This is a discussion on Why 185 grain 45 ACP? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I has some 185+p in a G30SF I used to own. It was quite snappy. I have no idea if it was any better than ...
I has some 185+p in a G30SF I used to own. It was quite snappy. I have no idea if it was any better than any other 45ACP but the the price tag implied that it was guaranteed to turn what ever it hit into vapor!
"Everybody's got a plan, 'til they get hit".
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Thanks everyone! I will stick with 230! Was just curious. I use the 147 grain HST in 9mm also. The only gun I experiment with is my 357. Mostly because it is so versitle and it is fun! But I use 38+P in it for home defense.
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I ran across this while doing some other reading you may find it of use
185 grain Winchester FMJ : 910 Feet Per Second
185 grain Remington JHP : 1015 Feet Per Second
200 grain Speer FMJ : 975 Feet Per Second
230 grain Federal FMJ : 845 Feet Per Second
230 grain Ultramax JHP : 850 Feet Per Second
All I carry is 185 gr....but.......it also has the Barnes Tac XP all copper bullet in it. Listed below are several companies where it can be found:
All my guns like them!
The 185 gr. might hit closer to POA on some pistols.
The 185 gr. may produce less recoil.
I handload the 185 Hornady XTP to an average 970 fps (matches advertised factory velocity) out of my Glock 30 SF.
The Winchester Ranger T 230 gr. averages 874 fps out of my Glock 30 SF.
185 gr @ 970 fps = 387# KE / PF 179
230 gr @ 874 fps = 390# KE / PF 201
I can certainly notice the difference in recoil with a power factor of 179 vs 201 out of the same pistol.
Since I prefer the flush fitting and non-pinky pinching 9 round magazine, recoil minimization is important.
No internal lock or magazine disconnect on my pistols!
Why 180 gr, Because my wife shoots them accurately! DR
Is there an advantage either way at longer distances, either anecdotal or statistical?
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My understanding is that the older bullet designs needed the velocity from a 5'' barrel for expansion to take place. Afte many of the more modern 4'' 45s became popular the 185gr allegedly expanded better from the shorter tubes and penetrated less in the body which was desireable at the time. In the 80's and 90's light weight bullets were in style in all callibers. Now we've come full circle and deep penetrating bullets are now back in style.
Corbon DPX 9mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP duty ammo vs. Fed HST as control - M4Carbine.net Forums
It's also one of the loadings recommended by Dr. Roberts (Thoughts on Service Pistols, along with Duty and Self-Defense Ammo Recommendations - M4Carbine.net Forums):.45 ACP Corbon 160 gr Barnes XPB JHP; ave vel=1101 fps (1911); gel cal=9.0cm@576fps
BG: pen=13.9" RD=0.66", RL=0.43", RW=159.7gr
4LD: pen=13.2", RD=0.64", RL=0.46", RW=160.1gr
.45 ACP Corbon 185 gr +P Barnes XPB JHP; ave vel=1097 fps (1911); gel cal=9.0cm@576fps
BG: pen=16.8" RD=0.65", RL=0.51", RW=185.3gr
4LD: pen=16.5", RD=0.66", RL=0.51", RW=185.9gr
.45 ACP Fed 230 gr +P HST JHP; ave vel=996 fps (1911)
BG: pen=12.2", RD=0.85", RL=0.41", RW=230.5gr
4LD: pen=14.6", RD=0.69", RL=0.46", RW=230.7gr
What's more, a ten shot chrono average for an XD Service/4" clocked the Corbon 185 gr +P DPX at 1094 fps which is just a little shy of Dr. Roberts test(s). Most importantly, it feeds/functions reliably in my XD Service in .45..45 ACP:
Barnes XPB 185 gr JHP (copper bullet)
Federal HST 230 gr JHP (P45HST2)
Federal HST 230 gr +P JHP (P45HST1)
Federal Tactical 230 gr JHP (LE45T1)
Speer Gold Dot 230 gr JHP
Speer Gold Dot 230 gr +P JHP
Winchester Ranger-T 230 gr JHP (RA45T)
Winchester Ranger-T 230 gr +P JHP (RA45TP)
-- Obviously, clone loads using the same bullet at the same velocity work equally well (ie. Black Hills ammo using Gold Dot bullets, Corbon loads using Barnes XPB bullets, etc…)
I remember when the 185's came out it was i think an early attempt to get an .45 ACP to exspand drive a lightweight HP fast enough and maybe it would open up. Back then magnum revolver rounds got all the glory remember Dirty Harry? So anything below 1,000 fps was just to slow to be taken seriously.
I do belive shooters found the lighter bullet recoiled less so they could shoot a .45 more accurately so maybe that's why its still around?
I really have no Idea why the 185 grain .45 ACP is still with us today other than the current rage for 3 & 3.5 inch barrels. That is the short barrels will burn less powder & lower velocity with the heavy bullets so maybe the 185's make a .45 more controlable with at least a chance of expanion.
I feel if I want a lighter bullet than a 230 grain or even a 200 I will just move to a smaller caliber.