Army considers ditching 5.56 round

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FfNJGTFO
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Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by FfNJGTFO » Thu May 11, 2017 6:18 pm

TTAG - US Army Considers ditching 5.56 round...

So, assuming this happens, what would happen to the market for 5.56 rounds? Would it dry up eventually? For those of us with 5.56 milspec ARs/M4s, would we be SOL in re: procuring 5.56 ammo, or do you think there's a sufficient market for it to be manufactured, even without military participation?

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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by g.willikers » Fri May 12, 2017 9:15 am

With the popularity of the caliber and all the guns that are (and have been) chambered for it, there's always going to be demand.
Even without the AR, plenty of other types of guns use it.
If you're concerned about the .556 version in particular, it's not difficult for ammo manufacturers to make it or adapt a .223 substitute.
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by hurricanecharlie » Fri May 12, 2017 4:54 pm

round is used around the globe
won't be scarce any time soon

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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by flcracker » Fri May 12, 2017 7:08 pm

This article suggests that they are thinking about dropping the 7.62 NATO round as well.

https://bearingarms.com/bob-o/2017/04/1 ... to-for-65/
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by tcpip95 » Fri May 12, 2017 9:29 pm

The entire manufacturing world of the 5.56 and the 7.62 x 39 could cease to exist tonight, and I'll still end up with some left when they bury me. [smilie=pdt_xtremez_30.gif]

Oh, and they'll probably put a couple of magazines of .40 and .45 cal in my casket too! [smilie=011.gif]
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by REDinFL » Sat May 13, 2017 5:50 pm

Had to laugh about the going back to battle rifles bit. They can try some othe odd rounds but, there's not much you can't fix by the application of .30-06.
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by hurricanecharlie » Sat May 13, 2017 6:16 pm

6.5 creedmoor is a likely candidate

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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by george_995 » Sat May 20, 2017 12:15 pm

hurricanecharlie wrote:6.5 creedmoor is a likely candidate

Really is a damn good round, as well as the 260 remington.
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by Gregh181 » Sat May 20, 2017 1:29 pm

It'll be well over 10-15 years until they switch and find what they want.

The real change I'm seeing is a Marine unit just recently deployed w every Marine given a suppressor and they have given the idea great reviews Post deployment
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by cougar_guy04 » Sat May 20, 2017 3:31 pm

I don't see it happening anytime soon. Every 10-15 years the Army or Congress gets a bee in their bonnet about a new rifle, new caliber, or both (OICW, M4 PIP/M4A1+, SPIW/ACR/NIBLICK/SALVO, XM8, LSAT, etc.). I agree that suppressors are a more likely realm to move into before we see a new caliber.
NSWC has the Suppressed Upper Receiver Group (SURG) proposal that they keep talking about and the new report from the USASOC about 14.5" Midlength uppers with MLOK free float forends and Surefire cans/muzzle devices . . . like a lot of companies have already been building in the commercial realm for years). Also I'm hearing that M855A1 is showing some improved terminal ballistics, so there is that.

I see .260 Remington being a thing on a limited scale for certain groups (.260 is already being used in some capacities). NATO is still using a 5.56 round, so I don't see the production going away anytime soon.

Funny this coming about after we drug NATO kicking and screaming to 7.62 NATO in the 60's instead of something like .280 Brit. I do think there's some merit to 6/6.5mm calibers. When I have the spare funds to throw at something, a .260 Rem gas gun and maybe a RPR or something like that.
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by P5 guy » Sun May 21, 2017 6:45 am

Going up to a bullet 0.260" in diameter from a bullet 0.224" in diameter does not seem to me to be a significant increase.
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by forcefed » Sun May 21, 2017 7:52 am

P5 guy wrote:Going up to a bullet 0.260" in diameter from a bullet 0.224" in diameter does not seem to me to be a significant increase.
Not much difference in a .380 and a .40 either
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by Cloaked Dagger » Sun May 21, 2017 9:20 am

P5 guy wrote:Going up to a bullet 0.260" in diameter from a bullet 0.224" in diameter does not seem to me to be a significant increase.
It has a lot more powder behind it too. The 5.56 NATO carries around 1800 joules of energy, the .260 carries 3100 joules of energy. Energy is the best measure of a round's ability to do damage as it takes energy to do the damage. Everything else being the same a round with more energy will do more damage, the only thing that will change this is if the higher energy round cannot transfer its energy to the target as effectively.

