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January 19, 2023 - 1:57 am
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Several years ago I came across an 1885 22 WCF that I purchased and put in the safe. Beautiful rifle the had been restored. I can’t recall my entire conversation with the previous owner but I believe he told me it was re-chambered for 22 Hornet. The barrel has no markings what so ever. I will add that it came with 22 WCF bullet molds. Serial # 105025. Main question is should I have a gunsmith verify the caliber or is it safe to shoot 22 Hornet in a 22 WCF rifle?

Appreciate your responses 

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January 19, 2023 - 2:07 am
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Rule of thumb verify ammo is correct for the firearm. This probably goes double for a custom gun with vague provenance. 

 

Mike

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January 19, 2023 - 2:08 am
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Mike,

There would be no need to “rechamber” a 22 WCF to the 22 Hornet… they are the same cartridge case dimensionally except for the slightly larger neck diameter for the 22 WCF.  The 22 WCF used a .228 diameter bullet whereas the 22 Hornet uses a .224 bullet.  So in answer to your question, Yes, it is safe to shoot a 22 Hornet in a Winchester Single Shot rifle originally chambered for the 22 WCF as long is the rifle is in sound mechanical condition.

Bert

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January 19, 2023 - 2:35 am
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Good deal. Thank you for the replies

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January 19, 2023 - 2:46 am
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Welcome to the forum, Mike. Any other cool Winchesters hanging out in that safe?

 

Mike

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January 19, 2023 - 4:00 am
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Mike Laurer said The barrel has no markings what so ever. I will add that it came with 22 WCF bullet molds.
  

Brl is a replacement, obviously.  Rebarreling a 22 WCF to Hornet would make sense, to be able to use standard .224 bullets.  Rebarreling to 22 WCF, with its oddball bore dia, makes no sense whatever.  Leads me to suspect the mould has nothing to do with the new brl, but you can find out for sure by slugging the bore or making a chamber cast. 

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January 22, 2023 - 6:29 pm
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Bert H. said
Mike,

There would be no need to “rechamber” a 22 WCF to the 22 Hornet… they are the same cartridge case dimensionally except for the slightly larger neck diameter for the 22 WCF.  The 22 WCF used a .228 diameter bullet whereas the 22 Hornet uses a .224 bullet.  So in answer to your question, Yes, it is safe to shoot a 22 Hornet in a Winchester Single Shot rifle originally chambered for the 22 WCF as long is the rifle is in sound mechanical condition.

Bert

  

Mostly correct.  I used Hornet brass and fire formed it to fit my chamber.  I used a tapered punch to open the neck enough to push the bullet in.  No sizing die was used. The dimensions are close enough to shoot a light load to fire form it but the case dimension will change.  The tapered part (shoulder) of the case will expand and move a bit forward.  Once you fire a Hornet case in a 22 WCF chamber the fired case probably won’t chamber in a Hornet without using a full length sizing die to not only reduce the neck diameter but to move the tapered (shoulder) part back to the size of an original Hornet case.

Easy job.  Case did not need trimming since the difference is only about .001″.  Have fun.

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