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I have heard this mentioned quite a bit lately with people saying find ammo your gun likes and stick with it.

... how?

Do you go buy 50-100 of several brands and see what has a tighter grouping?
Do you find something that is just reliable and goes bang?

I am just not sure I believe there is that much of difference in new bullets that are not russian or something crazy like that.

Take into account like remington white box or blazer brass or federal ... how do you really decided that your gun likes one over the other.


for me, I have used blaser brass 115gr for years and have not had any issues. I tried some remington UMC and saw no difference. I was looking at the ammo sites and saw lawman 1000 round for $210 shipped, I was debating if it would be worth the $20-30 more in price over blaser since it was Lawman.

Where do you draw the line or when do you say that is tight enough for me.

.... reloading your own ammo does not count, since my wife would shoot me if I brought home that setup haha.
 

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The only way to find ammo your gun likes is to run it through your gun. While most modern guns today are very reliable, some guns can be more finicky than others, even in the same models. That said, you can rest assured that the most popular ammo is a good starting point, so it's not like you have to go buy every brand offered in every weight. Start with the most popular brands and pick one you like. Any modern ammo is going to run reliably in most modern guns.

Federal HST or Hydra-Shok, Hornady Critical Defense and Duty, Speer Gold Dot, Winchester SXT...all these are fairly plentiful and should work well for you regardless of what your gun is provided it is one of the modern guns. There are a few of the modern guns that are more picky, but on the whole you should be fine with any of these. Pick one or two and run a few hundred rounds through the gun. That should be enough to let you know how it is going to run for you.
 

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Do you go buy 50-100 of several brands and see what has a tighter grouping?
I have a wide variety of ammo in the various calibers I shoot. If one doesn't work, I'll try another. If none of these work, time to pick up another variety.

Do you find something that is just reliable and goes bang?
Pretty much, yes. I find the accuracy differences between various modern ammo, within each subset (ie defensive, target, practice/training) to be pretty comparable and similar.

I am just not sure I believe there is that much of difference in new bullets that are not russian or something crazy like that.
With the wide variety of ammo available today, there can be a surprising range of compatibility with your gun. Was a harder primer used? Your hammer/striker spring may not be stout enough to ignite. Is the shape of the bullet such that it will not feed reliably in your weapon? Is the powder charge a bit on the light side, preventing proper cycling of the slide, hence causing failures to feed, failures to eject, stovepipes, etc? Is the overall length the cartridge is manufactured to such that it prevents reliable feeding to your weapon?

Again, in terms of accuracy, not that much difference within each subset. But reliable feeding, that is the million dollar question.


Take into account like remington white box or blazer brass or federal ... how do you really decided that your gun likes one over the other

for me, I have used blaser brass 115gr for years and have not had any issues. I tried some remington UMC and saw no difference. I was looking at the ammo sites and saw lawman 1000 round for $210 shipped, I was debating if it would be worth the $20-30 more in price over blaser since it was Lawman.
For range/practice/training ammo, my decision is typically guided by price. Whether the ammo is reliable or not is not that important to me as various failures give me opportunities to practice malfunctions in a random, unexpected fashion.

Where do you draw the line or when do you say that is tight enough for me.
If the ammo is for defense, I want to run 200-300 through my weapon without a failure (caused by the ammo) prior to using it for defense. If the particular round I am testing fails to perform, the test is started over with another choice. I will run 100 or so every year of the defensive ammo in the weapon to make certain something has not changed, either in the weapon or the ammo.
 

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The only gun that I've owned that is ammo-sensitive is a Taurus PT22, and that's because it won't run reliably unless it's using hotter stuff. That's because of the design, and it isn't the only one- there are numerous 22 handguns with the same issue. It is what it is.
If I am not depending on that firearm for defense, I'll keep it- Like the PT. It's just for plinking, and it was given to me. If I do depend on it, I prefer that it run anything. While I understand that any mechanical device can be finicky, and have the potential to fail, I want that chance to be as minuscule as possible.
 
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GCBHM breaks it down fairly well.

I would add that for typical range practice, you're fine with most any ammo from major manufacturers. Understand that "typical range practice" isn't for measuring hits or competition and certainly not for lifesaving - other than firearm familiarity. If you find a low cost ammunition for your range work - buy and shoot it.

