Jump to content

The great rifle cartridge debate.


DT Fan
 Share

Recommended Posts

Recent threads brought this to mind for me, Todd's mention of the .225 and the Creedmore one. I have nothing against either of these. The .225 was basically obsolete before I got into the rifle game in the 80's. Creedmore came on the seen well after my interest had waned.

The interesting part for me is this; The firearms industry just keeps trotting out 'New' cartridges, branding them as the greatest thing since sliced bread and selling more new guns like hotcakes. Genius marketing is my take. There are few original case designs. 30/06, .222 Remington, .300H&H, and the .416 Rigby spawned tons of commercial and (several) tons of wildcats! In 1974 we got the .22PPC, which is based on the 5.6X39 from the fifties. Some more wildcats were spawned and some became mainstream.

P.O. Ackley was a master of this stuff. Take a popular cartridge, reform the shoulder a bit, claim 200 FPS increase in velocity, (he did this before personal chronographs were affordable) and sell it as the greatest thing since sliced bread. I'm not knocking P.O., great gunsmith, just a bit of a snake-oil salesman.

The velocity barrier was effectively reached in 1935 when Winchester brought out the .220 swift. Yes you can attain greater velocity with newer stuff but barrel life gets to be so short it's impractical. I know this well, have washed out my share of hot-shots. Currently carry a .243 Win. with 1 in 14" twist barrel that shoots 55 grain pills at 4400 FPS. I'm really conservative what I shoot at, don't want to have to re-barrel it again.

Point being, not a lot of New in cartridges for a long time now.

 

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well said DT.

I am an old proven cartridge guy myself.

Don't blame the gun and ammo mfg's.

Like you said it is marketing and increased sales for me

And there are the disciplines where they are always pushing to get the most accuracy at distance. 

But for me, I love my Ruger #1V in .220 Swift for the hotrod aspect and my old Rem 700 in .30-06 will take anything I will run across on this continent.

Now I may have a couple two or three🙄 in between those.

If I could only own one firearm, what would it be???

Thankfully I don't have to make that decision so will not enter the debate that way. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, sandhiller said:

Well said DT.

I am an old proven cartridge guy myself.

Don't blame the gun and ammo mfg's.

Like you said it is marketing and increased sales for me

And there are the disciplines where they are always pushing to get the most accuracy at distance. 

But for me, I love my Ruger #1V in .220 Swift for the hotrod aspect and my old Rem 700 in .30-06 will take anything I will run across on this continent.

Now I may have a couple two or three🙄 in between those.

If I could only own one firearm, what would it be???

Thankfully I don't have to make that decision so will not enter the debate that way. 

I like lots of different calibers. Everything from my 22mag to my 7mm mag. I have killed more deer with my beat up Savage 223 that I bought years ago. My favorite for prairie dog plinking is my 22 mag. The Ruger M77 with the skeleton stock, in 7mm is extremely accurate way farther than I can see. Killed a deer at 700 yards with it. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

35 minutes ago, Lazy WP said:

I like lots of different calibers. Everything from my 22mag to my 7mm mag. I have killed more deer with my beat up Savage 223 that I bought years ago. My favorite for prairie dog plinking is my 22 mag. The Ruger M77 with the skeleton stock, in 7mm is extremely accurate way farther than I can see. Killed a deer at 700 yards with it. 

Don't get me wrong Nick.

I like the many different calibers in the many different chassis I have also. I just prefer to stick with old proven cartridges, nothing wrong with the latest greatest sexy girls.

My 7 Rem mag is my "reach out and touch someone, go to gun".

Killed many many deer with my little Ruger MKII in .22LR. Game Warden approved to address a problem I had with large whitetail numbers destroying alfalfa bales in my stackyards.

I could go on about why I own what and what I use them for but it would go on forever.

I am an unabashed gun enthusiast. From firearms that have been in my family for generations to my latest purchases. 

We all have our hobbies I guess. Mine just happens to tie in with the second amendment🤠

  • Like 8
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The worst I ever had was a Rossi Ranchhand in a 44. Couldn’t shoot it like a rifle or a handgun. Traded it to Matt Minor for a set of spurs when he was building them!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've shot a lot of different calibers over the years, always favored the fleet of foot. As mentioned, not good for barrel life. Loved Roy Weatherby's stuff, currently have a .240 in a mark five and a .300 in a re-barreled 721 Remington.

