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CCI Blazer 22 Long Rifle "F" headstamp?

Discussion in 'Rimfire Forum' started by G19 A4, Sep 19, 2012.

  1. G19 A4

    G19 A4

    May 18, 2007
    Got a brick of CCI Blazer (500 rounds). I understand bulk Blazers comes in two flavors...

    1. 500 rounds packed into ten 50-round cardboard boxes. Each box has a plastic thingee that separates each of the 50 rounds. Or...

    2. 525 rounds all thrown in together will nilly into one big box.

    I also understand #1 is supposed to be of slightly higher quality as the lubricated lead bullets are not allowed to bump into each other possibly causing them to deform.

    Anyhow, I have #1. My question is I found approximately one (sometimes two or three) cartridges with a "F" headstamp in each cardboard 50-round box. The rest of the box, the cartridges have the usual CCI "C" headstamp.

    I also noted CCI does not show Blazers on their website list of 22LR ammo along with Stingers, MiniMags, Velocitors, etc. Are Blazers "contract" ammo made by whomever at the time, in this case I presume Federal?

    The reason I ask is I just got an Advantage Arms G19/23 conversion kit. A kit insert recommends Blazers and NO Federals. I broke in my new kit with 50 rounds of CCI MiniMag 40gr round nose with not one hitch. I then switched to Blazers. I had 11 FTEject and 6 FTFeed in 46 rounds before I stopped and returned to using MiniMags. (Which out of the remaining 99 rounds of MiniMags I had on FTEject. Total MiniMags: 149, only one FTEject.)

    Who manufactures the "F" stamp? (Pictured on this website:

    And why is it mixed in with the other "C" stamped Blazer rounds?

    I used 4 different mags (Blazer problems happened with all of them). My kit has the latest "low cut" feed lips to reduce ejection problems, if that matters. It would be a bummer if I can't use Blazers as they are significantly cheaper than MiniMags.

    Last edited: Sep 19, 2012
  2. Paul53

    Paul53 Geezer Boomer

    Nov 27, 2011
    Can't answer your question for sure, but manufacturers place marks on products for differing reasons. They might be a different manufacturer as you assume, the letters might indicate date of manufacture, the particular machine that made that round, it's endless.

    Example: Incandescent light bulb manufacturers track their products on a five year cycle. Look at the mount inside a bulb where the glass is squeezed against the wires. There will be a number there from 1 to 60 indicating which month the bulb was manufactured in the 5 year (60 month) cycle.

  3. Both CCI and Federal are owned by the same parent company ATK. Yes Federal loads some of the rimfire ammo that is marked as CCI just as CCI loads some rimfire ammo that is sold marked and sold through other manufactures (most notablly .17 HMR Ammo).

  4. DJ Niner

    DJ Niner Moderator

    Feb 13, 2001
    North-Central USA
    On the rounds with the different case head markings, did the bullets appear to be the same? I'll have to take a closer look at some of mine, and see if I have anything like that.

    I probably have 5-6 bricks of the 50-round boxed stuff around the house, along with about 2.5 boxes of the poured-in-the-box-loose stuff. They loose-packed rounds don't seem to have the same bullet lube as the 50-count boxes; the bullets in the 50-pack boxes almost look like they were moly lubed, and they seem to feed and eject better in some of the "picky" semi-auto guns.
  5. SLO1911Fan


    Nov 23, 2009
    I was always told that the 500 round bricks (Blazer black) were made my CCI, while the 525 round bulk back (Blazer gray) were made by Federal. This seemed to hold true given their respective reliability, and the fact that blazer grey would always choke one Ruger I had. The damn thing would eat anything, even remington bulk packs, but it choked at least once per magazine with both the grey blazer and Federal.
  6. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

    Oct 28, 1999
    Blue Planet
    Not necessarily true. I've been buying both bulk CCI Blazers and by the box for several years and the box packed is the same at the bulk packed ammo.

    Federal does make some of the Blazers for CCI. The
    Federal ammo has a different factory code on it from the CCI made ammo but I don't remember what it is offhand. So far I have only found the Federal made ammo in bulk but I also have cases of the bulk packed CCI made stuff as well.
  7. DJ Niner

    DJ Niner Moderator

    Feb 13, 2001
    North-Central USA
    I have samples of both the bulk-pack and 50-count-box packed Blazer right now, and in addition to the color difference, the bullets don't appear to have quite the same profile.


