Author Topic: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?  (Read 9588 times)

Offline SloSheepdog

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223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« on: May 30, 2016, 04:21:23 PM »
Hi everyone! I am thinking about swapping from my Moss 590 to an AR for my primary home defense weapon. What specifically would be some examples of quality ammo for this purpose?

With the correct rounds, the AR can penetrate less walls than handgun rounds or buckshot because it will fragment or keyhole - so I've read on the internet. I like my shotgun but I admit the AR is lighter and faster to shoot.

Even in home defense situations the 4 rules of gun safety apply and I must be aware of what's behind my target. Looking for something better/best for the role than the FMJ I usually shoot, not a miracle round. I wonder what the law enforcement around here uses...

Offline 9mmMaster

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2016, 04:37:48 PM »
I really like Federal TRU (Tactical Rifle Urban) 55gr. It also comes in 64gr. Lots of Agencies have used it.

http://www.ammunitiontogo.com/product_info.php/pName/20rds-223-federal-le-tactical-tru-55gr-hp-ammo

Offline machinisttx

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2016, 07:58:42 PM »
I don't shoot .223/5.56, so I haven't spent any time researching it in that regard. I would look for a 50 or 55 grain hp that is intended for use on varmints up to coyote. Anything more frangible than that would generate impressive, but very superficial wounds. Softpoints might work, but they might not too....best to research it(or build a wall and shoot it).

Offline Marinesg1012

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2016, 09:15:17 PM »
look for the 64 grain and up hunting bullets, you still want that 12 inches of penetration in ballistic gel and some of the lighter stuff doesnt do it.

Offline Carl

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2016, 05:25:13 AM »
An AR is a good choice because it is easy to acquire a target and shoot well with low recoil....
but as far as overpenetration...the 1000 or so foot pounds of energy of a 223 will certainly present a danger
to any behind a interior wall...the projectile may break up but I have yet to see a bullet proof vest made from drywall....
train the family to lay low and yourself to shoot well under stress....
though odds are that you will never need the defence AR,train body and mind.

Offline Chemsoldier

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2016, 09:02:59 AM »
I use 55 grain Hornady TAP.  Bear in mind that ammo selection is not as important as residential geometry.  My house is brick and I have rifle avenues where from a barricaded position I have full book shelves as a backstop for most shots I should need.  I have also ensured that these angles are not ones that are a least distance path to the neighbors house. 

Two story houses are nice for rifle use.  If bedrooms are on the top floor and access to the house is on the bottom floor, use the down angle to avoid bad angles.  Additionally consider the height of nearby houses if you have to make horizontal shots on the 2nd floor.

So, workout the residential geometry and then go through the house with your rifle (unloaded please) and mentally think red light or green light throughout.  Try to make it second nature on whether you can shoot at an angle or not.

This approach actually applies with the shotgun and pistol also, just not quite as pronounced.

Offline SloSheepdog

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2016, 09:19:48 PM »
Thanks for the advice friends. I'll watch for some TAP or Fed LE. I have walked down my home with this in mind. What I need to do next is the brain-challenge of thinking like an intruder breaking in. Where am I actually going to move to as an intruder? It is hard to change perspectives but I think it might be beneficial. Be ready for the unexpected.

Offline Davew223

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2016, 04:41:55 AM »
+1 on Hornady TAP, I have used it on deer and hogs with 1 shot clean kills. 

Offline 9mmMaster

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #8 on: August 27, 2016, 10:51:46 PM »
Hey I remember our sister department the sheriffs used Winchester 64 grain ranger in the M16 / M4 the SWAT used it also. Good ammo

Offline bdhutier

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2016, 12:05:42 AM »
+1 for TAP as well.

Offline Carl

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2016, 03:31:10 AM »
As I look again at this post ,I must ask how does one expect minimal drywall penetration and yet depend on penetration and power to put down an aggressor?

Offline David in MN

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #11 on: August 29, 2016, 07:55:55 AM »
As I look again at this post ,I must ask how does one expect minimal drywall penetration and yet depend on penetration and power to put down an aggressor?

