A recent press release from MKS Supply of Dayton, OH, announced the results of a self-described "quick and dirty" 7.62x39mm Barnaul ammo test.
In the last few years, Barnaul 7.62x39mm and 7.62x54R ammo has been available in the United States. These two 7.62mm rounds are loaded into high-temperature resistant, lacquer-coated steel cases with the primer water sealed.
First, some background on Barnaul as an ammo manufacturer. The original government-owned Arsenal P began production in the 1880s in St. Petersburg. Due to World War I and later on, the Russian Civil War, it was moved to Podolsk. In 1941, the plant was evacuated and relocated to Barnaul, Russia, where it remains today. About 20 years ago, Barnaul became a privately-owned company that manufactures high-quality ammunition for the Russian Special Forces.
Using two original Russian SKS rifles, testers set up two NRA B-27 targets at 300 yards. The SKS rifles were zeroed at the same distance. Firing fairly quickly from the bench, they sent 10 rounds of Barnaul 7.62mm Russian ammunition from each rifle down range. They were holding (lower) taking the boiling mirage into effect and when it was blown away from the breeze, the rounds then went low due to the lower hold. However, the balance of the hits were in the 8- and 9-rings, with four in the 10-ring.
According to the testers (one of which is a Distinguished Rifleman):
"We were not trying for anything real precise, just a quick and dirty rattle battle field test ... This demonstrated to us that 7.62x39mm Barnaul ammunition shoots very well out of decent surplus original military rifles."
Available cartridges are listed below (no suggested retail pricing available): 7.62x39mm