It’s the age-old question. Which airgun calibre is best, .22 or .177? South-west of England Field Target Association champion James Head, of Crackshot UK, says it’s largely a matter of personal preference.

“The two calibres are equally accurate. There’s no reason why they shouldn’t be,” he explains. “The difference is that the .177 flies flatter at longer ranges, because it’s that bit faster. The .22 is a lot slower so it will more ‘loopy’ at longer ranges.”

That’s another way of saying that a .22 pellet drops more than a .177 at any given range. Estimating range and holdover becomes more important when you’re shooting a .22. Click here to watch our video on the difference in trajectory between .177 and .22.

That needn’t be a problem, even for hunting, James says. “When you’re hunting with an airgun you’re not looking to take stuff at stupid long ranges. You’re shooting at closer ranges.”

He continues “The .22 definitely has its place, especially for a shooter who has learned the trajectory of that particular gun. If you’re shooting close range rats and the like then the .22 will make that job a little bit easier.”

James finds that people tend to stick with the calibre they had when they first started shooting – and nothing wrong with that he says.

“It’s just what you personally prefer. Each calibre has its good points, so pick what works for you. If you’ve got the facilities you can try out both and see which you prefer.”

And which calibre does he shoot? “I use .177, mostly because I shoot a lot of targets. I have shot different calibres, but I’m used to the .177.”

To find out more about Crackshot UK, its range of airguns and the ranges where you can try them out, visit

More on airguns from Fieldsports Channel and Fieldtester

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