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Old 02-16-2010, 08:43   #1
J_Rico
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Reliability of Budget JHPs

Hello GTers,

There are plenty of debates here about the "best" defensive round. Not looking to start another.

IMO reliability is #1 when talking defensive ammo. Has anyone had any reliability issues with the budget jhps? The Remington bulk jhps or the WWB jhps?

My supply of "premium" ammo is finite. The supply line is shaky and unreliable. I may switch over to a budget line at some point as long as it feeds, goes bang and flies reasonably straight.

Thanks,
WB
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Old 02-16-2010, 09:30   #2
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WWB hollow points perform surprisingly well. I wouldn't use them if I had other choices though.
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Old 02-16-2010, 10:56   #3
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WWB hollow points perform surprisingly well. I wouldn't use them if I had other choices though.
I agree.

The WinUSA 9mm (USA9JHP2) and .45ACP (USA45JHP) ammuniton is loaded with the same bullet that used to be (in) Winchester's LE ammo line years back and is still designated as "Personal Protection" on the box. While not "premium" by any stretch of the imagination, they'll do until you can find more of your primary ammunition selection.
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Old 02-16-2010, 11:34   #4
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Given that few persons other than LEO will need to be able to shoot through the sheet metal or windshields of automobiles, it is debatable just how less than satisfactory are the less than premium loads currently available.

One can not help but wonder to what degree the emphasis on high-tech cutting edge development of the latest bullet/powder combination boils down to simply marketing of product to increase sales.

For instance, I remember with the Nosler Ballistic Tip bullet hit the market. I have used this bullet and find it to be very effective. However, I have not found it to be superior in effect on game to the basic soft-point hunting bullets loaded in factory ammunition by Remington, Winchester, Federal, etc. Because I simply like them, I load and shoot the Nosler BT. But I cannot justify that choice on any real world observation. It would be of real interest if it were possible to compare the actual real world effectiveness of premium SD/HD loads to the more common JHP handgun loads currently marketed by the major ammunition manufacturers. Sincerely. Brucev.
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Old 02-16-2010, 12:59   #5
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if I had nothing else I may try this but I would rather bet my ass on a top of the line carry load plus alot of times you dont save that much more. I got a case of ranger T for 18 bucks a box in 9mm and 19 for the 40 cal I got. If I had to go low budget I would go with the GA arms gold dot loads but now a days most ammo isnt that much cheaper
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Old 02-16-2010, 13:00   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weybug View Post
Hello GTers,

There are plenty of debates here about the "best" defensive round. Not looking to start another.

IMO reliability is #1 when talking defensive ammo. Has anyone had any reliability issues with the budget jhps? The Remington bulk jhps or the WWB jhps?

My supply of "premium" ammo is finite. The supply line is shaky and unreliable. I may switch over to a budget line at some point as long as it feeds, goes bang and flies reasonably straight.

Thanks,
WB
My problem w/ UMC or WWB is not the bullet but the ammo itself. It's of mediocre quality. That is not what I want to put into my SD pistol. I have no issues using not so premium Hornady, BlackHills for example.
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Old 02-16-2010, 13:08   #7
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Originally Posted by fredj338 View Post
My problem w/ UMC or WWB is not the bullet but the ammo itself. It's of mediocre quality. That is noit what I want to put into my SD pistol. I have no issues using not so premium Hornady, BlackHills for example.
Thank you for the reply, this is exactly the information that I was seeking.

Quality control not "performance". Have you seen QC issues? Ammo failures?
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Old 02-16-2010, 19:51   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weybug View Post
Thank you for the reply, this is exactly the information that I was seeking.

Quality control not "performance". Have you seen QC issues? Ammo failures?
Maybe I just use good equipment to feed it through, or I'm the luckiest MoFo alive, but I've NEVER EVER EVER had WWB 9 or 45 ACP or 45 GAP, FMJ or JHP, not go 'bang' first time or fail to feed/eject. I don't reload anymore so there was a time my entire ammo budget went through Wally World 100 rounds at a time for IDPA, range use, and just banging away at beer cans in the backwoods. No "OOPS. What happened there?". No "#*%@ POS cheap ammo!" Just bangity bang bang bang when I mashed the boom button.

