The Handloaders Bench Home
Home Search search Menu menu Not logged in - Login | Register
The Handloaders Bench > Rifles > Rifles > 22 Hornet vs 218 Bee

Attention: Due to an increase in spammers all new members will be activated manually by an administrator, and start out as probationary members. You will only be able to start a welcome post in the welcome new members forum. You can reply to all other posts. Once you have reached 5 posts you will be a full member and can start topics. We apologize for the inconvenience but spammers are becoming a real problem. We are also experiencing problems with new members receiving activation emails. We are manually activating new members. Please be patient with us. We will activate your membership within 24 hours of registration. We are sorry for any inconvenience this might cause. HB Admin

22 Hornet vs 218 Bee
 Moderated by: WildBill, wheezengeezer, DesertMarine
 New Topic   Reply   Printer Friendly 
 Rate Topic 
AuthorPost
 Posted: Sat Jan 31st, 2009 01:44 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
1st Post
OK Hunter
Full Member
 

Joined: Mon Apr 23rd, 2007
Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma USA
Posts: 238
Photo: [Download]
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 7mm-08
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

I'm going to have an Encore barrel built by MGM or Bullberry and can't decide between these two fun calibers.  What is  everyone's take on  them?  Is 218 Bee brass available commercially?



____________________
Read the Patriot Post. It's right and its free!
http://www.patriotpost.us


 Posted: Sat Jan 31st, 2009 01:55 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
2nd Post
klallen
Board Founder


Joined: Thu Feb 10th, 2005
Location: Great Falls, Montana USA
Posts: 2318
Photo: [Download]
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: Warbirdz Rule
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

Performance wise, they look darn near identical.  Can't imagine one being able to do something that the other couldn't do just as effectively.

Bee brass will probalby be harder to fine, but not impossible.  I see Midway's got Remington Hornet stuff in stock.  Out of stock with Winchester Hornet and Bee brass.  GunBroker's currently got two auctions going for Bee brass so I'd imagine if that was the round you just wanted to go with, you'd be able to put together a pretty nice groups of cases.  Might just take a little longer and a little more searching (and cost a little more) to do so.  If you didn't want to deal with these brass concerns, Hornet would be your way to go.

I own a couple handguns in some obsolete rounds where cases are hard to find.  I've never let that deter me if I absolutely wanted the round.  Ya just shoot with what you can get and always be on the lookout for more on the web or gun shows.

Good luck to ya.  klallen



____________________
A Big Mouth Don't Make A Big Man !!!

THE DUKE



 Posted: Sat Jan 31st, 2009 02:31 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
3rd Post
Rockydog
Board Founder


Joined: Tue Jul 26th, 2005
Location: Wisconsin USA
Posts: 9878
Photo: 
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 8mm Mauser
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

Winchester still makes brass and, I believe, one commercial loading. It can be fireformed from other brass. see below:

 

Here is some information:

218 Bee

When Winchester introduced the .218 Bee in 1938, they probably figured that varmint shooters would buy any rifle as long as it was chambered for a new twenty two caliber centerfire cartridge. Obviously, their crystal ball was operating at less than full voltage, less than 6,000 Model 65 lever action rifles were produced in this caliber. Had the .218 Bee been introduced in the great Model 70 bolt action rifle, it's fate might have taken a different twist. But it never happened.

In 1949 and 1950, the .218 Bee had it's second chance at fame and fortune when it became available in the Winchester Model 43 and the Sako L-46, both bolt action rifles. But the introduction of the .222 Remington cartridge in 1950 swept the Bee even farther under the rug, along with a number of other factory made and wildcat cartridges of like caliber. Until Marlin pulled it from the grave in 1990 by chambering Model 82 rifles for it, the Bee was a dead cartridge. Remington had stopped loading the Bee and Winchester was down to a single load.

Despite the dark cloud that seems to have always trailed the .218 Bee, it is an excellent cartridge, one quite capable of clean kills on varmints up to the size of groundhogs out to 200 yards or so. Due to it's relatively low velocities, 40 and 45 grain bullets made with soft lead cores and thin jackets for the .22 Hornet should be used when varminting with the Bee.

Best accuracy was recently squeezed from a Marlin Model 1894CL with a Speer 46 grain flat nose bullet pushed along in the neighborhood of 2700 fps by H110, 2400, and W-680 powders.

