I looked at a SureFire flashlight (M910A) with two LED's for lighting, a QD lever mount and a vertical hand grip today. Holy Smokes!, it cost almost $500 with tax. It was certainly a nice unit. No, it was better than that, it was SUPER cool, but $500?
The hand held SureFires were most excellent at about $100. Which is preferred, the high output or ultra high output (despite shorter battery life)?
Are the LED units just for general lighting? They don't seem to have the power to blind/stun like the xenon lamps. Am I correct in this?
Shop around. I think I paid $400 for mine, and it's a throw lever M900.
Seems like a hard pill to swallow. I still haven't jump in either. Considering I only shoot during the day and my home defense weapon (Sig Pro .40 cal) all ready has a light on it, I have a hard time justifying a $400 accessory that my ARMS #23 provides the basics. I definitely do see the need for them though in certain applications.
Depends on the application. Personally I find much more than 65 Lumens for CQB/Indoor use to be too much. Way to easy to get spash back and either wash out the reticle or give you problems under certain conditions.
Now when using the rifle outdoors - I like the brighter lights. In those conditions I've found 120lumens to be much better than the 65, but I'd would have preffered even more.
They are called 'Navigation Lights' and used to help you see where you are going w/o broadcasting your position (for use in a building).
Couldn't agree more. While I would love to have a Milennium M900, I can't seem to justify the price. No matter how you spell it, it's a just a flashlight. Repeat after me: Flash Light. Nothing more than for the guys that have money to burn. I have serious doubts that a lot of the guys who buy expensive bling like that even use it for its intended purpose, unless the purpose is to GI Joe around the house in the dark pretending to be defending against zombies. In that case... money wel spent. I have to venture a guess and say that most people shoot during the day and only real operators use them, and even then, do those work any better than a regular $100 Surefire mounted on a $30 First Samco light mount?
But I'm probably as guilty of paying a little (or a lot) more for something that looks a little cooler.
Okay. let's I pretend shopped around. We can change thread title to:
$400 Flashlight ! (lol)
It really is a nice unit - no exposed wires (none!) to snag on something.
I don't really like/understand the vertical foregrip because I've never used one. What are the benefits of the vertical foregrip on a semiauto?
I think I prefer a pistol for indoors. My house is so small, maneuvering a rfile indoors is just too much. Even with a pistol in hand I can easily operate a push button flashlight.
I think I'll buy a hand held Sure Fire light in 65 lumens. They are so flexible in how and where you use them (more bang for the buck).
VFG's are for ninjas. Don't bother buying one unless youhave a pair of these .
They're good for a little more stability when shooting from a standing position when doing CQB and such. Sit down, bench, prone, fox-hole... it really serves no purpose.
For most people it's simply.
An AR for home defense is like using a coat rack for an abortion instead of a coat hanger. People who say an AR is for home defense are planning on defending their homes against men wearing jack boots and/or zombie hordes WTSHTF, and probably put on their MARPAT PJ's and sleep with it in their beds.
so where can i get a pair of them PJ's?
Look for one of these guys who spray paints everything they own... I'm sure they spray up a pair of your PJ's for you if you ask nicely.
Spoken like somebody who runs around in those kind of boots??
Seriously the VFG's have several advantages.
1) For those of us that shoot alot our 'handgrip' never heats up too much (I have over heated the standard grips to where I could not hold the rifle - even by the magazine well).
2) Better Muzzle control
3) Proper ergonomic alignment of the wrist/arm. This allows you to hold your rifle for a longer time in a ready position w/o fatigue (very usefull if you take carbine classes).
4) Better weapon retention (you can maintain a stronger grip on the rifle)
There are a few other specialized advantages like able to use it as a monopod, storage for spare flashlight batteries, muzzle strikes, etc. But these I consider marginal at best
I mostly agree with you here. They can be used in the prone and fox hole (like a monopod if you're using 20 rounders - but they offer no 'advantage' other than the reduced stress on your arm muscles (you don't need to keep your wrist rotated).
That's just plain wrong. Many of us use them for Home Defense because we understand the advantages/disadvantages of various weapon systems.
The 5.56 is superior in just about every way to any handgun caliber (the only downside is noise). Its even SAFER to use in building and when you have nearby neighbors than pistol rounds and buckshot/slugs.
You may choose to defend yourself with a sub-par weapon, but my family's and my life are worth more.
Just real fast....
I live in a house with a floor plan that borders at slightly over 4600 square feet, it is a VERY open floor plan where the great room, kitchen, dining room, entry, and one of the hallways joining 3 of the bedrooms on the split wing are all a DIRECT LINE shot from one end of the house to the other where the garage door entry is(probably the most probable point of entry by an intruder).
If I was forced to take a shot within my home, from the door to my room to the other end of the house where that garage door is located, I can expect the longest shot to be right on the border of 25 YARDS (NOT FEET).
You show me where a handgun manages to give you a level of accuracy, control, speed, or in general is preferable to that of a well configured AR15 using a round that is prone to penetrating less than that of a handgun round.
I COULD use a shotgun but I don't much like the idea of what a spread from a shotgun looks like after traveling the max distance I might expect to encounter within my home, most of the pattern will be on target but not all of it. I'd rather not worry about near by family members if I am forced to take a shot, I'd rather be responsible for ONE bullet and have it be much more probable that it lands on target than launch a multitude of projectiles and the risk that I may hit something I intend not to hit. I also prefer the trajectory/point blank range of the carbine round, 25 yards for a handgun is relatively "long range" especially if under stress but such a range for a rifle is a joke as it is all in the pbz.
It's all about having the capability to exploit a situation that might not be possible with a firearm of a different type.
All the little "tactical fag" trinkets help to further that means. Surefire 500A for identification and disorientation, should it be needed and an Aimpoint for purposes of rapid and easier sighting under stressful situations as well.
If anything, when people start to argue with me(not that anyone in this thread is) about using an AR15 for home defense, I take the approach that if anything I am being MORE responsibly minded having chosen the AR15 than if I were to choose something else.
Now, when I and if I move to another location in a house of different construction and totally different concerns to weigh, then I may wind up choosing something else. I am very unlikely to sit there trying to defend myself with the same firearm if I'm living in a cramped apartment surrounded by neighbors on all sides just opposite a wall.
