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Thread: Difference Between 5.56 and .223?

  1. #1
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    Difference Between 5.56 and .223?

    Is there any simple explanations around for the difference between 5.56 and .223? GunCity website shows .223 WIN, but google is only showing .223 Rem. Very confused right now on how they work.

    Any explanation appreciated. Thanks

  2. #2
    Member zimmer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheChosenOne View Post
    Is there any simple explanations around for the difference between 5.56 and .223? GunCity website shows .223 WIN, but google is only showing .223 Rem. Very confused right now on how they work.

    Any explanation appreciated. Thanks
    This is one of the explanation explaining the subtle differences between 223 Remington and 5.56 NATO (aka fully 5.56 x 45 NATO)
    https://bearingarms.com/bob-o/2011/0...ould-hurt-you/

    CS who are dicks should have called it at the very least 223R or the fully versions of 223 Rem or 223 Remington, not 223 WIN. There is also a very very slight chance they may be referring to 223 Win Short Magnum (WSM) but I doubt it.
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  3. #3
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    The leade (throat) length of the 223 rem is shorter than that of a 5.56.

    Meaning a 5.56 in a 223 can result in higher (potentially dangerous) pressure but a 223 in a 5.56 will be OK.

    5.56 is generally loaded to higher pressure too.

    https://bearingarms.com/bob-o/2011/0...ould-hurt-you/
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    Oh I see, thank you. So if you were to buy a rifle, would you search for a .223 rifle or a 5.56 NATO rifle? For 500y target shooting.

    Also assuming that the cost for both ammo should be the same since they are exact same dimensions (I think)?

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    I think somebody previously posted a screen dump of a letter from CZ confirming their 223's will run 5.56 with no issue. Can someone recall this?

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    Boom, cough,cough,cough

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheChosenOne View Post
    Oh I see, thank you. So if you were to buy a rifle, would you search for a .223 rifle or a 5.56 NATO rifle? For 500y target shooting.

    Also assuming that the cost for both ammo should be the same since they are exact same dimensions (I think)?
    If it was an ar15 then 5.56 or 223 wylde (a derivative that is safe to fire both). You will be fine with 223 Rem. Generally 5.56 Nato is labelled as such or you can have the chosen rifle re-chambered in 5.56, 223 Wylde or have the throat lengthened to a 5.56 Nato by a throating reamer.

    My advice would be get the rifle that has all of the features you want then reload for it in the chosen calibre.
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  8. #8
    Member Solo's Avatar
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    Pretty sure the ".223 Win" on Gun City is just a typo/wrong link, as if you backtrack from an actual .223 Remington rifle/ammo, you get the right section.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fireflite View Post
    I think somebody previously posted a screen dump of a letter from CZ confirming their 223's will run 5.56 with no issue. Can someone recall this?
    Yep seen it many times on Yankee forums (enough times to actually believe forum speak on this particular subject) where posters have contacted CZ USA and asked the question re the 527.
    But why would you bother....... My CZ 527 is an absolute tack driver which responds best to handloads.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheChosenOne View Post
    Oh I see, thank you. So if you were to buy a rifle, would you search for a .223 rifle or a 5.56 NATO rifle? For 500y target shooting.

    Also assuming that the cost for both ammo should be the same since they are exact same dimensions (I think)?
    Generally the only 5.56mm rifles will be based on a military platform, ie ARs, Steyrs, SIGs.
    As others have mentioned it's a longer chamber throat and loaded to higher pressures for 5.56mm.
    Off the top of my head, my 5.56mm chambered rifle has a throat 3.5mm more of a jump to the rifling than my .223s.

    I don't know of much in the way of 5.56mm target ammo produced.
    Welcome to Sako club.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by dogmatix View Post
    Generally the only 5.56mm rifles will be based on a military platform, ie ARs, Steyrs, SIGs.
    As others have mentioned it's a longer chamber throat and loaded to higher pressures for 5.56mm.
    Off the top of my head, my 5.56mm chambered rifle has a throat 3.5mm more of a jump to the rifling than my .223s.

    I don't know of much in the way of 5.56mm target ammo produced.

    Hornady does a bit: Hornady Manufacturing Company :: Ammunition :: Rifle :: Choose by Caliber :: 5.56 NATO

    The above link has the difference in leade measurements. Imperial but...

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by dogmatix View Post
    Generally the only 5.56mm rifles will be based on a military platform, ie ARs, Steyrs, SIGs.
    As others have mentioned it's a longer chamber throat and loaded to higher pressures for 5.56mm.
    Off the top of my head, my 5.56mm chambered rifle has a throat 3.5mm more of a jump to the rifling than my .223s.

    I don't know of much in the way of 5.56mm target ammo produced.
    In the early days loaded SS109 was used a bit for target shooting (assuming you were running a faster twist) but it is hardly competive nowadays, maybe wasn't then either. Loose projectiles (Canadian?) seemed to be available everywhere as well. Nowadays Hornady Training ammo would thrash it but wimp at the longer ranges unfortunately. Don't know if the Yanks produce a National Match version of the 5.65.

    Interestingly was at the range the other day with mate who was sighting in ( a 2 2 3 Remington) using GECO and it was piss poor. Certainly didn't suit that brand of rifle. Changed to the Ozzie Outback ammo (69gr SMK) and the group shrunk to around 1/2 moa. The ADI brass looked reasonable brass as well. Lot better than a lot of the roadkills I bring home from the range.

  13. #13
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    Hornadys 75gr bthp is a national match load
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  14. #14
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    Hi ChosenOne. If you would like the option of using cheap military surplus ammo (55 or 62 grain FMJ such as PMC X-TAC ammo) you best get a rifle chambered for 5.56 mm.
    Otherwise a .223 chambered rifle with a 1-8 or 1-9 twist barrel will shoot any factory loaded .223 ammo.

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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by 300_BLK View Post
    Hornadys 75gr bthp is a national match load
    Its not a bad hunting projectile too.
    My 5.56mm used to love the steel cased .223 training ammo.
    Welcome to Sako club.

 

 

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