Speer Gold Dot vs Winchester PDX1 in 9mm


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Ben86
May 24, 2011, 12:00 AM
Are there any reasons why one is better than the other? Should I just buy whichever I can get a better deal on as the performance of both is top notch (both seem to work well in my guns)? The loads I am talking about specifically are the gold dot 124 grain +P load and the winchester pdx1 124 grain +P load.

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Good&Fruity
May 24, 2011, 12:09 AM
Gold Dot, it's been proven for a long time, and is probably the most widely used 9mm JHP in LE (NYPD).

That said, the FBI ordered a bunch of the PDX so I woulnd't hesitate to carry that either. But if I had both on the shelf, for the same price, and both worked reliably in my gun, and both shot accurately in my gun, I would go with the Gold Dot.

HK Jake
May 24, 2011, 12:31 AM
Far and away, Speer Gold Dot.

JoeMal
May 24, 2011, 12:32 AM
GDHPs are in all my HD guns

Steve C
May 24, 2011, 12:48 AM
I've always liked Winchester ammo and have had feeding and set back issues with Gold Dots, though mostly in .45 acp. I keep my 9mm's loaded with Ranger 124gr Partition Gold or 127gr +P+ and have some 135gr PDX1's in .38 spls and 95gr PDX1 in .380 for my P3AT and PPK. Would not hesitate to use the PDX1 in my 9's and they are currently more available and less expensive than Gold Dots.

SoulLessGinger
May 24, 2011, 02:54 AM
Far and away, Speer Gold Dot.

Can you explain your reasoning?

Both are solid performers. Either would be fine, and if there was any advantage to one or the other, it certainly would not be "far and away".

The PDX1 is very similar to the RangerT rounds. Those are some of the best SD rounds out there.

memphisjim
May 24, 2011, 03:01 AM
i picked gold dots on the tests ive seen they had greatest expansion
i would consider the ranger 127+p+ but also on a test saw them clog with denim and fail to expand where the gold dot didnt

HK Jake
May 24, 2011, 05:04 AM
Can you explain your reasoning?

Both are solid performers. Either would be fine, and if there was any advantage to one or the other, it certainly would not be "far and away".

The PDX1 is very similar to the RangerT rounds. Those are some of the best SD rounds out there.

It's similar to the Ranger Bonded rounds, but those are nothing like the Ranger-T rounds. They use two completely different bullets. In all honesty, after reviewing the ballistics on Winchester's site, I would not be comfortable carrying the Ranger Bonded rounds.

As to ballistic testing, Winchester's own site shows both the 124gr +P and the 147gr Ranger Bonded bullets failing nearly all but the bare gelatin tests, and then they are nothing exceptional, although the 124gr +P does show promise in that single bare gelatin test.

Winchester PDX1 147gr Testing on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4sycG22BvI)

This video shows the 147gr PDX1 bullet in denim testing; it travels 17.5" in wet newspaper jugs covered with 4 layers of denim and expands to only 0.50" which is abysmal when compared with premium JHPs. In the bare water jugs, the PDX1 expanded to .56" and penetrated to ~17.5" (water test is inexact). It did stay together, so I can't fault that, although I find any rounds penetrating deeper than 15" or 16" to be a bit much. FBI standards say 12"-18," so it does fall into that category perfectly fine. However it still fails in terms of expansion and is wholly underwhelming for a modern JHP.

Federal Tactical HST 147gr Testing on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wY_cJEDxxEI)

This video shows the 147gr Tactical HST bullet in similar testing. The first bullet is fired through denim into wet newspaper jugs and penetrates to 16.0," and expands to 0.70," which is phenomenal. The second bullet is fired into bare water jugs where it penetrated from 13" to 16" (water test is inexact) and expands to a whopping 0.75," which is more than Winchester claims their .45 ACP 230gr Ranger-T bullet expands!

In closing... The PDX1 is a mediocre SD round, especially with so many great options available. I'd never watched that video before today, so I can honestly say that I didn't know the PDX1 was that underwhelming in terms of expansion. Would you rather have similar penetration with .75" of expansion or .56" of expansion? Not to mention the PDX1 costs $25 for a box of 20 whereas the Tactical HST rounds cost $29 for a box of 50, so you could practice and stock much more of it, unless price wasn't an option.

