.22 cal vs .25 cal

Hi all,
Nubie here. Want to first say what a great forum. This site definitely made up my mind to get a condor. There is a lot of good info here.

But I could not find much on regarding the difference between calibers. I am particularly interested in the pros and cons of .22 cal vs .25 cal. I understand that there is more ammo selection for .22 cal. Also that the .25 is heavier by nature, there for more energy downrange giving a bigger punch.

If I over looked a previous post please give link. No need to do rework.

If this helps: I will be using the gun to shoot squirrels. They are used to being shot at by .22lr. They spook at 100yds so I need accuracy at +100yds. I also want to do long range target shooting in the same rang. I have the green light to take care of pest on the vineyard property we are on and the size of the pest can go up.

Sorry for so long of a post.


General Chat

All Replies

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 34 total)

1 2 3

Thought this link was somewhat relative to this thread, kinda long


I have found this ballistic calculator to be very useful. Put it on your desktop and you don’t have to be online to use it. Don’t forget to fill in the little box in the upper left hand corner. I use the SWC/HP figuring that is the closest option to the pellets.


vlady, right you are.

theory is if you had equivilant weight and shape (cant get a good 22 the same weight as the good 25’s) at same velocity, it would be ballistically superrior (wind drift, drop, retained energy)…….great for paper punchers. If he will be hunting though this would tend to be a paper punch situation for the 22, in one side and out the other, little energy transfer. Hunting (impact, energy transferred to target) would still have the advantage go to the shooter with the bigger hammer (bigger hole, more energy transfer, more damage) = quicer, cleaner kills.

Course shot placement is everything……..I suppose if a guy was confident in getting head shots at 75yds plus, a 30.1gr .177 Kodiac at 1000fps would be the greatest for anything up to rabbit size.

getting the .25 will be fun

Just for fun, all this applies to talking about wind drift too!!
about half of wind drift is time of flight (how long the wind has to act on the pellet in flight) since low bc pellets ie .177 loose velocity faster, they take longer to get to the target and hence the wind has more time to redirect them; not that they are directly impacted by the wind so much more than the larger pellets.

from a bunny point of view, body shot he has a much better chance if you will shoot the smaller pellet. Good head shot….never know the difference.

You see what you started, Eric? 😉

also… 28.5gr .22 eunjin is really close to 31gr .25 kodiak…isnt it? something to consider…

That was an interesting read. Thanks shrpshotr28, that real helped me to understand BC and what I was missing. So I see aerodinamics does play a big roll in the BC equation. I knew that the .25 would be the better pellet because of getting heavier pellets but after reading post it was clear that mass was not the single mast importqant thing.

Thanks to all who posted and helping me understand. Now this is why I like this forum. People are willing to help out and they all have great info to give.


Borrowed from WIKIPEDIA: BC is a function of mass, diameter, and drag coefficient. It is given by the mass of the object divided by the diameter squared that it presents to the airflow divided by a dimensionless constant i that relates to the aerodynamics of its shape. Ballistic coefficient has units of lb/in² or kg/m².

More good reading there on this subject.

Basically the longer/heavier a pellet is compared to its diameter the better it will retain velocity = flatter trajectory. I think all posts here have a correct understanding of their part of the equasion. If a pellet of equal weight and velocity is shot from two different bores, ie 22 and 25, (this would make the 25 a short fat, less aerodynamic pellet) the 22 will have an advantage in both trajectory & retained energy at equal range. (this does not consider impact on the target animal however where the larger diameter of the 25 may still appear to hit harder (transfers more of its less retained energy to the animal vs. punching through)

The advantage to the 25 cal is in any two pellets of similar shape ie kodiacs, the larger diameter will also be heavier & longer; this = more initial energy, and better bc which is better retained energy given similar starging velocity

Us former powder burners get over this by speeding up the lighter smaller bullet until it outperforms the larger one. Here in AIR world we are handicapped to subsonic velocity to maintain accuracy so each caliber has its limit at its maximum weight pellet which it can fire at approximately 950-1000 fps for best accuracy. Since this can be done with all 4 small bore calibers, anyone wanting “long distance” impact and accuracy should be well advised to shoot the longest/heaviest pellet for their diameter and if you don’t have enough range, look to the next larger caliber.

