.308, .223, or 9mm?

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    1. #1
      Member ScottChapin's Avatar
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      .308, .223, or 9mm?

      I've been torn about getting a semi automatic in .223 or .308. The .223 S&W M&P 15 TS would compliment my M&P 15-22, but the small caliber bothers me. I guess that at close range defense, the most likely (not that any are likely), the .223 is enough?

      The fact that some states will not let you hunt deer with a .223 kind of shakes my confidence in it. Then again, I'm not likely to be using it at hunting ranges.

      Then there is the Beretta CX4 Storm. I already have a 92SB Compact in 9mm and that would simplify ammo. I'm thinking it would be admirable at longer ranges than the .223 and better at closer ranges.

      What do you folks think?

    2. #2
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      I think if you're going to buy a long gun, get something in a long gun chambering.

      The benefit of a long gun over a handgun is the larger caliber, why negate that with a pistol caliber carbine (PCC)?

      According to THESE GUYS, the difference between 5" barrel and an 18" barrel for some 9mm ammo is less than 200FPS in lots of cases results will vary with ammo type of course), the velocity of a rifle round in the same length barrel is almost 2-3X that of the 9mm.

      As for the .223/5.56 vs. the .308/7.62X51...that battle has been going round for decades. As for the deer hunting thing, many states limit the caliber to .30cal and above, that omits the .270 which is a fine round and in most some cases these laws predate the mass civilian use of the .223.

      I prefer the handling characteristics of an AR in 5.56/.223 or 6.8 to those of most .308 semi-auto rifles and they are cheaper to shoot.

    3. #3
      Member ScottChapin's Avatar
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      Ah, OK, that rules out the 9mm iwth good reason. I guess I need to convince myself that the .223 has stopping power. It probably does at the ranges for which it is intended. The .223 probably falls apart at greater distances as compared to the .308.

      One can argue that the .223 will penetrate brush better, and yes, the lower cost is attractive. The fact that an M&P 15 TS would be a great compliment to my M&P 15-22 is a strong drawing factor. I just have to get past my mentality that the .223 is an anemic round. I just feel that it is a .22LR on steroids.

    4. #4
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      Quote Originally Posted by ScottChapin View Post
      Ah, OK, that rules out the 9mm iwth good reason. I guess I need to convince myself that the .223 has stopping power. It probably does at the ranges for which it is intended. The .223 probably falls apart at greater distances as compared to the .308.

      One can argue that the .223 will penetrate brush better, and yes, the lower cost is attractive. The fact that an M&P 15 TS would be a great compliment to my M&P 15-22 is a strong drawing factor. I just have to get past my mentality that the .223 is an anemic round. I just feel that it is a .22LR on steroids.
      I'm not that fond of the .223/5.56 myself, there is indeed room from improvement which has led to the 6.8 etc. if/when the 6.8 chambering reaches the supply level of the .223/5.56 I'll change.

      Now regarding the .223, it's effectiveness can be enhanced with ammunition selection. Most of the detractors of the .233/5.56 (myself included) only have a negative view point based on the results of FMJ projectiles, not JHPs.

    5. #5
      Member MitchellB's Avatar
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      I think it depends a great deal on your intended target. Punching holes in paper the 9mm or .223 is probably the best and cheapest to operate. When I want a clean kill with targets over 150 lbs or targets that could can present a threat, I like to grab "enough gun," so I'd want the .308. Being a civilian, I do not need a small gun to wound my attacker (or game) with the mentality this will force more combatants to stop fighting me to care for their wounded comrades.

    6. #6
      Senior Member zhurdan's Avatar
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      When are people going to realize that the lethal nature of a round has and always will have more to do with shot placement than anything else by a full order of magnitude?

      I believe that the main reason the 5.56 should probably be your round for this project is because it's cheaper to shoot, therefore you can get more practice in with it. Assuming you're wanting to train seriously to be able to put rounds where they need to go when required to do so.

      Pistol caliber carbines... well, I simplify it like this... I put pistol cartridges in pistols, and rifle cartridges in rifles. There's a reason they were designed that way. PCC's were developed for very specific roles, and unless you're fulfilling one of those rolls, well, you get the picture.

      People have been saying more and more that the 5.56 is anemic or underpowered or a .22LR on steroids simply because they heard it somewhere. .22LR's are usually 40g @1100fps. 5.56's are 55g @3200fps (picked the most common loading of each). That's some steroid! Try hitting a man sized target at 300 yards with a .22LR, then try it again with the 5.56. In the first instance the cartridge really isn't up to the task, and the rifleman damn well better be. In the second instance, the cartridge is very capable, and the rifleman still damn well better be. Seeing a commonality? THE RIFLEMAN!