As far as the JHP version? Never had to resort to it in 9mm because they all feed Gold Dots and/or DPX perfectly (Glock, Berretta, SiG), but if I got a 1911 that's chokin' and pukin' on GDHP's or HST's it gets Wilson mags first and WWB 230 JHP next. Guess what? They suddenly 'feel much better'. Ever Look at the ogive on the WWB JHP? Damn near hardball with a hole drilled in the end to expose the lead core.

I can't say from experience, but I'm pretty sure mister bump-in-the-night bad guy ain't gonna die laughin' 'cause he happens to recognize the tip of a WWB JHP 4 1/2 inches down that big dark tube in his face . Like someone said earlier: LE used this kind of 'low-tech' JHP for decades, and soldiers used hardball for almost 75 years - and a lot of men died!

A lot - definitely not all, but a lot - of what you see and hear recommended about ammo on forums like this, in gun shops, and at the range is just advertising, packaging, and vanity ("Yeah, well I carry the 'X-cut, bronze-coated, antimony core Destroyminator 230 +P+ Squared' in my (fill in the blank)! And I put 3 rounds down range twice a year to prove functionality [I know, big word], and then clean the gun for 3 hours before I EVER put it back in the holster.) Pffft, whatever you need to get you there, cammo commando.

To be sure, some rounds are more highly engineered, better designed, and (marginally) more effective on certain media and in certain tests than others, and Glocks don't 'choke and puke' on much from what I've seen. But ammo companies gotta get someone to pay for that R&D (for us lucky taxpayers, it's usually done through LE contracts) and I bet Mr. BG can't tell you the difference on the spot between a good solid thoracic hit as the result from lots of practice with WWB JHP or any other 'modern, bonded design'. And I doubt the coroner could either... Just my $0.02 FWIW.

Cheers,
Kpr
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Old 02-16-2010, 22:31   #9
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Originally Posted by weybug View Post
Thank you for the reply, this is exactly the information that I was seeking.

Quality control not "performance". Have you seen QC issues? Ammo failures?
THe bulk pack ammo, like UMC & WWB, are made using low bidder components. While they probably always go bang, accuracy, at least for me, has always been marginal. There is merit in using higher quality ammo. You are likely to get one chance to save your life, do you really want to trust it to ammo made in a foreign country w/ minimal quality control, using the cheapest powders & primers & bullets that may or may not perform as intended? Me, only if I have no choice. Right now, you have many. A JHP from any of the majors will work, some slightly better than others, but they will work. You need very little SD ammo, 100rds will last years. Practice w/ the krap & carry the good stuff.
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Old 02-16-2010, 22:36   #10
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Whatever you carry, I think you need a MINIMUM of 250 rounds of it down the tube before you should be carrying it. If you can only afford to do that with WWB, then I would recommend WWB. However, if you can afford to do that with Ranger T/Gold Dot/HST, then I do think you would be better served to do so.

On a side-note, I use ammo from the same lot #. My MO is to buy about 1,000 rounds or so of it, shoot 250, and keep the rest loaded in mags/stashed away in an ammo-box. That way I further remove variables by using ammunition made at the same time on the same machines with the same components.
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Old 02-17-2010, 03:14   #11
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I have seen many accuracy tests done where the WWB actually finished in the top 2 or 3.

I have never had an issue with the "generic" ammo. I would like to see some data on defective ammo rates between generic and high end ammo from the same manufacturers. I have a friend who is a police officer and he says that even the high dollar ammo has quality control problems at times.
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Old 02-17-2010, 04:26   #12
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Originally Posted by ricklee4570 View Post
I have seen many accuracy tests done where the WWB actually finished in the top 2 or 3.

I have never had an issue with the "generic" ammo. I would like to see some data on defective ammo rates between generic and high end ammo from the same manufacturers. I have a friend who is a police officer and he says that even the high dollar ammo has quality control problems at times.
I have had to return Hornady XTP's before. I have seen Ranger T and Gold Dot and other rounds that should not be shot as well.