I hope this helps. :cool:

P.S. From Winchester's website, "The new Winchester Supreme Elite Bonded PDX1, which was chosen by the FBI as their primary service round, is now available in a full line of popular handgun calibers. The Bonded PDX1 is engineered to maximize terminal ballistics, as defined by the demanding FBI test protocol, which simulates real-world threats. The new Winchester Bonded PDX is offered in 9mm, 40 Smith & Wesson, 45 automatic and .38 special."

The FBI service round is a bonded 180gr .40 S&W round developed by Winchester, this much is true. However, this round cannot be anything like the .40 S&W Ranger Bonded as that bullet failed testing and failed it miserably. If the FBI saw the results I'm staring at, there is no way they'd accept them, which means the PDX1 (if it is actually the same bullet the FBI uses as Winchester claims it is) 180gr .40 S&W must be exceptionally better than the 9mm testing we just witnessed, as no LEA I've heard of would accept those as their primary duty load after comparing them side by side with the HST, Gold Dot, Ranger-T or DPX.

I do find it very hard to believe that Winchester would offer the round the FBI uses to the public in free form when their Ranger-T boxes are specifically marked as "Law Enforcement Only," and gun shops are not allowed to sell them to civilians. ...Just a thought.

usp9
May 24, 2011, 08:48 AM
I have, and probably will carry both rounds in the future. Right now I have the PDX1 in my handgun. My other round of choice is the Hornady TAP. One of these three has been loaded in my carry guns for as long as I can remember.

ColtPythonElite
May 24, 2011, 09:18 AM
Either of them will work just fine if you put them in the right place.

maganoo82
May 24, 2011, 11:07 AM
I highly recommend hornady critical defense and corbon dpx for cc/pd. Of the two though my vote is for gold dot.

Happy shooting.

KevinB
May 24, 2011, 01:45 PM
I do find it very hard to believe that Winchester would offer the round the FBI uses to the public in free form when their Ranger-T boxes are specifically marked as "Law Enforcement Only," and gun shops are not allowed to sell them to civilians. ...Just a thought.

Is this actually true? There's obviously no law against owning the Rangers, why would a gun shop deny a sell to a non-LEO? I've bought many a box, no problems.


To address the OP, I have choosen the GDHP over PDX1 in the past simply due to the price. At least in the shops around here the PDX1, for whatever reason, is much more expensive.

ssyoumans
May 24, 2011, 01:54 PM
1) Federal 124gr +P HST
2) Speer Gold Dot 124gr +P
3) rangers
4) PDX1
I've watched a few tests using 147gr loads, and I wouldn't hesitate to use them either. I just have a preference for the 124gr rounds.
Confirm reliability with 100-200 rounds, then practice, practice, practice.

skifast
May 24, 2011, 02:02 PM
From what on read on Box o Truth, the Winchester powder results in a redder and thus less blinding flash. Since most gun fights happen in low light, I carry 147gr Ranger Ts.

As far as expansion and penetration, all the top brand HPs are close enough in performance that arguing about which is best is retarded.

catnphx
May 24, 2011, 02:14 PM
I've used both and prefer the Gold Dots. Also, much of my reading for both gel penetration data and actual wound damage data has shown over the years that Gold Dots 124gr +P has done the job ... Massad Ayoob has recommended this ammo too.

When both real-life wound data and gel tests confirm the ammo works, well, I guess that is why someone like Ayoob would recommend the ammo.

Good luck on your choice.

HK Jake
May 24, 2011, 02:41 PM
Is this actually true? There's obviously no law against owning the Rangers, why would a gun shop deny a sell to a non-LEO? I've bought many a box, no problems.

It's not illegal for civilians to own it; it's just a Winchester policy. Gun shops are not supposed to sell this anyone without a law enforcement ID, or Winchester will supposedly stop selling their products to them; Federal and Speer have similar policies for HST and Gold Dot (in the 50rd boxes which state, "Law Enforcement Ammunition").

Usually, you can get these ammunitions online, and many times the ammo sold online is police surplus. I own multiple boxes of each.

