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Will Wolf ammo damage my new AR???

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by grizz, Feb 17, 2006.

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  1. grizz

    grizz Member

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    I was recently warned that Wolf ammo will damage AR-15s due to the fact that they use steel cases. Is this true? I just bought a new RRA AR-15 tactical carbine and after shelling out $1K i don't want to do anything that might damage it. Also, same question for Wolf ammo use in pistols.

    Can anyone recommend some decent brass .223 rounds in 1000 round bulk and where to find them? I'd like to pay under $200 if possible. I'd love to shoot Black Hills moly coated, but they're pretty spendy. Anyone know who's got the best deals on BH ammo?

    THANKS!
     
  2. The Undertoad

    The Undertoad Member

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    I plan on picking up 1k rounds of Georgia Arms Canned Heat at the gunshow tomorrow. I hear it's good stuff and hard to beat $170/1000. Black Hills for under $200? Let me know where you find it...that'd be a good price.
     
  3. ocabj

    ocabj Member

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    While I personally would not let a round of Wolf steel case in my ARs, many people shoot Wolf steel case in AR-15s all the time without any problems.

    You can get 1000 rounds of loose packed Lake City M855 from ammoman.com for $219 shipped. Expect about 40-50 rounds to be rejects though (mostly due to split necks and other types of case damage).
     
  4. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    If you can use the steel penetrator M855 ammo, Natchez is selling Lake City overruns at $179/1000 right now (brass case, NATO headstamp, 5.56 pressure).

    I wouldn't say that Wolf will damage your AR; but it can cause issues in function with some ARs. Generally the major issues I've seen are the neck sealant (thick red stripe around the case neck/bullet) on the older Wolf ends up gumming up the chamber. On the newer Wolf, the steel doesn't expand as much as the brass and you end up with more baked on, hard-to-remove carbon in the chamber, particularly if the chamber isn't chrome-lined.

    Some have suggested that the steel case of Wolf is harder on extractors and bolts than brass cased ammo. I haven't seen that myself; but I don't shoot much Wolf either. However, given the cost savings with Wolf, it could be pretty hard on gun parts and you might still save money with it.

    In either case, the Wolf will generally function acceptably in my experience but you need to be particular about cleaning. It isn't all that accurate...4MOA ammo.
     
  5. The-Fly

    The-Fly Member

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    i've run 4k rounds of wolf through my bushmaster, works good for me. Just make sure to really clean good afterwards.
     
  6. Sunray

    Sunray Member

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    "...due to the fact that they use steel cases..." Rubbish. Steel cases are made of much softer steel than the steel in your rifle. Soft metals won't damage hard metals.
    Don't buy any ammo in bulk until you've tried one box in your rifle. You have no idea how well a particular brand shoots in your rifle otherwise. If you're not reloading, you need to try as many brands and bullet weights to find the one or two that shoot best in your rifle. Then buy in bulk.
    "...I hear it's good stuff..." That means nothing if it doesn't shoot well in your rifle. The price of bulk factory ammo means nothing either.
     
  7. pcf

    pcf Member

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    I've gone thorugh 6k of the polymer Wolf, a friend turned me onto it about 4 month ago, and about 200 rounds of the old stuff. I get twice mileage out of the same amount of money.

    The Good:
    -It works in most rifles
    -It's cheap
    -It's more than accurate for training inside of 100yds
    -Wolf has a pretty good Customer Service department, if it doesn't work, Wolf will refund your money for unused ammo. If your rifle KB's or blows up when using Wolf, they'll repair/replace (that's a lot more than some US ammo manufacturers)

    Bad things about:
    -It stinks.
    -Not as accurate as American made ammo. The SD for velocity is extreme.
    -Require that you spend a couple extra minutes cleaning the chamber and bolt.
    -Shooting Wolf and then brass cased ammo, without cleaning can lead to problems.
    -Can't be reloaded.

    I get twice the mileage out of Wolf, all I have to do is spend an extra 3 minutes cleaning after a range session.
     
  8. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    I haven't seen Wolf actually damage an AR15 but I have made a bit of money removing stuck cases from the chambers of AR15 rifles that have been fired extensively with Wolf ammunition.
    In two cases the jams were severe enough that I had to pull the barrels and use an easy out and a hydraulic puller to remove the cases.

    I will add that in every single case the rifles were extremely dirty/fouled.
    While everyone will tell you that the stuff jammed on the third round, I am inclined to think in every single case, the rifles were fired heavily and rarely cleaned properly.

    Anyway, I don't shoot any steel case ammunition in my AR type rifles, I use it quite frequently in my AK type rifle with no issues other than less than exciting accuracy and that may be the gun/shooter, not the ammunition.
     
