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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey everyone,

I know this information is scattered around the boards, but it's really hard to put together a good opinion with it so spread.

I know,
A hole is a hole.
Incoming fire has the right-of-way.
The most important thing is shot placement.
And you stupid moron .45 is the only effective bullet for killing. Everything else bounces off. ;)

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Now to business, I have an XD9sc, and I am looking for the best Self Defense round I can get.

Now I've heard great things about...
Federal HST in 124gr, 147gr and +p flavors
Speer Gold Dot
Winchester Ranger (Not sure if there is more to the title)
And Hornady TAP (Which was recommended by my gun shop in place of them not having HSTs. But it felt like they were throwing something at me so I wouldn't leave with out buying >.>)

Now then, taking into account that I have a SC with the 3" barrel, which I hear makes a difference in velocity, which in turn affects expansion and penetration. Which is these or others even would work well? And then the flavors... 127gr? 147gr? Regular load? +P? -_-

I understand many of these are spoken highly of but if one gives me 3% better performance on the bullet end, I'll take it... And I will do the rest on my end.

Thanks for your thoughts, and as I stated before I have already searched and found scattered results. I would rather start fresh conversation and have all the relevant data condensed here.
 

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Hey everyone,

I know this information is scattered around the boards, but it's really hard to put together a good opinion with it so spread.

I know,
A hole is a hole.
Incoming fire has the right-of-way.
The most important thing is shot placement.
And you stupid moron .45 is the only effective bullet for killing. Everything else bounces off. ;)

--------

Now to business, I have an XD9sc, and I am looking for the best Self Defense round I can get.

Now I've heard great things about...
Federal HST in 124gr, 147gr and +p flavors
Speer Gold Dot
Winchester Ranger (Not sure if there is more to the title)
And Hornady TAP (Which was recommended by my gun shop in place of them not having HSTs. But it felt like they were throwing something at me so I wouldn't leave with out buying >.>)

Now then, taking into account that I have a SC with the 3" barrel, which I hear makes a difference in velocity, which in turn affects expansion and penetration. Which is these or others even would work well? And then the flavors... 127gr? 147gr? Regular load? +P? -_-

I understand many of these are spoken highly of but if one gives me 3% better performance on the bullet end, I'll take it... And I will do the rest on my end.

Thanks for your thoughts, and as I stated before I have already searched and found scattered results. I would rather start fresh conversation and have all the relevant data condensed here.
I don't have a chrono but my understanding is that you lose about 50 fps per inch of barrel length, so our XD9-SC's are about 100 fps slower than most published data. Most modern defensive ammo is designed to expand properly over a specific velocity range. If you have "papa bear" velocity you won't achieve proper expansion. The same is true for "baby bear" velocity. We all need "mama bear" velocity for proper performance.

Winchester Ranger T series has a lot of high praise but I've never shot any and can't provide testimony.

Personally, I carry Federal HST 147 gr +p. In my limited testing through four layers of denim into wet newspaper, expansion has always been excellent.

I wouldn't hesitate to carry Gold Dot 124 gr +p Short Barrel ammo. Expansion was disapointing but consistent from round to round.

I am disappointed in the performance of all Golden Sabre (124 & 147 gr, bonded, unbonded, +p and standard pressure).

HST 124 gr +p showed less expansion than Gold Dots. No experience with the 124 and 147 standard pressure stuff.

Corbon DPX are very pretty when they expand properly but they are very expensive and I don't want to spend the money to run a couple hundred rounds through my pistol.

I've never shot Hydra-shocks but they are an older technology and as I understand it they are inferior to the HST line.

Make sure to test your selected ammo in your SC. A bad guy won't pay a lot of attention when you try to explain that some idiot on the internet gave you some bad advice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Make sure to test your selected ammo in your SC. A bad guy won't pay a lot of attention when you try to explain that some idiot on the internet gave you some bad advice.
Oh absolutely. It's almost funny how much money and time we spend, Practicing drills, maintaining our weapons, test firing ammo, running thousands of rounds through to make sure everything works...

All perfecting a skill we hope to never have to use. It's an interesting thought. Thank you sir for your input! It helps paint the picture.
 

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Oh absolutely. It's almost funny how much money and time we spend, Practicing drills, maintaining our weapons, test firing ammo, running thousands of rounds through to make sure everything works...

All perfecting a skill we hope to never have to use. It's an interesting thought. Thank you sir for your input! It helps paint the picture.
Glad to be of service. Your initial post got me to thinking that I haden't checked the Ammunition to Go website for a few days. I've been trying to get some Ranger ammo, especially the 127 +p+. They've always been out, but today they at least had some 147 Ranger. I ordered a couple of boxes to test in my SC and my new baby girl, an XDm-9.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah that is the site I've been using as a reference. They don't seem to have the HST 147 +P you mentioned. Or any 147 HST for that matter. It seems to be hard to get. Where does everyone get it at? Oh on that site, what are their shipping charges? I assume ammo ships to your house and isn't regulated like Firearms are...
 

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Speer makes a gold dot specifically designed to expand in short barreled pistols might look into that.
 

