Jimenez JA22 - Some Performance Data

Discussion in '.22-Rimfire Forum' started by Dutchboy, Jun 8, 2010.

  1. Dutchboy

    Dutchboy Member

    Jun 5, 2010
    At a recent gun show, I purchased a Jimenez JA22. (This pistol is basically the same thing as the old Bryco or Jennings .22 semiauto.) The JA22 is one of those "ring of fire" Saturday night specials that everyone loves to hate.

    I'd read a lot comments on the internet about these Jimenez pistols, and I was curious enough to try one out. The price was only $110, NIB; so, I made an impulse buy and took it home.

    Here's the data so far:

    482 rounds fired
    13 failures: (7 stovepipes, 3 Fail to Feed, 2 Fail to Fire, 1 Fail to Extract)
    That's a 2.7% failure rate

    83% of the rounds were Federal 40gr HV. The rest of the rounds were a mixture of Rem Thunderbolt, Win Wildcat, Rem Golden, Win 36gr, and Aguila 40gr SV.

    The pistol was stripped, cleaned, and lubricated before the first shot, and then after about every 150 rounds.

    So far, nothing has broken.

    This performance was way better than I expected.
  2. oscarmayer

    oscarmayer New Member

    Jun 24, 2008
    i'm not a gun snob and i own a few guns that some might consider "junk" 2.7% failure rate isn't bad if you're plinking, or using it to dispatch rats and snakes. but to stuff it in your pocket and depend on it to save your life, no way. even lower end guns have their place, and can be fun to shoot with . just realize these weapons have their short comings and and use it in the environment it's best suited for.

  3. Esteban

    Esteban New Member

    Feb 14, 2010
    They are " cheap " pistols , but many perform surprisingly well !! I would clean it again very well, & before reassembling, look over all parts of the mechanism under strong glasses. You may see a lot of small burrs, rough places, etc., that can easlily be filed off with a ladie's fiber [ NOT steel ] fingernail file. Depress the spring & check under the lips of the mag for any roughness , too. Polish the ramp as slick & smooth as you can, & reassemble. Shoot some more & if one ammo performs much better than others, stay with it. I have seen some that just didn't like soft lead-nose ammo .
    As stated above,, it is not a self defense weapon. Bigger caliber is a better choice. Good luck !
  4. Dutchboy

    Dutchboy Member

    Jun 5, 2010
    Thanks for the feedback. I agree that this Jimenez pistol is not one that I would like to carry around in my pocket with a round in the chamber. But, for what it is, I've been happy with it.

    I forgot to post some accuracy data originally; so, I'll add it here.

    The last time I fired the pistol I shot the Course of Fire for the NRA Pistol Qualification - Distinguished Expert Level.

    That Course is a D-1 target at 10 yards: Six shots in 10 seconds (two hands, strong side) Six shots in 10 seconds (one hand, strong side) Six shots in 10 seconds (two hands, weak side) Six shots in 10 seconds (one hand, weak side). On the D-1 target, the 10-ring is 8" diameter. The X-ring is 4" diameter.

    The max score is 24 shots x 10 = 240. This course worked out well because the Jimenez JA22 has a six round magazine.

    I shot a 236 out of a possible 240, with 17 shots in the "X". You can't expect much more out of such a short barreled pistol. That's about the same performance as my Walther P-22, which cost $200 more than this Jimenez.

    When I get back in the mood to take this Jimenez out again, I'll update this post with some more numbers. My goal is to keep track of the rounds until this pistol finally breaks. (I think that the extractor is going to be the weakest link, but that's just a guess.)
  5. Slabsides

    Slabsides Member

    Jul 22, 2009
    L.A. (Lower Alabama)
    Nice...and thanks for the report. I'm one of the few crazies who happen to like mouse guns. I have the JA22's grandfather, a Jennings J-22 and I love the thing. I had to give it the usual treatment to make it reliable and it has been running like a Singer sewing machine, processing everything I put in it.

    Did this at 25ft, two hands, strong side.


