.223 Rifle Questions

Fret

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I thinking of getting a .223 bolt action rifle. I'm pretty ignorant about these rifles since I only have .223 ARs and the only bolt guns I have are .22LRs. I have all the reloading stuff for .223 ARs so I want to stay with that cartridge. The rifle will be for shooting paper targets at 100 yards. Is it reasonable to expect sub 1/4" 5 shot groups at 100 yards pretty consistently with a factory rifle with only a swap to a better barrel (if needed) and a better trigger? If this is doable what model rifle and what barrel would you suggest? Would a Remington or Savage do the trick with a barrel from Northland? Being able to swap barrels at home would be great.

Thanks!
 

bgavin

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Yes that will work.

I would also look at a tikka varmint. If you don’t like the stock get a bravo or chassis.
 
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Dthomas3523

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I thinking of getting a .223 bolt action rifle. I'm pretty ignorant about these rifles since I only have .223 ARs and the only bolt guns I have are .22LRs. I have all the reloading stuff for .223 ARs so I want to stay with that cartridge. The rifle will be for shooting paper targets at 100 yards. Is it reasonable to expect sub 1/4" 5 shot groups at 100 yards pretty consistently with a factory rifle with only a swap to a better barrel (if needed) and a better trigger? If this is doable what model rifle and what barrel would you suggest? Would a Remington or Savage do the trick with a barrel from Northland? Being able to swap barrels at home would be great.

Thanks!
1/4” should doable with either a factory load your rifle really likes or handloading. Barrel may or may not have to go.

For 100 and in, might consider a .22. Cheap and challenging.
 

bunsen27

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I thinking of getting a .223 bolt action rifle. I'm pretty ignorant about these rifles since I only have .223 ARs and the only bolt guns I have are .22LRs. I have all the reloading stuff for .223 ARs so I want to stay with that cartridge. The rifle will be for shooting paper targets at 100 yards. Is it reasonable to expect sub 1/4" 5 shot groups at 100 yards pretty consistently with a factory rifle with only a swap to a better barrel (if needed) and a better trigger? If this is doable what model rifle and what barrel would you suggest? Would a Remington or Savage do the trick with a barrel from Northland? Being able to swap barrels at home would be great.

Thanks!
Do you have a budget for this project?
 

Fret

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Thanks for all the informative replies.

Does a factory .223 Tikka Varmint have the potential for sub 1/4 MOA accuracy? If it does, that might be the way to go. If it doesn't, how difficult is a barrel swap on a Tikka? Who makes a good barrel and can the swap be done at home or is a gunsmith required? What barrel twist would be good at 100 yards? I'm thinking of around a 1 in 12" for using 55 and 60 grain FB Bergers.

As for a .22LR, I already have a Vudoo, 1710 and 1727 Annies, and a KIdd so I think I have enough of those. They sure are a lot of fun! LOL

And for budget, I was thinking of around $1500 for a rifle and more later for upgrades to get to my goal. Wow, just went on Eurooptic and they have a Tikka T3x Varmint for under $900!
 

Dusticles

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I've become a huge Tikka fan over the last few years. You could do the Tac A1 as mentioned or take a T3X varmint and put it in a chassis/stock that you like (good option as I'm not in love with Tac mags). Not sure if any production gun is going to hit 1/4 MOA but 1/2 should be pretty doable.

If you go that route, have a looksy right here:

Edit: There's a few folks nowadays that build prefit (barrel nut) barrels. You can buy headspace gauges and install it at home. 1:12 twist will work good for 55-60 but maybe a 1:10 in case you want to try to stretch out later with 69 grain lead?
 
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bunsen27

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Tika makes a great rifle, and it looks like prefits barrels are available from a few vendors.

I personally went the Remage route last year and have been exceptionally pleased with the results (~$1300).

Rem 700 action = $320
Criterion Remage barrel w/nut & lug = $415
KRG Bravo = $375
MDT Mags = $40 each
Trigger upgrade = $150-$250



I have a 26" Criterion 1 in 8" Wylde chambered barrel that shoots 55gr, 69gr, 73/75/77 all phenomenally!

I would not go shorter than a 24" barrel and if possible go with a 1 in 8" or 7" twist Wylde chamber.

I shoot mostly 73/75gr Hornady ELD-M's loaded to ~3000fps out to 600yds.
 

silentheart

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I have a tikka t3 sporter in 223. It shoot 1/3 moa 5 shots group w factory ammo when no wind. I like my tikka.
 

Fret

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Thanks everyone for all the links and advice. The Tikka seems like a great choice but the Remage sounds interesting and looks like you can buy just about everything needed at Northland. I think I will give them a call and get some info. Got to do some thinking. Thanks again!
 

Greg Langelius *

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Yes, you can make that happen. It likely won't be cheap.

What you might want to do is to step back a step or two and ask yourself seriously just what real purpose would your achieving reliable 1/4MOA accuracy serve, and whether 1/2MOA might not be a more reasonable goal that puts that same smile on your face. Bear in mind that this is a Tactical site, not a Benchrest site. Some forget. Nothing against Benchrest.

I haven't dealt with Northland, but what I read here leads me to trust their abilities. I also (especially) like Savage rifles, but some don't, and there are better rifles out there.

Handloading is a must. For 100yd, 50-53gr flat based bullets are very good, and Varget is a very versatile powder for 223 (I use 26.0gr under the 50-55's). For out to 600yd, one can go with heavier bullets. I like the basic stuff and my 600yd bullet is the Hornady 75gr HPBT-Match atop 23.5-23.7gr of Varget. Starline brass and CCI BR-4 (only if head to head tests show significant improvement over CCI-400). A barrel with a 1:8" twist works, I prefer a 24" bull barrel.

