Ruger LCR-22 .22 Revolver

Ruger has announced a .22 LR version of their Ruger LCR revolver. It is virtually identical to the low-end .38 Special LCR. If you own a LCR-38 or LCR-357, the LCR-22 is the perfect range companion.

Michael Bane writes about the Ruger LCR-22 …

The solution to the challenge is, as it pretty much is with all guns, to shoot them a lot. A .22 option allows you to shoot them a lot, and cheaply. I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest that if you’re new to CCW and think a snub revolver might be the way you want to go, I might get the .22 LCR first…no, .22 isn’t the world’s best self-defense cartridge, but it is substantially better than harsh language. Secondly, you will have a gun that you can shoot a lot and that you will keep even if you decide to go to a semiauto for CCW. If you feel comfortable with the .22, it’s an easy transition to the .38 (which I’ve been carrying for a couple of months now) or the .357 version.

Caliber .22 LR
Capacity 8
Finish Black / Advanced Target Grey (Cylinder)
Grip Hogue Tamer
Barrel 1.875″
Overall Length 6.50″
Weight 14.90 oz.
CA / MA Approved No
Front Sight Replaceable, Pinned Ramp
Rear Sight U-Notch Integral
MSRP (Price) $525

Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • Lance

    Looks like a cool gun to tech a lady to train for a CCW revolver.

  • With 3″ barrel and DA/SA trigger, adj. sights, it would be a great kit gun or plinker. Now it is just a training gun for “real” LCRs.

    • Komrad

      If you want a .22 revolver for plinking, get one of the new SP101s in .22 or one of their single action models.

  • Vhyrus

    I think this was a mistake on ruger’s part. They took a no nonsense self defense gun, took all the bite out of it, and are trying to sell it as a training tool now? That’s a lot of money for a training tool… probably more than most people are willing to spend I reckon. It’s also a piss poor one since it will feel and act almost nothing like a 38 or 357.

    • Komrad

      I don’t know about it being a mistake, I think it could be useful. I know I wouldn’t want to get hit by a CCI 40gr Velocitor or an Aguila 60gr SSS even from a short barrel and I think that the .22 version would probably act similarly to the .357 version loaded with light .38 loads.

      It isn’t really that expensive either. A .22 adapter kit for a CZ-75 is similar in price (ok fine, $100 less) but isn’t even a whole new gun.

    • Sian

      If the trigger is the same, it can be very useful: trigger control is the majority of accuracy, and sure you can get better at that just by dry-firing, but nothing beats the feedback of a loud bang and a hole in the paper.

    • Crosshair

      People always have and always will carry 22s for SD for whatever reason. Nothing short of a minigun is going to stop the mugger high on PCP anyway and the 22 will work just as good on more everyday threats. People are not going to get a 38 LCR if Ruger doesn’t make the 22, they are going to go buy a Taurus or whatever they can find in 22.

  • Al

    It would be a great training gun for teaching new shooters the two types of handguns in a CPL class. They could then shoot both types with low cost ammunition. If they wanted to carry it for a CCW, I would stress that they at least carry a quality type ammo.

    Everyone thumbs their nose at a .22 for self defense, but if that is all that a person can handle (i.e. elderly frail people) I know I wouldn’t want to get hit by it. And if the bad guy has any sense at all, they won’t stick around to find out what caliber it is if they see it pointed at them.

  • Komrad

    I think this would pair nicely with Aguila 60gr SSS. The heavier weight will mean that it will retain more energy with the short barrel that lighter, faster bullets. The only problem, and it’s a big one, would be the SSS’s tendency to keyhole unless paired with a 1:9 twist rate barrel. The other choice I could see would be CCI 40gr Velocitors or similar high-velocity loadings but not stingers. The stingers wouldn’t be able to utilize all their powder before reaching the end of the short barrel but high-velocity loads might be able to use comparatively more.

    • noob

      I wonder how quiet it would be as an unsilenced assassination gun…

      fired inside a room, would people outside report “I heard firecrackers”? or would it be closer to “guy was banging with a hammer upstairs”?

