1911 Firearm Addicts banner
61 - 80 of 81 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
511 Posts
Discussion Starter · #66 ·
45=230gr HST
9=Gold Dot 124+P
My pistols function 100% and are accurate with both. And they work.
+1 on outstanding function, impact, and accuracy. It seems that those two as well as Winchester Ranger are chosen most often by folks who responded; any of the LE lines from the top makers is a good choice.

…if you want to geek out with data keep reading. Otherwise, stop since you already know the answers and have selected your ammo.

Both Speer and Federal have had several LE wound ballistics workshops where different agencies could see them tested in an easy to compare manner. This is one example:

- There’s a nice tool that takes lots of testing data and shows them in a simple ’apples to apples’ Law Enforcement - Federal Premium LE, Speer LE, BLACKHAWK!, Eagle - Load Comparison

Other useful links for browsing are:
- Why Ballistics Gel Works and Caliber Arguments are Dumb - Lucky Gunner Lounge

- The anatomy of a gunshot and why your bullet choices matter

- More testing of ammo from Lucky Gunner from @Whiten: Handgun Self-Defense Ammunition - Ballistic Testing Data

-The original testing from Doctor Robert’s: Best Choices for Self Defense Ammo
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
511 Posts
Discussion Starter · #68 · (Edited)

This is the ammo I mentioned--I LOVE this +P Liberty ammo--it's really hot, functions perfectly and really reduces total carry weight. Big time reccomendation!
This and similar types of exotic ammo focuses only on energy, thus the very light and very fast projectile, ignoring penetration and expansion, both of which (and shot placement) are critical. At least if you accept the FBI’s view of what makes solid self defense ammunition based on actual shooting (prompted by the 1986 Miami shootout event https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1986_FBI_Miami_shootout ). That’s one reason why folks prefer slower and heavier bullets such as 230gr. HST and 147gr. Gold Dot. You want to reach critical organs in less than ideal angles and with “stuff” in the way, for example an extended arm, or barriers ranging from clothing to windshield.

Anyway, as I think @UBOATDOC said previously, with handgun ammo which is limited in power, most good ammunition will work if you disable the target with a brain or spine shot(s). It’s also worth calling out that a rifle with proper ammunition will have a lower probability of over penetration if you hit your target.That’s where high velocity—much higher velocity—comes into play. The links for Doctor Robert’s cover that too. It’s counter intuitive on first look and we’ll worth reading about.

Also, in my previous life wearing green, we learned that to stop a determined attacker, hitting their body with a round per second or so will override their ability to do anything because the nervous system is overwhelmed and there is only so much the brain can process. That last bit isn’t part of what I think as self defense mindset; only stopping the threat until the danger is over.

Happy Thanksgiving!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
27 Posts
Thank you for the detailed and helpful follow up, @Merton and extending to more common calibers! The fact you can reload is an awesome plus, especially given no boon in the future of the ammo marketplace.

I want to share a suggestion and solicit feedback from others too wrt the usage of FMJ in different calibers. The primary scenarios for using FMJ as far as I understand it are: (1) concern a JHP wouldn’t expand given some problem (e.g., insufficient velocity, HP cavity plugged), and (2) a requirement for deep penetration.

Both of these can be addressed (after proper self testing) with the full copper, non-expanding Lehigh Defense penetration bullet which is available from them, WC (Wilson Combat bought the company), and Underwood.
View attachment 1132807
After stripping lots of marketing talk, they say this: ”…the Xtreme Penetrator Fluid Transfer Monolithic (XP FTM) product line, for both handgun and rifles. The progressive nose geometry allows for deep, straight penetration while creating a permanent wound cavity diameter exceeding that of most expanding bullets.

The rest of the above as well as their offerings can be found on:Xtreme Penetrator - Our Technologies and it would be great if anyone who has done first hand testing, or research into these and can offer an informative view rather than my testing suggestion.
I bought a variety of their bullets to test. My testing was delayed recently when I discovered a compound crack in the cast iron bullet trap that I have inside the shop. The gelatin should stop the bullets but over penetration would result in a hole in the wall which would allow the Minnesota winter inside and I pay dearly to keep it at bay. The low outside temps would skew results. I'll resume as soon as the new trap is built.

