Defensive handgun ammo questions


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45Guy
October 7, 2007, 10:44 PM
I have a 9mm XD that I want to use as a house gun for an apartment, and my gf is getting a 9mm soon for the same purpose. We would like lower recoil rounds, that have only as much penetration as neccesary. I know that rounds can still penetrate no matter what, but I'd like to eliminate as much of that possibility as possible.

I'm also looking at a .38 revolver for a house gun, with the same requirements in ammunition.

Thanks- 45Guy & blondebombshell

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Jimmie
October 7, 2007, 10:51 PM
I don't think any quality 9mm HP is going to overpenetrate. And a 38 will even less so.

ArchAngelCD
October 7, 2007, 11:37 PM
Federal makes a 135 gr low recoil Hydra-Shok round that's a very good SD round without having too much "kick."

JLStorm
October 7, 2007, 11:49 PM
I think most high quality ammo is just fine. I just bought a half case of federal bonded tactical because I got a great deal on it, but I would have been just as happy with the HST or hydrashok, etc. I use federal because it has always performed well, but there are many other great companies out there. People argue over these 10ths or sometimes 100ths of an inch, its just silly as long as it will expand well I wouldnt worry if it is .789" or .790"

Hauptmann
October 7, 2007, 11:53 PM
Be careful what you wish for. Limiting your penetration ability can get you killed as was one of the conclusions of the FBI ballistics workshop. You need a bullet design that will penetrate through heavy clothing and the ribs of the rib cage and damage the large blood bearing organs of the body. As for a low recoil load, Winchester Ranger Talon 147gr or Speer Gold Dot 147gr are good loads to consider for your needs. They are not low penetration loads, but they are low in recoil and perform well according to the Firearms Institute.

The best firearm for home defense is without a doubt a 12 gauge shotgun. It compensates for its low penetration with multiple hits which often pass between the ribs of the rib cage and damage internal organs.

Fumbler
October 8, 2007, 12:39 AM
There's a second reason to be careful with low recoil rounds. If it doesn't recoil enough then your gun won't cycle.
Make sure you test whatever low recoil ammo you find.
If it doesn't reliably feed and eject then you could try lower power recoil springs (but then you might end up with more feeding problems).

I say just get more range time in. She'll get used to the recoil in just a few range trips.

45Guy
October 8, 2007, 12:57 AM
I have a Remington 870 HD in 12g that will be coming along.

ALL ammo will be tested at least 50 rds if not 100 too make sure it functions fine.

Guitargod1985
October 8, 2007, 01:45 AM
Mag Safe and Glaser Safety slugs are a great selection for a low recoil non-overpenetrative round.

I use Mag Safes for my HD pistol. They have a very high muzzle velocity, but a low bullet weight for less inertia. A typical MagSafe .45 ACP round, for instance, has a bullet weight of 65 grains and leaves a four inch barrel at around 2200 fps.

MagSafes also have a hollowpoint that has no.9 shot, which penetrates into the target after the hollowpint opens and the epoxy is dissolved.

Fumbler
October 8, 2007, 02:31 AM
I'm sorry, I misread the initial post and thought the reduced recoil was because yall didn't like recoil, not because of penetration.

Like Guitargod said, you could use Glasers or Magsafes.
Corbon JHP loads tend to penetrate less than other JHPs, but they aren't reduced recoil.

Hauptmann
October 8, 2007, 09:07 AM
I strongly advice you to NOT use Magsafe or Glasers:

http://www.firearmstactical.com/tacticalbriefs/volume4/number3/article432.htm

Super light, high energy bullets have very little penetration which as I have stated good penetration is the most crucial characteristic of a handgun round. Another example of ammunition to stay away from is RBCD LeMas "blended metal" ammunition:

http://www.tacticalforums.com/cgi-bin/tacticalubb/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=78;t=001189

Stick with any of the following:

http://www.tacticalforums.com/cgi-bin/tacticalubb/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=78;t=000964

Hauptmann
October 8, 2007, 10:09 AM
I fixed the above links.

Fumbler
October 8, 2007, 10:34 AM
I don't like the idea of underpenetrating bullets either.
If I shoot something then I want the bullets to get to the vitals.
Imagine shooting a really fat guy (no offense to overweight people). If you shoot a big bad guy in his man boobie then his skin and fat alone could stop even a marginaly performing JHP.

BUT, peoples' needs differ. If overpenetration is a serious issue then you have to err on the safe side with the Glasers or Magsafes.

