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Thread: Budget .223/5.56 "Precision" Upper?

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by 6933 View Post
    SS isn't necessarily more accurate. Chromolly barrels tend to see accuracy degrade over the life of the barrel whereas a SS barrel will maintain its accuracy until all of a sudden it degrades rapidly.
    Right, this is my understanding...

    So, for my purposes, SS is "nice to have," and a lot of match/precision barrels are coincidentally SS, but SS is not a "must have."


    Quote Originally Posted by taekwondopreacher View Post
    If I wasn't shooting past 400, I'd probably do a 16".
    Really, I ran the numbers, and the extra 50fps of an 18" vs. 16" means <3" less drop at 500yds, so ≈57.6" vs ≈60.2" drop. Negligible.

    I would only go for 18" if I found a great deal on one... As a benefit, having the muzzle 2" further away and burning more powder might mean less flash/blast, which would be nice, because I usually shoot from inside a covered range house.


    Quote Originally Posted by taekwondopreacher View Post
    When it comes to precision, I'd go with the best option you can afford. When my Sionics 18" barrel is shot out, I'll probably go higher end and get a Krieger.
    Well, "afford" is always an abstract term. If I really needed to do it, then I could come up with the $1,000+ for a CLE/Bartlein upper.

    Really, I'm looking for a cost/benefit compromise (hence the title of the thread), and I don't think I have the skills to take advantage of a top-tier match upper, anyway...

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by 6933 View Post
    SS isn't necessarily more accurate. Chromolly barrels tend to see accuracy degrade over the life of the barrel whereas a SS barrel will maintain its accuracy until all of a sudden it degrades rapidly.
    Right, this is my understanding...

    So, for my purposes, SS is "nice to have," and a lot of match/precision barrels are coincidentally SS, but SS is not a "must have."


    Quote Originally Posted by taekwondopreacher View Post
    If I wasn't shooting past 400, I'd probably do a 16".
    Really, I ran the numbers, and the extra 50fps of an 18" vs. 16" means <3" less drop at 500yds, so ≈57.6" vs ≈60.2" drop. Negligible.

    I would only go for 18" if I found a great deal on one... As a benefit, having the muzzle 2" further away and burning more powder might mean less flash/blast, which would be nice, because I usually shoot from inside a covered range house.


    Quote Originally Posted by taekwondopreacher View Post
    When it comes to precision, I'd go with the best option you can afford. When my Sionics 18" barrel is shot out, I'll probably go higher end and get a Krieger.
    Well, "afford" is always an abstract term. If I really needed to do it, then I could come up with the $1,000+ for a CLE/Bartlein upper.

    Really, I'm looking for a cost/benefit compromise (hence the title of the thread), and I don't think I have the skills to take advantage of a top-tier match upper, anyway...

  3. #23
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    You say you're looking for a precision upper but as you get more descriptive it seems like you're looking for an upper.

    If you don't want stainless and you're looking for 1.5 moa just get any regular upper from a reputable manufacturer.

    I have a shockingly accurate BCM standard 16" upper. Sionics barrels are reported to be very accurate. Molon's testing shows that Colt barrels would meet your accuracy needs although a colt upper is hard to find now.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by dmd08 View Post
    If you don't want stainless and you're looking for 1.5 moa just get any regular upper from a reputable manufacturer.
    Like I said, I would be happy with a consistently 1.5 moa upper, but (1) ideally I'd find something that would shoot match/handloaded ammo moa or better, and (2) I don't believe that "any regular upper" is going to predictably consistently shoot 1.5 moa.

    I already have a couple "regular" uppers that consistently shoot 2-3 moa, and I'm looking for something better.

    I don't doubt that there are some serendipitous "regular" uppers out there that can shoot 1.5 moa (5-shot groups), but I think that's extraordinarily good luck rather than repeatable performance.
    (I'm reminded of how ordnance departments used to select "sniper" rifles by simply picking the most accurate of the run-of-the-mill rifles.)

  5. #25
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    I was going to suggest Compass Lake also. It sounds like you kinda want the BCM, so even though 2-300 more, just get it, that way you won’t have remorse later that you didn’t get the BCM upper. It has the rail slots you want and it is BCM...so there you go.
    ETC (SW/AW), USN (1998-2008)
    CVN-65, USS Enterprise

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by hotrodder636 View Post
    It sounds like you kinda want the BCM...
    I started by looking at BCM, because I'm a fan and they're my "go to," but given the price, I'd rather go Compass Lake, or just not bother.


    Honestly, I'm leaning towards the Aero...

    The Ballistics Advantage barrel looks fine (it's even available fluted: cool), and of the various handguards, the Atlas S-One is my favorite. (Who really wants a full-length rail at 12 o'clock?)

  7. #27
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    I have been pleased with my Aero barrels thus far. Granted mine are not for precision (10.5”-.223Wylde and a 8.5”-.300BLK).
    ETC (SW/AW), USN (1998-2008)
    CVN-65, USS Enterprise

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by markm View Post
    Not sure what WOA is currently offering in chambers... but my 16" WOA has a wylde chamber that isn't 5.56 pressured ammo friendly. (I get case buldge with hot ammo)

    I like the option of shooting hot ammo in a "precision" style AR.
    I have a WOA service 5sra7M4 with what they list as ď223/556 WyldeĒ chamber.

    https://www.whiteoakarmament.com/whi...-m4-ramps.html

    Iím running a 75gr BTHP load in Speer nickel cases that is (at least book data wise) right at 62,000 PSI so right there at maximum SAAMI 5.56mm 62gr pressure. I donít notice any issue with case bulge? Where is the case bulge, right near base? And how much? Iím currently even seeing flattened primer and some totally loose after firing and cases still drop right into a case gauge after.




    Andrew - Lancaster, CA
    NRA Life Member, CRPA member, Calguns.net contributor, CGF / SAF / FPC / CCRKBA / GOA / NAGR / NRA-ILA contributor, USCCA member - Support your defenders!

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by lordmorgul View Post
    II’m running a 75gr BTHP load in Speer nickel cases...
    To hijack my own thread... Do you have any problems using nickel cases?

    I use them almost exclusively for handgun rounds (and I like them, have had no issues, and will never go back to plain brass), but everything I've read about reloading rifle rounds says to avoid them.

  10. #30
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    Budget .223/5.56 &quot;Precision&quot; Upper?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bimmer View Post
    To hijack my own thread... Do you have any problems using nickel cases?

    I use them almost exclusively for handgun rounds (and I like them, have had no issues, and will never go back to plain brass), but everything I've read about reloading rifle rounds says to avoid them.
    I also use them exclusively for handgun. I keep the bare brass I get in a pile for rainy days.

    They reload beautifully, at least once. The issue people have with them is cracking at the neck due to the nickel being less strain tolerant during the resize so they may have lower reuse count. I havenít reloaded mine enough yet to provide that input. But they clean fantastically, they resize smoothly (nickel has a high lubricity so although I use a case lube it is easier to size than other cases). Excessively flaring the case mouth for bullet seating is a danger.
    * I have a couple cases I took thru reload #3, but most I have are only been reloaded once so far.

    Nickel is very easy to find on the ground after shooting. But then, itís a tossup if youíre better off losing more and getting higher reload count?

    I use bare brass for 308 and 3006, so only tried nickel cases for 223.


    Andrew - Lancaster, CA
    NRA Life Member, CRPA member, Calguns.net contributor, CGF / SAF / FPC / CCRKBA / GOA / NAGR / NRA-ILA contributor, USCCA member - Support your defenders!
    Last edited by lordmorgul; 11-03-19 at 11:33.

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