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Old 03-14-2006, 18:13   #31
MAB32
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Gene,
this conversation brings up a question that I have had for years that maybe you or another QP can answer. Back in the mid 80's I owned an SP1 and was shooting 55 grain out of it like there was no tomorrow. When 62 grain first appeared on the gunshow circuit shortly thereafter I was told that I would be wasting my money if I bought it because the 1-12 twist rate would not be able to stabilize the round enough to be accurate and I would end up with mostly "keyholing" at distances greater than 100 yards. I never experienced it and got acceptable accuracy to boot. Then I purchased an A2 and tried the direct opposite; 55 grain through it and was again told, "your're wasting your money becuase the twist rate is too fast for 55 grain and it will rip off the jacket as it goes through the bore and on on and so forth and so with. Never had a problem with shooting the 55 and it made nice small holes at 100 yards too. Did anybody else hear this and was it just "hype" or is there some merit to it?
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Old 03-15-2006, 08:58   #32
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Originally Posted by MAB32
Gene, When 62 grain first appeared on the gunshow circuit shortly thereafter I was told that I would be wasting my money if I bought it because the 1-12 twist rate would not be able to stabilize the round enough to be accurate and I would end up with mostly "keyholing" at distances greater than 100 yards. I never experienced it and got acceptable accuracy to boot. Then I purchased an A2 and tried the direct opposite; 55 grain through it and was again told, "your're wasting your money becuase the twist rate is too fast for 55 grain and it will rip off the jacket as it goes through the bore and on on and so forth and so with. Never had a problem with shooting the 55 and it made nice small holes at 100 yards too. Did anybody else hear this and was it just "hype" or is there some merit to it?
MAB:

Basically, your 12 turn twist really needs a short and relatively light 5.56 bullet. 55 grains is about it. You can shoot the 62 gran stuff out of it but it will yaw and pitch too much for good accuracy. I doubt it will tumble unless you go past 300 yards but your shot groups will be very poor.

It is better to overstabalize than understabalize so firing the 55 grain stuff out of the 1/7 barrels on the A-2 is just fine -- to a point. I wouldn't expect as good accuracy from them past 300 yards as I would a heaiver and longer bullet.

You need to research 'precssion' and 'nutation' in some good ballistics books. If you want, also research the relationship between the center of mass and point of pressure on bullets. They tie together.

As for in bore jacket failure -- I haven't seen it happen in bore. I have seen bullets literally explode in flight due to too fast a spin plus too fast a velocity. Match grade or varmint bullets use pretty thin jackets and if you spin them too fast -- normally too high a velocity -- they may have a jacket failure in flight. You see a puff of grey as the bullet disintegrates. It doesn't happen in bore unless the jacket was defective in some manner.

Military ball uses very thick jackets. For hunters, they would almost be considered 'solids'. You won't see a jacket fail in flight on one of these from any commercial or issued rifle.

Gene
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Old 03-15-2006, 15:21   #33
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Speaking of AMMO.....The biggest problem I have seen and always hear about is the velocity of .223 or 5.56. You all know what I am talking about. It just zips thru the Threat, not putting him down. My question is can Military units use Hollow points or soft tipped Ammo these days. I know Contractors use them. But are our Troops still restricted to Ball Ammo??? Never heard of this rule being changed
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Old 03-15-2006, 17:10   #34
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Originally Posted by kgoerz
Speaking of AMMO.....The biggest problem I have seen and always hear about is the velocity of .223 or 5.56. You all know what I am talking about. It just zips thru the Threat, not putting him down. My question is can Military units use Hollow points or soft tipped Ammo these days. I know Contractors use them. But are our Troops still restricted to Ball Ammo??? Never heard of this rule being changed
K:

Rule has not been changed. Although the issued M-118 Long Range uses an 'open tip' as it is a Match Grade bullet, the tip ain't so open it would get hung up feeding. In fact, all you see is kind of a dot where the jacket converges at the meplat.

I believe the 77 grain 5.56 that will probably replace the M-855 is FMJ with a cannelure as opposed to the open tip / non cannelure match bullet of the same weight and design.

Feeding issues for many different types of 5.56 weapons in many different conditions of wear make anything but FMJ kind of out of the question. Also, no doubt there are some standards that must be met. Normally distance and hit probabilities. Normally, your spitzer tip FMJ will give more danger space and a smaller cone of fire than other tip designs. For competitive shooters, danger space means 'flatter trajectory' and cone of fire means 'shot group'.

