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What can you do with a .22 rifle?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by CalamityJane, Dec 28, 2006.

  1. CalamityJane

    CalamityJane New Member

    Dec 12, 2005
    Southwest USA
    I enjoyed reading the thread on the AR-15, and what they were good for. I have been wondering the same about the "everyone should have one" .22 rifle. I do want one. But not being very knowledgeable about long guns, nor ever having hunted, I would like input on what can be accomplished with a
    .22 besides the terrific fun of target shooting. IOW, can it serve a functional purpose on the farm that other guns do not?

  2. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Senior Member

    May 21, 2004
    "Land of (dis)Enchantment"
    The chief benefit of the .22 rifle is the fact that ammo is cheap enough that you can shoot enough to become proficient. 550 rounds of Wally World Federal ammo is cheaper than 20 rounds of many centerfire calibers.

    At the same time, the .22 rifle will do the job on rodents and other pests around the farm.

    Once you have one .22 rifle you will want more. At last count I have six of them.
  3. Owen

    Owen Moderator Emeritus

    Dec 24, 2002
    Georgetown, TX
    .22s are good on animals up to the size of a coyote or so. The ammo is cheap, and the report and recoil are quite mild. I think they are ideal for fox in the henhouse, rabbits in the garden type scenarios
  4. Sniper4Life

    Sniper4Life Member

    Nov 17, 2006
    Peoples Republic of Virginia
    Cheap ammo= MUCH SHOOTING:evil:

    Yes a .22 does have a place on a farm it will take care of a lot problems, from putting down the sick cow to killing groundhogs at 200yds. Even though it is illegal most of the deer in my county taken by the locals have been shot with a .22. If you live on a farm definantly get one, or two, or three, or.........:evil:
  5. Dave Markowitz

    Dave Markowitz Mentor

    Dec 24, 2002
    Plymouth Meeting, PA
    1. Cheap practice.
    2. Cheap way to introduce new shooters.
    3. Quiet, so .22 LR can be shot in areas where louder rounds could cause neighbor problems.
    4. Small game hunting.
    5. Vermin control.
    6. Plinking.
    7. Serious target shooting.
  6. ZeSpectre

    ZeSpectre Mentor

    Oct 10, 2006
    Deep in the valley
    A .22 is good for... really pissing you off when the primers don't fire :evil:

    Seriously though, your typical .22 LR is great for learning to shoot, the guns are (realatively) inexpensive and the ammo is pretty cheap. If you're of a mind to have a "project" gun there are probably more tweaks and aftermarket parts for .22 guns than anything else out there. Also excellent for varmits of many types, especially as some .22 rounds punch about as hard as a good airgun so can be used in a more urban setting without risking nearby neighbors.

    Of course if you are an uber-trained super mega mall-ninja who can shoot the eye off a gnat repeatedly at 100 yards with a 40mph crosswind... well the .22 is all you need to hunt big game in darkest Africa as well :D
  7. SSN Vet

    SSN Vet Mentor

    Jan 3, 2006
    The Dark Side of the Moon
    fun, fun and then.....

    more fun....

    just make sure you obey rule #4...be sure of your target and what is beyond, because those little buggers can go a long way.

    at least that's what I was taught......but I lack factual knowledge so I'll piggy back my own .22 question...

    What's the muzzle velocity of a typical .22 rifle? and to what range could it inflict serious injury (I'm thinking about safe plinking in a wooded area here).
  8. Onmilo

    Onmilo Mentor

    Jul 26, 2004
    We keep chickens and other domestic livestock and a .22 is perfect for keeping pests away when this close to the other outbuildings.

    It is a whole lot cheaper and quieter than using a .243 Winchester and does the job just as well.

    Even now, after being introduced to the sport over 30 years ago, even now I gain great pleasure from shooting river rats and field mice with a .22 rifle.
    Many years ago my cousin and I used to get a nickle a rat bounty from the local dump and this was our movie money.
    .22s were .63 cents a box then and if you were really good you could make
    $1.87 profit in about two hours, good money for an eleven year old.

