Testing a Controversial Pistol—-Using Bad Ammo Skews The Results?

The second generaton R51 handguns have finally made it to the range, but how do they perform? One of the first to record his experiences is YouTuber RyeOnHam, whose video is embedded below:

Now, after that poor showing, I am going to stick up for the R51 Gen 2 here and say that I think there’s a high probability that the ammunition was the root cause of most of the malfunctions. TulAmmo Brass Maxx is loaded in Gorade, Bosnia, by Pobjeda. Whether this manufacturer is a good one or not,ย it is highly unlikely that Remington designed the R51 to work with ammunition made in Bosnia! Likely, there is a pressure difference between Pobjeda ammunition and the ammunition that the R51’s unique hesitation locking system was designed to work well with. Consider, for example, that some AR-15s do not work well with TulAmmo ammunition, not because they are bad rifles, because there is a difference in the port pressure of TulAmmo ammunition and the ammunition they were designed to work with. Ultimately, a firearm that is not getting enough power or power in the right part of the pressure curve won’t function properly.

Another reason to think it might be the ammunition are the signs from the primer and the case. Both are bulged in many shots, something normally indicative of ammunition loaded too hot. However, these can also be symptoms of inadequately hard materials used in the primer and case. Is the Brass Maxx/Pobjeda ammunition loaded in weak cases with weak primers? I don’t know, but that would explain the “high pressure signs” we see there.


This doesn’t mean the R51 Gen 2 woks properly with the ammunition it was designed for; I do not know whether it does or not. However, I am content to dismiss this initial test as likely the result of poor ammunition. A further note: While it did work with Remington brand ammo, ROH did not shoot enough of the Remington ammunition for me to feel comfortable drawing a conclusion that way, either. Does using American made ammo fix the issues seen in the video? I don’t know!

So does the R51 Gen 2 work or not? I don’t think we can say either way for sure, yet.


Thanks to Daniel for the tip!

Nathaniel F

Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. In addition to contributing to The Firearm Blog, he runs 196,800 Revolutions Per Minute, a blog devoted to modern small arms design and theory. He is also the author of the original web serial Heartblood, which is being updated and edited regularly. He can be reached via email at nathaniel.f@staff.thefirearmblog.com.


  • cwp

    You may well be right that this is a problem with the ammunition, rather than the gun. Unfortunately:

    1) After the disaster that was the first generation, people are going to be suspicious of anything that goes wrong with these guns.

    2) Being finicky with ammunition is not one of the more reassuring attributes for a handgun designed for concealed carry.

    • Douglas Watson

      I came here to say exactly what you did in point #2.

      One of the tests I put any pistol I am considering for carry through is to run at least 2 boxes of 5 different types of range ammo through, followed by at least 2 full magazines of 2 different types of carry ammo.

      A pistol that is designed for carry should be able to “eat” whatever you feed it.

    • Bullphrog855

      As long as it shoots the quality hollow points reliably, I don’t care. A gun meant for conceal carry isn’t going to be some dirty work horse that needs to run on scavenged ammo.

      • thmsmgnm

        A CCW piece should be able to reliable feed and shoot any ammo off the rack. If you travel you will never know where you will end up and your gun may make it there but your ammo may take the grand tour.

        • Deanimator

          “ANY ammo off the rack”? That’s a pretty broad requirement.
          What you’re saying is that a concealed carry gun should work EQUALLY well with Federal or RWS ammunition or somebody’s garbage COMMERCIAL remanufactured ammunition.
          A friend once sent me some “AMERC” (American Ammunition) headstamped .38 Special cases. They were literally UNUSABLE, with among other things, wildly inconsistent rim and primer pocket dimensions, to the point where many wouldn’t feed through my Dillon 550, and the ones which did either had primer pockets too small to seat the primer or too large to hold it in place. Those were once fired cases from FACTORY ammunition. Do you SERIOUSLY expect ANY semi-automatic firearm to function with 9x19mm ammunition of THAT “quality”?
          It’s one thing to expect a gun to properly function with ammunition of REASONABLE quality. It’s foolish to expect it to function properly with ANY ammunition.

          • thmsmgnm

            The gun should be able to chamber and function any in spec ammo made for the caliber of the gun. If the gun is ammo sensitive or intolerant of FMJ that is in spec then the gun is not fit to be carried.

          • Bullphrog855

            It would be nice, but it’s not ‘unfit’ to be carried just because it can’t shoot some trash ammo that has no place in your magazine in the first place.

          • Steve

            I agree. Where do these people go that they claim the only ammo available might be junk steel cased ammo? I have no plans to vacation in Bulgaria with my pistol.

            I was at a shoot where my friend’s H&K would not function with steel wolf 9mm. My Glock would fire it fine. So what? I guess he should junk his crappy H&K pistol? I think not.

          • It’s a poor carpenter who blames his tools and all that, but there a lot of cars on the road that specifically recommend against Regular Unleaded, and I don’t think anyone is in a rush to call BMW or Mercedes products unfit to drive; unless I’m attacked by feral hogs while practicing at the tire berm, there is no realistic way that I’ll ever be called upon to defend myself with cheap plinking ammo out of my concealed carry or duty firearms. No mechanical malfunctions with real-deal JHPs from major manufacturers = fit to be carried.

          • iksnilol

            I dunno, BMWs require much fixing (though if you get a good one you’re set, though I don’t like that lottery so i drive a Skoda). Mercedeses are just… ugly, so people with functioning eyes shouldn’t be near them let alone drive them ๐Ÿ˜›

          • BigR

            I agree with what you’re saying! Ammo for my carry guns has to be one of the name brand ammo makers in this country. I don’t even use Blazer ammo to practice anymore. I guess I’m just gun shy, especially about ammo.

          • Deanimator

            I practice mostly with my own lead bullet reloads. If pressed for time when I don’t have reloads for the caliber I need, I’ll use whatever reasonable quality factory ammunition is available, including Blazers, although I prefer Winchester White Box, since it’s reloadable.
            I simply don’t trust the cheap Russian ammunition and wouldn’t use most of it in anything other than an inexpensive Kalashnikov or SKS. When I had the latter, I shot Hanson/Prvi Partizan in it.

        • Joseph Goins

          @thmsmgnm:disqus “If you travel you will never know where you will end up and your gun may make it there but your ammo may take the grand tour.”
          Do you really think if you use up your self defense ammo on a trip that the police are going to give you back your gun?

          • thmsmgnm

            While TSA regs allow it, not all airlines will allow you to carry your ammo in the same locked case as your gun. Hence your gun may arrive, while your ammo is taking the grand tour.

          • It’s not a good idea though.

          • Joseph Goins

            I have never had an issue shipping ammunition on six carriers.

          • Depends on how White you are and how many lawyers you can afford.

          • Joseph Goins

            There is a clearly defined process with the TSA. It is cut and dry.

          • thmsmgnm

            Which does not prevent from F*&K F&*k games in the part of the airlines where the regs are concerned.

    • I wouldn’t be surprised. I know the local shops around hear won’t carry that brand because of QC issues.
      I have a T&E R-51 Gen 2 coming and I’ll use quality ammo not some junk ammo. I want a fair test above all.

      • cwp

        I’ll be interested to see how it performs with better-quality ammo. So far I don’t think of this as a red flag, just a yellow.

        • Agreed—-I’ll be using Remington ammo as well as , Cor-Bon, Federal, Barnes and a couple of others I haven’t decided on yet.

          • Harry’s Holsters

            Try out some Freedom, Stand One and other quality reloads or Blazer and other inexpensive plinking ammo.

