A Cute Browning .22
And A Letter
Dear Mr. Editor: I am taking a subscription just so I can cancel it. I am deeply offended. Offended and indignant. One of your so-called “experts” referred to the Browning 1911-22 as “cute.” Firearms are not cute. They are tools. They have no personality. You’re no better than anti-gun types who demonize guns with terms like “assault weapon” and “sniper rifIe.” You are helping the anti-gunners, betraying your readers, setting a bad example for the children, scaring the horses, causing anxiety and sleep disorder, and just generally guilty of bad form.
There, I’ve said it, so there’s no need to write Editor Roy a scathing letter. Because against all my better instincts, knowing full well the grievous nature of my sin — I am labeling the Browning 1911-22 “cute.”
I know our own Duke Venturino covered this nifty gun not long ago, but we simply couldn’t resist another look. This little Browning is a copy of the John Browning-designed US Pistol, Model of 1911A1, but scaled down in size to 85 percent of the original. Rather than .45 ACP, it’s chambered for the .22 LR. Obviously it isn’t an exact copy in every respect. Rather than the tilt-lock mechanism of the .45 it’s a straight blowback. The frame and slide are made of alloy, keeping weight at 1 pound (empty).
The barrel is steel-lined; the breech area and feed-ramp are steel and a steel breechface/firing pin/extractor housing is pinned in the slide. Operating components subject to wear such as the hammer and sear, thumb safety, slide stop, magazine housing and magazine latch are steel.
The pistol came in a very nice soft pistol rug, with labels containing the signature of John M. Browning and “1911 – 2011 100 Years”. My first impression on opening the case was, “Hey, is this thing ever cu- I mean, curiously, it isn’t a full-size .22.” If what you want is a same size/weight .22 for cheaper practice with a 1911-style pistol, this probably isn’t the one you want. But, this one stands on its own merits.
I ran about 250 rounds of several types and brands of ammunition from CCI, Federal, Remington, and Winchester; plated high-speed solids and hollowpoints, standard velocity target loads with lead bullets. The magazine capacity is 10 rounds, and the 1911-22 functioned perfectly, with never even a hint of a malfunction.
Operating controls — grip safety, thumb safety, slide stop, magazine release — are located and operate the same as on a real 1911. There’s one additional feature, a magazine safety; and everything functioned reliably.
By Dave Anderson
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