Zipping through a threat is probably correct. So does the issued 7.62. The problem with service ammunition is that it has always been designed to penetrate. No one I know hunts big game animals using issued 7.62 ball. The bullets aren't designed to expand. I would rather take my chances shooting someone behind hard material using issued FMJ than hollow or soft points.

For terminal effects on live tissue, lowering the velocity isn't the solution for issued FMJ. Lower the velocity too much and your danger space and effective range decreases dramatically -- in small arms terms. For those who believe in hydrostatic shock, lowering the velocity decreases the effects of hydrostatic shock. Now, slowing the rifling twist can mean an increased probability that the issued FMJ destabalizes faster when it penetrates things denser than air -- like flesh and blood. It also means it will destabalize faster when penetrating things like small trees, cars, walls, etc. Can't win.

I do hand it to military small arms bullet designers. They work based on two facts -- gravity and drag. However, they are also forced to design based on random factors that can't possibly be modeled.

No one will get what he wants with issued ammo but I am betting that if that 77 grain lead core stuff gets issued, there will be a much higher hit and kill probability than with the issued M-855 ball.

Gene
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Old 03-15-2006, 17:40   #35
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Thanks Gene. E
Maybe the lawyers on here can add to this. The rule about not using anything but ball Ammo in this day and age has always been an issue with me. Like you said with the soft Ammo and Hollow points, penetration of cover is a big concern. I am a firm believer in shooting thru cover to eliminate a threat (Urban Environment). I know in N.C the use of Ball Ammo for hunting is forbidden because it allows the Deer too much time to get away. In a perfect world the Operators should be given the proper Ammo for the situation. Urban Warfare/ open terrain.
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Old 03-15-2006, 20:28   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kgoerz
Speaking of AMMO.....The biggest problem I have seen and always hear about is the velocity of .223 or 5.56. You all know what I am talking about. It just zips thru the Threat, not putting him down. My question is can Military units use Hollow points or soft tipped Ammo these days. I know Contractors use them. But are our Troops still restricted to Ball Ammo??? Never heard of this rule being changed
The 5.56x45mm bullet rarely if ever zips through. After a few inches of tissue, the bullet yaws and reverses to go base forward. If it hits with the velocity over 2500 fps, it may seperate at the cannelure and frag the majority of the lead core into adjacent tissue while the tip continues generally forward. If it is over 2700 fps at impact, it will almost certainly frag. This was what most people referred to as "hydrostatic shock", which is actually the temporary cavitation the round causes. Some tissue structures are elastic enough to return to normal after the stretch (less the permanent wound cavity), some other structures are not (brain, liver, etc.).

The DoD JAG has determined that Open Tip Match (OTM) ammunition is designed to be more accurate, and not to cause increased damage. The hollow point, as Gene noted, is only a tiny hollow and does not create an effective wound beyond the increased accuracy causing it to go where it is aimed much more effectively than the M855. If it the newer cannelured Mark 262 75/77 gr. 5.56, it will also frag if it impacts at the appropriate velocity.

There is a separate legal determination that pretty much any hollow point ammo can be used (by certain special units) if the threat is criminal or terrorist in nature, rather than a Geneva/Hague protected combatant.

The conventions which we are ordered to abide by limit the types of ammo we may use against other protected combatants. Clearly, we would require that our normal opponents, like the FSU, not run functional hollow-points, non-radio opaque, or exploding bullets. Note that our current opponents are not protected by the Conventions.

There has also been effective 7.62x51mm FMJ which fragged horribly, it was an 80s era German load, IIRC. Fully legal, very nasty.

Hard to get a round which penetrates, but does not overpenetrate, and yet is a good tissue destructor. Some people complain that the M855 overpenetrates on structures, others will say that it underpenetrates. The Mark 262 is better than the M855 at almost everything but LR penetration. The LeMas is one of the best compromises that I have seen, but it is expensive and has not been ruled on by the JAG, to my knowledge.

TR
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Old 03-16-2006, 16:19   #37
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I did some research and came up with this article I beleive is from the IWBA(?)


Wounding Effects of the U.S. Military M193 (M16A1) and M855 (M16A2) Bullet Cartridges

Exaggerated descriptions of the wounding effects of the M16 rifle bullet flourish as great works of urban lore. One fable describes a bullet that tumbles end-over-end in flight as soon as it exits the muzzle of the rifle. Another legend provides a dramatic account of an unstable, super-high velocity bullet that tumbles and chews its way through flesh like a buzz saw. Although there appears to be a tinge of half-truth behind these entertaining and awe-inspiring mythical tales, these stories do not represent an accurate description of the wounding characteristics of the M16 bullet.

