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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I am about to purchase my first .22, and was hoping to get some advice from those out there who have much more experience with .22's and firearm training than me.

I currently own a 9mm, but as ammo is so expensive, I was hoping to purchase a cheaper gun that would make both a good trainer for my 9mm and something to have fun with at the range.

However, I have heard so many different opinions about this that it has become confusing.

For example, some people say that you should ONLY train with your 9mm, and not a .22 that is similar to it, simply because at the end of the day they are still two entirely different guns. You need to be very familiar with your 9mm is the argument that they present, and shooting a .22 is only going to make you more familiar with THAT gun. SO, if you are going to get a .22, get whatever you want and do not worry if it is close to your 9mm in style and function. It will still help in the end, but never like training with your 9mm personally will and you will have something fun and different to shoot.

The other argument is to get one as close as I can to my 9mm, because it will still help with muscle memory and will make you better with your 9mm than if you purchased a .22 that is entirely different from the 9mm.

The reason that I ask is because I eyed a Colt .22 1911 style Gold Cup that I really like, but the clerk in the store told me that the Colt will not be very accurate and started recommending either a Ruger, or an M&P .22 compact that is more like my 9mm. (I cannot buy both right now.)

This is why I was hoping for some of your thoughts on this subject. Does it really matter that the gun be close to my 9mm in style and function, or would any .22 (like the Colt) help me in the end, because ultimately once I leave the 9mm I am going to an entirely different gun? So maybe go with the Colt for fun and something a little different than the one I already have rather than shooting a .22 that is so close to my 9mm?

Which one of these guns do you think would be best?

Thank you so much for your thoughts!

An interesting side note on Colt outsourcing (the Colt .22 Gold Cup is made by Walther) is that Colt has outsourced almost since the very beginning of the 1911: "One thing that many people don’t realize...is that the demand for them (1911's) was so high during the war, that Colt contracted out to other companies to help keep production numbers up. Some very well-known companies helped, to include Remington Rand, Ithaca, Springfield Armory, many foreign companies, and even the Singer sewing machine company.)" Best 1911 Pistols For the Money [2020] - Pew Pew Tactical
 

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What brand and model is your 9mm? The reason I ask is that MY carry 9mm is a Sig Sauer P938. I bought a conversion slide in .22 that slips on in place of the 9mm slide. If your gun has a .22 conversion slide, then I would go with that conversion.
 

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I don't think it matters at all which one you purchase. I have been shooting guns all my life and I can tell you that training with a 22 is fine. A gun with less recoil will help you improve your form and confidence. I am breaking my wife in to shooting guns and I started her off with a Marlin Model 60 semi auto. She is confident enough now that she isn't scared to handle larger guns of different calibers. At the end of the day, practice makes perfect and that can be said for any gun you handle. To add to that point I think in order to get good with any weapon requires years of practice and ample range time.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
What brand and model is your 9mm? The reason I ask is that MY carry 9mm is a Sig Sauer P938. I bought a conversion slide in .22 that slips on in place of the 9mm slide. If your gun has a .22 conversion slide, then I would go with that conversion.
Thanks. My gun is the Sig P365 XL. I am just a few bullets shy of having put 500 rounds through it, and I am liking it. Not as accurate as the bigger, more expensive 9mm's that I shot, but still pretty good given the size.

I am not sure what a .22 conversion slide is. Still so new!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I still like my Ruger SR-22 solid as a rock
The newish Taurus TX22 is getting a lot of rave reviews. It might be worth looking into.
I have heard good things about the SR-22, my wife picked one out with an orange slide that she likes, christmas present for her this year.
Thank you guys so much! There just is not much to pick from here right now, which is why I had it narrowed down to the Colt or the M&P (Colt for fun and some degree of training, and M&P for a closer level of training, if it matters).

I forget what Ruger I was shown, but I will check again if one of them was the SR-22. I will also look and see if they have that Taurus.

I just really liked that Colt but was not sure if it was a completely off decision to make, given that I do want my time with it to help with my 9mm and not just be wasted.
 

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I am not sure what a .22 conversion slide is. Still so new!
It's exactly what I described. It is a slide, with a .22 barrel, that takes the place of the 9mm slide. Here is a picture of mine, so you can kinda see what I mean.
Sig .22 Conversion P938.JPG
I checked Sig's website and they do not offer one for the P365. I bought my conversion directly from Sig, shortly after I bought the pistol. When I registered the warranty, they sent me an email offering the conversion kit.
 

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I am not sure what a .22 conversion slide is. Still so new!
It's actually called a conversion kit. You replace the top of your pistol - the slide,the barrel and the recoil spring - with pieces that will let you shoot 22 in your gun.

This way, since the bottom half is still your gun, the safety is in the same place, it has the exact same trigger pull.

This is a 1911 45 "field-stripped" (disassembled into its major parts).
m1911-3834.jpg


This is a conversion kit for a 1911 45.
1356768_02_colt_ace_22_45_conversion_kit__640.jpg


As you can see it consists of a replacement slide, barrel, recoil spring, magazine, and a few internal parts that are needed to make the gun work with 22.

But the main part of the gun - the receiver - stays the same, so it has the same feel and the same grips and the same everything else.

It just shoots $4 a box ammunition instead of $20 a box ammunition.
 

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I chose the m&p22 only because I have one and enjoy shooting it. I have never held the colt so can't speak to that.
My m&p22 was purchased in Dec 2014 so no doubt there have been changes of some sort to the newer ones today. I am not even sure if the reliability of today's is the same as mine. Obviously not all purchased guns are solid reliable lead spitters.
Try to find one of each, shoot them, then look for prices of spare parts and likely hood of service ooptions in the future and weigh it all out for your choice. Then buy both!
 

