Handguns > Semi-Auto

Walther P22 Pistol Review

A one-pound, one-ounce plinker turns in a performance that pleasantly surprises.


Several decades ago, the late Col. Jeff Cooper characterized the double-action/single-action semi-auto pistol as, “An ingenious solution to a problem that does not exist.” As a burgeoning pistolero, I gobbled up everything the good colonel wrote regarding pistol-craft. Fact is, I have never owned a DA/SA semi-auto pistol, and I have pretty much adopted a similar attitude toward this complex design. I tell you this in the interest of full disclosure. Nonetheless, a whole lot of folks do not share Col. Cooper’s and my viewpoint on this. Virtually every new handgun design is either a DA/SA semi-auto or a striker-fired pistol.

A couple of months ago, I attended a varmint shoot sponsored by Smith & Wesson and ATK/Federal on the Silver Spur Ranch near Encampment, Wyo. There were many guns available to shoot—too many to critically evaluate on a two-day shoot. One of the pistols there was a Walther P22. With its 3.4-inch barrel and weighing in at just an ounce more than a pound, it certainly did not scream “prairie dog pistol,” but its tight design and near-perfect execution intrigued me. I gave it a whirl at prairie dogs and picket posts, and the short-sight radius and my nearly six-decade-old eyes confirmed my first impression of it as a varmint pistol. Later, Matt Rice, the representative for Smith & Wesson—the company with exclusive marketing rights to Walther in the U.S. at the time—sent me a P22 for evaluation.

The P22 is a 3/4-size rimfire rendition of the famous Walther P99 center-fire pistol. One immediately noticeable difference besides the size is the P22’s external hammer. Its frame is made of polymer, and the slide is zinc alloy. Barrel, recoil spring guide, extractor and ejector are made of steel. The magazine is constructed of stainless steel with a polymer follower and bump pad. An interchangeable backstrap allows the grip to be customized to the shooter’s hand. Sights consist of a polymer ramp front sight with a white dot pressed into the slide and a polymer rear sight adjustable for windage with two white dots. Two additional front sights come with the pistol to adjust elevation. The P22 features a novel ambidextrous magazine release located at the bottom rear of the trigger guard. A nod toward the North American market, the magazine drops free with the activation of its latch.

Within the polymer frame is a lockwork consisting of stamped and MIMed steel components. The sculpted and stippled grip is well designed to allow virtually any size hand to be able to control the pistol. Typical of European pistol design, the P22 has a hooked front on the trigger guard. Though considered an obsolete technique by most modern pistol shooters, the hook provides a place for the offhand index finger. Ahead of that is a Picatinny rail for the mounting of lights, lasers and other accessories. Another European penchant is a magazine safety. This pistol will not fire without a magazine in place.

At the range, the little P22 initially showed some ho-hum groups, but that was with bargain-basement bulk ammo. Groups were on the order of 5 inches at 15 yards, and there were some failures to feed. However, once I switched to some quality loads like CCI Velocitor and Winchester Power Points, both groups and reliability improved greatly. Apparently, Walther pistols can be a bit finicky about what they are fed. Both the CCI and Winchester 40-grain hollow-point loads averaged 1.75-inch groups at 15 yards. I chose the 15-yard distance because clearly this is a plinker, and 15 yards is a more typical plinking distance. Reliability also improved with a little Ballistol lubricant, so like a lot of modern guns the Walther likes to be run wet.

The Good and the Bad
The sights are excellent as there is plenty of light between the front sight blade and the rear sight. Adjusting them for a given load might be tedious, especially for elevation, but as far as usefulness, I really liked them. The ergonomics—or the feel of the pistol in my hands—was great for shooting. I had some difficulty with my thick thumbs accessing the mag release, and the safety operation was a two-handed deal for me. Trigger pulls for DA and SA were pretty decent for an off-the-shelf plinker—12 pounds, 2 ounces and 4 pounds, 13 ounces, respectively. One thing that this pistol should come with is an additional magazine. Most semi-autos today come with at least two magazines.

The P22 is available in several variations, including a 5-inch barreled target model, a target military trainer model and several color variations for those with a fashion bent. It didn’t change my mind about DA/SA pistols, but it was a fun gun to shoot, and for those who choose to carry a DA/SA auto as a carry gun, this would make an excellent trainer. I would like to see a threaded barrel available to take a suppressor like the new rimfire prototype can SureFire brought to the Encampment shoot. It should be available within a year, and I have been promised an early sample for review.

With an MSRP of $410 and a street price in the low to mid 300s, the P22 has already become a popular rimfire plinker—and justifiably so.

Model: Walther P22; (800) 331-0852; Waltherarms.com
Type: DA/SA semi-automatic pistol
Caliber: .22 LR
Barrel Length: 3.4 inches (tested), 5 inches
Magazine/Capacity: 10-round detachable box
Rifling: 6-groove, 1:16” RH
Sights: Blade front, interchangeable for elevation adjustment, rear sight adjustable for windage, three dots
Safety: Manual, firing pin block and magazine safety
Frame: Polymer with interchangeable backstrap inserts
Length: 6.3 inches
Weight: 17.6 oz.
Metal Finish: Blued
Accessories: Barrel wrench, front sights, backstrap
Suggested Retail Price: $410

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125 Responses to Walther P22 Pistol Review

Duke wrote:
December 07, 2014

My safety and Fire are opposite. It fires on s and will not fire on f. ???

ANDREW wrote:
November 10, 2014

Can ANYONE here tell my why ANYONE would be satisfied with a weapon that has misfires like described here? If you have ever been in combat..that is life or death. Nothing makes my blood freeze like a misfire. And this one sounds almost guaranteed to do that. Just like my Sig .22 1911. Junk. Who buys a weapon that you can't rely on? Even if you are just using it to practice your shooting. Every jam is causing burrs and leads to problems down the road.

Terrie Noll wrote:
October 31, 2014

If the people with feed problems would use the recommended ammo they might not have those problems ...

chris wrote:
October 25, 2014

this gun if you use CCI ammo it will never let you down, my work fine and no regrets

Lee J Reynolds wrote:
October 21, 2014

just bought a new walther p22 and it jam and feed proplems right off the first clip. did it with 2 types of ammo. was not a happy camper not worth having if it keeps that up.