So does 3100 from 1800 seem like a significant improvement? That's a 72% increase in energy.

The .260 is basically a necked down .308. It's based on the .308 case. Wouldn't it also mean carrying less ammo and smaller magazine capacities just like with .308 though?
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by P5 guy » Mon May 22, 2017 4:22 am

Ah ha, Longer cartridge case, longer action.
276 Peterson then, maybe?
More recoil and muzzle blast too I suspect.

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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by cougar_guy04 » Sat May 27, 2017 7:05 pm

A lot of talk about .264 USA. Case length is in between 7.62 NATO and 5.56 NATO:
Image

6.5mm bullets would also give you better exterior ballistics and shoot flatter . . . . which would help make up for PFC and Spec. Snuffy's lack of marksmanship and range estimation prowess. It's the same thoughts behind the .338 Norma MMG.
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by Cardboard_killer » Sat May 27, 2017 8:57 pm

Gregh181 wrote:The real change I'm seeing is a Marine unit just recently deployed w every Marine given a suppressor and they have given the idea great reviews Post deployment
Do you have a link for this? Nevermind, I found it.
Last edited by Cardboard_killer on Sat May 27, 2017 9:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by Cardboard_killer » Sat May 27, 2017 9:02 pm

It will be long after I am dead that 223/556 would dry up. There are more 223/556 rifles in civilian hands than there are in US military hands right now anyway, although our use isn't as intensive as the military's. Still, if the military changes, I'm sure all GI Joe wannabes will want to switch over too.
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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by Absolute2A » Mon Jun 26, 2017 11:15 pm

Most of us will be long gone before the 5.56 becomes an obsolete military cartridge.

We're more likely to see more advanced bullet technologies evolve the 5.56 capability rather than a new cartridge be adopted in the next few decades.

There is also the chance that the 5.56 rides out this entire era of firearm evolution...

With something like caseless ammo or electronic weapons being the next frontier where major changes take place.

Ditching the 5.56 today, would be far more radical of a change than when the 5.56 was adopted in the 1960's - which was during the cold war era of insane military spending and growth. That's how entrenched the 5.56 is.

The U.S. military is married to this round. Our NATO partners and many other nations around the world are also deeply invested in 5.56. Most of them cannot afford and will not tolerate any kind of rearmament to a new cartridge in the foreseeable future. The US outspends all of them combined on military matters, and we cannot even justify spending on a new platform.

Love it or hate it, it's here to stay.

Also, consider that the gun scene today is utterly unrecognizable for a shooter from the 1990's. The incredible widespread popularity of the AR-15, and 5.56 would be hard to imagine in those days. But it happened. The civilian demand for it is so great, the market does not need military institutions to subsidize it. Civilian demand is a market force of its own.

Figure, the 7.62x39 has been obsolete for a while now. The major nations have replaced it. Yet there's several who still use it. It's being churned out like crazy and it's relatively cheap. 5.56 dwarfs the 7.62x39 in acceptance and use by major military powers and has not been made obsolete by any of them yet and is still going strong.

These stories come up every few years. This is the big dogs playing the game and hooking up their industry partners. Politics and business.

Look how long it took to replace the Beretta! That's not even a caliber change which is far more significant. There's been talking of dumping that thing since at least 1991. Finally just happened.

Good luck ditching the 5.56

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Re: Army considers ditching 5.56 round

Post by ger42 » Tue Jun 27, 2017 6:06 am

Plenty of non military 5.56 ammo being sold today the only reason this would dry up is if we stopped buying it.
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