This is a discussion on .45 Hardball as a carry round? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I carry it in the .45 caliber, but the (flat nosed stuff) found here . Better transfer of energy and a straighter wound cavity; plus ...
I carry it in the .45 caliber, but the (flat nosed stuff) found here. Better transfer of energy and a straighter wound cavity; plus plenty of penetration to boot. Sure JHPs are better, but with finicky eaters the FMJ wins the day.
Carry what you want, and apply as needed.
"He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one." – Luke 22:36
"If a law is unjust, a man is not only right to disobey it, he is obligated to do so." – Thomas Jefferson
There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.--RAH
...man fights with his mind; the weapons are incidental.--Jeff Cooper
There is a reason they try and make small bullets act like big bullets--Glockmann10mm
A good hollow point gives the best of both worlds if it fails to expand you got ball ammo, if it does expand you have a huge wound cavity / channel.
The military doesn't carry ball ammo because it has more or less stopping power they have to no expanding ammo. They use the 45 because it was the biggest bullet they had to conveniently carry.
Ball ammo is for the range, hollow points are for carry I have never seen a box of self defense ball ammo.
Ballistics gel is for testing which in the end means nothing as the performance of any ammo can only be checked after it is fired.Gel simulates muscle it has nothing to do with a bullets performance to an actual living being, bone, cartilage,air spaces all play a role in the end result which can not be duplicated by gel.
Good to go with FMJ. It worked then..it'll work now.
"We deal in lead friend">Steve McQueen The Magnificent Seven
82d Abn(1983-86)OIF 2007-08
Glock 19&26/ Colt Gov't & OM/Ruger SP101
Retired NYS LEO / NRA Life Member
Still Love Ya Sarah !
"no kidding,gun slinging,spurs hitting the floor"
It left many guys bleeding from through and through shots. Far from quick incapacitation as a good JHP.
Treat me good, I'll treat you better. Treat me bad, I'll treat you worse.
I alternate 45 JHP in the tube, followed by a 230 gr hardball, and alternate there after in the mag. This way, I have at least have the first 2 rounds that are going to feed well.
Why Waltz when you can Rock-N-Roll
If new factory JHP doesn't feed well in a modern 1911, there is something wrong with your gun. Feedramp, extractor, mags can all lead to problems. I'd get it checked over.
Treat me good, I'll treat you better. Treat me bad, I'll treat you worse.
My Springfield feeds both very reliably and this was mainly meant to be an "academic" discussion. Personally, I greatly prefer to carry JHP.
"I practice the ancient art of Klik Pao."
Humm...I carry "both". Mine has a magazine with Aguillar 1657fps aluminum expanding HP and my two back-up mags carry Hornady XTP (probably the best stopper available next to the Critical Defense) and a full mag of 230grn ball ammo for whatever I have to shoot through. I personally witnessed the ball being shot into a car (70's model Ford Torino or LTD? mint green) and it was impressive. One shot through the drivers door went right thru-lodged in the passenger's door somewhere. Nice big "see-thru" hole. The other round fired from the signal light 2ft from front drivers fender at angle toward passenger's compartment went through the fender, inner fender, firewall, knocked the ashtray out in the floor and either went into the seat or door...we couldn't find it. If you carry FMJ for self defense in a .45ACP round, rest assured, if you can "hit" the target in the torso, arm, leg or whatever, it's probably going to knock them down. It was developed to stop drug-crazed islanders that were lopping off the heads of our Marines (hence they started wearing thick leather collars...nickname: Leatherneck or Devil Dog) even after having 3 cylinders of .38 dumped into them. The .45 generally knocked them down flat. I would surmise it "will" defininely go through the body and if had to shoot a BG, I would aim for the center mass chest or the pelvic region as it will definitely break bones. I've also witnessed a Federal HydraShock round go through an animal's skull with lethal damage, exiting it as well, but not stopping the animal. It was a HP. The other rounds in the mag were Hornady XTP and the second and final round fired went through as well, but did "massively more" amount of damage, taking bone and all. The final slug expansion looked like the jagged aftermath of an old Winchester Black Talon (predecessor to the SXT). It would stop you dead and if you got hit in the arm, probably bleed out or be in so much shock, you would pass out. That Aguillar is a very fast shooting round and expands as one solid piece about size of a quarter. It goes through paper so fast, it looks like you used a hole punch on it and little/no residue left in gun.
In my opinion, I trust my life to Hornady and Cor-Bon ammo. Remington and UMC seems to fail consistantly. Federal is very good, Winchester also.
