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What kind of accuracy can you really get with a 55 gr in a stock AR15??

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Rule3, Dec 8, 2013.

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  1. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    Mil Spec AR 15, 16 " barrel. 1:8 twist

    Stock S&W MP, not a match grade anything

    55 gr FMJ BT w/c, LC brass trimmed to length, seated to the cannelure center.

    AA 2230 powder with 23.0, 24.0 and 25.0 grains tested I also had been using IMR powders but can not believe it's the powder

    Shot from a V shape sand bag rest Sighted in and shot at 50 yds.

    Have been using Hornady bullets but found a stash of a bag of Winchester bulk bullets and used them. They look almost the same but are they really?

    I have a Burris 3.5-10 scope on this rifle and can not seem to get decent groups, more of patterns

    I am used to shooting my Savage Heavy barrel bolt Varmint and one hole accuracy. Really do not expect the same accuracy but better than 3-4 inch groups.

    A 55 gr bullets seems light to me for a 1:8 twist but I have a bunch of them. I can try some 62 gr bullets but would like to get these to work.
     
  2. osteodoc08

    osteodoc08 Member

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    3-4" at 50 yds?! Ouch.

    Make sure everything is tight with scope set up.

    Clean well to make sure no copper fouling.

    Try another bullet. I suggest heavier.

    Keep at it.
     
  3. Weber

    Weber Member

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    What type of bullets?

    This is my first set of reloads out of an ar at 100 yards, 5 shot group, 55gr sp 1:9 16" barrel.

    null_zps1affa009.jpg

    And here is factory 55gr fmj Remington umc.

    null_zps1d37c539.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2013
  4. W.E.G.

    W.E.G. Member

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    Not all 55 gr bullets are created equal.
    The right load, out of a good barrel, will shoot a quality 55 grain bullet easily sub-MOA.

    55-grain-FMJ's not so much.
     
  5. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Those are the least accurate bullets made by anyone, anywhere.

    Try something with the jacket hole in the nose, not in the base.

    HP Match, or Plastic Tip varmint bullets will give you all the accuracy the rifle is capable of.

    Here is my Colt carbine shooting the exact same load.
    Except one group is Win 55 FMJ-BT, and the other is 55 Nosler Ballistic-Tip.

    EoTecGroup.jpg

    rc
     
  6. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    ^^^
    Yep, that looks like my target (the bad groups):uhoh:

    I am gonna borrow another similar rifle and see how it does with my loads.

    I have several factory loads that I can try but I want to blame the gun.;)
     
  7. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    55 grain bullets should do just fine in a 1-8 twist barrel.

    With 55 grain VMAX or Blitzking bullets I get 1/2" to 3/4" groups at 100 yards with a 20 inch, service rifle profile barrel with a 1-7 twist.
     
  8. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    That raise's the point RC made as to the bullets I have are not as accurate as say the ones you are using.
    I can only go by the listed BC of bullets as I have not shot enough of them out of this rifle. I have some heavier "match" bullets that I use in the bolt action so I still need to blast these away.
     
  9. steve4102

    steve4102 Member

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    As already stated FMJ bullets are not known for accuracy, but some are better than others. The Hornady 55gr FMJ should do better than 4 inches the cheaper ones, not so much.

    What brand of FMJ are you using?
     
  10. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Agreed, there are 55 Gr FMJs that can do better than 4" at 100 yards.

    But Webers pics show the normal results between a FMJ and a HP or SP bullet. One can shoot very well, and one, well, not so much.

    Good enough for cheap plinking? Sure thing.

    What brand 55 Gr FMJs?

    And yea, it isn't the twist rate.
     
  11. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    I only shoot my ammo.Which was the Hornady bullets until I loaded a few hundred with the Winchester bullets.

    I do have some Win White box 55 gr, PMC Bronze 55 gr
    Federal 62 gr,
    Some DRS re-manufactured 55 gr. (Hornady bullets)

    Also have some Winchester "hunting" ammo in I think 65 grain .
     
  12. hentown

    hentown Member

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    I found, several years ago, that bulk Remington and Winchester 55gr fmj bullets are just about worthless. The Hornady bulk bullets are much better. Also like IMI, but have a hard time finding them.

    1/8 twist is fine for 55gr bullets.
     
  13. BoilerUP

    BoilerUP Member

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    I have an 18" 1:8 BHW barrel on my precision AR. 77gr Noslers with Varget or 8208XBR are easily sub-MOA with some groups in the 0.5-0.75 MOA range.

    With 55gr Hornady FMJBT the best it would do is 2MOA - I get that with UMC 55gr factory ammo.

    I have no doubt if I used 52 Amax/HPBT/SMK or 55 Amax/Nosler BT the rifle would be back to sub-MOA accuracy.
     
  14. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    They sure aren't consistent, from cannelure location, to weight, to shape, .....

    At first I just figured it was my Mini 14, but after shooting them in an AR, I decided they were just not very good bullets, even for FMJ.

    [​IMG]
     
  15. bds
    • Contributing Member

    bds Member

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    +1. I had a similar experience with a batch of .308 Hornady bullets and H4895. 5 round shot groups were erratic and wandered around the target. After pulling some hair out of my head, I realized scope mount hex bolts were not tight. After I tightened the bolts, shot groups got tight and stayed where I put the cross-hair. :banghead:

    Since then, I make sure I always have "known accurate loads" with me in the range bag when I am doing load development with a new rifle bullet/powder. If I have any concerns to accuracy, before I make any adjustments to the scope, I will shoot 5 rounds with the "known accurate loads" to verify accuracy of rifle/scope.

    For .223, I keep a blue box of Black Hills ammo or my most accurate reloads as my "known accurate" loads.


    +1. Something is not right.
     
  16. docsleepy

    docsleepy Member

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    Good bullets are a must. Try some sierra's. Lose the cannelure -- that hurts big time. At 100 yards, should easily be in the 1 - 1.25" 5 shot group, I can get that with my M&P15, and I use 65 grain hunting bullets, which won't be quite as accurate as HPBT's will be.
     
  17. PapaG

    PapaG Member

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    Bushmaster Vietnam Nam style...solid stock, round forend, carry handle. 4-12X scope. LC match brass, sized and trimmed. 25 grains Varget. WW primer. 55 Sierra SP.
    Consecutive groups...virgin gun, 2". Second group, 1.5". Third.....3/4", fourth, 5/8". Next two...3/4 and 1". Eyes were getting tired. One year later, three groups all 1" or under.
    Never had a factory gun ever come close, that quick. Been at this shooting and loading thing since '56.
     
  18. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    Well you have given me some hope.:) Maybe it is just the damn bullets.

    I was getting really miffed as I changed 2 variables at the same time. The bullet and the powder. Went from the Hornadys to the Winchester in a bag and H322 to the AA 2230. So I now loaded some Hornadys with the same AA2230 load to see if there is any change due to the bullet.
     
  19. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    4" @ 50 yds. It ain't the bullets.
     
  20. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    All bullets are not created equal for sure.

    I have found the bullets that shoot best in my rifle are 55gr Sierra GameKing HPBT #1390. The Sierra #1355 FMJBT GameKing is also a good and accurate bullet too.

    I'm sure there are plenty of accurate .224" bullets out there but since I found those 2 I stopped looking.
     
  21. steve4102

    steve4102 Member

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    Is your Handguard free floated?
     
  22. silicosys4

    silicosys4 Member

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    I have loaded some of the Hornady 55 gr. fmj's for accuracy and gotten some strange groups. 2" to 2.5" was the norm, but usually with 5 or 6 clustered together under an inch...it was frustrating, getting a taste of great accuracy, but I could never pull a consistent 10 shot group out of them no matter how long I waited between shots.
     
  23. Cherokee

    Cherokee Member

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    Hornady 55 FMJ should give you 1-2" groups at 100 yd with out any problem, sometime better. Their 55 JSP is the most accurate of the 55 gr bullets I have shot in 1-10, 1-9 and 1-8 twist barrels. Winchester FMJ are the worst I've ever used.
     
  24. stavman11

    stavman11 Member

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    Rule3

    I have never had much luck with any FMJ Bullets in my AR's:banghead:

    I get a similar group with the Hornady FMJ-BT I have... never can get em ta group very good.... Z-max V-Max and HP's are all Tac Drivers...I just use the FMJ in my short range AR for Plinking

    Its not yer Gun... its the Bullets:cool:
     
  25. Tim the student

    Tim the student Member

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    I can get about 1.5 MOA groups out of a 1:8 RRA varmint gun with Hornady 55g FMJs. Sometimes more, sometimes less. These are about the best shooting "blasting" bullet I've found.

    You will (should) have much tighter groups than what you have now with a better bullet, such as a 50 or 55g V-max.
     
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