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Posted: 5/20/2005 7:52:18 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/20/2005 9:35:43 AM EDT by Old_Painless]
A few days ago, Tman and I found some Blazer 9mm ammo cheap at Academy. We shot it, but felt that it might not be as accurate as we thought other ammo was. But, instead of depending on "feelings" (), we decided to conduct a test.

We brought our handloads and three cheap brands of 9mm ammo to the range.

Here is the set-up:



We shot my Glock 34, off of bags, at around 35-40 feet. Why not further? Because these 56 and 63 year old eyes can't do their best work at longer ranges.

Here's Tman shooting his groups.



I caught a round of Wolf in the air.

We shot several groups with the following:

Handloads, 115 grain Remington JHP, 5.0 gr. WW 231.

Winchester White Box 9mm.

Wolf 9mm.

And Blazer 9mm.

Here's some representative groups:



As you can see, the groups indicate that this ammo was plenty accurate enough for practice ammo.

Lessons Learned:

1. Our general opinion as to accuracy is that they were good. Wolf was best, next Winchester White Box, and then Blazer. But all were accurate.

2. All ammo functioned 100%. I had carried this Glock 34 to Thunder Ranch three times, and it has never failed.

3. We have over 80+ years of handloading and make some good handloads. We use a Dillon press. But the factory stuff was slightly better accuracy-wise than our stuff. The difference in price is very small.

Bottom Line: You can't justify handloading at the present low prices of this cheap 9mm ammo.

And even though it is relatively cheap, it is plenty accurate.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 7:54:22 AM EDT
Cool report... I wish .45 wasn't so expensive...

Makes me want 9mm...

Shawn
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 7:54:34 AM EDT
Excellent post, as all ways.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 7:56:11 AM EDT
Thanks O_P!!

Scott
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 7:56:14 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/20/2005 7:56:30 AM EDT by PAEBR332]
O_P: Did you shoot more than one group with each type of ammo? if so, did you measure group sizes? If you did, I would like to see the numbers.

P.S. You forgot: Shooting stuff (even paper) is fun.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 7:57:22 AM EDT
Is that the stuff that I keep hearing about for less than $4 for 50? I wish there was an academy here....


Meantime, wolf .45 ball groups better in my SA lightweight than any quality hollowpoint does.....go figure.


(but blazer .40 shot PATTERNS in my .40 hi-power, which is otherwise a very accurate pistol)


I suppose that just verifies that you shouldn't make assumptions....
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 7:58:45 AM EDT

Originally Posted By PAEBR332:
O_P: Did you shoot more than one group with each type of ammo? if so, did you measure group sizes? If you did, I would like to see the numbers.

P.S. You forgot: Shooting stuff (even paper) is fun.



No, we didn't measure group sizes. We shot a lot of groups. The ones pictured are representative.

This was just an informal test. We weren't trying to draw concrete conclusions as to measured group size. We just wanted to see if there were big differences in accuracy.

There weren't.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 8:01:38 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:

Originally Posted By PAEBR332:
O_P: Did you shoot more than one group with each type of ammo? if so, did you measure group sizes? If you did, I would like to see the numbers.

P.S. You forgot: Shooting stuff (even paper) is fun.



No, we didn't measure group sizes. We shot a lot of groups. The ones pictured are representative.

This was just an informal test. We weren't trying to draw concrete conclusions as to measured group size. We just wanted to see if there were big differences in accuracy.

There weren't.



Thanks O_P. Now if only Wolf did not stank so bad...
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 8:02:19 AM EDT
I really like Blaser for my G34 – I’ve never had a problem with it – probably been through a dozen cases of the stuff. Natchez loves me.

I just got through burning up the last case of Wolf pistol ammunition I’ll ever buy. For some reason it was a bitch to load in magazines, and while I only experienced one light primer strike in the whole case, when working the slide to load off a loaded magazine – sometimes the stuff just didn’t want to sit all the way in the chamber. That’s a great way to start off an IPSC or IDPA stage – having to hit the back of the slide with your hand.

