TX22 semi-auto pistol

is truly state-of-the-art rimfire

Let’s go back maybe a half-century, maybe a bit more, to the time when I got to first-fire a .22-caliber semi-auto pistol — an original Ruger Standard — before it became known as the MKI. It had a tapered barrel, fixed sights, nine-round magazine and the magazine release was located on the butt. It sure shot good though!

The fact a smallbore pistol could be accurate, easy to fire, a little less easy to load and be devastating on small game such as rabbits or raccoons fascinated me. The only drawback seemed to be the pistols of the era were on the heavy side, but they were a hoot to shoot!

Like all things, pistol design has advanced with time and technology. I’ve seen rimfire pistols with bull barrels, aluminum frames and polymer frames. With the advancements in design, pistols got better.

Now comes the Taurus TX22, touted by the company as “the most advanced .22 LR rimfire pistol on the market.” Well, let’s have a look.

There’s an interesting video available at the Taurus site featuring Jason Pittman, the company’s engineering manager for new product development, and Taurus Team Captain Jessie Harrison. Harrison’s comment, “Competition ready, even if you’re not” appears on the website. That’s gutsy. It also appears to be spot-on.

Weighing 17.3 oz. empty, the TX22 is a single-action-only, striker-fired pistol with a 7075 aluminum slide that has a black hard-anodized finish. There are wide cocking serrations front and rear. It has an adjustable rear sight with white dots and a white dot front sight. The thumb safety, available on certain models, is ambidextrous.

The grip frame is polymer with a textured surface front, back and both sides to prevent slipping even in damp weather. Its 4.1″ barrel is threaded to accept a muzzlebrake or suppressor and it comes with a threaded collar.

The TX22 has a 5-lb. trigger pull. The trigger shoe is solid and smooth, and the trigger offers a quick reset for fast shooting.

At its widest point, the TX22 is 1.25″ wide, and the overall length is 7.06″. There’s a molded Picatinny rail at the front of the frame, and the triggerguard is slightly recessed at the rear to allow the middle finger of the gun hand to come in a little higher on the grip frame. There’s something else worth noting about the grip: A slight bump on the front strap creates a shallow finger groove.

Magazine capacity, depending upon local regulations, is either 10 or 16 rounds. Two magazines come with each pistol.

What I noted in the video was this pistol is very easy to take down and field strip for cleaning. Where semi-autos are concerned, I like simple. Just hold the slide firmly with four fingers and the thumb rests on the upper rear of the grip while pulling down on the disassembly latch located on the frame ahead of and above the trigger. Press and release the trigger and push the slide forward a half-inch and the slide lifts off the grip. From there, remove the recoil spring and then the barrel for a thorough cleaning.

The magazine may also be disassembled for cleaning by pressing inward on a pin in the floorplate, sliding it off carefully and allowing the spring to come out. Then remove the follower. To reassemble after cleaning, it’s just a matter of reversing the process.

I can’t say this is the best .22-caliber semi-auto pistol ever manufactured. It’s a pretty subjective topic. What I can say is the TX22 is rather well thought-out with features today’s handgunner will appreciate. It has all the earmarks of being so pleasing to shoot it’ll likely earn a reputation as a “lead hose” because you’ll just keep shooting and reloading until the ammunition is gone.

For more info: www.taurususa.com, Ph: (800) 327-3776.

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