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 Post subject: Successful 223 subsonic loads
PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2006 9:01 pm 
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Silent But Deadly

Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:52 am
Posts: 170
The Accurate S1250 subsonic 223 loads have been discussed before, but I had not seen many other recipes.

I called Hodgdon, and sure enough, they had some suggestions.

From Hodgdon:

Bullet: 55 gr Hornady full metal jackets
Primer: Winchester Small Rifle primers
Powder: 3.2 grains of Clays
COAL: 2.2"
Velocity: 1060 fps according to Hodgdon.

I tried this recipe using some Sierra 55 gr soft point boat tails and it worked fine. I switched to CCI Benchrest primers -- DON'T DO THIS. The load fizzled and I had a stuck bullet.

I did some experimenting and found some other successful 223 loads, as follows:

Bullet: 55 gr Sierra SPBT
Primer: Winchester SR
Powder: 4 gr Clays

Bullet: 68 gr Hornady BTHP (Match)
Primer: Winchester SR
Powder: 5 gr Clays

Bullet: 75 gr Hornady AMAX (Match)
Primer: Winchester SR
Powder: 5.5 gr Clays
Note: This load is borderline subsonic. I probably need to reduce it to 5.3 grains or so.

All of these were shot in my Savage 10FP with 22" 1:9 barrel using a YHM 5.56 Phantom suppressor.

Make sure you know what you're doing with reloading before trying these. Use them at your own risk -- your mileage may vary.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2007 8:44 pm 
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Silent But Deadly
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Always use lubed bullets for subsonic loads. Prevents bullets getting stuck in the bore. Moly is a good lube but you can use crisco or any other fat or talow as well.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 10:17 am 
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Silent But Deadly
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How did they shoot accuracy wise? good groups or lots of random flyers?


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 Post subject: Why?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2007 11:34 am 
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If you want subsonic in a .223, why not just shoot 60grain Aguila SSS with a .22LR mod? Trying to tame the supersonic .223/5.56 down to subsonic seems to me like putting a 1-bbl carb on a Corvette engine to slow it down.


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 Post subject: Re: Why?
PostPosted: Thu Feb 08, 2007 11:22 pm 
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Silent Operator

Joined: Tue May 16, 2006 8:42 pm
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40G27 wrote:
If you want subsonic in a .223, why not just shoot 60grain Aguila SSS with a .22LR mod? Trying to tame the supersonic .223/5.56 down to subsonic seems to me like putting a 1-bbl carb on a Corvette engine to slow it down.


I've been wondering about this myself. I'm sure it's been brought up before, but I can't remember reading about it.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Feb 08, 2007 11:38 pm 
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Silent But Deadly
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I've heard alot of people having luck with trailboss. I picked up 5 pounds, but haven't had a chance to experiment yet.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 5:38 pm 
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Silent But Deadly

Joined: Wed May 04, 2005 5:46 pm
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Location: Las Vegas, NV
"Trying to tame the supersonic .223/5.56 down to subsonic seems to me like putting a 1-bbl carb on a Corvette engine to slow it down."


The answer is simple and obvious. You are walking along with an AR15. You need want to fire A shot that absolutely has to be as quiet as possible. You switch mags (to a mag loaded with subsonic ammo) and fire that shot. You put the original mag back in and you now have full powered ammo. Quick, versitile, nothing extra to buy, nothing to convert...........


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 10:43 pm 
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Silent But Deadly
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Quote:
The answer is simple and obvious. You are walking along with an AR15. You need want to fire A shot that absolutely has to be as quiet as possible. You switch mags (to a mag loaded with subsonic ammo) and fire that shot. You put the original mag back in and you now have full powered ammo. Quick, versitile, nothing extra to buy, nothing to convert...........

The answer is not nearly so simple.

To switch from one ammo to another you have to rack the action and eject the live round, which then has to be picked up. You are then taking a chance by shooting a subsonic round through a potentially dirty barrel, which can cause the bullet to stick in the bore. As suppressed subsonics are freakin quiet, in a time of stress it may be difficult to notice a squib round. Then you have to manually eject the fired case and rack the action to load a full power round. IF there is a stuck bullet waiting in the bore, the next shot is going to be more than a surprise. Not to mention subsonic and full power rounds have vastly different impact points so the user has to remember which is which and apply to correct hold over.

Even if everything goes as planned, all this manual racking of the action takes time, is unweildy, noisy and a pain in the ass.

A suppressed .22 rimfire pistol in a holster is a MUCH better solution. It is quick, quiet, accurate, easy to use and handy. Subsonic 556 is a complex solution to a simple problem.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 18, 2007 2:41 pm 
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Silent But Deadly

Joined: Wed May 04, 2005 5:46 pm
Posts: 275
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Obviously, I completely disagree.

