AR-15 5.45x39 upper Who has experience


November 2, 2010, 06:21 PM
I have some stuff my FFL wants and I really do not need anything however??????

Has anyone used the 5.45x39 upper on their 5.56 AR?

Did you have to change the trigger spring??

Did your normal 223 mags work with the 5.45 with a few less rounds in them??

Who/what/where makes the best for the best price?



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November 2, 2010, 06:41 PM
The whole point of having a 5.45x39 rifle is the extremely cheap surplus ammunition. Otherwise there's not a huge price advantage over .223. The problem is that all this surplus ammunition is corrosive, and the AR-15 is a direct impingement gun. Basically, this means you're going to get nasty corrosive stuff blown all the way back into the receiver. The cleaning job you're going to have to do after shooting this stuff will be huge, and you better hope you get it all or you'll get corrosion in your rifle.

Now, beyond that, the magazines may give you trouble. 5.45 wants more of a curve to the magazine than 5.56 ammo does. I've heard of people putting 5.56 in a 5.45 magazine, and what I've heard is that it does not work beyond 10 rounds or so. I would think, however, that 5.45 in a 5.56 magazine will give you less trouble than the other way around because less of a curve is, logically, far less a problem than too much of a curve.

November 2, 2010, 07:42 PM
So even this is considered Corrosive?

FFL has 1260 rounds in brass he will sell me. I did not ask the brand but he usually gives me a pretty good deal on his overstock stuff.

From aimsurplus

New Siver Bear brand 5.45x39 ammunition by the CJSC Barnaul Cartridge Plant of Russia. Features a 60grn lead core bi-metal full jacketed bullet, zinc plated steel case, and non-corrosive berdan primer. Packaged 30rds in a box, and 750rds (25 boxes) to a case. While supplies last.

November 2, 2010, 08:05 PM
The ammo your FFL has is almost certainly corrosive. It's in what's commonly referred to as a "spam can": a sealed steel ammo can. While recently a few Russian arms factories have begun marketing NEW non-corrosive production ammo in spam cans, almost all of what you'll find in 5.45x39 is still older surplus. And despite what some will tell you, Communist Russia did indeed make some brass-cased ammo.

Silver Bear is new commercial manufacture. It's non-corrosive. It's generally pretty good ammo, but it's steel-cased. AR-15 extractors really don't like steel-cased ammo. Also, if you shoot steel-cased, you need to be sure to clean with a chamber brush before shooting brass. Steel cases don't expand to fully seal the chamber, resulting in fouling buildup which shrinks the size of the chamber. Then when you shoot brass afterwards without cleaning, it expands and freezes in there solid.

November 2, 2010, 08:24 PM
except that it specifically says that it doesnt have corrosive primers....

Its not corrosive. Generally speaking only the surplus stuff is. the new manufactured stuff is generally not corrosive

November 2, 2010, 08:59 PM
Good post guys!!

I had not thought or heard about cleaning the chamber after shooting steel.

It does stand to reason due to different expansion rates of steel versus brass.

I have even mixed steel and brass in the same mag!!? But all my shooting is pretty much hunting so nothing ever gets that hot.

No I do not do it all the time it would happen when filling a mag with federal, run out and top the mag off with silverbear etc etc. Hummmmm

November 2, 2010, 09:59 PM
I bought a S&W AR in 5.45 and even swapped the upper with my other ARs without any problem. I did however have to buy spare mags that were 5.45 specific though, but they are made by C Products. The mags are cheap and run flawlessly.

November 3, 2010, 11:54 AM
You might ask Andrew over at the Vuurwapen Blog about the 5.45, he's got quite a bit of experience with them.

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