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Discussion Starter #1
One of the most frequently asked questions I see in these, and various other forums, is "what ammo should I carry in my (whatever model pistol in whatever caliber)".

Now, while it does get a bit old, I'm not going to point out the utility of the search function (although...most questions would be answered by the poster doing this;)).

No, I'm going to comment on the "well, what works in other people's pistols? Maybe my carry ammo isn't good enough, or maybe because it malfunctioned in somebody that I've never even met's pistol, it'll malfunction in mine" mindset...and it's converse: "well, if it works in somebody else's pistol, it should work just dandy in mine".

Folks--if you're carrying a premium, LE-oriented JHP round that functions 100% reliably in your pistol in your hands, and shoots with what you find to be acceptible accuracy and control...just carry the ammo. You've got something that works for you...and that's the bottom line, now, isn't it?

Now, of course, this means you actually have to buy a couple boxes of carry ammo and shoot the stuff. And while I know that not everyone can afford to shoot a few hundred rounds of their chosen carry load...you can at least put a couple of magazines through your pistol; this is life insurance, folks, and it's about the cheapest policy you're gonna find. Simply assuming a given round is gonna work in your pistol because it works in somebody else's is just begging for Mr. Murphy to dick with you...and he'll probably bring his best bud, Mr. O'Toole along with him.

As Reagan said: "Trust, but verify".

And on the flip side of that coin--if you search the forums, you're going to find posts that will show that someone has had an issue with pretty much every type of carry ammo...so trying to find one that works in everyone's pistol is going to be impossible. Which brings us back to: find something that works in YOUR pistol.

As to what loads: I've always recommended this: Best Choices for Self Defense Ammo

It not only gives some ammo recommendations for the most common defensive calibers, but it also gives the thought process behind why these are good loads.

I do hope this helps folks, especially new folks trying to figure out what they should use in their pistol.
 

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:mrgreen: These questions do come up frequently. I am glad to see that most everyone on here answers honestly and politely, even though it is sometimes to the same question over and over and over. This is why we have stickies in the different sub-forums.
 

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Great read Cuda, this should be a sticky..

Too many people fall for the hype about defensive ammunition without doing any actual research.

What is newer isn't always better, sometimes it is, but not always.
What is more expensive, isn't always better.
What the mall ninjas say is the best SD round in the history of firearms, isn't always better.

I've been shooting handguns since 1994, mostly 9mm with a bit of .40 and 45ACP.
Most of my carry pistols have been 9mm since I started carrying in 1998.
For years I fell for the hype surrounding 9mm +P.
About 4 years ago I read more about the subject and realized heavier is better than faster.
I've been carrying 147gr 9mm since, usually Ranger Ts.

I'm more accurate, have better control, and have better follow up shots with the 147gr bullets than I did with 124 +P Gold Dots I used to carry.
 

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Good post. Everyone has different experiences. But when it comes to ammo most are very similar and it basically comes down to preference for most people that don't know anything about bullet weight. If you want technical info, use your google!

I do find it interesting to hear other people's opinions on what they use and why.
 

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Good post... looks like sticky material to me.
 

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I just carry a .45 and it's like having Chuck Norris on my hip :p
 

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In the September, 2011 issue of "Guns" magazine Massad Ayoob has an article on defensive handgun ammo in which he echos many of your points and expounds on some others.

Another good read for those that are interested.
 

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I vote for this to be Stickied!
 

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RIght as always on this Cuda. Too many guys get caught up in the whole gello shooting deal, it's fine, it's useful, but in the big scheme, means very little in a gunfight.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
In the September, 2011 issue of "Guns" magazine Massad Ayoob has an article on defensive handgun ammo in which he echos many of your points and expounds on some others.

Another good read for those that are interested.
That is a good read; and I mostly agree with what he says there. Thanks for linking it.

I have a few quibbles about overpenetration--using a proven JHP, that is--as it tends not to happen when, as Golden Earring sang, "the bullet meets the bone". Misses, well, yeah, you need to worry about strays going through walls, etc...but the simple fact is, any round that will work well at rapidly incapacitiating a goblin is gonna go through walls, plural; the flip side, of course being a round that won't go through walls is likely not going to perform will against the aforementioned goblin, leading you to have to shoot more (if you're lucky enough to be able to get additional shots off), and increasing your chances of a miss going astray...and some of those "safety" rounds (Cough...Glaser...cough) tend to act like ball and blow right through wallboards. A LOT of wallboards.

And I'm glad folks like the writeup. It's been on my mind for a while, and I figured I'd just let 'er rip.
 

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I have read through all of your guys' recommendations on deffensive carry ammo and I think that I am going to try Federal HST, I just need to find it now! I have watched some pretty good videos on you tube also.
 
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