Self Defense Ammo for .223?

This is a discussion on Self Defense Ammo for .223? within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; It seems there are always stories of certain rounds not working as designed. I've heard about people being shot in the ace with .357 magnum ...

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Thread: Self Defense Ammo for .223?

  1. #46
    RKM
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    It seems there are always stories of certain rounds not working as designed. I've heard about people being shot in the ace with .357 magnum and living. Weird stuff happens. Either way, no BG is going to get a single shot. If one round fails to frag, I doubt all the other 3 or 4 will :)

    Still I agree, a well designed bullet is always preferred, but m193 is no slouch, IMO.

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  3. #47
    VIP Member Array jonconsiglio's Avatar
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    I'm or sure of all the differences, but from a quick look, the Superperformance does not have a cannelure (needed for improved fragmentation and to prevent bullet setback) and also has a ballistic coefficient difference of of .040. Give me a minute and I'll tell you the difference that makes. The Superperformance looks to be more of a flatter shooting round more for accuracy than putting down human targets...which is what TAP is designed to do.

    The difference in BC means the Superperformance will have about 5% less drop than the TAP. Not a big deal there, but it will also help with wind drift and be slightly more accurate at longer ranges. That is with no change in velocity...
    Proven combat techniques may not be flashy and may require a bit more physical effort on the part of the shooter. Further, they may not win competition matches, but they will help ensure your survival in a shooting or gunfight on the street. ~Paul Howe

  4. #48
    Senior Member Array Ring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonconsiglio View Post
    If you guys look a couple posts above, I provided a link showing that the 5.56 TAP is a different bullet, the T2. It's also stated on Hornady's website that they use different bullets between the two loadings of TAP.

    Both 223 and 5.56 are different than the VMAX if for no other reason than the cannelure which aids in fragmentation and helps with bullet setback.

    They are different. The newer T2 bullet fragments at a lower velocity and also the meplat (what I was looking for in my last post) is much more consistent round to round and is even all around unlike the 223 TAP. The 5.56 T2 also has slighted better ballistic coefficient so it shoots slightly flatter, obviously the near 200 extra feet per second aids in this as well.
    that 75 is not a vmax, its a BTHP... the 55/60 tap is VMAX, and is the same as the varmit load...

  5. #49
    Senior Member Array AZ Hawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonconsiglio View Post
    I'm or sure of all the differences, but from a quick look, the Superperformance does not have a cannelure (needed for improved fragmentation and to prevent bullet setback) and also has a ballistic coefficient difference of of .040. Give me a minute and I'll tell you the difference that makes. The Superperformance looks to be more of a flatter shooting round more for accuracy than putting down human targets...which is what TAP is designed to do.

    The difference in BC means the Superperformance will have about 5% less drop than the TAP. Not a big deal there, but it will also help with wind drift and be slightly more accurate at longer ranges. That is with no change in velocity...
    Thanks. =)
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  6. #50
    VIP Member Array jonconsiglio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ring View Post
    that 75 is not a vmax, its a BTHP... the 55/60 tap is VMAX, and is the same as the varmit load...
    In every post mentioning TAP, I've mentioned the 75gr. 55gr in anything fragmenting is a poor choice for a defensive load.

    EDIT - going back, every single post specified 75gr TAP. This is the first mention of it from either of us... Here's what you posted before, which is incorrect.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ring View Post
    no... no its not... its the normal Vmax and 75 match in a shiny case... everything else is 100% the same except the 556 is loaded a tad hotter
    Proven combat techniques may not be flashy and may require a bit more physical effort on the part of the shooter. Further, they may not win competition matches, but they will help ensure your survival in a shooting or gunfight on the street. ~Paul Howe

  7. #51
    RKM
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    The 75gr that's in the shiny case, or the nickle case is TAP FPD. It's .223 but it's not that match bullet it's a T1C. That used in the TAP LEO in .223 (not sure the difference between the FPD and LEO other than packaging and FPD comes in a nickle case, LEO comes in a bras cases) The 5.56 uses the T2.

    Hornady posts all the ballistic results on the LE website.
    Hornady : Law Enforcement | Products | Rifle

  8. #52
    VIP Member Array peckman28's Avatar
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    I have some 75-gr FPD .223 that I would feel very confident in. My other choice would be the M193 ball ammo. Like others have said, it wouldn't perform perfectly every single time (just like any other load) but I do remember shooting a pineapple with it and seeing little .22 sized entry holes, then walking up to it and seeing that it looked like it had been cut in half with a machete. Between that and pictures I have seen of small entry wounds and massive exits with it on people, I feel like it would do just fine. The FPD would be my first choice over that, however. The 5.56 TAP load does sound like it would work better, but since I can't imagine having to fire anywhere near 100 yds in a SD situation with it, I just can't justify the extra cost in my mind for it. Honestly if I was using a rifle in HD anyway it would be a pretty bad situation. I imagine my .40 would take care of most situations and is the primary weapon in my defensive plan anyway.

  9. #53
    RKM
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    How does the Black Hills .223 62gr TSX compare to the Black Hills 5.56 50gr TSX? I can find a lot of great info on the 5.56 50gr version, but not so much on the .223 62gr version. I like the idea of heavier bullets.

