Reply with quote #1
Looking to build a .243 WSSM AR-15 upper for long range tactical & "f class" shooting, as well as a great mid-sized game/ hunting set up. Per my ballistics program a 28" barrel 243WSSM with the 117 DTAC will shoot flatter and with less drift than a .300WM 0ut to at least 1200 yards, all in a small little auto. Pretty nifty I think.
Ballistics, functioning, and accuracy are good in this build.. I have read reports of 5 shots in the .2's @ 100yds.
My only concern, is getting the 110+ grain VLD's to work in the magazine length of 2.3" max, so as to not be limited to single loading.
I can find no one that has this build who can/will tell me their first hand experience. The two gunsmiths nor Olympic Arms who supplies it as a factory offering can nor will answer these questions. Will the 106, 108, 115, and 117 VLD's work in the mag?
I got to thinking if I were to "Ackely" the .243 WSSM with a 40deg. shoulder, it would make for a shorter overall length of the case, via moving the neck rearward, giving a little more room for a lengthy bullet in the COAL.
I'm not a wildcatter, engineer, or much of anything else!
It would be great to hear some thoughts, opinions & FACTS from those more knowledgeable & experienced than I.
Reply with quote #2
Okay, That is not what I wanted to hear. Your fired Cat.
Seriously- Thanks for the input, I was guessing the 40deg shoulder would move the mouth back at lest .010 - .015."
I'm glad you clarified. Now hopefully someone with experience in this area (stuffing 6mm VLD's in an AR mag) will chime in.
Reply with quote #3
The WSSM on the AR-15 platform is a single-stack. You can mill a slot in the front of the magazine and gain a HUGE amount of room for the VLD bullets.
Where I have never done an improved case on the WSSM line, I have built and sold uppers just for long-range. The last one I did was on a Shilen blank and my customer's first 5 shot group, after break-in, was .192" @ 100 yards.
Reply with quote #4
Several years back there was a VLD magazine being produced that would allow an OAL of 2.460" for the 223-based cases. What some enterprising individaul did was open the back guide ridge of the magazine to allow the head of the case to fit back into this guide ridge, single-stacked. I have 1 and is just a slick as it gets for the AR. I was looking at the head of the WSSM cases, and i bet an equally enterprising individual could do the same thing with the WSSM mags, and if need be mill some off the slot the ridge fits into on the lowers. Wish somebody would try it, cause that in combination with the nose end of the magazine opened up could allow a 117 DTAC to be seated quite a bit more efficiently i'd bet.
Reply with quote #5
DTECH - How about some lowdown on your 243 WSSM uppers?? For long range what length barrel, what kind of accuracy could be expected past 100? I saw your numbers at 100 what about 500+?
Reply with quote #6
I don't have a lot of personal, long-range field time with the WSSM's. I have taken many nice white tail deer with them, but all under 200 yards.
For the first couple of years that I was building the WSSM uppers I was using the Olympic SUM barrel. It's a broach-cut stainless barrel that I've had excellent luck with. In earlier years, Oly sold barrel blanks and I have chambered a couple of bolt-action rifles with those blanks. The barrels are fantastic! The problem is, that the barrel assemblies are chambered in a production manor, after all, it is a production barrel! The SUM barrels have been giving me very good accuracy, but since I have started chambering my own Shilen blanks, the accuracy is better, and much more consistent. I think if a guy were to hand-chamber the SUM barrels you would have great accuracy as well. The production SUM barrels are producing 100 yard groups of well under an inch. When I was working with my own upper, I was able to get consistent sub 1/2" groups @ 100 yards, and with single digit standard deviation. That load was with a Hornaday 87 grain bullet.
Now if you do the tables on a load that is sub 1/2" and a SD of 1, you will find that it does quite well at the longer ranges. I never put it on paper beyond 100 yards, but did very well on prairie dogs that had been burned back to beyond 400 yards with the .223. The only "real" data that I have is from one of my customers. He ordered a WSSM upper for 600 yard comp. That was the guy that got the .192" group I spoke of in my last post. When I finished his upper, it was too late for him to compete in the class that he should have been in.(I admit, I know little to nothing of this form of competition) He entered in "F" class. From his description, this class is unlimited. Unlimited caliber, optics and weight. He was competing against huge bolt-action rifles with powerful optics. He ended up with 4th in the state, he was elated.
I left a career of 30 years in electronics to build AR's, enjoy myself and have some time to hunt and shoot. Early on that worked well, but I'm a challenge-driven individual and keep launching into new territory. After we got the WSSM project off the ground, I haven't had time to do anything but build uppers. Now I've taken on chambering many wildcats, including a new batch of big-bore WSSM's. 6.5mm, 7mm, .300, .338 and the new Indiana deer legal .358 WSSM.
Reply with quote #7
So you think the 243 WSSM will more than hold its own out far? That sounds very interesting. What would be really cool if it could be arranged is a test, a black gun shoot out to see just what can be done. Each owner/designer take their own rifle, work up a load and submit the results with formula, barrel specs and target to webmaster.
He then takes them and assigns the winner. Post the results and info in a section for all of us to read. The winner then wins the prize of a cup of coffee or other beverage of choice. LOL
I mean think about it Hollinger, Whitley, dtech, High Performance International and any others that are willing. The only requirements is that it is NOT a 223 and the configuration must be able to be purchased by common folk. So no lathed turned bullets and brass you can not find or make by gathering components on the web.
Paul: If you read this I am willing to help put it together and contact black gun builders.
Reply with quote #8
When you start talking John Holinger, you are talking out of my league. This guy is inside the competition market, lives it and breaths it. I do a fair amount of business with John and respect him greatly. I primarily build for the varmint, predator and big-game hunters. On occasion I have a guy come along and want a gun that he's going to compete with. The VAST majority are just shooters, like me.
Here's a pic of some of the wildcat WSSM's that I'm just launching into. From left is the .300/.25 WSSM, then the 7mm, 6.5, 25 and .243. Yet to come are the .338 and .358. I have the reamers but am waiting on the dies. The .358 will be trimmed to make it big-game legal in Indiana.