Maybe #4 Buck in the shotgun will be a good compromise.

RustyShackelford
October 8, 2007, 06:28 PM
For your use I would get either the Magsafe 9mmNATO load or the Glaser safety slug(silver). Apartments and/or condo units may have thin walls and or weak bldg material. I would not want a powerful 9mmNATO round punching through a wall and killing an innocent bystander/resident. Other good +P +P+ 9mm loads are out there but for general home protection stick with these special purpose rounds. The recoil is low and they offer a good balance.

For the .38spl get Glaser safety slugs(silver) or the Speer Gold Dot +P 135gr JHP.

Rusty S :cool:

Hauptmann
October 8, 2007, 06:45 PM
*sigh*
A couple more readings on why you DON'T want to use Glaser, Extreme Shock, RBCD, or Magsafe:

http://www.firearmstactical.com/wound.htm

http://www.firearmstactical.com/briefs5.htm

There's a reason why you don't see law enforcement agencies using this crap. It's bad publicity to have your officers getting killed because of uneducated equipment selections.

RyanM
October 8, 2007, 06:57 PM
If I owned a 9mm, 147 gr Remington non-bonded Golden Sabers are absolutely the only rounds that I would be willing to use.

FLORIDA KEVIN
October 8, 2007, 07:07 PM
I would think almost any 115 grain to 125 grain jhp woould fill the bill ,and not break the bank practicing !

silverlance
October 8, 2007, 07:26 PM
May I suggest the Federal EFMJ? I don't know if it's been discontinued, but that round offers really good penetration, and expansion very nearly on par with Golden Saber and Hydra-Shock (an FFL friend of mine did water tank tests).

The_Antibubba
October 9, 2007, 02:09 AM
I like the Hornady TAP.

sm
October 9, 2007, 02:47 AM
45guy wrote in Original Post:
I have a 9mm XD that I want to use as a house gun for an apartment, and my gf is getting a 9mm soon for the same purpose. We would like lower recoil rounds, that have only as much penetration as neccesary. I know that rounds can still penetrate no matter what, but I'd like to eliminate as much of that possibility as possible.

Software.
I would first consider prudent steps to avoid being in Serious Situation.
Beefing up Security and at the same time making yourselves less of a target.

Shooting lanes, such as furniture placement allows you and her cover from incoming rounds and backstops for your outgoing rounds.

Training classes that include, but not limited to guns, loads, gun fit, correct basic fundamental, Reliability, Shot Placement...

Here is the deal, with Shot Placement, one has to have rounds designed for the gun, that work Reliably with mags, that shoot POA/POI.

If a load does not run the gun, with mags, it for sure cannot shoot POA/POI, no matter what the box or marketing "says".

Once dead, a little too late to consider the load did not run the gun.

Hardware

Once the Software above has been done, Actually apply to using guns, ammo, and running the gun with instructor.
Continue with quality practice.


Software first, then apply with Hardware, then these both in conjunction.

The Motion light might deter, a beefed up door chain/bar might prevent.
Worse comes to worse, the practiced plans incorporating training with Cover, Shooting lanes, You hit what needs hitting to stop that threat as quickly a can.

The load could be anything, even hardball, if the Software was applied and that Bookcase moved "there" or that top drawer filled with books over "there" or...Aquarium place "there"...or...

I do not recommend fru-fru rounds, those with umbrellas, stir sticks or low calorie marketing.

ArchAngelCD
October 9, 2007, 02:57 AM
Try the 135 gr Federal Hydra-Shok rounds like I mentioned above, you won't be sorry. My son carries them in his Taurus PT-111 Pro and he is very happy with them.

Deanimator
October 9, 2007, 10:36 AM
Winchester white box 147gr. jhp from Walmart

Accurate
Reliable
Good expansion
Cheap

I've switched over to it exclusively.

yesit'sloaded
October 9, 2007, 11:03 AM
You need to check out theboxotruth.com

oldie
October 9, 2007, 01:16 PM
I have been using either Speer Gold Dot or the Federal Hydra-Shok in my Springfield Arms XD Sub-Compact and have been very happy with both. The recoil is easy so recovery for follow-up shots is great and from what i have been able to gather, will not penetrate through walls, only BGs.

jaydubya
October 9, 2007, 07:15 PM
+1 on Speer Gold Dot. There are fourteen of them in my Browning Hi Power.
Cordially, Jack

351 WINCHESTER
October 9, 2007, 11:35 PM
For a .38 a good hard cast wadcutter is hard to beat. Magsafe used to make some very good ammo (when Joe Zamboni owned it). Don't know about current loadings. This was some very hot ammo, but had limited penetration too. I shot some glaser "safety" slugs into ballistic gelatin (38+P silver). As I recall from a 4" .38 it was only going about 1100fps (supposed to get 1600 from a 2"). Anyway performance was dismal at best.

