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Is M855A1 available outside of the military? Login/Join 
I Am The Walrus
posted
When I ran ranges on active duty, we would get a mix of M855 or M855A1. I’ve seen M855 but don’t recall if I’ve ever seen the A1 variant.

It’s supposed to be “better”?

Not sure why we would get a mix when we ran ranges but maybe it depended on what the ASP had at that time.


_____________

Edmond
 
Posts: 10765 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: March 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
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The M855A1 bullet is a significant change from the M855’s. A good description here. I was surprised that the cartridge wasn’t given an entirely different model number.

In short, the most obvious change is the fact that the steel “penetrator” of the A1 is exposed at the nose and is much heavier than the small cone in the green tip. The A1 also contains no lead and therefore addresses the environmental issues that have been raised about the 855. The tests I’ve seen indicate that the A1 does indeed perform much better against hard targets. In my testing of the M855 some years ago I was not impressed with its performance against automobile barrier materials; in general the 64 grain Gold Dot did better.

I took an interest in the A1 load recently and tried to find some for sale online, but with no real success. I suspect that any that’s for sale (at very high prices) was stolen from military stocks.




“The fundamental cause of trouble in the world today is that the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt.”
— Bertrand Russell
 
Posts: 42101 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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short answer -- I do not believe that it is available for civilian purchase.

in recent years of on-line ammo buying I don't recall seeing it available as a 'stocked item' from the usual sources / distributors. a quick look on Gunbroker shows individual small lots for sale at over $2 / round.

as SF mentioned above -- it has been available for sale here and there -- but probably as a result of dubious procurement methods ...

if you really wanted some I would peruse gun shows near major military bases and you might get lucky

i read that its pretty high pressure and can wear guns faster but I don't know that from personal experience obviously

good info here from a former SF soldier

https://www.defensereview.com/...e-or-just-overblown/


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also from from an Army website:

There are three main areas in which the new round excels: soft-target consistency, hard-target penetration, and the extended range at which it maintains these performance improvements.

This is not to imply that the EPR increases the maximum effective range of the M4 or M16. Its trajectory matches the M855's, which aids in training, lessens the need to re-zero the weapon, and allows it to link to the current tracer round (the M856) for eventual use in the M249 SAW. So while the maximum effective range does not increase, effectiveness at range does, meaning the round greatly extends the range of desired effects along its trajectory.

The Army tackled the consistency issue by focusing on the yaw of a projectile and how differences in yaw can influence results when striking soft targets. The M855 round, similar to the Army's M80 (7.62mm ball round), is a "yaw-dependent" bullet. As any bullet travels along its trajectory, it "wobbles" in both pitch and yaw, causing the projectile to strike its target at different attitudes with virtually every shot.

For a yaw-dependent bullet such as the M855 or M80, this results in varying performance, depending upon where in the yaw/pitch cycle the bullet strikes its target. For example, at a high angle of yaw, the M855 performs very well, transferring its energy to the target in short order. At a low angle of yaw, however, the bullet reacts more slowly, causing the inconsistent effects observed in the field.

The M855A1 is not yaw-dependent. Like any other bullet, it "wobbles" along its trajectory. However, the EPR provides the same effects when striking its target, regardless of the angle of yaw. This means the EPR provides the same desired effects every time, whether in close combat situations or longer engagements. In fact, the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) verified through live-fire tests against soft targets that, on average, the M855A1 surpassed the M80 7.62mm round. The 7.62mm, although a larger caliber, suffers from the same consistency issue as the M855, but to a higher degree.

Hard-target performance is a second area where the EPR really shines (see Figure 2). The exposed, heavier, and sharper penetrator, along with a higher velocity, allows Soldiers to penetrate tougher battlefield barriers than is possible with the current M855. Although it's not an armor-piercing round, the EPR can penetrate 3/8 inch-thick mild steel at distances approaching 400 meters (based on the range at which 50 percent of the rounds can pass through the barrier). The M855 only penetrates this material out to approximately 160 meters.

Not only is this performance much better than the M855's with its smaller steel penetrator, it is vastly better than the M80 7.62mm round.

Additionally, the EPR can penetrate concrete masonry units at ranges out to 80 meters with the M16 and 40 meters with the M4. The M855 can't penetrate this type of battlefield barrier at any range.

