Is there an ideal barrel length for a suppressed .22 LR barrel? I have a CZ-452 American with a 22.5" barrel I am considering having cut to 16.5" and threaded 1/2-28 for use with a Silencerco Sparrow. I estimate the 6" of lost barrel will weigh approximately 12 oz. so with a 5"/6.5 oz. can attached I assume the balance and handling characteristics will be nearly the same. From a ballistics standpoint, is there any reason not to go with the shortest possible (non-SBR) barrel length? I recall reading .22 LR reaches it's velocity potential at around 16". My preferred cartridge is CCI #0032 40 gr., which at a published velocity of 1,050 fps. should remain subsonic. I should also mention sight radius is not a concern since the rifle will be scoped. Thanks for the input.
|Go ahead punk, make my day|
My 452 American is a 16.5" barrel and I think that is perfect, especially when adding a 5-6" suppressor.
Standards can go supersonic sometimes depending on the temperature / quality control of the ammunition, but usually Aguilla stays subsonic; although when I want to ensure it's quiet I use the subsonic version of the ammo in rifles and standards in pistols.
Review Ballistics by the inch for .22lr
Gains in muzzle velocity per additional inch of barrel length really decrease after maybe 12 inches. But the increases continue.
Ideal is in the eyes of the beholder -- no one barrel is perfect for all users, all applications. With a scoped rifle, barrel length considerations include desires for flight ballistics at distance, maneuverability, and overall balance. I have 16", 18", and 20" barrels. The 20" barrel has noticeably faster MV in all ammo types than the 18" and the 16". The 20" has subsonic ammo velocities often in the 1100-1130 fps range, and I don't experience the supersonic crack. Ammo with 1200-1250 fps MV definitely does have the supersonic crack.
I often shoot 22lr at distances of 100-200 yards. The additional MV from the 20" barrel makes a noticeable difference in flight ballistics at these distances.
Understand that cutting a 22lr barrel sometimes does something funky with accuracy. Sometimes, but not always. We've seen that occur with Remy's 40X rifles -- uber long and heavy barrels that can shoot really well, even after a boatload of rounds down the bore. When the 40X rifles are converted to repeater actions, the shorter barrels don't always perform as well.
Jelrod1 will soon convert my 40X to a repeater. Although my initial tests with the Remy's original barrel (maybe 26" long?) show promising accuracy, I will have Jelrod1 install a new Krieger barrel -- IIRC 20" or 21" long. I'd rather have a new barrel than take the chance that a cut-down barrel won't perform well. Note that this 20-21" barrel will use a can that's about 5.5" long.
As for barrel length with a can, that's a personal thing. I shoot steel competitions using a 26" barrel plus a 9" can, often moving the rifle in and out of barriers and props. Sure, it's not a carbine, but I don't have major issues with rifle movement. And I surely haven't lost a match due to a couple extra seconds of gun movement time.
I bought a CZ 455 Scout to teach my daughter to shoot. It has a somewhat short stock and comes with a 16.5" threaded barrel. I shoot it with a Liberty Essence suppressor, which is 6.5" long and 4.4 ounces.
It's a very handy package and shoots great. With standard velocity target ammo it is movie quiet.
Rimfire suppressors are so lightweight that I don't think the weight on the end of the barrel makes much of a difference, pretty much regardless of barrel length, but a long barrel + suppressor can certainly be unwieldy.
On the other hand, even a 22" barrel .22 with a long rimfire suppressor on it is shorter than most pump and semiauto hunting shotguns, much less clay games shotguns.
|I run trains!|
I had a 455 .22lr American barrel chopped down to 16.5” for handiness with a suppressor. I noticed no discernible accuracy issues with it at the ranges I typically shoot (out to say 150 yds.). Overall glad I did it as I still have another full length barrel in the safe, but it hasn’t seen service since the chop.
Success always occurs in private, and failure in full view.
Optimum would likely be an integrally suppressed barrel that is 16” inches but if you already have the can then just chop to 16.5” and you will be delighted with the results. Accuracy will largely not be impacted by velocity when shooting subsonic and at ranges well suited for .22.
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