Recommendations for 22 Pistol

Discussion in '.22-Rimfire Forum' started by brentfox, Jan 9, 2009.

  1. brentfox

    brentfox New Member

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    Hey Guys and Girls, I need a recommendation for a good carry gun for a small lady. She's only about 5" 2" weights only 102 pounds. Now this is important. She's never fired a gun in her life. So I thought - 22 LR. Little recoil, little blast, little noise. I like revolvers but, its been my experience that the trigger pull, or pulling back the hammer on a revolver requires more power than she has. Next option, automatic which I fell is more dangerous for a first time shooter. Lighter trigger pull (Gun Goes Bang). Also, 22's automatic's jam way to much for me. So, I am hoping one of you 22 experts will lead me to the perfect gun.

    Thanks for any advice. ;)
    BrentFox
  2. CampingJosh

    CampingJosh Well-Known Member

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    For reliability and accuracy in a .22 autoloader, you're looking at a Ruger Mk III (or other from the series). Unfortunately, they're not lightweight: you're looking at 37 ounces or more.

    There are some .22s that are specifically designed for concealed carry, but I have very little experience with these. Beretta makes one, their Tomcat model (link). I've heard good things about it. Taurus also makes a number of various .22 pistols (link), but they seem to be based off the Beretta design (from what I can tell).

    I can tell you that both the SIG Mosquito and Walther P22 are fun to shoot on the range or plinking in the backyard, but they're both big for the cartridge. Also, neither is a target gun by any stretch (with the accuracy edge going to the SIG).

    Your best bet will likely be to get to a range with several rental guns and let her try it out.
    If her hand isn't strong enough to pull a double-action revolver trigger, you can have a gunsmith lighten it up a bit.
    Also, have her squeeze a tennis ball in her hand. If she squeezes for 10 seconds, then rests 10 seconds, and constantly repeats, her hand strength will build up very quickly. She can do this while watching TV, reading, etc.
  3. dusty9

    dusty9 New Member

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    You are probably going to get a lot of negative comments regarding a .22 carry gun, warnings that a .22 is totally inadequate for defensive use. Compared to the 9mm, .38, .40, .45, etc. that is correct. However, many people cannot or don't want to handle the larger calibers, thereby making a .22 a good choice. A good quality .22 semi auto pistol is too large and heavy for concealed carry, leaving a .22 revolver as the most viable alternative. The absolute best small .22 revolvers are those made by Smith & Wesson. The bad news is they discontinued these small frame revolvers some time ago. However, they are still available on the used market. I question your statement about the lady being unable to cock the hammer on a revolver, especially a small one. They are not very hard to manually cock, unless one has some type of problem with their hands, such as arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, or some similar ailment. I am quite familiar with S&W model 34 and model 63 .22 revolvers and feel that one of these would be good for your lady. I bought my wife a model 63 many years ago and she has shot untold amounts of .22 ammo through it. I just checked S&W's web site and noticed they are still cataloging a model 63 but with only a 5" barrel, which is a little long for concealed carry. My wife's has a 4" barrel.

    The original 34 was also called a Kit Gun. As I stated earlier, 34's and 63's can be found on the used market. One in good shape will command a rather high price. There are a few other small .22 revolvers but except for an occasional Ruger SP101 in .22 caliber the quality of most of them ranges from poor to totally junk. The fact is your choices of a good quality small .22 revolver are pretty limited. While there are a number of small semi automatic .22 pistols out there, I agree with you that they are not good choices for a new shooter to start out with.

    There are a number of very good small frame .38 revolvers available. With light loads such as the lead wadcutters used by target shooters, your lady might find these manageable.

    One very, very important thing your lady absolutely has to do if she gets a handgun of any kind, is to get good training on using it. Then practice regularly with it.
  4. mjstef

    mjstef New Member

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    My wife is about her size and i got her a Bersa Thunder 380. Little more punch than a .22 and also VERY dependable, Small and easy to handle. It will fit in my front pants pocket...........

    [​IMG]
  5. tonygrz

    tonygrz New Member

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    Went to a local gun show and turned two "carry" pistols. One of the pistols was a Bersa. Just too heavy to carry in my pants pocket. The other one I traded was a OMC .380 "backup" in strainless steel. The print of the gun was small but the weight was such that you ended up wearing suspenders to keep your pants up.

    Let me recommend a Kel-Tec in .32 ACP. The gun only weighs 6 oz empty. A very light gun to carry and easily carriered in the front pocket of most jeans and dress slacks. I know, people will laugh at you for carrying such a little pipsqite of a caliber. Yep, but I practice a lot and know what I'm going to hit and I load them with CorBon bullets. I don't leave the gun at home because it's "too heavy", "too bulky" or "it will show.

    Just my 2 cents worth. Whatever you pick, carry it. You can't defend youself with the gun at home.

