If you know your gun likes a certain brand in FMJ...

This is a discussion on If you know your gun likes a certain brand in FMJ... within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; ...does that mean it will like it in JHP? My gun seems to do well with the Federal FMJ I have been using for practice. ...

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Thread: If you know your gun likes a certain brand in FMJ...

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    Member Array LaraCroft10's Avatar
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    If you know your gun likes a certain brand in FMJ...

    ...does that mean it will like it in JHP?

    My gun seems to do well with the Federal FMJ I have been using for practice. Can I rightfully assume that it will also shoot Federal JHP well? I'm wondering if I can confidently stick the JHP in for defense knowing the gun likes that brand, or if I should practice with it at the range with the JHP to make sure....

    Signed, Clueless Newbie.
    Proud owner of a Sig Sauer P238 SAS Explosive Space Modulator.

    "I played the powerless in too many dark scenes. And I was blessed with a birth and a death, and I guess I just want some say in between." - Ani DiFranco, "Talk to me Now."

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaraCroft10 View Post
    ...does that mean it will like it in JHP?

    My gun seems to do well with the Federal FMJ I have been using for practice. Can I rightfully assume that it will also shoot Federal JHP well? I'm wondering if I can confidently stick the JHP in for defense knowing the gun likes that brand, or if I should practice with it at the range with the JHP to make sure....

    Signed, Clueless Newbie.
    My Glocks like everything.
    "When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk."
    Tuco

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    It's all trial and error. HPs do not necessarily have the same shape as FMJs, even for the same bullet make. Try the Federal, if that's your choice, and see if it functions 100%. If not, another style or brand is in order.
    Retired USAF E-8. Lighten up and enjoy life because:
    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... "For What It's Worth" Buffalo Springfield

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    New Member Array garyr's Avatar
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    The only sure fire, 100% reliable, way to know is to get a box and see if your gun likes it, or not!

    This is not something I would leave to guesswork.

    Regards,

    Gary
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    VIP Member Array Cuda66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaraCroft10 View Post
    ...does that mean it will like it in JHP?

    My gun seems to do well with the Federal FMJ I have been using for practice. Can I rightfully assume that it will also shoot Federal JHP well? I'm wondering if I can confidently stick the JHP in for defense knowing the gun likes that brand, or if I should practice with it at the range with the JHP to make sure....

    Signed, Clueless Newbie.
    Unfortunately...no. There really isn't any correlation between the two...mainly because of the different bullet shapes.

    But really, that shouldn't matter, as you should always test a carry load before greenlighting it.

    I wouldn't be confident in any load unless I'd put at least a magazine or two through my pistol...usually, more like 100 rounds of it.
    There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.--RAH

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    Senior Member Array Fausty's Avatar
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    i would not recommend federal for carry. not the highest quality. there are a million threads around here but i think speer gold dots are the general consensus. i carry corbon.
    My metal band: Born under Sirius

    Glock 23, mic holster, clipdraw, abdominal carry.

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    VIP Member Array Cuda66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fausty View Post
    i would not recommend federal for carry. not the highest quality. there are a million threads around here but i think speer gold dots are the general consensus. i carry corbon.
    Um.

    You may want to look into the Federal HST line...one of the best performing rounds currently available in most service calibers.
    darbo and Fisher10 like this.
    There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.--RAH

    ...man fights with his mind; the weapons are incidental.--Jeff Cooper


    There is a reason they try and make small bullets act like big bullets--Glockmann10mm

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fausty View Post
    i would not recommend federal for carry. not the highest quality.
    Really? This opinion is based on...?
    Smitty
    NRA Endowment Member

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    Gee, I'll have to tell my federal agent son that his issued Federals are no good.
    Retired USAF E-8. Lighten up and enjoy life because:
    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... "For What It's Worth" Buffalo Springfield

