I stopped by the Taurus booth at the Shooting Hunting Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show to see what might be new. Taurus has been a leader in innovative products. I have had good luck with several Taurus revolvers and semi-auto pistols in the past, so I was hopeful for 2019. The Taurus TX22 is a new, mid size .22 Long Rifle target pistol that weight 17.3 ounces, and sports a 16-shot magazine. A 10-round version is also available for individuals living in jurisdictions mandating such nonsense. The Taurus TX22 pistol will invariably be compared to the new Kel-Tec CP33, so let’s get right to it.
Both the TX22 and CP33 have raised the bar for magazine capacity in a .22 pistol. However, they are considerably different guns, filling different niches. As previously mentioned, the Taurus TX22 features a 16-round magazine. This is about a 25 percent increase over the commonly available 12-round magazines for some models of Smith and Wesson and Walther. However, the Kel-Tec CP33 lands on the scene with a whopping 32 rounds in a flush fit magazine!
Although billed as a target pistol, those interested in a pocket .22 may prefer the the Taurus due to its smaller size. No one would claim the Kel-Tec is pocket-sized. In fact, the Kel-Tec CP33 is a standard-sized, lightweight pistol that tips the scales at 24 ounces. It is also 10.6 inches long. .22 LR would not be my first choice for home defense, but I have met others who for one reason or another, have opted for the low recoil cartridge. If that fits your situation, 32 rounds on board sounds rather appealing.
The Taurus TX22 has real pocket potential. It is only a bit over seven inches long, and 5.44 inches high. The TX22 has a 4.1-inch barrel. The barrel is threaded. The threads are inside the envelope of the slide. An adapter for standard 1/2×28 threads is included with the pistol.
Jason Pitman, the designer of the TX22 was kind enough to go over some of the TX22’s features. The barrel of the TX22 is not fixed. It is designed not to move during firing or when the action is cycled. The take-down is very similar to that of the Glock. First, ensure the pistol is not loaded, then double and triple check it. Once you have confirmed the gun is clear, pull the trigger. The disassembly tabs may then be depressed, after which the slide can be pulled forward and off the frame.
The TX22 comes with adjustable sights, and what Taurus dubbed the Taurus Pittman Trigger system. The trigger breaks at about five pounds, or a little less. The trigger has very definite staging. A trigger safety is included, but not visible.
The trigger was as good as promised. Taking up the slack actually equates to about the half or so of trigger pull. On target, you essentially have a two pounds trigger. It is one that you will have to feel to wrap your head around completely, but it works.
The slide of the TX22 is a combination of high strength aluminum and hardened steel. The steel is used for the bolt face. I cannot see any reason why it would not outlast the number of rounds a shooter would ever put through it. The magazine has been designed to prevent rim-lock. That’s how it packs 16 cartridges into the relatively short magazine. According to Pitman, Taurus is looking into including a loading tool. The advantages would be twofold—easier loading and less chance of operator error while loading the magazine. The Taurus TX22 ships standard with two magazines.
Concealing the Taurus TX22 should be easy, if that is your preference. However, due to the caliber this is more of training gun in my opinion. Closely mimicking the size of Glock 19 with less recoil and a lower ammunition cost is appealing. The TX22 would also hold its own for a rimfire “pinhead” shoot. Being new, you’ll likely have to opt of a general purpose or generic holster, at least for awhile. Popularity and purpose will dictate whether manufacturers will start building a molded holster for the guns.
For those wanting a little more, Pitman stated that tooling and design were made in such a way as to allow future expansion to variants such as a five- or six-inch barrel TX22. That could be a game changer for rimfire competitors in the future.
Do you train with a .22 LR pistol? How does the Taurus TX22 compare to your favorite rimfire pistol? Share your answers in the comment section.
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