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Why 2K?

A thing that I’d never really thought about is when someone tests a gun (usually on the internet), the 2,000 round test seems to be some sort of standard. Is there a particular reason for this number? If so, I’m unaware of it.

Also, some tests seem to be just tests and others are “torture tests”. I don’t know why it’s torture to shoot a gun that’s made to be shot.

21 Responses to “Why 2K?”

  1. Garrett Lee Says:

    I think that the distinction between a test and a torture test is that for it to qualify as the latter, the firearm cannot be oiled, tuned, or have anything done to it in between firing the 1st round and the 2000th. A 2000 round “test” is not as specific. As for why 2000, beats me.

    (I await corrections from those wiser than I.)

  2. PaulB Says:

    Dunno. as the gun is a likely to fail after 200 rounds as 2000. Tam usually does it as a torture test and it pretty good about documenint ammo used and other minutia that could be handy for analysis.

    But it does point out that you need to get out and shoot. No skill can be sustained without some measure of practice.

    I have noticed tam’s groups have tightened substantially over the time she has been doing these tests.

  3. BDubya Says:

    Automatic pistols, more so than revolvers, are subject to fatigue failure of parts that are stressed with each cycle of the gun as it is fired. It is within the realm of probability that, after 6000 rounds fired, an auto pistol such as the Beretta 92FS may display failures related to recoil spring fatigue, failure to extract and slide failure.
    The document “U.S. ARMY DEVELOPMENTAL TEST COMMAND TEST OPERATIONS PROCEDURE” requires a minimum of 5000 rounds per tested gun, with three guns being the minimum sample size to cover all statistical failure bases.
    Why would you test a proven pistol design with 2000 rounds, which could represent as much as 33% of its service life, if that pistol is intended to be your daily carry arm or the pistol that you primarily rely on for home defense?
    It makes little sense to me. YMMV, of course. It makes sense to shoot the pistol enough to acquire proficiency with it under expected conditions, but not so much to shoot it to pieces.

  4. JFM Says:

    My problem is that I’m of the clean it after you use it generation. I cringe every time someone does one of these multi-thousand tests without any cleaning/maintenance. Also think it’s a bad example for the people who learn about guns from the internet.

  5. mikee Says:

    Why run a few thousand rounds through a pistol?
    I took that many shots to get some valid confidence in my ability to hit the target where I thought I was aiming. If it had only taken a magazine or two, I would not have shot that many. I am not that good a shot.

  6. Hist_ed Says:

    I thought torture never worked.

  7. Jailer Says:

    2K rounds is 33% of a pistols service life? Are you kidding me? If that’s the case I’m WELL beyond service life on a couple of mine.

  8. nk Says:

    Extreme tests, to destruction or near destruction, are for test samples that you are not going to keep. If they pass, you buy one from that product line for your normal use.

    It’s stupid to abuse a tool that you want long term use out of. Those you only check out for normal operation and otherwise baby as much as possible.

  9. Jamieb Says:

    50,000 RDS or more for good quality guns like SIG p series, xd, block, mp.

  10. mariner Says:

    I can make a case for 2000 rounds to be a torture test, but I can also make the case that it’s a break-in and reliability test.

  11. Shooter Says:

    I really hope 2,000 is closer to break-in than service life on my guns. They get shot.

    I enjoy Tam’s 2K round tests but I’d like to see something a bit different – her tests use various ammo throughout with some guns obviously not liking a certain type. I typically figure out what a gun likes and then try and shoot that exclusively/ or atleast DONT shoot ammo I know it doesn’t like – and would like to see ‘torture’ tests do the same – 2k rounds of ONE ammo that the gun likes. I don’t fault a gun for failures with one ammo if it shoots other known ammo perfectly.

  12. Chiefjaybob Says:

    I think it was Todd Green who came up with the 2000 round test. I believe his theory wasn’t so much to try and destroy the gun, but as more of a reliability test: if your gun could fire 2000 rounds without cleaning or lubrication, it was reliable enough for daily carry. If I remember all this correctly, it had nothing to do with a torture test or to try and work the gun to failure.

    Maybe Tam will chime in and correct all of us dummys.