Afraid I agree. If I'm looking to stop someone with an AR, virtually all rounds will work. If I want a round that won't go through a wall I'd spend more time and effort enhancing the wall than seeking the correct bullet.

Offline Carl

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #12 on: August 29, 2016, 09:48:16 AM »
Afraid I agree. If I'm looking to stop someone with an AR, virtually all rounds will work. If I want a round that won't go through a wall I'd spend more time and effort enhancing the wall than seeking the correct bullet.

As I have said before, I have never seen a bullet proof drywall vest.

Offline DDJ

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #13 on: August 29, 2016, 10:52:30 AM »

I think I am still on the side of a 45 or perhaps a subsonic 5.56.  The effect of gravity is a constant with time and speed being the variables.  If you slow the speed down then the bullet hits the ground sooner.  This I think is where the testing done on a square range looses some of its effectiveness.  The distance across a room and or between houses is not taken into account.  Agreed as a 55Gr 5.56 passes through something it destabilizes which changes it's BC adding drag which does reduce speed, but can you count on it being consistent.  This is now a high school physics exercise, but I still say a 45slug traveling at 800 FPS is less likely to make it to the next house than a 5.56 round traveling at 3000 FPS.  This is one I would love to have a good range where I could set up 2 houses and do some validation. 

This always makes my head hurt.  I would guess that no matter what knowing your target and what is beyond is still the best bet.  Move the kids beds away form the top of the steps, where you are logically going to engage an intruder.

The other option is fill the wall with concrete, or AR500 plate.



Offline Smurf Hunter

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #14 on: August 29, 2016, 11:17:50 AM »
I hope and pray it never matters, but all our bedrooms are upstairs.  From my master bedroom doorway I have a direct angle to the front door and stairs, with the kids' bedroom rooms perpendicular to my left.  So *I* would have to do some pretty crazy shooting for bullets/shrapnel to present a serious threat to their walls/doors.  My more practical concern is shooting through my front wall/door of my house and possible sending ricochet into the neighborhood.  Since I'd be shooting downward, it's possible a light .223 round could "bounce" off the ground and do something unpredictable.  Hopefully a lot of velocity/energy would have been lost at that point, limiting any risk.

Besides all this tactical talk, I own dogs, set the monitored security system all night.  If an intruder insists on breaking in after hearing barking dogs, and then continues to enter after triggering the loud audible alarm - he is a special combination of stupid and/or evil.  Any bad guy sticking around after all that is pretty clearly not delivering flowers.  I'm grabbing what's nearby and loaded.

Offline Carl

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #15 on: August 29, 2016, 12:45:32 PM »
I hope and pray it never matters, but all our bedrooms are upstairs.  From my master bedroom doorway I have a direct angle to the front door and stairs, with the kids' bedroom rooms perpendicular to my left.  So *I* would have to do some pretty crazy shooting for bullets/shrapnel to present a serious threat to their walls/doors.  My more practical concern is shooting through my front wall/door of my house and possible sending ricochet into the neighborhood.  Since I'd be shooting downward, it's possible a light .223 round could "bounce" off the ground and do something unpredictable.  Hopefully a lot of velocity/energy would have been lost at that point, limiting any risk.

Besides all this tactical talk, I own dogs, set the monitored security system all night.  If an intruder insists on breaking in after hearing barking dogs, and then continues to enter after triggering the loud audible alarm - he is a special combination of stupid and/or evil.  Any bad guy sticking around after all that is pretty clearly not delivering flowers.  I'm grabbing what's nearby and loaded.

The deformed projectiles have a very poor ballistics coefficient and have very limited range tough still some danger,not as much as one would imagine...a 5.56 is a varmint round and seldom retains it's shape after first contact with most any item. UNLESS at low velocity from too short barrel or steel core or jacket projectile.

Just my 2 cents.

Offline xxdabroxx

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #16 on: August 29, 2016, 01:52:12 PM »
I wonder what frangible ammo would do after hitting drywall, not sure if it would hold together or not.  So long as your attackers aren't armored up, it should do well against them. 

Offline Smurf Hunter

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #17 on: August 29, 2016, 02:25:19 PM »
I wonder what frangible ammo would do after hitting drywall, not sure if it would hold together or not.  So long as your attackers aren't armored up, it should do well against them.