GRIZ22
May 24, 2011, 04:01 PM
Either will work fine just as a few dozen other factory loads. Don't get overwhelmed by advertising and internet experts shooting water jugs, phone books, etc.

HK Jake
May 24, 2011, 04:29 PM
Either will work fine just as a few dozen other factory loads. Don't get overwhelmed by advertising and internet experts shooting water jugs, phone books, etc.
Well, the PDX1 wasn't approved by Dr. Roberts, and he was the head of the IWBA; the research he and his group did is pretty much why we are where we are today in terms of premium SD ammunition. That holds more than enough weight for me.

sixgunner455
May 24, 2011, 04:42 PM
If you do your job, the bullet will do its job.

My 9mm is loaded with 124gr Gold Dots, standard pressure. I have killed a deer with that load, in a shorter-barreled 9mm than I have now. I have every confidence in it.

firemanstrickland
May 24, 2011, 04:50 PM
Gold Dot, its the best you can get, i shoot all gold dot. Proven time and again

GRIZ22
May 24, 2011, 05:11 PM
Well, the PDX1 wasn't approved by Dr. Roberts, and he was the head of the IWBA; the research he and his group did is pretty much why we are where we are today in terms of premium SD ammunition. That holds more than enough weight for me.

Dr. Roberts and the IWBA are not going to be there if I get in a gunfight and WW PDX1 works are they? The iwba.com domain name is available so that says something about them. 95% of gunfighting is mental and only 5% guns, ammo, and shooting skill. You shouldn't get all wrapped up in what bullet to use and feel that .2 of an inch more expansion or 2" more penetration is going to win or lose the fight.

I didn't say WW PDX is the best (I've never used it) but it will do the job if you do yours. Are there better rounds? Probably. There are also worse.

HK Jake
May 24, 2011, 05:26 PM
Well, the PDX1 wasn't approved by Dr. Roberts, and he was the head of the IWBA; the research he and his group did is pretty much why we are where we are today in terms of premium SD ammunition. That holds more than enough weight for me.

Dr. Roberts and the IWBA are not going to be there if I get in a gunfight and WW PDX1 works are they? The iwba.com domain name is available so that says something about them. 95% of gunfighting is mental and only 5% guns, ammo, and shooting skill. You shouldn't get all wrapped up in what bullet to use and feel that .2 of an inch more expansion or 2" more penetration is going to win or lose the fight.

I didn't say WW PDX is the best (I've never used it) but it will do the job if you do yours. Are there better rounds? Probably. There are also worse.
Why would they be there...?

The need for the IWBA is no longer there, so the funding has dried up. I'm not wrapped up in what bullet to use anymore than you are; a fellow forum member asked me how I came to the conclusion that I did, and I answered his question to the best of my ability.

A very high percentage of gunfighting is mental, if you've got the training to back it up. "We don't rise to the occasion, we fall to our level of training." This is true of nearly all high stress situations, including sports.

I never claimed .2" of expansion will win or lose the fight or 2" of penetration will either; I simply stated facts.

What are you trying to prove here?

GRIZ22
May 24, 2011, 06:04 PM
What are you trying to prove here?


I'm not trying to prove anything other than opinions are like...well you know the rest. We can agree to disagree here.

A very high percentage of gunfighting is mental, if you've got the training to back it up. "We don't rise to the occasion, we fall to our level of training." This is true of nearly all high stress situations, including sports

We do agree on this point however.

Mr. S
May 24, 2011, 07:46 PM
I would choose Gold Dots of the two simply because the Gold Dots can be easily found in 50 round LE boxes for not much more than the PDX1 in 20 round boxes.

bigfatdave
May 24, 2011, 08:57 PM
BOTH

Why limit yourself to one? Get whatever is cheap when you're shopping and stock up ... both are bonded modern HP designs formulated to do the same exact thing, penetrate clothing, open up, and penetrate to ~12" of ballistics gel
In fact, almost ALL duty-type HP or other expanding design ammo in the common duty calibers is designed to do exactly that ... so what matters is your skill under pressure and reliability in your chosen defensive weapon.

