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+P+ now standard-issue?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by labnoti, Apr 24, 2019.

  1. labnoti

    labnoti Member

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    According to American Rifleman's report, "The pressures for the M1152 and M1153 are 39,700 p.s.i."
    The SAAMI pressure limit for the 9×19mm Parabellum is set at 35,000 psi. NATO's specification is 36,500 psi. The SAAMI pressure limit for the 9×19mm Parabellum +P is set at 38,500 psi. But now standard-issue for the US Army is apparently 39,700 psi.

    "...out of a 4.7"-barreled P320-M17, M1152 with the 115-gr. bullet was at 1326 f.p.s. and 449 ft.-lbs. of energy, while the M1153 clocked 962 f.p.s. with 302 ft.-lbs., both at 15 ft."

    edit: by standard-issue, I'm referring to the US Army standard
    edited to add link per request:
    https://www.americanrifleman.org/articles/2019/4/23/m1152-m1153-the-army-s-new-9-mm-luger-loads/
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2019
  2. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    Wow. Got a link to the source?
     
  3. Jack B.

    Jack B. Member

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    I've been looking but I can't find any reference to the standard-issue 39,700 psi. Seems a little high. Surely SAAMI would not list that as standard-issue.
     
  4. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    The military can set whatever spec they want. I read the OP to say that's the military standard for one particular ammo type... not SAAMI's.
     
  5. Jack B.

    Jack B. Member

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    cancel
     
  6. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    I was told once that 9mm ammo issued in the US mil is hotter than standard pressure because it must cycle reliably in SMG's like the MP5, which is pretty much obsolete even in SOF now. I have absolutely no proof this is true, it is just something I was told many years ago in training.
     
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  7. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

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    Some Police/Sheriffs patrol personnel are issued +P+ ammo, I know my local SO has issued 127 gr Win SXT +P+ for 9mm shooters for at least the last twelve years or more as that’s what they issue my office (contracted for tri-annual range and force training).

    Recently the Sheriffs office switched to 124 gr SXT +P. I was told it’s because the gun manufacturers won’t warranty repair guns that are used with +P+ ammo. I dunno what deal the military has with SIG, but if it’s high pressure loads that are going to be standard the guns (hopefully) are up to the task.

    Every year our ammo is rotated out. Instead of just blasting mine I keep it and put it in reserve. Even after shooting an occasional box or two in practice through the Glocks or the PC Carbine I must have nearly two cases of rotated-out +P+ ammo still on my shelf. :thumbup:

    Stay safe.
    22A7D7C8-1544-42ED-9A18-4E930771F4C2.jpeg
     
  8. entropy

    entropy Member

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    I concur, that is what I was told in Armorer School, before the M9 was even issued. The SEALS used even hotter ammo from IMI (procured for their MP5's) in some of the first M9's, and some slides cracked. I had no problems with the issue M882 cracking slides, or causing function issues with MP5's.
     
  9. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    The military is interested in defeating body armor. 9mm FMJ ammo at high velocity does this better than other calibers.
     
  10. entropy

    entropy Member

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    9mm NATO is inconsistent in defeating a frag vest, (remember those?) much less NIJ 3A. 5.7 would be a much better choice if that were the objective.
     
  11. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    I feel like we're watching the morphing of 9mm right before our eyes. 9mm +P+ (which has no specific meaning except "beyond the edge of the map") is becoming common in LEO, self-defense, and now US military ammo. Meanwhile, sport shooters in USPSA/IPSC are running 9mm up to velocities once only associated with topped-out 38 super... or .357 magnum 125 JHP's. Rather than tack an extra mm or two onto the case to keep all these +P+ rounds from being chambered in firearms not really built for them (ala the .357 magnum being stretched in large part to keep it from fitting in 38 special-length chambers), we're just ramping it up.
     
  12. sequins

    sequins Member

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    40k PSI in a 9mm really can't sound pleasant. I wonder if this stuff will start blowing up mouse guns.
     
  13. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    I can't speak to the new military ammo, but, yeah, these beyond-9mm-in-a-9mm-case loads are quite loud!
     
  14. Buzznrose

    Buzznrose Member

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    I learned some good things about SAAMI and ammo making in general in addition to some interesting stuff Federal Ammo is doing from the latest "Center Mass" podcast with Fred Mastison.

    http://toppodcast.com/podcast_feeds/center-mass-skillset-radio/

    "In this episode we are going to visit with JJ Reich of Federal Ammunition. We are going to talk about all of the great new ammo they are releasing and how to choose what you need!"

    Biggest thing for me was regarding SAAMI specs...how it was basically a standard, agreed upon by major ammo makers, to use as a guide for commercial ammo manufacturing on a "one-size-safe-for-all" basis. Certainly, they are considering performance, but they also need to think about liability as well.

