Mixing Ammunition in One Magazine


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VetPsychWars
June 26, 2013, 08:19 PM
I've been thinking lately about my carry ammunition. I carry full-size 1911.

Right now, I load up a full magazine of Federal HST. Not inexpensive.

But... is that best? What if I loaded four or five rounds of ball and then three or two rounds of HST?

I don't carry every day and I do a lot of dry-fire practice, so I unload and reload the carry gun a lot. This means I should shoot those off every so often.

I'm not sure what I'm saying or asking. There are a lot of factors floating around in my brain.

But I'm curious whether any of you mix your load.

Tom

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rcmodel
June 26, 2013, 08:25 PM
If you were fighting giant's & throwing rocks at them with a sling?

Would you carry a pouch full of different size rocks to throw??

Shoot the best JHP you can find that functions 100%, all the time, in your gun.

Mixing up ammo with different recoil & flash characteristics in a mag is foolish business.

Unless you do it at the range to get rid of old mixed ammo left-overs.

rc

allaroundhunter
June 26, 2013, 08:28 PM
What is the point of having defensive ammunition if you aren't planning on using it to defend yourself?

Load each magazine that you carry with the defensive ammo of your choice (Federal HST in this case) and go with it. Don't mix it up, that certainly won't make your load out any better.

If you want to use FMJ for defense then go for it, but I sure wouldn't unless nothing else would function in my gun... And if that was the case then I'd sell the gun.

David E
June 26, 2013, 08:37 PM
It's silly to mix it as you suggest.

Premium ammo is expensive? Have you priced funerals lately?

Ed Ames
June 26, 2013, 08:44 PM
You won't find many people willing to defend mixed magazines here. I'm not sure if that's a reflection on the practice or the local groupthink.

M2 Carbine
June 26, 2013, 09:02 PM
I do mix magazines for one gun.
I pocket carry the Ruger LCP .380 a lot.
For a long time there's been an ongoing argument about which bullet is better in the .380 for defense. FMJ for more penetration or a good JHP for more damage?

Since I honestly do not know which is best I load every other round a FMJ and a good JHP, with a JHP in the chamber.
Both will start out with a .355 size hole in the BG and we'll see what happens from there. :)

In the bigger calibers, 9mm, 45, etc, I just load a good JHP.

wow6599
June 26, 2013, 09:21 PM
For a long time there's been an ongoing argument about which bullet is better in the .380 for defense. FMJ for more penetration or a good JHP for more damage?

Sorry to side-track, but I have always been lead to believe the best compromise in .380 was the Remington 102 GS round? Yeah, inter-web lore... but, it's what I load my wife's LCP with.

Sam1911
June 26, 2013, 09:31 PM
But... is that best? What if I loaded four or five rounds of ball and then three or two rounds of HST?So you start out with four or five rounds of sub-optimal ammo and then if you get to the bottom of the mag, you'll finish out with a couple rounds of the good stuff?

8 rds of HST is "not inexpensive?" C'mon man, even at a dollar a piece, if you paid that much, you're talking about the price of lunch at McD's, not a new Caddy. And you don't have to shoot off your carry ammo more than once or twice a year, if then.

I don't think you're thinking this through very clearly.

If you load and unload frequently, just load up your carry mags with the HST, and use different mags for practice. That way you don't have the grand excuse of having to go to all the trouble of reloading your carry ammo.

KYamateur
June 26, 2013, 09:43 PM
I mix magazines only when I am target shooting. I do it just to check the guns reliability with different loads. I would not mix ammo when carrying or for any HD situation. The only exception is my shotgun. I mix buck shot, bird shot, and slugs but only in a pump.

Onward Allusion
June 26, 2013, 09:47 PM
VetPsychWars
Mixing Ammunition in One Magazine
I've been thinking lately about my carry ammunition. I carry full-size 1911.
Right now, I load up a full magazine of Federal HST. Not inexpensive.
But... is that best? What if I loaded four or five rounds of ball and then three or two rounds of HST?
I don't carry every day and I do a lot of dry-fire practice, so I unload and reload the carry gun a lot. This means I should shoot those off every so often.
I'm not sure what I'm saying or asking. There are a lot of factors floating around in my brain.
But I'm curious whether any of you mix your load.

