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Thread: What type of ammo do you carry and why

  1. #1
    Regular Member fire suppressor's Avatar
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    What type of ammo do you carry and why

    Hydroshock, silver tip, +P.... ok guys help me out I am not a ballistics expert and I get lost in a lot of this stuff I have a simple question for all of you, what do you carry for self defense and why. I am going through all of my ammo right now and am trying to figure out what is the right bullet for me. I have always been a big fan of shooting heavier grain bullets with the philosophy of hit em with the biggest round possible you feel comfortable with to put them down fast, but after a recent trip to the range and shooting some lower grain "self defense ammo" I am thinking about changing my way of thinking. I shot better groups and got back on target faster with the lower grain they really impressed me and I do not think your average want to be slim shady is going to notice a difference between 165 grains and 180. So my question is what grain and type of ammo do you carry for self defense and why. I understand the difference between FMJ and HP and will be carrying HP for self defense

    Thanks gang
    "Fight like you train, train like you fight"

  2. #2
    Regular Member TechnoWeenie's Avatar
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    I carry bullets, usually in the same caliber as the gun I'm trying to load them in.. They fit in the magazine so.. they must work..
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    Regular Member yz9890's Avatar
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    I really like and carry Federal Premium HST. (the next generation HydraShok). Great expansion, penetration, and 100% weight retention (amazing for a non-bonded bullet). I carry it in 165gr 40 S&W in a Glock 27 and Sig P229. The 165gr bullet has more energy at all distances than the heavier 180gr HST and lighter 155gr. (468ftlbs @ muzzle / 426ftlbs @ 25') Here's a site that'll show you the ballistics and let you compare.

    http://le.atk.com/general/federalpro...cticalhst.aspx

    [be careful when using this site that you're looking at the HST and not the LEO only Tactical Bonded version. The ballistics are different]

    I also like that it comes in boxes of 50rds instead of 20. I think I paid $27 for my last box. They're hard to find in your LGS but not bad online. Recoil isn't bad at all but of course that will depend a little more on the gun it's fired from than the cartridge. As far as I know, Federal doesn't make a low recoil (135gr for the 40SW) version of this cartridge like they do with the HydraShok. Here's a video of a meat and gelatin test I did for the HST 40 and PDX1 380.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eyG_w...e_gdata_player

    And I carry 9mm 127gr +P+ Win Ranger T in my Glock 26. Love those as well. They're a little harder to find for me as a non-LEO so I'll probably switch to HST in 9mm eventually also. I keep 95gr Win PDX1 or 90gr Hornady Critical Defense in my 380.

    All that being said. I really don't think it matters very much. More recoil just means more practice to get quick and accurate follow-up shots. It's just fun to investigate.
    Last edited by yz9890; 02-15-2012 at 07:18 AM.

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    Regular Member fire suppressor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yz9890 View Post
    It's just fun to investigate.
    You got me figured out
    "Fight like you train, train like you fight"

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    Regular Member SpyderTattoo's Avatar
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    I shoot 230gr. Gold Dots in .45 in both my Glocks. (Also shoot 62gr M855's in my rifle...)

    After all, your pistol is supposed to be used for fighting your way to your truck where your rifle is...
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    Regular Member 1911er's Avatar
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    .357 mag

    I carry Mag tech's new first defence 95 gr.copper hollow points you dont have to worry about losing copper jackets and my time back on target has improved greatly , accuracy is better and I love the fact that what leaves the barrel is what they will dig out of the BG great bullet weight retention.
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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    I carry 9mm 124gr Gold Dot Hollow Points that I load myself.

    Why?
    Because I can affordably shoot the same bullet in practice that I carry for Self Defense.

    I get a round that performs with great accuracy in my firearms rather than a "one size fits all" factory round.

    Lastly, because I don't give a crap about what Masaad Ayoob says. He has yet to prove that anyone has ever been prosecuted for shooting someone in Self Defense just because they used "Reloads".
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

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    Regular Member Trigger Dr's Avatar
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    I cast and load 115 gr and set it over 9.3 gr AA#9 with a CCI 500 primer.I use these for range and plinking. For defense ammo, I use the same load but use the Hornady 115 JHP.
    It is hard to find 38 super in a good defense load so I cook my own. As far as ballistics, the super will equal the 357 sig given the same bullet weight and configuration. Easier to reload and much less recoil.
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    Right now

    9mm 127gr +P+ Win Ranger T series and .45 230gr +p Win Ranger T series.

    WHY? Because I can


    others have been .45 200gr+P Gold Dot, and 165gr+P Powerball
    Last edited by 223to45; 02-15-2012 at 11:28 AM.

  10. #10
    Regular Member unknownsailor's Avatar
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    9mm God Dots with the M&P, and 230 grain Gold Dots when I carry a 1911.
    They are available locally, and perform about as well as any other.
    I don't get worked up about it, knowing as I do that all handguns are underpowered anyway.

  11. #11
    Regular Member massivedesign's Avatar
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    HST's for me too. In the 9mm, it's 124gr +P, in the .45 it's 230gr.
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    165 grain HST in an M&P 40 and in M&P 40c, and for the most economical reason, I just purchased the 40c and the seller had a box of these to sweeten the deal.

  13. #13
    Activist Member golddigger14s's Avatar
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    Hornady 9mm Zombie-Max.
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    Regular Member SovereignAxe's Avatar
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    at the moment, 115gr reloads my grandfather loaded because I'm poor.

    if i had the money I'd be carrying 147gr gold dots
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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    9mm HST for me too...I have a video laying around here somewhere, my late cousin and I had took showing what they did to a pumpkin. FMJ's clean through, Hydroshock....wow!
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    Regular Member fire suppressor's Avatar
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    A few years ago I bought silver tips because it was the only JHP I could find do they do anything special? And aren't +P and hyroshock similar in the sense that they both have increased pressure?
    "Fight like you train, train like you fight"

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    Regular Member WinchesterModel12's Avatar
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    Regular Member Schlepnier's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    When i hit the range i usually go through a 50 box of PMC 230grain .45 ACP ball ammo.

    when i am OC or CC i have winchester .230 grain hollow-point .45 ACP loaded-stopping power that going to terminate the threat to my safety in a short amount of time.
    Last edited by Schlepnier; 02-16-2012 at 09:27 AM.
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  19. #19
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    I use Federal HST which I buy from Streichers.

    IMO, it's the most effective 230gr .45 ACP currently available for personal defense. Federal LE testing in gelatin has demonstrated greater expansion and deeper penetration than any other premium ammo brand/type.

    Feeds ultra reliably through my four and five inch 1911s, consistently high velocity when I've chronographed the ammo (965 - 970FPS in 5" bbl), clean burning, accurate, minimum muzzle flash, nearly 100% bullet weight retention into wet phone books. Stiff felt recoil and probably tougher on my pistols than regular old 230gr ball but then it's not a daily practice round.

    An all around great choice for personal defense. Available in the most popular personal defense calibers--.45 ACP, 9mm, .40 S&W, .45 GAP, .357 Sig.

  20. #20
    Regular Member sawah's Avatar
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    Not sure how hard it is to find out but I'd think the safest, if there is such a thing would be to carry the same thing the police carry. The problem with using special SD ammo is it complicates the process. What are the chances the gun and mag you have on you is still loaded with cheap range ammo? Interesting discussion, though.
    A firearm is a tool of convenience, not effectiveness - Clint Smith, Thunder Ranch

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    Quote Originally Posted by sawah View Post
    What are the chances the gun and mag you have on you is still loaded with cheap range ammo? Interesting discussion, though.
    Not a chance. I never keep any magazines loaded with range ammo. Always loaded with SD rounds. When I go to the range, which is usually my backyard, I unload my mags and load them with the cheep stuff for practice. I typically shoot between 100-200 rounds for practice and when I'm done I reload all my mags with SD rounds again.

    As for what I carry I'm not too picky. I carry a Glock mod 23 and its loaded with 180gr XTP HP right now. Most of the major brands will do just fine. I personally pace more emphasis on shot placement. An awesome, supper expanding HP through the arm is not going to work as well as a FMJ though the heart/ lung.

    I've hunted with Speer Gold Dots and Hornady XTPs in 44mag and they work pretty well so those are the ones I usually carry in .40cal. There is no one bullet that will out perform everything else in all cases. If there was then everyone would be using it.

    John

  22. #22
    Regular Member massivedesign's Avatar
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    Most PD around here carry the Speer Gold Dots. They carry that because that's what the WSP uses. WSP uses it not because of it's ballistics, but because of the deal they get from Speer in the quantities they buy. Same reason a lot of Depts. are switching over to the M&P, because the WSP did, and they only did because S&W gave them an offer they couldn't refuse... Even though most of the troopers I know, hate em.
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  23. #23
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fire suppressor View Post
    A few years ago I bought silver tips because it was the only JHP I could find do they do anything special? And aren't +P and hyroshock similar in the sense that they both have increased pressure?
    +P has to do with pressure. The Hydra-Shok is a proprietary bullet design that is claimed to improve expansion. The two may be in combination, a Hydra-Shok bullet combined with a +P load but the two are not the same.

    FWIW, some head to head tests at the Plantation Range by local law agencies showed that the Gold Dot Hollow Points were more than equal to the Hydra-Shok bullet. In some circumstances even better.


    First Rule of SD. A hit by an inferior bullet is far more effective than a miss by the most deadly bullet. It isn't what you carry, it's what you can hit with what you carry.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

    "If you refuse to stand up for others now, who will stand up for you when your time comes?"

  24. #24
    Regular Member yz9890's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amlevin View Post
    +P has to do with pressure. The Hydra-Shok is a proprietary bullet design that is claimed to improve expansion. The two may be in combination, a Hydra-Shok bullet combined with a +P load but the two are not the same.

    FWIW, some head to head tests at the Plantation Range by local law agencies showed that the Gold Dot Hollow Points were more than equal to the Hydra-Shok bullet. In some circumstances even better.


    First Rule of SD. A hit by an inferior bullet is far more effective than a miss by the most deadly bullet. It isn't what you carry, it's what you can hit with what you carry.
    the HydraShok is still a great bullet but it's a pretty old design. Federal has been selling it since the 80's but it's roots go back to the mid 70's. the more modern defense cartridges benefit from pretty big advances in bullet design and manufacture.

    it probably doesn't matter much in my opinion though. just pick a defense load that cycles well in whatever guns you run and be happy with it. there's nothing magical about any of them. even some of the federal agencies (FAM's, FFDO) are dumping the Gold Dot in favor of generic Remington hollow points. not because the Speer sucks but because they both do the same job only one does it more cost effectively.

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    Quote Originally Posted by golddigger14s View Post
    Hornady 9mm Zombie-Max.
    Never know when zombies will be around. I carry the same but in .40

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