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Old December 10, 2009, 11:01 AM   #1
Oldjarhead
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AR-15 calibers for Home Defense

Ok. I Have read a lot on these forums about the AR-15. I shot many a M-16 in my years in the military. I feel the AR-15s today are very good. Here is my reservation about buying one myself. I have big questions about the effectiveness of the .223 caliber round. I have heard good things and bad. Larger pattern AR rounds, like the .308 I have not heard any bad things. If I buy a AR-15, what would be the best all round Home defense or on the battlefield? .223, .308, 6.8, 6.5 grendel, .450, or .50 beowolf?

And just for more interesting opinions, what brand of AR-15? Thanks.
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:23 AM   #2
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And just for more interesting opinions, what brand of AR-15?
Pre-Ban lower is the best. The type that will take all trigger groups.
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:28 AM   #3
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why not look into other options than the AR?
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:30 AM   #4
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+1 for other option. AR great for SHTF, but 12ga buckshot best for home D.
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:35 AM   #5
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and with a shotgun, you can get a slug barrel. multi-purpose
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:36 AM   #6
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:37 AM   #7
Bartholomew Roberts
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Quote:
Here is my reservation about buying one myself. I have big questions about the effectiveness of the .223 caliber round.
OK, what are those questions? Obviously .223 has killed a lot of people under a wide range of circumstances, so I am assuming the question isn't whether or not .223 can do it.

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If I buy a AR-15, what would be the best all round Home defense or on the battlefield? .223, .308, 6.8, 6.5 grendel, .450, or .50 beowolf?
Just some advice; but you have asked an impossibly open-ended, vaguely-defined question. We do not know what your parameters for home defense are, so we don't know what criteria is important. Every person who answers will end up using THEIR situation and experience to fill in the blanks and you will get widely varying answers, most of which will be useless to you because nobody will discuss the unstated assumptions that led them to that answer - so you don't know if they are living in a 10x10' efficiency in downtown Manhattan or a concrete reinforced bunker in Montana on 1,000 acres.

Since you don't know that, you will have no idea how useful their suggestion is for your circumstances - and that is just on the home defense question. By opening it up to "battlefield", you've introduced another several dozen variables that can cause the answer to change.

Just to give an idea of the type of criteria that might affect what answer you get:

1. Is terminal ballistics the most important criteria or is inflight ballistics important as well? How important is each?

2. Are we concentrating solely on ballistics or do we need "best value" where we have to make tradeoffs concerning cost and weight as well?

3. Is the likely scenario defending a rural home? Suburban home? Urban home? Where is that home? U. S.? Africa? Middle East? Thailand? Alaska?

4. What are you physically capable of handling in terms of rifle weight, ammo weight, recoil? How far do you have to move it?

Of course, all of this assumes you want a useful answer. You may just want to engage in the timeless Internet practice of jawing about firearms with no greater goal than entertainment and no intention to take any of the information seriously at all

Quote:
And just for more interesting opinions, what brand of AR-15?
Forget about brand. Decide what features you want on an AR15 and then buy the AR15 that has those features at the price that is most convenient for you. If you don't know what features you want or why those make a difference, then you've got a lot of research ahead of you
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:42 AM   #8
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another popular route is a lever 357, 44 mag, or such. great rifles, POWERFUL, half the price of the cheapest AR, ammo is EVERYWHERE!!!, and good for home defense, hunting, ect...

there are carbine models avaliable too...

a buddy of mine has a Rossi M92 with a 16" barrel in 357. its a BLAST and deadly accurate.

other friend has a sinlge shot 44mag (thinking in terms of cartridge, not gun). withing 4" 100 yds and will drop a 270lb pig one shot on the spot

$299... cant beat that for a 44mag, and you can put a peep sight on it to feel tacticool
http://gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewIte...Item=149587026
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:49 AM   #9
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Bear in mind that most the grumbling you hear about failures is with military ball ammunition. With expanding bullets, it's a whole different ballgame.
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:54 AM   #10
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If you want an AR15 get one. 55gr 5.56 has the advantage of loosing energy as it passes through bad guys or walls lowering the risk of collateral damage to neighbors. Unless you live in the country it's probably your best choice. I just wouldn't get exotic with round choices. Stick with 55-62gr SP or JHP, or XM193 ball to keep penetration reasonable.
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Old December 10, 2009, 11:59 AM   #11
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SBR with a can in 6.8 - consider gas piston instead of direct gas.

SBR with a can in 6.8 - consider gas piston instead of direct gas.
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Old December 10, 2009, 12:18 PM   #12
.300 Weatherby Mag
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A shotgun is the best type of home defense weapon.... An AR is not...
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Old December 10, 2009, 01:54 PM   #13
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^^^^ Not if you trust your abilities with your AR more. A shotgun is a great HD weapon, but it's not the only one worthy of the task. So many people think that it's the only reasonable choice for an HD gun.

