Most Reliable Ammunition


August 11, 2007, 08:44 AM
Have seen a lot of threads on a lot of forums on the most reliable handguns, and have enjoyed them all. But a lot of times in my experience the malfunction was not a problem with the handgun but a problem with the ammunition.

Most of us shoot at the range with the cheapest ammunition we can buy which might be a start of the problem, but I know a lot of us also shoot defensive ammo and our own reloads.

My question with all your experience what has been the most reliable ammunition that you have bought over the counter, brand and caliber and type.

My next question is for those who reload how reliable has your reloaded ammuntion been, and compared to commercial ammo?

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August 11, 2007, 09:57 AM
I have shot a number of brands of OTC ammo, and none of them were unreliable. Remington (22lr), Winchester (.223 Rem, .45 ACP, .308 Win), Federal (.308 Win, .223 Rem, 22lr), and Black Hills (.223 Rem, 308 Win). I will say that out of 3 bulk loose pack Remington 22lr, I had 1 squib. Fortunately I was firing it out of my Buckmark and it did make it out the barrel.

I have found that reloads are just as reliable, however, MUCH more accurate, as you can tailor the load to the firearms harmonics. Just takes time to find the load.

Mikee Loxxer
August 11, 2007, 10:09 AM
The only problem I have ever had with ammunition reliability-wise is with pistol cartridges reloaded using a progressive press. On the first attempt the cartridge would not fire, it would work just fine on the second attempt. I surmised that the primers had not been completely seated and when trying them the first time the firing pin would properly seat it making it work on the second attempt.

August 11, 2007, 10:35 AM
Remember the rule for surplus ammo, Dont shoot ammo from a country you wouldnt drink the water in.

August 11, 2007, 11:13 AM
Never had any unreliable ammo.

August 11, 2007, 06:07 PM
I have bought reloads at dick's that were dirty and had more misfires than I care to think about. This said I have never had a misfire from factory new ammo but I sure as heck have had some that left a load of crap in the barrel (mostly federal)

August 11, 2007, 08:39 PM
Green Tiger or whatever that cheap 7.62x39 that was widely avaliable a few months ago didn't like my AK, it had two FTF in a box.
Federal works good, but dirties the barrel up horribly.
Everything else I've shot is fine.

August 11, 2007, 08:59 PM
I've had winchester .44 specials that didn't have a flash hole. The only ammo I trust is my own handloads.

August 11, 2007, 10:39 PM
CCI/Blazer rimfire .22 seems to have rather stout primers, at least in my Buckmark and 10/22.

August 11, 2007, 10:57 PM
The most reliable ammo is the stuff thats in your gun when you need it.....

Plinking ammo is one thing...the stuff you put in a CCW or Homeland Defense Firearms is a whole other ball of wax.

Don't buy crap if you can avoid it.....your life may depend on it.

August 11, 2007, 11:30 PM
Never had any trouble and had decent accuracy with all the Popular brands, Winchester, Federal, Remington, ect. Wolf ammo also does well in my AK and shoots very well out of my old Luger but I pretty much won't use it in anything else. I also have never had any real problems with any of the surplus ammo I have used in my gas guns but I will not use the Indian surplus ammo.
The only real problems I have had with any ammo manufacturer was with American (Amerc) ammo in .30 carbine. I have about 200 rounds of it that I will not shoot anymore.

How relaible is my reloaded ammo?
I would say no more than any of the popular brands but it is more accurate because I shoot loads developed specifically for each rifle I own. Hanguns I am not so particular about developing extreeme accuracy but more to develope loads that make them shoot 100% reliably.

August 12, 2007, 12:34 AM
I can't remember ever having a round of centerfire ammo fail to fire. I've had some brands that weren't as accurate or was more dirty than other brands. I try to stay with well known brands for factory ammo (Remington, CCI, Winchester, Federal, etc.). I'm sure I've probably had a rimfire not fire, just can't think of a time right now.

As far as reliability of reloads vs. factory, you have absolute quality control over ammo you load. There's always a chance, albeit very small, that a factory round may have some defect that affects reliability (no flash hole, missing powder, incorrect crimp, etc). Most of these are easily noticed when reloading.

August 12, 2007, 12:40 AM
Remember the rule for surplus ammo, Dont shoot ammo from a country you wouldnt drink the water in.I thought it was: Never buy ammo from a country that's never won a war.

There's room for both I guess.

August 12, 2007, 12:48 AM
I haven't meet an ammo that doesn't go bang almost every time you pull the trigger.

