varmint reduced loads

Discussion in 'Hand loading your Sako' started by cybermike, May 25, 2016.

  1. cybermike

    cybermike Member

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    I have been using 6.5gr TrailBoss powder behind my standard full velocity 50gr Hornady SP varmint projectile in my L461 Vixen .222 to roughly duplicate .22 Rimfire Magnum ballistics. This is where the hunting is close & I need to minimize noise. I need to buy more projectiles, & am wondering if there is a better projectile for low velocity expansion? Maybe Hornady .22 Hornet 45gr SP? There are many .224 projectile options, though most are intended to hold together & expand at muzzle velocities above 3000fps - whereas my current load is approximately 1700fps.

    Also, is my 1977 model rifle .224 or actually .223? I have been using the former diameter projectiles with good accuracy, though it was recently suggested to me that some of the Sakos were the latter diameter. Cheers.

     

  2. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    I use the same 50 grain Hornady in somewhat reduced loads with Alliant Blue Dot in my .223, but the velocity is somewhat higher, running around 2800 fps. Expansion has been fully adequate, but then my velocities are about 1,000 fps more than yours. Any of the bullets intended for the Hornet should give you plenty of expansion. The problem is that most of them are very blunt, but I assume you're not shooting at longer ranges so the blunt noses shouldn't matter much.

    Your rifle is specked for a .224" groove diameter, as were all .22 Centerfires post WW-II. Of course, it was made on machinery specked in metric, and was gauged in metric numbers, so the actual diameter may or may not be exactly .224". But don't worry about it. A difference of .001" won't make any difference in the way it shoots. A modern barrel from many manufactures may vary that much within the length of the barrel.

    However, if your question is can you shoot .223" bullets for the Hornet in it, the answer is yes, certainly, and they may shoot as well as the .224" bullets.
     
  3. dodgyrog

    dodgyrog Well-Known Member

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    Why don't you cast some boolits and use them?
     
  4. ohiochuck

    ohiochuck Well-Known Member

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    Hi!
    There are reduced loads that were developed on another forum
    Reduced Loads

    "We developed these loads in a Sako Vixen rifle, with a 24" barrel. All groups were 3 shots at 50 yards. We used RWS primers in RWS brass. and used the Remington 45 g SP."
    Send me an e-mail and I will give you the link as I believe this data maybe what you are looking to find.
    Thanks!
    Jim
     
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  5. Rocky

    Rocky Well-Known Member

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    Hey Matey, get a suppressor.
     
  6. Branxhunter

    Branxhunter Well-Known Member

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    Cybermike,

    If you are running at .22mag velocities, why not use .22mag projectiles? The 40gn HPs are available here in Australia. I bought some from Elks in Albury Victoria. If you want a handful to try send me a message with your details.

    BTW they are accurate enough for the distances you want to use them over - I tried a full power load in one of my .222s and it shot under 1" at 100m. I suspect the trajectory would fall off a cliff pretty quickly after that though.

    Marcus
     
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  7. cybermike

    cybermike Member

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    I contacted Winchester Australia who tells me they are no longer producing .22mag projectiles as a reloading supply - so maybe not a good idea to get too attached to the last remaining ones in the system. Thanks for your kind offer Marcus. The current projectiles I am using are the “SX” (Super Explosive) variant of the Hornady 50gr SP - which seem to be doing a good enough job @ 1700fps MV on the wild cats which are usually around 50yds out.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  8. sourdough44

    sourdough44 Member

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    I have loaded reduced 223 loads with Alliant 2400 powder and 40-45 grain bullets. My charge weight was near 12 grains, FPS was 2670 average with chronograph.

    Of course check reputable web sources for confirmation. My data is from an older Alliant manual.
     
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  9. kj60

    kj60 Well-Known Member

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    Hi cybermike


    yes had this same need for a reduced load - but moreso for making sure I got a whole rabbit for the pot - and here is the results [perhaps the Trailboss will be better [safer] than the red dot load, but have been using it for many years before trail boss came out] Of the many 40 grain pills, tested them and best of the bunch was the Nosler 40g - very soft and explosive enough at low velocities and accurate and right seating length too, which the hornet bullets could not do.

    Test 1. Aim: - a 40g pill emulating 22 magnum or thereabouts for rabbits 50- 70yds.

    5.1 g of Red Dot, 40g Nosler BT, Hornady cases neck sized only, Fed GMM primer or any, OAL to factory. Velocity is ~ 1800fps

    Results: much quieter than std 222 loads, still a touch more than 22 WMR tho. Performance of the Nosler at these low velocities is exceptionally good. Full case expansion, no blow back and primer is fine, thus pressure signs seem all OK. Works perfectly well on rabbits, accurate enough for a precise head shot. Accuracy under an inch at 50 yds. Impacts 1" lower and 1/3" to the left compared to my standard load 40g at 3400, and 1/2" lower than the 12g 'hornet load' below at 50 yards so YES can all be used with the same scope setting.


    TEST 2. AR2205 [a published ADI load data]

    Cases: Winchester
    Primer: Fed GMM
    Projectile: 40g Nosler BT

    Aim: '22 Hornet emulating' load for on farm use where distances don't require a full powered load and where noise may be a factor but good for 100 to 130yds but not too destructive.

    40g Nos BT
    AR2205 ADI start load = 12.0 yes 2,500 fps [MAX= 15.0 FOR 3,045fps]

    Results: works very well at ADI start load, under 1" at 100yds, primer fine, fully expanded case, no blowback, perfectly acceptable.

    Hard to distinguish any much difference between the two loads on rabbits, in the pics you can see that head shots obviously work, and a slight miss also kills very humanely.

    222 reduced loads.jpg
     
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  10. cybermike

    cybermike Member

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    I’ll have to try some of those Noslers though won’t be for a while as I have 300 Hornady 50gr SPSX to get through!

    Cakes of soap can be used for testing of expansion to get relative indication of expansion which I used a lot for .22 LR though I want to do for these reduced centrefire loads.


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  11. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    I've found the Hornady 35 grain V-Max (intended for the Hornet) to be devastating in slightly reduced loads in the Hornet (just enough Blue Dot to propel them at about 2500 fps.) Nosler now also offers a 35 grain Varmageddon which should provide similar performance. Once you run out of your 50 grainers you might want to give the diminutive and effective 35's a try.
     
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