Thoughts on LE only ammo?

Thoughts on LE only ammo?

This is a discussion on Thoughts on LE only ammo? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I am about ready to look for a new carry round for my CC weapon. I still carry Black Talons at this point, but I ...

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  1. #1
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    Thoughts on LE only ammo?

    I am about ready to look for a new carry round for my CC weapon. I still carry Black Talons at this point, but I am finally starting to run low on it. Every once in a while I will fire off a round of it just to make sure it's still working, but it is now getting to an age where I think it's best to retire it and start carrying something fresh.

    So here's my question... What are your thoughts on carrying LE rounds for self defense? Are you asking for additional legal troubles by not just sticking with a more common off the shelf type? When I purchased all my Black Talon ammo, it was legal to buy anywhere so even after they pulled it I assumed that if I ever got into a self defense situation, while it might cause a little extra trouble in a trial situation, it ultimately shouldn't have too much of an effect since it was purchased 'off a shelf'. I am not sure how the LE ammo like Winchester Ranger or others might play out since it is all supposed to be sold/used in the LE community only.


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    Array GunnyBunny's Avatar
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    The instructor at my first CC seminar recommended LE ammo. He said it was easier to justify using it rather than more "exotic" ammo.
    CCW permit holder for Idaho, Utah, Pennsylvania, Maine and New Hampshire. I can carry in your country but not my own.

  3. #3
    Member Array Mr. Habib's Avatar
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    It is not illegal to own 'LE only' ammo in most places. It is only a policy of the ammo company. I think they are trying to avoid the bad press Winchester got from the Black Talon. Some here will say that carrying what the local LEOs carry will look good in court, it's harder for the DA to say that you were carrying some evil death ray round. I don't know if there is any evidence to support idea that or not. Personally, I carry what functions, is accurate, and has proven terminal ballistics. Right now, for me, that means Federal HST, which btw is an LE only round. Hope that helps.

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    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    There's more good SD ammo available to civilians right now than at any other time in history. "LE Only" has been used as a marketing tool by ammo manufacturers but seldom has any legal teeth. But with so many excellent options available without any potential highlights...why bother?
    There are only TWO kinds of people in this world; those who describe the world as filled with two kinds of people...and those who don't.

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    Distinguished Member Array Rexster's Avatar
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    These days, the main difference between much "LE only" ammo, and that available to everyone, is the packaging and the pricing structure. For example, Speer Gold Dots packaged for LE consumption are packaged in 50-round boxes. If I understand correctly, LE ammo is not subject to the 11% federal excise tax built into the cost of sporting ammunition, and that, plus the quantity packaging, makes the per-round cost of LE ammo considerably less.

    The price disparity seems to have caused many authorized LE distributors to ration the ammo they sell to individual officers, to keep them from flipping the ammo at gun shows and in other private deals.
    Last edited by Rexster; August 3rd, 2009 at 12:25 PM. Reason: clarification

  6. #6
    VIP Member Array Tubby45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rexster View Post
    For example, Speer Gold Dots packaged for LE consumption are packaged in 50-round boxes. If I understand correctly, LE ammo is not subject to the 11% federal excise tax built into the cost of sporting ammunition, and that, plus the quantity packaging, makes the per-round cost of LE ammo considerably less.
    True to an extent. Non-federal LE is exempt (federal LE is not) from Federal Excise Tax on ammunition. However, to get the exemption, the manufacturer must deliver direct to the LE agency, not through a third party like a wholesaler or dealer. Once Speer LE line is sold to a non-LE entity, the manufacturer is liable for the FET on that ammunition.

    The ammunition my company loads and sells to LE directly is lower in cost partly because of the lack of FET.
    07/02 FFL/SOT since 2006

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    Member Array LM2024's Avatar
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    My department carries/issues Remington Golden Saber Bonded HPJ. Supposedly, it's only sold to LE.

    RemingtonMilitary.com

    The closest thing I can find in stores is the Remington Golden Sabers HPJ. I have no idea what the difference is between bonded and not bonded.

  8. #8
    VIP Member Array Tubby45's Avatar
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    Think of bonded as welded. The core and jacket become one, joined, in unison, etc as opposed to traditional cup and core seating of core into jacket where only minimal pressure is holding them together. Bonded is said to resist core/jacket separation experienced with some bullet designs when fired into hard mediums and/or at ultra high velocity.
    07/02 FFL/SOT since 2006

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    Senior Member Array Tom357's Avatar
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    Ranger T, and Gold Dot are both available off-the-shelf, here. I choose my self-defense ammo based on performance, and I don't worry about what some hypothetical prosecutor might say at some point in the future. I'll deal with that when it becomes a reality. In the meantime, I use the best ammo for the job, available to me off-the-shelf.
    - Tom
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    Member Array Darkwater's Avatar
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    Good performance and cost are what count! I use Dr. Roberts review of self defense ammo as a starting point.

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    LE markings are for marketing. Federal has sent out messages to distributors to cease the sale of some LE marked boxes of ammo, but some dealers still sell it. Most LE ammo from ATK (Speer and Federal) is packaged in 50rd boxes instead of 20 or 25, and is usually MUCH cheaper, which raises the question of whether they are dodging some sort of tax (FET?) by allowing this to be sold to us regular guys. My box happens to say LE, but if my Tactical HST box happened to say "the worst round on earth" instead, I'd still buy it.

    Edit: +1 Rexter, didn't see your post, but obviously we're on the same page here.

  12. #12
    VIP Member Array Tubby45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by titleist View Post
    which raises the question of whether they are dodging some sort of tax (FET?) by allowing this to be sold to us regular guys.
    As I stated before: No. FET is due on ammunition whenever it is sold to a non exempt party direct from the manufacturer. The only two ways ammunition is FET exempt is manufacturer to LE agency directly or manufacturer to Department of Defense directly. Any other handling means FET is due.

    If Speer loads the ammo, then sells to a distributor, they are not exempt from FET and Speer must pay 11% FET on the ammo. Period.

    I'm an ammunition manufacturer and sell retail, wholesale, and law enforcement. LE sales go direct only and there is no FET. I do this every day.
    07/02 FFL/SOT since 2006

  13. #13
    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    I have both Ranger 9mm 124 grn SXT and 45acp 230 grn T,I also have Federal HST 9mm 124 grn and 230grn 45acp,Between the two types I'm comfortable with expansion and penetration,I also sent my daughter some 9mm Federal HST,I want her to carry some of the best and sent her enough to where she can function test her gun and be proficient with the snappier recoil over practice ammo I reload for her
    "Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country,"
    --Mayor Marion Barry, Washington , DC .

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