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 Post subject: Locally Manufactured 9x19 Luger > Review & Range Report

Master at Arms

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Hi TGF

There have been long debates at TGF about local ammo (leaving aside POF made ammo) and there have been numerous questions like is it safe to use or would it damage a gun / injure a shooter ? Is it reliable? Will it feed and eject properly? Is it corrosive? Is it accurate? etc etc.

Various members have been giving their views based on experience however, no one carried out a proper test of this ammo which brings out the facts that enable us to make a decision whether we should use it or not. It is very cheap for sure as compared to Pak made POF ammo and other imported ammos and this is very tempting indeed. Keeping in mind these things, carrying out a detailed test of Pak made non-branded ammo was on the cards since long but I was not getting time. Now I have decided to give it a go if though feasible or of any interest to forum members :mrgreen:

To do the test, few friends have donated 10 rounds each of a number of non-branded ammos and few lots I have purchased from local market. When I say non-branded, I mean an ammo made by a factory / individual which is nota known / registered ammo manufacturer, it is not known what component he used and whether he followed the safety procedures or not.

Please note that the tests hold good for only those ammos which are being tested. There may be many more locally made un-known ammos which are not covered in these tests. The results of these tests should therefore not be applied on all the locally manufactured non-branded ammos.

Now, I will take a few days or may be weeks to carry out these tests and will post complete results alongwith pics when the tests are completed. However, I am going to list down the procedure that I am going to adopt and invite suggestions on that so that I don't miss anything. These are the steps I am going to follow......

Step 1: Take one make of ammo at one time. Inspect the ammo, clean it if dirty, note down the headstamp wordings of each cartridge, measure COAL (cartridge overall length) and cartridge weight (in grains) of each cartridge and mark each cartridge with the same serieal number on which it has been entered in the record with a permanent marker. Take photos of the head stamp and cartridges.

Step 2: Open 5 cartridges in each lot. Weigh the propellant and bullet in each cartridge, note down the primer type (berdan or boxer). Measure length of each bullet and the case. Take pics of propellant, bullet and empty case (from inside). Calculate the seating depth of each cartridge by subtracting case length from COAL alreay measured in step 1 and comparing the difference with the bullet length.

Step 3: Resize the primed cases with a sizing die from which decapping pin has already been taken out. Flare the cases just a little.

Step 4: Reload the propellant accurately and put back the bullet, ensuring standard crimp and same COAL of all cartridges. Note the serial number of these cartridges.

Step 5 - Range Test: Go to the range and shoot each ammo one by one. First, shoot the reloaded 5 cartridges, chronograph the MV of each shot and mark each shot on the target. Take observations for each round like feeding, recoil, ejection, inspect the case and see pressure signs on primer and deforming of the case. Inspect if there is any unburnt propellant in the case, barrel / chamber. Then, shoot the remaining 5 round of the same ammo which were not tempered with, ie, as manufactured by factory and take down the same obsns. Repeat the same procedure for all lots of ammo. I will use Baikal MP446 Viking for the tests. All shots will be from the rest at 15 M distance.

Step 6: Analysis of the data collected so far.

In the end, the tests must answer three questions with regards to local ammo.
1. Is it safe to shoot?
2. Is it reliable?
3. Subject to passing first two stages, than determine that how accurate that ammo is? Please note that accuracy is irrelevant if the ammo is not safe to shoot and is not reliable.


This test does not attempt working out the potency of the ammo (terminal velocity, penetration etc) which is entirely a different subject.

It is going to be quite a tedious job and I hope I will be able to complete it in a week or so.

Open to any suggestions which can make these tests more productive....... :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

Marksman

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WOW. It would be a great service for the members. Thanks for your initiative and time/effort to educate us.
which pistol you'll use for this test ?


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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

TGF Expert Panel

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@ GE
I Think he already said what pistol he would use, the Viking

@ KBW
My only suggestion would be to make some kind of bullet stop right behind the target.
That way you could check the Bullet penetration at the same time as you test accuracy, if the ammo passes all previous tests.
But this would be asking a lot, and I think getting ANY kind of testing should be the top priority, not wait till all conditions are at an optimum for testing all aspects of the ammos capabilities.