CJ Adams wrote:
September 23, 2014

Great looking gun .light wieght and balanced. (Major Flaw it Jams everytime!) Cannot Fire winchester Varmit HE 37 grain. This is very dissapointing.

Logan wrote:
August 25, 2014

Picked up the P22 last month and I am really enjoying it. My wife is not an avid gun shooter and so I wanted something small and easy to use for her. I have been very impressed. I have noticed the same issues you all have mentioned: miss-feeds and ejection problems, but with a new CLP gun oil I recently found, TruRecoil, I have had NO issues at all. (trurecoil.com)

James wrote:
July 10, 2014

It does not like cheap ammo. And,it takes a while to get used to it, but, great groups with CCI M/Mags

Gary wrote:
April 07, 2014

Purchased the P22 some time ago.. I initially had a miss feed problem with lead bullets.. Went to the gold coated bullets (various brands) and thoroughly cleaned the pistol with Frog Lube.. Don't care for the Hoppes or other oil lubes and cleaners. Have not had a miss feed or ejection problem since.. Had to readjust the rear sight. Now all is fine.

tg wrote:
March 22, 2014

Got a p22 for my wife it first hadxa few nonfeed problems but as she uses it it is getting better. Bought a sr22 for myself and NO problems at all like both pistols but would recommend the Kruger over the walther hands down

kelly wrote:
March 16, 2014

My wife and I got a p22 about three months ago. Had feeding problems from the get go. CCI standard velocity just did not feed. ( only ammo available to me at the time ). Oddly, Remington Golden Bullets feed fine. Now after shooting 2000 rounds, CCI standard velocity does fine, though mini mags and stingers do better. It hates winchester ( white box )and american eagle. I don't know if it is just a break in issue, or the fact that I run it really well lubed now. Interestingly, the feed issue is worse with a full magazine and is almost never an issue with the last five cartridges. I have to wonder if the pressure of the spring plays a role though I don't know why this would be so. If this were the case , perhaps it is the magazine that has broken in and not the pistol, per se.

Early Cuyler wrote:
March 12, 2014

Only 22 pistol I would have. Looks so damn cool!

Jesse wrote:
February 14, 2014

'I would like to see a threaded barrel available to take a suppressor'....Was getting the adapter too inconvenient? I pretty much use my P22 exclusively with a Gemtech Outback II suppressor. Never been a problem for me. The gun itself has been. The slide is known to break and mine did just that. However, I've got a free factory replacement on the way so it's not too bad. Either way, getting drilled in the right should with the back 4/5ths of the slide sucked.

February 03, 2014

My son and I decided to shoot our P22 and was very disappointed in the performance of the pistol. We had several rounds backfire in our face. Seems the slide doesn't fully engage the bullet into the barrel. It jammed several times and misfired so much that my son didnt want to shoot it again. I decided to shoot the same ammo in my rifles and it performed flawless.....not happy with the P22......

Adam wrote:
December 17, 2013

I've had this gun for over 5 years and I love it. Keep it oiled and it chambers rounds without a problem. I lost my front sight and called S&W. They shipped me 10 extra sights for FREE! You just don't get that kind of service any more.

Patrick wrote:
November 16, 2013

First time I saw this gun I loved it, being left handed everything was in reach, I use CCI all the time when it's bedside, otherwise plinking I use federal 36 gr. I have no trouble with jamming, love this little gun. Fell in love at first sight my S/N is under 5000.

David P wrote:
November 14, 2013

I think it is common sense that such a weak cartridge as the .22 is not going to slam a slide back like a more powerful caliber. That being said, it follows that it would be wise to use a higher grade round such as CCI or Winchester Super X to ensure reliable cycling. The shorter barrel adds to the necessity of using good ammo. Proper cleaning and polishing can add to reliability also.

Rich wrote:
October 09, 2013

I have had the Walther P22 for over a year. The biggest problem is the assembly and disassembly, would be a issue in the field. The zinc alloy slide, seems to be weak. However the accuracy is good for the pistol type, but as mentioned in the review it likes quality ammunition. Recently purchased a Ruger SR22, and it's a better design all around..

Cole perry wrote:
October 04, 2013

I am 14 I shoot trap, I love guns, I know guns, and I have one of these I carry it because we live on a farm and it is one the finest guns that I have seen/used/owned, my dad has a walther p99 .40 s&w, and if you take the clips out of both the p22, and the p99, my p22 is much heavier than the p99, it is a nice piece for women, younger people, and the ammo is cheaper than the p99, I would totally recommend this pistol to anyone and every one !!

dada wrote:
August 20, 2013

hi sir im from Manila. i have a P22 5' barrel model. may i just ask where can i buy the 3.4' conversion barrel. thanks

LTC Corteney Callis wrote:
August 06, 2013

I have no idea how, but the front sight came off (probably when I pulled it out of the holster, it should never do that) and I am now dealing with how to get this repaired since I bought it at the Base Exchange.

ivanator wrote:
August 03, 2013

I've had mine since 2006, and it's one of the most reliable handguns i've owned. I shot 2 squirrels in the first 2 magazines, and it's fired thousands since, both standard and high velocity; doesn't like the sub-sonics though. Very reliable. Decent accuracy. The only aspects I don't care for are the pressed-in front sight, tools necessary for dissasembly, and the complicated re-assembly.

JRE 2281 wrote:
August 01, 2013

I received my P-22 from a gun trade and later found out from forum's it had several negative issues. Three months and 300 rounds later, it shoots fantastic! It doesn't matter if it's expensive ammo or from a brick, it shoots it. One of my favorite guns.

Bob Lowe wrote:
July 18, 2013

Purchased the P22 at a gun show. Tried to shoot it and it jammed or would not load the next shot. Sent it back and they said nothing was wrong. Took it to a gun smith and he said I had to use 'high velocity' ammo only. He spent a full magazine without any issues. Now try to find ammo, good luck. Looks like it is time to pawn it and buy another brand.

