View Full Version : need help... 223 or 22-250???

January 5, 2009, 09:44 PM
Im looking to get a target rifle ... would like either .223 or .22-250 caliber.. would like something entry level...nothing high end.. prefer wood stock over synthetic... prefer bolt action not auto... ive always shot larger caliber rifles and have never looked into something this small... any advice/suggestions would be appreciated.... i have way too many guns already... much larger in caliber... so im working on limited funds.... i also reload and have no idea how the two calibers compare for reloading .... help me out ya'all.

Art Eatman
January 5, 2009, 10:31 PM
I guess I'd call the .22-250 more of a hunting cartridge, in comparing the two. Generally, hunting rifles aren't fired as often as target rifles. Equal accuracy, basically, but the .223 won't burn the leade as quickly. So, long term the .223 is more economical for barrel life. And, the powder charge requirement is about 3/4 as much.

Quite a few choices for rifles...

January 5, 2009, 10:57 PM
I own a .22-250 and a .222, and have a .223 on the way. The .222 is closer to what I would consider to be a "target" rifle, though the .22-250 is a tack driver. It will also definitely let you know you're shooting something. You'll feel it and hear it substantially more than a .223.

Some of it depends on the distance you're shooting, of course. The .22-250 will definitely "reach out and touch" at longer ranges. For closer in (100-200 yards) I really like the .222. You use the same primers, powder and bullets as the .223, just a little less powder. I have read that the .222 has a little better intrinsic accuracy. Probably not many new rifles chambered for it, though.

January 6, 2009, 12:29 AM
I'd go with the 22-250. I've fired both and own a 22-250. It's flatter shooting and yet very effective on game up to deer size. Can be reloaded with bullets from 40gr to 70 gr. The .223 came into vogue with the advent of the M16 but the 22-250 has been the choice of varmit shooters for decades. And while you can build or buy a .223 with great accuracy the cost is significantly more than an off the self 22-250. The basic Remington 700 in 22-250 is sub-MOA right off the shelf.

January 6, 2009, 01:42 AM
your 22-250 gun may be cheaper off the shelf, but the ammo is much more than the .223.
a target shooter is going to put alot more lead down range than a average hunter. you will make up the gun cost quickly on ammo.

plus the 22-250 burns out the bbls fairly quickly.

have you looked at .204 ruger?

January 6, 2009, 05:38 AM
G'day. My money would have gone to the .223, but I was able to pick up a .222 for 0$. The .222 ended up being a much cheaper option.
The .223 will be a cheaper pet to feed, but it won't run as fast as the bigger animal.

January 6, 2009, 06:03 AM
I have a 22-250 imp that I hunted with for 10 years plus, I have stopped number of big goats from cliff tops were we hunted right out to 350 yards some times even a little further, with a 60 nosler partition so I have a soft spot for this little hotrod.

January 6, 2009, 06:41 AM
Went through pretty much the same question you are asking some years ago and went with the 22-250, Savage 12BVSS. I roll my own so price per box didn't matter. Just liked the ballistics and it has been around forever. Have not been disappointed in the least. Absolute tack driver. By circumstances a few years ago, I killed a huge Hill Country buck with it from about 135 yds or so with a perfect neck shot and didn't take a step. Don't make a habit of shooting large game with it, but with the accuracy and shot placement, it did the job. Don't regret the caliber or rifle choice one bit. If for sole target work, there is good advice above. Do both with mine.

January 6, 2009, 07:16 AM
I would have to say the 22-250 is my fav round for both target and hunting. Try it sometime and you will see for yourself why it is I like it so much.

January 6, 2009, 09:19 AM
I have them both so I don't have to make the choice but the 22-250 is my favorite. The 223 is cheaper to drive but not the RIDE you get with the 22-250.

Art Eatman
January 6, 2009, 10:11 AM
For the .22-250 folks: You may already know, but Google for "Jerry Gebby" and "Varminter" for some history on the cartridge.

January 6, 2009, 12:57 PM
I own both, and I love my 22-250, but for target shooting I would recommend a 223. Cheaper to feed and easier on the ears.

January 6, 2009, 04:42 PM
Another vote for the 22-250. The .223 isn't inherently more accurate than the 250 and the 250 has better ballistics and less wind drift.

The .222 however held about every medium range target record for years until the PPC's arrived on the scene. IMO, It has proven that it IS inherently more accurate than either of the rounds you mentioned.