          • I thought about PMC and maybe try Blazer but aluminum cases can be finicky with some guns.
            I tested a Vector and it would not feed steel or aluminum case ammo at all.

          • Harry’s Holsters

            I shoot mostly the blazer brass and the last class I was at most people were using blazer brass, PMC and UMC.

          • I use a lot of the Blazer brass and PMC.

      • Anon

        Forgive my being suspicious, but I wonder if a T&E gun would get extra quality control…

        • No they just pull them off the line.

          • Anon

            Great, glad to hear it.

          • Thanks and I look at that as dishonest and damn sure negates the test.

          • Amplified Heat

            So, you were able to strip & examine the insides of the pistols your shot at the pre-production shoot that had no problems? Plenty of white grease, metal shavings, and burs all over everything? Visible mold lines & sprues on all the MIM internal parts like the bolt body? Scratches & wear on the locking surface area as well as the exposed spring bushing in front of the barrel chamber? Because otherwise your guns were heavily worked-over by Remington’s marketing & engineering staff.

    • Nicks87

      “Being finicky with ammunition is not one of the more reassuring attributes for a handgun designed for concealed carry”
      It never stopped anyone from buying a 1911 for the same purpose.

      • Or carrying one daily—-oh hell Nicks lets not go there it’s a holiday:-)

        • Nicks87

          It’s ok if you carry one, Phil. I’m sure you are very proficient with your immediate action drills by now.

          • LOL—thanks Nick and yea it’s like another appendage for me after all these years.
            I’ll admit you have to know the pistol well.

      • BigR

        It depends on the which 1911 you buy. You pay for what you get. If you’re not careful, it’s like getting stuck with a car that’s a lemon. I hate buying a gun, any gun, and not trusting in it, especially the one I carry. There are some really great gun smiths out there today, you just have to get the right one. The one I had in the Army was a left over from WWII or Korea. It was loosey goosey, but I never had it jam on me. With the fixed sights that came with it, I had to aim at the right hip to hit the left shoulder, but it never jammed. Wilson and Baer 1911’s are the real thing today and have great accuracy. Only problem, the cost has gone out of sight on them today.

        • Wilson is probably on average mid to upper $3000 range. I just finished testing a Carolina Arms Group 1911 which are hand built and fitted and the one I had was about $3800.

          • U8SM5C

            I have over a 1000 rounds of all types of ammo through my RIA Commander 1911 without any issues. Paid less than $500 for it.

          • They are decent pistols and a best buy in 1911’s. If you ever have a problem with one they will fix it and have it back to you in a couple of weeks.

    • Kelly Jackson

      I would disagree with your point #2, some guns are specifically designed for ammo types, the Beretta Nano comes to mind. The factory doesn’t recommend using 115 grain bullets, and people do anyway and complain. It feeds flawlessly with the heavy bullets it was designed for.

  • Adam Priestley

    I carry an Interarms PPK and shoot it frequently. It has been flawless with everything EXCEPT the .380 BrassMax. I get tons of stovepipes and the same bulged cases and primers in my PPK. I look forward to another test with better ammo.

  • Mc Cain

    Give this one a LONG time before wasting any money on it. Let other people be their beta testers.

  • kipy

    Why would you use the poopiest ammo when your the 1st review out -_-

  • Ritterbruder

    Those bulged cases are not a good sign. I would think Remington engineers are at least smart enough to design the gun with a fully supported chamber, so I doubt that’s the issue.

    It could be that the action is unlocking too soon while the pressure is too high. Seems like a recipe for ruptured cases, popped primers, and even case head separation.

    • One of the local gunsmiths told me the brass case is thin in some lots of this ammo.

      • Anonymous

        How would a thin case cause the casing to expand beyond the inner diameter of the chamber?

        • Stephen Shallberg

          That is a damn good question that no one seems willing to address.

          I think Anonymous and Ritterbruder have presented the most compelling hypothesis to explain the deformation of the case/primer shown in the images above.

        • Amplified Heat

          It would exacerbate poor case support, which the R51 has. The real question, is whether it is typically an issue in quality ammo (the Remington ammo did not seem to deform so badly as to be non-reloadable the way the Tula did). The primer flow is due to the firing pin being both pointy & large in diameter.

    • Interestingly enough there are normally two engineers with one as lead. If I recall correctly there were six working on the revamped R51.

  • Maaaaaannnnn, getting a bad rep from a shooting session using freakin’ Tula is like a car getting a bad review because you loaded it up with gas you found in someone’s lawnmower shed. Try it again with non-frat boy ammo, I wanna see if they actually fixed the problems or not.

    • PK

      Funny, none of my guns have issues with any Tula, or random steel cased, or basically any in-spec loads regardless of brand, case, etc. It may not be very accurate or the least smokey or the nicest looking, but it’s factory loaded.

      Tula is dirty, but inexpensive, and it’s SAAMI spec. If I owned a firearm that couldn’t use any off-the-shelf ammo, I’d take issue with that particular firearm, not with the ammo.

      • I have when using a Sphinx

        • toms

          That brass max ammo sucks, It has thick brass, and other issues as well. I’ve had some problems with lite strikes, stuck rounds ect with it. I still don’t get warm feelings watching this though. Two questions
          Why use the old mags?
          Why not try some other ammo? It would seem guns guys would have several brands sitting around not just whatever is in stock at the local walmart.

          • If you’ll be doing a real test you want a range of at least 5 brands considered by most shooters as good for practice and carry. If I can afford it at the time a minimum of 500 rounds. My R51 test will be at least 500 rounds.

          • Wanderlust

            Exactly what I thought in the opening seconds of the video. Why use old mags, Why use junk ammo. Bad testing is a waste.

          • 100% true—-

      • TexianPatriot

        Agreed. Never had any problems with tula either. Not the best ammo but still runs in all of my firearms. Not considering the massive failure that was the R51 gen 1. Maybe the gun is the problem….

      • Joseph Goins

        @disqus_PEeoc4pjnz:disqus TulAmmo is not SAAMI spec (see link below). It can run, but I’d rather pay an extra $0.05/round to stock something better.

        Link: http://www.saami. org/member_companies/index.cfm

        • kingghidorah

          Tula works in my Austrian made pistol.

          • Tom Currie

            Tula varies considerably from one caliber to another and also from batch to batch.

            There is no way in hell that the ammo which produced those bulged cases and primers was SAAMI spec pressure in a properly dimensioned case of proper material.

          • iksnilol

            well, if it works decently in other pistols but has problems with one pistol I’d sooner blame the one pistol.

          • Kivaari

            But, is he using the same ammo? I see enough primer flow into the FP channel that there is an edge. An edge that needs to be dragged out screaming in resistance.

          • Joseph Goins

            @KingGhidorah:disqus As I said, “it can run.” As I also said, “TulAmmo is not SAAMI spec.” Both statements are factual, and your statement doesn’t refute that.

          • GarolS

            Steyrs are awesome arent they!

      • Well, congrats on lucking out with your gun/ammo combinations, but the internet is right there, and there’s probably a good and valid reason why Tula has had a few words written about it. It’s not universally unreliable or actively dangerous, but it definitely ain’t high quality, and there are plenty of perfectly good firearms with individual tolerance regimes that don’t work well with the wide variation of tolerances in low quality ammo, the same way there are plenty of perfectly good cars that require Plus or Premium gasoline to run their best.

      • JLR84

        I’ve personally witnessed about ten shooters (myself among them) who have had troubles with Russian steel-cased ammo like Tula out of a variety of Glocks and M&P pistols.