Sellier & Bellot is great and sealed at primer/bullet for bad weather or underwater work...
I would trust NO .45 gun to reliably feed the .45 cartridge unless the feed ramp and hood/chamber had been polished and about 500rnds shot thru it. . Most FTF/FTE are caused by a bad magazine with horribly tight springs, bent feed lips etc or that gritty feed system. A .45 bullet strips off mag, hits ramping up and into barrel, hitting the top (hood) of the barrel, bouncing down, hitting the floor portion of barrel and chambering. Tight recoil spring will cause a FTF if the ammo is so under-powered it won't cycle slide all the way back. I've noticed that reloads will also sometimes fail to chamber if they are not "taper crimped" which eleminates that bulge where bullet is in the case as its sides are squeezed. Good luck & happy shooting.
There's no "perfect JHP' and when they fail to expand, guess what you have - a FMJ. I carry 45 JHPs if I have them but if I run out "as during the recent ammo shortage", I carried FMJs without any worries. Many years ago there were studies on over penetration and if my memory is correct the 9mm was the round that had the most over penetration problems. If I need to shoot the bad guy more with FMJs then I always carry a spare mag with 8 more rounds. 17 rounds of 45 FMJs should disable any attacker!
A 45 may not expand but it will never be smaller than .45!!!
NRA Life Member
If it's all I had, I'd be confident in it. The stopping power of the .45 ACP in FMJ I don't think is the worry, it's the over penetration. Same goes for many power calibers. But not only a HP rounds safer as far as over penetration goes, but stopping power of the HP vs FMJ round in any caliber is undoubtedly better.
If I had a choice, and I do, I'm going to use a premium HP round for defense. My two .45's are loaded with Cor-Bon DPX 185gr. +P (I'd get 230 if they made it) and Ranger T 230gr +P. Both my .45's (Glock and Hk) feed anything I give them 100% reliably.
Many people have the mentality that getting shot by anything hurts, therefore a bullet is a bullet and it's good enough. Well, getting shot by "anything" does hurt, but it's not always good enough! Why not use the best you can use? Buying premium HP rounds may be expensive, but it's not like you're going to be shooting them a lot, other to run a box or two through your weapon to test them.
If your carry gun won't reliably feed JHP ammo, which is universally accepted to be the best performer with modern bullet selection, why are you carrying it?
This isn't directed at anyone in particular, it just seems this is a recurring point people are using in favor of fmj.
It should be noted that 1911 pattern pistols will reliably feed most if not all brands of JHP if they are tuned and functioning correctly.
The issue SHOULD BE "Do you want to bother to have your firearm correctly tuned to feed JHP or do you just want to continue feeding it hardball?"
If you want to just continue feeding your 1911 hardball ammo then that is a personal choice/decision but, your 1911 IS perfectly capable of feeding all bullet nose configurations if you want to have it modestly worked on by a competent 1911 gunsmith.
USUALLY the exact reasons WHY any particular 1911 will not feed JHP with perfect reliability are very simple and easily rectified.
Sometimes the solution is as simple as getting rid of your present magazines and switching over to a Tripp Research CobraMag which positions the top cartridge (in the magazine) a bit higher up and at a more ideal feed angle.
The only good reason to NOT have your 1911 "fixed" would if it was a vintage/valuable/collectible/original Mil Spec Colt 1911 where you would not want to have the original barrel throated or the original extractor replaced....etc.
If that was the case though YOU COULD have a secondary throated barrel fitted and installed - have a newer extractor (properly tuned & tensioned) installed...keep your original parts "original and unaltered" and then it WOULD feed JHP and you could always "put it back" to being 100% original by simply reinstalling the original parts.
Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ
A solution we used back in the mid-1980s was to load a good hollow-point into the chamber at home, where we could monitor its successful feeding, then all the rounds in the magazines, including the magazine in the pistol, would be premium FMJ. Yes, premium FMJ used to be easier to find, with such features as sealed case mouths and primer pockets. Over time, the ammo makers learned to make JHP that fed better, the gun manufacturers learned to make 1911s that fed a wider variety of ammo better, and Wilson Combat and then others made magazines that helped it all work better.
Good hollowpoints in those days included the Speer 200-grain JHP, the so-called Flying Ashtray, which had a good reputation for actually expanding, in a time when many JHPs failed to expand. These were like gold, not easy to find at dealers. The Federal Hydra-Shok, when it was introduced, was the first JHP that seemed to feed well in most 1911s, and actually usually expanded inside bad guys' bodies.