Source:
Hodgdon Data Manual, 26th Edition

Historical Notes:

The 218 Bee, introduced by Winchester in 1938, was originally chambered in the Model 65 lever action rifle, a modernized version of the Model 1892. Considerable enthusiasm greeted the announcement of this cartridge, and many magazine articles were devoted to comparing its superior killing power and range to the 22 Hornet. Although criticized as being inaccurate, some Model 65's were capable of minute of angle accuracy. After WWII, Winchester brought out the Model 43 bolt action rifle in the 218 Bee. Mechanical troubles developed in some early models, and the rifle was discontinued. For a time, one or two European manufacturers, such as Sako, and Krico, furnished small Mauser type rifles in 218 Bee. At the present time, Ruger, Marlin, Thompson/Center and Browning chamber guns for the 218 Bee. Cases can be made by necking down a 25-20 or 32-20 brass, then fire forming.

General Comments:

The 218 Bee has a larger case and somewhat greater powder capacity then the 22 Hornet. It provides higher velocity and a greater effective range than the 22 Hornet, and in a good single shot or bolt action rifle, its just as accurate. It is one of the most economical small game or varmint cartridges available. On small varmints it can be counted on out to 200 yards, but on coyote, bobcat or the like, it cannot be depended on for one shot kills farther then 150 yards. On rabbits or other edible game it is necessary to use full metal jacketed bullets or reduced loads, otherwise it ruins much of the meat.

The Bee is easy to reload, and one can duplicate anything from the 22 Short up to and exceeding the 22 Hornet. With modern powders, the factory performance can be improved safely. By using heavier bullets of 50 and 55 grains, its killing power and range can be increased.

Although still a fine cartridge and useful for many purposes, the 218 Bee has been largely displaced by the 223 Remington and 22-250 Remington. The 218 Bee, like the 22 Hornet, has a relatively mild report compared to the more powerful 22 centerfires and can be used under circumstances in which the larger cartridges would not be acceptable. It is a better performer than the 22 Hornet and its lack of popularity has always been a mystery. The Bee is the basis of several useful wildcats. Ackley's version approximately equals the 222 Remington performance. The 17 Bee Improved offers impressive short barrel performance. Factory loaded ammunition is available from Winchester.

Source: Cartridges of the World


Last edited on Sat Jan 31st, 2009 02:33 PM by Rockydog



____________________
“And the problem with our leaders is that they are.” Charles Krauthammer March 24, 2014


 Posted: Sat Jan 31st, 2009 02:38 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
4th Post
dakotasin
Board Founder


Joined: Tue Feb 8th, 2005
Location: South East - Bucks And Gazelles -, South Dakota USA
Posts: 722
Photo: 
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: rifle
My favorite chambering is:: ?
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

i would love to find a bolt action 218 bee rifle, but they are few and far between - and very expensive when they do pop up. ultimately, i am likely to just build my own, but i haven't gotten serious enough about the project to start gathering components.

the reason the 22 hornet is a bit of a turn-off to me is its well established reputation of being finicky to load for and paper thin brass.

i do not know the bee's reputation for those two things because it is a cartridge that seems to be overlooked by everyone, so not much info about it. still, i want one.

brass may be difficult to get, but loaded ammo is relatively easy to come by, probably thanks to taurus and their raging bee handgun...



____________________
Hunting is not a matter of life or death; it is much more important than that!



 Posted: Sat Jan 31st, 2009 03:28 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
5th Post
OK Hunter
Full Member
 

Joined: Mon Apr 23rd, 2007
Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma USA
Posts: 238
Photo: [Download]
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 7mm-08
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

:beer:  This is good information.  Thanks to all!



____________________
Read the Patriot Post. It's right and its free!
http://www.patriotpost.us


 Posted: Sat Jan 31st, 2009 03:33 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
6th Post
Rockydog
Board Founder


Joined: Tue Jul 26th, 2005
Location: Wisconsin USA
Posts: 9878
Photo: 
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 8mm Mauser
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

No personal experience here but from what I've read Bee brass is nearly as fragile as Hornet. In fact Winchester advises that all new brass be formed before reloading as necks will be misshapen from shipping. RD



____________________
“And the problem with our leaders is that they are.” Charles Krauthammer March 24, 2014


 Posted: Sun Feb 8th, 2009 06:02 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
7th Post
ollie6x47
Junior Member
 

Joined: Sun Jan 11th, 2009
Location:  
Posts: 5
Photo: 
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: rifle
My favorite chambering is:: 
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

I have shot a hornet for 8-10yrs now and have killed everything from a black snake at 101yds to whitetail deer. It is a easy round to load. Lil'gun and 35gr v-max's.



