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Thread Killa
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Recent testing by the FBI and the US Army has shown that the 5.56 NATO round may actually be safer for use in CQB environments. The theory being that the lighter bullet of the 5.56 NATO round sheds energy MUCH faster in common building materials like sheetrock and 2x4's. Recently our own testing showed that although the results look somewhat promising for the 5.56 NATO round as far as some penetration tests, there are some very significant long term dangers to the LEO who may be behind that gun while doing a dynamic entry.

In our tests the 5.55 NATO round (M855) fired out of a Sig 552 rifle posted 163dBs. With a suppressor that same round posted 128dBs*, still WELL beyond the pain threshold and certainly well beyond the OSHA standards of 85dBs. Since most SWAT teams tend to train with hearing protection but work with none, this can have long term effects on each members hearing. Also of concern is the immediate threat to an officers hearing (3 rounds will do permanent damage) and how that effects command and control of a situation.
From a tactical perspective, many have tried subsonic 5.56 rounds to little or no avail. They are generally less reliable, less accurate unless shot via specialized barrels, and essentially about as powerful as a rimfire rifle when brought down below subsonic speeds. The reason the 9mm and .40 S&W are so popular is that they KEEP energy and have good terminal performance when going subsonic. (Good for hearing, good for taking out the bad guys, but bad for over penetration)

There are several solutions that are up and coming including in ear "bone" mikes with built in hearing protection, newer helmets that allow for the use of miked hearing protection, and even a full helmet system similar to those worn by motorcycle riders (remains to be seen).

In any event, as you train or work, keep in mind your ears are essentially the only pair you get and there is no real cure for hearing loss, only patch fixes. If you start having problems hearing seek medical attention as soon as possible, continued exposure to loud noises will not be "fixable".

* (by comparison a chain saw is about 120 dBs)
 

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yeah i think with all the demo and CQB/live fire we do, i am gonna be a diabled vet by the time i get out.

we use the SF Liberator soldier system head set and they are pretty impressive.
 

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Thread Killa
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Along those lines, flash bangs etc are even worse as they are specifically designed to generate over pressure in a given area. They also generate somwhere near 180 dB+...which is even worse.

yeah i think with all the demo and CQB/live fire we do, i am gonna be a diabled vet by the time i get out.

we use the SF Liberator soldier system head set and they are pretty impressive.
 

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CBQ aside..................................

In a patrol environment, the 5.56mm carbine is more versatile than 9mm/.40 cal carbines. I'd rather be alive and need "miracle ear" than but put out to pasture/planted cuz my pistol rounds didn't penetrate armor/cover/vehicle that the perps were using.
:lol:
Besides EOD1, you'll need the VA letter for your DAV top-of-the-list status when you get back!
:wink:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yes but a patrol rifle and a SWAT CQB entry gun really are two different things. In that one is being touted as being "safer" but it's safer MAYBE in a penetration/liability instance but not safer to the operator. The patrol rifle is again a different animal in that it's not really an entry gun and is more often than not used as a standoff weapon. The same things that make a 5.56 "great" for use in CQB also make it not so good for a penetrator for vehicle.....but that's another discussion and one of the reasons for cartridges like the 6.8 Remington SPC, the .50 Beowulf, and the 6.5 Grendel.
I think slowly but surely there is going to be a specialization to the extent that one base platform (like the AR) can have multiple uppers for multiple roles (sort of the way it is now) but with more focus on mission specifics. I'm seeing this now in how the military is changing their MOUT doctrines...and at some point that's going to fully trickle down to LE.
It has already to some extent...but I think it will be quicker and more purposeful as things progress.

CBQ aside..................................

In a patrol environment, the 5.56mm carbine is more versatile than 9mm/.40 cal carbines. I'd rather be alive and need "miracle ear" than but put out to pasture/planted cuz my pistol rounds didn't penetrate armor/cover/vehicle that the perps were using.
:lol:
Besides EOD1, you'll need the VA letter for your DAV top-of-the-list status when you get back!
:wink:
 

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Of course a sub gun may be safer to the operator as far as hearing goes, but how safe is it to do a room entry, are forced to use lethal force and your pistol-calibered sub-machinegun is defeated by a perp in body armor? Possibly allowing him to get off a few rounds into the entry team?? Subguns definitely do have limited applications in CQB, but make sure another officer is backing that subgun with a 5.56 rifle! I also don't think there's any question that a 5.56 rifle (or similiar calibered rifle) is far superior for a patrol rifle.
 

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I think an M-4 with the Tactical Entry (stubby) stock is probably a great all-around weapon for patrol and SWAT. It does it ALL. Maybe not great at any one particular role, but pretty versatile!
:wink:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Again that's where guns like the p90 that have armor penetrating rounds and suppress well come in. Or in instances where you need penetration into glass, 7.62 or the 6.8 SPC and the like come into play.

For the patrol rifle, if you are dealing with an auto(vehicle), it depends on the type of auto and the stand off distance. If a 5.56 is safer in CQB because it doesn't penetrate walls, do you think it is better or worse with a windshield or steel and sheet metal than a 40 caliber round out of a subgun? 5.56 does well for some medium distance shooting and penetrating soft armor,but it is no wonder gun for rounds into a vehicle or a barricade. Even industrial plate glass 3/8 inch and up (think office buildings) the 5.56 fails to stay on target or keep energy from distance past 50 yards.