Tom Larimer wrote:
May 25, 2013

I just bought my first P99 and live it , no misfires at all after shooting Winchester and CCI ammo the barrel is threaded, one mag. Came with the gun. It shoots very well, needed to install the provided lower profile front sight as it shot low but grouped well at 15 yards. I would like to know HHS to contact to get the suppressor and adaptor for the threaded barrel. Tom

Chuck wrote:
May 19, 2013

I must have gotten one of the good ones. No failures. No special ammo (standard 40 gr). No problems at all. A nice little pistol.

Jim Nelson wrote:
April 11, 2013

What follows is a portion of a letter that I sent to S&W, along with my P22 at their request. They have had it for over a month now. When I called, they said that it could be as much as 10 weeks. Piss poor service. Must have a lot of returns. "Of the first three rounds fired with this handgun, the first two jammed, i.e. the slide failed to move fully forward, therefore the next round was not inserted into the chamber. Retracting and releasing the slide manually reloaded the next round. On the third round, the spent cartridge only partially ejected, i.e. moved about half the cartridge length out, and the slide jammed open. I have investigated what may be causing the jamming problem. I disassembled the gun for cleaning, removed the recoil spring and the spring guidance rod, and reassembled it so that I could observe the slide action without the force of the recoil spring. I do not have any way of measuring the force required to return the slide after cocking the trigger, but it seemed to be considerable. After lubricating the breech block, slide grooves and slideplate flanges, the force required to return the slide was noticeably less, but still seemed high. After lubricating and properly reassembling the gun, I fired a full magazine of ammunition. I had one jam and one failed to eject, which, as above, came out only half way. I have included the two failed-to-eject spent cartridges for you to inspect, if that will help. In summary, I believe that the hammer exerts too much pressure on the breech block, which creates excessive friction between the slide grooves and the flanges on the sideplates. The pressure on the breech block could be reduced by one of three methods. Have the hammer retract slightly further back, slightly recess the breech block, or shave the hammer where it contacts the breech block."

BuckIV wrote:
April 01, 2013

I just picked one up even though the reviews I've read describe it as pretty finicky regarding ammo. Been to the range twice sending 500 rounds of non premium ammo through it and it has not had a single failure. FWIW I baought some Fiocchi that the range had on hand, some old Winchester Super X and some Federal American Eagle. Like I said, based on the reviews I went in a bit hesitant about the purchase but after some range time I couldn't be more pleased.

George wrote:
March 24, 2013

Bought two. One jams every third round and the 2nd failed completely; slide is stuck; will not move. Worst gun ever manufactured. Plan to use them for deep sea fishing sinkers this summer. Don't waste your money on Walther or Smith and Wesson products, because they do not have customer support, will not respond to online submissions, or stand behind their products.

James wrote:
March 19, 2013

i bought mine a few months back. the only ammo that will work through mine is the cci brand. nothing else will hardly fire without jamming. iv shot tons of cci through it without cleaning it for a while and still never had even one to jam at all. i was extremely impressed. i had a problem with when i went to chamber the first round it would get caught on the feed ramp but i started pulling the slide back fast and letting it go on its own and absolutely no problems. i would recomend this gun a million times over. and i might add for a 22 pistol with a very short barrel it is extremely accurate. i can hold good groupings out to around 20 yards with it. iv shot only twice out at 50 yards and hit within an inch of a dot that was only bout 2 inches wide. i prefer this gun over all others. love it.

ncObserver wrote:
March 10, 2013

I just recently bought the p22 and have run nothing but standard 40 grain CCI rounds thru it...no problems at all. My worst problem was finding ammo.

Charles O. Slavens wrote:
February 26, 2013

I spent 3 years in the Army in the 60s and I was a member of the base pistol team back in the day. Since then I've only fired a hand-gun occasionally at a range. I do a lot of backpacking and would like to do some plinking while I'm out there. So I'm thinking Sig -220, Walther p22, Browning 1911/22, Ruger 22/45-al, etc. I went to a local gunshop/range to try these out. Of course I was using their cheap ammo. I got a lot of no-fires, jams, and even some refusals to chamber a round. My style of shooting is to aim carefully and to fire one shot at a time. The gun shop guy said one of the reasons these small guns jam so much is because they should be fired tactically... or rapid fire. He fired a couple clips with only a couple mis-fires, which he said were the ammo. Am I wrong to think you should be able to fire these small guns slowly and carefully, without malfunctions?

Steve wrote:
February 22, 2013

Sunaj... When I bought my P22 I was told by the gunsmith to only fire the CCI Mini Mag ammo or it would jam. This has something to do with the design. I have done this and have NEVER had a jam, and so far have fired several hundred rounds.

Tom Eastman wrote:
February 12, 2013

Just bought a new one for my wife. It constantly jams. I am not happy and need to figure out how to 1) get it fixed or 2) get my money back!

sunaj wrote:
February 10, 2013

Just took this out to the range trial run-I shot about 7 different types of ammo and for the most part they all cranked out superbly, after 100 shots (with only 2 ff) it started jamming, which would be expected, cleaned the barrel and boom! ready to rock, I don't know why someone wants to limit this to a plinker, this is now my go to gun (or at least the backup0, great ergonomics, if it is clean it works perfectly and chews up any brand I have loaded in it-this is a keeper:)

Tom wrote:
February 10, 2013

I'm getting the wife one for Valetines Day. I've had S&W, Colt and Sig Semi Autos and every one of them likes a little TLC at the feed ramp, some more then others. a little 3M wrapped on a slow turning Dremel works wonders. I'm thinking someone that has twenty rounds in a row jam needs to get some training. I spent thirty years in Law Enforcement and only had two problems with sidearms, both discovered on the range and both repaired to my satisfaction prior to leaving the range. One was a rough feed ramp on a semi auto pistol (Colt Combat Commander) and a S&W Model 27 wheel gun with a small burr from the original manufacturing process.

