PDA

View Full Version : The AR-15 and steel cased ammo - how to make Wolf or Tula shoot reliably.


ANGLICO
05-28-2012, 3:17 AM
First Thread at Cal Guns... Note: I posted this also at Defensive Carry.

Granted, for home defense, I'm running Federal 65 grain........ But, a shooter has to practice and sometimes, you just have to shoot what ya got........and staying proficient is not cheap.

(last paragraph from the Tinkerer's blog - referenced below) If you have an AR that doesn't like steel ammo, but have a stockpile of it or have a source where you can get it for cheap, it's worth a try to mix some brass in with the steel and see if your AR will run it.

My Comment: I'm going to test this in the ARs and a Mini-14. Will get back with a report later on my success or failure.

Topic: Using inexpensive Russian-made steel cased .223 ammo selling for quite a bit less than the brass versions of the same rounds. Either for Practice or Defense.

Suggested Solution for stuck Steel casings: (apparently caused by blowback of power residue between the casings and the chamber causing a stoppage at about the 50th round) is to mix Brass with Steel rounds, at a ratio that allows the Brass to 'clean' the residue from the chamber, extending the period (number of rounds of steel cases used) before a stoppage, or eliminating it all together.

This Blog (link below) puts up a good argument - though the testing he did is limited in data points, it did show promising results.

Have any of you tested this? Please share your results.


Tinkerer's Blog
Sunday, May 20, 2012

The AR-15 and steel cased ammo - how to make Wolf or Tula shoot reliably: http://tinkerers.blogspot.com/

Edited: Read Warning Thread on Wolf Ammo: http://www.defensivecarry.com/forum/defensive-rifles-shotgun-discussion/104614-ar-ammunition-warning.html

gemini1
05-28-2012, 4:56 PM
First time I tried Tula, 500 rounds went through the pipe with no issues. The 2nd time I bought another 500 rnd box, I've only experienced two FTE. This was on two separate occations, the fte was after 150 rnds. After pulling the stuck case, the next 50 rounds went bang without a hitch. I usually shoot about 100 rnds of brass case ammos on the bench for accuracy and 200 steel case rnds for fun.

gregm784
05-28-2012, 5:32 PM
Mine won't feed Tula steel. It fires but then maybe 1 in 10 it'll feed the next round. Rifle was clean, and oiled. Switched to PMC brass, and it functioned fine.

Too heavy of buffer or spring? This is a standard carbine spring & buffer from SBR.

Dave07997S
05-28-2012, 9:58 PM
My 6920 shoots the Wolf and Tula just fine...however, it seems that alot of the times there is a problem it is with a midlength or a carbine gas system. Never had a issue out of my Colt A2 20".

Dave

Quinc
05-28-2012, 10:11 PM
About one in 150 the extractor rips the rim off the shell and they get stuck. Other then that they are fairly accurate and work just fine.

gemini1
05-29-2012, 2:08 PM
Mine won't feed Tula steel. It fires but then maybe 1 in 10 it'll feed the next round. Rifle was clean, and oiled. Switched to PMC brass, and it functioned fine.

Too heavy of buffer or spring? This is a standard carbine spring & buffer from SBR.

Is that a new rifle? maybe it just needs breaking in? shoot more brass ammos, and then try the steel case again.
I only use standard carbine buffer/spring, on a midlenght upper. Last time at the range, I tried 20 rounds the steel cased 75 grn Hornady TAP and about 100 rnds of 62 grn Wolf (yellow box) along with 100 brass 62 grn reloads from FreedomArms. Again all went bang with no issues.

21SF
05-29-2012, 3:48 PM
Upgrade extractor...

xpbprox
05-29-2012, 3:52 PM
Wolf and WPA work very well in my LMT carbine. I've shot about 500 rounds out of it, just a couple FTF bad primers but in the second hit they went off.

6doubleR
05-29-2012, 4:04 PM
Looking forward to the update. Will give this a go this weekend.

tacticalcity
05-29-2012, 4:06 PM
It may never work. Some guns just don't like certain ammo. It is not necessarily a price point thing. You could have a gun that hates the most expensive ammo on earth. Solution is to use different ammo. Once you find ammo that works great, then stick with it for as long as your gun continues to like it.

People who say, "my gun will eat anything I feed it" have just been lucky thus far. Eventually if they keep trying new brands and makes of ammo they find something their gun hates.

BASE45
05-29-2012, 4:19 PM
My 6920 shoots the Wolf and Tula just fine...however, it seems that alot of the times there is a problem it is with a midlength or a carbine gas system. Never had a issue out of my Colt A2 20".

Dave

I researched this topic a while back and found that the AR in a rifle length gas system, which it was initially designed for, allows proper time for the casing to cool through the cycle of the action. Since the carbine is just a shortened version the cycle rate is too fast to allow the casing to cool in the chamber.

The guy who had this "explanation" claimed it wasn't the fault of the ammo in carbines, it was the design of the carbine's themselves.

IrishPirate
05-29-2012, 4:26 PM
It may never work. Some guns just don't like certain ammo. It is not necessarily a price point thing. You could have a gun that hates the most expensive ammo on earth. Solution is to use different ammo. Once you find ammo that works great, then stick with it for as long as your gun continues to like it.

People who say, "my gun will eat anything I feed it" have just been lucky thus far. Eventually if they keep trying new brands and makes of ammo they find something their gun hates.

I think his point is that he wants to be able to shoot the cheap stuff...not find ammo the works. Of course if you look long enough you'll find something that works, but it might be $30/box and if that's the case you might not be able to ever afford to shoot your gun.

