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.22LR: what's the best do-all brand/loading?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by AStone, Nov 11, 2006.

  1. AStone

    AStone Well-Known Member

    Imagine that for some reason - whether personal financial stress or the end of civilization as we know it - you could own only one specific .22LR ammunition for, say, the next 20 years.

    That is, imagine that you are going to buy a few thousand rnds of .22LR ammo that must serve all your needs for 20 years.

    You're not going to use said ammo for target practice - you're already proficient at punching paper bullseyes at 50-100 yds - but for acquiring meat in the form of small game (squirrel, rabbit, grounded birds... ).

    Which .22LR ammo would you buy, and why?

    Please be specific, especially if there are multiple loadings for the brand that you recommend.


    PS: if your decision depends on which rifle you'd be shooting it in, it's a CZ 452.
  2. sm

    sm member


    Remember each gun has its preference. That said

    CCI Mini Mags.
    Fed bulk 550 pack
    Win X22LR

    At one time, Win X22LR was THE .22 ammo I always suggested, Across the board, bar none, it ran in every gun I shot it through - period. Now it may not have been the most accurate, often times it was, it always again across the board, in all these platforms, hand guns or rifles, was "accurate"

    CCI was not that easy to get here, when it was, or I brought it back - it too did as the X22LR. Just getting it was harder for me to obtain at one time.

    Fed Bulk pack. This 550 round bulk, just worked. Honest we bought for plinking, never really thought about reliability or accuracy , we bought it to "run through and plink".

    Then it dawned on us, we were not having problems with ammo in any of the guns, it was reliable, and accuracy , well, phooey, we had one Marlin 60 that shot like a high dollar target rifle , a $39 K mart Marlin 60, with this ammo, iron sights, just awed us. Then I snagged a Browning .22 auto [dang I like these things] it went nuts over this ammo. I am looking at a Box of high priced ammo,and thinking "huh, Bulk pack beat the high dollar stuff".

    American Eagle by Federal was another , just we did not see it often.

    This is what "we" hoarded up, for having for whatever ammo.

    There is still PMC Zapper hoarded up, it was great, and a Marlin 39 liked this ammo the best of anything.
  3. MatthewVanitas

    MatthewVanitas Well-Known Member

    I'm starting to be leery of Federal American Eagle.

    Several of the UT campus range guns, which run fine on everything else, have been light-striking badly on FAE. Admittedly, we run the suckers until a thick clay sludge of carbon jams them, but still.

    Hunting: how does Fed Game-Shock work? I love Fed Champion for plinking, and Game-Shock seems the hunting equivalent.

  4. AStone

    AStone Well-Known Member

  5. sm

    sm member

    I was hoping you would chime here. :)

    I have not hunted with the Gameking, so I cannot comment.

    -For Nem's use, I am thinking of "hoarding up to have" to do anything, not so much accuracy , as much as running in whatever.

    -The kids I assist with, well, some of what we shoot are OLD inventories of Fed Bulk packs , the American Eagle , X22LR and Mini Mags.... Honest for the kids, and I am not a fan of Remington .22 ammo, they sometimes want to buy a box at the bait shop or whatever, Thunderbolt is inexpensive and if a kids wants to buy a box - why not? We still get .22 shorts and just get whatever. I lucked out and bought a slew of Federal .22 shorts and "rat shot" with the crimped metal cases I prefer over CCI shot shells anyway.

    -I'd just as soon shoot standard velocity ammo, Dynapoints were great! Cannot find the darn things. These did not always run in some semis, so I use them in bolt guns, and revolvers.

    -When the kids get a new brick, they have shot and let the guns tell them what it shoots best. X22lr and CCI MiniMags are what they have boiled it down to. Sure I / we influenced them, but they have shot some ammo that did not work, and have figured out stuff that don't go bang or other problems,is not worth buying to save a little money.

    I mean there is something about a "brick" with the little boxes, I understand this. Some have gotten a bulk pack, and I know , oh yeah I know since the kids saw the little pouches to hold ammo, they will have these. A Grandpa of one of the kids showed them his old one. Naturally it is cool, so, grandpa had to run down something like it and the kids are going to get one.

    If you start a 'want' with the kids, you gotta see it through. *snicker* He knew darn well what he was starting. *wink*

    I mean two kids decided splitting a box of CCI Mini Mags instead of each getting a box of Thunderbolts. They had problems with T-Bolts and - being kids, just wanted to buy a box of ammo at the store we were at and like I said, kids gotta right to be kids. Heck we adults got a bigger kick out of this than the kids I bet.

