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Old July 9, 2006, 03:19 AM   #1
Doubletaptap
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Hello Fellow Reloaders!!!

I was directed here by my search engine and WOW!!!! I found gold!!!
All these knowing minds to pick at!!!!!
I recently purchased a "Hee Hee!!! "Varmint Special Bushymaster in .223/5.56
I'm not interested in the 5.56 at this time but I do want to re-load some .223 target and maybe a wild Hawg load for it.
I have reloading experience from a hundred years ago. I did 300 Win. mags for my Tikka target shooter! Actually it was a deer rifle but it was MY target rifle....and it stomped the crap outa me every trip to the range!!! I loved to hear that 26" tapered barrel just rattle the windows in the range house when she'd beller!!!!

Now I got me a rifle XM15 E2S with a 24" hoohah!!! Barrel and all, and it already shoots better than I do with factory fodder. It's one year old,barely fired,I got a good price!! Bushmaster Stainless Varmint Special!!!SWEET!
The original owner put the 9 7/8" skeleton stock on it and it has a 4 1/4" flash hider that's aftermarket.
Chrome chamber and barrel bore!!!!Free floatin' tack driver!!

I need to know the secrets of making a solid,dependable .223 cartridge that will repeat shot after shot at a target from 25yds. out to 200 yds. (so far)
I have once fired Rem, Win and Monarch,and a few Hornady brass now but plan on getting set up with new stuff.

I need to know,
about crimping dies, a good one for a mag fed semi-auto.

Full size or neck size with this rifle only?

"Strectching" the length to almost touch the riflings? Good? How much? Into the riflings?

Stuff like that.
I have been reading these forums for a few days and I have enjoyed so much I wanted to join in!!!
I liked the MMM crap, that was a lesson in how bad things could get,if unknowing/ignorant people are allowed to be heard in public. That sports dude has a serious problem!!!!

I'll be asking questions as i go, Nice meeting all of you here!!
Thanks for all the info I already have on the subject!! What a great group!!
I'm at Muzzleloader Magazine Forum the Campfire also, and a member of The Texas Predator Posse.
That's where this sweet rifle will come in handy too!!!
Shoot on fellers,and ladies if you're here too!!!!!!.
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Old July 9, 2006, 09:13 AM   #2
Art Eatman
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I don't think I'd use a .223 on hogs of any size. Penetration is a key on those.

Full-length resizing is best for semi-autos. Facilitates extraction. I only necksize for my bolt actions.

Art
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Old July 9, 2006, 12:24 PM   #3
amamnn
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auto loading varmint rifles

A major part of handloading for accuracy is in case prep and bullet seating. Unfortunately, a good part of that is not applicable to auto loading rifles. "Stretching" the round, what we call seating to the lands, or bullet runout, is not going to be an option, nor is fine tuning the case size. You can still do some things to help tighten groups, such as insure the concentricity of your cases and the uniformity shoulder, case length, and cartridge overall length. You can uniform the primer pockets and insure that the flash hole is free of burrs. You can sort your brass by weight, brand, and lot# and also the bullets.
You can weigh and drop each powder charge individually, using mfgr data. You can use match grade bullets and primers. There is a lot you can do, but you will never get long range varmint grade bolt accuracy out of an auto loader. I load for both. They both have their attractions and strengths and weaknesses.
A good reference for accurizing you, your rfile, and your ammo can be found on www.snipercountry.com and on www.gunzone.com
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Old July 9, 2006, 01:11 PM   #4
wixedmords
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Quote:
A major part of handloading for accuracy is in case prep and bullet seating
Case prep and bullet seating/crimp is the majority of the task.

Agreed.

Keeping records, and paying attention is also important. Doing the same task the same way over and over again requires patience. Without patience, someone should buy their ammo.
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Old July 9, 2006, 01:13 PM   #5
contender6030
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Never gotten that "deep" with my reloading. I will say this though, a 223 is plenty of gun for shooting hogs or even deer. I have this from personal experience. A 300 win mag WON'T kill a hog or a deer if your shot placement is not correct.
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Old July 10, 2006, 01:58 AM   #6
Doubletaptap
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Thanks

Thank you all for the help! Good info!!!

The rifle is quite accurate as it is with factory fodder,but I thought it would be fun to tweak the loads a bit to see what happens.

Actually it will match,or is more accurate than some bolt rifles already. From experience.
And if it can't be as accurate as a bolt, how come they're winning long distance match competitions?

As for rollin' hawgs with a .223...we do it at night with a scope and a pad pushbutton rifle mounted light. A shot anywhere from the eye to the ear will turn them off instantly. They taste great too!! Specially the ribs!!!!

I know the 1 in 9 twist in 24" barrel is not supposed to be good with real heavy bullets. They say a 1 in 8 is better.
I plan on using 55-69gr. bullets and see which one dials in best and go from there. I don't think anything from 70-80gr. bullet would do very good in this barrel would it, for accuracy, not hunting?
Hunting loads come later!


Thanks again!!!

Don't ya just love experimentin'!!!!
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Old July 10, 2006, 03:10 AM   #7
Bullet94
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Doubletaptap Quote – “Bushmaster Stainless Varmint Special!!!SWEET!
The original owner put the 9 7/8" skeleton stock on it and it has a 4 1/4" flash hider that's aftermarket.
Chrome chamber and barrel bore!!!!Free floatin' tack driver!!”

I believe if your rifle is a stainless varmint special the chamber and bore are stainless. Never saw a flash hider on a varminter but it could be done.

