Introduction to the .222 Remington
The .222 Remington, a centerfire rifle cartridge introduced in 1950, has a long and storied history as one of the most important benchrest and varmint cartridges. Its specific design parameters, performance, and various applications have made it a favorite among shooting enthusiasts.
Dimensions and Specifications
The .222 Remington cartridge is designed with some distinctive measurements. The rimless, bottlenecked case measures 1.700 inches (43.2 mm) in length with a shoulder angle of 23 degrees. The overall cartridge length is 2.130 inches (54.1 mm).
Different types of bullets can be used with the .222 Remington, typically weighing between 40 and 60 grains. The common bullet diameter is .224 inches (5.69 mm), and the case capacity stands at around 26.7 grains of water.
The primer type is small rifle, and the maximum pressure, as defined by SAAMI, is set at 50,000 PSI.
Powder loads for the .222 Remington vary depending on the bullet weight and specific requirements for accuracy and velocity. Commonly used powders include H4198, IMR4198, and Varget. A typical load might include:
- For a 50-grain bullet: 21-24 grains of IMR4198
- For a 55-grain bullet: 20-23 grains of H4198
These loads should be approached with caution, and it is recommended to consult a reputable reloading manual or work with an experienced reloader.
The .222 Remington was introduced by Remington Arms Company in 1950 as the first commercially available .22 caliber centerfire cartridge available in the United States. It was designed primarily for varmint hunting and benchrest shooting competitions.
Mike Walker, a Remington firearms designer, led the development, aiming to create a cartridge with impressive accuracy and modest recoil. The cartridge's performance in benchrest competitions quickly earned it fame and various records.
Known for its excellent accuracy and modest recoil, the .222 Remington became a standard for benchrest shooters. With a muzzle velocity ranging from 2,800 to 3,200 feet per second, depending on the load, it offers a flat trajectory ideal for hitting small targets at medium ranges.
Its effectiveness as a varmint cartridge, especially for pests like prairie dogs and coyotes, is also well acknowledged.
Several firearms have been chambered for the .222 Remington. These include:
And many custom benchrest rifles have been built around this cartridge.
Successors and Current Use
The .223 Remington, introduced in 1964, can be seen as a successor to the .222 Remington. It offers similar ballistic characteristics but with a slightly higher case capacity.
Though it's no longer the most popular choice, the .222 Remington is still used by enthusiasts for varmint hunting and benchrest shooting competitions. Some European countries have adopted it for roe deer and similar-sized game hunting.
The .222 Remington has left a mark on the shooting world. Its perfect blend of accuracy, performance, and application versatility has made it a timeless classic. Though overshadowed by more modern cartridges, it continues to be a cartridge of choice for those in pursuit of precision and excellence.
In the tradition of firearms and ammunition design, the .222 Remington stands as a testament to ingenuity and the relentless pursuit of perfection. It's not just a piece of history; it's an enduring symbol of innovation and excellence in the field of shooting sports.
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