When the M16 cartridge is fired and the bullet is propelled down the bore, the bore’s rifling imparts a gyroscopic spin to the bullet. This gyroscopic rotation is needed to maintain point forward stabilization of the bullet as it flies through the air. This method of bullet stabilization is identical to the rotational spin applied to a football when thrown by a quarterback (American football).

The Earth’s gaseous atmosphere is approximately 400 times less dense than the body's soft tissues. When the M16 bullet strikes and plows into the body, the rotational spin that stabilized its flight through the air is insufficient to maintain its stability as it flies through dense tissue. The bullet typically penetrates point forward for approximately 4-5 inches before it begins to seek a state of stability in the body.

The bullet’s pointed shape makes it heavier at its base than its nose, producing a center of gravity that is located aft of its longitudinal centerline. When the bullet hits the body and penetrates, the bullet attempts to rotate 180 degrees around its center of gravity to achieve a base forward orientation. This backwards orientation is the bullet’s stable position in tissue because it places the center of gravity forward.

As the bullet yaws through 90 degrees and is traveling sideways through flesh, the stress of tissue resistance to bullet passage can overpower the physical integrity of the bullet. The bullet has a groove around its midsection called a cannelure. The purpose of the cannelure is to permit the mouth of the cartridge case to be crimped tightly against the bullet shank to hold it firmly to the case. The cannelure weakens the structural integrity of the bullet's copper jacket.

At distances of 100 yards and under, when the bullet hits the body and yaws through 90 degrees, the stresses on the bullet cause the leading edge to flatten, extruding lead core out the open base, just before it breaks apart at the cannelure. The portion of the bullet forward of the cannelure, the nose, usually remains in one piece and retains about 60 percent of the bullet's original weight. The portion of the bullet aft of the cannelure, the base, violently disintegrates into multiple lead core and copper jacket fragments, which penetrate up to 3-inches radially outward from the wound track. The fragments perforate and weaken the surrounding tissues allowing the subsequent temporary cavity to forcibly stretch and rip open the multiple small wound tracks produced by the fragments. The resulting wound is similar to one produced by a commercial expanding bullet used for varmint hunting, however the maximum tissue damage produced by the military bullet is located at a greater penetration depth.

(The increased wounding effects produced by bullet fragmentation were not well understood until the mid-1980’s. Therefore the wounding effects of the original M16 rifle bullet were not an intentional U.S. military design characteristic.)

At distances between 100-200 yards the bullet commonly breaks in half at the cannelure forming two large penetrating fragments, the nose and base.

At distances beyond 200 yards the bullet usually remains intact due to velocity decay. It simply yaws 180 degrees to penetrate backwards through the body.

Both the M193 and M855 bullets demonstrate similar terminal performance as described above, when fired from rifles fitted with a 20-inch or longer barrel.

Shooting the M193 or M855 from a rifle with a barrel length less than 14.5-inches produces insufficient muzzle velocity to achieve the terminal performance described above. A rifle fitted with a 14.5-inch barrel is adequate for close-quarters battle. For engagements anticipated at greater than room distance but less than 100 yards, a rifle fitted with a 16.5-inch barrel should be employed to ensure sufficient velocity.

The older 55-grain M193 (M16A1) cartridge is not sensitive to rifling twist rate and can be fired in rifles with 1:12, 1:9 and 1:7 rates of twist. However, the newer M855 (M16A2) cartridge is best used with a rifling twist rate of 1:7 or 1:9. When the M855 is fired in a rifle with a slower rate of twist the longer 62-grain bullet can yaw up to 70 degrees in free trajectory through the air, substantially degrading accuracy.

The wound ballistics of the U.S. military Olin M193/Winchester 55 grain FMJ (X223R1 or Q3131) and green tip U.S. military Olin M855/Winchester 62 grain FMJ (RA556M855) cartridges makes them an adequate choice for use against violent criminal offenders.

Additional testing has indicated that errant bullets (military FMJ and commercial .223 Remington JSP/JHP) which do not hit an attacker appear to penetrate fewer walls and other common building materials than stray handgun bullets.

Click here to view wound profile illustrations of the M193 and M855 bullets.

References:

Fackler, Martin L.: "Wounding Patterns of Military Rifle Bullets." International Defense Review 1/1989, 59-64.

Fackler, Martin L. : "Physics of Missile Injuries," Evaluation and Management of Trauma, Chapter 2. Appleton-Century-Crofts, Norwalk, CT; 1987, p. 35.