I've received notice from both Underwood and Lehigh of 20% off Thanksgiving sales!!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
511 Posts
Discussion Starter · #70 ·
I bought a variety of their bullets to test. My testing was delayed recently when I discovered a compound crack in the cast iron bullet trap that I have inside the shop. The gelatin should stop the bullets but over penetration would result in a hole in the wall which would allow the Minnesota winter inside and I pay dearly to keep it at bay. The low outside temps would skew results. I'll resume as soon as the new trap is built.

I've received notice from both Underwood and Lehigh of 20% off Thanksgiving sales!!
Awesome! I look forward to seeing your write up and takeaways. You definitely want to keep our bone chilling MN fog and cold out.
 

·
Registered
Wilson SFX9’s and 1911’s
Joined
·
102 Posts
For 9mm defensive ammo I exclusively load Federal HST 124gr +P in my handguns and HST 147gr in my pistol caliber short barrel suppressed carbines. From short barrel handguns and medium barrel carbines this ammo has demonstrated excellent expansion and moderately deep penetration. I wait until I can find and buy a 1,000 round case of the LE marked 50 round boxes,. A 1,000 round case will last me several years as I don’t train with it regularly, but do shoot up the numerous loaded magazines I keep on hand a couple times a year. This is fine defensive ammo, well tested and street proven. Also, in the aftermath of a defensive shooting, in the chance a overly aggressive anti-gun prosecutor wants to make hey, or even more likely, the shot person or their aggrieved family will file for civil damages, I think it important to be able to demonstrate that this is the exact same ammunition used by police forces all around the country and that there is nothing cruel, unusual, experimental or having any special feature that shows malicious intent in its use.

I would say much the same can be said for “police“ ammunition from Speer, Winchester and Hornady.

It may well turn out that the new all copper bullets from Lehigh, Barnes and others perform better in a wider range of shooting situations with various types of barriers. But I think I’ll wait for more “real world” street performance reports to roll in, and see it’s adoption by more police departments and/or state and federal agencies, before I load up my EDC with this stuff.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
27 Posts
I forgot to mention what I load in my defense firearms.
Most of my carry, especially in winter, is with a .45acp and in that I load the Speer 230 Gold Dot. Great track record and bullets are available for reloading so testing can be done at less expense than the premium load price for 20 rounds.
In one of the "house guns" and when I carry the 365XL 9mm it is usually loaded with the 147gr Federal Hydra-Shok. I seldom carry it but in the Micro 9 I load the 124 gr Federal Hydra-Shok. Lastly on the rare times that I carry a S&W 340 it has five rounds of Hornady Critical Defense.
Honorable mention: I carry a 1911 in either .45acp or 10mm when hiking in the woods. They are usually loaded with handloads using weight appropriate Hornady HAP or XTP.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
133 Posts
Honestly, I'm pretty happy with anything in .45 that is reliable in my guns that isn't ball. I don't mind ball in general because it feeds so well, but quality hollow points are better of course. People can bitch about ball ammo sucking but it still makes 2 holes in the guy even if small.

.45 HST is my #1 choice due to proven track record, feed reliability in all my guns, different calibers (nice rounded ogive helps a lot) AND it's available pretty easily at any time. I generally don't keep the same ammo in my mags for more than a year at the outside. Because I actually shoot through my carry ammo/anything in a magazine that is carried I don't want a round that is hard to locate later on.

That said, I still like Ranger Talon 230 the most as a .45 round. Expands well and the petals could do more than HST. But I run HST because I can get it easily.

230 GD are easy to get and work great if they feed

200 +p in Gold Dot & XTP both work well and I would have no problem carrying them in a steel frame/heavier or longer gun. They push a bit more than the 230s for me and accuracy suffers a bit.


in 9mm, all of these function reliably for me; I would not hesitate to carry the DPX/TAC PD type copper bullets if they functioned reliability, but I've never even shot a single round of them

these would be my choices
1. 147 HST standard pressure
2. 124 HST +p
3. 124 HST
4. 124 GD +p
5. 147 Ranger Talon (hard to find sometimes)

I want reliability above all in all me gear; guns, ammo, penetration with some expansion.

Situational awareness, tactics, shot placement rule the day.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
454 Posts
HST hands down first choice. GD and Ranger close second choice... in reality any good SD load will serve you well.

