New Ruger 22/45 Lite Design

Ruger had debuted a modified version of their terrific 22/45 Lite pistol. The original models were anodized gold, then they switched to black (I have and love one of the older gold models). These come with factory threaded barrels and are very suppressor friendly!

The new model features dimples that act as vents to cool the barrel off (suppressed guns get hot fast, even though they may be rimfire).


I asked a rep if the vents served their purpose well and he said, “of course, but I also think it looks bad#$&”. Indeed it does Mr. Ruger rep, indeed it does.

Alex C.

Alex is a Senior Writer for The Firearm Blog and Director of TFBTV.


  • hami

    I compete with a 1911 and value the training advantages of a .22 that mirrors my 1911’s manual of arms. But i have to ask: with all the .22 1911s on the market, why would i pick this Ruger?

    I would like to know what separates the 22/45 from the competition.

    • In my opinion I would choose the Ruger because of its track record. The Mark pistols are legendarily reliable, whereas all the .22 1911s I have messed with have been rather finicky. Parts availability is also fantastic, and upgrading them is a breeze (many companies specialize in Mark pistols).

      The tubular receiver and light bolt of the Rugers are just more compatible with rimfire ammunition.

      • FourString

        What about the SR22 vs. the 22/45 Lite? 🙂

        They seem to be both very good, and it’s rather hard to choose between the two, at least in my mind

    • Cymond

      If training is your primary goal, a dedicated 22LR 1911 pistol or conversion slide may be the best bet.

      However, the 22/45 stands out as a pistol that was originally designed for the 22LR, not something that’s been redesigned for it. In essence, the 22/45 is the exact same gun as the Mark 1/2/3 except with a different grip frame on it. It’s not intended to exactly duplicate the feel & function of a 1911, it just has the same grip angle, similar control layout, and (only recently) the same grip panels as a 1911. The similarities to a 1911 end there.

  • Andrew

    Yuck. Looks like a Tec-9. The black Lite is where it’s at (even though I have the original gold one, would have waited if I’d known the black model was coming).

    • gunslinger

      yup. beat me to it.

    • FourString

      I *do* prefer the look of the Black anodised model with the fluted barrel. Looks far handsomer in my opinion.

    • Well that’s an insult:-)

  • Cymond

    I like the ventilated barrel, reminds me of something you’d see on an old Sten subgun. I think I’d like it best with a black outer shroud and silver inner barrel. I also really like the all-black 22/45 Lite, but found the gold to be garish.

    • jamezb

      I’ll take mine bead-blasted and in a gray park’ed finish with matching durakote lower and walnut grips.
      Can I get a retro medium brown leather flap holster with a mag pouch on the front to go with that?

    • FourString

      Good that you mentioned the Sten, a much better image in my mind now than the Tec-9 I had envisioned at first glance

      • gunslinger

        I just dont see the sten in this

        • Fruitbat44


          • gunslinger

            Sterling…I can see that

  • Anonymous

    I only wish we could get a standard 22/45 Lite but with a MKIII frame in black oxide finish instead. I can handle a little extra weight in exchange for the superior controls of the MKIII.

    • Cymond

      Well, if you’re of the mind to do some tinkering, you could put a Lite upper on a MKIII frame, then put the 22/45 frame on the MKIII upper and sell it.
      Or just look at the Tactical Solutions PacLite uppers.

  • Mystick


  • Nicks87

    My last two pistols were Rugers and now I will have to add this one as well. Damn you Ruger! Stop taking all my money!

  • Looks like a great concept. I’s tempting. However, all of the Ruger semi-autos have one big problem: that Satanic reassembly procedure! Makes me think “Walther.”

    • hkryan

      It’s tough the first couple times but then isn’t so difficult once you get the hang of it. But yes, much more difficult than removing a slide stop pin!

  • pcnotpc

    Just something else to collect crud and have to be cleaned.

    • hkryan

      Agreed. The loaded chamber indicator added plenty of crevices, now some “cool” holes…

  • LeeC

    Looking again at the vent nose… think back further… Buck Rogers ray pistol! Now, THAT I can get behind!! }:o)

  • BryanS

    Wife has one of those gold Lite models with a 22/45 frame. only complaint I have about it is the magazine capacity. Especially when out shooting with a suppressor, which most fit perfectly on these with the flow of the body making it look natural.