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Thread: Is the .223 the most versatile cartridge?

  1. #1
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    Is the .223 the most versatile cartridge?

    I had my first hunt with my new .223 Howa Mini today and it got me thinking. After having shot a .22, 8x57, .303, .308, .270, .44mag, 30/30, 7mm08 I’ve come to the conclusion that the .223 is probably about the most versatile cartridge out there.

    When you think what you can effectively use it for; everything from small game to med (large?) game it certainly seems to punch above its weight. Plus; the amount of factory ammo (and economy of shooting) and projectiles for reloading is pretty awesome. It’s seemingly inherent accuracy, and range of rifles it’s chambered makes it a pretty compelling little cartridge…..

    I know you technically use any cartridge for the above uses, but for sheer practicality it would be pretty hard to usurp the .223…. It’s sorta the Swiss Army knife of cartridges; sure many specialist cartridges (knives) can do things better; but the 223 does most things more than adequately…

    Maybe it’s just a case of my infatuation with a new rifle?

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  2. #2
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    Versatile is just another term for all-rounder, which means for me the 308. ( yes it's just your infatuation with a new rifle)

  3. #3
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    No, I think you are right. Not much it can't do with the right bullet and sensible use.
    Dublin and xtightg like this.
    "The generalist hunter and angler is a well-fed mofo" - Steven Rinella

  4. #4
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    Yes and Yes again incase anyone didnt get it the 1st time
    Konus binoculars " The power to imagine"

  5. #5
    MB
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    Having never owned one, a most unqualified answer from me, but yes. It seems to cover everything from rabbits to deer.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Got-ya View Post
    ( yes it's just your infatuation with a new rifle)
    Ha ha; too right!

  7. #7
    Member Max Headroom's Avatar
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    You're right and infatuated.

    Take a cold shower. You'll still be right afterwards.
    bumblefoot and planenutz like this.
    RIP Garry S. 23/08/19

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Max Headroom View Post
    You're right and infatuated.

    Take a cold shower. You'll still be right afterwards.
    Cold showers never worked when I was a teenager, can't see it working now......

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    How you liking the mini? A 6.5 grendel is on my shortlist for replacement of my 300blk ar Bush gun

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick-D View Post
    How you liking the mini? A 6.5 grendel is on my shortlist for replacement of my 300blk ar Bush gun
    I've only put a few rounds through it sighting it in and 2 today hunting. But I'm really liking it. Accurate and I've always had a love for short handy rifles. It's wearing a new Nikon 3-9x40 Bushmaster which I really like too. I was shooting near dark after sighting in and the Nikon blew the Redfield Revolution 3-9x32 I had on another rifle out of the water....

  11. #11
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    Apart from economy, I would say most any of the 6mm, .25, and 6.5mm you can mag cycle would be more versatile cartridges.
    bumblefoot likes this.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick-D View Post
    How you liking the mini? A 6.5 grendel is on my shortlist for replacement of my 300blk ar Bush gun
    When I tried different rifles the one I liked the best (handling-wise) was a stainless Remington Model 7; but the blued Howa was $700 cheaper. I'm always on a budget so decided that the Model 7 wasn't going to kill a goat/deer $700 "more dead" But the mini was #2 in my price range after the Remmy

  13. #13
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    223 a fine little caliber but I'd give the most versatile all-rounder title to the 243.

    Ideal flat shooter for very long range varmints, good range of projectiles down to 55gr, but much more smack on target (near twice the ft/lbs) for big animals esp good size pigs and reds - right out to 250-300m. 223 can drop these bigger animals, but you'll also lose some - not ideal for big animals, longer range. We did use 222s in the 70s and 80s for shooting reds etc in the northern bush, but these shots were all 0-50m, max 100.

    We have couple of sites now where we'll encounter bunnies, pigs, reds etc in an evening, and 243 perfect for that target combination. Light and easy on the ear and shoulder too with the suppressor.

    My vote..

  14. #14
    Member viper's Avatar
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    Perfect caliber , best all rounder............no such thing, urban myth.
    bumblefoot and Sideshow like this.

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    My past, present and soon to be doomed .223/5.56s.

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