        The problem was actually that the rounds would get stuck in the magazine. Basically the top round would be stripped up, but the follower spring would be unable to push up the rest of the stack. So you’d end up with an empty chamber, and a click instead of a bang.

        Tap-rack wouldn’t solve the problem, because of course the next round was not in a position to be stripped from the mag. Usually giving the magazine a firm smack would cause the stack of rounds to move up in to position. My theory is that the steel case just offered a lot more friction between the rounds and the sides of the magazine wall, causing them to get stuck in place.

        Eventually I gave up on using Russian steel-cased ammunition out of handguns. I still have a good supply of .223 for my AR, which hasn’t given me any problem.

      • CavScout

        Sick of people saying we need to loosen up fit and open up gas ports on American guns because they won’t run commie junk ammo. I don’t want loose, inaccurate, over gassed guns just so you people can spend less for what little you really shoot.

    • Exactly right. Using junk ammo invalidates any gun test.

      • Giolli Joker

        Not really. For example if you test the gun and its competitors with junk ammo and only one fails, you have a decent and valid test.
        Since you have one R51 coming for review it would be great if you could repeat this test alongside maybe Glock 43 and another comparable pistol.

        • I can do that as a second article. I want to burn a ton of ammo through the R51 by itself. Assorted defense rounds. I’m already stocking up on ammo for testing.

          • Giolli Joker

            Sounds good!

          • Thanks:-)

          • Enthusiastically seconding this plan, for reasons stated above; some folks can only afford the cheap and dirty ammo, and it’s a public service to let them know if a gun they were considering buying will be able to run reliably with low quality ammo or not.

        • That’s an excellent point; I’d actually very much like to see that sort of comparison test using known low quality ammo like Tula and Remington Thunderbolt, because a lot of people can only afford the cheapest and dirtiest stuff for practice/plinking and it’s definitely helpful to know ahead of time if a gun that might cost someone an entire paycheck is going to be able to run with the ammo they can afford to feed it.

      • thmsmgnm

        After the fiasco with the first gen gun people should back away from trying to offer up defenses for this gun until there has been more testing.

        • They should back off any opinion until some real test are done. Just my opinion having shot some of this ammo. I shot maybe 3 mags but with the primer backing out just like this “test”. I stopped using it.

          • thmsmgnm

            After the last fiasco where many gun writers tried to heap praise on unfinished product, call me skeptical.

          • Thing is those of us that praised it (from the Gunsite shoot) were shooting prototypes and pre-production guns. It’s when they went into regular production the problems started.
            Those 8 prototypes and pre production guns ate up several cases of ammo with one FTF.
            That’s why the new CEO said writers/editors would only get production guns to shoot from now on.

          • Evan

            Right. Reminds me of another fiasco from years back, the All American 2000.

          • I remember it well—-

          • Oh man– are you telling me this thing is an anime gun, where the protoype is super effective and owns the battlefield compared to the production model? No wonder it got good reviews, the frame must have been made of Gundarium Alloy!

          • Austin

            If it was an anime gun it would be one of a kind and shoot mithril bullets.

          • Amplified Heat

            The thing is, I don’t remember any of these initial pre-production reviews offering any information that would have been useful to identifying widely-occurring issues out of the gate. For instance, what the spent brass looked like; were you allowed to examine it? Because the primer flow that (still) appears in the R51 due its pointy firing pin and gargantuan firing pin hole is very distinctive, and endemic to every single R51 I’ve seen brass from. The same question applies to the slide feel, which was described as ‘light’ by most, but failed to mention extreme notchiness due to an inherently poor disconnector trip design (which has been heavily modified in this new version, the only discernable design change, that still does not appear to fully solve the problem).

            Light triggers, I can believe prototype guns had better sear surfaces.
            Overall quality & reliability, I can believe proto’s made properly would run just fine
            A barrel design that runs the feed ramp a full 1/4″ up the side of the case resulting in bulges? I find it hard to believe the prototype guns were so vastly different in the feeding geometry yet still ran great, even more so that Remington would FUBAR this geometry to impede feeding & cause case bulges
            A disconnector trip that rides up & down inside the slide three times each way during a cycle? I find it hard to believe no one noticed this had an impact on what racking the slide feels like, or that the proto’s had a totally different system (more likely the disco was removed for you; I can attest it drastically improves the feel of the gun, and is unnecessary for trigger reset so long as the trigger is pulled fully to the rear)
            A 3/32″ diameter firing pin hole, with a conical spike for a firing pin that leaves protruding craters on every piece of brass fired no matter what? It’s doubtful your test guns had a more proper <1/16" hole with a proper blunt/rounded tip that would properly support the primer

            This is why I, at least, think there was a concerted effort to ignore or look past very clear failings of the gun. Or at the very least, that you reviewers were given such a tightly-controlled exposure with no chance to examine any aspect other than whether it fired repeatedly (or neglected to insist on doing so), that your 'experience' with the guns was nothing of the sort, at least not enough to write anything approaching a thorough review of value to readers. If all you got to see was the ad-copy, you might as well have just re-printed the ad-copy like so many others.

        • Joseph Goins

          @thmsmgnm:disqus Don’t mistake skepticism for critical analysis. A healthy dose of skepticism never hurt anything, but it does create a negative bias. This is no different than having a positive bias while conducting a “test” to achieve positive results (look at the Larry Vicker’s advertisement for FireClean, see Link 1).

          The manual for the original R51 stated: “Use only clean, dry, high quality commercially manufactured ammunition…” I doubt the new model will be different. If your measure of a gun is how well it can shoot TulAmmo (a non-SAAMI company, see Link 3) when the company manufacturer clearly to use “high quality” ammunition, that’s on you, not the gun.

          @disqus_dP3XDSJsgl:disqus Thank you for advocating common sense.

          Link 1: http://www . vuurwapenblog . com/general-opinion/lies-errors-and-omissions/where-theres-smoke-theres-liar/
          Link 2: https://docs . google . com/file/d/0Bz-axcUwpDQUY2ZBNWdJUS03bWs/edit
          Link 3: http://www . saami . org/member_companies/index.cfm

          • iksnilol

            Doesn’t make sense for Tula to be a member of SAAMI, more likely they’re a member of CIP or something.

            So your complaining about SAAMI is like me complaining that a car in the USA doesn’t comply with Norwegian standards. Completely irrelevant. Tula complies with CIP specs and certificiations.

          • Michigunner

            You are absolutely correct. However, I’m sure neither SAAMI or CIP specs allow for the overpressure signs that this ammo is showing in this gun. I have shot LOTS of foreign 9mm that was CIP spec instead of SAAMI, and none of the spent casings looked like that. Especially the primer flow. Maybe it has something to do with the design of the pistol, but it really does look like the ammo is the most likely cause of the problem.

          • Joseph Goins

            @Michigunner TulAmmo isn’t CIP and it isn’t SAAMI.

            http://www . cip-bobp . org/homologation/en/homologation_public
            http://www . saami . org/member_companies/index.cfm

          • Giolli Joker

            In the CIP table there is in the ManufactErer window “The Tula Cartridge Works OJSC” that is the head company of TulAmmo and Russia as 4 proofhouses.
            This does not mean that the specific cartridge is CIP approved, though.

            I’m however having hard time to get search results there, just looking by manufacturer, I only get “empty list” and I’m to lazy to study how to make it work (I got the same results with Norma as well, as a reference).

            Edit: now it worked…. Tula only submitted their .308.

          • Joseph Goins

            As this topic isn’t about .308WIN, I chose to exclude it from CIP.