However, this was all production/assembly error (wrinkled/collapsed case-neck, etc.). I have only heard of one occasion, and it was with Ranger T, that a high-end round didn't work. Winchester requested the round back for testing, as well. It failed to go off when the primer was repeatedly, solidly struck by the firing-pin.

Usually, premium components are used in premium ammo (Hornady Critical Defense is an exception, based on the rash of failures and the use of second-rate primers reported on various forums), and it is hand-inspected. This doesn't mean some don't slip by, as I mentioned, but it does mean that you are getting a better product. Nothing is perfect, but to assert that there aren't degrees of imperfection, is incorrect.
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Old 02-17-2010, 04:57   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G8Kpr View Post
Maybe I just use good equipment to feed it through, or I'm the luckiest MoFo alive, but I've NEVER EVER EVER had WWB 9 or 45 ACP or 45 GAP, FMJ or JHP, not go 'bang' first time or fail to feed/eject. I don't reload anymore so there was a time my entire ammo budget went through Wally World 100 rounds at a time for IDPA, range use, and just banging away at beer cans in the backwoods. No "OOPS. What happened there?". No "#*%@ POS cheap ammo!" Just bangity bang bang bang when I mashed the boom button.
Good post overall.. just wanted to comment on the above, as I totally agree. While I don't think the WWB FMJ is the most accurate ammo in the world, I find the JHP to be a step above the value packs. The only time I recall either failing on me, is while breaking in a picky 1911. After a few hundred rounds though, the 1911 feeds them just fine.

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Old 02-17-2010, 06:21   #14
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I emailed Winchester about 2 years ago asking if the primers used in their premium line were different than their USA budget line. I was told that they were the same. The USA brand might include some "discolored" brass or bullets that they wouldnt use in the premium line, but functionally they were just as reliable.
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Old 02-17-2010, 07:54   #15
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Originally Posted by G8Kpr View Post
Maybe I just use good equipment to feed it through, or I'm the luckiest MoFo alive, but I've NEVER EVER EVER had WWB 9 or 45 ACP or 45 GAP, FMJ or JHP, not go 'bang' first time or fail to feed/eject. I don't reload anymore so there was a time my entire ammo budget went through Wally World 100 rounds at a time for IDPA, range use, and just banging away at beer cans in the backwoods. No "OOPS. What happened there?". No "#*%@ POS cheap ammo!" Just bangity bang bang bang when I mashed the boom button.

As far as the JHP version? Never had to resort to it in 9mm because they all feed Gold Dots and/or DPX perfectly (Glock, Berretta, SiG), but if I got a 1911 that's chokin' and pukin' on GDHP's or HST's it gets Wilson mags first and WWB 230 JHP next. Guess what? They suddenly 'feel much better'. Ever Look at the ogive on the WWB JHP? Damn near hardball with a hole drilled in the end to expose the lead core.

I can't say from experience, but I'm pretty sure mister bump-in-the-night bad guy ain't gonna die laughin' 'cause he happens to recognize the tip of a WWB JHP 4 1/2 inches down that big dark tube in his face . Like someone said earlier: LE used this kind of 'low-tech' JHP for decades, and soldiers used hardball for almost 75 years - and a lot of men died!

A lot - definitely not all, but a lot - of what you see and hear recommended about ammo on forums like this, in gun shops, and at the range is just advertising, packaging, and vanity ("Yeah, well I carry the 'X-cut, bronze-coated, antimony core Destroyminator 230 +P+ Squared' in my (fill in the blank)! And I put 3 rounds down range twice a year to prove functionality [I know, big word], and then clean the gun for 3 hours before I EVER put it back in the holster.) Pffft, whatever you need to get you there, cammo commando.

To be sure, some rounds are more highly engineered, better designed, and (marginally) more effective on certain media and in certain tests than others, and Glocks don't 'choke and puke' on much from what I've seen. But ammo companies gotta get someone to pay for that R&D (for us lucky taxpayers, it's usually done through LE contracts) and I bet Mr. BG can't tell you the difference on the spot between a good solid thoracic hit as the result from lots of practice with WWB JHP or any other 'modern, bonded design'. And I doubt the coroner could either... Just my $0.02 FWIW.

