22-250 accuracy problems


fireman 9731
November 22, 2008, 03:26 PM
I have a Remington 700 VTR in 22-250 and reload. I have gotten great 1/2in groups with Barnes 36gr varmint grenades and and Barnes 55gr TSX bullets using Varget and IMR 4895 loaded in Winchester brass. I got about 1in groups with factory winchester and remington ammo.
My problem is that I bought a thousand Remington 55gr FMJs for plinking and some longer range target shooting. No matter what I do though, I cant seem to get them to shoot sub MOA. I have tried different powder loads and seating depths and everything and just cant seem to get much accuracy out of them.
does anybody else have this problem? are they just cheap bullets that dont perform that well or is my gun just being picky?

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November 22, 2008, 04:00 PM
FMJ has never had a reputation for accuracy. What's the best group you've been able to wrench out of them?

November 22, 2008, 04:00 PM
I don't load 22-250, just 223. I've bought Rem 55 fmj with two different product numbers but neither were accurate. Same with Rem 52 grain hollow point. Just good for blasting and plinking. Premium bullets like your Barnes or like Nosler BT make small groups. But all the bulk fmj I've ever used (Win, Rem, Hornady, milspec) are good-but-not-great.

November 22, 2008, 04:03 PM
It's just the bullets. I get sub .5MOA with the Nosler Ballistic Tips, and consider myself lucky to shoot an inch with FMJs.

fireman 9731
November 22, 2008, 04:19 PM
the best I have gotten is about 1 and 1/2 to 2 inch groups with the FMJs.

November 22, 2008, 05:00 PM
Weigh the bullets!

If they are anything like the batches I've purchased, they are plus/minus 1 grain or more. A few were 2 grains off, so you can have as much as a4-5 grain variation.

Weigh and see.

November 22, 2008, 06:56 PM
I'm with Shoney, there's quite a bit of weight variations with mass produced fmj's. I had some Winchester fmj, a box of a thousand, and could not get them to shoot in my 222 or 223 , at least to my expectations. Checked and found about a grain differential on a few. I sold them off in packs of a hundred and made money. Live and learn.


November 22, 2008, 09:03 PM
Instead of getting rid of them, I used my electronic scale (for the only function I care to use it) to quickly weigh and segregate the bullets into piles of being closest to the 0.5 grain marks in each direction+/-, then load them accordingly

dagger dog
November 22, 2008, 09:47 PM
The weight variation in bulk bullets usually comes from voids in the innner core, these voids throw of the center of gravity in the less expensive bullets. When combined with the extreme revolution when fired from the 22.250 that void causes yaw, like a bad football pass, and the bullet does not continue on the course that wich it was intended.

Yes weighing to groups will get some better accuracy. But because the voids are in different locations in those bullets not all same weights will shoot to the same point of aim.

Stepping up to a higher grade bullet will make a world of difference.

November 23, 2008, 11:58 AM
It has nothing, or at least very little to do with weight variation.

I don't buy "voids in the core" because the lead wire all bullet cores are cut from don't have voids!

FMJ bullets have the jacket opening on the base of the bullet.
That is the way they have to be made to have a closed point that makes them FMJ.

It is well neigh impossible to make all the bullet bases exactly square on them due to the swaging process squeezing more jacket out on one side then the other.
Even a frog-hair off, and the bullet is given a nudge to start it wobbling off course as it exits the muzzle.

If you want best accuracy, the bullet jacket opening has to be in the nose of the bullet to insure perfectly square bases on all of them.


November 24, 2008, 04:35 PM
1.5-2 moa with FMJ is about the best you're going to get, unless you've stumbled across a spectacular lot of FMJ.

I'd take that same load and use a Nosler BT, Sierra Blitzking or HPBT and see what it does. I'll bet good money your groups shrink by at least .5 moa or better.

dagger dog
November 24, 2008, 04:46 PM
The thickness of the jacket walls on jacketed bullets must be the same all around or it shifts the center of gravity. The jackets on the less expensive bullets are not concentic with the core and can cause bullet yaw.

Rc, Please tell me why extruded lead bullet cores cannot have voids!

November 24, 2008, 05:30 PM
I can't tell you why they can't.

I can just tell you that the same lead wire process is used to make cores for FMJ as is used to make cores for the best grade of match bullets.

It would seem there would be no way for air to get inside an extruded lead wire while it is squirting through an extrusion die under tons of hydraulic pressure.

Anywho, I still contend it is non-uniform bullet bases that cause FMJ to be inaccurate, and not weight variation.


dagger dog
November 24, 2008, 06:41 PM
It isn't that the air is induced during the extrusion it's that the air is not forced out by the extrusion.

The lead does not come out of the ground in extruded form it is smelted into ingots and those ingots are eventually reduced in size to the specs of the bullet needed . If voids are present the air is not forced out by the extrusion. So even when forced into cores for 17 cal bullets there can still be voids in the lead.

November 25, 2008, 08:28 AM
Well, I have a 700SSV in .22-250 and.... well..... the twist rate on a Remington is slow, like 1 in 16 or 1 in 14 instead of 1 in 12 or so.

This means 55 grains is a bit on the heavy side for good stabilization. You may get lucky with a particular load, but you should find that things get a lot better if you go down to 45-52 grain bullets.

Yeah, I don't like it either - I have a huge pile of 55gr surplus I was going to load just to shoot at the range for accuracy tuning, and found that I'm going to have to load it into .223 instead (because IT has a faster twist).:uhoh:

Give it some thought. I am not going to say this is Gospel, but it's proven true on my end. Good luck.

The Rem is a fine rifle - but like everything, it has its limitations, just like the 244 Rem had too slow a twist.

November 25, 2008, 12:05 PM
My 1:14 Rem700 always shot 55gn Nosler BTs just fine. That being said, it shoots the 50s about twice as well.

November 25, 2008, 12:19 PM
Would they be more accurate if shot backwards (base first)?
Is air forced between the jacket and core when fired?

November 25, 2008, 12:28 PM
If voids are present the air is not forced out by the extrusion.It is impossible to trap air bubbles in molten lead. Or almost any other impurity for that matter.

Even steel scrap and copper jackets float to the top of melted lead like Styrofoam on water.

An air bubble would stand about the same chance as a fart in a hurricane of staying inside the ingot before it solidified.

And if Hornady, or Sierra, or Speer, or any other bullet manufacture were getting lead wire or ingots from the vendor with air voids in it, they would very quickly be finding another manufacture!

On another rant:
The OP said he is getting 1/2" groups with Barnes 55gr TSX bullets.

SO, why is everyone trying to tell him his Remington will not be able to shoot 55 grain bullets because the twist is too slow? :banghead:

The OP said he can't get the same accuracy with 55 grain FMJ, and that is because FMJ bullets cannot be made as accurate as bullets with the jacket opening in the nose.

In actuality, his 22-250 1/14 barrel will shoot 55 grain bullets, and even some 60-63 grain semi-pointed perfectly fine. As long as they are high quality precision made varmint or target bullets, with the jacket hole in the front end, not the rear end!

I've been doing it since I built my first 22-250 before Remington made it a commercial cartridge in 1967.

(It very likely may not shoot 60 grain VLD type plastic-tip bullets, because they are longer for a given bullet weight then SP or HP bullets.)


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