Never had any issues with the Winchester White box either – I just prefer the Blaser because through my 34 – it’s the most accurate.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 8:04:36 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Dolomite:
Never had any issues with the Winchester White box either – I just prefer the Blaser because through my 34 – it’s the most accurate.



Good point.

I would buy which ever of the three was cheaper when I needed some.

It seems to all be good stuff and reasonably accurate.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 8:06:34 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/20/2005 8:07:05 AM EDT by mcnielsen]
And dont forget-

Shooting stuff is still fun!

ETA: Man, I wish I was retired...
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 8:16:35 AM EDT
Why didn't you post a pic of the group resulting from the handloaded Rem 115 grainers?
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 8:19:04 AM EDT
I had a wierd experience with Blazer ammo, I used to buy it a lot and get excellent results with it in my HK USP tactical.

Well I went through several boxes with great results. Then a few months later I picked up another box. Oddly enough (I was shooting balloons), I could not hit anything. Funny cause at the time I was trying to show a guy how great and accurate my tactical was.

I was beginning to think something was wrong with the gun. Luckily I had some extra winchester ammo and I tried that. I had no problems with it, was popping 8 inch balloons at 50yds every time.


Must have just been a bad batch, but I shy away from Blazer now (It made me look bad )
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 8:30:34 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Coolio:
Why didn't you post a pic of the group resulting from the handloaded Rem 115 grainers?



Because you can't go out and buy a box of our handloads.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 8:31:37 AM EDT

Originally Posted By mcnielsen:
And dont forget-

Shooting stuff is still fun!

ETA: Man, I wish I was retired...



It's even better than you can dream.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 9:00:15 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/20/2005 9:02:21 AM EDT by Coolio]

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:

Originally Posted By Coolio:
Why didn't you post a pic of the group resulting from the handloaded Rem 115 grainers?



Because you can't go out and buy a box of our handloads.



That may be true, O-P. (Although you could share your recipe.)
Look, the reason I ask is because the premise of your test seems to be, "Is economical factory ammo as accurate as our handloads?". But you never actually answered that question for the rest of us.

I'm not trying to dog you, I'm just asking the question.

P.S. I enjoy your "Box-O-Truth" posts.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 9:05:04 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/20/2005 9:05:24 AM EDT by nationwide]
Another great post, thanks O_P!
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 9:05:55 AM EDT
better than sex?
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 9:13:21 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/20/2005 9:16:29 AM EDT by brianksain]
He has no test bed to base an answer to that question on ...

BK

EDIT: But he does have a cool TV with the Military channel and no nagging ...
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 9:25:55 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/20/2005 9:37:05 AM EDT by Old_Painless]

Originally Posted By Coolio:

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:

Originally Posted By Coolio:
Why didn't you post a pic of the group resulting from the handloaded Rem 115 grainers?



Because you can't go out and buy a box of our handloads.



That may be true, O-P. (Although you could share your recipe.)
Look, the reason I ask is because the premise of your test seems to be, "Is economical factory ammo as accurate as our handloads?". But you never actually answered that question for the rest of us.

I'm not trying to dog you, I'm just asking the question.

P.S. I enjoy your "Box-O-Truth" posts.



Sorry, I didn't realize that I had failed to supply the information in my original post.

I didn't keep any of our handload targets, but they were just about like the others. The factory ammo may have had a slightly better average accuracy than our handloads, but it would not be statistically significant.

Surely no reason to handload for a 9mm rather than buy cheap factory stuff.

Edited to add:

I thought I had said this. You were making me think I am going nuts.


3. We have over 80+ years of handloading and make some good handloads. We use a Dillon press. But the factory stuff was slightly better accuracy-wise than our stuff. The difference in price is very small.


Link Posted: 5/20/2005 9:26:58 AM EDT

Originally Posted By brianksain:
He has no test bed to base an answer to that question on ...

BK

EDIT: But he does have a cool TV with the Military channel and no nagging ...



