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Thread: .223 cost and uses

  1. #1

    .223 cost and uses

    Hello all,

    Im after a .223 to bridge the gap between my rabbiting guns and stalking/fox gun, currently i have...

    .22lr ( dont use it often)
    .17hmr, this is cuttently my go to rabbiting gun, rubbish in a breeze
    .243 win. used for deer, rarely comes out with me other than stalking.

    So my thoughts are a .223 would be good as I could take it out on rabbits and if i see a fox/ muntjac I can use it for them too. Leaving me with one gun for everything up to muntjac and then my stalking rifle for stalking. another benefit being its a flatter round and less effected by wind than the 17 and will allow me to push the range out a bit


    my main questions are....

    I pay 30p a bullet for the HMR, i believe can get .223 ammo for sub 40p if i reload, is this right and what price am I looking at for factory ammo, about 50-60p a pop ?

    next is noise, is it too loud for rabbiting bearing in mind i currently use the .17 which has a bit of a crack anyway?

    and finaly, can anyone tell me from experience if they make a mess of the rabbit, head shots only, with my hmr the exit side of the head is usualy missing, not that it bothers me as i dont eat the heads, but will a .223 pull off the shoulders etc as well ?

    thanks

    David

  2. #2
    I use mine on the occasional rabbit, It does make a absolute mess of them with 55 gr vmax. Reasonable factory will be 70/80p a pop but reloads about 30p ish I think, never really worked the cost out.

  3. #3
    A good head shot should leave the rest of the rabbit untouched. The rabbits will be lighter to carry back to the truck, minus their heads anyway!

  4. #4
    You're looking at about 45p per reload, brass excluded, assuming 25/100 bullets, 7/100 primers & 40/lb powder (300 rounds reloaded per tub)

  5. #5
    You mentioned Muntjac....I think that you still need deer on your FAC if not already on there as this is not classed as vermin. "Deer" in this context would only relate to legal species for the 223, so Muntjac and CWD only for England and Wales.

    My reloading costs:

    Brass = 56/100 (lapua match used but you can use cheaper like PPU wich is ok brass);
    Primers = 4p each (CCI small rifle);
    Powder: N133 @ 73/Kg = 2.201lbs = 15,407gr and at 23g/load is approx 670 rounds per Kg = 11p/round
    Bullets: average cost for all bullets I use is 24p/round
    Brass at 8 times use =7p

    Total cost per reload = 46p. In reality, accounting for some spillage/wasteage of powder, the odd case needing to be binned and maybe if you don't anneal, getting 5 or 6 reuses of cases if not re-loading too hot, you're looking at closer to 50p/round. That would be quite typical. Some powders from the USA are a lot more expensive than I've quoted too, but I have based my costs on using Viht powders.

  6. #6
    If you have the primary reason for fox and allso all other legal quary on your ticket you can use it for muntjac also this is what I did I also found since useing the .223 the 17hmr seldom gets used anymore

  7. #7
    If you can find a cheap factory round that shoots in your rifle, you might not think it is worth reloading. If Samson ammo was still available in the UK, I don't think I would bother to reload. As it is, I am gradually getting through the large batch of Samson that I bought so that I had all the same cases for reloading.

  8. #8
    It's true that considering the outlay of reloading gear, the costs of developing a load etc, that some cheap factory ammo makes reloading seem financially unworthwhile. However, if you shoot a lot, it is still worth reloading and the benefits are that you can develop very accurate and consistent ammo for your rifle, usually bettering factory ammo. It's one of the reasons that I reload, as shooting longer distances now (not on deer) I can reliably develop loads for my rifles that I cannot hope to match with factory. One the the better combos for my 223 uses 69 Sierra TMKs and shoots (consistently) 0.2 moa. I can't get that level of accuracy from any factory round that I've tried for my rifle. It opens up a wide selection of bullets as well, and you can very effectively tailor very precisely ammunition for your specific needs. That's one of the principal reasons I'll carry on reloading, and the other is that I shoot over 1500 rounds per year, so there is a saving for me.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by ChesterP View Post
    It's true that considering the outlay of reloading gear, the costs of developing a load etc, that some cheap factory ammo makes reloading seem financially unworthwhile. However, if you shoot a lot, it is still worth reloading and the benefits are that you can develop very accurate and consistent ammo for your rifle, usually bettering factory ammo. It's one of the reasons that I reload, as shooting longer distances now (not on deer) I can reliably develop loads for my rifles that I cannot hope to match with factory. One the the better combos for my 223 uses 69 Sierra TMKs and shoots (consistently) 0.2 moa. I can't get that level of accuracy from any factory round that I've tried for my rifle. It opens up a wide selection of bullets as well, and you can very effectively tailor very precisely ammunition for your specific needs. That's one of the principal reasons I'll carry on reloading, and the other is that I shoot over 1500 rounds per year, so there is a saving for me.
    +1
    Just out of interest, are your rounds and expanding missiles that you can own, lumped in together on the FAC? Plod is querying why I want so many. Some people appear to have separate amounts for loaded rounds and expanding missiles, enabling lots of different weights and types of bullets for experimenting and working up loads.

  10. #10
    I just asked for 500 in both 308 and 223, and it doesn't stipulate whether they are expanding or target (non S5) but the FAC also authorises me to use S5 expanding for both calibres, so in effect, I can buy as many expanding bullets as I like, but am only allowed to have 500 rounds loaded of either S5 or non S5 or a mix of both. I think that is pretty typical of how many FACs are worded.

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