I spent a weekend shooting various premium SD loads out of my guns with me shooting... seems like a better choice then trusting somebody else shooting their guns to tell you what to shoot.

Media includes various clothing, wet phone books, water jugs, bails of insulation, home made ballistic gel, various barriers, etc.

Coditions included early morning, mid day and night for different temperatures and light condition.

You will immediately see what you and your gun prefers in terms of reliability to function, mussle blast, felt recoil, performance, etc. It just amazes me that people will carry a gun without testing various ammo that they may need to save your butt? You only have one life so if the situation arrives that you need to draw and fire, don't you want 100% trust in your setup? Ammunition is cheap, your life not so much.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
The Lehigh bullets do see

I have yet to shoot the Lehigh-type bullets but the data that is out there is very compelling. It really does seem to work as advertised.

For me, your suggested uses of FMJ is about spot on. In the end, a non-expanding HP will still act as a FMJ, theoretically. I believe that under penetration is the biggest deterrent to me. I do not live with North America's large Brown and Grizzly bears, but I do live with cougars, wolves, feral dogs, black bear and other vicious if smaller animals like badger. 12-18 months ago I shot a badger at under 15 yards with a .45 FMJ and it did not exit that little animals body. It died, but it did not pass through and to this day I have wondered if somehow I missed the exit hole, but I didn't. That bullet stayed inside and it made me rethink everything. I used to carry a Ruger LCP .22lr in my jacket pocket as something of a "backup". Not only is it too unreliable of a backup as it is a semi-auto and a rimfire(a centerfire revolver is the true belly gun), but then of course there is the underwhelming performance of .22lr out of 2" barrels.

For me, the use of FMJ/hardcast is for a few reasons. I believe that reliability of course is tops with RN bullets. I also believe that cast will shoot better than lead in 90%+ barrels. I love the 200gr. SWC in the .45 as it is accurate and effective, but reliability drops with the SWC profile. The .45 is in my opinion the "perfect" cartridge for defense because the diameter, weight and slow speed are an ideal combination for bipedal animals that are under 24" deep at the juicy bits. My only concern with HP's in the .45 for my personal situation is that they could underpenetrate on a wolf or cougar, but though they live right outside my door Oregon has neither a cougar nor wolf attack of a human in the record, ever.
Howdy. Been using the Speer .45+P 230gr ammo in steel pistols. Said pistols have the Wilson stainless "Bulletproof" short guide rods and their plastic buffers to lower shock, along with 18.5lb recoil springs. That pretty much does what needs doing, and one can just shoot light loads in practice.

Happy Thanksgiving, Dan.
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
3,898 Posts
I go back and forth between Speer Gold Dot and Remington Golden Saber depending on what is available when I need more.

I have 1000’s of rounds down range with both ammo types and both are capable of near match grade accuracy and their ballistic data has been proven to be acceptable.

Many times I was able to shoot better groups with the GD or GS than I could get with dedicated match grade ammo like Gold Medal Match
 

·
Registered
1911's & Glocks
Joined
·
17 Posts
I do love the Lehigh Xtreme Defense bullets, loaded by Lehigh or Underwood (or by me!). These bullets rely on velocity, thus the light for caliber designs. 135 now for .45 ACP (used to be 120), 115 for 10mm. They flat out work! I use them in all of my carry/home defense pistols with complete confidence.

My second choice is always Speer Gold Dots (when one can find them!) with HST, & Golden Saber close behind. No matter what bullet you use, shot placement is still king and there are no magic bullets... but I believe the Lehigh's come closest!
Cheers,
crkckr
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
712 Posts
9mm & 40 124gr+P & 180gr Gold Dot.
.45 230gr HST+P

For the 9mm & 40 those are common LE carry rounds with good performance in real life situations. We're issued the 180 GD so I have no say in the matter.
For the .45 my Pro shoots those more accurately than about anything and a well known LE trainer I respect has mentioned it is known to "kill like the hammers of Hell" in LE defensive shootings.

If there were no more JHP rounds available, I'd go to semi-wadcutter .45's and not feel under-armed.
 
  • Like
Reactions: _Dan_
61 - 80 of 81 Posts
Top