.22 magnum vs. .38 special ballistics

Discussion in 'The Powder Keg' started by CoachSuper, Aug 15, 2009.

  1. CoachSuper

    CoachSuper G&G Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2008
    Messages:
    205
    Location:
    Harlingen, Texas
    I see that .22 WMR performs very well vs. .38 special (according to wikipedia).

    The .22 mag. Muzzle vel. Energy
    *30 grain 2200 fps 322
    *40 grain 1900 fps 324
    *50 grain 1600 fps 300

    The .38 spec. Muzzle vel. Energy
    *110 1000 fps 235
    *130 800 fps 189
    *148 700 fps 156
    *158 800 fps 208

    I realize that .22 mag is a rifle round. My source doesn't consider barrel length, manufacturer, brands, etc. But, does this show an even amount of "stopping power" with these rounds?

    Look at .357 mag to compare.
    muzzle energy

    *125 grain 1600 fps 710
    *130 grain 1400 fps 574
    *158 1300 688
    *180 1300 700
    *200 1200 700

    CS
  2. TXplt

    TXplt Gun Toting Boeing Driver Forum Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2008
    Messages:
    11,277
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    .22 Mag is a wicked powerful round. Unfortunately it does lose a fair bit without the rifle barrel; you get .22 LR rifle ballistics of a high velocity round .22 LR from a 5" .22 magnum pistol barrel; about 1400-1500 fps in some cases.

    If you can get a 3" bbl or better and shoot it accurately the .22 Mag has some limited self-defense possibilities. I think though you'll find the .38 Spl ballistics out of a similar length bbl to be a fair bit better (as well as a heavier and bigger bullet). But if it comes down to missing with a .38 and hitting with a .22 obviously hitting with the .22 is better.

    The .22 mag (with its compact and light rounds) has good potential as a game-getter and a general kit/defense gun for an all purpose survival type revolver.
  3. big shrek

    big shrek G&G Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    Messages:
    8,512
    Location:
    Northwest, FL
    Yeah, I needa Chronograph one of these days...

    Try a Grendel P-30 or P-31 in .22Magnum, they're very nice lightweight carry pistols. The barrel is specially threaded for accesories...like the compensator that you see screwed in below.

    30 rounds of .22WMR per Magazine is enough to make someone rethink what they're doing ;)

    [​IMG]

    They also used to make a Folding-stock Carbine...but they're kinda pricey...you've lucky if you can find one around $750...most sell for around 1K. Same mags as the pistol.
    The Grendel R-31 (.22WMR)
    [​IMG]
  4. Taurus Fan

    Taurus Fan G&G Newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2008
    Messages:
    1,954
    Location:
    COBRA COMMAND HEADQUARTERS
    Forget it, the .22 mag loses A LOT of velocity from short barrels. From a 4" barrel it's just barely better than a hyper-vel .22LR, the cost of ammo is ridiculous, and people who buy .22 mag pistols are fooling themselves. Difference in "stopping power" over a .22LR is nil.
  5. blaster

    blaster G&G Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Messages:
    4,457
    Location:
    big pine key, florida
    I have cronographed .22 mag from my Grendle's 5" bbl. it was several years ago so I can't quote the exact numbers but the mag out of a pistol goes a little faster than a .22 l.r. hi velocity out of a rifle. that is a lot more velocity when you compare it to a .22 lr from a pistol.
  6. TXplt

    TXplt Gun Toting Boeing Driver Forum Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2008
    Messages:
    11,277
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    This is correct; there's a good article by G+A in their "Rimfires" special which chronos different brands out of pistols and rifles and contrasts .22 LR out of a rifle with .22 mag out of a pistol. The bottom line is that a .22 Mag out of a 5" bbl pistol is a litte faster than a .22 LR high vel out of a rifle.
  7. HEMI

    HEMI G&G Newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2006
    Messages:
    1,185
    Location:
    Canada
    I like the 22mag , but it isn't in the same ballpark as the 38 for stopping power.
    The best loads have the 22mag at around 50% the 38 85%.
  8. blaster

    blaster G&G Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Messages:
    4,457
    Location:
    big pine key, florida
    one of the advantages of the .22mag is that it supposedly will go thru body armour. I have not tested it but other small diameter high velocity pistol rounds do so it is possible. anyone got an old vest we can try it out on?
  9. HEMI