At one time I really wanted to build a .240 cobra, they used to be somewhat popular and I have a ton of new .220 Swift brass. Set one up with a 12" twist, would have been great.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

29 minutes ago, Lazy WP said:

The worst I ever had was a Rossi Ranchhand in a 44. Couldn’t shoot it like a rifle or a handgun. Traded it to Matt Minor for a set of spurs when he was building them!

LOL, Matt will trade for anything. Not because he is stupid, he just likes to trade. 

Got my Rem 700 .22-250AI heavy bbl from him.

I am very envious of his families "equipment" and abilities. 

7 minutes ago, DT Fan said:

Loved Roy Weatherby's stuff,

Would really like to win our FD's raffle rifle in .257 Weatherby mag. 

They had two of em when I ordered for the FD. Almost got the other one for myself. Kinda wish I had now. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, sandhiller said:

LOL, Matt will trade for anything. Not because he is stupid, he just likes to trade. 

Got my Rem 700 .22-250AI heavy bbl from him.

I am very envious of his families "equipment" and abilities. 

Would really like to win our FD's raffle rifle in .257 Weatherby mag. 

They had two of em when I ordered for the FD. Almost got the other one for myself. Kinda wish I had now. 

Had a couple of .257's over the years, just never one I was proud of. Have a .25/06 I've shot a ton. Not quite a .257 but pretty darn good. Took it prairie dog hunting one time, took an awkward shot, it put a bruise on my shoulder..... Shot nothing but the .223 the rest of the trip!

I used to tinker with rifles like I do tractors now. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

To me it depends where you are and what you can use to hunt. Here the largest game animal is a whitetail deer and rifles aren’t allowed to harvest them. We don’t see as many large caliber rifles because of that. My first was a Rem 788 in 22-250.  Dad paid me a bounty on groundhogs and I cleaned up that problem around the farm.  I’ve had many since but never been without a 22-250. Predator calibers are what we see the most of in this part of the world. 223, 220 swift, 22-250, 243 are pretty common.   Still some 222 around.  I’ve probably killed more stuff with a .22mag than the plague did.  There are still 30-30’s and 30-06 around which are time honored classics but we see far more smaller stuff do to a lack of sporting animals for the big bores. 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would say the longest shot I would have on my land would be 300yds, the most common shot would be 25 in semi dense brush after that they are either over a hill or so thick you've lost them, 30-30 is actually an excellent choice for half of my terrain 

Game out my door that is huntable with draws or tags is mule and whitetail, moose and elk, starting to get the odd black bear coming in

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can shoot over 1000yds from my yard if I want. It’s open farm country with a light roll and some shallow draws. It’s not uncommon to push distance boundaries deer hunting for us. That is 2-250 tops normally with a muzzleloader or shotgun slug. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The only thing that the new cartridges do is to put long high bc bullets in factory loadings, and they give a clean slate for gun manufacturers to get twist rates appropriate for the long bullets as well. Just look at the 223. It's common place for an AR to have 1:7 but a bolt action was commonly 1:12, now they are mostly all 1:9, but u have to do some real digging to find a 1:7 bolt gun. The 6.5 and 260 are like ballistic twins with the same twist barrels, but a factory 6.5 has a barrel for the heavy for caliber bullets. The 260 didn't have that option when it was new. Even the 243. Newer 243 rifles that ive seen have started having a change in twist rates and a buyer has to pay attention if they are wanting to shoot heavy bullets. The 6 mm creed steps in with a clean slate to make a "standard" twist rate for heavy bullets for the long range shooting crowd. Nothing that the new cartridges do couldn't be achieved with a gunsmith putting a fast twist barrel on for you, except they are ready off the shelf

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, 885 said:

The only thing that the new cartridges do is to put long high bc bullets in factory loadings, and they give a clean slate for gun manufacturers to get twist rates appropriate for the long bullets as well. Just look at the 223. It's common place for an AR to have 1:7 but a bolt action was commonly 1:12, now they are mostly all 1:9, but u have to do some real digging to find a 1:7 bolt gun. The 6.5 and 260 are like ballistic twins with the same twist barrels, but a factory 6.5 has a barrel for the heavy for caliber bullets. The 260 didn't have that option when it was new. Even the 243. Newer 243 rifles that ive seen have started having a change in twist rates and a buyer has to pay attention if they are wanting to shoot heavy bullets. The 6 mm creed steps in with a clean slate to make a "standard" twist rate for heavy bullets for the long range shooting crowd. Nothing that the new cartridges do couldn't be achieved with a gunsmith putting a fast twist barrel on for you, except they are ready off the shelf

885, I think you have hit a nail on the head. I have never understood that line of thinking though. I would have preferred my .223 to have a 1 in 14" (or even 16) twist like the rest of my 22 center-fires.