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I am a big supporter of training with a .22 as I do it religiously especially for weak hand shooting as you get to hone your fine motor skills at a considerable savings. But you mentioned that your sig was not as accurate as the more expensive and bigger 9mm's. The sig you have is already as good as any other 9 mil that is out in the market and unless you practice a lot and I mean a lot you will never be as accurate with your sig as with other bigger handguns simply due to the short barrel and the sight radius being smaller than a full size handgun.

The cost of ammo is definitely a factor and if you planned on shooting bulk ammo 22lr for practicing it could possibly hinder your training as accuracy on the 22 lr depending on brand will shoot all over the place and you won't know if it is you or the ammo. So by buying ammo that is more expensive like cci or more elite ammo you could really not be saving as much money as you think.

I don't know your financial situation, but if I were you, and if this is your first handgun that you have bought and use as your conceal carry, personally I would use the money that you are going to spend on the purchase of a handgun on ammo for the sig you own already. Hopefully you are not using self defense ammo for practicing as this is truly very very expensive ammo for 20 round box.

I use a browning buckmark for practicing my weak hand shooting as I carry a 1911, and for me I focus on sight picture and trigger control. When I carry a revolver I use a 617 model to mimic my 686 on only practice double action. So if money is not an issue than buy the one that feels best or closely matches your personal carry.

By the way not all clerks at the gun counter are very knowledgeable about guns so be careful when heeding their advice, and as you noticed everyone has an opinion, even here and it is up to you to decipher which is best for you given all these information.
 

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As a dedicated understudy neither. Not that they are bad pistols but your 9mm is a striker fired pistol, a true understudy should have as close an action as possible IMHO. I would find a striker fired 22. Not a striker guy so my knowledge of those guns is limited, a Taurus TX22 or the Glock 44 may be worth a look.
A quick look on the net.......I’d skip the Glock and give the Taurus serious consideration.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thank you to everyone for all of your thoughts and suggestions! It is really helping me very much as I think about making this decsion.

It's exactly what I described. It is a slide, with a .22 barrel, that takes the place of the 9mm slide. Here is a picture of mine, so you can kinda see what I mean.
View attachment 222250
I checked Sig's website and they do not offer one for the P365. I bought my conversion directly from Sig, shortly after I bought the pistol. When I registered the warranty, they sent me an email offering the conversion kit.
Thanks for checking for me! That is really kind of you. I wish they had one, it would be perfect!

The cost of ammo is definitely a factor and if you planned on shooting bulk ammo 22lr for practicing it could possibly hinder your training as accuracy on the 22 lr depending on brand will shoot all over the place and you won't know if it is you or the ammo. So by buying ammo that is more expensive like cci or more elite ammo you could really not be saving as much money as you think.

I don't know your financial situation, but if I were you, and if this is your first handgun that you have bought and use as your conceal carry, personally I would use the money that you are going to spend on the purchase of a handgun on ammo for the sig you own already. Hopefully you are not using self defense ammo for practicing as this is truly very very expensive ammo for 20 round box.
Thanks! In this case, it sounds like, in the end, I should focus on practicing with my 9mm and if I want another gun go ahead and get it, but consider it to be it's own thing and do not reply on it as an understudy for the 9mm?

The ammo that I have is Aguila .22 Super Extra 40 gr, and Fiocchi .22 High Velocity. Is this ok ammo to use?

As a dedicated understudy neither. Not that they are bad pistols but your 9mm is a striker fired pistol, a true understudy should have as close an action as possible IMHO. I would find a striker fired 22. Not a striker guy so my knowledge of those guns is limited, a Taurus TX22 or the Glock 44 may be worth a look.
A quick look on the net.......I’d skip the Glock and give the Taurus serious consideration.
Thank you also. I will look for the two you mentioned, but not sure if they will be available around here given everything. This sounds like another good argument for practicing strictly with the 9mm I already have. Thanks!
 

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Mr. King - the ammo suitable for your pistol will vary from one pistol to another of the same make and model. Just have to shoot them and find the one(s) that work best in YOUR firearm. One of my early dusty rusties is an OLD Ruger Standard Model. It absolutely LOVES Remington Yellow Jacket cheapie ammo and chokes up on any CCI or Federal ammo. Go figure.
 

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C.King,

It might be time to sell the 365 and get something that will accept both 9mm (or any centerfire round of your choice) and the .22 RF, with the addition of the conversion kit.
That way you can have the best of both worlds without the expense of having to buy two separate guns.
...just another way of looking at it.

DCman
P.S. I'm noticing a lot of videos on YT showcasing CCI standard velocity 22LR ammo seems to be very accurate in a variety of guns. However, that doesn't mean you can't shoot the Fiocchi and Aguila ammo you have now.
 
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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks again to everyone who shared their advice! It has really helped me not only with this decision, but with other things related to guns and shooting as well.

I decided to go with the Colt imitation 1911, just because I could not resist. A great looking 1911 style gun that shoots cheap ammo? With the Colt name? (Sure, it is made by Walther, but still very much like the original Colt Gold Cup from what I understand...) Kind of hard to turn that one down. I picked it up today and cannot wait to take it to the range!

In the end, I decided that for now I will stick to quality practice with my Sig rather than go with an understudy, and during my last trip to the range I noticed that I was improving very much as I went just based on following some of the suggestions I have received. My shots were tightening, and I was hitting my exact target more often. Just what I want to achieve!

That said, if I decide to go for an understudy, I will know where to return to review some great advice.

Thanks again to everyone who has helped me with this!
 
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