9mm +P versus standard pressure?

9mm +P versus standard pressure?

This is a discussion on 9mm +P versus standard pressure? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I recently got my first 9mm. I made sure to get a firearm that could support +P and +P+ loadings, but in the current ammunition ...

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Thread: 9mm +P versus standard pressure?

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    VIP Member Array livewire's Avatar
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    9mm +P versus standard pressure?

    I recently got my first 9mm. I made sure to get a firearm that could support +P and +P+ loadings, but in the current ammunition market I am having trouble finding my preferred bullet weight (124gr) in +P at the discount ammo dealers. I went ahead and bought a couple boxes of 124gr Gold Dot, but at standard pressure rather than +P.

    Does anyone have useful feedback on whether there is any real reason to carry +P over standard pressure? According to the ballistics tables, the +P does have superior numbers (obviously, I suppose), but the 9mm round is still very good. Also, is the recoil substantially different? I am loading them in a Kahr CM9, so a difference in recoil might make more of a difference than anything.

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    sgb
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    The standard 124gr gold dot passes the FBI protocol just like it's +P brethren and works just fine without subjecting your firearm to the increased wear and tear of the +P pressures. I prefer the 147gr loads
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    Member Array mook012's Avatar
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    I use standard pressure Gold Dot 124g. It works fine without the +.
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    Senior Member Array sensei2's Avatar
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    everything else being equal, a +P load should have more stopping power than its standard pressure brother. more velocity = more energy. for me, it has always been a case of accepting more recoil for the increased power, and thus increased time between follow-up shots. faster wear on the firearm is real, but a minor factor for me. i have a CM-9, which is one of my EDC choices. i have chosen to shoot standard pressure Hornady Critical Defense FTX rounds in it. i would be more likely to shoot +P (Cor Bon 115 grain +P) or +P+ (Winchester Ranger 127 grain +P+) in my Sig p-239, but i'd also feel quite comfortable loaded with the Critical Defense rounds.

    one caution: if you do choose to go the +P route, do shoot some +P rounds during at least some of your practice sessions. police who trained with .38SPL loads and carried .357Magnum when on duty, did not shoot very well with the more powerful magnum rounds, to which they were not accustomed. the difference between standard 9mm and +P 9mm is not so great as that between .38SPL and .357Magnum, but the principle holds. train like you expect to fight. this will likely mean shooting some of your SD rounds,as i know of no +P FMJ practice loads.

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    Member Array randomCOguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mook012 View Post
    I use standard pressure Gold Dot 124g. It works fine without the +.
    I second that. All about the "middle of the road" grain.

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    Quote Originally Posted by livewire9880 View Post
    Does anyone have useful feedback on whether there is any real reason to carry +P over standard pressure? According to the ballistics tables, the +P does have superior numbers (obviously, I suppose), but the 9mm round is still very good. Also, is the recoil substantially different? I am loading them in a Kahr CM9, so a difference in recoil might make more of a difference than anything.
    Bullets are designed to perform at an optimal speed to reliably penetrate and expand as designed. Modern premium ammunition has a wide range of speeds for optimal performance. With that said, standard pressure loads work well in pistols with 4"+ barrels (and slightly shorter if the pistol uses polygonal rifling). Shorter barrel pistols may benefit from +p ammunition, depending on bullet design. Now, if you use +p or +p+ ammunition in longer barrels you will have a faster bullet with more energy, but the said bullet may over-expand, fragment, causing an under-performing bullet. IF the bullet is designed to perform better at higher speeds, then you've got a high-energy projectile working extremely well. The key to how effective a round can be has more to do with bullet design than it does out-right speed.

    If you buy premium ammunition, use it with confidence. Be sure to buy bonded ammunition if you really want an effective projectile (it holds together better than older designs). 115, 124, and 147 grain bullets all work well, but I readily admit I am a fan of 147 and 124 grain bullets.
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    sgb likes this.
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    I shoot standard pressure 9mm in my Browning Hi-Power. I found the added recoil of the +P caused my second shot to be awry or slow. I consider the normal rounds to be very sufficient.

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    sgb
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    Quote Originally Posted by sensei2 View Post
    everything else being equal, a +P load should have more stopping power than its standard pressure brother. more velocity = more energy. for me, it has always been a case of accepting more recoil for the increased power, and thus increased time between follow-up shots. faster wear on the firearm is real, but a minor factor for me. i have a CM-9, which is one of my EDC choices. i have chosen to shoot standard pressure Hornady Critical Defense FTX rounds in it. i would be more likely to shoot +P (Cor Bon 115 grain +P) or +P+ (Winchester Ranger 127 grain +P+) in my Sig p-239, but i'd also feel quite comfortable loaded with the Critical Defense rounds.

    one caution: if you do choose to go the +P route, do shoot some +P rounds during at least some of your practice sessions. police who trained with .38SPL loads and carried .357Magnum when on duty, did not shoot very well with the more powerful magnum rounds, to which they were not accustomed. the difference between standard 9mm and +P 9mm is not so great as that between .38SPL and .357Magnum, but the principle holds. train like you expect to fight. this will likely mean shooting some of your SD rounds,as i know of no +P FMJ practice loads.
    Stopping power as it relates to handgun ammunition is a myth. Energy is also meaningless measurement. Handgun bullets incapacitate by either severing the CNS or causing enough blood loss as to drop blood pressure to the point the individual is no longer able to function.
    "There is a secret pride in every human heart that revolts at tyranny. You may order and drive an individual, but you cannot make him respect you." William Hazlitt (1778 - 1830)

    Best Choices for Self Defense Ammunition

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    Ex Member Array RayBar's Avatar
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    You can overthink this ballistics stuff.SHOT PLACEMENT! Shoot fast,don't miss.
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    Member Array Blades's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sgb View Post
    Stopping power as it relates to handgun ammunition is a myth. Energy is also meaningless measurement. Handgun bullets incapacitate by either severing the CNS or causing enough blood loss as to drop blood pressure to the point the individual is no longer able to function.
    Quote Originally Posted by RayBar View Post
    You can overthink this ballistics stuff.SHOT PLACEMENT! Shoot fast,don't miss.
    Tru dat!!

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    Not to mention regular Gold Dots are way cheaper...you can get the 50 round LE boxes for a few dollars more than what 20 rounds of +p costs.

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    VIP Member Array smolck's Avatar
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    My favorite 9mm bullets include the Cor Bon DPX (best IMO), the Gold Dot 124+p and the Hornady Critical Defense. Of those rounds, the Hornady is the easiest to shoot fast with the mild recoil.

    If you want to immerse yourself in some pretty good amateur 9mm tests, go here.......9mm Ammo tests - YouTube

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    VIP Member Array livewire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lordj View Post
    Not to mention regular Gold Dots are way cheaper...you can get the 50 round LE boxes for a few dollars more than what 20 rounds of +p costs.
    I find that 124 gr stuff is about the same price in standard and +P... Maybe a little more, but not enough to matter. It's availability that I'm having a problem with.

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    VIP Member Array livewire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sgb View Post
    Stopping power as it relates to handgun ammunition is a myth. Energy is also meaningless measurement. Handgun bullets incapacitate by either severing the CNS or causing enough blood loss as to drop blood pressure to the point the individual is no longer able to function.
    I was thinking more along the lines of the extra penetration. Not barrier so much as bone and clothing.

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    There are four boxes to be used in the defense of liberty: soap - ballot - jury - ammo

    “The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie: deliberate, continued, and dishonest; but the myth: persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic.”
    -- John F. Kennedy

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