.22 LR Velocity By Barrel Length

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Velocity by barrel length for .22 Long Rifle (also referred to as .22LR or often just ".22" for short). Data for .22LR shown below is sourced from Ballistics by the Inch. A number of popular loads from major manufacturers were tested. We'll also discuss things like ideal barrel lengths for various firearms to help navigate the various barrel length offerings. This is especially relevant when it comes to things like AR-15 rifle and/or pistol builds, as well as offerings like the Ruger 10/22 (and its "Charger" pistol variants).

Barrel Length CCI 27 gr. CPHP CCI 29 gr. CPRN CCI Stinger: 32 gr. CPHP Remington Yellow Jacket 33 gr. (truncated cone, CPHP) Remington Viper 36 gr. (truncated cone CP) Remington Golden Bullet 36 gr. CPHP CCI Mini-Mag 40 gr. CPRN Winchester Super X 40 gr. RN CCI Velocitor 40 gr. CPHP Aguila Sniper SubSonic 60 gr. LRN
18" 1158 1114 1510 1407 1342 1181 1212 1250 1366 903
17" 1116 1060 1502 1396 1304 1178 1206 1227 1376 903
16" 1130 1094 1489 1398 1306 1185 1207 1251 1340 900
15" 1133 1083 1496 1369 1305 1178 1211 1241 1336 879
14" 1096 1103 1483 1334 1294 1163 1224 1222 1349 883
13" 1098 1071 1496 1381 1296 1147 1183 1248 1341 891
12" 1089 1074 1476 1334 1293 1167 1221 1235 1335 892
11" 1092 1079 1463 1360 1280 1180 1210 1223 1338 881
10" 1115 1065 1452 1304 1270 1150 1169 1193 1316 859
9" 1092 1042 1430 1315 1267 1129 1169 1203 1275 868
8" 1092 1048 1396 1271 1212 1101 1158 1191 1268 857
7" 1060 1056 1367 1284 1229 1073 1139 1162 1244 820
6" 1049 993 1321 1249 1165 1063 1101 1133 1093 824
5" 1029 1014 1286 1214 1156 1009 1097 1070 1172 796
4" 956 948 1191 1113 1104 984 1014 1043 1120 762
3" 907 893 1129 1045 998 890 948 965 1026 726
2" 861 860 974 945 875 846 856 862 882 663

Best Barrel Length For .22 Long Rifle

For Subsonic Loads

For a heavy subsonic load like the Aguila Sniper Subsonic 60 gr., the loading doesn't gain too much velocity in anything more than an 8" barrel. For non subsonic loadings, it's important not to go so short as to make all .22 loadings subsonic, unless that's what you're looking for! Something like an AR-15 in the 8-inch barrel range, or Ruger's shorter 8" "Charger" 10/22's, pairing these with a 5" suppressor like the SilencerCo Sparrow leaves you with a suppressed firearm that is still 5 inches shorter than a more typical rifle setup at around 18" barrel length.

For Maximum Velocity

If one were so inclined to squeeze every bit of velocity out of a .22LR firearm, an 18" barrel does an excellent job of taking full advantage of everything the round has to offer. Some manufacturers offer Ruger 10/22 barrels at 21 inches in length. But as an example, Volquartzen offers match-grade bull barrels in lengths like 16.5" as well. Keep in mind that according to the data above, velocity gains at longer than 16" barrel length were fairly negligible, so 16" appears to be more than enough overall. Still, most stock .22 rifles come with an 18" barrel, so don't worry too much. Any more length is up to you, but doesn't appear to be necessary for a .22LR firearm.

Best Overall Barrel Length for .22 Long Rifle

The big question to ask is whether you plan on using a suppressor with your .22 Long Rifle firearm, and how long that suppressor is. If looking for a more average setup, a typical 18" barrel will give you everything the round has to offer, and it's not worth putting a ton of thought into it. If you want to get the vast majority of .22 Long Rifle performance in a short package, 8 or 10 inches like the lengths offered on the 10/22 Charger, will do well. But if you're absolutely planning to attach a suppressor, it appears that an 8" barrel is a great place to be. Remember that a suppressor will increase muzzle velocity somewhat. If going with something like a SilencerCo Sparrow, an 8" barrel with this 5" suppressor gives you a handy 13" effective barrel length, without leaving performance on the table. You could even go shorter, but the additional length of a suppressor probably won't fully make up for performance loss with a shorter barrel. Overall, if you could only pick one barrel length for any application (or multiple applications with the same firearm), something like an AR-15 pistol with an ~8" barrel will be great. For an average rifle setup, a typical stock 18" barrel is a no-stress decision. But if you must have every bit of velocity with a suppressed setup, 10" still leaves you with an overlength under 18" with almost all suppressor offerings. In that case, something like the Rugged Oculus with a potentially tiny length of only 3.25 inches could be an attractive option to keep the setup short.

Other Information

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