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Not sure if this is acceptable as it contains advertising at the conclusion, but some interesting statistics. I even watch Chris' videos that don't pertain to me because he does such a good job. Please remove if not acceptable.

 

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These kinds of tests would be more relevant if they used gel that had been smoking meth all day.

Rimfire rounds and low power rounds like 6.35 are certainly better than simply calling your assailant hurtful names. They do mange to kill a lot of people every year when wielded by dimwits. I would expect a more informed selection by a reasonable person arming themselves for lawful purposes and would put the absolute minimum at the .32 ACP level with the advice to get the largest caliber you can handle beyond that.

Use enough gun and get enough practice or don't bother.
 

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No, thank you. As troublesome as the .22s of various makes in this house are at the range, I’m not gonna trust my life with them. And then there are their ballistic inferiority compared to proper self defense ammo. Like 9mm HPs.
 

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I love these debates, and my P22 is my EDC for self defense. Why? As Lucky Gunner's tests (Pocket Pistol Caliber Ballistic Gel Tests - LuckyGunner.com Labs) show (merely the latest in a long line of tests), the lowly .22lr performs adequately against the FBI's gel penetration tests, including (as the recent Lucky Gunner shows) with the heavy clothing standard included.

Then look at real world self-defense usage (An Alternate Look at Handgun Stopping Power). Again, the lowly .22lr acquits itself compared to other calibers in real-world self-defense stops. Check out the 1-shot-stop percentages and average-rounds-till-stop numbers. The .22lr is doing just fine in the real world.

Does it perform the best in either of those sets of data? No. But only one does the best anyway. And plenty of rounds that are traditionally considered "better" actually do the same or worse in the data. .22lr performs just fine.

Next, my P22 is small and light, and therefore will be on me every single day, no matter what I'm wearing. And I bring 10+1 rounds to the fight even without a spare mag. I really like having 10 rounds compared to 30% (or fewer) less with some other small/light guns with other calibers. With the low recoil, I can shoot those 10 rounds very accurately compared to other calibers firing at the same speeds. Even expert shooters tend to score better with .22 compared to other calibers. It's just the physical reality of recoil management.

And since ammo is dirt cheap, like almost-free compared to the cost of other rounds, I can afford to get very good with this gun...very very very good...Unless you're made of money, there's a direct correlation between ammo costs and rounds fired in training. That training will count for a lot in a fight. No one here will disagree with me.

As for crazed-meth-guy, the most rare of all self-defense shootings, that's a (small) problem for all calibers. And here, as everywhere, shot placement is king over caliber. And I'll have 10+1 chances, with little recoil, with far more training, to hit something vital. A CNS hit is a CNS hit.

So, on the .22's side, We've got tons of data. Against it, we've got the gun community's "but it seems small" collective gut feeling. I'm going with the data.

Happy shooting, everyone!

p.s. Someone will reply to me with, "Yeah? Well, I carry an elephant-gun caliber in my pocket every single day, with 75 rounds in it, and train just as much as you." I say, "Congratulations on your situation! For the rest of us in the real world, the .22lr performs just fine. And if you trained just as much with a .22, your shot placement (which is king) under time pressure would be much better than your elephant pistol."

p.p.s. Someone else will reply with "Rimfire is unreliable. You're gonna misfire and die." I say, "The real world self-defense usage data indicates no such problem. And with a properly maintained gun, using quality ammo, you're unlikely to have a problem. I've yet to have a misfire with my P22."

p.p.p.s Someone else will reply with "But look at the data, this other round is better." I say, "Sure, I never said .22lr was "best." Just that it performed as well as many other calibers that don't catch the kind of flak that the lowly .22lr does. This shows the conventional wisdom about it is wrong. And I say the increased training the .22 allows, and better shot placement from less recoil, will count for a lot.
 

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People speak of unreliable .22LR rounds. I have shot many thousands of bulk .22LR and can say I have only had a handful of misfires using multiple .22 handguns and rifles. A pretty good ratio.
This is using multiple brands at usually the cheapest prices.
My 9mm bulk ammo fired/misfire ratio would be higher since I've only fire hundreds (maybe a thousand) of rounds through multiple handguns.
An average range trip includes 500 rounds of .22LR and 50-200 rounds of 9mm.
I am confident enough that in real world self defense I will carry an M&P22 sometimes and my wife's go to is her M&P22C.
Is the ideal round for SD? No. Can it save your life? You betcha.
 
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I've got CCI mini mag 36gr CPHP. But I'm not set on that. That new Lucky Gunner data has me wondering about CCI mini mag 40Gr CPRN, or the 40gr velocitors.

I've sent a question into Walther about whether they have a list of "approved" rounds or round-types, or a list of "unapproved" ones. Haven't heard back yet.

I don't know if it's "Any .22lr round will fire safely in a P22" or if there are some round types/loads that cause extra wear/tear on the gun and should be avoided.
 

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The last review I saw indicated Velocitors we’re better than Stingers in short barrel pistols. clearly if one is going to use a .22 for self defense make sure you trust the ammo. Buy the best and hope you never have to test your skills.
 
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