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Old 07-05-2010, 21:01   #1
JoeInKS
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Walther SP22 M3 range report

Just got back from the local pistol range after shooting my new Walther SP22 M3. I purchased the gun after seeing what I consider to be a spectacular deal for a 'ray gun'.

After having received it and initially looking at it, I was in love with the weird, space-age look to it. My initial impression was that it was a very nice looking and well put together pistol. Contrary to the P22, which I consider to be too small based on size and feel, this thing is sized for a person with a decent sized palm / grip. It just felt good in hand. Nice size grip, nice feel, 'nice' look.

I cleaned it as indicated prior to the initial shooting following the manual's direction. Admittedly, I felt that a variety of things were missing from the directions so I called Walther, (really Smith and Wesson) and asked for clarity on a few things. One of which was the simplicity in the take down. Step 1 - remove the top aluminum housing. Step 2 - clean. Just seemed too simple. S&W said that it was as far as I had to go for cleaning (contrary to a Ruger Mark III where an engineering major seems to be necessary in comparison). Bore snake, easy clean, lubricate with a light gun oil all metal to metal contact areas,........... go shoot already!!!!


Well, I loaded the darn thing with standard, cheap-o Walmart .22LR as a baseline. The initial trigger feeling was long take-up, instant resistance, and a bit of overtravel. The trigger pull needed was minimal and instant. To get the second shot initially away, there was a bit of reverse travel needed but it was light and crisp to again fire. Quite a different feeling from my Ruger Mark II target and Beretta 87 but still very nice. The sights are a little different in that the wide rear gap and minimal front gap took some getting used to. Luckily, the front sight is 3-way adjustable so I played with it to get the widest version possible.

I shot about 100 rounds getting used to the feel. I REALLY liked it. Not one issue other than the fact that the trigger safety can be somewhat easily engaged and the gun stops to shoot. Just make sure that you depress the trigger fully from right - to - left and it'll shoot. Another thing that I noticed is that this pistol ejects the spent bullets like no other gun I own. It throws them out violently and if there's a nearby wall, expect a hot peace of brass to come at you. So, I just moved further into the shooting lane to avoid the rebounds.

The pistol feels light in hand. Remarkably, there was pretty much no muzzle rise that I could really feel throwing me off from the second shot. Yes it's a .22LR but there's always at least a little flip. Being as light as it was, there was surprisingly nothing noticeable.

I tried some Federal, Remington, CCI, etc. and the pistol did not fail to shoot and shoot well. I got out my bags and pistol rest and tried to do some accuracy tests. At 15 yards I was easily shooting sub 3" groups. Felt great about the purchase!!! Can't wait to get more acclimated to the trigger.

The M3 allows you to adjust the trigger for pre- and post-travel as well as trigger pressure needed supposedly. I started to play around with each. After about 450 rounds, I had run out of bullets to finalize the adjustment (admittedly the entire time wasn't spent adjusting.......... there were quite a few sessions of just shooting up stuff and having fun). The trigger is tremendously better at this point but I'll need to do more adjustment to find what I like best. There's a really nice reset sensation right now that I don't want to mess with too much but I want to see if I can reduce the reset distance a little more.

All in all, it is a terrific purchase and I am pleasantly surprised by its quality feel and capabilities. Thank you Walther for making the Logan's Run gun of my dreams. For the price I paid, I feel like I have a pistol worth several hundreds more and that can compete with my Beretta 87 quite well.

A word of warning though, for those of you who, like me, are used to shooting with a thumbs forward grip, you will be punished by this gun if you try that with the SP22. The charging tabs are situated beneath the barrel and directly in front of the trigger. If you don't mind your thumb, it'll get a nice jolt when you shoot. Thankfully I was only 'nicked' a couple of times and didn't get a direct hit. It would have REALLY hurt.



Scale of 1 - 10.............

Currently an 8 with a great potential for a 9 with some more adjustment.
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Old 07-05-2010, 21:24   #2
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Glad to hear you like it and thanks for the nice writeup!
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Old 07-06-2010, 18:12   #3
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Very interesting. I was just looking at one of those the other day, good price too.

Are they made of quality steel or zinc alloy castings like the P22?
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Old 07-06-2010, 18:31   #4
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The outer barrel / slide cover seems to be made of an aluminum alloy while the barrel, guide rod, grip / fire mechanisms seem to be steel.

I just took it apart again for the first post shoot cleaning and I was very glad to see that there was no noticeable wear on the inside of the aluminum housing. It's really easy to clean with a small brush, a bore snake, and some CLP.

