223 FTR LoadPosted by sray47 on March 10, 2014 at 1:18 pm
I'm going to try using my recently purchased (from a friend) 223 Varmint bull barrel 1×8 twist rifle in some local 600 yard mid-range matches. I know 308 is the big kahuna for F/TR and this is just to see how the rifle/load performs at 600yds.
Ensure barrel has no stock contact
Steel recoil lug
14oz trigger spring
Aluminum rear shroud
EGW scope rail
12x42x56 NF Benchrest scope (from my F-Open 284 rifle)
I have been working on some load development and have come up with a decent setup:
Berger 82gr BT Target
Seated at lands
2825 fps (avg)
ES 18 and SD 7 (could be better)
Single fed from magazine sled
MemberMarch 11, 2014 at 2:48 pm1 Bullseye
If you've followed my posts over the years, you know that I've been shooting a stainless Super Varmint (.223) in F-TR for the last 2 years. I've done quite well with it, winning the state championship in my division both years. People don't scoff at my Tikka anymore, like they used to.
I'm shooting a different bullet and powder, but close to what you're doing. You and your rifle will be fine. Re-check the barrel contact after 200 shots, and check occasionally. Mine has settled a tad here and there, but I just break it down and touch up the sides with 80 grit sandpaper.
I'm going to pillar and glass bed it in the next month. But before you consider that with yours, just get used to it, and shoot the heck out of it. Oh, and I made a board for under the bipod, and covered it with short nap carpet, to get a more consistent slide during recoil. It has helped quite a bit. Good luck this year! 🙂
MemberMarch 12, 2014 at 10:47 pm1 Bullseye
I've noticed several of your posts on this and other sites. I certainly value your input!
I will check my receiver/barrel contact and make the 80 grit adjustment when required. I do want to leave it in the composite stock for now to get used to it. Hopefully won't take too long to get up to speed with it.
What type of bi-pod are you using and if it's a Harris type; are you leaning into to it to load the legs. The board and carpet area great idea.
Hope I can at least show well. Won a few matches years back with a Savage 308, this will be a whole new endeavor with a 223.
After seeing how it groups, it'll the trigger man and wind that determine my development.
Had one of the guys at the range offer to buy after he saw me shoot several groups with it. Shocked when I told him no and it's basically a box stock rifle.
MemberMarch 13, 2014 at 4:37 am1 Bullseye
I'm using a rigid one piece bipod that a guy here in MN makes. I have no idea what he calls it. It's along the lines of the Sinclair F Class bipods, and such. Not quite as fancy as a Sinclair, but I seem to get by.
Don't sell your stainless varmint. They aren't sold here in the states anymore. You can play with it until you burn out the barrel (in about 4,000 rounds ;D), then just screw a new barrel on. I have an 8 twist Bartlein in the safe for when mine goes.
Get a good bipod (spend the money), a good rear bag, and go to town. I get a warm feeling everytime an “X” comes up at 600 yards with my $1,000 Super Varmint. I shot a 198 last year. That just shows you what these rifles are capable of…if you do your part. 223's are a blast to compete with. 🙂
MemberMarch 13, 2014 at 10:59 pm1 Bullseye
I have seen several of the F/TR guys with that erector set looking bi-pod (couple of them National record holders) – good point on getting a good one.
I usually have a coat & sling on so this will be a little different game for me.
My 223 Varmint is the blued bull barrel version – wanted stainless (none around) local shooter was selling his and picked it up for less than $500 + trade stuff. Looks like Tikka does a decent job with their chambers and finish work, never saw anything that nice on my Remi's or Savages.
Have a good gunsmith that does all my Palma rifle work and he had nothing but high regards for Tikka/Sako. Of course the lack of 1×8 223 bull barrel T3 didn't hurt either. All in all great purchase & fun. ;D
I'm really having fun with it, I'd like to make the custom F/TR guys give me that “what the he** is that your shooting” look at one of the mid-range matches. 8)
Keep em in the X
MemberMarch 14, 2014 at 3:10 am1 Bullseye
You're gonna have fun with it. Right now I'm designing, and going to build an attachment for the bottom of the stock (a rear bag rider) that will allow for straight tracking at the rear of the rifle.
Measure your trigger pull, and see what you have. I have my factory trigger at 1.65#. You should be able to safely get down to 1-3/4#, after that you need to fine tune.
MemberMarch 15, 2014 at 1:44 pm1 Bullseye
Have a set of wolf trigger springs for various firearms and isolated one that fits perfectly and breaks at 14oz, safety passes bump test, and I have had no misfires, or light firing pin strikes.
Curious about your rear bag idea for better tracking – what kind of rear bag are you using?
Have my eye on a Sinclair bi-pod one of the local F/TR guys is selling.
Have first match in a couple weeks.
Guess its becoming obvious that I'm starting to like the Tikka T3 ;D
MemberMarch 17, 2014 at 2:30 pm1 Bullseye
I thought you were just using a lighter spring, along with standard trigger pull. I didn't realize your spring allowed you to get down to 14 oz. on the pull. That is sweet!
I'm using Edgewood bags, but I'm making an attachment that will make the bottom of the stock “flat”, and parallel with the ground, so the elevation of the rifle doesn't change after recoil. Then it will just slide straight in/thru the ears of the rear bag.
Sinclair bi-pods are very nice. Gen II has an elevation change that a lot of guys like. They never last very long in the “for sale” forums on the internet.
FWIW, my Super Varmint is 5# lighter than the allowed F-TR weight…so yours is too. Maybe, try to figure out a way to add some weight to yours. I'm hashing around a few ideas myself. 😉
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