Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Brad Y

Inconsistency in 223

Recommended Posts

Gday fellas, thought I would post up here as you guys seem to be pretty honest and up front about things unlike a few of the forums we have here in Aus where if you arent trying to make your gun like an M16 or cover it in camo or black and pretend to be Bob Lee Swagger then your just wasting your time.

 

My krieger barreld rem action in 223 shoots brilliant groups at 100m. Regular 1/4 to 1/2 MOA with 40gr and 50gr nosler BT's and max loads of benchmark in lapua cases and CCI450 primers. The chamber has been long throated for use in F class with 80gr bullets so thats why I think I can run such hefty loads. Basically nothing is different to a run of the mill varmint rifle except for the fact that the krieger is a 1:8 twist.

 

Ive shot it at 100m and set the impact to be an inch high and about 1/8 inches left. At 200m this is pretty much smack bang on. However past 200m the bullets just go crazy- especially if there is a little wind while im shooting. Some bullets stay flat, some loop over my targets heads, and they quite often drift right a long way. Ive really only realised there is more to the situation than just me missing shots on foxes- my 20 practical with its standard 12 twist was down right evil on foxes yet I could only shoot the same size groups as I can with this 223.

 

Im going to jump up to 55gr bullets- both 55gr sierra gameking softpoints and 55gr nosler BT's and a mid charge of varget to see if I can tame the twist effect down a little. Im not a big fan of heavy bullets as the shots we take can be anywhere from 80-300m and I dont want trajectory to be too loopy at night under the spotlight.

 

Would like some opinions on my problem if you would be so kind. Im just about ready to buy a 14 twist varmint barrel as im certain the fast twist is causing me problems.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That one does seem odd????

I have a 1-8 barrel in one of my Rock River rifles. It shoots 80 gr. bergers (over Varget) pretty good out to 500 yards. The wind begins to get me at the 750 target bank, but I could safely say those 80 gr Bergers fly pretty good out to 500 yards.

 

That being said, I would try a box of bullets from several different parts of the reloading spectrum for .223. You seem to have already addressed the light end with the 40-50 grain bullets. Now try some 55 gr, some of the 69 gr, and then the 77 gr. With my match barrel, I did discover a SIGNIFICANT affinity for 69 gr bullets. It will shoot the 77's/80's pretty good, is above average with the 55's, but is just dog nuts accurate with the 69 gr pills.

 

You gotta fine that 'node' that your rifle likes (both in terms of power/velocity and bullet weight). Like some shooters, a certain combination just 'makes sense' (and hence shoots like nothing else). That is part of the fun with reloading (to me), finding that combination that REALLY works for a given gun.

 

Maybe it's just personal preference, maybe I just don't usually play with the 'light for caliber' end of the spectrum, but I don't usually like the 1-12 and 1-14 twist barrels. I guess they are fine if you are really trying to push the upper end of velocity in your .223, .22-250, or 220 Swift, but I just never saw the point (as in it didn't seem practical to me). Sure you can Scorch a light one out there (because I usually do shoot 'out there' quite a ways), but even if it starts fast, a light bullet will get blown around by winds and drafts, and have a lower probability of making the hit that I'm looking for at 500,600,750 yards. That is a bit of a long winded way of saying that I've been shooting with this 1-8 twist barrel in .223 on one of my rifles for about 8 years now, and I do in fact MUCH prefer it to the 1-9 and slower barrels on some of my other rifles. You just gotta find the right combination that syncs with that barrel.

 

Good luck,

M

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had a similar problem when I was shooting 55gr Midway USA Dogtown bullets. With a max load, a light bullet and a fast twist, the bullets were spinning too fast and the lead nose would be spun right off from centrifugal force. Sometimes the bullet would disappear in a small grey puff about 15m from the barrel. Wouldn't even leave a mark on the target at 25m. 3225-3240fps seemed to be the point where the bullets blew apart. If the bullet stayed together there would be a vapor trail from about 20 meters out to about 125 meters. Actually left a grey swirl mark around the bullet hole on the target. Midway says these bullets are good up to 4000fps. However after doing some research on the problem I found there is a rotational limit on these bullets. With a 1-14 twist varmint type barrel that limit is 4000fps. With the 1-9 twist barrel I was using the limit came out to be 3200fps. Might try slowing them down a bit and seeing if that helps the problem or going a slightly heavier bullet. I myself started using Hornady 50gr V-max bullets and never had the problem again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks guys

 

Ive gone and got a box of the 55gr sierra 1365's and a box of 55gr nosler BT's to try out. Im going to drop the load back a little and just shoot whats accurate. Never had a 100m group over 3/4 inch in this rifle, it just seems to shoot everything I run in it.

 

Ive heard you can overstabilise a bullet in a fast twist barrel and there seems to be a big division amongst reloaders as to if its true or not. I can see from a physics point of view that its more than possible. Ive seen speer TNT's explode into blue dust at fast velocity but never any of the ballistic tips. But over spinning a bullet could really bring out any yaw that is has after leaving the muzzle and making it fly inconsistent.

 

Will see how these new bullets go and let you know. Being winter its hard to get a good day to do some load testing be it no wind or no rain.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That is curious.I prefer the 1/6-1/8 in a 22-250 A.I. 40 deg. using an 80 G.Sierra or Berger.Same story,slightly different calibre .Velocity to a point negates gravity;mass of projectile to a point negates wind drift .Hmmmm,need to think on this one.Updates welcome.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like your bullets are "poofing"...

 

If you want to shoot 40's in that fast twist, you'll probably have to find a heavier jacketed bullet.

 

Fast twist .224's sure are fun.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know several Service Rifle shooters who use the 55 gr Sierra FMJ for short course ranges(200 yd and under)in a Wilson1:8 and have exellent results. But I don't know anyone who is shooting 55 gr or lower past 200 yd. A lot of the guys are using Reloader 15 and 75 gr. for 300 out to 600. Some are using Vihtvouri(sp?) and 75-80 gr in the 1:8 also with good results. But I beleive the velocity is around 3000 fpsor less,not super fast. I do know that the Sierra 55 gr. SP bullet over 25 grs. of IMR 3031 performs well in almost any rifle.It runs about 3100 fps.Have used it successfully in 2 Mini-14's and 3 AR's over the years.But still a short range (200 or less) cartridge. I currently use RL-15 and 75 gr Hornady's,but have shot 55 gr FMJ out of the 1:8 barrels on my AR's with satisfactory results,although the groups opened up substantially(was shooting the old M-195's). Might just be a case of playing with the load/powder/bullet combo to find one that shoots in your rifle.If you have any 3031,give it a try,I think you will be pleased.

good luck,let us know what you discover/change to fix the problem.

Patriot

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

×