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.22 caliber long rifle ammunition

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posted on Aug, 29 2007 @ 02:39 PM
Hey guys,

I just came back from the shooting range. I shot my .22 long rifle caliber bolt action rifle. It is a Marlin 880 heavy barreled Squirrel Rifle with a Redfield 3x9 power scope.

I was shooting this rifle at 100 yards chasing soda cans around the backstop and breaking clay pigeons.

100 yards is a bit far for a .22 caliber rifle. Most of my shooting has been at the 50 yard line with a .22 long rifle caliber or on the 25 yd indoor range.

What I noticed or sensed was that with standard factory ammunition..Federal .22s... there seemed to be a significant variation at times in the performance of this ammo particilarly at this longer range.
I was shooting off a Caldwel Rifle rest with a eared sandbag at the back of the rifle stock. It was a solid shooting set up.
I would shoot and some rounds seemed to noticably fall short. Others went where the cross hairs were directed.

Have any of you shooters out there noticed this?

My question for some of you with experience is...What brand to your knowlege or experience is the most consistent performing .22 long rifle ammunition.

I am aware that there is target grade ammunition. I am however speaking of across the counter varietys in bulk. What brand/brands to your knowlege are the most consistent performers at long ranges.

I dont believe at 50 yards or more that it will make much difference the longer ranges is where it will show up.
I never gave this much thought till today.

Any answers guys?


[edit on 29-8-2007 by orangetom1999]

posted on Aug, 29 2007 @ 02:46 PM
I've experienced this as well with a few brands, Federal being one of them.

I was once told by a gun shop guy that a lot of the bigger companies produce and package their rounds in uneven generations leading to inconsistant performance.

For myself, I have sworn by CCI for a while now and have no complaints to speak of.

posted on Aug, 29 2007 @ 04:51 PM
All ammuntion will vary in accuracy somewhat from lot to lot and even as the bore becomes fouled.

Many competition shooters will foul the bore before shooting for a score.

You can do some research on match-grade ammo here, but be aware that for most people the difference between standard ammo and match-grade ammo is minimal, even miniscule.

Google Search

posted on Aug, 29 2007 @ 05:14 PM
I have noticed that the .22's in the 550 bricks are not the best in the world. I will go along with Lock on the CCI.


posted on Aug, 30 2007 @ 02:48 AM
Fiocchi and Lapua are both very good brands and popular around here. CCI rounds are considered a it of a plinkers here.

But .22cal guns are allways individuals one Ruger might like Lapua and another from the same production patch likes CCI. You just have to test what works with your own gun.

posted on Aug, 30 2007 @ 03:29 AM

Originally posted by Roper
I have noticed that the .22's in the 550 bricks are not the best in the world. I will go along with Lock on the CCI.


The 550 bulk packs are what I call plinking ammo.

It's not meant for winning bullseye competitions.

posted on Aug, 30 2007 @ 03:29 AM

Originally posted by Roper
I have noticed that the .22's in the 550 bricks are not the best in the world. I will go along with Lock on the CCI.


The 550 bulk packs are what I call plinking ammo.

It's not meant for winning bullseye competitions.

posted on Aug, 31 2007 @ 03:22 PM
.22 Caliber Long Rifle Ammuinition

IN the last couple of days since making the OP on this thread I have been musing on the responses and considering some experimentation.

Today I went out to my local Wally World and purchased four boxes of CCI mini mag standard ammunition in the 100 count boxes. While there I also saw that they carried a .22 caliber ammunition marked CB which I took for .22 short or lower powered ammo. I purchased one box of 100 count CB shorts for the pesky varmits and nuiscances which sometimes frequent this property. The Standard .22 CCI mini mags were some $5 and some change per box.