First of all: In an AR15, I can do a tactical reload and rack the bolt in seconds: single digit seconds. This includes grabbing a new magazine (loaded with subsonic ammo) from a belt pouch, removing the magazine currently in the weapon with retention, inserting the new magazine. I see no reason to catch the ejected round, it isn't going to break me. If time permits after the shot you can simply bend over and pick it up.
By the same token, the opposite senario can be utilized: you could have the rifle loaded with subsonic ammo for whatever purpose and encounter a situation where you need full power ammo. You do a tac-reload and you are good to go. A suppressed firearm chambered for .22 LR permit no such versitility.
Having that magazine of subsonic ammo in a pouch, pocket, rucksack or whatever gives you an option. It presents new possibilities. The rifle with a suppressor and a variety of ammo is FAR more versitile. You can shoot targets out to medium range (500 yards or more) with or without a suppressor as well as poping something inside 50 yards with a nearly silent shot all with the same weapon. And, a magazine of subsonic ammo is FAR lighter in weight than a second firearm like a .22 pistol.

Second: If you read my thread about loading subsonic .223 ammo with Trail Boss powder I note that I was using a TA31F ACOG and give the details as to what stadia line on the reticle corresponds with the point of impact using subsonic ammo. This could very easily be expanded on if this is an issue for you. In other words, the ACOG has a reticle with ranging lines to allow aiming and rangefinding out to 800 meters. So, you zero the ACOG using your normal service ammo. Then with the aid of paper targets you can get the sight dope for the subsonic ammo. You can find the precise aiming point for subsonic ammo out to whatever distance you consider it reasonable to use subsonic ammo. I shot mine out to 50 yards and know where to hold on my ACOG to make precise hits.

Third: When I was loading and testing the ammo for the previously mentioned thread, I was using a rifle that had recently been through a two day practical rifle skill builder class at Frontsight. I would estimate that it had 500 rounds through it without cleaning easily. I never cleaned it prior to testing, and I never cleaned it during testing. No stuck bullets resulted. While I obviously can't guarantee that a stuck bullet will not occur, we are all big girls and boys and assume that risk (or not) ourselves. To me, it isn't even a consideration and I will continue to ignore the risk.

IMO, in an effort to make your point, you are making this FAR more complicated than it needs to be. If you choose not to use subsonic ammo, that is fine. If you want to use a suppressed .22 rimfire handgun, that is terrrific. Me ? I own and use both and find both to be very useful. However when comparing the "power" of MY suppressed .22LR handgun to the "power" of a suppressed .223 round, there is no contest. At the present time, the only suppressed .22 rimfire handgun that I own is an AAC Phoenix. The barrel is ported so that you can shoot supersonic ammo with the excess velocity bled off so the ammo exits the bore at a subsonic velocity. I have never chronoed this pistol, but I HAVE shot quite a few jackrabbits with it and consider it marginal at best in terms of effectiveness. I would imagine that a subsonic .22LR bullet wouldn't be terribly effective. On the other hand, the subsonic .223 rounds that I handload are using a 77 grain open tip match bullet. The bullet is almost twice as heavy as a .22LR slug and (if it matters) much more aerodynamic.
This is the same answer that applies to the internet forum question "But isn't shooting subsonic 223 the same as making your AR15 into a 22 ?"

Only if your .22 shoots 77 grain jacketed bullets.

You will note in another thread on this board I experimented with using 100 grain bullets for subsonic .223. In the brief time I worked on that project, I never came up with a load that produced consistent velocity. The bullets were stable (no tumbling) but the velocity was all over the board. I don't know if I ever could or not however I know that commercial subsonic .223 ammo is available with bullets that heavy or heavier.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 18, 2007 10:40 pm 
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Silent But Deadly

Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1892
Location: WA, USA
I do not really have an opinion on most of the above posts, but I do have some data to add here for those who might be interested.

I use WC820 (like H110) for all of my magnum pistol loads and subsonic rifle loads. It meters very well and gives low standard deviations, usually less than 20 fps.

My first attempt at a subsonic 223 remington load was with 70 grain Speer semi-spitzers and standard primers. As I had no idea where to start, I loaded ten rounds with loads from 12 to 4 grains. Starting from the top, each load clocked a bit slower each time, and the bolt carrier moved less as well until it did not move at all. The 9th round gave me about 750 fps. The tenth round surprised me by extracting and holding the bolt open. The chrony did not show a tenth shot, and there was not a hole in my light senser (again). :) The bullet stopped past the gas port, about 2 inches from the muzzle and was easily tapped out with a cleaning rod.

My next trip to the range with various loads gave me about 1050 fps with a spread of 40 fps and stdev of 19 fps using 7 grains of WC820. Eight rounds at 100 yards using a the peep sight set for 200 yards gave me a 4 inch group about 16 inches below the aiming point. My 20" Colt H-bar has a 1-9 twist.

My goal is to develop a good subsonic load for my contender in 22 k-hornet and use it with my 223 suppressor. However, the contender barrel has a 1-12 twist which is very good for 40-55 grain bullets moving 2000-3000 fps. I am thinking that I will get keyholing or large groups using the 70 grain speer bullet. I may have to try seating them in the case backwards.

Any sugggestions? Thanks.