I think Chem was on point.  Work out your geometry.  Are there likely scenarios where a bad guy would be between you and a sensitive interior wall with loved ones on the other side?  If the other side of the drywall is an unoccupied study or garage, who cares. 

Of course folks living in apartments/condos have a lot more to sort out in this regard.

Offline Carl

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #18 on: August 29, 2016, 03:09:37 PM »
I think Chem was on point.  Work out your geometry.  Are there likely scenarios where a bad guy would be between you and a sensitive interior wall with loved ones on the other side?  If the other side of the drywall is an unoccupied study or garage, who cares. 

Of course folks living in apartments/condos have a lot more to sort out in this regard.

But not if you don't care for your neighbors... :sarcasm:

Offline hackmeister

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #19 on: August 30, 2016, 10:25:34 AM »
I think I am still on the side of a 45 or perhaps a subsonic 5.56. 

How about a subsonic 300 AAC round which has similar ballistics to .45 ACP?

Offline Carl

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #20 on: August 30, 2016, 10:47:55 AM »
A 60 grain AGUILA SSS round is the same and it is a 22 long rifle...may as well hit them with tennis balls.....though I agree with a sub sonic 45 acp or 44 special...that will do the trick.

Offline 9mmMaster

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #21 on: September 01, 2016, 09:23:07 PM »
I think any modern 556 / 223 round designed for Law Enforcement/ Defence will work. Well I would stay away from FMJ they'll work but the military uses them because they have to not because they are the best.

But 55 62 77
Good Soft Point / Hollow point.

Offline Smurf Hunter

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #22 on: September 02, 2016, 10:21:35 AM »
I think any modern 556 / 223 round designed for Law Enforcement/ Defence will work. Well I would stay away from FMJ they'll work but the military uses them because they have to not because they are the best.

But 55 62 77
Good Soft Point / Hollow point.

For my bulk recreational .223 shooting, I get the Hornady 55gr soft points.  I can usually get them $10/100 online.  I started using them for shooting steel plates, as the lead tip did less damage on the targets.  After using them a while, I have found no measurable difference in ballistics out to 200 yards.  Aside from military regulations, I don't know why most folks wouldn't use these.  They fly as well and make a bigger hole due to expansion.

Of course there are purpose built hunting rounds with even better expansion, but those cost real money, and aren't usually sold in ziploc baggies at the gunshow.

Offline jerseyboy

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #23 on: September 02, 2016, 10:55:12 AM »
I think any modern 556 / 223 round designed for Law Enforcement/ Defence will work. Well I would stay away from FMJ they'll work but the military uses them because they have to not because they are the best.

But 55 62 77
Good Soft Point / Hollow point.

I don't know the truth of this but I was once told that the military uses FMJ specifically to injure so someone has to rescue them which effectively removes two from the battlefield instead of one

On some level this makes sense but on other levels it doesn't.

Anyone know the truth of the matter besides the " low bid " effect on why they use FMJ?

Jerseyboy

Offline Carl

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #24 on: September 02, 2016, 11:07:46 AM »
I don't know the truth of this but I was once told that the military uses FMJ specifically to injure so someone has to rescue them which effectively removes two from the battlefield instead of one

On some level this makes sense but on other levels it doesn't.

Anyone know the truth of the matter besides the " low bid " effect on why they use FMJ?

Jerseyboy

Good Reading on this subject:

http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-911286


I still feel I am better armed with a 357 magnum lever action carbine even with it's 25% or so less energy, I have found it more effective on game.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2016, 11:14:02 AM by Carl »

Offline 9mmMaster

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Re: 223/556 Home defense ammo suggestions?
« Reply #25 on: September 03, 2016, 10:52:18 PM »
Well kind of and feel free to correct me if I wrong but The Hague Convention not Geniva said the colloquial "we" had to use Full Metsl Jackets. Now the military thinking for the 5.56 was that we would be fighting a conventional army and it would wound there by talking not just the one man out but the man or men out to help said person.
Not flawed logic we just haven't really fought a "conventional" military since we adopted it. Radicals / terrorist don't really operate the same way.

Hope this helps.