However.....while also making some other rounds about town I decided to stop into my local gun shop to purchase some more 7.62x39mm ammunition ..some 100 rounds. While there I looked down the ammunition counter and to my surprise I found several boxes of CCI Green top target ammo. I purchased two 100 count boxes at $15 per box. A bit pricey for my tastes but I splurged for the purposes of the experiment and the knowlege. I figure the knowlege in the long run will be worth the $30 I have put forth in these materials.

We will not be working at the shipyard this weekend and it is a three day weekend with the Labor day falling on Monday. I plan to take this rifle back to the gun club and see what happens with the different kinds of ammo.

I have never had any reason to put forth the expense for target grade ammo so this will be a new experience .

By the way.... Grady Phillpot put forth a site showing some Lapua .22 long rifle ammo with a heavier bullet. I have never heard of such ammo. Some 48 grains bullets in stead of the standard 40 grain ammo sold almost anwhere in round nose types. This looks like a very intresting round in a rifle. I will keep my eye open for this ammo and try a box or two. My thanks to Grady Phillpot for this information and link. I would never have known this had Grady not posted such. I will also check my Midway supplier as I get the flyers in the mail from them as well as E-mails.

Up to recently at the 100 yard range I never had much reason to question the quality of rimfire ammo.

I am not intrested at all in this .17 rimfire type rifles and pistols and consider the standard .22 long rifle to be a very useful all round tool to have in ones inventory...either pistol or rifle ...though I am more partial to a good rifle

I will post the results I find after this weekend.

Thanks to all for thier tips and links
And keep them in the X ring,


[edit on 31-8-2007 by orangetom1999]

posted on Aug, 31 2007 @ 04:16 PM
The bulk packs from Federal and Remington can always be a little patchy, but the Remington Golden Bullet 550 round bulk packs are the better of the 2 IMO. Especially at $11 each - that's a lot of cheap shooting.

For the ultra premium target ammo I'm not really sure, but for varmint duty I really like the Winchester Super X, CCI Stinger, CCI Velocitor, and now the new Aguila Interceptor loads - all the above are hot for .22LR.

I confess that I get a kick out of buying a box of 50 rounds of ammunition and getting change out of a dollar, .22LR pistol shooting in the Arizona desert is one of lifes great low cost pleasures.

posted on Aug, 31 2007 @ 05:39 PM
Last year, my friends dad let me use his Ruger 22 bolt action, he said the barrel was hardened as well. I was consistantly nailing a target the size of a quarter at 100 yards( except when my breath was off or I flinched). I was using reloaded shells at first(till they ran out), then went to CB shorts we purchaced at Wally world earlier in the day. The reloaded bullets performed the best( the dads own special mixture), but the CB shorts did quite well. Some were off, but it was few and far inbetween. Have fun plinking this weekend!

posted on Aug, 31 2007 @ 06:05 PM
Good post Orangetom.

Since I bought my Ruger 10-22 blue target model I've been buying quite a few different brands of 525-550 count LR's

So far, non scientific testing - meaning popping paper targets off a bench - shows the Winchester Dyna Points to be about the best so far.

The Federals are good for popping beer cans and the like - and especially fun on our last trip to the dry lake where we had 24 full cans of old Pepsi.
Made for some great explosions and to be fair we plinked at those at about one hundred yards and off-hand.

I too find the CCI Mini Mags to be fairly consistent in both the scoped target 10-22 and the Wally World 10-22 Special with Williams peep sight.
As well as from on older - circa 1952 - Winchester Model 74 and Remington Model 550-1 from the same era.

Old 22 rifles in very good condition are very common out here and prices are well within reason . . . $80. for the 550-1 with old timey Weaver 3/4" 22 style scope.
About a grade 7-8 on a scale of 10 being best.


Not to get too far afield, but you may remember my tribulations with the Yugo SKS 7 x 39 rifle I bought last fall.
Failure to fire etc.
Turned out to be the fault of the Brown Bear ammunition which is reputed to have an overly thick primer cup.

I ran a couple boxes of Silver Bear through it and no malfunctions at all.