          • Amplified Heat

            Tula 308 is supposed to meet a standard? Yeah right. I had two cases in my BM59 rupture through the extractor groove, because the case head was about as thick as the walls of the case body! Like a balloon-head case from the 1800’s!

          • Joseph Goins

            @iksnilol:disqus Dumbest thing I heard all day!

            TulAmmo USA and its parent company Tula Cartridge Works are not certified by CIP (see link below). They do not participate in the two most prominent small arms ammunition pressure testing which means that they are suspect in my eyes. Do your research.

            Furthermore, your own example of “a car in the USA doesn’t comply with Norwegian standards” as being completely irrelevant backfires on you. Why would an American designed and American built pistol comply with European standards? It wouldn’t; therefore no one can complain about the gun not working with TulAmmo.

            http://www . cip-bobp . org/homologation/en/homologation_public

          • iksnilol

            Because Tula Cartridge Works isn’t an American company, maybe that’s why?

          • ostiariusalpha

            A bit mean spirited of Joe to say that your statement was “the dumbest,” but it is true that the Pobjeda BrassMaxx ammo is not in spec for either SAAMI or CIP. The number of quality, dependable pistols that it has malfed in are legion, and there are plenty of cheap junk pistols that it will fire from. It is not a good measure of a firearm whether it can eat BrassMaxx or not. If you have a pistol that has a relatively generous chamber, than BrassMaxx is an option, otherwise stick to SAAMI and CIP cartridges.

          • iksnilol

            Weird. I’ve just not had a problem with the Pobjeda ammo. Sure, a bit dirty but otherwise I haven’t had any more problems than I’ve had with Fiocchi or Geco.

          • Joseph Goins

            How the hell did you get on the topic of Pobjeda BrassMaxx? I didn’t even mention that stuff. And that Bosnian stuff is CIP certified.

          • iksnilol

            Okay, I think we had a misunderstanding. As I understood it Pobjeda was being sold as Brassmax, but so was Tula or something.

            Bottom line, the Bosnian stuff should be CIP or NATO certified (Igman is NATO certified, I think Pobjeda is CIP). I also might be a bit biased towards it due to it being from my homeland (and Igman being not far from me).

            I haven’t used Russian steel-cased pistol ammo much so I won’t comment much there. In Makarovs it works well, then again 9×18 was designed with a steel case in mind IIRC.

          • Joseph Goins

            No $%^! That’s why you can’t fault the R51 for having problems when it chokes on Russian crap.

          • iksnilol

            Yeah I can, if it works in other pistols without a problem I expect it to work in the R51 as well. Simple as that, it ain’t a race car so it doesn’t need the super ultra high octane premium fuel.

          • Joseph Goins

            I was talking about it in the confines of your example of a car in the USA not complying with Norwegian standards.

            Outside of that, of course you can complain. It just doesn’t make it reasonable. TulAmmo does not meet any sort of specification and owners are told not to fire it through the R51.

          • Steven White

            My question would be…Does this ammo do this out of a Kel Tek or Taurus with the same batch of ammo. If so, question the ammo. If not, question the gun.

          • Joseph Goins

            @Steven White Only if you are too cheap to spend a little extra money on good ammunition.

          • ostiariusalpha

            Yes, it will fire from a Taurus, and you don’t even have to pull the trigger. ?

          • Steven White

            Then why buy it…much less test with it?

          • Joseph Goins

            @Steven White Because it is cheap. I won’t say it is anymore plentiful than Winchester white box.

          • Steven White

            Maybe that’s what is meant by that old adage…You get what you pay for. For practice I use Fiocchi. It always fires, burns clean and is made right up the road in Ozark MO.

          • JoelM

            Speaking of Winchester ammo… I wonder how this gun would fare with THAT stuff. Winchester ammo has been pretty shoddy lately.

          • Joseph Goins

            Not to say you haven’t had a problem with it, but it has worked flawlessly for me over the last few years and still in recent weeks.

          • You bet!

    • R H

      I too have fed every 9mm I own BrassMaxx. So far I have had 0 issues with Glocks, CZs, Springfields, and a HK VP9. Obviously, it looks like the author got some bad ammo, but I’ve probably run about 2000 rounds of the stuff without issue (which is already WAY better than that Winchester Forged garbage). Not saying it’s great (or even decent), just offering up my experience as a data point.

  • A bearded being from beyond ti

    Now that’s an ugly pistol.

  • Gregory

    Why are you loading a round in the chamber and dropping the slide on it? Do you enjoy having guns with damaged extractors? If you want a round in the chamber and a full magazine, load from the magazine and then top it off. If you have loaded Glocks by placing a round in the chamber and dropping the slide, you need remove the extractors and ensure you have not chipped off the bottom corner of the extractors.

  • Kurt Joseph

    It looked like even the Remington ammo had a bulged primer

  • PK

    This doesn’t bode well for sales, regardless of root cause of this issue.

  • Unless Remington clearly warns customers that these guns will only work with specific brands/loads, I’m not willing to make excuses for its poor performance. I have an expectation that the gun should run on any commercially available ammunition.

    That said, there are some guns that prefer some loads more than others. However, this video is showing some of the same issues I had when running US made ammunition through a first generation gun.

    Maybe the R51 Gen2 will be 100% reliable with every other load on the market. But the track record of these pistols certainly suggests otherwise.

    • Hopefully we’ll know before long. I’m just waiting on it to come in,

    • Joseph Goins

      The first generation R51 explicitly stated in the manual: “use only clean, dry, high quality commercially manufactured ammunition in a good condition.” I believe the newer model will have the same disclaimer. If the gun fails while using TulAmmo (dirty and low quality) that the company says not to use, that is on you, not the gun.

      See: https://docs . google . com/file/d/0Bz-axcUwpDQUY2ZBNWdJUS03bWs/edit

      • The ammo appeared to be clean and dry in the video, and I think everyone can agree the ammo was commercially manufactured. Clean, in this context, does not refer to how cleanly the powder burns, as it is talking about ammunition (a complete cartridge) not a single component of the cartridge.

        ‘High quality’ is a subjective term that can be made to mean whatever the reader wants it to mean. It is certainly not instructive for objectively ruling out the ammunition used in the video. Nor does it offer the specificity that I suggested needed be in place. Such specificity is offered by other firearms companies who have identified problems with particular loads.

        Let’s face it, this is a gun designed for self-defense. In more concrete, personal terms that means Remington expects me to save the lives of my children with this pistol. If the gun fails, my children may die. I’m sorry if I set the bar high on that, but I’m not willing to give Remington the benefit of the doubt, especially after:

        – the extensive problems with the first generation,
        – I was fed incorrect or outright false information about the guns by company representatives,
        – the extended delay in returning the guns to its customers, and
        – this early indication of potential problems.

        I’m not saying the reworked R51 is a failure. It may be a wonderful gun that is completely reliable with every load other than the one used in the video.

        I’m just saying that they have to earn my trust, and I would hope that anyone that is looking at this – or any gun – for self-defense would employ a healthy degree of skepticism. After all, its only the lives of your loved ones that could be impacted by your decision.

        • Joseph Goins

          Did you watch the test video? The shooter used TulAmmo for the first ~60 rounds out of the gun. He then used ~40 rounds of UMC (I think that is what he said), and he didn’t have any problems when he switched ammo. A healthy degree of skepticism is good but don’t let it cloud your vision.

          Your buyer’s remorse is squarely on you. You chose a new gun without any sort of record. You relied on advertisements with out see past the hype. You didn’t do your own research prior to making a purchase.

          • I’m not sure where you are coming from on the “buyer’s remorse” thing. I’ve never owned an R51.

