A few months ago I managed to find a PMR-30 in the wild and quickly snatched it up. I’d been lusting after this lightweight .22 WMR pistol for some time, so when the opportunity arose to get one of my own I jumped at the chance.
After getting the pistol home, I hosed it down with Gun Scrubber to clean out any shipping grease and then lubricated it with Mobil 1 (10W-30) motor oil*. After the first range trip, I determined that it did need the new upgraded 1:11 twist barrel offered as a free Warranty Replacement by Kel-Tec. I emailed them and within a few weeks had the new barrel. It was a simple drop in replacement and I was back up and running.
Since then the PMR-30 has had just over 1,000 rounds through it without being cleaned at all. Until the Central Oklahoma Gunblogger Schutenfest it had not had a single malfunction. At the Schutenfest I and the other bloggers (who all wanted to try it out – and why not? It’s a heck of a lot of fun to shoot) ran about another 500 rounds through it. One malfunction occurred around round 550 when we had a round-nose bullet catch on the feed ramp: not a horribly unusual problem, and not one I felt I could blame on the gun.
Another malfunction occurred at round 653 when I had a Failure to Fire from a dud rimfire round. Inspection of the round showed a good primer strike. The cartridge simply failed to fire. This type of problem is endemic to rimfire rounds of all types, and is not one that could be blamed on the pistol.
Other than those small issues, George Kellgren’s unique design ran like a champ with nary a hiccup, a testament to the engineers who overcame the many unique problems presented by the .22 Magnum in a semiautomatic pistol design. Between the long cartridge design, late peak pressure of the .22WMR, and unique problems presented by the “coffin” style 30-round magazine, the PMR-30 truly is a feat of modern design.
Now I just need to go bug Dennis about getting one of his custom PMR-30 holsters.
Caliber: .22WMR (.22 Magnum)
Rounds Fired: 1012
Failures: 1 Failure to Feed, 1 Failure to Fire
Magazine capacity: 30 rounds
Twist: 1:11 Inches
Trigger pull: 3.5 to 5 lbs
Weight (no mag): 13.6 oz.
Muzzle Velocity (40 gr): 1230 fps
Barrel length 4.3 Inches
Length: 7.9 Inches
Height: 5.8 Inches
Grip Width: 1.1 Inches
Max width, across safety levers: 1.3 Inches
*Why Mobil 1 motor oil? Because it’s a heck of a lot cheaper than any other “gun lubricant” and actually performs better. Many gun lubricants will begin to burn off as a firearm heats up during rapid fire, and the magnum .22 cartridge generates a lot of heat, especially when burning through a full 30-round magazine. Mobil 1 synthetic motor oil does not burn off nearly as quick and in my experience provides much more reliability across all firearm platforms.