Experience WWII’s First True Combat Rifles through .22 Replicas

Chiappa's M1-22 has the potential to be a slick camp rifle.

Chiappa’s M1-22 has the potential to be a slick camp rifle.

Chiappa’s M1-22

All that has changed. Let’s start with a closer look at the “American” entrant.

The M1-22 is a dead ringer in the wood stock version to late war production “low wood” M1 Carbines. The stock is a very walnut appearing hardwood in a natural style low-gloss finish. The barrel and bolt are made of steel, while low stress components are polymer.

Seriously, there really is a difference between polymer and plastic-quality polymer is very durable and it works well in terms of appearance and function on the M1-22. The late war style also features a faux bayonet lug (I tried a real M1 Carbine bayonet on the gun, it didn’t fit but it looked good).

The magazine release is the correct style, and is in the correct location. The safety is the rotating lever style that replaced the original push button to avoid confusion with the magazine release button on early military M1’s. The charging handle can be locked to the rear with the small button found at the rear, just as the real M1. The bolt also stays open on the last shot.

The polymer magazine has the same profile as the original and is entirely enclosed due to its 10 round capacity limit. No loading assist button is needed. The magazine locks in place in the same manner as the original.

The rear sight is the same style as the late model adjustable carbine sight and the front sight is standard M1, plain blue-no fancy light gathering inserts. There is a slot in the stock that would accommodate an original carbine oiler and sling combo should you wish to add it, although the M1-22 is certainly no burden to carry as is.

Weight and feel is indistinguishable from the original M1 Carbine. This is about as exact a replica that could possibly be found with one exception. The receiver is grooved to accept a “tip-off” type .22 caliber scope and mount. This feature is very low profile and does not detract from the lines of the gun, but does allow the user to add a scope for hunting if they felt the need to do so and increases the versatility of the carbine. It actually took me awhile to notice it was there.

Operation, like any other semi-auto .22, is blowback, and the bolt doesn’t rotate during cycling like it does on the .30 caliber gun.

5 thoughts on “Experience WWII’s First True Combat Rifles through .22 Replicas

  1. Gunguyohio

    My wife purchased the STG 44 for me last Spring. I have had a blast with it. I was concerned about it shooting very low . The rear sight is replicated so closely to the original that it isn’t set up for .22 rimfires . A simple fix is to take the rear sight apart., clear down to the screw pylons on the barrel. stack 3 small washers on each pylon and reassemble the rear sight . This puts the sight adjustments into alignment and I was impressed ,as is everyone else who has fired my rifle, with it’s accuracy. Can hardly wait for the MP-40 replica to hit the shelves.

  2. markpro

    I own an STG44 and it is one of the best .22s in my safe. I also own real M1 carbines and I don’t know where you get your ammo but right now I can get .30 carbine as low as $12 for 50 rounds of FMJ compared to .22 ammo (if you can find it) for as much and in most cases even more than the .30 carbine. I also own other Chiappa .22 replicas like the 1911/22 and yes there junk. But I really do enjoy the STG44. Its one of those guns that works better as a point and shoot than actually aiming. Plus at over 8lbs NO recoil at all. Every shot follows the first. But at over 5 bills one must really want the STG.

  3. Lt. Dan

    The STG44 is a blast to shoot. Companies producing new and interesting products is what’s keeping interest going in the firearms world. Some very early ones had a fit issue with the stock. Mine is tight. I love it! Puts the fun back in shooting.

  4. bhp0

    Like mostly everything else these days its a hunk of junk. The German .22 look alike assault rifle is made with a junk zinc frame as is the new Walther PP .22 pistol. Pure trash. The .22 rifle’s stock was also found to be attached in a very flimsy way which resulted In the stock wobbling when in use. What a piece of trash.

    O course when one looks at .22 rifles and pistols darn few were ever made of quality. The few that were are long gone except the old Browning bottom ejecting rifle that has been around since 1900. Buy one of those if you want quality, the balance of most .22 firearms today are just pure junk.

  5. whooziss

    FWIW, the Chiappa .22 LR M-1 Carbine replica was tested by the NRA, and written up in the American Rifleman some time ago, and was not highly thought of. Apparently the ignition/combustion/firing (whatever you want to call it) gasses tend to blow right back into the shooter’s face, which isn’t cool. I dunno if they do or not, that is just what the article said.

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