Consolidated List of Boberg Compatible 9mm Ammunition

Boberg's patented loading design is great for us and helps us by squeezing a longer barrel into a smaller package but some ammo that isn't manufactured up to specs may cause problems.  I don't consider this a flaw of the gun but rather a flaw in the ammo - You can't expect to put cheap tires on a Ferrari and still expect it to go 0 to 60 in 3 seconds.

 

The problem has been separation of the bullet from the casing because of inadequate crimping by the bullet manufacturer (remember most guns PUSH the next round into the barrel and thus don't have problems with bad crimps. The Boberg PULLS then PUSHES the next round into place.)  Plated ammunition is generally not able to be crimped very well.  The lead is too soft for the case mouth to get any decent tension on the bullet.  Full metal jacket or hollowpoint ammo, however, had a solid foundation for the case mouth to create tension during crimping.

 

I will update the list as people post more of their experiences - please try to be as specific as possible regarding Manufacturer, model, grain, FMJ/JHP, flat/round nose, etc.  All manufacturers are constantly updating manufacturing procedures when they identify deficiencies.  For failed ammo, if you can identify roughly when ammo was purchased, this info will be posted so as to not permanently blacklist any particular brand/model of ammo.  For me, however, I personally would not want to carry any ammo with questionable reliability in my gun as my life may depend on it in the future.

 

So from the posts I've seen so far and squinting at hard to read pics of boxes, here is the current list.  I have chosen to put all ammo with any reproducible issues in the incompatible list but some of these may still usable for practice or with swapping the trigger spring for a heavier one.  I would personally avoid regularly shooting ammo that separates because it is a pain to clean out and the loose gunpowder flies right into your face.  Regarding separation malfunctions, Arne is working on a 4.2" barrel that significantly reduces separations in case you want to use a particular ammo that has light crimps.

Disclaimer: Boberg Arms does not officially recommend any type of ammunition, nor does it guarantee the performance of any particular type of ammunition since we do not control the manufacturing of ammunition.  We highly recommend that you test-fire ammunition at the range before carrying it for self-defense.

 

Known Incompatible:

Atlanta Arms - any of their ammo (according to them)

Aguila 124gr FMJ (reported to jam 5-10% of the time, 1 hard primer report)

Bitterroot Valley Ammunition (BVAC reloads) 115gr (2 separations in 150 rounds)

Blazer Brass (5 separations in 6 magazines)

Black Hills +P 115gr (can be over-crimped - little case mouth for magazine to register on)

Blazer Aluminum Case (2 separations in 9 shots)

CorBon +P 115gr, 125gr JHP (separations and stovepipes)

Estate (possibly made in same factory as Federal Champion) (separations)

Federal Champion (separations in batches prior to summer of 2010 as well as 1/12)

Federal Range and Target 115gr FMJmultiple separations reported

Glaser (Dakota) reportedly crimps all their ammo subpar but note report below of specific grain compatibility

Hornady 125gr HAP (2 bullet shift/FTF in 21 rounds, improved after break-in)

Independence 115gr FMJ (2 separations in 2 magazines)

Independence 124gr FMJ (1 separation in a case of 50)

MagTech Guardian gold 115gr jhp that separated 1 in 7 times.

MFS Russian Zinc Plated Steel Case 115gr (extra rounds ejected)

Remington Golden Saber 147gr JHP(bullet shift reported)

Sellier and Bellot 115gr and 124gr (Hard Primers but works well with 7.5lb trigger spring or stronger, 1 reported FTF with fully loaded mag)

Speer Gold Dot 124gr +P (1 separation in 85 rounds)

Speer Lawman 115gr, 124gr FMJ (multiple reports of separations, FTF)

Tula Steelcase 115gr (Hard Primers)

Winchester Silver Tips 115gr (1 separation malfunction in a case of 50)
Winchester SXZ9 115gr JHP (FTF)

 

Known Compatible:

Aguila

     115gr FMJ

American Eagle

     115gr and 124gr (1 FTE reported) and 147gr FMJ

     Flat Point 115gr and 147gr FMJ

Black Hills

     115gr +P - see possible over crimp issue above

     124gr JHP

     124gr +P

     Subsonic 147gr JHP

Brown Bear

     115gr FMJ

Buffalo Bore

     +P 147gr

Corbon

     +P 90gr

     PowR Ball +P 100gr

     +P 115gr DPX

Federal

     Classic Hi Shok 115gr JHP (3 separations from an old 1990's batch)

     Guard Dog 105gr EFMJ

     Premium HST +P 124gr

     Premium Hydra-Shok 124 gr, 147gr JHP, 147gr +P

     Premium Personal Defense Hydra-Shok JHP 124gr, 135gr and 147gr

     Range and Target 115gr FMJ

Fiocci

     147gr JHP

     115gr FMJ

Georgia Arms

     "Canned Heat" 115gr FMJ

Glaser

     Pow'rBall 100gr +P JHP

Hirtenberger

     100gr JSP

Hornady

     Critical Defense 115gr FTX JHP

     Critical Duty 135gr +P

     TAP FPD 124gr and 147gr

     XTP 115gr

Liberty Ammunition

     Ultra Defense/USM4 50gr +P Fragmenting HP

Magtech

     147gr Flat FMC

     115gr FMJ

     First Defense 92.6gr Solid Copper Hollow Point

     Guardian Gold 115gr +P JHP

On Target

     115gr FMJ

PMC

     115gr JHP

     Bronze 115gr, 124gr FMJ

     124gr FMJ

ProLoad

     +P 124gr JHP

Prvi Partizan

     158gr FMJ

RBCD

     Performance Plus Platinum 60gr Total Fragmenting Soft Point

Remington

     Golden Saber 124gr JHP

     Golden Saber Bonded 124gr +P

     UMC 115gr MC and 124gr MC

     UMC Leadless 124gr and 147gr

     UMC Target 115gr MC and 124gr MC (1 report of FTF 10 rounds in 50)

RWS

     85gr Copper Matrix NTF

     124gr RN

Speer

     Gold Dot 124gr JHP or 147gr

     Gold Dot +P 147gr JHP

     Gold Dot GDHP 124gr    

     Gold Dot Short Barrel 124gr GDHP

 

Tulammo

     115gr Polymer-coated Steel Case FMJ (steel casing not recommended during break-in) 

 

Underwood

    115gr +P+ reported compatible but beware theoretical wear issues

 

Winchester:

     NATO 124gr, 147gr FMJ

     PDX1 Defender Bonded 124gr JHP +P (Partial separations reported - bullet shift prior to firing), 147gr OK

     Personal Protection 115gr and 147gr JHP

     Ranger 124gr, 127 +P

     Ranger Bonded 124gr +P

     SXT HP

     White Box 115gr and 124gr Bulk FMJ 
     

Wolf

     115gr FMJ

     Gold

 

 

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Replies to This Discussion

Are you running the "medium" 7.5 lb mainspring?

BullDog007, Dennis said:

I had the same problem with Hornady Custom Defense 147gr.  Had one dud with Hornady Steel Match 125gr.  There was a 3rd Hornady (don't remember the exact type) that had hard primers and took multiple pulls on the trigger to get them to fire. [Not a big Hornady fan at this point.]  For defense I am using Federal Guard Dog.  For general use (at target range have had seperation issues and 3 duds with Federal 115gr from Walmart, apparently an old lot, which Federal reimbursed me for) RWS 125gr RN from Walmart has been reliable.  Am trying Remington UMC next.  At this point we are a small drop in a very big lake, but ammo mfgrs will need to step up their game on crimp quality control to keep Boberg fans happy.
 
Alex Dziuba said:

All ammo has worked fine in mine except S&B 115gr.

Many failures to chamber fully and I have the correct spring.

Uh, did you not read my comments above?

Dave Kelly said:

Has anyone tried the Speer Lawman TMJ?  (Yes TMJ not FMJ)  Thanks.  :)

Arne,

I had many failures in the beginning with S&B [30%] but this decreased to 5% with more rounds through the pistol. I am now running the 6lb trigger spring which I like very much with no difference in failure rate. Also the 6lb spring is not having any problem with the S&B hard primers. My failures have been failures to chamber or go to full battery. The gun has the replacement firing pin spring installed.

Is the TMJ a soft lead electroplated bullet (to make it Total Metal Jacket, vs Full, which has an open base?)?

Jason Joice said:

Just to follow up on my Speer Lawman experience, the multiple failures I had in a single box was 115 gr TMJ lot number 53615.

Just out of curiosity, do they all drop in the barrel easily when out of the gun?  Can you post a pick of a bullet that doesn't chamber?

Thanks

Alex Dziuba said:

My failures have been failures to chamber or go to full battery. The gun has the replacement firing pin spring installed.

On my next trip to the range when the problem occurs I will check how it drops into the barrel.

Could be a high-side extractor - I'd like to see how close to battery the slide is if it stops short - particularly the extractor area.

Early on, I had a couple of issues with the round not fully going into battery.  I don't clearly remember which ammo I was using since I'm trying many different types.  It was mostly within the first 100-200 rounds and has been much better recently.  Interestingly, when this was happening, it is very difficult to rack the slide and the mag needs to be ejected first but requires quite a bit of wiggling to get the mag out.  After the mag is out, the round can be ejected.

 

I too thought it was a safety spring issue but when I recently got my replacement kit, I checked and the original spring was correct.  Just for giggles, I replaced the original spring with the slightly crushed (from the mail sorting machine) replacement that I felt had a little less strength on the spring.  It has been firing fine since.  I don't know if it's due to swapping out the spring or if it's a different ammo or if it's just loosening up but I'm happy I haven't had any more FTFs.

