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220 swift change or stay

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Unread 12-17-2010, 05:05 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Idaho again Praise God!
Posts: 145
220 swift change or stay

So here in a couple months I will be in the market to get a new barrel on my Ruger M77 Mark II chambered in 220 swift. The plan on using this rifle for long range coyote and rock chuck. I want to shoot heavy bullet fast. I am considering the 220 swift improved but not sure if there is something better to do the job. I would like to stay with the .224 but would consider 6mm calibers. Any input will help
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Unread 12-17-2010, 10:45 PM
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: California
Posts: 458
Re: 220 swift change or stay

I think you will be happier in the long run with a 6mm for that application. Fast twist 6mms with heavier bullets are very popular these days.
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Unread 12-18-2010, 05:43 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 873
Re: 220 swift change or stay

I have a 243. win set up for those applications. Just trying to load up some 75 grain vmax around 3400 FPS.
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Unread 12-18-2010, 09:31 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Potters Hill, NC
Posts: 1,724
Re: 220 swift change or stay

If you already have the dies and brass for the .220 Swift it would be easier/cheaper to stay that course. Going to the AI version would only cost you dies and maybe more brass, depending on how shot what you have is. Annealing may bring it back around.

If you want a "new" barrel and really wanted to stay .224 cal then consider the .22-250 AI or .22-243 Middlestead. Both are hotrod .22's. Not sure of the shoulder angle of the Middlestead but the AI version of cartridges makes case stretching not an issue, so I've read. Die setup helps with this issue also.

If you decide .243 cal, then there are a multitude of great 6mm's out there. Personally, I like the idea of owning a .243 AI. Don't overlook the 6-284 or 6-06, both high end 6's.

The 6mm's will have a slight edge in the wind and at extended ranges (over the horizon ). Put all your choices on little pieces of paper, put them in a hat and let your wife choose. This way, down the road if you don't like it that much or want something else, blame it on her. She chose it for you! JohnnyK.
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Unread 12-18-2010, 10:38 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Texas
Posts: 7,189
Re: 220 swift change or stay

A lot of good suggestions.

I have my own opinion like everyone else and this is what I would recommend.

First = as far as .224 the swift is hard to beat in the velocity department. I have owned 22/250s
220 Swifts,and my latest project was a 224 WSSM. it can out do the others in its class but not by
that much over the Swift (100 to 200 ft/sec) depending on the bullets weight.

As far as accuracy , the swift can produce some outstanding accuracy.

If you already have a Swift and all the loading components I would stay with it. It doesn't
need to be accurized (AI) and staying with the standard SAAME spec. has many advantages.

With a good high quality barrel and chamber you won't be disappointed.

There are Lot's of great cartridges available and if you want change then go for it ,but be prepared
for some difficulty with feeding ,loading fire forming and other things that come with wildcats.

They are sometimes worth the effort but in this case the Swift is hard to beat for trouble free

If you want to shoot certain bullets then see what the barrel maker recommends and don't be
talked into some that will limit you bullet selection.

A 1 in 14 twist is the best all round twist and able to use all .224 bullets in the swift. something
like the 223 rem needs a faster twist because of the lack of velocity with big bullets. In fact
the Swift is fast enough to test the jackets on the lighter bullets.

My .224 WSSM has a 1 in 15 twist and will destroy most 35 and 40 grain bullets because the
velocity is over 4400 ft/sec with the 40 grain (The 40 grain ballistic tip) is the only one that
does not come apart.

Just my opinion for what it's worth.

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Unread 12-18-2010, 11:10 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Idaho again Praise God!
Posts: 145
Re: 220 swift change or stay

Thank you all for the great input.
There has been some great choice mentioned on here. I am having a hard time stepping away from the swift. I know that when out coyote hunting in the Owyhee desert there is many chances for long range in the wind. I believe that it would be the best to step up the 6mm in something fast. But what do you thing if I stayed with the swift shooting the 75gn a-max our of 3 groove 28" barrel. Do think this combination would do the trick for say around 700yds or so on coyote?

Last edited by 1984nitro; 12-18-2010 at 11:34 PM.
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Unread 12-18-2010, 11:25 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: So. Utah
Posts: 406
Re: 220 swift change or stay

I have that same rifle. It is a Ruger M77 MKII. I love this rifle and it'll shoot better than I can hold it. My brother and I were out today and were rolling around a softball sized rock at 550 yards with it. That's pretty darn impressive for me. We were well pleased. I am shooting.....

52 grn Sierra Matchkings HPBT
38 grains IMR 4064
CCI 250 lrg rfl Magnm primers
Winchester Brass

In my eyes the Swift will always be the king of the 22 calibers. Sure it has had its ups and downs, but it seems to be the golden standard. I loved it a while back when I overheard a guy and his wife talking. I heard him trying to talk his wife into letting him buy a 22-250. His word were, "This is a great gun and a good deal and its almost as fast as a 220 Swift." I chuckled to myself and thought "It may be almost as fast, but it still isn't a Swift."
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