P. O. Box 550. 329 S. Union St. Alexandria 2, Virginia
YOU WERE WISE to choose the .222 Remington round—it was created practically without bugs. Now ihe most popular .22 hot-shot, it hit the market in 1950 and lias been hitting varmints and targets ever since. Ballistics fill the gap between the low powered Hornet and loud-mouth Swift. There is nothing amazing about these ballistics— except inherent accuracy which gave gun writers a field day witli both gun and pen. Factory fodder starts a 50 grain pill at a listed 3,200 fps. The hull has a good shape, high loading density and uniformity.
The Hull Fillers fraternity snatched at the case like it was an inheritance from a rich uncle. The bench rest brothers promptly started shooting new world's record groups. Varminters found exceptional accuracy at moderate range in the hull that looks like a .30-06 viewed through reversed binoculars. All tubes shoot well.
Some writers call it a 300 yard varmint cartridge, which strains .the barrel on small targets. Wind dopers can be fairly certain of hits to 249 yards, but darned if I'll call it a 250 yard crow gun, for the average lads. Even a novice can smack 'em dead at 200 plus, and hear a satisfying Plop! as the bullet expends energy. Shooters with plenty of field practice, a real hot tube, and a fine glass, can blast the black bandits almost without a miss on a calm day, when the wind is less than 5 miles per hour.
At 100 yards a factory slug is traveling 2,660 fps, and at 200 is a pretty decent 2.170 fps. At 300 yards, the bullet is getting tired and wobbles along at only 1.750 fps, although still spinning at around 160,000 revolutions per minute. No matter what the rotational velocity, the forward velocity is getting a little slow for fast blowup. Drop is a huge 23 inches plus, and a mere five-mile side breeze moves the group more than 8Ys" compared with 61/i>" with a Swift. If you are shooting in one minute of angle, which is pretty good, you can miss the exact point of aim by nearly a foot without allowing for windage. Or, if you are lucky, you can hit within SVj" with the other side of your spread.
When you estimate the range and allow for drop, wind speed, and bullet deflection, you'll agree that crows and prairie dogs at 300 yards are too small for consistent hits, although the group would plug a Stetson hat every shot. At 200 yards, mid-range trajectory is only about 2M>", and bullet drop less than 9". The same wind pushes the bullet only 3Vj", compared to 2x/->" for the Swift or over 7" for a Hornet. If you forget the wind, a two-minute of angle (2 moa) group will catch a goodly number of crows, with no hold-over necessary. If you hold into the wind on the far edge of a crow that thinks you have a Hornet, it's as deadly as the arsenic a sweet old lady puts in her husband's coffee to collect insurance.
There's the truth in a cartridge shell. Let's call it a 200 yard-plus gun. Coyotes roll most of the time at up to 250 yards, but the punch is light at this range, where more bullet weight or velocity performs better. While not recommended for deer, 100 pound whitetails have been cleanly killed with a well placed hit. A glassed .222 at moderate range in open country makes exact bullet placement more accurate than an open sighted .30-30, and a well placed hit is always the best killer. Tiny, high velocity pills are not wood choppers, and
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Deer hunting is an interesting thing that reminds you of those golden old ages of 19th centuries, where a handsome hunk well equipped with all hunting material rides on horse searching for his target animal either for the purpose of displaying his masculine powers or for enticing and wooing his lady love.