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My take and only MY opinion. In normal times any bullet that is FMJRN is a last resort; there are too many great bullet designs used such as Hydrashok, Nyclad, etc..and I understand a lot is not available...That stated, if all you have is FMJRN use it. Reloaders have the advantage of being able to load what ever they need...those caught behind the 8ball shall use what they have but realize that the "cavitation effect" of a hollow point is gone and the shock of dumping the full energy is gone. The FMJ is used by militaries and it works, it wounds and eventually kills or maimes and it causes several support troops to be activated. I personally only carry FMJ ammo in two calibers.....32ACP I carry Fiocchi and .380 I carry FMJFP...When I carry a 9/40 or 45 it is an expanding bullet that hopefully stays in the body of the assailant,..that is my beef with FMJ aka non expanding bullets, they tend to over penetrate which in an ideal situation works best..if the SHTF.use what ever you have...JMHO
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
^^^Not why the thread got started?
No, sir.

As a nerdy ballistics geek, I hang around with a few other nerdy ballistics geeks. Yesterday (?) we were discussing the .45 acp and the energy from different barrel lengths, +p, not +p, the ‘best’ platforms, etc.

One guy said he’s been impressed with flat-nosed .45 acp such as the Browning round and there’s a Winchester round.

This led to a discussion on fmj vs hp for self defense rounds. Four of the five carry fmj in a .45 acp caliber pistol. Another guy and I prefer hollow points, but I’d be content with fmj, all thing’s considered. That’s for the .45 acp pistols, not the 9mms.

So, I got to wondering what the brethren and sisteren on ye olde G&G had to say.

Pretty boring, huh?
 

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Depends, Long tirade and biased opinion follows. I carried 1911s with ball in the Military Police and never had a worry and never heard of a worry. My buddy shot a guy in the belly at about 3 feet, the guy was coming at him at a rush, shut him down quick. I later carried ball ammo in the CONUS and elsewhere in anti-terrorist operations. For those that may not know the military jargon counter terrorist ops is shooting them in their beds, like Bin Laden, Navy Seals and old Delta missions in my day. Anti-terrorrist ops are laying in wait for them to come and shooting them when they are wide awake coming for you. The thought at the time was that shooting through a car door was a good thing, shooting through a wall was a good thing, and if the bullet went all the way thru the bad guy it gave you two locations for air to enter and blood to leak out. Point is no military guy was worried about not having the latest hollow point ammo like cops do in downtown locations where people are out in the open. You may remember back in those days the FBI SWAT and LA County SWAT and many big city SWAT had entry guys lead with 1911s in hand. The guys with the little ARs came in after the room was clear or at least the lead guys were in the door.

I also carried military issue 38 special ball, 130 grain in a model 15 SW and an Issue model 36 3 inch. They were not good stoppers at close range so the training was 2 to the body one to the head. Except for the guy who attacked the beauty queen in the Phillipines, (he took 5 hits of 38 ball and did not go down). Except for that guy I am not aware of anyone not stopping a bad guy with the 130 grain military ball. It as hot ammo, basically like 9mm ball today.

Later in civilian law enforcement I carried the gee whiz JHP ammo but never shot a person with it so nothing to report. However, once while hunting in Colorado I knocked a mule deer down and did not seem to need a follow up. So, I slung my 308 and walked to it. As I got there up it came, I grabbed my 1911 and shot it 3 times and nothing happened so I shot it in the neck with my 308. When I skinned the deer I found very nice mushroomed bullets about 6-8 inches into the deer, worthless. The were 185 grain Silvertips, rated back then as a top 45 acp defense load. Since then, I tend to carry ball ammo. I have a SW Governor where the ammo only gets about 750 fps, I prefer the ball ammo. Even slow 45 asp ball ammo will penetrate 2 feet.

Two rules, there is no substitute for penetration, never. Rule 2, there is no substitute for penetration. I own a bunch of Golden Sabre, Hydroshock, Corbon, and several other top brand defense loads. But if I am hiking where there are hogs, I take ball ammo, if I walk where there are pit bulls I take ball ammo. Did I say I like ball ammo?