Neil wrote:
January 28, 2013

P-22 is junk IMHO. Mine would only run Remington ammo 40grain everything else sucked. Every round jammed 20 in a row. Junk

rick wrote:
January 17, 2013

1-15 2013 shots good 100 rounds no problems at all no key lock on my gun . it feeds good no misfires . i have ruger mark 3 it wont shoot like them. butit has short barrel good carry gun.love it so far.

phil wrote:
January 10, 2013

I don't have a lot of experience with handguns, but after skimming the comments, I can agree that; the feed ramp could probably benefit from some 'Dremeling', it performs better (excellently) with CCI high velocity hollowpoints than with other rounds, and last, but not least, ergonomically, it's like butter.

Bear wrote:
January 09, 2013

I have owned the military training version for years now. Great gun, barrel comes prethreaded with thread protector. Accurate enough to hit a quarter at 15 yards all day. Winchester white box ammo cycles with ease. Used some gunslick and hasnt jammed since, 2,000+ rounds later its still a champ. And dont be fooled, it may throw pees, but those pees will go through 19+ layers of cloths and more.

Lee Hurt wrote:
January 07, 2013

Just tried to fire my P22 and it wouldn't fire.Iv'e had it for 2 years but I doubt if Iv'e shot 100 rds.thru it.Not a mark on the casing.Scarry.I have carried this pistol for CC.I think the firing pin may be broke.Not sure.Any advice.Thanks

Jason wrote:
December 29, 2012

Does s&w honor a lifetime warranty on walther p22? Also I bought mine used does anyone know where I can buy the barrel wrench and trigger key?

December 22, 2012

Wow I have to agree with very few on here. I bought my Walter P22 3.5" about 2 years ago and only shoot bulk Winchester and Remington hollow point ammo. Never had a jam unless the gun got very dirty. As far a being accurate? It's perfect at 15, 25 and 50 yards. Remember it's not the gun it's the shooter. Problem is most of you are Pampered with High End Price Guns that promise sub MOA. If you know what you are doing even a cheap gun will out shoot a more expensive gun. You are probably the same people that still hate Taurus guns because of being "cheap and unreliable" I owned and use Taurus for 23 years and never had a problem and have shot thousands of rounds. So go ahead and buy your Expensive priced guns and when you do the rest of us will be laughing while hitting targets at the range for half the price!!!

Scott_PD wrote:
December 20, 2012

To the complainers: Learn how to own a handgun,how to clean a handgun,how to break in a handgun, and my guess...how to shoot a handgun. It's $350 NIB, what do you expect? A kimber or Colt? Honest evaluation and opinion is fine, but some on here sound like they were promised to moon and got a bag of lint. The gun is decent, not great, not terrible, but decent.

Christopher J Jackson wrote:
December 18, 2012

I just purchased the new M&P. 22LR that literally just came out and I'm posting this .2 .22 LR I just a bowl sites are for tarI just a bowl sites are for target shooting like the Glock it is not for target shooting if you only 1 I suggest you get an aftermarket barrel that is fully supported or don't buy 1 at all or anything that resembles a Glock mass produced which means lots of room for error if I'm going to put money into the gun I don't want to machine it or have to do any modifications to help feed any rounds.

Bob B wrote:
December 16, 2012

Terrible pistol. Found a site that explains modifications to help, but still problems. Changed the extractor also, no better. The trigger bar ears eats away at the under of the slide. You can see the crap metal all chewed away. The only thing that will fix this is a furnace.

Joe Hardy wrote:
December 04, 2012

These pistols seem to run the gamut, apparently according to when they were made. The early ones (single groove in the picatinny rail) are prone to problems. My later version (3 slots in the rail) seems to work perfectly. As with my Ruger SR9, the newer model cures the problems. I have heard that early models have magazine problems that should be fixed with the newer stainless mag. Mine works great with CCI Blazer ammo, but I'm going to push the limits with CCI "Quiet 22" ammo.

Eric wrote:
November 30, 2012

This gun is really bad. I can't believe they would let a gun like this leave the warehouse. It only takes high end ammo? If u put anything besid. CCI then every single shot u get ftf's...

johnny wrote:
November 29, 2012

This gun is absolute junk. It will only take high grade ammo and sometimes wont take that. It is made of some very cheap material that will not last long at all. I DO NOT recommend carrying this gun for self defence because it is so unreliable. I bought mine for $325 brand new with only mag. I purchased a few more mags which I regret cause I sold the piece of junk for $225 and I am so lucky I was able to sell it to someone that doesnt use the internet much cause if he had hd would not have bought it from me.

J Richard wrote:
November 26, 2012

Bought my p22 used and has red laser. Using cci mini's and no ftf or jams. Great gun, keep it clean and it performs flawlessly!Love my p22.

Harvey wrote:
November 22, 2012

I bought the p 22 for my wife and she hates it,because it jams so much it takes the fun out of shooting.i know it shoots better with the right amo butt my mark two will shoot any kind sorry i bought it

Josh Bowyer wrote:
October 18, 2012

After returning from my third combat tour, I purchased two Walther P22s. The 5" for myself and the 3.4" for the little lady. After a thorough cleaning and lubricating, we went out to the firing range to break them in with with some Federal 40 grn solids. Hers averaged one failure to eject per magazine (usually the second round). After another cleaning (this time including a good scrubbing of the articulating grooves in the slide with a brass brush) and another lubrication the problem persisted. We switched to Remington 36grn hps and haven't had a single malfunction in over 2000 rounds. Both the change in cartridge and the fact that the problem was limited to the 3.4 inch barreled pistol all point to this pistol requiring a higher energy round to function properly. It would be my guess, aswell that after some time, the pistol will "loosen up" enough to function with the lower energy Federals. Long story short, if you are experiencing a failure to eject, try a ammunition with a lighter slug and faster MV (which will equal greater KE). I love this pistol... only fault I find is the grip is a bit small for my hand... and I would not consider my hands abnormally large.

alan brendlinger wrote:
October 18, 2012

the one i bought does not have a firing pin,won't shoot at all.

