Lighter bullets in .223 due to bullet scarcity


January 10, 2013, 10:39 AM
So my AR is 1-9 twist 18" barrel R-15. My question is I can not find 55 to 70 grain bullets anywhere! I have about 200 rounds of 55 fmj .223's but would rather not shoot them now. I have some 30 gr bullets and can find these bullets for sale locally. Now I'm just looking to do some short range plinking/practice maybe 50 yards, not expecting any 1/2 " MOA's. How will my gun perform with a 30 gr bullet with a 1-9 twist barrel? Any powders that would be suited for this particular load?

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January 10, 2013, 10:51 AM
In my 14" Thompson Contender barrel I shoot a lot of 34gr flat base hollow point bullets, mostly because they are cheap but they also group exceptionally well at 100yds, but my barrel has a 1:12 twist. With these light bullets I recommend IMR4198, RL-7, H322 or something right around their burn rate.

January 10, 2013, 10:55 AM
Who makes this 30gr bullet? Ramshot and accurate arms post data for a Barnes 30gr HP, but that is the only data i have seen with that weight. What powders do you have, because most places are sold out of the common ones, but AA2200 and AA2230/Ramshot Exterminator would be my choice.

It is going to have a pretty long jump to the rifling...

Or are these already loaded, I wasn't sure.

January 10, 2013, 10:56 AM AR. 20'' Bushy national match upper 1-9 twist


The gas port pressure curve is a critical part of internal ballistics for cartridges used in gas operated firearms. Gas operated weapons are generally tailored to a narrow range of powder burning rates and characteristics. If the port pressure is too low the weapon will fail to function and if to high the weapon may function too forcefully or rapidly causing extraction or cycling problems. When using the fast H4198, the pressure peaks very fast and is done producing pressure sooner than your slow powders. With such a wide range of bullet weights from 40gr to 80gr, matching the gas port location and size is critical. If the gas port was moved closer to the chamber and drilled larger, H4198 may work?

January 10, 2013, 01:45 PM
It it's easily done in bolt rifles with faster powder but with autos 243 had points out the problems.

January 10, 2013, 02:04 PM
So is this a bad idea?

January 10, 2013, 05:31 PM
Bad idea, i dont know. Sierra goes down to 40 gr in this AR data. Maybe change your title to "30 gr bullet in an AR15. Need load suggestions." There has to be someone that tried* it??

January 10, 2013, 05:51 PM
I think the only problem you might have, but it's a big one, is that the jacket may fly off the bullet once it leaves the barrel from the centrifical force of the bullet spin. I think you will have plenty of gas generated to cycle the action because you will have to add more powder to compensate for the lighter bullet.

What is the source of these 30gr pills? I get my .224" 34gr bullets from Midsouth. They are part of their Varmint Nightmare line of bullets......made by Nosler I think.

January 10, 2013, 08:01 PM
Well I finally found some 55 and 69 gr bullets today. I'm ditching this whole idea.

Hondo 60
January 10, 2013, 09:19 PM
Congrats on finding the right bullets.
I was gonna suggest trying just a couple light ones.

I don't think I would try it, unless you're using it to put meat on the table.
(mine's just for fun)

January 11, 2013, 09:28 AM
200 left? What's a good reserve? I have about 1000, and I think I'll keep'm until there's more supply. I'm also thinking I'll sell my stash of military brass since brass since prices are up 400%.


January 11, 2013, 02:03 PM
OP check Powder Valley. They still supplies in stock and they are not gouging either. I placed an order last night and checked today and with Nosler at least they're still showing in stock bullets....

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