View Full Version : 221 Fireball and Lil'Gun

Herb in Pa
07-10-2010, 04:45 PM
Has anyone loaded the 30 grain bergers with LilGun? I checked with Berger and they didn't list this with their data? I'm considering using the same data for the 35 gr vmax............anyone see any problems??:confused:

Gary in Illinois
07-10-2010, 05:57 PM

I would think that would be a safe place to start with a bullet that is approximately 15% lighter. My use of Lil Gun has been mostly limited to heavy loads in big bore handguns, though.


07-11-2010, 12:54 AM
Hornady Vol 7 (2007):

Hornady 35 gr V-Max Rem Rem 7-1/2 Lil'Gun 13.3 @ 3,200 fps
Hornady 35 gr V-Max Rem Rem 7-1/2 Lil'Gun 14.0 @ 3,300 fps
Hornady 35 gr V-Max Rem Rem 7-1/2 Lil'Gun 14.7 @ 3,400 fps
Hornady 35 gr V-Max Rem Rem 7-1/2 Lil'Gun 15.4 @ 3,500 fps

Barnes Website:

Barnes 45 gr Banded Spitzer Solid Rem WSR Lil' Gun 11.5 @ 2,443 fps

07-11-2010, 01:06 AM
From Berger:

221 Fireball
Bullet Powder Start Load Approximate Start Velocity Approximate Max Velocity Fill Ratio
30 Grain H110 15.5 3274 17.4 3635 87.1%
30 Grain WIN 296 15.5 3343 17.3 3706 86.5%
30 Grain IMR 4227 15.5 3230 17.2 3558 100.9%
30 Grain VIHT 110 14.0 3338 15.5 3629 98.1%
30 Grain RE-7 17.0 3305 18.8 3655 104.3%
30 Grain AA 5744 14.5 3202 16.4 3587 94.2%
30 Grain AA1680 17.0 3123 19.1 3521 95.4%
30 Grain H4227 15.5 3209 17.5 3600 102.7%
30 Grain H4198 16.5 3042 18.7 3447 106.9%

Herb in Pa
07-11-2010, 04:12 AM
Thanks for the replies, Berger uses quickload data and there must not be any available for LilGun. I currently shoot the 35 vmax over 15.6 grains of LilGun with great results both on paper and the local groundog population. Just thought I might try the 30 grainers.

07-16-2010, 02:44 PM
Herb- I found the 35gr. Vmax, while very accurate at 100 yards, fails badly at anything past about 160yards, with 200 yard groups opening up to almsot 3". The 40gr. Vmax, on the other hand, seems to hold it's accuracy to at least 400yards. On gophers, the 40gr. makes as big a mess as the lighter but faster low BC 35gr.
I'd merely start with a starting load for the 35gr. and work from there. With 40gr. bullets, Lil'Gun is a bit too fast burning for that case, I think. It should work OK with the lighter, but longer 30gr. Berger. Due to it's length, perhaps the bullet's lighter weight might not counter it's increased barrel drag completely, but then, it should deliver everything that W296 gives and perhaps improve on accuracy as well.

07-18-2010, 03:19 PM
I agree with Daryl on the 35 grain Vmaxs. Both in the Hornet and the 221 I found the groups very poor at 200 and terrible at 300. I have had much better groups with the 40 Vmax and Blitzking and in the 221 the 50 Grain SPSX is a great performaer both for groups and damage. I use 14.3 grains Lil"Gun, CCI 400 primer in Rem brass and the 50 grain SPSX. It Chronos at 3050 FPS, no pressure signs, and in fact it is so low pressure I have cases with over 15 loadings in a factory chamber, doesn't heat the barrel, and will hold under an inch out past 300 yards.

I too would start with the load for the 35 and work up. One thing to watch for though is Lil"Gun is a fast powder that goes from fine to over pressure in a pretty small jump so I work it up .2 grains at a time, that way you get pressures signs well before you have a problem.

07-18-2010, 04:00 PM
My first CZ .22 Hornet used 13.5gr. Lil'Gun with RP brass pistol primers with 50gr. SPSX and delivered 3,080fps. It shot them into 1/2" to 6/10".

My new Hornet just breaks 3,000fps with 13.5gr. and makes 3/4" groups with the same 50gr. SP or SPSX bullet, but does much better with 40gr. Vmax's, 40gr. Sierra Rn's as well as the various 45gr. SP's and RN's.

The 45gr. Hornady SP is a very accurate bullet and does a good job on gophers or coyotes when driven 3,00fps to 3,200fps form the Hornet. I'd expect the .221 to make 3,200fps with that bullet with appropriate powders.

I also think I'd experiment with a Lee crimp die in the .221 as well. It's about manditory for the Hornet and Bee from my experiences with those. It looks like a .218 Lee crimp die might work for all three rounds. I use a .218 Bee die for both bee and hornet's.

07-18-2010, 04:37 PM
Daryl you are right, I can easily get more speed out of the 221 with the Lil"Gun and the 50 SPSX, but I like the low pressure many reloads per case I get. If I wnat 3500 FPS I can get that from using the 40 grain BlitzKings, and still have the long case life. B.C.s of the 50 SPSX and 40 BK are about the same, thing I like about the SX is they are about $7 a hundred cheaper so for high volume gopher shooting they are a more economical choice.