Strongest .22lr bolt action

Sep 30, 2014
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#1
Need one for R&D, testing of advanced military .22lr ammunition. Going to be pushing the limits so need a strong, safe bolt action rifle. Any thoughts on a modern rifle that fits this bill?

Thanks!
 
Likes: demolitionman

SporterII

Full Member
Nov 23, 2006
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#2
Need one for R&D, testing of advanced military .22lr ammunition. Going to be pushing the limits so need a strong, safe bolt action rifle. Any thoughts on a modern rifle that fits this bill?

Thanks!
I am no expert on bolt action design but can testify to the material CZ 452 is made from. Clacamus Kimbers are not current. Strong actions in my opinion.
 
Sep 16, 2009
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#3
Vudoo on the Rem 700 pattern action would be the best I would think.
The week link in the 22 LR chain is the case, not the action. I can think of no action that is strained in the least by the 22 LR.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#5
Vudoo on the Rem 700 pattern action would be the best I would think.
The week link in the 22 LR chain is the case, not the action. I can think of no action that is strained in the least by the 22 LR.
That's what I was thinking but just want to be safe. I've been through this too many times and somehow was able to keep my face in tact! Check this out:


The one on the left obviously. current version slightly different with less bearing surface. Initial testing planned for this weekend. I'm also thinking of making an airgun version!
 

demolitionman

Sergeant of the Hide
Feb 26, 2013
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#10
AZGEEK, you should chronicle your R&D in a thread so we can follow along. It sounds interesting, whatever it is, you are testing.....I’m a sucker for anything 22lr.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#11
Demolitionman - I may just do that. This is actually a dummy-down, civilian version of work already done. I do R&D for Gila Defense Systems here in Tucson AZ. This is just a side project for my own fun as I'm also into 22lr & air guns. There may be some things I learn along the way that could be used to enhance the existing military versions. We shall see.

Just picked up a bolt action rifle for testing today so ready to go. There is really no published data using off-the-shelf smokeless powder, thus the caution. Target velocity is 1800 fps with a 32.5 gr projectile. Keep you posted.
 
Likes: demolitionman

W54/XM-388

Online Training Member
Oct 1, 2005
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#12
So basically you are wanting to push a .22lr to basically a .22 magnum velocity in the same case then.
I kind of prefer the .22TCM for the high velocity stuff.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#13
Well push it to the extent I can with reason. Given I'm just using pure lead now present limitations. But for the initial prototyping it offers a lot of flexibility. I'm already certain I will need a lead alloy to increase hardness in the future. That could in fact actually lighten the overall weight. I want to keep the weight in the low 30's. Mass is still important.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#14
Ok so first batch ready for initial testing. Had three problems right out of the gate:

1. The belling out the pulled brass was too large. Fixed by proper crimp adistments.
2. The projo's stick to my swaging nose punch.
2a. Getting them off with the method on hand creates slight deforms and requires emery cloth sanding and polishing. Still working on a final solution.

Ended up with a new Savage Model B22F. Ran each round into the gun (by hand) to ensure they chamber and eject. Will shoot these tomorrow as I have the day off. The two with the red lines are loaded with Vit 3n37 while the others use the factory powder charge from the pulled brass.

1526596082254.png
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#16
Nope no poly. Special sauce, family secret! I wasn't joking about its military roots! It's a special sabot I'm developing to make 22lr more lethal than you can possibly imagine for both hunting and self-defense for civilian use.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#18
Thanks Paydirt! I just ignore ignorance. I'm just a member of this community like anyone else. Having fun and sharing where and when I'm able. Wonder what's in their wallet? Here's what I carry in 9mm:

1526605330742.png
 
Likes: rth1800
Sep 30, 2014
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#20
Ok so the initial test went well in terms of all round going kaboom and ejecting safely from the rifle. Shots were taken with open sights at 15 yards. Group 1 used the pulled powder charge and Group 2 the Vit 3N37:

1526694205124.png

They seem to fly just fine. One of the two rounds in Group 2 just did not seat or crimp correctly and resulted result in the flyer. With gun and face in tact, I'll move on to next steps:

1. Fine tuning the reloading process, including and most importantly the removal of the stuck projo's from my point forming die without damage
2. Create a ladder test with Vit 3N37 and chrono the results (assuming my Magnitospeed works with just lead projo)
3. Test an initial load with Titegroup (open to any other suggestions for smokeless powders!)

