June 2000

Pocket .22 Long Rifle Semiautos: Fussy, or Functional Firearms?

How deep must you dig for a quality rimfire pistol? We tested the tip-up-barrel Beretta EL22, the venerable Walther PPK/S, and the safety-loaded Phoenix HP22 to find out.

[IMGCAP(1)] When it comes to .22 caliber Long Rifle pistols, you can spend as little or as much as you want. For about $200 retail, there are a number of very good target pistols that provide valuable range time with this economical cartridge. However, if you want to take a .22 with you wherever you go, we found that downsizing the action costs a little more, both in terms of money and functionality.

Within the modern pistol, ammunition is the fuel that runs the gun, and the .22LR round’s tepid power makes for chancy operation, even though it has to move relatively little mass and overcome less slide travel. This alone may account for the higher price of pocket guns that can serve as a la...

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