XD-M 10mm 10,000 Round Torture Test
March 31st, 2019
4 minute read
To prove the quality and reliability of the new XD-M 10mm, 10,000 rounds of Federal Premium Hydra-Shok ammunition was fired through the gun with EVERY round documented on video. No work was done to the pistol, outside of a recoil spring change and oil at 2,000 round intervals. The XD-M 10mm performed flawlessly and powered through all 10,000 rounds without a single failure.
What do you learn on the way to ten thousand? A lot it turns out, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. If you are just tuning in, a recap is in order.
As a full-fledged, dues-paying member of the Cult of the 10mm, I have long awaited the perfect platform to harness the cartridge. Many have tried and failed, some have moderately succeeded, and most have looked the other way for fear of shattering on the anvil of Col. Cooper’s frame killer. When 10mm first came on the scene, the metallurgy of the day couldn’t keep up, resulting in catastrophic failures in early guns. Things progressed, but slowly.
Those of us that demanded a high-capacity, striker-fired 10mm were languishing in the wilderness, waiting for a sign to lead us to the promised land. And finally, that star has appeared. It’s actually the night light on top of the Springfield Armory factory, but it took us where we needed to go.
The XD-M 10mm is exactly the gun we have been waiting for. It is sized for the human hand, sharing an ergonomic footprint with the excellent XD-M 45. It manages 15+1 in a flush fit magazine, which counts as P for Plenty in this caliber. It comes out the box ready for action, with usable sights and a trigger we know and love. But is it tough? That is the question I set out to address.
If you have been on the XD-M train for some time, you’ll probably get a chuckle out of this part. I am a recent convert, so I had my doubts about the XD-M or any new gun’s ability to survive in 10mm. As a 10mm guy, that is a fair question to ask. So I did, and Springfield Armory told me to step right up if I felt froggy. I countered with a proposal to run 5,000 rounds through the new model. They said 10,000 or they weren’t even interested. Challenge accepted! In the course of a single weekend, I did run a full 10,0000 rounds of Federal Premium Hydra-Shok through a randomly selected XD-M 10, as they left for the distributors.
Now I have always heard XD-M pistols are built like tanks, but it is something I never tested for myself. To be fair, I didn’t even own one until about six months ago. So I was shocked to find that not only did the pistol survive, we barely scuffed the finish. Literally, not one part even looks truly used. I am confident that if I actually cleaned the gun, I could pass it off as new. The little bit of wear on the top of the barrel could be written off as dry fire in most guns. The most amazing part, I didn’t even break a fiber optic in the front sight. Springfield Armory has always run a significantly thicker front fiber optic than most. I always assumed it was just to be different, or to illuminate the dot a little better. Turns out it was also a durability factor, and speaks volumes for how they think about things. If a rapidly heated and cooled slide, throwing 10k of 10mm downrange in 48 hours won’t break it, I don’t know what will. They must send the spare fiber rods as an elaborate inside joke, to see if you can keep track of them for a decade before you need them.
The test also says a lot about the downstream members of the XD-M family. If it will take that kind of punishment in 10mm, what will it do in its anemic sister 9mm? How about old low-pressure .45 ACP? I love the .45 ACP round for certain applications, but it isn’t 10mm. Not even close. Hell, how about the .40 Slow and Weak? That bastard child foisted on us by the FBI, before they decided they needed yet even weaker bullets to qualify. The implication is staggering. It is now my sworn duty to try and wear out an XD-M pistol, but I’ll need to hit the Powerball to afford the ammo.
I have a newfound respect for the XD-M, forged in the fire of 10,000 rounds. 10mm is my religious preference, but that is still more in two days than I have cumulatively shot in my life in any caliber. The fact that the XD-M not only survived, but thrived, is way more than I bargained for. Not one pin broke, not one stress crack, not one malfunction. This might very well be the toughest pistol ever crafted by god or man — I’ll let you know in a decade of hard use. But one thing I can tell you is this: I have found my apocalypse sidearm, and its name is XD-M 10.
A special thanks to Federal Premium for providing the 10,000 rounds of Hydra-Shok ammo for the test and to Action Target for providing an E-50 steel target to absorb 10,000 rounds of 10mm ammo.