Best .224" for the money? Best overall?


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777funk
October 19, 2013, 08:06 AM
Curious on this? I've tried the 55FMJ by Hornady in 223/556 and have gotten 1.5" 100 yard groups with a scope, which I don't consider to be terrible or great. I haven't really worked up a load yet but I'm curious if it's worth spending time with? For the money they're not a bad deal I suppose even if only 1.5MOA.

Curious what other people have found to shoot well in target AR's and Bolt guns in the bang for buck catagory and in the best accuracy overall category?

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steve4102
October 19, 2013, 09:18 AM
My Colt is a 1-9 twist, so I use pretty light bullets.

Best bang for my Buck is Midsouth Varmint Nightmare 55gr HP.

http://www.midsouthshooterssupply.com/item.asp?sku=000042255HP

Best accuracy overall, it's tough to beat Sierra. My bullet of choice is their 53gr HP Match.

https://www.sierrabullets.com/store/product.cfm/sn/1400/224-dia-53-gr-HP-MatchKing

Blackrock
October 19, 2013, 10:08 AM
What Steve says ^

john wall
October 19, 2013, 10:24 AM
You can get cheap, or good. PICK ONE. Don't count on bulk bullets for stellar accuracy.

The AR needs specific bullet styles, there are plenty of accurate ones out there.

jwrowland77
October 19, 2013, 10:30 AM
As far as the accurate .224 bullet, I'd go Sierra Matchking all the way. I love their MK's. I use a lot of them.

As far as bulk, there's a bunch of bulk 55gr FMJ out there, just try to find the best beal. I like Hornady FMJ that I load for my daughter to practice with, just to get trigger time.

Best bang for you buck, and accurate normally don't go together. Accurate, consistent bullets are going to cost. Cheap practice bullets, isn't always all that accurate. I would suggest two different loads. One for you to just throw lead down range. The other, when you want to go for tight groups.

MrWesson
October 19, 2013, 11:07 AM
Curious on this? I've tried the 55FMJ by Hornady in 223/556 and have gotten 1.5" 100 yard groups with a scope, which I don't consider to be terrible or great. I haven't really worked up a load yet but I'm curious if it's worth spending time with? For the money they're not a bad deal I suppose even if only 1.5MOA.

Curious what other people have found to shoot well in target AR's and Bolt guns in the bang for buck catagory and in the best accuracy overall category?

The million dollar question is what gun are you shooting?

If you chasing sub MOA groups with an M4 barrel or something similar then only luck will get you there.

I shoot hornady fmj boattails in my rifle and easily get sub moa groups with it but with a $400 barrel it better shoot well.

divad
October 19, 2013, 11:07 AM
So is there a decent compromise bullet? There has to be a place where you get the best blend of cost/accuracy.

KansasSasquatch
October 19, 2013, 11:19 AM
Cheap and pretty accurate, Hornady Z-Max, 50 or 55gr. Just like V-Max, with a green tip, but less expensive. Or 55gr Hornady SP.

ole farmerbuck
October 19, 2013, 11:22 AM
I use mostly Hornady v-max 55gr bullets in my AR's. P-dogs dont like them but I do! Most Three of my AR's have Krieger barrels so accuracy is great but even the stock barrels shoot them very well.

Otto
October 19, 2013, 11:27 AM
Curious on this? I've tried the 55FMJ by Hornady in 223/556 and have gotten 1.5" 100 yard groups with a scope...
Hornady's bulk 55gr Spire Points are inherently more accurate than the FMJ.
You don't say what your barrel twist is but if it's 1:7 you need to look at a heavier bullet.

stavman11
October 19, 2013, 12:11 PM
My Bullets of Choice in order

Dogtown HP's 55gr
varmint Nightmare HP's 55gr
Z-Max 55gr
Hornady 55gr SP's


The HP's all are tack drivers... of the SHOOTER can shoot... so for me, well, they shoot good.....

the Seirra Match Bullets rea VERY accurate but not cheap... the Dogtowns and Varmints are a Great price for 500, Like $50ish...

