.223

BRYAN

Well-Known Member
#1
Has anyone ever loaded .223 with lead bullets at sub-sonic velocities.
I am pondering the possibilities.
Would the average common barrel twist rate suit lead bullets?
 

8x57

Distinguished Member
#3
I think there are a couple of guys on the Full-Bore U.K. forum who do so. I believe mainly for reduced loads on indoor pistol ranges.
 

Orion

Well-Known Member
#5
You're welcome. :tiphat:

I've experimented with the .308 and Trail Boss and the results were 'interesting'! I'm going to be giving it a go with the 300 AAC Blackout (300BLK) Ruger American Ranch Rifle when it arrives, and I hear that the Speer 220gr Matchking is the one to try. Muir has posted some favourable things about the cartridge and it looks very capable over a wide range of .30 calibre bullets, if not 'big deer' legal in the UK.
 

Highlandsjohn

Well-Known Member
#6
You're welcome. :tiphat:

I've experimented with the .308 and Trail Boss and the results were 'interesting'! I'm going to be giving it a go with the 300 AAC Blackout (300BLK) Ruger American Ranch Rifle when it arrives, and I hear that the Speer 220gr Matchking is the one to try. Muir has posted some favourable things about the cartridge and it looks very capable over a wide range of .30 calibre bullets, if not 'big deer' legal in the UK.
:thumb: Yes, I found when dealing with Roe close to property with H4895 reduced loads,the minimum requirement of 2450fps, here in Scotland came into play quite quickly and trajectory had to be carefully checked against range. So they were not subsonic, but certainly sweet to fire.
The full reduction to 60% of maximum load could be achieved on the range,all be it, the case necks were a bit smoky which is to be expected on such a reduced load, Trail Boss might very well be different....
 

Brimfire

Well-Known Member
#7
Has anyone ever loaded .223 with lead bullets at sub-sonic velocities.
I am pondering the possibilities.
Would the average common barrel twist rate suit lead bullets?
Subsonic loads work better with heavier projectiles from my findings using jacketed bullets, I don't fancy firing cast lead bullets through the barrel. Orion posted a great link, the Hodgdon website has a PDF https://www.hodgdon.com/PDF/Trail-Boss-Reduced-Loads R_P.pdf with more calibres listed. But read the instructions at the top and you can make subsonic loads for any calibre and bullet weight.
 

markyw

Well-Known Member
#9
For downloading, I found the H&N copper washed bullets to be pretty good. They have a max recommended velocity of 1600fps, but I push them at about 1300 when on the indoor range. This is from my CZ527 in .222, over both Trailboss and Unique I think.

Unfortunately not available in the UK, but stopper.de are good value and deliver in a reasonable time.

http://www.stopper.de/index.php/cPath/38_60_460_463_462/category/h/n-bullets-high-speed-rifles.html

I think I have some in 45gr and 55gr, so can send you some to try if you pm me your address.

Regards

Mark
 
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BRYAN

Well-Known Member
#10
I don't have a .223. I am thinking of selling my Tikka M55 .308 and down sizing. Also th .308 is range conditioned.
I am wanting something to replace it that is also for field shooting.
It was assumed that a faster barrel twist might be needed for longer ranges at higher velocity.
 

AndrewS

Well-Known Member
#11
FWIW I've used Trail Boss to load sub-sonic cast bullets in .308. Got just over 1000fps and they were tolerably accurate at 100m. Strange to shoot - no noise, no recoil!
 

The tramp

Well-Known Member
#12
You're welcome. :tiphat:

I've experimented with the .308 and Trail Boss and the results were 'interesting'! I'm going to be giving it a go with the 300 AAC Blackout (300BLK) Ruger American Ranch Rifle when it arrives, and I hear that the Speer 220gr Matchking is the one to try. Muir has posted some favourable things about the cartridge and it looks very capable over a wide range of .30 calibre bullets, if not 'big deer' legal in the UK.
The hornady 220gr round nose work well in mine, helluva thwack when they hit foxes.Similar trajectory as a 22lr subsonic

Sent from my SM-G925F using Tapatalk
 

Brimfire

Well-Known Member
#14
FWIW I've used Trail Boss to load sub-sonic cast bullets in .308. Got just over 1000fps and they were tolerably accurate at 100m. Strange to shoot - no noise, no recoil!
How much drop at 100m are you getting with the subsonic loads compared to your normal ammunition at 100m?
 

Highlandsjohn

Well-Known Member
#15
How much drop at 100m are you getting with the subsonic loads compared to your normal ammunition at 100m?
This copied from Orion's excellent link....You may have seen it for the 223..

Forthe .223 Remington, anyhow, thereis little sense spending the moneyto build a centerfire subsonic loadwhen its performance can be duplicatedwith an inexpensive .22 LongRifle cartridge shooting a 40-grainbullet at 1,300 fps. At 50 yards, thesubsonic loads I shot hit only aninch or two below aim at 100 yardswith the rifle sighted in for highvelocityloads. The subsonic load**** a couple feet below point of aim
 

Orion

Well-Known Member
#16
For the .223 Remington, anyhow, there is little sense spending the money to build a centerfire subsonic load when its performance can be duplicated with an inexpensive .22 Long Rifle cartridge shooting a 40-grainbullet at 1,300 fps.
Although the example quoted would be a super/trans sonic .22lr, I can see that there is little to be gained by tinkering with a centrefire .22 to make it subsonic as all it does is roughly equate to the venerable .22lr - nothing to be gained really.

Move up to one of the .30 calibres and it's a totally different ballgame - especially with the high volume powders and new(ish) cartridges such as the 300 ACC Blackout.