Interestingly, my pal's somewhat well used SKS didn't like the Brown Bear either.
Another friend who was along for the shoot, tried the Brown Bear in his AK47 with only one failure to fire.
I gave all the Brown Bear I had to him and it's back to J&J in Prescott, AZ for some more Silver Bear.

Nice part about my SKS was that the trigger seemed to be a bit creepy and heavy on the pull.
After I got it to shooting ok with the SB ammo, it had no trouble in laying all it's shots into a man-sized target at 200 yeards off-hand.
The trigger wasn't bothersome so I'm going to leave it as is.

Got all these 22 LR's I gotta take care of....

posted on Sep, 1 2007 @ 10:43 PM
Hello Dawg,
Good to hear from you again. Yes I recall you posting about the problems with your Yugo SKS rifle.
You know I found some similar problems with mine. I had several rounds which would not go off on the initial trigger pull but took several times to get them to go off. I did not know about the extra heavy primer cup. This is a new one to me. I will keep a eye out for this symptom in the future.
Thanks for this info.

Other than this I have found little fault with my two SKS rifles. They are not as accurate as would I like but acceptable within the range for which I intend them. I must however admit I have been spoiled by bench rest type rifles and scopes. Not the fault of the SKS.
My SKS too has a heavy chunky trigger with creep but it is something I can live with. Once again ..suitable for the intended purpose of this rifle.
I have come to admire this little rifle for its features and within this price range. I should also state that I like the 30 caliber in a rifle.

On the subject of .22 long rifles. I had all my gear ready to go to the range this afternoon and stopped long enough to fix myself some lunch. After that I got sleepy and decided to nap for awhile in my Lazy Boy. Well they most certainly have the correct name for that lounge chair. It was dark when I woke up. I shall have to go tomorrow some time after noon.
The best laid plans of mice and men...

IM going to run basically the same format I did in the initial attempt...some paper punching and also chasing cans around the backstop.

I have not actually used CCI mini mags in some years now. I have simply bought the bulk ammo..mostly Winchester or Federal in the 500/550 blocks or 1000 round bricks. It never occured to me about the difference till I decided to so some 100 yard shooting as most of my time with this bulk ammo has been at the 50 yard line.

It should be intresting. Also it should be intresting to note the consistency of the target grade ammo.

Wow!! You have a 10-22 with a Williams peep sight. That is great!! I have had one rifle with a receiver type peep sight and that was a Mossburg 144s. It was a wonderful rifle and very accurate within the range of that sight. This is the rifle which taught me that the type of sights ...even in iron can make a big difference in the performance of a rifle or even handgun. What a huge difference over bladed iron sights. This rifle also had the rounded type sleeve or hooded apeture above the front of the barrel to house different types of sights from a post type to a target appeture. They came in a little box and you could switch out the types of front sights. The rear sight could be unscrewed to put in different sized apetures here too. It was a very unique and accurate set up for iron type sights.
Like a dummy I let that Mossburg 144s go. I should have known better. It was a great shooting rifle.
Letting that rifle go and in missing it is what prompted me to purchase this Marlin 880 Squirrel Rifle. I do like a good accurate bolt action .22 long rifle. I own a semi but am just partial to the bolts. Personal preference.

However, I must admit that the advent of so many aftermarket accessories and modification kits for the Ruger 10-22 makes me curious about the potential of this rifle. It is most certainly priced right for the all its variations. As I understand it you can currently purchase across the counter models in heavy barrels of this fine rifle.
Ruger has most certainly judged the market correctly with this Rifle as they did with their Ruger .22 long rifle semi automatic pistol. As I have stated before...this is quite a testament to Bill Ruger and the company which bears his name.

Thanks for your post Dawg and keep them in the X ring,

posted on Sep, 2 2007 @ 12:24 PM
I hear you on the peep sight 22's.

