Steel case ammo is one of the most taboo subjects in the gun world. There is a huge community of people that wouldn’t touch the stuff with their buddy’s gun. Then there are guys who only shoot steel case and laugh in the face of those who don’t.
The common thought in the naysayers head about steel case ammo, is that the ammo is going to damage their gun. They are right and wrong all at the same time. Typically we don’t recommend shooting steel ammo in a few scenarios. 1. If you have a stainless steel barrel. The steel-on-steel contact will wear your barrel about 30% faster than normal. 2. If you have a relic or antique firearm. Lots of older guns were not treated to the same hardness or tested to the same level of newer firearms. So if you do manage to break an extractor or something like that, the part may be difficult to replace.
Other than those 2 reasons. There really isn’t a good reason to not be shooting steel-cased ammo. The steel case is harder than brass, so the extractors of most guns don’t bite into it as deep and they can extract kind of weak. They don’t expand in the chamber so you get less built up pressure and more debris in the upper of the firearm from gas blowback.
What that means to me is that all of my modern firearms that have nitrided or heat-treated barrels, making them harder than steel will be fine. If for some reason I manage to break an extractor off of one of my guns. The money I save shooting steel case as opposed to brass, will pay for a new extractor 10 times over.
If it comes down to shooting 500 rounds of steel or 300 rounds of brass on a training day. I’ll take the steel ammo all day every day. The Pros far outweigh the Cons. Typically the steel is a few bucks cheaper and more readily available. These weird COVID times have swapped things around and jumbled prices and whatnot. However, in normal times it’s the way to go. So if you’ve ever heard about steel case ammo gumming up a gun and being the reason it won’t work. It’s probably not really the ammo’s fault. Our company shoots Tens of thousands of steel case ammo a year with no problem.