New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

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Ron S.
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New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by Ron S. » August 9th, 2010, 3:39 am

Hi, All,

I recently purchased a '76 P-64 from my brother, who until recently ran one of the largest gun shops and museums in AZ, if not the southwest (The Shootist Gun Shoppe) for something like 25 years. The gun is used but unfired. I've gone through it myself, put in a Wolff 18lb hammer spring, cleaned it, lubed it, and now it's time for me to get out and practice. I purchased this gun specifically for discreet carry.

I've been reading (devouring!) the plethora of info on this site, and have formed a few opinions regarding practice and CC ammo. One seems to be "Wolf is Bad". And yet, my brother swears by it for practice because it's inexpensive and available. I'm going to quote a recent email here, as I don't think my brother would mind:
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"I've sold literally a ton of Wolf ammo and never had reports of any sort of problems. All it is is repackaged Russian military ammo that is now surplus. The guns were engineered around that very ammo and for practice shooting it really can't be beat. There are not a lot of options. CCI Blazer is aluminum cased and I've never been fond of it. I put a box of Hungarian military brass cased aside for you, but there's not a lot of it around. Chinese is also steel cased, as is about all the other Eastern bloc imported stuff. The Cor-Bon and Hornady JHP (Jacketed Hollow Point) are the only U.S. made stuff I know of and it's purely for self defense use (at a buck a shot!). I personally shoot tons of Wolf since it's available and cheap and nothing promotes practice like cheap ammo - likewise nothing discourages practice like a dollar a shot!"
-----
I trust his advice completely, and yet I really am fond of this gun and do not want to do anything that might damage the firing pin, barrel, or anything else I wouldn't be able to replace, even if it means spending more and practicing less. These are the kinds of things I've read about here. I can clearly see that there are many on this site with substantial and long-term knowledge of the P-64, so I'd like to hear from any of you on this subject. Is there another option besides Wolf that is available and less than a buck a shot? Is JHP really necessary, or is it overkill with this gun because of the lower muzzle velocity? Anything you can tell me would be greatly appreciated, as well as typical prices, availability, vendors and lead time.

Thanks from a newb...

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by DocCasualty » August 9th, 2010, 10:22 am

I've been using Silver Bear, made by Barnaul, also a Russian mfgr. You can buy it in bulk for ~ 24 cents a round, including shipping. I haven't used their Brown Bear, though I know many do, as I understand it's dirtier and uses lacquered cases. The Brown Bear is cheaper, so it's probably the least expensive option out there. Silver Bear is available in JHP and FMJ.

Here's a link to AmmoEngine for some examples and places to buy: http://www.ammoengine.com/find/ammo/9x18mm_Makarov


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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by normsutton » August 9th, 2010, 11:40 am

Ron S. wrote:Hi, All,




-----
"I've sold literally a ton of Wolf ammo and never had reports of any sort of problems. All it is is repackaged Russian military ammo that is now surplus. The guns were engineered around that very ammo and for practice shooting it really can't be beat. for self defense I personally shoot tons of Wolf since it's available and cheap and nothing promotes practice like cheap ammo - likewise nothing discourages practice like a dollar a shot!"
-----


Thanks from a newb...
wolf ammo is not surplus ammo the Russians never loaded a 100 to 120 grn except for export to the US as a selling ploy because American's have to have bigger an faster stuff , it is newly made ammo with the cheapest components, and there are no parts for the P-64 so when you blow the extractor off or burn the tip of the firing pin off, you just made a paper weight of the gun

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by Autosurgeon » August 9th, 2010, 11:49 am

Wolf is no longer made in the high grain loadings. It is all 95 grain now. Also Wolf is the importer and Tula ammunition plant makes the ammo.

All of the Wolf 9x18 I have seen in the last three years has been 95 grain and no different to shoot than the Brown and silver bear.

Just an FYI

The specs for Wolf 9x18 are as follows.

9x18 Makarov 95 gr Bimetal FMJ Berdan 1033 fps
Anything I post may be my opinion and not the law... you are responsible to do your own verification.

Blackstone (1753-1765) maintains that "the law holds that it is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by normsutton » August 9th, 2010, 12:12 pm

Autosurgeon

I know quit making the high grn stuff, but there is some still out there, I will not endorse any wolf steel case ammo , I have seen to many problems with it and to many paper weights because of it, shoot it at your risk, those who indorse it, maybe they will pay for it, when the gun is broken because of it

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by Autosurgeon » August 9th, 2010, 12:17 pm

It is easy to tell the difference. The old stuff stated the grain count for the projectile right on the box.

Wolf paid for a number of damaged guns and then switched exclusively to the Tula plant for all pistol cartridges BC of there better QC.

Tula Ammunition Plant makes the Silver Bear ammo as well. The are owned by Barnaul.

The only point I am making Norm is you are painting with a broad brush. And while in the past this was a problem it has been corrected.

I do agree that people need to be careful and read what the box says and ONLY use recent loadings from Wolf. Within the last 3 years for 9x18...
Anything I post may be my opinion and not the law... you are responsible to do your own verification.

