Discussion in 'Small Stuff--22s, 20s, and 17s' started by Evan, Jun 23, 2019.
Evan. If you go with the 95s here is what I am using now.
Loading up some 95s to try this weekend. Here they are loaded touching the lands in my chamber:
It's significantly longer than the 88ELD, but the micrometer seater is set to just about the same depth to get it touching the lands, which is neat.
Went out today with the 95 SMK and 90 VLD. VERY high humidity (100%) at 6AM but cool at ~60degrees:
Light but gusty wind; weird stuff was afoot today and groups were large. No mirage made bullet holes crystal clear though! Target set at 300 yards.
I shot RL17, IMR 4350, and Varget. I tested bullet seating from touching to jumping 0.050" in 0.010" steps and I found a whole lotta blah groups. Best group of the day was 0.65" with 90 VLD and 0.040 jump with 29gns of RL17. Most groups were in the 1.2" range and I just don't know that I can trust any of these results. The 95SMK needs 0.5 MOA less than the 90VLD at the same speed, so it's a big jump in BC! I didn't clean as often today and I tried to shoot a bit faster. No blown up bullets yet.
Plenty of speed available, and the speed didn't cause the groups to get bigger. Top loads in the graph had faint ejector smears and 4350 was crunching just a little. Again, some would push on, but I consider this maximum especially given the cool weather; I won't load anything that hot.
I only shot the 90VLD with RL17. The berger was 40fps faster than the 88ELD at all charge weights. I didn't ladder up to max; I'm not going to push them (they're known to be fragile) and they shot well at 2950 today with 29gns of RL17.
Today was a successful day shooting, but it has left me a little uncertain about the future. First things first. All targets today were shot at 300yards in ~65degree overcast weather with relatively high humidity between 7 and 9AM in the morning. Wind was light and breezy at probably 2mph with gusting up to 5mph.
28gns of IMR4350 behind the 88ELD REALLY shoots across many different days and conditions. Today it was very good, once again:
That itty bitty little group is 0.35inches!!!!
The 95SMK does not want to shoot :
It's OK. but it doesn't want to lay in together nice and tight like the 88ELD seem to. I also lost a 95SMK today; one of my targets has 2 holes instead of 3.
The 90VLD is promising, all of them made it to target, but they kept jumping out ruining a real screamer group.
All the targets today:
My RPR in 6.5 Creedmoor was screaming:
That 3 shot group was so good, I clicked the scope over and finished the next 7 into a separate group. I am always blown away by this rifle; I really won the lottery with it!
So not a bad day at all, but I must confess I'm a bit disappointed. I don't know what to do with the 22BR. I know it can't be a competition gun (not that I go to many comps anyway), and it seems to handle MOST 3 shot groups ok without losing bullets, but it only seems to shoot the 88ELD well slowly. I can't really get the 95 SMK or 90VLD to impress enough at any speed to warrant the extra 18 cents a bullet. Do I try the 90 SMK? Do I try 80s? Do I just run with the 88ELD at a pretty anemic ~2750fps and call it good?
I'm also in the territory where I'm starting to question what is my gun, what is my reloading, what is the wind, and what is my shooting skill. These 3/8" groups at 300 yards are small and I think they represent the union of all 4 of the listed attributes coming together. It's been repeatable; pretty much every trip has at least one group and many more up in the 1" category. I appreciate anybody's thoughts on how to improve from here.
I admire your thoughtfulness and thoroughness in your quest. Your experience is so very much like my own with several caliber/rifles (almost there, but not quite). Seems to be my usual experience.
I have nothing to contribute except encouragement and looking forward to following your experience with this cartridge. I've got a short throated .22 BR reamer whose future I'm debating. You're giving me much to ponder.
The real question is what do you want to do with this gun? The answer to that question will steer you in the right direction. If competing is the goal, you're probably going to want a slightly slower twist barrel so you can push the heavies faster without fear of jacket failure. This setup would be legal in F-Open, assuming the weight is less than 22 lbs. Your precision is already about as good as it's likely to get. A 3/8" group at 300 yd is 0.125 MOA, which is outstanding precision for anything that is not a dedicated BR rifle. Even a 1" group at 300 yd is still ~0.333 MOA. That's very good shooting. When fired using the makeshift benchrest setup you have on a wide open plain as you have shown in a few earlier images, I'd have imagined you would be very pleased with that level of precision. Have your accuracy/precision expectations been met?
