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.223 or .222 Remington...which?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by IWAC, Jul 7, 2019.

  1. IWAC

    IWAC Member

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    I have a definite recoil sensitivity, that's why my 257 Roberts with a good recoil pad is no more.
    I have decided that a new rifle should have these characteristics:
    Low recoil
    Sufficient for predators and hogs
    Easily reloadable
    Component (mostly brass) availability
    I have about settled on the Savage model 25 Walking Varminter...can get it in either 222 Rem or 223/5.56
    Gathering information, I have discovered that the .223 is slightly less accurate than the 222.(?) I don't know if that is a practical problem, or not.
    Brass for either is
    available, if not common for the 222.
    Recoil is about the same for either round, given like weights and powder charges.
    Heavier bullets are available for larger critters.
    Ammunition is more available for the .223.
    The .222 has a longer neck, making it more...somethng. Does that make a great deal of practical difference?

    Can anyone with experience with either or both rounds give me some guidance?
    Thanx
     
  2. edwardware

    edwardware Member

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    .222 has slightly less concussion than .223, but both are at the very low end of the scale. I would suggest a .223 for versatility in bullet weight, and brass availability, unless you consider a rare/old/obsolete caliber a good in and of itself.

    I make my .222 brass from .223, but it's not easy. I haven't found the .222 to do anything the .223 doesn't, other than be chambered in a beautiful old rifle.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2019
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  3. Yarddog

    Yarddog Member

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    Agree with the ease of 223 cal than 222, unless you have plenty of reload stash ; )
    Y/D
     
  4. horsemen61

    horsemen61 Member

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    I’d it were me I’d do .222
     
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  5. murf

    murf Member

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    the savage model 25 is chambered in 223 Remington, not 5.56. even so, this would be the better choice due to it's 9:1 twist rate. bigger bullets for those hogs. the 222 rem twist rate is 14:1 and will not stabilize the bigger bullets.

    luck,

    murf
     
  6. loose noose

    loose noose Member

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    I have both/or all three I have a CZ in full stock .222Rem. and have a Howa .223Rem. with a 1/10 twist, and an AR-15 with a 1/7 for both the .556 NATO rounds, (actually I have 3 AR-15's and I also have a 1/9 twist) as well as the .223 rounds. Both the Howa, and the CZ will shoot one hole groups with the projectile it prefers at 100 yards from a cold/cool barrel. The CZ prefers lighter bullets such as the 45-53grn as well as the Howa, both have 1/10 twist. BTW I do reload for all of the three types of rifles. Please note the Howa in .223 will not shoot the NATO rounds. I should say they will not easily chamber the NATO rounds, and should not attempt to shoot them. Hopefully I didn't confuse the issue.
     
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  7. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    In 2019, 223rem, 100%.

    If it were available today, I wouldn’t buy a new rifle in 222rem, and I would (and do) frequently avoid buying older used rifles in 222rem when I come across them. Nothing terribly bad about the 222, but there’s nothing it does which the 223rem doesn’t - except have less available firearms and ammunition, and lower brass availability.
     
  8. horsemen61

    horsemen61 Member

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    ^^ well varmint your right on all accounts but I just want to be a little bit different
     
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  9. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    This really isn’t a thing.
     
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  10. entropy

    entropy Member

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    .223
     
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  11. IWAC

    IWAC Member

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    Thanks, all, for your answers. Keep them coming! :) Loose...you have thrown some mud in the stream. Educate me, please. How is the .223 round or brass different from the 5.56, and/or is it a rifle chambering thing that causes the .5.56 round to be more difficult to use? Iirc, guns like the Ruger Mini 14 and S&W M&P are said to use either round.
     
  12. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    I assume you are looking for something other than a AR or similar semi auto? I have a Mossberg MVP in 223 that shoots 1 MOA or better with 75 and 77 grain factory ammo. This turnbolt uses AR magazines.
     
  13. IWAC

    IWAC Member

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    Yes, Bolt action.
     
  14. wanderinwalker

    wanderinwalker Member

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    Get the .223 and don't look back. The difference in accuracy between the 2 is largely academic and can easily be lost in the noise of one particular barrel being better than another.

    The 5.56 vs .223 is largely in the chamber throat and leader dimensions. As I understand it 5.56 chambers typically have slightly larger throats with longer leades, being setup to handle longer ogives than a .223 chamber. My 3 personal ".223" rifles are an AR carbine with a 5.56 NATO chamber, a match AR rifle with a .223 Wylde chamber and a CZ527 that is stated by CZ to be OK with 5.56 ammo. Thus completely avoiding the 5.56 or .223 issue for my ammo supply.
     
