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Novice ?...What makes .22 a target pistol vs normal handguns

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by wild cat mccane, Jun 9, 2011.

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  1. wild cat mccane

    wild cat mccane Member

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    Hi,
    Can someone help me out? What makes a .22 (like a Buckmark or Ruger MK) a 'target' pistol and the same doesn't apply to center fires like an XD, P99, glock..etc. Just people using the word 'target' more?

    I know these guns can have more loose tolerances for functioning, but shouldn't they be about the same? Is it just the lack of recoil?


    Thanks!
     
  2. Justin Holder

    Justin Holder Member

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    Generally Target models have adjustable sights, while standard or "service" pistols generally have fixed sights designed for a quick sight picture not pin point accuracy.

    Chambering has nothing to do with it, a centerfire can be a target model just as a .22 can be a standard model.
     
  3. wild cat mccane

    wild cat mccane Member

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    but doesn't every model of 'service' handguns have adjustable sights?

    Even glock has them...
     
  4. ForumSurfer

    ForumSurfer Member

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    I call mine a "fun" pistol. :)

    It is hands down the most fun out of all my handguns. Then again, I have the luxury of shooting on my own land so I can setup whatever safe reactive targets I wish. For shooting holes in paper, well it isn't any more fun than anything else I own in that respect.
     
  5. Milkmaster

    Milkmaster Member

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    I don't know anything that prohibits the other calibers from being used in a target fashion. (I might make an exception for the sorry .25acp round)

    Target pistols like the MKII usually have a one piece barrel and chamber assembly that afaik allows for better accuracy and has moveable sights as has been mentioned already. Kind of like a generic bolt action rifle can be or is usually more accurate than a semi-auto. The barrel and receiver are all one piece.

    I can't think of a larger caliber semi-auto pistol that would have the one piece chamber and barrel. There may be, but I am not thinking of it right now. My guess is that it would be more accurate as well in the right hands of course.

    I think the .22lr was originally a rifle round more than for a pistol. The size and adaptability of the lowely .22 allows for it to be used as a good choice for either.
     
  6. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Most combat grade center-fire pistols are held to a much lower accuracy standard then a target grade .22 rim-fire.

    A Glock or XD or whatever is doing good to hold a 4" group at 25 yards.

    A .22 that won't put 10 shots in one ragged hole at that range would not even be competitive in an NRA Bullseye match.

    Get into "match grade" center-fire guns and you have much tighter fitting, adjustable sights, a better trigger pull, and so forth then on a standard combat or duty grade gun.

    For instance, a 1911 Match gun will shoot one ragged hole at 50 yards out of a Ransom rest, or when being shot by a top level competitor.
    A GI issue combat grade 1911 won't.

    No they don't.

    Most combat or duty grade guns, including Glock, come with non-adjustable fixed sights.
    Most have provisions to drive the rear sight back and forth in the slide to move Windage.
    But very few Glocks have any way to adjust Elevation without changing out the front or rear sight to a different height one.

    rc
     
  7. NG VI

    NG VI Member

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    Mostly intended use. .22 pistols like the ones you mentioned tend to be bought for cheap, low recoil range fun. The others you mentioned work fine as target pistols in the same fashion as the .22s, they are just more expensive to feed and have other priorities than just accuracy, namely durability and reliability.
     
  8. Shadow 7D

    Shadow 7D Member

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    It's the use and design of the gun
    Do you really see yourself lugging around a 7" target barrel Ruger MK

    Here is the S&W 52 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4IZ7WeMdsT8
    It's a .38 target AUTO

    The most extreme target pistils are probably Olympic Free pistols, those are some VERY serious target guns, and will COST you.

    Most have very long barrels, large adjustable (and somewhat delicate) sights, weigh a bit, don't have large ammo capacity

    Compare a Walter P22, or a smaller model Browning Buckmark to their target models.
     
  9. Ala Tom

    Ala Tom Member

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    The only practical use of a .22 pistol is for training and for target practice/competition. I have one for cheap training and practice. I have a 40S&W for home defense.
     
  10. Snowbandit

    Snowbandit Member

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    My little P-22 probably kills a coon a week along with other assorted pests on the farm. I find it a fairly valuable asset for more than training the grandkids and targets.
     
  11. RidgwayCO

    RidgwayCO Member

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    What about the sheer joy of it? I believe more .22 ammo is expended every year through "plinking" than any other activity. And I'm pretty sure there's no formal "shooting tin cans" competition. Also, handgun hunting with a .22LR for small game can be very enlightening and enjoyable.
     
  12. Ole Coot

    Ole Coot Member

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    The 22 is my favorite in LR or Mag. Accurate to a fault and no recoil. Many reasons already mentioned and I also carry a 40 or 45 but enjoy the 22 and feel very confident with it within it's limits. My Ruger MII bull barrel at 30yds can head shoot a rabbit or other small game and I can't do that with my carry 45 or 40. If I was in a survival situation the 22 pistol or rifle would be my survival weapon. I have no problem carrying a few thousand rounds.
     
