Confusion about carry ammo

This is a discussion on Confusion about carry ammo within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I look at this way TOOLS, 230g sledge hammer. 185g claw hammer 115g finishing/craft hammer. All will hurt to get hit with some cause more ...

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Thread: Confusion about carry ammo

  1. #31
    Member Array jbonfadini's Avatar
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    I look at this way TOOLS, 230g sledge hammer. 185g claw hammer 115g finishing/craft hammer. All will hurt to get hit with some cause more damage than others, but it's all choice what your comfortable with and what you shoot best with, remember your responsible for any bullet you fire until it stops

    I tend to carry gold dot I've every gun I carry. Golden sabre being my second choice

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  3. #32
    Senior Member Array IAm_Not_Lost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 12 gauge View Post
    Why is there such a disparity when people talk about the best defensive carry ammo? No one seems to have a lock on the best. Seems that with as much science and research as we have today, we should have a number 1,2,3 & 4.
    Well, until the government begins allowing ballistic testing on pedophiles, rapists, and murderers, we can only simulate. Sort of like how people aren't lining up to test car safety ratings.

    The biggest problem is that the issue doesn't just lie with bullet effectiveness, it also lies with cost, weight, size and capacity. For example, if the .45 was as cheap as 9mm, and had the same wight, size, and capacity of my G26, I'd pick the .45, but it isn't and doesn't, so I don't.
    LouisianaMan likes this.
    "Brilliant. So now we got a huge guy theory, and a serial crusher theory. Top notch. What's your name?" - Paul Smecker

  4. #33
    New Member Array K_9twofive's Avatar
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    Re: Confusion about carry ammo

    Hmmm...I realize I'm new here, but I couldn't help but notice that for all that everybody talked about caliber wars in this thread, nobody actually engaged in caliber wars. Advice was helpful, despite the OP's relative lack of knowledge on the subject, and posters were respectful of viewpoints other than their own. Nary a flame to be found, and this in stark contrast to any number of other sites out there on the interwebs.

    I think I'm going to like it here.

    Sent from my Motorola on a very tiny keyboard. Awkward autocorrects are not unexpected.

  5. #34
    Member Array LouisianaMan's Avatar
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    I like PEF's 4 categories of poster: learner, teacher, mischief-maker, and Old Fart. I was actually born an Old Fart, I believe, but have occasionally tried to diversify into the other three categories :-)

    As a learner, I've enjoyed reading everything I can get my hands on that causes me to think on this subject. (Maybe that should worry me, but it doesn't.)

    As a teacher, I have little or nothing original to offer, and can only give my support to some of the teachers who have pointed out that caliber selection entails more factors & compromises than one might imagine. Literally every combination you can think of will have its relative strengths and weaknesses. We can only stare into the abyss of caliber selection and embrace ambiguity.

    As a mischief-maker, I could troll around some recommendations like .25 and .32 that might just flush a couple of Old Farts out of the woodwork, unable to resist shooting at a perfect broadside target.

    In my capacity as Old Fart, I could wax eloquent (OK, try to wax eloquent) on the virtues of a favorite of mine over the past few years: the .38 caliber, 200 grain bullet, while casting aspersions on hi-capacity automatics as the refuge of the lousy shot, the panicky Walter Mitty, and/or the nervous neophyte. Alas, honesty requires me to give my true opinion: most of the time in SD/HD situations, caliber & bullet selection are irrelevant, if we believe the statistics that indicate the huge majority of such situations are resolved without firing a shot. (And while statistics can mislead, I personally think this statistic is valid.) Of course, at other times the caliber and bullet type combine to succeed, or combine to fail. In the former cases, it was "exactly what the situation required," and in the latter, oops, it wasn't.

    Since all of these situations are quite literally unique, each can be discussed fervently by guys like us who enjoy analyzing such things, and finding ourselves either surprised by the outcome or confirmed in our beliefs. It's interesting in either case.

    So my mischief-making answer at the end of all this rambling is: small, slow & low-tech is usually good enough, but bigger, faster and hi-tech sometimes turns out to be necessary. Those who have extensive experience seeing these things play out in real life (and I don't) commonly shade the odds by choosing relatively bigger, relatively faster, and relatively higher-tech, but they generally agree that it's impossible to predict the outcomes in advance. Rather, they emphasize that a strong man behind a little gun has an advantage over a weak man behind a big gun.

