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Questions about best weight bullet for .223 rifle.

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by G23, May 31, 2014.

  1. G23

    G23 Millennium Member

    Nov 5, 1999
    I've purchased a new Ruger Hawkeye compact rifle. It is stainless with a laminate stock. It has a 16.5" barrel with a 1 in 9 RH twist according to specs.

    I know there are many knowledgeable reloaders on this site, and am seeking some advice as to the best weight bullet for this barrel length and twist rate. I have a good supply of 55 grain .224 bullets on hand that I use to reload for another rifle. I was hoping that these bullets might work well with this barrel / twist combination also.

    Also, any recommendations as to what might be the best powder for for this application. I have H4895 on hand, and have had good results using it in .204 and .222 rifles.

    Thank you for all advice. It is appreciated.
  2. Samuel_Hoggson


    Jan 27, 2013
    If you have a good barrel overstabilization is myth. I've used 50s and 55s in 1:7 5.56 bbls and can detect no significant difference in accuracy vs heavier least none attributable to weight. You would have no trouble stabilizing any available 60-64 gr soft points.

    There are scads of available canister powders suitable for .223. The 4895 burn rate is near perfect for most weights.


  3. happie2shoot


    Jan 5, 2008
    Your 55gr will work good, some of the SX bullets may come apart.

    The 1 in 9 should work up to the short 75gr, call the manufacture of
    the bullet you want to use first, I like the 1 in 8 best.

    Many powders work good, bullet weight will make a difference.
  4. G23

    G23 Millennium Member

    Nov 5, 1999
    I also discovered a stash of 50 grain bullets that I'd squirreled away. I'm guessing that these should work well also. :cool:
  5. WeeWilly


    Nov 12, 2011
    I have a Savage bolt gun with a 1:9 barrel. It will stabilize most styles of bullets up to about 69 grains and a couple that go a little heavier.

    4895 should work well.
  6. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    Whether a bullet shoots well will be determined by the individual bbl. A fast twist will stabilize light bullets just fine in most instances, they are just spinning faster. My 1-7 & 1-8 ARs handle the 50-55 gr bullets just fine.
  7. J Lee

    J Lee Silver Member

    Aug 5, 2013
    62 grain- When I bought my Bushmaster 15 or so years ago, I was told by an engineer there that 62gr was the optimal bullet for 1:9 twist barrels. Of course there is a chance that I could have been talking to a janitor but I took it as fact and have had good results with bullets 55-62gr.
  8. Samuel_Hoggson


    Jan 27, 2013
    This is a good point. The problem is not bullet weight or even velocity, per se - it's construction. The 40 gr Nosler works just fine with about any twist.

    To the usual list of potential offenders, ie., Hornady SX and Sierra Blitz, I would add Remington Power-lokt 50s and 55s. I have never been able to make Power-lokts group from a 1:7. Yet, at 4000+ fps (.220 Swift) they are tackdrivers.