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About Alycidon

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    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 11/06/1953

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    Driven game shooting, rifle shooting, deer stalking.

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  1. Alycidon

    Eley Cartridges

    Use VIP on game, but only about 400 a year. No issues at all. A
  2. Alycidon

    Where are all the hardcore Varmint hunters gone ?

    N550 is in fact slower than N150, I know that Vit suggest otherwise but thats what I found when I tried it and N160 as well., you should ideally fill up to the base of the neck or close to for a nice even velocity spread. To do that may mean using a slower powder than is generally advised but it pays you back with single figure ES sometimes and rarely more than a 20 fps difference in a 5 shot string. Its not the drops that get you at long range, you can range and dial that out but its the drifts as I am sure you are aware, thats why I went for the Berger 50 as at the time it was the heaviest 20 cal bullet out there. But in practise 200 yards is a pretty long night shot for me, so drop/drift is academic. Zero 1 inch high at 100 yards, puts it on at about 180, so its 200 yards plus before you have to think about anything if its a chest shot, I appreciate that you dont get time to range at night usually but if you shoot at a constant mag ( I usually use 8x) then you know how far a, by the ground assuming you know your ground and b, by how it fills the reticule. Building a high speed 20 today I would build it around the 39 SBK and 1 in 11., ( think thats what Sierra advise) . Re charges, around 32gr/33gr from memory, it was some years ago now, my working load is around 29.5 gr, (3500) to give me a consistent ballistic curve and similar velocity I deduct .5gr when loading for the 39gr. Had that rifle for around 10 years, only ever missed 3 foxes with it ( all were perfectly straight forward 150/200 yard shots) but my declining eyesight ( I am 66 now) means it does not now get the night use that it used to some years ago. Been out to 300 yards on foxes with the 39s with no issues but on a front on bib shot it does not usually exit. Have you had a look on Quickload to see if 38 gr of N550 can be burnt in a 26 inch tube ?, might be an idea if not, extra barrel length = extra time in barrel = extra velocity, around 30 fps per inch. No point loading 38gr if the barrel is not long enough to burn it all. You might also check that it will fit your cabinate, thats something I forgot, luckily it JUST went in. The only drawback with a long tube it that its a pain to handle inside a 4x4 and forget carrying it very far unless you are young and fit. In my experience you dont get a second shot at anything you have missed, its dead or its gone, ( I missed more than a few in my 22.250 days !! ) I suppose a quick reload is handy if you mess up the placement, knowing you only have one pop does make you wait till everything is about perfect, so no Chinese heart shots and no going out in high winds. I have only ever had one occasion where a fast follow up would have been handy and that was on my 17AH ( which is my least favorite fox round). I have had the ejector removed on all my rifles except a semi 22LR, as I dont want to lose expensive Lapua brass that has had a lot of prep work, yet one night I killed 3 foxes ( almost full grown cubs) and had a miss all in around 30 seconds including working the lamp and having to move the Disco slightly for the last one, I have a butt stock shell holder to keep fresh rounds handy. My action is Lawton 7500 single shot, one of the first in the UK, (Lawton failed as a business when the owner Barney Lawton died, ) a single shot actions supposedly flexes less under firing and are therefore a shade more accurate ( supposedly) than a magazine fed action , if you shoot 100BR a .1 increase in group size can be the difference between top three and nowhere, but for a sporting rifle then it would be perfectly good, horses for courses. Have a look at Saubier for more info on 20-250 if needed, I have no experience of it but do have hands on experience of 22.250 and 22.250 AI, both sad stories. The AI belongs to a friend who also posts here occasionally, having shot out the barrel trying to make it shoot it was re barrelled to 22BR and it now shoots .2 - .3 from the off with minimal load development again a single shot action, Hope you have more joy with the .250 case than we had. A
  3. Alycidon

    Where are all the hardcore Varmint hunters gone ?

    28 inch Bartlein, 1 in 9, so hardly ideal, 1 in 11 would have been better but the rifle was built around the 50gr Berger. I went to around 4100 with the 39, no need to go any faster, but was getting pressure signs at that. Have also been to about 3900 with the 50 Berger, match and varmint, they also held together fine. I would suggest as a working load 3300/3600 will be where you will find best accuracy, given a heavy rifle ( mine is 14lb) and no mod you should be able to see the bullets arrival. I shot a crow with it some weeks ago at about 160 yards, it dropped off the top of a drinking trough before I had registered the gun had fired. If you are going 20BR then I would advise using N150 and either BR4s and Fed 205s, that gives you a nice case full so a close velocity spread. Dont forget barrel life is around 1500 rounds at sensible pressure and velocity, you start pushing the limits and this will drop down to around 600 rounds, thats a pound a round plus just for barrel life. You will find it beneficial to weigh and batch your bullets by weight, use your powder scale. Bergers are pretty good, I once had 200 x 50s, ALL were 50.0 or 50.1 which is remarkable. I usually find in SBKs a spread of plus or minus 1 grain with the bulk falling into two or three weights. For a pest control bullet thats perfectly acceptable. A
  4. Alycidon

    Where are all the hardcore Varmint hunters gone ?

