What school of thought do you subscribe to?
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Thread: What school of thought do you subscribe to?

  1. #1

    What school of thought do you subscribe to?

    Basically when it comes to ammo there are two schools of thought. One says that lighter, and therefore, faster bullets, are more effective. The other believes that slower, heavier bullets are more effective.

    Personally, I carry 147gr ammo and am happy to sacrifice a couple hundred FPS to use a bullet with more mass behind it. My thinking is that it will penetrate better because it will slow down less when it actually hits a person. Looking at test data of recently developed big name rounds, I noticed that the heavier bullets actually penetrated ballistic gel further than lighter rounds. Who knows what this means in real life...but I do know the 147gr rounds let me line up follow-up shots quicker than lighter +p rounds.

    Any thoughts?

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  3. #2
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    My school of thought is if it goes bang then it's going to be effective. I carry most of the time a 9mm, light and fast. I sometimes carry a 380, 357 sig, 40 cal or 45 cal. I prefer shot placement and shot quantity. Six placed rounds from a underrated 380 will stop someone in their tracks. What you want to carry is a weapon that is comfortable and one you can shoot accurately.
    USAF Retired, CATM, SC CWP, NH NR CWP, NRA Benefactor
    To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them... -- Richard Henry Lee, 1787

  4. I tend to prefer the heavier rounds myself. I prefer .45 cal though I will be getting a .38 snub as a BUG. For me .38 is about as low on the power side I am willing to go. You can only go so far in regards to how effective velocity is. Take the military's 5.56mm for example it does not provide the needed knock down power, at close range it will go completely through the enemy with out causing imediate death. You may knock him down but unless you hit him in the heart, head or spine he will get up again.

    Shot placement is always key. So I believe you need to find a caliber you feel you can control accurately. I feel this is the real limit for selecting the proper caliber in a hand gun. I know many people who prefer a .357 magnum over a .38 SPL and in the right gun matched to the right person it is great however in a 15 oz little snub it is hard to control and painful too. That is the point I am trying to make.

    Whatever you carry you need to ensure that it is capable of penetrating 12 inches of ballistic gel that is considered by many the prefered amount for a fatal shot. There are hundreds of web sites out there that you can use to check these stats and of course many gun magazines do reviews on the ammo as well so just look at the information that is out there and buy a few boxes and head to the range to see which one feels right in your hand.
    ["Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!"
    - Ben Franklin
    FONT]

  5. #4

    Three most critical factors of takedown efficiency

    1. Placement

    2. Placement

    3. PLACEMENT
    Reality, DEAL with IT!

  6. #5
    Well I'm a huge fan of the 1911 and I think it's ultimately one of the best guns ever made. One of my favorite things about it is that you can get it in something BESIDES a .45!

    Anyone with a basic knowledge of physics will understand that heavy bullets will travel a little farther into ballistic gel. Last time I checked, ballistic gel doesn't move or have bones so it's hard to miss and easy to damage. If you're confident with hitting/stopping 3-6 BG or more with 8 rounds then I applaud your confidence.

    I know I don't need my round to "start with a .4X" and I also know that if I fire, each BG is gonna catch at LEAST 2 rounds the first time my sights cross center mass. My M&P will hold 12+1 and I always have another 12 handy. ;)

    My $.02
    Last edited by Memphis; 02-10-2008 at 11:08 AM.
    Unapologetic American
    NRA/IDPA/USPSA/GSSF

  7. #6
    Big and fast is what I like 185 or 200 grain corbons 45.

  8. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by ecocks View Post
    1. Placement

    2. Placement

    3. PLACEMENT
    This is true but I would argue there are clear differences in bullets within the same caliber type...

  9. I don't know how much "real world" difference there is, but I recently switched from 115 gr +P JHP 9mm to 147gr JHP in my CZ RAMI. I made the switch mainly because my RAMI didn't feed light +P rounds reliably. Ever since I switched to the heavier non +P rounds, I have 400-500 rounds without a hitch. The more I think about it, I guess I do like the idea of a heavier, slower bullet for close range encounters....seems like there'd be less chance of over-penetration. I haven't seen any studies to back this up though. Anyway, just my opinion.
    "Though defensive violence will always be 'a sad necessity' in the eyes of men of principle, it would be still more unfortunate if wrongdoers should dominate just men." St. Augustine A.D. 354-430

    -LP

  10. #9
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    I think getting the job done is what is important...

    I prefer a big heavy .45 for its knockdown without over penetration. I think fast and light has just as much potential for knockdown power. I don't trust a 9MM due to the fact that it will go really fast and hit folks behind a BG. This is just me and my mindset. I would love to try some of the frangible airmarshal type rounds.
    FESTUS
    IN OMNIA PARATUS

  11. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by 2075RAMI4ME View Post
    I don't know how much "real world" difference there is, but I recently switched from 115 gr +P JHP 9mm to 147gr JHP in my CZ RAMI. I made the switch mainly because my RAMI didn't feed light +P rounds reliably. Ever since I switched to the heavier non +P rounds, I have 400-500 rounds without a hitch. The more I think about it, I guess I do like the idea of a heavier, slower bullet for close range encounters....seems like there'd be less chance of over-penetration. I haven't seen any studies to back this up though. Anyway, just my opinion.
    Stolen from an old post in Glock Talk:

    Now let's compare the two rounds using Winchester's penetration numbers in bare gelatin:

    147gr = 13.9"
    124gr+P = 12.2"

    If the 124gr. +P has more momentum than the 147, why did the 147gr. penetrate deeper?

    That is because the 124gr. was dependent on it's velocity for it's momentum. Once the bullet strikes it's target, the velocity is quickly lost where as the mass of the 147gr, not being as dependent on velocity for it's momentum, penetrated deeper. The higher velocity 124gr bullet almost assuredly expanded quicker than the 147gr bullet due to it's velocity further reducing it's penetration. In this example the 124gr. bullet expanded to .70 caliber where as the 147gr. expanded to .65 and retained more weight - 141gr. overall compared to 116.2 for the 124gr bullet.

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