            Of course I watched the video, why else would my first sentence start with “The ammo appeared to be clean and dry in the video…”

            I’m really intrigued why you are seemingly so committed to defending the R51.

          • Joseph Goins

            I have no stake in the gun. I have no interest in owning one and I don’t own or intend to own any Remington products. My commitment is to a fair process.

            When I referred “you” buying the gun, I wasn’t directly talking about “you the person” but “you the R51 suckers.”

    • Hey Richard this is from the users manual of the R51
      “Use only clean, dry, high quality commercially manufactured ammunition…”

  • Renegade

    Blaming a firearm when a case and primer come out looking like that is foolish at best. Tula has (and has had) major QC issues with their BrassMaxx line.

  • I would love to test one for TFBTV.

    • Pseudo

      I would love to see that

    • I got it——

    • the_duck

      Have Ian & Karl bring some of their wheelbarrow mud along with you on this test

      • nadnerbus

        I’d like to see that going through the Xray machine at TSA

  • pc299

    As others have said… I’d expect the gun to work with any SAAMI spec’d ammo in the caliber it was designed for. The one possible exception I would allow is aluminum cased ammo, as that can cause pistols that run 100% otherwise to choke up. I’ve used the same ammo (as the review) in a few of my 9mm pistols without issue.

  • Sean Michael

    Judging from the rationalizations here, it looks like someone needs to wipe the RemOil off their chin.

  • Varix

    If we’re already questionin whether it works or not, then it doesn’t work. You never should have to question the ability of a firearm to perform. If you do, it’s a bad gun.

    • Austin

      If he was using Winchester or Remington bulk brass I would agree but there are obvious metallurgy issues with this ammo look at the primer and the fracture in the headstamp near the rim

  • Bradley

    I have never seen any issues like that with the tula branded brass case 9mm. It has nothing to do with the Russian made steel cased stuff other than the name. The brass cased stuff is imported and sold under several brand names, and I have shot quite a bit of it. I’ve never had an issue in any weapon, and the cases have always looked great before and after firing. I’m not saying this means it was a valid test. It looks like this may have been a bad batch of ammunition. For those of you that insist on making rude comments about anyone who buys “junk” that wasn’t loaded in the USA, I’ve had wrinkled case mouths, squib loads, loose crimps, improperly seated bullets from Speer, Federal, Winchester, and Remington. That being said, why bother making a video and “review” and not even bother trying something different when you have function issues.

    • He used some Remington ammo with no malfunctions of any type. That was the answer he gave me anyway.

    • Austin

      Granted I’m a bit of an ammo snob but I don’t trust eastern European ammo in western designed guns, its fine for AKs and Makarovs but I stick with US made ammo for the most part

      • Bradley

        So is it a bad idea to shoot american ammo in my Czech designed pistol? Granted that was meant to be a smart remark. My point is the standards are pretty universal these days. Either the ammunition is made correctly or it isnt. The whole “it doesn’t like x brand” shouldn’t be valid with modern technology. If it doesn’t work then there is something wrong with either the weapon or the ammunition. That’s my opinion anyway.

        • Austin

          Shouldn’t but I’ve seen a new shotgun refuse to cycle Winchester ammo

  • Austin

    that primer has some issues but the case could be a chamber or ammo problem possibly a combination of the two.

  • Bradley

    I have wanted to want one of these ever since it was originally announced. Even if it turns out to be reliable it’s just too far gone for me. They’ve had a ridiculous amount of time to perfect it, and it still appears to have an absolutely disgusting trigger among other things. It’s too bad really.

    • BigR

      You’re right! I noticed when he would shoot the first round of each mag., he was straining to get the shot off. I wish he would have tested the trigger for how heavy it was. Personally, I wasn’t impressed with gun!

      • Bradley

        It did look stiff from watching, but I’ve also heard multiple people state that the reset is basically non existent. To me that completely defeats the purpose of carrying a single action pistol.

  • Edeco

    hey, can we prove theres a problem with the ammo? Does it malf in a G19 or other common, generally proven 9mm pistol?

    • Austin

      The primer and fracture in the headstamp prove the ammo issue for me

    • Doctor Jelly

      I ran a couple hundred rounds of Pobjeda MaxxTech brass case late last year (Tula BrassMaxx being used in the video is the same stuff just rebranded) in my Witness (based on the proven CZ75B) with the only issue being a single light primer strike. Thus far out of almost a dozen different brands/loads equating to a couple thousand rounds, the Pobjeda was the only one my gun ever had a problem with. Even then it was a 1/2% failure rate that set off with the second hammer strike, not an issue for the price in my mind. Based on my limited experience, I’m not convinced the problem lies with the ammo itself, though there seem to be many issues with this ammo strewn across the interwebs…

      • Edeco

        aha, good info!

  • Bob

    My father and I have both used Tula Brass Max, even going so far as to reload them. The only problems I have had was a missing primer and a round that wasn’t crimped, both of which I caught as I was loading a mag.

    So, let’s see, we have a few thousand rounds which have happily gone through: Two different Glocks, a S&W 5906, and a Belgium Hi Power. No problems other than the two mentioned above, nor have any of the reloads done anything funny. Therefore, unless this was a particularly bad batch of Brass Max, I’m not impressed with the R1. Gimmie my Hi Power and call it a day…

  • Just for info this R51 in the video is a replacement gun for his gen 1 that was sent in.

  • Anonymous

    Protruding primer, but no cratering or flattening on the edge of the pocket, tells me this isn’t an over pressure issue. The bulged brass isn’t possible from a normal chamber either. Given that it’s probably not an unsupported chamber issue, I’m fairly certain what we’re seeing is the result of the delay system not working as intended, and unlocking far too early.

    While it might be true that Remington designed it around a different load, a specialist system should be jamming if it’s truly that finnicky, not causing incipient catastrophic failures. Brass bulged like that is a sign that the pistol was trying to pull the brass out while pressure was critically high, and only the strength of the brass prevented explosive disassembly of the weapon.

    Sorry Remington, but once again you’ve released a dangerous abortion of a product, ignoring engineering safety standards in favor of something shiny.

    • Austin

      And the fracture in the headstamp?

      • Anonymous

        The slight ridge on the right side? Looks like a poor headstamping or forming process, not a fracture.

        • Austin

          If it is a ridge then I don’t see how it could sit right in the chamber which raises questions about the testing protocols involved here. And why am I debating Anonymous you are a fool by default.

    • Seriously that’s jumping to conclusions.

      • iksnilol

        is plausible due to other guns digesting the ammo without problems.

      • Anonymous

        No, jumping to conclusions would be believing that bad ammo in a functional pistol would be capable of bulging the case head that badly. It’s not possible. Either the chamber is wildly unsupported, it fired partially out of battery, or it unlocked while pressures were still high. The fact that the primer didn’t give way or show flattening around the edges is a huge clue to what happened. If this were a locked-breech pistol it might be a different story, but given the facts to go on, I’d wager that it was a little hotter than the weak Remington loads it was designed around.

        Or put another way: Any normal manufacturer designs their firearms to be fired with a proof load. Assuming the ammo was wildly hot, it still should not fail.

        • iksnilol

          I am always surprised by the lack of proof testing in the USA. It’s cheap and helps a lot (both in preventing injuries and against lawsuits).

    • Amplified Heat

      The barrel ramp on my Gen 1 R51 extends a good 1/8″ into the chamber, and was also rounded over at the corner; smart money’s on the chamber being poorly supported. Incidentally, my chamber was also badly undersized and egg-shaped, and had at best a 60-grit interior finish. A finish reamer only went 1/2 way in, but when properly reamed, the egged area was almost completely eliminated, along with the rounded-over area.

