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#272176 - 10/12/14 04:34 PM Re: ammo choice [Re: quick_joey_small]
LesSnyder Offline

Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 1506
Loc: New Port Richey, Fla
re: reliability... years ago at an Area 6 USPSA match in Georgia, Dave Dawson (pre Dawson Precision)motioned me over and said I needed to watch a couple of unknown (to us) shooters...Matt Rierson (KIA Mogadishu, Somalia) and Larry Vickers were shooting the 50yd standards with 1911s.... shooting Match 230 grain Ball...5 "A" hits in 6 seconds....first time I met the
SFOD-D "Delta" shooters from Ft Bragg... good enough for me

#272182 - 10/12/14 09:10 PM Re: ammo choice [Re: haertig]
Phaedrus Offline

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2122
Loc: Great Plains
Originally Posted By: haertig
Originally Posted By: Phaedrus
I choose my ammo based on the track record it has "on the street" in police shooters

I choose mine based on its reliability in the specific firearm it is going in. Not the brand/model of the firearm, the actual firearm itself. Only after shooting lots and determining which ammos are 100% reliable (that takes 100's of rounds of each, not just a few) do I start looking at other factors.

I thought that part was a given. I never settle on a round for CCW until I've tested it thoroughly in my particular sidearm. My general standard for a self loader is 200 rounds without a problem. Bear in mind this is with a gun that's already proven reliable. I'll run 300-500 rounds of ball first because if it won't even run ball there's no point trying anything else. So once I have ten or so 50 round boxes through a pistol I'll switch to self defense ammo. 200 rounds of that and I am satisfied that it's going to work right and it's cleared for CCW duty.

With my HKs my regimen is slightly different. All of my HKs have proven so reliable over the years that I will run just 100 rounds through them with a given ammo.

I'm also a believer in training and practicing with carry ammo, at least a little bit. While I can't afford to do all my practice shooting with Federal HST I do think it's important to run a mag of them through my CCW sidearm every other range trip. My preference is to do that right before I pack up to go home.

One thing I love about the HST is that the round seems to run great through every gun I've ever tried.
“You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” Naguib Mahfouz

#272185 - 10/13/14 04:17 PM Re: ammo choice [Re: quick_joey_small]
wileycoyote Offline

Registered: 03/01/11
Posts: 272
Loc: eastern oregon
carefully choosing the right bullet design & cartridge makes sense considering the advancements in the last couple of decades.

and having read untold number of articles/books written by both sides on the subject of "stopping power", i tend to agree with the "morgue-monsters"* (street shooting data collection crowd like marshall/sanow) vs the "jello-junkies"* (ballistic gelatin measurement fans like fackler & IWBA).

but that aside, when discussing self-defense with firearms, i believe there are a few things even more important than what a firearm is loaded with (in descending order):

1) situational awareness
2) knowledge of your legal and moral obligations in the situation
3) the ability to react instantly and decisively
4) having the tool with you
5) being able to place rounds precisely and quickly
6) reliablity of tool
7) bullet design & stopping power of cartridge
8) everything else (type of tool, capacity, reloading speed, court proofing, cost, etc)

*names used by Massad Ayoob in 2002 for the two sides

#272186 - 10/13/14 05:07 PM Re: ammo choice [Re: wileycoyote]
Russ Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 4833
The problem I have with the Marshall & Sanow database is that it doesn't make any allowance for why a particular bullet had a one-shot stop, or rather why a particular bad guy stopped after being shot once. Did he stop because of severe physical trauma and simply could not continue, or did he stop due to a low pain threshold and non-life threatening hit to the arm that made him retreat? M&S classify both of those instances equally as a one-shot stop.

It may be worthwhile to read a bit about Dr. Martin L. Fackler (retired Colonel in the US Army's Medical Corps) before dismissing his work as that of a "jello-junkie". But that's just my opinion...

#272188 - 10/13/14 06:12 PM Re: ammo choice [Re: quick_joey_small]
chaosmagnet Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 2906
Loc: USA
For myself, I keep an open mind. I think Marshall & Sanow collected some useful data that's worth reviewing. I also think that measuring penetration into ballistic gelatin allows us to draw some reasonable inferences about how a bullet might perform in a defensive shooting.

One of my instructors wrapped a 2x4 with a kevlar vest and shot it with several different rounds, showing us the permanent indentation into the wood. In the (admittedly for me quite unlikely) event I'm facing a violent attacker wearing such a vest, the "back face signature" of the bullet might matter. In other words, deeper indentations into the wood may indicate a great effect on a violent attacker.

#272189 - 10/13/14 08:09 PM Re: ammo choice [Re: chaosmagnet]
haertig Online   content

Registered: 03/13/05
Posts: 1999
Loc: Colorado
Anyone who makes their caliber/ammo/firearm choice based on some kind of "one shot stop" rating is barking up the wrong tree IMHO. Your chances of a one shot stop with ANYTHING in a chaotic self defense situation are quite low. Best to concentrate your defensive plans/training elsewhere, than to depend on the magic bullet being your savior.

#272191 - 10/13/14 08:45 PM Re: ammo choice [Re: quick_joey_small]
boatman Offline

Registered: 03/10/03
Posts: 424
Loc: Michigan
I was told to find out what your local law enforcement uses.If you do have to use a sidearm to defend yourself,you will likely be sued by the "victim".(Lets not get into a disussion on that.)
It is easier for your defense lawyer to justify your ammo choice as not being inhumane. It is what the police use....


#272192 - 10/14/14 12:03 AM Re: ammo choice [Re: quick_joey_small]
Bingley Offline

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1384
A renowned firearms teacher who passed away a few months ago taught that any caliber commonly used by the military or police is fine for civilian self-defense. However, ammo quality matters. The last few years saw a decrease in ammo quality after a certain big company bought some of the popular brand names. Some reported defective, unfirable ammo. That's really bad.

#272193 - 10/14/14 07:23 AM Re: ammo choice [Re: quick_joey_small]
Phaedrus Offline

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2122
Loc: Great Plains
The way I look at it it's not voodoo, it's science. There will probably always be a random/chaos element in terminal performance but that's not an excuse not to design bullets scientifically. The ancient samurai tested their swords on the bodies of prisoners. Since we can't do that nowadays ord gel is a good stand in. Just because a bullet does well in gelatin doesn't mean it will be a great fighting round but it's a rare one that does poorly in standardized testing yet excels in combat.

I'm in favor of controlled expansion and bonded bullets.
“You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” Naguib Mahfouz

#272194 - 10/14/14 07:52 AM Re: ammo choice [Re: quick_joey_small]
Bingley Offline

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1384
Some swords were tested, most weren't -- there were just far too many swords, and not enough bodies. They also hired specialists to do the testing, partly to avoid damaging the sword, partly because this sort of task wasn't highly regarded.

It would be funny for a samurai of old to look at all this ammo selection debate. They might have had their precious heirloom sword that was the equivalent of gun people's "safe queen" today. They also had swords they actually fought with -- if they lived during war time. If not, they probably never saw action. These swords got chipped, damaged, and broken fast -- that's just what happens when metal cuts against metal. These battlefield beaters never made it to the museum. In other words, they expected their weapons to break. Here we have the luxury of collecting data about ammo and wondering about "single shot stoppers" and weapon reliability. Back then it was "hack, hack, and hack again," hoping that your sword wouldn't break before you kill the guy.

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