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What is good accuracy for an AR15?

 
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  #8  
Old 01-10-2014, 06:43 AM
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Re: What is good accuracy for an AR15?

My R15 varmint, 24" triangular barreled model, is a sub .5MOA with hand loads and factory 55gr Rem Accutips and 55gr VMAx, better with hand loads.. Both factory rounds will consistently hit beer can sized targets at 500 yards. My DPMS 24" heavy barreled upper loaded with 69gr SMK's is .25-.5 MOA, generally closer to .25 MOA. I have used this rifle successfully competing in 200-300 yard egg shoots against bolt rifles. My Colt and Bushmaster standard fare 20" HBar's generally keep their shots in .75MOA with Rem bulk FMJ 55gr, green tips, and Hornady VMax. All my rifles have 1:9 twist and I shoot 55-69gr ammo. Years ago i bought a Colt HBar. I wasn't expecting much, but to my surprise I have been quite impressed with the accuracy potential(and reliability) of the AR15 platform. A tight upper/lower lock up, decent trigger, free floated barrel, and finding the right load are key to maximizing accuracy.IMO.
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  #9  
Old 01-10-2014, 12:39 PM
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Re: What is good accuracy for an AR15?

The only AR I owned was a DPMS chambered in 7.62x39. Magazines would not feed, period. Was sighted in by hand loading single shot. Reworked all the magazines myself (C products went out of business and new owner would not honor warranty issues specific to the 7.62x39).

Accuracy out of the box was 2.5MOA regardless of load. Ultimately put in a $100 CMMG 2 stage trigger of modern design and concluded that the DPMS barrel was a 308 barrel and not a .310 like an AK or SKS. Made reloads using 123gr 308 bullets and together with the new trigger it shot 1MOA. Any factory 7.62x39 ammo was 2.5MOA due, I believe to the fact that the barrel was not a proper match for the ammo. Just another cheap trick used by DPMS instead of ordering the proper barrel.

Yes, DPMS do sell quality uppers with better stainless barrels. They totally erased all info on the 7.62x39 from their website and refused to answer any questions on their forum regarding the rifle. I started to doubt I would even get spares for it. So it ultimately got traded for a dirt bike around election time and the guy who got it was pretty glad to get his hands on an AR.
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  #10  
Old 01-10-2014, 06:41 PM
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Re: What is good accuracy for an AR15?

Quote:
Originally Posted by westcliffe01 View Post
"Tipped ammo" ? You mean the FMJ 55gr bullets ? In the American Eagle box ? It is amazing that it works so well. I got about 300 rounds of AE 55FMJ ammo with my Golani sporter and it was flat out the worst ammo I had ever shot in 223. Terrible accuracy in my Savage 10PC which usually shoots 1/2 MOA.

Now the stuff that you are talking about is a new offering and I believe was even cheaper than the "regular" FMJ ammo. I ended up giving it away, so if it shoots good for you they must have improved it. The stuff I had the primers were crimped, the brass was patinated, the bullet was crimped and it was just lousy.

Before I started reloading I was typically shooting the Hornady Superformance Varmint ammo with the Vmax bullet and later I switched to superformance Match 75gr HPBT. Then I started rolling my own with the same performance characteristics as the superformance match ammo. Just a lot cheaper than $18/box of 20. But all this in a bolt gun, where one does not have to worry about the bullet feeding mashing a hollow point or polymer tipped bullet. I imagine that people who hunt coyotes with an AR are also typically using a polymer tipped bullet (or other form of frangible bullet) since FMJ do not work too good on most live animals.
You might want to avoid the Superformance stuff for use in the AR platform. Hornady issues a warning about excessive pressures in an AR chamber with it. That being said, I ran a bunch of it down my RRA( before I found this out) without a single hiccup. But there's no sense in taking the risk if it isn't necessary.
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  #11  
Old 01-11-2014, 08:23 AM
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Re: What is good accuracy for an AR15?