      The firing pin diameter is huge on these guns, and the firing pin pointy. This means the area around the point, inside the pin hole, is never supported, and bulges outward into the “dimple on a pimple” these guns are universally notorious for. This does not appear to have changed, either.

      It’s worth mentioning that for all the hue & cry about “danger” and “out of battery ignition,” there hasn’t been a single kaboom yet with these guns that I’ve heard of (and I’ve been looking –a lot). The main takeaway, IMO, is that the Pedersen action is supremely tolerant of poor production, taking in stride timing & machining flaws that would blow magazines out of other guns.

  • BigR

    When my Wilson Combat 1911 .45 arrived, they recommended 500 round break in period. I used 4 different brands, plus about 25 rounds of old military I had left over from the old days. I never had one hiccup! Sixteen years later, it’s still rocking and rolling. I think I’ll pass on the Remington! I don’t like getting had! God bless Wilson! By the way, my Baer Custom “ain’t” no slouch either.

    • Austin

      If this were a match or custom pistol those might be good comparisons…

    • Kevin Craig

      For the price of a Wilson or Baer, you could buy the R51 and enough premium ammo to wear it out.

    • iksnilol

      Try an RIA. You’ll then realize you could’a bought a car and still have a pair of good 1911s ๐Ÿ˜›

      • BigR

        I’ve got a car! And two 1911’s that never run out of gas!

  • I’ve shot most ammo I can get my hands on and I have never had a problem my favorite ammo is called Perfecta from Italy, its cheap target ammo but its dirty as crap. I will say that some ammo seems to shoot better then others but between me and most ammo I do not have a problem.

    • Yep I’ve used some of that. Not bad but it is a bit dirty.

    • Nashvone

      Since I would be cleaning my guns anyway, I’ll take the price vs. dirty trade off. It gets bonus points for being cheaper than Winchester White Box but not as dirty.

  • John

    First, the firearm doesn’t appear to reliably eject casings. This may be related to the magazine nose dive as they appear to be associated. The case and primer bulge makes me wonder if the bore cross sectional area is to saami spec or small. Also, chamber dimensions may be in question. It is interested sting that the bulged cases and primers is reduced as the gun is breaking in, indicating possible changes in the bore that reduce pressure – smoother barrel.

  • iksnilol

    Can you please write Gorazde? Using the wrong letter isn’t as bad as omitting one is.

  • DanGoodShot

    Looks like a three-part issue. Weak brass, brake in and possibly the gun itself. Hope not the gun. I would like to see how it runs after a full brake in. I am real interested in purchasing one.

  • Gorilla Biscuit

    Well and unsupported excessively large chamber ( in either diameter or length ) can produce a happy face (Smith Shield 9mm) on the case web and primer flow due to incorrect headspace, with SAAMI specification ammo. Also early opening/unlocking would produce this result. I suspect it is early unlocking. I highly doubt this ammunition is +p+. I can wait to see more results.

    • I’ll sure have one as quickly as possible once my pistol arrives.

      • Gorilla Biscuit

        Surprisingly similar example from the first production run of pistols, before the recall.

  • squareWave

    Given the history of this pistol, you would think one of the first reviews of the re-released version would use ammo of known good quality, just to avoid further muddying the waters with additional variables.

    Remington should have just designed a similar form factor pistol with a proven action rather than trying to shoe-horn this Pedersen action into the 21st century.

    • Amplified Heat

      Not possible; the R51 has the form factor of a fixed-barrel blowback pistol, which if done the traditional way requires a huge, Hi-Point-esque slide to function. Remington clearly cannot design & produce anything new at this point, and that is the fundamental problem. Even the RM380 is a rebranded knockoff of a purchased competitor.

  • Gidge

    Some of those rounds that weren’t feeding looked a little long

  • Evan

    Could be the ammo, but I still wouldn’t buy an R51 until at least a couple years of solid reviews after the fiasco last time. I also prefer guns that aren’t picky about ammo. I like buying the cheap stuff most of the time.

    • Austin

      Or at least a few YouTube channels I really trust give a green light on it

      • Evan

        To be honest, this is the first I’ve heard of it since it was re-released. And it wasn’t exactly on the “guns I need” list anyway. I’m more of a rifle guy.

  • Hilltop

    I really want this to work. But……., I own a wide variety of guns and they will all eat whatever I feed them or they have to go away.

  • Kivaari

    It’s the ammo. I’d stop using ammo that showed such signs. The primer flow into the firing pin channel is a big indicator that things aren’t right. That flow alone could cause trouble. Poor ejection as the slide overcomes the added forces of driving the excess brass out of the channels could sure make the gun “sluggish”. Had it been me, I’d have stopped the “test”.
    In the past Winchester sent me quite a bit of ammo for testing in SIG pistols. I’d like that chance again to test one of these.

    • Austin

      Yeah that is scary looking brass

    • Amplified Heat

      The primer marks are ‘normal’ for the R51s; the firing pin is very wide, but with a narrow tip, so there is a ring of material that is never supported during the firing process. Not saying it’s ideal, but I haven’t seen reports of popped primers, and the extrusion is definitely not deep enough or ‘sharp’ enough to hang up on the hold during ejection.

      • Kivaari

        Or maybe “normal” is wrong? That amount of protrusion is not good. It wouldn’t be “normal” in any other pistol. Glocks leave a small amount of protrusion, it’s nothing like the images of this pistol.

  • Treyh007

    I buy that ammo all the time at Walmart for $22-$25 per hundred rounds and it works fine in my Glocks, Sigs, XD’s, Berettas, etc! Basically I’ve not personally had any issues with that ammo after shooting close to 1000 rounds of it. I really hope it is the ammo though, I want this pistol to succeed!

    • Austin

      I don’t see how the gun could cause a headstamp fracture

  • ironked

    I bought about 300 rounds of the Tula BrassMax at Wallyworld and also use a lot of Tula owned Italian Perfecta and it has all fed through a Glock. I’ve fed that thing all kinds of crap brass, steel and aluminum without a hiccup. Can’t we expect at least comparable performance in any new firearm? Is there room for finiky?

  • totenglocke

    I own lots of guns and I’ve never had one malfunction due to using cheap ammo like Tula. Sorry, but if a gun only works with certain types of ammo, I consider that a defective gun.

    • JDC

      Hmmm. Many .22’s are finicky about type of ammo, and I wouldn’t call them defective. Maybe just a difference of opinion and you would.

      Your Glock only works with “certain types of ammo”…non-lead bullets (assuming you follow manufacturers recommendation not to use lead). Of course, it “can” shoot lead ammo, but may eventually blow up in your hand…does that make it defective? Nope, just a byproduct of the polygonal rifling.

      BTW, if you show up at a GSSF match with lead bullets, the armorer will give you a lecture on how dangerous it is, and hopefully someone will send you off to get something different.

      Not trying to throw stones here. Just pointing out that there are different opinions.

      Anyhow, I hope the R-51 succeeds. Remington could use another hit. Given their quality issues in the recent past, they don’t need a failure. At this point in American history, we should ALL be pulling for firearms manufacturers to be putting out good weapons, and for them to be highly successful. The anti-gun factions would love to see another gun manufacturer go belly up.

  • Kevin Craig

    Did the reviewer do any cleaning and/or lubrication before firing?

    Anyone who drops the slide on a loaded chamber before inserting a magazine probably doesnโ€™t understand guns very well.

