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Why did my .22 quit shooting?


We see a lot of .22's come through the shop. From pistols to rifles we see them all and usually it is with the customer that doesn't understand why after 20 or 30 years the firearm has quit working. Here are a few reasons we consistently find that may cause these issues.


  1. Dirty Chamber- Chambers often get dirty because of the ammunition that we shoot. .22 ammunition is small and is often not carried or stored well. It is dropped or kept in your pocket or rolling around in a drawer. All of this attracts dust, dirt, and other debris that can and will be transferred into the chamber. These issues can cause the chamber to become defective. Here is how you can tell. With a flashlight inspect the chamber. It should be bright and shiny. If it is not it a cleaning is needed. If it is red or dull grey the chamber needs to be polished by a professional gunsmith.

  2. Bad Ammo- There is varying qualities of .22 ammunition out there. That mixed with how we store and transport it can cause these qualities to get worst. .22 ammunition is probably the most abused ammunition out there. From being carried loose in your pocket, to a pill bottle, to a glove compartment of a truck we don't do the quality of the ammunition any favors.

  3. The Extractor- Extractors don't just break. They are usually small and well enough made that something has to cause them to break. If your .22 is not extracting look and see if the extractor is in place. Often times you will see it missing or broken.

  4. Your Firearm is Dirty!- All .22's get dirty, especially when they have been shot or hunted with constantly for years on end with out being maintained. Dirty guns lead to broken extractors, broken firing pins, and damaged chambers. .22's are notorious for being extremely dirty shooting guns because of the nature of the ammunition and how its made.

  5. The Firing Pin is Broken- Broken firing pins are a by product of the force required to set off the primer. Typically .22's need to have 20-22 lbs of force to ignite the primer of the cartridge. The typical 9mm is around 7-8lbs.

These are just a few of the common causes that we see with .22 caliber malfunctions and repairs. Have an issue give us a call or visit us to see how we can take care of you.

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