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Thread: What type of ammo do you carry and why

  1. #51
    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapmonkay View Post
    ...As for use of reloads, here is a cite link with court cases where reloads and question of use were involved (from massad ayoob himself): http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost....&postcount=140
    I just read those. Only a couple of them had to do with reloads being used as added ammunition against a righteous shoot, and it says it was refuted successfully in court...
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    Quote Originally Posted by USMC1911 View Post
    W/C White Box .45 cal 230 gr. FMJ. Simple and efective.
    FMJ for SD, really?
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  3. #53
    Regular Member Whitney's Avatar
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    Training vs Fighting

    Quote Originally Posted by fire suppressor View Post
    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
    There is a lot of good information in this thread relegated to each persons preference, and as such diverse as each individual. At the risk of sounding condescending perhaps you should ask a different question. You know already how different ammunition effects your shooting so my question to you would be; can you afford to train like you fight?

    I have taken up reloading and have had very sound advice from members on this forum with regard to the same. Reloading greatly reduces my cost per cartridge and gives me latitude to develop the characteristics I desire in a self defense round. I acknowledge this method is not for everyone. My simple answer to your question, I train to fight and use the load best suited for my firearm and my shooting techniques. I cannot afford to purchase this ammunition as a commercially made product, and maintain proficiency, so I make my own. I would be willing to meet up for coffee for further discussion if you like. I hope this doesn't come off sounding smarmy.

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  4. #54
    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tawnos View Post
    FMJ for SD, really?
    For a .45? Why not? Probably less risk of overpenetration than some hollowpoints out of a .357 Sig, 10mm, or .357 Magnum, etc.

    Ultra-reliable.

    I carry FMJ in my everyday-carry .45 as well. RELOADS, at that!
    Last edited by MAC702; 02-17-2012 at 08:57 PM.
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  5. #55
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapmonkay View Post

    As for use of reloads, here is a cite link with court cases where reloads and question of use were involved (from massad ayoob himself): http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost....&postcount=140
    Your cite actually proved my position. Three of the four cited incidents or cases didn't Self Defense. In the fourth the person still won an acquittal.

    Again my challenge. Show a case where the use of reloads was either the reason one was charged or was instrumental in getting a conviction in a Self Defense case.

    The same argument could be used against someone driving a Hummer and hitting a pedestrian. "Why were you driving such a huge vehicle? Wouldn't a Geo Metro have been adequate?"

    FWIW, one could easily make the case, with numerous experts verifying, that "Handloads and Reloads" don't even measure up to the available "Self Defense" ammo available today. Many of the exotic bullets that are available only on Factory Loaded Ammo sold for self defense.
    Last edited by amlevin; 02-18-2012 at 09:39 AM.
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  6. #56
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAC702 View Post
    Probably less risk of overpenetration
    The issue of overpenetration is more and more being recognized as an unnecessary concern. It's overshadowed by a much larger one. Just think how much "overpenetration" one gets with all those rounds that miss. Most handgun bullets don't have a lot of energy left after passing through the full thickness of a human body. All too often there are lots of rounds fired that miss the target and then go off to cause collateral damage. Those that do hit are rarely the cause of a problem unless they go through a hand or something as "thin". That is just about the same thing as a "miss". The bigger issue is getting ENOUGH penetration to reach vital organs. With Rifle Rounds it's a whole different story.
    "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?"

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    This link is a very good, well thought out response from a Wa. resident.
    http://forums.1911forum.com/showthread.php?t=347419

  8. #58
    Campaign Veteran slapmonkay's Avatar
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    Question

    Quote Originally Posted by amlevin View Post
    Your cite actually proved my position. Three of the four cited incidents or cases didn't Self Defense. In the fourth the person still won an acquittal.

    Again my challenge. Show a case where the use of reloads was either the reason one was charged or was instrumental in getting a conviction in a Self Defense case.

    The same argument could be used against someone driving a Hummer and hitting a pedestrian. "Why were you driving such a huge vehicle? Wouldn't a Geo Metro have been adequate?"

