.22 for defense CC?

This is a discussion on .22 for defense CC? within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Any thoughts, experience or statistics on carrying a .22 as a CC weapon? Looking for facts here no just opinions. Thanks, HOLYROLLER....

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Thread: .22 for defense CC?

  1. #1
    Ex Member Array HOLYROLLER's Avatar
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    .22 for defense CC?

    Any thoughts, experience or statistics on carrying a .22 as a CC weapon? Looking for facts here no just opinions. Thanks, HOLYROLLER.

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    The known fact is that the .22 is less than ideal as a self defense caliber.

    Another fact would be that more human beings are killed each year with the .22 rim-fire than any other ammunition caliber.

    Obviously then they are not stopped quickly enough to prevent them from continuing to pose an immediate deadly threat. So one can assume they are killed but, not right away.

    Another fact would be that it would be better to have a .22 than no firearm at all.

    In order to carry a .22 for effective self-defense you would very much need to practice rapid multiple head shot hits as your most viable and effective means of terminating a deadly threat ASAP.
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    Senior Member Array joleary223's Avatar
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    I had thought about it once. I saw one of these http://www.army.lt/guns/gallery/G08.jpg The Grendel P-30 has a capacity of 30 rounds and It's chambered for 22. magnum. I don't think I would carry it, but I would still like to own one just for the cool factor. I want a self defense round that will knock a BG down, the 22. might just zip right through but not stop forward momentum. A knife attack might still get to you if you shoot with a 22. and didn't get a head shot.

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    VIP Member Array ELCruisr's Avatar
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    Another thing to consider is the dependability of .22 ammo. I don't know how many times I've got a good firing pin strike and a dud round since I was a kid. Would hate to depend on that.
    If you stand up and be counted, from time to time you may get yourself knocked down. But remember this: A man flattened by an opponent can get up again. A man flattened by conformity stays down for good. ~ Thomas J. Watson, Jr.

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    There are precious few "facts" when it comes to wounding effectiveness. There are simply too many variables at play to make many concrete statements about anything. The best we can do is too look at the research, the "street" results, and the opinions of people we respect and make the best decisions for us as an indivdual.

    That being said, the .22LR is widely considered an underpowered round for SD. The fact that more people are killed by .22s than other calibers is simply because there are so many more .22s out there; it's not a real testament to the round's lethality.

    As far as "knockdown power;" this is 99% myth and 1% a psychological reaction to being shot - people simply aren't knocked or pushed anywhere by objects weighing fractions of an ounce - so I wouldn't worry too much about that. What I would worry about is putting such a tiny hole from a light bullet without as much yawing/fragmenting potential as a .22 centerfire round in a bad guy intent on doing you harm. If it's all you've got, then it's the best caliber in the world. If you have options, it loses it's standing pretty quickly.
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    Member Array mikeb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joleary223 View Post
    I want a self defense round that will knock a BG down
    impossible.

    i know knock down power is often thought of when picking caliber, so here is a little math that might help in your next gun shop or range debate.

    the thing you need when knocking something down, stopping something, or generally changing its speed is momentum.

    momentum = mass * speed

    units don't matter if we're comparing the same thing, so lets use pounds and feet per second for mass and speed.
    so a person strolling at 1 mile per hour is going about 1.5 feet per second (go to google and type in "1 mile per hour in feet per second"

    lets say the person weighs 160 pounds

    momentum = 160 * 1.5 = 240 (Combat-Carry-Momemtum-Units or CCMU)

    now for the bullet. its a sweet .45 +p load that weighs 200 grains and travels 1200 feet per second, this is a HOT LOAD probably loaded in .308 brass.

    google "200 grains in pounds" you get about .029 lbs
    speed is already known at 1200 feet per second

    momentum = .029 * 1200 = 35 (CCMU)

    The way momentum works, you take the system of the bullet and the person, that momentum has a direction. lets call the direction the man is going positive and the direction the bullet is going negative.

    Nothing will change the momentum of the system even if the bullet hits the man and gets embedded in him. The man/bullet total mass and total speed will always multiply to be the same. This is part of how "CSI" can tell how fast a cars were going after a wreck just by knowing how much each one weighed and where they ended up.

