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Old November 10, 2012, 04:31 PM   #1
rebs
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windham weaponry varmint exterminator ?

I went to the lgs today with money in pocket to buy a windham weaponry varmint exterminator./
I was very surprised to find it is chambered in 223 only, no 5.56 so I guess I can't use my LC cases which I have over 1000 of.
Also I guess I can't shoot military ammo in it.
It was a surprise to find that the tag on it said chrome lined barrel, I thought it was a stainless steel barrel.
Are my assumption's true, no military ammo in 5.56 and the chrome lining in the barrel actually hurts the accuracy to an extent ?
What would the reason be to chrome line a SS barrel ?
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Old November 10, 2012, 05:39 PM   #2
ruger357w
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I've always fired 223 ammo in mine, reloads only. It shoots 68gr. bullets great. The barrel is not chrome lined. if you check out windham weaponrys web site they give the specs on the rifle. It has a compass lake chamber, which is tighter then the 5.56 chamber so they recommend 223 ammo. I have never tryed 5.56 in mine.
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Old November 10, 2012, 07:27 PM   #3
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I have over 1500 Lake City once fired cases. Now I don't know if I could use them for reloading in this rifle or not.
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Old November 10, 2012, 07:32 PM   #4
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You can use your 5.56 cases. Not factory loaded 5,56 ammo though. The differences btw 5.56 and .223 are the pressure to which they are loaded. If you worked up a load using your cases that would be fine.
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Old November 10, 2012, 07:43 PM   #5
Mike38
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Correct me if I’m wrong, but if you size 5.56 in .223 dies, trim to .223 length, and start the powder charge low and work up, you should not notice the difference. I’ve been doing such for years now.

If you plan to discard those 1500 pcs of LC brass, discard them my way.
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Old November 10, 2012, 07:46 PM   #6
allaroundhunter
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Use the 5.56 cases, but load them to .223 Rem specs. The problems with the two (when they occur) are due to the slightly hotter 5.56 pressures.

If you load the 5.56 case and .223 case similarly (to .223 pressures) you will not notice a bit of difference, and neither will your gun.
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Old November 10, 2012, 07:55 PM   #7
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I'd keep looking for a rifle with a 5.56 chamber. There are plenty of choices in the same price range.
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Old November 10, 2012, 08:38 PM   #8
rebs
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I am looking for a good very accurate AR 15 with a 20" barrel and no flash hider of muzzle brake on it.

The windham has great feel and balance to it, I thought it would be an excellent target and varmint rifle.
I am not a big fan of chrome lined barrels either since I understand the chrome lining tends to be less accurate.
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Old November 10, 2012, 08:47 PM   #9
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Rock River Arms makes a Varmint style rifle, with 16", 18", 20" and 24" barrels. That's if you can find them in stock, they have a 3 to 6 month wait time.

Sometimes you can find one locally though, I got lucky last month and found a 24" model. Shoots great. MIne has the 1 in 8" twist, which is what I wanted.

My friend found another one, but it has the 1 in 12" twist. He's not happy, since he wanted the same twist I got in mine.

Check out Gunbroker, they do turn up from time to time. Stag Arms has a Varmint rifle as well.
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Old November 11, 2012, 01:34 PM   #10
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I just bought a Windom Weaponry varmint rifle two days ago. It has stamped on the receiver 223/5.56 and it has a fluted 20" stainless steel barrel 1in8 twist. Am I to assume it will only shoot 223's if it has stamped on the receiver 5.56 also?
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Old November 11, 2012, 01:57 PM   #11
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Quote:
I am looking for a good very accurate AR 15 with a 20" barrel and no flash hider of muzzle brake on it.
The windham has great feel and balance to it, I thought it would be an excellent target and varmint rifle.
FROM THE GUNSMITH'S BENCH
Erik Winter, Windham Gunsmith
TOPIC:

5.56 AMMO in a VEX
I've had a few customers inquiring recently as to whether they can shoot 5.56 NATO ammunition in their Varmint Exterminator rifles since the barrel is marked "223".

The Varmint Exterminator is safe with decent factory loaded 5.56 NATO ammo. We put .223 on the barrel as that is what is recommended for best results - match grade .223 ammunition.

