In the past year, the National Shooting Sports Foundation reported a massive influx of 6.2 million new gunowners in the US. The civil unrest in the country and the effects of the presidential election prompted many people to purchase a firearm for self-defense.
Hence, ammunition rose in demand, and ammo manufacturers and retailers continue to face a rampant ammunition shortage. The lockdown and temporary closure of many factories also slowed down their manufacturing process.
As one of the most commonly used firearms used in the country, AR 15 ammo is scarce. However, this doesn’t mean that you should buy and use whichever ammo you can get your hands on at the gun shop. You should know which type of bullet is right for your weapon, as using the wrong one can be dangerous and can reduce your gun’s lifespan.
Which Bullets Should You Get?
The main feature to pay attention to when you’re selecting your bullets is the bullet type, the caliber, and the barrel twist rate.
Steel or brass bullets have their own advantages. Steel is far cheaper, but brass runs cleaner. Similarly, there are two categories of bullets; full metal jackets (FMJ) and hollowpoint (HP) or softpoint (SP).
FMJ bullets are more commonly used in the military, while HP or SP bullets are ideal for self-defense or long-range shooting.
The AR 15 platform comes in two main calibers, 5.56x45mm NATO and .223 Remington.
To understand which one is right for your weapon, you can check the model specs stamped on the barrel itself. The only difference between the otherwise identical bullets is that the 5.56 can handle more pressure. The .223 is a civilian round and adheres to SAAMI specs standards.
While 5.56 barrels can fire both bullets, not all .223 barrels can fire 5.56 caliber bullets.
Barrel Twist Rate
The barrel twist rates range from 1:7 to 1:12 on the AR 15 platform. Heavier grain bullets require a lower barrel twist rate, and are primarily used in the military. The most common barrel twist rate is 1:9.
So, now that you have a clearer idea of which bullets you need to purchase, you can start stocking up the right ones.
How to Keep Inventory of Your AR 15 Ammo
Being prepared for unforeseen circumstances is always a wise decision. In times such as these, when there is a shortage of bullets in the market, keeping an ammunition inventory is advantageous.
Experienced gun owners tend to keep healthy amounts of ammunition storage, so that they have something to fall back when ammo is scarce. A cool and dry basement, storage unit, or any secure area is a good place to keep your inventory.
You should keep a set standard, and make sure that your bullets do not fall below that line. You can keep track of your ammunition inventory by marking down the numbers every time you take a box to the shooting range.
In today’s market, you should regularly check online for AR 15 ammo deals and their availability, since they are in high demand. You should purchase a reasonable amount when you can, and save a certain amount each time for your inventory.