Ignoring information relating to quality or reliability of a specific ammunition for "typical range practice". Quite the opposite is what you should be buying range ammo for. Consider that one of the major liabilities of carrying a firearm for personal protection is how you recover a failure when your life is on the line. As with anything firearms related - your ability to recover failures to feed, failures to load, failures to fire - ALL impact your ability to protect yourself when you need to. Without practicing working with those failures - without experiencing them and practicing recovering from them - it's not at all unlikely you have a "what do I do" moment that can have disastrous results. That's one of the things "typical range practice" helps you learn to deal with.

That said - when it comes to personal protection ammunition - buy the best and practice with it as much as you can. Know what works best in your fireams.
 

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The first qualifier for me is "Will it feed reliably?"
I have seen many types of JHP that will jam in the feed ram my 1911s, so I avoid them completely. Granted some demand a ramp polishing, but bullet shapes matter.

Second is primers. I have a case of 9mm that works in all but one gun. That is not acceptable when buying large quantities.
 

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Good suggestions above! I'll add one thought about 9mm practice ammo. I try to run practice 9mil that's on the warmer side of affordable ammo.

I mean, the typical 115g UMC, Win White Box, Federal and most reloads are so soft-shooting, they're really nothing like running the defensive loads we carry. IMO, it's better to at least include a healthy portion of 124g loads in your 9mm practice diet.

My preference is Speer's Lawman or Federal's American Eagle 124s. These still aren't as snappy as the HSTs & Gold Dots I carry, but they're not nearly as 'sleepy' as those 115s...

Cheers
 

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I haven't found any ammo yet that any of my SIGs won't feed.

If I come across one (defense or practice round) that really is bad in accuracy at combat distances, I will select a more accurate one.

When it comes to quality defense loads, they are all sufficiently accurate at self-defense ranges; with one exception that I shall not name in order to avoid this thread turning into yet another brand vs caliber vs stopping power vs yada, yada, yada.
 

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I've shot Fiocchi in my 9s since day one and never had a reason to change. For my FireFly I went with the recommended CCI Mini Mags and then Browning BPRs recommended by my LGS. The BPRs are slightly hotter than the CCIs and are only about 6.5 cents per round. They run fine and are cheap enough, so if it ain't broke don't fix it.
 
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There are tons of gell test videos and ballistic charts available. I pick what performs best in guns similar to mine - caliber, barrel length, etc. Then I try it. The only problem I've ever experienced is with the 14 rd mag for my Sig 227 sas. It was the mag, not the gun; I no longer have 14 rounders for my 227.
 

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Helpful for a new shooter (me) to read. I know some of these questions might get tiresome to you guys who have been shooting for a long time, but this has been a big question for me lately....now I have some answers! My plan was to go buy 50/100 rounds of a few different brands and see what (if any) the gun seems to prefer. Thanks!
 

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Do you go buy 50-100 of several brands and see what has a tighter grouping?
never have done that yet for "range ammo". Don't care about how individual "bullets" effect "groupings" only how I personally effect groupings.

Do you find something that is just reliable and goes bang?
Brass only cases (or nickel coated brass). Grain bullet head at best price w/ S/H. For range use everything else is assumed reliable.

for me, I have used blaser brass 115gr for years and have not had any issues. I tried some remington UMC and saw no difference. I was looking at the ammo sites and saw lawman 1000 round for $210 shipped, I was debating if it would be worth the $20-30 more in price over blaser since it was Lawman.

Where do you draw the line or when do you say that is tight enough for me.
Cases must be brass. Pretty simple. Lowest cost shipped. The handguns i use aren't ammo picky.

That said 95% of what i shoot is reload.
 

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1. Buy a box
2. Shoot it
3. Repeat

If it has lots of problems with step 2 then remove that brand from step 1. There are enough brands available then to worry about one unless it happens with lots of brands, then check gun.

Oh, and step 3 is really important and should be done as often as possible!
 

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I find that while type can be a factor with some guns, typically bullet weights create more variables. I have a few 9mm that do not like 115gr but do well with 124 or 147.

Also, this is normally only prevalent at 25+ yards.
 

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Brand is not so much an issue on modern, name brand guns like Sig. Main thing for you if you are a Sig owner will be the grain of the ammo. For instance, my 9mm seems to kick less and be more accurate with 124 gr rounds, as opposed to "standard" 115 gr. My advice, go to your local store, find an ammo brand that comes in a few different grains, and try them all out. Once you get the right grain, then you can see what brand you like. For me, I chose Fiocchi and never looked back.
 

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I look for consistent POI, No FTF and FTE, and also how dirty my gun gets with the different brands. I also check both target and SD ammo in the same evaluation process.
 
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