Your exact bullet style matters a whole hell of a lot less than reliability and personal performance ... stop wasting time with the little things

HK Jake
May 25, 2011, 12:12 AM
Deleted

Apocalypse-Now
May 25, 2011, 12:40 AM
there's loads of youtube vids, and pics on forums/blogs showing the pdx1 to be an inconsistent performer.

not sure how much longer the fbi will stick with it.


ATK products have always been better performers than winchester's jhp's. stick with either gold dot, hst, or tactical bonded.

the "talons" on the ranger rounds are nothing more than a marketing scheme. they create identical permanent wound cavities as other equivalent brands.

Apocalypse-Now
May 25, 2011, 12:46 AM
Well, the PDX1 wasn't approved by Dr. Roberts, and he was the head of the IWBA; the research he and his group did is pretty much why we are where we are today in terms of premium SD ammunition. That holds more than enough weight for me.

doctor roberts determined that Winchester jhp's (such as ranger-t and pdx1) failure to expand stem from bad QC. the tools that cut the jacket serrations are not changed when they should be, and become dull.

HK Jake
May 25, 2011, 02:41 AM
doctor roberts determined that Winchester jhp's (such as ranger-t and pdx1) failure to expand stem from bad QC. the tools that cut the jacket serrations are not changed when they should be, and become dull.
You have a source for that?

REAPER4206969
May 25, 2011, 03:00 AM
I do find it very hard to believe that Winchester would offer the round the FBI uses to the public in free form when their Ranger-T boxes are specifically marked as "Law Enforcement Only," and gun shops are not allowed to sell them to civilians. ...Just a thought.

The reason that Winchester, and every other ammo maker has a "LE only" line is because they don't have to pay the 11% excise tax on it. That is why they do not allow it to be sold to private Citizens.

The FBI uses Ranger Bonded which is the exact same thing as PDX1. They bought $54 Million dollars of it, and every federal agency that issues a .40 uses it as well.

It replaced their GoldDots.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has awarded Winchester®
Ammunition the single largest ammunition contract in the history of
federal law enforcement worth a maximum of $54 million.

Winchester Ammunition will produce 40 S&W service ammunition,
training ammunition, reduced lead training ammunition and frangible
ammunition for the FBI for one base year, with four, one-year renewal
options.

"The innovation behind the enhanced 40 S&W bonded service round is a
testament to our Winchester engineers and the quality of our
manufacturing," said Dick Hammett, president, Winchester.

Winchester's enhanced 40 S&W service ammunition is a 180-grain,
bonded jacketed hollow point round and was selected over all other
rounds that were tested. The FBI tests the terminal ballistics of
each round by shooting a specific test protocol through various
barriers such as heavy cloth, wallboard, plywood, steel and auto
glass into ballistic gelatin.

In addition to the FBI, the contract affects many agencies both
inside and outside the Department of Justice, including the Drug
Enforcement Administration, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and
Explosives and U.S. Marshal Service.

"On behalf of Winchester, we are extremely proud that our nation's
premier law enforcement agency has selected Winchester ammunition to
use in its mission of protecting and defending the United States,"
said Hammett.

For more information about Winchester Ammunition and its complete
line of products visit www.winchester.com

HK Jake
May 25, 2011, 04:01 AM
The FBI uses Ranger Bonded which is the exact same thing as PDX1.

Hmm, I find that incredibly difficult to believe; the expanded Ranger Bonded bullet and the expanded PDX1 bullet look nothing alike. The PDX1 looks like a hybrid of the Ranged Bonded and the Ranger-T bullets on close inspection.

REAPER4206969
May 25, 2011, 04:28 AM
That info is from Winchester regarding the .40.

The 9mm is said to be different.

HK Jake
May 25, 2011, 04:52 AM
That info is from Winchester regarding the .40.

The 9mm is said to be different.
Winchester Internal Ballistics Testing (http://www.winchester.com/SiteCollectionDocuments/flash-SWFs/law_bullit.swf)

According to Winchester, the .40 Ranged Bonded in 180gr fails denim testing and heavy cloth testing.

In denim testing, the 180gr bullet overpenetrated to 21.8" and expanded to only 0.51." In heavy cloth, the 180gr bullet overpenetrated to 19" and expanded to only 0.55."