Cheers,
Kpr
What a hoot! I had to swallow hard to keep from spraying coffee all over the monitor! I also agree. In fact, currently I am carrying (Mexican style) my SA Mil-Spec 1911 in .45 ACP which is loaded with WWB .45 230 gr. JHP ammo. At no time has this pistol ever bobbled with this or any other load that I have put through it. It puts the WWB 230 gr. FMJ and JHP into the same spot at 15 yds.
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Old 02-17-2010, 09:30   #16
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Old 02-17-2010, 09:37   #17
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[QUOTE=Brucev;14775418]What a hoot! I had to swallow hard to keep from spraying coffee all over the monitor! I also agree. In fact, currently I am carrying (Mexican style) my SA Mil-Spec 1911 in .45 ACP which is loaded with WWB .45 230 gr. JHP ammo. At no time has this pistol ever bobbled with this or any other load that I have put through it. It puts the WWB 230 gr. FMJ and JHP into the same spot at 15 yds.[/QUOTE]



I agree completely.


I tried to post something and could not. I will try again in a minute...




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Old 02-17-2010, 09:43   #18
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What a hoot! I had to swallow hard to keep from spraying coffee all over the monitor! I also agree. In fact, currently I am carrying (Mexican style) my SA Mil-Spec 1911 in .45 ACP which is loaded with WWB .45 230 gr. JHP ammo. At no time has this pistol ever bobbled with this or any other load that I have put through it. It puts the WWB 230 gr. FMJ and JHP into the same spot at 15 yds.
Got to like a man who carries his 45acp Mex style. No other way amigo.

To further add to the Post by G8KPR. Although I roll my own for fun and for carry most of the time in other calibers other than 45acp. I do trust my life every day to the WWB or CCI Brass (as it is called), in 45acp FMJ, 'and' even the 9mil tossed in the truck has WWB 147gr JHP's in it. (U out there 481 )

That being said. since I was a little fella I have shot a truck load of this " so called cheap" factory ammo from WW or Rem, in one form or another, whatever they called it athte time, and I have no problem with it. They did not make this stuff to be squib and dud loads. This is a ridiculous way of thinking. They are not sitting at the table saying, "let's make some risky rounds in our WWB or rem umc line, and hope we do not get tens of thousands of law suites". No. And think about all the guys shooting this stuff out of full auto guns, and by the tens of thousands of rounds without a hitch.

But they are at the table always thinking up new and unique ideas for the market, and to make more money. Just like everyone in business does. YES, I know, and agree that "some of the stuff" ammo manufactures have done has been improvements, from nickle brass to flash suppressant powders, and I am mostly unimpressed with so called 'modern bullet design...'

But, I cannot see the big deal in most of it.


A picture is worth a thousand words they say.



Accuracy ? Well I went out back here and did a demo for everyone and shot up a bunch of my cherished WWB stuff .

How is this for accuracy from a G19 using the 'cheap WWB JHP 147gr ' rapid fire in the GREEN target approx: 150rds

45acp 230gr WWB Rapid fire RED target out of a Kimber commander size 1911. 20rds

Edit to correct typo... That was "20 rds" in the 45acp not 50. But it does the same with 50/100/150.




Have fun boys !



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Old 02-17-2010, 10:28   #19
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I'd like to see more ammo testing using the Rem .40 UMC JHP. I did one a long time ago and can't remember the results I found. I do remember it was satisfactory though.
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Old 02-17-2010, 11:20   #20
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I'd like to see more ammo testing using the Rem .40 UMC JHP. I did one a long time ago and can't remember the results I found. I do remember it was satisfactory though.

OK, I'll give ya an accuracy shoot again out back here. G23 180gr Rem UMC rapid fire empty one mag full.


Man I got to stop havin fun and get goin today on some other things.


Good shooting


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Old 02-17-2010, 14:27   #21
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Got to like a man who carries his 45acp Mex style. No other way amigo.