Last thought. In August of 1986 I was in Edmond, Oklahoma on the morning that Patrick Sherill walked into the post office and killed 14 and wounded a half dozen more. I walked toward the police cars as they rushed to the scene but of course we were turned away. I could not hear it but others told me they heard the shots as he went room to room. I had lived in that town had been in law enforcement there and had been in that post office a hundred times. I later talked to local officers who confirmed that he used 2 military issue 1911s, assigned to the National Guard Pistol Team. I was told that the ammo was 200 grain wadcutters loaded to about 700 fps, target loads. FWIW

Later for personal carry I bought and used IMI ammo created by the Israeli Defense folks and still have a few. They are ball ammo, 190 grain, truncated cone design. If I can find them I will post a picture. The develop 490 foot pounds from a 5 inch barrel.

So, yes I sometime carry ball ammo in a 45 and have zero worries, I carried it on days I was not sure I would come home and still have that confidence. You can shoot through car doors and walls and glass and heavy jackets and pit bulls and hogs. If it does not work, I do not know what to say, except maybe fire a second round.

My 2 cents.
 

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I started out in 71 issued a 38 Spec Smith, then they went to 357 Colt border patrol. Didn't care for it, them came my favorite 45 long colt Smith, fell in love, THEN we went to the 92F barettas, Didn't care for it at all. No knock down at all. Above photo with my grease gun I mailed he picture back home to a girl friend and she glued it into a scrap book and glue came through.
 

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the 'house gun' is a smiff 624 in 45 acp.
it's loaded with 225gr rnfp lead bullets.
same load that has shot a few stupid deer as i rolled up on them on the 4 wheeler.

yes,,, they go in and out the other side, i wouldn't use them if they didn't.
 

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I had a conversation about this with a retired Navy Chief a week or two ago. He was telling a sea story and asserted that if you got a head shot with .45 ACP ammo it would blow the back of someone's head off. I informed him that, at least with ball ammo such as what the military issues, that will not happen. You will get a pass through with two neat holes. I've seen it in real life.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
I had a conversation about this with a retired Navy Chief a week or two ago. He was telling a sea story and asserted that if you got a head shot with .45 ACP ammo it would blow the back of someone's head off. I informed him that, at least with ball ammo such as what the military issues, that will not happen. You will get a pass through with two neat holes. I've seen it in real life.
God bless you, my friend.
 

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my main loads (plinking, target & hunting) for the .45 ACP use 200 gr. swc bullets. they give the penetration of ball ammo but the semi wadcutter design cuts a neat .45 hole through the animal that bleeds really good. where as round nose bullets (ball) pushes tissue out of the way and delivers less shock. same reason that when hunting with a big bore revolver I use "Kieth style" lead bullets. when I carry a .45 acp for urban carry, I load 200 gr h.p. bullets, usually XTPs. only for fear that the swc bullets will go thru a bad guy and hit someone else.
 

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No, sir.

As a nerdy ballistics geek, I hang around with a few other nerdy ballistics geeks. Yesterday (?) we were discussing the .45 acp and the energy from different barrel lengths, +p, not +p, the ‘best’ platforms, etc.

One guy said he’s been impressed with flat-nosed .45 acp such as the Browning round and there’s a Winchester round.

This led to a discussion on fmj vs hp for self defense rounds. Four of the five carry fmj in a .45 acp caliber pistol. Another guy and I prefer hollow points, but I’d be content with fmj, all thing’s considered. That’s for the .45 acp pistols, not the 9mms.

So, I got to wondering what the brethren and sisteren on ye olde G&G had to say.

Pretty boring, huh?
No no! Ballistics are never boring. I would agree on the FMJ 45, but I do believe the Flatnose would make a large difference versus the round nose or pointed tip. I sure wouldn’t want to test the theory but I can only imagine how much force you would get hit with being shot by a flat nose 45 ACP bullet.
 

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I had a conversation about this with a retired Navy Chief a week or two ago. He was telling a sea story and asserted that if you got a head shot with .45 ACP ammo it would blow the back of someone's head off. I informed him that, at least with ball ammo such as what the military issues, that will not happen. You will get a pass through with two neat holes. I've seen it in real life.
Two? As in an entry and an exit?
 