The Safety, and reliability should be the Prime aspects of your testing.
But I dont think no mater how muck testing is done, there will be someone whom wants another kind of test done.

I commend your efforts to provide a valuable service to the other members, and they should be satisfied that you are willing to do any kind of testing at all.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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I think almost all major concerns have been covered. Potency and penetration are a different subject, and come at a later stage, only if the safety and reliability have been established. I would have preferred to see the ammo performance from 25mtrs, instead of 15 mtrs alone. however, even at 15mtrs, a comparison can still be made.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@ Saif
Accuracy and penetration would be better tested at 25 meters.
But all the critical tests must first pass the BASIC tests, to get to the next stage.

But if KBW gives you a green light on the first two tests, and it is reasonably Accurate on the third test at 15 meters, Then I would think it would be up to the others to do the ADVANCED Testing on their ammo of choice, With " THEIR GUN "
at a distance that is comfortable For THEM.

But I am sure that if one wants to supply KBW with all the ammo he will ever need, then he will test it gladly for a Small Fee and a Percentage of the Ammo.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

Master at Arms

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Saif and Larry
I will check the accuracy of the ammo but that is not my primary mission in these tests. As I pointed out in my post, checking that locally manufactured ammo is safe to shoot and is reliable is more important. And I do not want to loose my focus by doing too many things which I might not be able to manage due to time / resource shortage.

You see, these local ammos cost 12-20 a pop as compared to POF and imported ammos which start from 40-45 a pop and go up to hundreds of rupees per round.

What I am trying to say is that a reliable locally made ammo which is absolutely safe to shoot is good enough for range practice. Afterall, one would be buying 4-6 cartridges in the price of one. It may not be very accurate but it can do ok as practice ammo. For competitions and for SD, one may have quality ammo.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@ KBW
I agree.
Plus , the accuracy of any ammo, is more closely related to the GUN that it is fired in.
Even in the same model gun, there can be Vast Differances accuracy with LOWER Priced Ammo.
The same goes for Muzzle Volocity, and sometimes overall reliability.

Your basic tests, are what the other members need , but do not have the Means or equipment to accuratly evaluate.
But EVERYBODY, Must do further testing on their own.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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Wow, this is simply great news. While I do not understand most of the reloading lingo that you have used, I can understand you are going to measure them in every possible way. When you open them up, which you will do, please do also share the kind of propellant that has been used. I am not asking the chemical analysis(off course that's not possible), just simple things like Black powder or whatever it is. I remember testing local ammo once in Lahore, and still haven't been able to figure out what kind of bullet was used. It was lead with some sort of brass coating? Not sure. Would appreciate if you could tell us about the primers being used and the bullet itself. Sir, I hope I am not asking too much. If possible please do so. And if you need some sort of local "Desi" ammo 9mm, I will be glad to send you some form here, various brands, that is. I also wish to thank you in advance for doing this for the mutual benefit of all. On a lighter note, putting your Viking at risk, stay safe ;)

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

Master at Arms

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six_shooter wrote:
Sir, I hope I am not asking too much.
Not at all 6S. In fact, all that you have mentioned is already covered in step 1 and 2 of the tests.

six_shooter wrote:
And if you need some sort of local "Desi" ammo 9mm, I will be glad to send you some form here, various brands, that is. ;)
That would be great :handgestures-salute:

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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Have to go to the market in a day or two and will let you know. Thanks

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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Will baikal resist the non branded ammo tests ??

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@ Canik
If the gun wont hold up to the tests, would you buy the ammo ? ? ?
KBW is providing you with a great service, and sometimes you just have to take CALCULATED chances.

I am sure , that with his initial inspection and evaluations, the safety factor is going to go way up.
And who knows, he may find you safe ammo that will be worth shooting , at a lower cost to all of you.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

Master at Arms

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Through with step 1-4 of the review. O boy, it's taking some time because there are so many things to see. What I can say at this stage is that ...... "Very Revealing". Keep tuned... :)

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@ KBW
Do we have to pitch in and hire you an assistant.
Maybe Kari Byron from Mythbusters is available to help you.
I see her on the show testing guns all the time.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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If I was living near you I would volunteer for this kind of work, then you wouldn't need to hire Kari Byron :)

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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This is going to be exciting ... thanks KBW and hats off to you for the research you're doing for the forum! :text-bravo:

A few points ... in step 4, you said you'll re-load the ammo correctly. I assume that can only be done if the powder type is known. Of not, it might get dangerous.