Chuck Newton wrote:
September 10, 2012

Do not recommend CCI amo. They don't eject propably sometimes. Remington amo works better.

shidpoke wrote:
August 31, 2012

I received my P22 from a brother as a gift, I owned a Ruger target MKlll which I compare ALL .22 semi-auto too. My Ruger was stolen. I have put appox. 1000 rds thru the P22 and like it fine but have found one problem others may be experiencing, at first I got a few jams because I was shooting it like my heavy Ruger, you cannot limp wrist this pistol, its light, and will jam if you do. Other than that I'm satisfied with it, I just wish I had my Ruger back.

Aaron S wrote:
August 14, 2012

I have had my p22 for over 6 years, I absolutely love it. Yes it is picky on what it likes to shoot, but so dose most of my other guns. I also agree keep it clean and it will run good for you.

Jay wrote:
August 03, 2012

Look around Dave. I have had a P-22 for several years and bought an inexpensive adapter that replaces the barrel nut for the 3.5" barrel and my Gem Tech suppressor works fine on it. Loads of quiet fun.

gera wrote:
July 27, 2012

i bought one long time ago the first time they became available, no complaints, no problems at all, my brother have the same and no problems, we use any kind of ammo, from cheap to expensive ones, any brands with no problems, you guys should clean and lubricate your guns, even when is new before you go and shoot make sure you oiled all moving parts

Stephan wrote:
July 02, 2012

Seems that S&W have somehow messed this up. Poor Walther have been stuck in this relationship since the war.

Nathan wrote:
June 28, 2012

After reading all the bad reviews (and knowing something about guns) I still bought a P22. Even for a display model, mine has been exceptional. As with all .22 caliber weapons, you need to clean your pistol more often than you would a .40 cal. Had some problems with FTE (failure to eject) and FTF (failure to feed) at first, but after a good hard cleaning, I left her wet and fired a round to expel the excess and put it away. The next day, even with the cheap federal bulk, which it hates, action cycles almost flawlessly. I use 38gr. Federal Eagle HP, a box of 400 costs about $17. I both open carry and conceal carry. People sometimes comment on the size of it, calling it a "girl gun." Not true. I've had the misfortune of having to draw my weapon twice, once in an attempted carjacking and once when an idiot tried to grab it from my holster. Both times they cried. Keep the extractor oiled, keep the slide wet, and oil the spring. If you're cracking the slide, you're not treating your firearm right. Firing 1000 rounds consecutively at the range may be fun, but I suspect that you may have also dropped your P22 a number of times. Gotta treat her right. For the sight problems, use a little clear nail polish (ssshhh) and it won't pop off.

Anthony wrote:
June 16, 2012

I bought the p22 for my wife to carry with her concealed permit. It's a great little gun, we haven't had the problems mentioned here with FTF or FTE. We have shot around 2000+ rounds through it with no problems. It likes all ammo even the crappy remington bulk ammo. She carried it with cci stingers loaded and had to shoot a methhead in the thigh with it, it broke his femure, needless to say it stopped his attack. She has since graduated to the glock 19 gen 4. I still use the pistol for practice since I shoot USPSA and its much cheaper to practice with 22 cal cheap ammo than with the 9mm and 40 s&w that I shoot in competition. I would recommend it too anyone that is just learning or needs a small pistol for concealed carry, as with any pistol you need to keep it clean and you need to run different types of ammo through it to see what it likes best, it just so happens that ours isn't ammo sensitive.

Charles wrote:
May 25, 2012

Bought my P22 when they first came out. The only issue that I have had was jamming with some subsonic or standard velocity rounds. I bought High Velocity rounds and have had NO MORE issues since. As is with most semi-auto pistols in 22lr caliber they need the extra umph to cycle the slide properly. Most state that fact in the owner's manual.

Steve wrote:
May 21, 2012

I borrowed a P22 with the intention of evaluating it prior to buying one. Ergonomics were great, groups were acceptable, but I was extremely disappointed with its reliablity. The only ammo this gun would shoot consistently was the CCI Stingers and Vellociters. Everything else failed to feed, eject and cause stovepipes galore. Even with the CCI's I still had some failures - although not as bad. A nice little gun but the one I borrowed was very ammo sensitive. I know many people say it shoots everything under the sun but this gun was one of the finicky ones. I would say Walther/S&W need to tighten up on their QC before I recommend this pistol to anyone.

DaRavensFan wrote:
May 21, 2012

I've had my P22 for almost 5 years and it runs like a clock...eats everything I put through it. Either I'm the luckiest guy on earth or you all are doing something wrong.

Troy wrote:
May 12, 2012

i have had my p22 for about a year and a half and have put maybe 4000 rounds threw it. i love it and carry it with me daily. its accurate, light, and only jams when i dont oil it. nice grip. think i need a new spring but other than that it is well worth the $300 i paid for it

Erik wrote:
May 06, 2012

Took the Walther p22 shooting this morning. The cci Velociter surprisingly jammed on every clip but I think it was due to the hollow point. The cci mini mag 40 grain 1235. Fps no problems at all shot so smooth. Great gun very pleased with it.

josh wrote:
April 26, 2012

I've tried every type of ammo for this gun and the only one that dont jam on me is the remington hollow points and they are cheap, $19.97 for 550.

Randy wrote:
April 19, 2012

99% of the loading problems can be fixed with dremal tool on ramp. Clean the bottom of loading ramp.no more jam ups for me..

Alex wrote:
April 10, 2012

I bought my Walther P22 Target pistol with the 5" barrel. It seemed to have worked flawlessly using the usual cheap walmart Federal and Winchester ammo. Problems began when I had to ship my gun back to Walther in order to make it CA compliant. After getting it back while shooting the same type of ammo the slide developed a crack all around the front sight. Sent it back to Walther a month or say they sent it back with a new slide free of charge. The very next visit to the range I had shot about 100rds through it and I noticed the slide had been making contact with that front peice and pushing it forward off the barrel. When I tried to retighten the screws I found that they were all stripped and I was unable to remove the front piece at all. Called Walther and explained my situation so they are having me send it back to them for a 3rd time now. Mind you all my problems started when I sent the gun to Walther in order to make it CA compliant. I also own a Browning Buck Mark and that gun has yet to dissapoint me. I'm just saddened because I was under the impression Walther stood for a very high quality and reliable product.