Most ammo issues have to do with cycling, like not enough power to push the slide back, or sticking in the chamber because of coating of some such.

August 12, 2007, 12:51 AM
I use Winchester White box for my target shooting and I've only ever had two failure in all of my shooting experience. I use Wolf ammo in my AKs and I've had a few failures with that stuff.

As for my defensive ammo (MagSafes in the XD .45 and Federal HydraShoks in .357mag, .40 S&W, and 9mm Luger), with which I practice less frequently, I have never had any problems.

August 12, 2007, 11:21 AM
No ammo is 100% reliable, but even the worst (surplus) factory centerfire ammo only has a few duds per 1000 typically.

Rimfire ammo, especially the bulk pack stuff can be a few per hundred depending on the lot. Cheapest Remington .22lr has much higher dud rate that the cheapest Federal or CCI or Winchester in my shooting experience.


August 12, 2007, 11:26 AM
i've never had problems with any factory ammo, and i usually shoot cheap stuff. (cci blazer, wwb, monarch)

edit: actually i've had blazer brass .45 that had bad bullet setback out of the box

August 12, 2007, 11:46 AM
The only ammo issues I ever recall having was with rimfire, specifically Remington Thunderdolts.

August 12, 2007, 12:23 PM
Had a box of factory .22 Hornet that was overloaded or overcrimped to the point that I had a primer back out completely and bleed gases into the action!
Tried to pull a bullet from another to check the powder using a collet puller = couldn't do it:fire: Sent the box back to Remington = Never heard from them, have never bought their product since.:cuss::cuss::cuss:

August 12, 2007, 10:30 PM
The vast majority of modern ammunition is reliable, so reliable as to put virtually all other man made products to shame. Even rimfire ammo which has more misfires than centerfire will go bang +99.99% of the time if it is new ammo used in a modern firearm. Older milsurp is still quite reliable for target practice, hunting etc although the chances of it not going bang are slightly higher than new ammo it will still function as intended most of the time.

The only ammuniton I have ever had a problem with was new manufacture Brown Bear in .223, I had about a 10% misfire rate out of the case I had bought. I was able to pick up these rounds, reuse them and they all went bang the second time in my AR. I would not stake my life on that ammo but it was certainly adequate for all other purposes. Aside from that lot I have had perhaps a dozen centerfire rounds fail to function as intended out of many thousands I have shot.

As long as you are using new modern made American ammuniton that has been stored in a reasonably stable environment you will have a malfunction rate that approaches zero. If you get more than two or three misfires out of a batch of ammo you should consider that entire batch as suspect and relegate it to practice use only. The odds of that happening are minimal though. Considering the billions of rounds manufactured each year, and the
complexities of automated manufacturing to the tolerances that ammunition is required to meet it is actually quite a feat the we have so few malfunctions as most people have. Compared to many other manufactureres ammunition companies do an excellent job of quality control.

August 13, 2007, 01:19 AM


In rimfire, the most reliable I've used in my guns is Aguila--it goes where I aim it, and I've not had a FTF so far.

Almost all factory centerfire ammo is reliable, but if I could only shoot one non-premium brand (Like Norma) it would be Magtech. Clean, consistent, reliable, and usually a bit less expensive.

August 13, 2007, 01:09 PM
Most reliable over the counter = COR-BON.
Most reliable cheap OTC = Seller & Belloit
Most reliable reloads = Mine I inspect every case, seat every primer, check each powder charge, seat every bullet and crimp in separate operation and store bullet down in fifty round cases so I can run my fingertip over each primer to check for high primers. Never had a failure with my reloads and I load some 10mm stuff to the original Norma specs with 200gr Hornady XTPs.

August 13, 2007, 01:20 PM
Most reliable: My own reloads.
Most reliable centerfire common/plinking pistol: Magtech
Most reliable centerfire defensive pistol: Hornady TAP/Hornady Custom
Most reliable centerfire rifle. : Federal Gold Medal
Most reliable rimfire: Eley Target
Least reliable centerfire common/plinking pistol: CCI Blazer Aluminium case.
Least reliable centerfire defensive pistol: hard to say.
Least reliable centerfire rifle: Yugoslavian Misurp 7.62x39
Least reliable rimfire: Remington 500 rd Walmart Bulkpack .22

August 13, 2007, 04:10 PM
Most frequent FTF's hve been with rimfire cartridges. Remington in particular. Never any problems with centerfire except some really cruddy 7.5 MAS that was made in Iraq many years ago.

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