    So man momentum is +240 (CCMU) and bullet momentum is -35 CCMU.

    system momentum is +240-35=205 (CCMU)

    Bullet hits man and gets embedded in him, momentum is "conserved" so there is still 205 CCMU, but the bullet and the man are one piece now, so they must be traveling at the same speed as eachother.

    well their mass is obviously added, so 160 lbs + .029 lbs = 160.029
    the momentum is the same as before they collided, so 205 CCMU

    Since [mass * speed] = momentum, [momentum / mass] = speed

    so [205 CCMU / 160.029 lbs] = 1.28 feet per second. You barely slowed him down with the one shot.


    What if you hit him with a full magazine out of your 1911 plus the one that was in the chamber, you're talking about 7 bullets.

    the bullets speeds are all the same, and their masses are the same, so just take the momentum of one and multiply it by 7.

    this hail of bullets has a momentum of 243 CCMU
    the strolling mad has a momentum of 240 CCMU

    so to actually knock someone down, or stop them where they stand from bullet momentum,
    -you're going to have to empty a whole magazine of 45 +P+ into him
    -he'd better weigh less than 160 lbs
    -he'd better only be strolling because you're going to take 1.5 miles per hour off of his speed.

    if we use .22 a hot load would be CCI stingers,
    34 gains = .0049 pounds
    1640 feet per second
    makes 8 CCMU per bullet

    takes 240 CCMU to stop a strolling skinny guy, so thats 30 CCI stingers.
    honestly thats less than I thought.
    this Ruger 30-round .22 magazine holds as much knock down power as this .45 1911 magazine.
    Last edited by mikeb; April 23rd, 2007 at 08:51 AM.

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    Member Array mikeb's Avatar
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    The FBI training book I failed to bookmark talks about immediate incapacitation as the thing you're looking for in a defensive round. (makes sense)

    The reading suggests that penetration is the main factor in incapacitation, and you want 12 inches minimum.

    Once you've got 12 inches it suggested you use the biggest bullet you can find.

    So the biggest bullet that you can handle shooting rapidly that can penetrate 12 inches into a person is the best self-defensive round as far as they concluded.

    not that this is about "is .22 the BEST defensive round"

    I think its fine because such a large % of times someone uses their gun it only takes presentation to stop an attack.

  9. #8
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    Just my experience from my EMS days, both calls I've run and from medical case studies:

    -The .22 can definately kill.
    -The .22 RARELY puts a guy down right away
    -The .22 has put a guy down right away with as few as 2 body shots (maybe less, just citing cases I personally know of)
    -The .22 has failed to penetrated the front of the skull with a dead hit
    -The .22 (and even calibers up to 9mm, in cases that I know of) have glanced off the front of the skull at angles other than close to 90 degrees (exact angles unknown).
    -The temple or eye socket is easier to penetrate that the teeth/front or skull
    -tens of thousands of .22 round sent downrange by yours truly, and never a single failure to fire. Mostly thunderbolts and cci minimags.

    My Opinion that you didn't ask for:

    -I agree that more often that not, presentation alone will stop an attack. Particulary of the gun looks like a real gun and not a toy (compare a p22 with the many tsy bitsy .22s out there) I know many will argue this point, decide for yourself.
    -I also think you had better be prepared training-wise and emotionally to pull the trigger if it doesn't.
    -A .22 that you'll practice with is way better than anything else that you wouldn't practice with. (I say this because my wife doesn't like a 9 or even a .380, And I think a .22lr JHP is a way better round than .25 or .32 for SD)
    -I'd probaly empty my .22 at the BGs neck if thats what I carried. Very vascular and probably the only chance for a spine penetrating hit, which would put him down NOW.
    -I havent fired a .22magnum handgun, but can't imagine the recoil being much less than a .380. That being equal, go.380.
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  10. #9
    Senior Member Array joleary223's Avatar
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    I should have chosen my words more carefully. When I said " Knock the BG down" I was talking about stopping power. Here is an article I found http://www.reelfishingwithgunner.com...AMMUNITION.htm
    MikeB is correct, a handgun will not launch a BG out the window. A handgun can make said BG stop forward movement and fall to the ground. The larger the round the more effectively that job is done.

  11. #10
    Member Array denverd0n's Avatar
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    A .22 is probably better than nothing, but just barely. Considering the wide variety of much better calibers available, and the very small guns that are available in those calibers, I can't think of any good reason for deliberately choosing the .22 as a defensive weapon.

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    Member Array OfClanMcnab's Avatar
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    Excellent post, MikeB.

