.300 BLACKOUT — Take The Plunge!

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Here’s a compelling argument in favor of this relatively new cartridge for an AR15 enthusiast wanting to expand the capabilities of this firearms platform. Read why…

300 blackout

SOURCE: Team Springfield, posted by Steve Horsman

Historically, I have been hesitant to jump on the bandwagon of newly introduced cartridges. I am already heavily invested in several pistol and rifle calibers. When a new caliber comes out, I usually wait to see how it’s received and if it’s going to stick around. So when the .300 Blackout made its appearance several years ago, I took the “wait and see” approach.

As time went on, and it was apparent that the .300 Blackout was here to stay, I took the plunge and built an AR-style rifle with parts that I had on hand. I had to buy a barrel in .300 Blackout, so I invested in a 16-inch. When I put it all together, the rifle worked great. I’ll admit that I have only put a few hundred rounds through that gun, but like any good firearm enthusiast, I purchased the dies and components to eventually handload .300 Blackout.

As time went on, I continued researching the caliber, but my .300 Blackout rifle largely remained in the gun vault due to other firearm projects taking priority. #FirstWorldProblems

saint 300 blk

DUTY CALLS
In late 2017, Springfield Armory® introduced the SAINT™ Pistol in 5.56, and to say it has been successful would be a huge understatement! Prior to the release, I was tasked with testing the pistol and subsequently penned a blog about it shortly after it came out.

After literally shooting thousands of rounds through my 5.56 SAINT™ Pistol (and having a lot of fun), I started to think that a cool, new version would be if it were available in .300 Blackout. Well, the decisio- makers at Springfield Armory® were on the same track (great minds think alike), and designed the newest SAINT™ Pistol chambered in .300 Blackout.

I was excited to get my hands on one of the early production samples and I admit, though I really like the first 5.56 SAINT™ Pistol, I LOVE the newest chambering of .300 Blackout.

My .300 Blackout test firing consisted of shooting multiple steel and paper targets at 80 yards, and I also performed some reload drills. The only ammunition I had on hand when testing the .300 Blackout was 125-grain supersonic FMJs. Even though that ammo may not have been the optimal choice, the .300 blackout SAINT™ Pistol functioned perfectly and shot amazingly well. I was able to put one round on top of another at the 80-yard distance. I was very pleased to say the least.

BALLISTIC COMPARISON
There is a ton of ballistic data available for the .300 Blackout on the internet, so I will share just a little of the basic info with you here.

Compared to the 5.56 round, the .300 Blackout performs really well, and it actually excels in a short-barreled gun (primarily because it doesn’t lose velocity as rapidly as the 5.56 out of a shortened barrel).

The 5.56 REQUIRES velocity for peak performance whereas the .300 Blackout’s peak performance is based much more on the combination of bullet weight and velocity.

What I am basically saying is that the lightest bullet (commonly a 110-grain projectile) in the .300 Blackout is double the weight of the most common 5.56 bullet weight (a 55-grain).

A quick comparison shows that a 55-grain 5.56 round out of our 7-inch SAINT™ Pistol comes out at about 2300 FPS, creating about 650 foot pounds of energy. On the other hand, the 110-grain .300 Blackout round comes out of the 9-inch SAINT™ Pistol at about 2100 FPS, creating about 1090 foot pounds of energy.

If you’re more of a visual learner like I am, this may process better:

SAINT™ Pistol 5.56 — 55 gr. bullet — 7-inch barrel — 2300 FPS — 650 FT LBS

SAINT™ Pistol .300 — 110 gr. bullet — 9-inch barrel — 2100 FPS — 1090 FT LBS

Ballistically speaking, because of the huge difference in bullet weight, the comparison is pretty incredible!

SIDE BY SIDE SAINT PISTOLS
At first glance, the SAINT™ Pistols in 5.56 and .300 Blackout visually appear similar, but on closer inspection you will notice that the .300 Blackout version does not share the muzzle blast diverter that the 5.56 has. Also, the barrel on the 5.56 model is 7 inches long, whereas the .300 Blackout has a 9-inch barrel with a conventional A-2 flash hider.