The CEO of Surefire does very well for himself thanks to ARFCOM.
Just because you don't want to spend serious $$$ on a tac light, doesn't mean you should come on here and post rediculous diatribes, in which you make insulting and childlike statements.
It's like bitching if someone else buys a nicer car than yours. Who fuckin' cares???? If they can afford, and want it, they should have it!!!
I, for one, think a 9v light is appropriate for a tac/CQB carbine. So, you could spend $300-$325 on a light, and then spend $50-$65 on a good-quality VFG. The M900 just combines the two. Might be a few bucks more expensive, but I sure don't care. No wires sticking out around on my M900.
And making fun of someone who uses an AR carbine for home defense is just plain idiotic. Do some research. Talk to some experts. If the AR/M4 is way too much for home defense, I wonder why we see so many tac units aorund the country using them????
Way to go Grant and Forest.
And there's something wrong with this type of planning or mentality?
Dudes... lighten up a little.
Most of what I wrote was in a joking tone (which I understand can be easily confused in text). If you have seen me in other posts I tend to mess around and make a point at the same time. I guess in this case it was hard to distinguish between the two. Apologies on that.
I also tend to speak empirically as opposed to theoretically. So obviously what works for me may not work for someone else. Which is why, when someone asks for an OPINION, I give mine rather than regurgitating other people's.
I have no doubt that the CEO of Surefire makes some bank from arfcom, and a portion of that money is probably coming from chairborne keyboard commandos, rather than actual operators.
Ninjas in the sense of LEO, .gov and .mil type operators who do CQB on a regular basis and can validate the use of a VFG and light, particularly together. I would venture to say the average home defender has no more need for that than a minimag and a pistol. I'd also venture to guess that the bling bling crowd more than likely doesn't do a lot of CQB training in the truest sense (actual shoot houses). Besides, the whole point of that type of CQB training it to train as a team in coordinated movements, not solo. CQB and defending against a guy(s) who is dumb enough to break into you house does not constitute are apples and oranges. So the people who say CQB when they actually mean grabbing their AR in the tighty whities to catch the crackhead stealing their DVD player are watching too many movies and playing to much Rainbow Six.
After looking at some of the pictures from Iraq today I can see that a VFG works just a good as a bipod in some case. There was one of a troop propping his weapon up on a sandbag. I'll eat crow on that one. That's a little different from shooting from a bench on the range though.
I would more than likely fall into the bling bling category on some things. I'd give my left big toe for an M900, but given all the other expenses me and my family have that is a luxury buy above and beyond most.
Muzzle control and handguards heating up. In all my time using the M16/AR's I have never had the handguards heat up that much on me, nor do I think it would in a HD scenario. The idea of pumping out tht many rounds in HD paints a pretty funny image in my head. Even in CQB I don't think they crank out that many rounds. CQB shooters are relatively ammo disciplined. The muzzle rise isn't so bad that I can't live without a VFG. If they were that necessary they'd be on every service rifle in Iraq. Once again, not that say they don't offer an advantage... and I do agree with the wrist/arm alignment principle.
If my .45 misses the target I have my doubts it's going to go through a wall and travel across the yard into the neighbor's home. One of the reasons I choose such a heavy round for HD. The reason I think of an AR as home defense overkill is simply because I am thinking of it from my standpoint, in my house. Besides the fact that they make frangible rounds in most common calibers for this reason if I'm not mistaken.
For one, I don't sleep with my gun collection under my bed It's in a storage room which is far enough from my bedroom that it would be ridiculous for me to try to get to it in the event of a break in. I store my AR broken down (mainly because it recently outgrew the case and I haven't gotten the funding for a new one). I keep a handgun by the bed.
I understand that everyone doesn't live in the same house, nor does everyone have children to worry about. The layout of my house is tight enough that there is no more than about 50ft from any given point to a wall. Another reason I choose a handgun as opposed to the AR.
Not to say that I wouldn't love the opportunity to be able to pick which gun I want to slay a would be burglar, but from a practical and safety standpoint, I can't pre-position my guns all over the house so that I can defend from any room at any given time. And I don't walk around with my handgun in a holster or AR slung over my shoulder while watching Seinfeld reruns.
ID'ing an intruder? Well, I can do that easily in my house... my wife sleep next to me and my son doesn't walk or crawl... so anyone else in the house is free game. Besides the fact that we have an alarm system and a reliable watch dog. If, down the road, my kid is playing around in the house at 3am with a squirt gun, I'll more than likely know because I would check his room before "clearing" the other rooms in the house. But I would like to have a handgun mounted light for this purpose... JIC. An intruder is also more than likely disoriented enough by the fact that they are going into an unfamiliar place in the dark. While I know what is where so i don't trip on something, an intruder doesn't have that advantage unless they have been casing the house for a while... but it's not likely I or my neigbors wouldn't notice this. Do I need to blast them with a Surefire light to throw them out of whack. Not really. If I'm sleeping when someon breaks in, my night vision will be as good if not better than an intruder's.
If you plan on defending your home against the man in the jack boots then I can only suspect you're doing something wrong to think they would be kicking down your door. So, no, there's nothing wrong with that sort of planning... relax, sit back, and make sure your tin foil hat is on nice and tight.
If you "GI Joe around the house in the dark pretending to be defending against zombies" while wearing ninja booties and MARPAT PJ's, then yes, I'm making fun of you, because you have some serious issue that goe beyond buying a $500 flashight.
I'll take my chances... thanks for the warning.
.223 for CQB
by R.K. Taubert
About the author: A recently retired FBI Agent with over 20 years experience in SWAT and Special Operations, he conducted extensive counter-terrorism and weapons research while in the Bureau.
Reprinted and edited with permission.
Close Quarter Battle Reputation
Several interesting but inconclusive articles examining the feasibility of the .223 caliber, or 5.56x45mm round, for CQB events, such as hostage rescue and narcotics raids, have recently been featured in a variety of firearms and police publications. However, for more than 20 years, conventional law enforcement wisdom generally held that the .223 in any configuration was a deeply penetrating round and, therefore, totally unsuited for CQB missions in the urban environment. Partly because of this erroneous, but long held perception, and other tactical factors, the pistol caliber submachine gun (SMG) eventually emerged as the primary shoulder "entry" weapon for the police and military SWAT teams.
