HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » benEzra » Journal
Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 Next »


Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Eastern North Carolina
Home country: United States
Current location: Eastern NC
Member since: Wed Dec 1, 2004, 03:09 PM
Number of posts: 11,687

Journal Archives

It seems a response to this thread was posted Somewhere Else...

where it would be protected from civil debate. The gist of it:

"the AR15 was a POS for anything but close in combat"

Actually, one of the selling points of the AR-15 platform is that it's not a POS for civilian shooting at 300-600 yards. That's one of the biggest things that differentiates the AR from the Ruger Mini-14 or civilian AK's; the latter are basically 300-yard guns (with the exception of the Mini-14 Target), whereas a rack-grade AR is a 600-yard gun with a suitable optic, and longer barreled AR's are usable for target shooting out to 1000 yards. The AR's design makes it shoot like a bolt-action, and it's easy to swap barrels, free-float the barrel, etc. without needing a gunsmith.

Here's a New Zealand AR owner hitting at 609 yards with a 14.5" barrel and a sound suppressor (yes, New Zealanders own and shoot AR's, and owning a shorter-than-16" barrel and sound suppressor is less of a hassle there than here). The round is slow out of a shorty 14.5" barrel, but accurate:

500 yards with an iScope:

700 yards with a 20" (another Rock River, FWIW):

1000 yards:

"The most popular ARs have 20 inch barrels but good varmint guns have 28-30 inch barrels and are bolt action, a whole different animal from the AR platform."

Not in .223. Most bolt-action .223 varmint hunting rifles have 22" to 26" barrels, because the little .223 case doesn't hold enough powder to take advantage of a barrel longer than 24"; most AR's set up for varmint hunting are 20" or 24".

The 26" to 30" barrels are for more powerful cartridges like .22-250 that can take advantage of the extra length. And as pointed out above, one of the draws of the AR platform is that it shoots like a bolt-action, in terms of accuracy and barrel harmonics.

Remington Model 700 SPS Varmint, 26 inch
Mossberg MVP Varmint, 24 inch
Savage Model 25 Walking Varminter, 22 inch
Weatherby Vanguard S2 Varmint Special, 22 inch
Remington R-15 VTR Stainless Varmint, 24 inch (AR-15 type)

"The longer barrels add velocity (which is crucial to overcoming the 55 grain light weight projectile) and accuracy. "

Not in .223, they don't. Longer barrels add velocity to a point, until the gas has expanded enough that barrel friction overcomes gas pressure and the bullet begins to slow down. The little .223 case doesn't hold enough powder to take advantage of a barrel longer than 26", and some loads start slowing down after 24".


A longer barrel does *not* add accuracy; for a given barrel diameter, a longer barrel is less rigid than a shorter barrel. As long as your barrel is long enough for good velocity (which affects the distance downrange at which the bullet slows to the wobbly transonic zone), adding more length won't help accuracy and may hurt it.

"The only positive input for the AR was the ability to jerk off 10-15 rounds at a running target. Really? That's a good idea? Like you can know what lies past the target and make a humane kill on a running target?"

That is hilarious. You're shooting at 200+ yards, and you think you're going to "jerk off" fast shots? A more measured one-shot-per-second is do-able out to 200 yards or so, but at 600 you'd better be watching and correcting.

And if you can't see what's behind and around the target at 600 yards, you have no business taking the first shot, whether it's a target range or a prairie dog colony. I'm not sure what scenario you're imagining here.

"If you want a good varmint gun try a 25-06. Twice the weight of the .223 and the same velocity. Flat trajectory, not susceptible to windage and with custom loads can exceed 4000 fps. All states accept it for game up to elk."

A .25-06 is a big-game cartridge, not a varmint cartridge. It's a .30-06 deer and elk rifle necked down to 6.5mm caliber for better long range performance, and is about twice as powerful as a little .223, being more comparable to a .270 deer/elk rifle than it is to the centerfire .22's.

