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Old 06-10-2010, 05:59 AM   #1
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Default 223/5.56 ammo options

Since I'm relatively new to the whole AR thing, I'm just looking for some thoughts on the better ammo options out there for different purposes. I have a DPMS 16" 556, so I'm really just looking for opinions and insights into various rounds...like what you like and for what purpose (distance, plinking, defense, hunting, etc).

Here's what I've got:

FMJ- I have mostly Federal Bulk, as well as some PMC Bronze and Rem UMC...all 55gr. This is all I've fired so far (500+ rds), with an average cost of 40 cents a round.

The stuff I now have various amounts of, but have yet to use:

Win/Fed/Rem 45-50gr JHPs (40-50 cents/rd)
Silver Bear zinc-plated case 62gr JHP (25 cents/rd)
Lake City (m855) 62gr penetrator (65 cents/rd)
Hornady Match 75gr BTHP (90 cents/rd)

A few things I'd love to hear some insight on:

1) What are your thoughts on non-brass ammo, such as Russian made Silver Bear?

2) How big of a factor is "tumbling" and how is this impacted by going from FMJ to JHP?

3) What do you consider some of the best values out there?

4) SHTF, you'd like your AR loaded with _____?

5) What do you like for precision shooting beyond 100yds?

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Old 06-10-2010, 12:53 PM   #2
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Well, to address PART of your inquiry- the "tumbling" Seems to be chacteristic of most 5.56 ammo- that on impact the bullet tends to "yaw"- basically, get sideways.

And if SHTF, I would like an AR loaded with .308.

Not a fan of steel cased ammo EXCEPT for 7.62 x 39, since SKS and AK was built for it. But that's just my opinion.

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Old 06-10-2010, 04:54 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sweeper22 View Post
A few things I'd love to hear some insight on:

1) What are your thoughts on non-brass ammo, such as Russian made Silver Bear?
Very unfond of steel cased 5.56. No trust for any Bear ammo. Totally based on being an ammo snob though, never had a problem with Bear because I refuse to use it.

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Originally Posted by sweeper22 View Post
2) How big of a factor is "tumbling" and how is this impacted by going from FMJ to JHP?
Zero factor unless vegetation is between you and your target. Unless your round clips something in flight, this doesn't happen usually.

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Originally Posted by sweeper22 View Post
3) What do you consider some of the best values out there?
I'm quite fond of milsurp 5.56, not to picky about nationality. Can be about as dirty as Bear ammo for post shooting clean ups, but certainly should be more reliable.

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Originally Posted by sweeper22 View Post
4) SHTF, you'd like your AR loaded with _____?
SHTF get various Hornady TAP rounds depending on scenario. 60 grain TAP FPD for most scenarios, 75 grain TAP precision for ranged engage. Milsurp steel core for wall punching.

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Originally Posted by sweeper22 View Post
5) What do you like for precision shooting beyond 100yds?
So far the TAP Precision 75 grain rounds have treated me well. I have a 1/9 twist and could maybe shave a 1/10th of MOA by staying at 70 grain or lower, but I like how the 75's hit, and there isn't a 70-flat grain TAP Precision or I'd try it out. If really wanting every round as close as humanly possible to the previous, I keep some Hornady BTHP non-TAP rounds handy.

And yes, I'm quite fond of Hornady reliability, even in the face of it's cost. Stuff isn't cheap at all, but my rifle knows I love it and never feed it cheap crap.
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Old 06-11-2010, 03:15 AM   #4
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I have found the cheaper ammo, even PMC is a heck of a lot dirtier than decent ammo. Best out of box ammo I have found is Blackhills. It comes in either reload or regular, both seem to shoot the same for me, quite accurate.

No steel cased ammo in the AR. Use it all the time in the AK, like others have said, it's built for it.

From what I understand some of the tumbling issues come from a twist vs. bullet weight mismatch. No experience with that issue.

Military ammo is what I use for SHTF use. It is cheap enough to buy in bulk and reliable enough to serve the purpose.

Precision is only really done well with handloads, IMO.

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Old 06-15-2010, 06:32 PM   #5
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We use Silver Bear currently in our Stag AR, a few hundered rounds through it and when I inspect it I have yet to find any effect that SB, or Wolf, which we use in our Saiga .308, AK, and SKS, have on the AR, so far its eating it up w/out ANY problems. The accuracy is amazing, so I think we'll stick with the "crap" ammo.

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