HD carbine: 45acp vs. .223/5.56

Discussion in 'AR-15 Discussion' started by CHLChris, Jul 5, 2012.

  1. CHLChris

    CHLChris New Member

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    I've got a list of firearms that I need in my collection before I just go into "buy cuz it's fun" mode. Three of my needs are a home defense carbine (short and shoulder-fired), I need a second gun that fires .45acp (everyone knows that two is better than one), and I need a second AR-15 (parts interchange is important). Eventually, I'd like to have 3 separate guns to fill all 3 roles, but for now, I am thinking a single AR-15 in 45acp might do the trick.

    Olympic Arms makes a smokin' 45acp upper with proprietary mags that fit a standard lower. Then I'd build a pretty standard lower from parts. It would cost about $1200 with a good trigger and mid-range red-dot scope.

    What do y'all think about .45acp carbine vs. .223/5.56 for home defense (not talking 100 yards-plus, I've got a 5.56 20" AR for that).
     
  2. AgentTikki

    AgentTikki New Member

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    First Ar? If so, get a .223/5.56 ammo is cheaper and mags are cheaper. If you really want a .45 AR just get the .45 upper and swap it out when you feel the need. If you can get an SBR as I don't think 16" of barrel is going to do anything for .45acp in fact it might actually slow it down as pistol powders burn fast and there isn't much of it in comparison to a rifle round.
     

  3. CHLChris

    CHLChris New Member

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    Nope, not my first AR. I agree that 45acp ain't a first AR kind of round. Federal 230gr. +p LE rounds will not be slowed down in a 16" barrel, but probably sped up by about 150 fps from what I've read. That means almost 600 ft-lbs.

    I am budget-conscious here, which is why I'm talking about filling multiple roles with one firearm.
     
  4. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    There is a very good reason most LE SWAT teams have abandoned SMG's for entry guns; overpenetration. A good pistol hollowpoint bullet will penetrate further through residential walls than a good frangible .223/5.56 bullet. I have not seen/heard/experienced many good things about Olympic arms rifles.
     
  5. MikeJK

    MikeJK New Member

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    My vote is for .223/5.56.
     
  6. AgentTikki

    AgentTikki New Member

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    Can you define your roles and need?
     
  7. CHLChris

    CHLChris New Member

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    :confused:

    I thought I did. 1) HD carbine (my 30-30 isn't quite right), 2) 2nd 45acp gun (my 1911 commander needs a buddy), 2) 2nd AR-15 (chambering not all that important)

    These needs could be filled by a 5" 1911 and a 16" AR in 223, but my question is whether an AR w/ 45acp upper would fill the roles well.
     
  8. AgentTikki

    AgentTikki New Member

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    Ok,

    You said you want a short one...are you going to SBR one?

    How big is your house/apartment? Do you have neighbors close by? Are you worried about over penetration?

    Do you have a big yard? What ranges are you planning on shooting?
     
  9. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

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    What I'd do:

    5.56 AR- Get a 14.5-16" middy gas set-up. Aim for a sub-7lb rifle. I'm building one such rifle right now and finding the best quality/price ratio from BCM, Spikes, and JoeBobOutfitters. If you want to buy complete, Daniel Defense seems pretty tough to beat in the $1200-1400 range (not sure how much you want to spend). Good deals can also be found on a number of the higher end 1:8 twist S&W rifles.

    Pistol Cal carbine- I like 9mm for such a job. Very quick follow-up shots, flatter trajectory if you should desire an extended shot, cheap to feed, high capacity, and plenty of power (9mm 16" barrel ballistics ~ 357mag pistol). You can go with an AR, Beretta CX4, Marlin Camp, Kel-Tec, even Hi-Point...whatever. Lots of options in 9mm. I went with the Kel-Tec S2K. Super light/compact/manueverable, quick target acquisition, affordable (under $400), and it takes 30+rd G18 mags.

    45acp Pistol- 1911 Government. Remington R1 Enhanced is a pretty great gun for $750 IMO. SA TRP if you want to spend a bit more.

    Funny...I'm finding it very easy to spend your money.

