Competition Handguns Rifles Self Defense

Uncle Zo’s Top Five Firearms Based on Round Count

It’s been about three years since I last published a top list post. I’m still not sure I will make them a regular thing, but I figured it would be fun to share what my top five firearms by round count are. So here is that list.

I pretty much gave up on top list style posts a long while back. They seemed too subjective as they were mostly based on perception and preference. I swore them off. Then I came across a Facebook post where Caleb Giddings shared his top five most shot revolvers and thought that was pretty neat. It got me thinking about the firearms I’ve shot the most and that seemed like something worth writing about. So yeah, I decided to hijack his idea and adapt it. I may or may not circle back and reattempt it with more specific categories and may or may not revisit it from time to time. Only time will tell. Anyway, on to my top five firearms based on round count.

#5 Ruger Mark IV 22/45 Lite

Coming in the number five spot is the Ruger Mark IV 22/45 Lite. I picked up this little rascal shortly after I started shooting Steel Challenge after watching how fast some of the competitors in the match were ringing steel. It just looked like a lot of fun. Given the rules surrounding the RimFire Optic Division, this pistol makes it out to pretty much every local Steel Challenge match I attend which happens on a monthly basis. I don’t really practice or do anything else with it, but it’s so dang fun and easy to include as a second gun at that match that I just can’t help myself.

As of writing, this gun has about 700 rounds through it and will likely hit the 1000 round mark within the next two or three months. This means that y’all can expect a 1000 round review to follow shortly after that. It has only had a couple of malfunctions which I attribute to the nature of 22 Long Rifle reliability. Even though I’m particular about shooting nothing but CCI Mini-Mag ammo, which is considered to be among the cleanest and most reliable 22 LR ammo, the fact remains that rim fire ammunition is, by design, just not as reliable as high quality center fire ammunition. I’ve also had the Picatinny rail come loose a couple of times in the middle of a match. However, I think I’ve finally got that resolved by switching from Blue 242 Loctite to VC-3 Threadmate on the rail screws.

I’ve made a few changes to the Mark IV since I originally reviewed it. Namely, I added a TandemKross compensator and charging ring. I’ve also played around with the position of the Primary Arms SLx RS-10 mini reflex sight on the Mark IV’s Picatinny rail. I’ll get into more details on those changes when it’s time for the follow up review. That said, it’s pretty awesome to see how many aftermarket options are available for this little rimfire blaster that allow folks to turn it into something that suits their needs and preferences. I can’t say enough good things about it as it lends itself exceptionally well to good inexpensive fun.

#4 Daniel Defense DDM4 V11

Next up is the only rifle that made this list and that’s the Daniel Defense DDM4 V11. This rifle was my very first AR-15. It’s played and continues to play the role of the home defense rifle. However, it’s undergone a couple of transformations in terms of how I’ve accessorized it which started off as a general purpose rifle. However, it’s currently in the process of getting another makeover after I realized just how heavy the rifle has become after attempting to run it at a local pistol and carbine match a few months back. Needless to say, it’s been a diet since then.

The round count on this rifle is currently just north of 1,200 rounds which tells me two things. First, I don’t shoot it as much as I would like to and probably should given the primary role that it plays. Next, it tells me that it’s over due for a 1000 round follow up review. I suppose I will have to remedy both of those things.

Overall, it’s proved to be a fantastic rifle. I can’t recall it having a single malfunction yet which is a little bit surprising given how dirty it’s gotten while running suppressed. Yeah, it’s not the most affordable AR-15 on the market, but I consider it to be a really good option for a rifle that one’s life or the life of one’s loved ones may depend on.

#3 CZ Shadow 2

I’m absolutely certain some of y’all are sick of hearing me talk about the CZ Shadow 2. However, the round count on this freedom seed dispenser has been steadily increasing recently since it’s been my go to pistol for USPSA Carry Optics division which is the division I’ve been focused on for the past year. It was also the division I participated in my first major USPSA match about a month ago.