  9. hksw

    hksw Member

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    I was a little tenative about shooting Wolf through my plate shooting AR at first at a plate shoot but didn't and haven't had any problems since.
     
  10. MechAg94

    MechAg94 Member

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    I have put around 500 rounds of Wolf through my Armalite. No problems. It is smelly and I guess dirty. I clean my rifle though. It has been moderately accurate though I have not yet shot it off the bench, just for plinking. No reliability problems whatsoever with Wolf.

    I have had reliability issues with cheap brass ammo. I had some gun show specials I bought when I was breaking it in. The primer section came out of a few rounds and caused me problems. One got a small sliver of brass jammed in my bolt. That was not quality ammo though.

    I bought a spare bolt w/extractor and a firing pin from Armalite for $65. I save almost that much buying a case of Wolf over a case of brass ammo.

    As an alternative, I bought a case of brass S&B ammo for about $190. I don't know if it is any more accurate, but it is reloadable.

    For cleaning, I would suggest getting an OTIS cleaning kit. They are pretty cool and come with all the necessary accessories like the bore brush. If you use a Hoppes Boresnake, be aware the bolt slamming forward can cut the string. :)
     
  11. boofus

    boofus Guest

    Wolf is all I use in my full-auto FNC. I've also used it in all the AR15s I previously owned. The only one that balked was a RRA stainless national match that wouldn't lock the bolt back on the last round. Other than that it worked just fine.

    The Wolf stinks and is dirty but works just fine for range blasting ammo. For SHTF I keep a small quantity of XM193. The Wolf simply doesn't fragment like the milspec stuff does.

    The new polymer coated Wolf is alot better than the old lacquer coated stuff. You can tell the new ammo from the old by the big letter P on the case.
     
  12. ftierson

    ftierson Member.

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    Hmmm

    $219/1000 for reject ammo with a 5% split neck/case damage rate sounds like a real deal to me...NOT. I guess that, as long as people will buy reject production ammo for really high prices, they'll keep providing it to us...

    Sorry, I'd much rather shoot Wolf...

    The Wolf that I've shot (only 55gr FMJ) has performed pretty well. The newer, polymer coated Wolf has received better marks than the older lacquered stuff, but both have worked well for me. However, I should also mention that I don't fire my ARs until they're red hot...

    Also, the Wolf 5.56x45mm steel cased ammo is boxer primed if you're really looking for some adventure... I've never tried reloading the cases, but I know people who have played a little with it...

    Personally, I just reload M193 spec ammo (in brass cases :)), using mostly US Mil. cases. It's much cheaper than buying factory ammo at the prices that are being demanded for it today. And, unlike the current reject ammo being sold, I know the quality of the reload ammo...

    Forrest
     
  13. Bobarino

    Bobarino member

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    wolf is dirty, smelly, not very accurate, but it won't damage your rifle. you can also get ADCOM M855 for $170/k shipped from aim sutplus. i've been using it and its pretty good. there were 10 rounds out of the first 500 i examined that were damaged bad enough that i threw them out but the rest went bang and worked fine. be careful of the of the M193 and M855 that have PD after it, marked on boxes it comes it. its the rejects and some of it is unreliable and damaged. if you don't mind weeding through it and picking out the bad ones and are mindful of squibs and the like, it can be a good deal.

    Bobby
     
  14. Samuel_Hoggson

    Samuel_Hoggson Member

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    Yes, yes, yes.

    Yes, it will ruin your gun.......also you'll lose your hair.........girlfriend will leave you............dog will leave you..........

    But act now!! PM me for addy, and package up all your Wolf ammo. I will be happy to dispose of it for you.

    No charge.

    Sam
     
  15. MatthewVanitas

    MatthewVanitas Member

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    If you want to settled down for a good, long read, there are dozens of pages of Wolf discussion in the ammo section of www.ar15.com

    I read through a few dozen pages, and ended up getting the gist: "it's underpowered and dirty, but won't hurt anything." Your interpretation of the argument may vary.


    Seeing as how I can save $50 a case or so, that's acceptable to me.

    I ran a .223 "taste test" in my new BM Disspator upper (the one I'm turning into a Vietnam-era Colt 605 repro), and found that the 62gr fed/extracted/ejected just peachy, however, a few times it failed to lock the bolt back on an empty mag. This leads me to believe that it's just right on the edge of underpowered for my rifle at this time. So I'm going to run a few hundred rounds of higher-pressure ammo through it to smooth out the action, then buy a few more boxes of Wolf to see if they'll lock the bolt back on an empty mag.

    So far as accuracy: if I were shooting varmints, probably no. But for hitting the gong, and running in 3-gun matches, no worries.

