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The .22 Magnum is too much for small game if you intend to eat. If you are just killing for the sake of killing it is probably okay. OTOH on larger animals it is in a narrow range of target sizes. There are not all that many things that need more power than a .22 LR that are not really too big for a .22 Magnum. I have had both .22 Magum rifles and pistols but have sold all of them but one. Once I am beyond .22 LR size targets I would just as soon move up to a .222/.223 size gun that delivers better long range performance and at shorter range can be used on game up to deer.
 

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The .22 Magnum is too much for small game if you intend to eat. If you are just killing for the sake of killing it is probably okay. OTOH on larger animals it is in a narrow range of target sizes. There are not all that many things that need more power than a .22 LR that are not really too big for a .22 Magnum. I have had both .22 Magum rifles and pistols but have sold all of them but one. Once I am beyond .22 LR size targets I would just as soon move up to a .222/.223 size gun that delivers better long range performance and at shorter range can be used on game up to deer.
For small game, like squirrel, learn to shoot so you can hit their heads and you won't lose meat with the .22 mag. Even the .22 LR is very destructive on a squirrel body shot.

For slightly larger, like fall turkey, the .22mag destroys far less meat in a wing butt shot then the .222/.223 (which being center-fires are not legal for small game in PA and are not legal for deer in many other states that have a .243 minimum). The .222/.223 for hunting are primarily good for rodent pests (prairie dogs to woodchucks) through small carnivores (eg coyote).
 

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The comparison between the 22 LR and the 22 WM is always interesting. The choices each has made are obviously pretty well thought out and based on experience. I tend to agree with the poster who said that very thing, let your needs dictate your decision.

I have never had a use or need for the 22 WM. My step up from the 22 LR is the 32-20. I can load 32-20 for significantly less than the cost of a box of 22 WM. I need to qualify that. I stockpiled a half ton of lead, I do not know how many primers or how much powder close to or longer than 20 years ago....I load the 32-20 for less than $5.00 for a box of 50. It does not have the trajectory of the 22 WM but does have more energy. Perhaps had I not done those things I did so long ago I would have a different opinion.

My choice is the 22LR. It just suits my needs better. The 22LR is a hunting round for me, which means squirrels, and not a plinker, and I much prefer the less damage it causes. I do try for head shots only and most of the time am successful.....but as anyone who has hunted squirrels much knows they don't always sit and wait patiently for that bullet to enter their brain cavity....and the front legs are my favorite part of the squirrel so I try not to put a bullet through them.

If I had a need for the 22 WM you can bet I would own one!!!!
 

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I think Ken K pretty much hit the nail on the head with his comment "your intended purpose should dictate your choice". The 22 WMR is much more powerful than the high speed or even hyper velocity 22 long rifle rounds. Most 22 WMR loads produce more energy at 100 yards than high speed long rifles do at the muzzle. They have a much flatter trajectory as well. Even when shooting small animals within 22 long rifle range (say 75 yards or so) the WMR will smack them much harder because of it's higher foot pounds of energy. The down side of course is the cost of the ammo. Comparing on sale prices of 22 long rifle vs WMR ammo the price differential is usually 6 to 8 times. Most of the folks I know who shoot WMR (myself included) shoot most of their WMR ammo either for shooting critters or for sighting in. I typically shoot a few hundred rounds of WMR a year as opposed to several thousand rounds of long rifles. Of course I have only one WMR (a Marlin heavy barrel rifle) as opposed to a bunch of regular 22 rifles and handguns. For targets, plinking, and short range hunting of smaller critters a nice 22 rifle is tough to beat. The WMR is a better choice if you need the extra range and power it provides.
not to get 'off target' here, but try a .17 hmr.........jus' sayin'
 

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I would like to shoot .22 MAG more, but my shells keep splitting and they're a pain to remove :/
 

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Try a box of .22WRF in your Mag firearm. Same case diameter and rim but slightly shorter and of slightly lower pressure loadings. If you get split cases then it's NOT the AMMO at fault.
 

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"For slightly larger, like fall turkey, the .22mag destroys far less meat in a wing butt shot then the .222/.223 (which being center-fires are not legal for small game in PA and are not legal for deer in many other states that have a .243 minimum). The .222/.223 for hunting are primarily good for rodent pests (prairie dogs to woodchucks) through small carnivores (eg coyote). "

I can load my .222/.223 down to 22 Mag levels cheaper than I can buy the Mags. Besides I also own a .22 Hornet.