Although new revelations about the .223 are beginning to slowly circulate throughout the Special Operations community, a number of law enforcement agencies are in the process of acquiring the next generation of "advanced" SMGs in 10mm and .40 S&W calibers. Could they and the public be better served by a .223 caliber weapons system and at less expense? Please read on and judge for yourself.
FBI Ballistic Tests
As a result of renewed law enforcement interest in the .223 round and in the newer weapons systems developed around it, the FBI recently subjected several various .223 caliber projectiles to 13 different ballistic tests and compared their performance to that of SMG-fired hollow point pistol bullets in 9mm, 10mm, and .40 S&W calibers.
Bottom Line: In every test, with the exception of soft body armor, which none of the SMG fired rounds defeated, the .223 penetrated less on average than any of the pistol bullets.
These tests were conducted by the FBI’s Firearms Training Unit (FTU), at the request of the Bureau Tactical and Special Operations personnel. Located at the FBI academy in Quantico, VA, this is the same unit with the encouragement of forensic pathologist Dr. Martin Fackler and other ballistic experts, that dramatically advanced the testing of modern handgun rounds to estimate their wounding effectiveness and potential lethality. Ultimately, this entity confirmed that permanent crush cavities, or "wound-channels," and deep penetration were the primary factors for handgun-fired projectiles. The FTU further determined that under various target engagement circumstances, a depth of penetration in soft tissue of between 12 to 18 inches was required for a handgun bullet to be effective.
Equipment Employed / Rounds Tested
For these series of tests the following firearms, ammunition and equipment were employed:
· Sealed, match grade test barrel to determine 25 yard, 10-shot group accuracy and 20-round velocity potential.
· 20" barreled, M16A1 rifle to stabilize and test rounds ranging from 40 to 55 grains in weight.
· 20" barreled, M16A2 rifle to stabilize and test rounds ranging from 62 to 69 grains in weight.
· Oehler Model 85 chronograph.
· Ransom type rifle rest, with laser bore sighting.
· Numerous blocks of Kind and Knox 250-A, 10% gelatin, to simulate living tissue.
· Federal’s 40-grain "Blitz" hollow point, 55-grain soft point and 69-grain hollow point; 9mm 147-grain Hydra-Shok, 10mm and .40 S&W 180-grain, jacketed hollow points.
· Winchester’s 55- and 62-grain full metal case, NTO-military spec. rounds.
As indicated, both rifles were fired from a mechanical rest. Ten-shot groups and 20-round velocity tests were fired for each round. 13 penetration tests were conducted. 95 rounds were fired for each type of round tested. A total of 760 rounds were tested and recorded for this project.
Bare gelatin, heavy clothing, automobile sheet metal, wallboard, plywood, and vehicle windshield safety glass, were shot a distance of 10 feet from the muzzle. The vehicle safety glass was set at an angle of 45 degrees to the horizontal, with the line of bore of the rifle/SMG offset 15 degrees to the side resulting in a compound angle of impact for the bullet upon the glass, which simulates a shot directed at the driver of a car closely missing the shooter. Furthermore, the gelatin was covered with light clothing and set back 18 inches behind the glass. All gelatin blocks, with the exception of the body armor barrier, were set 18 inches behind each solid obstacle shot.
All involved shots through heavy clothing, safety glass and bare gelatin at 50 to 100 yards, concluding with internal walls, external walls and body armor at 10 feet. Test eight however, involved safety glass at 20 yards, shot dead-on, without the 15 degree offset, to simulate a shot at a car’s driver bearing down on the shooter.
For the connivance of the reader, test results are summarized in the following chart. Please note that the data displayed represents the average penetration of these rounds as measured in 10% ballistic gelatin (see tables 1 and 2).
Considering that the average person’s torso is 9 inches thick, front to back, all the .223 rounds ranging in weight from 55 to 69 grains appear to be adequate performers on soft targets where frontal shots are involved. Although the majority of target engagements are frontal, profile shots can and do occur. A .223 round that is required to pass through an arm before entering the rib cage mat, upon striking bone, fragment, and while possibly shattering the appendage, would most likely not be successful in producing a sufficiently deep body cavity wound to be decisive. In this, as with any CQB encounter, "controlled pairs," or rapid-repeat hits may be required to ensure target neutralization.
Defeating Ballistic Garments
Soft body armor appears to have little effect on the calibers ability to penetrate and actually seemed to enhance the 40-grain Blitz’s depth of penetration in soft tissue.
From a law enforcement standpoint, the ability of the .223 caliber round to defeat soft body armor, military ballistic helmets and many ballistic shields is a "double-edged sword." The criminal use of body armor is rare, but increasing. Possessing the ability to penetrate and adversary’s protective vest is obviously desirable. However, this round will also defeat law enforcement vests, so great care must be exercised in laying out and observing fields of fire in training and during operations. With this concern over potential fratricide in mind, voices have been raised in some quarters regarding this bilateral tactical attribute. A number of veteran officers strongly embrace The traditional concept that a department’s duty rounds should not exceed the capabilities of their vests. Arguably, this is a sound approach for any law enforcement agency to take for its non-tactical response personnel. However, SWAT, because of its specialized missions, may be a different matter and this later concern, while important, should not dominate the rationale supporting weapons selection by highly competent tactical units.
Although it has been reported that less that 1% of all serious crimes involve long guns and less than 8% of long gun related crimes involve rifles, law enforcement is being confronted more frequently by criminals with weapons and munitions that are capable of defeating all but the heaviest ballistic protection. The FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Section indicates, for example, that rifles were involved in 13% of the assaults on police officers during 1992. The incident a Waco, Texas, is a recent example of this problem. For forced entry teams, the need for higher levels of ballistic protection is essential.
For safe training of specialized law enforcement teams, the development of a lead-free, low penetration, short-range 5.56mm/.223 caliber training round that will (1) not penetrate ballistic vests and helmets, (2) destroy "shooting house" walls, (3) crater, or perforate steel-reactive targets, is extremely important. Fortunately, it appears that private industry is responding to these demands and such munitions are currently being developed.