There is no possible way the FBI would have accepted this round with those two results, as the Gold Dot 180gr severely outperforms it.

REAPER4206969
May 25, 2011, 05:59 AM
Are you suggesting that Winchester is lying on their site, press releases and ammunition boxes?

The FBI's primary concern is penetration. They wanted a round that penetrated 15"-18" (IIRC) and they got it.

http://i156.photobucket.com/albums/t8/REAPER1911-A1/Pistolcartridge.jpg

Ben86
May 25, 2011, 09:06 AM
Since there is so much division over this topic I gather that they are both great loads.

But, I think I'll be sticking with the tried and true gold dot for my future purchase to replace my non +P 124 gain gold dots. I'm just more comfortable with it. I've also done some small game hunting with that load and have seen it work fantastically with my own eyes.

Now if only I can find some of the 50 round boxes instead of the chump 20 rounders.

Apocalypse-Now
May 25, 2011, 12:55 PM
You have a source for that?

dr. roberts posted it on m4carbine forum. i'm not a member, just found it via a google search.

HK Jake
May 25, 2011, 04:08 PM
I'm not suggesting Winchester is lying; I'm suggesting that the PDX1 is not the Ranged Bonded as you say it is.

The FBI would not accept a round which failed it's own testing, this much is fact. The .40 180gr Bonded failed both denim and heavy cloth and is unacceptable for LE use. The PDX1, therefore, cannot be the Ranged Bonded.

Apocalypse-Now
May 25, 2011, 04:38 PM
could be any number of reasons the pdx1's perform so poorly despite the FBI using it, according to winchester's LE site.

could be better QC for ammo made for the FBI, or simply the FBI hasn't tested it lately and seen this kind of performance, or maybe winchester simply uses the same "bullet technology" but the actual bullets are slightly different. who knows?

one thing i'm sure of, none of us know the reason.

HK Jake
May 25, 2011, 04:58 PM
one thing i'm sure of, none of us know the reason.

True that. :cool:

REAPER4206969
May 25, 2011, 08:51 PM
Here is the 180gr. .40 PDX1 test from the same guy you linked to.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nc5ToYdcq7A&feature=channel_video_title

REAPER4206969
May 25, 2011, 08:52 PM
If anyone can find an E-mail for Winchester, they should ask if the .40 PDX1 is the same as Ranger Bonded.

They maybe you'll believe me.

Apocalypse-Now
May 25, 2011, 08:57 PM
what is this "winchester" you speak of? :eek:

REAPER4206969
May 25, 2011, 09:16 PM
Olin?

gofastman
May 25, 2011, 09:27 PM
HST's are usually my first choice, but since that's not an option, Gold Dot's are a very close second. If it were a car only gun I would choose Gold Dots first, they do a bit better when dealing with auto glass from what I have seen.

HK Jake
May 25, 2011, 09:34 PM
Here is the 180gr. .40 PDX1 test from the same guy you linked to.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nc5ToYdcq7A&feature=channel_video_title
Interesting. The 180gr PDX1 seriously outperforms the 9mm (124gr and 147gr) PDX1 in similar testing. I'd love to see more testing done on this one.

Also, if that's the Ranger Bonded, then they must have updated it. OR, Winchester tested a really, really bad batch. It does look a bit more like the expanded Bonded bullets I have seen, but it's still a bit different, and I've never, ever seen a Bonded bullet expand that much.

I would, however, be comfortable carrying the 180gr PDX1 from that video after doing my own testing to confirm those results. The only important factors for civvies in terms of ballistic testing are the bare gelatin, denim and heavy clothing tests; the rest really don't matter much to us.

