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.223/5.56 in combat

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by sh3rm4nt4nk, Mar 6, 2009.

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  1. sh3rm4nt4nk

    sh3rm4nt4nk Member

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    This is a question for those who served or are serving in the millitary.
    Thank You for protecting Freedom and Hope in the world!
    I have no millitary experience. I have read claims that the .223/5.56 are not adeqate in some situations or environments. I found this article interesting.
    http://www.chuckhawks.com/243_service_rifle.htm
    I would like opinions from first hand observations. Please state when you served, when you served, the caliber you used and where.
    Thank you for your time.
     
  2. Dan Crocker

    Dan Crocker Member

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    In both Iraq and Afghanistan, I found the 5.56 to be an adequate stopper. True, the round doesn't yaw as much since the introduced the tungsten penetrator years ago, but it still gets the job done. Since the emphasis is on overwhelming suppressive fire while another element manuvers to get kills, the 5.56 makes sense since you can carry so damned much of it.
     
  3. C-grunt

    C-grunt Member

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    Never had a problem with its stopping power. I served in Iraq during the invasion and then again for 05. I also never really had a problem in the penetration department either. My SAW in 03 shot completely through pretty much any house or wall I shot at.
     
  4. jackdanson

    jackdanson Member

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    bleh, stopped reading right here.

    This doesn't take 8 million other factors into account. Weight, training, cost, etc.

    There are plenty of dead terrorsists who would contend that the .223 does just fine.

    Thanks for the service and first hand info c-grunt and Dan C.
     
  5. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger Member

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    USMC 0351 (assault-man). Al Anbar province 2004. 20" bbl M16A4.

    I found the 5.56mm round to be merely adequate at stopping people. Definitely not great, when you consider that in most cases a 7.62NATO smacks an Iraqi down much harder. Mud brick walls pose a problem if they are very thick for a 5.56mm, a 7.62 M240 makes short work of a mud brick wall. Performance on vehicles was worthless, a 5.56mm round doesn't hit hard enough to disable a vehicle in a timely manner, although 7.62X51 works fairly well.

    We need something in between the 5.56mm and 7.62mm NATO rounds that is still accurate and feeds reliably in belt fed weapons. A 90-100gr bullet with a high B.C./sectional density at around 2700-2800fps would be just about perfect.
     
  6. husker

    husker Member

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    i was told that the 5.56 in theory was for wounding. 1 wounded man needs 2 or 3 men to get him off the battle field. where as a dead man needs nobody to take him anywhere. 2 wounded men= 6 -8 men taken out of the fight so on and so on+ the fact that 1 man can carry a lot more 5.56 ammo than 308 or 30-06. is this true or was it just a bunch of malarkey
     
  7. Deer Hunter

    Deer Hunter Member

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    Malarkey.
     
  8. husker

    husker Member

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    iv shot yotys with FMJ and thought i missed. watched them run up to 50-60 yrds before they tumbled. little hole going in and little hole going out. i use soft point or hollow points now. the exit wounds are really bad some times
     
  9. jbech123

    jbech123 Member

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    This part is not malarkey at all.

    The "wounding" theory, I have heard that before, can't say if there is any truth to it though.
     
  10. husker

    husker Member

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    it kinda makes cents the man who told me this was my father. 40 years as a GI he was. he was there in 1948-1988 so i no he saw the m14 though the m16 dont no if he ever was issued a garand. i no the garand was his favorite rifle on earth. PS dad=combat engineer fort riley kans.
     
  11. chriso

    chriso Member

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    US army 11b bahgdad 2006 .223 is what I would consider a unadequate stopping round no doubt its good on the squad automatic but I have seen guys get shot 2-3 times before they hit dirt. No doubt a 7.62 or a 6.8 spc even a 7.62x39 would be a better choice but its what you have to use regardless so you make it work...
     
  12. kBob

    kBob Member

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    For the 433rd time,

    One of the requirements set down for the .22 Special which became the 5.56 M193 Ball was that it have equal or greater wounding power than the M80 7.62 NATO Ball to a range of 300 meters.

    That meant it was to be able to produce a wound as well as the 7.62 NATO Ball. A wound is an injury, a displacement of flesh, a breaking of bones, ect.

    It was to produce a wound, including lethal, as big as the 7.62 Ball from the M-14 or M-60 GPMG.

    This has nothing to do with makeing wounded men that must be cared for but making the same damage as one another.

