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Old September 30, 2012, 02:19 AM   #1
p95
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Federal 9mm ammo

My brother and I were out shooting today, and I had my Ruger p95 and a box of federal champion 9mm 100 value pack. I had already shot a mag of hornady critical defense with no problems. Then load up a few mags of the federal. I got through one mag then I start getting failure to ejects and failure to feed. First thought was maybe the gun was dirty, stripped it down it was clean. So I load back up and ftf fte start again. At one point I put one in the chamber and dropped the mag out and fired, everything seemed fine until I racked the slide and out pops the empty casing. Anyway I said all that to ask this, did I just get a bad batch of ammo or is this a common problem with federal?
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Old September 30, 2012, 02:51 AM   #2
iraiam
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I am not aware of any common problems with Federal ammunition, it is my experience that they are a top shelf brand.

Are you sure you didn't develop a mechanical problem with the extractor? It may be uncommon, but I had that happen to me once on a 1911 pistol.
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Old September 30, 2012, 06:38 AM   #3
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Are you sure you didn't develop a mechanical problem with the extractor?
+1. Did switching to different ammo subsequently solve the problem, or did you just give up at that point?

How did the rims of the ejected brass look? How about the empty casing that didn't eject? A bad extractor will often leave deep scratches or take little nibbles out of the rim as the extractor jumps over it.

I suggest inspecting the extractor. It should have a sharp edge and corners, and should not be clogged with powder residue and brass shavings. Try prying it outwards with your finger; I'm not terribly familiar with the P95, but on most automatic pistols, moving the extractor with your finger is difficult but possible.
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Old September 30, 2012, 06:58 AM   #4
thedudeabides
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New gun? Heavy slide? Firm recoil spring? Small grain ammo?

My P30L stovepiped a few 115 gr, so I fed it some NATO rounds to break it in. My SP2022 had a few hiccups with 115 gr ammo when brand new.
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Old September 30, 2012, 06:59 AM   #5
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Hhmmm....Federal Champion is Federal's discount brand that is commonly (but not exclusively) found at Wal-Mart. It's has a reputation for being under-powered." There's a whole host of problems in semi-auto pistols that can be associated with "non-robust" ammunition. I'm thinking failure to cycle properly is one of those problems. I've thinking that the post from Dude...is a very likely explanation to your problem--Patrice
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Old September 30, 2012, 07:50 AM   #6
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It's has a reputation for being under-powered
I've found this to be the case as well. Several of my guns eject it very weakly although they do function fine with it. My guess is that it was the ammo (could be a bad batch or just the underpowered nature of it); only one way to know for sure though--try something a little hotter. Speer Lawmen is full powered practice ammo if you can find it. If not Brown Bear is relatively hot 115gr 9mm as well.
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Old September 30, 2012, 08:06 AM   #7
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I've chrono'd that Federal 115 gr FMJ, 9mm ammunition through a Glock 19 and got 1085 fps for an average of 5 shots. By contrast, Remington Golden Saber 124 JHPs went 1151 fps for 3 shots; while Winchester White Box 115 JHPs went 1041 fps. If any are under powered, they aren't by very much and function well in all my 9's. (Sig P290, Colt Combat Commander, Colt Gov't Model with 5" barrel, Beretta 92, and Glock 19)

I'd recheck your extractor hook, recoil spring and mainspring for wear or damage, also the chamber condition...i.e. nicks or rough machining marks.

Best regards, Rod
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Old September 30, 2012, 01:06 PM   #8
WyMark
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I've put several thousand of them through my P228 without a single ftf, fte or any problem whatsoever.

I have about 1500 of them in the garage now, but any time I find a 100 rd pack in Walmart I grab it.
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Old September 30, 2012, 04:15 PM   #9
Coltman 77
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I like Federal American Eagle for range practice. Tried two boxes of Federal Champion and it just wasn't up to par, even for range ammo.
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Old September 30, 2012, 07:16 PM   #10
p95
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I forgot to mention after the federal ammo I loaded some Winchester pdx1, my new carry ammo, and it ran it flawlessly without the first hiccup. I'm thinking the federal is under powered for my gun.