I'll try and get this next round of testing done on Sunday.

Keep you posted.
 

ZY100

Sergeant
Oct 13, 2007
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#21
"2. Create a ladder test with Vit 3N37 and chrono the results (assuming my Magnitospeed works with just lead projo) "

Magnetospeed works fine with 22LR, but you need to adjust the sensitivity up from around the default 2 to usually >8 (of 11). I just go to 11, I dont think there is any downside of being set too sensitive.

Good luck,
ZY
 

MarinePMI

Battery Operated Grunt
Jun 3, 2010
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#22
Hmmm...is your intent to stay within published pressures? If so, than any action will work, since all rimfires (save the 5mmRM) opearte at 28k max pressures (which is the main reason the 5mmRM has never gone mainstream, it's 38k pressure max is too much for the cheaper rimfire actions. i.e. the ones that just have a single lug, ala bolt handle, like Savages, Mossbergs and Marlins).

Interesting project though...
 

SLG

Gunny Sergeant
Sep 2, 2009
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#23
Interesting project and a good write up so far, though i can certainly see where guys may have thought this was a teenager in their moms basement based on the first post.

Any thoughts on the relative strength of a CZ action? 452 and 455? Just curiosity on my part.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#24
Thanks for that help with the Magnetospeed ZY!

MarinePMI - My intent is to stay within safe operating pressures for typical guns. Not interested in beefing up bolts and recoil springs. Pretty sure I can achieve my goals without pushing velocity to the limits, but we shall see. This is my first attempt reloading 22lr so I'm learning as I go. Thank you for that pressure information! I've also got to consider a potential increase in pressure just due to the bearing surface of this test bullet. The ridge created by the "Keith" wad-cutter nose shape is a problem for feeding. Its a trade-off based on my decision to go with this shape which I'll explain later once we start testing against metals, clays, glass, rubber and maybe even body armor.

SLG - I'll defer that question on the CZ's to the experts.
 

MarinePMI

Battery Operated Grunt
Jun 3, 2010
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San Diego, Ca
#25
Getting 1800fps within normal pressures is going to be a real chore (assuming a 40 or 38gr bullet; 30's might be achievable though). I have some 38gr HP loaded to 1650fps (prototype stuff from a company I used to consult on R&D projects), but it's pretty snorty stuff. It worked (and well I might add), but the liability shelved the project. Even if we had put "Bolt action only" on the packaging, you know some knuckle head would try and putting in a Jennings pistol or some old Stevens or crappy old Marlin.

Smacked the ever loving crap out of rabbits though. We did the same thing with a truncated bullet as well (ala the old "SGB" (Small Game Bullet) that CCI used to produce years ago). BTW, even CCI pulled their SGB ammo, because of it being too hot for some older .22RF actions.

WRT to the CZ's, the 452 will have the stronger of the two actions, since it retains it's BRNO #1 roots by having two bolt lugs. The 455 only has one. In the case of RF actions, the bolt lugs tend to be the issue, not so much the action itself. From a purely action perspective, the CZ's (either of them) a severely over built (not a bad thing at all).

JMTCW...
 
Likes: SLG
Dec 17, 2013
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#26
While a 452 has 2 lugs, they are smaller in size compared to the single lug of the 455. The 2 lugs on a 452 rarely make full contact. They need to be lapped in order to get that which should only be done when rebarreling. Only way to really find out this one is to see at what pressure each would fail at. The cz’s made today that have the CIP proof markings pass a test which subjects them to 30% more pressure then the listed maximum.
 
Likes: SLG

MarinePMI

Battery Operated Grunt
Jun 3, 2010
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500
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San Diego, Ca
#27
The cz’s made today that have the CIP proof markings pass a test which subjects them to 30% more pressure then the listed maximum.
Which is why CZ walked away from producing 5mmRM rifles. It was too close to the maximum of what the actions were rated. They were talking about it, but I think when the pressure specs were conveyed (most back then just assumed all rimfires operated at the same Max pressure), the talks slowed down, and eventually just fizzled out.

