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22lr as a self defense round


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Old 06-20-2014, 10:19 AM   #1
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Default 22lr as a self defense round

Most members of FTF see the 22 lr as inadequate for a self defense round. Yet, statistics prove otherwise. Surprisingly, every caliber that begins with a 4 (.40 S&W, .45, .44 Mag…) performed worse than the .22 caliber firearms in terms of putting the opponent in the dirt for good.

I was quite surprised by the results of this study. Maybe this information will allow us to make better recommendations based in fact for recoil sensitive shooters, instead of our personal opinion.

This isn't a gelatin test. This is a people shooting study, ultimately that is all that matters. Over 1,800 shootings over the course of 10 years were analyzed in this study.

Here is the condensed version:
http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2012/06/foghorn/ask-foghorn-22l-for-self-defense/

Here is the actual study. The raw numbers are much easier to read in this article.
http://www.buckeyefirearms.org/node/7866

Last edited by John_Deer; 06-20-2014 at 10:21 AM.
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Old 06-20-2014, 11:00 AM   #2
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This is only one man's opinion. I have a suspicion that some of the lethality of the .22lr can be attributed to an attitude of, "Oh, it's only .22 wound."

Don't get me wrong, I am not now or ever will be willing to stand down range of a .22lr weapon.
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Old 06-20-2014, 11:03 AM   #3
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Most people feel that the lowly .22lr is not a good self defense round because it does not make a big manly hole when it it hits. It also does not require a big manly grip to control the recoil. I have yet to find anyone that wants to put the .22lr to a live test either.

What I have seen with most .22lr pistols is they hold plenty of ammo in a small package. With it's extremely low recoil it would not be hard to empty the mag into the bad guy without losing your target.

Yes there maybe better options but never count the little .22lr out. People have used it on hog and deer. Granted in a lot of states it is not legal to use .22 rim fire on a deer but does not mean it cannot do the job.

Besides if it wasn't such a good self defense round why are the prepper's buying up so much of it?
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Old 06-20-2014, 12:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eatmydust View Post
This is only one man's opinion. I have a suspicion that some of the lethality of the .22lr can be attributed to an attitude of, "Oh, it's only .22 wound."

Don't get me wrong, I am not now or ever will be willing to stand down range of a .22lr weapon.
The truth about guns article was just one mans opinion. But they Buckeye Firearms article was a 10 year compilation of data that involved over 1,800 shootings. I doubt the number of people that did not seek medical attention after being shot by a 22 in the chest exceeded 12. Well, this is Ohio we are talking about. You may be right.

I am not willing to stand down range of anything larger than a Daisy Red Ryder.
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Old 06-20-2014, 12:47 PM   #5
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22 L.R.

L = last
R = resort
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Old 06-20-2014, 01:17 PM   #6
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While ANY gun can produce a lethal wound (I have read the Medical Examiner's autopsy report on a fatal shooting with a Sheridan 5mm air rifle) the issue in self defense is not lethality. It IS stopping the threat.

There is a lot of data available under the category of "one shot stops". Note the word STOP. Did not say fatal shooting- says stops. If I shoot you, and you bleed out in 10 minutes, I have to be concerned about what you are doing in that 10 minutes. My goal is to stop you- in a matter of seconds- not minutes.

I have no question of the potential LETHALITY of a .22LR- have taken enough small game with one to respect that little 40 grain pill. But I DO question it's ability to reliably STOP an assailant in a real world setting. If the .22 LR was actually effective for that, would expect to find a lot of .22LR firearms in the holsters of the armies and police departments of the world.

