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Thread: Tell me about the .223

  1. #1

    Tell me about the .223

    Right chaps,

    ive recently got a slot for a .223. This is my first Centre fire and I'll be honest I didn't research it before applying as put in for .243 also (didn't get granted that this time)
    ive been having a look around at a few and like the idea of a synthetic stock with stainless barrel and something like a T8 on the end.

    After a bit of research I've got a couple of questions.

    Why dont you see many for sale second hand?
    Plenty of .243's and .300 cals but not so many .223 which as it's supposed to be one of the most popular Centre fires is surprising. Is this because of the barrels burning out?

    If if you were buying a second hand setup and looking to spend around a grand, what would be an acceptable level of rounds to go through it? I know that it's only as good as the word of the man telling you, but roughly speaking on something like a Howa or Tikka barrel, how many rounds would you expect it to go through before you noticed barrel issues.

    failing that, brand new is an option as soon as my bloody house sale goes through. I bought my CZ455 HMR brand new as an Edgar Bros deal with Bushnell Banner' Dusk to dawn scope and moderator for about 600, has anyone bought a similar new package deal on stainless .223 recently? What sort of deals should I be looking out for?

    Ill get get myself down the gun shop at the weekend hopefully to have a look, but don't want to get excited and blow my wad without some advice from those in the know.

    Over to you...

  2. #2
    A nice CZ 527 might suit you. They usually shoot well. Guntrader usually have a few on sale.


  3. #3
    I have had a Savage for the last 20 years. Stainless with Black synthetic stock.
    It has had over 1000 rounds, mostly quite high velocity reloads.
    It will still group under 75 mm at 200m.

  4. #4
    Have looked at a couple of cz as I do love my 455. Hadn't thought about Savage really but just seen a couple of nice examples. Seem sensibly priced too, the .223's that I have found so far seem to really hold their money. Tikka etc.

  5. #5
    I found a Sako 85 varmint 1/8 twist second hand at 1100 it was like new not a mark on it. There are plenty of gems out there just be patient and don't rush in and buy the first rifle you look at .....unless it is the gem hit first time.

    If you want to use anything over 62gr then you'll need the 1/8 twist instead of the common 1/12. My local gunsmith reckons I've got a few thousand rounds to go through before the barrel loses it accuracy. But that will ultimately depend on load types and cleaning regimes.

    To stay within your budget you won't go far wrong with the Tikka T3 Varmint.

  6. #6
    Not stainless, but the Howa mini will hold its own with most once run in'
    55 gn sierra with case filled to bottom of neck with varget, worked for me,
    I would spend for one the same weight as a 452 if i bought another.
    The 452 with light mod and 6x40 scope just floats into my hand whenever i open the cabinet door

  7. #7
    Established Poster
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Staffordshire moorlands
    I don't think the .223 is very hard on barrels and the higher velocity of a .22 250 or 243 does mean they tend to burn out barrels faster I'm no expert though.
    i have a Sako 85 stainless laminated .223 which shoots really well with a zeiss duralyt on top. My son has a howa stainless synthetic which he bought new for 400 and with a Schmidt and bender 8 X 56 on top shoots equally as well for less than half the price of mine. He did get the trigger fettled by Brock and Norris which improved the trigger no end.
    So shop around there are some bargains out there new and secondhand. I would certainly consider a howa if I wanted another caliber.

  8. #8
    Sako85 with jet-z cqb mod.

  9. #9
    If there is a scarcity of .223 it might well be because the barrels don't wear out that quickly. One of the classis ways of dealing with a failing barrel is to sell the rifle. 223 just seems to work. I'm not sure that the 7" twist barrels aren't just a step too far, but a 9" twist seems to work well and keep going. The .223 round itself is easy to load for, economical. It all just works.

  10. #10
    Guess I'm too trusting! That makes sense!

    Thanks chaps, definitely some things to consider. Will have a research on the twist rate as I'm not fully up on that yet.

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