What is the most Lethal 380 ACP ammo on the market

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by 2'Bucks'11, Mar 4, 2012.

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  1. 2'Bucks'11

    2'Bucks'11 Member

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    Cant Fix off a bit when I need to be extra quick that is true. I can't exactly ask my attacker to wait while I aim...Have you ever tried that? :) So back to Hp v ball...
     
  2. 2'Bucks'11

    2'Bucks'11 Member

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    Cant Fix off a bit when I need to be extra quick that is true. I can't exactly ask my attacker to wait while I aim...Have you ever tried that? :) So back to Hp v ball... What works in this small of a cal? Is there benefits to just wounding and would that work better?
     
  3. ku4hx

    ku4hx Member

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    Bottom line is there just ain't no magic bullets, shot placement is king and buy and shoot the most powerful and reliable cartridge you can consistently shoot accurately. More simply put, "It all depends".
     
  4. kokapelli

    kokapelli Member

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    And if it's a fmj it goes through more tissue, so which is best. I like more Tissue damage due to more depth.

    Jhp may or may not reach a critical organ where a fmj will reach the organ and likely leave an entrance and exit hole in it. I like the probability of two holes verses a single and little larger hole.
     
  5. Thompsoncustom

    Thompsoncustom Member

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    Well I would say that swampfox ammo was the hottest out there but the owner passed so that's a no go, grizzly xtreme would by far make the biggest hole but there is not a lot of data out of these rounds because they are so pricy. Magsafe makes some birdshot-holllowpoint like bullets that travel at around 1800fps but they only weight 52gr.

    There are a lot of different options and exotic ammo out there but does one really work any better than the other I don't know, personally I carry standard hollowpoints.
     
  6. kokapelli

    kokapelli Member

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    What difference does velocity play in a 380 round?
    If a Winchester semi wadcutter will penetrate 16" of ballistic gelatin at a little over 800 fps, what would be the benefit of a little more velocity?

    All this discussion of what this round will do and what that round will do imo is useless in 380.

    The round is what it is and as long as it penetrates deep enough to hit something vital is pretty much all one can expect.
     
  7. Loosedhorse

    Loosedhorse member

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    It might. Depends.

    An FMJ doesn't necessarily go through more tissue. In a straight, frontal chest shot, the most any bullet can go through is the thinkness of the chest from front to back. If the JHP gets to the far skin, but the FMJ sails clean through, well, you have similar length wound tracks, even though the FMJ "could have" gone through more.

    And then there's the question of downrange safety when a HC bullet that can penetrate over 20 inches of flesh and bone exits after going though a chest that's a bit over 12 inches thick.

    In any case, my point was that the expansion of a slug does not compensate for poor aim. Or even for bad luck!
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2012
  8. dfsixstring

    dfsixstring Member

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    I carry the Hornady 90 grain .380 in my LCP. BTW - I've fired everything from Federal, to Winchester, Hornady to TullAmmo in my LCP without a "SINGLE" feed issue.
     
  9. kokapelli

    kokapelli Member

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    Most "stops" are psychological, not physiological in nature. The bad guy either faints or makes a voluntary decision to stop what he's doing. It's possible that a bullet with more "wallop," one that quickly delivers its energy and produces more blunt force sensation, might play a role in producing psychological collapse. But, psychological reaction to being shot is highly erratic and unreliable. It doesn't happen to everyone, especially a highly motivated attacker who's determined to cause as much harm as he can before he's stopped.

    Unless you're clairvoyant, you cannot predict the exact circumstances of any self-defense situation you might find yourself in. Therefore, your goal in choosing a bullet for personal defense should be to select one that will be effective in as many different scenarios as possible.

    Your bullet must be able to penetrate deeply enough to contact and destroy tissue that is critical to the immediate survival of your attacker.

    The two most important factors in stopping a bad guy are: 1) where you place your bullets, and 2) what organs your bullets penetrate and damage.
    How much penetration is adequate?

    According to the nation's most prominent wound ballistics experts, your bullets should penetrate at least 12 inches of soft tissue. Penetration beyond 18 inches is considered too much, and a less penetrating design should be considered to optimize the cartridge's wounding potential.

    But with small caliber cartridges such as .22 LR, .25 ACP, and .32 ACP (and sometimes .380 ACP), you're better off selecting a non-expanding bullet that might exceed 18 inches of penetration than to choose a bullet that expands and underpenetrates.

    When a bullet expands, the increased diameter and non-aerodynamic shape acts like a parachute to quickly slow and stop the bullet as it penetrates flesh. These tiny bullets lack the mass and momentum to achieve adequate penetration after they expand.

    Bullets that meet the 12-18 inch penetration guidelines have proven to be very effective in police shooting incidents that have been investigated by reputable researchers who use the scientific method. These findings have been verified and validated by other distinguished wound ballistics researchers who've fully reviewed the data.

    These findings are far superior in validity to the Marshall/Sanow "one-shot stopping power" junk-science that is published in newsstand gun magazines.

    http://www.firearmstactical.com/briefs3.htm

    And if your on the Hornady Critical Defense band wagon you might want to look at this article

    http://www.firearmstactical.com/tacticalbriefs/2006/04/main.htm
     
  10. 2'Bucks'11

    2'Bucks'11 Member

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    It's not that I'm on the Hornady Critical Defense band wagon per-say. They just were on sale. I have a hard time passing a buy one get one 1/2 off ammo sale.
     
  11. fatfreddiescat

    fatfreddiescat Member

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    guy wants a simple suggestion or two on opinion as to the quality/reliability of a cartridge for a .380. 15-20 opinions about hot air, and whichever goes the straightest, and other buffoon-sent answers.
    Does anyone have an opinion as to the better shot? I like Speer Gold Dot.
     