 Posted: Mon Feb 9th, 2009 12:27 AM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
8th Post
OK Hunter
Full Member
 

Joined: Mon Apr 23rd, 2007
Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma USA
Posts: 238
Photo: [Download]
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 7mm-08
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

I am leaning toward the hornet, mainly because it's a round everyone knows about and I believe it would be lots of fun to load and shoot.

I read that hornet brass is much less expensive than bee brass.



____________________
Read the Patriot Post. It's right and its free!
http://www.patriotpost.us


 Posted: Mon Feb 9th, 2009 03:47 AM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
9th Post
Rockydog
Board Founder


Joined: Tue Jul 26th, 2005
Location: Wisconsin USA
Posts: 9878
Photo: 
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 8mm Mauser
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

OK Hunter, Just for the heck of it, take a look at the 17 Hornet over on Saubier.com. These guys are crazy over there making .14 and .17 Hornets and all sorts of other small stuff. Check out the articles section. Some info on .17 hornets, .17 bee, .17 HeeBeee etc. Another whole world of handloading. RD



____________________
“And the problem with our leaders is that they are.” Charles Krauthammer March 24, 2014


 Posted: Tue Feb 10th, 2009 03:58 AM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
10th Post
nail driver
Full Member
 

Joined: Mon Feb 2nd, 2009
Location: British Columbia Canada
Posts: 288
Photo: 
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 308 norma mag ...
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

i have a 218 bee lever action and it is on of the nicest rounds to plink with, i go to gun shows and find 218 brass all the time i just got a set of dies and am looking forward to reloading it,i have yet to find a store with actual rounds except when i was moose hunting in northern B.C and i bought all the rounds they had.



____________________
"Don't fight a battle if you don't gain anything from winning" Field Marshal Erwin Rommel


 Posted: Sat Feb 14th, 2009 01:41 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
11th Post
OK Hunter
Full Member
 

Joined: Mon Apr 23rd, 2007
Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma USA
Posts: 238
Photo: [Download]
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 7mm-08
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

I think I'll go with the hornet first.  It's such a fun round and I have always wanted one.  I may later have a barrel made in the bee.



____________________
Read the Patriot Post. It's right and its free!
http://www.patriotpost.us


 Posted: Sat Feb 14th, 2009 01:49 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
12th Post
Rockydog
Board Founder


Joined: Tue Jul 26th, 2005
Location: Wisconsin USA
Posts: 9878
Photo: 
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 8mm Mauser
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

Keep us posted on how it turns out. One more thought. If you are having a barrel built you might also consider a K Hornet. Starting with the Hornet case the shoulder is blown out for more case capacity and less trimming needed. Dies are readily available, most builders have reamers available, rimmed cartridges can be fireformed using factory loads, and it's probaly one of the most popular wildcats of all time. You can gain somewhere around 2-300 FPS I believe.  RD



____________________
“And the problem with our leaders is that they are.” Charles Krauthammer March 24, 2014


 Posted: Sat Feb 21st, 2009 03:26 PM
   PM  Quote  Reply 
13th Post
OK Hunter
Full Member
 

Joined: Mon Apr 23rd, 2007
Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma USA
Posts: 238
Photo: [Download]
Are you a handloader?: Yes
Favorite type of cartridge to load?: I load everything!
My favorite chambering is:: 7mm-08
Status: 
Offline

  back to top

Rocky, I have considered the K hornet.  I think when I talk to the guys from MGM in April at the Tulsa gun show, I'll get their input as well.

By the way, if there is anyone within driving distance to Tulsa, OK and has not been to the Wannamaker gun show, you are missing something.  It's huge!  Over 4,000 tables in an 11 acre building.

I have had a table there for many years, if for no other reason than to escape  the crowds.

If you need any info on it, let me know.  I'd love to see everyone there.



____________________
Read the Patriot Post. It's right and its free!
http://www.patriotpost.us


 Current time is 12:37 AM
The Handloaders Bench > Rifles > Rifles > 22 Hornet vs 218 Bee
Top




UltraBB 1.17 Copyright © 2007-2008 Data 1 Systems
Page processed in 0.2744 seconds (36% database + 64% PHP). 27 queries executed.