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Thread: AR Caliber thoughts???

  1. #1
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    Default AR Caliber thoughts???

    As posted in another thread 2012 is going to be my AR dabbling year. The arguements of a semi auto in the AK brush aside (we have done that to death in many other threads) what are your thoughts on the various AR15 (NOT AR10) calibers for AK hunting. Specifically:

    50 Beowulf
    450 Bushmaster
    458 SOCOM
    300AAC Blackout
    6.8 SPC
    6.5 Grendell
    .223 NATO

    I have specifically ruled out 7.62x39 as I am not happy with reliability reports and 300 Blackout offers same (slightly better) ballistics.

    I have done plenty of research and have my own thoughts, but would just like opinions on these calibers from those who have experince of them up here.

  2. #2
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    6.8/Grendel are the best medium game rounds with the Blackout close behind. For bigger stuff, 458 calibers only because there are a lot more bullets out there for them. I have built three .50 Beowulf uppers and they work fine once you work out the kinks....which can be a challenge.

    One you missed there and is one of my favorites is the 6x45. It's just a barrel swap and is a FINE round for varmints and deer with the proper bullets. Also consider the 20 Practical for a varmint gun. Shooting 32 gr they are almost up to the .204 Ruger and the brass is pretty much free or very cheap.

    Good luck!!!
    Somewhere along the way I have lost the ability to act politically correct. If you should find it, please feel free to keep it.

  3. #3

    Default 458

    I have the 458 socom , 350 gr at 2300fps lot of gun out to 200 yards

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    I have a couple of 6.8 SPC rifles by LWRC. I'm still working up load development. With Barnes 95gr TTSX over 30 gr of RE-10 I'm getting 0.3 inch CTC spread at 50 yards. I have yet to chronograph that load but it is just about max for my rifle and I'm guessing in the upper 2800's or so. Go over to 68Forums and look at the pics of hogs and deer that are dropped with the 6.8. http://68forums.com/forums/forum.php This is a pretty handy item out to 300 yards. Up to 300 yards it has a slight edge on the Grendel. As for the WSSM options, I have no experience with that. I'm okay with a 2800+ FPS 95 gr copper slug that doubles diameter and goes in one side and out the other side on most shots. 25 cartridges in a magazine, smaller mags are available. Low recoil. The 6.8 is gaining in popularity so it'll be around for a while. If you reload, you're golden.

  6. #6
    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    I like the 6.8. Got one as a starter gun for my 11 yr old daughter. Plenty of good bullets available. Lots of good info on 68 forums.
    Olympic arms has a 30 cal round in an ssm case. Supposed to get close to 30-06 ballistics. Hard to get cases tho.
    For starters and fun, hard to beat an AR in 223.
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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    I also went the 6.8 road. Sweet little round, only pain is that they don't use standard 5.56 mags so the cost is a good bit more for them. My 4yo has shot it with my assistance. The 7 and 9 yo boys have no problem shooting it off a Stoney point QD bipod. Darn thing makes me look good at the range to! I will be trying out 85grn Barnes tsx for predators and 110 accubonds for caribou, deer and black bear. No recoil to speak of and more fun than should be legal!

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    A couple months ago I built an AR-15 in .264 LBC-AR, which is basically the same as the 6.5 Grendel. There are a few, what I think, are minor differences and you can shoot the 6.5 Grendel ammo through it. There was some big to-do with licensing for the Grendel so several similar chambers were made to get around it. I couldn't find a "Grendel" barrel when I was doing my build so I ended up with the .264.

    Anyway, this is my first AR, and it was a lot of fun to put together. I don't have a lot of experience in this area but I really enjoy shooting mine. Its a lot less punishing when working up loads than my larger rifles. I'm still trying to find a good load for it but I've got one that has 3 120 Grain Barnes TXS's touching at 100 yrds with 1 flyer.

    Hornady, Lapua, and Alexander Arms (Lapua), have brass for this round. Midway usually has it. Sometimes Alexander Arms runs a sale on brass. I think the last sale I missed was 500 pieces of Hornady for $275. One of the Manufacturers used to use a large primer pocket but I think they are all down to small primers now. At least the Hornady's are.

    The only thing I am a little bummed about is not being able to find a 6.5FMJ. I think Norma makes one but I'm having difficulty finding them.

    If you find yourself in Anchorage before you buy, and provided Rabbit Creek is open I'd be happy to meet you down there if you would like to send a few rounds down range to try it out.

    Brian

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    Member akula682's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lowrider View Post
    Also consider the 20 Practical for a varmint gun. Shooting 32 gr they are almost up to the .204 Ruger and the brass is pretty much free or very cheap.
    I cant seem to find anyone who can make me a 20P AR barrel, do you know of anyone, dies too? to me it is a great alt. to the 204 and 17 Rem.

    --I have the classic 223/556 upper,
    --450BM upper-- love it. it is very accurate does not kick too bad, granted there is only one real choice for factory ammo but it works and isnt too hard to find online.
    --6.5 Grendel from precisionfirearms.com it should be delivered in another week or so, i told him to take his time with it because i am still in Afghanistan. i have a TC barrel in the grendel and it is awesome, so i decided to get the Grendel upper and convert the TC barrel to a 260Rem.
    Josh
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    Try DTI. He does good work and is pretty fast considering. You can also get other ideas for calibers from his site.

    http://www.dtechsuperstore.com/new_altcal.htm
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    So far I have gone the 'normal' route with a 223 and 308. Both of these will/have done all that I have asked of them. Thought about the 243 but I already have a bolt action that is awsome.
    Guess that I just 'stuck' in a rut!
    The 223 has done well for coyotes out to 300 yards and the 308 has done very well on caribou out past 450 yards. However the 308 is set up for long range shooting anyway.

  12. #12
    Member ironartist's Avatar
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    ammo availability in a pinch prob what bearcat uses there the most common outa your list
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    Member tyrex13's Avatar
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    Make sure you reload. I went 6.8SPC and ditched it due to ammo availablilty.

    Take a look at the 30 Remington too.

  14. #14

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    Me love 6.8 SPC and I bought a boat load of ammo when it was $14.99 a box. What I have learned is to have the very best lower, with the best trigger. For me I use the 24" .223 upper for winter walk'abouts, and a 6.8 SPC upper for summer walk'abouts.

    I should have bought the 6.8 SPC upper that "Tyrex13" sold, that was a sweet'thing.

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    My 6.8's both got timney drop in triggers and I don't know that I could ever go back to mil spec and be happy now! If anyone wants a top quality 6.8 then I suggest contacting Harrison at ar15performance.com he builds em right!

  16. #16
    Member ironartist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AGL4now View Post
    Me love 6.8 SPC and I bought a boat load of ammo when it was $14.99 a box..
    Not trying to get the discussion off topic but cost is why I went with 7.62x39 at about 3-4 bucks a box
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    Quote Originally Posted by reddogiii View Post
    I have the 458 socom , 350 gr at 2300fps lot of gun out to 200 yards
    That's pretty amazing. Everyone else is around 1850 fps with max loads and a 350 gr bullet.

  18. #18
    Member ironartist's Avatar
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    yeah thats killer and the round single stack down a factory 556 mag
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    Thanks for all the opinions. Still not surevwhat direction to go. Will mull it over with a few beers over Christmas.

  20. #20
    Member alaskabliss's Avatar
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    Wilson Combat has a new AR that would be very fun for preditors. 7.62x40. The barrel fits a standard 5.56/.223 upper and they sell brass and dies for it. That may be my new build just to be different.

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