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 5.56 load data
Altair  [Team Member]
8/16/2010 11:01:50 AM
I'm looking for 5.56 NATO pressure reloading data.

I set out looking for data with the 68gr Hornady OTM and the 62gr TSX with TAC powder. I found some data on the Barnes website. They had .223 and 5.56 data for the 62gr TSX with TAC and I was surprised at the difference. The max charge for .223 was just barely more than the minimum listed for 5.56. The Barnes data should work for me with the TSX but I didn't find anything for the Hornady 68gr OTM. Their manual only has .223 loads and the manual with the TAC powder only had .223 loads as well.

I've just picked up reloading in the last couple years primarily because I wanted to try out a couple of wildcats (300/221 and 7.62x40) that required it. I'm now looking into loading ammo for my 5.56 AR's and realized I had this problem.

I'm not sure where to look at this point and it got me to thinking, all my rifles are chambered 5.56 so any reloading I do in the future would be to 5.56 level. Is there a good source for this info?
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Dogue  [Team Member]
8/16/2010 12:03:50 PM
Here's a link in the archives with TAC's 5.56 loads.
Altair  [Team Member]
8/16/2010 12:30:56 PM
Thanks again. You've found both my threads about the Hornady 68grain BTHP today. You are on your game...
AeroE  [Moderator]
8/16/2010 2:03:12 PM
Loading for 5.56X45 ammo all over this site and this forum.

There's a flippin' database tacked at the top, for starters. Plus everyone can search this forum.

SYSTEM MESSAGE  
8/16/2010 2:03:53 PM
Dupe of dupe of dupe topics.
SYSTEM MESSAGE  
8/16/2010 4:43:16 PM
Let's see some 5.56X45 load data for 68 grain Hornady bullets or 62 grain Barnes bullets to help the thread originator out.
Altair  [Team Member]
8/16/2010 10:49:19 PM
Barnes sent me two PDF's, one with .223 Remington data and one with 5.56 NATO data. Interestingly enough the .223 Rem data is from a 24" 1:12 barrel and the 5.56 NATO data is a 20" 1:7 barrel, which is why some of the 5.56 data uses more powder but has a lower muzzle velocity (that one puzzled me until I looked closer). I don't think I can post the PDF so here is some of that data. I just picked a few TSX's from light to heavy for comparison. This is Barnes' data, not mine, so I take no responsibility for it. If you would like the PDF's with the complete data for all powders and bullets PM me and I'll be happy to send them. You can also see a partial list on Barnes' website http://www.barnesbullets.com/information/load-data/data-224/


45gr TSX

.223 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

IMR 4198...........20.0........3126........22.0........3479
TAC..................26.0........3333........28.0........3549

5.56 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

IMR 4198...........20.4........3063........22.4........3342
TAC..................27.6........3235........29.6........3428


53gr TSX

.223 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

H4895 .............23.5.........2970........25.5.........3292
TAC.................24.0.........3051........26.0.........3307

5.56 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

H4895 .............24.6.........2886........26.6.........3199
TAC.................25.6.........2958........27.6.........3161


62gr TSX

.223 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

H4895 .............22.5.........2876........24.5.........3034
TAC.................22.5.........2787........24.5.........3055

5.56 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

H4895 .............23.4.........2785........25.4.........3006
TAC.................25.0.........2825........27.0.........3027


70gr TSX

.223 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

H4895 .............21.5.........2623........23.5.........2879
TAC.................21.5.........2684........23.5.........2853

5.56 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

H4895 .............22.4.........2619........24.4.........2828
TAC.................24.0.........2675........26.0.........2866
Altair  [Team Member]
8/18/2010 10:17:24 PM
I received an email from Ramshot today regarding 5.56 pressure loads. Again, the .223 data was with a 24" barrel and the 5.56 data was with a 20" barrel. I only have time for a short post but here is what they had for the Hornady 68gr BTHP

.223 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

TAC..................21.7........2714........24.1........2980


5.56 Data..........Min..........Vel..........Max.........Vel

TAC.................22.9.....2750-2859...25.4.....3075-3175


I think I got the same email info from them as the poster in the archived thread referenced above.