The round count on this pistol is roughly 2200 rounds and counting. I’m fairly certain this pistol will sail past the 5000 mark before this year is over as I’m still focused on the carry optics USPSA division and plan on shooting another major match with it in a few months. Things could change given I’ve been dabbling in a few other USPSA divisions, but I think it’s unlikely.

There are a lot of things to love about the CZ Shadow 2. It’s a fantastic shooter. It has nearly endless aftermarket support. It’s also very easy to work on. Granted, it’s scope is limited to competition applications by design and it’s not what most folks would consider a budget pistol. However, anyone who is looking to be more competitive in either USPSA Carry Optics division or Production division should take a good hard look at the Shadow 2. There is a reason it is very popular for those divisions in USPSA and that may have something to do with the number national championships have been won with one.

#2 H&K VP9 Match

The number two spot on this list goes to the VP9 Match with 2350 rounds. It’s been a while since I’ve written about this gun and it’s another gun that I never got around to writing its follow up review which was due at 2000 rounds (which I should probably remedy). I was super excited when I got this gun. It was the gun that I used when I got started with USPSA and used it in the Carry Optics division. The truth is while I really like this gun, it got supplanted by the Shadow 2 for the same application. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great gun. However, it’s still not on the USPSA production gun list which makes it a nonstarter for major matches. That’s notwithstanding the lower capacity magazines which I’m not certain would fit the 140mm magazine limit (I haven’t tested this).

One of the things that I really like about the VP9 Match is that it provides me with a version of my personal everyday carry pistol, the VP9, with competition features. It has the same fantastic trigger that I am used to with the same grip profile in addition to a bit more capacity. Had I not become interested in shooting major USPSA matches, I would probably still be shooting the snot out of this gun. However, I did become interested in shooting major USPSA matches. As such, I don’t see myself shooting it much until it makes it onto the USPSA production gun list and I find aftermarket parts (or magazines) that bring the capacity of the pistol up from 20 rounds to 23.

All of that said, I still think the VP9 Match is a fantastic pistol and makes a lot of sense for VP9 fans who are looking for something almost identical with competition features to use in local club matches or other competitions where it is allowed. The aesthetics alone are probably a good enough reason to pick one up.

#1 H&K VP9

Unless you are a brand new reader, it should be no surprise to see the VP9 making the top of this list. There is no denying that I’m a huge fan of the VP9. As I’ve said already, it is my everyday carry pistol. I’ve shot more matches, trained more, practiced more, and taken more classes with this pistol than I have any other pistol. It’s the one I am most familiar with and the one I depend on without hesitation. It’s also the only pistol I’ve bought a second of and set up identically so that I have one dedicated for defensive carry and another to take the wear and tear associated with continuous development. The combined round count between the two pistols is about 11,000 rounds with the “training” one being responsible for 9,750 of those rounds. A 10K round review of the VP9 is going to happen as soon as the “training” VP9 hits 10K which is undoubtedly going to happen very soon.

The configuration of the VP9s haven’t changed much since the first one hit 5,000 rounds. They are both outfitted with a 6.5 MOA Trijicon RMR and XS Sights Minimalist Tritium Night Sights. The only thing that has changed is that both guns are now sporting Jerkman Custom Grips.

Neither of the two guns has had a malfunction that was not user or ammo induced. Those malfunctions I can count on two fingers. Having a 0.002% malfunction rate, while anecdotal, is something that gives me a lot of confidence in the platform and the choice I have made for my self defense needs. As such, it is not something that I will change in the near future unless the track record changes or my day to day circumstances change. I like shooting guns. I shoot a lot of different guns. However, the VP9 is the one I rely on the most and the one that monopolizes my range time by a long shot.

There you have it. Those are my top five based on round count. Let me know what your top five are. Also let me know if you liked this list and would like me to either revisit it from time to time or would like me to do the same for a more specific category.


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