OK for the range. For SD/HD it's plain stupid in a pistol. Different ammo have different characteristics. Mixing ammo can cause your pistol to cycle at inconsistent rates. Different ammo can also have different recoil, making follow-up shots a little harder.

Let me relate to you what happen to me and my little mouse gun (Kel Tec P32). I loaded a hollowpoint in the pipe and all FMJ in the mag. This was suggested by some P32 owners. It made sense on the surface. While practicing with this loading method - EVERY mag jammed up after the first round fired from the chamber.

I'm sure other folks have been able to get it to work but it didn't work for me with Federal 32gr Hydra-Shok 32ACP in the pipe and Fiocchi 73gr FMJ 32ACP in the mag. Since that time at the range, I've never mixed ammo in a pistol.

herrwalther
June 26, 2013, 10:40 PM
Mix and matching carry ammunition is generally ill advised. Especially in a 1911. They carry 7 or 8 in the mag and one in the chamber. So one box of most self defense or carry ammo will set you up for 2 mags and some change. Since they are relatively low capacity, there isn't much reason to mix ammo for the cost. It would be different if you were using say a XD .45 that uses a 13 round magazine. More or less have to buy a box of ammo per magazine you want to carry.

VetPsychWars
June 26, 2013, 11:08 PM
So you start out with four or five rounds of sub-optimal ammo and then if you get to the bottom of the mag, you'll finish out with a couple rounds of the good stuff?

Nope, you got that exactly backwards. 2-3 rounds of HST and then ball.

230gr HST and 230gr ball feed just the same, so let's take that out of the discussion, eh?

In fact, any feeding issues need to be taken out of the discussion because they're just not relevant. If my pistol can't feed both then I have no business carrying it... and I'm a little surprised it was brought up.

Ignore any discussion of what happens inside the gun, because first, I don't care, and second, it's not relevant. I care about what happens real-life after the bullet comes out the gun.

Tom

allaroundhunter
June 26, 2013, 11:12 PM
What happens real life after the bullet leaves the gun?

The defensive ammo works better for defense. That is why it costs a little more, and that is why I am willing to pay a little more for it.

I don't know about .45 ACP, but in 9mm I paid less than $1/round for 124 gr +P HST, and I actually paid close to $0.50/round... That would be just as cheap as practice ammo if I had to pay for it.

rcmodel
June 26, 2013, 11:20 PM
I'm not sure if that's a reflection on the practice or the local groupthink.That was my thought 40 years ago too, before I was a member of the present group.

(Who might, or might not have influenced my thinking?)

You will have to be the judge of how much influence they have on my thinking.

rc

Certaindeaf
June 26, 2013, 11:26 PM
Ball sucks. Use SWC's or good jacketed hollow points.

David E
June 26, 2013, 11:55 PM
I care about what happens real-life after the bullet comes out the gun.

Your first post indicated you cared more about saving a few pennies.

This post is contrary to that, soooo which is it?

WardenWolf
June 26, 2013, 11:59 PM
I've been known to stack a magazine, FMJ, hollowpoint, repeating. But that was in a Tokarev. The FMJs penetrate body armor and the hollowpoints do evil things to unarmored targets. This had a purpose, ensuring that no matter what, my first shot would go through.

I never actually carried the gun like this, but I kept it around the house. Not saying it's the best idea, but I did it with a specific reason in mind.

rcmodel
June 27, 2013, 12:02 AM
FMJ for more penetration or a good JHP for more damage?If the JHP fails to expand due to clothing clogging up the HP, or whatever?

It is for all practical purposes going to penetrate just as far as FMJ.

If one JHP does expand for what ever reason?
It for sure is doing more damage then a FMJ on it's best day.

