Federal .22 LR ammo


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ChronoCube
May 10, 2009, 07:32 PM
I picked up some red-boxed Federal Lightning .22LR ammo @ Walmart today. Previously (pre-panic) they had blue-boxed Federal Champion high velocity .22LR. What is the difference between Champion and Lightning? They have the same bullet (40 gr solid) and muzzle velocity (1240 fps). Also cost the same.

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Sunray
May 10, 2009, 08:10 PM
Champion is their match ammo brand. They seem to have dropped the Lightning brand name and call all their target ammo Champion now.

22-rimfire
May 10, 2009, 10:26 PM
The old Federal Lightning load is the same as the Champion 510 load that Walmart sells in the 50-ct box (or it used to be). They just renamed it. Check the load # on the box. If they are changing back to the Lightning name/packaging, that is news actually. Could be something special for Walmart perhaps?

Guitargod1985
May 11, 2009, 12:53 AM
Never heard of Lightning, but I can tell you that IMO the Champion ammo sucks hardcore in my Marlin 795. In a ten rouund mag I usually get 2-3 FTF or FTE. For some reason Champion works fine in my Savage .22, though.

It's odd, because I've never had a problem with any of Federal's other products. Their .22 bulk packs are great, and both the American Eagle brand and their shotshells have performed superbly in my experience.

22-rimfire
May 11, 2009, 01:00 AM
Many of the gun writers have touted the accuracy of Federal Lightnings for such inexpensive 22LR ammo. It is nice that Federal has maintained a good reputation for 40 years.

outerlimit
May 11, 2009, 01:05 AM
I've had bad luck with the Federal bulk packs and won't buy them again. Weak underpowered ammo that doesn't cycle semi-autos well. Never had that problem with any of the Winchester or Remington bulk packs. Though I have had lots of duds with the Remington Golden Bullets in the past. The old Federal Lightning ammo was okay in my opinion, but nothing spectacular. I've always considered it just barely a step above the bulk fodder and not really worth the price.

22-rimfire
May 11, 2009, 01:18 AM
I rarely buy ANY bulk packs of 22LR ammo (all brands). I really don't care what the price is on them. I like individual boxes in either 50 or 100ct boxes. I have a few for ammo testing and family outings, but that is about it. I would guess I have maybe 10 lying around.

If Federal is changing the name back to Lightning again, I welcome it. There are way too many "Champion" boxes that many don't realize there are a number of different loadings (and cost). I bought my first brick of Federal Champion Target #714 at Dicks thinking it was overpriced Walmart 510's. Couldn't be further from the truth.

I don't know exactly when Federal changed the name from Lightning (1990's perhaps?) . Back then, they had Power Points and Lightnings. The Power Points were copper washed and I used them in my 22 pistols primarily.

outerlimit
May 11, 2009, 05:05 AM
I was at Walmart tonight and they had a new type of Federal bulk pack. It was the only .22lr ammo they had besides CCI Minimags so I figured what the hell, I will try it again to see if it is any different than my old Federal bulk packs that date back to what Walmart was selling in 2004. Sad that they only come in 325 round boxes now instead of 550. And of course they cost twice as much as the old bulk packs at nearly $15.

grimjaw
May 11, 2009, 10:14 AM
I can tell you that IMO the Champion ammo sucks hardcore in my Marlin 795.

I guess that just goes to show you that even among the same model of rimfire rifle, they can be picky about ammo. My 795 loves Fed 510, so long as it's fresh. My experience is the stuff doesn't age well unless care is taken to keep it dry and temp-controlled.

jm

outerlimit
May 11, 2009, 12:24 PM
I just opened this new box of Federal. They're all bare lead, no copper coating like the old ones.. :uhoh:

22-rimfire
May 12, 2009, 03:41 PM
The old ones were not copper washed. Is that you over on RFC?

Clarence
May 12, 2009, 05:53 PM
I've shot thousands of the Federal bulk-packs through my rimfires, especially my S&W M41 with no complaints.