    I'll write up a more extensive report once I get a few hundred rounds of various manufacture through. Also curious to see if the 55gr will function or no. Must have picked up 10 different brands of inexpensive .223 ammo at the SAXET show. I'll pick up and function check some good quality defense ammo later, but I want to find the best cheap plinking ammo for the nonce.

    I'll be following this thread with interest,

    -MV
     
  16. ocabj

    ocabj Member

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    The fact is that pretty much all US issue ammo that will make it to commercial retail will be tier 2/3 production lot reject since the US military can longer surplus ammunition (except to the CMP). As far as $219 for 1000 with a 5% split neck/case rate, it's not a great deal but it's not a bad deal. People who buy Lake City XM193 or M855PD get good ammo with usable brass to use.
     
  17. MechAg94

    MechAg94 Member

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    That may be true, but I'll plan on buying brass ammo when I find deals and use Wolf for most of my plinking.
     
  18. OEF_VET

    OEF_VET Member

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    I shoot Wolf and Barnaul through my AR all the time, with very few malfunctions, no more so than with brass-cased ammo at least. Oh yeah, I rarely clean my AR either. I'm trying to see just how long it can go until it starts having issues. So far, I've got about 1,500 rounds down range with nary an issue. (1,500 rounds of .223 that is. I also use the same lower for my 9mm upper - 1,000 rounds, and my .22 upper with suppressor - at least 1,000 rounds)

    I do keep a supply of brass-cased ammo handy for serious/social work/SHTF/TEOTWAWKI, but Wolf and Barnaul are my primary sources for plinking ammo. I use a lot CCI Blazer 9mm and Federal .22 Subsonic for the other uppers.
     
  19. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    Try mixing some brass cased ammo in with your use of the steel cased stuff. I bet you see issues earlier than if you continue to use just steel cased ammo. I'd also add that if you have a chrome-lined chamber, you probably don't have much of a problem; but if you don't then the type of carbon buildup you are getting in your chamber will be VERY hard to remove completely.
     
  20. Beren

    Beren Moderator Emeritus

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    Wolf has some nice stuff on its way. Brass cased ammo reportedly made to M193 specs, and some 75gr 5.56mm ammo. I've run the old Wolf through Glocks with no problems. Need to try some in my AR's.
     
  21. OEF_VET

    OEF_VET Member

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    I do fire some brass cased stuff from time-to-time; milsurp mostly. (I found a good deal on some Gautemalen and it works quite well.) I do, in fact, have a chrome-lined barrel and chamber. That's pretty much the only way I roll with an AR. About the only cleaning I do routinely is run a boresnake through the barrel, to avoid much build-up in it.
     
  22. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    Yeah, that will make a difference. The chrome-lined chamber makes it hard for carbon to build up in the first place, which is nice when shooting ammo like Wolf that is known for being dirty and doesn't seal the chamber as well as brass.

    It is amazing how much difference that little layer of chrome makes in cleaning off baked on carbon.
     
  23. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    Well either I am blind or my Lake City XM193 ammo isn't of as low of a quality as yours. I maybe find 3-5 per 1000 that are of spec, but none are split cases.

    As for the Wolf ammo and lower prices versus the terrible wear and tear on extractors, you can save enough money with each case to buy a new extractor, spring, and roll pin and still come out well on the deal. Heck with the savings, you can find a whole bolt assembly from Bushmaster, almost, at $56..

    With $50 savings per case of ammo, you would have enough saved to buy a lower end AR15 after 14 or 15 cases ($700-750). For me, that would mean being able to buy one new AR a year, plus a couple of mags. Unfortunately, Wolf doesn't function in my AR.

    For my 1911 and shooting Blazer ammo, I would buy one Wilson Combat magazine with each case of Blazer I ordered form Natchez and still come out with a few $ saved as compared to buying non-AMERC brassed ammo.
     
  24. Zen21Tao

    Zen21Tao Member

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    BLACK HILLS AMMO

    A few month back I bought a few hunderd rounds of Black Hills remanufactured ammo (which is just as good as their new ammo) form MidwayUSA. Midway was selling the 55grn at $11.50/50rnds. This I reasoned was relatively close to the $4(+tax)per box of 20 I usually get in Winchester Whitebox from Walmart. Now I think Midway is seeling them for around $14/50rnd box. Still not bad for match grade ammo.
     
  25. Samuel_Hoggson

    Samuel_Hoggson Member

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    I've read elsewhere about the problem of "chasing" Wolf with brass-cased stuff. The pics showed an incredible amount of black crap sticking to the brass cases - along with the reported FTExs, etc.

    FWIW, last time out I ran about 1k Wolf poly through a couple of Colt uppers in FA. Then I deliberately tried to reproduce this problem by switching to some of my SA. I could not stick any empties. When I examined the SA empties I did not see any sign of carbon whatsoever. But, of course, the Colt chambers are chromed.

    Sam
     
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