Ammo: Should my target ammo be the same as my SD ammo?

Ammo: Should my target ammo be the same as my SD ammo?

This is a discussion on Ammo: Should my target ammo be the same as my SD ammo? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Greetings, All. I just ordered my first handgun, S&W M&P Shield 9mm ($375 after shipping from PSA, btw!). I've been reading up a bit on ...

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Thread: Ammo: Should my target ammo be the same as my SD ammo?

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    Ammo: Should my target ammo be the same as my SD ammo?

    Greetings, All. I just ordered my first handgun, S&W M&P Shield 9mm ($375 after shipping from PSA, btw!). I've been reading up a bit on various ammo and what others have suggested for target and SD use, and there are tons of options. What I'd like to know is, should I really be using different ammo for target use (FMJ) or should I use the same for when I carry (JHP...I already have a box of Hornady CD FTX waitn to be loaded)? I know that there's an affordability issue, but aside from that, what issues could arise if I only use FMJ for target use?

    Thanks!


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    Depends.....how big is your wallet?

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    No. Train & Practice with cheap but functional FMJ ammo, carry the high end good stuff.

    After practice with the FMJ, run a mag or so of the carry stuff to ensure that it feeds well, then check the differences in hits on the targets. There will likely be darn little, or no difference.

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    Most cant' afford to do all of their training with SD ammo especially enough to get proficient. I always try to train with the same grain bullet in my practice ammo as I do my SD ammo. For instance, I use 180 gr ammo (usually CCI Blazer brass) and I use Winchester Ranger T 180 gr for SD ammo.

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    I would at least run 50 rounds of your SD ammo to make sure it feeds properly.

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    Only if you can afford to. Practice with less expensive fmj and run enough of your SD ammo through your pistol to ensure that it functions properly.
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    What the others said. Shoot a few rounds of the SD ammo to see where the POI is, and practice with fmj's.

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    Yep.. They also make combo packs now range and carry ammo in the same box nice for first timers if you ask me ..

    Used white box / eagle /pmc /Remington etc for normal range stuff but carry the good stuff I like critical defensive rounds but most any normal modern hollow point will work .. Just try to fire a couple box to make sure the gun like it and you know how the round feels to fire esp if the round is a +p round ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stoveman View Post
    Depends.....how big is your wallet?
    Not big enough...
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    No. Shoot the crap out of the cheap stuff and occasionally shoot the good stuf - while training your brain that the good stuff is what to expect on SD.
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    The only real "issue" that's going to arise is the potential for your gun to perform differently when using range vs. SD ammunition. It's probably, in all likelihood, never going to be any sort of issue at all, but it's worth being aware of the differences so you don't expect one thing and get something else.

    Basically, say you practice with 115 gr. FMJs. They are most likely going to be snappier so you'll probably have to work a little more to get the pistol back on target for your follow up shots. If you get too used to that sort of recoil and your SD ammunition is 147 gr. stuff, you'll probably over compensate for muzzle rise on your follow up shots with your carry ammunition because the heavier weight bullet is probably not going to have anywhere near as much 'snap' to it. If you don't' do double or triple tap practice, then this probably won't matter at all...

    IMO, it's pretty close to picking fly poo out of pepper. You'd have to train a lot to have that much familiarity with what you expect to happen and if you're training enough to have that much familiarity then you're probably training enough for it to not matter much anyway.
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    Thanks, everyone, I really appreciate it!!!

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    VIP Member Array StormRhydr's Avatar
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    Everyone wants to talk about "being able to afford" to shoot the good stuff. I think thats a crock.

    I cant "afford" to shoot "the good stuff" for training & practice, either. But it wouldnt make a difference.

    I dont believe in wasting money, and I would consider the expense of throwing away premium carry ammo on training and practice targets a waste. I simply wouldnt do it, even if I had Bill Gates money.

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    My Ruger loves CHEAP Winchester White Box and Tul Ammo for range use. At home and carry it's Hornady Critical Duty (.40S&W 175 Gr) with their Flexlock (JHP)

    Its kind of $0.34/round for Winchester target ammo Vs $0.58/round for the Critical Duty
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    Quote Originally Posted by TX expat View Post
    The only real "issue" that's going to arise is the potential for your gun to perform differently when using range vs. SD ammunition. It's probably, in all likelihood, never going to be any sort of issue at all, but it's worth being aware of the differences so you don't expect one thing and get something else.

    Basically, say you practice with 115 gr. FMJs. They are most likely going to be snappier so you'll probably have to work a little more to get the pistol back on target for your follow up shots. If you get too used to that sort of recoil and your SD ammunition is 147 gr. stuff, you'll probably over compensate for muzzle rise on your follow up shots with your carry ammunition because the heavier weight bullet is probably not going to have anywhere near as much 'snap' to it. If you don't' do double or triple tap practice, then this probably won't matter at all...

    IMO, it's pretty close to picking fly poo out of pepper. You'd have to train a lot to have that much familiarity with what you expect to happen and if you're training enough to have that much familiarity then you're probably training enough for it to not matter much anyway.
    So, would you recommend that the gr. be the same for both practice and SD?

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