    The abundance of field mice doesn't seem to keep the corn and black snakes and fox and coyote away from the chicken pens so I happily murder them for not doing their job, the .22 is perfect for this task.
    I hate rats, they serve no useful purpose whatsoever, even the snakes won't eat them.

    Cute as they make raccoons and opossums on the animal planet network, they are incredibly destructive in real life and I will shoot them without mercy when they become a problem around the outbuildings or the animals.
    Again a .22 is perfect for this task and won't punch gigantic holes through the sides of the buildings if you get a ricochet or poorly placed shot.

    Unless you are good enough to hit a moving target, at night, don't try shooting the coyote and fox with a .22LR, this doesn't work so well, this is the realm where that nasty AR15 rifle shines, If I could just get ITI to sell me a 4th generation night vision pocket scope for under $1000 I would have this problem licked,,,,,,,,,:D

    Velocity is based on the chosen type of cartridge and barrel length.
    .22 CB Longs are about 800 fps
    .22 LR Subsonics are about 980 fps
    .22 LR standard velocity are about 1085 fps
    .22 High Velocity are about 1190 fps
    .22 Super high velocity-Stingers, Expeditors, etc. are about 1325 fps
    Your results may vary and a .22 LR bullet is capable of inflicting a serious injury to about 500 meters, plan your backstop and know what is behind the area you shoot in.
    In realistic terms, using average muzzle elevation from a shooting position, a .22 bullet will generally not travel more than about 3500 feet over flat level ground before it hits the dirt.
  9. 1911 guy

    1911 guy Mentor

    May 5, 2005
    Garrettsville, Oh.
    Cows with a .22.

    It's been done and I've done it myself. If you don't know how to find the sweet spot, it gets messy and decidedly un-fun.

    Groundhogs and skunks were the main things done with our .22s when I was growing up. Well, those and lots of plinking. I can remember seeing a "whistle pig" out in the alfalfa one day, I was in elementary school, maybe junior high. Pretty far out, so I got down prone and my Dad got behind me, standing with a pair of binoculars. Every time I shot, he'd see the dust between the new alfalfa sprouts the groundhog was chewing on. Used his feedback to whack the thing after about 8 or ten shots.
  10. aka108

    aka108 Participating Member

    Aug 26, 2006
    Tallahassee, FL
    Originator mentions AR15 in first sentence. Then 22 cal. Were you addressing 22 rimfire or 22 cal in centerfire cartridges?
  11. Father Knows Best

    Father Knows Best Senior Member

    Apr 14, 2005
    Minneapolis, MN, USA
    That depends on a lot of factors. Your average "high velocity" 22LR round with a 40 grain bullet fired out of a typical rifle or carbine barrel, though, will do 1200-1300 fps. "Standard" velocity rounds will be closer to 1100 fps, and "hyper" velocity rounds may hit 1400 fps. There are also subsonic and other low velocity rounds that go as slow as 600 fps.
    A long way. "Effective range", meaning the range at which you can hit anything, is around 200 yards, because the ballistics are such that bullet drop becomes very difficult to compensate for beyond that range. Practical max range for most people is closer to 100 yards, but I bet most 22LR shooting is done at more like 50 feet.

    Thats not to say they can't cause serious injury well beyond 150 yards. Always have a safe backstop.
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2006
  12. CalamityJane

    CalamityJane New Member

    Dec 12, 2005
    Southwest USA
    "Originator mentions AR15 in first sentence. Then 22 cal. Were you addressing 22 rimfire or 22 cal in centerfire cartridges?"


    Thanks for all the replies so soon. Your answers are just what I wanted to hear!
  13. shaggycat

    shaggycat Member

    Dec 30, 2005
    We live in an urban area and were having trouble with rabbits eating our tomatoes. The 22 did the trick without alerting the neighbors 20 yards away.

    But for me, as others have said, the main thing is cost. If you can't afford to shoot enough to learn your craft, what good is that high powered rifle that never gets shot?

