Wolf through an AR-15

Discussion in 'AR-15 Discussion' started by CJx, Apr 30, 2014.

  1. CJx

    CJx New Member

    182
    0
    0
    Disclaimer*-I'm sure the topic has been discussed ad-nauseum but the forum search provided nothing and I didn't see the topic on the first 3 pages in, so here goes. Please feel free to link me to a discussion thread on the subject and delete this thread.

    Is shooting Wolf 5.56 consistently through an AR-15 platform ok? I watched a video where the guy said steel is about 50% harder than brass, so "theoretically" expect 50% more wear on internals.

    Accuracy of surplus ammo aside, how hard on the AR-15 internals is Wolf? Or Brown Bear/Silver Bear? The guy in the video said that the money saved from buying steel ammo will buy you a new barrel (which will burn out faster) and another box of 1000 rounds (or another barrel on top of the other one :D.)

    How do you personally feel about putting steel cased ammo through your AR-15, and how does it affect your rifle?
     
  2. Gatoragn

    Gatoragn Active Member

    3,937
    13
    38
    As long as your barrel is chambered for 5.56, shooting Wolf ammo is not a problem. Most of the Wolf I have seen is in the .223 flavor, but I shoot that in my ARs too.

    Steel cases do not expand as much as brass, so some gas leaks, so maybe after a couple hundred 1k cases of ammo you could have a problem. Not likely to happen to me in my lifetime with today's ammo prices.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2014

  3. CJx

    CJx New Member

    182
    0
    0
    What kind of problems would arise from gas leaks?
     
  4. Mercator

    Mercator Active Member

    11,342
    16
    38
    Excessive fouling and potential malfunctions.
     
  5. Gatoragn

    Gatoragn Active Member

    3,937
    13
    38
    As long as you clean your gun at decent intervals, probably very little.

    If the steel is lacqured, the lacquer can gunk up the chamber, again a proper cleaning will prevent this.

    Also, you could experience some more carbon build up in the chamber from steel versus brass, but cleaning solves this.

    I like to shoot, I have not taken up reloading, steel case ammo costs less. The benefit of less cost outweighs the possible steel case ammo problems to me.

    YMMV
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2014
  6. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

    2,706
    1
    0
    Personally, I think a lot of the Russian stuff is a decent option for the non-reloader. I've shot quite a bit of the zinc-plated Silver Bear, and it's accurate and reliable. The Silver Bear 62gr soft point/JHP is also a versatile bullet that can perform well for defense, range work, or varminting.

    At times there can be feed issues with many of these rounds. They have a coating that (once things heat up after a few rounds) can lead to the cases having a sticky exterior.

    The irony when it comes to Russian ammo, is that many cheap guns will struggle with it...yet the owners of such guns are of course among those who are most determined to make it work. that makes perfect sense. And many of the folks who have milpec/M16 BCG ARs that can digest it properly, prefer not to shoot it.

    My guns tend to shoot Silver Bear well, and I shoot a bit of it. But I still mostly shoot brass. I consider the Russian SB to be a nice affordable contingecy plan. Not perfect, but an affordable and versatile option.
     
  7. CJx

    CJx New Member

    182
    0
    0
    Silver Bear seems to navigate around the lacquer problem from what I've read, since it's not lacquer coated :eek: Some people say the lacquer coating problem is over-hyped and other will not shoot the stuff because of it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2014
  8. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

    7
    2
    0
    well here's my take on steel ammo. some guns seem to shoot it just fine and some don't. all you can do is try some out and see how it works out for you.
     
  9. CJx

    CJx New Member

    182
    0
    0
    What about the supposed extra wear and tear on the rifle? Any legitimacy to that?
     
  10. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

    7
    2
    0
    honestly, IMO, i think it would depend on lots of factors. a lot of people shoot steel cased ammo with no problems.

    i think most people sho do use large quantities of steel cased ammo are not looking for the Nth degree in accuracy to begin with.

    but also consider this, Hornady in just the last couple of years is now offering match grade steel cased ammo is several calibers for competition shooting.
     
  11. JonM

    JonM Moderator

    20,110
    19
    38
    There is some infintesimal extra wear but you really need to run about 60,000 rounds of steel through the gun to see the difference. Average barrel life of a cold hammer forged chrome lined barrel and milspec chrome lined bcg is between 30,000-40,000 rounds. Bolts can wear out anywhere from 15,000-40,000... your going to wear out the barrel and maybe several bolts long before the teensy eensy bit of extra wear from steel raises its head.

    Its a non issue

    If your running a non milspec bcg and or stainless barrel non chromed life span is MUCH shorter. Steel ironicly has less effect on these since they wear out so much sooner.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2014
  12. FernandoTheCommando

    FernandoTheCommando New Member

    1,183
    0
    0
    I've honestly never heard of that aside from a few keyboard warriors in some forums saying it may damage it. Hornady and other companies make steel case match ammo. If you look up reputable sources and articles from professionals, I see little about wolf damaging fire arms. The worst experience I've ever had with steel wolf ammo was a one bad primer in a 100 round box. It was blatantly obvious that the primer looked funny. I've got a ton of steel ammo in .223 and I'm not scared one bit that its damaging my rifle. As for wear and tear, I think modern firearms are MORE than capable of digesting thousands of rounds of steel case ammo. I've been know to baby all my firearms more than most, and I've yet to be nervous about steel cased ammo. Like axxe said, try it out and see for yourself. If it was damaging firearms, I doubt they would be selling so much of it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2014
  13. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

    7
    2
    0
    and in all fairness, even brass cased ammo can be defective too on occasion.
     
  14. FernandoTheCommando

    FernandoTheCommando New Member

    1,183
    0
    0
    Absolutely.
     
  15. JTJ

    JTJ Well-Known Member Supporter

    9,677
    390
    83
    One caution. Do not shoot brass after shooting steel without cleaning the chamber. The brass will grab the crud and lock up. You will probably only do it once and learn your lesson the hard way.
     
  16. Mercator

    Mercator Active Member

    11,342
    16
    38
    Surprised to read this. I think it is safe to shoot brass after steel, as long as the chamber is not fouled up excessively. When the chamber is clogged for any reason, including but not limited to steel cased ammo, then any kind of shellcase may get stuck.
     
  17. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

    2,706
    1
    0
    I just really appreciate that username. It's a little bit screwy, yet hilarious cool.
     
  18. FernandoTheCommando

    FernandoTheCommando New Member

    1,183
    0
    0
    Lol thanks. My middle name is fernando and when I played pc games as a kid, I always used fernando the commando as a gamer tag. You wouldn't believe how many times (when I was winning) that people threw racial slurs at me. "umm, hey buddy, I'm not Hispanic but thanks for your racist remarks." Glad someone besides me gets a laugh out of it haha.
     
  19. Quentin

    Quentin New Member

    7,551
    1
    0
    This is the simplest and best answer. Try it and see if your AR likes it.

    It is true that steel case ammo wears the barrel more than standard ammo but the shorter barrel life is more than offset by the cheaper cost of the ammo.

    Just don't use it when you absolutely, positively must have reliable function. For range use, why not use it if it functions most of the time in your AR.
     
  20. Dahamp2003

    Dahamp2003 New Member

    262
    0
    0
    Did I just read a rational, respectful discussion about steel cased ammunition vs. Brass cased ammunition. Crap. I gotta start looking for Saint Pete and figure out where to go next....lol