Smith & Wesson Model 22A .22LR pistol

A few months ago I was in the market for a .22LR pistol. After looking at numerous models available – I selected the Smith & Wesson 22A. Why? Well – my local gun shop had it in stock for one. I read several reviews on it and liked what was reported. I also had an opportunity to shoot one over at a friends house and liked it. Price was right  – so I went for it.

A few words on my¬†experience¬†with it so far…

Fit and function: So far – has been great. I have had no mechanical problems whatsoever. Everything works – but that doesn’t mean it couldn’t be better. The safety sucks. Sorry – gotta be blunt. At least on my model – it is very difficult activate and deactivate. Trigger pull is OK – could be lighter. Nothing has loosened up & nothing has broke.

Ergonomics: Everything is where it should be…..almost. Most all control’s are in familiar locations. The slide release is easily accessible and used. As mentioned – the safety is horrible but where it should be. Unique to the 22A (see below) – the magazine release is positioned on the front of the grip. I like it. For those with smaller hands – the magazine release may be easily pushed by mistake. For me and my average sized hands – no problem at all.

Function & Reliability: My model came with two 10-rd magazines. These magazines are super easy to load as they have a button on the side that allows you to compress the spring while inserting a round under the feed lips. One of the keys to a reliable semi-auto firearm is the magazine that feeds it. After firing at least 500 rounds of .22LR solid point ammo – not a single failure to feed. I have equally used both magazines – pretty happy about the reliability. Ammunition used has been a combination of CCI Blazer, CCI Tactical and CCI Mini-mag. Yeah – I like CCI.

Accuracy: As far as accuracy – the pistol will shoot very accurately if I do my part. This model features a decent sight radius and fully adjustable sights. As it came out of the box – I have not had to adjust anything.

One criticism I have are the flat black sights. Maybe it is just my aging eyes but I had a difficult time getting a good sight picture – especially with both eyes open. When shooting at a dark target – forget it. I plan to touch up the front sight with some neon orange or green. Although I typically shoot with both eyes open – the 22A’s sight picture requires one-eye only in my hands.

15 yards 3 shot off-hand group – not bad……

Final: Overall – I really like this pistol. I need to pick up a good holster and few extra magazines. Why own one? I have had both my 8 and 12 year old shoot it and have found it is a good intro-gun. Mrs. Rourke likes it as well – and she is not a huge fan of shooting. As far as a backpack gun (check local ordinances) – the thing is HEAVY. There is a lot of metal on this gun. It weighs over 34 ounces – more than many polymer framed combat pistols. If you can make room and deal with the weight – certainly would be good for putting some meat in the pot or could work in a punch for self-defense.

I am glad I have and plan to keep it for a long time to come.


20 survival items ebook cover
Like what you read?

Then you're gonna love my free PDF, 20 common survival items, 20 uncommon survival uses for each. That's 400 total uses for these dirt-cheap little items!

We will not spam you.

9 thoughts on “Smith & Wesson Model 22A .22LR pistol”

  1. I purchased one of the first SIG .22/.45 pistols to come on the market. Do not recommend anyone purchase. It uses a lot of cheap plastic parts (for a $450 pistol) and the trigger is awful. Wish I had purchased the S&W or another old steel Ruger.

    The finest .22 pistols I have owned are the old High Standard Supermatic and Colt Woodsman Match target.


    • Thanks Panhandle. I bought my wife a Sig Mosquito. It is an ok gun. Overpriced and not the best reliability. Would not recommend it.

  2. I’ve owned several 22lr handguns over the years – down to just two, a revolver and a pistol. Favorite at the moment is my Colt Gold Cup 1911 made by Walther. Great out of the box. After about 1500 rds there have been no malfunctions . It’s a little lighter in weight than my RI 1911A1- but not by much. I feed it CCI minimags.

  3. I have had a 22A for almost 14 years. I have shot thousands of rounds through it. Then one day, the firing pin broke. Did some research and found that this has happened to others and S&W will fix it for free, just as long as you are the original owner. Took about 3 weeks and had it back. Looking forward to thousands of more rounds to fire with it.


Leave a Comment