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I've tried, but I just can't let this thread stand without commenting. Since it's the internet and any opinion may be put forth...

...I'm gonna say that a chronograph session years ago, January 20, 1982 to be exact, found that .22 Long Rifle ammunition kept accelerating in longer barrels and these claims about how short barrels yield higher velocities than longer barrels are utter rubbish and, in the main may be depended on to be false.

Yeah it was 38 years ago, but I doubt that .22 Long Rifle ammunition characteristics have materially changed since that time.

I've sporatically tested various .22 loadings since then, but have not made an all encompassing test of most brands available. .22 Long Rifle is still performing within about the same velocity ranges in my experience, standard velocity loadings being lower generally than high velocity loadings. I need to do that as an update to these tests.

I recently read somewhere online that a 19-inch .22 Long Rifle barrel milks all the velocity out of ammunition that may be gained and anything longer will actually give lower velocity.

Nope! 19 inches is no magic length and it was asinine for such a claim to have ever been made. That's the trouble with the internet. Everybody opens their heads and pours out the contents. Each barrel is a law unto itself as is each loading, but longer barreled .22s can be pretty well be depended on to beat out shorter barreled .22s (with few exceptions) and .22 caliber handguns are completely out of the running when compared with the same .22 cartridge loading when fired from a rifle.

With great effort I dug out my early edition of chronograph testing notes on .22 Long Rifle and will present it here. A generous selection of .22 Long Rifle loadings of the day were gathered and tested. 10-shot strings were taken and averaged for velocity figures.

Rifles used: Remington Model 513T Matchmaster with 27-inch barrel (yeah, that long), Winchester Model 57 with 22-inch barrel.

Handgun used: Smith & Wesson Model 17 K-22 Masterpiece with 8 3/8-inch barrel.

The Tests

Federal Lightning 40 gr. lead solid

27 inch barrel:
Muzzle Velocity 1220 fps
Muzzle Energy 132 ft./lbs.
Extreme Spread 75 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1190 fps
ME 125 ft./lbs.
ES 126 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 1085 fps
ME 100 ft./lbs.
ES 55 fps

Winchester T22 40 grain lead solid*
27 inch barrel
MV 1116 fps
ME 110 ft./lbs.
ES 46

22 inch barrel
MV 1143 fps
ME 114 ft./lbs.
ES 56 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 994 fps
ME 88 ft./lbs.
ES 55 fps

CCI Stinger 32 gr. copper-plated hollow point
27 inch barrel
MV 1592 fps
ME 180 ft./lbs/
ES 62 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1553 fps
ME 174 ft./lbs.
ES 114 fps

8 3/8-inch barrel
MV 1272 fps
ME 114 ft./lbs.
ES 89 fps

Federal Champion Target 40 gr. lead solid
27 inch barrel
MV 1157 fps
ME 119 ft./lbs.
ES 73 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1141 fps
ME 115 ft./lbs.
ES 48 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 1037 fps
ME 96 fps
ES 40 fps

Federal Spitfire 33 gr. copper-plated hollow point*
MV 1449 fps
ME 153 ft./lbs.
ES 39 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1454 fps
ME 155 ft./lbs
ES 41 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 1300 fps
ME 124 ft./lbs.
ES 53 fps

Remington Target 40 gr lead solid
27 inch barrel
MV 1186 fps
ME 125 ft./lbs.
ES 26 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1144 fps
ME 117 ft./lbs.
ES 28 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 1051 fps
ME 98 fps
ES 45 fps

Remington Viper 36 gr copper-plated hollow point
27 inch barrel
MV 1390 fps
ME 154 ft./lbs.
ES 72 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1345 fps
ME 140 ft./lbs.
ES 28 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 1196 fps
ME 114 ft./lbs.
ES 45

Federal Hi Power 40 gr copper-plated solid
27 inch barrel
MV 1240 fps
ME 137 ft./lbs.
ES 24 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1236 fps
ME 135 ft./lbs.
ES 45 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 1122 fps
ME 111 ft./lbs
ES 33 fps

Eley Tenex 40 grain lead solid
27 inch barrel
MV 1058 fps
ME 99 ft./lbs.
ES 14 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1045 fps
ME 97 ft./lbs.
ES 16 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 964 fps
ME 83 ft./lbs.
ES 48 fps


The .22 Long cartridge

Winchester Super-X 29 gr. copper-plated solid

27 inch barrel
MV 1217 fps
ME 95 ft./lbs.
ES 44 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1204 fps
ME 93 ft./lbs.
ES 37 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 1072 fps
ME 74 ft./lbs.
ES 69 fps

The .22 Short cartridge

Federal Champion Target 29 gr. lead solid*

27 inch barrel
MV 1069 fps
ME 73 ft./lbs.
ES 27 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 1090 fps
ME 76 ft./lbs.
ES 69 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 1039 fps
ME 70 ft./lbs.
ES 84 fps


Federal Hi Power 29 gr. copper-plated lead solid
27 inch barrel
MV 1076 fps
ME 74 ft./lbs.
ES 42

22 inch barrel
MV 1060 fps
ME 72 ft./lbs.
ES 40

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 1043 fps
ME 70 ft./lbs.
ES 61

CCI Mini-Cap 29 gr. lead solid (CB cap in a .22 Short Case)
27 inch barrel
MV 669 fps
ME 30 ft./lbs.
ES 15 fps

22 inch barrel
MV 667 fps
ME 29 ft./lbs.
ES 12 fps

8 3/8 inch barrel
MV 628 fps
ME 25 ft./lbs.
ES 12 fps

* Shorter 22-inch barrel delivers higher velocity than the 27-inch barrel

Looks like I've mislaid the notes for the .22 Magnum cartridge which was tested in a Mossberg 640K Chuckster rifle with 24-inch barrel and a Colt New Frontier .22 Magnum revolver with 4 3/8-inch barrel. Loadings centered around the 45 grain bullet weight which was available at that time and rifle velocities were 1700-1900 fps for the loads tested. Handgun velocities were 1100-1400 fps.

In the great majority of instances, the longer 27 inch barrel wins the velocity race. It may not be by much, but it comes out on top. For cryin' out loud even the silly Mini-Caps kept up the pace in the long 27-inch barrel!

This is from memory, but I'm pretty certain that I did have a Federal Champion Match .22 short bullet stick in the long barrel of the Remington Model 513T during that testing sequence. It stuck just before exiting and required prodding out with a cleaning rod.

It's old data so if you don't choose to believe it, get ya' own ol' chronograph and test to your heart's content. If you bet against the longer barrel you will lose money in the long run. Some few loads may perform better in shorter barrels, but this business of bullets coasting down the last few inches of the longer barrels needs to be laid to rest.

As far as .22 rim fire handguns shooting flatter and requiring less elevation than with the same load fired from a .22 rifle, that ain't never gonna happen. Perceptions can be deceiving and while it might appear that a handgun barrel required less elevated than than a rifle barrel, a 24-inch dowel rod or stiff wire taped to the side of a handgun barrel would have revealed a different picture. Slower bullets simply will not have flatter trajectories.
 

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Hah!

Sometimes a man does what he's gotta do.
 
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