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Thread: 22 lr vs 22 mag vs 17HMR

  1. #1
    Member viper's Avatar
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    22 lr vs 22 mag vs 17HMR

    Just after thoughts and experiences regarding these three calibres.
    My rabbit shooting has gone through the roof since moving to central and I am not complaining....living the dream as a varmint shooter.

    I will always shoot .22 LR, cheap, quiet and effective. With the amount of shooting I am doing the little JW15 is tagging fur over 100mtrs ..... and of course some shocking misses when I don't do my part.

    I have a .223 for the long stuff and I am not enjoying the shotgun but that's another story.

    I have dappled with the 17 HMR and was pretty unimpressed to be honest, a lot of wounded animals over the 120mtr mark and wind was shocking with the effect on drift.
    So I have been thinking about the 22 mag which I have never owned. I have friends who have dropped Deer with them and even watched the home kill butcher drop 300kg beefies in their tracks with one.
    I want a middle ground varmint rifle.. say 150 to 200 yrds , will the 22 mag do it ?

    Some say they aren't very accurate but I don't see why they wouldn't be.
    As usual guys let rip, tell me your thoughts, piss people off and generally give me your opinion.

    Viper

  2. #2
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    .22mag is a funny beast. They do tend to be not that accurate with a few notable exceptions. One of the most accurate you will come across is the old mossberg 640k, for some reason these things just shoot.

    Realistically though, I would stick to the .223. Ammo cost wise you won't save that much with the .22mag, and the mag will never keep up with a .223 outside of 150, and not a look in at 200.
    Gerbs likes this.

  3. #3
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    If you have a 22lr and a 223 you have your bases covered (as long as the 223 is accurate enough to take advantage of it's range capabilities).
    If you wanted a 3rd light rifle, I would go for the 17HMR. Mine is a stunning shooter.
    By the way, the 17HMR will drift less in the wind than the 22WMR. Check out Varmint Al's web site and his feature on the 17HMR.
    Experience. What you get just after you needed it.

  4. #4
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    I shoot all of the above - .22LR, .22WMR, .17HMR, .223, .225-250.

    My thoughts (and I am being realistic here; I know, we have all done that 5% shot at super long range with all calibers, but lets be real .....)

    .22LR - I shoot exclusively suppressed subs, and make my realistic limit 75m. I have tested all of my .22LR's and they all shoot subs out to 100m more accurately than supersonic, so with the smaller grouping, and accurate dope, I find I have better percentages. Mainly comes out of the safe for night shoots.
    .22WMR - I have found accuracy is a bit fickle, (Winchester is the best in my CZ) and as such limit it to 100m. Certainly hits with more authority than the .22LR, but I don't find the range gain significant in real work hunting terms. Then you have to factor in the extra muzzle noise, which effects your real world hunting numbers due to spooking game. That said, I have now been caught short on 3 occasions where I have run into deer in the late evening when using the .17HMR which, had I had even a .22LR I would have head shot for meat. I now take the .22WMR in the late afternoon when deer are about.
    .17HMR - My CZ in .17HMR is more accurate at 100m than my AR15 in .223. I will happily shoot the HMR out to 150-160m and be confident of the +90% hit rate, higher if I can go prone. This is definitely my go to for walk around rabbits where I have cover to get around from ridge to ridge. Big advantage is low ammo weight, not having to worry about brass, and I seem to be consistently more accurate off hand with the CZ bolt action than the AR (recoil, ergonomics??). Definitely less wind deflection than the .22's (but has cost me three deer!)
    .223 - you already own that so you know what your limits are.
    .22-250 - I bring this out when the ranges are regularly over the 200m mark and I can set up a fixed shooting posie, or the wind is blowing a bit stronger and its speed and better BC's on the reloads I use give it an edge over the .223.

    My recommendation, get an accurate .17HMR, find the ammo it likes, buy a couple thousand rounds, and go kill some!
    PS. I have found the Vortex 2-10 FFP scope ideal for the HMR. Do a look up table for the but stock and you are good to go.

  5. #5
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    Cz455 ( in 17HMR) will put 5 shots into a thumbprint at 50m when conditions and I do the right thing. @Gregg (can't remember his name) in Invercargill did a good YouTube clip comparing 17 and 22mag in the wind.

    Last box I got cost 60 cents a round, could prob find cheaper if buying bulk
    Last edited by 223nut; 26-03-2017 at 04:45 PM. Reason: Forgot to say calibre...

  6. #6
    Member clickbang's Avatar
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    Have a marlin heavy barrel 22mag shortened 6 inches and suppressed with a waitaki suppressor. It shoots better than I can on any given day with Hornady 30 grain v max ammo.
    But the cost ammo you could reload .223 for so yeah if ya have a .223 get it suppressed and hand load for it

    Sent from my SM-A510Y using Tapatalk

  7. #7
    Member GravelBen's Avatar
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    I've owned a 22wmr and used 17hmr, have considered buying an hmr but for me both 22wmr and 17hmr are stuck in a bit of an awkward middle ground between the 22lr and 223.

    They're not quiet and dirt cheap to feed like a 22lr, but they don't have the effective range and versatility of the 223 either.
    gadgetman and Steve123 like this.