Can you use a long range deer and elk rifle like a .25-06 on groundhogs and prairie dogs? Sure! Overkill, but if that's what floats your boat, more power to you. The downsides are that .25-06 costs far more than .223 to shoot, has far worse muzzle blast, and kicks much harder, making it very unpleasant to shoot a couple hundred rounds in a day. For a target rifle, .25-06 would be brutal compared to a .223, for the same reasons of muzzle blast, recoil, and expense.

Cartridge comparison:

Left to right: .25-06, .308 Winchester, .223, .17 HMR, .22LR, .22 airgun, .17 airgun

The guy who was killed for selling loose cigarettes was killed in New York City, not in an NC mall.

I'm pretty sure that if you were walking around with a modern-looking rifle in New York City, you'd be put in a chokehold too...or worse.

A lot of that goes to the difference between NYC's philosophy of government, and the rest of the nation's. We don't have "stop and frisk" here either, and people don't get put in chokeholds for selling fricking cigarettes.

It's a very old law...

and I believe its intent was to regulate the manner of open carry. Of course, given the history of NC gun laws, it was probably written to disallow open carry by people with the the "wrong" amount of melanin in their skin.

Not legal in NC. (n/t)

More scaremongering about centerfire .22's...

Since the ".223 is WAY TOO POWERFUL for civilian use" argument was so glaringly silly, someone has tried the exact opposite argument, basically arguing ".223 is not powerful enough for civilian use, but still should be banned because ZOMG VELOCITY! and its military pedigree" (ignoring the fact that it's based on a civilian varmint hunting cartridge, of course).


After a great deal of hand-waving about military automatic weapons and the military utility of 5.56mm in full auto fire, there are some pretty novel claims. To wit:

"Because of the light weight projectile and very high velocity (3000 + feet per second vs 2600 FPS for the M14) many states prohibit the 55 gr .223 round as a humane hunting round."

Wait, just four days ago, you guys were saying that .223 is too powerful for deer hunting and would tear up too much meat if you shot a deer with it, so it should be banned. Now you say 55gr .223 is too underpowered to humanely kill deer, so it should be banned. Which is it?

If you think 3000 ft/sec is "very high velocity", there are plenty of civilian hunting rifles that can exceed 4000 ft/sec with the same weight bullet, or that can throw a bullet two or three times as heavy as a .223 at 3200+ ft/sec. That's because .223's small case doesn't hold enough powder to match the velocity or energy that a bigger case can produce. For example, a .22-250 Remington can throw a 55-grain bullet (same weight as typical .223) at 3786 ft/sec, or a 40-grain at 4224 ft/sec. By comparison, my 16" AR will launch a 55gr at around 2950 ft/sec, if that.


I also notice you praise .308 (7.62x51mm NATO) as a civilian cartridge. Ummm, guess who developed that cartridge, and for what purpose. And what about .30-06 Springfield, originally designed to kill human beings at extreme range, and capable of exceeding 3400-4000 ft/sec with some loads? Just asking.

"The lightweight projectile and loss of ballistic energy past a few hundred yards making it ineffective for long range target or varmint shooting"

So the #1 varmint hunting cartridge in the nation is useless for varmint hunting. Maybe you should tell these hunters:

http://www.fieldandstream.com/forums/-firing-line/223-vs-22-250 (ummm, yep, that's a hunting site)

Funny thing is, the majority of bolt-action varmint hunting rifles are chambered in .223.


Maybe that is true because .223 Remington is a slightly improved variant of the .222 Remington varmint hunting round introduced in 1950, and is even better for hunting small game than .222 is. Yes, .22-250, .220 Swift, etc. kick .223's butt in terms of velocity and energy, but .223 recoils less, is much cheaper to shoot, and doesn't wear out a barrel like the higher velocity choices.

"making it ineffective for long range target or varmint shooting (although very few people participate in 1000 yard competition)."

