.222 Remington

"Triple Deuce"

A compilation of the history of one of the finest factory cartridges ever!

The .222 Remington has been a favorite cartridge for both target shooters and varmint hunters for nearly 60 years.  Affectionately nicknamed the “Triple Deuce”, the .222’s proven performance has become legendary.  From its introduction in 1950, through the 1970’s the .222 was the cartridge of choice for benchrest competitors.  During this time period, if you did not use a rifle chambered for the .222 it was likely that you were not in competition for the win.  To this day records are still held by rifles chambered in .222 Remington.  

The ingenious nature of benchrest competitors has continued to spawn improvements to their rifles.  Unfortunately for the Triple Deuce, this zeal for the infinitesimal edge has resulted in the development and use of calibers that seem to have surpassed the extremely fine accuracy of the .222. Remember that the advantage afforded competitors by these newer chamberings is measured in groups varying by hundredths or thousandths of an inch.  For all but the most competitive shooter, this difference is insignificant.  This is especially true for varmint hunters and hobby target shooters.  In most cases it will take many, many years of dedicated shooting experience before the skill of a shooter can advance beyond the limitations of the Triple Deuce.  Most hobby shooters (like me) will never achieve this skill level.

        Mike Walker was a long time employee and designer for Remington Arms Co. Inc. and is credited with many accomplishments.  Among them are the design of the 721, 722, 40X and 700 rifles, the button rifling process, and the development of the .222 Remington cartridge.  This fine little cartridge, released in 1950, was an entirely new design rather than one that is based on a parent case re-necked to another caliber.  The Triple Deuce has many design attributes that contribute to its superior accuracy.  Among these are its modest powder capacity, 23 degree shoulder angle and a long case neck, all these provide the foundation for a cartridge that some refer to as “inherently accurate”.  No matter how one describes the little Triple Deuce, it is a pleasure to reload and a dream to shoot a rifle chambered in .222 Remington.

        Some of the criteria for the design of the .222 was a rimless medium range cartridge that would fit in and feed in a short action and fire a 50 grain bullet to a velocity of about 3200 fps.  These qualities were skillfully incorporated into a highly accurate cartridge with an effective range of about 250 yards.  This distance is quite adequate for most varmint hunters especially in the eastern US.   In the 1950’s a Remington 722 rifle chambered in .222 was a varmint hunter’s secret weapon.  With a quality scope, this combination was frequently capable of sub minute of angle groups.  If the owner of this desirable rifle was also a hand loader, accuracy of ½ minute of angle is possible. 

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