Little Scotty wrote:
April 09, 2012

I bought my P22 in Jan 2012 @ the Meas Gun Show. Thought I was getting a good deal and a good gun because of the Walther name, I took it to the range for the 1st time the next weekend and after only 75 - 80 rounds the firing pin broke and had to send it to S&W for repair. Three month later I e-mail customer service and they said they were waitting for parts from Germany? I WILL be selling IT if and when I get it back...

David Ross wrote:
April 07, 2012

I have two new P22. Them have been problematic, or shall I say jamamatic. Both have been retired from the range with empty cases stuck in the chamber. The front site got launched on one yesterday after about 250 rounds. The other one lasted about 40 rounds after a good cleaning and was retired with a spent case stuck in the chamber. The only diet is CCi mini mags. I have been in the weapons business all my life, and I cant beleive what I see and what I am hearing. If you look dead on the chamber from behind, you will see how thin the metal is at the cut for the extractor. This after a couple of hundred rounds peens the metal with the extractor and the chamber becomes flat on one side. A round object that tries to fit into a round hole with one flat side is doomed to get stuck. And they made them like this?

copperhead wrote:
April 05, 2012

In regard to the P22 remarks,D.Mak has a cracked slide,not a frame.Anyway,it's no wonder because the slide is made of Zamac.The stuff that sat.night specials are made of.I think you payed too much for yours.Next time buy a Ruger.P.S. has the front sight flown of yet?

Amanda R wrote:
March 31, 2012

Well yesterday I purchased my first walther p22. Today I was able to use it at a range. Out of 400 shots I would have to say about 150 were jam free. It wouldn't load at some points. I'm not giving up on it though. I figure I need to break it in. Those 400 shots were with federals. I then tried out some CCI's. Those seemed to work better. Jammed only bout 10 times out of 100 shots and mis fired twice. Any recommendations? I would hate to send it back to s and w so soon. :(

D.Mak wrote:
March 28, 2012

Purchased a P22 a couple of year back. Had some issues with ammo feeding. I bought (5) new mags and ran ammo through each. Those that caused no problems I dis-assembled and checked the spring length, made the spring length on the problem mags the same length....problem cured. Love the gun but had to send it to S&W because of a cracked frame near the ejection port. I have not got the gun back yet. 3/28/2012

chuck wrote:
March 27, 2012

My p22 has never had any feeding/misfire/jams and I shoot the cheap Walmart Remington rounds. However, yesterday my pistol stopped firing in double action. Cock the hammer and fire in single action still works perfectly. Any suggestions?

Christopher Balcsik wrote:
March 27, 2012

I have owned this weapon a good minute, and I love it. I carry for my concealed weapon with copper hollow point rounds. Fairly reliable with a thourough cleaning and lubrication session. I am a military police officer and am a firm supporter of the .22. Anyone can argue about me carrying a .22, But I am sure they wouldn't want to be on the receiving end of it, or any other gun for that matter.

Vincent wrote:
March 25, 2012

I am a little sad to hear all the negative comments on this little pistol! I have owned two of them and love them. I have had a few issues and they are picky with ammo, but they are nice little plinkers! I also own a ruger mk3 and it also has a few problems feeding certain ammo. Not to mention it is 3 times the weight and ugly as all get up. I use my Walter while hiking and it even saved my life against a timber rattler so I would trust it with my life. For the price what do you expect it to be made of? I also own a few 1911 that are very picky of what ammo they feed! Doesn't mean they are cheap crap, only that you give it what it wants. Good luck to you all and have fun shooting

Chris wrote:
March 23, 2012

Just ran 300 rounds of Blazer and CCI mini mag through my new p22 and it worked flawlessly and was very accurate. It would not feed or eject wildcat at all so I will stay with Blazer or like ammo. Great gun and fun to shoot!

Eugene wrote:
March 20, 2012

I just bought a P22 with lazer. They both work fine so far. You must keep the chamber clean. After 100 rounds +/- it will start to misfeed. The lazer has a small housing design flaw. It has fins on both sides near the bottom. If using a snug fitting holster, the gun goes in but it has the fish hook efect & wont come out w/o a struggle.

Willis wrote:
March 04, 2012

Sad to hear the negatives.I bought a P-22 eight years ago and it had been an excellent pistol. It does not like Spitfire hollowpoints and I imagine it doesn't like Yellowjackets either even though I haven't tried them.Blazers, Stingers, Velociters, Aguila 60 grain SSS all work very well. It is handy enough to go every where and accurate enough to hit what I am accurate enough to hit.

shedhunter87 wrote:
February 22, 2012

best little rimfire ever. Mine is my rattlesnake gun. it goes absolutly everywhere with me. I've owned it for a year and have ran a couple thousand rounds through it with no problems at all. Can use dirt cheap ammo or super high velocity(1600fps) with no malfunctions ever. My gun has been under water a few times while falling in the creek fishin and still no problems. Had the oppurtunity to trade for a kel tec pf9 and i passed. Will never get rid of this pistol. Walther spells pure quality:)

p the c wrote:
February 14, 2012

Went to range today. Shot cci blazers no problem. Also shot hollow points worked well. The front side blade came off. Added the other front sight went back to shooting. Nice and on target

Joseph Adams wrote:
February 10, 2012

I bought a Walther P-22 and have had to send it back twice because it won't feed properly, even with the ammunition recommended by S&W. Both times I was told that nothing was wrong with it, but it continues to have problems. I've expressed my dis-satisfaction and requested a different model of equal value and have not heard back from them in almost a month. What can I do?