  13. GLOOB

    GLOOB Member

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    I consider a gun a target pistol if 1. it's WAY bigger/heavier than it needs to be to function, and that size/weight is meant to increase accuracy. 2. It's actually accurate.

    Compare a 38 oz Ruger MIII to a HP22A. They both hold 10 rounds of 22LR. They both function reliably. But one is designed to be accurate at the cost of size/weight.

    You could make a Glock 19 more accurate by increasing the sight radius and adding some weight. But that wasn't the design goal.
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2011
  14. Ala Tom

    Ala Tom Member

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    I thought what I said was simple and direct. There seems to be some resistance even to what I said. So I'll go ahead and toss some more ideas out there. I think the low chamber pressure and low recoil of the .22 long rifle enables companies to build high quality, accurate guns at low prices. Combine that with the low cost of ammo compared to centerfire ammo and you have the reason .22 's are often called "target pistols." I will also go even farther to say they are very good for training young people in shooting and handling guns. I have owned and shot automatics in .22 LR and .22 short (great frog killer), an SA revolver and a DA/SA revolver. All these guns taught me a lot and gave great value as well as just plain fun.

    That's my long answer.
     
  15. sniper5

    sniper5 Member

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    Most "target" guns are plinkers.

    A true target pistol usually has a name ending in "i": Pardini, Hammerli, Benelli, or a German name-Feinwerkbau, Walther, etc.

    What you are looking for is extreme accuracy, tight tolerances, good ergonomics, adjustability, repeatability, and reliability. Tight tolerances AND reliability come at a cost. And adjustments that stay locked down are also expensive. Put all that together and you are looking at around $2000 bucks or so. And while you're at it, look at the cost of match grade .22 ammo like Federal Ultra Match or Lapua or Eley. Serious target shooting is not cheap.
     
  16. REAPER4206969

    REAPER4206969 Member

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    Those are Olympic match pistols.

    A little different from Target pistols.
     
  17. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Unless it ends with S&W Model 41, or Hi-Standard Supermatic Trophy or something.

    rc
     
  18. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

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    In most cases, it would be appropriate to substitute "training pistol" for "target pistol". You can just shoot a heck of a lot more rounds per dollar with a .22.
     
  19. M-Cameron

    M-Cameron member

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    the caliber has nothing to do with making a gun a "target" pistol.......

    the pistol is what makes a "target" pistol.

    there are "regular" .22s and there are "target" .22s and there are "tactical" .22s....ect.


    ive seen target .22s and ive seen target .45s, and just about everything in between.


    it all depends on which discipline of shooting you are in, and the rules for said match.....it just so happens .22 competitions are far more popular.
     
  20. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    The only practical use of a .22 pistol is for training and for target practice/competition.
    Tell that to the boxcar load of squirrels and rabbits I've killed with .22 pistols. About 50 years ago, I even killed a Canada goose with a Ruger MK I.
     
  21. mgmorden

    mgmorden Member

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    Most have them available as an OPTION, and there is some level of windage adjustability just by drifting the rear sight, but in general most of them don't have adjustable sights.

    Basically though, .22's aren't really a good choice for a defensive gun. They also shoot dirt cheap ammo which means that a ton of shooting can be done for a fraction of the cost of the bigger guns (and target shooting is about the only type of shooting a civilian would engage in where they're shooting hundreds of rounds per session). Plus, they have almost no recoil which makes them particularly easy to shoot without developing bad habits.

    As to "for the fun of it" and "plinking", those are both within the realm of target shooting IMHO. Target shooting doesn't mean you're shooting paper for groups - it just means that you're on a range shooting some lifeless object for the sake of recreation or practice. Whether it's steel plates, paper, or random tin cans on the ground, they're all target shooting.
     
  22. ForumSurfer

    ForumSurfer Member

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    Yep. Try starting with one of these at 7 yards and see how far you can make it go. It is shockingly fun with a 22 plinker. They move rather unpredictably, so shooting it quickly is a real challenge.

    groundbounce.jpg
     
  23. Owen

    Owen Moderator Emeritus

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    ForumSurfer, those look like a blast. Where do you get them?
     
  24. ForumSurfer

    ForumSurfer Member

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    Owen you can get those at Cheaper than Dirt. I picked mine up at Gander Mountain on impulse sense it looked so fun. The "top hat" model moves unpredictably when you hit it.

    They are fun. Naturally how long they last depends on what caliber you shoot with
     
  25. sniper5

    sniper5 Member

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    Unless it ends with S&W Model 41, or Hi-Standard Supermatic Trophy or something.

    rc

    Just curious, maybe I missed something. Who shoots either one in international competition? If I remember correctly, the last American made handgun to win any kind of international title was the High Standard Olympic, and it was obsolete when they changed the rules to prohibit .22 shorts in rapid fire events.
     
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