    Run with the N135, that will be fine. A
  5. Alycidon

    Where are all the hardcore Varmint hunters gone ?

    Data on 223 and N120 is available free here: https://www.vihtavuori.com/reloading-data/rifle-reloading/?cartridge=7 Personally I would have said N120 is a bit fast for the caliber but you should be able to get away with in on the 40 gr VMax, For the 50s etc I would deffo look for something slower like N133. Ideally you want a pretty full case, (95% or so), that way you get a uniform velocity, so a closer shot to shot velocity and thus a smaller group with less vertical dispersion. I would also recommend a look at Sierra Blitzking, I use the 20 caliber 39s in a 20BR and 1 in 9, hell of a good bullet, holds together at over 4000 unlike the 40gr VMax. But best accuracy as is often the case is way below top speed, in my case about 3600. A
  6. Alycidon


    Superb pic, well done. A
  7. Alycidon

    Where are all the hardcore Varmint hunters gone ?

    Try N150 then, or N550, I found that 150 was faster than 550, this is not what the books suggest. ( 20BR) , My advice is load for accuracy not speed, nothing hit in the boiler room at 3000 or 4000 will not tell the difference. A
  8. Alycidon


    It just shoots very sweetly at 3500, .2 off a bench when I do my bit, no mod yet see the impact, ( its a heavy old set up), in my 100BR days it used to agg high 2s or low 3s off a bipod with a rear bag, no pedestal rest. Start getting it up to around 3800 with Berger 50s and I get pressure signs on the primers, I have taken 39 gr SBKs over 4000 yes but increased recoil ( and faster barrel life) means I dont see the impact. Very rare I go much over 200 ( my old eyes are not getting any better) but have taken them comfortably off the Landrover wing mirror at 300. All my other rifles are set up at around 3500 so it makes the trajectory curve that much easier to master if a snap shot is needed. Yes a 22 will make a bigger hole, I had some spectacular splatter kills with 55gr NBTs through a 22.250 on things like rabbits but dead is dead, bang flop with both every time. Both Berger 50s and 39SBKs usually pass through, front on fox at 300 the 39s dont usually. Interestingly a friend shot a fox with a 257AI some years ago and could not find it. I went to pick it up next morning, about 100 yards further on that he thought, front on chest shot, no sign of an exit, small smear of blood on entry, but chest was twice the size it should be. I was expecting to need a shovel !!. A
  9. Alycidon


    Under 300 yards there is little to choose between 204 and 223, I use a 20BR downloaded to around 204 levels, over 300 yards wind drift is usually less than the same weight of bullet in 223 but 223 is able to fire much heavier bullets if needed. Horses for courses. A
  10. Alycidon

    6mm bullet choice

    Why is mag feed so critical, you miss and its gone, no chance of a second go. I use single shot rifles with ejectors removed as I dont want to loose hand formed brass. I had killed 3 foxes in 30 seconds and has a miss as well. Bloody things came piling out of a wood one night. No real experience of the bigger case 22 but a friend has a 22BR on a single shot action and get on well with it. I use a 20BR and again no issues with rate of fire. A
  11. Alycidon

    17 hornet or 17 remington

    Depends how fast you drive it, the hotter ( faster) the load the faster the wear rate, from new 1500 rounds top accuracy, then another 1500/2000 acceptable accuracy then its new tube time, usually. Extend the life by using cooler ( slower ) powders, there used to be a site where you could calculate barrel wear for a given load/speed but it seems to have gone, but have a look here: https://precisionrifleblog.com/2012/07/09/practical-tips-to-extend-barrel-life/ Velocity is something you brag about to your friends but its accuracy that kills, those two rarely go together. Optimum accuracy is usually some way below max velocity.. A
  12. Alycidon

    17 hornet or 17 remington

    A bit late here, I run a 17AH, so an Ackley hornet and the predecessor to 17HH, slightly more case capacity than 17HH. For crows at 150/200 yards its a great round but i really dont like it for foxes unless I can get a head shot. For an all round rifle 17FB ( also known as 17 M4) or the 17 Rem would be a far better bet if foxes are regular victims A
  13. Alycidon


    No. Vartarg Turbo is based on the 222 magnum case, as is the 204 Ruger I believe. A
  14. Alycidon

    6mm BR build

    One thought on barrel length, will it fit your cabinate ??. A lockable internal box reduces the max rifle length, I nearly came to grief on that, it was not something I had considered. A
  15. Alycidon

    Lamping scope

    NOT a thick ret, they are hard work on a 300 yard daytime crow. Yiou wont have time to be dialling it in at night when old charlie is watching you, so you will need to aim off. A light plex ret is fine, McClouds at tain usually have a good selection of used Ziess, Swaro, S&B,kahles. Nightforce while good in daytime and in a lamp in teh half light of late duck when sitting up a tree is not as good optically as the German glass. I have had to used the side bars before now as the center dot had gone ( NP2DD) A

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