3 comments on “Your next AR/AK should be a bolt action rifle. Wait, what?

  1. The .223 Remington chamber is dimensionally different from that of its NATO counterpart; it has a much shorter throat and slightly less headspace (LEADE length), resulting in a tighter chamber. Shooting 5.56 out of a .223 chamber can result in unsafe pressures leading to excess wear and tear on the firearm. Basically what it boils down to is you can shoot .223 in 5.56x45mm chambered guns but it is not recommended to fire 5.56 out of a .223 chamber. But like almost anything, there are exceptions.

    Modern heavy barreled firearms can oftentimes handle the higher pressure, and only need to have the LEADE corrected with a simple reamer to fire safely. Consult a qualified Gunsmith to see if your firearm can be safely altered.

    In the case of the .308 vs. 7.62x51mm NATO round, the situation is 180-degrees opposite. The .308 is the ‘hotter’ of the two. .308 can fire the 7.62 safely, but not the reverse.

    One further note: I opted for a cheaper solution. Instead of bolt-action firearms, I went with a much simpler single-shot rifle class, such as H&R’s ‘Handi-Rifle’. See: http://www.hr1871.com/ The cousin to these is the single-shot shotgun from the same manufacturer. Same action. Same operation. Great starter guns for children and young adults. Inexpensive. Great “truck guns”. Offered in most of the popular rifle calibers and shotgun gauges including .410 Bore.

    I opted for the .223 REM Handi-Rifle with a bull barrel and had a Gunsmith ream the LEADE length to match that of a 5.56x45mm chamber, and have safely fired several thousand rounds over the past couple of decades, both on the range and at Coyotes.


  2. Additional Bit of Information: From Remington’s website…

    ” What is the difference between the .223 Remington and the 5.56 calibers? ”


    Per SAAMI specifications: The 5.56 and 223 Remington cartridges are similar, but the chambers of the guns and test barrels they are evaluated in are different. One of the key differences is the length of the throat or leade on the 5.56 chamber compared to the 223 Remington. It’s almost twice as long in the 5.56 chamber versus the 223 Remington chamber.

    Typically, the 5.56 round is loaded to a higher velocity and pressure level than the 223 Remington.

    Firing the 5.56 round in a 223 Remington chamber with the shorter leade can dramatically increase chamber pressures.

    Therefore, we recommend against firing the 5.56 round in a 223 chamber, unless the gun is marked with both cartridge designations such as our Model 7615 Patrol Rifle.


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