  • IndyToddrick

    The hesitation locking system just seems like a bad idea if you plan on reloading your brass. While the pressure is still high the case is halfway out of the chamber, which seems like it would lead to a lot of bulged or deformed casings even with quality brass. Am I wrong? It seems to me that steel cased ammo (like Tula) might be ideal for the R51, since it should be less likely to bulge, and since you may not be able to reload spent casings anyways.

    • Austin

      The bulge is the lesser concern compared to a fractured headstamp which indicates serious metallurgy issues in the case

      • Anonymous

        It’s not a fracture. The brass could be too hard (and cause a fracture) or too soft (and bulge in an unsupported chamber), it’s not going to do both.

        Go look at other brands and calibers of ammo, particularly cheap stuff, and you’ll see the same headstamping imperfections commonly all over.

        • Austin

          Assuming that it hardened uniformly it wouldn’t but I’m not ruling out anything considering that primer.

  • Jim_Macklin

    Soft primers cups will extrude into teh firing pin hole. Soft brass will not spring back to a smaller size and will therefore stick in the chamber. The extruded primer will hang up in the breechface.

    NATO spec 9mm, USA commercial, should be used. No doubt Remington used Remington ammo and Winchester and probably Russian steel cased ammo to test and proof.the guns before releasing the Gen II guns.

  • Seems like the R51 uses a unique operation mechanism. Is it like delayed blowback? The issue isn’t that TuLAmmo is “bad” it just doesn’t work well in some firearms, especially if they have special requirements for ammo or tolerances. It’s well known that some firearms do work better with certain ammo. My AR loves steel cased Wolf ammo! Low quality ammo (it seems that the ammunition in question might have issues with quality control) might cause a malfunction in 1 out of 10 firearms, but the other 9 gobble it up no problem. I wouldn’t condemn the R51, yet. Remington spent time getting it right. Try it with some Federal, CCI, Remington, or Winchester and I bet it would work just fine. Eliminate the variable of bad ammo for a good test please!

    • Austin

      Its a hesitation locked system like the original Remington model 51

    • Here’s a promotional video illustrating the mechanism.


      • That is very reminiscent of Pedersen’s blowback design. No wonder why the reviewer was having issues with cases bulging. It seems the rear of the casing isn’t fully supported. I think you might have issues with out of battery discharge and cases being extracted while still under pressure, right? If that’s the case, then I can see the argument for quality cartridges!

  • James Doe

    I shot four 400 rounds of being 200 rounds being TulAmmo other 200 rounds Brass Maxx ammo through my Taurus Pt92 and Taurus Pt809 both guns where brand new never been usedt at out door rang had zero issues you had shooting Remington R 51 Gen2 with this brand ammo. I well give benefit doubt until see how firearm perform with so called better ammo.

  • RBnash

    I got my R51 back this week brought it home, cleaned, lubed, and took to the range with some Winchester white box. I put about a hundred rounds through it without a single issue as to the function of the gun. I didn’t catch all the brass but what I was able to look at was consistent with every other 9mm casing I’ve ever seen. No bulges in the primer or casing.

    I can’t speak for anyone else’s but my function flawlessly. I was shooting low and I need to work out whether it was me or the gun but I had none of my original issues which caused me to return the gun. The most concerning of which was that would be slightly out of battery after the first shot. The action was also smoothed out and I feel like the trigger was much lighter and broke very crisp at what I think was prob 6 or 7 lbs. still no discernible reset which was disappointing but I guess we can’t have it all.

    • Amplified Heat

      I would love to see pictures/video of your gun not leaving pimples in the primer. I’ve not seen a single R51, including my own, that does not do this, nor do I see how it is possible not to given how large & pointy the pin is.

  • Uncle Festet

    Why would you want to test a controversial pistol using “strange” ammo? Why not buy a box of common training ammo?

    • Baley

      Because agendas..

      • Amplified Heat

        Because cheap. He also shot UMC/Remington, and it worked better. Not great, since it still bulged, but better.

  • T Rex

    I agree it’s too early to relegate the Gen 2 R51 to the Nambu or trot line weight category, but it sure looks like the best case verdict will be finicky in the ammo appetite category.

    Given the price range Remington hopes the market will bear for their allegedly new and improved R51, who in their right mind wants a finicky pistol when they could buy a reliable Glock 43, S&W Shield, or Kahr CM9 for about the same or less money. Anyone willing to settle for finicky and less reliable can just buy a Taurus and save even more money.

  • Steven White

    I’ll stick with my Kahr. Goes bang and ejects non-deformed cases.

  • WCC

    The only ammo I care about in a gun like this is any one of the reputable defensive cartridges. If it will shoot any one of PDX, Gold Dot, whatever the latest Federal is, etc. with combat reliability, then its purpose is served. This is not going to be my plinking gun, nor my secondary weapon “down range.” I understand the need to train, but if it shoots at least one JHP well, it will surely shoot at least one FMJ well–enough so that I can give it a little range time every now and again, after doing my skills develoment with my primary practice pistols. Perhaps, if you can only afford one 9mm pistol in your life, then maybe you wait to see if there’s at least one defensive round and one cheap FMJ that it will shoot, and learn what those are. The price of that practice ammo may weigh upon your choice of this gun vice another gun that does shoot Tula, but perhaps isn’t quite as comfortable in your hand. But as long as it has one of each at the end of the day, it’s certainly a viable and functional choice as a defensive handgun. If it mows grass, the fact that it doesn’t mow certain brands of practice grass does not disqualify it from being a lawnmower.

    Also, I am amused to see that the “I won’t own a gun that can’t shoot Tula” brand of purism is now just as prevalent as the “I would never let Tula touch my weapon” brand of purism. I would put myself more in the “very pleased to discover that my gun can shoot Tula without exploding,” Tula-as-bonus-points camp.

  • I’d like to a see a photo of the R51’s barrel with a round seated, just to check how much of the case web is unsupported. Judging from the footage in RyeOnHam’s table top review, the barrel is horrifically overramped.

    • Amplified Heat

      The ramp is like 1/8″ into the chamber on my Gen 1; the new ones appear identical, though they at least do not appear to have followed it up with manual rounding of the transition corner as they did on mine (yes, it guppies brass slightly, but not this much; I’m thinking his Tula ammo was both soft/cheap and also had a fat bullet that hit the lands early on causing higher pressures)

  • Andrew Moursund

    Mine ate 100 rounds of American Eagle without choking, but I’d need to shoot more before I call bullshit on this.

  • John McPherson

    As I remember, this type of action was simply Remington trying to get around another patent. Using the Pedersen system did just that but today building a locked breech 380 is simple, so the use of the Pedersen system is just a really bad idea.

    • Uncle Festet

      What Patent? Virtually every modern SA design is likely to be off patent by now. They could easily have created a version of a Glock like Ruget did.

      The Pederson system was used because it allows a smaller frame to be used, a fixed barrel for accuracy, and a low bore accuracy. The “trick” was figuring out how to do it correctly at modern (someone will put a +P 9mm in it) 9mm pressures. They failed with Priduction version 1.0. Will Version 2.0 work properly

  • Thanks!

  • Bradley

    This ammo is one of several brands with questionable quality control (I would put a couple brands of winchester and Remington on that list personally), and everyone is correct in pointing that out. I’m not sure why everyone keeps discussing the steel cased Russian ammunition which is completely different from what is in the video, but that’s beside the point. I would be willing to make a small wager that this ammo was out of spec, but it’s still jumping to a conclusion. If you think the ammo is the only thing that causes symptoms like these then stick any brand in a chamber that is a few thousandths oversized and see how much bulging you get. I could be wrong, but it seems like I remember firing out of battery was one of the original issues. If that happened I would not be surprised by cases that looked exactly like these do. If there is anything more dangerous than poorly made ammo it is combining it with a poorly made firearm. It would take a lot to convince me to risk buying one of these.

