Several years ago there was a shortened cartridge for the .22 Magnum that was the same length as the .22 LR but with the Magnum head dimensions and the same .224 bullet diameter. It is a pity it was discontinued
Sorry 451 but advising anyone to shoot ammo NOT intended for that particular weapon, safe or not. Isn't a great idea IMO, not that I haven't done it or it can't be done "safely" sometimes, it's just something I couldn't recommend for others, especially newbies.. I am very fond of both calibers, lr & mag, but feel anything bigger than squirrels/bunnies the 22 mag does it better/ further/louder, esp for yotes and even hogs, (from a tree) with a VERY well placed shot.
I have a CZ22mag and found it super accurate on rabbits out to 125 yards using Winchester Supreme for head shots. But found they are far too light for larger game like fox, and the .32 gr bullet tends to deflect or explode even on a blade of grass. But the 40 gr sp Winchester super X isn't as accurate but I have brought down many large goats and wild dogs out to 100 yards but that would be it's limitations, although a friend of mine has downed a number of medium sized deer with head shots at medium ranges like 75yards using Super X.
While I would agree that 75 yards is about the max effective range for the .22 LR I would have to disagree with your assertion that "at 75 yards the difference is only in the mind of the beholder". At any range the .22 LR cannot be counted on to anchor a rock chuck before it makes it down it's hole except with brain shots. The .22 WMR kills instantly with any reasonably good upper body hit out to at least 125 yards and that is a 66% increase in effective range as well as an increase in knock down power.
Comparing the LR to the WMR is not a question of "either or", you need one of each, but for hunting alone, if you're not plinking and just burning ammo, the .22 WMR is quite superior in both rifle and handgun.
I can handload a 222 or 22 hornet for about the same money as it cost to shoot a 22 Mag. So I would opt for a .22 L.R. as its much cheaper to shoot and at 75 to 100 yards the difference is only in the mind of the beholder in that the result would be the same.
I have a very nice CZ which is a tack driver. If it's an auto you want Savage makes one as well as several bolt actions both right and left hand in various price ranges and there is the Henry lever action so you have plenty of choices if you cruise the web.
I still like the .22mag for bigger critters at about the same range as I'd use a .22LR on smaller critters.
Difference between the 17 and .22mag is basically 50% less bullet weight for25% more speed....I just perfer the bullet mass for bigger critters,but won't split hairs with the .17 fans.
In short barrled revolvers/pistols...often it's bark is more impressive than it's bite. It's more power,but not as much as the flash/noise would lead you to think.
(*the alternate view is that I'm not an assassin...so making noise,letting EVERYONE know that there is a problem going on, is a good thing.)
I just shot two porcupines which were chewing up my apple trees. Both were butt end shots at about 75 yards but the Fiocchi 40 grain JHP dropped them stone dead. I wouldn't have tried those shots with .22 LR.
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