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Mar 25th, 2012
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65 gr Gamekings in a 223 #7016379
12/30/17 02:18 AM
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Who's tried em and what was/is your opinion? Santa Claus left me 300 of em, so I'm about to work up a load for my 22" 9 twist bolt gun. I plan on starting with Varget and CCI primers in Nosler cases. My Sierra manual shows data for an AR but not a bolt gun for the 65 but it should be enough to work off of. I don't think I can shoe horn enough Varget in the case to get in trouble. Hopefully if I can get it up around 3100fps it will shoot there. Atleast on paper that would be a potent load in a 223.


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Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7016409
12/30/17 02:49 AM
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I have a sack of them too. Never tried them on deer or hogs, but iíd expect them to do pretty well since I have used the 63 gr Sierra on hogs and a few deer to good effect.

In my first 223 barrel, they shot great over Varget, but I ran out of Varget during the Obama nightmare. I switched to H335, and that works well too, though I think I got slightly better accuracy with Varget (but that was a different barrel). Both barrels had a 9 twist.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7016446
12/30/17 03:13 AM
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I love H-Varget, it works so well in a long list of cartridges. If you handed me that rifle/ bullet/ powder combo, I would keep stepping up until I found pressure, so I would know the limit. My bet is it will like a full case.

IMR-8208 is also something to look into. Tiny kernals that are less likely to get compressed.



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Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7016456
12/30/17 03:25 AM
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Never used them but had good luck with Benchmark in that weight range in 223


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Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7016491
12/30/17 03:49 AM
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I have an AR that shoots them to 1/2 moa over 24 gr of H4895. I've killed pigs, deer, javelina, and foxes with it, it's my go to bullet.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7016832
12/30/17 01:43 PM
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I shoot em out of AR and they shoot great. I use h335.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7017100
12/30/17 05:50 PM
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I used the 65 grain Sierra GK in my son's Tikka 223 varmint 17" barrel (cut down) for hunting. It did ok, for a 223 at least. He shot 2 deer with it, and neither gave a pass through. Bullet was recovered inside animal, and was fragmented with some good expansion signs. Both deer went down, but ran a decent ways. I didn't like the lack of penetration, so I switched to an 87 grain SP bullet, the same bullet I use in my 223 subs. That bullet gave full penetration, but minimal expansion. I was using my bulk Lovex powder, so I don't have any Varget data. But load it up near max, and it will shoot good. I think the 65 grain was running 2850 or 2900 fps.



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Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7017709
12/31/17 03:25 AM
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Thanks all for the replies. I'll report back what I come up with.


Smokey Bear---Lone Star State.
Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7017751
12/31/17 04:05 AM
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I've had nothing but excellent results with the 65gr SGK on coyotes, hogs, and deer with 9" and faster twists. I use H335.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7017762
12/31/17 04:14 AM
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I like em. From memory, I think I load them over 24.5gr fr RL15. They do a great job.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7019454
01/01/18 07:09 AM
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They donít work in my .220 swift with a 1 in 9 barrel.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7019545
01/01/18 01:37 PM
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Well darn, I would have thought the bullet would have worked in a 9 twist Swift. I considered a new barrel on my Swift to be able to shoot that bullet and others that wouldnít stabilize in my 14 twist barrel.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: 603Country] #7019564
01/01/18 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted By: 603Country
Well darn, I would have thought the bullet would have worked in a 9 twist Swift. I considered a new barrel on my Swift to be able to shoot that bullet and others that wouldnít stabilize in my 14 twist barrel.


Might I suggest a 1:7.7 twist.

You can run up to 80 gr bullets.



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Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: sbushee] #7019709
01/01/18 03:45 PM
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Originally Posted By: sbushee
They donít work in my .220 swift with a 1 in 9 barrel.


Are you sure? A 65 grain will easily stabilize in a 9" twist barrel, especially at the 220 swift speeds. Most 220 Swift barrels will be a 12 or 14" twist, which will not stabilize this 65 grain bullet. I would put money on it that your swift is not a 9" twist, if it won't stabilize a 65 grain.



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Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7019780
01/01/18 04:33 PM
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When I tried several heavier bullets in my 220 (14 twist) a year or so ago, only the 63gr Sierra SMP would stabilize. That wasnít new info, since I had used it since the 80ís. I sure wanted the Nosler 64 gr BSB or the 60 gr Partition to stabilize, but neither would. The Partition was closest, since it would group at 100 yards in certain temperatures. As for the 65 gr Sierra GK, I never actually hit paper with it at 100 yards, and the target stand was 2 feet by 4 feet. I have no idea where they went.

My Swift has a 20 inch barrel. Maybe, since the Partition was close to stabilizing, if I had a 26 inch barrel and pushed the bullet faster, it might stabilize. Itís a moot point though, since I like the 20 inch barrel.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: sbushee] #7022537
01/03/18 04:30 AM
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Originally Posted By: sbushee
They donít work in my .220 swift with a 1 in 9 barrel.