With the exception of the full metal case and the 69-grain JHP rounds, it appears inadvisable to select lighter weight, soft or hollow point versions of this caliber when automobiles are likely to be engaged during planned raids and arrests. Penetration against automobile windshield safety glass is generally very poor and is only slightly better on sheet steel. Although terrorists from the insurgent New Peoples’ Army were able to blast their way through an armored limousine in the Philippines and murder a highly regarded U.S. military official with concentrated M-16 rifle fire, the SMG-fired pistol round demonstrates at least a theoretical, if not practical, edge against such hardened targets.
Interestingly, while penetration on auto glass and sheet steel is marginal, .223 projectiles will readily perforate and breach mild steel such as standard pepper poppers, that pistol rounds will only slightly dimple. However, very little of the .223’s mass is retained, so after defeating mild steel, significant wound potential is severely diminished upon exit.
Barriers and Structures
The Bureau’s research also suggests that common household barriers such as wallboard, plywood, internal and external walls are also better attacked with pistol rounds, or larger caliber battle rifles, if the objective is to "dig out" or neutralize people employing such object as cover or concealment. Although it is usually not advisable to fire at targets you can’t see in urban settings, it is done and some subjects have been stopped in this manner. Conversely, the ability of some pistol rounds to penetrate barriers tested puts innocent bystanders and fellow team members at greater risk in CQB scenarios. If an operator misses the intended target, the .223 will generally have less wounding potential than some pistol rounds after passing through a wall or similar structure. The close range penetration tests conducted indicated that high velocity .223 rounds were initially unstable and may, depending on their construction, disintegrate when they strike an object that offers some resistance. When concrete, brick or macadam are struck at an angle at close range, .223 rounds tent to fragment or break up, and ricochets are generally less hazardous. The .223 could consequently be considered safer for urban street engagements, because of its inherent frangibility within the cross-compartments created by street environments. In other words, in most shootings, the round would probably strike something, hopefully a hard object, break up and quickly end its potentially lethal odyssey.
As a point of interest, the rifled shotgun slug, while not possessing the .223’s flat trajectory, is still capable of attaining a maximum range of 900 yards. This fact illustrates that any errant law enforcement round regardless of caliber, or maximum range, is potentially dangerous to the community.
.223 Wounding Characteristics
Ballisticians and Forensic professionals familiar with gunshot injuries generally agree that high velocity projectiles of the .223 genre produce wounds in soft tissue out of proportion to their calibers, i.e. bullet diameter. This phenomenon is primarily attributed to the synergistic effects of temporary stretch cavity (as opposed to the relatively lower velocity stretching which typifies most pistol rounds) and bullet fragmentation on living tissue.
Distinguished forensic pathologist Dr. Martin L. Fackler, observed when he was conducting wound research for the U.S. Army several years ago ("Wounding Patterns of Military Rifles," International Defense Review, Volume 22, January, 1989), that in tissue simulants such as ballistic gelatin, , the 55-grain, M-193 military bullet lost stability, yawed (turned sideways) 90 degrees, flattened and broke at the cannelure (groove around the bullet into which the cartridge case is crimped) after penetrating about four to five inches. The forward portion of the bullet generally remained in one piece, accounting for 60% of its originally weight. The rear, or base portion of the bullet, broke into numerous fragments that may also penetrate tissue up to a depth of three inches. Dr. Fackler also noted that a relatively large stretch cavity also occurred, violently stretching and weakening tissue surrounding the primary wound channel and its effect was augmented by tissue perforation and further weakening by numerous fragments. An enlarged permanent cavity significantly larger than the bullet diameter resulted by severing and detaching tissue pieces. However, as the range increases, the degree of bullet fragmentation and temporary cavitation decreases because terminal velocity diminishes. At 100 meters, Fackler observed that the bullet, upon penetrating tissue, breaks at the cannelure, forming two large fragments. However, beyond 200 meters, it no longer looses its integrity, although flattening continues to somewhat occur out to 400 meters.
In his study, Fackler remarked that in abdominal shots, "There will be increased tissue disruption (beyond the bullet diameter wound channel) from the synergistic effect of the temporary cavitation acting on tissue that has been weakened by bullet fragmentation. Instead of observing a hole consistent with the size of the bullet in hollow organs such as the intestines, we typically find a void left by missing tissue up to three inches in diameter." However, "unless a extremity (peripheral hit) is sufficiently thick like a thigh, or the bullet does not strike bone, the round may pass through an arm for instance, causing little damage from a puncture type wound."
Regarding NATO’s 62-grain FMC M-855 (SS109) .223 caliber round Dr. Fackler observed that the bullet produces a wound profile similar to the M-193’s, particularly where abdominal or thigh wounds were involved. Other sources indicate this bullet, with a [steel] core penetrator, exhibits 10% greater fragmentation and retains its ability to fragment at slightly longer ranges than the 55-grain military bullet. [Keep in mind that the M-855 round, because of its steel core, has a length comparable to a 73-grain lead core bullet, and should be shot out of longer barrels (18+ inches) with tighter twists in order to retain good pratical accuracy],
Hollow and soft point bullets in this caliber can be expected to upset and fragment much sooner and more consistently that full metal case (FMC) bullets. In light of this more consistent performance, Fackler recommends hollow points over "ball" ammunition for police use, providing the HP bullet penetrates deep enough to disrupt something vital. However, in his candid opinion the most effective round currently available for law enforcement operations is the 64-grain, Winchester-Western, pointed soft point, currently referred to as "Power Point". This bullet has a heavier jacket than those tested by the FBI, resists hyper-fragmentation, penetrates well and "expands like a .30 caliber rifle round." Subsequent FBI tests of this round fired from Colt’s 14.5-inch barreled Mk-IV carbine bore this out and bullet expansion was "impressive."
Dr. Fackler also advised that the synergistic effects of fragmentation and high velocity temporary cavitation cannot be scientifically measured in gelatin because that medium is too elastic. More Accurate results can be obtained by examination of fresh animal tissue soon after it is shot.