    -Bob Hollingsworth
     
  13. -v-

    -v- Member

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    Other thing to consider is M855 is designed for penetration over wounding. I don't know what the supply situation is like, but if its M855 thats issued en-mass and M193 is one of those "got to know a guy" supply items, then it might not be too surprising that the wounding capabilities of an optimized penetration round can be found lacking.
     
  14. JR47

    JR47 Member

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    Perhaps in it's original configuration, and barrel-twist. No longer.

    Rung Sat Special Zone, RVN, 1966-69. Started, and ended, with the 7.62 caliber M14. The M16 of the era was an unreliable, easily broken, and pretty much useless rifle. The VC and NVA actually liked the fact that American soldiers had it, as opposed to the M14. They worked the fact that it wouldn't penetrate trees and logs very well, and tended to jam, to their advantage.

    Purportedly, the rifle is somewhat more reliable today in combat. Face it, that was the last time that we fought an enemy that was willing to go toe-to-toe with us. Iraq I was a war of air-power and armor. Iraq II is a guerilla war.

    Eventually, we are going to face an enemy that will contest our air-power long enough to require real infantry battles, and armor battles. In that instance we'll see how well the M16 fares. Overwhelming firepower is going to be returned, and fire and maneuver will be routinely subjected to enemy artillery, automatic weapons, and mortars.

    The Soviets are reportedly unhappy with the 5.45x39 cartridge, and moving back to an improved 7.62x39. The Chinese are experimenting with the 5.8x42, with dedicated ammo for multiple purposes. As they routinely copy others thoughts, decades later, you have to wonder if that's what's happening here.

    I was never impressed with the ability of the Vietnam-era 5.56 round to put an enemy down.

    As for the wounding principal, it only works if your enemy cares about his troops, like us. There aren't many armies in the world that do that.
     
  15. husker

    husker Member

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    pops hated it=m16 of the late 60s and carried a GI 45acp. now my friends that are still active swear by it and say its a bad rap thats been carried over from the Nam era. it just needs to be kept clean
     
  16. mgregg85

    mgregg85 Member

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    This old debate again? Really?

    Just for my curiousity, how many rounds does/did a front line soldier in Iraq/Afgahnistan carry? Were they all in magazines or were some loose or on stripper clips?
     
  17. Acera

    Acera Member

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  18. W.E.G.

    W.E.G. Member

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  19. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger Member

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    mgregg85,

    I routinely carried 10-13 fully loaded 30rd magazines full of 5.56mm ball while in Iraq.

    6 in magazine pouches on my body armor, 1 in the magazine well, and 6 more in my camel back day pack.
     
  20. chriso

    chriso Member

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    depending on who you were and what you were doing usually determines or helps as well I was 11b/ranger I carried 12 fully loaded mags most the time and usually 5-6 pistol magazines... Versus lets say someone doing recon would carry less... We also got alot of good toys ;)...
     
  21. RevolvingCylinder

    RevolvingCylinder Member

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    All rounds are carried in magazines. 7 magazines is the minimum. Most opt to carry more(I sure did). The 5.56 will put a guy down but that's not to say that it's equal to the 7.62x51mm. Like with any round, you have to hit them where it counts and repeat as necessary.
     
  22. Float Pilot

    Float Pilot Member

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    You will probably not see as many meaningful responses to this thread, compared to your other recent thread.
    At least not many from your intended respondents. Although the wannabes will no doubt chime in.
    It is one thing to discuss or debate mechanical reliability in filed conditions.
    It is a much different thing to ask about weapon effectiveness from those who have used their weapons at close enough range to observe the effects.
    As if they had other weapons handy to compare the results...
    It borders on being bad form.
     
  23. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger Member

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    ^ Pretty much accurate. It's not like I had anything other than 5.56mm at my immediate disposal on my person. I could observe the increased effectiveness of the M240 though, and it was a pretty noticeable difference.

    As part of a weapons company we also had .50's and MK19's as well. Now those really really really work.
     
  24. nwilliams

    nwilliams Member

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    Ahhh the age old debate, this should be interesting....How many times has this question been asked I wonder.....
     
  25. sh3rm4nt4nk

    sh3rm4nt4nk Member

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    I guess if were in a fire fight I would be concentrating on the objective and not thinking "gosh I wish I had a .308". American forces aren't suffering defeats and bullet weight probably wouldn't change that if they were. There are some that may have seen both 7.62 and 5.56 in action and I would take their opinion seriously. It would be good to know soldiers are happy with 5.56 even if they have nothing to compare it to. I didn't indend to start a debate, I was hoping for first hand observations.

    Again Thank You All for your service, and for your input.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2009
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