Shooting the ammo you carry

Shooting the ammo you carry

This is a discussion on Shooting the ammo you carry within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I'd like to get an idea from people how often they shoot the ammo they carry. I bought 20 cartridges of Hornady Critical Defense ammo ...

View Poll Results: Do you shoot the ammo you carry?

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  • Yes, every time I shoot at the range.

    32 14.81%
  • Occasionally.

    129 59.72%
  • Rarely.

    46 21.30%
  • Never.

    9 4.17%
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Thread: Shooting the ammo you carry

  1. #1
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    Array BenGoodLuck's Avatar
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    Aug 2005

    Shooting the ammo you carry

    I'd like to get an idea from people how often they shoot the ammo they carry. I bought 20 cartridges of Hornady Critical Defense ammo based on the dealer's recommendation. That's what I keep loaded in my Glock 30 and what I plan to carry everyday when my permit arrives. But when I go to the range, I unload that ammo and shoot regular ball ammo because it's cheaper. Based on what I've read, it makes a lot of sense to shoot the ammo I carry every day to make sure that I can handle it, that it feeds properly and so I can get used to its characteristics. Please share your experiences and opinions on this issue.

    CANT: Carry Always, Never Tell

    Cogito, ergo armatum sum. I think, therefore I am armed. (Don Mann, The Modern Day Gunslinger; the ultimate handgun training manual)

  2. #2
    Member Array Justified's Avatar
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    Jun 2011
    Every couple months I blast off whatever rounds I have been carrying around for 2 reasons
    1)Practice with the +p+ loads as they do handle ever so slightly different then ball
    2)Because I dont want the same defensive rounds sitting in there for ever (like keeping a condom in your wallet-truth you will prob never use it but you still have to put a fresh one in from time to time) because of dirt, sweat, etc getting all over the rounds.

    Deerbnb likes this.
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  3. #3
    VIP Member Array Harryball's Avatar
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    Jun 2009
    Lansing Mi
    You should shoot it to make sure it works in your weapon. I shoot my EDC ammo up three months. It retains my confidence in it, and my weapon
    ZX9RCAM likes this.
    Don"t let stupid be your skill set....

    And Shepards we shall be, for Thee, my Lord, for Thee,
    Power hath descended forth from Thy hand, So that our feet may swiftly carry out thy command,
    And we shall flow a river forth to Thee, And teeming with souls shall it ever be,

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  5. #4
    Senior Member Array ZX9RCAM's Avatar
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    The Woodlands, Texas
    Quote Originally Posted by Harryball View Post
    You should shoot it to make sure it works in your weapon. I shoot my EDC ammo up three months. It retains my confidence in it, and my weapon

    If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went.

    -Will Rogers

    Im a big fan of the .22LR for bear defense.
    Just shoot the guy next to you in the knee and run like heck.

  6. #5
    Senior Member Array SFury's Avatar
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    Jun 2011
    I was always taught to shoot your gun with the round you were going to use with it. I've seen firsthand how different bullet weights, cheap vs higher quality rounds, have different trajectories from the same gun.

    It's a philosophy that has worked well for me.

  7. #6
    Member Array ChrisMia's Avatar
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    Aug 2011
    Miami, FL
    Most definitely a good idea to shoot your carry ammo - I for one don't trust a firearm for EDC until I've put 100 or so rounds of carry ammo through it without any hiccups, and that's in addition to 200+ rounds of cheaper FMJ range ammo. A bit expensive? Perhaps, but if I'm spending hundreds of dollars on a gun to safekeep things that I consider priceless (i.e. myself and my loved ones), an extra $100-$200 on ammo testing is an insurance policy/peace of mind exercise that's well worth the cost IMO.

    Every firearm I ever intend to use for SD/HD will go through the following procedure:

    0-150 rounds: doesn't exist as anything but a range gun to me
    150-200 rounds: comfortable enough with reliability to keep in the nightstand alongside standard HD firearm as a backup if SHTF
    300 flawless rounds: comfortable enough with reliability to carry

    Of course, my opinion is free and worth what it costs.

  8. #7
    VIP Member Array mlr1m's Avatar
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    Oct 2006
    Something to consider is the abuse the ammo you carry inflict on the weapon you use it in. Many light framed carry guns were never meant to be fired constantly with full house loads. I remember in the 70's a gun maker warning people not to use the hot 158 gr 357 loads for target practice as the newer alloy framed guns would not stand up to them under constant use.