For Longer distance and less Bullet drop the Hornady FMJ-BT and SP's work Great... SP's for me are a lot more accurate but the FMJ's shoot good at longer distance

Hope this helps


Stav....

Rule3
October 19, 2013, 01:00 PM
You never said what rifle or twist. Too many variables to consider. The bullet being only one of them. Even the best "perceived" bullet is only as good as the rifle, shooter and load.

556by45guy
October 19, 2013, 07:35 PM
The "best" is an ambiguous and subjective term at "best", LOL. Sierra BK's are the most accurate 55gr pill I've found so far out of my 1-7 AR.

Hondo 60
October 19, 2013, 10:07 PM
No such thing as "Best Overall" in my book.
Every rifle is different, so what works beautifully in mine, may be absolutely rotten in yours.

Lotsa folks thumb their nose at 55 gr FMJs.
I use the cheapest of the cheap & have VERY good results.
Of course their out of stock at the moment.

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/2586146771/armscor-bullets-22-caliber-224-diameter-55-grain-full-metal-jacket-boat-tail

777funk
October 19, 2013, 10:29 PM
I have a 1:7 twist (got it to stabilize deer hunting bullets for my son). I'd read that the fast twist can still work well with 55 grainers but a 1:9 wouldn't work as well with the 62's and above.

CMV
October 19, 2013, 10:33 PM
The Hornady 55 gr SP are really inexpensive and very accurate for bulk bullets. Just a hair more than their 55 gr FMJBT and well worth it. That's my plinking round, but it'll hold an inch @ 100 group easily.

My target loads (I don't compete but like to see what I can do from the bench) are 55 gr V or ZMax. They hold <.75" groups @ 100 easily.

Both are inexpensive for shorter range accuracy and a good value. I'd go with a heavier SMK for longer distance or outdoors where wind is a factor.

I like a lot of different bullets for different things, but Hornady is hard to beat overall for that balance between cost, accuracy, & consistency. I'd say the same thing for Montana Gold (pistol bullets - never tried their .223). Not too many others come to mind*. Lots of people making really good bullets, but the cost is up there with most of them too.

Anyway, for a couple bucks difference per 1K, the Hornady 55 gr SP are much more accurate for me than any 55 gr FMJBT I've tried and well worth it. It's a noticeable difference on paper.

*need to try some of those Varmint Nightmare - that's a good price and no soft point to squish :)

Rangemaster
October 19, 2013, 11:02 PM
Here is my results last Saturday using hornady 55 gr sp using my precision ar-15 with 24" varmint barrel at 100 yards.

Load data:
Hornady 55 gr sp .224 bullets
C.O.L. 2.215
Powder 24.7 gn AA 2230
Primer #7-1/2 rem
FPS 3050 average

Otto
October 19, 2013, 11:03 PM
I have a 1:7 twist (got it to stabilize deer hunting bullets for my son). I'd read that the fast twist can still work well with 55 grainers but a 1:9 wouldn't work as well with the 62's and above.
A 1:7 barrel should be using 69gr. and above. 69gr bullets have a longer bearing surface and the extra weight helps buck the wind.
But if your content with your 1.5" MOA then continue using the 55 grainers.

777funk
October 19, 2013, 11:28 PM
RE: 69gr and above, the only problem there is that it doesn't leave me with much other than target/match HP's. I purchased this as a deer rifle for my son and of course an enjoyable target gun as a side benefit. I see Sierra Game Kings at 65gr. We may try that and see.

556by45guy
October 19, 2013, 11:30 PM
A 1:7 barrel should be using 69gr. and above.Some may be of that opinion but there is no such rule.

69gr bullets have a longer bearing surface and the extra weight helps buck the wind.
But if your content with your 1.5" MOA then continue using the 55 grainers.My milspec AR with 14.5" 1-7 chrome lined barrel shoots my 55gr handloads just fine. Even pressure test workups with powder charges varying by over 1gr it still shoots sub-MOA 100m groups (shooting over a chrony at the same POA just for velocity data). I am definitely content with the 55gr BK. YMMV.

