Got a Good .223 Handload for Pigs?

Texas Patriot

Member
Jul 17, 2008
115
16
Spring
I'm thinking of using either a 16" bbl Mini 14 or a 16" AR for pig hunting next time. Anybody got a good handload (or factory load) that will do a quick and dirty on pigs at relatively close range, say < 100 yards?

What bullet type and weight?
What powder and how much?
What primer and case?

I've heard some use Hornady TAP 75 gr with good success. Any others?

Thanks for your input.
 

robocop10mm

Active Member
Jan 9, 2009
997
36
Round Rock
Winchester 64 gr. power point. 25 gr W-748. Winchester commercial case. Win or CCI sm rifle std primer.

Do not use this load in a mil 5.56 case.
 

Texas Patriot

Member
Jul 17, 2008
115
16
Spring
Winchester 64 gr. power point. 25 gr W-748. Winchester commercial case. Win or CCI sm rifle std primer.

Do not use this load in a mil 5.56 case.

Thanks robo.

Have you used this on pigs with effectiveness? I presume its at or near a max load or else it might be safe to use in 5.56 case?
 

robocop10mm

Active Member
Jan 9, 2009
997
36
Round Rock
I consider it a factory duplication load even though I am not sure what powder Winchester actually uses in the ammo. This load shoots w/in 15 fps of the factory ammo. Yes near max. Work up to this carefully.

I have not used this load on pigs but would have little hesitancy in doing so on the good eaters (sub 100 lbs). If I were to going for larger piggies, i would opt for a larger caliber (.308). For the bigguns (350# +), I wil only take the .45-70.
 

robocop10mm

Active Member
Jan 9, 2009
997
36
Round Rock
The mil 5.56 case is thicker than the commercial .223 case. This means there is less internal volume in the 5.56 case. A load that is at or near max in a commercial case will be way over loaded in a military 5.56 case and quite possibly dangerous to you and your rifle.

Any time you change ANY component, you must reduce the load and work up a new load. Even changing from one primer maufacturer to another, one lot of the same powder and/or a different bullet manufaturer (even if it is the same weight and basic design).
 

TSU45

Active Member
Jun 6, 2008
410
16
San Marcos, Tx
The mil 5.56 case is thicker than the commercial .223 case. This means there is less internal volume in the 5.56 case. A load that is at or near max in a commercial case will be way over loaded in a military 5.56 case and quite possibly dangerous to you and your rifle.
Can you provide an information source for the different case thickness between 5.56 and .223? I'd like to check it out. Everything I've ever read from independent testers identifies it as the same thickness, just 5.56 is loaded a little hotter at the same brass thickness. There is more variation between manufactures than the two designations. I think that's why everywhere you see 5.56 being quoted as thicker it says "may", "could", or "sometimes" be thicker.

There are certainly differences between 7.62 and .308 brass thickness, but I don't there is a standard thickness difference in 5.56 and .223. The only difference is in the primer crimp. 5.56 CHAMBERS are a little longer in the throat than .223.

I absolutely agree with you that you should always work up new loads if you are using different components and trying to get near a max load.
 

robocop10mm

Active Member
Jan 9, 2009
997
36
Round Rock
Can you provide an information source for the different case thickness between 5.56 and .223? I'd like to check it out. Everything I've ever read from independent testers identifies it as the same thickness, just 5.56 is loaded a little hotter at the same brass thickness. There is more variation between manufactures than the two designations. I think that's why everywhere you see 5.56 being quoted as thicker it says "may", "could", or "sometimes" be thicker.

There are certainly differences between 7.62 and .308 brass thickness, but I don't think so in 5.56 and .223. The only difference is in the primer crimp. 5.56 CHAMBERS are a little longer in the throat than .223.

I absolutely agree with you that you should always work up new loads if you are using different components and trying to get near a max load.
I will try really hard to not get testy with this one, I know I do not have 1000 posts here (yet). I have been loading for 30+ years and have studied internal and external ballistics about as much as anyone this side of Dr. Martin Fackler. I am a Colt trained and authorized armorer. Much of my information comes from Colt/Specialized Armament Warehouse (Ken Elmore). I am a TCLEOSE/NRA certified firearms instructor and have attended armorers courses from Smith And Wesson (2x) and Sig.