NO rule of gun-fighting says you only get to shoot once and put the gun away!

rc

Certaindeaf
June 27, 2013, 12:50 AM
You really just want to use a lunker of a semi-wadcutter. Some are pretty long and will yaw and tumble. If they don't, it's still good.

ku4hx
June 27, 2013, 03:33 AM
The way I see it, my hide (and that of my wife, kids and etc.) is worth a whole lot more than the most expensive premium defensive ammunition on the planet. "If you care enough to send the very best" sort of thing.

I hand load and develop practice cast boolit fodder to be the ballistic twin of "the good stuff" but still, my hide's worth more than the cost of all of it combined regardless of the source.

Ed Ames
June 27, 2013, 06:02 AM
That was my thought 40 years ago too, before I was a member of the present group.

(Who might, or might not have influenced my thinking?)

You will have to be the judge of how much influence they have on my thinking.


A father rases his sons and daughters to believe that Chevy makes the finest automobile. A stranger, listening to the family debating exactly which Chevy is the best car ever built, intrudes to introduce the concept of groupthink. The father responds, "I knew Chevy was the best before most of this group was even born."

Sam1911
June 27, 2013, 07:22 AM
A father rases his sons and daughters to believe that Chevy makes the finest automobile. A stranger, listening to the family debating exactly which Chevy is the best car ever built, intrudes to introduce the concept of groupthink. The father responds, "I knew Chevy was the best before most of this group was even born."So you're saying it's a non sequitur.

"Groupthink" may be bad, or may be good, or may be irrelevant. Groupthink isn't positive if you're following someone off a cliff. However, as sociologists show us (and some popular game shows these days), large groups polled do tend to produce the right answer to even tough questions far more often than not. (Though the very rare exceptions tend to get the bigger notice.)

And then you have this debate where the question has been researched and tested heavily over many decades, with one utterly predominate result, making claims of "groupthink" just a contrarian distraction.

Walkalong
June 27, 2013, 07:33 AM
A mag or two full of premium ammo is a small price to pay for defense of your life. The premium ammo of today is very good. Find one that runs in your gun 100% and call it good. If none do, run FMJ while looking for another gun.

Price is not a good reason to mix and match. There are some reasons folks can put forth for carrying ball ammo (Or 7 round 1911 mags), but price isn't one of them.

243winxb
June 27, 2013, 07:43 AM
45 acp does not need to expand to do its job. (1986 Miami FBI shootout ammo testing). In a shotgun, mix #4 buckshot & slugs.

Ed Ames
June 27, 2013, 07:47 AM
So you're saying it's a non sequitur.

Yes. Saying you believed what the group believes before you joined the group does not preclude groupthink.


"Groupthink" may be bad, or may be good, or may be irrelevant. Groupthink isn't positive if you're following someone off a cliff. However, as sociologists show us (and some popular game shows these days), large groups polled do tend to produce the right answer to even tough questions far more often than not. (Though the very rare exceptions tend to get the bigger notice.)

Yes. In sociology (and a great many areas of soft science and the humanities) the majority view is by definition the right view. So the group view and the right view will tend to coincide. It's a subtle form of confirmation bias.

That doesn't apply to physics.

It doesn't even apply to the stock market or home prices. Did the group here predict two years ago that bulk pack .22lr would be a rare and precious substance today? No.


And then you have this debate where the question has been researched and tested heavily over many decades, with one utterly predominate result, making claims of "groupthink" just a contrarian distraction.

I actually said that I wasn't sure if the result was valid or groupthink. I'm not. If someone were to discourage expression of counterviews by calling them "contrarian distraction" that would actually strengthen the groupthink hypothesis. Social conventions need to be defended via social pressure. Physics does not.

Someone raised the .380 example. I'll give the examples of revolvers loaded with different loads for different purposes. These are adaptations to real world challenges faced by real world people. Are those practices wrong? Do the tests you mentioned address the challenges faced by those who choose them? Or are we dealing with confirmation bias enhancing groupthink? It happens all the time.

