+P+ ammo

This is a discussion on +P+ ammo within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Is it a gimmick? Just saw this today for the first time and not sure what to make of it. If this has already been ...

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Thread: +P+ ammo

  1. #1
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    +P+ ammo

    Is it a gimmick? Just saw this today for the first time and not sure what to make of it.

    If this has already been discussed, point me to the thread.

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array Guantes's Avatar
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    I wouldn't say it was a gimmick, but a limited use item. The most common +P+ is 9mm, which is often used in 9mm carbines. It is questionable if +P+ is worth the additional wear and stress in a handgun. If the handgun will even handle any amount of it without damage.

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    Not a gimmick but be very careful with any +P+ ammo since it is loaded to far higher pressures than standard or even +P ammo. Using +P+ in some weapons will cause accelerated wear or possible weapon failure.
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
    "Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."

  5. #4
    VIP Member Array Tubby45's Avatar
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    My opinion is if you need more pressure to generate your ballistics, why not move up in caliber where you can push a heavier bullet at a similar velocity as the smaller caliber?
    07/02 FFL/SOT since 2006

  6. #5
    Ex Member Array BikerRN's Avatar
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    +P+ 9mm ammo has been around, and putting badguys down with aplomb, to give a bullet human qualities, for years.

    It may accelerate the wear and tear on your handgun, as well as not function in some older handguns, but it does work against bipedal aggressors. My favorite 9mm loads are all +P+ loads.

    ETA: It's what's in my Glock 19 and 26 right now. I've not noticed any extra wear and tear FWIW. I train with what I carry and I shoot about 100 rounds/month on average. I've been using it for years.

    The energy delivered by most 9 mm loads allows for adequate expansion and penetration with premium JHP bullets. Illinois State Police, Border Patrol, Federal Air Marshals and United States Secret Service favored and used 115 grain +P+ 9 mm loads at 1,300 ft/s for years with excellent results.[15] Lethal Force expert Massad Ayoob has stated that the "Tried, tested, and True" 115 grain +P or +P+ is the best self defense load in this caliber[citation needed].
    Biker
    Last edited by BikerRN; June 22nd, 2010 at 02:57 AM. Reason: see above

  7. #6
    Senior Member Array DIABLO9489's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikerRN View Post
    +P+ 9mm ammo has been around, and putting badguys down with aplomb, to give a bullet human qualities, for years.

    It may accelerate the wear and tear on your handgun, as well as not function in some older handguns, but it does work against bipedal aggressors. My favorite 9mm loads are all +P+ loads.

    ETA: It's what's in my Glock 19 and 26 right now. I've not noticed any extra wear and tear FWIW. I train with what I carry and I shoot about 100 rounds/month on average. I've been using it for years.



    Biker
    Same here
    Colt New Agent, Dan Wesson V-Bob, Glock 19,20SF, 23, 26, 27, 29, 30SF, 36, Kahr P380 w/CT, PM9, PM45, CW9(SOLD), Kel-Tec P32, P3AT, PF9(SOLD), Kimber Ultra Crimson Carry II, Stainless Pro TLE/RL II (SOLD), Rohrbaugh R9s, Ruger LCP w/CT, LCR, SP101 S&W J-Frame 638 w/CT, M&P 340 w/CT, Walther PPK/S

  8. #7
    VIP Member Array Stevew's Avatar
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    If I feel a need for more power I change calibers.
    Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around laws. Plato

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tubby45 View Post
    My opinion is if you need more pressure to generate your ballistics, why not move up in caliber where you can push a heavier bullet at a similar velocity as the smaller caliber?
    Plus one.
    If you don't feel (trust) the 9mm to do the job you expect, get a .40 S&W, .357 Mag, or go to a .44 Mag and get it over with. I don't understand the concept of getting a 9mm for the "lighter recoil" and then jumping up in power.
    Retired USAF E-8. Remember: You're being watched!
    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... "For What It's Worth" Buffalo Springfield

  10. #9
    Member Array Tarowah's Avatar
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    Here is a great video of the Ranger 127gr +P+ ammo, I have shot a bunch of it and it is the ammo my wife likes to carry in her G26.

    YouTube - Winchester Ranger 9mm +P+ 127 grain SXT
    Gen 3 G19 ~ Gen 3 G19 OD ~ Gen 3 G34 ~ PT 738 ~ M&P 9mm ~ Ruger 22/45 4" bull barrel ~ Marlin 60~ PSA M4 Carbine ~

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikerRN View Post
    The energy delivered by most 9 mm loads allows for adequate expansion and penetration with premium JHP bullets. Illinois State Police, Border Patrol, Federal Air Marshals and United States Secret Service favored and used 115 grain +P+ 9 mm loads at 1,300 ft/s for years with excellent results.[15] Lethal Force expert Massad Ayoob has stated that the "Tried, tested, and True" 115 grain +P or +P+ is the best self defense load in this caliber
    Many, if not all, of the agencies you listed have switched to 357 Sig or 40. cal.