    Can't expect much more from a short gun with such a small sight radius. I'd like to add a JA22 to the collection some day.
  6. jdub229r

    jdub229r New Member

    May 7, 2010
    The Jennings 22LR was the 1st handgun I ever owner - Cost $ 55 in 1990. It was never designed as a range gun. I didn't know any better? I must have run thousands of Thunderbolts through it. I then went out & bought the .380 version. It fell apart in my hands as I was firing it maybe 100 rounds (pins started backing out). I got scared of them & inadvertently traded both of them (& cash) for a used Ruger Mark II short tapered barrel. I should have kept the Jennings 22. It was a lot of cheap fun.
  7. Dutchboy

    Dutchboy Member

    Jun 5, 2010
    I took the JA-22 to the range this weekend. Here's an update on its performance:

    190 rounds fired
    20 failures (15 Failure to feed. 5 stove pipes)
    10.5% failure rate.

    75% of the rounds were Winchester 36gr HV. The rest was a mix of Thunderbolts and Federal 40gr HV.

    These last 190 rounds had a failure rate that was about 3x the failure rate of the first 482 rounds. The failure trend is in the wrong direction. I shot a lot more Winchesters this time, but the Federals and the Thunderbolts were not doing any better.

    For the life of the gun, the totals stand at

    672 rounds fired
    33 failures
    4.9% failure rate. (but the trend is getting worse)

    Accuracy was still pretty good. Two hands, strong side, I could consistently keep 19 out of 20 shots in a five inch circle at 10 yards. Out to 15 yards, accuracy dropped off quite a bit. At 15 yards, hitting a paper plate was not automatic. However, I didn't see any keyholing.

    Nothing on the gun looks too worn, and nothing has broken. Stay tuned. . .
  8. Slabsides

    Slabsides Member

    Jul 22, 2009
    L.A. (Lower Alabama)
    Run some CCI MiniMags through it and see what your rate does.
  9. Big Shrek

    Big Shrek Well-Known Member

    Nov 10, 2009
    NorthWest Florida
    Once you get rid of the Thunderbolts (Thunderduds) and RGB's (Remingtoon Golden Bullsquish) your rate will likely become much better.
  10. Dutchboy

    Dutchboy Member

    Jun 5, 2010
    Big Shrek and Slabsides were right on the money with their advice about the CCI MiniMags. I bought a box and ran them through the JA22 last night. 95 rounds fired with only 2 problems. Both problems were failures to feed, and both times, all I had to do was gently push the back of the slide, and it snapped back into battery and chambered the round.

    The accuracy at 15 yards was also much improved.

    (btw. . .The reason that I shot 95 rounds instead of 100 was that I was so impressed with the MiniMags that I saved 5 rounds to put in my NAA mini-revolver, which I carry from time to time.) Thanks for the good tip about the MiniMags.

    Total numbers for the JA22 so far:
    767 rounds fired
    35 failures
    4.6% failure rate

    Nothing is broken yet.
  11. 3/2 STA SS

    3/2 STA SS Active Member

    I had a Jennings that would only function properly if it was dirty. Clean it and it would jam every time.
  12. Dutchboy

    Dutchboy Member

    Jun 5, 2010
    I got in the mood to shoot the JA-22 again. I mostly used Winchester 36gr high velocity hollow points today. It was rare to get through a magazine without at least one failure. But, the slide feels gritty. I have not cleaned the gun for a few hundred rounds. I'll clean it up well before I shoot it again. Maybe the performance will improve. The data so far is listed below. The little gun has fired almost 900 rounds, and nothing has broken yet.

    (Sorry about the formatting. I can't figure out how to get things to line up)


    Ammo Type / Total shots / Failures / Percent Failure
    Remington Thunderbolt 40gr HV / 67 / 2 / 3.0
    Winchester Wildcat 40 gr HV / 12 / 1 / 8.3
    Federal 40gr HV / 421 / 15 / 3.6
    Remington Golden Bullet 40gr HV / 12 / 1 / 8.3
    Winchester 36gr HV / 275 / 34 / 12.4
    CCI MiniMags 36gr HV / 95 / 2 / 2.1
    Aguila 40gr SV / 5 / 5 / 100.0

    Grand Total / 887 / 60 / 6.8
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2010
  13. dtaxman

    dtaxman New Member

    Dec 11, 2010
    I bought a JA22, blue one, jammed at least once every mag with CCI's. Ran across a really good deal on a silver one, not stainless but I dont know what its called. Not a single jam with CCI's or cheap shells. So sold the blue one for more than I paid.