RevolvingGarbage
June 27, 2013, 07:56 AM
The difference in what materials a .45 ACP will penetrate with ball vs. HP ammo is not worth worrying about. Neither are going through anything more robust than a 70's flak jacket, so the only advantage ball has is the depth of the hole it makes, and at that you are talking good enough (HP, 15") versus borderline too much (FMJ, 30"+).

Potatohead
June 27, 2013, 11:51 AM
i do a little mag mixin'

Sam1911
June 27, 2013, 02:42 PM
Yes. In sociology (and a great many areas of soft science and the humanities) the majority view is by definition the right view. So the group view and the right view will tend to coincide. It's a subtle form of confirmation bias.

That doesn't apply to physics.

Several different issues here, but the group polling dynamic actually works far beyond confirmation bias. Certainly if you ask folks what the best flavor of ice cream is and 87% say chocolate, then chocolate IS the best flavor because they all said so.

However, if you ask a large enough group of the same people some question of hard-science or history fact (Q: Which year did Vasco DeGama first land in India?) and give them a set of choices (A: 1450, 1498, 1515, or 1537?) the group does tend to pick the right answer more often than not. That's rather the opposite of confirmation bias.

It doesn't even apply to the stock market or home prices. Did the group here predict two years ago that bulk pack .22lr would be a rare and precious substance today? No.This is a bit of a red herring. The group has to be given all the relevant information in play, and this of course can't predict outlying oddities and unforeseen events.

If you'd polled gun owners a totally blind question like, "How much will a brick of .22 LR ammo cost in March of 2013?" They'd have totally blown the answer. If you'd said, "If we have a highly publicized mass shooting of children during a Democrat presidency and in an intensely polarized political climate, what will the price of a brick of .22 LR ammo be four months later?" They'd be quite likely to guess a price point not very far off from reality.

Bringing this back to the realm of the discussion we're having here, when there are pretty much two choices (Option A: JHP, or Option B: mixed ammo, mostly FMJ ball) and the debate over the question had largely been answered decades back, with NO relevant new data arising in that time to lend further support to the value of "Option B" -- the group really doesn't stand a chance of getting the answer wrong. Calling their answer "groupthink" makes it sound like the answer is questionable or worse, which is a way of casting doubt on the answer's validity without having to provide a legitimate basis for that doubt.

"Battery acid is poisonous! Do not drink it!" ---> Pshaw! That's just groupthink! Be a free thinker! They don't want you to know the TRUTH!

VetPsychWars
June 27, 2013, 03:39 PM
OK, you've convinced me! Plus, the horse is already dead!

Ordering another box of HST now!

Tom

hariph creek
June 27, 2013, 11:20 PM
Mixed mags for SD irritate me. For most the reasons listed previously.
It seems the prevailing tactic of internet commandos and gun shop ninjas.

My first impression was that frequent dry fire, with the assumption of frequent rechambering. Was a "set-back" concern? Necessitating (frequent) disposal of, otherwise, usable rounds?
Am I wrong here?

VetPsychWars
June 28, 2013, 08:12 PM
Mixed mags for SD irritate me. For most the reasons listed previously.
It seems the prevailing tactic of internet commandos and gun shop ninjas.

My first impression was that frequent dry fire, with the assumption of frequent rechambering. Was a "set-back" concern? Necessitating (frequent) disposal of, otherwise, usable rounds?
Am I wrong here?
You're pretty much right. Not just set-back (of which there is little) but the rims get chewed up a little too.

Tom

tarosean
June 28, 2013, 11:07 PM
8 rds of HST is "not inexpensive?" C'mon man, even at a dollar a piece, if you paid that much, you're talking about the price of lunch at McD's, not a new Caddy. And you don't have to shoot off your carry ammo more than once or twice a year, if then.


Couldn't agree more...