65gr and 77gr shoot well too and 69gr are on my to do list, but I see no rational reason to not try 55gr bullets. I was going to start experimenting with 53gr and 50gr pills and H322 or AR-Comp before the weatherman said temps were going to be in the 30s and that we could get snow, so that might have to wait until next spring.

556by45guy
October 19, 2013, 11:33 PM
RE: 69gr and above, the only problem there is that it doesn't leave me with much other than target/match HP's. I purchased this as a deer rifle for my son and of course an enjoyable target gun as a side benefit. I see Sierra Game Kings at 65gr. We may try that and see.Yes, I was about to suggest the 65gr GK. It shoots outstanding in my 1-7 AR over Varget.

MrWesson
October 20, 2013, 08:52 AM
A 1:7 barrel should be using 69gr. and above. 69gr bullets have a longer bearing surface and the extra weight helps buck the wind.
But if your content with your 1.5" MOA then continue using the 55 grainers.

What barrel do you have?

Is your forend free floating?

Trigger?

I have a sub moa AR that can't miss(.5 out of a rest isn't uncommon) with bulk bullets and one that takes alot of effort to get close to 1"(closer to 1.5) and match bullets,heavier,different powders don't seem to help much.

One has a match mid weight barrel from lothar walther and the other a bull barrel from green mountain.

The lothar barrel outshoots the other by alot.

777funk
October 20, 2013, 10:02 AM
I have a barrel with sights, and a HEAVY trigger, I'd guess it's probably 10 lbs, (although I don't notice any drifting during my slow pull). I suppose I better address the heavy trigger... I still wonder if it's workable with practice though.

atblis
October 20, 2013, 10:15 AM
Nosler 52 gr custom competition for $10 per 100. Factory seconds. Cheapest most accurate bullet I've ever bought.

MrWesson
October 20, 2013, 04:21 PM
I have a barrel with sights, and a HEAVY trigger, I'd guess it's probably 10 lbs, (although I don't notice any drifting during my slow pull). I suppose I better address the heavy trigger... I still wonder if it's workable with practice though.

A barrel with a mounted front sight post is a M4 barrel(usually) which while light,handy and great in battle they aren't very accurate.

Pair that up with that 10lb trigger and you should consider 1.5" grouping to be amazing. If you know someone with a very accurate AR maybe try your ammo in their gun but I'd bet you are chasing your tail trying to fix ammo that isn't broken.

I bet you are good at working that trigger and I bet the barrel is the thing holding you back for shooting groups. If all you do with it is shoot off a bench with a scope I'd go for it.

A good reason to keep it would be for 3 gun competitions or if you want a light gun for whatever reason.

Rule3
October 20, 2013, 06:10 PM
With a 1:7 twist a heavier (than 55)bullet (all other things equal) will probably work better.

Any of the premium brands Nosler, Sierra, Hornady all work well. For hunting deer with a 223/5.56 I would think a heavier bullet would be better anyway.

For range blasting the 55 gr you are using are fine, I use them also and get about the same groups as you, I am not getting money, throphys or medals.:D

mtrmn
October 20, 2013, 06:17 PM
Sierra 60 gr HP Varminter does quite well and relatively cheap if you can find them in stock

blarby
October 20, 2013, 10:37 PM
I've found the hornady Vmax is great, and they are usually on the shelves when all the vultures snap up the 55 FMJ.

Nice bonus ? You can hunt with the Vmax if you were inclined.

Edit : didn't notice that deer were the hunt target.... Vmax is a thin skin, and I wouldn't use them on anything larger than a 'yote. In the same price category is Hornadys Soft point- which would work just fine, as is more than accurate enough for deer.

777funk
October 20, 2013, 11:15 PM
I'd like to try the nosler partition 60 gr on deer. I'll see how that works on the bench. Sierra Game Kings and even the Hornady SP also looked like good possible options and from what I've read have good accuracy. I've heard V-Max can go either way for clean deer kills. I'd like something that will have an exit and holds together so the deer is easier to track if need be.