  13. majmike Says:

    Never kept track of the number of rounds launched from any of my firearms. Too busy zeroing-in the scope/sight or beating myself up on all the mistakes I’m making. Just relax and enjoy the shooting experience.

  14. Ravenwood Says:

    “I believe his theory wasnít so much to try and destroy the gun, but as more of a reliability test: if your gun could fire 2000 rounds without cleaning or lubrication, it was reliable enough for daily carry.”

    I don’t get it. Seems like firing a bunch of rounds through your gun without proper maintenance would cause it to fail unnecessarily.

    When I get a new car, I don’t drive it for 15,000 miles without an oil change to see if it’s good enough for every day use. On the contrary, I usually change the oil more frequently when new, because of the initial wear.

  15. MattW Says:

    “I donít get it. Seems like firing a bunch of rounds through your gun without proper maintenance would cause it to fail unnecessarily.”

    I don’t think the point is that everyone should test their own new guns with 2,000 rds no cleaning or lube. The point is to watch other people do it on a T&E gun to help someone else make an informed decision on which gun to buy and carry.

    Generally I’ll avoid guns that fail regularly during other people’s 2,000 rd tests.

  16. Blue Falcon in Boston Says:

    2k might come from the US Army Ordinance Dept’s original testing standard for that lead to the selection of the 1911s way back when.

  17. Phil Says:

    Even if it’s arbitrary, it’s a decent high round count that’s both attainable and likely to expose any flaws.

    That said, I do not understand those who refuse to consider any gun that won’t go over 2K rounds without any maintenance. It’s a level far beyond what any pistol is going to be expected to do. If you’re in a 2000 round firefight, you’re not only going to run out of pistol ammo, but you ought to have brought both a rifle as well as a lot of friends. I doubt anybody has 2000 rounds of pistol ammo ready to go, loaded in magazines. If you have time to load mags, you have time to field strip and oil it.

    So it’s a level of academic interest, but not really a practical concern. If mine will do 200 round in a range session without a hiccup it’s good enough.

  18. JTC Says:

    At least in my timeline of awareness as an FFL, the Big Deal about plastic guns was that they wouldn’t hold up under field usage/conditions. Glock deployed an army of demo men (see what I did there?) to prove otherwise, truly torturing those Mattels way beyond round count.

    If success is counted by sales and ubiquity, both public and private, I’d say that was a pretty successful program.

  19. JTC Says:

    @Ravenwood, the last 5 new cars I bought (since ’05) came with dealer maintenance included, and the computer determines when it’s ready…usually about 15K miles.

    Maybe if I planned to keep a car to and through 100K miles, I’d double or triple that schedule…but obviously that’s not a factor for me.

  20. Drake Says:

    It’s nice to know if my gun or one I might buy can survive such a test. But I would never do that to one I own – any more than the above mentioned oil change torture test on my new car.

  21. Jay Eimer Says:

    For semi-auto pistols, 200 rounds is about minimum for break in. My machinist father always advised clean it (get the cosmoline off, etc.), lube well, shoot a box, clean, shoot, clean, shoot, etc. until you had 200 rounds. This is breaking loose, then removing the machining chips and burnishing the burrs (and removing their chips, too).

    After that, lube once and shoot without clean or lube is useful to know how sensitive a gun is going to be to gunk buildup. In Tam’s tests she’s uncovered a couple that did remarkably well on functioning (no fail to feed/fail to fire) for 1K or so, then gunked up enough to not fire (ash in the striker path) or go into battery or eject (gunk on the rails slowing the slide down). That doesn’t “reject” a gun for carry (in my mind), just means clean it more often. OTOH, one that CAN go 2k without cleaning can certainly go two or three range trips between cleanings and STILL be a carry gun, too.

    Of even MORE interest to me, though, is knowing things like “Blazer brass is pretty weak sauce” and that HKs don’t like wimpy ammo. Saves me time when a friend complains that his HK keeps jamming. “Shooting Blazer?” “Yep.” “Try better ammo, HKs like some oomph. If you insist on shooting wimpy or target loads, keep it clean and lubed and invest in a lighter recoil spring.” (Note: actual recall of a conversation with a friend while he was showing off his new one – we shot 200 rounds of Win white box with no problem right after).