I had a JC Higgins bolt 22 with peep in my teen years, but let it get away from me.
It did well in shooting against the other guys and their semi-auto 22's.
Kinda taught me the value of one well aimed shot - regardless of action type - vs hosing down the landscape with bullets like many semi-auto owners are wont to do.
Specially the younger ones.

Here's a couple pics of the WW Special.
A neat rifle as is, but even better with the peep.
Still getting it sighted in, but offhand shooting with the 22" barrel is pleasant and easy since it 'hangs' on target so well.

You'll note that a higher front blade is required.
No big deal and Brownell's or Midway has front and rear sights in one kit.

The Ruger blue - also comes in stainless -10-22 target comes with a heavy barrel, laminated wood stock and lighter trigger from the factory.
So far I've only shot a box (50) or so or so through it, but it's looking good.
A little more sighting in with the 4.5 x 14 scope then I'll start looking for what ammo it prefers.

A pic of the target model:

And . .. a pic of what happens to the WW Special if you use spray-on brake cleaner to hose out the interior of the receiver:

The brake cleaner doesn't seem to affect bluing, but some are reporting that it does.
I didn't realize at the tme that the WW Special - which has a stainless barrel and brushed stainless looking silver powder coated aluminum receiver had powder coating on it.

I got some matching paint from Brownell's, but didn't like the way it turned out so I stripped everything off the aluminum receiver and gave it a brushed finish.
It's looking ok and all I do to it is wipe with a lightly oiled rag when I clean the gun.

One funny one last time we went to the range - cuz the dry lake was a bit flooded and the heavy rains had washed out the road down to it - I took along my Ruger M77 22 magnum bolt action.
I hadn't shot it in quite a while and it's always been one of my favorites - as is the 22 magum round, to the extent that I only shoot 22 magnums from my 9 1/2" barrel blue Single Six.
The Single Six is known as my "pocket rifle."

Anyway, I grabbed the M77 and a box of what I thought were 22 mags.
Then decided to take along another box of 22 mags.
Good thing I did, I'd just glanced at the first box and it was a box of Mini-Mags.
Read em & weep, but I was lucky to have some 22 mags along.

I have a Leupold Compact 4X scope on this rifle and wonder why I didn't get the Compact 2 x 7.

Probably because we were doing varmint hunting at the time and I figured the 4X would be enough for the short to medium range shots - 100-200 yards.
Anything over that would be taken care of my my pal's M77 in 220 Swift.

The 10-22's are nice rifles, seldom fail - 11,000 rounds through my 1968 era 10-22 - and I encourage you to give one a shot.
So to speak....

WW Special = Walmart Special or Wally World Special.

[edit on 2-9-2007 by Desert Dawg]

posted on Sep, 2 2007 @ 04:11 PM
Hey Dawg,

Great photos in your post. Very nice set ups on your rifles. Also very nice wood. I understand the practicality of the new composites but they are not wood and do not have the class and grace one finds on a very nice piece of wood. Composites will never be wood!!

Your photos are causing my palms to itch and I want to scratch it. LOL LOL. Perhapsed sometime down the road. Let me know when you find out the preference of ammo type for the target heavy barreled 10-22.

The shooting session went well today. Lots of people there looked to me like they were checking or sighting in their hunting rifles. Must be getting ready for the season. Lots of heavy barrels there too.

What I found on the range today was that the CCI mini mags shot more consistently than the bulk Federals. Noticably so both on paper and chasing the cans around the backstop. This is pretty much what several of the posters here have outlined.
What I also found was that the CCI greenn top target ammo shot nice tight groups..but not all that much tighter than the standard mini mags. Noticable but not that much tighter.
I expected more from this ammo.

However to qualify ...this target grade ammo was subsonic. The difference in noise level was immediately noticable. Once I figured out the drop on this ammo I was able to go for groups. This green top ammo was the tightest most consistent groupings. I shot about 40 rounds of this green top CCI target ammo.

Also to note ...I ran a clean patch down the barrel before changing ammo types as I did the other day in my shooting sessions.