CPLofMARINES
June 28, 2013, 11:11 PM
No, I don't do this, only in a woods application. FMJ will
Penetrate too much for street use. Something some of us
Forget about is that we, as law abiding, concealed carrying
Pistol citizens are held a hell of a lot more accountable.
All the hard chargers talk about penetration, but that
Bullet after leaving bad guy just may hit good guy. I know
"Better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6." We have all
Heard it. LEO's have a different rule book. So, a mixed
Load (Combat Mix) for the woods, (bear/couger...) is fine ,
Streets, no.

rcmodel
June 28, 2013, 11:15 PM
Well, if mixing two loads in a mag is good?

Then why stop there??

Here is my carry load for my .380 Kel-Tec P3AT!

I got all the bases covered I tell ya!!

http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j219/rcmodel/Magmix.jpg

PS: Except I need to change a couple of them out.
I need a Silver bullet for werewolf's, and a wooden bullet for vampires!

rc

rcmodel
June 29, 2013, 12:45 AM
But with my lifestyle?

Rattlesnakes & copperheads are a more likely threat then Border Ruffians, Gangsta's, Villain's, or Zombies!
Besides, it was a joke anyway.

I am not a proponent of mixing loads in a mag or cylinder.

Except for a couple of snake-shot when tromping around in the woods.
And then a revolver is far superior to a bottom-feeder anyway.

rc

ChCx2744
June 29, 2013, 09:21 PM
Dude, just buy some good quality carry ammo (In your case Federal HST) and load it up fully with that. It's not that expensive if you really think about the application. A box of good quality HSTs will last you at least a couple years. I am still cycling the same box of Gold Dots I bought two years ago. Whenever I chamber a round, I mark it and chamber a new round. If a round gets two marks, it gets shot. You can cycle a box of 50 for a long time using this method, even if you carry an extra mag.

CPLofMARINES
June 29, 2013, 10:55 PM
^^ What he said. :D

HankB
June 30, 2013, 01:19 AM
I met an old retired sheriff's deputy (or maybe he was a state trooper) many years ago who carried a .357 when he was on the job - the first few rounds were standard lead SWCs, and the last few were Winchester metal piercing. He said that in his job if he fired more than a few rounds and the fight was still on, the bad guy was likely behind a barricade and he wanted something that would get through it. (Lead SWCs and metal piercing were the only loads commonly available when he was on the job. He may have hollow-pointed the SWCs himself.)

Personally, I don't mix ammo in my handgun loadouts, I just use premium JHPs.

Now, in RIFLE loads, there's something to be said - theoretically - for loading the first few rounds in the magazine (last ones fired) as tracers; they'll tell you when you're due to reload. But how many of us are going to go through a whole rifle mag in a HD situation at a long enough distance that we'll see tracers?

BSA1
June 30, 2013, 12:56 PM
There is a school of thought that bullet placement is more important than bullet style.

Another school of thought is to keep shooting until the threat stops his aggressive actions.

Some view overpenetration as a red herring as it is not possible to predict what distance, the build of the attackers, clothing, cover and angle you may shoot from. No one type of bullet will cover all of these variables.

Another school of thought is when using a semi-auto ball ammunition is the most reliable.

And then there is something called Murphy's Law.

You can probably figure out by now what schools I went to.

Robert101
June 30, 2013, 03:16 PM
Back in my early handgun days, I only had a couple of guns - one was a S&W 44 Mag (629 model). For SD, I loaded the first round with #4 lead shot cap and the rest were Winchester Silvertip 44 Specials. My reasoning was, for a night stand gun, I would have a better chance of getting some lead on a target and then could apply the 200 grain Winchester's as needed.

Today, I gravitate to semi-automatics and love the Glock 40 for SD. I use Winchester 180 grain, JHP T-series ammo in all mags. I'd like to think I know better now than years ago. I really hope I shoot better too. All those 1,000's of reloaded practice rounds should account for something.

Onward Allusion
July 1, 2013, 09:54 PM
That's correct gentlemen... Back in the day with REVOLVERS. Mixing ammo is absolutely fine with a revolver. Even a shotgun. Doing it with a semi-auto pistol is not wise for SD/HD. If one must mix, then test with the same mag(s) & ammo mix a dozen or more times.

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