If nothing else, you can just shoot a very accurate rifle and enjoy it. If having some additional goal helps provide purpose and motivation to shooting it, pick some type of competition for which it is legal and try your hand at that. Sometimes having a specific goal helps to provide focus and determination to complete it. What kind of competition choices/access do you have in your area?
So I took some time today to measure and analyze:
28gns of IMR4350, 88 ELD seated 0.020" out of the lands = 0.800", 0.614", and 0.327"!!!!!
29gns of RL-17, 88 ELD seated 0.020" out of the lands = 1.002", 1.125" (5 shot group)
30gns of IMR4350, 95SMK seated 0.020" out of the lands = 1.248", 0.713"
30gns of IMR4350, 90 VLD seated 0.040" out of the lands = 1.110"
And the stunning 3-shot 6.5 Creedmoor group: 41.7gns of RL-17, 147 ELD seated to mag length of 2.830" (>0.150" jump) = 0.161inches or ~0.05 MOA!!!!! which is the smallest group I've ever shot at any time.
I'm very pleased with the rifle's accuracy and precision; it's better than anything I've had to date (except maybe my 20 Vartarg, but that's been away at the gunsmith for a while now and I didn't get a chance to fully explore its capabilities before sending it back). When I shoot the 22BR back to back with my RPR in 6.5 Creedmoor, I really question why I'm dealing with the extra recoil, burning 13gns more powder, and throwing away an extra 60gns of lead and copper with each trigger pull. Honestly, I don't have a level of accuracy or precision where I say, "Yup, that's good enough!" I'm just trying to continually shoot smaller. I live about 1:30 away from the Colorado Rifle Club in Byers and there are all sorts of events going on there. I've gone to a 600yd and 1000yd BR match there and liked it fine, but I can't say I'm particularly interested in competition. Shooting guns has always been a way for me to feel closer to the memories of my grandpa and my uncle (and my dad, but he's still alive and well). When I was at the competitions, I didn't feel that same connection or inward reflection that I do alone out on the prairie.
I guess I'm struggling with a few questions:
Do I start acquiring new reloading equipment (more precise scale, weigh primers, gouge my eyes out) in the quest to squeeze more out that way (I'm extremely skeptical of this approach)
Would I see any benefit with a 6BR or 6PPC (presumably some of that would also come from using custom bullets)?
Or am I at the point where there is nothing but practice left (I'm leaning this way)
Shoot 80 grain Bergers up in the 3150 range.
You’re not giving up much to even the 95s when it comes right down to it
I’ve shot the 80s out to 1100 yards and they shoot as good as can and better I’m sure.
Thought folks might like to see what the various big 22's look like:
80ELD, 85.5 Berger, 88 ELD, 90 VLD, and 95 SMK
What's the BC spread across these heavies?
80 ELD - .244
85.5 - .268
88 ELD - .274
90 VLD - .274
95 SMK - .302
Went out today and ran a ladder with the new 85.5gn Berger and IMR4350. It looks great!
33.2gns for 3190fps had a very clear ejector swipe. This was MAX. I came back and shot 3 at 33gns:
The dead center group is my 20 Vartarg with 55gn Bergers (http://forum.accurateshooter.com/threads/my-20-vartarg-custom.3969176/page-3). The upper left group is the 85.5 and it measures 0.214" at 125yards. I will report back when I do some seating tests and work at 300 yards, but this looks pretty good. I'll also have to see if I can get 10 in a row to go without blowing anything up.
At 3150fps, the 85.5 will drift 36.8 inches at 1000 vs the 88 ELD at 2975fps drifting 40.2 inches. Shoots flatter too (207" vs 237"). So if I can get it to hold up, it will work very well indeed! Compare to a Berger 108 out of the 6 BRA at 2925fps drifting 43 inches and dropping 251 inches.
P.S. It was 30 degrees today, overcast, strong wind at 3 o'clock.
Bad cows !
Separate names with a comma.