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    Distinguished Member Array lchamp's Avatar
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    When I started firing my wife's new pistol, I tested my SD rounds in a cold, unfired gun. Then after firing about 50 rounds of range ammo rather rapidly (heating barrel), I test-fired more of the same SD ammo. Gun liked the SD ammo when it was hot and cold. I trust that ammo now and have bought a few more boxes of it. I will cycle it through the gun occasionally.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fausty View Post
    i would not recommend federal for carry. not the highest quality. there are a million threads around here but i think speer gold dots are the general consensus. i carry corbon.
    I like Federals well enough.
    "When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk."
    Tuco

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    VIP Member Array jbum's Avatar
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    Always fire the ammo you intend on carrying period. Might cost a few bucks but your life is worth it.
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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaraCroft10 View Post
    If you know your gun likes a certain brand in FMJ...

    ...does that mean it will like it in JHP?
    Absolutely not. Every ammo is different, and some guns simply won't easily swallow certain ammo, whether due to tolerances of the gun, or shape/length of the cartridge, or timing issues on the gun, or whatever. About the only way to know for certain is to shoot the jeebers out of it until you're certain, and even then there's still room for error.

    Keep in mind that your gun is brand new, and it's not nearly broken-in yet. UNTIL THEN, it's hard to say what a given example of a gun (your specific one, in this case) is going to do, which might well be completely different than the next dozen examples you hear of via forums and word-of-mouth.

    Particularly if you're experiencing bobbles from certain ammo, this is one of the reasons many of us typically do two things with a new pistol:

    • Shoot the gun through the full break-in period, at minimum, before worrying too much about this or that ammo. Of course, you need to shoot it, so you need to find a decent FMJ that'll work for that break-in shooting.
    • Once broken-in sufficiently to where it seems to swallow everything, then work hard to find a suitable defensive round that will meet your needs and that the gun seems to love. 'Cause, the last thing you want to happen is for that gun to get cranky when loaded with your defensive ammo in the unlikely event you find it necessary to defend yourself.


    Examples:

    My CZ P-01 9mm has been practically error-free. Though, with certain JHP ammo, it has cycled noticeably more smoothly and perfectly, as compared to any other JHP round. And as it turns out, the stuff it likes best is the longest (OAL) cartridge of anything I've tried. The longer the better. The gun's tolerances have just worked out that way. Couldn't have known that ahead of time, as I've read about a hundred other P-01's that reportedly worked just dandy with a wide variety of JHP. Mine has too, mostly, but it's darned near perfect with the DoubleTap JHP 124gr +P.

    Another pistol I had years ago (a Browning BDM 9mm) swallowed everything without issue, after the initial break-in period. Cruddy rounds, discards, reloads, factory stuff, defensive rounds, JHP/FMJ/LFN/whatever. Yet, a second example of the BDM that I had years afterwards failed on many different JHP rounds, whereas nearly all FMJ was just fine. Go figure.

    The point is: every gun is different, and some might have the tolerances just right (or wrong) such that certain ammo won't work well. At least, not until it's loosened up quite a bit. You'll need to test it, to find the "good stuff."
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
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    Distinguished Member Array SCXDm9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fausty View Post
    i would not recommend federal for carry. not the highest quality. there are a million threads around here but i think speer gold dots are the general consensus. i carry corbon.

    I have shot about 4,000 rounds of Federals this year, not one has failed in anyway.

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    Member Array Lindy1933's Avatar
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    Lara: My P238 would shoot FMJ flawlessly but would not even chamber JHP, critical defense, and a couple others. I poished the ramp that directs the bullet into the chamber with a Dremel tool and now it works with all of the above. I called SIG on the problem and their answer was just to shoot it more. For a while I carried Pow-R-ball because it had the same profile of the FMJ and worked fine in my P238. Not only are individual bullets different, individual weapons of the same type may be different. A friend's P238 would fire all of the above right out of the box. I agree with the above comments that you need to find a bullet type that works flawlessly in your individual gun. Not only that the individual magazine may be different enough to cause trouble. Another thought: The FMJ is the only standard power .380 bullet that consistantly gets FBI/CIA gell minimum penetration.
    Retired AF pilot, Vietnam FAC 1967-68

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