Best .45 ACP Ammo?


February 5, 2012, 11:55 PM
I just bought a Rock Island 1911 .45 cal. What's the best ammo to use for personal defense?

How do I buy reliable ammo at a good price? I used to buy on the Internet, but someone sold me reloads that ruined my .357 mag. See my thread at
Now I am leery about buying on line.

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February 5, 2012, 11:59 PM
Whatever is cheapest and feeds reliably and accurately in your gun. It is not as much about this round or that round. It is more about that the gun will feed it 100% of the time and launch it at the target accurately.

February 6, 2012, 04:48 AM
Any good JHP that'll run.

My recommendation would be Remington Golden Sabre 230 gr. standard pressure. They have the profile of a FMJ for reliable feeding and give really good terminal performance.

I use them in .380, 9x19, 9x23 Largo, .38/.357, .40 S&W, 10mm Auto, .45 ACP. I handload them, though.

Factory ammo is good stuff, too (but not cheap)

February 6, 2012, 06:44 AM
Federal HST's are often regarded as the top of the line .45 ACP. And I agree. Great performance at a decent price (Box of 50 can be had for $30... makes function testing cheapish). I only use HST for defensive handgun ammo. The +P version apparently expands a little better and shoots flatter, but I haven't gotten my hands on any in a long time.

February 6, 2012, 09:39 AM
Stan Chen Asym Precision. Very high quality, very accurate.

It will not be the cheapest. But it will shoot clean and accurate and consistent. If you haven't tried ASYM, I highly recommend it. Its incredibly good ammo.

February 6, 2012, 10:06 AM
+1 on the Federal HST's.

Whatever youu do, stay away from the SJHP. I have an ATI 1911 and had a sig XO 1911 and neither one will feed anything but FMJ and JHP. That soft tip jamed every single time and didn't want to send them in for polishing when I could just use different rounds. Para P-12 eats those SJHP because the mag feeds almost straight into the chamber where the 1911's have a pretty steep ramp.

February 6, 2012, 11:31 AM
I like the Gold Dots in most calibers. Personally I prefer lighter weight bullets at higher velocities.


February 6, 2012, 12:40 PM
230gr HST

February 6, 2012, 12:45 PM
Heavy slow low flash low recoil hollow point.

February 6, 2012, 12:55 PM
Buy a box of each of the popular self defense rounds.
Go to range.
See which one YOUR pistol likes the best.


February 6, 2012, 01:21 PM
After much research I opted for Federal HST. I may switch to Hornady Critical Duty if ballistics tests show an advantage over the HST... but I doubt it will.

February 6, 2012, 02:12 PM
Unless you test them yourself you won't know what's best.

February 6, 2012, 03:05 PM
Federal HST in either standard pressure or +P, whatever's available.

Don't refuse to buy from anyone online just because you bought some bad reloads once. There are tons of great companies selling mainstream factory ammunition out there, and some like Georgia Arms who are manufacturers and make both 'new' and previously fired ammunition. Really both types are factory fresh, one is just using brass that's been fired before.

Shawn Dodson
February 6, 2012, 04:30 PM
Suggest you consider the loads that have been tested and are recommended on this web page:

If the load you choose doesn't feed and function reliably in your pistol then try another load until you find one feeds and functions reliably. I suggest purchasing just one box of your chosen load and testing it. If it doesn't feed and function reliably then you aren't out a bunch of money. (You'll quickly know if the ammo is unreliable - you'll experience stoppage after stoppage.) Once you've verified the load is good to go then place a full order for your ammo.

I suggest you avoid the 20 round boxes of ammo for common consumers. You can purcahse law enforcement ammo in 50 round boxes for about the same price that you'd pay for the 20. I purchase my ammo from this web site:

Good luck!

February 6, 2012, 05:04 PM
+ 1 on Jims reply:
" Buy a box of each of the popular self defense rounds.
Go to range.
See which one YOUR pistol likes the best"

I found the Hornday Critical Defense with the rubber insert thingy to run very well in my CZ97 BD and they are not over the top price wise..

February 6, 2012, 05:27 PM
I shoot the cheapest 230 gr FMJ ammo I can find at the range. That's usually the Russian stuff--Tula. Works fine in all my .45 Autos. WWB, UMC, PMC, Aguila, Independence, whatever...they all seem to function fine in all my pistols.

As for a defense round, someone said above "Any good JHP that'll run". And that, my friend, is as good an answer as you'll likely get.

February 6, 2012, 07:53 PM
I like the Double Tap 230 g.bonded Gold Dot they expand to about 7/8", travels at a muzzle velosity of 1010 fps and produces 521 ft lbs muzzle energy, one bad ass round.


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