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The Handloaders Bench > General > Archives > May 2006 Cartridge of the Month - 225 Winchester

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May 2006 Cartridge of the Month - 225 Winchester
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 Posted: Sun Aug 7th, 2005 05:32 PM
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Gunrunner
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Here are the past winners.  Each of them can still be viewed and discussed in the Archives section. 

2005

Feb. -       22-250 Remington

March -    7x57 Mauser

April -       308 Winchester

May -        270 Winchester

June -       45-70 Government

July -         264 Winchester Magnum

Aug. -        45 ACP

Sept -        338 Winchester Magnum

Oct -          300 Winchester Magnum

Nov-           6MM Remington

Dec-           Tie:  223 Remington & 257 Roberts

2006

Jan -           6mm-284

Feb -           44 Remington Magnum

March-         444 Marlin

April -          222 Remington

May-            225 Winchester











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 Posted: Mon May 1st, 2006 05:04 PM
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Gunrunner
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The 225 Winchester was introduced to the shooting public in 1964.  Intended to be a replacement for the 220 Swift, the new cartridge was chambered in the 'new and improved' Model 70 rifle. 
 
The 225 Win is a semi-rimmed case with the rim diameter being .473", the same as the 30-06.  This made it quite easy to chamber the 225 in a standard bolt face rifle.  Even with the slight rim the case headspaces on the shoulder, same as a rimless cartridge.  Case length is 1.930", maximum COAL is 2.500" and SAAMI maximum pressure is 50,000 cup. 
 
Factory ammunition from Winchester drives a 55gr bullet at 3,570 fps.  Handloaders can usually get a bit more velocity with the same weight bullet.  Some favorite powders for the 225 are IMR-4064 and 4895, H380, and Win760.  Unfortunately 225 brass is only readily available by buying factory ammo, which is still manufactured by Winchester.  Cases can be formed from 30-30 brass, if a reloader has the inclination to do so. 
 
Although the 225 Winchester is a fine cartridge in it's own right, it came about at the wrong time.  The good folks at Winchester had decided the 220 Swift was losing popularity and decided to drop that cartridge from their lineup.  Not wanting to be left out of the high-velocity smallbore market they developed the 225 to be their new offering.  Many wildcat cartridges were going strong during this period, one of them being the 22-250.  After Remington made the 22-250 a standard factory round in 1965 the 225 had a hard time keeping up...in sales anyway.   The two rounds perform very similarly, but with the 22-250 having a more conventional design it gained a much larger following.
 
Winchester chambered the 225 in both sporter and varmint configurations of the Model 70.  The only other company to chamber the 225 was Savage, who brought it out in the Model 340.  Other manufacturers went with the 22-250, and the demise of the 225 was imminent.  Anyone who is lucky enough to own a Model 70 in 225 should not be discouraged by the lack of interest in this cartridge.  It's a fine performer and will serve the varmint hunter well.  



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 Posted: Mon May 1st, 2006 05:17 PM
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Gunrunner
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This will be my last review of Cartridge of the Month.  I'm turning the reigns over to CB900F at this time.  CB has a wealth of knowledge about cartridges and will be a great asset to The Handloaders Bench in reviewing the winners for us. 

I'll still be here, and will continue with the Military Rifle of the Month review.

CB, it's all yours bud.  Enjoy it as much as I have....:thumbs:

Gunrunner

edit:  I just noticed in my Midway flyer that 225 Win brass is indeed available from Winchester.   My mistake on saying it's not available....GR

Last edited on Mon May 1st, 2006 07:19 PM by Gunrunner



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 Posted: Tue May 2nd, 2006 01:11 AM
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Timberghozt



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This is one cartridge I never have liked.Intended to replace the Swift...NOOTTTT..This thing is on par with a 223 Rem..I would never own a rifle chambered for this thing.Winchester screwed the pooch with this mistake........:shameon:



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 Posted: Thu May 4th, 2006 03:21 AM
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CB900F
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Timber;

Not to put too fine a point on it, but in the middle 60's Winchester had an absolute talent for stepping on their dick.  The .225 is a salient point for those making that argument. 

Nonetheless, the cartridge in & of itself is a fine varmint .22 centerfire.  It's unpopularity had more to do with it's competition and the extremely bad feelings sixties sportsmen felt for Winchester as a company than the performance of the .225.  All Winchester would have had to do is legitimatize the .22-250 instead of spending development money on the .225 & they would have upstaged Remington and breathed some life into the post-64 model 70's.  But, as I said, they had an absolute talent at that time.  Winchester announced the .225 in June of 1964, Remington released the .22-250 in early 1965 & doomed the .225.

The initial factory loads were supposed to be right up there with the .22-250.  But, in those days, not every third guy on the range had a chrono, & rumor had it that the .225 was a little retarded.  This may have been due to the hard feelings about the revamping of the model 70 too.  Don't ever discount how badly that marketing decision hurt Winchester in every aspect of their business from 1964 on.

In any case, the initial published pre-release data had a 50 grain bullet load at 3800 fps, a 55 grain bullet at 3650 fps, and a 60 grain bullet at 3500 fps.  After production started, the figures were different.  If the 50 and 60 grain bullet loads were ever released, it would be news to me & several others.  The 55 grain load was shown as 3570 fps, not 3650 fps. 

The hell of it is, that with modern powders in a good gun, this is as accurate a cartridge as you can ask for.  Nobody ever seriously knocked it for accuracy, only speed.  And speed is still somewhat of an issue.  Speer #13 shows loads over 3600 fps only with the 50 grain bullets.   The 55's just barely squeak over 3500 fps with one powder only.  On the other hand, Hornady shows several powders able to push their 50 or 55 grain bullets to 3600 fps.  Loads in both manuals were developed in Winchester model 70's with 24" barrels.

On the plus side, if you've got a Winchester model 70 in .225, treat it well, it's rare.

900F



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 Posted: Thu May 4th, 2006 11:02 AM
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Timberghozt



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I hear ya CB...It can`t compete with the 22-250 nor the legendary Swift...isn`t much better in numbers that the 223 Rem..Its a fine cartidge in its own right.I just don`t see anything benefical to it it that would make me want it.Not downing anyone that does own it,just not my cup of tea..:thumbs:



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 Posted: Thu May 11th, 2006 01:31 AM
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jimatcat
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as i'm the guy that nominated the 225, here's mine:::... i bought the rifle in a trade for a mossberg 243...28 yrs ago.... it had a weaver k6 with fine cross hair and a dot... now its got a k12.... i handload 52 gr hollow points, about 3200fps... hornady's most accurate load... ive taken everthing from ground squirrels to pronghorn antelope with it.... jackrabbits at 400 yds on a still day....i have about 300 loaded rounds, and 10 or so boxes of new winchester brass...i'd still like a swift, but never wanted the 22-250....with handloading i can duplicate the 22-250.....



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 Posted: Mon Jun 5th, 2006 08:02 PM
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bea175



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The 225 Win isn't all that bad, but it was trying to follow in the shadow of the 220 Swift and that domed it from the beginning. It is a great round in Single Shot rifles and comes very close to the 22-250 . I personally wouldn't build a rifle for this round because of the availability of the brass. I have used it on a limited basis for groundhogs back in the 70's and it worked well, but the Swift has and always will  be my favorite when it comes to long range varmint hunting. :thumbs:



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