    Bulk-pack on the left, 50-ct-box on the right:


    My experience with these loads (as far as reliability goes) matches that of SLO1911Fan, above. I've seen several different guns that will eat the 50-round-box Blazer without any problems, but the bulk-pack Blazer will give me stoppages from time to time. It looks like the boxed ammo has a slightly "pointier" bullet that also has a longer driving band, while the bulk-pack has a shorter driving band, more blunt profile, and two grooves in the driving band. Both of these were purchased in the last year, but I don't know when they were actually manufactured.

    CCI doesn't seem to separate them on the Blazer website; they just post a note saying one is bulk-packed and has a different stock number for this reason.

    And back to the main subject of this thread, I didn't find any headstamps that were anything but a "C" (checked 250 rounds of 50-ct boxes, and dug around in the half-box of bulk-pack stuff).
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  8. G19 A4

    G19 A4

    May 18, 2007
    WOW, great pics DJ.

    Thanks for following up.

    I dont have my ammo in front of me at the moment, but I seem to recall my 50 count boxed ammo looked like the bullet on the left in your pic. I didnt compare the '"C" and the "F" marked rounds for any differences either. I will try to get photos tonite but I have a crappy digital camera and not real good at computers so I might have to email you the pics for posting.

    On a side note, while at the range in my original post, while loading the "Blazers", I had difficulty in pulling one round from the plastic sleeve. When I yanked it out, I could easily see and feel the lead bullet was "larger" in diameter than the casing and in fact the opening of the plastic divider. (Did not note if "C" or "F" marked as I didnt realize there were two different markings until I got home.)

    I obviously did not load that round into the mag. Definitely not encouraging. Also my one 500 round brick was acquired maybe 2008.

    I just checked and the cheapest prices are as follows (per round):
    Blazer - .04 (Specifically recommended by Advantage Arms)
    Mini Mag 40gr - .07 (MOST recommended by Advantage Arms)
    Stinger - .10 (Hyper velocity not recommended by Advantage Arms)
    Velocitor - .12 (Hyper velocity not recommended by Advantage Arms)

    I guess I will buy Minimags exclusively from now on. Nothing worse in ruining a fun range trip than fighting unnecessary malfunctions.
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  9. TonyT


    Mar 14, 2009
    Federal anbd CCI ammi is made by the same company. In the "good old days" it wass not uncommon to find Peters headstamped brass mixed in with remington headstamped brass.
  10. GSSF17

    GSSF17 ...2 of 'em

    Jan 25, 2009
    Central FL
    Awesome info and great pics- Now, the bulk pack I got from Palmetto State Armory is the 525 count, loose, but the bullets are stamped "C" and look like the darker bullet to the right, like your ones from the 50 ct.....

  11. DJ Niner

    DJ Niner Moderator

    Feb 13, 2001
    North-Central USA
    Maybe I was too quick to identify them by box type; sounds like it's subject to change.

    I was hoping to get the darker-style bullet when I bought several of the bulk-packs on sale at a shop in another town, but there was no way to check without tearing open the box (definitely a no-no in most stores). I figured if they weren't what I wanted, I could shoot them in my revolver or another manually-operated rifle.

    Maybe the darker bullet is just the newest style? If that's the case, until ALL the old stock gets sold and used-up, the other bullet style will continue to be seen from time to time.

    Ah, I remember the semi-good-old-days, back when ammo companies actually would stamp the year of manufacture on the box (usually as part of the lot number). It was a more simple time...

    ...but with a lot less guessing about what was "new" and "old" ammo! :supergrin:
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2012
  12. 19Tim68


    Sep 10, 2011
    On the 525 pack look at the lot numbers/letters on the box. CCI lot numbers start with a letter. Federal starts with a number. Also if the last three characters are three numbers, it is Federal, if the last three characters have one letter in it, it is CCI.
    Black Bullet/Waxy Lube = CCI
    Silvery Bullet/"Dry" Lube = Federal
  13. GSSF17

    GSSF17 ...2 of 'em

    Jan 25, 2009
    Central FL
    Awesome info. Thanks, Tim. :thumbsup:
  14. AquaHull


    Nov 11, 2011
    West MI
    Good info, I checked all my blazer and they is CCI:wavey: