"That big .45 slug doesn’t have to expand to be effective.”

This is a discussion on "That big .45 slug doesn’t have to expand to be effective.” within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Hi all, I just happened to stumble across this webpage: http://www.sightm1911.com/lib/other/why_the_m1911.htm And I read the following: Clint Smith On The 1911 “The 1911 remains popular ...

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Thread: "That big .45 slug doesn’t have to expand to be effective.”

  1. #1
    Member Array Chris17404's Avatar
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    "That big .45 slug doesn’t have to expand to be effective.”

    Hi all,

    I just happened to stumble across this webpage:

    http://www.sightm1911.com/lib/other/why_the_m1911.htm

    And I read the following:

    Clint Smith On The 1911

    “The 1911 remains popular because it’s an efficient tool. In more than 30 years of experience, I’ve met more competent, serious gunmen who carry 1911’s than those who pack any other handgun. They are professionals – policemen, government agents and others who carry handguns daily because the know their live may depend on it…Me? I’ve carried a 1911 every single day for the past 20 years. It’s a very comforting gun to have at your hip. It offers a good, consistent single-action trigger pull and is wonderfully dependable. Because the 1911 is basically a defensive handgun, I’m not concerned about tight groups. I don’t bother with expanding hollowpoints that could cause feeding problems. For absolute reliability, I shoot only high-quality ball ammunition. That big .45 slug doesn’t have to expand to be effective.”

    From Guns and Ammo, September, 2001.

    I guess I'd just like your comments on the last few sentences:

    "I don’t bother with expanding hollowpoints that could cause feeding problems. For absolute reliability, I shoot only high-quality ball ammunition. That big .45 slug doesn’t have to expand to be effective.”

    What are your thoughts and feelings on this?

    Chris

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  3. #2
    Ex Member Array Pete's Avatar
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    I must say, on first reflection I absolutely agree, I would not want to be shot by a .45 FMJ and would feel more than comfortable carrying it.

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    Quite a big can'o'worms possibly!

    I do feel with a ''large, slow and heavy'' like the .45 acp - expansion can well be compromized by clothing, plus of course always the possibility of feed troubles. I also think ''thru&thru'' shots less likely and so - IMO ball ammo has a place.

    WWII jungle fighting often seemed to boil down to a guy having to use his A1 at close quarters - and the record of that seemed pretty good for effect - just ball ammo.

    IF expansion does occur then I would expect greater damage however.
    Chris - P95
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    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


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    I would suggest that, if your gun doesn't feed modern expanding ammo reliably, you might want to look at a different gun.

    Does the .45 need expansion to be effective? No. Any time a new hole is being created in your body - regardless of the size - it's going to have some effect. Is a larger hole better, in almost all circumstances? Yes. That's why most guys who carry the .45 carry the .45, right? Of course clothing (or whatever) may prevent expansion, but if you're using ball, you have zero chance of expansion from the outset. Why take away even the possibility of expansion? Reliability issues? Again - this is a problem with the GUN, not the ammo...

    Ball ammo has its place, certainly. As the standard round in a self-defense handgun isn't that place, IMO.
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    Member Array turbo93's Avatar
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    heck an ice pick will kill you. The real reason for hp is to stop penetration. In a military battle environment not as important perhaps and also the Hague convention prohibits expanding bullets .
    The us did not sign the convention but abides by it. I think in a defensive shooting if you killed the bg but injured or killed a bystander by using fmj you would feel awful and also be liable legally and morally.

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    JD
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    It depends on application, for SD there's no way I'm going ball only.

    I want to make the biggest wound tract possible.

    No for Military use where ball is all you get, give me the .45 any day.

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    Ex Member Array Pete's Avatar
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    I haven't been to Thunder Ranch (yet) but I read Clint's articles and watch him on PDTV, he's likely forgot more than I ever learned regarding combat.

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    VIP Member Array Bud White's Avatar
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    Dont want to get shot by anything but ya got to admit a 45 starts at almost a half inch hole so if it don't get bigger ya all ready have that advantage

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    Opinions vary. I prefer HP's , even in my .45 ACP gun. A FMJ will certianly damage a person as well, even in smaller caliber sizes.
    "In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson


    Nemo Me Impune Lacesset

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    Senior Member Array Juggernaut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Crunch View Post

    Just because Clint Smith says something doesn't necessarily make it gospel, but he does have the experience to validate what he says. People can listen to him or not, that's their choice, as it should be.
    That was the point I was driving at, in a circuitous manner.
    Like most other people, the size of the round is not my paramount criteria.
    Vis consili expers mole ruit sua.
    -Horace

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    Senior Member Array sjones's Avatar
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    I use winchester sxt's but if they don't expand,They are still 230 grains and pack quite a wallop.sj

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    Senior Member Array Joshua M. Smith's Avatar
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    But you must remember, in FMJ, the wound closes almost immediately, creating an ice-pick type channel. This channel is about the same size as what 9mm ball would create, but has less chance of exiting, and bleedout may then take longer as there would be only one hole, not two, as is almost guaranteed by more penetrative rounds.

    In other words, I feel that 9mm ball and .45 ball are about the same with regard to wounding potential and would feel equally as comfortable with solids in either. It's all about placement, remember.

    However, I choose to carry premium hollowpoints in 9mm and disagree with Mr. Clint Smith's statements on solids. If your gun is not reliable with hollowpoint ammo, make it reliable.

    Josh <><

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    JD
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    Wink

    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua M. Smith View Post

    In other words, I feel that 9mm ball and .45 ball are about the same with regard to wounding potential and would feel equally as comfortable with solids in either. It's all about placement, remember.
    Trust me, there's a difference

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    VIP Member Array Rob72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris17404 View Post
    "That big .45 slug doesn’t have to expand to be effective.”
    I like Clint Smith. I like Masaad Ayoob. In recent years, they've both taken turns on the gun writer crackpipe. Lacking any other context, the above is unmitigated crap. A .22LR doesn't have to expand to be effective. A .32ACP doesn't have to expand to be effecive. A 9mm doesn't have to expand to be effective. A .380 doesn't have to expand to be effective. I've seen people made dead by all of the above, all with ball.

    Am I gonna load my Seecamp with ball? Nope.

    Before we get into the many dead by God's Ordained .45 ball,consider the millions dead by the frigging anemic European 9mm loadings. (As in those under Stalin, Hitler, Mussollini, Franco, etc..)
    Last edited by Rob72; June 4th, 2007 at 06:09 PM.

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    Oh Why I carry my .45 empty and I leave my ammo at home because all the bad guy has to do is take a peek at that BIG Huge hole in the front of my pistol and they immediately surrender. Just lookin' at a .45 knocks the fight right out of them.
    No need to even carry hardball ammo.
    No need for any ammo at all when you pack a .45
    Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ

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