Just wondering

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by unclebear, Aug 21, 2013.

  1. unclebear

    unclebear New Member

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    Ok I got talking to a guy about the M16's, about why is the military still using the 5.56. After a bit of number crunching I found that the 5.56 pretty much sucks past 500 yards.

    At 500 yards with a 5.56 using a 55gr bullet it hits with about 350 ft-ib. Where a 30-30 theoretically hits with around 400 ft-ibs using a 170gr bullet. I know the diameter and the weight of the bullets are different but it's just a comparison.

    Now the military says the M16 is effective for a point target out to 550 meters and an area target out to 800 meters?

    I can see the 500 meter mark possible but what the 800 meter is just to give people the impression that someone is shooting at them?

    Why are we using the 5.56 when the 30-30 or even a 270 win has more power and about the same recoil?
     
  2. kaido

    kaido New Member

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    I don't remember what we use in our C7 rifles, but I want to say its a 57gr or something, it's a little heavier then the 55, I know that much. But at 800meters, it basically means that at least one guy is going to land a hit on the target, the rounds that miss will do a damned good job of keeping the targets head down.
     

  3. unclebear

    unclebear New Member

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    But even if the round actually lands a hit it would hit with about as much force as a 22 long rifle in theory. While someone in plain cloths it would still suck either way but a target wearing even light armor without plates it wouldn't do much. I can see how it would keep the targets head down even with rounds landing around the target but I'm still confused about why we would keep using this round
     
  4. kaido

    kaido New Member

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    But the goal of the 5.56 it's self it's not to kill. It's to mane. So if it hit like a .22LR, it causes the target to freak out still which intern takes his friends attention off of you for a period of time while they do what ever they need to in order to treat him.

    As far as us still using this round, it's probably more weight then anything. A single round of 5.56x45mm compared to a single round of say 30-06.....well the projectile of the 30-06 probably weighs the same as the case, powder and bullet of the NATO round. Basically it boils down to how much ammunition a single man can carry. I know for a member of the Canadian forces, we carry 150 rounds, or five magazines. Now add in the weight of everything else that'd be carried on a patrol and its easy to see why they went with a lighter round.
     
  5. unclebear

    unclebear New Member

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    So pretty much they chose to carry more of less effective rounds then more effective rounds that could stop a threat quicker. I can understand the weight when your carrying 100 rounds of ammo plus other gear during a 20 mile hike every ounce counts. But if your going against an enemy with no concern for there fellow soldiers and they just leave the wounded to die then soldiers would burn through more ammunition actually putting down threats with the 5.56 then the old 30-06. Also when shooting at long range and you have to put down a serious threat with the 5.56 your most likely going to have to use multiple rounds.
     
  6. jebsca

    jebsca New Member

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    Something else to keep in mind, most of the targets that a 5.56 will be used on are 300 meters or closer. If you look at the carbines that they are using, 300 meters is about it. And keep in mind, nobody has volentired to be hit with a 22 at any range, or a 5.56 at 800 meters. At this point, I don't want to be hit by a bb. Paint balls are statting to hurt too!
     
  7. kaido

    kaido New Member

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    That's the thing, most guys don't burn through their ammunition. Even doing rapid fire drills at the range with the C7s, it took around 20 seconds to go through a magazine. That's firing as fast as you can get back on target at 200meters. You've also got to think though, at 800, you more then likely don't HAVE to engage the threat as they wouldn't be that big of a threat from that far. If you truly had to do something about a target at that distance and for what ever reason couldn't get closer, there are higher caliber weapons carried while on patrol so they could be utilized.


    Should also state that we only loaded our mags to ten rounds each, we had to get through everyone in a short amount of time.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2013
  8. jebsca

    jebsca New Member

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    Last I checked (I am a bit out of date) a platoon of Marines carried more than just M-16s. If 5.56 aint enough, how about 7.62, or maybe 50 cal. I would rather just do a call for fire and let arty party. The problem is, its been so long, I would call for them to blow my location off the map!
     
  9. unclebear

    unclebear New Member

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    I got reading this book and that's what spurred this before the cease fire with North Korea when we were fighting, our guys carried the good ol M1 garand shot heavy hitting 30-06 they would run the rifles without any oil or lube because it would freeze the gun shut. They had a rugged reliable rifle that could kill a man pretty much as far as the rifle man could see the target and hit it, back when one shot pretty much did the job but two sealed the deal.

    Now our guys are using rifles that have to be lubed and cleaned and need to be treated like a prom queen. The ammo they use to is a lot less effective compared to the old 30-06. So if we get back into active combat with North Korea I'm wondering how our weapon systems are going to hold up.

    But even outside Korea it just seems to me like the round our guys are using are really under powered compared to even the 6.5 rounds and esp even a .270 WIN.
     
  10. JW357

    JW357 New Member

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    It's an interesting thought but I can tell you exactly why we use the 5.56 still.

