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NAA .22 Revolvers

Discussion in 'Handgun Discussion' started by etrain16, May 25, 2016.

  1. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Seems the discussion on guns has been a little light of late here on NWFA (at least it seems that way to me). I thought I'd throw out a topic for discussion. In this case, it's the super compact little NAA Mini .22 revolvers. I got one a while back and it's just been sitting nestled away - honestly, it's so damn small, I have a tendency to forget I have it.

    What got me thinking about it was reading an article or thread somewhere about BUG's, and that's something I've not really given serious thought to. I currently don't own anything smaller than my M&P 9c, so trying to plug in a BUG won't really work with the current collection. Maybe if I get a .380 or even .32 at some point, but for now, that would require another purchase, and I can't do that right now.

    So I decided to pull out that little NAA Mini .22lr revolver. I never really took it seriously as a 'defensive' gun, partially because I have a hard time thinking of .22 as a defensive caliber (not looking to start a debate on that subject here, I know many folks have made good cases for .22 for defense), and partially because it's so small, it can be a little hard to manipulate. But upon doing some reading around the googlywebs, I found some folks made some good arguments not only for the .22 but specifically for the NAA revolvers. One article I read referred to the NAA revolver as the "get off me gun", and noted that some police officers carry them in an easily accessible place for that reason - if they get in a scuffle and can't get to their other weapon(s), they may be able to pull this and with a shot get the space/time to draw a primary. That got me rethinking my carry plan.

    PROs: The gun is tiny. I can actually slip it into that little 'coin pouch' pocket in my jeans and only a bit of the grip sticks out - since I wear my shirts un-tucked 95% of the time, it's easily concealed and doesn't share a pocket with anything else. But, if I do need it in a regular pocket, it's so light that it doesn't bother me. I cannot pocket carry other guns, even an LCP, it just bothers me to have that much size/weight in my pocket. No safety to mess with - just use the NAA safety of dropping the hammer into the notch between the cartridges on the cylinder and you're safe to carry. Back to size, this is one gun that I can carry under just about any circumstance and just about anywhere on my person, and no one is going to know. It's easy to shoot with very little recoil. It also makes a lot of noise, so, at the least, it's likely to disorient someone momentarily if you had to use it defensively. Another bonus is that it's a fairly simply revolver, so not much to go wrong with it. And the cost is reasonable, you can find them used for under $200. I think I paid around $150 for mine. And, at least to the original registered owner, NAA has a lifetime warranty.

    CONs: Single action only, so the hammer must be cocked for each shot. Short barrel, so lower velocity bullet and not spectacular accuracy. 5 shots only and not easy to reload quickly - unless you have the sidewinder model, you must remove the cylinder to reload.

    This is no doubt a very close quarters gun. It's not got spectacular accuracy, but inside 10 feet, it would be hard to miss a person sized target. Would it drop someone? Maybe. Could it kill them? Possibly. Would it stop an attacker? Again, maybe. Those answers all depend on a variety of factors including how susceptible an attacker would be to any resistance. Either way, having it, perhaps in addition to your regular carry, seems to be just one more tool at your disposal for self defense. Kind of like having a knife on hand as well. And from my experience firing it, even though it's just a 'little .22', the thing makes a LOT of noise and would most certainly cause someone immediate pain - likely just enough to give you the space/time to get to your primary gun. I like the 'get off me gun' concept :)

    These guns are, in my opinion, very well made and will last a long time. I think they look very nice too. They actually fit my hands well and shoot easily. I've honestly considered adding a .22 mag to my collection, or maybe sell this one and put the $$ toward a model with the .22 mag and .22 lr cylinders.

    What are your thoughts on these little buggers? Waste of $$? Or do they have a real place in a defensive strategy?

    This is a photo of what I have (not my photo, just from the net) - .22lr with the longer 1 5/8" barrel:

    north-american-arms-cover.jpg
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2016
  2. UserNameInUse

    UserNameInUse SW WA Active Member

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    For me they are nothing more than a novelty, not that there is anything wrong with that.

    Here is a pic of mine next to a Redhawk I recently sold. I can sometimes get on the paper of an 8.5 x 11" target at 7 yards. Mine is the .22LR/.22 Mag version and labeled Spanish Fork, UT which is somewhat less common.

    The .22LR grip is smaller and the cylinder is a bit shorter. So strictly on the novelty aspect I think I would prefer the .22LR version. I've been thinking about offering a trade. Hint, hint. :)

    For something really small to actually carry I'm thinking Gen II Ruger LCP which these days costs about the same but I have to finish paying off something else first.

    150315_0019ces2.jpg
     
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  3. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I may be listening...;)

    Nice Redhawk btw. Do you regret getting rid of it?
     
  4. UserNameInUse

    UserNameInUse SW WA Active Member

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    No regrets on the Redhawk. I tried a lot of different grips and it just never felt right. Also, Ruger's fit and finish is not what it used to be. It got replaced by an older 629.
     
  5. Joe13

    Joe13 NW of Vancouver Opinionated & Blunt Bronze Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    I thought I've seen a grip that folds like a pocket knife sold from the same company. I think that folding grip is bigger then the standard one.


    Also, Hornedy makes a defense round in .22mag that is made for guns with less then a 2" barrel (I have a box or two and I want to say the ballistics advertised are from a 1 7/8" barrel. 40 grain and good ammo.


    I'm a .22lr carrier part time but that little NAA would always be a backup gun for me.