What I found was that there was a significant difference in the performance of this ammo at 100 yards.

I rate the Federal ammo suitable at 50 to 75 yards...but questionable at 100 yards. The mini mags more suitable at the 100 yard range.

Were I to shoot target matchs I would use the green top CCI ammo or other target grades. I will not be using up much more of this ammo at that price unless I was in fact shooting target.

I also enclose a photo of my Marlin Squirrel Rifle. I have enjoyed very much the shooting of this rifle and consider it a good buy for the moneys spent.
However my conscience is begining to foam and dribble at the corners of my mouth and my palms itch for one of those heavy barreled target grade Rugers. I need to walk softly here for awhile.


mod edit: turned image into link to correct page width

[edit on 2-9-2007 by UK Wizard]

posted on Sep, 3 2007 @ 09:30 PM
Very nice Marlin

I really like the heavy barrels regardless of caliber.
Until you have to tote a heavy centerfire a long way to the hunting area.

One I've always lusted after is the Ruger M77 V (heavy barrel) in 308.
Makes for a nice silhouette rifle although I've not kept up with the silhouette game for a while.
Seems the heavy barrel 308's were the hot setup for a while then a few pioneers went over to 7mm wildcats and I think that's still what they're using.

One thing I've noticed wth the 22 rifles from the 50's and earlier is that they have a longer than optimum barrel.
23" - 24" being very common.
I believe the trade-off between handling characteristics and ballistics was tipped in favor of handling.
Some of these old rifles "hang" on target very well when used offhand . . . which seems to be the norm for the 22 LR's most times.

The heavy barrel 10-22 has excellent handling characteristics and it's compactness is a help in some areas.

If you're near a Walmart that still sells rifles, the blue target model 10-22 is $328. plus tax.

A lot of guys are building 10-22's with heavy barrels, mucho tuning with aftermarket parts and far out looking stocks.
I might do a little trigger tuning on mine later on, but for now I'm very happy with it.

The laminated stocks as seen in the pic of the 1-22 target rifle above are very stable dimensionally speaking.

The birch stock as seen on the WW Special above is fairly nice compared to some of the birch stocks seen on rifles from about ten years ago.
Mine's nice, but somewhat plain.
Interesting part is some of the birch stocks are coming through with very highly figured wood.
Walnut's nice, but I'm liking the laminated stocks a whole lot.

Below, a better look at the WW Special's stock.

If you look close at some of the older Winchester 22's from the early 50's and before, you'll see many times some very nicely figujred walnut.
The Winchester 72 that I'm almost done restoring - just have to weld the bolt back on - has some nice walnut on it.
Here's a pic of it.

Nuff for now, getting so dark in here I almost can't see the keyboard....

posted on Sep, 3 2007 @ 09:57 PM
My Ruger 77/22 is surgical at 100 yards with Federal Gold Medal ammo. However every gun is different...

posted on Sep, 4 2007 @ 08:45 PM

Originally posted by FsuSteveO
My Ruger 77/22 is surgical at 100 yards with Federal Gold Medal ammo. However every gun is different...

22LR or Magnum?

Mine's a magnum and I was pleased to end up with a 1 1/2" - 2" group at 50 yards.
Pleased because I'd forgotten my targets and used some blank 8 1/2" x 11" paper on the target board.

Surprising how much difference there is shooting blank paper vs a well laid out paper target.
It did better in the past, but that was shooting at 'real' targets.

I have no doubt the 22LR version shoots excellent groups.
I had one for a while and it was a good shooter.
Now it's grandson's pride and joy.

I go to a couple other shooting boards besides dropping in here now and then.
It's interesting that on all three sites, people report realistic, believable groups.

Most guys you talk to at the gun shops seem to always be able to shoot inside 1" at 100 yards.
And sometimes 1/2" at 200 yards.
With a semi-auto.