To further add to the Post by G8KPR. Although I roll my own for fun and for carry most of the time in other calibers other than 45acp. I do trust my life every day to the WWB or CCI Brass (as it is called), in 45acp FMJ, 'and' even the 9mil tossed in the truck has WWB 147gr JHP's in it. (U out there 481 )

That being said. since I was a little fella I have shot a truck load of this " so called cheap" factory ammo from WW or Rem, in one form or another, whatever they called it athte time, and I have no problem with it. They did not make this stuff to be squib and dud loads. This is a ridiculous way of thinking. They are not sitting at the table saying, "let's make some risky rounds in our WWB or rem umc line, and hope we do not get tens of thousands of law suites". No. And think about all the guys shooting this stuff out of full auto guns, and by the tens of thousands of rounds without a hitch.

But they are at the table always thinking up new and unique ideas for the market, and to make more money. Just like everyone in business does. YES, I know, and agree that "some of the stuff" ammo manufactures have done has been improvements, from nickle brass to flash suppressant powders, and I am mostly unimpressed with so called 'modern bullet design...'

But, I cannot see the big deal in most of it.


A picture is worth a thousand words they say.



Accuracy ? Well I went out back here and did a demo for everyone and shot up a bunch of my cherished WWB stuff .

How is this for accuracy from a G19 using the 'cheap WWB JHP 147gr ' rapid fire in the GREEN target approx: 150rds

45acp 230gr WWB Rapid fire RED target out of a Kimber commander size 1911. 20rds

Edit to correct typo... That was "20 rds" in the 45acp not 50. But it does the same with 50/100/150.

Not bad for an old fart, and old fashion ammo.



Have fun boys !



CanyonMan
Yep, just got in. Now I see where all your WWB 147 JHPs are going and why you are always lookin' for more.

Very nice shootin', CM.

Back to the grindstone for me; Tengo trabajo mucho hoy, Senor!
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Old 02-17-2010, 15:32   #22
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I shot blazer aluminum 115gr FMJ the most accurate from my P226 Elite ST. I found an old 25 yard target a while back that measured a bit over 3" CTC for the 5-shot group. This does not mean that I would prefer this loading for serious business, however.
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Old 02-17-2010, 15:52   #23
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Yep, just got in. Now I see where all your WWB 147 JHPs are going and why you are always lookin' for more.

Very nice shootin', CM.

Back to the grindstone for me; Tengo trabajo mucho hoy, Senor!


LOL.

A guy has to play when he can amigo. :supergrin

Thanks !

yea, that is why I am going to start reloading the 9mil in the 147gr XTP.


Tengo trabajo mucho hoy, Senor Sounds like you got alot of work goin on though today. I should have and usually do. Today, nada


Buenos tardes hombre !



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Old 02-17-2010, 16:32   #24
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Perennial topic. Unsurprising, though. We all desire the best bang for our buck and don't want to spend more money than necessary, right?

I run more down the middle of the road on threads like this one. I don't see the answer being a consistently definitive one.

Does everyone mean the same thing when they're talking about 'reliability' or 'best for their needs'?

I've fired at least my fair share of both 'budget' and 'premium' defensive handgun ammunition lines. There have been years when I've fired anywhere from 6,000 to 15,000 (or more) rounds through issued guns and personally-owned guns. (Hey, it helps if you have access to an agency's ammunition inventory and are expected to not only maintain your proficiency as an instructor, but to constantly demonstrate things to other shooters and function test different guns. )

I've encountered at least my fair share of apparent QC issues with both low-cost ammo lines as well as premium ammo lines. In my experience, I've come across more occasional problems with the low-cost lines, but then up until recent years I've shot more of the low-cost lines.

I can remember coming across low-cost rounds where the primers were either inert/defective, loaded sideways or backwards or just not sensitive enough to be ignited by a single hit (even in hammer-fired pistols).

I've seen mangled bullets and cases, as well as some short-loaded (low power) rounds. I've been told of really low power/velocity rounds being discovered by during chrono testing at times, too.

On the other hand, I've also come across (or had it reported to me) where some of the more expensive 'premium' rounds exhibited some occasional QC issues. The ones that come to mind have involved short powder loads, cases trimmed to improper lengths and mangled bullet noses and/or case mouths.

Just the other day I was present when an example of a 'premium' line had a mangled bullet nose and badly cut & folded case mouth which was barely holding the bullet in the case ... until someone apparently loaded it in a mag without realizing what it was and then their gun tried to chamber it. Oops. I didn't keep it for my collection of out-of-spec duty/training rounds, but I probably should have done so. It was a bit different than some other examples I've seen over the years.