    I've been admittedly over thinking my ammo choices. While I have 75gr TAP FPD and Mk262, I have a 1:9 twist barrel. I have plenty of confidence of these doing a good job 50 yards and in. But I'd like something that can do a good job out to even 200-300 yards, which while my 1:9 shoots the 75 and 77gr rounds decently at 100 yards, I know it won't at 200-300. I've been thinking about going to the Black Hills TSX loadings, not only because they're lighter and will do better at distance with my twist rate, but I DO like the idea of having better barrier performance (even if I don't really need barrier performance, it's there if I do). But I can't find any info on the .223 62gr version. Do they load 62gr in 5.56? Also been thinking about trying the MK318. Read that Mk318 is 2925 fps from a 14.5" barrel. Is this hotter than typical 5.56 ammo?

    I know there is never end all be all round in any caliber. I'm trying to find one that does everything that I want it to do.

    I'd like a .223/5.56 load (preferably 5.56, but .223 will do) 55-62gr bullet (any design HP, JSP, FMJ, don't care) that has consistent "wounding" performance from 0-200 yards. I don't need .00000001 MOA accuracy. 3 even 4 MOA is good enough.

    But then I start to think, is my target going to care whether it's hit by XM193 or the new latest and greatest?
    Last edited by RKM; October 30th, 2011 at 07:28 PM.

  10. #54
    Senior Member Array AZ Hawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RKM View Post
    How does the Black Hills .223 62gr TSX compare to the Black Hills 5.56 50gr TSX? I can find a lot of great info on the 5.56 50gr version, but not so much on the .223 62gr version. I like the idea of heavier bullets.

    I've been admittedly over thinking my ammo choices. While I have 75gr TAP FPD and Mk262, I have a 1:9 twist barrel. I have plenty of confidence of these doing a good job 50 yards and in. But I'd like something that can do a good job out to even 200-300 yards, which while my 1:9 shoots the 75 and 77gr rounds decently at 100 yards, I know it won't at 200-300. I've been thinking about going to the Black Hills TSX loadings, not only because they're lighter and will do better at distance with my twist rate, but I DO like the idea of having better barrier performance (even if I don't really need barrier performance, it's there if I do). But I can't find any info on the .223 62gr version. Do they load 62gr in 5.56? Also been thinking about trying the MK318. Read that Mk318 is 2925 fps from a 14.5" barrel. Is this hotter than typical 5.56 ammo?

    I know there is never end all be all round in any caliber. I'm trying to find one that does everything that I want it to do.

    I'd like a .223/5.56 load (preferably 5.56, but .223 will do) 55-62gr bullet (any design HP, JSP, FMJ, don't care) that has consistent "wounding" performance from 0-200 yards. I don't need .00000001 MOA accuracy. 3 even 4 MOA is good enough.

    But then I start to think, is my target going to care whether it's hit by XM193 or the new latest and greatest?
    Ammunition To Go : 20rds - 5.56 Federal Commercial Version MK318 MOD-0 62gr. OTM (SOST) Ammo [T556TNB1] - $19.95
    Move. Shoot. Survive. ― The "Unofficial" Suarez International Doctrine

    “The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress and grows brave by reflection.” ― Thomas Paine

  11. #55
    RKM
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    Good find. The TSX loaded by Black Hills still sounds tempting (and wicked expensive ). The benefit of the mk318 is it's cheaper and from what I've found, excellent fragmentation results, but nearly 3000fps out of a 14.5" barrel sounds like it's loaded pretty hot. Maybe TOO hot for my lowly M&P15 :-/ I do have a 5.56 NATO chamber, so S&W says. I'd have no problem sticking with 75gr TAP FPD, but I'd like performance further than 50 yards. Not about to change my barrel to accommodate certain ammo, haha. I'll certainly hold onto my TAP, but I want to have more of a "do-it-all" round, within reason. Of course nothing is "do-it-all".

    It's way easier to choose defensive ammo for my AK, as there aren't NEARLY as many options :) That's the problem with .223/5.56 loads. Too many options, and then we (atleast I) get confused about which is better, twist rates to keep in mind, .223 vs. 5.56, fragmentation vs. expansion, barrier penetration... jeez...

  12. #56
    Senior Member Array AZ Hawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonconsiglio View Post
    I'm or sure of all the differences, but from a quick look, the Superperformance does not have a cannelure (needed for improved fragmentation and to prevent bullet setback) and also has a ballistic coefficient difference of of .040. Give me a minute and I'll tell you the difference that makes. The Superperformance looks to be more of a flatter shooting round more for accuracy than putting down human targets...which is what TAP is designed to do.

    The difference in BC means the Superperformance will have about 5% less drop than the TAP. Not a big deal there, but it will also help with wind drift and be slightly more accurate at longer ranges. That is with no change in velocity...
    Silly me, I should have just looked at the bullet.