Try it, for the money I feel that I'd be hard pressed to find anything better.
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Old 07-06-2010, 19:02   #5
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I searched around a little since reading your report, saw a few disassembled pics. It looks like a quality gun. Only complaints center around the trigger, which can be adjusted on most versions.
I'll have to look at it some more, next time I hit the shop.

(almost daily)

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Old 07-09-2010, 22:39   #6
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Update:

Been back to the range with the gun a couple more times since last post. Finally got the trigger adjusted to where I like it best. Nice, small, initial take-up, gentle trigger weight with crisp break, overtravel is just a bit long, and a nice positive reset. Shoots really well. Shoot it against three heavier guns (S&W 22A-1, Ruger MkII, and Beretta Neos) and it definitely has the least recoil / flip. Not sure why (maybe best grip of the three, something in the dynamics of the gun, etc.) but it sure gets on target easily.

Now if I could only take advantage of the accuracy of the gun.... next task.

Recommendations:

GET ONE!
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Old 07-11-2010, 23:43   #7
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Sounds interesting but I'm confused by how the sighting system interacts with the rail system. I haven't seen one of these in real life, best I could find was a semi-side view from the owners manual. That looks like the base of the Picatinny would block a lot of the sight. How much can you see the iron sights with it installed? Could you grab a pic of what you'd see sighting down the barrel?
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Old 07-12-2010, 19:53   #8
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Originally Posted by GPalmer View Post
Sounds interesting but I'm confused by how the sighting system interacts with the rail system. I haven't seen one of these in real life, best I could find was a semi-side view from the owners manual. That looks like the base of the Picatinny would block a lot of the sight. How much can you see the iron sights with it installed? Could you grab a pic of what you'd see sighting down the barrel?
Unfortunately, you are reading the post of a person, probably one of the last, that does not have a cell phone, digital camera, gaming system, etc. One day I may try one of those new-fangled thingamabobs you youngins use. So I'll try to describe how it works......

Picture looking down a long channel where the edges of the channel are the Picatinny rail while the center is a cut-out. At the end nearest you eyes there is section that goes across from one side to the other of rail at just under the edge of the rail. At the center, there is a square cutout to represent the typical rear sight on most guns. At the far end of the channel stands a trigonal where each edge is a different width. This sight's width can be changed by simply turning the sight to one of the other two sides. Looking at the sight from the back using the largest width from post sight, there is still a bit of space to be seen around the front post (which I like).

Sort of looks like the following with the left and right sides being the picatinny rail.

http://www.jarviser.co.uk/hawc/image...ht_picture.png

Hope that I have helped.

Last edited by JoeInKS; 07-13-2010 at 06:08..
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Old 07-12-2010, 21:56   #9
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Yup, that was pretty much what I was expecting but I wanted to confirm it. I don't love the looks but I just might get one next time I'm in the market. It sounds like it's a real shooter and if it is, I can live with the looks.
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Old 07-13-2010, 06:09   #10
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Originally Posted by GPalmer View Post
Yup, that was pretty much what I was expecting but I wanted to confirm it. I don't love the looks but I just might get one next time I'm in the market. It sounds like it's a real shooter and if it is, I can live with the looks.
C'Mon the looks were the best part (in a strange sort of way). Honestly, I just wanted something different and luckily the price dropped dramatically for a sale so what the heck........
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Old 07-13-2010, 09:09   #11
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I don't know about that, I'd need to see it "in the flesh" as it were...
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Old 07-24-2010, 07:32   #12
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Anybody got a pic of this badboy? I'm sure I've seen it but just want to confirm.
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Old 07-24-2010, 10:12   #13
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Rimfire Forum

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Old 07-24-2010, 21:51   #14
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I am the new owner of an SP22 M3 and its my first gun. I took it to the range today and had a blast. I only shot the cheap federal from Walmart and from what I can tell, it did great. At 7 yards I was hitting what I was aiming at . As for grouping, mine are still huge. Went through 400 rounds and had a few FTF's, but I reloaded them and they all fired the second time around.

I do have one question about the gun. Where can I get better sights? These don't have any dots or anything and it makes aiming kind of difficult. I'm thinking about buying the scope Walther makes.

Have you considered any accessories for your gun? Nanopoint perhaps?

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Old 08-06-2010, 05:50   #15
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Sorry, missed this last post.

I purchased the Nano for it and it works great on the pistol. There's also a laser available that fits the style of the gun. Also there is a fiber sight pair made for this and it's also available from cdnninvestments.com

Have fun
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Old 08-06-2010, 06:18   #16
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Thanks for the response. I already bought both of those from CDNN. I will be trying the new setup out this weekend.

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Old 08-06-2010, 16:35   #17
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Great..... make sure to PM me or post back here with the results. I am curious about the laser and fiber sights. I like the Nano, but if the results are good, I'll get those aw well for plinking.
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