Tag Archives: beretta bobcat

Seems like everyone has a new .22LR pistol for 2020

Only a few weeks into 2020 and the domestic U.S. firearms market has seen a flood of new .22LR pistols from some of the biggest names in the business.

Last month saw the 42nd annual SHOT Show in Las Vegas where more than 2,600 exhibitors gathered from around the globe to display their freshest wares. When it came to rimfire handguns, there were lots of new faces in the aisles.

More in my column at Guns.com. 

Pipsqueak guns

One Fabbrica d’Armi Pietro Beretta-made Model 21A Bobcat coupled with a North American Arms Mini-Revolver (short-barrel variant) and the nicest 50-cent pumpkin my local co-op had for sale.

Both handguns are in .22LR, with 7+1 and 5-shot capacities, respectively. The Beretta, with ammo, magazine and natty wood grips, weighs in at just under 13-ounces. The NAA, 5.5.

For those curious, the smooth holiday squash weighs slightly more than either but will make a much cuter Jack-o-Lantern.

The mouse that roared: The Beretta 21A pocket plinker

Going back to 1952, the Italian firearms firm of P Beretta in Gardone came up with a pocket-sized handgun that proved extremely popular, that gun, the 950 Jetfire is still around in one form or another, to include the hero of our story: the .22LR Model 21A.

Baby Beretta history.

Dubbed the Model 950 Jetfire, this little tip up barreled .25ACP had an 8-shot magazine, used a simple blowback action, and loaded from a tip up barrel. Snappy and compact with a 9.87-ounce weight, the gun was under 5-inches long, which made it just perfect for a pocket or handbag.

Over the past six decades, the 950 was made in a .22 Short Minx, and now comes in the Model 21 Bobcat in either .22LR or .25ACP. The magnum of this series, the .32ACP caliber M3032 Tomcat is the same size but tips the scales at over 14 ounces empty. New models can be had for around $350-$400 while used versions, especially of the older 950-series, can be picked up for closer to $200.

They make great little hide out guns for when you don’t want to (or cant) carry something bigger.

The Beretta series benefits from some 60+ years of research and development and is just about one of the simplest designs you can imagine. I mean have you really worked with a tip-up barrel? Suffice it to say, the little Italian pony is pretty sweet.

The 21A in profile

With its 2.41-inch barrel, the 21A is 4.94-inches overall and weighs just 11.81 ounces. Of the Beretta “Cat” line, only the .22 Short chambered Model 950 Beretta Minx is shorter, and then only by a quarter inch. Using a 7-shot single stack detachable magazine, you have a 8 shot capacity which, when loaded with a nice hot round like a CCI Stinger or Mini-Mag, gives you an ounce of preventative medicine when walking around should you choose to carry such a small gun– or use the 21 as a backup piece.

beretta 22 with zippo and custom knife

Read the rest in my column at Firearms Talk