Link to the FBI report on handgun wounds-http://oag.ca.gov/firearms/ab991

Includes this quote- and I must agree with it-
It is critical to bear in mind that the single most critical factor remains penetration. While penetration up to 18 inches is preferable, a handgun bullet MUST reliably penetrate 12 inches of soft body tissue at a minimum regardless of whether it expands or not. If the bullet does not reliably penetrate to those depths, it is not an effective bullet for law enforcement use.
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Old 06-20-2014, 01:22 PM   #7
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Oh heck yes it is a self defense round. I promise you if someone is coming at me and all I have is my wife's 22 lr 1911, I will stand my ground and empty that mag if need be, and not fear doing so.
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Old 06-20-2014, 02:38 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c3shooter View Post
While ANY gun can produce a lethal wound (I have read the Medical Examiner's autopsy report on a fatal shooting with a Sheridan 5mm air rifle) the issue in self defense is not lethality. It IS stopping the threat.

There is a lot of data available under the category of "one shot stops". Note the word STOP. Did not say fatal shooting- says stops. If I shoot you, and you bleed out in 10 minutes, I have to be concerned about what you are doing in that 10 minutes. My goal is to stop you- in a matter of seconds- not minutes.

I have no question of the potential LETHALITY of a .22LR- have taken enough small game with one to respect that little 40 grain pill. But I DO question it's ability to reliably STOP an assailant in a real world setting. If the .22 LR was actually effective for that, would expect to find a lot of .22LR firearms in the holsters of the armies and police departments of the world.

Link to the FBI report on handgun wounds-http://oag.ca.gov/firearms/ab991

Includes this quote- and I must agree with it-
It is critical to bear in mind that the single most critical factor remains penetration. While penetration up to 18 inches is preferable, a handgun bullet MUST reliably penetrate 12 inches of soft body tissue at a minimum regardless of whether it expands or not. If the bullet does not reliably penetrate to those depths, it is not an effective bullet for law enforcement use.
Your link is to CA gun laws.

I have seen deer that were shot with a 22. Every bullet passed through the deer. Many of these shots hit more than one bone. A deer's bones are much more dense and stronger than a human bone. These shots were made at ranges much further than common self defense ranges.

Law enforcement officers should be wary. 22 wmr gold dot's penetrate 10% ballistic gelatin very close to 12" from a NAA revolver with a 1.9" barrel. A gold dot would easily penetrate 12" of soft tissue from a semi auto with a 4" barrel. The semi auto would not allow gasses to escape from the cylinder gap. In kommiefornia and NY the average officer on the beat might be toting a PMR30 with a 10 shot magazine.
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Old 06-20-2014, 02:41 PM   #9
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The .22LR can be used in self defense, but......

Get in a pen with a 120# wild pig that is pi$$ed and the .22LR.

If you won't be willing to do that, then how come you expect it to stop a 200# BG on drugs?
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Old 06-20-2014, 02:52 PM   #10
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First let me state: I hate these threads. They generally degenerate into a caliber pissing contest.

Sure a .22 will do the job. Is anyone going to seriously argue that it's the best tool for the job?

Quote:
Most people feel that the lowly .22lr is not a good self defense round because it does not make a big manly hole when it it hits. It also does not require a big manly grip to control the recoil. I have yet to find anyone that wants to put the .22lr to a live test either.
Just because no one is stupid enough to stand there and let you shoot them proves nothing.

What I have seen with most .22lr pistols is they hold plenty of ammo in a small package. With it's extremely low recoil it would not be hard to empty the mag into the bad guy without losing your target.
So do .32s and .380s. Hell even the .22 magnum.

Yes there maybe better options but never count the little .22lr out. People have used it on hog and deer. Granted in a lot of states it is not legal to use .22 rim fire on a deer but does not mean it cannot do the job.
Poachers in Africa spray elephants with AK 47s. Does that make them the go-to big game safari hunting rig?

Besides if it wasn't such a good self defense round why are the prepper's buying up so much of it?
A number of reasons.
High density, you can carry a LOT of it for very little weight.
It's quiet. It will attract less attention from hostiles when you're out shooting dinner.

Good trading/barter stock, in a TEOTWAWKI scenario, ammo will be as good as gold, literally.
If one is forced to "make do" it will work against humans. That said, I seriously doubt that most people believe that .22LR the best possible option for a Mad Max style end of the world gun fight.
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