Really don't get the heavy bullet thing. Light bullets shoot way flatter out to 500 yds. or so. I don't even shoot at coyotes much further than that. Guessing that a lot of these fast twist guns never get fired a true long range target, maybe I'm crazy?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, DT Fan said:

885, I think you have hit a nail on the head. I have never understood that line of thinking though. I would have preferred my .223 to have a 1 in 14" (or even 16) twist like the rest of my 22 center-fires.

Really don't get the heavy bullet thing. Light bullets shoot way flatter out to 500 yds. or so. I don't even shoot at coyotes much further than that. Guessing that a lot of these fast twist guns never get fired a true long range target, maybe I'm crazy?

Part of the long range thing also brings in wind drift, supposedly the heavies buck wind better. I have shot a 6.5 out to 730 successfully. Hoping to make it to 1k soon but finding 1k ranges in the Appalachian mountains is difficult. Every little bit helps way out there, wind is hard to judge and being less influenced by wind helps. But at some point it all boils down to the guy pulling the trigger, and their skill level. Heck military sharp shooters have been making 1k shots for a long time with worse equipment than we have now. But they got to know their guns and their cartridges. No replacement for practice

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, DT Fan said:

And where has @IHRunner been lately, this thread is tailor made for him!

I see he has been driving his ol brown F150 quite a bit to work recently. I keep wondering and asked him the other day if he has a lady who is using his car. He has more demand at his job than he used to have. He is one heck of a great manager at our O'riley Store here in town. That store took a heck of a step up when they moved the last manager out and Runner in his place

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

56 minutes ago, 885 said:

Part of the long range thing also brings in wind drift, supposedly the heavies buck wind better. I have shot a 6.5 out to 730 successfully. Hoping to make it to 1k soon but finding 1k ranges in the Appalachian mountains is difficult. Every little bit helps way out there, wind is hard to judge and being less influenced by wind helps. But at some point it all boils down to the guy pulling the trigger, and their skill level. Heck military sharp shooters have been making 1k shots for a long time with worse equipment than we have now. But they got to know their guns and their cartridges. No replacement for practice

I have shot the 6.5 out to 1200. I also use it for predators but everything has to be in your favor for long shots. Farthest coyote I’ve taken was 425 on the trot with a 6.5 creed.  That could be done with most 22 calibers and a scope with the correct dope in it. I have a buddy that will shoot 5 shot .243 groups at 700 you can cover with a half dollar so I know it is capable. The chassis of that gun cost more than some vehicles I own though. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Always wanted a 7x57 in a Ruger #1...... had a nice one in my hands once, but didn't pull the trigger.  Seems like a classic and versatile combo......

In all reality,  a Winchester 70 in 30-06 is about as classic as a combo gets.  .270, 7-08 Rem, .280, and .308 all get props too.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

30-30, 303, 30-06, 270, 220 swift, 375 h&h, 8x57, 7x57 and 6.5x55 are classic cartridges that have been tweaked into many variations. All these cartridges predate WWII, many predate WWI. 

Nothing wrong with the newer cartridges but these fit most of the needs of hunters for full power cartridges.

7x57 factory loads are anemic but can be handloaded to good velocity.

Thx-Ace 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Talking about .22 cal for use. I got a .22TCM for goundhog really like it. Just got a Rossi lever action in 357 to try in deer hunting. Have only shot about 30 rounds thru it so far I like it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My collection includes 3006 (M1), 308 (LR308), 243 (Johnson), 243 Savage, 223 (DPMS) 243A1 (WJH) and 44mag Marlin. The 243 Savage is my truck gun, goes everywhere with me, extremley accruate.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...