      • 18D

        @Komrad- Speer has a Gold Dot load for the .22 that wouldn’t be too shabby either. The Gold Dot is an awesome self defense bullet that should be at the top of anyone’s list for consideration in any cartridge. Speer’s .22 offering might be just the ticket for someone carry the Ruger for SD.

        @noob- You bring up an interesting point. I have fired a few different caliber in residential type homes and I can tell you the sound isn’t as pronounced as you might think. Even people in the next room usually can’t tell a gun went off. The sound from handgun calibers tend to be absorbed by the items in the room. A .22 might be somewhat loud to the person shooting it or the person getting shot by it but its not going to blow out your ears or even wake the neighbors. Now, a rifle caliber, that’s another story!

      • Komrad

        From checking Speer’s website, the Gold Dt load is only for .22 Magnum, not .22 LR. However, that does give me an idea. What if Ruger made this gun like their convertible Single-Six design, that is, able to fire .22 LR or .22 Mag with a cylinder change.

  • Jeremiah

    Load that puppy with some good ammo and It will make a good carry gun. 8 rounds is nothing to sneeze at. Even if it’s “just a 22”

  • I like the LCR and I love .22s, but for that cost you could buy a lot of practice ammo. If you want to introduce a new shooter than just get really light loads. I just not sure I see the purpose for a it.

    If agree with others that the SP101 in .22lr would be better.

  • SpudGun

    Not sure how good this revolver would be as a ‘generic’ training gun – short barrel and sight radius, rudimentary sights, DA only trigger, small grip, etc. and I know it would blow as a range / hunting pistol. So once again, I scratch my head and say ‘what’s it for?’.

    A low powered .38 load doesn’t have that much recoil and the ammunition price difference is negligible. All CCW pistols are a trade off and we’ll put up with negative aspects in exchange for concealability, fire power and weight. This .22 variant seems to encapsulate the worst of all possible worlds.

    • peter

      .22 costs MUCH less than .38 special. A quick look at ammotogo showed inexpensive .38 at $155/500 rounds, .22 at $16/500 rounds.

      • SpudGun

        Yes, .22LR is cheaper then .38 Special, but considering the number of rounds you’re going to put through a CCW revolver, the overall savings you’re going to make are pretty small comparitively speaking.

        As good as the .22 tactical rounds might be, they really can’t compete with the larger .38 rounds. Now here’s the other factor – shot placement – I personally wouldn’t like to try and accurately hit a target in a high stress situation using the .22 LCR.

        Finally, if I were to use a .22LR for personal defense, and the Ruger Mk III or Browning Buckmark were too big, then I could get a North American Arms revolver, with the same power but in a much smaller and more concealable package.

        In short, there are a lot of great firearms out there that offer more practicality, accuracy and shooting fun in .22LR then the LCR.

  • erwos

    I was liking this all the way to the price. $525? For reals? This thing better not cost more than $300 on the street.

    • fw226

      Seriously. I just got a Ruger MkIII Target for 300, so this seems a little extreme.

      As far as 22 caliber goes, there are plenty of homicides committed with 22 revolvers. I wouldn’t use a 22 for defense, but it can work.

      • Duray

        This gun and the MKIII have nothing in common except the chambering and the logo stamped on the side. They are different in purpose, design, function, construction, manufacturing, etc. A much more relevant “value” comparison would be with either the centerfire LCR, or even better, the S&W 317, which sells for ~$500. Remember, value depends on quality, not the diameter of the bore. If you want a cheap revolver or an auto, there are plenty out there to be had. Either way, the MKIII is something else altogether.

      • fw226

        I get your point! Although I still don’t understand why this revolver costs so much. It may be quality, but is it 550 dollars of quality? I wouldn’t want to spend that much for a 22 range gun to shoot my 38 more cheaply, and I wouldn’t choose a short barreled 22 as a plinker. Nor would I want it for defense, when I could have a quality revolver in a larger caliber for a similar price.

  • Ak-adventurer

    To hell with practical use or not, whos idea was that Ugly taper/step on the cylender?? they couldn’t just leave it full dia?


    • Crosshair

      They put the “step” in because otherwise the revolver would weigh several ounces more than it does. It was done for a good reason.

