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Discussion Starter #1
I've got a few questions about ammo in firearms that you carry or have a home for Self Defense & protection.

My first question, assuming that you have multiple firearms, is do you use different ammo in 3 to 4 inch barreled firearms vs. 5" or longer barreled firearms? If so, what difference in terms of bullet, bullet weight, velocity, and any other differences?

In shorter barreled handguns 4" & under, what's your "personal opinion" about a lighter bullet & higher velocity vs. heavier bullet & less velocity?

And last my friends, I have lots of Win. Silvertip ammo, 115 grain JHP 9mm and 185 grain JHP 45acp ammo. Also I have several cases of 185 grain LE JHP 45acp Remington Golden Saber ammo (not bonded). Do any of you have experience with any of this ammo in 4" or shorter barreled firearms. If not I'd like to hear your opinions and thoughts about this anyhow.

Thank you guys. I'm sure there have been a lot of discussion on this topic but I'm mainly concerned about the ammo that I already have. Thanks brothers.

JD - BCD 45
 

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Winchester Silvertip has been good especially in larger calibers and okay in the smaller calibers. It's not as good as the state of the art bonded ammo but it's very serviceable ammo. The only "short-barrel" load I use is the .38spl Gold Dot 135gr in my Smith 642.
 

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I've got a few questions about ammo in firearms that you carry or have a home for Self Defense & protection.

My first question, assuming that you have multiple firearms, is do you use different ammo in 3 to 4 inch barreled firearms vs. 5" or longer barreled firearms? If so, what difference in terms of bullet, bullet weight, velocity, and any other differences?

In shorter barreled handguns 4" & under, what's your "personal opinion" about a lighter bullet & higher velocity vs. heavier bullet & less velocity?

And last my friends, I have lots of Win. Silvertip ammo, 115 grain JHP 9mm and 185 grain JHP 45acp ammo. Also I have several cases of 185 grain LE JHP 45acp Remington Golden Saber ammo (not bonded). Do any of you have experience with any of this ammo in 4" or shorter barreled firearms. If not I'd like to hear your opinions and thoughts about this anyhow.
I'm one of the guys that used the first gen of SilverTip... results were horrible... and in fact caused us to get rid of the Silvertips, the Model 59 and move to series 80 Colts in 45acp.

I use different ammo in 45acp and 9mm. I was moving to critical duty for 9mm, but a buddy gave me 3 boxes of the Black Talon replacement.
 

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Max Otto von Stierlitz
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Terminal ballistic effects can be argued from many different angles. And certainly those end results are influenced by a multitude of variables. Perhaps it’s just my way of simplifying (maybe, “overly simplifying”?), but over time, I’ve tended to put the greatest emphasis on an ammunition’s muzzle energy rating. Even that published number is subject to certain qualifying measurement / testing bias.

Why ‘muzzle energy’? Because that’s at least a relatively common, fairly uniform measurement among different manufacturers (even though test barrel lengths can vary between ammo manufacturers). And knowing I will have no say of the impact distance the bad guy is away from me on that fateful day where I’m relying on the ammunition to help make a difference. Muzzle energy would seem to be the logical choice for a basis of comparison. So the muzzle energy measurement helps shed some light on what the terminal impact results would be without unduly entering into the debate between velocity verses bullet weight (at least for most handgun self-defense distances).

Of course bullet material, design, propellant burn rates, barrel length, grooves, tolerances, temperature, humidity, density altitude, ad infinitum... all play a role. But to me, the muzzle energy numbers offer the quickest performance snapshots to consider.

Back in the day, I favored Winchester Silvertips for my .357 revolver use, but they stopped making them. I wrote Winchester and they explained how they ‘cycled through’ manufacturing various calibers in Silvertips. They promised they’d put me on a list to notify when they started making them again. I also got that commitment from a couple LGS - all to no avail. That’s been several years ago; fortunately there are other good .357 rounds available now.
 

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Terminal ballistic effects can be argued from many different angles. And certainly those end results are influenced by a multitude of variables. Perhaps it’s just my way of simplifying (maybe, “overly simplifying”?), but over time, I’ve tended to put the greatest emphasis on an ammunition’s muzzle energy rating. Even that published number is subject to certain qualifying measurement / testing bias.

Why ‘muzzle energy’? Because that’s at least a relatively common, uniform measurement among different manufacturers (even though test barrel lengths can vary between ammo manufacturers). And knowing I will have no say of the impact distance the bad guy is away from me on that fateful day where I’m relying on the ammunition to help make a difference. Muzzle energy would seem to be the logical choice for a basis of comparison. So the muzzle energy measurement helps shed some light on what the terminal impact results would be without unduly entering into the debate between velocity verses bullet weight (at least for most handgun self-defense distances).