    I would agree that the role it fits best is a get off me gun, but I'd rather things not get to that point so a slightly larger carry piece would be ideal in a BUG IMO. It certainly would not be a critter getter so you would need another .22 for that as well if that's in your plan.


    "love my gp100 6" but it's the slightly older style that came with the rosewood inserts on the grip - can't say what the quality is on the newer ones"
     
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  6. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Perhaps it's even better considered a BUG to your BUG - double backup ;) I don't know what it is about them, but they do have a cool :cool: factor for me. Something about them really gets my attention. Odd isn't it?

    And yes, 6" GP100, that is a darn fine gun, isn't it? :) Even with solid walnut finger grips.
     
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  7. Joe13

    Joe13 NW of Vancouver Opinionated & Blunt Bronze Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    I am a big fan of the oddball stuff as well and want at least one of everything:p



    I swapped out my grips on my GP100 for the hogue all rubber grips because it goes out to the boonies with me on the regular (well less regular now) and I didn't want to ruin the wood. Still keeping the original grips because they are purdy.

    I was just speaking to Rugers fit and finish being good for me but I have an older gun and not a new one.

    I also haven't shot any good colts or s&w's so I can't really say much about it anyway with any certainty - other then when I run out of ammo, it's heavy enough to be deadly, empty, in the right hands:D.
     
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  8. albin25

    albin25 Lewiston Idaho Well-Known Member

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    I've held one with the folding grips and they were surprisingly comfortable.
    They lock in the down and up positions.
    They make it much more functional.

    2261942_01_naa_magnum_folding_pocket_clip_640.jpg
     
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  9. jbett98

    jbett98 NW Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    A good friend of mine had the cool belt buckle just like the one on the video.
    He wore it for years and then one day he looked down and it had fallen off somewhere.
    He never did find it. He hoped some kid hadn't picked it up and played with it, as it was loaded.

     
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  10. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I saw those buckles, thought they were pretty cool, but losing a gun is no bueno. Hopefully a responsible person picked it up.
     
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  11. PaulB47

    PaulB47 Hillsboro Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I have a Wyoming friend who carries one on his belt buckle too. Didn't lose it that I know of, yet. ;)

    I have the Freedom Arms version of this gun.
    http://firearmfun.blogspot.com/2008/10/review-freedom-arms-mini-22.html
    I have tried once or twice to target shoot with it but the bullets are all over the place, can't hit what you are aiming at for beans. And think about it, if you are using it for a "get off me" gun, a knife makes tons more sense for that.

    These are novelty guns, plain and simple. Although I have to admit to a itch for one of those mini-master guns. That 4-inch barrel just might move it into the useful category.
     
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  12. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    All the more reason to carry this plus a knife...

    Honestly, it would take the same kind of fumbling to pull my knife and get the blade open as it would to draw this little gun and pull the hammer. And at zero to say 5 feet, you're going to hit your target.

    I think the main appeal it has for me is that it's so darn small, it's really completely effortless to carry, so, why not? It's just one more tool in your bag to take on whatever may come. And since we never do know what's coming, being further prepared just makes sense to me.

    In saying that, I would never advocate using these as a primary defensive weapon. It's not built for that purpose. But if you need to have deep, deep concealment, it's hard to find something that can pack a similar wallop.
     
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  13. PaulB47

    PaulB47 Hillsboro Well-Known Member

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    I have to question that. This gun is hard to cock and shoot (and hang onto!) even if you are using both hands. Trying it with one - good luck! On the other hand, I have a folder in my pocket, had it for years, use it almost every day and it is definitely in my "muscle memory" by now. Opening it is effortless, access as easy as can be. If I had an attacker that close and had both this gun and the knife in my pocket, I would go for the knife, no question.
     
  14. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Perhaps my experience, with the NAA gun is a little different. I cock and shoot it with one hand, comfortably. From my point of view, it's about equal with respect to the number of steps and the difficulty with using/pulling either one.
     
  15. ogre

    ogre Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    If somebody were to give me one I would be tickled pink but I can't see using it as a BUG because of it's physical size.

    Other than it's novelty factor as a cool, fun, little gun the only use I can see for it would be to use it as an FP-45 Liberator to obtain a better weapon.
     
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  16. sandman1212

    sandman1212 NW Oregon Active Member

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    I carry one with the folding pocket clip as a BUG. I have it for the close up needs, as it is not accurate worth beans, but if needed it is easily accessible and may save my life. As well, I can carry it at work, and it looks like a knife, and nobody is the wiser...rather than possibly being seen with a pistol tucked in a IWB holster that might get me fired.
    I am usually with my wife too, who conceal carries and could back me up;)
     
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  17. Low Marker

    Low Marker Skagit Valley New Member

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    Here's my informal testing with using both the .22 long rifle & .22 magnum. I bought two used about 10 years ago. The .22 was the short length barrel & the .22 magnum the 1 7/8" barrel. After a successful kill of a deer or elk I would shoot into the cranium. The .22 didn't penetrate into the brain of an elk the one time I tried it so I traded it off. Since then the .22 magnum has penetrated fine on two more elk with various bullets including the Hornady.

    I shelved it last month for a new stainless LCP that I much prefer. Testing will continue.
     
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  18. Kaboomer

    Kaboomer Gresham, Oregon Member

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    The Black Widow with the big finger grooved rubber grip is a damn fine little revolver.
     
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  19. boogerhook

    boogerhook Seattle Well-Known Member

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