    FWIW, one could easily make the case, with numerous experts verifying, that "Handloads and Reloads" don't even measure up to the available "Self Defense" ammo available today. Many of the exotic bullets that are available only on Factory Loaded Ammo sold for self defense.
    my point was not to say you will get convicted, but rather that it could cause extra burden and explanation. I personally don't want to deal with that worry if I am ever put in that position. The fact that there are cases that bring the ammunition into question/concern supports my point and concerns.
    I Am Not A Lawyer, verify all facts presented independently.

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  9. #59
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapmonkay View Post
    my point was not to say you will get convicted, but rather that it could cause extra burden and explanation. I personally don't want to deal with that worry if I am ever put in that position. The fact that there are cases that bring the ammunition into question/concern supports my point and concerns.
    I'd spend more time on learning the law regarding Self Defense, Practicing my skills, and worry less about getting prosecuted or sued. If you don't break the law there's no prosecution. As for any Civil Suit, that could happen even if your actions were totally legal. You could get sued for carrying a black gun if the Plaintiff thought it was too intimidating and thought you should be carrying a silver one.

    The only burden you will be faced with when shooting someone will be answering only the questions. "Were you in fear for your life or that of another?" "Was a Felony about to be committed on you or another?". If your answer is yes and the evidence supports, there'll be no "extra burden".

    Of course one can get so tangled up in their underwear over things like this they end up getting killed due to their hesitation.
    "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?"

  10. #60
    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapmonkay View Post
    my point was not to say you will get convicted, but rather that it could cause extra burden and explanation. I personally don't want to deal with that worry if I am ever put in that position. ...
    If the other lawyer is trying to use my ammunition against me, I'd say that's a pretty good sign he's getting desperate.
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  11. #61
    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amlevin View Post
    The issue of overpenetration is more and more being recognized as an unnecessary concern. It's overshadowed by a much larger one. Just think how much "overpenetration" one gets with all those rounds that miss. Most handgun bullets don't have a lot of energy left after passing through the full thickness of a human body. All too often there are lots of rounds fired that miss the target and then go off to cause collateral damage. Those that do hit are rarely the cause of a problem unless they go through a hand or something as "thin". That is just about the same thing as a "miss". The bigger issue is getting ENOUGH penetration to reach vital organs. With Rifle Rounds it's a whole different story.
    So the .45 ACP with FMJ does a pretty decent job at giving you the best of both worlds, as do many other loads and bullet styles.

    I can't disagree with you! There are dead FBI agents from the Miami shootout who won't disagree with you!

    I was replying to the guy who questioned FMJ for a .45, as if it was not an appropriate option, usually because of the "overpenetration" of "non-expanding" bullets.
    Last edited by MAC702; 02-19-2012 at 10:13 AM.
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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fire suppressor View Post
    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
    You don't state what handgun you are using. And yes, IMO, it matters. Some rounds are great in full size guns but not a particularly good choice in short barreled firearms. For example, some JHP don't expand consistently out of short barreled firearms and several +P rounds give extra recoil and cost but add nothing to short barrel velocity.

    For. 45acp I use Wiinchester Ranger RJ45T. Federal HST performs similarly for similar cost but was not readily available when I was ready to buy a case of SD ammo. I chose that because it works well in 3, 4 & 5" barrels, all of which I carry depending, showing consistent expansion in testing in each of the sidearms according to tests both amateur and pro. It feeds as well as FMJ, at least in my guns. It is affordable. Lastly, it has identical POI out of my carry guns as practice, ie cheaper, FMJ ammo and has similar recoil so I don't need to blow through hundreds of rounds and the extra $ to practice with it once I perform function testing on a new firearm.

  13. #63
    Campaign Veteran gogodawgs's Avatar
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    I carry......

    All of my bullets go bang!

    Live Free or Die!

  14. #64
    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deepdiver View Post
    ... several +P rounds give extra recoil ... but add nothing to short barrel velocity...
    You'll have to explain that one to me. I was a physics major so don't spare me the details.
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    Regular Member ghosthunter's Avatar
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    I dont think the average joe gives it any thought. Someone breaks in they get shot. I have never heard type of loads argued on the street . Just here.

    Me I buy the cheapest 9mm I can find and practice + carry it. When they ask why I used that load? I would say it was what was on sale.

    In the house it is a Judge with PDX self defense .410 loads. Why they ask? So they dont leave my home when I pop at the BG.