Quote:
Originally Posted by threejones View Post
You might want to avoid the Superformance stuff for use in the AR platform. Hornady issues a warning about excessive pressures in an AR chamber with it. That being said, I ran a bunch of it down my RRA( before I found this out) without a single hiccup. But there's no sense in taking the risk if it isn't necessary.
I have ran a few boxes through mine also because in the R15 forums hey were reporting really good accuracy with the superformance. It shoots close to 3/4 Moa in mine but the AR223 Tipped shoots 1/2 Moa at half he price.
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  #12  
Old 01-30-2014, 03:30 PM
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Re: What is good accuracy for an AR15?

I love the AR platform just because its cycling functions lead to an inherently accurate firearm. I will not claim they can replace a bolt gun in the most accurate of venues like benchrest, but they can compete quite well in field conditions. I would argue that an average bolt gun and an average AR will be indiscernible in most tests of accuracy. At least in my experience.

My last .223, a Howa Vaminter Supreme accurized by a gunsmith of 30 years experience, averaged .325" with its best load. My AR without anything but my assembly, easily ties that average. However, the AR is a bit more finicky about its loads.

Sorry, I digress.

I expect MOA or near MOA from any rifle I shoot. If it can't do it I either fix it or get rid of it. AR's are no different. After that, I aim for doing what I can do minimize the groups.

Attached are some pics of load tests from my AR-15. It gives results that rifle delivers from my hand loads. This is what I consider accurate. I wrote I review on these tests and the pics aren't there anymore, but here is the thread:
My .223 experiment - THR
Attached Thumbnails - Click to View Larger
What is good accuracy for an AR15?-223-group-5.jpg   What is good accuracy for an AR15?-223-group-7.jpg  

What is good accuracy for an AR15?-223-group-3.jpg  
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  #13  
Old 01-30-2014, 04:46 PM
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Re: What is good accuracy for an AR15?

From the pictures it looks like your gun likes H335. I tried Varget with handloads with similar results to yours. Couldn't get under an inch. Ill read the write up when I have time. But what was your best load in that rifle. Powder and bullet.
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  #14  
Old 01-30-2014, 08:36 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2014
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Re: What is good accuracy for an AR15?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShootnMathews View Post
From the pictures it looks like your gun likes H335. I tried Varget with handloads with similar results to yours. Couldn't get under an inch. Ill read the write up when I have time. But what was your best load in that rifle. Powder and bullet.
My best load for this rifle was the one you see. 28gr H335 under a 40gr pill. However, there were other issues with that load that made me refrain from hunting with it. From another write up:

Quote:
It only took me a few days more to get this out to the field to test it on a few of the local groundhogs. I figured to single load the Blitzkings to use them up. The 55gr slug had gone into my daughters’ loads for their rifles. My first shot was a standing hog at 112yds. It went to heaven before it knew it had been hit. Next one proved different. The next ranged at 306yds. I saw it take the hit through the scope and then it managed to get 10yds into the trees. I found the blood leading to its hole 20yds into the woods. I thought I might have scored a poor hit and went on to my next field determined to not make the same mistake. Sure enough I was presented with a 286yd shot on a standing hog and it flipped back as if it took a chest hit then made it to its hole as well. Judging from the blood (a bowhunter tracking skill) they both seemed to be lung hit, but they were not expiring quick enough.

I started to think about it and decided that maybe the bullets were not expanding as well as they should. I had used Blitzkings in the past with excellent results, but not out of such a short barrel. I truly wanted to get a hold of one of the hogs and see what had gone wrong. If I had had a shovel, I would have probably dug one up.

Finally, I tried one that had roamed too far from its hole. I took a chance and it paid off. As did another in a similar situation. Ranges were about the same as those that had escaped. I took them apart to see how the bullets did and found they weren’t passing through. Also while there was fragmentation, it was not as much as I was used to seeing from this bullet. Groundhogs and coyotes are tough critters, so you tend to need a good bit of damage internally to stop them in their tracks. In any case, there was no way I could use this load on a ‘yote.
After some trial and error I came with a load that was a compromise load several factors. I needed a temp stable powder, a load that worked in all three .223's in the house, and terminal performance. I ended up with a load of 27gr Varget under 50gr Zmaxes in WCC 07 brass lit by CCI primers loaded just shy of too long for my magazine. This load flies to .325 regularly in my gun, .654 average in my daughter's Axis, and just about an inch in my other daughter's Rossi. It blows up varmints, and is accurate out to a proven 528yds in my AR on live targets.
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