This guest post is by Jeff P and entry in our non-fiction writing contest .
Many of us have .22 caliber ammo and firearms in their “survival” battery. I am no exception and have more than I probably need, but each has a special place in my safe. But this article is about something I think is even more important – ammo.
I have been buying .22 LR ammo for some time and have what I feel is a safe amount. Now the question is – what do I concentrate on stocking up, now that I’m past “whatever I can get or is on sale”.
Took the four Browning Buckmarks I own to the range. I have three pistols; a 20-year-old 5.5” “slabside”; a new Camper Model w/ a 4” TacticalSolutions Ultra-light barrel, compensator, and Picatinney rail for optics; a Dragonfly (10.5” barrel with built-in suppressor); and a bull barrel rifle.
I like the way Browning’s work, they all use the same magazine, and are easy for me to disassemble – for repair or cleaning. So I felt this would be a pretty good group of weapons, with enough similarities, to do an ammo test. These results are not scientific and were only designed for rough accuracy testing, but I was more concerned with reliability.
So I tried out a bunch of ammo to find what works. Here’s what I found:
Hunting ammo, regular – Winchester Power Point 40 grHP. This stuff kills it dead with the 1st shot and is very accurate.
Subsonic: I’m goingwith Remington 37 gr HP’s and Aguila 60 gr solids. The 38 & 40 gr. Aquilawould not cycle the action in standard or suppressed pistols, where the Remington and the 60 gr’s would. Plus the 60 gr’smade a presentable sound difference when they hit, a much more “respectable”smack!
CB’s & Aguila 20 gr – might save them for the kid’ssingle shots. Or possibly a revolver. They wouldn’t reliably feed in any of the 10 magazines I took out.
Training: Federal 36gr HP in 375 or 525 count boxes. The Winchester White Box 36 gr.’s alsoworked, but for me are harder to find. Remington bulk (also 36 gr.) both had failures to fire, feed, and/or eject. Stay away from American Eagles. First, there are only 40/box not 50. Second, I had 3 with oversized bullets that would not go into the chamber fully but one still fired (causing much distress and consternation on the non-firing support hand!)
Hyper-velocity: I did not take any with me this trip as I only had a little on-hand. I am not a fan. Over the years I’d been too inconsisten tbased upon weather and wind and the type of firearm.
If you want quiet, get a suppressor that fits your 22 pistol/rifle. Even the WW 40gr HP’s were acceptably quiet;I think if I used them in my small back yard, my neighbor would actually have to see me shoot to hear it. The subsonicones more so. I would get a separate suppressor and pistol, as then you can change pistols, plus use in on more than one firearm. They make one that is very light, and will work on .17 Mach 2, 22 LR, .17 HMR, and .22 Magnum weapons. I will end up with one and another$200 tax out just because I want to suppress a rifle too.
If you’re thinking of the ultra –light barrels, I’d go with the 5.5” and skip the compensator. It does not change the perceived recoil and adds no significant weight to the pistol.
Finally, the .22 caliber ammo you choose is really going to come down to personal preference, the type of weapon you are going to use, and ultimately what you can find and afford. I have also run the regular velocity ammo through a Walther P22, a SiG Mosquito, all my 10/22’s, and my 2 lever-action rifles, and found similar results, but Ididn’t take them all out this time. I was trying to get the guns as consistent as possible to make them a non-factor.
Hope this helps.
This contest will end on August 7 2012 – prizes include:
First Place : 1 Year Subscription to AlertsUSA, 1 Radiation Safety Package consisting of the following; (1) NukAlert Radiation Monitor and Alarm (5) Radsticker Peel and Stick Dosimeters (1) Box Thyro Safe Potassium Iodide. All courtesy of AlertsUSA. A $150 gift certificate for Federal Ammo courtesy of LuckyGunner Ammo. And a British Berkefeld water fillter system courtesy of LPC Survival. A total prize value of over $700.
Second Place : A six pack Entrée Assortment courtesy of Augason Farms, a Nukalert courtesy of Shepherd Survival Supply and a WonderMill Grain Mill courtesy of Kitchen Kneads. A total prize value of over $550.
Third Place : A copy of each of my books “31 Days to Survival” and “Dirt Cheap Survival Retreat” courtesy of The Survivalist Blog dot Net and “Kelly McCann’s Inside the Crucible Set” courtesy of Paladin Press. A total prize value of over $200.
Contest ends on August 7 2012.