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 Rimfire Bullets
Rimfire bullets - Winchester 22 long Rimfire bullets are lower velocity than most centerfire.  Generally there is enough power to kill varmint effectively to 100 yards.  There are two types of rimfire bullets being sold: frangible and solid.
Rimfire bullets - CCI Frangible rimfire bullets shoot, look and perform very close to their lead-based counterpart.  Rimfire frangible bullets do not disintegrate to the same degree as centerfire frangible bullets do, but they break off pieces and fragment to crush tissues and dissipate energy quickly.   When shot into ballistic gel the wound channel has similar width and length to lead, with little variation between bullets.  Frangible bullets are available for .17 Mach 2, .17 HMR, and .22 WMR. Manufacturers include Hornady, Winchester, Remington, and CCI.
Rimfire bullets - Winchester Solid rimfire bullets are made of either tin or copper composite with a small hollow point.  These metals are lighter and tend to act differently when compared to their lead-based counterpart.  As a general rule, manufacturers increase velocity to solve the problem of non-lead bullets being lighter than lead. However, small rimfire caliber do not have the case capacity to achieve higher velocities. This results in the lighter bullets destabilizing sooner than lead-based rimfire ammunition. On ballistic gel, they do not expand and retain nearly all of their weight.  The wound channel they create is longer but thinner than lead bullets.  In hunting applications the non-lead bullets are more capable of crushing bone and heavy tissues, but shots have to be well placed to effectively use the narrow wound channel because the crushing, tearing and trauma to internal organs is less severe than lead bullets. Manufacturers include CCI and Winchester. 

Find Bullets

We understand that finding ammunition for a particular rifle can be difficult, especially so with hard-to-find calibers.  While HWNL does not endorse any manufacturer or retailer over another, here are a few helpful tips to find ammo:

» To find common cartridges, use a search function such as gunbot.net or ammoseek.com.

» If it isn’t found by using a search function, find a custom ammunition loader.  Custom loaders can make any known cartridge, and some will use once-fired brass from the client to reduce costs.

» Visiting your local gun store and asking for non-lead ammunition may be the most convenient way to purchase non-lead ammunition. Knowing what brands and bullet models are available in non-lead before going to your local store is always a good idea.

» Bullets are widely available and we have found 293 cartridges loaded with non-lead bullets made by custom loaders. 

» Lastly, email nonlead@iws.org and use our experience to help you find the cartridge for you.


California DFW List of Certified Non-lead Ammo



  EMAIL US nonlead@iws.org