  8. #8
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    i have been useing the 22 mag for night shooting for over 20 year's and find it ideal for what i do, it's good to about 100 meter's on rabbit's ect. you maybe beter to just reload for the 223,it can workout to be about the same cost

  9. #9
    Member northdude's Avatar
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    owned a 22mag it was just a case of finding what ammo it liked and it was very accurate it was a zastava but sold it as i tended to use one of my 22hornets or the 222 more ive shot up to deer sized animals with both the latter

  10. #10
    Member viper's Avatar
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    Great feed back , thanks guys. It does raise the point... seems to be something missing in the middle ground between the 22LR and a .223.
    I've shot rabbits to 450 mtrs with two diffrent brands of rifle with the 223. Done some bullshit / crazy shots with the 22LR that I won't even mention.
    17HMR / 22 MAG / Hornet...............all seem to have faults and limits. something cheap and probably rimfire is missing in the 100 mtr to 200 mtr range.
    If the .223 is as cheap to run as a 17 or 22 mag then I don't get it.
    Less powder, less brass......just seems to be a gap in the market, the 17 HMR tried which is why it was probably so suggestful.
    Maybe I had a bad experience with the 17 HMR and need to keep trying .

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by viper View Post
    Great feed back , thanks guys. It does raise the point... seems to be something missing in the middle ground between the 22LR and a .223.
    I've shot rabbits to 450 mtrs with two diffrent brands of rifle with the 223. Done some bullshit / crazy shots with the 22LR that I won't even mention.
    17HMR / 22 MAG / Hornet...............all seem to have faults and limits. something cheap and probably rimfire is missing in the 100 mtr to 200 mtr range.
    If the .223 is as cheap to run as a 17 or 22 mag then I don't get it.
    Less powder, less brass......just seems to be a gap in the market, the 17 HMR tried which is why it was probably so suggestful.
    Maybe I had a bad experience with the 17 HMR and need to keep trying .
    Don't know if there is a gap as such. 22lr for <100m, 223 for >100m in your case. If for some reason you won't be shooting over 150m then get a 17HMR and get rid of the 223. Obviously I am talking small game here, not having the opportunity of a deer or goat or the like. If that was the case I would always carry the 223. But hey, why not have all 3?
    Experience. What you get just after you needed it.

  12. #12
    Member Happy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by viper View Post
    Great feed back , thanks guys. It does raise the point... seems to be something missing in the middle ground between the 22LR and a .223.
    I've shot rabbits to 450 mtrs with two diffrent brands of rifle with the 223. Done some bullshit / crazy shots with the 22LR that I won't even mention.
    17HMR / 22 MAG / Hornet...............all seem to have faults and limits. something cheap and probably rimfire is missing in the 100 mtr to 200 mtr range.
    If the .223 is as cheap to run as a 17 or 22 mag then I don't get it.
    Less powder, less brass......just seems to be a gap in the market, the 17 HMR tried which is why it was probably so suggestful.
    Maybe I had a bad experience with the 17 HMR and need to keep trying .
    You did cos seriously that rifle was a dog. I have a Sako .17 with Nightforce and it misses nothing
    The in between you need is 204 when not windy it's the flattest shooter of all of them

    So the choices are. .17 .223 .204 for what you are doing. I Ve done every 22 cal plus all the hornets and still own them all
    My pest control is mainly 200 (honest mtrs ) and they are flighty not like yours. I love both my 22-250 rifles but 204 is as good but wicked fast. The 204 ammo is a little cheaper. I m buying a T3 light 204 next as my REM is a bit heavy (varmint heavy barrel )
    rossi.45 likes this.
    "This is my Flag... Ill only have the one ..

  13. #13
    Member viper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shearer View Post
    Don't know if there is a gap as such. 22lr for <100m, 223 for >100m in your case. If for some reason you won't be shooting over 150m then get a 17HMR and get rid of the 223. Obviously I am talking small game here, not having the opportunity of a deer or goat or the like. If that was the case I would always carry the 223. But hey, why not have all 3?
    Thanks for the feed back, I think there is a gap. If you are shooting small game at 100mtrs with a 223 then you need work on it. I don't start till 180 mtrs and that's to easy.
    Something in the 110 to 180 mtr range.
    New farm I shoot has pigs and fallow, Northdude alluded to the 22 mag potential , right rifle / right ammo combo....

  14. #14
    Member northdude's Avatar
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    If your looking for cheap to run the hornet uses fuk all powder it lasts for ever you'll need a lot of patience to get one to shoot tho I think that's why most people either love them or hate them
    rossi.45 likes this.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by viper View Post
    Thanks for the feed back, I think there is a gap. If you are shooting small game at 100mtrs with a 223 then you need work on it. I don't start till 180 mtrs and that's to easy.
    Something in the 110 to 180 mtr range.
    New farm I shoot has pigs and fallow, Northdude alluded to the 22 mag potential , right rifle / right ammo combo....
    Personally I would never shoot a pig of Fallow with a 22WMR at anything like 110+m. But that's my view.
    Pengy, rossi.45 and rockland like this.
    Experience. What you get just after you needed it.

 

 

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