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Thread: 221 Fireball anyone?

  1. #1

    Default 221 Fireball anyone?

    A year or so ago I came upon a Remington Light varmint job in a 221 Fireball. In the end it turned out that that gun had been owned by a tinkerer who had it so screwed up that I was glad to part ways with it. I didn't figure I'd go that route again (famous last words). However I came across another just like the other only unscrewed with. I got the gun a set of RCBS dies and some loaded ammo all for $400. How could I say no to that?

    Not knowing who loaded the ammo, I pulled the bullets and started over. I put a Leupold 3x9 on it and went to the range today! It looks to me like I ortsta be able to shoot a nut out of a squirrels mouth out to 100. Usually if you hit the nut the squirrel dies from the shrapnel. I used to do that sort of thing with my dads 222 when I was a kid onliest difference is now I got a 222 short.....I'm still a kid....just an old one!

    Tommorrow morning I'll be in the big woods before the sun comes up......I'll let you know how it goes!

  2. #2
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    Default .221 Fireball in T/C

    I picked up a .221 Fireball barrel for my Thompson Contender some years back but never got around to fooling with it much. The round looks idea for a pistol or light rifle but like nearly everything else it got blown away by the .223 / 5.56 craze.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
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  3. #3
    Member Smokey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    A year or so ago I came upon a Remington Light varmint job in a 221 Fireball. In the end it turned out that that gun had been owned by a tinkerer who had it so screwed up that I was glad to part ways with it. I didn't figure I'd go that route again (famous last words). However I came across another just like the other only unscrewed with. I got the gun a set of RCBS dies and some loaded ammo all for $400. How could I say no to that?

    Not knowing who loaded the ammo, I pulled the bullets and started over. I put a Leupold 3x9 on it and went to the range today! It looks to me like I ortsta be able to shoot a nut out of a squirrels mouth out to 100. Usually if you hit the nut the squirrel dies from the shrapnel. I used to do that sort of thing with my dads 222 when I was a kid onliest difference is now I got a 222 short.....I'm still a kid....just an old one!

    Tommorrow morning I'll be in the big woods before the sun comes up......I'll let you know how it goes!
    Hmmm, and now ANOTHER Tinkerer has one - good grief where will it end!
    When asked what state I live in I say "The State of Confusion", better known as IL....

  4. #4

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    Once upon a time (as in long, long ago) a friend got a great deal on a couple of the XP-100's in a close-out, then discovered he hated them. So he went to tinkering. The action from one ended up in a stock with a replacement 18" medium weight barrel, and the action from the second ended up in a rifle hosting a 20" lightweight barrel for a 25 cal wildcat on the 221 case. Yeehaw! The 221 rifled was mounted with a compact 3x9 scope and became his rockchuck stalking gun. It could zap ground squirrels, much less rockchucks at impossible ranges yet didn't weigh 7 pounds scoped. The 25 was scoped the same and intended as a lightweight general purpose rifle firing lighter bullets for varmints and up to 87 grains for careful deer shooting. Both turned out to be dream guns, they worked so well.

    That's my only experience with the "221" in rifles, but it was enough to convince me you're really onto something. Sure the 221 is no 222 or 223, but that's a good thing.

  5. #5
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    I got one for my daughter, it's a tack driver. 50 gr v-max, max dose of RL-7, 5 shot 1/2" groups with no recoil. What's not to like?
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

  6. #6

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    Lilgun looks like a good powder to try from the manuals. And the Berger 45gr HPV may be a good over looked bullet in the fire ball.

    I found a new in box CZ527 in 22-Hornet that I could not pass up and love it. But wish it was a 221FB in stead because I could load at 222rem pressures for tame loads about what the hornet is with Lilgun. Or up to the 221FB pressures for some 250 yard plus shooting. And all with a great case that will last. The hornet is pretty thin and I wonder about its case life.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by tjen View Post
    The hornet is pretty thin and I wonder about its case life.
    Good instincts. I've done best on case life when only "neck sizing" the case, but also using moderate charges. FL size and shoot hot loads, and case life goes south in a hurry unless the chamber is cut to really minimal dimensions.

    Best solution for me has been the K Hornet. I don't really push one any faster than a Hornet and also neck size, but I find the shoulder doubles or triples case life compared to original Hornet in most rifles.

  8. #8

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    I head shot a couple of squirrels with it this morning. Neither had a nut in his mouth so I aimed for an eyeball! Yup they both lost their heads. They were late hatch tree rats which are the tender ones. Mom's going fry them up and make biscuits and gravy for my late night snack.

    Smokey you don't know what your talking about....I'm no tinkerer. When I do a project gun it always comes out like planned.....except for that barrel full of boo boos in the garage that is.

    In reality if I have a project that gets very involved I'm sending it to Alaska to Gunbugs or the Kid. They've both done work for me that was top notch.....we don't have any gunsmiths in Iowa that can touch those guys.

    Pardon me fellas whilst I go pick the fuzz off a couple of stiff tree rats!

  9. #9
    Member 1Cor15:19's Avatar
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    As you already know EKC, my Fireball is still in project status. gunbugs chambered, threaded and installed a Brux #1 contour on a Sako L46 that should prove to be an ideal carry rifle. It's off getting the barreled action blued, but I promise as soon as I get it back I'll post a couple of pics as well as some load work and accuracy reports.
    Foolishness is a moral category, not an intellectual one.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1Cor15:19 View Post
    As you already know EKC, my Fireball is still in project status. gunbugs chambered, threaded and installed a Brux #1 contour on a Sako L46 that should prove to be an ideal carry rifle. It's off getting the barreled action blued, but I promise as soon as I get it back I'll post a couple of pics as well as some load work and accuracy reports.
    Yes please do post some pictures.

    I think your going to like that contour in a take to the field gun.

    If I can find a good deal on a mini mauser In 222 or 223 I might buy it and have the barrel set back and rechambered to another Fireball for my grandson.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by BrownBear View Post
    Good instincts. I've done best on case life when only "neck sizing" the case, but also using moderate charges. FL size and shoot hot loads, and case life goes south in a hurry unless the chamber is cut to really minimal dimensions.

    Best solution for me has been the K Hornet. I don't really push one any faster than a Hornet and also neck size, but I find the shoulder doubles or triples case life compared to original Hornet in most rifles.
    Not high jack the tread but I use a Lee collect neck sizing die on the hornet. And my hot Lilgun loads are low to modest pressures compared to other powders. With that I have not had a case grow in three firings and thats with a 40gr berger at 2980fps. Still a fireball would be better. I am still looking for a 222rem they are rare to find these days and would make a better gun than the fireball. Yet the F B has its and its a fine place.

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