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Thread: 20 cal varmint rifle

  1. #1

    20 cal varmint rifle


    which 20cal cf would you recommend (and more importantly, why!!), for shooting rabbits, crows, rooks, fox at 100 - 300 yds? I'm looking for something which will keep a fast flat trajectory, explode on impact, cheap and easy to reload. I'll probably complement with a varmint xmas-tree style reticle in something like 10x40 or go rangefinder + ballistic turret - not sure yet.

    Also, for 20 cal cf's, would you still go with something like a 26" Varmint barrel and ensure good bedding, etc. or is it such a small calibre that you don't need to worry much about the usual 'accuracy dependant variables' that we normally discuss for stalking and/or target rifles in the larger calibres?

    my thoughts are between:

    .220 Swift

    Initially, I'm drawn to the Swift, but not sure...

    many thanks for your input.

    Edit: ps. or should I just use the .243, get moderated, and use some light 50g bullets?
    Last edited by PKL; 18-09-2011 at 19:58.

  2. #2
    The vartarg 20 is supposed to be the kiddie ! Or what about the .221 fireball ?
    Last edited by splash; 18-09-2011 at 22:01.

  3. #3
    Account Suspended
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Bonnie Scotland
    When you say 20 cal, do you mean 20 cal, cos you then list a selection of 22s.

    And... if you're shooting in Scotland's central belt you may have noticed we now have loads of wind farms, there's a reason for that

    A .204" at 300 yds on live quarry in our climate...? I wouldn't worry about the quality of the action bedding, you're going to drift off target a lot of the time anyway no matter how much you spend.

    Get a .223rem and keep your shots down to about 250yds max on live quarry unless you can dope the wind very well (or there is none where you shoot).And... If you really want to shoot fox and vermin... and include bunnies in the mix... I'd have a .22 hornet and keep my shots down to deer stalking range. Good discipline.
    Last edited by Tamus; 18-09-2011 at 20:22.

  4. #4
    This topic has been round a bit and it always kicks up the same stuff. I would have thought that the thing to do was find a way to shoot them. When you have I would be suprised if the .204 had not left a big big smile on your face.

    Having said that 55gs in a .243 will do the trick nicely.
    Last edited by howa243; 18-09-2011 at 20:26.

  5. #5
    .243 with 50 or 55 gr bullets is going to be flatter and faster than any of the smaller calibres, and will certainly demonstrate the downrange performance to take anything from rats to the biggest fox.

  6. #6
    PKL go with your instincts and get a 220 Swift. It is the best of the best for what you want. My latest swift is a Remington VSSF, shoots 40 gn. Noslers at 4450fps into half inch groups, and before anyone tells you that the barrel will melt I will quote from the Hodgdon manual.' The 220 Swift is the grand-daddy of all varmint cartridges. In modern rifles it is fast and accurate and, to some degree, hard on barrels. Nonetheless, it still shoots with the best of them. Not bad for a highly criticized cartridge that made its debut in 1935 when few shooters would even consider the possibility that a factory 22 calibre cartridge could compete with any of the finely tuned wildcats.
    To mitigate barrel erosion, modern steel has pretty much controlled the problem, but it pays to refrain from long strings of sustained fire and to clean the barrel frequently.
    A Remington 40x test rifle managed to keep 25 shot aggregates in less than .270 inch, and 5 shot groups after 3000 rounds ( yes 3000 ) held in .344 inch. So much for short barrel life.'
    You may gather that I am a bit of a fan ( I have owned four ). Read what P.O. Ackley has to say about the Swift. Ian Carmichael in The Accurate Riflle says, 'The most accurate rifle out of the box I ever owned was a Ruger 77 in 220 Swift'
    So there, all you 22/250 owners, blow your hands off as you like you are only in second place.
    Do you think that may have started something??????
    All the best.

  7. #7
    i recently got a .204 Ruger and Its the funnest thing in the world to shoot , went out this afternoon got a nice this yrs vixen . she was hit at about 140m with a chest shot she just collapsed did not twitch . Two crows both at about 110m , then I spied a bunny at a good 300m I did not have the RF so guesstimated the range . aimed for his head and let rip the impact was instant through the upper shoulder/neck . the best bit is there is no recoil a little bit of a crack but what do you expect with just shy of 4000 fps this is with a 22" barrel also cheap to reload

    damage to rabbit and crows is what you expect, no exit on the fox .

    JeffreyL 4450fps now thats fast

  8. #8
    you cant beat a .20tac 23.5grn of powder pushing a 39grn blitzking at 4000fps does all that griffshrek says , and much more , 200 yard crows no sweat 300 yard foxes not a problem

  9. #9
    20tac has excellent brass too. Id like to have a 20ppc at some point in the future

  10. #10
    my mate has a ppc but i think the tac has the edge

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