    • kip viau

      I purchased mine brand new for $399.00 at a Scheels in North Dakota. I’m very pleased with this weapon!

  • mosinman

    i dont like DA only guns, makes it harder to maintain accuracy

  • Tommy big balls

    This would be good for tiny chicks who are most likely just scaring away a rapist/robber. They don’t need to actually kill them just change their mind. That’s probably the intended use. The tiny chick market. It better come in pink.

    • JMD

      Just scaring away rapists or robbers, eh? The purpose of a gun is to incapacitate, potentially fatally. If someone is firing a gun, it had better be because they feel their life is in danger, for instance in the case of rape or robbery. There are less dangerous ways to scare people away.

      Shoot to stop the threat, not to scare people.

      That’s one of the stupidest things I’ve read in a while.

      • Tommy big balls

        Obviously I’m stating that it would only scare them because it’s a .22. I don’t know how that implies rape is not serious. Lol!!! The dumbest thing I’ve read in awhile is your post. Stop being so serious. It’s the Internet.

      • El Freddio

        @Tommy big balls
        I really think that the attacker isn’t going to know it’s a .22 or a .38 etc. If he’s not scared of this, he’s not worried about the bigger verison either.

    • JMD

      It’s almost as if you’re trying to imply that rape and robbery aren’t serious enough reasons to shoot someone.

    • 18D

      I’m assuming Tommy is being sarcastic.

      Either way, there are people out there that believe that kind of crap! Carrying a gun to scare people away is the easiest way to get yourself killed or put in prison. Before you start carrying, the first step to doing so is to adjust your mindset. You must be ready to pull that trigger and kill another human being if your life depends on it. Tiny chick market? No way!

  • abprosper

    I personally would buy the SP101 as the LCR is not my cuppa tea (ugly and polymer) but its not a bad gun at all.

    Either is a nice trainer, a nice plinker and not awful for self defense. One really nice trait of a revolver, any rimfire revolver really is that if a .22 round fails to fire, maybe do to a primer issue which is distressingly common, well just pull the trigger again.

  • Gorman

    There was a ten-year study that showed in real defensive uses of firearms (not shooting at blocks of gel), the most effective caliber (fewest rounds needed) for incapacitating an attacker was the .22.

    How could this be? I think it’s because people, especially non-professionals, can handle and aim .22s better than larger guns.

    A .22 to the chest or head is usually much more effective than a .357 or 9mm fired into the wall.

    Anyway, as someone else said, the .22 sure beats harsh language.

    • Gorman

      Here’s the study I referred to:

    • Pb37

      I am sure that the .22 LCR should have been produced in.22 mag for more effective CCW. The price would still be too high at $500!

      • Woodroez

        The street price for this gun is probably going to be closer to 400 than 500. And, as others have said, that price is competitive for quality revolvers. You would have to go to Charter Arms for something cheaper. As far as I know, they function fine, but Charter’s guns are going to have worse fit and finish, worse triggers, and lower ammo capacity.

  • Billy Bones

    When is Ruger going to manufacture a .22 LR breaktop?

  • Alex

    OK,first we got the LCR in 38 spl,then,after many shooters ran to buy one,Ruger came up with the LCR 357 mag….. Should we not rush and wait for the more useful 22 mag version of the LCR?

    • dalexbouv

      I’m with you. Wouldn’t that just be the thing – and what a great competitor for the S&W 351PD which is a fine pistol but really pricey? I’m gonna sit on my hands this time fellas. I jumped too soon on the 2 1/2 Judge. Learned my lesson there. Had to sell that one and get the 3″ chamber.

  • “…substantially better than harsh language.” rofl
    A 22 should be fine for self defense. I like this gun mainly because of low ammunition costs, and easy handling.

  • Lars

    Ruger needs to lower the price or like others have said add a convertible 22 magnum cylinder for that steep $525.00 price

  • The LCR22 is a Great little piece. Very accurate at 20′ in spite of the stubby 2″ barrel. Gotta shoot it and learn it. Questions about the cal 22 LR? Check out the velocity and ballistics of a Hollow Point 22. Put your shots where they count.