As for the .223 being cheaper? In real world terms it's not. Good or target grade ammo is compartivly priced and if you reload the extra cost is very minimal. Now if you are thinkin that the.223 is cheaper because you are used to shooting crap like wolf you may be right. But who in the hell wound try to target shoot with crap ammo. As for sound, I've never noticed the 22-250 being any louder than the .223 and by all rights you should use hearing protection with both anyway


January 6, 2009, 07:16 PM
Yes, the 222 Rem is a great target rifle.
Cheaper to load than the 22-250. Just because it takes less powder.
It is also a great small game caliber. I load a 55 grain bullet at about 3000 FPS. The 223 is about the same size, just a little different shape and with similar characteristics. My rifle is the Remington mod 722 in a walnut stock. It was a tack driver from the factory. Good luck.

Shane Tuttle
January 6, 2009, 07:56 PM
What's the longest distance you're going to shoot?

If you're limited on funds, then I'm presuming that you only want to stick with a stock rifle?

IF you're shooting at 300 yards or so and under, then I'd say either one will do. You will spending more on powder to reload .22-250, but I don't know just how much penny pinching you're doing. Everything else is equal.

Twist rate on your rifle at this point shouldn't be an issue. 52gr SMK HPBT works great in my rifle's 1:12 twist. chambered in .22-250. The .223 will match the .22-250 in performance at this range.

IF you're shooting at 400+ yards, this is where I think the .22-250 starts to outperform the .223. I'd recommend both of these cartridges to be used with a faster twist rate such as 1:8 and heavier bullets (or at least a longer ogive). In order to maximize either one, you'll need the heavier bullet to buck the wind and faster twist rate to keep it stabilized. Don't get me wrong, the .223 has potential at up to 600 yards, but you'll be taking a little greater effort and time to match the .22-250.

IF you're wanting to go longer than 600 yards, I don't recommend either one. I think you need to reconsider your choices because there's simply better cartidges that will leave both of these in the dust at this range...

Like Scorch said: If noise is a factor at your range, the .223 is a little "quieter", but not that much IMO.

plus the 22-250 burns out the bbls fairly quickly.

In general terms, I have to agree with this statement. However, two items to consider:

1. How many rounds/year are you considering firing? If you're in the neighborhood of 500-1000, then (depending on brand you select) you may end up changing barrels every 2-3 years. If you're not, I think the rifle will last for years before worrying about this issue.

2. If you are considering .22-250 even though you're planning to shoot that much, I HIGHLY recommend buying a Savage. The reasons are they are about the most accurate rifle out-of-the-box out there with a price tag that won't make your jaw drop to the floor. And the barrels are easy to change out. By then, you can afford to attach another brand if you wish without knowing brain surgery.

Just my thought on the issue...

January 7, 2009, 09:39 PM
tkx for all the replies.... tuttle.... i dont even have anywhere around this whole place that has a whole that is 600 yds long... that was a joke... i was actually just going for up to 300 yds.... im unhappy that the two .30 calibers that i have wont do me much better than a 1 inch pattern at 100 yds... and thats with a 150 gr bullet... thought i would try something smaller and easier to group up on..

Shane Tuttle
January 7, 2009, 09:55 PM
If 300 is max and you're on a budget, I'd stick with .223. That hurts me to say because I REALLY like .22-250. But, I just can't see any inherent differences in these two at that distance...

January 7, 2009, 11:27 PM
I am a HUGE fan of the 22-250 as it was my first centerfire and will always be my favorite. My bone stock Remington 700 does well under an inch every time. As has been said, it is great at reaching out and making its presence known. Even if you are shooting shorter distances you can't beat the flat trajectory. With all that said, a 223 would be ideal for 300 yards and under.

Both calibers will cost about the same if you hand load (which is almost a necessity if you are looking for accuracy).

You can't go wrong with either one.

January 10, 2009, 01:42 AM
This is a tough decision.

And I own both .......

You say you want to stick with a wood stock ...... laminates are nice looking and accurate .... but spendy ..........

But this brings me to this:

What are you really going to do with this rifle???

The end use drives all decisions.

Competitive target work or just for fun or braggin' rights?

The .223 will be more economical ...... the .22-250 will always kill with more authority .......

Barrels will last longer with the .223 ........

Three 44s

January 10, 2009, 03:06 AM
+1 on the .223, i have a .222 which can do all the .223 does, i speak on field not target. The .22-250 is a noisy bugger and a barrel burner. Stay away if your gonna be punching holes in paper all day.