My brotherinlaw & sister shoot both. After some trial and error,he has the 223 shooting almost as fast as the 22-250. They're both Rem 700 Varmit rifles. With the 223,you can buy shells as cheap as 5.00 a box. The 22-250's that I saw at a local gunshop recently ran around $15 a box. The shells for the WSSM are even more expensive,even at Wallyworld!
I reckon what I'm trying to say is this...If you shoot on a budget and don't reload, the 223 will do anything that the others do. If you're a reloader,not worried about ammo costs or just want to play,buy whichever one you want.
I shoot both, the 223 is much cheaper and for what I use them for the 223 is the better choice for me. Actually, I can't really think of anything that I need the 22-250's for and I have 3 of them. My nephew just bought a 223 wssm and from what I have seen as far as ballistics it is in line with the 22-250 but you can shoot a heavier bullet. However, have you seen the cost of ammo for the wssm, it is kind of costly. I can buy nearly 3 boxes of 223 for what 1 box of the wssm would cost.
I bought a 223 a few months back and it is a slick piece. It is the Remington VSF (I think ) and it shoots great. Its like the Sendero's but in Varmint caliber, synthetic stock, stainless and fluted barrel. I topped it with a Shepherd scope, added a bi-pod and a really nice sling and it is my favorite coyote gun right now.
The numbers for the 22-250 are better than they are for the 223, but when you get into the field there just isn't a noticable difference. I suppose there is a difference between 250 and 300 years, but those are REALLY long shots at varmits.
Go for the 223. BTWthere is a difference between a 223 and a 5.56 round. Some guns shoot both and other's don't. So if you want to shoot surplus 5.56 ammo make sure that your rifle will take it.
I would like to know the differences as well. When you say some guns will shoot both are you talking about accuracy or are you saying there is a problem chambering the 5.56?
I shoot AR's and I have not seen any problems with any of these nor have I seen any problems with the 223 varmint rifles.
Now, some ammo is more accurate than others but that would most likely be a preference in the rifle or inconsistent ammo, I think.
As I remember, the 5.56 chamber has a slightly longer throat than in the 223 in order to acommodate the longer and heavier bullets generally used by the military. There may be a corresponingly longer neck on the brass but I'm not positive. The use of 5.56 ammo in a .223 has the potential to increase pressures in the gun though the amount can vary by gun. Military brass is thicker than that for civilian use to reduce problems when used in fully automatic weapons. Powder charges need to be reduced when using military brass as well as reaming the crimp out of the primer pockets.
Guest, if finances are not an issue, get the one that you like and have fun shooting it. It looks like the 22-250 has less drop at longer ranges vs the 223, but unless you are planning to shoot 200+ yards, it is more or less a toss-up between the 223 and 22-250. I went with the 223 in the Savage 10FP because the ammo was inexpensive though I now handload for better performance and the ammo is still cheap enough that I can shoot 2-3 boxes and have enough left over to buy gas on the way home. The short mags are interesting but never tripped my trigger enough to actually get one.