This is a pic of where the slide typically gets stuck for me.  This particular episode was with one of my separated Blazer aluminum cased rounds so the bullet was likely blocking the casing somewhere from going into full battery (notice the loose gunpowder on the mat and on the targets) The position is roughly equal to where my slide was getting stuck earlier on with my intact rounds.  Like I said, I haven't had any recent issues after about 400-500 rounds total.

Since switching to the 7.5lb spring the only issue was with the 'old' lot of Federal with 24 seperations in 100 rounds along with 3 duds. [Which Federal reimbursed me for.]  The earlier problems were with the light spring.
 
Arne Boberg said:

Are you running the "medium" 7.5 lb mainspring?

BullDog007, Dennis said:

I had the same problem with Hornady Custom Defense 147gr.  Had one dud with Hornady Steel Match 125gr.  There was a 3rd Hornady (don't remember the exact type) that had hard primers and took multiple pulls on the trigger to get them to fire. [Not a big Hornady fan at this point.]  For defense I am using Federal Guard Dog.  For general use (at target range have had seperation issues and 3 duds with Federal 115gr from Walmart, apparently an old lot, which Federal reimbursed me for) RWS 125gr RN from Walmart has been reliable.  Am trying Remington UMC next.  At this point we are a small drop in a very big lake, but ammo mfgrs will need to step up their game on crimp quality control to keep Boberg fans happy.
 
Alex Dziuba said:

All ammo has worked fine in mine except S&B 115gr.

Many failures to chamber fully and I have the correct spring.

Uh...apparently not.  Thx.  :-)

Jason Joice said:

Uh, did you not read my comments above?

Dave Kelly said:

Has anyone tried the Speer Lawman TMJ?  (Yes TMJ not FMJ)  Thanks.  :)

BullDog,

Can you pls specify your Hornandy problems so that I can update the master list?  Were they all hard primers or separations or FTF?  I think I'll probably list hard primers in the compatible section with the specification of hard primers so that Boberg users know that Hornandy works but they'll have to switch to the heavier trigger spring if that's their preference.

 

Also, I looked up the Federal Guard Dog ammo as I haven't heard of them before.  Apparently it is Federal's rebranding of their EFMJ technology but using a very light (105gr) bullet.  I'm not as technical as some of the other members on this board but aside from the advantage of not clogging like a standard JHP and being able to use them in New Jersey because JHP is illegal, I don't feel that having a much lighter but faster load would be better than say a 124 or 147gr +P round.


BullDog007, Dennis said:

I had the same problem with Hornady Custom Defense 147gr.  Had one dud with Hornady Steel Match 125gr.  There was a 3rd Hornady (don't remember the exact type) that had hard primers and took multiple pulls on the trigger to get them to fire. [Not a big Hornady fan at this point.]  For defense I am using Federal Guard Dog. 

     No seperations.  Steel Match had one dud and several that had hard primers that took 2 or more trigger pulls to fire, but at that time I still had the 'light' spring in place. (The dud had a deep dimple and would not fire in 3 different pistols.)  The Custom Defense 147gr refused to go into battery with the slide stopping about 3/8" short [8 out of a box of 25 did go into battery, most of those were ser # 51, #52 gave the most number of failures (Arne looked at it and haven't had any problems since, but I refuse to buy Hornady.)]

     The advantage of the Federal Guard Dog ammo is the expansion of the bullet even if you miss the bad guy and it penetrates a sheetrock wall thereby expending energy slowing the bullet down.  A typical HP is clogged by the sheetrock and penetrates more like FMJ.  I live in an apartment complex and would never want over penetration.  In Federals video you must think of the ballistic geletin as the innocent bystander, not the bad guy.  Hopefully no one even considers firing at a bad guy they cannot see.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DT8gxYHWYs8&feature=related  Also, I have never had any problems with it.
 
Brokedoc said:

BullDog,

Can you pls specify your Hornandy problems so that I can update the master list?  Were they all hard primers or separations or FTF?  I think I'll probably list hard primers in the compatible section with the specification of hard primers so that Boberg users know that Hornandy works but they'll have to switch to the heavier trigger spring if that's their preference.

 

Also, I looked up the Federal Guard Dog ammo as I haven't heard of them before.  Apparently it is Federal's rebranding of their EFMJ technology but using a very light (105gr) bullet.  I'm not as technical as some of the other members on this board but aside from the advantage of not clogging like a standard JHP and being able to use them in New Jersey because JHP is illegal, I don't see that having a much lighter but faster load would be better than say a 124 or 147gr +P round.


BullDog007, Dennis said:

I had the same problem with Hornady Custom Defense 147gr.  Had one dud with Hornady Steel Match 125gr.  There was a 3rd Hornady (don't remember the exact type) that had hard primers and took multiple pulls on the trigger to get them to fire. [Not a big Hornady fan at this point.]  For defense I am using Federal Guard Dog. 

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