    I'm not advocating exceeding SAAMI pressures out of hand, but I would be surprised it Winchester didn't meet with Sig Sauer and Beretta people to make sure the ammo they are planning to produce would be safe in the guns.


     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2019
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  15. labnoti

    labnoti Member

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    If AR's measurements are what's to be expected from the ammo, it seems like the 115 gr. M1152 with close to 40K psi pressure is reaching for .357 Sig velocities, but the 147 gr. M1153 which is also reported to produce almost 40K psi, doesn't seem higher in velocity than many factory self-defense loads (do we know the pressure those produce?).

    This is not armor piercing ammo. The Russians developed 9x19 loads for armor piercing like the 7N31. The US employed 5.7x28 in the P90 for a while but appear to be phasing those out for carbines in 5.56x45. I'm not aware of any serious effort in the US that produced widespread results for an armor-penetrating handgun.

    I agree with the assessment that what we're seeing is an effort to make 9x19 live up to the rhetoric behind its near universal adoption. I believe proof loads are around 45K psi and with a little effort and high-quality materials, we might see them go up a few thousand psi to increase the margin as production loads begin to exceed 40K psi. At this point, it would be easier to adopt higher pressure 9x19 than it would be to adopt some other cartridge design. New guns will need to be made stronger, but selling new guns chambered in 9x19 is not a problem. Pitching some new cartridge with a requirement to turnover all inventory of guns and ammo is totally untenable for the foreseeable future.

    I am not convinced the high pressures are worth it. Using some published load data and Quickload, I estimate the difference between a SAAMI-spec 9x19 124 gr. load at 35,000psi and one at 39,700psi is just under 50 fps. Stretching it to almost 43K psi could provide no more than about 100 fps over a SAAMI-spec standard pressure load. No doubt some will go there. For me personally, I do not load or shoot 9x19.
     
  16. fxvr5

    fxvr5 Member

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    Yes. Standard 9mm loads will not exceed a maximum average pressure of 35,000 psi, and the +P versions will not exceed 38,500 psi.

    Proof pressure for the 9mm is a maximum average 55,500 psi.

    https://saami.org/wp-content/upload...FP-and-R-Approved-2015-12-14-Posting-Copy.pdf
     
  17. labnoti

    labnoti Member

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    No, because if I buy a box of Winchester Ranger T Series +P+ that has nothing to do with SAAMI standard.
     
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  18. mdauben

    mdauben Member

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    Not sure if they still use it, but Federal 9BPLE 115 grain +P+ used to be the standard issue for the Illinois State Police.
     
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  19. fxvr5

    fxvr5 Member

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    Note that I was referring specifically to the 147 grain bullet and loads. I don't see a +P+ 147 load in Winchester's catalog.

    It's not correct to say that a +P+ has nothing to do with SAAMI's standard. The +P+ indicates it is loaded to a pressure above SAAMI's +P pressure limit, so for the 9mm it means that it's at a pressure over 38,500 psi. It's just not defined what that pressure might be.
     
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  20. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    It means you're in the part of the map where there are dragons and sea serpents.
     
  21. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    I'm reading this thread and can't help but wonder why the agencies who are abusing the guns and shooters with all the over pressure 9mm ammo just don't switch over the the 40 S&W instead? (or better yet back to the 45 Auto)

    I know the military can't because of the commonality requirement of NATO ammo but the others can.
     
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  22. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Oh, the Army can use whatever it wants -- and for many years we used a non-NATO standard pistol cartridge, the .45 ACP. We can always switch back.
     
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  23. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Member

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    Anybody considered the European CIP specs for the 9mm?
    NATO ammo has to function in everyone else’s guns, too.

    From what I’ve gleaned, the SAAMI specs for the 9mm are rather “tepid”.
    The Beretta slide cracking problem was not so much ammo related as it is a metallurgical/heat treating problem with Beretta’s in general.

    I had a Beretta TomCat .32acp that cracked both slide and frame from shooting Fiocchi.32 ammo. Beretta sent me a new gun with no discussion of ammo fired... .32 ammo is loaded to somewhat lower pressures than the 9mm SAAMI spec’s.

    You want to see what is being done by “OTHERS” with the 9mm, research the Russian “Grach” PYa service pistol, and the armor penetrating ammo it uses. The all steel Russian service model is prohibited from export, but the Viking version is exported. It’s still rated for European CIP pressure ammo. Or, what we are calling +P+...
    What’s interesting is that accuracy is stated a 1” at 25m 27yds!
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2019
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  24. Random 8

    Random 8 Member

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    Hypothetically speaking, let's imagine the 5.56 NATO cartridge was invented in 1908, with 1908 designs, powders and metallurgy. We'd probably be shooting low pressure loads in that as well.