I was originally searching for accuracy from the bench but if there was a one bullet fits both bench and field that'd be even better.

243winxb
October 20, 2013, 11:37 PM
Sierra .224 cal, 65 gr. SBT GameKing
Please Note!! This bullet requires a 1x7" to 1x10" twist barrel.

jwrowland77
October 20, 2013, 11:42 PM
I can attest to the Nosler 60gr Partitions. Great accuracy and my daughter has taken a few deer over last couple of years from a Rossi single shot .223 with a 1:12 twist over H4895. I shot some over my new chronograph yesterday and I had 15 shots in a 1" square at 50yards and that was with the chronograph attached (MagnetoSpeed). Average speed was 3015fps.

50yds is the limit that I have given my daughter for distance to shoot since she's only 8.

You might be able to find some Nosler 60gr Partitions on Shooters Pro for a discounted price for seconds. They shoot great even as seconds.

gdcpony
October 21, 2013, 10:43 AM
Cheap and pretty accurate, Hornady Z-Max, 50 or 55gr. Just like V-Max, with a green tip, but less expensive. Or 55gr Hornady SP.
I use these now as they are the most available around here. However, Midway's "Dogtown" and Midsouth's "Varmint Nightmare" are both capable of extremely tight groups. I doubt your rifle will know the difference. Mine, at least with me behind it has trouble telling and it averages .5-.75 depending on load. Not enough difference for a 'yote to notice out to the ranges I use the .223 at.

Edit: Since it looks like deer are your target, I like the 55gr Hornady SP's. They are supposed to be a varmint bullet, but they failed to expand on some ground hogs and 'yotes for me so I tried them on a small deer. It worked perfectly and I used it for my daughters when they wanted to hunt. Some decent NC does fell to them last season. One did go about 50yds before dropping, but sprayed blood the whole way (daughter described it as a "red spray paint can out each side of the deer"). I limited them to 100yds though. This season I have an extra .243 and .308 so I won't use them.

jwrowland77
October 21, 2013, 11:36 AM
The Nosler 60gr Partitions are in stock right now at the following link. They are over-runs.

http://www.shootersproshop.com/nosler-products/factory-over-runs/nosler-over-run-bullets/nosler-22-60gr-partition-spitzer-over-run-50ct.html

$16 per 50 instead of $30 per 50.

777funk
October 21, 2013, 01:35 PM
I ordered some of those (60 gr Noslers) this past weekend. Looks like this should be a good youth setup for deer hunting. My 9 year old managed a 2" group at 100 yds with the bulk FMJ Hornady's. I told him we'd practice from sitting and spontaneous out in the field style rests to find what kind of real ranges he's able to achieve. I'm guessing within 100 yds and he'll be ok.

blarby
October 21, 2013, 01:37 PM
a 2" group from a novice shooter.....for deer ?

I'd practice other things now, like calls, rattles, and effective quiet stalking.

It appears his shooting is ready :D

777funk
October 22, 2013, 12:11 AM
Ha blarby, I'll have to tell him you said that:) I was proud of him and his target.

He still needs to work on sitting shots or blind supported shots (real life situations). I was thrilled with his bench shooting and he did it fast. I kept telling him to REALLY take his time on the trigger squeeze. But he didn't listen. Shell loaded, BANG, next shell, BANG,... and the 5 shot group was done. Sad thing was I took my time and only got a 1/2" better than he did. lol.

oldreloader
October 22, 2013, 12:35 AM
I like both the Hornady 55gr sp and the Mid South VNE HP for bulk bullets.

divad
October 22, 2013, 09:54 AM
I had horrible results from the Walmart bulk federal 55g factory ammo. 4 inch groups at 50 yards.
Currently I'm loading a batch of 65g Sierra Gamekings to try in my 1:8 and 1:9 20-inch rifles. I keep hearing Sierra is expensive, but at <$20 per hundred they're one of the cheaper options I can find right now.
I just ordered a box of the 55g Dogtown from Midway based on positive comments in this thread, will give them a try over the next few weeks.

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