    If you want knockdown power you are going to need a rifle round, or maybe a handgun chambered in .454 Casull. I saw a video of a BP agent shooting a rock-throwing illegal alien with an M4, and the alien instantly went from standing to a limp puddle on the ground. The .223 may not have the mass and energy on paper required to 'stop' a human in their tracks, but the enormous cavity it creates in the bad guy's chest will instantly negate any thoughts of malice.

    Same goes with a handgun round. If you are carrying a handgun that can create a massive wound, then chances are good that whatever it lacks in stopping power will be offset by trauma. A .22LR (or heaven forbid, puny .22 Short!) is not capable of creating massive trauma even though it can be lethal. If you absolutely have to carry a .22, then I would recommend a semi-auto loaded with hollowpoints. Also try to go for headshots. If a headshot doesn't work, rapid fire to center mass will probably do the trick.

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    Senior Member Array mark555's Avatar
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    Years ago a buddy of mine responded to a call, a guy popped up and emptied a .22 into his stomach, they penetrated this vest and he got about eight rounds in the stomach (we are talking well over 20 years ago). He is still alive and kicking. I guess what that says to me is that a .22 is better then nothing, but just barley.
    "Hell of a thing, killin' a man. Take away all he's got and all he's ever gonna have."
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    Ok, the 1st rule of gunfighting is "Have a gun!"

    That being said, next is caliber, bullet grains, ballistics, knock down power, stopping power, velocity, hollow points, wad cutters ad nauseum, and all that stuff will absolutely boggle the mind. Countless volumes to fill entire libraries on the topic.

    What you want is generally the largest caliber of weapon that you can handle, consistently, under stress with an acceptable amount of accuracy and using good quality factory loaded ammunition.

    Another key factor that is directly related to the 1st rule of gunfighting is having a firearm that you will have with you all the time. Large caliber weapons with large capacity magazines are and can be considered uncomfortable enough to wear that people end up leaving them at home or in the car. (a gun in the car does you no good when you are at the "walk-up" ATM when someone confronts you).

    It is generally accepted that the .22 caliber is notoriously impotent as a "Fight Stopper!" ie, stopping the attack as quickly as possible with the least ammount of shots fired.

    The .22 caliber is also very lethal and probably kill more people than any other caliber. I have also personally seen more people killed by .22 caliber than any other caliber.

    What stops fights is "Central Nervous System" shut down, and again, usually the larger caliber rounds can accomplish that quite well with decent accuracy. The other thing that stops fights is massive quick blood loss again, most readily acheived by the larger calibers.

    However, if you are limited to by financial resource or by a particular physical handicap that only allows the .22 caliber as your more reasonable option, then by all means, go with the .22 caliber with as large a capacity as possible and practice frequently for accuracy in shot placement.

    Above all else, Rule #1 always applies. "You must have a gun in order to participate in the gunfight!"

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    Senior Member Array tanksoldier's Avatar
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    There are none such in handgun calibers. Even 12g buckshot won't knock an adult human off his feet under normal circumstances..

    Quote Originally Posted by joleary223 View Post
    I want a self defense round that will knock a BG down,
    The OP only specified .22, so:

    .22 Short has been known to bounce off denim clothing in anecdotal stories. Even if untrue, round is totally inadequate for SD. Gun may scare some BGs away...

    .22LR is slightly better than sharp stick, certainly better than nothing.

    .22WMR is better. It gets decent penetration, but has pyrotechnics and report greater than more effective, larger caliber, rounds.
    "I am a Soldier. I fight where I am told, and I win where I fight." GEN George S. Patton, Jr.

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    Senior Member Array joleary223's Avatar
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    Moderators: I have included some graffic video, if you think it is inappropriate feel free to remove my post.
    The "knock down "down phrase is being taken too literaly. If you get shot and fall to the ground, you have been knocked down. A 22. normaly doesn't do that. Here is a video of someone getting shot multiple times with a 22. pistol. It aired on Fox. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bbT-JLYihtw
    This is a video of an Israeli sniper probably using a 223. or 308. WARNING the sniper video is graffic. Notice the militant is knocked down but his feet don't move an inch. http://shock.military.com/Shock/vide...132057&page=4#
    A pistol will not do what a rifle will do, but if the round is large enough it will knock you down, make you fall down, if you prefer.
    Last edited by Bumper; April 24th, 2007 at 11:48 PM. Reason: Removed bogus video.

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