Butler Creek Savage Arms A22 Magazine Review

Give your Savage A22 more capacity & less frustration

We love the little Savage A22 rifle – it’s light, easy to shoot, and great for beginners and experts alike.  The semi-automatic, rimfire rifle has a lot going for it, but suffers from one of the most obnoxious engineering decisions in all of firearms – the cylindrical magazine. 

Sure they’re consistent magazines, but they’re painstakingly slow to load & offer very limited capacity.

Stock Savage A22 Rimfire Rifle
A bone stock Savage Arms A22 .22LR Rifle

The ten-round capacity of the OEM magazine means it’s legal in all 50 states, which may or may not be true of the Butler Arms aftermarket magazine, so double check the legality in your state before buying.

Butler Creek A22 Magazine Review - Side-by-side
Left: Butler Creek A22 Magazine, Right: OEM Savage Cylindrical mag

The Butler Creek magazine has 5-round increments & view-through window on one side.

This made it much easier to know how many rounds we had fired – and most importantly how many more we had available left to fire. 

The arrow indicator also serves as a lever with which to pull down the spring-loaded tension plate, and speeds up loading considerably.

Metal up top

Many aftermarket components and magazines tend to use plastic to focus on price, but one thing we liked about the Butler Creek option (beyond looks and capacity) was the metal head, which mirrors the OEM materials.

Plastic head options are a few bucks cheaper and slightly lighter, but as with all plastic products, wear is a concern. With a plastic head you’ll find the feed lip wearing down much faster than metal counterparts, which is an investment in lack of reliability. 

Butler Creek A22 magazine review - comparison
Top: OEM Savage Arms Magazine, Bottom: Butler Creek replcement. Note: both use a metal head rather than plastic.

A slightly longer release 

Another aspect of the OEM magazine we we’re looking to solve for was the release – it’s just too short for our liking, and the Butler Creek has a longer release lever, which makes it much easier to get in and take out. 

It also rocks in and out (like an AR magazine) which is easy to do thanks to the length of the product and makes swapping magazines much faster and easier.

The Butler Creek’s release is also oriented much more forward, adding length to the release pull but making it much easier to gain purchase on the lever itself – and consistently release the magazine.

Butler Creek A22 Replacement Magazine Review - head to head
Left: OEM magazine, right: Butler Creek magazine. Note the length and positioning of the release arms.

Performance & Conclusions

With the first 25 rounds, we did have a handful of misfires, but we chalked that up to the lack of break in on the magazine and rifle having sat in the back of our safe for a good 4 months.

After getting through the first 25 rounds each subsequent load cycled without incident – plus reloading was much faster and were able to get more rounds downrange (and frankly, have more fun with the rifle.) 

Butler Creek 25 Round .22lr Savage A22 Detachable Magazine Review - Installation
Our Savage A22 with the Butler Creek magazine installed

The rifle also looked a bit more tacti-cool and with the added length of the magazine provide a couple more hand-placement options while shooting. 

For under $30 it’s an easy way to give your A22 a new level of capability, capacity, and fun.

More on.22 LR firearms & accessories:

The Best .22 LR Pistols

After testing more new models, we’ve updated our top recommendation to the Glock G44 .22LR Pistol. We’re keeping the other recommendations on our list, but

The Best 22 LR Rifles

Which are the best .22 rifles? Ask just about any shooter what rifle they started with and they’ll tell you it was a rifle chambered

Read more gun & gear reviews: