Top Single Stack .22LR Pistols for Competition

Posted by Emma Roy on 4/12/2024 to Tips and Tricks

Top Single Stack .22LR Pistols for Competition


With almost endless options for single-stack .22lr pistols in the competition space, we often get asked what pistol is “best” for competition. Turns out, that’s a pretty subjective question that depends heavily on the individual competitor’s preference, financial situation, and even where they live. Listed below are three of the most popular firearms we see at competitions. Please keep in mind that the prices you’ll read here are the posted MSRPs as of writing this article. Any of these MSRPs may change over time and the prices you might find at your favorite store can vary significantly.

Browning® Buck Mark

Browning® Buck Marks have been in production since 1985. In our opinion, they have one of the best triggers out of the box. Buck Marks’ wide ejection ports also help to reduce fouling or buildup inside the action. This in turn can reduce the risk of ejection failures or other cycling malfunctions. The Buck Mark is available in a large number of different configurations including different frames, slides, grips, colors, and barrel options. This pistol is commonly available across most of the country including states with handgun rosters, such as California.

The Browning® Buck Mark unfortunately has some of the least aftermarket support available. With an MSRP of $49.99, standard Buck Mark magazines also cost more than those for the other two pistols we’ll discuss. Assembly and disassembly is also a bit more involved for the Buck Mark than the other options we’ll cover.

The Browning® Buck Mark’s MSRP starts at a respectable $439.99, with other unique options showcased on Browning’s website priced up to as much as $1,079.99. Despite the Buck Mark’s lack of aftermarket support, it still proves to be a highly viable option thanks in part to the wide variety of options available from the factory. TANDEMKROSS offers a number of upgrades for the Buck Mark including magazine components, optic mounts, triggers, and more internal upgrades.

Smith & Wesson® SW22 Victory®

With attractive options from the factory, plus a wide variety of aftermarket upgrades, the SW22 Victory® is our pick for a “middle of the road” option. The SW22 Victory® has fewer factory options available than its peers in our list. However, its prices are fairly competitive while still offering a wide range of attractive features. The MSRP for base models starts at $459 with upgraded Performance Center models—some complete with red dot optics—available for only $989.

The aftermarket options available for this platform vary widely from independent boutique shops to offerings from larger companies including TANDEMKROSS. With different color choices, grip styles, barrels, and more, there’s an option for everyone.

Ruger® Mark IV™ 22/45™ LITE

The Ruger® Mark IV™ 22/45™ LITE is the most versatile contender in our list. There is a wide variety of factory options available from Ruger and its distributors. Additionally, there is a vast array of aftermarket support available—certainly the most aftermarket support of the three pistols covered in our list. Anything the 22/45™ LITE might lack out of the box is more than compensated for by its ability to be fully upgraded and customized inside and out. Aftermarket support for the Mark IV™ 22/45™ exists in the form of entire replacement grip frames (lowers), uppers (aka receivers or barrels), internal components, and much more. Thanks to the easy takedown of the Mark IV™, it is also the most user-friendly option for routine cleaning and maintenance. Additionally, this pistol also stands alone from the other two competitors as being safe to dry fire.

The options and prices for the Ruger® Mark IV™ 22/45™ models vary from $739 to $799 with a wide selection available through their exclusive distributors and retailers. While this places it on the slightly higher end comparatively for MSRP, it comes with a surplus of options and great levels of customization and ease of use.

Pairing your Ruger® Mark IV™ 22/45™ LITE with aftermarket upgrades is the quickest way to take it from good to great. TANDEMKROSS offers the only upgraded replacement lower available along with a range of internal and external drop-in upgrades. Between ourselves and our industry peers, the ways to make a 22/45™ uniquely yours are practically endless.

As you can see, each option has their unique pros/cons so it’s up to you to truly determine which is the right choice. TANDEMKROSS is here to help make your good gun great, have fun, and be safe while providing as much information as we can to help you pick the firearm that’s perfect for you.

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