As the debates goe on about Lake City ammunition, I’ve heard everything from XM193, XM118 are reloads to they’re rejects, basically anything with an X in the number is a bad thing. That’s what the arm chair experts say anyway even though they look the same, weigh the same and have the same LC/Nato head stamps. I decided to settle the debate, at least in my head, by contacting Lake City to get the real info. The person that returned my call turned out to be the production manager for all things 5.56 from the ATK brand including Lake City and Federal. Here is what I was told. In order to distinguish retail brand packaging from military supply they decided that anything that was Federal retail boxed they would add an X to the prefix. That’s it. Federal or Lake City label, it’s made on the same assembly line, using the same components and built to the same military specs. The only ammunition that is questionable would be “PD” labeled which is ammunition that for whatever reason is not up to military spec. This does not mean it is bad, only that it does not meet total quality fitness. This could be as simple as passing the submersion test or appearance defects. These issues, for the most part, would in no way effect a civilian shooter. Of course feel free to debate this in your favorite forum. DJ