Bet you can't load you .22 Mag up to .223. If .22 LR are doing too much damage on body shots on squirrels the stay away from high velocity HP. The .22 LR solids don't do much damage to our fox squirrels and they all hit the ground dead.
 

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I would like to shoot .22 MAG more, but my shells keep splitting and they're a pain to remove :/
You have a problem with the gun. That is not normal.
 

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About the only complaints of the .22WMR I keep seeing are #1 high ammo cost and #2 too destructive of edible game. I certainly agree the .22 mag can't compete with the .22 LR as a plinking round, for extensive practice and training new shooters or if you just like to see how much ammo you can burn up stick with the .22 LR. But for hunting the .22 WMR ammo cost has always compared favorably with the cost of shotgun shells which many people use on the same game. Even the cheap discount 12 gauge shells cost about as much per round as .22 WMR and in non-toxic shot even the cheapest steel costs twice as much. But does anyone really take enough small game that ammo cost becomes a serious concern?
As to destruction of small game, my old hillbilly dad taught me early on "if you can't hit it in the head don't shoot it with a .22". That rule has stood me in good stead over the past 65 years and still seems to apply whether I'm shooting .22 shorts or a .50 caliber round ball. If the bullet isn't destructive on body shots then it can't be relied upon to quickly kill on body shots so either way if you want meat you shoot for the head.
 

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I started wanting a .22 mag in the 60's when I was a kid. Finally got one a year ago and I love it. Have shot turkey coyote and bobcat with it. I am not much of a plinker but have a Marlin Model 60 for the rare times I do.

I've shot so much .22 LR in my 54 years I am burned out on it. I will never sell my Buck Mark or Model 60 though. Good guns to teach the grand kids with.
 

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You have a problem with the gun. That is not normal.
Nope, I had a gun smith check it out, then I looked closely at the catridges, and the ones that split when fired already had a hairline split on the shell casing before hand. I hate it :/
 

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Interesting.... must have a bad batch. What did the ammo maker have to say about it?
 

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Interesting.... must have a bad batch. What did the ammo maker have to say about it?
I called and Emailed, no response. And I haven't shot it because I can't find any Hornady or Federal or CCI in .22 MAG :(
 

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If you don't have one yet you should find an old winchester or remington that is chambered for 22wrf. They are kind of sort of right inbetween the lr & wmr. They are so fun to shoot, and the ammo can still be found. Winchester still make a special run of it every year, and CCI makes it all the time

Steve
 

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If you don't have one yet you should find an old winchester or remington that is chambered for 22wrf. They are kind of sort of right inbetween the lr & wmr. They are so fun to shoot, and the ammo can still be found. Winchester still make a special run of it every year, and CCI makes it all the time

Steve
You can still find ammo for them, but if he is gonna do what I do with rimfire ammo, he's gonna need a LOT
 

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I for one am sure interested in the new Winchester rimfire round! I shoot a couple of .22mags and this new round has it all over the .22mag in ballistics.;):cool:

I hope Federal or someone goes and sticks a 50 grain bullet into the case. I know that the Federal .22mag with a 50 grn bullet is awesome on coyotes out to 75 yards. It falls off quick after that but man it gets the job done.:)
 

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When I was young a friend got a refinished Win 62 22 short for Christmas the next yr he got the Win 22wrf refinished, very very nice.
 

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hi all,

i don’t have much experience with rimfire rifles, but i’m curious to know if there is a significant increase in performance of the .22 wmr over the .22 lr? What is the difference in trajectory between the two, and what is the effective working distance of each? Also, can i shoot a .22 lr round out of a rifle chambered for .22 wmr?

thanks.
the best way to decide is in the field. I do quite a bit of woodcuck hunting and can tell you with a high degree of certainty that it is difficult to anchor a woodchuck with a 22 lr (even with the cci stingers). However, i haven't had much of a problem while using the 22 magnum. I like the remington 33 grain v-max bullets. Very accurate in my ruger 77/22 mag. Under inch groups at 100 yards.
 
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