Second, most of the local reloaded ammo (specifically made in Darra) have a very heavy or thick Iron/Steel jacket on it, which is then copper plated. Do make them go through the bullet resizing die (I'm guessing they'll simply drop through to the other side) before you fire them. The thin copper plating might scrap off during firing, leading to Steel-Steel contact between the barrel and the bullet!

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@ MR
You do have a Valid point, and these are the things that ammo buyers need to know before they purchase ammo for their guns to shoot.
At some point in the testing , or in future testing, I hope the bullets like this get shot into a bullet stop like I used for my penetration tests.
That way, the bullet can be recovered and inspected to Actually see if the steel jacket is contacting the barrel steel, and the visual effects on the bullet.
Then we can surmise what that ammo will do to a barrel over time.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

Master at Arms

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MR, the ammo reloaded would be far less dangerous than what it already is. You have to trust me on that :)

Secondly, most of the military ammos, specially the old ones, come with a copper plated steel jacket. This includes most of the Russian ammo (including 9x19 and 9x18 Barnaul) and even the current NATO 7.62x51 ammo that I have is steel jacketed. However, when it comes from patent manufacturers, the steel used in the jackets is softer than that of barrel. It always comes in contact with the barrel rifling because copper plating is not deep and strong enough to avoid this contact. I do not want to give my findings in bits and pieces before the actual report but on visual inspection, the steel jacket was found of thin metal. So a properly made steel jacket is not a problem but a bullet of incorrect dimensions is certainly a problem. However, we will read about it in more details when I post the report :)

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@ KBW
You have us all sitting on pins and needles waiting for the results.
I thank you for being Willing and Able to provide this kind of information to the members.
You have learned well in the past year, and it is a sign of greatness to be willing to share your knowledge with others.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@ KBW - Will be a double treat for me coz I own the test firearm you are using for this TEST :)


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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@LAGS
Thanks for your comments. I will try my best to make sure you guys don't sit on needles. And if unavoidable, the needles should be broad ones so that they pinch less :mrgreen:
Now I am left with the range test which may take 3-4 days. It's remains cloudy in Islamabad nowadays for most part of the day, specially during evenings. Since last ten days, it rains every day in Rawalpindi Islamabad. And you understand that for getting fool proof reading with a chrony, I have to conduct these tests in a bright sunny day. But I hope I will be able to do it by this weekend as the weather is getting better (for shooting chrony :mrgreen: )

Wajeeh Hassan, thanks for your comments. In fact the focus of the test is on ammo and not the weapon. I have selected MP446 Viking as it has a very strong chamber with lower tolerances. I am expecting that some of the ammo may generate chamber pressure towards the higher limits and also, the cases may not be properly resized during reloading. Such an ammo will shoot ok in a gun like Viking but in a gun like CZ which has tight tolerance, I may encounter more stoppages.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@ KBW
I didnt realize you were going to Chrony the loads also.
I just assumed you were testing for feed and ejection.
The guys are going to owe you Big Time for providing such comperhensive testing.

I think you are going to save everybody time and a Lot of money over the long run, trying different ammo in their guns.
It may also keep them safe.

And I hope that after your testing and narrowing down their ammo of choice,
The other members will step up and pitch in with their own testing,and reviews.
The members will have a vaster selection of weapons that you may not have access to, and it would be good to get further tests from them, even if it is only for accuracy, or function in their gun.

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@ KBW - I know and thanks for the clarification.


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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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Waiting.....anxiously.... :)

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 Post subject: Re: How about it..........

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@KBW
Sir this is great initiative. Like all others i am also waiting for the report. I hope that something good comes out about our local ammo and it will be great if we find some good ammo which is safe for the guns to shoot. This way we may be able to buy three times more ammo for our practice in same money.

Waiting for the results :pray:

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