To me it appears the only downside to the 25, would be too much power (if there is such a thing) for a given situation, since velocity is limited by being an air gun (subsonic) and accuracy is not compromised given a good barrel and quality pellets, the higher energy and ballistic coeffecient of the heavier pellets make it a clear favorite (hope so anyway, waiting on a barrel from Tony)

Great place everyone, enjoy all the reading here. Sorry so long winded, but ballistics have always been a fascination of mine.

quote Saugus18:

RiffRaff, that is understood. What Oeno brought up was a .25 and .22 pellet weighing exactly the same. If all things are equal, with the exception of one pellet having a larger dia, then I would think the .22 would be more efficient having less frontal surface area, meaning less drag.[/i]

Yes you are correct. I give a simplified explanation as I know it.

One thing to consider, if 2 different caliber pellets weigh the same, the smaller caliber pellet will be longer.

In that case, the turbulence drag down the sides of the pellet will be greater because of a longer surface for the air to roll on. Same weight, greater drag but less frontal push, might not be much different at all.

It is strange but if I shoot a metal spinner with a 28 grain .22 pellet and a 31 grain .25 the spinner is impacted far more?? All I know is I get the same number of shots per tank with WAY more power the .25 just is more effecient in a PCP rifle. Seems to be the sweet spot before going to a big bore.


PS doing LOTS of .25 testing this Saturday so we will have 1 – .22 and 2 – .25 Condor playing. 😆

Eric, if you take a .22 air-rifle capable of pushing a pellet of a given weight at a certain energy level and then swopped the barrel to .25 you will find that 9/10 the power will go up with an equal weight pellet. You will probably gain 10fpe+ just from going up a caliber. That is why so many people with a Condor have gone up to .25 as there are no real downsides: the shot count is similar, the power is higher, and the heavier pellets available keep things under the sound barrier. On top of all that, a .25 pellet makes a bigger hole in the target which is a bonus, and at longer range it will retain energy better due to having a greater mass.

Randy brought up that the BC is the mystical factor here. It seams that the bigger diam is going in favor for a better BC. The BC factor is something I am having a hard time rapping my brain around.

Ok in the everything is the same scenario; aerodynamics will go to the .22. But it sounds like there is something about when pressure is applied to the skirt of the larger diameter pellet(.25) vs the .22. The .25 will have a smaller psi because its area is bigger then the .22. Does this make it more efficient and there for conserving more energy when it leaves the barrel?

Sorry if this is to deep but as u can see I have a curios mind.


Yes, but its killing/stopping power will be greatly diminished. It will probably only transfer 1/3 of its energy into the target, while the .25 will transfer more.

RiffRaff, that is understood. What Oeno brought up was a .25 and .22 pellet weighing exactly the same. If all things are equal, with the exception of one pellet having a larger dia, then I would think the .22 would be more efficient having less frontal surface area, meaning less drag.[/i]

If you have 2 different calibers shooting the same pellet design, the larger calibers pellet will be heavier. With similar design and similar starting velocity, the heavier pellet will retain its velocity longer.

The thing is, air resistance is best overcome by weight. Frontal diameter is a factor, but if design is the same weight will win every time.

This is why they don’t allow extra weights in bobsled competition. The heavier sled will have an advantage overcoming resistance.

There are probably exceptions, but as far as ballistics go its a good rule of thumb.

Wait a minute, I’m kinda siding with Oeno here. I’m no physics major, but if you were to have 2 guns, putting out exactly the same power, with exactly the same barrel length, one in .22, the other in .25, with both pellets the same design with exactly the same wieght, I would think the .22 would actually do as good if not a bit better than the .25 as far as distance goes. The only differance I see between the two now is dia size. The .25 has more facial/frontal area, meaning slightly more drag thru the air than the .22. It seems to me that a pellet the same weight/design with same power and less drag would have a slight advantage distance wise, although the .25 would have the advantage making a bigger hole in a critter than .22 if hunting for instance. Hey, this is what my mind throws at me, it doesn’t mean I’m right!

I see, a pellet has its own unique variables. So my problem is I shouldn’t think of it as a bullet but as a pellet. Which the size has a significant influence on its ballistics numbers. I need to look at that site to see the influences on BC. Thanks.

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 34 total)

1 2 3
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.