HK Jake
May 25, 2011, 09:35 PM
HST's are usually my first choice, but since that's not an option, Gold Dot's are a very close second. If it were a car only gun I would choose Gold Dots first, they do a bit better when dealing with auto glass from what I have seen.
HST is an option! 9mm Hollowpoint Ammo from Ammo To Go (http://www.ammunitiontogo.com/index.php/cName/9mm-hollow-point-ammo)

Apocalypse-Now
May 25, 2011, 09:56 PM
HST's are some of, if not the best JHP design on the market right now. HST retain more weight through auto windshields than the bonded gold dots, even though they are not bonded.

check it out on ATK's LE website :)

orionengnr
May 25, 2011, 10:42 PM
and feel that .2 of an inch more expansion or 2" more penetration is going to win or lose the fight
While I agree in principle that marginal improvements are no substitute for training, the two are not mutually exclusive.
"The race is not always to the fast nor the fight to the strong, but that's the way to bet."
In other words, all else equal, why not opt for every advantage you can get?

skoro
May 25, 2011, 11:05 PM
Gold Dots have been around a lot longer and have a good track record, so there are no doubt more fans for that round. I like 'em, too. But I think that ANY of the top shelf JHP ammo is going to perform in a similar manner. I wouldn't hesitate to carry the PDX ammo.

Apocalypse-Now
May 25, 2011, 11:10 PM
I wouldn't hesitate to carry the PDX ammo.

i would. HST and Gold Dots are less than half the price online in the 50round LE boxes :)

HK Jake
May 25, 2011, 11:21 PM
While I agree in principle that marginal improvements are no substitute for training, the two are not mutually exclusive.
"The race is not always to the fast nor the fight to the strong, but that's the way to bet."
In other words, all else equal, why not opt for every advantage you can get?

I couldn't have said it any better myself. :D

What's the point in having standards and tests if they are disregarded? Hell, if the FBI hadn't set up these standards and testing procedures we'd still be using full metal jackets or hollow points which plugged and/or didn't expand or penetrate with any consistency!

I see no reason why, when given the choice, a person would not choose to use a round which consistently performed 100% better than another round, especially when it's less expensive! We are talking about our lives here, not which shoes we put on in the morning! I'd like every advantage I can get!

If you show up for a fair fight, you're not prepared!

MikeNice
May 26, 2011, 01:17 AM
Let me put it succinctly. Either one will work.

If you are looking for another opinion, I have one. The police department I work for puts 124gr+P Federal HST bullets in their 9mms. It has done the job against a t-shirt at 100 degrees. It has also done the job against winter wear at sub freezing temperatures.

They have worked every time in the Sig Sauer P229. I have talked to the officers that use this round every time they hit the range. I have also talked to officers that used the round in defense of lives. They all trust it without hesitation and many carry it in their off duty guns.

I can't think of a much more ringing endorsement.

My second choice would be the Winchester Ranger Bonded 147gr 9mm. It penetrates better than the Ranger T. It also expands more than the 124+p Ranger Bonded in heavy cloth and denim. It expands to .58 inches and penetrates as much as 16.5 inches through heavy cloth and denim.

rhinoh
May 26, 2011, 11:12 PM
Easy solution- alternate the two in your mags. Double tap gets the bad guy one of each:neener:

MikeNice
May 26, 2011, 11:28 PM
rhinoh wins post of the week hands down.

gofastman
May 29, 2011, 11:11 AM
HST's are usually my first choice, but since that's not an option, Gold Dot's are a very close second. If it were a car only gun I would choose Gold Dots first, they do a bit better when dealing with auto glass from what I have seen.
HST's are some of, if not the best JHP design on the market right now. HST retain more weight through auto windshields than the bonded gold dots, even though they are not bonded.

check it out on ATK's LE website

hmmm, I though I remembered reading on that exact website that the HST's had a bit of trouble with auto glass.
Oh well, I guess I'm just going crazy.

Erik M
May 30, 2011, 12:46 AM
gold dot 124 grain +P, all day everyday in my carry guns.


Winchester claims that they get 6 more inches of penetration in a clothed target than bare gelatin. Interesting physics there.

Apocalypse-Now
May 30, 2011, 01:19 AM
hmmm, I though I remembered reading on that exact website that the HST's had a bit of trouble with auto glass.

quite the opposite :) make sure you read ATK's LE site. in almost every test, the non-bonded HST's retained more weight than the gold dot's through auto glass.

Apocalypse-Now
May 30, 2011, 01:20 AM
Winchester claims that they get 6 more inches of penetration in a clothed target than bare gelatin. Interesting physics there.

probably because they don't expand LOL

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