A .22Lr sub will give around 100ft/lb at the muzzle. A 220gr .30 calibre bullet running subsonic will give 500ft/lb, and if it's one of the latest generation low-velocity expanding rounds such as the LeHigh or Outlaw State linked above, then would be devastating on fox and similar sized animals. Trajectory is going to be a bit loopy but with good range estimation should be an excellent silent killer out to 120 or so metres. I'm also reading on 300BlkTalk forum that the humble 110 V-Max running subsonic with about 270ft/lb isn't to be discounted for similar use either.
 

Brimfire

Well-Known Member
#17
Although the example quoted would be a super/trans sonic .22lr, I can see that there is little to be gained by tinkering with a centrefire .22 to make it subsonic as all it does is roughly equate to the venerable .22lr - nothing to be gained really.

Move up to one of the .30 calibres and it's a totally different ballgame - especially with the high volume powders and new(ish) cartridges such as the 300 ACC Blackout.

A .22Lr sub will give around 100ft/lb at the muzzle. A 220gr .30 calibre bullet running subsonic will give 500ft/lb, and if it's one of the latest generation low-velocity expanding rounds such as the LeHigh or Outlaw State linked above, then would be devastating on fox and similar sized animals. Trajectory is going to be a bit loopy but with good range estimation should be an excellent silent killer out to 120 or so metres. I'm also reading on 300BlkTalk forum that the humble 110 V-Max running subsonic with about 270ft/lb isn't to be discounted for similar use either.
On the odd occasion that I have been shooting .30 calibre subsonic projectiles I found that there was a 2 inch drop at 30m, keeping the same zero as my normal loads for 100m. Also of note, when I shoot normal loads unmoderated at 100m there is a 2 inch shift of elevation upwards, possibly to do with the extra muzzle flip when unmoderated, so it would be fair to surmise that there could be between 2 and 4 inches drop just at 30m, the drop being considerably more shooting out to 100m with subsonic loads in a .30cal projectile. How much that drop would be at 100m I could not possibly guess... I would be interested to know though.
 

jthyttin

Well-Known Member
#18
Trajectory is going to be a bit loopy but with good range estimation should be an excellent silent killer out to 120 or so metres.
I wouldn't trust estimation. At the 100m mark, each additional meter means roughly one centimeter more drop. Combine this with the usual dispersion of subsonic rounds and shooting challenges (long barrel time) and you'd like to know not estimate the range. IMHO estimation is fine to 60-70m but not more when talking subsonic.
 

jthyttin

Well-Known Member
#19
On the odd occasion that I have been shooting .30 calibre subsonic projectiles I found that there was a 2 inch drop at 30m, keeping the same zero as my normal loads for 100m. Also of note, when I shoot normal loads unmoderated at 100m there is a 2 inch shift of elevation upwards, possibly to do with the extra muzzle flip when unmoderated, so it would be fair to surmise that there could be between 2 and 4 inches drop just at 30m, the drop being considerably more shooting out to 100m with subsonic loads in a .30cal projectile. How much that drop would be at 100m I could not possibly guess... I would be interested to know though.
If you are 2-4" off from zero at 30m, you'd be 7-13" off zero at 100m. This has nothing to to with drop.

If you have zeroed a subsonic rifle at 50m, the drop at 100m is roughly 2.5 MRAD (so 25cm). This is based on MV at 300m/s (so subsonic not transsonic) and usual bullets and LOS (Line of sight) heights. 22LR (especially SS HP) might drop a bit more like 2.6-2.7 MRAD and 30cal or above a bit less.
 

Highlandsjohn

Well-Known Member
#20
Although the example quoted would be a super/trans sonic .22lr, I can see that there is little to be gained by tinkering with a centrefire .22 to make it subsonic as all it does is roughly equate to the venerable .22lr - nothing to be gained really.

Move up to one of the .30 calibres and it's a totally different ballgame - especially with the high volume powders and new(ish) cartridges such as the 300 ACC Blackout.

A .22Lr sub will give around 100ft/lb at the muzzle. A 220gr .30 calibre bullet running subsonic will give 500ft/lb, and if it's one of the latest generation low-velocity expanding rounds such as the LeHigh or Outlaw State linked above, then would be devastating on fox and similar sized animals. Trajectory is going to be a bit loopy but with good range estimation should be an excellent silent killer out to 120 or so metres. I'm also reading on 300BlkTalk forum that the humble 110 V-Max running subsonic with about 270ft/lb isn't to be discounted for similar use either.
I agree and thank you for the .22 analysis, that is a sizable difference in ft/lbs. However, for my needs the lower range is what I am after.

At the moment for roe and fox I use the 243 on full loads. To shoot a small number of rabbits when I am finished with roe, on my way home, I am having to carry my 22rf. Its a pain in the neck for a couple of shots but necessary. These bunnies are close to farm houses, that is why I want to use the reduced loads at up to 22lr ranges, without the hassle of carrying two rifles and not easy when I have a roe to bring home.

I was at the range today, I zeroed my 243 with a full load of H4895 at 28 yds. using 85gr G.K.
At the same distance using only 21grn (60% of full charge) it was going through the same ragged hole.

Now I know the full load was still rising for about another 1.8" approx and the reduced load had probably reached its high point, but it felt and sounded like an air rifle with the mod on to shoot. That is plenty good enough for me to leave the second rifle in the cabinet and tweak some ss loads:thumb:

My previous dabble with reduced loads were on roe and as I said previously, I never achieved subsonic because of the restriction on FPS for deer here, I will have no such problem this time on the bunnies......
 

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