1. #1

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    Caliber Terminology

    In some firearm cartridge reference material, the caliber designation has the decimal point, e.g., ".223 Remington," ".308 Winchester," etc. In other material, it is omitted, e.g., "223 Remington," "308 Winchester," etc. I believe I looked through a Speer reloading manual one time that specifically addressed the issue, stating that the decimal point should be omitted. Anyone know the reason behind that?

  2. #2

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    Personally, I think it just sounds better to ask for a box of "223 Remington" than to ask for a box of "point 223 Remington".

    I don't know if theres a technical reason, I think its just the accepted vernacular. Similar to how the .38-40 is really a .40 caliber bullet, with 38 grains of black powder behind it.

    Just my two cents.

  3. #3

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    The point Speer was making wasn't that one shouldn't say "point such-and-such caliber" but rather that the decimal point should be omitted even in print. Here's an example of that policy in an online update of reloading material:

    http://www.speer-bullets.com/whatsne...ding_data.aspx

    Now although there are minor differences in nominal designation and actual bullet diameter--a "223 Remington" bullet has an actual diameter of .224"--why should it be "223 Remington" and not ".223 Remington," it being understood that the ".223" in ".223 Remington" is a close approximation of bullet diameter in inches?

    I just don't see Speer's logic in maintaining that "223 Remington" in print is correct and ".223 Remington" in print is not.

  4. #4
    submessenger's Avatar
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    Just a shot in the dark (hehe), but the Speer literature you quote seems to be implying that without the decimal, it's a name - with the decimal, it's a measure; in the case of the 223 Remington, that measure would be inaccurate. Seems logical enough to me.

  5. #5

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    But I don't believe the Speer manual I had looked at so long ago had made a distinction between a cartridge name and an actual bore or bullet diameter. I'm going to try to track the passage down and see what their reason was.

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