    Just because someone owns a book, that doesn't make them a reader. Same thing applies to shooting.
  14. Glockfan.45

    Glockfan.45 member

    Sep 7, 2006
    Democratic Peoples Republic of Illinois
    Thats not right at all :mad: its just plain cruel. Use the right caliber for the animal or dont shoot the damn thing at all. Now that I have that off my chest .22 is great for small varmint hunting. I do a lot of coyote hunting in some areas we hunt its just too wide open and flat with buildings and livestock around to use a centerfire. Cheap ammo, low report, no recoil = lots of practice. When I take a 10/22 out 500 rounds is nothing to burn up in a day.
  15. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Senior Elder

    Nov 25, 2006
    Northeast PA, USA
    As many people have already said, cheap ammo means a lot of practice which will make you a better shot. The .22 LR is great for riding yourself of varmints and rodents.

    Be careful because unlike posted above, the .22 LR is effective up to 1 mile, not 150 to 200 yds. Be very careful where you shoot a .22 LR.

    From the CCI Site:
    Subsonic .22 Short & .22 Long = 710 fps
    Standard .22 Short 29 gr = 1080 fps
    Standard .22 LR 40 gr = 1080 fps
    High Volicity .22 LR 40 gr = 1235 fps
    Mini-Mag .22 LR 36 gr = 1260 fps
    Velocitor .22 LR 40 gr = 1435 fps
    STINGER .22 LR 36 gr = 1640 fps (GREAT ROUND BTW)
  16. mr.trooper

    mr.trooper Participating Member

    Mar 9, 2005
    You CAN kill an Elephant with a .22lr; its been done.

    Under normal circumstances a .22lr is great for anything smaller than your average dog. That makes it great for foraging and small game hunting. the ammo is alse very inexpensive and very light. Its not very loud either.
  17. rangerruck

    rangerruck Mentor

    Jan 12, 2006
    Texas, baby!
    a 22 , rifle or pistol, can teach yourself the correct way to shoot; target acqusition, trigger control, breathing technique, both eyes open, recoil control, offhand, weakhand, prone, kneeling, sitting, etc. much cheaper to learn this way, instead of a centerfire.
  18. AStone

    AStone Senior Elder

    Aug 5, 2005
    Far N, E coast
    Elephants with a .22?
    Yeah, kinda like driving to the south pole in a jeep: it can be done, but it will be painful.

    The .22 LR rifle in my toolkit is for one thing only: small game for the pot.

    Squirrel, rabbit, maybe coon if I get hungry enough at some future time
    when things change beyond what we can even imagine now...

    I'm about to sell a CZ 452 Style so that I can buy a Marlin 39A
    (because I've learned I'm a lever guy, not a bolt guy, even if the 452 IS a tack driver).

    Let me know via PM if you're interested in bidding on the 452.

    Going once, going twice...
  19. dm1333

    dm1333 Active Member

    Dec 21, 2005
    I have some nice guns but the one I shoot the most is my TC R-55 Sporter. Accurate as hell for practicing serious rifle shooting and a lot of fun for plain old plinking. I am in the Coast Guard and just went to the range to keep my quals up on the M16 and I outshot the small arms instructor. I attribute that to lots of shooting with my .22s.
  20. Logan5

    Logan5 Participating Member

    Feb 24, 2004
    The .22 has been with us since the White patent for the bored-through cylinder, pretty much, so it's seen an amazing ammount of tweaking and platform experimentation. I bought a .22 rifle for $100 at a flea market that's identical to the one that took me from NRA smallbore novice through Jr. Olympic tryouts (a Mossberg 44US(b), to be exact.) Just the massive variety of rifles produced over such a long time frame means you can find anything, with enough looking, from a .22 AK clone, to a 100 year old gallery rifle, up through stuff like the Calico or the American 180. A solid semi can be had for well under $100 used, and a light, slim, sporting rifle that will show you laser like accuracy with iron sights can be had for much less than anything similar in a centerfire.
    As for what you can do with them aside from paper punching; I wouldn't reccomend a .22 for anything very large. Elephant is right out. On the other hand, I once shot a fruit-tree despoiling porcupine up close with a .30-30, and there's a lot to be said for using the simplest thing that is reasonably likely to work.

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