    1) Cost. It is cheaper to use and train on then the 30-06, for example.
    2) Light weight. Someone else covered this.
    3) Yes, all Marines are trained how to engage targets at 500 yards, but even that is uncommon in combat. Generally they don't need to, and won't, engage targets farther than 200-300 yards. Anything at 800 yards, yes the M16 is capable of hitting if needed, but anything at that distance, a trained sniper on a better weapons platform, shooting a better caliber, is called in.
    4) 5.56x45mm is a NATO round. It allows for compatibility of ammo amongst some of our allies. 30-06, or 7.62x63mm in its metric designation, is not a NATO round. 7.62x51mm is a NATO round, and grunts use that caliber also, in many various platforms.

    The bottom line is, the average grunt doesn't need a better caliber or rifle platform than an M16 with 5.56x45.
     
  11. sbeezy

    sbeezy New Member

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    Just to add a little, I remember reading recently that 30-30 doesn't lend itself very well to auto loading guns because they're rimmed. I don't know if it's 100% accurate but that's what I read.

    Someone correct me if I'm wrong.
     
  12. kaido

    kaido New Member

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    You're probably right. But I think 30-30 was just a random example, sort of like my 30-06.
     
  13. manta

    manta Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have read similar before I don't buy it. The 5.65 like all military bullets are designed to kill. It would be stupid to design a bullet to injure leaving the injured person to shoot and kill you. As for the 5.65 its a compromise the army are not going to redesign or change the rifle for a different bullet with a marginal performance gain.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2013
  14. kaido

    kaido New Member

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    If you injure the target, chances are they aren't going to be able to focus well enough to put effective fire down range towards you. It's also more then likely not going to instantly kill him, giving his allies the displeasure of hearing him in pain. But we're actually taught that if all you see is even so much as a toe of an enemy, take the shot, it'll at least put him out of the fight or better, make him stumble out from cover giving you a better shot.
     
  15. JW357

    JW357 New Member

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    I disagree with this slightly, but only because during the wars of the last decade, especially in Iraq, insurgents were often under the influence of drugs, especially Khat. There were many reports of a Soldier or Marine hitting an insurgent with a shot or two from his M16 and the insurgent staying in the fight, because he was simply so laden down with drugs that he couldn't feel much pain. Eventually the body kicks in and realizes it can't go on much longer, but that actually takes a surprisingly long time in those cases.
     
  16. manta

    manta Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Would it not just be better to kill him. Obviously any hit is better than nothing. I don't even how you would design a bullet to injure to many variables if its capable of killing 500 meters its just chance weather it kills you are not. To say that the bullet manufacturer designed a bullet for the military to injure and not kill is rubbish. The injure not kill was probably BS put out after complaints about the effectiveness of the round. It is an intermediate round and was never designed to match the 7.62 for example.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2013
  17. JW357

    JW357 New Member

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    In old-war thought, it is better to injure an assailant than to kill him. When you injure him, it used to take at least two of his buddies to pull him off the battlefield. So an injured soldier in actuality takes three people out of the fight. A dead soldier is left to lie where he fell. So only one is out of the fight.

    Of course, that is old-war thought. Nowadays, things are different.
     
  18. kaido

    kaido New Member

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    Well clearly this is going to be a battle of wording things better. Haha

    I guess it's more likely to wound then it is to kill compared to other rounds. A 7.62 is going to have more damaging effects at any range then a 5.56 will, thus the smaller of the two is more likely to knock more then just the person it hits out of the fight. But as stated, now days our advisories for the most part seem to be using pain numbing drugs, which cancels out being shot while still in the system.

    Where we to be fighting an army that was like ours and didn't allow the use of such drugs, that theory of hitting one, taking out three would work a lot better.
     
  19. spack762

    spack762 New Member

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    I belive it to be false. Heres why. The 7.62x54r is a rimmed round. The Russains have been useing it for a very long time in thier auto loading guns.
    I watched a show on the History channal a while back and it said that designers liked a rimmed case for a machin-gun because it was easy to extract.

    It's what I heard.

    Also I was wondering if anyone has heard or seen a AK platform chambered in 45acp?? I think it would be neat!
     
  20. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    Your information is a bit dated. We do not use 55 gr bullets. We use 62 gr bullets.

    If you think the .30-30 and the .270 recoil in the same class with the 5.56mm, I begin to wonder if you have fired any of the above. night and day difference in recoil.

    Military doctrine has changed since WWII and Korea. We have very large stores of crew served weapons for the 800 meter situations. M-2 to B-52 and the ability to communicate. We EXPECT to have air superiority in short order. If the enemy is that far away, you call for support. 81mm, 105mm, 155mm, MLRS, Apache, Super Cobra, Commanche, Warthog, Spectre, Hornet, Lancer, Buff, etc. Not to mention Mk12 Mod 0/1, M-21's, M-24's, M-110's, M-82, M-107.

    Such targets are not the "target" of the rifleman anymore.