My philosophy is that if you can't shoot "crappy ammo" in your plinker gun, you have a crappy plinker gun. Try a new extractor or new buffer spring. In the long run, more expensive parts that let you shoot less expensive ammo will pay for themselves...kind of like .22 conversions.

And why would I look for more expensive ammo if the cheap stuff works, or look for ammo that DOESN'T work??? My RIA 1911 loves cheap ammo, so that's what I buy. I don't by the expensive stuff to see if it doesn't like it, then I'd be stuck with useless ammo. It's always a good idea to find the CHEAPEST ammo your gun will RELIABLY shoot and stick with that. Don't go mixing and matching stuff if you know what works....

FeuerFrei
05-29-2012, 4:47 PM
dwell time, gas pressure, gas system length, action spring, buffer weight all affect how the ar cycles.
if you want to shoot the widest variety of ammo loads in your ar then pay attention to swapping out the gas block for adjustable unit. heat of cases dosen't affect how it extracts as long as your extractor is functional. carrier speed and timing are key.
the ar has always been ammo sensitive. if you shoot 556 m193 power level ammo then leave it alone.
if you are unsure of your future ammo supply and can only find lower powered ammo then tune it for that contingency then both will work.
metering the gas properly for the load you are using is the key while still using the standard buffer and action springs. no special extractor gimicks needed either.
the lack of a gas metering device is the only thing i hate about the origional design.

famas619
05-29-2012, 5:07 PM
I fire it out of my AR with 16 inch barrel, i've had 3 jams out of about 600 rounds, so i dont see that as a problem.

Yemff
05-29-2012, 5:16 PM
I've shot 500 round or so of silver and brown bear through 2 different ar's and I've never had one jam, maybe I'm just lucky.

MrPlink
05-29-2012, 5:25 PM
Buy an Ak, problem solved :D

Seriously tho, my LMT w BCM bcg eats it all :shrug:

m1a1driver
05-29-2012, 5:28 PM
I had ripped case rims. Wolf will never touch any of my ar's ever again. I sent the rest of the ammo back to wolfs hq and they cut me a check.

L4D
05-29-2012, 6:37 PM
I guess I'm lucky with my carbine, mid length and rifle length AR's.

One thing to note is that i don't clean them often and I throw brass in there during indoor range visits.

Also the carbine would eject with much more force I would notice heavier/deeper extractor marks.

stix213
05-29-2012, 7:00 PM
Between my 2 AR's in .223/5.56 I have about 1400 rounds of 55 grain Brown Bear steel cased down the pipe. I don't shoot brass cased out of these. No failures of any kind. No "50th round stoppage." No stuck cases. No torn off rims. One has an S&W upper, the other an RRA. Both are guns I've assembled, and I rarely clean.

I don't shoot Tula or Wolf out of these, just Brown Bear. Price is pretty close and I think the Bear ammo is more consistent with higher quality control.

nitrodude
05-29-2012, 9:24 PM
About one in 150 the extractor rips the rim off the shell and they get stuck. Other then that they are fairly accurate and work just fine.

I know greg and his AR-15 is very new(less than 300 rounds down range). i was there when he shot the steel and it was almost like a bolt action AR because he had rack the slide back then let it go to feed. and it had already auto ejected but it failed to pick up the steel and feed it into the chamber. he then switched to brass and it worked fine and never malfunctioned for the rest of the day.

morfeeis
05-31-2012, 1:18 PM
I know greg and his AR-15 is very new(less than 300 rounds down range). i was there when he shot the steel and it was almost like a bolt action AR because he had rack the slide back then let it go to feed. and it had already auto ejected but it failed to pick up the steel and feed it into the chamber. he then switched to brass and it worked fine and never malfunctioned for the rest of the day.
Sounds like it was short stroking.

My first 500 round with wolf were a joy, no real problems, my second 500 with hearters (whatever they are called) has been a pain in the ***, they have even less power then wolf.

gregm784
06-01-2012, 9:55 PM
Looks like my issue is due to the rifle gas setup and it's hitting a little softer than a carbine gas setup. I'm going to experiment with a new buffer spring next weekend and see what happens. If I can't get it to run on Tula, I'll have 1400+ rounds of it for sale.


---
Sent from my iPhone 4.5 using Tapatalk. Of course.

negolien
06-02-2012, 4:30 PM
Fired thousands of rounds no issue so /shrug. I guess it can't hurt to try the advice if you're having issues.

Carsgunsandchics
06-02-2012, 5:17 PM
Looks like my issue is due to the rifle gas setup and it's hitting a little softer than a carbine gas setup. I'm going to experiment with a new buffer spring next weekend and see what happens. If I can't get it to run on Tula, I'll have 1400+ rounds of it for sale.


---
I am here: http://tapatalk.com/map.php?lknvro
Sent from my iPhone 4.5 using Tapatalk. Of course.

Cough Cough Cough Birthday ahem...
We'll get it figured out

SocomM4
06-03-2012, 8:30 AM
Lighter buffer should solve the short stroking.

6doubleR
06-04-2012, 2:04 PM
Went out and put 200 rounds of JSC Barnaul lacquer coated 5.56 62 grain using the 9 steel and 1 brass combo. Not one issue at all. I was very pleased with the results. Even my girlfriend, being her first time out, was hitting all bullseye at 50 yards with no magnification.

I shot the steel out of a PSA 16" midlength complete upper. No issues feeding with D&H 10 rd mags with Magpul followers. My buddy with a complete JD Machine upper/lower didn't have the same luck. 8th round in and had issues.

So steel is definitely hit or miss, but I am glad mine runs it fine. My chamber and BCG was the dirtiest I have ever seen it after shooting the steel, but being able to shoot 2x as much for the same price is worth the extra time spent cleaning.