AR-15 Ammo choice & barrel selection

AR-15 Ammo choice & barrel selection

This is a discussion on AR-15 Ammo choice & barrel selection within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Building my first AR-15. I am not decided on which barrel configuration I will get. Please answer the poll as best as you can with ...

View Poll Results: Which combination ammo/barrel might be best for Self Defense AR-15

Voters
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  • Light bullet with 16" 1 in 9 twist barrel

    9 25.00%
  • Light bullet with 16" 1 in 7 twist barrel

    1 2.78%
  • Heavy bullet with 16" 1 in 9 twist barrel

    9 25.00%
  • Heavy bullet with 16" 1 in 7 twist barrel

    7 19.44%
  • I prefer a completely different combination not listed

    7 19.44%
  • Go pound sand

    3 8.33%
Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    AR-15 Ammo choice & barrel selection

    Building my first AR-15. I am not decided on which barrel configuration I will get. Please answer the poll as best as you can with what you have experienced regardless of what has been written or suggested in other articles and forums.

    I will mostly use this for fun/plinking but it will definitely be set up for a home defense rifle.


  2. #2
    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    I added to the 'I prefer a completely different combination not listed' category. My current AR is a 1/9" twist 11 1/2" barrel. 45gr JHP's in the HD mags. HD or coyotes to 100 yds?

  3. #3
    VIP Member Array matiki's Avatar
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    I selected 'other', pound sand was tempting but only because it's my favorite phrase.

    1:9 14.5" is my favorite so far. I shoot mostly M193 (55gr). Zero complaints. Big heavy match ammo is a no go, same with really light 40-45 gr. varmint bombs.

  4. #4
    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    Well, you guys who talk about the "shorter than 16" barrels", how do you legally have these? According to what I have seen and read, shorter than 16" is illegal for regular civilians to use.

  5. #5
    Member Array Blackhawk6's Avatar
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    A 1:7 barrel offers the most versatility with regard to ammunition selection when self-defense is a consideration. It will allow you to shoot the heavier bullets that are generally regarded to be the best terminal performers in the caliber. You will also be able to shoot cheaper 55-grain FMJ for plinking/practice.

  6. #6
    VIP Member Array aus71383's Avatar
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    1:7 means you can shoot 50 to 80+ grain bullets. 75 grain TAP just happens to be the best for shooting people (terminal ballistics wise). 1:9 twist barrels may be able to stabilize the 75 grain bullets. Some people say they shoot fine. Others get huge groups at 25 yards. I think it will vary from barrel to barrel, likely the deeper grooves will work better. 16" as a total overall length is the minimum legal length. I have a 13.7 inch barrel and my barrel has an overall length of 16.1", some barrels will be 14.7" with a permanently attached A2 hider that makes 16", or there are 14.5" barrels with various flash hiders that will make 16 inches as well. If you want a 16" barrel you don't have to use a flash hider at all - you will likely want to, but it won't have to be permanently attached.

    Hope this helps....

    Austin

  7. #7
    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    Now we're gettin' somewhere!

    That info, if correct, will mean I can now choose my barrel and not worry so much as to which one I SHOULD get. If the 1:7 works well in "most" situations and also with the heavier ammo, that will be what I want.

    Hornady TAP and/or the Federal Tactical .223 are the two SD ammo types I have looked at for what I will purchase. Lake City .223 or some rejected 5.56mm will be my target/practice ammo.

  8. #8
    Member Array dan728's Avatar
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    I like 55 gr. TAP from my 16" M&P shoots great nice recoil nice groups at 100 yrds. and good penitration for self defense. Just my thaughts, but I am new to AR's so take it with a grain of salt.

  9. #9
    Member Array Senderofan's Avatar
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    My AR's with 1:9 twist don't like heavier bullets. I have a R.R, with a 1:8...it seems to really like 75 & 77 gr. bullets...so I voted for the 1:7 with heavy bullets...specifically thinking along the lines of the TAP ammo.

  10. #10
    Member Array Final Option's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tally XD View Post
    Well, you guys who talk about the "shorter than 16" barrels", how do you legally have these? According to what I have seen and read, shorter than 16" is illegal for regular civilians to use.
    Actually you can have as short a barrel as you want and even put a suppressor on it. All legal...depending on your state and your willingness to pay the government for the $200 tax stamp. That said I run a 10.5" 1/7 with 75g TAP for social encounters

  11. #11
    VIP Member Array matiki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Final Option View Post
    Actually you can have as short a barrel as you want and even put a suppressor on it. All legal...depending on your state and your willingness to pay the government for the $200 tax stamp. That said I run a 10.5" 1/7 with 75g TAP for social encounters
    I'll add that in WA, you can't have an SBR, and you can have a silencer, but you can't install it or use it. Seriously.

    So I order my 14.5" barrels with a permanently attached flash hider to make me legal (16" and a hair). That is an option you may want to keep in mind, as another poster also pointed out.

  12. #12
    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    Well, you guys who talk about the "shorter than 16" barrels", how do you legally have these? According to what I have seen and read, shorter than 16" is illegal for regular civilians to use.
    Bushmaster 11 1/2" barrel, 5 1/2" bird cage flash suppressor. The 'commando' upper.

  13. #13
    VIP Member Array Tubby45's Avatar
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    Any of those combos will work. I have a 7 inch twist AR and use 64-77gr bullets.
    07/02 FFL/SOT since 2006

  14. #14
    Member Array Texas Yankee's Avatar
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    Why would you get a SBR and then and a 5 inch flash suppressor to it? Doesn't that negate the advantage of the shorter barrel? Why not just get a 14.5" or 16 inch barrel with a shorter flash suppressor?

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