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Discussion Starter #41
It's not just about 38+p vs 357. The same thing apply to 9mm vs 9mm+p for example.

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My concern would be more about penetrating heavy winter clothing with my carry ammo rather than effect of cold on the ammo itself.
Unless the winter clothing is made out of kevlar or AR500...your bullets will go through it just fine.
 
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Oh, you mean like when it's 72.
Yup. Interesting sight around these parts is folks wearing parkas when it's all the way full winter, about 60-65. I have discovered it isn't because of the outside temp, but the inside temp. Restaurants leave the AC on 50 all year long. You need the parka to cover your plate to keep your food warm!!!
 
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When we moved to Southwest Florida, I laughed at people wearing winter clothing when it was in the low 70s. The next winter, I was wearing winter clothes.
 

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When we moved to Southwest Florida, I laughed at people wearing winter clothing when it was in the low 70s. The next winter, I was wearing winter clothes.
Conversely, when I moved to the interior of Alaska, being covered up with every piece of artic clothing the military issued me, I was amazed to see some of my coworkers working in shirtsleeves in 15-20 degree temps. The next spring, I was doing the same. After all, after months of 25-35 below, "warm" is relative.

I used to shoot my .41 Magnum at sub-zero temps, handloads of Blue Dot powder, and never noticed any difference in felt recoil or sound. Of course, artic headgear may have muffled it a bit.
 

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When we moved to Southwest Florida, I laughed at people wearing winter clothing when it was in the low 70s. The next winter, I was wearing winter clothes.
 

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Only a personal opinion from admittedly limited observation. If someone who knows more about it would chime in that'd be great.

I play chronograph and have for many years. Now my playground is Texas and we don't have the kind of cold so many of you experience in spades each winter. Also, I don't often drag the chronograph out in really cold weather except on rare occasions when I'm really enthused about some test. Don't know that I've ever tested loads over the chronograph when temperatures were below freezing.

My opinion is that loads' velocity performance don't fluctuate all that much between mild temperatures and really cold temperatures. It's when it's really hot that velocity increases can be depended upon. On a few occasions in the really hot summertime I've experimented with shooting a series of loads kept in the shade and another series of the same load left to bake in the sun for a period of time. Up to 100 fps differences was noted and assumptions were made about corresponding rises in pressure levels. Texas in July is not the time to test one's "nuclear-powered" handloads.

Up in the Bad Bob or Rock 'n Glock zones this might not hold true.

Please chime in if you have knowledge of extreme cold chronographing.
 

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Absolutely. 357 gives more velocity even out of 1.875" barrels. But that only helps you if you hit your target, and if you can make your follow up shots. There is an upside and a downside to 357 vs 38+p. Which is better depends on the individual.

If cold weather slows down the 357, it also tames the recoil. So the tradeoff changes.
Skill set determines if you can hit or not. My split times with my 3" model 13 are virtually identical between 38 and 357 loads (.23-.25) with the same accuracy.
 

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Discussion Starter #50
Skill set determines if you can hit or not. My split times with my 3" model 13 are virtually identical between 38 and 357 loads (.23-.25) with the same accuracy.
I'm guessing you aren't 75 years old with arthritic hands.

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Shooting major matches under varying temperatures makes the competitors who reload very aware of temperature effects on velocity. Here in AZ, we might start off the day around 50F yet reach 90 by mid-afternoon. A runner comes around to collect ammo for chrono, but you never know how it will be stored or what the ambient temp will be when it's fired - it might not even be the same day it's collected. Best to give yourself at least 5% velocity margin over whatever minimum velocity is required for your chosen Minor/Major power factor.

I load Titegroup almost exclusively for 9mm and .45, and it clearly reacts to temperature. In preparation for this week's match I checked my ammo chilled to 55F and then also at the ambient 90F, and got a 6% lower velocity at the cooler temp. Temperature effects are highly dependent on the powder, and there's at least one powder out there that actually develops higher velocities at lower temps (wish I could remember which!). Thus seeing reduced cartridge performance in cold weather is hardly a shock to me, but the question remains just how big is the performance hit.
6% at only 55 deg is a lot! lot's more than I was thinking. DR
 

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Unless the winter clothing is made out of kevlar or AR500...your bullets will go through it just fine.
I don't believe penetration in/through winter clothing is the problem. The problem is with bullet expansion in cold weather due to heavier/thicker winter layers of clothing. The article a_l_a_n provided in the link in his post (by Mas) addresses the subject.
 

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Only a personal opinion from admittedly limited observation. If someone who knows more about it would chime in that'd be great.

I play chronograph and have for many years. Now my playground is Texas and we don't have the kind of cold so many of you experience in spades each winter. Also, I don't often drag the chronograph out in really cold weather except on rare occasions when I'm really enthused about some test. Don't know that I've ever tested loads over the chronograph when temperatures were below freezing.

My opinion is that loads' velocity performance don't fluctuate all that much between mild temperatures and really cold temperatures. It's when it's really hot that velocity increases can be depended upon. On a few occasions in the really hot summertime I've experimented with shooting a series of loads kept in the shade and another series of the same load left to bake in the sun for a period of time. Up to 100 fps differences was noted and assumptions were made about corresponding rises in pressure levels. Texas in July is not the time to test one's "nuclear-powered" handloads.

Up in the Bad Bob or Rock 'n Glock zones this might not hold true.

Please chime in if you have knowledge of extreme cold chronographing.
My experience is the same as yours, but...
I’m pretty sure that’s right, and if you graphed how temperature affects pressure and velocity it would be a curve going right up to the point it started cooking off. The lower end of the curve would be much more shallow, and probably flatten out below freezing.

I have gone almost exclusively to temperature stabilized powders for rifles, but that only lessens the effect. In matches I don’t throw the bolt and put the rifle into battery unless I’m already on the target, because I don’t want to roast my cartridge in the breach at the end of a string. I see some guys doing it, and some not. I notice it a lot more on the 600+yd stages where 50fps can start to really matter on your vertical dispersion.
 

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I don't believe penetration in/through winter clothing is the problem. The problem is with bullet expansion in cold weather due to heavier/thicker winter layers of clothing. The article a_l_a_n provided in the link in his post (by Mas) addresses the subject.
If it will expand in a denim test it will expand in a carhart.
 
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