All About the 7mm Cartridge

Long recognized as a superb choice for hunters, the 7mm (.284) bore size is now attracting great interest among long-range match shooters as well. The 7mm occupies the "sweet spot" between 6.5mm and 30 caliber--with an optimal balance between bullet weight and BC. It's hard to beat 7mm ballistics with either a 6.5mm or a reasonably-sized 30, and the 7mm will give longer barrel life than a 6.5 mm with less recoil than a 30-caliber (of equal BC). To match the ballistics of a 7mm 180gr VLD with a 30-caliber bullet, you must move up dramatically in bullet weight--to a 210gr or larger bullet. To drive the heavier 30-caliber bullet at similar velocities, you'll need more powder. More powder and a much heavier bullet weight means more recoil (and attendant fatigue) for the 30-caliber shooter. The combination of great ballistics with manageable recoil has made the 7mm cartridge a favorite among long-range prone and benchrest shooters. The chamberings of choice are the .284 Winchester, 7mm Winchester Short Magnum (7mm WSM), and 7mm Remington Short Action Ultra-Magnum (7mm SAUM). For silhouette shooters and hunters, the 7mm-08 is a top choice (but not the only choice).


7mm family portrait: (left to right) 7mm-08 Rem, 7mm Mauser, .284 Win, .280 Rem, 7mm SAUM, 7.21 Lazzeroni Tomahawk, 7mm WSM, 7mm Rem Mag, 7mm Wby Mag, 7mm Dakota, 7mm STW, 7mm Ultra Mag and 7.21 Lazzeroni Firebird.

New Interest in the .284 Winchester For many years, the "original" .284 Winchester lived in the shadow of the smaller 6.5-284. That is all changing. Today there is great interest in the .284 Win.

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About the .223 Remington & 223 AI Cartridge

.223 Remington--Centerfire Favorite The .223 Remington is the most widely-used centerfire rifle cartridge in the developed world. In its 5.56x45 military form, it is the primary issue ammunition for the U.S. Military and NATO forces. It is a popular sporting cartridge, and probably the most commonly used centerfire varmint cartridge. In our Readers' Poll, the .223 Rem (both standard and improved) ranked first among preferred varmint rounds. The .223 Rem is efficient and versatile. It can sling 40-grainers past 3650 fps, and deliver 90gr VLDs accurately at 1000 yards. Its parent case, the .222 Remington, was once a mainstay of benchrest competition. Today, with custom match bullets, the .223 Remington can still deliver impressive accuracy, shooting well under quarter-MOA in a good rifle.

.223 Remington Cartridge History The .223 Rem traces its roots to the .222 Remington, a round popular with benchrest and varmint shooters in the 1950s. When the US military was looking for a new high-speed small-caliber round to replace the .308 Winchester (7.62x51), Remington started with the .222 Remington, and stretched it to increase powder capacity by about 20% in 1958 to make the .222 Remington Magnum. The cartridge was not accepted by the military, but it was introduced commercially. In 1964, the 5.56x45 mm, also based on a stretched .222 Rem case (and very similar to the .222 Rem Magnum), was adopted along with the new M-16 rifle. As with the .222 Rem Magnum, the new military case achieved enhanced velocity (over the .222 Rem) by increasing case capacity with a longer body section and shorter neck. This military modification of the .222 Rem was originally called the .222 Special but was later renamed the .223 Remington. In military metric nomenclature, the round is called the 5.56x45. For the full history of the 5.56x45 cartridge, read the 5.56x45 Timeline, by Daniel Watters.

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