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Discussion Starter #1
I have read that the P22's are pretty selective about what ammo they will tolerate. After reading on the message boards about these pistols, I bought a bunch of Remington Thunderbolt ammo. When I went to the range yesterday to try my new pistol out for the first time, things started out fine. I started with Stinger ammo, then went to the Thunderbolt. When I switched to the Thunderbolt, I notice the holes in the target started getting bigger, clearly the bullet was tumbling. Anyone experience this? The kid at the range said he thouight it was hte ammo, but some of hte Stinger tumbled later in the session as well. There was some buildup on the muzzle, but I am not sure that influenced things.
 

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The P22 has very shallow rifling.

From what I've read on the rimfirecentral forums, thunderbolts aren't very nice to P22 barrels.  They tend to foul them quickly with lead.  If there was just enough fouling in that barrel to cause the bullet to not engage the rifling enough, you'd probably get the keyholing you're seeing.  I've had success with Federal Champion bulk pack and recently Remington Golden Bullet bulk pack both available at wally world for cheap.  Those won't foul the barrel as quickly.

In fact, neither one of the two I mentioned fouled the barrel enough in extended shooting sessions (200 to 300 rounds) to cause keyholing.  Clean 'er up and find some different ammo!  Hope that works.

-stunks
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. Yeah, thr fouling on the muzzle was evident. Thankfully .22 ammo is so cheap, I won't regret having to waste what I've already bought.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
When I cleaned the P22 after this incident (it took me a couple of days to get to it), I noticed what I thought were some small burrs on the inside of the barrel right near the muzzle. I had read somewhere that another person had a tumbling problem and had found theses little imperfections on their barrel as well, so I was convinced that was the problem, but decided to give it another range session with different ammo any way.

Well, I went yesterday with some Winchester X-Pert and lo and behold, no tumbling. I am still not very accurate with this pistol, but at least I don't have to send it back to S&W and I can play with it until I get good with it.
 
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