You little fart.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 10:00:00 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/20/2005 10:01:22 AM EDT by Coolio]

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:

Originally Posted By Coolio:

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:

Originally Posted By Coolio:
Why didn't you post a pic of the group resulting from the handloaded Rem 115 grainers?



Because you can't go out and buy a box of our handloads.



That may be true, O-P. (Although you could share your recipe.)
Look, the reason I ask is because the premise of your test seems to be, "Is economical factory ammo as accurate as our handloads?". But you never actually answered that question for the rest of us.

I'm not trying to dog you, I'm just asking the question.

P.S. I enjoy your "Box-O-Truth" posts.



Sorry, I didn't realize that I had failed to supply the information in my original post.

I didn't keep any of our handload targets, but they were just about like the others. The factory ammo may have had a slightly better average accuracy than our handloads, but it would not be statistically significant.

Surely no reason to handload for a 9mm rather than buy cheap factory stuff.

Edited to add:

I thought I had said this. You were making me think I am going nuts.


3. We have over 80+ years of handloading and make some good handloads. We use a Dillon press. But the factory stuff was slightly better accuracy-wise than our stuff. The difference in price is very small.





Thanks O-P!
That answers my question.
You see, I'm a handloader. I enjoy reloading purely as entertainment. In truth, I have almost no interest in inexpensive factory ammo, so the original question you asked was more intriguing to me than perhaps to other people who have already decided that the various inexpensive brands of ammo are the answer for their needs. For me, the real issue was, "If you're a handloader, is there any practical reason to reload 9mm ammo". I guess the answer has to be, "No."
For sure, that's not going to stop me from rolling my own. As I already said, it's entertainment as far as I'm concerned.
Good thread!
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 10:05:44 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Coolio:

Thanks O-P!
That answers my question.
You see, I'm a handloader. I enjoy reloading purely as entertainment. In truth, I have almost no interest in inexpensive factory ammo, so the original question you asked was more intriguing to me than perhaps to other people who have already decided that the various inexpensive brands of ammo are the answer for their needs. For me, the real issue was, "If you're a handloader, is there any practical reason to reload 9mm ammo". I guess the answer has to be, "No."
For sure, that's not going to stop me from rolling my own. As I already said, it's entertainment as far as I'm concerned.
Good thread!



Like you, I am a confirmed handloader.

I will still roll my own as far as unusual rifle and pistol rounds go. I doubt that .44 Specials will ever be as cheap as I can load them.

And, as far as accuracy goes, I can handload .223 ammo that cannot be matched by a factory.

But for general plinking, especially shooting as much as I do, there just isn't any economical justification for me to handload 9mm when I can buy it for $80-$90 a thousand.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 10:06:39 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 10:42:26 AM EDT

Originally Posted By The_Beer_Slayer:

i bought a case yesterday out the door for 86.74 for 1000 rounds.



"How you gonna beat it?"
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 10:50:51 AM EDT
and the Wolfe was closer to point of aim, interesting!
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 11:15:59 AM EDT
Great Post O_P!
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 11:28:09 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/20/2005 11:28:43 AM EDT by Old_Painless]

Originally Posted By RMac:
and the Wolfe was closer to point of aim, interesting!



An interesting point.

The pistol has adjustable sights. It was sighted-in with the Wolf, as that's what I took to Thunder Ranch.

But it is interesting that different brands of ammo will shoot to slightly different points of impact. Of course, this could easily be adjusted for with the adjustable sights, so it really is not a negative problem.

But it is interesting.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 12:03:34 PM EDT
I too shoot blazer from Academy. I recently bought a lot of 124 grain usgi issue federal from ammoman. It shoots well and is hotter, but you can't beat that 3.86 price for 50 blazers.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 12:55:40 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mushoot:
I too shoot blazer from Academy. I recently bought a lot of 124 grain usgi issue federal from ammoman. It shoots well and is hotter, but you can't beat that 3.86 price for 50 blazers.



Yep, Blazer is not as "hot" as some others.

But it is $3.86 a box.
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