  9. #8
    VIP Member Array joker1's Avatar
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    Jan 2009
    Due to the cost and unavailability of good SD ammunition in my neck of the woods I don't shoot much SD ammo at all. I shoot alot of target/range/ball ammunition when practicing and competing. I did shoot a couple of magazine worth of my carry ammo to verify function. Someday I'd like to be able to afford more Golden Sabres or Gold Dots to practice with but for now it's whatever Wal-Mart has on the shelf. Yes I know I could buy online, it's just hard to justify it right now.
    NRA Life Member

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  10. #9
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    Array SpencerB's Avatar
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    Feb 2010
    Phoenix, AZ
    I have shot some of my self defense ammo before but I don't have the income to be shooting it off regularly, I do occasionally though..
    OEF Veteran

  11. #10
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    Array RETSUPT99's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    Central Florida
    Depending upon the firearm, I do occasionally shoot some of my carry ammo.
    Proverbs 27:12 says: “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.”

    Certified Glock Armorer
    NRA Life Member

  12. #11
    Distinguished Member Array TSiWRX's Avatar
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    Feb 2011
    Cleveland/Shaker Heights, Ohio - USA
    As with many of the others here, I also like to "prove" my firearms, using my chosen SD/HD ammo. I'm a bit excessive and compulsive, so I like to put 100 rounds of those rounds down-the-pipe as soon as the gun's reasonably "broken in," and after that, I pretty much ramp as quickly as reasonably possible (and that does include my finances) to the 500-round mark. I know, that's excessive, but it gives me peace-of-mind.

    I do tend to shoot my carry ammo a bit, but mostly - especially for high-round-count classwork - I tend to stick with range-fodder.

    With SD/HD ammo, I'm mainly looking for:

    (1) me knowing the firearm/ammo's POA/POI, and being comfortable with its recoil characteristics
    (2) me knowing that the firearm will feed and fire flawlessly with the ammo
    (3) me knowing what the muzzle blast is like - including low-light

  13. #12
    Distinguished Member Array ArkhmAsylm's Avatar
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    Mar 2011
    St. Paul, Minnesota
    I shoot up my stored mags on my monthly range trips. I keep 2 Glock mags (17x2+1) of my +P+ 127gr T-series & 3 Kel-tec mags (7x3+1) of my 147gr T-series ready to go. I was shooting off about 50 rounds of each when I first started using the Winchester Ranger to ensure proper operation & consistency, but at .48 cents a shot I decided to cut down after going through a case of each.

    It's money well-spent knowing my ammo will likely perform if needed for SD.
    Last edited by ArkhmAsylm; August 24th, 2011 at 06:58 PM. Reason: * price correction
    "Historical examination of the right to bear arms, from English antecedents to the drafting of the Second Amendment, bears proof that the right to bear arms has consistently been, and should still be, construed as an individual right." -- U.S. District Judge Sam Cummings, Re: U.S. vs Emerson (1999)

  14. #13
    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    I used to carry factory ammo, but like many here, I scoff at paying ridiculous prices for ammo. I found my solution years ago by reloading. I can put together ammo meticulously assembled and tailored to my specs.

    But the best part is I can shoot as much as I want and it's the same thing I carry.
    I can load 50 rounds of premium ammo for half what a 20 round box of factory costs.

    If I use lead bullets, which work as well as anything, I can load a box of 50 rounds of 45 acp or 40 S&W for about $ 7.00.
    nerdyvirgin, bmcgilvray and mprp like this.
    " Blessed is that man, who when facing death, thinks only of his front sight"
    -Jeff Cooper

  15. #14
    Distinguished Member Array Knightrider's Avatar
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    Mar 2010
    If I shot what I carried all the time, my 9mm and .38 would be broken once per year as my carry ammo in both are +p+. With that being said, I shoot it once per year to change out to my new carry ammo. That isn't including the times through out the year that I may let a round or two go from time to time.
    Sig Sauer: P938 9mm Smith and Wesson: Sigma SW9VE 9mm

  16. #15
    Ex Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    Oct 2009
    Omaha, Nebraska
    I wish I could afford to shoot my carry ammo more often but I rarely shoot my carry ammo.

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