Get what you want, but as of right now the question is a bit vague. I think the .223 is probably best for indoor/HD use than the others mentioned.
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Old December 10, 2009, 02:17 PM   #14
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If you want an AR- then that is exactly what you ought to get. I prefer a flat top to put toys (scopes & such) on and a 1:9 twist bbl. That's about the slowest you'll readily find on a pre-built rifle, and it should handle 45gr up to 64gr. It may not be absolutely 'on' with the 45's varmint loads- but they'll find their way to their intended targets.

I'm like you- I want the things that are as close as possible to the things Uncle Sam asked me to carry around for him. Go ahead- get the AR, you can always pick up a SG for $200 +/- $50 at a pawn or gun shop later on down the road. Life is too short not to have what you want and while everybody strives to get old- there ain't much sense in gettin old with regrets.
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Old December 10, 2009, 03:09 PM   #15
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why not just get a Colt AR sporter in 9mm? cheap to feed and will put a hurt on the BD. Get the 32 round mags!
later on you can always buy uppers in different calibers (because you can NEVER have just 1 AR!)
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Old December 10, 2009, 03:28 PM   #16
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If you want an AR just to have one that can also act as HD, than get it. But an AR is not the best tool for 15-20 foot fights. It will work, but not the best. I have an AR-15, 12ga and a 9mm high cap pistol. For the typical home break in, I would grab the 9mm. then shotgun. If i have a horde of rioters, home invaders or zombies i would grab my AR.
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Old December 10, 2009, 03:39 PM   #17
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Quote:
A shotgun is the best type of home defense weapon.... An AR is not...
Bunk.
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Old December 10, 2009, 03:44 PM   #18
TheManHimself
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A shotgun is the best type of home defense weapon.... An AR is not...
Perhaps you should tell that to the SWAT teams and military personnel who find compact 5.56mm carbines the ideal weapon for CQB. Killing bad guys inside a building is killing bad guys inside a building, whether you're defending or attacking. Higher ammunition capacity, less recoil, and less risk of overpenetration sounds like a winning combination in my book.
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Old December 10, 2009, 03:56 PM   #19
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Although I think a 16" bbl AR loaded with .223 soft point rounds would make an EXCELLENT home defense gun, I personally would pick a 12ga with 00 buck. But then again I don't really have to worry so much about overpenetration where I live, you might.

The other calibers are great but have one fatal drawback; they're expensive to shoot and therefore you can't afford to practice as much. With FMJs the 5.56/.223 may have limited stopping power but with civilian hunting and self defense loads it should prove to be more than adequately lethal for SD.
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Old December 10, 2009, 04:04 PM   #20
kwells6
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and with a 12ga, aquilla makes the short 12ga shells... they're like 1 1/2" with 00 buck... its like a pop gun
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Old December 10, 2009, 04:32 PM   #21
10-96
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aquilla makes the short 12ga shells
Which is a major crapshoot/gamble to find a firearm that will reliably function with these. I believe even the Aguila website said something about them not being much bueno in anything but Winchester Pumps- and those may not be 100%.
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Old December 10, 2009, 04:39 PM   #22
kwells6
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they work great in my H&R single shot
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Old December 10, 2009, 04:47 PM   #23
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... If I buy a AR-15, what would be the best all round Home defense or on the battlefield? .223, .308, 6.8, 6.5 grendel, .450, or .50 beowolf?

And just for more interesting opinions, what brand of AR-15? Thanks.
Well for home defense I like the good ol' 1911 45ACP. Or for those who want more capacity maybe a Hi-Power or more modern wondernine or 40S&W. A "tactical" shotgun could be substituted but is cumbersome indoors.

For outdoors (battlefield?) it's hard to beat an AR-15 carbine in 5.56. As for which brand, there are many great options. Personally I built a stripped lower and added a complete midlength upper. Really enjoyed the project and it turned out better than anything I saw for sale locally. And I can truly say "This is MY rifle..."

This is my home defense:
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Old December 10, 2009, 09:34 PM   #24
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If I buy a AR-15, what would be the best all round Home defense or on the battlefield? .223, .308, 6.8, 6.5 grendel, .450, or .50 beowolf?
For home defense, NONE! You'll shoot through walls and kill family or neighbors. Get a shot gun and use shot.
As for battle field, what type of battle field? House to house or open area?
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Old December 11, 2009, 02:47 AM   #25
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Whatever caliber you get, make sure it has a bayonet lug. Knives are very effective - they've been stopping fights for centuries.



-tINY

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