I suppose I could crank up the band saw and cut up several pieces of 5.56 and .223 brass to demonstrate but there are easier ways to prove this. The first method is to take two externally identical pieces of brass. Decapped and trimmed to the same length. Weigh each. You will find the 5.56 case weighs more. This can only be because of the thickness of the brass. The other way is to measure volume in CC's of water. The 5.56 case will have less internal volume, once again because of the thicker brass.

Each manufacturer has different brass thickness. This is one reason you should work up a new load with a different brand of brass. Bench rest shooters will purchase large lots of new brass and segregate them by weight. They will work up a load using brass of one weight (thickness/volume) and use it several times until they deem it worn out. They then work up a load with brass of a different weight and use it, etc.

Military brass is subjected to forces you and I will not present it with. Loose chambers, very hot chambers, belt fed MG's, dirty field conditions etc. The extra thickness gives an extra margin of safety when firing and allows for stronger cases that will extract properly when fired under adverse conditions.

Please weigh some cases or take my word for it. If someone is telling you .223 and 5.56 are the same thickness, they are dangerously misinformed. You will find wildly differing weights between Rem, Fed, Win, S&B, Fiocchi, LC, TW, IMI, TZZ.
 

TSU45

Active Member
Jun 6, 2008
410
16
San Marcos, Tx
I will try really hard to not get testy with this one, Thanks for not getting "testy" just because someone doesn't completely agree 100% with you. I appreciate the civility. I know I do not have 1000 posts here (yet). I have been loading for 30+ years and have studied internal and external ballistics about as much as anyone this side of Dr. Martin Fackler. I am a Colt trained and authorized armorer. Much of my information comes from Colt/Specialized Armament Warehouse (Ken Elmore). I am a TCLEOSE/NRA certified firearms instructor and have attended armorers courses from Smith And Wesson (2x) and Sig. Okay.

I suppose I could crank up the band saw and cut up several pieces of 5.56 and .223 brass to demonstrate but there are easier ways to prove this. This really should be done with various makers virgin brass, it would answer a lot of questions. The first method is to take two externally identical pieces of brass. Decapped and trimmed to the same length. Weigh each. You will find the 5.56 case weighs more. This can only be because of the thickness of the brass. The other way is to measure volume in CC's of water. The 5.56 case will have less internal volume, once again because of the thicker brass. Or more material in the primer pocket. The 5.56 brass that "may" or "could" be thicker, yes.

Each manufacturer has different brass thickness. This is one reason you should work up a new load with a different brand of brass. Bench rest shooters will purchase large lots of new brass and segregate them by weight. They will work up a load using brass of one weight (thickness/volume) and use it several times until they deem it worn out. They then work up a load with brass of a different weight and use it, etc. Not disagreeing with any of this.

Military brass is subjected to forces you and I will not present it with. Loose chambers, very hot chambers, belt fed MG's, dirty field conditions etc. The extra thickness gives an extra margin of safety when firing and allows for stronger cases that will extract properly when fired under adverse conditions.

Please weigh some cases or take my word for it. If someone is telling you .223 and 5.56 are the same thickness, they are dangerously misinformed. You will find wildly differing weights between Rem, Fed, Win, S&B, Fiocchi, LC, TW, IMI, TZZ. Exactly my point. In 5.56/.223 there is more variation between manufacturers than the designations.
What I'm saying in a nutshell is: If 5.56 is quoted as "may", "could", or "sometimes" be thicker than .223. The .223 may, could, or sometimes be thicker than 5.56.

There is no case thickness difference specification for 5.56/.223 like for 7.62/.308. If you have these specs that I can't seem to find, then please post them so I can check them out.

Maybe we can get some brass donors for a little experiment. Or better yet, get the box of truth talked into doing it.
 

robocop10mm

Active Member
Jan 9, 2009
997
36
Round Rock
Whatever.

I wrote and posted a long diatribe and rethought it. I will try to do some experimentation for you this weekend to show you my point. I do not have enough posts to go off the deep end, yet.
 

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