They stabilize in my two 1:9 barrels at 223 speeds... confused2

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7026836
01/06/18 03:12 AM
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I shot them for a while and they were bad medicine for jogs and coyotes.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: 603Country] #7027212
01/06/18 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted By: 603Country
When I tried several heavier bullets in my 220 (14 twist) a year or so ago, only the 63gr Sierra SMP would stabilize. That wasnít new info, since I had used it since the 80ís. I sure wanted the Nosler 64 gr BSB or the 60 gr Partition to stabilize, but neither would. The Partition was closest, since it would group at 100 yards in certain temperatures. As for the 65 gr Sierra GK, I never actually hit paper with it at 100 yards, and the target stand was 2 feet by 4 feet. I have no idea where they went.

My Swift has a 20 inch barrel. Maybe, since the Partition was close to stabilizing, if I had a 26 inch barrel and pushed the bullet faster, it might stabilize. Itís a moot point though, since I like the 20 inch barrel.


I rebarreled my 77V .220 Swift because I bought a Lyman Borecam a while back, and discovered the Swift was pitted from breach to muzzle. The rifle had frustrated me ever since I took it in a swap...it would shoot about an inch, but rarely better and sometimes worse. I sent it to Pac-Nor and opted for a 1:12 twist just to give me the option of shooting 60-grain Partitions, and I took the opportunity to save a bit of weight and get a little better handling by going with a 24-inch v. 26-inch barrel. I need to get on the stick and refinish the barreled action so I can wring it out.




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Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7027522
01/06/18 11:20 PM
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Originally Posted By: Smokey Bear
Who's tried em and what was/is your opinion? Santa Claus left me 300 of em, so I'm about to work up a load for my 22" 9 twist bolt gun. I plan on starting with Varget and CCI primers in Nosler cases. My Sierra manual shows data for an AR but not a bolt gun for the 65 but it should be enough to work off of. I don't think I can shoe horn enough Varget in the case to get in trouble. Hopefully if I can get it up around 3100fps it will shoot there. Atleast on paper that would be a potent load in a 223.


I like them in several of my AR's. I always suggest trying CFE-223 because it was designed specifically for that caliber, and I've had crazy good groups across multiple combinations.

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7027605
01/07/18 12:47 AM
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Shot a preliminary ladder workup today and it showed a lot of promise. I found what looked like a node from 25.3 to 26.3 grains of Varget. 26.3 was as high as I loaded. Used .2 grain increments for ladder work. I had planned to load a bit higher to see if I could find the max load. I ended up stopping at Sierra's advertised max of 26.3 gr.(C). Seating a boat tail bullet over 26.3 grains of Varget in the Nosler brass was like trying to stick a wet wash rag up a bobcats a$$, with substantial crunch. No pressure signs found so I could go a bit higher but don't plan to. Seating would be a pain. I went back to the bench and loaded 3 each at 25.5- 26.3 and shot 100 yard groups. Worst group was 25.5 gr @.776". Best was 26.1 gr @ .448". I plotted all 15 shots from five charge weights onto one target and got an aggregate .886", so a fairly robust node. About to sit down and load five more at 26.1 gr. to chronograph. I am hoping to be north of 3100fps with good consistency. We will see but I think I am close. If the velocity is there I plan to experiment with primers a little to see what happens.


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Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7028796
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Originally Posted By: Smokey Bear
Shot a preliminary ladder workup today and it showed a lot of promise. I found what looked like a node from 25.3 to 26.3 grains of Varget. 26.3 was as high as I loaded. Used .2 grain increments for ladder work. I had planned to load a bit higher to see if I could find the max load. I ended up stopping at Sierra's advertised max of 26.3 gr.(C). Seating a boat tail bullet over 26.3 grains of Varget in the Nosler brass was like trying to stick a wet wash rag up a bobcats a$$, with substantial crunch. No pressure signs found so I could go a bit higher but don't plan to. Seating would be a pain. I went back to the bench and loaded 3 each at 25.5- 26.3 and shot 100 yard groups. Worst group was 25.5 gr @.776". Best was 26.1 gr @ .448". I plotted all 15 shots from five charge weights onto one target and got an aggregate .886", so a fairly robust node. About to sit down and load five more at 26.1 gr. to chronograph. I am hoping to be north of 3100fps with good consistency. We will see but I think I am close. If the velocity is there I plan to experiment with primers a little to see what happens.

sounds like a heck of a load!

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: Smokey Bear] #7028820
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Smokey, would you post a picture of your ladder / load developments, some curious minds likes to learn some extra something. up

Re: 65 gr Gamekings in a 223 [Re: TackDriver] #7028931
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Originally Posted By: TackDriver
Smokey, would you post a picture of your ladder / load developments, some curious minds likes to learn some extra something. up



Will do but it will be the end of the week. I am off bird hunting.


Smokey Bear---Lone Star State.
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