    HEMI G&G Newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2006
    Messages:
    1,185
    Location:
    Canada
    The 22 mag will not defeat body armour and how can that be an advantage if it did?
    Where did you get your facts?
    Many of us here rely on our armour to go home safe to our families please be carefull what you post !!
  10. TXplt

    TXplt Gun Toting Boeing Driver Forum Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2008
    Messages:
    11,277
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    I think you might have this confused with the F+N 5.7x28 when loaded with armor piercing ammo (which is unavailable and possibly illegal in the states as far as I know)--the 5.7 and the .22 Magnum have similar ballistics from barrels of similar length (although .22's have proven somewhat problematic in consistent feeding in autoloaders and many autoloaders in .22 are somewhat sensitive to ammo--I would imagine the .22 mag would exacerbate this due to its longer case length but don't know for sure). I know of no normal .22 rounds which exhibit the thru body armor characteristic.

    As a side note, there have been several Bad Guy encounters where the BG's have been wearing body armor (not a new concept--Dillinger and pals--as well as other "public enemies" often wore the "bulletproof" vests of their day). In your training drills, you might want to train to the BG with body armor scenario if you haven't been doing so.

    I think a KEY advantage of all the .22's is their lack of recoil (sometimes making for better follow up shots) as well as their typical inherent accuracy (I shoot a Smith 317 or Ruger Mk3 much more accurately than I do a snub .38 but alot of this might be me).
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2009
  11. jerry

    jerry G&G Evangelist Forum Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2002
    Messages:
    18,851
    A 22 Mag could out perfrom a .38 ballistically by two fold and it would not matter to me. The 22 Mag is a rimfire and the .38 obviously a centerfire. The risk of reliable primer function on the 22 Mag (or any rimfire) puts it out of contention for a serious defense round. A little oil or water under that rim, inertsville.
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2009
  12. sempai9

    sempai9 G&G Newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2009
    Messages:
    1
    22 mag vs. 12 ga steel

    I have been researching the 22 mag auto pistols for a while as I have a H&R auto loader rifle that is a tack driver. One of my buddies brought his bolt action version and punched holes in my target 12 guage steel plate I brought for testing various rifles and pistols in our group. I was impressed at that point with the 22 mag. I realize you need barrel length to take advantage of this round, as it puts out a pretty good fireball from a pistol.
    I am looking into the Accelerator MP-22 with a 8-1/2" barrel. Gunblast site did some comparisons with AMT Automag II and a revolver with the MP-22 as well. The extra couple of inches add about 200 FPS...up to 1800 FPS.
    I think that is good enough for me. I will compare it with my son's FN FiveSeven when I get the pistol.
    It really boils down to preference of the individual or why all the variety anyway?:irked:
  13. chiefrcd

    chiefrcd G&G Newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2009
    Messages:
    43
    Location:
    Virginia
    I'd be happy using a 22. Mag. if I was being attacked by rouge woodchucks....other than that I'd stick with a proven defense weapon and round...
  14. Taurus Fan

    Taurus Fan G&G Newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2008
    Messages:
    1,954
    Location:
    COBRA COMMAND HEADQUARTERS
    Can't compare effectiveness of a .22 to a .38 by thinking if they have the same ft-lbs muzzle energy then somehow they'd be comparable it means nothing.
  15. chesterwin

    chesterwin Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    Messages:
    11,877
    Location:
    Outer Banks
    From my experience with 22. magnum in a handgun the muzzle flash in low light is a detracting factor. I'd opt. for the .38.
Similar Threads
Forum Title Date
The Powder Keg .44 russian/special/magnum Jun 17, 2008
The Powder Keg Magnum or .38 Special Dec 11, 2006
The Powder Keg Nikon P-223 3x32 on Winchester .44 magnum? Sep 16, 2013
The Powder Keg Cromagnum arms international(cai) Feb 17, 2013
The Powder Keg Willoughby Magnum??? Nov 9, 2010