BTW, AR's can also deliver 1/2MOA reliably, not especially easily, just like bolt rifles. Good barrel, good trigger; you may even save some money, too.

The Stag 15 Varminter Kit is affordable (you will still need to buy a stripped Lower). If your Lower has a good trigger, try just the Upper.

Yes; they're out of stock right now, along with most of what Stag makes just this moment. They're in the process of moving their operation; lock, stock, and barrels, out of CT right now. Smart folks, Stag. Check back with them in a few months.

Greg
 
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CarbonMTN

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223 1/8 twist and 77gn match and you'll be good... so either the Ruger predator or the tikka t3x. Its possible with factory loads.

if you go with a 1/9 twist you'll limit your GR to 65-69 max GR weight.

I just ordered a T3X Varmint so I'll see how it does but my Ruger predator shooting 77gr Norma match did a .68 fist time I tried to group.


proof https://forum.snipershide.com/threads/ruger-accuracy.6961828/
 

ratton

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A friend of mind purchased a new Ruger RPR for $700.00. Its a tack driver. There may be a few out there if you look hard enough.
 
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CarbonMTN

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No. Factory rifles are unlikely to do that well, even if they could, are you capable of that level of shooting yourself?

A good factory rifle might get you half MOA, better than that is doubtful.
I'm going to try my best to prove you wrong! ;)
 

steve123

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My advice is to revisit your goals.

Go to a bench rest match, buy a used 6mmPPC, with dies, brass, bullets, and duplicate the previous owners load.
I got mine for $1100. 1/4" was common.

It's rare for a factory rifle to meet that accuracy requirement and not common for most custom tactical rifles as well.

6mmPPC was designed to agg as small as possible, 223 was not.
 

Sieg

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Another vote for the Tikka T3x Varmint. I recently bought one, put it in a KRG Bravo, $10 trigger spring, Athlon Ares ETR optic, and have been testing it's factory ammo preferences.

Federal GMM 69g SMK




Extremely please with this rifle and the stock Tikka action is slick! My objective for this rifle was informal monthly 100/220yd matches at our range and sage rat hunting.
 

Fret

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Thank you very much for all the informative posts. After reading them and thinking about it, I think my best bet is to look for a used 6PPC and play around with that after I pay my crazy high property tax bill which should be here next month. I didn't want to go that route initially since I have all the reloading stuff for a .223 but that way looks to be too hit or miss. Thanks again! You guys are a super storehouse of knowledge.
 

Sieg

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Thank you very much for all the informative posts. After reading them and thinking about it, I think my best bet is to look for a used 6PPC and play around with that after I pay my crazy high property tax bill which should be here next month. I didn't want to go that route initially since I have all the reloading stuff for a .223 but that way looks to be too hit or miss. Thanks again! You guys are a super storehouse of knowledge.
Living in Oregon all my life I can relate to the annual property tax issue. o_O
 

Vicdiesel

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If you change your mind on a .223 Tikka.... I have this one for sale. Already in a chassis.


Thanks
 

Krob95

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I thinking of getting a .223 bolt action rifle. I'm pretty ignorant about these rifles since I only have .223 ARs and the only bolt guns I have are .22LRs. I have all the reloading stuff for .223 ARs so I want to stay with that cartridge. The rifle will be for shooting paper targets at 100 yards. Is it reasonable to expect sub 1/4" 5 shot groups at 100 yards pretty consistently with a factory rifle with only a swap to a better barrel (if needed) and a better trigger? If this is doable what model rifle and what barrel would you suggest? Would a Remington or Savage do the trick with a barrel from Northland? Being able to swap barrels at home would be great.

Thanks!
I’ve had extremely good accuracy out on my Tikka T3 Tactical with a 20” bbl in .223 with an unknown amount of rounds through it (mfg date 2014). I run Federal GMM 69gr SMK HPBT and have it in a KRG W-3 chassis with subpar glass and was hittin 0.4MOA at 100 with every 5 rd group. Its definitely possible
 

EddieE

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I personally don't like the look of bench rest guns. I prefer tactical guns. I have a T3x varmint, in a KRG X-ray with Athlon Ares BTR. I have been playing with different ammo and found it shoots Hornady Match 68 BTHP, 73 ELD and 75 BTHP pretty well. I tried the 75 BTHP today and the two groups I shot were 0.578 and 0.640 measured edge to edge @100 yards.. I exclusively shoot factory ammo, so its nice to find a Hornady Match load that the gun likes. I think your goal of 1/4" groups consistently is very aggressive. Having a vudoo has spoiled us...I keep expecting that level of accuracy from every gun I pick up.

Good luck with your pursuit.
 

BoilerUP

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1/4 MOA is not going to be the norm in any factory rifle of any caliber with factory ammo...and isn’t likely going to be the norm with 90% of custom rifles and handloads.

I’m talking real-world, not the internet.

Weakest link in the system is almost always the rifle driver anyway...
 

phantomskittles

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As some others have said 1/4" is hardly the norm for a factory rifle or even some customs, but with handloads it isnt out of the question. I have a factory Savage 223 that will put 10 rounds in a ragged 1/2" edge to edge hole, but I would not expect that to be normal. A barrel swap can help a lot if you get a bad factory barrel though. Remage and Savage are the only swaps I have done myself and are so easy a caveman with go/no go gauge can do it. I have heard great things about Tikka but don't own one myself and don't know what barrel swaps involve with those.