Their disclaimer:

Here is the disclaimer they have at the bottom:

It’ important to note that SAFETY is our prime concern therefore we strongly recommend.

1. TO ALWAYS BEGIN LOADING AT THE RECOMMENDED MINIMUM “START” LOAD and develop loads in 2% increments towards the MAXIMUM load.

2. If at all possible, measure the velocity and correlate with our data.
EWP  [Member]
8/19/2010 1:01:42 AM
And most people freak about using max .233 load data for manuals like Hornady, just look how much more Tac you can use in a 556 chamber(which 99% of us have) with a 68gr BTHP, I hear people freaking out about using 25gr's of Tac with a 62gr bullet much less a 68gr bullet
Altair  [Team Member]
8/19/2010 10:28:15 AM
Originally Posted By EWP:
And most people freak about using max .233 load data for manuals like Hornady, just look how much more Tac you can use in a 556 chamber(which 99% of us have) with a 68gr BTHP, I hear people freaking out about using 25gr's of Tac with a 62gr bullet much less a 68gr bullet


I see your point but at the same time it is always best to be cautious about hand loads. At least those people freaking out about 25gr of TAC and using a 5.56 chamber should never have to worry about an overpressure round.

FWIW the data Ramshot sent me for a 62gr bullet (not an all copper one like the Barnes but a 62gr FMJ M855 bullet) has the minimum charge as 23.2gr with MV at 2850 to 2950 and the max at 26.0gr with MV at 3100 to 3200, again with a 20" barrel.

Here is the disclaimer they have at the bottom:

It’ important to note that SAFETY is our prime concern therefore we strongly recommend.

1. TO ALWAYS BEGIN LOADING AT THE RECOMMENDED MINIMUM “START” LOAD and develop loads in 2% increments towards the MAXIMUM load.

2. If at all possible, measure the velocity and correlate with our data.

Scalce  [Member]
8/19/2010 10:57:30 AM
You guys are missing the variables that could cause an issue if some geniuses decide to load right to max without working their way up.

We all know working your way up is the proper way to do it but how many new reloaders come here and ask for a full blown max load and will not follow the proper safety precautions?

All it takes is someone to have a rifle that has headspace issues, someone oversizes their brass too many times, a piece of brass is about to separate (and they do not check for incipient case head separation), or some other issues that would not be fun.

You can technically and safely work your way up and even past published current 223 max loads as long as you check all the variables that could get you in trouble and know how to see overpressure signs correctly.

Having someone tell you what the 556 ceiling is doesn't really do anything for you unless you are just looking for reassurance in going that hot or if someone just wants to jump straight to the highest "published" load.
Altair  [Team Member]
8/19/2010 1:40:06 PM
Originally Posted By Scalce:
You guys are missing the variables that could cause an issue if some geniuses decide to load right to max without working their way up.

We all know working your way up is the proper way to do it but how many new reloaders come here and ask for a full blown max load and will not follow the proper safety precautions?

All it takes is someone to have a rifle that has headspace issues, someone oversizes their brass too many times, a piece of brass is about to separate (and they do not check for incipient case head separation), or some other issues that would not be fun.

You can technically and safely work your way up and even past published current 223 max loads as long as you check all the variables that could get you in trouble and know how to see overpressure signs correctly.

Having someone tell you what the 556 ceiling is doesn't really do anything for you unless you are just looking for reassurance in going that hot or if someone just wants to jump straight to the highest "published" load.


I certainly agree with you. There is, and will always be, those that don't adhere to safe practices in reloading (or anything else for that matter). I don't condone or practice jumping into a max load out of the gate. FWIW I have started at the minimum .223 published loads and am working up .5 grains at a time watching for any pressure signs. I started with the .223 loads because despite having all my barrels marked 5.56, I don't assume that the chamber is cut correctly just because of the marking on the barrel. It is safer to start at .223 loads and work up.

I just wanted a reference as to where you are theoretically supposed to hit max rated pressure with a 5.56 chambered gun. I haven't reached these 5.56 max loads and probably never will as I don't typically load anything to the max published data. What I do know is that since I have found manufacturer recommended max 5.56 loads I will never exceed these loads, even if I have no pressure signs.
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