PS, I do think that shooting subsonic rimfire ammo in a rifle and expecting anything with power is a pipe dream. I will stick to heavy bulelts at 1000 fps minimum.

Ranb


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2007 12:05 pm 
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Silent But Deadly
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+1 on 444 idea, I use both loads when I go to the fields. :wink:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Feb 19, 2009 8:05 pm 
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Quote:
I use WC820 (like H110) for all of my magnum pistol loads and subsonic rifle loads. It meters very well and gives low standard deviations, usually less than 20 fps.
My first attempt at a subsonic 223 remington load was with 70 grain Speer semi-spitzers and standard primers. As I had no idea where to start, I loaded ten rounds with loads from 12 to 4 grains. Starting from the top, each load clocked a bit slower each time, and the bolt carrier moved less as well until it did not move at all. The 9th round gave me about 750 fps. The tenth round surprised me by extracting and holding the bolt open. The chrony did not show a tenth shot, and there was not a hole in my light senser (again). :) The bullet stopped past the gas port, about 2 inches from the muzzle and was easily tapped out with a cleaning rod.


Was this with the WC820? What were the 10 rounds? I count nine test rounds from your post... the first with 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, and the last (#9) with 4gr. Did I miss something?

Quote:
My next trip to the range with various loads gave me about 1050 fps with a spread of 40 fps and stdev of 19 fps using 7 grains of WC820. Eight rounds at 100 yards using a the peep sight set for 200 yards gave me a 4 inch group about 16 inches below the aiming point. My 20" Colt H-bar has a 1-9 twist.

Did this cycle the action? What do you think would happen with a 77gr Sierra MatchKing with my 1:7 twist 20" barrel?

Ranb[/quote]

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2009 7:33 pm 
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Silent But Deadly

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2005 11:36 am
Posts: 229
Location: Ohio
Accurate powder Solo s1250

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:15 pm 
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I have that load data. I still think the Trail Boss is better but I was trying to re-invent the wheel with one that cycles the action on an AR15. I found the data here but still need a 100gr bullet to do it. At this point I am not even sure I want to cycle the action anymore....too noisy....might wake the dogs. With the Trail Boss and a 68gr Hornandy HPBT suppressed they will sleep right through it.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 12:23 pm 
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Silent But Deadly

Joined: Sun Sep 18, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1892
Location: WA, USA
1moreaug wrote:
Was this with the WC820? What were the 10 rounds? I count nine test rounds from your post... the first with 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, and the last (#9) with 4gr. Did I miss something?[/color]

[color=black]Did this cycle the action? What do you think would happen with a 77gr Sierra MatchKing with my 1:7 twist 20" barrel?


Yes it was all with WC820, none of the loads cycled the action enough to pick up the next round. I had ten rounds initially, they were not in whole number weight increments, just various weights from 4 to 12 grains.

I think a 77 grain sierra might work well, but it is longer than the speer 70 grian so maybe not.

I have given up on a subsonic load for my K-hornet, the twist is too slow. I will use a non-cycling load with WC820 if I want to shoot subsonic in my ar-15.

Ranb

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 Post subject: New tests today
PostPosted: Fri Feb 27, 2009 10:15 pm 
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I should start out by saying that I can not pressure test these loads so I have no idea if they are below pressure limits for your rifle. I have fired them and saw no signs of pressure and know they are safe for use in my 20" Colt AR15 light barrel Sporter with a 1:7 twist.

I made 10 rounds for each load. 5 rounds were fired at a 50 yard paper target on 3/4" plywood to see if they are stable. The second 5 are fired through a S.A.S. 5.5" suppressor. All loads were made at maximum case length for magazine feeding.

Powder = Accurate 5744 6.5Grains

55gr Montana Gold FMJ - Stable & accurate subsonic round but not erie silent even with suppressor.

68gr Nosler HPBT - Stable and more accurate than 55gr FMJ still not completely silent

77gr Sierra HPBT MK - As accurate as 68gr Nosler

90gr Berger VLD for 1:7 twist - Nowhere close to stable at these velocities. I also tried 8.5gr and 10gr of powder but could not get the bullet to stabilize. I loaded 5 rounds each powder weight inverted for magazine loading and 5 long hand fed rounds so the bullet sat .010" off the rifling.

I also loaded all the above bullets with 8.5gr of 5744 and got the same results except they were all supersonic.

Powder Hodgdon 4831 - 20 grains powder - 77gr Sierra HPBT MK - Nowhere close to subsonic but this powder needs a full case and a magnum primer to avoid detonation. This powder is a dead end unless I can find a way to reduce the case volume to about 6 or 8 grains.

5.5 grains Trail Boss under 77gr Sierra MK is erie quiet. I called my brother-in-law on the phone and he could not hear anything with the phone 12" from the gun. I tried the 90 bergers on the same load and still wont stabilize.

The only ones that worked the action was the H4831 and that was NOT subsonic by a long shot. The 10gr load of Accurate 5744 under the 90 hand fed bullet opened the action about 1/2 way but that was hand fed anyway.

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