Federal’s Blitz round, because of its very high velocity, low weight and frangible construction, demonstrated extremely poor overall penetration in the FBI tests. If it is considered for CQB use, it should be fired from ultra-short barreled weapons, such as Heckler & Koch’s, 8.85-inch barreled HK-53. Shorter barrels would bleed off excessive velocity to reliably fragment and produce good temporary stretch cavities at close range. Because of this velocity loss, the maximum effective range on personnel would most likely be 100 yards or less. To ensure that .223 caliber bullets perform as previously described by Dr. Fackler, it appears that a minimum target striking velocity of 2,500 feet per second (fps) is required. Bullets over 50 grains in weight may not accelerate to this critical velocity in barrels less than 10 to 11 inches in length. Tactical teams should therefore carefully select the appropriate barrel length for their CQB weapon, to ensure that the round they employ will deliver minimum terminal ballistic velocities at the ranges desired and balance it against maneuverability requirements [Also remember that dr. fackler’s data is based on the FMJ ball ammo results and that hollow point ammunition will be as effective with lower velocities]. "Bull pup" configured carbines, such as the Steyr AUG, enjoy a distinct advantage here, because they retain long barrel lengths with relatively compact overall dimensions and are as flexible as an SMG in confined areas. In fact, a Steyr AUG compares favorably to H&K’s MP5-SD SMG in overall length and with a 16-inch barrel, is only an inch longer overall than a 14-inch barreled Remington 870 raid shotgun.
[At this point, Mr. Taubert’s article goes into extreme range shooting and barrel length. His suggestion is to have a barrel at least 14-18 inches long for CQB use as this allows for useful terminal ballistics at around 150-200 yards with 60+ grain bullets. I disagree with Mr. Taubert’s point of view for the simple fact that we are discussing Close Quarters firearms, and not long range sniping firearms. In these instances, a barrel length of 6-10 inches is practical for entry team use as it allows for greater maneuverability and acceptable ballistic performance with 55-grain hollow point ammunition. Also, a lot of Mr. Taubert’s information is based off of Dr. Fackler’s research using FMJ ammunition. Most of my information is based upon real-world shootings and actual testing of commercial ammunition in short barreled firearms designed for this application.]
A recent review of major U.S. ammunition manufacturers’ pricing indicates that commercially loaded .223 ammunition is slightly less expensive than similarly configured premium hollow point pistol ammunition. With millions of rounds of surplus military .223 ammunition possibly available to law enforcement, because of numerous base closures and through low cost channels, training with this caliber could be highly cost effective.
The .223 carbine is able to satisfy both close and intermediate range requirements and presents a good argument for eliminating the necessity for the law enforcement SMG. This one-gun concept will not only stretch departmental funds in this respect and reduce training requirements, but in some cases the difference in price between a single-fire carbine and a select-fire SMG often amounts to several hundreds of dollars. The need for full automatic fire with the M-16 carbine is debatable and two single-fire versions can often be purchased by police agencies for the cost of one top-of-the-line SMG. [This is a fact that I have been preaching for a long time. Another fact that Mr. Taubert does not touch on is that the M-16/AR-15 family of rifles use a split receiver system that allows the rapid exchange of differently configured uppers. This allows one officer to carry a 16" CAR-15 in is patrol vehicle as his secondary firearm, and a 6" upper receiver unit in his trunk for tactical entry use]
As a result of contemporary research, such as that conducted by the first FBI’s Wound Ballistic Workshop, some law enforcement agencies have expressed the opinion that concerns about pistol bullet overpenetration were exaggerated. They cite the toughness and flexibility of the human skin in resisting bullet exit and the fact that police officers historically missed their intended targets most of the time in actual shootings. While poor hit ratios and overpenetration may not be critical to some for individual gun battles that occur in the street, these marksmanship realities can become real planning and safety concerns when establishing fields of fire during raids, hostage rescues and other tactical operations.
Typically, these operations involve confined areas, where officers occupy positions in close proximity to each other. In close combat operations, every round expended must be accounted for. It is imperative that that rounds fired hit their intended targets and not pass through them to endanger other officers and innocent bystanders. If misses occur, it is desirable that once the stray round strikes a solid object, it expends its energy and disintegrates into relatively harmless pieces. If deep, barrier penetration is necessary, special ammunition or projectiles [or weapons] possessing this attribute can be selected.
It was late in the morning on a hot July day in 1993, when members of a major Western cities’ police tactical unit executed a search and arrest warrants in connection with a narcotics raid on a "biker residence." The tactical officers were armed with Sig-Sauer 9mm P-226 pistols and 16-inch barreled Steyr AUG .223 caliber carbines with optical sights. The Steyr, loaded per SOP, with 28 Federal 55-grain HP rounds was the primary entry weapon for several officers on the team. Steyr carbines were selected for this raid, because the team leaders anticipated shots "out to 25 yards."
The team was required to knock and announce, effectively negating the element of surprise. Approximately 92 seconds into the raid, the officer involved in the following shooting incident was in the process of cuffing a subject when two Rottweiler dogs attacked. While the other officers were dealing with the dogs by employing OC aerosol, a 6-foot-tall, 201-pound subject, high on "speed", suddenly burst into the room occupied by the police through a locked door and leveled a 9mm pistol at one of the tactical officers. The distance between the adversaries was approximately 20 feet. With his back essentially to the subject, the involved officer acquired the threat in his peripheral vision, whirled around and commanded, "Police, put your hands up," while clearing the Steyr’s safety and mounting the weapon. The subject then shifted his pistol, held by one hand in a bladed stance, towards the reacting officer. In "less than a second" the subject’s hostile action was countered by the officer by firing two fast, sighted, tightly controlled pairs, for a total of four rounds at the subject. Rounds one and two missed, but were contained by the structure. Round three connected, penetrated and remained in the subject. Round four grazed his upper chest and exited as he spun and fell. Round three was quickly effective. The collapsing subject ceased all motor movement and expired within 60 seconds. The involved officer was aware of each round fired and simultaneously moved to cover. Tactical members were then confronted by a female accomplice armed with a double-barreled shotgun. However, the involved officer also successfully negotiated her surrender. All .223 rounds that missed the subject struck parts of the building’s internal structure, fragmented and remained inside.
When the autopsy was performed, the forensic pathologist was amazed at the degree of internal devastation caused b the .223 round. There was a two-inch void of tissue in the chest, with a literal "snowstorm" of bullet fragments and secondary bone fragments throughout the upper left chest area. The round struck the subject 11 inches below the top of his head and inflicted the following wounds: · Penetrated the top of the left lung, left carotid and subclavian arteries. · The collar bone and first rib were broken. Cavity measured 5x6 centimeters.