I'd expect the cost of some of the powders can vary among low cost and premium lines, too.

Ditto the cases (nickel or highly polished, or 'cleaner' brass cases).

The bullets? Well, here's where the rubber may meet the road ...

Old-style JHP bullet designs weren't exactly known for consistent expansion, let alone doing when encountering variable intermediate barrier materials, obstructions, etc. Fragmentation was often reported to be an issue.

Nowadays LE/Gov customers (the greatest bulk of defensive pistol ammunition users) have the opportunity to benefit from design changes and improvements in the way of defensive ammo 'performance'. Not everyone agrees on what they want out of their duty ammo, though, it seems. Look at the differences in desired performance often expressed when it comes to minimum penetration achieved under various testing protocols, bullet weights & velocities and even how the bullets may perform when having to defeat harder intermediate barriers before striking an intended threat target.

Thee may be some standardized scientific testing protocols used by the ammo companies, but that doesn't mean the end users are going to agree on a 'satdnard' type of bullet design or 'performance' criteria.

So, the companies are making various changes to try and make something to offer to everybody.

Back to the expectations of 'expansion' when it comes to JHP loads, though ...

One of the seeming benefits of some of the newer designs is to offer a hollowpoint bullet cavity which more consistently resists becoming plugged, and therefore failing to robustly expand, after having to defeat some clothing barriers.

Now, this may, or may not, be something that is caliber dependent to at least some degree, in some conditions ... or perhaps at least in the experience of some potential customer users, if not in wider spread experience.

For example, I was discussing this with an instructor for a NE state LE agency one time. During the discussion he mentioned that agencies in his small area of the state had experienced how some of the newer designed .45 ACP JHP bullets seemed to more often fail to expand after defeating heavily clothed attackers than when similarly designed .40 S&W bullets had been used. he said the .40 loads seemed to exhibit better performance under their conditions, so that's what they decided to use. I'm sure there are any number of .45 ACP proponents who would feel inclined to disagree ... or even some folks whose experience was contrary in actual shooting situations ... and that's fine. Folks (including agencies) can certainty choose according to their own experiences, desires and reasons ... even if it differs from others.

Now, I've used a LOT of the Winchester Subsonic/Duty/Personal Protection/USA/Q, etc loads. Low cost and availability on state contracts has been the primary motivation. Ditto the low cost Remington (Express) loads and even the occasional Federal low cost loads. I've had primers not fire with all of them, and other QC issues that prevented normal functioning at one time or another, but that's when considered against using untold numbers of pallet loads of cases of them over the years.

I've carried them for duty use in addition to training/qual usage. I've chosen to use other, more expensive lines when possible for duty & off-duty, though, too, even if it was at my own expense. Why not, as long as I could afford it and it was authorized?

I don't mind the added potential benefit of cleaner burning, lower flash signature powders or more modern designed JHP bullets which might consistently better resist becoming plugged and expand more robustly, given my druthers.

Do I stay up at night worrying about those instances when I'm carrying the lower cost loads for whatever reason? Not really. I can find other, more critical things to think about.

After all, misses with the best, most expensive, most refined bullet designs available at any cost are still misses, aren't they?

I also realize that any combination of influences can occur at the most inopportune time ... or which ammunition is only one influence ... to cause a stoppage in even the best quality, most meticulously maintained firearm. Being aware of such a potential, uncommon or rare as it may be, and being able to react to such an occurrence, tends to be higher on my list of things to consider when using a pistol. As does maintaining my awareness, mindset and physical ability to effectively function under unexpected, chaotic conditions.

Ammunition is just one factor.

I tend to agree about obtaining ammunition made within production lots and test-firing random rounds for function testing, too, BTW.

Anything made by machinery which is controlled by other machinery, ultimately designed, made and programed by people, may have the potential to be less than 'perfect', at times, I'd think ...

Dunno. Not anyone's expert. Just my thoughts.
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Sub Club #9; .40 S&W Club #1953; S&W Club #3913
Retired LE - firearms instructor/armorer
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Nov 11, 2013 at 11:42