As for 9mm just about any expanding bullet of 115 to 124 grs. would be good. I personally don't like the 147 as they tend to penetrate too much.

sholling
October 10, 2007, 02:55 AM
SM's "Software, not Hardware" advice is excellent. No it's beyond excellent. It's stellar advice! Securing your home (http://www.statefarm.com/learning/be_safe/home/burglary/learning_besafe_athome_doorlocks.asp) is your first line of defense. Start with the front door (http://www.wikihow.com/Burglarproof-Your-Doors). It surprisingly easy to make solid core doors close enough to kick proof to discourage any thief, and buy you a good ten minutes. Add security window film (http://www.aceorangecounty.com/?kw=window+security&gclid=CODI7rDgg48CFQfpYAod4xJV3g) for a couple of hundred more and a couple of fifty cent alarm stickers and nobody is getting in. If budget allows install a similarly secured solid core door on the bedroom.

Next up is training that you will hopefully never need.

Finally we get to hardware. Forget the Magsafes and Glasers (http://www.brassfetcher.com/glasertest1.html), they've been shown to be horrible man stoppers. If I were you and living in an apartment and liked my neighbors I'd buy a 12ga shotgun (http://www.budsgunshop.com/catalog/product_info.php/cPath/37_336/products_id/39622) and load it with one to two rounds of low recoil #8 shot up first, followed four or five of low recoil 00 buck shot. And five more 00 in a stock sleeve.

Now here is why. Any effective 9mm cartridge needs to be able to penetrate a minimum of 12" and expand hugely to be effective. For that you can't hardly beat the Federal HST (http://ammunitiontogo.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=23_61_119&products_id=1389). But if you miss any effective 9mm is going to penetrate 8-10 drywall walls.

Number 8 shot probably isn't going to be an instant killer but it will make a big gnarly, extremely painful, and possibly fatal divot in a bad guys chest. If you miss you can count on it penetrating one wall but there won't be a ton of energy left for a second. Thats due diligence to protect neighbors. But if one shot of #8 hasn't solved the problem/run off the bad guy you need the deadly penetrating power of 00 buck, and by now the neighbors have gotten the hint to duck.

Links:
Sample strike plate (http://hardware.hardwarestore.com/29-437-strikeplates/deadbolt-security-strike-660682.aspx) Don't forget the 3.5-4" screws. The stuff that comes with the strike is usually crap. Don't forget to replace all the hinge screws with the same 3-4" screws - into the jam and the door.
Sample minimal door reinforcer (http://hardware.hardwarestore.com/29-437-lockset-reinforcers/antique-brass-door-edge-guard-659014.aspx)
Sample large door reinforcer (http://hardware.hardwarestore.com/29-437-lockset-reinforcers/antique-brass-door-reinforcer-659267.aspx)
Consider a Medico (http://medeco.com/residential/index.html) lock.
Door security (http://www.canadianhomeworkshop.com/quickfix/front_door.shtml)

kd7nqb
October 10, 2007, 03:22 AM
I think Sholling hit the nail on the head, now how this applied to 9mm could bne interesting. I have a .40m&p and know that CCI Shotshells wont cycle my slide, I kinda wish it would just for this reason. Number 8 shot probably isn't going to be an instant killer but it will make a big gnarly, extremely painful, and possibly fatal divot in a bad guys chest. If you miss you can count on it penetrating one wall there won't be a ton of energy left for a second. Thats due diligence to protect neighbors. But if one shot of #8 hasn't solved the problem/run off the bad guy you need the deadly penetrating power of 00 buck, and by now the neighbors have gotten the hint to duck.

I have heard very good things about Hornaday TAP, Corbons, GoldDots and just about every other ammo mentioned here. I am convinced its totally personal preference.

sholling
October 10, 2007, 03:38 AM
Forget the pistol sized shot shells. They may be fine for snakes and rats but all they will do to a bad guy is throughly tick them off.

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