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Anyone replace their .22lr rifle with an air rifle?

Ura-Ki

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Only thing I would ask is WHY? Especially if you were still running .22! I would see the merits for a bigger cal. If you wanted a noise reduction, but I cannot see an air rifle having any advantages over a .22 rimfire at All! With the longer barrel rifles, standard velocity. 22 ammo is very quiet, and through a Can, practially silent, then there is Subsonic ammo, which is pretty much silent, but will not cycle an semi auto action! Then you have the advantages of full power .22 high velocity ammo for awesome performance on small game!
 

cigars

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Some of those air guns are actually pretty fun to shoot. The larger ones will shoot .45 caliber, but you need the air tank set up for recharging. Gamo makes some pretty potent .22 Cal rifles. There are others. Air rifles have come a long way though since my old Crossman 760.
 
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An air rifle will compliment your .22lr more than replace it. Larger critters like racoons your better off with a .22lr. Smaller rodents I like an air rifle better. Especially around the house and shop. I have owned .177, .22 and .25 caliber springer air rifles and like the .22 caliber best. Spring piston rifles can get heavy also, nothing like a 10/22. I like the PCP airguns now. The Benjamin Marauder pistol works great for me. Super light and hits the small critters hard. It's has a silencer so you really hear the pellet thump the target. I also shot a break barrel air rifle as a teenager when we lived in the city limits in our backyard. Some would shoot in their basements. Some advantages over firearms, at least when I was younger.
 

BSAshooter

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After I started shooting pcp airguns, I stopped shooting my .22's. Then eventually, sold my .22 rifles & just shot airguns. Here's why, I have confirmed kills on ground squirrels out to 100 yds. I said confirmed kills, I mean dead bodies. Sound suppressed, mouse fart quiet. If I miss, squirrels just keep standing there because no noise to scare them. Plus I can practice short range in my garage. And most importantly, it's FUN. Now the bad news, I shoot high end airguns. They cost 4x more than a 10/22 rifle. If you don't have a fair amount of $$$ you can't get into this type of shooting.
 

Alexx1401

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I'm considering replacing my Ruger 10-22 with a .22 air rifle. It looks like I can find one that has enough energy to kill small game. I would guess the biggest limitation is going to be distance.

Has anyone else done this? If so, how did it go?
I learned a while back to stop selling my .22's :)
Lost track of how many 10/22's I have had, sell them, years later buy another. Now I did almost buy one of the Gammo multiple shot, break action .22 Cal. Air rifles while back. Was having a rat problem. Dogs used to keep them cleared out but they are getting old. Would spot them in the back yard at night and sometimes even daylight. Loading a live trap was a PITA and some seemed to learn to avoid it. Looked at some videos of the Gammo and it was QUITE impressive for about the cost of a base 10/22. Only reason it's still in my Amazon list is I instead got the neighborhood cats to come by. Started putting out "human grade" catnip in the drive. Several cats started showing up going nuts for it. Soon they were prowling the back yard too and the rats of course are long gone now.
Those little Gammo would have no problem taking small game though and the accuracy and range was impressive when I watched some testing them.
 

Reno

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While not replacing my .22 rifles ...I have also wondered about small game with a Air Rifle...
Many options are out there ... I really like the RWS 34 in .22 caliber...but can't afford one , yet...:D
Andy
This +100.

Do not go cheap on air rifles.

Then immediately replace the optic on it.

I owned an RWS Dianna back in NV for killing pigeons around the neighborhood. Was amazingly accurate up to 25-50 yards.

Like 22 rimfire, 17 and 22 air guns require testing out lots of different pellets to find one capable of good accuracy.
 
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As other have said before, each type has it's purpose. Got into air rifles a few years ago during the great 22lr famine and had a blast with them. I seem to shoot my 10/22s more overall, but I'm looking at some $2k air rifles that might change my habits!

I would recommend going the PCP route. The Air Force rifles and the Benjamin Marauder are good starting points to get into PCP shooting. Both are quiet, eat most pellets without issue, and put out good power. Just remember to factor in a tank or a pump with your initial purchase.
 
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I rediscovered air rifles during "the famine" as well (great name for it!) and found that with the right setup, they're just as fun/challenging as any powder burner! As with powder burners, just one won't do... as others have suggested here, some of these "toys" develop surprising power- sometimes you'll want something weak (I have an old Crosman pump), sometimes you want power but don't want to bother with external pumps or tanks (RWS 48 anyone?) then there are times when a PCP is the only correct answer...

I hardly ever use .22 rimfire anymore, but that's okay- we don't have to totally abandon one to enjoy the other, right? I will confess that the "toy" I'm lusting after right now is an FX Impact... quiet, quick (straight-pull bolt-action repeater), powerful (for an airgun) but sadly, more expensive than most M1As...
 

etrain16

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Does it have to be either/or? I can see reasons to own both. And I do. I have 2 break-barrel .22 cal air rifles, a Benjamin and a Hatsan. Both are big guns, and both hit hard. I wouldn't hesitate taking small game with either rifle. And while it was mentioned above that you can think of them as a 'suppressed .22', I would caution that's not necessarily the case - some of the air rifles can be quite loud. And if you go supersonic with the pellet (a definite issue with .177 cal models, and some .22 models), you're going to get the same loud 'crack' you get from a regular .22lr.

Still, they are a lot of fun to shoot, and can be had for less than the price of a 10/22, depending on what you're looking for. Of course, you can pay more than the cost of an M1A for high-end models too.

Unless $$ are really tight and you have to choose either/or, I would say keep the 10/22 and get the air gun. The 10/22 may still have uses beyond what you've considered so far. Just a thought.
 

Taco_lean

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I'm considering replacing my Ruger 10-22 with a .22 air rifle. It looks like I can find one that has enough energy to kill small game. I would guess the biggest limitation is going to be distance.

Has anyone else done this? If so, how did it go?
A good German .177 cal will kill a squirrel at 50 yards easy. Past that not sure. Depends on the pellet and shot placement.

I wouldn't replace the 10/22 for training since you can shoot a lot more with the 10/22.

Break barrel pellet guns can also be delicate. Soft barrel and big springs.
 
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Both of my PCP Marauders have built in supressors. The sound of the pellet hitting the squirrels is louder than the airguns themselfs. A nice thump.

And I agree with etrain, the faster unspressed airguns can get loud. Over 1280fps at sea level and you'll get the loud crack. Or if you over lube your piston the oil ignites and it has a loud crack and smoke comes out the barrel.
 
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etrain is absolutely right- keep the 10/22! You can build your own decently-performing pump or PCP for silly cheap using Crosman 1322 or 2240 parts. It's fun and you can build it up a little at a time to spread out the cost, but you'll need to do a little research to make sure it's safe- highly compressed air should be respected.

My brother and I were breaking in my Marauder-esque frankengun and had lined up a row of spent 12ga hulls as targets- a chipmunk appeared on the rail we were shooting at, and each shot would send a hull 20' into the air... the chipmunk would just turn and stare at the space left by the now-vacant shotgun shell. We didn't go after him, but knocked 5- or 6 hulls off the rail before he finally wandered off! A moderated barrel is practically a must with those PCPs, and it really does make a huge difference. No NFA registration foolishness required as long as it's permanently attached and can't be leveraged on any powder gun.
 
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I don't see the point personally. I think a 10/22 loaded with CCI quiet and the Volquartsen Firefly Bolt(designed to cycle CCI quiet and subsonic reliably) would accomplish the same goal while being just as quiet also faster follow up shots. As for leaving brass they make make brass catchers for a reason.
 

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