I shoot a Stevens 44 Ideal chambered in 22LR with a TJ .224 heavy liner and a 6X MVA Malcom scope in DZ mounts in 22BPCR matches. Trigger is crisp but less than optimal at 1.5#, but until I can locate one with SS or DS triggers this is what I have. The centerfire .224 barrel was somewhat of a mistake but was discovered after the liner was soldered in and we decided to shoot it before going to the trouble to take it out and replace it. Turns out, it shot just fine, so we cut the extractor slot and kept moving forward. I did very well with it in several 22LR schuetzen matches with a 20X Lyman STS shooting Eley Tenex. A friend invited me to shoot 22BPCR with him and since I already had a qualifying rifle and could rob the scope off my Sharps, I grabbed a couple of boxes of Federal 711B that I knew shot pretty well in the rifle and took off. Wind calls and a random twitch or two cost me a few of the laydown targets but I was sure I could hit a few chickens and come out alright. That's been working out fine enough but it is really annoying to see chicken misses that are less than half an inch off the silhouette so the hunt is on for ammo that is "good enough but inexpensive enough."
The gusting, swirling wind Monday made shooting for groups at 100 yards pointless, so all I got was chronograph data but any day at the range is better than any day at work, so here's what I got:
Ammo High Low Avg ES SD
Federal 711B: 1167 1120 1138 47 18
Fiocchi 320M 1208 1157 1171 45 20
Wolf Match Extra 1140 1105 1118 25 13
Wolf Match Target 1108 1039 1077 69 25
Lapua Master M 1125 1079 1097 46 17
Eley Tenex 1149 1132 1140 17 8
RWS R-50 1139 1126 1133 13 5
CMP-ELEY (4 strings) 1132 1101 1111 31 8*
No big surprises, the high dollar ammo is more consistent than the mid level ammo. What surprised me was the CMP-ELEY bulk that is $3.54/box is really consistent. I shot four strings and got the same results for each. Statistical probability of that happening is quite low, but it did. These were tested because I have case lots of each, no point in testing leftovers that won't make it through the season. Eley Tenex cost me right at $25/box, R-50 $18/box, The rest were $7-8/box when I bought them except the CMP-Eley bulk which is $3.54/box.
Several years ago I had a case of 1980s vintage Eley Benchrest Gold that claimed a MV of 985 fps. That free case of ammo won a lot of target shooting matches against Tenex, Tenex EPS, R-50 and R-100 shooters, the high dollar Lapua X-Act had not come to market then and Lapua Midas+ had temporarily vanished from the distributors. In discussing my results with my gunsmith who shot his 40X on the bench next to mine, we remembered seeing some RWS manufactured ammo marketed under the Walther logo that was claimed to be <1,000 fps and while not cheap, is more or less $10/box after shipping. It should arrive next week and maybe there will be a calm morning so we can shoot those and the CMP-Eley for groups. What I don't know is whether a 40 grain bullet with a MV <1,000 fps will knock over a ram. If it won't but does group well, then I may have to carry laydown ammo and chicken ammo.