    Tony
  6. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

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    I would go along with tony on the Kel-tec, they have a .380 also at about the same weight as the 32.
  7. mjstef

    mjstef New Member

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    Have not seen real good reviews on the Kel Tec and it's to darn light to keep on target. I was wacked in the forehead with a few spent shells when i tried one out. To light to hit a followup shot and my grouping sucked. Reliability isn't there either compared to the Bersa. In my opinion Kel-Tecs are the most expensive cheap guns you can buy. They have all the performance of a $50 Jennings but you get the glory of having to pay 4-5 times that amount. Bersas on the other hand would still be worth the price if they cost twice as much. I don't see 23 ounces as being to heavy to carry in pants pocket. Anyways here's some reading.....

    http://www.lesjones.com/posts/001097.shtml
  8. Shooter45

    Shooter45 *Administrator* Staff Member

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    Stay away from the .22 as a carry gun for the lady friend. Not enough bullet to stop a threat.

    I'd recommend a .38 special revolver. Manageable recoil and the trigger pull won't be that bad especially in a stressful situation involving an attacker. Remember adrinaline . :)

    Get her into a training program along with a lot of range time and she will be fine.
  9. Teejay9

    Teejay9 New Member

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    Depending on how much you're willing to spend, may I suggest looking at a German or French made PPK/s in .22lr. I carried one for years because of wild country I had to pass through on my way to work late at night. It is easy to put in her pocket book and functions flawlessly. If she is indeed not able to rack the slide to cock, then better look for a .22 DA revolver. TJ
  10. Oneida Steve

    Oneida Steve Active Member

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    If you can find a High Standard Sentinel .22 revolver from the 1970's-1980's you'll have a light, reliable 9-shot .22 snub revolver for under $200. A S&W Model 34 2" would be better, but they run close to $500.
  11. jacksonco

    jacksonco New Member

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    Last edited: Jan 13, 2009
  12. Hankster

    Hankster New Member

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    Taurus makes the Model 96, it's basically a copy of a Smith and Wesson double action design revolver. Holds 9 rounds. The 4 inch is easy to carry, light, easy for a small woman...accurate. It may not be a big bore, but i'd rather see her become a "dead eye" shot with a .22 than a "flincher" with a bigger bore.
    Besides, over time, success with a .22 most often leads to the desire to advance... .38 special would be a logical step up, if she desires to. If not, she'll have a gun she can both feel confident with, and HIT with.
    In the end, only hits count!!!
  13. Forte

    Forte New Member

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    I really like the Ruger Mark III Hunter. It's an attractive gun and feels good to hold. It's easy to shoot, doesn't kick, and had really good accuracy out of the box.

    The only problem is, it's a little difficult to clean at first, finding videos on youtube helps.
  14. mjstef

    mjstef New Member

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    Follow the instructions in the book precisely. Also painting the little arm in the backstrap that fits in the latch with white fingernail polish helps to see it to line up enormously!!!
  15. poser_pilot

    poser_pilot New Member

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    Get a .22 revolver, then take it to a gunsmith to have him do some trigger work to it. Lighten up that DA pull, and your lady friend should have no trouble at all.
  16. Forte

    Forte New Member

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    Just out of curiosity, what would happen if you shot someone with a .22lr? Would they just get really angry?
  17. oscarmayer

    oscarmayer New Member

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    agreed a 22 isn't a caliber of choice buy most threats are stopped by the pulling out of a firearm.thugs prey on the weak and frail when a counter threat is posed to them they beat feet in alot of cases. a 22 in the hands of a trained shooter ( aim for the face) will stop a vast majority of any possible threats. more people killed with a 22 than any aother caliber and at one time the caliber of choice for the israeli mossad. not to be discounted. ask yourself this, would you be willing to take a hit with a 22 at 10 feet ? most sane people would answer no.
  18. mrkirker

    mrkirker New Member

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    Go with a .22 for her. It's better than nothing, AND - since it's a self-defense weapon, tell to poke it right into the guy's ribs, or wherever!. ANY firearm emits a huge gas burst when fired. Much of the close range damage from ANY firearm is a result of this gas burst entering the entry wound. (Can you say, "Inflate the balloon?") ;)
  19. Hankster

    Hankster New Member

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    Uh, guys.. do you READ a question before answering it?? They don't WANT a semi auto!!!
    That said....the .22 isn't rated high for defense due to low knockdown (hydrostatic shock) power...... Then again, i'd rather take a 9mm ball ammo hit than a .22. Why?? The high velocity ball will go thru you....the .22 has a NASTY reputation for going in, then ricocheting off bones,ribs whatever, creating a REAL mess inside! Less instant shock...but MORE internal damage. Frankly, if she can hit center mass.... NINE .22 hits ought to stop just about anything on two legs!!! Better to hit with a lighter powered weapon, and hit where you WANT to, than wave a bigger gun you CAN'T hit with!!
    HITS COUNT, MISSES DON'T!!!
  20. Forte

    Forte New Member

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    He didn't say that[i/], as much as he wasn't sure if he wanted to go revolver or semi-automatic.

    Revolvers are very popular for self defense because there's not much to "screw up," there's no safety or anything, just aim, pull trigger (or cock it but I'm inclined to believe in self defense situations most people don't cock their revolvers)

    Semi-automatics require a bit more "know-how," I guess it will depend on the OP's wife. If she is one of those people who "dread" guns, but want to feel safer, a revolver would be better; but if she's slightly interested in guns and is willing to learn a semi auto may be better.

    That's just my opinion anyway. :)
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