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Tell me about 22 hornet...

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Lone_Gunman, Sep 12, 2005.

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  1. Lone_Gunman

    Lone_Gunman Member

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    I am looking for a good rifle with which to kill wild/feral/stray dogs that wander on the farm from time to time. Range would be probably no more than 150 yards, and usually well within 100 yards.

    I am looking at the Ruger Model 77 in 22 hornet. I want a little more power than 22 magnum, but not as much as 223 Remington.

    Would 22 hornet fit the bill? How loud is 22 hornet compared to 22 mag?
     
  2. Byron

    Byron Member

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    LG, The Hornet is a superb cartridge and will do what you are expecting of it.It is an easy cartridge to reload. Do a search in THR on the Hornet. There is a wealth of info. Byron
     
  3. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Member

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    Great cartridge. Fairly mild report and no recoil, but quite effective. I've shot praire rats out to 266 yards with mine in an NEF Handi-Rifle with a 4-12x 40mm scope using 40 grain V-Max's. The 35 grainers are a little faster, but not as accurate and lose energy quicker. The 40 gr. pills leave the muzzle at 2835 FPS. 35 gr. is 2955 and 45 gr. is 2690. I use H-110 for all Hornet loads.
     
  4. berettashotgun

    berettashotgun Member

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    Grew up learning the fine art of shooting with a ruger #3 in .22 hornet. The ONLY way for a unattended kid to spend his days :evil: . They kill deer very easily inside of 50 yards uh' I heard- yeah- I heard. Got shells at OTASCO on a signature when I was 8.I love the old America.
     
  5. g1726

    g1726 Member

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    In short, it may be exactly what you're looking for. I grew up in eastern PA and claimed about 300 groundhogs over about 4 years with one. Shots were from 10-150 yards and only required a second shot on rare occasions, usually when I hit the body rather than the head.

    My 77/22 Hornet didn't group real well with factory ammo, but with handloads was a bit better. You might also look at the CZ's for rifles, I know they make a few in Hornet.
     
  6. GunGoBoom

    GunGoBoom member

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    As mentioned, it would work for your purposes, but I'd still get a .223 for that use instead. Cheaper to shoot, a smidge more power, and many more platforms with more bullet twist rate choices. Hornet rifles are usually made with 1 in 14" twist bbls, which means they only work well with 35 or 40 grainers, not 45, 50, or heavier.
     
  7. Skofnung

    Skofnung Member

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    If you are a good shot, the Hornet is probably the perfect round for what you intend to do.
     
  8. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    I like the K-Hornet better than the original.
    It is an easy gunsmith conversion, simple finish reaming is usually all that is needed.
    Headspace remains exactly the same with the K-Hornet
    Case capacity is increased, it downloads easier and more efficiently.
    Standard Hornet ammunition can be used in a K-Hornet chamber and it doesn't effect anything in the negative plus you get automatically fire formed K-Hornet cases.
    The K-Hornet is way less picky when it comes to reloading acceptably accurate ammunition.
    A better choice in my humble opinion, especially if your rifle has a 1 in 12 or better yet, a 1 in 10 rifling twist.
     
  9. ThreadKiller

    ThreadKiller Member

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    I'd look real hard at the new Savage single shot Hornet. Many Ruger Hornet users have a heck of a time getting consistent accurarcy out of their 77's.

    Savages have a reputation for being very accurate right out of the box. A lot of gun for the money.

    The Hornet is a neat little cartridge. I load mine exclusively with Lil' Gun with all bullet weights. Shoots like a dream out of my Model 70. The little Hornady 35 gr Vmax is hell on prairie dogs.

    The 223 is much more practical, but the Hornet is just one of those neat old rounds that continues to endear itself.

    Tim
     
  10. GunGoBoom

    GunGoBoom member

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    Yeah, that new Savage may be just enough of a reason to add a new caliber to the collection (.22 hornet/k-hornet):

    http://www.savagearms.com/40Varmint.htm

    But it's still got that standard 1 in 14 twist...
     
  11. got_the_bug

    got_the_bug Member

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    Lone_Gunman...

    My experience with the .22 Hornet shooting varmints is nil, so please take that into account, but may I also suggest you look at the .221 Fireball? That is a caliber I have a lot of practical experience with. The Fireball will drive a 50 grain bullet to approximately the same speeds as the Hornet will drive a 35 grain bullet (~2900 fps). Feral dogs can be pretty large, and while I am sure a 35 grainer would do the trick on most, I'd want something a little heavier to ensure humane kills. The .221 is a really great round out of a rifle (accurate, fairly low noise level, decent range), and there are some excellent firearms chambered for it -- Remington, CZ, etc. Again, not trying to start a "my caliber is better than the one you chose" flame war, just thinking a heavier bullet might be a little better suited to your purpose.
     
  12. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    The solution to Hornet accuracy:

    1. Fire-form your cases. SAAMI standards for Hornet chambers and cases make for a sloppy fit. A case fire-formed to your rifle will produce better accuracy.

    2. Disturb your brass as little as possible. I use a Lee collet die, which squeezes the neck radially. With standard dies, the force of the ram is transmitted through the case walls and can bulge them. Pulling the expander ball backward through the neck can stretch the case.