Blackstone (1753-1765) maintains that "the law holds that it is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by bigmac » August 9th, 2010, 12:31 pm

Hello to all. I have been a Makarov collector for years and ran upon a Polish P64 recently and found this site searching for info on the pistol. Good information here.

I have had big problems with primer punctures on Wolf Ammo in the past and I will not use it in any of my pistols. From what I understand there are no parts for the P 64 so if you burn a firing pin tip off with a primer puncture you are S.O.L. Wolf Ammo has burned a pin on three of my Maks and recently on my AR-15. That's enough for me.

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by normsutton » August 9th, 2010, 12:37 pm

Autosurgeon

if you have ever work at a plant with more than one brand name on the idem , you know that the cheapest get the cheapest components, they are not all the same , if they were would all have the same head stamp and packaging
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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by Farmer » August 9th, 2010, 12:47 pm

I have been using brown bear for plinking in my P64 with no problems. It's been pretty accurate also. I popped a woodchuck in my hay field the other day using the tractor as a rest. I walked it off at 42 paces and I take a pretty healthy step. Not bad for a small pocket pistol.

I don't know how true it is, but I do recall some talk on the internet a couple of years back about Wolf having problems with 308 cal ammo. Some folks were reporting case failure and kabooms.

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by Autosurgeon » August 9th, 2010, 12:58 pm

Cite it otherwise it is hearsay.

I know I am a pain when it comes to this type of thing BUT I don't like second and third hand rumors!

And yes Norm I know that plants that make different brands may use diff quality's of components.

I personally have shot thousands of rounds of wolf out of 4 different calibers 9x19, 9x18 (only since they switched to 95 grain) , 7.62x39 and 12 gauge 00 buck. Other than the powder burn smell being different than US ammo I have not noticed any other differences. IMOP it is not even any dirtier than Winchester White Box or Remington UMC...

To be perfectly honest this is the first I have heard of firing pins being burned up by wolf... I would like to know how? over pressure and primer failure?

I am the type of person that wants details and proof obtained scientifically not rumors and suppositions based on second and third hand tales.

I hope everyone realizes that I am NOT calling anyone here a lier I am just asking for an explanation of how you came to your conclusions.
Anything I post may be my opinion and not the law... you are responsible to do your own verification.

Blackstone (1753-1765) maintains that "the law holds that it is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by bigmac » August 9th, 2010, 1:08 pm

Well after burning up some MAK PM firing pins with Wolf 9x18 Ammo I have learned not to trust the Russians anymore. I think they are sweeping the floors to get cartridge loads these days myself. LOL. Just saying, especially when there is just so much other good stuff out there at reasonable prices from the commie block counties. My preferred is S&B and I find it hotter and cleaner than the Russian stuff. But to each his own I guess. Oh by the way, I do believe that S&B also makes the WWB 9x18 also.

BigMac :hi:

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by normsutton » August 9th, 2010, 1:18 pm

bigmac
S&B dose make Winchester 9 x 18

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by Autosurgeon » August 9th, 2010, 1:27 pm

I will not argue that S&B is good stuff! I use their hunting loads in my Mosen Nagant very accurate consistent stuff! Also like their new 7.62 x 38r loading it is loaded to the original spec so it is much hotter than the other offerings out there!
Anything I post may be my opinion and not the law... you are responsible to do your own verification.

Blackstone (1753-1765) maintains that "the law holds that it is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by Ron S. » August 9th, 2010, 2:46 pm

Guys,

I really appreciate the input, links, etc.! Although Wolf may or may not be perfectly fine, based on what I'm reading here there appears to be enough of a controversy about it that I think I'm going to feel more comfortable with Silver Bear and/or S&B. Both are reasonably priced @ $11 to $15/box, and I'm okay with that. The S&B seems to be a higher quality round and 95 vs. 94 gr. so that might be my first choice. Gotta see if I can find any in the Phoenix area; if not I'll order some up.

Thanks again,
R.

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Re: New Member, New P-64--Ammo Advice

Post by shinerjohn » August 9th, 2010, 5:47 pm

I've only been shooting 9x18 for a little over 2 years now. The first 9x18 pistol I bought was an FEG PA-63. I changed the recoil and hammer springs, ordered one box each of Wolf, Brown Bear, and Silver Bear (all in the 93-95gr range). The only one I had a problem with was the Wolf. I had several light strikes with Wolf. Later I read that their primers were perhaps a bit harder. It made sense to me! All I knew was that the Bear ammo was flawless and Wolf wasn't. The Wolf was more expensive than either of the Bears, so why would I pay more for ammo that didn't work in my pistol?

I now use Brown Bear FMJ, Silver Bear FMJ and JHP, S&B, and Hornady. I have never had a problem with Brown or Silver Bear FMJ in any of my 9x18 pistols. That's 4 Makarovs, 3 P64s, 2 PA-63s, and 3 CZ82s.

That was my experience with Wolf ammo. It was only one box of 50, but I felt no need to buy more trying to prove it was okay. The less expensive Russian ammo works fine for me.

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