A Brief Report on .22 long rifle Ammunition (Factory, obviously)

Recently I did a comparison testing of a couple .22 long rifle offerings. As it happened, this is what I had on hand. Also the testing is limited to the firearms I own. Still, I think the combinations are not all that far removed from most shooter’s experience.

I used the CED Millennium 2 chronograph; chosen as it is the one I have.

The two ammunition types I fired most were:

1. CCI Standard Velocity ammunition. It is a 40 grain lead bullet at an advertised 1070 feet per second (fps) velocity.
2. Winchester High Velocity “555” ammunition. A 36 grain plated bullet, advertised at 1280 feet per second (fps) velocity.

Here are the chronograph readings.


Smith & Wesson m18 (revolver) with four inch barrel delivered: CCI Standard Velocity – 889.5 fps; Winchester 555 – 1046.6 fps.
Smith & Wesson m41 (semi automatic pistol) with five and one-half inch barrel: CCI Standard Velocity – 912.9 fps; Winchester 555 was not tested.
Ruger Lite (semi automatic pistol) with four and one-quarter inch barrel: CCI Standard Velocity – 871.7 fps; Winchester 555 – 1044.2 fps.


Marlin 39 (lever rifle) with twenty-four inch barrel delivered: CCI Standard Velocity – 937.3 fps; Winchester 555 – 1171.6 fps.
Marlin 25 (bolt action rifle) with twenty-two inch barrel: CCI Standard Velocity – 1036.1 fps; Winchester 555 – 1246.8 fps.
Stevens Automatic (rifle) with twenty-four inch barrel: CCI Standard Velocity – 1025.7 fps; Winchester 555 – 1225 fps.

I looked up the advertised velocity of both types of ammunition. The Winchester 555 is advertised as 1280 fps; the CCI Standard Velocity is 1070 fps. However, no information is provided regarding the type of firearm used to establish the advertised velocities. One can assume several bits of information from this. One is that – more than likely – different arms were used. Second, the firearms used were more than likely rifles rather than handguns. Last, the advertised velocities are probably derived under the best of circumstances. I’m sure the respective manufacturers can defend the truthfulness of the information, but I am equally sure it is the most optimistic figure available.

As has been mentioned, all firearms are a law unto themselves in terms of exact results. This applies to all firearms and all ammunition. Rimfire, central fire, factory or reloaded.


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