    I didn't read Sykes's "Shooting to Live with the One-Hand Gun" until about 70 years after its publication in 1940-42, but I find his formulations convincing. He recommended selection of a pistol and ammo that was as big, strong & powerful as one could handle, and preferred expanding bullets if possible, but he simultaneously noted that he'd witnessed multiple-hit failures with the .45 Automatic and .455 Webley--pretty much the stiffest medicine available to his audience at that time. Tellingly, in my eyes, he emphasized that whatever sidearm you had in a close-range gunfight, you needed to prepare yourself to use it as aggressively as possible, because it was likely to prove necessary. The .45 and .455 failures he used to illustrate his point were both successfully concluded when the Good Guy/shooter took his now-empty gun and smashed the Bad Guy/shootee in the skull with it!

  6. #35
    Member Array chasbo00's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garygl View Post
    It's been written before, and still is probably the most valuable advice. What YOU can control will be the best.
    How do I determine (includes measuring it) what I can control?

  7. #36
    Member Array nathanjns's Avatar
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    I've floated around to all sides of this issue for years - never really feeling that I was making the right decisions. I finally landed on a combination that I feel comfortable with- that being a gun/cartridge combination that I can shoot well and quickly. For me that combination is a full size pistol in 9mm ( G17 etc. ). I have no idea what might be right for someone else. If I could shoot well and quickly with something more powerful, I would use that combination. If a 22 LR was my limit, that is what I would use. I think a person armed with anything which they can use to place multiple vital hits quickly is a dangerous adversary. I agree that bigger is usually better than smaller and that faster is usually better than slower. But two or three quick shots to the right spot with anything is better than something that goes wide of the mark.

    I guess this places me in the category of an old fart who thinks he has learned something that shouldn't stir up too much mischief except amongst those who think they can teach me something different!

  8. #37
    Member Array chasbo00's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nathanjns View Post
    If I could shoot well and quickly...
    Can you further define, so that it's measurable, what well and quickly means to you? For example, draw and fire 6 shots within 5 seconds at an 8 inch diameter target 7 yards away with all 6 shots striking the target.
    Last edited by chasbo00; November 23rd, 2012 at 08:08 AM.

  9. #38
    Distinguished Member Array kelcarry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nathanjns View Post
    I've floated around to all sides of this issue for years - never really feeling that I was making the right decisions. I finally landed on a combination that I feel comfortable with- that being a gun/cartridge combination that I can shoot well and quickly. For me that combination is a full size pistol in 9mm ( G17 etc. ). I have no idea what might be right for someone else. If I could shoot well and quickly with something more powerful, I would use that combination. If a 22 LR was my limit, that is what I would use. I think a person armed with anything which they can use to place multiple vital hits quickly is a dangerous adversary. I agree that bigger is usually better than smaller and that faster is usually better than slower. But two or three quick shots to the right spot with anything is better than something that goes wide of the mark.

    I guess this places me in the category of an old fart who thinks he has learned something that shouldn't stir up too much mischief except amongst those who think they can teach me something different!
    Obviously just my comments and my choice, but I found your comments that mention 9mm and 22LR in same reply to be pertinent. I CC an FN 5.7X28 semi. Large capacity (20+1 rounds), lightweight, high velocity (>2000fps), lethal and accurate AND lower recoil than a 9mm. It just seemed to fit that "want a 9 but have it be a 22" sort of feeling and I have not been disappointed except for price (+/_$1000). 5.7X28 ammo seems to be in short supply and best prices when supply was good was around $20 for 50 rounds, which for practice is higher than a 9 and lot higher than 22.

  10. #39
    Member Array nathanjns's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chasbo00 View Post
    Can you further define, so that it's measurable, what well and quickly means to you? For example, draw and fire 6 shots within 5 seconds at an 8 inch diameter target 7 yards away with all 6 shots striking the target.
    I haven't measured anything but that sounds like a reasonable enough assesment of "well and quickly". To me it is more about shooting as fast as I can while maintaning accuracy and good control of the gun. When I reach a speed or recoil level at which that ability deteriorates, I back up to the previous level. For me that occurs when I move from 9mm to 40 or 45 caliber. I mostly shoot at paper plates ( accuracy ), three shot bursts ( speed ), and would define "good control" as the gun remaining firmly in my grasp so I can deliver follow up shots without having to re-adjust my grip. Not very scientific I guess, but it works for me.

    So, to get to something that can be measured:

    1. Three shots on a paper plate as fast as I can. ( I'm guessing that takes me 2 -4 seconds )
    2. I would choose 10 yards instead of 7.
    3. The gun is still firmly in my grasp and ready to do it again immediately without any sort of readjustment other than reaquiring the sights.

    Regardless of what a clock or ruler would tell me:

    1. I'll know I'm trying to go to fast when I start missing the paper plate.
    2. I'll know I'm using too much gun/cartridge ( for me ) when control diminishes.
    Last edited by nathanjns; November 24th, 2012 at 09:45 AM.