    Off topic blurp; Shots were fired tonight at 7 pm on the corner of my street. I went out to see what was up. Quiet, 10min later the PD is there street blocked. shell casings on the center line. NO one around.
    Last edited by ghosthunter; 02-20-2012 at 01:08 AM.

  16. #66
    Opt-Out Members BigDave's Avatar
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    I have and likely others on this board have taken a class from Massad on Judicious Use Of Deadly Force.
    My notes and if my memory does not fail me, Mass was discussing the issues of reloads along the lines of carrying ammo with names that could be referred to as cop killers and weapons names that relate to something more deadly then it could possibly be. This was discussed in relationship to how jurors may relate to the incident they are being asked to judge. In the context it was given had another issue if additional ammunition was needed for forensic testing and the need for the supplied ammo to come from "clean hands" other words from someone that had not interest in the outcome of the testing ie the manufacture. I am of the understanding that major manufactures maintain a certain amount of each lot that could be used for this testing.

    Even though there is no legal aspect to my knowledge that it would be a determining factor to finding one guilty or not but it does come down to personal opinions.
    Lets not forget Josh's case in Vancouver where the majority on the jury were gun owners and their opinions on open carry convicted him.

    Oh and I carry Speer Gold Dot in 40 S&W 165gr and works very well in my XD40SC
    Last edited by BigDave; 02-20-2012 at 01:24 AM.
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  17. #67
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAC702 View Post
    You'll have to explain that one to me. I was a physics major so don't spare me the details.
    It's simple. With bigger loads in a short barrel the bullet leaves the barrel before the full energy of the charge can be utilized. Rather than create more "push" on the bullet it merely creates a bigger fireball and resulting noise.

    As for recoil, the calculation for felt recoil uses bullet weight, powder weight, velocity, and weight of firearm. If the powder weight increases, even though the velocity doesn't , the recoil is still increased due to the "rocket motor effect of the bigger flame leaving the barrel.

    Here's a handy calculator for Recoil:

    http://www.handloads.com/calc/recoil.asp
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

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  18. #68
    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amlevin View Post
    It's simple. With bigger loads in a short barrel the bullet leaves the barrel before the full energy of the charge can be utilized. Rather than create more "push" on the bullet it merely creates a bigger fireball and resulting noise.

    As for recoil, the calculation for felt recoil uses bullet weight, powder weight, velocity, and weight of firearm. If the powder weight increases, even though the velocity doesn't , the recoil is still increased due to the "rocket motor effect of the bigger flame leaving the barrel.

    Here's a handy calculator for Recoil:

    http://www.handloads.com/calc/recoil.asp
    Better explained than I would have done. Thank you!

  19. #69
    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amlevin View Post
    It's simple. With bigger loads in a short barrel the bullet leaves the barrel before the full energy of the charge can be utilized. Rather than create more "push" on the bullet it merely creates a bigger fireball and resulting noise.

    As for recoil, the calculation for felt recoil uses bullet weight, powder weight, velocity, and weight of firearm. If the powder weight increases, even though the velocity doesn't , the recoil is still increased due to the "rocket motor effect of the bigger flame leaving the barrel.

    Here's a handy calculator for Recoil:

    http://www.handloads.com/calc/recoil.asp
    I can only agree that the law of diminishing returns is in full effect. But there ARE returns. Only after acknowledging this can you then decide if they are worth the extra recoil and blast.

    You can Google all the velocity reports you want, but I'll give you just one, written by Skeeter Skelton: http://www.darkcanyon.net/The%20Long...%20Barrels.htm

    In this example, a .38 Special from a 2" barrel makes 690 fps. A .357 Magnum from a 2" bbl makes 928 - 1093 fps (he tested two brands). All used a 158-gr bullet.

    Buffalo Bore makes a .38 Special +P+ load designed to use the short brass but be fired in 2" .357 Magnum revolvers. Using .38 Special brass, its 158-grain bullet moves at 1040 fps from a 2" revolver barrel: http://www.buffalobore.com/index.php...t_detail&p=108

    There ARE significant returns, if you are willing to put up with the accelerated rate of additional blast.
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  20. #70
    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAC702 View Post
    I can only agree that the law of diminishing returns is in full effect. But there ARE returns. Only after acknowledging this can you then decide if they are worth the extra recoil and blast.
    SNIP
    In this example, a .38 Special
    SNIP
    There ARE significant returns, if you are willing to put up with the accelerated rate of additional blast.
    I didn't see anyone say there are never velocity advantages with a +P in a short barrel. This started with my saying "several" +P loads give no advantage (should have said significant advantage) in velocity in short barrelled guns.