Also notable is the EPR's excellent performance against softer intermediate barriers such as car doors, windshields, or Kevlar fabric. The thinner metal found on car doors poses no problem. When engaging targets behind windshields with the EPR, ARL has shown an increase in the probability of hitting the occupant, due to both the steel penetrator and the copper slug remaining intact through the glass. Furthermore, ARL tested the round against 24 layers of Kevlar fabric out to 1,000 meters, but discontinued the test as the Kevlar showed no sign of being able to stop the EPR. The EPR also penetrates some lesser-quality body armors designed to stop 7.62mm ball rounds.

Another benefit Soldiers will see from the new round is its effectiveness when engaging soft targets at longer ranges.

As a small-caliber projectile's velocity decreases, it eventually will reach a point at which it can no longer transfer most of its energy to its target. Below this velocity, which equates to range, the round is more likely to pass through its target with little effect. The M855A1 can maintain consistent, desired effects at a much lower velocity, resulting in excellent effectiveness at far greater ranges along its trajectory.

In addition to the above-mentioned performance improvements, the EPR is more accurate than the M855. Accuracy testing during production lot acceptance has shown that, on average, 95 percent of the rounds will hit within an 8 x 8-inch target at 600 meters. It also uses a flash-reduced propellant optimized for the M4's shorter barrel.

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Proverbs 27:17 - As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.
 
Posts: 7946 | Location: Florida | Registered: September 20, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Web Clavin Extraordinaire
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InRange TV has done some interesting armor penetration tests with 855A1, if you're interested. They used actual Russian issue body armor.


----------------------------

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Educating the youth of America, one declension at a time.
 
Posts: 18705 | Location: SE PA | Registered: January 12, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
When you fall, I will be there to catch you -With love, the floor
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Closest I've seen is a Sig instructor brought some to a informal range session a while back. Didn't noticed much outward appearence difference. Shooting at paper targets didn't really prove proformance difference.

Doubt any will show on the civilian market for some time. Maybe components at some point.


Richard Scalzo
Epping, NH

http://www.bigeastakitarescue.net
 
Posts: 5318 | Location: Epping, NH | Registered: October 16, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
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quote:
Originally posted by rscalzo:
Maybe components at some point.


According to one video, the American Reloading company had both M855A1 and M80A1 bullets for sale. That information was from a couple/three years ago, though, and when for grins I checked their site yesterday, neither was listed.




“The fundamental cause of trouble in the world today is that the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt.”
— Bertrand Russell
 
Posts: 42101 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
I suspect that any that’s for sale (at very high prices) was stolen from military stocks.
I was involved in the M855A1 program. It is not available to the public and AFAIK, still not available to LE.

sigfreund's comment above is absolutely correct.


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Posts: 7680 | Location: Northern Virginia | Registered: November 04, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
I Am The Walrus
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quote:
Originally posted by sigfreund:
In my testing of the M855 some years ago I was not impressed with its performance against automobile barrier materials; in general the 64 grain Gold Dot did better.


I will have to get some of the Gold Dot then. I know their pistol cartridges have a good reputation, doesn't surprise me that their rifle ammunition would be high quality.


_____________

Edmond
 
Posts: 10765 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: March 12, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Edmond:

I will have to get some of the Gold Dot then. I know their pistol cartridges have a good reputation, doesn't surprise me that their rifle ammunition would be high quality.


PSA used to have good deals on Gold Dots, good luck finding it anywhere.

https://palmettostatearmory.co...ion-20rds-24448.html
 
Posts: 14522 | Location: Eastern Iowa | Registered: May 21, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by 229DAK:
quote:
I suspect that any that’s for sale (at very high prices) was stolen from military stocks.
I was involved in the M855A1 program. It is not available to the public and AFAIK, still not available to LE.

sigfreund's comment above is absolutely correct.


that's very interesting

were you on the R&D side or acquisition / log side?

-------------------------------------


Proverbs 27:17 - As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.
 
Posts: 7946 | Location: Florida | Registered: September 20, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of 229DAK
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quote:
Originally posted by Sig209:
quote:
Originally posted by 229DAK:
quote:
I suspect that any that’s for sale (at very high prices) was stolen from military stocks.
I was involved in the M855A1 program. It is not available to the public and AFAIK, still not available to LE.

sigfreund's comment above is absolutely correct.
that's very interesting

were you on the R&D side or acquisition / log side?
Acquisition side.


_________________________________________________________________________
NRA Life Member
NRA Rifle Instructor
NRA Pistol Instructor
NRA Range Safety Officer

The afternoon knows what the morning never suspected.
-- Robert Frost
 
Posts: 7680 | Location: Northern Virginia | Registered: November 04, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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