The .220REDLINE, Chuck & Buck Buster Extraordinaire!

By Fred R.

Part 4

Status Report & Health Check

Welcome to Part 4 of the Saga of the .220Redline! Long before endeavoring to build this wildcat, I’ve accepted that running a cartridge nearer the edge of traditional reasoning is not without consequences. Sparking off almost 70 grains of smokeless powder down a .224 caliber hole is rather extreme! Its only a matter of time before throat wear, firecracking, etc… occur. And of course, the knock-on effect that matters to us shooters is affected bullet flight (accuracy) & terminal performance (integrity). So, although I still give exactly “0 f**ks” about said consequences, from a purely experimental perspective, it makes sense to keep some tabs on the barrel…

As of this writing, my .220Redline has ~250 rds down the tube. Some of those initial load were ‘warm’, to say the least! Since then, i’ve backed down to a more brass friendly level, and still enjoying 4,000fps+ muzzle velocity. With 3 good loads established for 3 purpose driven bullet choices, I’ve little inclination to ‘plink’ with this beast! Therefore, most all of the recent rounds down the Brux tube have been sent with lethal intent…and dramatic after-effect! That established, lets get to what guys wanna know: “how far gone is the throat???”

Seein’s how I don’t own a borescope, I’m relying on the tried & true method of determining throat erosion by comparing cartridge OAL, new vs. present, with a given bullet. Based on a average measurements with 3 bullet profiles, after 225rds. down the barrel, hard jam land engagement has moved forward about .045″ since new…YIKES! One thing to note, I took initial OAL bullet/land contact measurement with 0 rd. count on the barrel w/ fresh cut chamber. Prolly should’ve held off and got a baseline measure after 20rds or so, but… oh well. Surely there’s a bit of ‘break in’ wear included in that rather large value… LOL! Bottom line is, at the rate I use this rifle, the next 250 rounds will take several years. And as long as accuracy holds, I don’t care one iota what the micrometer says. One thing to add, I did the first real barrel cleaning just before taking OAL measurements, and the Brux barrel cleaned up lickety split! A good soak of BoreTech foam, couple brush strokes and a few patches, and the barrel literally ‘squeaked’ clean…

Kill Report

Even though I friggn’ LOVE hunting / calling predators, still haven’t schwacked any coyotes with the .220 Redline. Mainly due to ‘minding manners’ on stand. Got two cute .223Rem based wildcats (.17 Predator & 6x45AI) that both do a bangup job for ‘after hours’ thermal calling campaigns. Simply stated, ~26gr of ‘boom’ is alot less obnoxious when calling in close vicinity of farm buildings & livestock… especially after dark! Alas, my .220Redline WILL be coming along for any future ‘out west’ predator calling adventures, and I’ve little doubt it will perform swimmingly! But, I just gotta stay with the peashooters, after hours…

Since Part 3 of the Redline saga hit Dave’s excellent blog, quite a few chucks & another nice buck have fallen to the .220Redline! Here’s a compilation of some early ‘chuckin’ vids with the .220 Redline, mostly with the 75gr JLK going a smidge over 4025fps! Couple 69gr TMK test hits mixed in, too & lotsa called headshots (aka, “SNERTS”) for good measure! I left out the 737yd shot from earlier, but plenty of 3-600+ yd vaportrails to witness…

.220 Redline ‘Chuck Destruction

And, this summer passed, had a great few days on the chuck fields with my friend “P”, out on some of his old stomping grounds. He was lookin’ forward to trying the .220Redline, and I was anxious to see his reaction! IIRC, we combined for 28 chucks in two days, most of them falling to the Redline. I sure enjoyed the time together…THANK YOU, P!!! We were like two kids, spotting hits (and a few misses) for each other. Ironcally, most every MISS was due to holding TOO MUCH wind! We literally just quit holding wind inside of 400yds, despite a tangible measure of breeze. In real world chuck conditions, the .220Redline just doesn’t require much hold-off! Here’s some more ‘chuckin’ action, from this past season, complete with some nifty vaportrails.

.220 Redline ‘Chuck Destruction Part 2

Hope ya watched til the end, as I added last year’s buck hunt to round the video out. Got lucky to have a pretty 10pt step out behind a couple does, & the .220 / 70TSX took care of the rest…

.220 Redline and 10 pt buck

After “kopfjaegering” woodchucks at 2-3x the distance all summer, hitting a whitetail @ 200yds is nothing special, really. I added the buck video in, because it depicts the terminal performance I’ve enjoyed from the mightly lil’ 70gr BarnesTSX on the other 4 deer cleanly taken with them. Full penetration, short run & tip over DEAD. Anyhoo, here’s link to next video!

Closing Thoughts, And Something To Look Forward to…

Well, that about does it for reporting on my .220Redline. For the wildcat junkies who’ve been reading along, I’m humbled by your continued interest. Don’t worry, the wildcat itch has struck again, and the .240REDLINE is a ‘thing’ already! If Dave allows, I’ll be happy to do another series on the ‘birth’ of the .240REDLINE. After enjoying the .220 for a couple years now, the .240 will have some big ballistic boots to fill! But, I think the .240 may be worth a try, so…

STAY TUNED! The reamer print is already done, confirmed & being ground!!!

Good shooting & be well!

Fred R.

The .220Redline, Chuck & Buck Buster Extraordinare!
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The .220Redline, Chuck & Buck Buster Extraordinare!
Status report, health check and field performance of the .220Redline project!
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5 thoughts on “The .220REDLINE, Chuck & Buck Buster Extraordinaire!”

  1. Hi what barrel are you running in that 220 Redline? That sure is a smoker.

    1. Thanks Robert!

      The .220 is chambered in a Brux barrel. 1:9tw, #4 contour, finished @ 27”.

  2. Hey Fred this is an amazing write up!!! I’ve been considering this for a while and while bummed someone beat me to the punch, I’m happy to know someone’s done the science behind it already. I’m wondering if I could pick your brain on this if you have time. I appreciate it, Jake. [email protected]

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