I see these same guys at the range now and then and sometimes my spotting scope wanders.
Interesting to see that if the five shot group they're dealing with hadn't had 4 flyers they'd have had a terrific group.

Nuff said there.....

posted on Sep, 7 2007 @ 10:12 PM
reply to post by orangetom1999

I am only a target shooting, and have not shot a rifle in a few years. Shotguns are my game.

I didn't know that factory .22 ammo was accurate to 100 yards. I always was successful with a scope with a bullet drop compensator with both CCI and Remington.

posted on Sep, 7 2007 @ 10:42 PM
Glad to see you having fun pulling triggers.
I grew up with Marlin model 60s. Lots of small fury animals died because of them. I had a Ruger 1022 for a few years, I was extremly disapointed with the magazines. After 50 rounds they were to dirty to function.
Then I got a marlin 39A. That is a sweet rifle. It is a tack driver. I love to shoot the CCI CB caps in it. All you hear is the hammer drop, then SMACK when the bullet reaches the target.

As for ammo when it has been serious I use CCI Mini mags. The bulk stuff has always been for plinking. A freind of mine swears by the Aqulari (sp?).

By the way I picked up a Rock River AR15-A2 last month. I had the money for a nice DPMS M4orgery and ammo. Wouldnt you know 3 days before the gun show the washing machine gets a hole rotted in the tub and I had to buy a new one. The new one has a stainless tub and I have an A2.

posted on Sep, 8 2007 @ 03:09 AM
Hey Dawg,
Wow...just got off work. Did only 8.5 hours tonght intead of the 12 hour nights I have been doing most of the week. Working weekend 12 hour days but one can get burned out on it after awhile.

I too like heavy barrels on my rifles. Some Pistols too. My Ruger Government has a heavy barrel. It is a fine shooting pistol. A heavy barrel on that Mossburg 144s is what caused me to purchase my Springfield Bolt action in 30.06 with a heavy barrel. I have a photo posted of it some where on here...

Try this...the last photobucket link at the bottom..

Sun Matrix...I too am mostly a plinker and paper puncher. I do like as stated a good .22 rifle. I never gave much thought to a .22 at 100 yards till I was at the range one day and saw an olde timer with a Kimber Rifle shooting cans at 100 yards. Talk about a nice rifle that bolt actioin Kimber. Kimber is known to most peoples for some fine .45 ACP caliber pistols. I was not familiar with thier rifles till I saw this olde timer and his very nice rifle. He was hitting the cans pretty consistently at 100 yards. He let me take a couple of shots. Very nice rifle and very nice trigger pull. I was shocked when he told me what a nice Kimber .22 long rifles costs. $800-$900. But it was a shooter and not a heavy barrel too. Very, Very nice wood on this rifle too. For that kind of moneys ...I'd expect so.! Plain across the counter CCI mini mags too.
This is what caused me to check this out at 100 yards except that I brought bulk Federals the first time and noticed the variation in performance even within this batch of bulk ammo.
As I said..I dont normally shoot a .22 long rifle at 100 yards but this experience is now added to my knowlege library.
I appreciate the input from all posters here.

I too grew up with the Marlin Glenfield 60s. I still have my first one. The new ones seem to have shorter barrels now days. I have learned over the years from my Glenfield 60 to put a full one inch type scope on them in instead of 3/4 inch type .22 type scopes.

I had to think a bit about what is a model 39A. It is thier lever action .22 rifle. I have never used a lever action .22. Pumps, bolt actions, and autos. I shall have to try one some day.
I too keep some of the CB caps around....for precisely that reason. I do know how to fashion one shot quick silencers but CB caps get around this in many instances. Wonderful thing....the CB caps...for sure.!!
As to that Aqulari ammo I have not tried that but have recently seen it in my magazines so it must be a up and coming ammo type making the rounds here in this country. I will keep this in mind as well as the norma type heavy bullet .22 ammo. I Like that idea of a .22 bullet heavier than 40 grains..

Thanks again to all for thier posts here,

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