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Reloads more reliable/accurate than factory?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by bds, Jan 31, 2010.

  1. bds

    bds Well-Known Member

    Went shooting yesterday and one of the shooter (who is a sheriff deputy) asked me a question.

    He showed me a box of factory FMJ ammunition and said several rounds failed to cycle and stove piped. Also, his shot groups were erratic with many fliers. He stated he does not have similar problems with factory JHP ammunition.

    He did side-by-side comparison tests using my reloads and his factory ammunition (9/40/45) and reloads gave him much smaller groups with no fliers. He asked about the reload specs and I told him they were reloaded to about 5% less factory/max charges.

    During lunch after shooting, he said to the group he's concerned about people using such factory ammunition for self-defense - he commented due to the availability/cost of hollow points, many people may do just that.

    We reached the consensus that regardless of FMJ/JHP ammunition we use for SD, we should thoroughly test them for reliability/accuracy in pistols intended for SD/carry.

    What has been your experience?
  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Well one things for sure.

    If you carry reloads, at least you know for a fact all the cases have flash holes in the primer pockets & powder in them.

    I can't say the same for factory loads, because I have tried to shoot a couple or two without flash holes in years past.

  3. sourdough44

    sourdough44 Well-Known Member

    Once the ammo is tested & evaluated over a period of time I wouldn't worry about using reloads for anything. After shooting a batch of reloads a bunch you will know about any problems that come up. Guy's like to say 'I wouldn't bet my life on reloads' or ' it could lead to trouble in court'. To the 1st one like I said you should know how they work. To the second I'd consider it minor compared to other potential problems.
  4. 243winxb

    243winxb Well-Known Member

    Thoroughly test any ammo for reliability/accuracy. Everything changes from lot number to lot number. The factory might ever use a different powder. At least with hand loads, you know when you change lot # on the bullet, powder or primer & brass. Keeping records is extra work, but when things go wrong, you have notes to check.
  5. Jesse Heywood

    Jesse Heywood Well-Known Member

    By all means. Also, anyone who relies on a weapon to protect and defend needs to practice with ammo that works like what is carried. If reloads are used for practice, they need to be as close to the carry ammo as possible. In my brief stint in law enforcement we bought our own guns and ammo. Most carried a 357 mag of some make loaded with Remington 125 gr. semijacketed hollow points. We practiced, on occasion, with 38 Spl. 148 gr. LWC. Few of us could hit the broad side of a barn.

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