  11. #40
    Member Array chasbo00's Avatar
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    @nathanjns, good answer - thanks!

  12. #41
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    Agree with to fast and to much,carry a 32 acp llama can in 4 seconds draw and empty the clip,and keep them all on it.
    With my pa63 would get out two shots maybe three in same time,faster would be off the pie pan.

  13. #42
    Senior Member Array bzdog's Avatar
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    Confusion about carry ammo

    Quote Originally Posted by Coltman 77 View Post
    You might appreciate this Best Choices For Defensive Ammo link:

    Best Choices for Self Defense Ammo
    This. Pick anything from this list Dr. Roberts generated, make sure it operates reliably in your firearm and that is all you need to think about this topic. You can then get back to more importaint issues like practice and training.

    -john

  14. #43
    Member Array ToeMoss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chasbo00 View Post
    How do I determine (includes measuring it) what I can control?
    Measure?
    Measure with the number of accurate holes you put on target.

  15. #44
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    I always hear about ranges that have guns for rent, guns a guy can try out. Never seen one. Ever. So the learning process was hit or miss for me. Buy a likely prospect, try it, and then keep it or sell it.

    I don't get too wrapped around the axle as far as carry ammo. Gold Dots, HST, Ranger, that's what I have. They are all reliable, proven, and most important, available. I carry guns that I like (SIGs and Glocks), practice as often as I can, and call it good. Other than taking defense classes, not a lot else you can do.

    If you are a civilian, a 12 gauge is about as effective as it gets. A pain to carry, so you also get a handgun (or like most of us, many handguns). A couple grand worth of ammo later, you are a reasonably good shot. But not good enough to satisfy yourself. So you keep shooting. And get better. By now, you have realized that there is no recipe for a handfired nuclear weapon. But you can run your gun, and run it well. And you feed it good ammo, ammo that carries a good reputation.

    And you are confident.

    They say that Hydra Shocks and Golden Sabers are outdated. I wouldn't be afraid to carry them. Lots of folks still do. Weapons and ammo have gotten quite a bit better over the last few decades. Penetration and expansion are superb. Weapon reliability is stellar.

    But the human body has had no such improvements. Same now as 100+ years ago.

    If you can get duty ammo, by all means run it. But if you have to settle for the more outdated, plain jane JHP ammo, you will still be OK. Just lay 'em where they need to go.

  16. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by 12 gauge View Post
    Why is there such a disparity when people talk about the best defensive carry ammo? No one seems to have a lock on the best. Seems that with as much science and research as we have today, we should have a number 1,2,3 & 4. But every where you look, the 9mm is better, the 357 Sig is better, the 40 S&W is better, the 45 ACP is better, the 10 mm is better, ad naseum.

    The other argument is...there is no difference, they all suck as defensive rounds. I drives me crazy to look at all the info and still not be able to come to some logical conclusion.

    Anything new in this age old argument, or am I right on both counts?

    12 Gauge

    You answered it yourself, in bold. That is compared to rifles and shotgun, handguns really do suck.

    Fact is, most handgun rounds will have negligible differences between each other. Some will perform better than other in lab tests. Some may even perform slightly better in real life. But how much better? It's hard to tell. Very rarely will a person be shot by two different calibers and than asked "which one were you more convinced to stop you attack by?" One BG may respond to 1 shot COM from .32 ACP, whereas another may take 3 shots of .44mag. It's not cut and dry.

    Choose a caliber you shoot well and can afford. Choose a JHP round that has a good reputation. Don't look at velocity of energy numbers. The main thing you want to concern yourself with is inches of penetration in lab tests. Yeah, again lab tests. Real life is real life. But if you choose a round that will consistently penetrate 12" of gel, and consistently expand, you'll be alright. Penetration is first, expansion is second. I like to choose a round that has consistent expansion even when shot through thick clothing. Expansion is just icing on the cake. But it's true, most handgun rounds suck, unless you start getting up into .454 or .500 mag, but good luck carrying one for SD :D

    For what it's worth, my two preferred handgun rounds are 9mm and .45ACP and I like to carry Federal HST 147gr and 230gr +P. I feel perfectly comfortable with either. I believe that back to back .45 will have a slight edge, scientifically. But in the real world, there is hardly a measurable amount of difference.

    .357sig is a compromise. .40S&W is a compromise. They both, in my opinion, are solutions for a problem that doesn't exist. Nothing against either caliber, but I would rather keep it simple. I don't enjoy shooting .40caliber. I've never shot a .357sig. I wouldn't bother owning one, unless it was gifted to me :D

    That brings me back to........ Choose a caliber you shoot well and can afford. This is, 9 times out of 10, for most people....................................... 9mm.

    My opinions, of course.

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