Hello and welcome back to another edition of The Rimfire Report! This ongoing series is all about the rimfire firearm world and its many guns, shooting sports, and ammunition. Last week we had Sam S. channel his inner Discount Han Solo and told us all about the Charter Arms Explorer II AR7 pistol. Much like the AR7 rifle, the Explorer II is meant to be compact, and portable but while achieving that it sacrifices consistency and reliability. Despite its less than stellar reputation in these areas, many of you and myself included want Henry Repeating Arms to come out with a modernized version that improves in these areas, and even if it winds up being an extra $100 or so, I think a majority of us would be willing to foot the bill to have an accurate, reliable, and interesting survival rimfire pistol. This week we’re getting back to our ammunition testing series with the big brother to Federal’s Personal Defense Punch 22LR – Personal Defense Punch 22 WMR. Luckily, I still have my Bear Creek Arsenal 22 WMR upper, and I still have access to the recently released Walther WMP for testing. Most of you know the drill here but for those that don’t, what we are testing here is how the ammunition performs in ballistics gelatin, and this time we’ve finally been able to get some support from the good folks at Clear Ballistics!
The Rimfire Report: Federal Personal Defense Punch Rimfire .22 WMR
PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS – FEDERAL PERSONAL DEFENSE PUNCH RIMFIRE 22 WMR
- Caliber: 22 WMR
- Grain Weight: 45
- Muzzle Velocity: 1000
- Bullet Style Punch: JHP
- Ballistic Coefficient: .136
- Package Quantity: 50
- Nickel-plated lead-core bullet
- Projectile profile and composition optimized for the deepest penetration through short-barrel handguns
- Rigorous function testing ensures reliability
- Nickel-plated case for ease of extraction and corrosion resistance
- 50-count boxes
- Maximum velocity for energy and penetration: 22 WMR offers 1,000 fps muzzle velocity through 2-inch barrel, 1,800 fps through rifle barrels
- Product Link: https://www.federalpremium.com/rimfire/personal-defense-punch-rimfire/11-PD22WMR1.html
- Price Per Box: $25.99 ($0.52 cpr)
As mentioned earlier, the two firearms we’re using will be the Bear Creek Arsenal 22 WMR upper with a 16″ barrel and the Walther WMP which features a 4.5″ barrel. Each test consisted of a series of shots into a 16″ block of Clear Ballistics 10% FBI Spec Gelatin from a distance of 10 feet. As opposed to my homemade stuff, this Clear Ballistics gelatin is incredibly consistent and requires no calibration as it is pre-calibrated from the factory and also requires no refrigeration.
RESULTS PERSONAL DEFENSE PUNCH 22 WMR – WALTHER WMP
- Avg Vel: 1,811-fps
- Max Vel: 1,970-fps
- Min Vel: 1,690 -fps
- Extreme Spread: 280-fps
- Std Dev: 143-fps
- No. of Failures: 0
- Min Penetration Depth: 13-inches
- Max Penetration Depth: 15-inches
- Average Penetration Depth: 14-inches
- Expansion: All rounds expanded
European Ammo Brands
As you can see in the picture above, each of the rounds penetrated to a sufficient depth, expanded, and even created some serious wound channels along the way. The rounds from the pistol created at least two large roughly 2″ temporary wound cavities within the first 12 inches of the block and at least two of the rounds shed part of their segmented hollow point and each of those obviously created their own wound channel which is a boon to lethality when it comes to creating more damage across multiple organs. However, none of these smaller pieces made it more than 10″ into the gel block.
RESULTS PERSONAL DEFENSE PUNCH 22 WMR – BCA 16″ 22 WMR UPPER
- Avg Vel: 1,833-fps
- Max Vel: 2,020-fps
- Min Vel: 1,799 -fps
- Extreme Spread: 221-fps
- Std Dev: 97-fps
- No. of Failures: 0
- Min Penetration Depth: 11-inches
- Max Penetration Depth: 13-inches
- Average Penetration Depth: 12-inches
- Expansion: All rounds expanded
It might be a little difficult to tell from the photos but what happened with the 16″ barrel kind of surprised me. While the rifle-length barrel does give the 22 WMR Punch a bit more heft, you’ll notice that the average penetration depth dropped a tad bit. However, looking at the photo you’ll notice that the permanent wound cavities left by these rounds are much larger in terms of width and depth – starting about an inch or two earlier (basically, as soon as the round entered the target) and ending about an inch or two after. More bullet fragments could also be found and they were nearly all found within the first 5 inches of the target. It is because of this reduced mass that the rounds did not penetrate as deep as the ones from the pistol but I still think that this is an improvement across the board with the rounds being more consistent, with less extreme spread, and a tighter standard deviation when shot out of a rifle length barrel.
The projectile on the far left was found in roughly the same place as the other two and I initially thought that it had over-penetrated and exited the gel block. The bullet has less than 50% of its original weight retained (about 23-grains worth)
A great YouTube channel Tools&Targets was able to give me some supplemental data via his video where he used a Heritage 22 WMR revolver with a 2-5/8″ barrel which gets us closer to the 2″ metric that is on the box of ammo. All of his rounds exceeded 1,000 fps however, the wound cavities are much smaller as you’d expect from the lower velocities. The Federal Personal Defense Punch ammunition continues to impress me, however, I am a bit concerned about the wild extreme spread we are seeing from this particular ammunition. In contrast, the 22LR Punch ammo featured much tighter spreads in terms of both standard deviation, and extreme spread.
As always, I’d like to hear your thoughts and observations on Federal Premium’s Personal Defense Punch 22 WMR ammunition. Would you be comfortable carrying around a 2″ pistol with this stuff in it for self-defense or is something with a longer barrel like the Walther WMP seem like a better fit? Tell us your thoughts down in the comments and thanks as always for stopping by to read The Rimfire Report! We’ll see you all next week!
I would also like to extend a personal thanks to the folks at Clear Ballistics for providing me with the 10% FBI Spec Gel Block used in this article, be sure to check them out if you’re interested in doing some of your own gel tests and be sure to check back here at TFB for more ammunition gel tests now supported by Clear Ballistics!