61chalk
May 12, 2009, 06:39 PM
I shoot Federal Champion through my GSG-5 with no problems...what is the difference....OP said they both read 40 gr. 1240 fps...are you sure?????? My Federal Champion are copper plated hollow points, 525 rds. value pack from Wal-Mart...They are 36 gr. an 1280fps.....

hunter25
May 12, 2009, 06:46 PM
Had to go look at my old lightnings before i posted. Pure lead hp. work great in my ruger but not at all in my other semis.

ChronoCube
May 12, 2009, 07:24 PM
I shoot Federal Champion through my GSG-5 with no problems...what is the difference....OP said they both read 40 gr. 1240 fps...are you sure?????? My Federal Champion are copper plated hollow points, 525 rds. value pack from Wal-Mart...They are 36 gr. an 1280fps.....

I'm not referring to the copper plated HP bulk packs. I'm talking about the 50-round boxes of 40gr solid lead rounds -- "Champion" (blue box) and "Lightning" (red box). I checked the load numbers between them and they're both 510. So post #3 sounds correct.

61chalk
May 12, 2009, 08:14 PM
Aaaaahhhh.....you know I've never seen the 50rd. packs, its always the 2 kinds of bulk packs, thanks for getting me straightened out.

Deltaboy
May 12, 2009, 09:35 PM
I remember when I bought lightnings for $5.00 a brick at a Freds Dept Store. I loved them in my Marlin 60. I used the powerpoint HP for hunting. I miss the Lightning brand in the Federal Line.

ShootTheM14
May 12, 2009, 09:36 PM
@outlimit said "I just opened this new box of Federal. They're all bare lead, no copper coating like the old ones.."

Federal has numerous 22LR loads including a 40gr solid and also a copper coated hollow point. The 525 value pack I've seen is always the copper coated HP. I've only seen the 40gr solid sold in bulk in the 500 pack which contains 10 boxes of 50. I believe Federal calls that round it's target load. BTW, that 40gr solid is my favorite cheap 22LR load. Shoots great in my Savage bolt and decently in my other 22s. IMHO 22LR rifles are the most finicky beasts around in terms of what ammo they like. When I get a new 22LR I try many different types of ammo in it and then feed it whatever it likes best.

Marlin 45 carbine
May 12, 2009, 10:03 PM
seems I recollect the 'Lightning' was a bare lead slug not copper washed.
it did well in some guns I've shot it in but I didn't mike the o.d. wish I had checked it now. CCI Blazer .22LR's do a tad better it seems but more $$. it's a bare lead slug not 'washed'.

omalon
May 13, 2009, 12:35 AM
Last month I purchased one box of Federal Bulk 550 for $12.67 38 copper hp at Walmart. Today all they had was Remington Bulk 550 36 Golden HP for $16.97. Guy at the counter said 22lr and 9mm still running out the door. Walmart has a 6 box limit.

toivo
May 13, 2009, 01:32 AM
I was at Walmart tonight and they had a new type of Federal bulk pack. It was the only .22lr ammo they had besides CCI Minimags so I figured what the hell, I will try it again to see if it is any different than my old Federal bulk packs that date back to what Walmart was selling in 2004. Sad that they only come in 325 round boxes now instead of 550. And of course they cost twice as much as the old bulk packs at nearly $15.

That sounds like Auto-Match. It's a higher-grade ammo than the 550-packs, which, BTW, is still produced--your store is probably just all out of it.

Auto-Match is decent ammo, but there was a bad batch a year or so ago. More info here:

http://www.rimfirecentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=217451

I had four boxes of the bad lot, and Federal replaced them plus a few extra boxes and reimbursed me for all the shipping. However, a few months ago I bought another box at a Wal-Mart without checking the lot number; I figured enough time had passed that all the bad ammo was gone. Guess what? Squib City. Wal-Mart has some mighty big warehouses, so the ammo you buy there may have been in the pipeline a LONG time.

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