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non-expanding loads - speed or mass?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Navy_Guns, Aug 12, 2009.

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  1. Navy_Guns

    Navy_Guns Member

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    .45 LC ported snubbie ultra-light, can't go nuts with pressures. I can push either a 255 grain flat-nose cast bullet at so-so velocity or a lighter 200 grain flat-nose at a little higher velocity. For terminal effects on warm-blooded creatures, would you want the extra mass or extra speed, all else being equal (non-expanding flat-nose cast bullet)?

    And please don't change the subject and tell me I should just get a 10mm and shoot hollow points...
     
  2. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    For self defense on two legged critters, it does not matter with those loads. FN hardcasts are going to bore a B-line right through a human torso and FPS one way or the other won't make even a little difference. For bigger things the velocity doesn't matter as much as the sectional density. The 255 would be my choice for hunting if I couldn't get something bigger. In all cases the velocity isn't really what kills with the .45 Colt but the penetration and severing of key systems. It fires a big slug at sedate velocities, none of which are really high enough to start generating a lot of hydrostatic shockwave or temporary cavity. If you amp up the loads closer the .454 Casull levels and fire out of long gun, THEN you can start to see that kind of damage.

    For self defense I'd use soft lead RN if I was going with a non expanding load. For big predators I'd be amping it up to the biggest baddest hardcast available. It's tough to find rounds that will do both very well.
     
  3. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Weight trumps speed every time at the velocity you can get out of a .45 Colt snubby.

    Go with the heaviest flat-point bullet you can get.

    The .45 Colt built it's reputation as a man-stopper 125 years ago with a 255 grain lead bullet.

    I had the pleasure of getting hit in the boot heel with a 255 that bounced back off of a railroad tie backstop.

    It tore the heel of a darn good pair of boots, and almost put me on my azz in the dirt!
    It was probably only doing 250 FPS or so.

    rc
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2009
  4. KBintheSLC

    KBintheSLC Member

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    I agree.

    They will both make the same .45 caliber puncture wound and fully penetrate a human body. I would choose the load with the best accuracy and the least recoil.
     
  5. mgkdrgn

    mgkdrgn Member

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    Well, you aren't going to get a lot of speed out of 45 LC and a short barrel, so you might as well go for throw weight!

    The 255 SWC is a very good choice, as it leaves a BIG punched hold that does not close in on itself. That is going to stop all but the most determined attacker ... but that is what the rest of the rounds in the revolver are for, right?

    Enjoy!
     
  6. Oyeboten

    Oyeboten Member

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    So...would a plain Lead, Semi-Wadcutter, be a better choice than RN for a short to medium lenght Barrel .45 LC?
     
  7. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Probably. Hard to beat a Keith. For personal defense I'd even say a soft lead straight wadcutter at pretty sedate velocities would be the very best this side of a HP.
     
  8. Drail

    Drail Member

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    l I vote for a heavy lead flat nose at some moderate velocity. A nice soft push on your end and a freight train on the other end. You know what they say about them fat bottom girls....keep you warm in the winter and shaded in the summer.
     
  9. kludge

    kludge Member

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    Pics of said gun please!

    TIA.
     
  10. Steve C

    Steve C Member

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    The main comment I'd make regarding the .45 Colt with solid bullets is that there will likely be little difference in terminal performance in a self defense situation with a heavy 255gr bullets or a lighter 200gr or anything in between. Any are going to make a .452" hole and all will most likely make a trhough and through hole in anyone not wearing body armor or thicker than 15".

    The problem I'd see with a 255gr bullet in a snub nose is lack of velocity, probably down in the 650 fps, maybe as high as 750 fps with a stout hand load. Sometimes you find stability problems with heavy bullets at low velocities in short barrels. You should be able to get the lighter 200 bullet to 750 fps easily and should give comparable performance to a .45 ACP ball load.

    If you already have a good heavy and lighter weight load, I'd run both over the chrono and see what they're doing. The load I'd select would be one that allows for the quickest recovery for additional shots and that hits where I aim as long as I could get at least 700 fps velocity or more.
     
  11. Diggers

    Diggers Member

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  12. cluttonfred

    cluttonfred Member

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  13. mgkdrgn

    mgkdrgn Member

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  14. Navy_Guns

    Navy_Guns Member

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    It's the only one out of 4 Taurus hand guns I've owned that hasn't had to go back for QC issues. The porting and ribber grips are VERY effective. I can snap shoot with this sucker better than any pistol I own. It does need a heavy crimp or the cylinder will lock up from the bullets unseating in the cylinders. The thing is guaranteed to flash-blind anyone if you shoot it in the dark. Maybe I should load it with real BP so if I had to use it in a defensive situation I could give myself some bonus concealment?

    I have an old Lee mould for 235 grain full wad-cutters that was intended to size out to .454". This would be a good fit for this revolver because the cylinder throats are oversized (.458" IIRC). Not going to win any speed reloading contests with this bullet, but maybe it's a good candidate for a critter load with soft lead and Unique...
     

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  15. Navy_Guns

    Navy_Guns Member

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    Quickload says:

    Staying within the 14,000 SAAMI pressure limits, I ran about 8 different powders through Quickload and got the following estimates for my short-barreled revolver - 200 grains at 700 fps, 255 grains at 650 fps, or 300 grains at 600 fps. Even though it's trudging along at 600 fps, the massive 300 grain bullet would still have more momentum AND energy than the lighter bullets.

    Now, the question is can I shoot that load worth a damn?

    Edit: The 300 grain had 10% higher momentum than the 255 and 22% more than the 200, only 2% higher energy than the 255 and 9% more than the 200 grain.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2009
  16. pogo2

    pogo2 Member

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    Maybe speed times mass?

    I'm a fan of momentum, defined as mass times velocity, for estimating penetration in a given caliber. I've noticed that lighter bullets usually go faster and vice versa, all else being equal. Often the momentum will be about the same in a situation like you describe.

    So I'd agree with those who say it may not matter much in your case. The penetration may come out about the same between the heavier and lighter bullets, because their momentum is similar.
     
  17. Gunfighter123

    Gunfighter123 Member

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    I agree 100% ---- when it comes to KILLING liveing things --- mass outperformes speed.

    Ps -- at the old 2nd Chance bowling pin shoots -- the heavy slugs almost always cleared the tables faster/better.
     
  18. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Think of your .45 Colt snubby as a modern day .455 Webley.

    The 265 grain bullet at 650 FPS would put a combatant on his azz.

    rc
     
  19. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Yep...goes for .44 Spl as well.

    When you can't go fast, go heavy.
     
  20. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    Now THAT sounds like just the ticket.

    I had a 208 grain .44 wadcutter mould that would have been a hard hitter, if I had owned a lightweight .44 at the time.
     
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