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I bought my wife a 223 Handi rifle several months back. I wanted to get her a little rifle with a medium weight barrel which the standard handi has. From the factory the trigger was awfull so I took it apart and reworked the trigger. It now breaks at a clean 2 pounds. As with my 243 handi this rifle isn't a shooter. 2.5" groups at 100 meters. :mad:

I took the for-rend off and re-channeled the area in front of the retaining screw so that it is free floated. I glass bedded the area behind the screw. I also cooked up some reloads in the medium velocity range. It now shoots about an 1.25 to 1.5" groups. Still nothing to brag about. I have employed all of the standard handi rifle shooting tricks such as putting the rest under the action and holding the trigger back.

The rifle has a 1:12 twist so I have been loading Sierra 45, 50, 52 grain bullets using H335, 748, reloader 15, and IMR4198 powder. I have tried pushing the bullet out as far as it will go to seating it to factory specs. I have to say, I starting think I would have been better off getting her a savage!

What have I missed? What should I do next?
 

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Have you shot it without the forend? That's a standard test to see if the forend is the problem.

Check the crown, touch it up per the FAQs, an easy, quick fix for a somewhat common problem.

Lot's more helpful info in the FAQs. ;)

Tim
 

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driead said:
I bought my wife a 223 Handi rifle several months back. I wanted to get her a little rifle with a medium weight barrel which the standard handi has. From the factory the trigger was awfull so I took it apart and reworked the trigger. It now breaks at a clean 2 pounds. As with my 243 handi this rifle isn't a shooter. 2.5" groups at 100 meters. :mad:

I took the for-rend off and re-channeled the area in front of the retaining screw so that it is free floated. I glass bedded the area behind the screw. I also cooked up some reloads in the medium velocity range. It now shoots about an 1.25 to 1.5" groups. Still nothing to brag about. I have employed all of the standard handi rifle shooting tricks such as putting the rest under the action and holding the trigger back.

The rifle has a 1:12 twist so I have been loading Sierra 45, 50, 52 grain bullets using H335, 748, reloader 15, and IMR4198 powder. I have tried pushing the bullet out as far as it will go to seating it to factory specs. I have to say, I starting think I would have been better off getting her a savage!

What have I missed? What should I do next?
Well...how fast are you trying to drive the bullets...? If your loading to the max...then back off...if your not...up the charge keeping a close eye on pressure signs...A load I will be trying is straight from Nosler using the 50 grain CT ballistic tip and Benchmark...24.5 grains to start...26.5 grains as max...I'll start with a perfectly clean bore as well...I've had excellent results with these bullets in all weights I've used them in...I'll start out at 2.260" OAL...and work out from there...Usually the CT's like to be seated close to the lands but not touching...so I won't expect to get the best accuracy until then..I will clean good after 30 rounds...and then foul the bore again...That's untill I have it dialed in...then shoot till the accuracy falls off keeping track of how many rounds I'll get ...and clean again...but not down to bare metal...The Lubalux is like that..I also have some 52 grain Berger match bullets to try as well...Berger's like more jump...so I'll load them for that...

Mac
 

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I have a 223 Ultra Varmint and have not got it to shoot as well as I like yet. It is a 1-12" twist and seems to like the lighter bullets. I have bought some slower burning powders to try next. I have been using some faster burning ones. I have bought Benchmark, H4895 and Varget. I am willing to bet that one of these is going to work. Generally, but not always, Handis do not like higher pressures. They seem to like middle of the road type loads. Remember I said not always, every gun is a thing unto itself. WW 223 white box seems to shoot well in a number of Handis and they are a top pressure type load, at least in my gun. I have several guns in the load development stage and just have not got back to this one yet. You have been given some good advice here by the others, so try it.
 

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i recommend shooting the rifle off of a rest that has something soft and smooth like denim over any suede or leather bag. suede / leather impart too much friction to the forearm. rest the rifle just ahead of the frame, away from the schnabel-type forend because that irregular shape will kick the bullet off your point-of-aim when it hits the rest you're using. remove the sling swivel studs (both) from the rifle to zero it in. pull the butt/recoil pad tightly into your shoulder and control your breathing to allow a decent release of the trigger. Breathe - Relax, letting out 1/2 of your breath - Aim-in (get on target) - Sight Alignment check - Squeeze the trigger (B-R-A-S-S, as in the USMC training). breathing control is critical.

many cartridges like a faster load (greater loading density) to achieve best accuracy. i've seen this with my .223 as well as others. if you want a slower load with a .223 with good load density try using Win' 760 or IMR 4831 with a remington 7 1/2 BR primer which will reduce velocities even with a full brass case. the loads are seemingly quieter, too.

good shooting, and let us know,

ss'
 

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Safetysheriff
"i recommend shooting the rifle off of a rest that has something soft and smooth like denim over any suede or leather bag. suede / leather impart too much friction to the forearm."

You are right about leather bags grabbing the fore arm as well as the butt stock. It is very important to be consistent from one shot to the next. I use a little talc powder on my leather bags, makes them real slippery. I have shot my best groups off of bags and free recoiling (no sling studs either), just powder them with some talc powder. ;)
 

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You can read my thread here about my 223 Heavy Barrel Handi.

http://www.go2gbo.com/forums/index.php/topic,129224.msg1098473918.html#msg1098473918

After trying many similar things that you have done to your rifle, I was getting 1 1/4" groups. After adding a de-resonator, I had 4 of 5 groups less than 1". Note: I was only shooting factory ammo, so could not adjust the loads like you have done. My guess is, the de-resonator won't do anything you can't do by adjusting loads, but might be worth a try.
 

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It took me years of trying to find something that would shoot well in my 223 Ultra. Then, lo and behold! 26.2 grns of BL[C]2 with 40 grn Nosler BT with a COL of 2.300 inches gives 5/8ths groups consistently at 100 yds. No special tricks other than a 2lb. trigger. The same parameters and charge weight of Varget yeilds 3/4 groups just as consistently. The 1 in 12 barrel on this one knows what it likes and won't budge!
 

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i feel your pain. my father has a .223 standard barrel that was absolute **** to find a load for. after 78 combinations and a few mods i finally found 2 loads it liked. if i werent as stubbron as i am i would have given up a long time ago. but now that i have the loads i wont ever change a thing. listen to the guys here, they do know what they are talking about.
 

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Did you polish the bore when you first got it if not you may still just be breaking the bbl in and 1.5"ain't bad but it'll do better
Kurt
 
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