Which Ammo To Use For .380acp Winter Carry?

This is a discussion on Which Ammo To Use For .380acp Winter Carry? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Hello, I've been thinking about the .380's penetration. In summer I think it's just acceptable around here. In winter, I try to carry my 9mm ...

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Thread: Which Ammo To Use For .380acp Winter Carry?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array Joshua M. Smith's Avatar
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    Which Ammo To Use For .380acp Winter Carry?

    Hello,

    I've been thinking about the .380's penetration.

    In summer I think it's just acceptable around here.

    In winter, I try to carry my 9mm as often as possible. However, I can't do that all the time.

    I have a couple different types of ammo sitting around here for the .380. The first is what's currently in the gun - CCI Blazer HP that look an awful lot like Gold Dots without the "gold dot." The other is WWB WinClean® I picked up for practice and noticed this stuff is flat on the end, more like a truncated cone with a flat meplat.

    Any thoughts?

    Thanks,

    Josh <><

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  3. #2
    Member Array myusername's Avatar
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    I use Corbon DPX

    It went deeper than the ranger-t in wetpack tests. It penetrates through barriers great. I think it will do well in winter clothing.

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    This is my thinking on the .380

    If a hollow point fills up with clothing and doesn't expand then it should preform like a FMJ with a blunt nose.

    I carry Hydroshocks in my .380, becuase the central post in the hydroshock is "suppose" to keep it from filling. I've never tested this but will take Fedearls word on it.

    I believe that most any name brand defensive .380 factory round will give me enough penatration. Of course in South Alabama our defination of heavy clothing probably varies with other parts of the country.

  5. #4
    Senior Member Array Joshua M. Smith's Avatar
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    Pgrass101,

    If it helps, I wear daily in this Indiana weather two shirts, one cover garment, and a heavy camo hunting coat that's waterproof. I would think that's way more than the denim tests allow for.

    As well, these Gold Dots (for lack of a better term) actually mushroom in trees when the sap is running. If the person's clothing is wet I wonder how much that would affect things.

    I've always accepted the .380acp as a tradeoff.

    Thanks,

    Josh <><

  6. #5
    VIP Member Array Tubby45's Avatar
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    Anything less than 9mm/38Spl is just begging for hardball. I'd use the WWB FMJ-FN. 9mm and 38Spl do well with JHPs, but less than that I strongly recommend ball ammo for penetration.
    07/02 FFL/SOT since 2006

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua M. Smith View Post
    Pgrass101,

    If it helps, I wear daily in this Indiana weather two shirts, one cover garment, and a heavy camo hunting coat that's waterproof. I would think that's way more than the denim tests allow for.

    As well, these Gold Dots (for lack of a better term) actually mushroom in trees when the sap is running. If the person's clothing is wet I wonder how much that would affect things.

    I've always accepted the .380acp as a tradeoff.

    Thanks,

    Josh <><

    That is a lot more clothing than I wear in the coldest of south Alabama days.

    Wet layers of clothing or multi-layers for that matter, probably would point me to FMJ rounds myself.

    Here in the "Bright Sunny South" I'll stick with hollow points, but would probably consider switching from HP's if I travel up north with my .380

  8. #7
    Member Array craze's Avatar
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    I like fmj in this caliber. There are some decent hollow points that expand in this caliber trouble is they suffer as far as penetration is concerned. I like the flat point on the winchester fmj load. I think flat points have more of a tendency to crush tissue where a round nose bullet will allow tissue to flow around it more. If I were going to use a hollow point in this caliber in any climate it would be the 102 gr golden sabre.
    "The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference - they deserve a place of honor with all that's good.
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    VIP Member Array SammyIamToday's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freakshow10mm View Post
    Anything less than 9mm/38Spl is just begging for hardball. I'd use the WWB FMJ-FN. 9mm and 38Spl do well with JHPs, but less than that I strongly recommend ball ammo for penetration.
    +1 on that. I'd go with hardball as well.
    ...He suggested that "every American citizen" should own a rifle and train with it on firing ranges "at every courthouse." -Chesty Puller

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    Senior Member Array mech1369dlw's Avatar
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    For the warmer months, I have mine loaded with Ranger SXT 95gr, and in coat weather, there is hardball onboard.
    A person is justified in the use of deadly force, if such person reasonably believes deadly force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to such person or a third person.

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    For my carry, I use a CorBon Powerball. I really like the read on this ammo. I'm a big fan of CorBon DPX+P in my 45 and was going to use the DPX in my Bersa but a friend said to check out the Powerball. The FPS is greater and with the polymere ball in the hollowpoint, its suppose to work like a hardball ammo. CorBon puts out some good stuff and maybe you should check the stats out.

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array Superhouse 15's Avatar
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    Try it

    Setting up a test with wet newspaper is pretty simple. Pack up a 5 gallon bucket with old newspaper and a few drops of soap and fill it with water until it's saturated. When that water soaks in, fill it again, and again. Lay some of whatever cloth you like over the end and fire it up. Most any range will let you shoot this, especially if you let them test some of their own loads, and it's really portable. It will stop anything handgun until you get to the big bore - solid rounds.

    I'd use 102gr Gold Saber personally.

  13. #12
    LaP
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    Add me to the 102gr. Golden Saber list. Even if it does not expand, you still have a decent bullet coming out of your .380.

  14. #13
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    .380 - I would not really trust my life to any .380 ammo through a heavy leather coat & multiple winter clothing layers.

    .380 Santa Barbara 95-gr. JSP is reported to be Extra HOT HOT

    Produced by the Spanish Co ~ Empresa Nacional

    Possibly that would be your best ammo choice for wintertime .380

  15. #14
    Member Array riverkeeper's Avatar
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    Corbon DPX reliably gets thru medium weight clothing and digs in to about 10 inches and expands very well. On the other hand my primary target ammo is Federal American Eagle FMJ RN which does not expand but digs to about 15+ inches.

    The FBI study suggested 12 inches penetration is minimum for LAW ENFORCEMENT use because there exists a need to sometimes go thru vehicle windows or arms to get to vital organs. I do not believe those issues will be an issue with my SD efforts. But if an arm gets in the way...a few more shots are in order.

    It is my impression that RN ammo crushs much less tissue and creates a narrower less effective wound channel than good HP.

    My choices are DPX and Gold Dots and AE FMJ when the temp is down and coats thick ... say below freezing. But I may be mistaken.

    Edit -- this is 380 from a KelTec P3AT.
    If the Winny Flat Points dig in to something over 12 inches, I might reconsider.
    Last edited by riverkeeper; February 4th, 2007 at 02:35 AM. Reason: Add caliber and insert ? about penetration

  16. #15
    Member Array badgerw's Avatar
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    I tried several brands of .380ACP thru my Colt Mustang. Winchester SXT 95 gr was significantly more accurate than any of the others in my gun. CorBon was the least accurate.

    Shot placement is critical, especially so with such a modest round. I'll take very edge I can get.

    YMMV one hell of a lot.

    Bill

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