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.56-56 Spencer
Type Rifle
Place of origin USA
Production history
Designer Christopher Spencer
Specifications
Bullet diameter .550 in (14.0 mm)
Neck diameter .560 in (14.2 mm)
Shoulder diameter .560 in (14.2 mm)
Base diameter .560 in (14.2 mm)
Rim diameter .645 in (16.4 mm)
Case length .875 in (22.2 mm)
Overall length 1.545 in (39.2 mm)
Ballistic performance
Bullet weight/type Velocity Energy
350 gr (23 g) 1,200 ft/s (370 m/s) 1,125 ft·lbf (1,525 J)
Source(s): Barnes & Amber[1]

The .56-56 Spencer was an American black powder rifle cartridge.

Designed for the Spencer rifle and carbine, patented 6 March 1860, it was employed by cavalry during the American Civil War, first appearing at Sharpsburg in rifle form. No Spencer carbines were on issue at the Battle of Gettysburg, though two units under Custer had the rifles. The .56-56 was loaded with a slug of 350–360 gr (22.7–23.3 g) over 42–45 gr (2.7–2.9 g) of black powder. It was loaded by a variety of companies, and was also used in the Ballard and Joslyn carbines. It is a short-ranged cartridge, ineffective on anything larger than deer. Commercially loaded ammunition continued to be available into the 1920s.

Nomenclature[edit]

The nomenclature of Spencer cartridges were unique. Unlike later cartridges such as the .44-40 Winchester and .45-70, where the first number indicated caliber and the second the charge weight, the .56-56 refers solely to the case. The first 56 is the diameter of the case at the base .56 inches (14.2 mm), measured just past the rim, and the second 56 is the diameter at the case mouth, also 0.56 inches (14 mm). Later versions of the cartridge included the .56-52, .56-50, and .56-46, which had varying degrees of taper in the cases, to accommodate smaller diameter bullets. All of these cartridges are rimfire primed. The actual bullet diameter of the .56-56 varied between .54 and .555 inches (13.7–14.1 mm), depending on ammunition manufacturer. The .56-52, made by Spencer, and the .56-50, made by Springfield, differed only in the degree of crimp, with the .56-50 having a greater crimp; both fired 350 grain .512-inch (13.0 mm) bullets. The .56-46 fired a 320 to 330 grain .465-inch (11.8 mm) bullet.[1]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Barnes, Frank C., ed. by John T. Amber. Cartridges of the World (Northfield, IL: DBI Books, 1972), p. 281, ".56-56 Spencer". ISBN 0-695-80326-3.

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.56-56_Spencer — Please support Wikipedia.
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Shooting 56-56 Spencer Rifle

Cowboy Action Shoot in Titusville, PA, one stage (I'm pretty slow, sorry) Shooting an original 1860 Spencer Rifle in 56-56 Spencer (CF Conversion) Uberti S&W ...

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実弾射撃 M1865 スペンサー カービン (1865 Spencer Carbine)

実銃「M1865 スペンサーカービン」.56-50弾レバーアクションライフルを体験。ラスベガスの射撃場にて。 Shooting of the Spencer Repeating Rifle Model 1865....

Loading the .56-50 Spencer Rifle blank for only 25 cents each!!!!!!!!

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1 news items

American Rifleman (press release) (blog)

American Rifleman (press release) (blog)
Thu, 04 Feb 2016 11:41:01 -0800

I know that you will be glad to know that the US Army has decided to (re)adopt the .56-56 Spencer as the new round to replace the 5.62 Nato based on your analysis. Larger than a .45 with a 360 grain bone crushing bullet the jihadists will convert to ...
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