  15. CarJunkieLS1

    CarJunkieLS1 Member

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    It looks as if you reload so couldn't you just keep your 257 Roberts and load a lighter bullet slower to reduce recoil? If that's not an option then the .223 is a much better choice than a .222 in today's firearm market.
     
  16. Sniper66

    Sniper66 Member

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    I can respond to this in a few different ways. I do not have experience with .222 so can't offer a comparison of the two calibers side by side. I've had shoulder surgery so have become more recoil sensitive. My Rem700 is a gem and will shoot the lights out with my reloads. Recoil is easy to tolerate. As you know .223 ammo is abundant, cheap, and more than adequate for your stated targets. I also have a Savage Model 25 Walking Varminter, but mine is .22 Hornet. It is very accurate. A very reliable shooter. Word of caution however. My first Model 25 would not load from the magazine and the mag fit poorly. Sent it back and Savage remade it twice. The third one they took to the range and fine tuned it; thus producing one of my favorite prairie dog rifles. So, good on Savage customer service. Good luck with your choice
     
  17. fpgt72

    fpgt72 member

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    IMHO unless there is a legal reason you can't own 223, in the US 223 is the answer.
     
  18. highlander 5

    highlander 5 Member

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    223 brass is all over the and cheap everybody and their brother has mil spec brass for sale usually trimmed and primer pockets swayed. As far as the 223/5.56 differences a gunsmith can run a 223 Wylde reamer thru and you'll be able to fire either round with no problems. I know at my range military brass is all over the place and free to anyone who wants to take it for reloading.
     
  19. natman

    natman Member

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    The 222 is slightly more accurate than the 223 - in a full blown benchrest rifle. In a walk around sporter weight rifle for hunting there's not enough difference to matter, certainly not enough to offset the ammunition variety and availability advantages of 223.
     
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  20. someguy2800

    someguy2800 Member

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    222 will just make life more difficult for yourself for no perceivable benefit over 223.

    However since you brought up the subject of hog hunting, I personally would not suggest a 222 or 223. The savage in 222 comes with a 1:14 twist which makes it unsuitable for shooting bullets heavier than 50 grains or so and thus not an ethical choice for shooting anything bigger than a coyote in my opinion. The 223 model has a 1:9 twist which is usually good for up to 69 grain bullets. 222 or 223 will work fantastic on coyotes as they are very lightly constructed, but I have not heard good things about people using 223 for hogs. Unfortunately there are not very many .224" diameter bullets available that are actually built to penetrate on medium size game. Most are varmint bullets built to explode on impact, or target bullets that aren't built for terminal performance at all.

    I would suggest you think about a 6.5 grendel in a ruger american, cz 527 or similar. Will be very little recoil but will put a lot more punch on target. Components for reloading and factory ammo are widely available, including true medium game capable bullets.
     
  21. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    Another vote for 6.5 Grendel as a low recoil hunting rifle.
     
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  22. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    Add this to the myth that match bullets are unsuitable for big game hunting. Not my deer, pic borrowed from another site, but this is the exit wound on a deer from a 223 match bullet after impacting a deer at 110 yards. They don't get much deader than this.

    17E9ntH.jpg
     
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  23. highlander 5

    highlander 5 Member

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    You find the 257 Roberts as too much recoil so how about another quater bore the 250 Savage. Cartridge is older than dirt but it was a pretty good cartridge that was over shadowed by the 243 win and 6 mm Rem.
     
  24. Mowgli Terry

    Mowgli Terry Member

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    In the days before 223/5.56 there was a 222 Magnum with .222 being the accuracy standard. This was before the net. The consensus was that accuracy was basically the same rifles being equal. That cartridge,222, was the precursor, came first, of all the rounds with that head size. Next time you are at the range and some old guy is shooting a .222 check out his groups. I'll not let go of my Remington 700 VS in 222. The .222 was not designed for larger game however the Eskimo people have been know to hunt polar bears with this caliber.

    Addendum: The 1:14 twist works very well with 55gr, bullets. The .222 was and is an effective varmint round reasonably used. If you really want some horsepower in .224 caliber get a Swift.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2019
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  25. loose noose

    loose noose Member

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    IWAC, What I was trying to clarify is that although the .223 and the 5.56 NATO are actually the same , the NATO round is just tad longer and somewhat more powerful, however rifles like the AR and most mini-14's are chambered for the 5.56, and therefore can shoot the standard .223 cartridge thru it. If you purchase a Mini-14 in the target model I do believe that this particular Mini-14 will only fire the .223. Now how's that? Incidentally When I'm reloading these cartridges I always trim the mouth of the case to .223 to1.750, as I shoot them thru a variety of firearms
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2019
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