Ammo Testing Rat Shot – CCI 22 Long Rifle #12 Shot

Ammo Testing Rat Shot - CCI 22 Long Rifle #12 Shot
Ammo Testing Rat Shot – CCI 22 Long Rifle #12 Shot

U.S.A.-(Ammoland.com)- 22 LR shotshells are at the bottom of the totem pole when it comes to power, but this niche item has its uses. Nominally, 22 LR shot loads comprise a capsule of small pellets inserted into a 22 LR case in place of a single projectile. The shot size is very small, #9 or #12–far smaller than conventional #7.5 target loads you might find in a conventional shotgun shell. We are also dealing with a small case that supports only a small amount of powder and shot. The purpose of these loads is often described by its nicknames: rat shot, snake shot, etc. Rat shot allows you to turn your 22 LR rifle or pistol into a very-short range shotgun so as to kill pests without much noise or damage beyond the target.

Kill the pest without putting holes in things you don't want holes in.

Beyond pest control, 22 LR rat shot is pretty common in my neck of the woods. Until a few years ago, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries allowed hunters–particularly bow hunters–to carry a 22 caliber pistol as a sidearm, provided that it was loaded with rat shot. That makes sense given the abundance of venomous snakes, but I doubt it would do much to a larger animal like a coyote or cougar. So I got to wondering how effective is rat shot? I just happened to have all I needed for a fun little test–some rat shot, left-over 10% ballistic gelatin, and a beat-up Heritage Rough Rider.

22 shotshells come in two different configurations. Some, like Federal's offering, consists of a capsule of shot with an elongated brass casing crimped over it. CCI's shotshells use a thin blue plastic case–sorta like a pill–with the rodent medicine inside and the capsule seated like a conventional bullet. The CCI load uses #12 shot and comes at a theoretical bullet weight of 31 grains.

CCI Shot Shell Ammo 22 Long Rifle #12 Shot

You can fire shotshells from either a rifle or a handgun, but I found handguns produce denser patterns. Out of my Rough Rider's 6.5-inch barrel, the majority of the pellets are hitting in an easy six-inch pattern at a distance of eight feet.

I set up an unused portion of my 10% gelatin block and tagged it with the Heritage from the same eight-foot distance.
I set up an unused portion of my 10% gelatin block and tagged it with the Heritage from the same eight-foot distance.

I set up an unused portion of my 10% gelatin block and tagged it with the Heritage from the same eight-foot distance. The front of the block was entirely peppered with pellets, small pieces of the plastic capsule still stuck in the block.

No pellet penetrated more than 3.5 inches, with the majority stopping between the 2-3 inch mark.
No pellet penetrated more than 3.5 inches, with the majority stopping between the 2-3 inch mark.

No pellet penetrated more than 3.5 inches, with the majority stopping between the 2-3 inch mark. This was better than I expected and the results seem to be perfectly adequate for the assigned task.

What do you think?


About Terril Hebert:Terril Hebert

Terril Hebert is a firearm writer native to south Louisiana. Under his motto-Guns, Never Politics-he tackles firearm and reloading topics both in print and on his Mark3smle YouTube channel, where he got his start. Terril has a soft spot for ballistics testing, pocket pistols, and French rifles. When he is not burning ammo, he is indulging his unhealthy wildlife photography obsession or working on his latest novel. Scourge of God, published in 2017. See more from Terril on youtube under Mark3smle

 

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    willydEj harbetCEMinMOSGT_WombatDesidog Recent comment authors
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    willyd
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    willyd

    Federal is out there, you just have to do a hunt for it, last time I found it I bought 6 boxes, that was about 4 months of looking and ordering from two different stores, it does a better job for pests than CCI ! It’s not pricey just harder to find!

    Desidog
    Member
    Desidog

    For years have been using cci .22 & .22 mag in NAA mini pistols for occasional rattler on our immediate property. Both absolutely do the needed job. A very versatile round.

    Xaun Loc
    Member
    Xaun Loc

    I would have been much more interested in seeing information about the Federal shot load — if you could find any to test!!

    vtownE
    Member
    vtownE

    will shooting this shot with a suppressor cause damage to the suppresor?

    SGT_Wombat
    Member
    SGT_Wombat

    I read something about not using shot with a ported barrel, so I would think the same applies to suppressors.

    CEMinMO
    Member
    CEMinMO

    Yes.

    Ej harbet
    Member
    Ej harbet

    Lead it up to the point you wish you hadn’t. Regular 22 lr is bad enough imagine a expanding clod of lead dust blasted into the baffles and you get the pic.

    willyd
    Member
    willyd

    The last time that I used CCI shot I thought I was loosing it, at 8′ I wasn’t hitting what I was shooting at, at all. I took some out with a couple of targets to see what was wrong, same style gun Heritage Rough Ryder 6.5 barrel, target at 8′ fired a round and found that the shot was not breaking through the plastic case, thus it was acting like a solid round instead of a shot round. I since then went back to the crimped shot and no regrets, they work just fine the way they should, with… Read more »

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @willyd, Good intel. Thanks

    CEMinMO
    Member
    CEMinMO

    My experience has been that from an old 18″ single-shot bolt .22 that at 10′ I get very thin 1.5′ to 2′ patterns with the CCI loads/ With Winchester crimped loads (still available) I get patterns of 3″ – 4″ at the same distance and they are MUCH more effective on rats, starlings and such. I give opossums 15′ or more so as not to hurt them too badly; I just want to discourage them from coming up on the porch and getting into things.

    Bill
    Member
    Bill

    No comparison w Fed shot?