Roberts, Gary K, D.D.S.: "The Wounding Effects of 5.56MM/.223 Law Enforcement General Purpose Shoulder Fired Carbines Compared with 12 GA. Shotguns and Pistol Caliber Weapons Using 10% Ordnance Gelatin as a Tissue Simulant." Wound Ballistics Review 3(4), 16-28; 1998.
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Old 03-16-2006, 16:31   #38
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I thought that I already gave the Reader's Digest version of that?

TR
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Old 03-16-2006, 16:51   #39
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Thanks TR and MAB32,

This should end a lot of discussions of Gun-shop lore. I've been to the sandbox and never experienced the ill effects that seem to perpetuate the myth of 5.56mm lackluster performance. MAB32's description makes me think graphically. Kinda like the opening scene to Lord of War, life of one 7.62 round. I get the gun-shop commando that read too much and talks as if they've actually squeezed the round off into the person themselves.
Makes me want to ask what their experiences were on the 2 way range. I get all types.

I think the inadequate performance myth is rampant because this generations lack of real experience with shooting. They see Hokeywoods version of a 9mm throwing bad-guy A into a plate glass window, and the 5.56mm throwing bad-guy B down on the 20th round he absorbs.

I grew up hunting and can say that watching prairie dogs go to pieces close and stay together out longer distances made me understand a little more about how velocity and mass work.

I help my brother reload (I'm cheap, he's got the equip) .223, .243and 22-250 for our annual prarie dog excursion. There's a company that sells a tool to make your own.

http://www.corbins.com/prhct-1.htm

Thanks again fellas
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Old 03-16-2006, 17:14   #40
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I did some research and came up with this article I beleive is from the IWBA(?)


Wounding Effects of the U.S. Military M193 (M16A1) and M855 (M16A2) Bullet Cartridges

Exaggerated descriptions of the wounding effects of the M16 rifle bullet flourish as great works of urban lore. One fable describes a bullet that tumbles end-over-end in flight as soon as it exits the muzzle of the rifle. Another legend provides a dramatic account of an unstable, super-high velocity bullet that tumbles and chews its way through flesh like a buzz saw. Although there appears to be a tinge of half-truth behind these entertaining and awe-inspiring mythical tales, these stories do not represent an accurate description of the wounding characteristics of the M16 bullet.

When the M16 cartridge is fired and the bullet is propelled down the bore, the bore’s rifling imparts a gyroscopic spin to the bullet. This gyroscopic rotation is needed to maintain point forward stabilization of the bullet as it flies through the air. This method of bullet stabilization is identical to the rotational spin applied to a football when thrown by a quarterback (American football).

The Earth’s gaseous atmosphere is approximately 400 times less dense than the body's soft tissues. When the M16 bullet strikes and plows into the body, the rotational spin that stabilized its flight through the air is insufficient to maintain its stability as it flies through dense tissue. The bullet typically penetrates point forward for approximately 4-5 inches before it begins to seek a state of stability in the body.

The bullet’s pointed shape makes it heavier at its base than its nose, producing a center of gravity that is located aft of its longitudinal centerline. When the bullet hits the body and penetrates, the bullet attempts to rotate 180 degrees around its center of gravity to achieve a base forward orientation. This backwards orientation is the bullet’s stable position in tissue because it places the center of gravity forward.

As the bullet yaws through 90 degrees and is traveling sideways through flesh, the stress of tissue resistance to bullet passage can overpower the physical integrity of the bullet. The bullet has a groove around its midsection called a cannelure. The purpose of the cannelure is to permit the mouth of the cartridge case to be crimped tightly against the bullet shank to hold it firmly to the case. The cannelure weakens the structural integrity of the bullet's copper jacket.

At distances of 100 yards and under, when the bullet hits the body and yaws through 90 degrees, the stresses on the bullet cause the leading edge to flatten, extruding lead core out the open base, just before it breaks apart at the cannelure. The portion of the bullet forward of the cannelure, the nose, usually remains in one piece and retains about 60 percent of the bullet's original weight. The portion of the bullet aft of the cannelure, the base, violently disintegrates into multiple lead core and copper jacket fragments, which penetrate up to 3-inches radially outward from the wound track. The fragments perforate and weaken the surrounding tissues allowing the subsequent temporary cavity to forcibly stretch and rip open the multiple small wound tracks produced by the fragments. The resulting wound is similar to one produced by a commercial expanding bullet used for varmint hunting, however the maximum tissue damage produced by the military bullet is located at a greater penetration depth.

(The increased wounding effects produced by bullet fragmentation were not well understood until the mid-1980’s. Therefore the wounding effects of the original M16 rifle bullet were not an intentional U.S. military design characteristic.)

