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Viceroy 馃煩馃煩馃煩
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Sorry if this is something that should be readily apparent. I'm new to the whole AR world and just built a PSA kit, which shoots great by the way. My AR is 5.56 chambered so this is not a big deal, safety wise. ... I'm just kind of curious.

I picked up some Armscor USA .223 ammo as well as some Federal / Lake City M855 5.56, and some Federal Fusion .233 to test out the gun. (The Fusion stuff was shooting consistent .75"-1" groups!)

The Armscor .223 shot very accurately too. Not as well as the Fusion hunting load, but it seemed like a quality plinking load for the low price. It definitely seemed more like a .233 when I shot it. (It always sounds to me like 5.56s are a little louder.)

But then why does the headstamp say 5.56? :confused: Here are pics of the box and the brass.
 

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According to the info some of the retailers selling this particular ammo have on their site, Armscor loads this ammo to 223 specs but sometimes will use 5.56 brass. The ammo is not XM855, the bullet will not attract a magnet. Though the muzzle velocity is the same as XM855 @ 3020fps.

As long as you are using it in a 5.56 or Wylde chambered rifle I would not worry. I agree though, the brass and the MV do suggest it will produce similar pressures as XM855.
 

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I did some research and found Armscor (the company) is located in the Philippines. Their ammo is loaded in the USA using Philippines made components (brass, bullets, primers, and powder). All their 223 Rem ammo has 55gr FMJ bullets. The headstamp is indeed strange. No other company marks their ammo with 5.56 .... it's either marked 223 Rem or has the USGI or NATO markings, which are the same with one exception. All ammo made to NATO specs will have a circle with a plus sign in the headstamp ... resembling the view through a scope. Armsco ammo has a 2-digit year code just like USGI and NATO ammo.

One thing for sure, it's not made to NATO specs and has the wrong bullet weight (M855 is loaded with 62gr bullets). Federal and Winchester make similar "white box" products that are 5.56 NATO wannabees , where their cases are marked FC (Federal) and the 2-digit date code or WCC (Winchester Cartridge CO) and the 2-digit date code. These companies use exactly the same cases and headstamp for their military contract ammo only they have 62gr bullets and the NATO mark.

There's no difference in 223 Rem or 5.56x45 NATO brass cases except NATO ammo will have peened primers. Here's a reference for the 223 Rem versus 5.56 NATO: http://rugerforum.net/library/135584-223-rem-5-56-nato-ammo-chambers.html

Armscor 223 Rem ammo is questionable .... safe to shoot in 5.56 NATO chambered rifles but it's uncertain in a 223 Rem chamber. A classic case of "something got lost in translation".
 

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Supposedly, ammo with the NATO mark (circle with the cross so it looks like a scope reticle) is manufactured in compliance with full NATO requirements; crimped primers, NATO level velocities and pressures, and either the XM193 55grn or M855 62grn bullets (77grn long range NATO ammo is another discussion). Therefore, 55grn ammo can be full NATO spec too (i.e. XM193 ammo) although the current NATO 5.56 caliber is loaded with the 62grn penetrator bullet.

The problem with the second tier ammo companies is that you're not sure what you're getting. Something marked 5.56 but without the NATO marking may be either a 55 or 62 grn bullet which may or may not have a penetrator, and it could be loaded to mil-spec pressure levels or not. It might have a crimped primer or not. You end up 'payin your money and takin your chances'.
 

Viceroy 馃煩馃煩馃煩
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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks all. I may shoot up these couple boxes and stay away from Armscor thereafter. The main objective was to find a cheaper practice round that hit pretty much the same as the fusion hunting round my kid will use for deer. I see there are a lot of generic white box loads that will do the trick and are 100% American-made.
 

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GONRA assumes (without knowing the FACTS) that Philippines鈥
Armcor "5.56" 55 grain bullet ammo is appropriate
for Really Olde M-16's in the Philippine鈥檚 military inventory.
Should be good for US Rabid Gun Crazies who shoot sloooow twist AR-15鈥檚.
 

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COSteve, Under US military pressure, in 1977 NATO reluctantly accepted the 5.56 cartridge, however they rejected 55gr bullets so a 62gr 5.56x45 became the NATO standard. Turned out, the USGI M193 cartridge with 55gr bullets had a reputation for being "inhumane" so the Belgian 62 gr SS109 round was chosen for standardization. Today it is called a M855 (or variant). So ... there has never been an official 55gr 5.56x45 NATO cartridge but there was a USGI 55gr 5.56x45 cartridge strictly for use by US military forces. These cartridges look just like 5.56 NATO except they don't have the "scope crosshair" NATO mark. There are other 5.56 cartridges with different bullet weights that may be used by NATO forces but none are actually standardized nor are they marked with the scope crosshair. Many of the NATO nations manufacture M855 or XM855 ammo. It has to meet rigid NATO specs, just like the US made Lake City, Federal (FC), or Winchester (WCC) ammo. The concept being ... you never know which allied nation you will be fighting beside so all NATO ammo is supposed to be made to the same exact specs.
 

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So ... there has never been an official 55gr 5.56x45 NATO cartridge but there was a USGI 55gr 5.56x45 cartridge strictly for use by US military forces. These cartridges look just like 5.56 NATO except they don't have the "scope crosshair" NATO mark. There are other 5.56 cartridges with different bullet weights that may be used by NATO forces but none are actually standardized nor are they marked with the scope crosshair.
Does this mean that my Federal American Eagle ammo labeled 5.56x45mm NATO 55 Grain FMJ on the box is mis-labeled? The headstamp has the NATO cross, the letters "LC", and the number 14.

HeadStamp556NATO.jpg
 

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I just checked a box of Armscor I bought the other day. It's labeled .223 on the box, and the brass is also stamped .223.
 

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That's a good question as I have plenty of that federal ammo
 

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flattop, XM193 ammo (55gr FMJ) was "certified" for NATO use prior to 1977. No doubt, the specs have not changed so companies can still make it and mark it as NATO ... it just won't go into the NATO supply channels. Your ammo is made by Federal and intended for civilian, law enforcement, or US military use only .... not for NATO military use.
 

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It's basically the non-metal piercing bullet correct?
 
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