no longer offer .219 Zipper brass; however, Buffalo Arms and Quality Cartridge offer high quality cases at reasonable prices.
Cases can be
formed easily by running .25-35 brass through a .219 Zipper sizing die and trimming. Of course, case necks should be turned/thinned.
forming dies from Redding, CH4D, or RCBS, Zipper cases can be made from .30-30 or .32 special with minimal effort.
forgotten, the .219 Zipper was one of the first high performance factory .22 centerfire rounds. Its more famous offspring
include the .219 Donaldson Wasp, the .219 Zipper Improved, and the .225 Winchester...And a host of wildcats based on those
1920's and 1930's, Winchester dominated the .22 centerfire market. Other period Winchester innovations include the .22 Hornet,
.218 Bee, and .220 Swift. Winchester was on a winning streak with their .22 centerfire offerings, and needed a potent .22
cartridge when it unveiled its M64 in 1937.
A 1938 catalog
advertised the cartridge with two loads: A 56gr SP at 3050fps, and a 46gr SP at a sizzling 3390fps.
shooters were quick to adapt single shots for the new cartridge; however, the Zipper's bench-rest days were short lived.
Harvey Donaldson's wildcat version of the Zipper, the .219 Wasp, overshadowed the Zipper and dominated Bench Rest shooting
until the advent of the .222 Remington.
dropped the Zipper from their line during the 1940's; Marlin catalogued it in their 336 until 1961.
By the 1960's,
Remington had surpassed Winchester as the leading innovator of .22 Centerfire cartridges--Having introduced the .222 Rem,
.223 Remington, .222 Remington Magnum, and .221 Fireball in rapid succession.
countered by reducing the rim size of the wildcat .219 Zipper Improved so that it would operate using an unmodified M70 bolt
face. The resulting .225 Winchester, a truly fine cartridge, was never really able to compete with Remington's commercialized
version of the .22-250 wildcat.
A similar cartridge,
the .22 Hi Power (.22 Savage) was introduced in 1912. Zipper case capacity and dimensions are nearly identical to the Hi
is known in Europe as the 5.6mm x 51, where it is used to hunt smaller species of deer.
The Hi-Power uses odd-ball .227" diameter bullets of 70 to 71 grains.
uses easily obtained .224" bullets, but the normal Zipper 1:14" twist rate won't stabilize heavy bullets.
My Encore barrel
employs a 1:12" twist rate, and I specified a Montana Rifle Works 1:10" barrel for my Marlin in order to stabilize heavy bullets.
My Zipper cases
are made from .30-30 brass. Water capacity, including case neck, is 34.9 grains. This is slightly less than the .22-250,
but greater than the .223 Remington.
usually limit lever action pressures: Case strength and case stretch.
can cause cartridge brass to turn to liquid--Squirting from the action as if propelled from a firehose. Needless to say,
this can be bad for your health.
Winchester M94 and Marin 336 lever actions have fairly springy actions that
allow the bolt to move rearward a few thousandths of an inch during firing. This permits cases to stretch slightly.
can cause cases to stretch so much that they wedge the bolt against its latching mechanism, making case extraction difficult.
is one (of many) signs that your loads may be a little too hot.
is no SAAMI pressure standard for the .219 Zipper. The SAAMI maximum average pressure
the .30 WCF, on which the Zipper is based, is 38,000cup/42,000psi. The more recent 7mm Waters operates at 45,000psi.
During testing, my custom Marlin functioned flawlessly as long as pressures remained at or
below 42,000psi. Pressures above about 48,000psi caused sticky extraction, and when estimated pressures hit 50,000psi, extraction
was no longer possible--I had to knock-out cases with a cleaning rod.
pressure beyond 42,000psi yielded so little velocity gain that it was hardly worth the decreased brass life and difficult
extraction. 42,000psi is my max lever gun pressure.
I didn't actually
pressure test any of the loads. I used a ballistics program to estimate the pressure necessary to achieve measured velocities
given powder weight, bullet weight, friction factor, and powder type. The program isn't perfect, and can't possibly account
for all of the possible variables that might affect pressure. Take any of my pressure information with a grain of salt.