  12. nelson133

    nelson133 Member

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    So as you (the op) can see there are many opinions and very little repeatable, verifiable facts. As said above, make sure that what ever you carry in your gun, works in your gun every time. If you have to shoot, shoot until the threat stops and you can get away. Carry the most powerful round with the most magazine capacity you can manage. Remember that there is less difference in lethality between a .380 and a .45 than there is between a .45 and a 12 gauge or a 5.56. All pistol are lousy stoppers when compared to long guns.
     
  13. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Member

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    That 1/7 of an inch could mean life or death, especially where shot placement is concerned. I would not forget that. When we are talking about a 2/7" diameter increase across the face of the slug during expansion, that may be the tissue destruction factor needed.

    As for my subjective answer to the OP, I prefer Speer GD. Shot into wet pack, it is quite devastating, Dow what it is. Yet I agree with kokapelli, shot placement is key. Although, has anyone researched
    whether or not hydrostatic shock apllies to .380?


    Edit: Looked for myself, and sadly it does not contain enough mass or velocity to induce hydrostatic shock.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2012
  14. cluznar

    cluznar Member

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    No ammo is any good if you miss your target, SHOT PLACEMENT is more critical than ammo. I use Corbon Pwrball ammo or Hornady Critical Defense ammo in my Bersa Thunder .380 for carry.
     
  15. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Member

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    In my state, you cannot just wake up, find a guy stealing your TV, and shoot him. You or those in your home must be in threat of their lives in order to legally defend yourself. This means that if a BG has a knife, bat, gun, etc., I'm going to be a little on the skittish/adrenaline fueled side. I agree shot placement is king, but I doubt most HONEST folks will tell you that they would take the time to aim better than center of mass. Not me: I want to feasibly hit my target and put them down, but not take the time to think TOO much about aiming, when I can instinctively point, squeeze, and end the threat. To help this, I myself believe in tissue destruction, not penetration. If I can get a few more thousandths of an inch in wound channel diameter, meaning more blood loss or hydrostatic damage to organs necessary for the function of living, I'll take it. So, to me, shot placement is king...bullet expansion is the vicious, ugly queen. I've read the article that kokapelli posted a few months prior, and based soley on research, I'd prefer a slug that dumps as much energy into soft tissue, causing as much hydrostatic shock to organs as possible, rather than taking precious moments to aim squarely at any one specific place or using FMJ.
     
  16. ByAnyMeans

    ByAnyMeans Member

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    I go with WWB flat nose for my P3AT. As stated reliability is most important with accuracy after that. WWB has been completely reliable for my pistol and it is also my practice ammo. The FNFMJ gets plenty of penetration.
     
  17. kokapelli

    kokapelli Member

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    This is my choice as well for my 380 pistols.
     
  18. Motownfire

    Motownfire Member

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    My Ruger LCP enjoys eating Hornady Critical Defense .380 ammo. Prior to carrying mine, I sent 200 rounds of it down range to ensure the gun would operate correctly with that ammo. With 200 rounds of Hornaday Critical Defense ammo and about 800 rounds of Federal brass FMJ ammo it has not had a malfunction. I am confident that this little pocket gun will operate any time I need it to.
     
  19. m2steven

    m2steven Member

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    I think everything else being equal, Buffalo Bore ammo will turn your 380 into a genuine self defense pistol. I've used one type of Corbon which I also thought was terrific. It was a hot hollow point which has fed perfectly in every 380 I've tested. Corbon is not as hot as Buffalo Bore, but it's great ammunition.
     
  20. JohnnyOrygun

    JohnnyOrygun Member

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    Interesting article, talks about most calibers from 22 up and makes recommendations for different guns.

    http://www.chuckhawks.com/ammo_by_anonymous.htm

    Hope it helps, I'm going to try out the author's recommendations for my p3at.
    John
     
  21. wild cat mccane

    wild cat mccane Member

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    "Old Grandpa" at KTRange has does the most extensive testing of .380 ammo out a of Kel Tec P3AT (and therefore the Ruger LCP).

    Speer Gold Dot expands the most while penetrating the deepest.

    I highly suggest you look at his work at KTRange (though he posts in KTOG) before you take any random advice here.
     
  22. wild cat mccane

    wild cat mccane Member

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    Buffalo Bore uses a generic hollow point in their .380. So even though it might be fastest, it uses the worst hollow point technology. This means a slower bullet using Barnes, Gold Dot, etc, can still be better as a hollow point.

    Search KTOG on the issue. Quite well known even if you didn't know.
     
  23. kokapelli

    kokapelli Member

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    Old Grandpa uses wet packs (newspapers) to test bullet performance and IMO there is just no way to get consistant results with different bundles of soaked newspapers.

    Also wet newspaper isn't in anyway similar to human tissue.

    If you want to know how a bullet will perform in real world conditions, find calibrated ballistic gelatin test results instead of bundled wet newspapers.
     
  24. Steve C

    Steve C Member

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    As far as it goes this is likely true however death of the assailant isn't a requirement for successful self defense. Most handgun shootings are not lethal and certainly not immediately lethal. The purpose of using JHP is that it makes a larger hole and if you have to rely on circulatory system depletion to stop the assailants agression then a larger hole brings that on faster.

    At best a JHP will expand and produce a large wound cavity, at worst its hollow gets plugged or closed off and fails to expand so it acts as a solid nose bullet. Solids never expand and have no opportunity to produce a larger wound cavity.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2012
  25. marcclarke

    marcclarke Member

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    "Lethal"?
     
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