The Ruger LCP is one of the most popular concealed-carry firearms on the market. It’s designed as a .380 pocket pistol. Ruger had great success with this model and has pretty much owned that market. They decided to expand on this success and introduce the Ruger LCP II in .22 LR. This is our Ruger LCP II .22 LR review.
Table of contents
|Metrics||Ruger LCP II .22 LR (Lite)|
|Weight w/ no mag (Oz)||9.7|
|Weight w/ empty mag (Oz)||11.0|
|Weight w/ full mag (Oz)||12.2|
|Height (top of slide to bottom of magazine baseplate) (Inches)||3.92|
|Width of grip (Inches)||.9|
|Width of slide (Inches)||.82|
|Width across controls (Inches)||.94|
This firearm could have multiple roles. It could work well as a small training firearm for people with smaller hands that want the lightweight recoil of a .22 or as a training alternative if you want to use cheaper ammo. The lightweight recoil on this gun makes it a good carry option as well. I know some may disagree with this, but .22 can be a valid caliber for self-defense.
The Ruger LCP is a very small gun with a very short barrel. This means you’re not going to have a lot of room for the gunpowder to burn. 380 isn’t exactly known as a man-stop. Any gun in this size class is going to be what I would consider a compromise.
With .380 ACP, the Ruger LCP is exceptionally hard to shoot well. In .22, it’s a very easy gun to shoot. This means you’re going to be able to be exceptionally accurate using the Ruger LCP II in .22. This is a viable concealed carry platform. If you’re using this gun for concealed carry, it’s going to work exceptionally well in a couple of scenarios. As stated before, this gun is a compromise.
So, it’s going to work well when you don’t have a belt or the option to carry a larger firearm. This gun weighs only 12.2 ounces fully loaded with 10 rounds of .22 caliber velocitors. This lightweight makes it an excellent gun for carrying when you’re not wearing a belt. It also makes it a great option for other positions where weight may be an issue.
IWB (Inside-Waistband) Carry
Carrying the Ruger LCP II .22 at the IWB position is going to be easy from a concealment standpoint. As long as you’re not wearing skin-tight clothing, the short grip on the Ruger LCP II will conceal fairly easily. If you’re doing an activity like jogging or any other type of cardio where you have a lot of movement, the gun’s lightweight can be a major benefit. It’ll allow you to carry a gun when you otherwise couldn’t. This gun also works well for any other kind of working out.
Pocket carry is what the Ruger LCP is known for and the LCP II in .22 is no exception. This small little gun will fit well in a pocket. One thing I will mention that could be an issue is that the magazine on the Ruger LCP II .22 is slightly extended. This could make carrying in a pocket slightly harder to draw. This is probably going to be one of my biggest complaints in this review overall.
If you’re like me and like to randomly carry a gun in a cowboy boot, then the Ruger LCP II in .22 is an excellent option. The gun is extremely lightweight, so it’s not going to cause discomfort like heavier guns may. As I said earlier, it’s also small enough to conceal really well.
The Ruger LCP II in .22 has a 10-round capacity. This is a lot larger than the normal six-round capacity you get in .380 ACP versions. So, not only do you get a decent amount of ammo but the gun is also lightweight with low recoil.
I was pleasantly surprised to find this was a very quick gun to load a new magazine into. The gun itself doesn’t have much of a bevel on the magazine well, but your hand acts as a bevel instead. As long as you remove your middle finger from the grip, you’re not going to have any trouble seeing the magazine itself. However, if you try to keep your middle finger in place, it will likely cause interference and prevent you from fully seating the magazine.
The general feel of this gun isn’t quite as good as I would hope. It feels just like the regular LCP II, but I’ve also never been a fan of its ergonomics. The gun works and you can definitely hold it in your hand well and get a steady amount of recoil control, but the grip isn’t what I’d call comfortable. It’s very square and blocked off. It makes the grip on a Glock seem somewhat ergonomic.
The good news is that it’s sized in a way that’ll work for hands of all sizes. If you have absolutely massive hands, you might have some issues, but otherwise, you should have no problem shooting this gun. If you specifically have smaller hands, it might feel like this gun was built for you.
The texture on the Ruger LCP II is actually pretty decent. It feels like it’s got very light grit sandpaper all around it and I feel like that might be the perfect texture for this gun. It actually has a more aggressive texture on the front and backstrap, which is always a nice feature. The texturing on the sides will not cause any discomfort when you’re carrying the gun directly against your skin. I really think Ruger nailed that feature on this firearm.
The sights on the Ruger LCP II are going to be my biggest complaint. They are milled into the slide itself, very low-profile, but are snag-free. That snag-free feature comes at a cost. The front sight is very hard to see and pick up and the notch at the rear is fairly shallow. Honestly, the notch at the rear isn’t that bad, and if the front sight had a little more contrast.
I’d probably find the gun easier to live with. A lot of people will take nail polish or some sort of luminescent paint and paint the front sight. That’s something I’ll probably end up doing with this gun as it will make it much easier to shoot. These sights become an issue when you’re shooting this gun at distance. Close in, they’re easy to pick up and easy to see, but once you get further out it could cause issues.
Another thing to mention is that there is no adjustment in the sights. If you’re trying to make the gun extremely accurate, then you may have issues or have to find ammunition that shoots point of aim, point of impact with these sights. If you were to adjust the windage on this, you would likely have to file out the rear sight to get the notch centered up perfectly. I can’t really say that a pair of dovetailed sights would work better for this gun, but I would like to see something with a little bit higher contrast.
The safety on the Ruger LCP II sits right at the rear of the gun. Frankly, I’m not a fan. Because this gun is in .22, they may have had to ship it with a safety for the protective aspect of the firearm. That said, if they didn’t, they made a mistake by adding a safety on this guy. The safety is set up as a push-style.