Of course bullet material, design, propellant burn rates, barrel length, grooves, tolerances, temperature, humidity, density altitude, ad infinitude... all play a role. But to me, the muzzle energy numbers offer the quickest performance snapshots to consider.

Back in the day, I favored Winchester Silvertips for my .357 revolver use, but they stopped making them. I wrote Winchester and they explained how they ‘cycled through’ manufacturing various calibers in Silvertips. They promised they’d put me on a list to notify when they started making them again. I also got that commitment from a couple LGS - all to no avail. That’s been several years ago; fortunately there are other good .357 rounds available now.
I loved the .357 Silvertips also. Very authoritative on deer.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Are the 357 silvertips available now different from the older ones? I noticed at Ammo Seek that several stores have the silvertip ammo in 357 mag.
 

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Are the 357 silvertips available now different from the older ones? I noticed at Ammo Seek that several stores have the silvertip ammo in 357 mag.
Don’t know myself, I’d hate to think they’d mess with a proven recipe. I did see they are going to offer them in small boxes now.
 

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I never saw the Silvertips as more than a Cool Werewolff load?
A nickle jacket on a 45acp bullet made for under 1000 fps.
Is this silver jacket going to work? We have enough trouble
trying to rewrite Physics, by getting HPs to feed perfectly
in a pistol designed for the 230gr FMJ bullet. Oh
then to expand with bullet speeds that do not excced
a Black Powder rifle :bang:.

Good luck with that. Silvertips still make a great Werewolff load. :confused2:
 

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Max Otto von Stierlitz
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Don’t know myself, I’d have to think they’d mess with a proven recipe. I did see they are going to offer them in small boxes now.
Ditto for me. After four or five years “out of production”, I stopped chasing them and moved on to other brands. I never tried them in other calibers, so have no experience with that.
 

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I’ve been carrying 185 silvertips for a while in 45acp,
Also have on hand 185 gr golden sabers, these are the +p version. Both function perfectly

I run the same in my Glock, Sig & 1911s no 3” 1911s
Looking at gold dots and hyshok 185s for the future.

For 9mm 147 gr sxt or CCI G2s
For 38spl it was the 125gr federal Nyclad since they have become unobtainable I’ve sourced some 110 silvertips,
& Buffalo bore 150gr hard-cast wadcutters.
 

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"My first question, assuming that you have multiple firearms, is do you use different ammo in 3 to 4 inch barreled firearms vs. 5" or longer barreled firearms? If so, what difference in terms of bullet, bullet weight, velocity, and any other differences?"
No.
Favor 230 gr., Standard Pressure HST in .45 ACP in 4/5" guns. I have no 3" .45 ACP.

"In shorter barreled handguns 4" & under, what's your "personal opinion" about a lighter bullet & higher velocity vs. heavier bullet & less velocity?"
In 2" revolvers I also favor the 135 gr Short Barrel loads or old school 158 gr. SWC's.
In my "Pocket 9's" I use Standard Pressure GD's in 115 gr. They chrono'd over 1200 FPS in both a P365 and Kahr.
I may be behind the curve of some of the old school stuff, but I shoot well and it all of it beats a rock.
 

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On The Lost Highway
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I use 185gr Silver Tips in all of my .45 acp 1911s.
They feed well, ramped barrel and not. I've never done jello shots with them or ran them past a chrono so beside feeding well, not much to add.
 

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“Careful man, there’s a beverage here!” — The Dude
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The 125gr WIN Silvertips are my standard for 9x23, I buy 'em whenever I find 'em. Heck even if I didn't love shooting them, I'd buy them for the brass which is outstanding. Anecdotally, I've fired them out of a 5" government length Colt 9x23 and 4" 9x23 stinger with noticeable difference but with short distances in. excess of 1400 fps I wouldn't really expect any.

For 9mm and even 45 acp I'm a fan of the high velocity, lighter bullet rounds. Higher velocity equals flatter trajectory (and mass x velocity *squared*) gives the nod to anything flying above 1200 fps as far as I'm concerned. I especially like the Liberty Civil Defense Ammo.
 

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We have enough trouble
trying to rewrite Physics, by getting HPs to feed perfectly
in a pistol designed for the 230gr FMJ bullet.
This is why we started ramping series 70s in the 70s. Most of us never shot ball, we shot H&G 68 200 grain SWCs out of our 45s. Far more accurate than a hardball bullet. Ramped barrels got even better. I never shoot hardball anything, no real reason too, including "reliability" if mine aren't reliable, they get fixed quickly.

Silvertip or any other "magic" bullet, the question will always be, can you place your shots as you need to.... that's the real "magic" regardless of the ammo.
 

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Turgid member
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10mm Silvertip is close to a full power load and mushrooms well with some velocity behind it.
I don't use it in any other caliber though.
 

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I have a stash of vintage Winchester Silvertips (snappy) for my carry 38 Super. I’ve always been a BIG fan!
 
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