This kind of question raises even more questions, possibly more than it answers. There are a ton of calibers out there, all with differing amounts of powder behind them. To get closer to something more realistic, it has to be about averages.
The average bullet will travel around 12,000 feet with an average speed of 1,700mph. Of course, there is a huge difference between maximum distance and maximum range. Distance is nothing more than firing a round at the optimal level and seeing how far it travels.
There are a lot of factors that go into maximum distance, including the weight of the round, the length of the barrel, the shape of the bullet, muzzle velocity, altitude, and the current weather. With that being said, how far can bullets travel when you’re looking at different calibers?
How Far Can A Bullet Travel
How far can a .22 travel
The thing is, there is more than one type, at least in terms of short and long. There is a .22 long rifle round and a .22 short, which is typically fired out of small, snub-nosed pistols. A .22-long rifle bullet is capable of reaching 2,000 yards, which is a little over a mile away.
A .22 short is much more limited at a mere 200 yards, probably if you had some wind at your back. It would be especially difficult out of a snub-nose. A .22LR cartridge will remain accurate out to 300 yards.
How far can a 9mm bullet travel
A 9mm is surprising in terms of the distance it can travel because it’s a smaller round. A giant .45 caliber generates a lot more friction. A 9mm is one of the most popular calibers as well.
The maximum range of a 9mm round is about 2.5 to 3 miles. Of course, it’s not going to be very accurate at that distance. Effective range is limited to a far more pedestrian 100 yards or the length of a football field.
Now, 100 yards isn’t the absolute efficient range of a 9mm because the 9mm cartridge makes up a variety of different firearms, each with its own capabilities.
How far can a .223 travel
The .223 is often a source of confusion for newbies, in terms of its association with the 5.56. The two rounds are nearly identical in almost every aspect. The 5.56 can fire a .223, however, a .223 rifle cannot fire a 5.56.
The only rifles that can fire both will have that capability clearly marked on the rifle. In relatively calm conditions a .223 round will travel about 4,300 yards. That may not sound like much, for something that’s a big step up from a 9mm, but a .223 is also effective and accurate at 800 yards.
That’s much farther than any round on this list thus far. You can effectively add or subtract 500 yards depending on the rifle and barrel length. The thing about an AR, is there are about 1,000 different customizations out there.
How far can a 5.56 bullet travel
A 5.56 will travel about the same range as a .223, depending on the setup. The old-school, M16A2 service rifle can send a 5.56 down range for about 3,700 yards while more modern rifles can do a bit better than that.
The 5.56 round is probably one of the most well-known rounds in the world, and it’s a highly popular round, often sold out are placed under restrictions in terms of how many boxes a customer can purchase at one time.
The overall, maximum distance of a round is much farther than what’s considered the maximum effective range. At those extreme distances, the bullet has lost a lot of its velocity as well. However, that doesn’t mean it’s no longer harmful at great distances.
Keep in mind, all of these distances, whether we are talking about maximum distance or maximum effective range, are generalizations. There isn’t one type of 9mm, 5.56, .223, or .22 rifle or pistol.
There are different barrel lengths and a variety of different features in firearms that can make or break the above-listed ranges. If we’re measuring things in a bubble, those are the maximum ranges for each caliber on any given day.
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