    -Your Team I suppose is using Standard Velocity - correct?

    See , I was concerned with Fed and CCI being under the same umbrella, something would goof up. Win ticked me off with the shotgun shell line, and no longer doing compression formed hulls, cheesy bases , out of spec, and other problems - afraid letting the line, including .22 ammo slide as well.

    These 550 bulk packs, were bought some time ago. Darn things work, and the kids do not have a problem with them. They[bulk packs] run semi handguns and rifles.
    Oh the kids re-fill some old CCI sleeves/ boxes. But they are cool with taking a scoop, putting a scoopful of shells in a shallow dish, and shooting from that.

    Dang old Rem 514 shoots great with this OLD bulk pack stuff too.
  6. MatthewVanitas

    MatthewVanitas Well-Known Member

    The CCI Standard Velocity runs well in all the UTRPC guns.

    We run some Aguila too, I just don't recall which specific offering, but it is exposed-lead round-nose.

    We've run some Thunderbolt as well; really grimy but cheap and works.

    Maybe we got a bad batch of Federal AmEagle; I used to run it in my own guns back in my college days in Seattle, and don't recall this many light strikes. We bought 4 cases back last month, and it's been the worst ammo that we've tried this year.

  7. sm

    sm member

    I'd call Fed on the lot numbers and tell them this is for a team use.

    What guns you running?

    CCI standard velocity is good stuff. I just do not understand why Standard Vel is "looked down on" and stores do not stock it because folks look down their nose and won't buy it. I understand inventory and turning the inventory .

    Hard to find Standard anything, even Win T22.

    Upsets me about The Fed Am Eagle, always been a sleeper, even in center fire ammo. I shot it in 9mm and 45ACP a lot. I hope your luck is just due to bad storage before you got it or something.
  8. MatthewVanitas

    MatthewVanitas Well-Known Member

    We're mainly running it for training and plinking; I think the UT team dips into our Eley stash.

    I might indeed call Federal about it; they're filling up our Dud buckets.

    We're running Ruger MkIIs and S&W 22a mainly. It may be that we're having some firing pin issues with one or two of the guns, that may be causing a string of light-strikes.

    I don't mean at all to defame FedAmEagle; try at least a box with your own gun. It's just that we've had some trouble on at least a few guns since we opened the cases of AmEagle. Could be coincidence, could be enemy action...

  9. AStone

    AStone Well-Known Member

    AE is all I've used in this CZ so far. It likes them. Good accuracy (at least at 50 yds, which is all I care about), and not one misfire.

    But I'm running low on the current brick, and would like to buy a few bricks for the next period of time. And one never knows when "bricks" may get scarce (due to personal financial stress, Dem control of the Gov, or the collapse of civilization), so I'm looking for the best bricks.

    (Note: money is not the issue; I want the best rnds for small game.)

    Right now, I'm leaning towards trying out a few bricks of CCI mini-mag.

    So, CCI is made by Speer, or vice versa?
  10. Spinnerblade

    Spinnerblade Well-Known Member

    If I could only have one it would be the Winchester Power Point 40gr HP.
    This is a full power load that Winchester says gets 1280fps out of a rifle, and always seemed very accurate to me, sometimes it seems a little hard to find, though.

    You said one, but I also shoot alot of sub-sonic ammo, PMC Moderator and just recently the Aguila, both hollow point and very quiet out of a long barreled CZ 452.Patrick
  11. rangerruck

    rangerruck Well-Known Member

    as a brand i would go Aguila, they make the most variants over any other brand. then out of them, I would go with their sniper subs at 60 grains, they are very accurate, and at 60 grians, can really put a hurt on. here are some of my aggie results with a super accurate marlin mod 60 , at 100 YARDS.
    GOLDEN EAGLE is the american made name of the Aguilas. One prob though, you def need to buy just a box, first to see if they will work in your rifle. The eintire bullet with case is as long as a regular lr bullet/case. But really it uses a stuffed full short case, with this ultra huge long bullet, so you need to see if you are going to get the right feed angle out of them for your rifle.
  12. LAK

    LAK Well-Known Member

    Winchester DynaPoints used to shoot very well. I think my choice now might be somewhat varied due to individual gun loads preferences. But for overall design I would have to say say Remington Vipers; HV 36 grain copper coated truncated cone solids. I wish they were available standard velocity as well.