NOTABLE SIDE NOTE
Most gun enthusiasts know that all 5.56 / .223 AR-style magazines and ammo work and function perfectly with .300 Blackout chambered guns. This may seem like a small detail to some, but the reason this is critically important to talk about is that the opposite is NOT true. Do NOT try to shoot a .300 Blackout cartridge through a 5.56 firearm!

While it may take some effort to get the .300 Blackout round into the chamber of the 5.56, it is extremely dangerous and will cause great damage. Just do a Google search to see photos and video of what actually happens. It’s not good and it’s not pretty. #ChamberDanger

Needless to say, I was very happy to see that the SAINT™ Pistol .300 magazines are smartly marked “.300 Blackout” on the side. This makes it easy to quickly differentiate from my 5.56 mags when I put my new SAINT™ .300 Blackout into the gun safe with the rest of my arsenal.

WRAP AND ROLL
The Springfield Armory® SAINT™ Pistol in .300 Blackout just might be the perfect size-to-power ratio in an AR-based pistol. The .300 and I will be spending a lot of time together this summer both at my backyard range and in my truck. Now, I’m not getting rid of my first 5.56 SAINT™ Pistol in the truck. I’ll just have two now — one for me and one for my lovely Mrs. The sleek, compact size of the SAINT™ pistol family makes that totally doable.

I’m also making space in my reloading bunker, because I’m now committed to another proven caliber.

Click HERE to check out AMMO at Midsouth!

saint pistol

Click HERE for more on the SAINT

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5 thoughts on “.300 BLACKOUT — Take The Plunge!”

  1. Mr. Zediker,
    Your first sentence under: NOTABLE SIDE NOTE
    “Most gun enthusiasts know that all 5.56 / .223 AR-style magazines AND AMMO work and function perfectly with .300 Blackout chambered guns. “(emphasis mine!)
    Please tell me you are not alluding to the shooting of 5.56 and .223 ammo in a gun chambered in .300 Blackout!
    You spelled out NOT shooting .300 Blackout in a gun chambered in 5.56/.223 but I’d think shooting 5.56/.223 in a gun chambered in .300 Blackout is equally dangerous.
    I’ve read and re-read your statement and I just can’t get away from what it implies.
    Please clarify.
    Thanks

  2. In the “Notable side note” paragraphs stating that “Most gun enthusiasts know that all 5.56 / .223 AR-style magazines and ammo work and function perfectly with .300 Blackout chambered guns.” That is complete utter garbage! The 5.56/.223 cannot chamber into a .300 Blackout chamber. The bolt will not lock into battery! You will destroy your gun or worst!

  3. The .300 Blackout is a useless cartridge that has no valid purpose, as there are a dozen other cartridges that will easily outperform it any day.
    It is a waste of time and effore to read anything that is written about it.
    Just one 60 year old shooters opinion.

    1. I’m 72 yrs. old and have been shooting since I was 6. My dad built me a 22 LR to shoot ground hogs with in upstate New York when the farmers appreciated you killing them. No posted land at the time.
      Anyway I built a 300 BLK a couple years ago to go hog hunting with. It is very accurate, low recoil, plenty of energy to take down a large hog. It just doesn’t nave the long range ballistics as some other calibers. Ex: 6.8 SPC
      great round. The 6.5 Grende, 1000 yard shooter and good small to medium game
      hunting rd. I don’t like my shoulder being hammered by those larger calibers. My next gun will be a precision shooter in 6.5 Creedmore for some serious long range shooting, which is new to me, but I plan on taking a long range precision shooting course to get the basics. My problem in NY., these no place to shoot over 200 yards., So real long distance shooting will have to be practiced in another part of the country. I am tired of traveling by air, but longs distance driving is not my thing anymore.
      You may not like the 300 BLK, and that’s your preference, but I like it for what it can do. And suppressed it can’t be beat with subsonic loads.
      Too bad NY doesn’t allow them.
      Take care and be safe.,

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