    The 357 Sig is without question the best 9mm defense load for use in a semi-auto. When you buy a gun designed to shoot the 357 Sig it is built heavy duty to withstand the extra pressure. Most 9mm gun manufacturers do not want a steady diet of +p ammo. It simply was not designed for this purpose.

    Why not do it right the first time and purchase a gun that is built to do the job? Running +p ammo is asking your standard 9mm to become a super hero on steroids. This is asking for trouble imo. If you want the performance that you are pushing your 9mm to achieve get the 357 Sig. It's a 9mm super hero on steroids that will out perform the standard +p 9mm. Most top manufacturers offer guns in this round that are built to last.

    As a side note: For those who don't know, the 357 Sig is NOT the same as a 357 magnum. It's a completely different round. Yet the 357 Sig comes close to the energy of the 357 magnum.
    "Confidence is food for the wise man but liquor for the fool"

  12. #11
    Senior Member Array Sig35seven's Avatar
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    Here is a comparison of the 357 Sig vs a 357 magnum (pistol round)
    Attached Images
    "Confidence is food for the wise man but liquor for the fool"

  13. #12
    VIP Member Array Tubby45's Avatar
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    The .357 SIG was designed to duplicate the ballistics of the .357 Magnum 125gr JHP load in an auto pistol, which it does. Any other comparison for ballistic performance departs from that point.

    The 9mm was designed around an 8 gram (123.x grain) bullet. Closest to original weight is the 124gr bullet. I prefer this weight at 1200fps at standard pressure, which is easily accomplished within SAAMI MAP.
    07/02 FFL/SOT since 2006

  14. #13
    Ex Member Array BikerRN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sig35seven View Post
    Many, if not all, of the agencies you listed have switched to 357 Sig or 40. cal.

    When they were using the 9mm, the forty and 357 SIG weren't invented yet, or in their infancy.

    The 357 Sig is without question the best 9mm defense load for use in a semi-auto. When you buy a gun designed to shoot the 357 Sig it is built heavy duty to withstand the extra pressure. Most 9mm gun manufacturers do not want a steady diet of +p ammo. It simply was not designed for this purpose.

    Depends on the manufacturer.

    Why not do it right the first time and purchase a gun that is built to do the job? Running +p ammo is asking your standard 9mm to become a super hero on steroids. This is asking for trouble imo. If you want the performance that you are pushing your 9mm to achieve get the 357 Sig. It's a 9mm super hero on steroids that will out perform the standard +p 9mm. Most top manufacturers offer guns in this round that are built to last.

    There are a few agencies left that are still running the 9mm +P+ loads. We will have to disagree on this.

    As a side note: For those who don't know, the 357 Sig is NOT the same as a 357 magnum. It's a completely different round. Yet the 357 Sig comes close to the energy of the 357 magnum.

    I myself am well aware of the differences between the .357 Magnum, my absolute favorite caliber BTW, and 357 SIG.
    FWIW, I like the 357 SIG, but when I started packing a gun we were issued revolvers. Now I pack a "bottomfeeder" and it's a 9mm. I like the 357 SIG because it does what a 9mm should do, IMO. If I wanted a forty, I'd get a forty. I'm not much of a forty fan, and have found only one platform that I like it in.

    The +P+ stuff works, as proven on the street. Why fix something that isn't broke?

    Biker

  15. #14
    Senior Member Array Sig35seven's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikerRN View Post
    FWIW, I like the 357 SIG, but when I started packing a gun we were issued revolvers. Now I pack a "bottomfeeder" and it's a 9mm. I like the 357 SIG because it does what a 9mm should do, IMO. If I wanted a forty, I'd get a forty. I'm not much of a forty fan, and have found only one platform that I like it in.

    The +P+ stuff works, as proven on the street. Why fix something that isn't broke?

    Biker
    Fair enough. I think we agree. Sure the +p+ stuff works but you may end up needing to fix something that wasn't broke.

    I would warn people that their gun may not be capable of a steady diet of +p+ ammo and some manufacturers don't suggest using it at all.

    I've always thought you should practice with the same ammo as you carry and if you can't practice with +p+ all the time.... you get my drift.
    "Confidence is food for the wise man but liquor for the fool"

  16. #15
    Senior Member Array WC145's Avatar
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    I'm with Biker and the other +P+ users. My duty/carry load is good ol' Federal 9BPLE, the same round that was carried by the agencies listed in his quote and still in use by more than a few. I've used it in a number of handguns and have never had a bit of trouble with it, it is always accurate and reliable.

    I used to carry a 357 Sig and liked it but I get about 1310fps out of the +P+ 9mm and I don't feel that the extra 10gr and 40fps are worth the cost of 357 Sig ammo. I have to purchase my own ammo and gear and wait to get reimbursed, 9mm makes that easier on me and the town I work for. My training ammo is standard 115gr FMJ and just the other day I picked up 500rds of Remington UMC at Wal-Mart for $110 inc tax, can't do that with a 357 Sig.


    One other thing, while the 357 Sig is a great round, it still fell short of it's goal of matching the ballistics of the .357mag by about 100fps in equivelant weight loads.

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