NCPat wrote:
February 07, 2012

I recently purchased the P22 to teach my daughters to shoot with. I selected this gun based on the size and weight combined with the Walther reputation. I have owned and shot many guns over the years. This is my first Walther, and it will be my last. The gun is inundated by design flaws. Failure to feed, failure to battery, spontaneous disassembly, and failure to slide lock. This gun has about a 50% failure rate that is not dependent on the ammunition. The cause of these issue are easily definable, which begs the question of how did such oversights make it past the engineers and quality control. The feed ramp has a catch at the apex of the ramp. This could probably be overcome with a Dremel and some polishing of the ramp and barrel entry. The second issue is that the slide lock drops out of position resulting in the slide coming up and full forward after discharge, resulting in the gun coming apart.The hammer is too high when cocked back resulting in far too much upward pressure on the bottom of the slide. Thinning the upper corner or allowing the hammer to lock further back would resolve this issue. My final observation is the barrel nut works loose. You can tighten this down, but it comes loose, contributing to the feed issues. I could understand if one of these issue got a blind eye, but seriously all of them. So what I am now faced with is a gun that I sell or trade in at a loose or I fix what the engineers should have. Sad state of things when a new gun has to be modified to get a greater than 50% reliability rate.

tasha wrote:
January 28, 2012

I love my p22 its and awsome gun wouldnt change it for the world

Michael wrote:
January 24, 2012

My aunt stopped going to the range with my uncle because she did not even like the recoil of a 380. Now she goes with my uncle anytime with her P22. Even though we are talking about the P22, my wife likes her PK380.

Hector wrote:
December 19, 2011

Over 1000 rounds no malfunction. Just keep your P22 clean and oil often between every 150+ rounds.

jack wrote:
November 27, 2011

the walther p-22 is cheap junk its made out of zink alloy the slide will crack and fail if you own one sell it.

Jerry Dye wrote:
October 27, 2011

I have put 100's of rounds through mine with very little trouble. I recentl shot 150 or so and had only 2 FTE. I would buy this gun again and again. Highly recommended

Pat wrote:
October 18, 2011

Mine came with the longer barrel and I had problems with it jamming. Switching to the shorter barrel seemed to fix the problem

Bruce wrote:
October 16, 2011

This pistol is and excellent handgun for a person to practice with in preparation for a CCW.

billy wrote:
October 16, 2011

i got a p22 few years ago been a great little gun never has jammed even with cheap 22 doesnt cycle with subsonic ammo but neither does any of my other 22's shot around a thousand rounds through it cleaned it twice alot of fun to shoot

Denise M. wrote:
October 16, 2011

I am a firearms instructor and own 3 of them...one in each color. They are the most popular among my students and I love the stuffin's out of them. Another gun site had nothing but negatives about them and I definately let them know it wasn't so. Great plinkers...but being the .22 longs need to be cleaned regularly. The only problems I had were just that, so they get cleaned regularly now.

BrandyJo wrote:
October 16, 2011

I love the P22 for it's size & fit in my small hands. It's a fun little thing to plink with, & it packs a fun punch for a 22. Easy to operate & handle, but I've had problems with craptastic ammo not feeding well thru it. For a child, or a first pistol for anyone, but especially a woman, I recommend it. It's too much fun!

David D wrote:
October 16, 2011

I bought a 5" P22 back around the time they came out, and it has been very disappointing. It is extremely ammunition sensitive, preferring high velocity loads to properly cycle. Typically the first (and sometimes the second) round will fail to feed, jamming against the feed ramp. My Beretta Neos has been much more reliable.

David B. wrote:
October 16, 2011

Earl's Repair Service sells a 1/2*28 barrel nut at a readonable price. I've used one for years with a suppressor with no problems. Try it with Aguila Colibri or Super Colibri 22lr with a suppressor for super quiet, close-range plinking.

Don N wrote:
October 16, 2011

Had one and sold it. Function was excellent with high velocity ammo but accuracy was about like a shotgun. Tried to improve on accuracy with a bundle of match ammo types and still it was just not what I was looking to keep.

Guy wrote:
October 16, 2011

I have thbe Walther and I love it. It will eat any ammo I give it, from the cheap to the expensive. My wife has the Sig. We had some trouble with it. We found that if we give it Thunderbolt cheap ammo, it loves it. All in all a good gun. I would take the Walther over the Sig though.

Jim Morrow wrote:
October 16, 2011

Started all of grandkids on the P22. We all love it. Many of them have moved on Glocks, Ruger and other brands. But when we get together to shoot, all of them want a turn or two with the P22

Dave wrote:
October 16, 2011

We've had one of these for several years; my wife likes to shoot it, it doesn't have a big recoil and is light to the hand. The only problem I have with it is the need to use a tool kit to disassembly it. Otherwise it's a nice little gun.

Gabe Erives wrote:
October 16, 2011

The walther p-22 is a great weapon for garment shooting but when it comes to accuracy on a target it is hard to focus on one spot but overall accuracy I give this gun a 10/10

Terry wrote:
October 16, 2011

I bought one 3 years ago and love it. It is great for personell carry and plinking. Its small and light to hide for everyday personell carry. The only negative I have found is it harder to clean than other semi's. I paid $299. for mine in 2008.

Joe H wrote:
October 16, 2011

I have never had an issue with mine, always loads, always fires. It shoots the the bulk Rem and the premium CCI. For fun shoot the CCI Stinger ammo just before dark, the slow burning powder makes an impressive fire ball like you see in the movies! Note, I clean the barrel after every trip to the range, and strip in every 500 rounds. Maintenance goes a long way.

Scotty wrote:
October 16, 2011

I got a P-22 in a trade, and I'm sad that I got rid of a perfectly good gun for this. It feels great in the hand, but a 14 lb. trigger is just stupid. The Thing jams and coughs constantly. I really hate the "U" clip that holds the slide. If you're going to keep yours, pick up some spares.

LB Wheat wrote:
October 16, 2011

I had one of these and it was ok but I wasn't that impressed so I sold it and kept using my old Colt Huntsman.

Mary S wrote:
October 16, 2011

I am an FFL holder in Michigan. I have sold several dozen P22s over the years. They used to come with 2 mags, as of '09 only one included. They do have threaded barrels with a barrel nut included. I also sell threaded adapters made by a friend nearby. I have never had a complaint aout operational problems nor a return by a dissatisfied customer. I always recommend frequent cleaning, but no other special instructions. You failed to mention the extra safety feature of a key system to disengage the trigger completely. In the off position the gun is easily taken off safe with the lever, in the on position you cannot fire the gun even with the lever safety off. This is a great safety feature if there are children in the house.