The VEX has what is called a "5.56 Compass Lake" chamber. This means the leade (amount of freebore before rifling) is shorter than on a 5.56 but not as short as a .223. Also the angle into the rifling is a little different. The overall chamber dimensions are slightly tighter as well and the bolt is matched to the chamber for better accuracy. Frank White, of Compass Lake Engineering, developed this chambering many years ago for competition shooters and this chamber is widely used in many service rifles used for target competitions at Camp Perry.

I have fired Federal M855 5.56 NATO ammo in VEX rifles with no ill effects. If you should fire any foreign 5.56 ammo through it, just keep checking the primers to make sure they aren't backing out, popping out or severely flattened. Some of the foreign military ammo can run a little hot and may not run efficiently in the tighter chamber of the VEX rifles.


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Old November 11, 2012, 02:39 PM   #12
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We put .223 on the barrel as that is what is recommended for best results - match grade .223 ammunition.

To me this seems like a fundamentally flawed practice. I would prefer to have my barrel stamped with the actual chamber rather than preferred ammo. Although the chamber can withstand higher pressures than what's stamped on the barrel (.223) you are somewhat misleading the end user. Why not just stamp it as it is and tell the consumer that you recommend match grade .223 for best results? The whole topic of " match grade" in itself is a can of worms and is grossly over used and poorly defined term.

This really isn't a HUGE deal to me, but just seems a bit odd. Certainly safer than the other way around which might be a possibility (however remote) if you have a process for labeling something different than what it actually is.
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Old November 11, 2012, 03:00 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by oryx
This really isn't a HUGE deal to me, but just seems a bit odd. Certainly safer than the other way around which might be a possibility (however remote) if you have a process for labeling something different than what it actually is.
Unlike the more recognizable .223 Wylde... it certainly seems to generate a good deal of confusion.

Hey rebs... do you happen to know (or anyone else for that matter) if directions, instructions, detailed information (about what should and should not be used) of any kind comes in the box with the VEX?
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Old November 11, 2012, 03:27 PM   #14
allaroundhunter
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I just bought a Windom Weaponry varmint rifle two days ago. It has stamped on the receiver 223/5.56 and it has a fluted 20" stainless steel barrel 1in8 twist. Am I to assume it will only shoot 223's if it has stamped on the receiver 5.56 also?
No, it will shoot both, hence why both are stamped on the barrel.
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Old November 11, 2012, 05:17 PM   #15
rebs
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Can someone that owns this rifle tell me about its accuracy ? Also what ammom your are using ?
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Old November 11, 2012, 06:04 PM   #16
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Mine is extremley accurate. it is my go to rifle for coyote hunting. I've never had any problems with it, she runs awesome. as for ammo I reload 68 gr. hornady tips with imr 4895 powder and it loves it. I have two other ar-15's, one other with a 1 in 8 twist and one with a 1 in 9 twist that also shoot the 68 gr. bullets has well. all three ar's have a bull barrel but I perfer the windham over the other two because it's got the 20 inch barrel over the 24's. I've never fired factory ammo through her.
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Old November 11, 2012, 09:34 PM   #17
rebs
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No, it will shoot both, hence why both are stamped on the barrel.
The one I looked at did not have both, the barrel was marked 223, not 5.6
The one I looked at is the varmint exterminator with 20" barrel.

Ruger357, what kind of groups do you get at 100 yards ?
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Old November 11, 2012, 10:04 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rebs View Post
The one I looked at did not have both, the barrel was marked 223, not 5.6
The one I looked at is the varmint exterminator with 20" barrel.

Ruger357, what kind of groups do you get at 100 yards ?
I am 99.99% sure that yours will fire both. As was mentioned earlier, Windham just stamps their barrels .223 because they shoot best with .223 match ammo.

Sent from my HTC One X
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Old November 12, 2012, 04:28 AM   #19
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To me this seems like a fundamentally flawed practice. I would prefer to have my barrel stamped with the actual chamber rather than preferred ammo.
It makes sense from a marketing perspective. It's a varmint rifle designed for accuracy and it works best with .223 ammo. They'd rather people use .223 in it so they can get the most accuracy out of the rifle as possible. They also figured that it wouldn't hurt to imply that the rifle can't shoot 5.56 because most varmint loads are in .223 anyway.
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Old November 12, 2012, 06:26 AM   #20
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I've never measured my groups, but off of a solid rest at 100 yards it will shoot 5 shot groups toughing. I've got one of the caldwell lead sleds thats made for the ar sytle platforms.
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