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thebees
01-20-2008, 01:44 PM
I be getting ready to have the barrel set back and re-chambered on my Rem. heavy varminter. My reason is to be able to shoot lighter bullets accurately.
My question is, as I have to re-chamber, would there be enough advantage to have it redone in .223AI?
Thanks

AVanGorder
01-20-2008, 03:11 PM
I be getting ready to have the barrel set back and re-chambered on my Rem. heavy varminter. My reason is to be able to shoot lighter bullets accurately.
My question is, as I have to re-chamber, would there be enough advantage to have it redone in .223AI?
Thanks

I vote for the 223 AI. I have both and I prefer the 223 AI. They will go faster and accuracy seems better. I shoot my AI at over 4000 fps with 40 grain bullets and H4198. It makes for an awesome prairie dog gun.

The only downside, I can think of, is that it won't feed real slick anymore. The sharp shoulder will hang up sometimes on the chamber so you have so slow down on cycling the bolt.

ReedG
01-20-2008, 03:57 PM
I agree with Adrian. The .223 AI is a really neat cartridge, the sharp shoulder stops any case stretch, neck-sized cases last forever and the extra capacity really accents the .223. You'll love the AI.

Redrock
01-20-2008, 04:58 PM
How much do you like the reloading process? If you like to fiddle with stuff go with the AI, you'll need new dies and if your not familiar with fireforming you'll need to do some research on best method.
you'll need to whack your cases with a couple of reloads to get the brass to settle into it's new shape.

Ballistically you bet go with the AI, you better like everything about the reloading process. If you just want to go shoot and not mess around with all that...be happy with what you got, the critters won't be able to tell the difference.

thebees
01-20-2008, 05:01 PM
I was going to ask do you have to get new dies or can I use regular .223 and just neck size. I wouldn't ever try to use the AI brass in another rifle.

Greyfox
01-20-2008, 05:50 PM
Regular dies won't work with an Ackley Imp. Part of the process takes the angle out of the case wall and they won't go into a standard 223 die, that is unless you want to return it to a 223. After once or twice that wouldn't work either since you would either crush the case or the brass would split. 223AI dies are pretty common now and aren't expensive like some of the more obscure wildcats.

As long as I'm able to make it to SD to shoot pd's, I won't be without a 223AI. There're a little faster than a 223, the brass doesn't grow and as Adrian said, they seem to be just a little more accurate.

Rick

Riflemeister
01-20-2008, 06:29 PM
I shoot both for prairie dogs. I shoot 50 gr V-Max in the 223 at 3400 fps, and 40 gr Ballistic tip in the 223AI at 3860 fps. They both have custom stainless barrels and are both very accurate. The AI is quite a bit flatter shooting in the 350 yards and under range and really does the job on those rats.

I load my 223AI using the standard 223 Lee collet dies. The dies are relieved at the shoulder so work with the AI's and load very concentric ammo. Much less expensive than special bushing dies and seem to do just as good a job.

AVanGorder
01-20-2008, 06:36 PM
I was going to ask do you have to get new dies or can I use regular .223 and just neck size. I wouldn't ever try to use the AI brass in another rifle.

Take a look at this picture. On the left is a regular 223. On the right is a 223AI. Both are loaded with a 40 grain VMax. In addition to the shoulder, you'll also notice that the case is larger, in diameter, up toward the shoulder.

To fireform, I just load up a regular 223 and shoot it from my 223AI... Done.

http://photos.imageevent.com/avangorder/guns/variouspics/websize/223v223AI.jpg

david dumas
01-20-2008, 06:45 PM
i'd stick to the std 223 if i was gonna change why not turn bolt face and go to 22-250, shoots 40 gr ballistic tips @4041 in one ragged hole

Ackman
01-20-2008, 09:31 PM
If it's an accurate barrel with a good bore, I'd definitely go with the AI. Velocity increase will be about 150-200fps with 40's and 50's. If it's a fast barrel, you'll be up into 22-250 territory.....with a good barrel and good brass you can get 4000-4200 with 40's. By good brass, I mean IMI which is very strong or the newer Lapua Match. Fireforming is very accurate and gives velocity about 1/2way between std .223 and formed AI cases. The only downsides are that you'll need new dies, and with a Remington you may have to fool with things a little to make it feed properly. It's a terrific cartridge and shooting light bullets it'll get a good bit more without using a whole lot more powder.

ReedG
01-20-2008, 10:11 PM
The .223 AI is, indeed, a wildcat cartridge and takes special dies with the exception of Lee Collet Dies. But it's a neat cartridge, a notch above the standard .223, and is a very useful round. Unless you have an opportunity to shoot beyond 300 yards on a regular basis, I think the AI will do as well as the .22-250 and the barrel will last forever.

Case forming is a non-issue. Just fire standard .223 cases in the AI chamber and you've done it. I've done 400 Lapua, IMI, and Winchester cases without any problem of any kind. If your barrel is 1:12, it will certainly do well with 40-gr. Vmaxes.

Enjoy ...

thebees
01-21-2008, 11:43 AM
Thanks for all the great replies. The AI sounds like a good idea.
The origional idea for the project is to shoot lighter bullets. The Rem. has a 1 in 14" twist and I'd like to shoot 52gr. matchkings.
Beesley

mysticplayer
01-21-2008, 11:58 AM
I really enjoy AI shouldered cartridges so the 223AI gets my vote too. Trimming is greatly reduced even when loads get warm.

For dies, if the chamber is set up so that a stand 223 is a crush fit (use your new brass to set the headspace), then a normal 223 Lee collet dies will handle the neck sizing duties. A reg 223 seater die will do this job just fine.

If concerned, take the 223 brass you have now and see if it has room in your seating die. I bet you have ALOT of wiggle room.

Lee makes a 223 AI die set for little money if you want to FL size. Personally, I prefer using a Redding body die to bump the shoulder whenever chambering gets a bit stiff. Keeps wear and tear on the brass to a min.

Feeding from a mag may not be as smooth. The Rems are accomodating to sharp shouldered cases so you may not have any issues.

For fireforming, just shoot NEW 223 brass in a properly set up chamber (cornmeal/cream of wheat with a bit of pistol powder works great too). Don't try and reuse your old 223 brass as it will likely split or head separate.

Enjoy...

Jerry

brickeyee
01-21-2008, 12:20 PM
You can also have Redding competitin dies opened up (If .223Ai is not already available) using the chambering reamer.
The actual sliding sleeve is NOT hardened.

AVanGorder
01-21-2008, 08:57 PM
I found my dies on eBay.

Doug Eckhart
01-25-2008, 12:08 AM
I thought E-Bay shut off gun related stuff .

TBonz
01-25-2008, 09:26 AM
I thought E-Bay shut off gun related stuff .

Some, but not all...I was on there yesterday and saw dies for sale...but, having shared an office with Adrian some time ago, I can tell you that he got the dies well before that change...

Tom