, 09:05 PM
No. Not in this life, not in any past or future life. :)

September 24, 2012, 12:57 AM
When I worked security in a very rough place, I decided to carry a BUG, and went through a large number of .22 pistols, and I finally ended up with a Beretta 950 .25ACP that I still own 32 years later. Every small .22 I have ever owned had some kind of feeding issues. Every one, so I went .25.

September 24, 2012, 01:50 AM
my mom carries a 7 round Scandium J frame in .22 Magnum...shes put hundreds of rounds through it, and Ive yet to see a misfire. She carries Speer Gold Dot .22 WMR Short Barrel

September 24, 2012, 05:08 AM
Sure do. A Beretta Bobcat in .22LR. I keep it filled with CCI Stingers. It's a gun that has proven to be extremely reliable over the THOUSANDS of rounds I have put through it.

Jacob L Freeman
November 20, 2012, 12:07 PM
Taurus PT22 in the pocket - why? It's light, unlike every other handgun I own.

November 20, 2012, 01:08 PM
Voted "NO"

There are better choices available.

November 20, 2012, 01:32 PM
Every night on the last dog walk. Sweatpants wont hold up any other

November 20, 2012, 06:10 PM
Nope...I've seen too many squirrels take .22 LR rounds and run away with little efect. The idea of making a perfectly placed shot during a close range and rapidly changing attack by someone employing deadly force is fantasy. I have seen people die after being shot with a .22 during my LEO but none of them died quickly. I have also seen the .22 fail to penetrate a heavy coat or other barrier. I never knew another LEO who carried a .22 for primary arm off duty. Tiny guns can give one the illusion of being adequately armed to defend your and your loved ones' lives and lead to false confidence...These days, there are plenty of better guns that are very light and compact so why depend on a tiny bullet to keep you alive?

November 20, 2012, 08:41 PM

November 20, 2012, 09:25 PM
Wife carries a Ruger LCR in 22lr. I feel comfortable with her decision

November 20, 2012, 09:46 PM
I absolutely LOVE the 22LR...but not for SD. There are too many alternatives on the market to settle for 22LR for SD.

Vern Humphrey
November 20, 2012, 09:51 PM
As I have said many times, most disasters occur because people plan to have disasters. If you find yourself fighting for you life with nothing but a .22, it's because you planned to have nothing but a .22.

November 20, 2012, 09:53 PM
Yes a beretta 948, has never failed to go bang thru 25 years. Small easy to conceal in any pocket.

November 20, 2012, 10:19 PM
Why carry anything except a .45 ACP when it makes bad guys explode upon contact?

Just kidding. I don't have an appropriately sized .22 pistol to carry. Reliability is not my concern with it because I have seen what CCI Mini Mags/Stingers offer in terms of reliably going bang.

There are better choices, but I can't see how a tight collection of .22 caliber wounds are conducive to good health.

Vern Humphrey
November 20, 2012, 10:21 PM
There are better choices, but I can't see how a tight collection of .22 caliber wounds are conducive to good health
Unless of course, the other guy is giving you a tight collection of 9mm wounds.

November 21, 2012, 02:38 PM
No. There are too many other, better options available.

However, this is an excellent blog post on why .22 may actually more sense than a centerfire cartridge in some circumstances.

None of those circumstances apply to me, currently. So...

November 22, 2012, 10:47 AM
Not presently, but my increasingly feeble wrist, on my formerly stronger side, lets me know that someday, I might well carry a small-caliber weapon on that side.

Ragnar Danneskjold
November 22, 2012, 09:07 PM
Well there are generally only 2 ways to "turn off" a human body. Sever the nerve connections to the limbs/damage the nerve center, or traumatic blood loss/damage to internal organs.

Damaging the nerve center(the brain) or severing the nerve connections is instantly effective. Legs stop running, hands stop punching, trigger fingers stop pulling. That should be the primary goal of any self defense round. Traumatic blood loss or damage to internal organs is effective, but slower. There is enough oxygenated blood in the human body to continue motor control for around 60-90 seconds. Plenty of time for that attacker to pull his trigger finger at you before checking out. Since this is slower, this should be the secondary goal.

Accomplishing the first goal involves punching holes into the body aimed at the spinal cord and brain. The rounds must travel through the body far enough to hit these nerve centers. This means the rounds must also be accurate, and allow for quick followup shots to improve your chances of hitting nerve areas. To accomplish the second goal, the rounds must be able to penetrate the body enough to perforate internal organs, and also be wide enough so that blood loss is indeed traumatic and not a slow seepage. Remember, the idea is to stop the threat NOW, not kill him on a hospital bed an hour and a half later after he's already shot back at you.

.22lr bullets are not good at either of these. They lack the speed and mass to achieve reliable penetration to the spinal cord and brain, and they also lack sufficient diameter to cause traumatic blood loss. Yes, a .22lr will kill. No, I would not want to be shot with one. But neither of those are the point. The point is to remove an attackers ability to attack. Physically damage his body in the right places as to prevent him from having the physiological capability of harming you. .22lr bullets cannot accomplish this reliably enough in a human body as to make them a wise choice for self defense.

Vern Humphrey
November 23, 2012, 11:54 AM
Nor are .22s all that reliable. Particularly nowadays, when it seems every company that makes them has gone downhill in quality.

November 23, 2012, 11:55 AM
Nope. Along time ago, I carried a .22 WMR, but that's been some years.

November 23, 2012, 12:03 PM
Sure, I have in the past. A Walther P22. At the time it was my only compact handgun. It served me well for about a year, when I switched offer to pocket carrying a KelTec.

It wasn't ideal, but IMO it is just fine. Penetration tests from BF show the P22 averages 11" - 12" of penetration with most ammunition. Plenty to make some space and escape a situation.

I don't have a suitable size .22 any longer, but If I ever do again in the future I may carry it again in certain situations.

November 25, 2012, 10:42 AM
For me, no way in :evil:, but my wife who is a competitive shooter and confident (and deadly) with everything from a Vaquero SA to my 1911, asked for a .22 magnum revolver for Christmas 2010. I bought her the Charter Arms version and it accompanies her everywhere she goes. She'll place 6 shots in the 10X center mass ring and call it a day. To each his/her own I say.:rolleyes:


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