As to the lugs, interesting point. The three I have all contact on both lugs, but they were early imports (maybe that makes a difference?). Hell, the first one/earliest one I have came from the first lot imported. It doesn't even say "CZ American" on the action; it's stamped "CZ Classic". I waited on that rifle for over a year and a half, while they sorted out the Clinton ban of importation of firearms from the Balkans because of Kosovo.
 
May 30, 2010
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#28
A Lithgow LA101 should be right up there with action strength. 3 rear locking lugs, bolt diameter and action wall thickness is also larger than most. You should also be looking at how an action deals with venting gas in the event of a case failure.
 

THEIS

Sergeant of the Hide
Nov 27, 2017
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#31
Hi,

@AZgeek

In terms of military applications, specifically the R&D sector for 22LR.....have you contacted the Israeli embassy and asked to speak with the Military Attache about such R&D/T&E? He can point you to the proper personnel within IDF that handles their 22LR counter-terrorism sniper program. Those guys are probably the most advanced 22LR T&E personnel in the world when it comes to "military applications".
They have a sniper "MOS" that is pretty much strictly 22LR usage :)

Feel free to let me know if you have any questions in regards to above.

Sincerely,
Theis
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#32
Thanks Theis but I'll pass on that. The Israeli's are notorious for stealing military technology. To do that would require DSP5 State Department approval, sharing of patent information, etc. Going to stick with current scope of a civilian version as discussed here.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#34
LOL. Your killing me Sniperstud. Theis is correct in that the Israelis really do use a lot of 22lr. Applications are interesting but we won't go there. Update on next steps. I'll have the next 10 rounds built for the ladder velocity testing using Vit 3n37 and TiteGroup this evening. For verification of the chrono, I'll start with two types of CCI rounds - The Velocitor (40 gr @1435fps )and Copper-22 (21gr @1850fps ). Looks like Friday morning is my next chance to actually shoot.
 
Feb 15, 2017
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#35
I’m not doubting, and I’m interested in any new rimfire developments. I just can’t help but think it has a “Bond” ring to it. If all goes well, maybe you could change you username to “Q”. Good luck.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#36
Nope. No bond ring. The sabot is based on patent pending technology from Gila Defense Systems. Almost done with the next batch of loads. On schedule for velocity testing Friday morning.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#37
Forgot to ask you guys about sourcing off-the-shelf harder lead. I know I can make it using portions of tin and Antimony but I prefer not to pursue a homemade version. We need to understand an document pure lead vs where we end up in the hardness department.
 
Oct 31, 2017
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#38
I've two bolt action 22s. the first is a Ruger 77/22Mag, which I inherited and have not fired yet, the other is a CZ 455 American in 22LR that I am completely please with. The CZ is quite accurate, adult sized and has the "controls" where I like them. The size and controls, bolt and placement were reasons were why I chose the CZ over the other 22 bolt guns available to me at the time. I would now look at the Ruger 22 American, but I doubt it would offer anything over the CZ save that larger magazine.

Are they fun? Well are guns fun? Understand my friend I have at least one of every means of operation 22 you can get. Single shot (falling block), bolt, pump, lever, and autoloader and I find them all fun. The single shot and bolt gun require you to take more time between shots, this saves you ammunition, but you also find this leads you to making your shots count.

The bolt gun's accuracy leads to making nice tight groups on paper, often single hole at 25 yards with me getting 1/2 to 3/4 inch at 50 yards and 1 to 2 inch groups at 100 yards and I've not spent the time to find a brand of ammo the gun really likes. To having fun making reactive targets swing, disappear, drop, or bounce. A friend and I spent a session at the range "racing" 'Do-All' round balls from about 50 foot to the 200 yard berm with our 22s. So fun is what you make of it.
 
Sep 16, 2009
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#39
I liked this thread from the start.

AZ, I have a thought you might want to consider if you have not already.
I am sure not all rimfire cases are created equal. Have you considered testing for strength? I suspect some of the present Hyper velocity type rounds may be beefed up for high pressure. Stinger, Yellowjacket etc. At 1800 are you not just duplicating the Stinger round with a Sabot type bullet?
Thanks for sharing.

