December 2014

22-Caliber Centerfire Self-Loader Shoot-out: FNH Vs. Rock Island

We test the hot 22 bottlenecks, the Rock Island 22 TCM and the FNH FiveseveN 5.7x28mm. However, only one has a combination of features suitable all-round use, including personal defense.

22-Caliber Centerfire Self-Loader Shoot-out: FNH Vs. Rock Island

The 22 TCM is shorter and fatter than the 5.7x28mm. Since it is based upon the 223 Remington case, the head diameter is workable in a 9mm handgun. These are not shown actual size.

In an intriguing and extensive match-up, we pitted two handguns chambered for hot 22-caliber bottlenecks against each other. The 22 TCM and the 5.7x28mm cartridges are interesting on many levels, but also are not the most common or easily obtained rounds. Both handguns have a military heritage, but the Rock Island 1911 is pretty far removed from its 1911A1 45 ACP ancestor.

The Fabrique Nationale Herstal FiveseveN IOM (hereafter 5.7) pistol was designed as a personal defense weapon (PDW) for military use. The 5.7x28mm cartridge was designed with the ability to penetrate light armor. Good accuracy and low recoil were important attributes. Comparatively, the original 1911 was designed to stop a man or a horse. The 1911 was designed as an all-out fighting handgun in close quarters. One gets the impression the 5.7 was intended for use at a greater standoff distance. The adaptation of the 22 TCM cartridge to the 1911 gives shooters longing for a hot 22-caliber centerfire something to use in a familiar platform.

In this test we asked lots of questions, including what are the goals of a shooter purchasing either firearm. The handguns were tested for reliability, accuracy, and fit and finish. Which system is the most controllable and accurate? Finally, which is the more practical, better buy?


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