What is at issue here is that the 5.56 is being "sold" and repackaged as the "wonder caliber" for the year 2000 and on out, and it isn't. Certainly it gives you some standoff distance but only the most specialized rounds in 5.56 (which most LEA's don't even get to see, let alone use) are effective in barricade incidents -but again those specialty loads are much less safe to the non actors that might be next door, which is the reason most departments are switching. I have yet to hear that a department is switching to 5.56in CQB because of armor concerns, most are switching because the FBI is saying that the 5.56 is safer in CQB as it doesn't penetrate walls and will reduce liability.

In reality I think this is the best argument for the AR series platform. It can do 9mm, 5.56, and larger specialty calibers. I have been getting lots of trade ins where departments are "trading up" from MP5s in 40 caliber for new G36K's and G36C's. I'll get comments like "we are an HK shop", only HK subguns and rifles...and I think it's a mistake 1 to start trading out when the FBI report is at best trying to use flawed methodology to prove how "less dangerous" a 5.56 round is in CQB. 2. When the real answer is, don't toss out the subguns, but add patrol rifles. 3. Sticking to a "brand" when you may need something else is sort of foolish.

Certainly I agree, a patrol rifle in a real rifle caliber is an important tool, but it's not the wonder gun the FBI is making it out to be. In reality the FBI isn't even promoting the 5.56 as a patrol rifle, more as a CQB rifle.Nor should departments just ditch their inventory for the next new thing on the block.

It's like the world keeps relearning the same lessons over and over again...FBI and US Military says 9mm is GREAT! Wait no it's the 10mm...then quietly they slowly move back to .45 ACP for tactical ops...or move then to .40 S&W.
One year the 5.56 is the counter sniper caliber, then slowly they move back to .7.62.
Then the 5.56 is too dangerous in CQB (hence Colt and other mfg's move to making pistol caliber AR's) then a couple years later the 5.56 is the end all be all for CQB.
If I didn't know any better I would almost guess the FBI was in the business of selling guns the way these reports are timed.

It is certainly an interesting topic and I value your input.

Posted Mon 20 Sep, 2004 12:47:

This I would agree with specifically because the AR/M4 has a foundation lower that can be tailord for a specific event or situation.
As well the training for these cross paltforms are MUCH easier than that of going from a subguns to a "battle rifle" or "patol rifle".
I would say if you can only have ONE gun, the AR/M4 platform is it.

I think an M-4 with the Tactical Entry (stubby) stock is probably a great all-around weapon for patrol and SWAT. It does it ALL. Maybe not great at any one particular role, but pretty versatile!
:wink:
 

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FBI and US Military says 9mm is GREAT! Wait no it's the 10mm...
Hahaa.....that's great....I'll never forget the FBI's S&W 1076 10mm debacle...they're a bunch of saps! No, there is no "magic bullet"; there are stories of people getting shot with a 22LR dying instantly and others being hit by .50BMG living....I agree there is no "perfect" rifle, and flexibility is the best option.
 

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Oh Yes!
The great god FBI. Remember the fall-out from Miami? They went to S&W 1076's after studies of what went wrong in Miami. Then their reduced round 10mm became the .40 S&W (hee hee)
:lol:
Oops the real story was that most pistol rounds are inferior to .223 rifles in a take down operation. Weren't these agents planning to take down this two (2) man serial robbery team? Why only bring pistols to the dance? I am still disheartened after reading how those special agents went down. Let's pray they never repeat those mistakes.
:shock:
 

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Has anybody considered, let alone tested, the .30 M1 carbine? I always figured it would fit the bill: 'close in' effectiveness, better at range than a subgun...and the M1carbine is pretty reliable...and available full auto!
 

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The Israeli police already use the M1 carbine as a patrol rifle, and have actually experimented with building a brand new rifle in the .30 carbine round for police use. They love the low recoil, accuracy and reduced chance of overpenetration.
 

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Yeah I agree with MPD the M4 shorty is great all around. Put a Nice bright SureFire maybe a foregrip and a reflex sight u can't go wrong.... Now what about a secondary? I like the kimber Swat model(w/ tac lite, prefrerably the M6X) , Maybe a USP... But definately a .45

hey delta-I am interested to see how that pans out in the future also, do we have any more info on it? :?:
 

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While the 6.8 SPC has the potential to be a real winner for the military, I think its a bit much for police work. It was basically the result of the military being unable to get hits at 400+ yards, particularly with shorter barrelled M-4. With police use I doubt we'll be engaging targets at 400+ yards and the 5.56mm is plenty powerful at ranges >100 yards, probably the limit of any police engagement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
What makes that useful for Military makes it VERY dangerous for CQB engagement for police.
Talk about over penetration in buildings. If they are worried that the 9mm has "over penetration" issues. the SPC and Gendel and the like are NIGHTMARES.

That being said as an overwatch gun..they are pretty effective and may well be some of the most effective urban sniper systems out there.

We have one and it really puts the thump to the metal and to the glass.

skip the 5.56 and 9mm subguns and get a 6.8 REM SPC, i'd like to see how this one pans out in the future....

 
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