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Old January 24, 2010, 08:54 AM   #1
highcaliberprovider
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5.45x39 vs. 5.56x45

I have read a few threads in these forums discussing acceptable ammunition for indoor firing ranges. In the area I live in there are no indoor ranges (for civilian use) that allow rifles period. However, I've seen many posts stating that the individual's frequented range does not allow 7.62x39. So, they ask about acceptable Kalashnikov style rifles. (Yes, I know you can get an AK in 5.56, that's not what I'm asking.) So, I recommended the AK-74, only to be told that the 5.45x39 is also not allowed.
It has been my experience that the 5.45x39 packs less of a punch than the 5.56X45 (5.56 nato, .223 rem, whatever your preferred nomenclature). So then, why is it that the 5.56 is allowed and the 5.45 is not? Does it have anything to do with the greater tumble on the 5.45?
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Old January 24, 2010, 09:02 AM   #2
Moloch
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I guess most 5.45x39 has a steel core which can damage your indoor shooting range by damaging the bullet backstop!
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Old January 24, 2010, 09:18 AM   #3
NSO_w/_SIG
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I don't know the answer but why would a range care that the 5.45 yaws more in flesh when you are shooting paper targets?
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Old January 24, 2010, 09:18 AM   #4
noyes
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penetration maybe ?

Tman used his Romanian SAR2, in 5.45 X 39 with Wolf ammo to shoot the box.
It went through all 12 boards, busted the water jug, but bounced off the wood in front of the bricks.


then tried a frangible .223 that Hardshell sent me to try.
They were Federal 50 grain, Frangible rounds.
This round went through 8 boards and bounced off the 9th board.


http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot4.htm
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Old January 24, 2010, 09:21 AM   #5
highcaliberprovider
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I've tested both in ballistics gel (cheap wolf ammo). The 5.45 does seem to have slightly more penetration, but, not so much that I think it would matter much to a bullet stop.
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Old January 24, 2010, 10:29 AM   #6
rbernie
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Quote:
why is it that the 5.56 is allowed and the 5.45 is not
Outside of the most obvious answer (blatant ethnocentrism) or the second most likely answer (resellability of spent casings), it likely has to do with the mo' frangible nature of most 223/5.56 rounds.
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Old January 24, 2010, 12:53 PM   #7
Beachhead123
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The indoor range near me bans 5.45 unless it's Hollow Point. It's a pain in the ass to try to get 5.45 hollowpoint sometimes you find it online, sometimes you don't. And usually if you find it it's not the cheapest you can get.
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Old January 24, 2010, 08:27 PM   #8
Dfariswheel
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The reason the 5.45x39 is often banned is because the military surplus steel core ammo can damage backstops and the owners can't be sure of what a shooter is using.

While the steel core is made of mild steel and is not armor piercing, it does have at least some armor piercing ability.
Here's a sectioned military 7N6-PS bullet with the steel core.

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Old January 25, 2010, 05:23 AM   #9
Bud Helms
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Greater tumble?
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Old January 25, 2010, 05:53 AM   #10
RT
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I don't know if this is true, but one indoor range owner told me he banned steel core ammo because it would spark upon impacting concrete potentially creating a fire hazard.....
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Old January 25, 2010, 10:31 AM   #11
highcaliberprovider
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Quote:
The reason the 5.45x39 is often banned is because the military surplus steel core ammo can damage backstops and the owners can't be sure of what a shooter is using.

Don't 5.56 military surplus also have steel cores? How can the range master be sure what they are shooting?
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Old January 25, 2010, 12:13 PM   #12
rbernie
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IIRC, M855 5.56NATO round has a small steel penetrator in a lead core. That small penetrator would not likely look/behave like the Russian steel-core 5.45x39....
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Old January 25, 2010, 08:14 PM   #13
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If M855 is allowed but combloc intermediate cartridges aren't, it's because the range can't sell steel cases to reloaders. That's the reason, period. The SS109 projectile is specifically designed for penetration of light cover. The mild steel core in the combloc surplus is intended to reduce cost and accelerate yaw in flesh. M855 would easily punch through any backstop that would be penetrated by combloc surplus 5.45x39mm.
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Old January 26, 2010, 02:34 AM   #14
stuffaknuckle
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Ok, Im confused. If ranges are going by penetration factor then why not the 7.62X39? If I remember right the 5.56x45 has more FPS than a 7.62X39 so wouldnt it be not as deadly?

If it is the fact that the ranges cant sell steel cases to reloders then why not again the 7.62X39? They make those in brass cases.
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Old January 26, 2010, 09:14 AM   #15
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Because there is alot of 7.62x39 surplus out there with steel cases,they don't want you to use what they don't sell.Most sell their own reloads and don't sell bulk surplus military ammo.
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Old January 26, 2010, 09:34 AM   #16
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Just to add to what TheManHimself said, It seems like ANY standard 5.56 FMJ round will penetrate steel better than the warsaw pact surplus 5.45 round.

This plate was hit with a variety of 5.56 FMJ, no AP or green tip, just plain old LC72, wolf & malaysian. All the 5.45 was Bulgarian military surplus. That air gap in the nose really cuts down on penetration in hard targets.



If I owned the backstop I'd rather have people use the 5.45, unless as stated before, I wanted the brass for resale.
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