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 17-223
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Hotelthreeromeo
Starting Member

USA
14 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2007 :  8:57:23 PM  Show Profile
I am looking for info on a 17-223. Does anyone have one or have a cousin that knows a guy who has one? I think I have stumbled on a very odd duck. Thanks HTR

nononsense
Moderator

8983 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2007 :  9:45:54 PM  Show Profile
Hotelthreeromeo,

The .17-223 is exactly what the name states, the .223 case necked down to accommodate the .172" bullets. This is a wildcat designation so there are quite possibly several variation available. It is very similar to the .17 Remington which has a slightly longer case with a longer neck. It is a superb varmint cartridge but has tendency to wear barrels due to the temperature of the plasma needed to achieve the hyper-velocities that are possible with this cartridge.

At one time Kimber had a custom line of rifles made around the .17-223 cartridge. Hodgdon created the reloading data and published it in at least one of their manuals.

This is a pretty good article that summarizes the .17 caliber cartridge development:

http://www.gunsandammomag.com/classics/bomb_1007/

Best.








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Hotelthreeromeo
Starting Member

USA
14 Posts

Posted - 12/22/2007 :  12:08:01 AM  Show Profile
Thanks nononsense, That seems to be about the only article around about it. I have a 223 sendero that I was thinking of converting, Should just be a barrel change I believe. I really don't need this gun but really want a 17 centerfire. I used to use this as a target rifle but haven't shot it in a couple years. I have 1000's of 223 brass which is more than I will ever shoot anyway. Any more info or insite into my thinking would be greatly appreciated. HTR
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cody45
Senior Member

1358 Posts

Posted - 12/22/2007 :  12:58:24 AM  Show Profile
H&R introduced their "Ultrawildcat" rifle in the early 70s chambered in the 17-223 caliber. It looked like a mini Weatherby and used a short Sako action. Ballistics are almost identical to the 17 Rem.
The best 17 wildcat IMO is the 17 Mach IV. It achives great velocity with little powder, and brass is easy to make, dies are readily available. Remington realized this and recently introduced the 17 Fireball in an attempt to cash-in on the Mach IV popularity.
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gunnut505
Advanced Member

6667 Posts

Posted - 12/22/2007 :  07:53:38 AM  Show Profile
Check out the January American Rifleman for an interesting cartridge that you could rebarrel for. It's a .22-6mm Ackley Improved capable of 1,000 meter accuracy.
Pretty sure 5mmgunguy will be asking about it soon.

"Qui non est hodie cras minus aptus erit" --OVID

"It never hurts to help!"--EEEK the Cat
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5mmgunguy
Advanced Member

3863 Posts

Posted - 12/22/2007 :  11:54:14 AM  Show Profile
Hi Hotelthreeromeo. Yes my brother had one of the H&R's 17-223s. It was a beautiful rifle. Great cartridge, very similar to the 17 Remington. My brother was shooting 25 grain HPs at about 4000fps. The only draw back was it got dirty pretty quick and had to be cleaned. The accuracy would start to fall off after about 25 - 30 rounds. If you have a lot of brass and want to convert the 223 rifle to something else, I would go with the 20 Practical. It is the 223 necked down the 20 cal, no shoulder angle change, very easy to make. And it will see the same velocities as the 17-223 with 25 grain bullets, except it will be shooting the 32 grain ballistic tip. And yes gunnut505 I have read the article about the 22-6MM AI, but I have no questions because I have a 22-243 Middlestead that will do everything the 22-6MM AI will do.
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Hotelthreeromeo
Starting Member

USA
14 Posts

Posted - 12/22/2007 :  8:49:33 PM  Show Profile
5mmgunguy,
How is that 22-243? I was having that thought too. 308 necked down to .224. My neighbor keeps telling me speed kills. He shots a 375 ruger, but he's afraid of bears. If I shot like him I'd be scarred too. I would have touble getting rid of my 243 though. The sendero is just taking up space. My smith mentioned the 20 tactical wich sounds ok, but then I'm still wanting a 17 centerfire. Maybe I should just go buy that 50 before they get outlawed.
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5mmgunguy
Advanced Member

3863 Posts

Posted - 12/22/2007 :  10:01:20 PM  Show Profile
The 22-243 is most easily made from 243 brass, just run it into the sizer, slight neck turning and you are good to go. Shoots 55 grain bullets at 4000 fps and 60 gr HP at almost 3900 fps. The best load I have so far is the 55 gr...it shoots 1/8 groups at 100 yds and explodes ground squirrels and jack rabbits. 55 gr plastic tip Hornady bullets. The 20 Tactical is very similar to the 20 Practical the Tac has a 30 degree shoulder and the 20 Practical is a 23 degree shoulder. All great cartridges. Now if you really want something different you can get a 19-223. Check out James Calhoon.
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Hotelthreeromeo
Starting Member

USA
14 Posts

Posted - 12/23/2007 :  05:40:47 AM  Show Profile
5mm, Thanks for the info. I like the look of there package deal. I think I could be good with that. I think Calhoon is the only guy making bullets but I bet he wont be the only one for long. I wonder if that would kill a wolf? Thanks again.
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5mmgunguy
Advanced Member

3863 Posts

Posted - 12/23/2007 :  11:14:48 AM  Show Profile
With the heavier 19 bullets (40 gr and 44 gr) i am sure it would. You can call James Calhoon and discuss.
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nononsense
Moderator

8983 Posts

Posted - 12/23/2007 :  1:45:13 PM  Show Profile
Hotelthreeromeo,

Let say first that I think Jim Calhoon is a great guy and very dedicated to his beliefs, goals and business. The 'however' is that he IS the only person making the .19 caliber bullets commercially. There may be others that create bullets for themselves but I haven't seen any made for the rest of the general public in volume. This is a distinct drawback to supply when you think of Jim retiring and this caliber falling by the wayside because someone didn't pick up the business. The .17's and the .20's make much better sense for the long run.

I happen to favor the .17 Mach IV for my miniature cartridge/bullet combination since it's both economical and efficient when compared to the other .17 caliber cartridges with more capacity. The other one that is neat but not quite as popular is the .17 Hornet Improved. Super little cartridge!



In your situation, I'd opt for the .17-223 simply based on the amount of brass that you have. The cost of new brass is rising steadily and doesn't appear to be slowing down, so having a large supply of cases in your possession is big bonus. The necking down can be accomplished by using a bushing die and interchanging the necessary bushings for the necking down process. This will hold down the cost by having to buy the vastly more expensive custom dies.

When I neck down .22 caliber brass for .17 caliber cartridges, I start with a .20 caliber die before moving on to the .17 caliber die. It adds a little more work but I have zero failures and better concentricity. Hornady has a .20 caliber neck die at a very reasonable price or you can get a .223 Rem. bushing neck die and buy a couple of different bushings.

My supply of .17 caliber bullets starts with the 15 gr. Berger and runs through the 18, 20, 22, 25 and 30 gr., MEF and standard hollowpoint. I also use the Hornady 20 and 25 gr. VMAX. There is too much velocity for the 15 and 18 gr. Bergers when loaded in the large capacity cases. They become a gray vapor trail towards the target but never make it there in one piece.

Enjoy whatever you decide to get!

Best.








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