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Can Saiga .223 fire 5.56?

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Hi Everyone:

I'm probably really late asking this question, but can a Saiga .223 fire 5.56 ammo if you need to? I could swear I read somewhere a Russian Izhmash rep said it can. I don't know where. I got the impression he said stamping .223 on the barrel was a formality, that they really made it with 5.56 in mind (or something to that effect). 

I figured I'd check with you guys. I've always bought Federal .223 for my Saiga, but it'd be nice to know if it can fire 5.56 since that seems to be more available. 




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Yes all day long! This is my 556 butter gun. I shoot hot loads and have added a heaver spring and it rocks.

Go for it if you have one. mine is also converted for p mags

Edited by jerry52
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Thanks Jerry52! :-)

I'm just relieved knowing I can shoot an "alternative" round in my gun instead of worrying about sticking exclusively with .223 ammo. During this weird ammo famine, it seems like 5.56 is available more than .223. So ... the versatility is nice. I remember this is a reason why I bought my Saiga years ago. I also recall thinking Tula steel-cased ammo wouldn't hurt it. 

I confess I need to get a sling for my Saiga. Then I'm ready. Maybe a couple more mags too. 

BTW, I've stuck with plain 55gr. FMJs all this time. 

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Yeah ... I was thinking it might be a collector's item now ever since the import ban. My thinking (and I hope this is sort of right) was to get rifle with AK reliability & toughness, but with the better accuracy of a .223 or 5.56 cartridge. 

As far as I know the 7.62x39 round is less accurate. However, I still wouldn't want to get hit by one. 

Given my Saiga's possible collector's value, I'm glad I've only taken it to the range about three times and never rapid fired it like I'm a Rambo wannabe. I did, however, buy it knowing it'd be a good battle rifle if stuff ever does get really crazy. The AK is easier to field strip too.

I am just now wanting an AR-15 like a good American. I like PSA's A2 classic with a 20" barrel. BOY! Those sure have gotten expensive! 


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