5.6x52mm Rimmed Ammunition
History of 5.6x52R Ammunition
The 5.6x52mmR, also known as the .22 Savage High Power or the .22 Imp, was developed by Charles Newton in 1912 and was produced by Savage Arms. Whom also chambered their popular lever action, the Model 99 rifle, for this cartridge. Newton designed an accurate cartridge that used the .25-35 Winchester case topped with a .227 bullet. Initially, the 5.6x52mmR was popular among hunters for its accuracy across the world. Soon it was being used for all kinds of game, to include deer and even on safari, hunting animals such as the tiger. Shortly after its introduction, the cartridge started losing popularity as stories of hunters being grievously injured by wounded game began to circulate and damaged the reputation of the .22 Savage High Power.
The cartridge itself is well designed and has excellent performance for what it is, a high velocity varmint and small game cartridge. The muzzle velocity in some loads can reach almost 3000 feet per second and about 1900 foot pounds of muzzle energy. This cartridge is seen primarily in European Drilling rifles and remains somewhat popular in that hunting community. European manufacturers Sellier & Bellot and Norma, still produce ammunition for the .22 Savage High Power. The Norma ammunition with a 71 grain soft point bullet will shoot at about 2600 feet per second with a muzzle energy of just over 1200 foot pounds of energy.
Although it is not among the most popular hunting cartridges in the United States, the 5.6x52R is similar in perforance when compared to the .222 Remington or the .22-250. When asked to perform out of its limits, on larger game, the cartridge failed and so it fell out of the good graces of the hunting community. Without this support and only one major American manufacturer making a rifle to shoot the cartridge, the .22 Savage High Power, ended up having an all too brief life span.
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