Soooo, the #1 centerfire target cartridge in the United States is useless for target shooting, too. Do you see the disconnect there? Heck, there's an entire division within F-class long range target shooting (F/TR class) devoted to .223 and .308:


And how about hits at a mile using a custom bolt-action .223?


Yes, there are cartridges that carry a lot more energy and velocity at 1000+ yards (6.5mm Creedmor comes to mind, or .22-250, or .300 Win Mag, or .338 Lapua Mag), and yes, .223 is also a great IPSC cartridge. But if all you want to do is punch holes in paper out to 600-1000 yards, you can set up a .223 to do it pretty well, and more cheaply than most.

"Also because of its very high velocity it is capable of penetrating an intruder's body and then interior walls and still inflicting lethal injuries after doing so make it less than desirable for home defense."

This is exactly backwards; .223 Remington with civilian jacketed hollowpoints or softpoints penetrates less in both ballistic gelatin and drywall than almost any pistol or buckshot load.

It is less likely to "penetrate and intruder's body and then interior walls" than almost any other round, centerfire or rimfire, with the possible exception of light birdshot. (I say possible exception because 40gr .223 JHP may even penetrate less than birdshot at close range, but I can't find a suitable birdshot test to compare.)

Don't take my word for it. See Roberts G.K., "Law Enforcement General Purpose Shoulder Fired Weapons: the Wounding Effects of 5.56mm/.223 Carbines Compared with 12 ga. Shotguns and Pistol Caliber Weapons Using 10% Ordnance Gelatin as a Tissue Simulant, Police Marksman, Jul/Aug 1998, pp. 38-45.

Roberts even discounts a lot of lighter .223 JHP and SP loadings as not offering *enough* penetration for routine law enforcement use, although I think that in general, the ideal for home defense is a bit less penetration than might be required for LE use. But if you want to know why law enforcement ditched 9mm carbines in favor of .223 for in-home use, there it is.

And for those who don't have access to a university library, or lack the attention span to read a technical-y academic article (minutiae!), see pictures!

"So, what is it good for? For doing what the military specified; firing a large volume of high velocity projectiles at close range to inflict the maximum number of injuries as quickly as possible."

Baloney. Show me the milspec where the military use of 5.56mm was driven by close range effectiveness over larger calibers. If I recall my history, the 5.56mm decision was based more on increasing the likelihood of hits at longer ranges compared to the then-standard M14. You're quoting gun-control-lobby talking points, not military doctrine. At the time, the U.S. military felt that in any engagement with the Soviets, closing to CQB distances would be a disaster, and hence emphasized accuracy and longer range fire. You do remember that the original M16 had a 20" barrel and target style aperture sights, yes? You do remember that the #1 thing on U.S. military planners' minds was the Fulda Gap scenario, not room-clearing, yes?

"It was designed to military specifications for use by infantry soldiers and paramilitary police officers who have been trained in the use of such weapons."

More handwaving. The .223 Remington is simply a modified civilian varmint hunting cartridge, and in non-automatic civilian rifles, it's simply an improved .222 Remington and a less powerful alternative to harder-kicking, more expensive rounds like .22-250, .243 Winchester, 7mm-08, .270, .308, and .30-06. And since it is easier for a novice shooter to learn to shoot a small, light-kicking caliber well than it is a larger one (which is why .223 is so popular as a first rifle), the argument "ZOMG .223 requires moar training than .308!!!" is downright silly.

In the military context, yes, 5.56mm/.223 allows military automatic weapons to put more lead on target at cyclic rate without uncontrollable muzzle climb. That's irrelevant to civilian non-automatics, just as penetration with military FMJ is irrelevant to civilian softpoints and hollowpoints. For civilians, .223 simply means you can shoot a smaller, lighter rifle with less recoil, less expenditure, and less risk of overpenetration than if you were using a full power rifle, all else being equal.