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I get my 147 +p at Ammunition to Go. They have been out of stock for a while. Shipping charges aren't bad, especially considering that some of this ammo is difficult to find elsewhere. I need to restock as I'm now below 100 rounds and I fire a few every week.

Shipping isn't restricted except that it has to be carried by a surface carrier like UPS or FedEx. USPS shipment is not allowed. Where I live, no signature is required but I understand that in some localities you must sign for delivery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You sir are a well of great information.
 

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My well is pretty shallow. There are some very deep wells in this forum that you can tap. There are also some cisterns and even some septic tanks so you'll need to evaluate the information you get.

Good luck and good shooting.
 

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From what I've read in the testing reports, the Federal HST's showed the best overall JHP performance, taking into account penetration and expansion in gellatin as well as after penetration through denim, auto glass, wallboard, and plywood.

I don't have a 9mm, but in .40, I'd rather have the 165gr or 180gr HST, since as someone else pointed out, the middle weights at the middle to higher velocities in each caliber seem to be the happy medium (though I carry 230gr JHP's in my .45) to get the best mix of expansion and penetration without too high risk of over-penetration. Unfortunately, every online site I tried were sold out of the .40 HST's except in the 155gr loadings.

So, I just ordered some .40 155gr HST ($22/50rnd box) and 180gr Gold Dot ($26/50rnd box) from Tactical Defense Solutions online. Other folks online recommended them, and they seemed to be a little bit cheaper than some of the other sites. S&H for 2 boxes of each was $13.67 via 4-7 day ground. The 50rnd boxes are much less expensive per round than buying the 20rnd boxes of the same loadings locally, and I haven't been able to find the LEO-only (marketing choices) ammo locally anyway.

Good shooting,
Alchemist77
 

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Speer makes a gold dot specifically designed to expand in short barreled pistols might look into that.
I carry Speer Gold Dots in all my carry guns..
Speer Ammo - Gold Dot

The SB (short barrel) Gold Dots
Speer Ammo - Short Barrel

From all my research Corbon DPX is allegedly "the Best".
But it isn't worth the extra $$$ to me.
I've never had a problem with Gold Dots in any of my firearms..

I usually purchase my SD ammo from Ammunition To Go..
Ammo, Ammunition, Rifle Ammunition, 9mm Ammo, Military Surplus

And this is what I buy for my 9MMs..
Ammunition To Go : 50rds - 9mm Speer LE Gold Dot 124gr. +P HP Ammo [53617] - $24.95
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
From what I've read in the testing reports, the Federal HST's showed the best overall JHP performance, taking into account penetration and expansion in gellatin as well as after penetration through denim, auto glass, wallboard, and plywood.

I don't have a 9mm, but in .40, I'd rather have the 165gr or 180gr HST, since as someone else pointed out, the middle weights at the middle to higher velocities in each caliber seem to be the happy medium (though I carry 230gr JHP's in my .45) to get the best mix of expansion and penetration without too high risk of over-penetration. Unfortunately, every online site I tried were sold out of the .40 HST's except in the 155gr loadings.

So, I just ordered some .40 155gr HST ($22/50rnd box) and 180gr Gold Dot ($26/50rnd box) from Tactical Defense Solutions online. Other folks online recommended them, and they seemed to be a little bit cheaper than some of the other sites. S&H for 2 boxes of each was $13.67 via 4-7 day ground. The 50rnd boxes are much less expensive per round than buying the 20rnd boxes of the same loadings locally, and I haven't been able to find the LEO-only (marketing choices) ammo locally anyway.

Good shooting,
Alchemist77
Hey thanks for that. I'll check out that TDS site.
 

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The 50rnd boxes are much less expensive per round than buying the 20rnd boxes of the same loadings locally, and I haven't been able to find the LEO-only (marketing choices) ammo locally anyway.
A huge +1 on that.

Even on the Ammunition to Go site you can compare the price of 20 rd boxes to the 50 rd boxes of the same ammo.
I have bought both and I cannot see any difference in the two.
50 rd boxes is the way to go........:rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
What is that?
 

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Hey everyone,

I know this information is scattered around the boards, but it's really hard to put together a good opinion with it so spread.

I know,
A hole is a hole.
Incoming fire has the right-of-way.
The most important thing is shot placement.
And you stupid moron .45 is the only effective bullet for killing. Everything else bounces off. ;)
You are confusing the .45 with the mighty 10mm 8)

While this site is excellent it doesn't have information about some of the new stuff that's become available.
Like what?
Best Choices for Self Defense Ammo
There's a wealth of informtion in this link



try the powerballer :cool:
Nah...Don't...

Try using:
HST
Ranger T
Gold Dot
Golden Saber
DPX
XTP

My personal preferences are for W-W Ranger T in either 127gr +P+ or 147gr, and Federal 147gr +P HST
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Now if I could just FIND The Rangers and HST 147s....
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Yeah I'm pretty tired of the whole "For LE Only" with these HSTs. I can't find them in stock and if I do I can't get them *sigh* You guys must get them somewhere ;)
 
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