I’d say full-length size trying to bump the shoulder .002 - .003. This should be enough for reliable chambering. You might want to purchase one of these to measure headspace –

http://www.midwayusa.com/eproductpag...eitemid=477756

I would recommend Sierra Match King bullets 69gr. for targets (not sure about hunting). I don't crimp these. These are loaded to fit in the mag. I’ve had good luck using VV N540. Some like Varget or RE-15. LC or Winchester brass has worked well for me.

Doubletaptap Quote – “Actually it will match,or is more accurate than some bolt rifles already. From experience.
And if it can't be as accurate as a bolt, how come they're winning long distance match competitions?”

Your rifle should be more accurate than a lot of factory bolt rifles, but the matches their winning are against other semi-auto rifles. Never seen a 223/5.56mm shooting past 600 yards.

Good luck and be safe.
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Old July 10, 2006, 10:52 AM   #8
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Actually, your 1 in 9 should do real well with the heavier bullets. It cracks me up to call a 65-70 gr. bullet heavy, because I too used to reload for the 300 win mag, w/ 26" barrel... Anyway, Try the Sierra Game King 65 gr. BTSP. You may want to try the 75 gr scirroco's as well. You have pleanty of twist for those. I am new to the "varmint" calibers too, but have recieved a TON of great feedback off this from fellow shooters. I just bought a HOWA 22-250, and finished working up my test loads this weekend. I found (through this site) that my 1 in 14 will do best w/ a 55 gr. I'm using it for the same purpose. So I loaded up 7 groups of 5 rounds in different poweder charges and taking them to the range this afternoon. I'm looking forward to see how they do. It is a head shot w/ that round though, and I too would not shoot a hog w/ a 22-250 or any other 22 anywhere but the head.
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Old July 10, 2006, 06:10 PM   #9
amamnn
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auto loaders vs bolt

It's a great marketing ploy to go around bragging up your "varmint" model auto loader using 3 round groups and competing only amongst other auto loaders. I load for and compete with both and I assure you there still is not an autoloader that's going to agg the same as a bolt action benchrest rifle. That's just the facts in the real world, not marketing.
That being said, I am really impressed with the new 6mm match rifles in the AR family, I use an Oly Arms Ultramatch mag and the aggs are impressive for an auto. Certainly they are much improved over what you could shoot even five years ago with an AR, but still this is relatively short range competition.
If you have a chance, try to get to a 1000 yard benchrest match some time. Your eyes will be opened.
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Old July 12, 2006, 10:35 PM   #10
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Take this w/ a grain of salt. I'm new to .22 cal varmint rifles like yourself, but have been pouring over all the bullets available, twist rate, etc. Bullet 94 mentioned the match king. I'd recomend using the game king for hunting. I just loaded some 55 gr spitzers for my 22-250. I believe their jacket is a bit thicker than the match kings. You have pleanty of twist, so if you want a heavy bullet, try the Sierra GAMEKING in 65 gr spitzer boat tail. I tested 10 bullets randomly out of my box, and I could not detect a measurable difference in weight at all. That's incredible!!! And no, I don't work for Sierra...
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Old July 13, 2006, 07:33 PM   #11
Buckythebrewer
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For 200yards just about anything will work.I recommend a full length die for safety(bumping your shoulder back were it should be.I also recommend a shoulder comparitor mic(rcbs sells a cheap one that is o.k.) even for full length sizing because you CAN size brass too much by bumping the shoulder back too far,and that can lead to head case seperation...
And you CAN change bullet seating depths as long as you can still magazine feed(That is if you wan't to) and you don't build an over pressure cartridge by seating the bullet too deep(rcbs comparitor mic helps with bullet seating as well)..You should check were your lands start,(ar15's ar all different)That will deside what you can do with bullet seating.You might find your rifle is capable of excellent accuracy out to 600 yrds and beyond because mine does(dpms stainless bull a3 upper)..I can regularly shoot Under M.O.A. at 625yrds.I have shot near 3inch 5 shot group once @ 625yrds..223 in the AR can and do win at 1000yrds but it takes work and I will admit the specialized bolt guns do better but thats usually if they are built correctly(and thats work).Most bolt guns won't out-shoot a 223 ar15 ..

I recommend the LEE factory crimp die because it is the safest most effective crimp for a semi-auto(well as far as I know).It is a product that takes an extra step to safety for handloading and can (SOMETIMES)help accuracy..
I use the lee collet neck sizind die but it really isn't safe to use unless you check your shoulder displacement after each firing and keep in in check by bumping it back into shape with your full sizing die from time to time when it needs it(way too much hassle for 200yrds in my appinion and it isn't very safe if you don't measure shoulder displacement with proper tools)..I have gotten good accuracy all the way out to 600yrds with a simple LEE PACESETTER and factory crimp die so Thats what I recommend..
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Old July 13, 2006, 07:57 PM   #12
Buckythebrewer
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I don't think you will get good results with bullets heavier/longer than 70gr maybe 75gr in 1-9 twist..Try 69gr SMK ,I love the 77 - 80 gr but the 80 gr require single feed.The 77gr smk I can magazine feed If I seat them deeper(.025 Off the lands) or If I use my cut out ORLITE mags I can seat them .005 off the lands.I recommend just setting them up as close to factory ammo as possible unless you buy the comparitor mic to basicly better fit them to your chamber(before and after firing measurements)..Also I have shot well with standerd m193 ball ammo out to 300 yards so it shouldn't take much to get were you wan't to be with your ar.
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