Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

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Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by S.W.G.C.JBMIII on Sun Aug 12, 2012 10:37 pm

I buy bulk .556 62gr M855 ball for mine. I don't bother reloading "cheep" not worth the time/hassel for the amount I need.
I know a lot shoot .223, cost is same....I'm talking "factory" ammo not reloaded.
Now, I know they are different by looking at the two side by side (at neck) I have shot both,mine likes the .556.....feeds and shoots better.
.556 vs .223 ? Asking the AR pros, what ya think ? Or does it come down what ur gun likes ?

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by onlymaroonmatters on Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:25 pm

I'm no pro by any means but know .556 is running at higher pressure than .223 so I would think it might wear moving parts out quicker. But still should be fine for long time. Mine is marked .556 as well but mostly shoot .223 because it is more readily available, cheaper, and more variety for different uses. If one was cheaper I would say use it for plinking and what not and use most accurate and reliable one for more important things.

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by Scharfschütze on Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:44 pm

I will also add that the bulk .223(ie Federal, generally sold at Great Wal of China Mart) while economical and reasonably accurate at up to 200, it has a MUCH larger flash signature, especially when fired from barrels shorter than 20". I have tested several at night. The surplus M855 "green tip" or Radway Green, if you can find it (they never painted the tips green since SS109 is all that was mfgd.) has a much lower flash signature.
Useful information for future use.

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by S.W.G.C.JBMIII on Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:24 pm

Scharfschütze wrote:I will also add that the bulk .223(ie Federal, generally sold at Great Wal of China Mart) while economical and reasonably accurate at up to 200, it has a MUCH larger flash signature, especially when fired from barrels shorter than 20". I have tested several at night. The surplus M855 "green tip" or Radway Green, if you can find it (they never painted the tips green since SS109 is all that was mfgd.) has a much lower flash signature.
Useful information for future use.

M855 only mil surplus with the low flash sig. ? mine are grn. tip. I'll hunt them online and OK with extra shipping cost...

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by Tree of Liberty on Tue Aug 14, 2012 4:23 am

Federal and IMI work very well.

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by fdxpilot on Wed Aug 29, 2012 12:43 pm

I really like XM193 from either Federal Lake City, IMI, or Privi. I find it's cheaper and more accurate than M855.

I understand it's hard to consistently place the steel penetrator in the M855 lead bullet, leading to variations in ballistics from round to round.

For actual Home Defense, I like Hornady 5.56 T2 75gr TAP or Black Hills Mk262.

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by S.W.G.C.JBMIII on Wed Aug 29, 2012 1:09 pm

Makes since...I do like the steel in the M855. Have not shot the XM193. I'll check that out. My AR is for mowing the lawn, not accurate placed shots. How it feeds with surplus ammo vs. 223 is key. Most of all price, bump fire can get $$$.

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by Lilnicky on Thu Aug 30, 2012 9:22 am

For the price .556 62 grain lake city ammo is my choice. Brass casing and it's accuracy has been very reliable for me... Cycles very smooth and clean even when I've fired it auto

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by Lilnicky on Thu Aug 30, 2012 9:26 am

Your barrel twist also will have a lot to do with it I wouldn't suggest 62 grain unless your twist rate is somewhere around 1 to 7 or 1 to 9 barrels with twist such as 1 to 11 and so on 55 grain and under ammo will be best

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by Lilnicky on Thu Aug 30, 2012 9:35 am

Sorry for the back to back post but if your shooting from a barrel marked .223 avoid 556 ammo. 223 barrels have tighter tolerances and are most commonly considered match barrels. 556 ammo shot from a 223 barrel will exit barrel unpredictably and most likely have piss poor accuracy, I've never seen any harm come from it myself but have been warned 556 out of a 223 barrel can dangerous

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by miker84 on Thu Aug 30, 2012 3:04 pm

I've heard theory that the core in the 855 gives a center mass for the bullet to spin around. Probably just a myth though.

I load 62 green tip and 55 for plinking. The 62's are more accurate out of my 1/7 barrels than the 55. Eiither one is still "acceptable" in terms of battle rifle accuracy for me in the 1/7. I have to use 55's in carbine class because we shoot steel sometimes. I noticed that Wideners now has some 62gr without the penetrator so I may get some of those.

All that being said, when I run across a deal, I'll still buy some factory ammo and stash it away. The Federal XM193 in the 500rd cardboard boxes and the 855 in the 420rd ammo cans on stripper clips has been flawless in all of mine.

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Re: Best ammo for AR marked .556 ?

Post by Scharfschütze on Thu Aug 30, 2012 5:02 pm

fdxpilot wrote:
...I understand it's hard to consistently place the steel penetrator in the M855 lead bullet, leading to variations in ballistics from round to round....
That has actually been an issue with the Soviet-era (now Russian) 5.45x39mm caliber; the steel core placement is not consistent. Soviet era quality control still does not meet "western" standards. Reference AK-47 The Grim Reaper by Frank Iannamico, pp 692-696. My experience with the 7N6 ammunition, which is currently widely available in this country, has been spotty at best.
I have not found any such references to the same problems with western (ie NATO) mfg SS109 (US nomenclature M855) munitions, however.

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