19 Jul The New 224 Valkyrie
Graphic Credit: The Truth About Guns
The 224 Valkyrie is Federal Premium’s newest entry into the .22 caliber shooting world. Designed for velocity, high Ballistic Coefficient, and long distance energy retention; Federal’s new cartridge is an amazing offering to competitive shooters and hunter’s alike!
The .224 Valkyrie started out in life as a .30 Remington/6.8 SPC case. Necking down a 6.8 SPC case with a long and skinny .22-caliber bullet providing high ballistic coefficients is the concept behind this new cartridge. The projectile is the same diameter used by the .223/5.56mm, but with heavier grain weights than traditionally loaded into the .223/5.56mm.
Federal offers 60-grain Nosler Ballistic Tip, a 90-grain Fusion MSR, 75-grain American Eagle Total Metal Jacket, 90-grain Sierra MatchKing, and a 78 grain Barnes TSX. Hornady also currently loads the 60-grain V-Max, 75-grain BTHP, and 88-Grain ELD-Match. The popularity of this cartridge will surely prompt other manufacturers to start loading their own proprietary projectiles in this offering (think Barnes and Nosler among others).
Researching the ballistics of this cartridge, I noticed that in factory ammunition the heaviest projectile available for the .22 caliber was the 77-grain Sierra MatchKing BTHP .223 Remington, also from Federal. Setting these ballistics side-by-side with the heavier, 90-grain Sierra MatchKing BTHP the Valkyrie clearly surpasses the .223 Rem! Boasting a 0.563 G1 BC versus the 0.372 of the .223 Rem, this translates to the wind not affecting the Valkyrie near as much as it’s inferior counterparts. A 10 MPH wind from the 3’o clock at 1000 yards moves the 90-grain bullet 57” LESS than the 77-grain. You read that right: 90-grain Valkyrie 78.38” of wind drift versus 135.39” of the 77-grain .223 Rem.
Better BC’s also account for retaining velocity and energy better than other .22 caliber offerings. Taking that same bullet match up as previous, the .223 only has 1122 FPS with 215 FTLB of energy left over at 900 yards. The .224 Valkyrie still has 1151 FPS with 265 FTLB of energy left over… at 1300 yards! That is correct, the Valkyrie projectile that weighs 13-grains more is retaining more energy and velocity 400 yards FURTHER than the .223 Rem!
From a Varmint hunting perspective, using the same data, the 224 Valkyrie has 6” less wind drift than the 223 does at 400 yards. The 224 Valkyrie still has almost 900 FTLB of energy at 400 yards while the 223 has only 590 FTLB of energy!
During my research I also noticed that ALL of the manufactures are building their rifles on an AR-15 style, semi-automatic platforms or chassis systems. As fun to shoot as they are, the AR-Platform is HEAVY compared to a Fiberglass stocked, bolt-action rifle. We at HCR have completed our research and worked through the design issues to offer this rifle in a VERY light weight, 6.5-7 pound rifle. This light of a rifle would make a great stand/truck gun and since we can use a shorter barrel, adding a suppressor will not make this ridiculously long. Only registering 8 pounds of felt recoil (6.5 Creedmoor comes in a 15 pounds), this will make a rifle for those that are recoil sensitive or have had previous surgeries and are unable to endure the recoil of other cartridges.
For the competitive shooter, the HCR Long Range Tactical chambered in .224 Valkyrie would be an AMAZING cartridge to compete with! Staying supersonic out past 1300 yards will be sufficient for most rifle matches. The high BC’s that we looked at will help with the ever changing effect of the wind. Combine all of that with the ability to visually track each hit (or occasional miss) through your mounted rifle scope will do away with the need to have a spotter calling adjustments because this rifle simply doesn’t recoil!
Regardless of the application, rely on Hill Country Rifle Co. to build your next rifle chambered in .224 Valkyrie! If you have any questions concerning this or other cartridges, please feel free to contact us and we will be happy to assist you!