    The Hornady 5.56mm NATO 75 gr. BTHP Superformance does have a cannelure, so maybe they do perform pretty much the same?
    Move. Shoot. Survive. ― The "Unofficial" Suarez International Doctrine

    “The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress and grows brave by reflection.” ― Thomas Paine

  13. #57
    VIP Member Array jonconsiglio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZ Hawk View Post
    Silly me, I should have just looked at the bullet.

    The Hornady 5.56mm NATO 75 gr. BTHP Superformance does have a cannelure, so maybe they do perform pretty much the same?
    Silly me as well... I'm the one that said it didn't!

    Edit - are you sure it has a cannelure? I just looked up some images and didn't see it and here's a thread on m4c where it's also mentioned that it does not have one.

    http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=65279
    Proven combat techniques may not be flashy and may require a bit more physical effort on the part of the shooter. Further, they may not win competition matches, but they will help ensure your survival in a shooting or gunfight on the street. ~Paul Howe

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    VIP Member Array 10thmtn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RKM View Post
    It's way easier to choose defensive ammo for my AK, as there aren't NEARLY as many options :) That's the problem with .223/5.56 loads. Too many options, and then we (atleast I) get confused about which is better, twist rates to keep in mind, .223 vs. 5.56, fragmentation vs. expansion, barrier penetration... jeez...
    Agreed. This thread gave me a headache.

    Boy, I do love me some 170 gr .30-30 JSPs.
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  15. #59
    VIP Member Array jonconsiglio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10thmtn View Post
    Agreed. This thread gave me a headache.

    Boy, I do love me some 170 gr .30-30 JSPs.
    I hear you guys... I still get unsure if something is the right choice now and then as well..

    BUT! no that we have all the explanations and reasons for each type of round, now we can break it down to be very simple....

    Hornady 75gr TAP (preferably 5.56 but 223 is fine) - great for home defense or anywhere that over penetration could be a concern. It's also a great choice as a precision round. Similar to mk272 which is used by our military in the mk12 (and others) TAP is slightly superior and is a great choice for an officer that may need to take a precision shot. It does it's damage by fragmenting.

    It will have maximum fragmentation reliably out of a 16" barrel to about 175 yard for the 5.56 75gr and and about 115 yards with the 223 75gr. From a 10.5" barrel, we're looking at 55 and 40 yards respectively. It's still devastating at 300 meters from either length, s don't get too wrapped up in that.

    The reason we want a heavier load with fragmenting ammunition is because it breaks into multiple smaller projectiles and the more there is to fragment, the more projectiles there will be. Also, this ammunition achieves the penetration it does while still beginning to fragment within a few inches due to one of the fragments retaining somewhere in the neighborhood of 1/3 of its original weight.

    These heavier rounds are often OTM - which stands for open tip match. Though they may look like a hollow point bullet, the do not expand like a typical hollow point handgun bullet. The lighter rounds will likely be a ballistic tip.

    Barnes TSX, TBBC or Win JSP - these are "barrier blind" rounds. A good comparison between these and the TAP would be Winchester Ranger T series and Ranger Bonded for handgun ammunition. These rounds are superior to TAP when working against intermediate barriers and work very well against auto glass. This would be a better choice for a patrol officer's carbine over TAP where TAP would be the better choice for an entry team or home owner. The barrier blind loads are also ideal for use in a p short barreled rifle. They exhibit adequate expansion at 300 yards from a 10.5" barrel where TAP will likely punch a clean hole at that point. With these loads, We aren't relying on the extra mass for fragmentation, so lighter runds are perfectly acceptable and at times, preferred.

    When talking twist rate, we often say we need a faster twist to stabilize the heavier rounds. While this is typically true, it's not so much the weight as it is the length. So, one thing to remember when choosing TSX is that it's a lead-free projectile and just because it's 70gr and your 1:9 may normally stabilize a 69gr bullet, the 70gr TSX is actually a bit longer than OTM 75 gr bullets. So, if you're running a 1:7, any TSX will be fine and 62 to 70 is likely ideal, while I'd you run a 1:9, 50gr to 62gr is the best choice.

    These rounds may have an open tip or a ballistic tip, depending on weight. The OTM barrier blind bullets will expand similar to hollow point handgun ammunition. Some will mushroom and some will have petals.

    So, to keep it simple!! 75gr TAP for entry, home defense or precision work. A quality barrier blind load like TSX or TBBC (Tactical Bonded Bear Claw) for working around vehicles, for LEO's as a standard patrol round or anytime you may need to unch through an intermediate barrier.

    Keep in mind that most quality 223 or 5.56 loads will easily punch through a level 1 or 2 soft armor. So, basically the majority of armor concealable under street clothes can be defeated by most 5.56.



    So, who's ready to start talking 7.62x51...?
    Proven combat techniques may not be flashy and may require a bit more physical effort on the part of the shooter. Further, they may not win competition matches, but they will help ensure your survival in a shooting or gunfight on the street. ~Paul Howe

  16. #60
    VIP Member Array 10thmtn's Avatar
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    Or - just shoot a .30-something rifle, and don't worry about it.

    You don't always know ahead of time if you need to defeat a barrier, or not.
    The more good folks carry guns, the fewer shots the crazies can get off.
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