      It's all about shot placement. Always has been, always will. That being said, I'd buy the one you can afford to practice more with. In this case...5.56.

    7. #7
      Member ScottChapin's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by zhurdan View Post
      When are people going to realize that the lethal nature of a round has and always will have more to do with shot placement than anything else by a full order of magnitude?
      LOL. That goes without saying. I just hope with all my experience under hostile fire (none), that I keep calm and collect, placing my rounds like I can at the range!

      I believe that the main reason the 5.56 should probably be your round for this project is because it's cheaper to shoot, therefore you can get more practice in with it. Assuming you're wanting to train seriously to be able to put rounds where they need to go when required to do so.
      That is what my M&P 15-22 is for. I can shoot all day with that and shoot maybe 100 rounds with the round I select for my main gun.

      Pistol caliber carbines... well, I simplify it like this... I put pistol cartridges in pistols, and rifle cartridges in rifles. There's a reason they were designed that way. PCC's were developed for very specific roles, and unless you're fulfilling one of those rolls, well, you get the picture.
      Yep, I got the picture, though the CX4 looks pretty darned good for CQC.

      People have been saying more and more that the 5.56 is anemic or underpowered or a .22LR on steroids simply because they heard it somewhere. .22LR's are usually 40g @1100fps. 5.56's are 55g @3200fps (picked the most common loading of each). That's some steroid! Try hitting a man sized target at 300 yards with a .22LR, then try it again with the 5.56. In the first instance the cartridge really isn't up to the task, and the rifleman damn well better be. In the second instance, the cartridge is very capable, and the rifleman still damn well better be. Seeing a commonality? THE RIFLEMAN!

      It's all about shot placement. Always has been, always will. That being said, I'd buy the one you can afford to practice more with. In this case...5.56.
      Again, as said in prior posts, my M&P 15-22 is for cheap practice. I favor the 5.56, as I can get an M&P 15 TC in that caliber and with JHP rounds, it probably isn't bad. I should rely on my marksmanship and rest easy.

    8. #8
      Senior Member zhurdan's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by ScottChapin View Post
      Again, as said in prior posts, my M&P 15-22 is for cheap practice. I favor the 5.56, as I can get an M&P 15 TC in that caliber and with JHP rounds, it probably isn't bad. I should rely on my marksmanship and ret easy.
      The common layout of the weapons would also benefit you from a long term standpoint. Same layout, same function, same operation (for the most part)... that far outweighs trying to learn more than one weapon. Unless of course you're a glutton for punishment like me and like trying to get as good as possible with multiple weapons systems.

    9. #9
      Member ScottChapin's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by zhurdan View Post
      The common layout of the weapons would also benefit you from a long term standpoint.
      Exactly so. If it weren't for the fact that I have the M&P 15-22, I probably wouldn't be contemplating the .223. I was considering a FN-FAL or Springfield chambered in .308, but having a matching weapon makes a lot of sense to me.

      I do have a Remington 700BDL chambered in 30.06. Maybe I need to research higher capacity set ups for it and develop a real fast bolt action delivery...LOL.

    10. #10
      Senior Member zhurdan's Avatar
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      Ohhhh.. now you're speaking my language (the other one).

      FAL's are a wonderful weapon, but they are nasty expensive to feed. I've got two FAL's (and three AR's), but the expense always makes me go back to the AR's. It's just that most times, it's easier to cut someone off at the pass and get them actually shooting the weapons they have... that may have been an assumption I made too fast. If so, I apologize.

      Here's my FAL's.




      that being said, AR's are more functional being they actually get shot more unless you're just loaded, in which case, I take donations. hehe

    11. #11
      Member ScottChapin's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by zhurdan View Post
      Ohhhh.. now you're speaking my language (the other one).

      FAL's are a wonderful weapon, but they are nasty expensive to feed.
      Sigh....I know. I really want the FAL, and if my wife wouldn't kill me, maybe a SCAR in .308,but that's a big buck isn't it...LOL? That's why I got the M&P 15-22. I can afford to shoot it and put maybe 30 rounds through a FAL once in a while.

      Those are very nice looking guns, BTW. I'm envious.

