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How does a short barrel AR-15 compare to a 16" barrel?

Discussion in 'NFA Firearms and Accessories' started by bushmaster1313, Aug 15, 2011.

  1. bushmaster1313

    bushmaster1313 Well-Known Member

    Compared to a 16" AR-15, other than making it an NFA, what is the effect of shortening the barrel to 12 or 14 inches?

    Muzzle blast
    Muzzle energy
    Follow-up shots

    Thank you
  2. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    Lose a couple hundred FPS.

    Mechanical accuracy should not be affected provided the barrel is good and the upper is built right.

    Effective range is decreased as a function of terminal velocity. External ballistics are reduced with reduced muzzle velocity.

    Muzzle blast is increased.

    It is typically a little harder to make a shorter barrel run as reliably as a 14.5"+, but it can be done. I have a 12" that runs flawlessly.
  3. Dustin0

    Dustin0 Well-Known Member

    I am currently fighting a 7.5 SBR. To get the gun to run correctly you will need a heavy buffer M16 Bolt Carrier and a fender D extractor. I hoping that will sovle my problems.

    Follow up shots and accuracy have not been a problem with the break I used. It also cut down on the muzzle blast alot.
  4. rjrivero

    rjrivero Well-Known Member

    My 7.5" is harsh on the ears, if you're using any kind of muzzle brake. So much so that I built an 11" upper for it. It's much more plesant to shoot.
  5. jbg762

    jbg762 Member

    Has anyone on here actually run any rounds from a 7 or 11 inch .223 through a chrono? I've been looking for a solid answer to this very question for months. I have an Eagle Arms EA-15 I want to register as an SBR and I'm trying to decide on barrel length. I'm kind of leaning towards a lightweight A1 profile 11.5 inch barrel. I don't think I want to have to deal with the pistol length handguards and I've heard the 11.5 is more reliable than the 10.5 without any tweaking. I've read a lot of posts by armchair commandoes who quote the 50 fps per inch "rule". Of course I imagine in the real world you lose a lot more than that once you start getting much below about 14 inches.
  6. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    Mk262 - 2500
    M855 - 2750
    M193 - 2850
  7. mortablunt

    mortablunt Well-Known Member

    More recoil, harsher sound, and less power going downrange. It's not really doing you any good.

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