    Do the AR first. There's already a ton of pull on supply, and it'll only increase in the coming weeks and months.
     
  10. Quentin

    Quentin New Member

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    I'm not a fan of a pistol caliber in the AR and would recommend a 5.56 pretty much like what Sweeper22 spelled out. For a 45 why not get a 1911. An AR and 1911, hard to argue with that. If you really want a pistol caliber AR, think about the 9mm.
     
  11. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    Ive got an olympic 45acp upper. Range toy only. The issue is the newer mags arent reliable. The older converted uzi all metal ones are superb. Ive also experienced parts breakages in the lower due to recoil slamming things around. Its direct blowback.

    45 acp works as a pistol round but its not so good as a carbine round due to the over engineering and weight needed to make it work as a direct blowback semiauto.

    The ejector on the olympic is just a piece of stiff wire. Definately not something i would bet my life on.

    You want a cool homedefense gun get a saiga12 or go with the standard 556/223 ar15 skip the pistol uppers for home defense
     
  12. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    And the 5.56 has about 10X the stopping power of the .45 ACP.:)
     
  13. AgentTikki

    AgentTikki New Member

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    I think there's a pretty overwhelming consensus that you should stick with a standard .223/5.56 AR.

    Its seems like a good idea to have a round that works in both your carbine and pistol but I think in reality you'd be better served with two seperate calibers. Plus .223 is cheaper to plink with than .45.
     
  14. AgentTikki

    AgentTikki New Member

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    I think the only advantage of the .45 is better barrier penetration and a larger entrance wound.
     
  15. SSCRS

    SSCRS New Member

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    458 Socom sounds like the ticket.......
     
  16. angurvail

    angurvail New Member

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    Locutus. 556 having more stopping power is a false statement. Slower pistol rounds have more stopping power. Rifle rounds tend to pass through objects more. Many case files have shown an assailant was still capable and continued to fight after being hit by multiple rounds from a 556 vs a 9, 40 and 45.
     
  17. CHLChris

    CHLChris New Member

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    Does the 45acp round stop threats? That's a big, proven YES!

    Would an extra 150 ft/s be helpful to that end? Of course.

    Are there a lot of high-quality 45acp carbines out there? NO!!!! That's too bad. AR-45, HK USP (expensive), Beretta Cx4 (small mags), HiPoint (not gonna trust my family's life to a $250 piece of...something), Just Right (can't find one FS anywhere!).

    Building a light 14.5" AR carbine might just have to do, and then pair it with a Colt Combat Elite. I was just hoping to keep it below that $2200 price tag.
     
  18. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    5.56 rounds act considerably different up close.

    Pistol rounds are still pistol rounds. There is no magic to be found in the .45 acp, it's still a pistol round even with an extra 100-150 fps. It isn't going to trump what a light thin jacketed bullet will do going 3000 feet per second and smacking something up close. The 5.56 is actually more likely to dump more energy into the target and not pass through because the bullet is more likely to fragment as long as it is still traveling over 2500 fps.

    Also since you don't have to abide by the Hague accords restricting ammo to non-expanding types used for combat. you can use soft points or hollow points.

    The AR was designed to run a rifle round not operate as a blow back gun for a heavy pistol round, using proprietary mags that could be hard to find some day compared to the tons of 5.56 mags available for an AR.

    Olympic is also not my first choice of AR manufacturer, based on the problems I had with one of their carbines. Then after working on it so much I figured out that a lot of their parts just don't measure up.
     
  19. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    .45 Hydra-shok:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&feature=endscreen&v=OwAbIdamK2A

    5.56 M855 round: Filmed from further back.
    [ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55CkeT7qdtM&feature=channel&list=UL[/ame]

    .223 Federal Triple-shok:
    [ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2m2vaJCBQTs&feature=fvwrel[/ame]

    Yep, the rifle rounds pass through, but they also do a whole lot more damage than a .45 And both of those rifle rounds are not soft points.
     
  20. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Research terminal balistics and look for hydrostatic shock.

    The hydrostatic shock of the higher velocity rifle round will outperform any slower handgun round.