What is significant about this "instant one-shot stop" was that the round did not strike the subject at the most effective or optimum angle and did not involve any direct contact with the heart or central nervous system. It is doubtful that this type o terminal ballistic performance could have been achieved by any of the police service pistol/SMG rounds currently in use.
Although this is only one incident and could be an aberration, police tactical teams require this type of terminal ballistic performance to enhance their safety and survival particularly during CQB engagements, when criminals most often enjoy a positional and action-versus-reaction time advantage.
The FBI study clearly demonstrates the following: (1) that .223 rounds on average, penetrate less than the hollow point pistol rounds evaluated, (2) concern for overpenetration of the .223 round, at close range, has been greatly exaggerated, (3) with the exception of soft ballistic garment penetration, the .223 round appears to be relatively safer for employment in CQB events than the hollow point bullets tested.
Observations and experience indicate that high velocity rifle bullets generally produce more serious wounds in tissue than pistol bullets, regardless of range.
Violent temporary cavitation, in conjunction with bullet yaw and fragmentation, are essential wounding components for high velocity rifle projectiles.
As range and bullet stability increases and velocity decreases, rifle caliber wound severity decreases and penetration increases.
Where soft target penetration requirements exist and overpenetration concerns are prevalent, police should employ hollow point bullets in this caliber.
Full metal case or heavier soft point bullets may be more appropriate for hard target penetration in this caliber.
The .223 and the current carbine systems available for it are highly versatile and well suited for urban as well as rural operations. However, because of enhanced terminal ballistic performance, rifles are recommended if targets are expected to be engaged beyond 200 meters. [The .223 round itself should not be used in law enforcement applications at any ranges outside of 300 yards/meters. Long distance shots should be left to highly trained sniper units using medium caliber centerfire rifle ammunition. e.g. .308/7.62 NATO. Also, the majority of police sniper shots occur within 100 yards/meters.]
The ability to train with one shoulder weapon and caliber for both CQB and open air options simplifies logistics and training, makes training more effective and is cost effective. [Again, one upper for general, secondary weapon usage, and one upper for CQB]
Under current pricing, police agencies can realize significant savings by purchasing single-fire carbines instead of select-fire machine guns.
Because of the "political" considerations and perhaps the concern over the possibility of more serious injuries caused by errant "friendly fire," the highly versatile and powerful .223 carbine may not be a suitable CQB firearm for some departments. However, if the above factors are not involved, the .223 carbine is an extremely flexible and effective anti-personnel weapon with, in many cases, handling characteristics actually superior to many contemporary SMGs. It offers the advantages of reduced logistics, lower costs and reduced training time when compared to agencies employing multiple specialty weapons. The caliber in its current offering is far from perfect, but in spite of some shortcomings, I anticipate that in the future it will eventually replace pistol caliber SMGs in many police departments and law enforcement agencies.
[It has been a recently growing trend to see law enforcement departments exchanging their issue shotguns for the police carbine in 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP. And many departments have found that these carbines do not serve their needs as they expected. However, they are fearful to switch, or in many cases purchase, .223 carbines because "they will go through 10 people and 3 city blocks before they stop!" As you can see, this is not the case, and is in fact, completely the opposite. I hope that this article helps to clear all false truths and misnomers about this very versatile and serviceable cartridge.]
ALL OF THE INFORMATION IN THIS ARTICLE IS BASED UPON THE PERSONAL EXPERIENCE OF INDIVIDUALS WHO MAY BE USING SPECIAL TOOLS, PRODUCTS, EQUIPMENT AND COMPONENTS UNDER PARTICULAR CONDITIONS AND CIRCUMSTANCES, SOME OR ALL OF WHICH MAY NOT BE REPORTED, NOR OTHERWISE VERIFIED IN THIS ARTICLE. NOTHING HEREIN IS INTENDED TO CONSTITUTE A MANUAL FOR THE USE OF ANY PRODUCT OR THE CARRYING OUT OF ANY PROCEDURE OR PROCESS. THE WRITERS, EDITORS, AND PUBLISHERS OF THIS ARTICLE ACCEPT NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANY LIABILITY, INJURIES OR DAMAGES ARISING OUT OF ANY PERSON’S ATTEMPT TO RELY UPON ANY INFORMATION CONTAINED HEREIN.
From some of the other posts he's made today, PF must have pulled out his costume.
Excellent post, brother!!
I made it pretty clear that the majority of what I have been saying is my opinion. I don't nor have I ever claimed to be "the resident expert" of anything on here. I offered my opinion to the guy who started the thread. He can take it or leave it, just as everyone else can. It's not my intent to come off as a troll. If some of my comments come off as an insult it's either because people misinterpret them or they are hitting close to home.
As far as blowing someone away in my house... I honestly can't say for sure how I would react if/when I have to draw down on a home intruder. Situation dictates. ID'ing a home intruder could be a simple flip of a light switch. IMO that would throw the person off long enough for either me to determine the threat or to scare him out of the house. But you're right... I suppose I'm going to learn this the hard way. I don't think there's an easy way to learn something like this. Training of any kind, while helpful, never totally prepares you for the real thing. I think I can say with a certain amount of confidence that I know it for a fact.
I've read about how a lot of LE agencies have been re-evaluating the use of SMG's for indoor use. Very interesting information. I'm surprised this wasn't done sooner considering the 3+ decades that the AR has been in service. Bettr now than never though.
...and someday he's going to do more the crawl, like sneak in late, or little Suzy is going to try to sneak out late.
Now, a question for you. Now that I have my trusty and expensive piece of hardware, be it pistol, shotgun, or rifle, why should I settle for a $10 outdated flashlight when I have access to superior equipment?
I think you have me convinced. I'm selling off what I do have and I'm going to pick up a nice cheap semi-auto and mini-mag to go with.
Like I said, if I could afford to bling out all my guns I'd do it in a heartbeat. But since I have to weight the options of pissing of my wife by impulse spending on stuff like that, or stay in her good graces, I'll opt for the latter and scrounge money here and there.
When the kid(s) starts moving around the house I'll adjust to the situation as I have always done. Between the alarm, the dog, and my wife (the light sleeper) I think we've got enough of it covered that I won't be running down the stairs in a blaze of glory.
