The .222 Remington


For no particular reason, I get a hankering for a new caliber or a new rifle from time to time. Sometime early in 2010 I got the itch. I have a particular interest in anything that will spit a .224 bullet and right now I can't recall how I got on the 222 kick however, that was the direction I was leaning.

I have quoted Jim Carmichael before in my work because I have read so much of his writing in Outdoor Life and his books. I tend to think that his view point has influenced me over the years and the 222 caliber is no exception. I do not recall the article(s) but remember that he spoke highly of caliber and I guess I never forgot it.

I will have to do some digging and re-read the work for grins.

Anyway I started watching for something in the 222 family and even considered re-barreling or re-chambering if necessary in order to add this caliber to my collection. Talking with a customer one day on the topic he piped in that he had a Savage 222 that he might be willing to part with. So a few days later I owned it and was headed for the shooting range.

It is a Savage 340 C that has been "re-blued" with a matte finish of some sort. The sights had been removed leaving a gaping hole under the scope where likely an old Dockendorff occupied the dovetail slot. Now the 340 C is only slightly different from my vintage 342 in 22 Hornet. So being "familiar" with the feel of this gun just made it that much easier to like.

In short order however, I discovered that the B-Square side mount scope base, well, sucked. The scope was off center and you could drive a truck under it. I ordered a Weaver 2 piece and assembled that as soon as possible. It at least centered the scope over the bore and lowered it some.

At the range, it was obvious that the gun was a shooter in spite of the 1/2 inch of trigger creep. I have not devoted enough time to this rifle but I have shot it enough to know that it isn't overly picky on powder though I have not switched bullets yet. Just playing with a 50 grainer right now.

Jumping forward to October/November 2011 and I got the itch again. 221 Fireball, 222 Mag, 222, 223, 6MM and of course 243 were all options that I was looking around at. On Gun Broker I watched all of these calibers and stumbled across a Ruger M77 in 222. The description stated that it was a limited production. And the price stated that the owner was pretty happy to have it in his possession. Wow !

About the 2nd week of December I spotted another Savage 340 in 222 with a great "Buy-it-Now" price. While I was waiting for UPS to deliver it I was talking with my salesman at one of my distributors. Kind of just poking buttons on the computer while he rang up my order, I did a search on his inventory for a Ruger 222. OMG on the screen before my eyes was a Ruger M77 Hawkeye 222. The total quantity in inventory - ONE.

"UM- hey, put this item number on hold for me."

A couple of hours later, I ordered some more stuff from him and had him go on and throw the M77 on the order and send it my way.

The Savage 340 and M77 both arrived on 12/19/2011. Dang, Christmas a week early !

The truth of it is that had I found the M77 first I would not have bought the Savage but what are you going to do?

I will play with the Ruger first but will get to the Savage shortly.

Check back for updates !


Back to CenterFire Central

Last Modified: Tuesday, December 20, 2011 11:20 PM