  • David Knutson

    Stopped watching as soon as he dropped the slide on a loaded chamber, no use watching a test from some one who does not know very much about handguns.

    • Steve

      That does show a lack of knowledge about firearms.

  • Triplanetary

    115 grain Tulammo and reloads ? Come on guys, this shows us nothing. How about some empirical testing on something that a lot of people are still interested in.

  • Bal256

    Bad ammo can jam any gun. Bad guns can jam on any ammo. That being the case, I always bring multiple guns and ammo manufactures to test new guns/ammo.

  • John Brown Jr

    Did you see his follow up with a tear down of the pistol? Spoiler alert: the R51 is still crap, and ammo had nothing to do with it.

  • John Brown Jr

    Not going to post his follow up vid with a complete disassembly of the still crap R51? If Tulammo was so bad as to have pregnant cases on the R51, then surely people who shoot 9mm Glocks would have the same issue, wouldn’t they? Seeing as how they don’t, it pretty much narrows it down to a known bad pistol, the R51.

  • Calvin Ledford

    While the choice of Tula ammo for the test was a poor one – the Remington apologists can just stop. I owned two of the Gen 1 R51s and the Gen 2 is exhibiting the EXACT same issues as the 1st gen – bulged cases and pimpled primers. I have pictures to prove it. There are photos posted online by Gen 1 reviewers as wel -that cans till be found with a simple Goggle search. That the questionable quality of the Tula ammo might be involved in slightly more case bulging in the Gen2 test doesn’t change for one minute that even with “quality” ammo (Remington, Winchester, Federal, etc.) the original R51 showed these same issues, and the Gen2 (in the RyeonHam video), when shooting Remington ammo, also did too.
    I want the R51 to work as much as anyone – but it appears that after two very long years, Remington did the bare minimum of what they felt was necessary to make the gun work and nothing more. Trigger, still appears inexcusably sloppy, and still seems to exhibit no tactile reset – despite Remington marketing statements to contrary. Gun still showing symptoms associated with over pressure (bulged primers and guppied cases), and (once again as well) concerning looking wear on frame in as little as 100 rounds.
    Oh, and given the serial numbers on the frames, looks as if they are still using frames made in Charlotte, NC and not the new plant.
    I really, really hope the R51 works out, but right now blaming the issues shown in the video on ammo choice is silly – especially when many other DEFENSE firearms digest the same ammo all day long. The gun (in the video) is showing the exact same behavior as the Gen 1 and that is extremely concerning. After 2 years of NUMEROUS instances on missing self imposed dates for owners to receive their R51s back – it is incomprehensible that Gen2s could go out the door as anything less than flawless.
    I wonder how many people who are defending Remington are going to put their money where their mouth is and go purchase an R51 for themselves or a loved one and then CARRY it, as it was intended. I also CANNOT wait until the Gun rag writers write up their reviews.

  • Weaponized_Hotdog

    Let me get this straight…. A known turd is redone and shipped to initial beta testers. A common plinker ammo won’t run known turd. Mags designed for Turd Gen2 (oh,wait, they are “old”) won’t run gun. Everyone blames non-Merica ammo.

    Give me a break! All my polymer guns, 9mm 1911, and 9mm AR run on brass Tulammo. The gun either needs more rounds through it to loosen it up or it remains a turd. There are many other guns out there that actually run for similar amounts of money that no one should have to endure this SKU. I know ppl want this gun to work out, but my money will go elsewhere….

  • Kivaari

    @ Nathaniel, What do you think about the primer protrusion. It appears the bulge is going into the FP channel. I’d say that’s an issue.

  • I’ll have a look

  • Sledgecrowbar

    “TulAmmo Brass Maxx is loaded in Gorade, Bosnia, by Pobjeda. Whether this manufacturer is a good one or not, it is highly unlikely that Remington designed the R51 to work with ammunition made in Bosnia!”

    We don’t forgive any other gun for being picky about ammo, save maybe semiautomatic rimfires. If this ammo runs fine in any other similar gun like Glock or M&P, that it doesn’t run in this gun is against this gun, not the ammo. I find it hard to believe that a gun on its second iteration after a buyback offer from the manufacturer should be defended.

  • AirborneSoldier

    Poor ammo=poor result

  • Joe Hathaway

    The original R51 was certified as designed to handle +P rounds. Did the Gen 2 come with the same rating?

  • Humpy

    What a totally useless useless article, use some quality ammunition for crying out loud.
    Why waste our time?

  • Chuck

    I believe the fail-to-eject issue is caused by the web of your hand. When you shot with the camera directly behind the sights I could not see the bottom of the slide because your web was in the way. It looked like the slide had to push your skin out of the way – or at least the bottom of the slide saw friction with your skin and compromised the ejection inertia.

  • Adam

    All valid nitpicks/observations aside, I stopped watching at 4:50 in the video, after he drops a round in the chamber and drops the slide. Who does that? Not anyone that I know or care to reference when deciding the merit of a firearms reliability. PS: His right and left handed grip techniques could use some work.


    i wont deny that tula is lesser quality than many other ammo manufacturers. but that being said my rule with all firearms is that they must fire any ammo i throw in them. i will accept a bit of pickyness with JHP rounds, since the shape of some brands just dont work well in certain guns. but with FMJ target ammo. anything more than 1 failure per 100 rounds after a proper break in the gun gets sold. period.

  • The Concerned Conservative

    Your failure to eject/feed may be that your hand is interfering with the slide return force.

  • Clinton Keller

    I can tell you Tula BrassMaxx will jam a Beretta M9 (92FS) like there’s no tomorrow! It’s crappy ammo! More stove pipes than you can count!

  • drizd

    Looking at that design on the case I would say it is a partially unsupported chamber at fault as much as the ammo. My glock 23 has done this when using Federal Hydrashocks, particularly the stuff from the mid 90’s. Its not really the gun and not really the ammo but when you put them together this happens.

  • Dragonheart

    First if you are going to post a test on the New gun give the gun to someone that knows something about pistols. First why did he use Old magazines instead of the New magazines supplied with the handgun? That’s asking for feed issues as we saw and didn’t prove a thing about the new gun as the magazine could have been caused the failures.
    Second, never drop a round into the chamber and then force the extractor to jamb the round into the chamber, possible damaging the extractor. A damaged extractor causes failure issues. Forcing a round into the chamber is not the way a semi-auto was designed to perform; the magazine feeds the round’s rim under the extractor and to the bolt face. This demonstrates ignorance of the shooter as to a semi-auto’s design.
    Since this is a carry gun the ammunition for the test should have been quality ammunition typically used for self defense.
    About the only valid thing I saw was the gun is not comfortable to shoot, but that applies to the majority of small lightweight carry guns.

  • BigR

    Remind me not to buy a Remington pistol in this lifetime!

  • chuckles

    The primer shows the pressure problem. Inaccurate powder loads or damaged powder can cause unreliable results. I had some reloads for 10 years or so and went to pop some off and had the same problem. Head separation and bulging primers were more than half the shots. The reloads were from a batch of about 1000 I did several years ago. The ones I shot way back at reloading worked fine. After many years of lugging them around and re-stacking them in different locations, I started to have problems. I’ve heard that sometimes the powder is damaged and breaks in smaller pieces and burns faster than spec. I always load at least 10% below hot loads, but the difference in new powder and old powder makes a huge difference. BTW, eventually after about 50 shots I bent an extractor that caused stove piping.