I'd hate to see how you guys deal with people who don't even have enough sense to have a gun for HD. Is the continuation of this on account of my having an AR and not opting to use it for HD? Or is the AR the olny HD gun you guys recommend to anyone who expresses an interest in buying an HD weapon.
Good idea... sell all your guns and restock with paintball guns and a case of tea candles. You'll have a serious advantage.
If you want it buy it. U dont live forever have fun. Buy it, if you dont like it sell it. That is life. I love my Surefires . Nothing worse then being lost in a Military base at nite without light. then I gues being lost in Iraq at nite would be worst.
One is from personal experience. I had a Rossi snub nose .38spl shot at me while on duty. It penetrated 4 layers of drywall and hit a picture frame, knocking it off the wall. That in and of itself sold me on either a SG or Carbine.
Next is a buddy (I was his backup sniper) shot and killed a scrot that was in the process of cutting a lady's throat. He did it with a 55gr BTHP from federal. Went in the right bridge area of the nose and didn't exit. Shot was from a distance of a bathroom (this was an entry gone south).
The autopsy Dr. called and wanted to know what he was shot with. Said it looked like a bunch of birdshot in the cranium. I'm sold on 5.56 for close up stuff.
I have some 40gr stuff that I'm going to beta test for a guy that I hope won't penetrate drywall, but will be super hot.
Hmm a mini mag - difficult to operate when holding a weapon, poor light, and the bulbs come out under recoil - yeah that's all they need.
And a Handgun? ?Handguns are what you use to fight your way to your long arm which you should have never put down in the first place". If I'm defending my life I think I owe it to myself to use something a bit more effective...
Hmm I guess you must be psycic to know how many of us train and how we train...
Well when my kids grow up maybe I'll have a team available at home - till then I have to rely on myself till the donut eaters decide to get to my house.
Yep - but most of us who use VFG's dont shoot from a bench.
Then I can tell you don't train much. During training and competition I've had the handguards really hot. Wouldn't expect it in a home defense situation - but you fight like you train so if I use a VFG in training I should use it 'for real'.
They help but are not mandatory - and if you look at the photos you'll see LOTS of VFGs - especially with the guys who are doing lots of QCB.
Then I suggest 2 things:
1) Get Informed - the article Yojimbo posted is one of the better ones there are many more.
2) Do your own testing - nothing surprises peopel more when they set up their own tests and find what they 'thought' doesn't work.
Frangible pistol rounds are notorious for UNDER penetrating the bad guy (still allowing him to stay in the fight). The 5.56 is much safer for use indoors (which is a prime reason why many SWAT teams are going to the M4 over the MP5).
Who does? There are a variety of methods of securing a single rifle near you.
I have two a 2 year old and a 6 year old...
While I only use a $130 light I know guys with the $500 lights. They are SERIOUS students of the AR. They have more class time with more instructors than 99% of the pros. All of them are very level headed.
Well, guys, a bit more vitriol has come out than I intended.
PathFinder74, I enjoyed your posts. Thanks for that. I enjoyed the lively retort by the others as well. I'm glad I started this topic.
From what I've seen in Iraq (photos only), it seems to me that most vertical grips are being used during extended carrying of the weapon to keep it at the ready instead of slung.
Does it really help with weapon retention? I thought the guy with the outermost hand position (the most leverage) gets the weapon in a struggle. The hand grips don't seem like a superior position during a life and death struggle for a weapon - the butt stock and the barrel do. I've never trained in rifle retention.
Honestly, I was just shocked by the price (sticker shock!). I'd never seen anything like that before. I had never seen a price like that before. It was a SUPER NICE unit.
P.S. - I am definitely a civilian. Many here are not. To our brave military and police officers I say, if you want or need one of these, you should get it. Nothing is too good for you guys (and women).
P.P.S. - home defense is why I got my carbine upper in the first place. L.A. riots, home invasions, 10.5 earthqukaes, zomies in the night, etc.
And you carry a remote for all the light switchs with you?? Never mind that this destroys your own vision as much as the intruders, whereas a weaponlight blinds the intruder to the point that he isn't able to shoot accurately back. One can certainly doubt SureFires pricing policy or go en route like this guy cheap setup, but to doubt the need for a weaponlight on a home defense longgun is rather amateurish.
Always amazes me that -with all the quality training available especially in the USA- gunowners will rather invest in accessoirs or more guns than professional coaching. But what do I know, I am just a stupid Austrian who sold half of his (small) gun collection to afford 5 days of training by Andy Stanford & James Yeager (both of whom I really recommend) when they visited Vienna. Boy, what a mind opener!!*
*The same goes even more true for an unarmed defense class by David Blinder in Atlanta, styled after the Insights system. Being a "gun person" isn't enough...
Real SureFire ninjas know that it takes more than just a hat nowadays.
AR15.com Survival Forum
No matter how many times I see that tin foil room picture I get a chuckle.
Slept on this topic (between dreaming about having a threesome) and thought about it some more this morning...
- When I say handgun and minimag, I'm not talking about mounting the mag to the gun. Not even I'm that ghetto. Is it the Weaver positions or the Harris technique...? Not to versed on the terminology.
- If I have to fight my way to my AR, then I'm likely not dealing with an ordinary home intruder(s). I doubt an intruder is looking to get into a firefight over a DVD player and some loose cash. They'll bug out long before I can get to and assemble my AR.
- I guess I should be more clear on my insults. When I say "bling bling crowd" I'm referring to the keyboard commado/PX Rangers types, who buy all the gear, but really have no practical use for or tactical experience with it... they simply put shit on the guns because it looks cool. Different from the guys who do it for a living and spend money on stuff because they actually use it.
- I own a SF 9V. I've had it for a while, although originally I didn't buy it for use as a weapon light. It worked better than those shitty green Army anglehead flashlights and was a great asset to my EOD gear. But now that I am no longer doing that I try to keep it handy around the house. After this conversation I plan on keeping it closer to the bed to work in tandem with my Kimber and down the road possibly mounting it to a First Samco when I get an AR that has the rails to accomodate it. My current BM has aluminum V Match handguards and it's not really set up for HD. I was planning on, down the road, picking up another AR more suitable for HD.
