Russian infantry weapons have a reputation for reliability. The AK and PKM are renowned for enduring through adverse conditions, powered by their powerful long-stroke piston actions. However, a recent report by warhead.su suggests that when these weapons do fail in Russian service, the problem is often not in their design, but rather in the Russian ammunition they fire.
This is not a new phenomenon. Russian imported ammunition to the United States has always been regarded as “budget” brands, with inconsistent quality. But apparently, the same problems apply to Russian military ammunition.
The report opens with a story of a soldier operating a Kord 12.7-millimeter heavy machine gun. The soldier noticed the belt was a little lighter than usual, and when he pulled the trigger… the bullet got stuck in the barrel, not even passing the gas port on the barrel.
The cause for this is the inconsistencies in Russian powder manufacture. In addition to bullets getting stuck in the barrel, there are stories of guns shooting hotter than usual, and guns exploding due to too much powder being in a cartridge. Of course, for these reasons, Russian domestic ammunition is rarely the ammo of choice for Russian precision shooters.