How many FTF/FTE per X # of rds. is (un)acceptable?

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KIR

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Mar 2, 2022
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I belong to several firearm forums and come across many reviews. There are always some about how the shooter experience malfunctions, but in many of them, they fail to mention the full ratio of failures. They might say they had 'X' number of failures, but neglect to mention how many total rds. they fired. I have read magazine reviews about the thousands of rounds that were fired with zero/nary a malfunction. I realize since the importance of a firearm used for defensive purposes and/or possibly used in a conflict, one would want to have a perfect weapon that has zero malfunctions. After all, lives may depend on the reliability of said firearm. Since no firearm is perfect, is there a level of acceptability. All firearms will have a failure eventually, simply by wearing out or not being cleaned periodically. Parts would need to be replaced to attain a perfection, but when should the parts be changed? How often should a firearms be cleaned, after how many rounds?
No firearm is perfect, so what ratio of a failure is acceptable? 1 in a thousand?

Your thoughts?
 
Joined
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My observation would be that if you enter into the shooting game you should not expect perfection. As you said, no firerm is perfect and the same can be said for ammunition. Each of us has to establish our own standards for expected performance, and there will be no 100% agreement on the matter. What might be acceptable to a casual plinker would not likely be acceptable to someone whose life depends on the performance of his gun. JMHO :)
 

GunnyGene

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Back in WWII Gov't contracts for ammunition contained quality control requirements that stipulated a AQL (Acceptable Quality Level) of 2% based on Mil-Std-105. That Std, gave tables for the sample size based on the Lot size. If a certain number of sampled rounds exceeded the upper limit, the entire lot would be rejected & sent back to the manufacturer. Things changed in the '90's and now Quality Assurance and Process Control requirements are much more stringent by contract, with a focus on Process Control, rather than end item inspection/testing. Ammo manufacturers typically maintain a failure rate in the low parts per million these days, although that is no guarantee that any given lot will be defect free. Sampling is inherently inaccurate, but you can't shoot every round before it leaves the factory if you intend to have any left to sell. :)

I'm not going into any deeper level of detail as to all the in's and out's of sampling or process control, other than to say sampling is primarily concerned with the overhead costs of manufacturing. If you're really interested in it, you'll need to take a few years of college level courses in manufacturing, business management, statistics, and quality assurance. :)
 

hittman

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Ruger seems to be okay with 2 in 1000 failures.

They were quoted in a recent article about the new Marlin that they had about 10 failures in 5000 rounds. They think most of the failures were ammo related.
 

fiasconva

Single-Sixer
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Jan 14, 2011
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York County, Virginia
IMHO, it depends on the caliber. I'd be more more accepting of a few more misfires in a .22 since that ammo is so bad compared to a 9 mm or any other pistol. The bar would be a lot lower for the .22.
 

noahmercy

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Jun 13, 2015
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Location
Sheridan, WY
For a centerfire defensive gun, I am unhappy with ANY failures. My EDCs are well maintained, fed quality ammunition (my handloads 99% of the time), and I utilize proper technique when shooting. Certain bullet profiles, weights, and velocities can cause issues, but I have guns with multiple thousands of rounds down-barrel and zero malfunctions, so it is possible to have failure rates below 1/10th of 1% with proper ammo and lubrication. With rimfires, I expect 1-2% failure rate due to ammo (far less for premium match stuff), but I would never carry a 22 for self defense, so it's just an annoyance.
 

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