- I'd love to be able to go out and buy an M900. I think they're a sweet piece of equipment. The price is just a bit daunting. Priorities? Well, the first priority in my house is paying the bills and putting money away for emergency. If my wife didn't have a problem with me buying a $500 flashlight I'd do it in a heartbeat. But she keeps a light leash on my wallet.
- When I say my house is tight quarters I was directing it more toward the question of handgun aiming and distance being a factor in accuracy. I'm pretty confident, given the layout of my home, that I'd be more likely to hit than miss if I am actually aiming with then intent of firing. If an intruder is armed and shooting at me I doubt he'll have enough courtesy to have frangible rounds loaded so that he doesn't over penetrate.
I don't train at all anymore. Got out of the Army a year ago -8 days. All the training I have done, regardless of frequency, has never heated up my handguards that much. But then again I wasn't training for CQB or heavy volley fire. Most of the training I've done, I did while practicing ammo discipline by placing my shots and not simply blasting away bursts in the general vicinity. I certainly would have welcomed the opportunity to give a VFG a try while I was in, but now, if/when I get one it'll be partly for practical use and partly for the bling bling value.
Excellent point. I never really thought of it that way... certainly something to make me reevaluate things.
Pretty much, yes. Right now, I'm playing Mr. Mom and taking online college courses, so I would probably notice someone casing my house. when I leave I have a tendency to close the blinds on the windows that are easy to get to (without having to cross neighbors yards to get to).
Having accidentally set off the alarm while half asleep, to let the dog out, on a number of occasions I know that once that thing is going off I'm very much away and alert. It's like getting an IV shot of Mountain Dew mixed with adrenalin.
No, but I have several switches in different parts of my house that control the same light... a switch upstairs that turns on the downstairs lights and what not. So I can light up a room I am not in and thereby save some of my night vision.
Well, since I have never actually been in an HD situation, that would definitely make me an amateur. If I become an expert of HD by way of doing it on a regular basis I will begin to seriously consider relocating to a safer area.
While I am no longer in .mil I think my prior training with weapons in addition to my trip to the range will still give me an advantage over most common home intruders and people who buy an HD gun with no prior training at all. While I'd love to go to some of the courses, fiscal priorities don't allow that luxury. I'll take every course and buy every flashlight I can when you get around to mailing me a winning lottery ticket.
I've noticed a lot of the infantry and upper tier guys using them (who seem to be the majority in those pictures being posted), but not the combat service support people who are less likely to be out looking for an engagement with enemies. They generally sling a standard A2 and they rarely if ever train for CQB, so the need is not there.
Our guys have functioned pretty well in the past before the advent and rise in use of AR VFG's and Tac-Lights. Just because something is made doesn't mean it's absolutely necessary. I will be the first to tell someone if you think you will actually be using your weapon, then by all means buy the bling... the payoff will be worth the payout.
Dude for a BTDT type of guy I can't believe you are actually saying that. I can pretty much guarandamnty you will miss when you are getting shot at.
And just because the bad guy is not using the right stuff doesn't absolve you. I bet you dollars to donuts that if an innocent gets hit they will determine who did the shot!
Pathfinder, I enjoyed your original post, and took it with the grain of salt it was intended to go with...I think a few folks here are taking it a *little* too seriously, imho.
But I'll be back in a moment with some popcorn
Good God I hope not with me or your AR...
Doesn't matter the technique you use the Mini Mag isn't up to the task (take a low light shooting course and you'll see what I mean). A Mini Mag with the Opalac LED conversion comes close - but there is still the issue of turning on/off (especially with any of the handgun/light techniques).
That was a quote (IIRC from Clint Smith) which points out you should be fighting with a long arm. Handguns are what we carry when you can't have a long arm (rifle or shotgun) like CCW. In the home there is no reason why you can't have a long arm secured near the bed.
I sure as heck hope not - but what is the intruder on that he would break into a house that has signs indicated you have an alarm system, the alarm is going off, and the dog is going nuts?
He isn't going to be a mild mannered burgler just looking to score a $99 DVD player...
Pete, the Director of the F.I.R.E Institute, uses the V Match handguards on his home defense carbines. He just adds a small section of rail to the handguards for attaching a light (its cheaper than buying a new upper).
Dude I hear that! You should have heard mine when I got the $130 650-2....
When the adrenaline is pumping accuracy goes to hell pretty quicly - especially with a handgun. There have been a couple of recorded LEO incidents where the pistol fight was at a few feet - and NONE of the rounds hit. Long arms are MUCH easier to aim.
Same here. The difference is I don't have to get off the line after 20 shots to make room for the next group. Do 10-20 repettions of a standard response with a timer and your handguards will start to get warm. Do drills for an hour or so and they will get VERY hot.
In the military the most I fired was in Basic training (other than blanks during MILES). The most shooing I did in a day there doesn't compare to a typical afternoon on the range - let alone an 3 day 6-8 hour per day class.
Then you've got a big advantage. I get to play Mr Mom about once every other week when my Wife has her consulting gig. I rarely get to stay home with the kids activities (I'm more like Mr Taxi driver some days).
Tell ya what - do yourself a favor. Put away a few bucks every time you can and instead of buying a new gun, optic, or light try a 2-3 carbine course.
You're within driving distance of Pittsburgh so I HIGHLY recommend the Fire Institute courses. They are inexpensive and very comprehensive (and a bunch of fun). Several of us on this board have taken classes there and they have representatives in the Training Forum.
You are quite right - unfortunetly. Since the Support people are being attacked and may have to fight at night. REMFs may not go looking for a fight - sometimes the fight comes looking for them.
Nobody said 'absolutley necessary' - they are 'performance enhancers'. If you do well withough them you will do even better with them (especially with a decent light).
To a small degree...
When I was shopping for weapon lights I was going over all the Surefire options vertical grips and what not with my wife and she told me to stop screwing around and just get the M900a...
Is that a great wife or what?
I was thinking of getting one until I saw it priced over $600 at a local gun shop. I wish I could find one for $400.
After reading this thread, I'm now considering retiring my Glock 20 with a M6 attached and my 1911 as my main line of home defense and replacing them with a couple of my AR15's.
These Surefires are new to me. Can you mount the Surefire NRA light (G2Z) to an AR?