James S. wrote:
October 16, 2011

Would like to see better accuracy out of P22!No 2 mag and cheap plastic front sights! It is a neat litle gun, I imagine I need to work with it more, but for the money, Ruger!

Bill H wrote:
October 16, 2011

I bought one for my wife and we love it. I have to say we did take some times to figure out what ammo it likes. So far federal and cci are the only ammo it likes. Since we have ,it shoots consistanly and we enjoy it alot.

Craig P wrote:
October 16, 2011

I bought one of these guns a few years back because of the Walther reputation; however, after having nothing but issues after issues with different ammo, I decided to dump it. I just picked up a Ruger 22/45 and I gotta tell ya, Walther doesn't compare.

Dan wrote:
October 16, 2011

I have a P22, bought it 5 years ago to be a plinker too. The one I bought came with 2 barrels, on long the other short. I believe I spent no more that $150 or so at a gunshow, and it was new.

Barry B wrote:
October 12, 2011

Frank G, I commend you on your work to make those pistols shoot. It is such a shame to have to go to that much trouble for reliablitly from two manufacturers that have a great reputation for their other products. I will say in defense of the P22 and Mosquito, both shot and functioned reliably every time with CCI high velocity ammuniton, which is what both recommend. However, I wanted to use subsoncis with the suppressor. Being quiet was the purpose of purchasing both pistols with the threaded barrels. Since we are both happy with what we now have, hope you have a great day :)

Frank G wrote:
October 12, 2011

Hi Barry B. - I too bought a Mosquito because of Sig's reputation for guns reliable out-of-the-box. I sent it back twice for problems and ultimately wanted to ask if they had directions for throwing it in self defense. It had every known problem and ammo made no difference. I read an article that suggested using a wire .22 cal cleaning brush in a variable speed drill to polish the chamber end of the barrel. Then soak the slide in G96 as well as the firing pin hole in it and drain it for an hour before reassembly. When I bought my P22 subsequently I gave it the same treatment. Both guns now shoot 60 grain Aguila Sub Sonics and anything else equally well and I wouldn't trade either one for a Ruger or a Browning.

Anthony M. wrote:
October 12, 2011

I love my little P22! But my grandson will fight me for it at the range, at the tender age of 12! He shoots my Glock 21 and Glock 36, shoots trap with me, but he he'd rather shoot the P22.

Barry B wrote:
October 12, 2011

I have owned 2 Walther P22s, hoping the second one would be more reliable than the first. I bought them for use with the threaded barrel adapter and a supressor. Neither pistol would shoot ANY brand of subsonic ammo without at least five rounds per clip jamming. This pistol and the Mosquito are two of the biggest pieces of junk to hit the American Market. Make mine a Ruger or Browning. No problems with either of those brands as far as reliable functioning with subsonic or high velocity rounds.

Frank G wrote:
October 12, 2011

I bought my P22 just over a year ago. It came with a threaded barrel. It loves to be clean and wet and using CCI Segmented HP, 32 grains, 1640 FPS I've never had a FTF, FTE or any other problem in approx 2,000 rnds fired. I wouldn't hesitate to use the Segmented HP for personal defense as any head or neck shot would be devastating.

John wrote:
October 12, 2011

Great weapon to teach marksmanship to young shooters. I have two and use then to teach basic marksmanship to my daughter and her friends. It is light and easy for them to handle safely, a little loud, but that problem is out grown quickly. She loves shooting the P-22 and so do I.

Dirteater101 wrote:
October 12, 2011

Have owned a p22 since seeing one in use(with suppressor)in Iraq. Was impressed with it than, and purchasing one on my return 5 years ago am still impressed with the little walther. My wife and I are both NRA personal protection in the home instructors. And My little Walther has become our primary rental pistol. It is currently celebrating passing its 23rd student and digesting over 14000 rounds of varying quality. Yes, they do like good ammo!

Melvin Haber wrote:
October 11, 2011

The info you gave re. "European magazine safety" may be true, but to sell that pistol or any other in CA you now have to have to by law have this "feature" and a "round in the chamber indicator". Any handgun (no grandfathering) that does not have this is by law labeled an "unsafe handgun" (all in the same law). Wait 'till they start confiscating all of the "unsafe" handguns that do not have this "feature." This is as of a couple of years ago.

LD wrote:
October 11, 2011

Relatives of mine bought two (his and hers), and both are jam-a-matics. One cockst the cartridge off to the side and won't chamber, and the other won't extract; the extractor slips right off.

Frank wrote:
October 11, 2011

The slide is zinc alloy? That's too bad. It's not going to last too long before it cracks. When I was a kid my cap guns were made of zinc alloy.

1917-1911M wrote:
October 11, 2011

Twist rate is 350mm or 13.8" Up until 2009 P22s came with two mags.

BillB wrote:
October 11, 2011

I agree with Joe, I found the same points odd. I have an early model with both barrels, 3 1/4 and 5 inch. It came with two Mags. I love mine, it makes a great gun to carry out in the desert while hiking, etc.

Pete wrote:
October 11, 2011

Mine is a great "fungun," but please don't use it for self defense -- not reliable enough, no matter what ammo or how you tweak it.

joseph miles stout wrote:
October 07, 2011

I have the fortune of owning one and find it comfortable in my hand and to shoot. Good size to carry. In my 511 tactical shirt

Joe wrote:
October 07, 2011

Glad to see a review of the P-22. I love this little plinker and have discovered that quite a few out there do as well. That being said, it's not perfect and needs a little help to address some feeding/reliability issues. Addresses these issues and how to remedy them in detail, a few of which I have done to my P-22 without and prior smithing knowledge. A couple of points you addressed in the article struck me as odd: 1. The lack of an additional magazine. Unless things have changed, mine came with two mags, one with the large mag butt plate and one with the standard. 2. The barrel is threaded with a barrel nut retaining the barrel sleeve. Many use suppressors via a thread adapter in place of the barrel nut. Hope you have a chance to try this little plinker out again. Take care!