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  #1  
Old 01-02-2020, 03:45 AM
ben lurkin ben lurkin is offline
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Default 17 Fireball Project - Step Inside

So not long after Remington came out with the 17 Fireball, I acquired one much to my dismay! I always liked the concept of the Mach IV but the gun I had was chambered extremely poorly. You could have probably stuck a ppc case in there; the chamber was that oversized! Needless to say, it shot very poorly and after much angst and frustration; I gave up on it, pulled the barrel off, sold the magazine box and then turned it into a 204 Ruger. This contributed greatly to my mental well-being as the first five rounds out of that 204 made a pretty little cloverleaf. It’s amazing the difference a Shilen select match barrel can make! If only Remington would employ some machinists instead of plumbers to fit and chamber their barrels!

Fast forward to now and I’m wanting to get a 17 Fireball running again in a walking varminter. I want a repeater so I’ll go with a Model Seven action. I see PT&G offers them with what looks like one of their custom bolts. Regarding the bolt, I know the extractor is positioned a little higher on the Fireball bolts as the 204 likes to bounce the occasional spent brass off the L-R scope knob. It’s not a real problem but it does reflect that Remington did at least put a little thought into proper ejection of the little fireplug case that is the Fireball. Too bad getting this little cartridge from paper to production failed so miserably! Looking at the PTG bolt, there’s three extractor options: Remington extractor cut, the Sako extractor, and the mini-M16 style. Here’s where I need some help. What extractor option would work best to ensure proper ejection for my project? Anyone have any experience to make this a success?

Thanks for the input and Happy New Year to everyone!

BL

Last edited by ben lurkin; 01-02-2020 at 04:15 AM.
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Old 01-02-2020, 10:53 AM
Hog Patrol Hog Patrol is offline
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I've seen some conversions that work with a standard .223 bolt and a few that jammed or wouldn't feed properly. Any chance of converting the original back to the Fireball?

Last edited by Hog Patrol; 01-02-2020 at 10:57 AM.
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Old 01-02-2020, 05:17 PM
Johnly Johnly is offline
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If it were me, I'd build a light walking rifle on a CZ or Zavista small mauser action, or just buy a Cooper that will retain its resale value.
I have an Oregon Kimber 84 in 17Mk4 and love it.
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Old 01-02-2020, 05:41 PM
df06 df06 is offline
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Default 17 fb

I’d pull that 204 barrel, buy and install a high quality barrel in 17 and chamber it in 17fb.
It’s not easy to find actions that work well with the fire ball cartridge, but you have one, use it.
Then take that used 204 barrel, and have it fitted to a different Rem 700 action.
You’ll likely end up with two good accurate rifles
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  #5  
Old 01-02-2020, 09:38 PM
ben lurkin ben lurkin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnly View Post
If it were me, I'd build a light walking rifle on a CZ or Zavista small mauser action, or just buy a Cooper that will retain its resale value.
I have an Oregon Kimber 84 in 17Mk4 and love it.
Thatís a thought. Iíve a 527 Varmint in 17 Hornet already and itís a great shooter. A guy could get a 17 hornet in a 527 American and looking at the parts list, change out the magazine for the 221 FB, the extractor for a 0.380 bolt face, open up the bolt face and rechamber it to 17 FB and have the perfect walking varminter confirmation. Theyíve been made in 22 fb already so it wouldnít be a big leap to get one up and running. Hmmm. . .

I know I could pull my 204 down but Iím not really interested in doing that.
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  #6  
Old 01-03-2020, 01:35 AM
toomb toomb is offline
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I had my 17 fireball built from a CZ 221 fireball by Bob Green. It feeds and ejects flawlessly. It basically amounted to putting a new barrel on it.
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  #7  
Old 01-03-2020, 03:08 AM
squirrel_slayer squirrel_slayer is offline
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I have zero experience with a 17 anything (other than HMR) but I have been getting my butt kicked on my short wildcat and researching anything to help.

Of that searching I found that PTG makes (made?) coned 700 bolts this allows you to cone the barrel to match the bolt thus giving you a better feed cone into the chamber as well as allowing the fired case to ride the wall longer and have a better chance of clearing the ejection port before falling off into the action.

Some other honerable mentions would be Howa's new mini action. One guy on here made his 5.7 spitwad or something of that sort based off a shortened 30 carbine case and he managed to get it to cycle well.

Then there are the CZ's mentioned

One last option abit maybe less desireable is to make a straight pull bolt action off the AR 15 platform. The aftermarket support is unreal and you can build one like a chassis rifle.
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Old 01-03-2020, 04:29 AM
Oso Polaris Oso Polaris is offline
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Have you considered simply re-chambering the .204 Ruger barrel into a 20 Vartarg. 35gr bullet doing 3700-3800fps
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  #9  
Old 01-03-2020, 05:03 AM
ben lurkin ben lurkin is offline
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Iíve a call into a smith to get some options on the CZ platform. Iím leaning more towards that after reading your replies. In addition, I want a small action for this build. The idea being lightweight - 6# range and smaller overall size. Since the 221 is out of production, Iíll see what his thinking is.

I know the 20vt is pretty popular. Perhaps Iíll pursue that at a later date.
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  #10  
Old 01-03-2020, 11:59 AM
Hog Patrol Hog Patrol is offline
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One thing to consider with the 17 Fireball is brass availability. AFAIK, Remington and Nosler are the only ones that make it and the Nosler is thicker, has a reduced capacity and some custom chamber necks will be too small for it. BTDT.
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