    My understanding is that the 38 special and derivatives are not a very good cartridge from which to generalize on this topic (I'm sure someone will be along to correct me if I am wrong on this) being that it was designed as a black powder cartridge leaving lots of extra room with modern powders in the case which for various reasons translates into more effective use of +P loadings even in short barrel revolvers. I don't recall reading of any 38+P cartridges that even in short barrelled revolvers didn't expand and didn't offer a better ballistics than 38 special although I am sure there must be some. FWIW, when I get around to acquiring a. 38+P snubby, I'll carry +P rounds in it.

    There are +P cartridges for 45 and 9mm that offer little to no advantage in velocity in short barrels and which in some cases propel bullets that require the higher velocities to expand effectively so do not reliablly expand out of the short barrels. That is why you see cartridges such as the Speer Gold Dot for Short Barrels acknowledging this issue. YMMV and your research may lead to different conclusions. I make no claim to being a ballistics expert. Heck, I haven't even gotten around to start reloading.

    My ammo choice is based not on generalities but by reading specific ammo tests in my speciific firearms and cross-referencing them to find what works consistently (POI, reliable expansion, consistent recoil), is affordable for me and offers the best ballistics within those parameters. Anyone else's caliiber or sidearm choice may lead to a different conclusion. Just like there isn't one sidearm choice that works for everyone, there isnn't one ammo choice that works for all sidearms of a given caliber.

  21. #71
    Regular Member USMC1911's Avatar
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    Just as important as what type, is how many you carry. I agree with a previous poster, carring 50 armor piercing black talons in a dragon slayer/desert eagle 50 cal will be looked at as over kill for self defense. I carry a 1911 clone (cost effective), in condition one, I have one mag w/ 7 rounds of FMJ 230 gr. .45 (8 total). I carry no extra mags/ammo/knife/multi tool/anything. My weapon is Solly for self defense.
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  22. #72
    Regular Member GuidoZ's Avatar
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    No matter what you choose - remember the importance of inspecting your ammo prior to loading!

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  23. #73
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by USMC1911 View Post
    I agree with a previous poster, carring 50 armor piercing black talons in a dragon slayer/desert eagle 50 cal will be looked at as over kill for self defense.
    Depends on what neighborhood you live in or where you travel. For some, you may be "under-armed"

    As for the so called "armor piercing" qualities of Black Talon ammo, here's some info that indicates it's no better than "conventional" ammo:

    The bullet was designed in 1991 under the supervision of Alan Corzine, who at that time was VP of research and development for Winchester.[5] The round quickly developed a reputation as a very effective expanding bullet. The alleged armor-piercing notion is urban legend, and was a result of media hyperboleórather than test or field data from actual shootings considering the short time it was on the market. Col Leonard J. Supenski of the Baltimore County police department said "It has the stopping power that police officers need and it is less likely to ricochet or go through the bad guy,"[2] something that could be said of any reliably expanding hollow-point. Despite its unique design, the Black Talon was found to be comparable in performance to conventional hollow-points. Black Talon pistol loads are not loaded to higher working pressures or higher velocities "+P" loadings for like and different calibers.
    The first shooting which brought critical media attention to Black Talon was by Gian Luigi Ferri, who used Black Talon and other ammunition to shoot 15 people at a San Francisco law office in 1993; nine of whom died. Dr. Boyd Stevens, the San Francisco Medical Examiner who performed the autopsies, later reported at the 1994 International Wound Ballistics Association's conference in Sacramento that the wound trauma caused by Black Talons was unremarkable and that all victims died due to penetration of a vital structure.[6]

    (from Wikipedia so that the copyright police are happy)
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

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  24. #74
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    Don't let the link title fool you. it is a very good read on ammunition for handguns and self defense.

    http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=19887

  25. #75
    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    While no particular reason, Magtech 124gr hollow point.

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