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I started out n 71 issued a 38 Spec Smith, then they went to 357 Colt border patrol. Didn't care for it, them came my favorite 45 long colt Smith, fell in love, THEN we went to the 92F barettas, Didn't care for it at all. No knock down at all. Aove photo with my grease gun I mailed he picture back home to a girl friend and she glued it into a scrap book and glue came through.
I do not think the 45 Colt is adequate for anything serious. That is why I stopped buying them at number 5. In that stainless Bisley I can load them to 1,200 foot pounds, hot enough that the hot shots at the range only want to shoot a couple or I can load them down to 45 acp levels for the smaller guns. In the Governor and Peacemakers they plod along at 800 fps in the Ruger 1,300 fps mild to wild.

I actually do load 230 grain ball ammo in the Ruger, wonderful rounds. At 1,300 fps I have no clue what the penetration will be. Loaded them for hogs, just have not hunted them yet.
162768
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
No no! Ballistics are never boring. I would agree on the FMJ 45, but I do believe the Flatnose would make a large difference versus the round nose or pointed tip. I sure wouldn’t want to test the theory but I can only imagine how much force you would get hit with being shot by a flat nose 45 ACP bullet.
When the Browning .45 acp came out years ago, I took a box to a buddy’s range. We were shooting the stink out water jugs.

The flat nosed .45 acp, though not as spectacular as hollow points, caused considerably more damage than round nose. They’re loaded a little hotter, which helps, as well.

I understand our tests won’t win any scientific method awards, but it was evident to us that the flat nose was the shizzle.
 

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When the Browning .45 acp came out years ago, I took a box to a buddy’s range. We were shooting the stink out water jugs.

The flat nosed .45 acp, though not as spectacular as hollow points, caused considerably more damage than round nose. They’re loaded a little hotter, which helps, as well.

I understand our tests won’t win any scientific method awards, but it was evident to us that the flat nose was the shizzle.
I would not call 45 hollow points spectacular. Back when they believeghin the Sanow tests the Federal 230 grain Hydroshock was the standard by which all were judged. I shot them a lot, but never a person, so no personal knowledge. But I would not call them spectacular.

Full disclosure here. When the Hydroshock was being created they went through several modifications starting with the 357 mag. I worked at a federal agency that was given some of that prototype ammo to test and report back general observations. So, I was tasked with my own observations as to recoil, flash, accuracy and any terminal effects that I felt relative to field agent use. Keep in mind the FBI carried 3 inch model 13s at that time. The State Department carried 2.5 inch Model 19s. Several agencies were issuing or thinking about issuing the 2.5 inch model 66 at the time. The loads were being developed as close range anti-terrorist defensive use ammo for State Department Security Agents. DEA guys were also carrying the model 19 2.5 inch. So Federal was trying to lock in those federal agencies with ammo contracts. I may post a picture of those proto type rounds when I get home tonight. They were a little different that what we buy today.

The 9mm was simply not considered viable when the 357 could develope 1,500 fps and the 9mm could only get to about 1,100 fps in the same size gun. That was a massive difference in arm length shock effect.

At that time the water test was considered helpfull. Except they did not shoot gallon jugs. They shot them into swimming pools and measured how far they went before they stopped. The second test was the wooden box. We simply built a long box that would hold 1 inch wooden pine boards one inch apart. It was a good indicator of penetration of walls and such and still is.

So, I think your tests are about as valid as all the gee whiz tests. If you shoot various types of ammo, you can sure compare the impact and penetration. I suppose we could put the wooden box inside a little swimming pool and get a better test? I may do that..
 
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I'd bet a heavier flat nose, exposed lead tip would be pretty devastating from a .45 acp.

I'd put it like this, if i had to choose, it would be of the following hierarchy:

JHP+p

jhp

soft lead tip

fmj

the .45 is alittle more forgiving than other, lowlier calibers.
 

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During the years we had 2 officers shot with 45s. Both almost lost an arm. One officer the perp got his 45 long colt hitting him in his arm. Other stopped a guy for questioning and perp was carrying his room mates 1911. This officer I had to take him to rehab appointments. 1st officer hit by hollow point, 2nd I dont know.
 
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