    3. Only size part of the neck. I put two washers on the shell holder, to cause the collet to activate early, sizing the last 1/4 inch or so. This leaves the rest of the neck to act as a "pilot" to center the bullet.

    4. Use Hodgdon's Li'l Gun. This powder has a lower peak, but longer burning period. The lower pressures are good for your brass, and give consistent results. I use the case itself as a powder measure, and simply dip it full and strike the mouth, then tap it to settle the contents. A case full of Li'l Gun and a Hornady 35-grain V-Max will give about 3,000 fps in my Kimber M82.

    5. Use the Hornady 35-grain V-Max. This bullet has a short nose, and allows you to seat the shoulder out far enough to touch the lands without being too long to feed through the magazine. (See below)

    6. All the Hornets I have shot are more accurate with the bullet almost or actually touching the lands.
     
  13. theCZ

    theCZ Member

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    One thing that got_the_bug forgot to mention about the .221FB is that it has a reputation for being very accurate. The Hornet can be accurate, but it can also be incredibly frustrating. My experience with a hornet has been in an Anschutz sporter made in the 50s. I finally figured out after trying all kinds of reloading tricks (I was getting 6" 100yd groups w/factory ammo) that the headspacing was very off. So, if after taking it to the gunsmith I start getting accurate groups I'll post them here. I'd look into a 221FB as well. Also, in the off chance that you shoot the barrell out you could have it rechambered in any one of the many 222/223/222mag family of cartridges. With the hornet if you shoot the barrel out, at something around 6000 rounds you could get a new barrel in 17 hornet or something fun like that!
     
  14. got_the_bug

    got_the_bug Member

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    Didn't I mention accuracy? Oh, well, then I guess I should post some supporting evidence... :D

    Here is 5 shots @ 100 yards...yeah, I know, no land speed records, but still... :neener:
     

    Attached Files:

  15. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    I take it that's .221 Fireball?

    That's gilt-edge accuracy from any cartridge.
     
  16. got_the_bug

    got_the_bug Member

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    Yep...Remington 700 LVSF in .221 Fireball...what a great little rifle. Not cheap, but highly recommended. I've also shot the CZ 527 American in .22 Hornet and .221 Fireball, and they are both recommended as well.
     
  17. Essex County

    Essex County Member

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    I've had experience with a couple of Hornets and loaded for it for a while. There isn't a single thing that the hornet can do that a handloaded .223 can't do better. Do I like the Hornet? You Bet! I think it's practical in this day and age to go with something more efficent. I own five .223's ( counting AR's ) and they pretty much have it covered....Essex
     
  18. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    If you can find a Kimber M82, jump on it! I got mine from an estate for $600, with Weaver K6 scope (the old all-steel version.)

    I have a post-it on my front door, "check for crows" to remind me to look before swinging the door open. I've killed a many in the pasture shooting from a prone position on the front porch.

    Day before yesterday, I looked and saw a huge flock in the pasture (which also has a fair amount of trees on the upper slope.) I put in my ear plugs, and since they were close (around 100 yards,) just cracked open the door and nailed one.

    Crows went everywhere, flapping, cawing and raising a ruckus. One landed about 10 feet from the one I just shot. Bang!

    They continued to flap and caw, and then began to settle in the trees. Bang!

    I got six before they finally got the message. Never saw crows do that before.
     
  19. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Member

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    Vern, from one old crow hunter to another...

    You know why the birds acted that way, you killed the scout(s). ;)

    Always was a big fan of the Kilbourn (K) Hornet myself. Sometimes one doesn't need a .223 Remington's noise and blast. Of course, I'll never own a big belted magnum for 100-300 yard deer hunting, either. :D
     
  20. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    They acted like Democrats after the Republicans won the election. :D

    One of these days I need to try a K-Hornet. I thought about re-chambering my Kimber, but I figured why fix it if it ain't broke?

    I have one belted magnum -- a 77 Ruger in 7mm Remington Magnum. I traded for it years ago, and it mostly just sits on the rack. If I had to give up one of my guns, that would be it.
     
  21. Fatelvis

    Fatelvis Member

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    Essex, what about a mild load in the Hornet? Its much quieter than the .223, for those of us shooting in our back yard (when we're not supposed to!).
     
  22. ThreadKiller

    ThreadKiller Member

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    Since we're posting targets.....

    Model 70 Winchester 100 yards 13 grs Lil' Gun 35 grain Hornady V-Max.

    Hornet target
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2005
  23. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Member

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    Agreed. I recently bought one in .17 Rem. Averages .62" 5-shot 100 yd. groups with the first batch of handloads, but I think I can get sub-1/2 MOA with some work. Have already dropped the trigger to a .032", 1.4 lb pull. Haven't tried the 25 gr. HP's yet; only the 20 gr. V-maxes. Chronoed 4240 FPS avg. for 3 10-shot strings (4241, actually. but I usualy round)
     
  24. AgentOrange

    AgentOrange Member

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    i know this is an old thread, but im famous i guess for reserecting them..lol

    the 22 hornet is great, but the 22K hornet is a sweeeetie.
     
  25. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    The K Hornet is indeed a fine cartridge -- but rifles originally chambered in K Hornet are scarce (or expensive) and there are many re-chambered Hornets that won't shoot well for sour apples.

    So if you're offered a K Hornet, shoot it first.
     
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