    12. #12
      Senior Member zhurdan's Avatar
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      My wife doesn't know what I've got into the PARA-FAL. Got the rifle for a steal really ($2000) and just put a Trigicon TR-24r on it ($850) and bought some more ammo three weeks ago ($900). If she ever finds out, I may need the rifle to hunt for food and shelter! hehe

      I'm skipping the SCAR's at this point. I want to hear much much more about how they run from people that shoot the crap out of them before I plunk down $2k on a rifle I don't really need (but want). Besides, between the FAL, AR and the AK's I own, I've got plenty to work on. Been really focused lately on the AR and the AK74. AK74 mostly being you can shoot it for next to nothing.

    13. #13
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      Oh I covet thy FAL's zhurdan. Shame on me but I truly do. There is nice one at my local shop with a tiger striped camo job on it that I fondle and lust after each visit. It's the $1899.00 and my wifes wrath that gives me pause.

      As one who has been trying to sort this very subject out myself (or rather the budget) I agree it sounds as though to start out the 5.56 in the M&P might be the ticket for you Scott. I have come to the conclusion that for me personally the ideal line up would be a one of each scenario. AK type, FAL/ AR10 platform 308 and an AR15/M16 in 5.56 covering the 3 most common combat chamberings and prevalent battle rifles in service today. While I concentrate on the 9mm my thinking runs the same for handguns. One has to start out some where and the 5.56 in a platform you are already familiar with makes a lot of sense to me. Maybe not ideal for reach out and touch them distances with power but that round will get it done nicely for urban concerns.

    14. #14
      Member ScottChapin's Avatar
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      Thanks Teufelhunden.

      I'm vacillating again

      I will probably focus on a M&P 15 TC in .223 initially and then sneak a FN-FAL through the back door while my wife's sleeping!

    15. #15
      Senior Member zhurdan's Avatar
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      Learned a great trick from a buddy of mine. You just take it apart before you bring it in the house... start taking one part with you when you clean a different gun, make sure she see's the new part a few times. Then put it all together and when she asks, "Nahh, this is the one I was cleaning last week".

      Works pretty good. hehe

    16. #16
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      That's too funny. I must admit I'm guilty of both those things. Problem is she watches the debits and credits and has less interest in the actual inventory although, I have been asked for an itemized inventory list a time or two. Never seem to be able to get that done. The trick is funding outside the normal channels or skimming. Ya I know. I'm bad but in good company.

    17. #17
      Member ScottChapin's Avatar
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      My wife balked when I just bought the Colt 1911. She asked me why I had to have it. I asked her if she had paid attention to the last two Supreme Court nominations. I got the nod. You see, liberals are good for something!

    18. #18
      Member Frank45's Avatar
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      With due respect to zhurdan,I have a simple question for you. Will your 5.56 caliber round penitrate and hit your intended target passing through a solid wood door, an automobile door or a windshield with a 25-30 degree angle at say 50 to 100 yards?

    19. #19
      Senior Member zhurdan's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by Frank45 View Post
      With due respect to zhurdan,I have a simple question for you. Will your 5.56 caliber round penitrate and hit your intended target passing through a solid wood door, an automobile door or a windshield with a 25-30 degree angle at say 50 to 100 yards?
      Assuming a 62g bullet, it'll easily go thru a wooden door at 10-20 yards. It'll lose a lot of energy, but that's really besides the point. If you're shooting, essentially blind, thru a wooden door, there's going to be hell to pay.

      These questions get asked a lot, but the likelihood of these scenarios ever taking place are at best a pipe dream and at worst a complete nightmare. The 62g bullets do "ok" against glass, but again, that scenario is unlikely to manifest itself to anyone other than LE or military. The trick to shooting thru glass is the point of aim. Deflection is going to occur with almost any round except the heaviest calibers. As for the car door, there's lots of angled metal in there and it's likely you'd hit one of them, but that's why there's 30 rounds in the mag. hehe

      The .308 will definitely perform better in those situations, but (assuming a home environment) hefting and controlling a .308 battle rifle in the confines of your home can produce some serious problems. Not to mention that even though the 5.56 will penetrate walls (hence why I talked earlier about line of sight issues), the .308 will most definitely become more of a liability maker.

    20. #20
      Member Frank45's Avatar
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      Your point is well taken, and I appreciate your quick responce to my question and respect your knowledge and opinion. However your comment on this being a pipe dream and a nightmare, I agree to a point there is a chance that a citizen may be drawn into that scenerio. Also,The scenerio manifesting itself to LE or military is disagree. This times we live in has put us in a situation where we may have to protect ourselves in this manner. This administration is becomeing out of control with the way they are dismanteling our way of life and the ability to enjoy the rights brought forth by our founding fathers. If things do not change by this election day coming up, we are may be thrown into a very serious situation. For this and this alone I prefer the 308 round. I thank you for your responce.

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