I’m not sure why I have not yet discussed the Ruger SR22. This is the firearm I use with my students for NRA First Steps and for those who do not bring their own firearm and ammunition for the concealed carry qualification. I have noticed a few things when using the firearm and none are concerning. First out of the box you need to clean and lubricate the firearm. If you do not and are using cheap bulk ammo the gun may not cycle properly. After cleaning and lubricating the next suggestion I have is to use the best ammo possible. I have found on occasion a nick in the nose may cause a jam or a substandard bulk may cause the slide to not cycle completely leaving it out of batter. A quick tap with the hand and it goes back in easily.
So what I don’t like about the pistol is the hammer is difficult to manipulate with the thumb. I basically treat it like a pistol without the hammer. I also don’t like the safety which also acts as the decocker. Up is fire which just seems odd for some reason and down is safe and decock. For that reason with students I just treat it as a gun without the safety and everything works great. If the magazine is out of the pistol the trigger is a soup sandwich all floppy and useless. I really don’t care for that much. Once you put in a magazine you are good to go.
After firing several SR22s with students and myself I must say they seem to be nicely made pistols. Recoil is minimal if at all which takes the scare factor out of the equation and the sights are pretty much on from the factory. Since I use them with multiple students I just left them where they came and allow the students to adjust their aim. I have found the most common issue is the slide coming forward and nicking the lead leaving it crimped to the point of not being usable. It doesn’t happen often, but it does occur. I have read some reviews where the user never had a jam or issue, but for the pistols I have that has not been the case. It is the exception rather than the rule, but it does happen.
If you are looking for a nice plinking gun or one to use for becoming accustomed to the operation of a semi-automatic pistol this might be a good choice. Ammo appears to be coming back and 22LR is still the least expensive ammo you can purchase. For accuracy I would probably choose a Ruger Mark III over the SR22, but with students I need to work drills with the slide so the SR22 is a much better choice and every student I have taught has had the dexterity and arm strength required to manipulate the slide of the SR22. The bottom line is the SR22 is a nice pistol.