You must push forward with your thumb and frankly, it’s not the most ergonomic or easy-to-reach safety. It’s in an okay position. I can definitely use it, but I have to compromise my grip to get the safety off. It’s easier to get the safety on than it is to take it off. The safety also adds to the width of the overall size of the firearm. I don’t find that to be a big deal as it doesn’t really affect concealment.
The safety is also only mounted on the left-hand side, making it easy for a right-handed shooter to use but not for left-handed individuals. I don’t like that either. This gun could potentially be used as a backup gun, which means that a right-hand shooter may draw with the left hand. That makes this gun less than ideal for that application as well.
The magazine release on this gun sits right behind the bottom of the trigger guard like any standard push-button-style magazine release. It’s easy to use and very authoritative; the magazine itself drops right out. You’re going to have to compromise your grip when letting go of the magazine as your hand will likely extend below the grip of the gun itself. That said, this magazine comes out extremely well considering the small size of the grip.
There is a slide stop on this gun located right in front of the safety. That makes the slide stop kind of hard to access without messing with your grip a little bit. That said, for me, it fits perfectly in the middle joint of my thumb, so I can use that to press the slide stop down. This slide stop works excellent for me but for somebody with slightly shorter or smaller hands, it may not work as well.
The slide on this gun is very easy to rack. It has a very light recoil spring and the serrations on the slide are surprisingly good. It has both forward and rear serrations, and I think Ruger did an excellent job with how they shape them and the depth of cut. They are the perfect amount of aggression for a gun like this.
The trigger on the LCP II .22 is a standard rimfire striker-fired trigger. You’ve got very light take-up and then you’re going to reach a point where it’s going to get very, very heavy. That will lead to a wall and it’s going to break in somewhat of a rolling break. The trigger feels more like it has a hard break, but that hard break has a lot of travel, which makes me want to call it rolling.
I know this is going to get confusing, but until you get your hands on this gun, you’re really not going to be able to feel what this trigger feels like. It’s not the best trigger in the world, but it is usable. Considering that it’s rimfire, unfortunately, there aren’t a lot of upgrades you can make to make the trigger better.
The aftermarket for this gun is pretty slim. There are lots of holster options because it will fit in a standard LCP II, but the Ruger LCP isn’t a gun you can easily accessorize. I know there were a couple of accessories for the standard LCP II, but in .22 there’s not really much you can do.
It would be cool to see threaded barrels for this gun because this gun in .22 with a suppressor would be really cool. That said, the barrel system is not a fixed barrel, so I’m not sure how reliable it would be with a suppressor.
When you’re shooting a .22, maintenance is going to be very important. .22s create a lot more debris than most other firearms and don’t have the same amount of pressure so they have to be cleaner to work reliably in most cases. A Ruger LCP II in .22, like its other models, has a slightly unique takedown.
You’ll need to push the barrel and slide back together as one unit and then there’s going to be a little pin on the left-hand side of the gun where most take-down pins sit. You’ll have to use the tip of a pocket knife or a small flathead screwdriver to pop that pin out. Once you do that, the slide will release free and you can then disassemble this gun as you would any other firearm, taking the recoil spring assembly, barrel, and slide apart. From there, you’ll just want to clean it, lubricate it well, and reassemble.
Aesthetically, this gun is somewhat cheap-looking. It’s just a Ruger LCP II in .22. I don’t think you’re going to be buying this gun based on looks. It’s a decent-looking gun, but it’s the equivalent of a modern compact car. It gets the job done, doesn’t look bad, but you’re not going to be talking about how cool it looked 20 years down the road.
Shooting this gun is where it really stands out. The recoil impulse on this firearm is absolutely insane. It’s also a very easy gun to load. The magazine itself is not easiest to load but once you get the magazine fully loaded and you go to rack the slides, you realize how good this gun will be for a variety of shooters. If you’re perhaps a weaker person or somebody with arthritis, this gun would be a great option for you. This would even be a good option to teach younger children to shoot with, assuming they understand the basics of firearm safety and you’re comfortable teaching them with such a short weapon.
When shooting this gun, it’s fairly accurate as long as you’re very close in. Once you start getting further out, for myself, the sights start becoming an issue. This gun is really designed, in my opinion, for three yards and in. You can print a respectable group at five or seven yards, but at three yards, this gun is a tack driver. You can hit dime-sized pieces all day long.
When you get out to 10 yards, the sights become more of an issue. If you’re in full light, they work fine. But if you’re in a compromised lighting position, it’s going to be much harder to print a good groove. That said, as light as the recoil on this gun is, you can literally get a tight grip, point in the direction, and you’ll likely get a very good grouping even if the sights are slightly off. The light recoil makes this gun just incredibly consistent to shoot.
Overall, I really like the Ruger LCP II .22 LR. My biggest complaint with this gun is going to be the general reliability of .22. I’ve seen multiple reports online of this gun not working with certain ammo. I’ve personally found this gun will run anything that I’ve put through it, but with .22s there’s a little more voodoo involved. You’ll need to test your specific example to make sure the ammo you plan to run is reliable. I suggest running some sort of high-quality .22 but realize the ammo that works in your LCP II .22 might not work with your buddy’s gun. This is just par for the course with any of this small of a .22.
I think this is an excellent weapon that will serve you well for concealed carry where you can’t carry a “real gun.” This gun is highly accurate, especially at close distances. That can make a big difference in a self-defense scenario. This gun is also fun to shoot at the range and will work for a wide variety of shooters with different skill levels. I think you’re going to be hard-pressed to find another .22 that is as good in this size class.