    It's only natural that the 9mm cartridge would evolve with modern designs, metallurgy and powders. This is especially true for military and LE regimes, where there is little concern for somebody stuffing some in a P08 Luger or other more modern and cheaply made automatic. Basically, with a few minor exceptions, since the introduction of the Browning HP and the Walther P-38, 9mm service handguns have been capable of bottling these pressures. I think current LE and Military loadings are seeking to get the most possible out of the cartridge without the prohibitive expense of re-equipping with an entire new caliber. 9mm makes sense for LE as training ammunition is much less expensive than .40, .357 Sig, 10mm or 9x23.
     
  25. golden

    golden Member

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    The +P and +P+ designations and the NATO standard are set by different organizations, for different reasons.
    The U.S. ammo makers, up until the "wondernines" came on the scene, did little development for the 9m.m. x 19 round. U.S. ammo was widely known to be underloaded or loaded below the 35, 000 psi level. U.S. 9m.m. ammo would in many cases be in the under 1,100 fps for the 124 and sometimes the 115 grain bullets.
    Things have changed a lot.

    The U.S. military wants to hot load their ammo. A recent article in a trade journal stated that the U.S. army wanted to raise the pressure maximum of their ammo to the same level that they use in the 120 m.m. cannon on the M1 Abrams tank! That is 70,000 psi or at least as near as they can get.
    This way, they can get higher performance without changing guns, which is expensive.
    You have to remember, that many of the people coming up with these ideas are not looking at all this from a civilian use perspective. It may be possible to raise the pressure level for an M-4 carbine, but the short barrel which caused a performance drop from the M-16A2, may make this impossible without a larger case, like the .224 Valkyrie or .22 Nosler.
    Whether they will or just go to a larger caliber, is still up in the air. As long as they are being promised more money by the President and Congress gives it to them, the idea will remain alive as a project which may or may not produce anything, but will help improve the promotional potential of the people involved.

    The 9m.m. ammo specifications are probably more European than American. The U.S. military buys pistols, not because it wants to, but because M.P.'s and security forces need them. So do Special Warfare units and others where space is an issue. Pilots, tankers and non-infantrymen, like mortarmen also have a need.
    So the European specs, which have always been hotter than civilian U.S. ammo makers have been more important to the military, which really does not care about handguns.
    If you disagree, fine.

    Now, with the proliferation of body armor, velocity and penetration have become more important. In an insurgent war, a pistol should have maximum stopping power as you are likely to be in close contact with an un-armored opponent who is likely to be the one that initiates combat with ambushes. You are not going to see jihadist battalions marching up the road to attack U.S. bases when a radio call will bring F-15E's, F-16's, F-18's or worse, Apache gunships or A-10 attack aircraft. At the very least, you can expect rapid artillery attacks.

    In a near peer war, as the new buzzword calls it, you are more likely to be fighting an organized, heavily armed and very likely body armored opponent, so now penetration is the desired effect. When the NATO round was poor in stopping power, it is good in penetration and a steel tipped or tungsten steel tipped round would be very good.
    It all depends on your situation and needs.


    When I started in law enforcement, we had the option to carry a 9m.m. that we had to purchase from an approved list. I bought a GLOCK 19 and then a 17 and also a SIG 226 to find the one that fit me best. We had to use the standard issue ammo which was 115 grain WINCHESTER jhp +P+ for carry and qualification with standard 115 grain for practice. We later went to the 124 grain FEDERAL Hydra Shok +P+ for carry and used standard pressure Hydra Shok for practice! The velocity on the Hydra Shok was not much higher than the standard pressure load which was not that fast either. The noise, flash and muzzle blast were very noticeable with both +P+ loads and when I recently did my qualifications using my personally owned guns, the +P+ ammo was still loud, bright and less pleasant than the standard pressure ammo.
    I recently bought a BERETTA M9A3 and wanted to try it with the NATO load and +P and +P+ ammo. You immediately notice the difference compared to when shooting standard pressure ammo.
    The NATO load is a +P+ load as far as I am concerned, based on the noise and muzzle blast. It may be borderline with +P for pressure, but feel's like touching off a 110 grain .357 magnum. The +P ammo is almost as bad when fired from a shorter barreled gun. I have used a 3 inch and 3.6 barreled pistols and think it is borderline for the improved performance versus the less pleasant shooting.
    For me, I will stick with standard pressure FEDERAL HST ammo in my 9m.m. pistols.

    I know that a number of law enforcement agencies went to the +P+ ammo to get some real performance out of the 9m.m. The Illinois State Police found the FEDERAL 115 grain jhp +P+ ammo did exactly what they wanted and my agency had no complaints about the performance of our 9m.m. pistols with the +P+ ammo. I think that the premium bullet ammo that all the ammo makers are not providing perform well enough that you can skip the +P+ and even the +P ammo in the 9m.m. if the barrel is at least 3.5 inches.
    However, one advantage of so many choices is that you can suit your needs and suit yourself.

    Just my 2 cents worth

    Jim
     
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