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NEF Sportster .22 mag

1611 Views 12 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  TERRY8mm

I'm new to this forum but have been shooting the .22 magnum for quite awhile now. Have a Bullbery 17 inch barrel and a T/C 10 inch barrel, and am very pleased with both. Have a Bullberry .17 Mach IV as well that is fantastic.

Both shoot the Wincester .40 gr HP very well and give good performance on prairie dogs at reasonable distances. They shoot the higher priced stuff even better but I'm too cheap to buy it. ;)

Have also had good luck with the ARMSCOR .22 magnum ammo. Priced pretty reasonable too.

Anyways......I was in my local shop couple days ago and picked up a NEF Sportster in .22 magnum for $100 new in box and was wondering if the experts here on this forum have any care and feeding tips for the NEF. Plan on adding a .17 HMR barrel later.

Haven't had a chance to try the gun yet as it decided to drop down to about 5 above outside here in Nebraska. Least not much snow like some of you other folks have!

Thanks guys!

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Feeding tips

Hi Joe and welcome,

I'm definately no expert.

You just have to do the trial and error thing. I have noticed that people with the same gun as me have different results. One round that everyone seems to have good luck with is the Remmington premier. 40 gr Maxi mags seem to be a favorite also. I have found 5 rounds that shoot very well in my gun. Others are not as good. One thing that might help is knowing your twist rate. You might have to carefully check it with a cleaning rod by marking it and measuring how far it travels down the barrel to make one revolution. Some guys would shiver at the thought of using a rod so be carefull. Make sure there are no sharp edges. 1 twist in 15" will shoot the heavier(longer) bullets better than 1 in 16". The bullets are not created equaly as far as "splat" factor goes. Good luck I hope this helps.
Make sure that the "Sportster" can have the barrel interchanged. I'm not sure you can get a .17 barrel for it. I have a .17 NEF Sportster and love it but I'm in doubt that it's available as a interchange. Check the H&R/NEF web site. Not sure but make sure before you buy it if you really want it in a .17 HMR
I just checked their site, They have added the .17 barrel for the Sportster. It's $63.00, Man get the gun. You'll have a .22mag & .17 for $163.00 + scope & taxes. SMART MOVE. Bill

Could you post a link to NEF's website plz. I have looked for it before but never seemed to find a site that was their own.

May the crows always flock for ya...

Ahhhh Harrington and Richardson and I thought it was just New england firearms. No wonder I couldn't find it.


I follow what you said about the twist rate for the NEF, but I thought they were all 1 in 16. You you saying that they aren't all the same from NEF?

Also, I appreciate all your quick responses. As for adding the .17 barrel, that was the plan, but I sure wish ammo wolud come down some.:(

I hope I can find a round the NEF likes. I've been lurking around here for awhile reading the post and it seems as though most people are having the best luck with the high dollar rifles. Which makes sense as usually you get what you pay for. I don't see too many posts for cheapskates like me. :)

But one thing I noticed here is the helpful and friendly atmosphere in the forums, so once again, thanks!

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No sir I don't know what NEF's in .22 WMR are. I do know that some other gun makers are 16 and some are 15. My ruger is 15. Not very many websites say what their twist rates are. Savage has a list of twist rates on their website. Their .22 WMR is 1 twist in 16". I hadn't been to NEF's site till after REDTIP17 filled me in to where it was. But now that I have I don't see it listed. That's why I thought you might want to check it unless someone else knows for sure. I have been told that a 16 twist is good for 30 grain bullets but a 15 is better for heavier ones.
Hi Chum..

I appreciate your responses. I sort of lurk around over on the H & R forums too and copied this today from a thread over there. Don't know about the .17 HMR twist rate though. He didn't list it.

NEF Barrel Twist Rates:

.22 LR 1 in 16"
.22 WMRF 1 in 16"
.22 Hornet 1 n 12"
.223 1 in 12"
.25/06 1 in 10"
.243 1 in 10"
.270 1 in 10"
.280 1 in 10"
.308 1 in 10"
357 Mag 1 in 18 3/4"
7x57 1 in 10"
7x64 1 in 10"
30/30 1 in 10"
30/06 1 in 10"
38/55 1 in 18"
444 1 in 38"
44 Mag 1 in 38"
45/70 1 in 20"
Shotgun Barrels
45 Colt/410 1 in 16"
20 ga. 1 in 28"
12 ga. 1 in 35"

I noticed another post over there from a guy asking about barrel grooves, whether it is 4, 6, or even 28. I'm gathering the more grooves provides better accuracy. I don't know much about that though, never gave it much thought, but it would seem to make sense.

Anyway...thanks again.

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With your other guns shooting the winchester 40 grain well, i would probably just try feeding it to the nef as well. A 40 grain bullet is a compromise between the heavy and lights, and while you are figuring out what your gun likes it is normally where i start. What i did is set my gun (ruger 77/22 mag) for the cci maxi mag hp and zero on that. It is a reasonable priced round, perform adequately, good box, easy to find. Then from there i try other rounds as i get a chance and money to see if i find other stuff. It isnt to hard to change from the 40 grain up to a 50 grain to see how they group, or a 40 grain down to a 30grain, but going from a 30 to 50 can take a little more time.

I like your nef idea, of switching barrels. Let me know how it goes.
I have a Sportster in 22 mag, in my particular gun the Federal 50 grain HP's shoot the best. At least so far, still have a few others I want to try. Last group I shot with the Federals was 9/16" at 50 yards. Winchester Supreme's I thought were pretty good, (3/4" at 50), till I tried a box of the Federals.

My Sporty shoots the REM Premiers between .75 and 1" consistently, as long as I don't overheat the barrel,> 10 quick shots.

I did have to tweak it a little, lap the chamber and relieve some forearm pressure on the barrel and reciever. The trigger was great right out of the box.
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