At distances between 100-200 yards the bullet commonly breaks in half at the cannelure forming two large penetrating fragments, the nose and base.

At distances beyond 200 yards the bullet usually remains intact due to velocity decay. It simply yaws 180 degrees to penetrate backwards through the body.

Both the M193 and M855 bullets demonstrate similar terminal performance as described above, when fired from rifles fitted with a 20-inch or longer barrel.

Shooting the M193 or M855 from a rifle with a barrel length less than 14.5-inches produces insufficient muzzle velocity to achieve the terminal performance described above. A rifle fitted with a 14.5-inch barrel is adequate for close-quarters battle. For engagements anticipated at greater than room distance but less than 100 yards, a rifle fitted with a 16.5-inch barrel should be employed to ensure sufficient velocity.

The older 55-grain M193 (M16A1) cartridge is not sensitive to rifling twist rate and can be fired in rifles with 1:12, 1:9 and 1:7 rates of twist. However, the newer M855 (M16A2) cartridge is best used with a rifling twist rate of 1:7 or 1:9. When the M855 is fired in a rifle with a slower rate of twist the longer 62-grain bullet can yaw up to 70 degrees in free trajectory through the air, substantially degrading accuracy.

The wound ballistics of the U.S. military Olin M193/Winchester 55 grain FMJ (X223R1 or Q3131) and green tip U.S. military Olin M855/Winchester 62 grain FMJ (RA556M855) cartridges makes them an adequate choice for use against violent criminal offenders.

Additional testing has indicated that errant bullets (military FMJ and commercial .223 Remington JSP/JHP) which do not hit an attacker appear to penetrate fewer walls and other common building materials than stray handgun bullets.

Click here to view wound profile illustrations of the M193 and M855 bullets.

References:

Fackler, Martin L.: "Wounding Patterns of Military Rifle Bullets." International Defense Review 1/1989, 59-64.

Fackler, Martin L. : "Physics of Missile Injuries," Evaluation and Management of Trauma, Chapter 2. Appleton-Century-Crofts, Norwalk, CT; 1987, p. 35.

Roberts, Gary K, D.D.S.: "The Wounding Effects of 5.56MM/.223 Law Enforcement General Purpose Shoulder Fired Carbines Compared with 12 GA. Shotguns and Pistol Caliber Weapons Using 10% Ordnance Gelatin as a Tissue Simulant." Wound Ballistics Review 3(4), 16-28; 1998.


Ok, here is the complete link:

www.firearmstactical.com/briefs13.htm

By the way TR, I have that info bookmarked somewhere on the then West German 7.62x51mm round fragmenting as it went into the body. When and if I find it I will post here as well. I do believe that it was Dr. Martin Fackler that authored that article too.

Last edited by MAB32; 03-16-2006 at 17:17.
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Old 03-16-2006, 17:15   #41
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MAB32, why did you post that long article again?

TR
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Old 03-16-2006, 19:51   #42
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TR, what I think happened was that I started typing it out then left for dinner and some other chores. When I came back and finished it I received an "invalid message". It must of "timed out" on me. So I did a cut and past and pasted it again and resubmitted it. Had know idea that it was a double post! Forgive me guys. TR, yes you are right, you gave an excellent "Reader's Digest" condensed version. You can look at it this way though. You were right on the money and the experts backed your findings!

Last edited by MAB32; 03-16-2006 at 19:59.
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Old 03-25-2007, 16:59   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MAB32
By the way TR, I have that info bookmarked somewhere on the then West German 7.62x51mm round fragmenting as it went into the body. When and if I find it I will post here as well. I do believe that it was Dr. Martin Fackler that authored that article too.
ooh! ooh! I got it:
http://matrix.dumpshock.com/raygun/basics/pmrb.html (HTML version)
http://www.btammolabs.com/fackler/wo...ary_rifles.pdf (PDF)

Is it possible the German military still using these in some limited capacity?
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Old 03-25-2007, 17:38   #44
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Originally Posted by GnaM
ooh! ooh! I got it:
http://matrix.dumpshock.com/raygun/basics/pmrb.html (HTML version)
http://www.btammolabs.com/fackler/wo...ary_rifles.pdf (PDF)

Is it possible the German military still using these in some limited capacity?
Is it possible you could fill out your profile before posting again?

You new guys sure seem eager to post.

TR
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Old 03-25-2007, 19:09   #45
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Yeah, sorry about that, profile filled. The eagerness was meant to be ironic, as I imagine the opportunity for me to provide any kind of helpful info will be rare around here.
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