In response to dude, my p95 does have a fairly heavy slide and it is also fairly new, prolly less than 500 rounds through it total.
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Old October 1, 2012, 07:50 AM   #11
itchy1
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I've put a couple thousand rounds of Fed Champ(both 9 & 40) through various guns and never had a single issue. Every gun has its own preferences though.
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Old October 1, 2012, 05:20 PM   #12
osbornk
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I have shot several boxes of Federal I got from Walmart though my cheap Hi-Point C9 and have not had any problems at all. I would think bad ammunition would show up first on a cheap little gun like mine.
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Old October 1, 2012, 06:15 PM   #13
thedudeabides
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I have shot several boxes of Federal I got from Walmart though my cheap Hi-Point C9 and have not had any problems at all. I would think bad ammunition would show up first on a cheap little gun like mine.
Not really.

Expensive, robust 9mm's built to routinely handle +P ammo with long barrels and beefy recoil springs are actually very vulnerable to underpowered ammo being unable to cycle those heavy springs and slides... like my P30L.

They require a 200-500 round break-in. But after that they're pretty good. Although you may still get a brass falling down onto your feet or not locking the slide when the mag is empty.
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Old October 1, 2012, 10:28 PM   #14
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It's honestly one of my favorite loads. I don't find it to be the best to break in a gun, but if you've already got 500 rds through I would think you'd be ok. If you had a chronograph that'd be a good way to see if its really underpowered.
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Old October 1, 2012, 10:33 PM   #15
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I've shot a bunch of Champion in 9mm and .45 acp. I've never noticed a problem. Perhaps it is gun specific. That is one of the drawbacks of semi-autos.
Sometimes a specific gun doesn't like a specific brand of ammo.
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Old October 1, 2012, 10:55 PM   #16
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I haven't shot much of it (it's always sold out when I try) but what I have shot I've been pleased with. It shoots to the same point of aim as the other practice ammo I commonly buy and seems to be just as accurate as the other budget ammo I typically have on hand.

No function issues so far.

The P95 can get finicky if it's not lubed sufficiently.

Also, with regard to your comment about shooting a round with the magazine removed--it's not uncommon to find that a gun won't eject normally when the magazine isn't in place. The magazine follower can play a part in the ejection process.
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Old October 2, 2012, 05:02 PM   #17
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I use it for general range time... its not the most accurate ammo, but I find it functions fine.

If you let the pistol break in a few hundred rounds it may work better.
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Old October 2, 2012, 10:27 PM   #18
p95
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Thanks for all the replies. I looked at the other box I bought at the same time as the one that gave me problems and at some of the brass from the first box and noticed it was slightly tarnished. So now I'm thinking I might have got a couple of boxes that had been on the shelf awhile, and yes those boxes came from Walmart. Today I picked up another box from my local gun shop. It was all nice brass no tarnish. It will prolly be a week or so before I go shooting again. But I will post with results after I do.

Also for those that said it wasn't a good round to break in a gun with, what is a good break in round?
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Old October 2, 2012, 10:50 PM   #19
TunnelRat
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Quote:
Also for those that said it wasn't a good round to break in a gun with, what is a good break in round?
Something hotter and heavier (bullet weight). Try some 147 gr ammo or some 124 gr NATO. Will break in the recoil spring faster.
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Old October 2, 2012, 11:31 PM   #20
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All the stuff I got in the 100rd packs had dark spots on the brass... not really tarnish per se... Its all worked well.

New gun... new spring... weaker ammo. Shoot a few hundred more rounds then break out your other box and I bet it works better.
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Old October 3, 2012, 03:19 AM   #21
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IMO the contributing elements of the P95 not functioning well with low powered ammo has to do with its form factor (barrel length), design (hammer, Hi-Power locked breach action), and the material of the frame.

The G19 (Glock 19) Gen3 having the same barrel length (4”) as the P95 generally has no issues with low powered ammo such as WWB (Winchester white box). Unlike the P95 the G19 is striker fired. The striker only partially cocks during the rebound of the slide. Full cocking of the hammer of the P95 takes a good deal more energy during the early recoil impulse of the slide.

Ruger P89 generally works fine because it has a 4.5” barrel with alloy frame.

Walther P5 works fine too. The P5 has a much shorter barrel at 3.5” and uses the Walther locking wedge method. The Walther requires less energy to unlock compared to the high mass Browning methods of the tilting barrel.
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