Ammunition Testing now Available at Chesapeake Testing

I think I may have found a fun place to work…

Chesapeake Testing now offers ammunition testing in accordance with SAAMI, FBI, and NATO protocols.

Our in-house calibration system allows for greater repeatability in testing, more accurate data sets, and fast turn-around time.

This is how you actually test and evaluate ammo and weapons…

I’m not sure if this is something that can be used (or would even be cost effective) for testing personal reloads, but it is fairly interesting. I’d never actually considered how ammunition was tested (naive, yes I know).

Tests include:

  • Pressure & velocity measurement
  • Proof testing
  • Cook-off testing
  • Less-than-lethal testing
  • Projectile characterization
  • Quality control inspection
  • Performance evaluations for accuracy and dispersion
  • Corrosive primer testing
  • Primer sensitivity testing
  • Environmental testing

Chesapeake also actually tests firearms and has a number of ranges that can accommodate test firing weapons up to 120mm.

Fact sheet:

Tom is a former Navy Corpsman that spent some time bumbling around the deserts of Iraq with a Marine Recon unit, kicking in tent flaps and harassing sheep. Prior to that he was a paramedic somewhere in DFW, also doing some Executive Protection work between shifts. Now that those exciting days are behind him, he has embraced his inner “Warrior Hippie” and assaults 14er in his sandals and beard, or engages in rucking adventure challenges while consuming craft beer. To fund these adventures, he writes medical software and builds websites and mobile apps. His latest venture is as one of the founders of; a search engine for all things gun related. He hopes that his posts will help you find solid gear that will survive whatever you can throw at it–he is known (in certain circles) for his curse…ahem, ability…to find the breaking point of anything.


  • flyingburgers

    I don’t think I’d call anything to do with an accredited test lab fun. I imagine it’s something like:
    1. Review calibration certificates of every piece of equipment you are using
    2. Fire round
    3. Record 20 different variables into Excel, take pictures of results
    4. Repeat 100 times, adjusting test setup as necessary after each round
    5. Do statistical analysis
    6. Produce 50 page document detailing measurement uncertainties, equipment serial numbers, test protocols, the temperature and humidity, etc.
    7. Sign and apply your professional engineer seal to the document. You’re now professionally liable for any errors and omissions.

    • Doc Rader

      Oh sure. Take all of the idealized mystery out of it… You mean it is not just firing hundreds of rounds for fun…? 🙂

      Actually I secretly nerd out over crunching numbers and analyzing data…

      • lucusloc

        Yeah, that part is fine, it is the “legally liable for errors” part that would get me. I do a good job in my line of work, but even with a good that I do not want that kind of ax hanging over me.

        • iksnilol

          You can always save yourself through a trial by combat?

          I presume automatics at 20 paces wouldn’t be a problem for you against the prosecutor (I assume the prosecutor would participate personally)?

    • RocketScientist

      I work in an environmental test lab for a MAJOR aerosapce firm. We do vibration/shock/presure/temeprature/pyroshock/etc testing for space and defense products. You nailed it almost exactly. Except insert “Have a meeting with clueless project manager to update him on progress since last meeting” in between each step. And god forbid something goes WRONG, then you have an FRB (failure review board) to figure out what happened, what the root cause was, and how to magically prevent it from ever possibly happening again. Its definitely work, not play. Though, I do get to set off high explosives under $90-million spy-satellites, so it has its perks.

  • noob

    This is excellent. Hopefully this will make some wildcat rounds achieve certification more easily now that people know this service is being offered.

    I wonder what the requirements are for you to be a customer. Do you need to be a business or can a lone inventor turn up and pay for a test plan?