  13. fal 4 me

    fal 4 me Well-Known Member

    I've had very good luck with CCI Velocitors in my CZ 452 Trainer. With the scope it is simply bullseye after bullseye. Before settling on the Velocitors I tried 12 or 13 different loads from different companies. While Wolf Extra Match is more accurate than the Velocitors, the Velocitors are better for hunting.

    Personally I can't stand any Remington .22lr ammuntion. Even the Remington Eley can't match the Velocitors or Wolf Extra Match in my rifle. Of course this could be different in any given gun, so my advice is to stop asking for advice on the Internet, buy a dozen or so different 50 round boxes of ammo, and go shooting. Naturally it will take a few range sessions to figure our the absolute best for your rifle, but in the end you'll be better off than reading a million posts about the best .22 lr ammo.
  14. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Well-Known Member

    I've always had good luck with Winchester Wildcats, and still have a couple of cases tucked away in the basement.

    Winchester Expert bulk pack hollowpoints shoot well in my rifles, but don't function all that well in automatic pistols (the wide hollowpoint tends to hang up on the feed ramp.) Remington bulk pack hollowpoints feed flawlessly in my pistols -- and my Colt Woodsman loves them -- but they do have the occasional misfire.
  15. GRIZ22

    GRIZ22 Well-Known Member

    I don't see a lot of difference between different 22rf loadings but the only way to find out what works best for you is to start trying different brands.
  16. saltydog452

    saltydog452 Well-Known Member

    1. CCI-Mini Mag, solid or hp

    2. Wincherster Wildcat (I haven't seen much of this in the past few years, but I haven't been paticullarly looking.)

    They always seemed to work for me. At one time, lots of years ago, we'd get select lots of Federal. The Federal, at least for me in a High Standard, MK1, or M41 had more squibs. All shots count, and you can't get an 'alibi' string for a 6 o'clock 7.

    The Club I belonged to then started ordering CCI 22RF ammunition and CCI primers in bulk.

    That was 20 or so years ago. I 'spect things have changed a bunch since then. Although I can't shoot well enough to notice a difference these days, the Mini-Mag is still what I buy whenever there is a choice.

  17. Lou629

    Lou629 member

    I've always used federal, remington and winchester. They're all about equal in most respects IMO, but i've never had a FTF with a winchester wildcat, while i've had a few with federal, and quite a few with remington over the years.
    If i could only buy ONE, i'd go for the winchester. However, i never like to have all my eggs in just one basket, so i make a habit of having at least a few boxes or a brick from each brand in storage, same as i do with my centerfire stuff, just in case a brick or a box of one brand happens to be from a 'bad lot'.
  18. borrowedtime69

    borrowedtime69 Well-Known Member

    my choice?

    Absolutely it would be CCI mini-mini mag HP's. been using them for years. never had a failure to fire, clean burning power, packed neatly in platic boxes the protect them. i currently shoot them out of 4 of my guns, both rifle and handguns. next weekend we are having a big gun show in town and im going with a Uhaul truck so i can stock up with ammo before the price rises anymore or is taxed out of $$$ range.
  19. ugaarguy

    ugaarguy Moderator Staff Member

    Before I left on the deployment most of 22 shooting was out of my S&W K-22 revolver. I was mostly running mid grade PMC stuff. Friends running Fed bulk packs in 10/22s, Marlin 60s, etc. were having problems with it. Folks at the local gun shop were selling these little 22 carbines, had a few come back that weren't running, they tell me all of them were having FTF with Fed ammo customers bought elsewhere. They'd test fire them with their own CCI and Winchester ammo, problems would clear up. Over and over I'd hear of problems with the Fed 22 LR. I don't think MV has a bad batch. I really think Fed is having problems with too hard of brass, the primed rim, or both. :( It's been a while since I've shot Rem TBolt, but MV's recent experiences mirror my past experiences that TBolt runs, but it shoots dirty. If I were stocking up on 22LR right now I think I'd be going with a mix of CCI standard velocity and CCI Subsonics. The CCI has been the cleanest running and most reliable 22 LR ammo I've fired. I'm sure Eley and the others are nice, but I never got into the match grade stuff :rolleyes:
  20. saltydog452

    saltydog452 Well-Known Member

    No one has mentioned it, but the plastic slide top conatiner is useful for other stuff as well.

    During a match, you could be absolutely sure that you put five, and only five, rounds on the bench.

    The mty plastic slide top container is useful for gunbox, range bag, spare parts, punches, extractor, bushing wrench, pins, and stuff.

    In the not too distant past, it held spare buttons, needle and thread in a travel kit for a couple of GIs that I am quite fond of.

    Its kinda like flour sacks that had other uses after they were mty.


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