I took a chance on the Walther P22 because the size was the most appealing of any of the semi auto .22LR pistols out there. I recall going into a gun shop I frequented and reading the sign “The Walther is cute, the Ruger is better” over the .22LR pistol display case several times. Ignoring the advice from the gun store I bought the one they had. I had wanted to buy one with a chromed slide, but I was in a hurry to make a hasty gun purchase for some reason. Most of my gun buying is much more calculated and researched.
From the very start I was optimistic about the pistol. It felt great in the hand and had a cool, sexy look to it. I had thought that I might suppress it eventually (by paying the $200 tax stamp, etc…), but the main purpose I got it was as a range plinker and a training tool. When I finally got it on the range it was a disappointment. Accuracy was lacking, but even more disturbing was the amount of failures it had. I could not run an entire magazine through this gun without a malfunction (or two, or three, or four…).
Frustrated, I took to the web to investigate. My search results were disappointing. I was not the only one having issues and it seemed that the only ones who were not having issues were shying away from “bulk” ammo which I had been using (Federal and Remington). Furthermore, at a family reunion I went to where most of the men (and a few women) went shooting, a cousin had also brought his new P22. It had similar issues throughout the day and he fed it a variety of different brands of ammo, some bulk, some not. I found this even more discouraging.
In the end, I had put over two bricks of .22LR through mine and saw no improvements in reliability. I tried to convince myself to keep it. That it would make for a good training/teaching tool. Finally, after one last not so fun trip to the range, I couldn’t take it anymore. I’ll admit I never used the better quality .22LR ammo out there (although my cousin had in his with no luck).
I never contacted Walther, I was simply done with this pistol. I cannot tolerate unreliable firearms. I ended up selling it. Luckily for me, the market for these pistols seemed strong and I ended up selling it for more in used condition than I had paid for it brand new. I don’t doubt that some people have reliable samples of these pistols, however, I am led to believe that they are few and far between just based on my experiences and from what I read about other people’s experiences on the net. I truly wanted to like this pistol. I am upset that it didn’t work out.
Let this be a lesson for us all, gun stores are not always full of armchair commandos. Every once in a while, the guy behind the counter actually knows of what he speaks.