Barnaul Ammunition is coming to the U.S. market in 2019. Distributed by the Ohio based MKS Supply, the Barnaul brand ammo will be available in many common rifle and pistol calibers. Made by and named after the Barnaul Cartridge Plant in Russia, the Barnaul produced ammo has actually been in the North American market under few well-known US brands for a while now, as well as sometimes coming in a white box from various surplus importers. The main difference is that the new Barnaul labeled ammo will be now fully supported by their official representative and distributor MKS Supply (877) 425-4867.
The Barnaul Cartridge Plant JSC has a long and glorious history. It was founded by Czar Alexander II in the mid-1800s near the then Imperial capital city of St. Petersburg to supply ammunition and arms to the Imperial Russian Army. The facility was relocated a number of times during the two World Wars for strategic reasons. The current name of cartridge plant came from its final location in the city of Barnaul in the Altai Krai region of Russia. During the Second World War, Barnaul supplied over half of all the ammunition used by the Soviet Red Army and its allies. Barnaul became more involved with the commercial market after the end of the Soviet Union and the following open up of Russia. It had been the actual manufacturer of complete ammo and cartridge components for numerous familiar ammunition brands not only in the North America, but also in European market and the rest of the world.
Here is the full range of calibers that are made by Barnaul for the commercial market. So far, according to Barnaul Ammo’s website from MKS Supply, the majority of those will be imported except for the 410 shotgun shell, the big bore 9.3×64 (good for caribou hunting), and interestingly, even the 30-06.
There are four main product lines of Barnaul commercial ammo. The Barnaul Silver ammo has a zinc plated steel case and bullet jacket. The Barnaul Gold ammo has a brass plated steel case and jacket. The regular Barnaul line could be a combination of various case and jacket coating, which included the addition of polymer and lacquer coatings. More on the Centaur line next.
I am very interested in the Barnaul Centaur line, as it features Hornady bullets, Belgian propellant, and is loaded in polymer coated Russian steel cases. I hear a lot of good things about it in the European market. I have previously reviewed the Barnaul made steel case 6.5 Grendel with the same Belgian powder, and I was impressed by how clean it runs. Together with the 100 grain projectile that was developed with assistance by Bill Alexander, it’s a great performer for a very affordable price. Not a bad deal for just 22 cents a round that’s capable of reaching out to 700 yards to hit a torso size steel target. I would expect ammo from the Barnaul Centaur line would be at least as good as their 6.5 Grendel.
Now we just wait to see if the Barnaul Centaur line will be imported to the US market. I am looking forward to checking out Barnaul and MKS Supply at SHOT Show 2019 for more detail.