Friday, November 11, 2011

Ammo Review: Tula and Winchester 7.62x39mm

Hey folks, your old pal 12-Gauge Chimp here with a new review.

No, it's not a gun or knife review. It's an ammunition review.

Why am I reviewing ammo, you might ask. Well, it's because I want to save someone else from buying crappy ammo.

The two major differences between Tula and Winchester 7.62x39mm ammo is that the Tula ammo is steel cased and Berdan primed, whereas the Winchester ammo is brass cased and Boxer primed.

First, the Tula ammo.
This stuff is basically Wolf ammo in a different box and with a different headstamp. I've fired this stuff through my SKS and it works pretty well. It isn't quite as clean firing as US made ammo or even some Russian ammo like Golden Tiger or Silver Bear, but if you're like me, cleaning your gun after a trip to the range isn't a big deal. Now, it's non-corrosive, which pretty much all commercially made Russian ammo is. The only ammo that's corrosive is the surplus military ammo.

Accuracy wasn't tested due to the fact I was primarily doing a reliability and function test, but I have heard of folks getting decent groupings with Tula ammo. I've only seen the FMJ version of Tula ammo, but if it's like pretty much every other 7.62x39 brand on the market, we'll see hollowpoints and softpoints soon.

Now, on to the Winchester ammo.

This ammo was purchased in 2007 and was sitting in my ammo can since then. I finally got out to the range to test the Tula ammo and figured I'd bring a US made ammo for comparison purposes. Well, this stuff works, but is expensive. Whereas a box of Tula will only set you back about 5 bucks US for a box, Winchester will set you back around 20 bucks US a box. Not exactly cheap. After running the Tula ammo through my SKS and cleaning it, I went ahead and loaded ten rounds of the Winchester ammo and fired it. Now, most US made ammo uses softer primers than the Russian made stuff, so I carefully closed the bolt on my SKS so as to avoid a slamfire. After loading the US ammo, I took aim and fired. The Winchester ammo was cleaner burning than the Tula, but not by much.

Again, accuracy wasn't tested, but the last time I fired my SKS I was able to keep 8 out of 10 rounds on target with the last two rounds being just slightly off target.

You really can't go wrong with either ammo. If you want cheap ammo that won't break the bank when you go to the range, buy the Tula ammo. It's cheap enough that you can get a good sized stock of ammo for less than 300 bucks. As of right now, 1,000 rounds of Tula will set you back about 150 bucks depending on where you buy it. The Winchester ammo is expensive, but with the price you get quality ammo and reloadable brass cases, which is good if you reload your own ammo. I don't, which is why I buy the cheap steel cased stuff.

That'll do it for this review. I hope you found it useful and entertaining.

As always, this is 12-Gauge Chimp signing off.

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