I'll also point out that some say .223/5.56mm is too underpowered for military use, since the military has to shoot through things, etc. Remember when 5.56mm rifles were derided as "poodle shooters" by Col. Jeff Cooper (USMC Ret.) and others? I think there is some merit to the criticism of .223's lack of lethality at range (see Dr. Martin Fackler, et al), but the real kicker is weight, and modern soldiers are maxed out on weight (body armor, radios, NVG's, support for more effective crew-served weapons). Ditching body armor or advanced electronics so they can carry a heavier-caliber rifle that hits harder would be a poor trade.

Taking Back the Infantry Half-Kilometer (thinks military should switch to a more powerful caliber)
http://www.chuckhawks.com/ar_disgrace.htm (way out of date on reliability issues, but has a point about lack of lethality)

"That's what it is good for."

It's good for civilian target shooting, which is why it's the #1 centerfire target cartridge in the United States.

It's good for varmint hunting, which is why it's the #1 centerfire varmint hunting cartridge in the United States.

It's good for defensive purposes while limiting overpenetration, which is why it's overwhelmingly used in civilian law enforcement patrol rifles and why it's the #1 choice of U.S. homeowners for defensive carbines.

Hand-waving about military automatic weapons shooting military full metal jacket ammo has absolutely nothing to do with the merits of .223 Remington as a civilian rifle cartridge. It's by far the most used civilian rifle round, and for very good reasons.

"Yet anyone with a few hundred dollars can walk into Walmart and buy one without training or instruction. There is something wrong with this system."

Just like any other civilian rifle, including those that are far more powerful and more lethal (which is most of them). Of course, you just want to keep as many guns as possible out of the hands of U.S. gun owners, which is why you're fighting so damn hard to outlaw the least misused class of weapons in America.

.223 Remington is the least powerful civilian rifle cartridge in common use (except for 5.45x39mm), but that doesn't mean it's not a great civilian cartridge, and all the handwaving in the world won't change that.

Is this a joke?

Name 3 common centerfire rifle calibers less powerful than .223 Remington. I can only think of one, 5.45x39mm; aside from that one, .223 Remington is the least powerful of all actual rifle calibers.

Do you honestly want to ban all rifles, or is this a joke?

Yep. I thought this post over there was ironic in that vein...

"Another well worn tactic is to run down the rabbit hole of minutea about guns getting into the tiny details of ballistics, terminology and definitions until the whole issue being discussed is lost. "

Ironic when the whole issue being discussed in that thread is a technical examination of why AR-15's are supposedly too powerful for civilian use.

The OP makes technical claims about .223 being more powerful than "conventional" rifles, which based on readily available and incontrovertible sources, is exactly backwards. Yet for them to open their minds enough to even question that claim, and take 30 seconds to test it against objective facts they can easily access themselves (is a .223 really more powerful than a deer rifle?), is like asking a hardcore creationist to read a paragraph on radiometric dating or consider the implications of a feathered coelurosaur.

They can't even go so far as to say "I don't like people owning AR-15's, but claiming they are super powerful is a stupid argument to use", because to question that claim would be to allow other pesky questions in. Like "are they really that rarely misused?", or "how are they really that different from a Mini-14?", or the ultimate badthink, "does going after .223 rifles actually make sense from a violence prevention standpoint?"

I'm hoping that the original poster will have enough curiosity

to actually check those facts. If he's for real, he can easily verify the energy figures, load data, and FBI homicide stats for himself, if he is open minded enough to look.

Interesting that they not only have to be protected from seeing a dissenting position...

they have to be protected from simply knowing that the dissenting position exists, lest they be led astray by such pesky things as verifiable facts.

It's probably for the best. Fraudulent claims like that beginning in the late '80s, and trolling Congress and the President into passing the original "assault weapon" bait-and-switch in 1994, are what destroyed the gun control lobby in the '90s and '00s. Maybe the Special Military Firearms Expert should just keep up the good work.

I won't interrupt this thread with discussion here...

as I respect the rules of this group, but if you'd like to defend your post on its merits, there's a thread in the RKBA discussion forum. I own and shoot a Rock River AR competitively and recreationally, and responded at length here, if you're interested.
Go to Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 Next »