RTH
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#40
Today's range update. Some good news and some bad. After a number of challenges, I was able to get my MagnitoSpeed to work on the Savage B22F. I only have the large bayonet as I needed something that could accommodate large muzzle brakes up to and including Barrett M82A1. A bit overkill but does work:

1527272343700.png

I tested several type of ammunition to see if their published velocities matched that measured by the MagnitoSpeed. Here are the results averages from 3-shots:

Federal Premium HV - Published 1200 fps - Measured 1220 fps
CCI Velocitor - Published 1435 fps - Measured 1375 fps
CCI Copper 22 - Published 1850 fps - Measured 1386 fps
CCI Mini Mag - Published 1235 fps - Measured 1225 fps

So on to our development rounds. I had resolved a previous issue where the belling of the brass was a tad too deep simply by lowering the crimp position. This go-round I did not polish up the bullets with emery cloth and check then to make sure they would chamber as i did last time. That came back to bite me. It may be hard to see but there is chamber drag on the bearing surface:

1527273766360.png

I would not chamber. Tried a bit of force but then backed off and knocked it out with a rod. I measured the bearing surface and its at .2270 so I'm 30 thousands over! Longer term I'll need to address this with my die maker. Short term I'll have to manually fit these so I can proceed with the rest of the testing objectives.
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#41
I liked this thread from the start.

AZ, I have a thought you might want to consider if you have not already.
I am sure not all rimfire cases are created equal. Have you considered testing for strength? I suspect some of the present Hyper velocity type rounds may be beefed up for high pressure. Stinger, Yellowjacket etc. At 1800 are you not just duplicating the Stinger round with a Sabot type bullet?
Thanks for sharing.

RTH
RTH

RTH: Totally open to any suggestions and help. I know next to nothing about 22lr! I don't know anything about the Stinger round. I'll have to take a look at it before I can answer that question. I have no intentions of duplicating anyone else's work or infringing on patented technology so I hope the answer will be no!
 
Sep 16, 2009
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#42
CCI Stinger. Hyper Velocity. Utilizes a 32 grain bullet at 1640 FPS. Has a nickel plated case that is longer than 22 LR but chambers in standard chamber with shorter bullet. High pressure so case may be just what you are looking for.
 
#43
They have a sniper "MOS" that is pretty much strictly 22LR usage
They are light years ahead of all but one 3 letter group on this rock, when it comes to a 22lr an eliminating 2 legged vermin.

OP
If your looking for speed an punching ability use a 22 cal pellet pushed via a Remington A22C4, but many bolt actions will not stand that combo. The Savage 93 an Remington 541 will, but DO NOT use that combo any semi auto or any pistol at all.
 
Likes: MarinePMI
Sep 30, 2014
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#44
CCI Stinger. Hyper Velocity. Utilizes a 32 grain bullet at 1640 FPS. Has a nickel plated case that is longer than 22 LR but chambers in standard chamber with shorter bullet. High pressure so case may be just what you are looking for.
Thanks for that info. Saved me research some time. I have no idea how to source cases in general. Looked several times and could find no one selling even standard primed 22lr cases. Let me know if you have a source.
 

AK49

Private
Oct 5, 2014
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#45
I just picked up an older Suhl single shot 22 LR.... at a bargain price... It has been sporterized...

I think it was used by the Germans for marksmanship training... Will post pics eventually.... my guess is that it is a tack drive... haven't had time to shoot it yet...

I am going to have it drilled and tapped to accept Talley lightweight scope mounts... The receiver appears to have the same profile as an Anschutz ... Very strong bolt action
 
Sep 30, 2014
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#49
No way I have the time for that Gunfighter. I'll just pull and re-use for now. Tweaked the test rounds buy lightly sanding and polishing bearing surface. This is in no way acceptable going forward! I have some suspicions as to why they are turning out just slightly over my chamber size but have to prove that out in the next batch. It's certainly not the gun. Works perfectly with factory ammo. Made sure all test rounds chamber and eject so GTG for tomorrow morning.

Kinda nervous about this. My partner in crime thinks the Vit 3n37 test rounds will hit 1900 fps at 2.4 to 2.6 powder charge interval. And you wonder why I was worried about my face early on! Seriously though, I'll pull the plug if there is any indication of pressure problems.
 
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