Preferred SD ammo?

knitepoetknitepoet Senior MemberPosts: 18,964 Senior Member
Mine pretty much fall to Federal HST and Speer Gold Dots, with the exception of my PM40. I was most impressed with Winchester Ranger-T 165 grainers in it.

I rarely, if ever, CC my 10mm, but it's loaded with 155gr Hornady XTPs when I do.

So, what do you prefer to carry, ammo wise, and why?
Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


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Replies

  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,743 Senior Member
    HST & Gold Dot

    They've done well in all the testing myself and........others have done.
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 15,187 Senior Member
    Hornady TAPs 230 grain in the 1911....not sure if they still make it, but I laid in a good supply when I was still working.... The .38 Spl snubby gets129 grain Federal Hydra Shok +Ps
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • LMLarsenLMLarsen Senior Member Posts: 8,337 Senior Member
    Gold Dots, HydraShoks, or Rangers in my .40 and .45s; Rangers or Silvertips in my 9mms.
    “A gun is a tool, no better or no worse than any other tool: an axe, a shovel or anything. A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it. Remember that.”

    NRA Endowment Member
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,178 Senior Member
    TAP or Gold Dots.
    Overkill is underrated.
  • Hondo341Hondo341 Member Posts: 448 Member
    Gold Dots in my .40 G22, since that is what the Sheriff's Office issued me and I have about 300 rounds of it. And, Federal Personal Defense for my Ruger LC9s Pro.
    "People are responsible to play a role in their own safety." Sheriff David Clarke 2016
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,313 Senior Member
    I don't pay much attention and couldn't say other than it's HP. I doubt there's a dime's worth of difference in any of them, since there's just so many ways you can skin a cat.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • NCFUBARNCFUBAR Senior Member Posts: 4,324 Senior Member
    Gold Dots, Ranger Ts, HSTs mainly. Since Palmetto State had the Gold Dot deals a few months back I have a huge stash of them in 9mm and .45acp along with their 64gr .223.
    “The further a society drifts from truth ... the more it will hate those who speak it."
    - George Orwell
  • TrueTone911TrueTone911 Senior Member Posts: 6,074 Senior Member
    I have decided I am most comfortable with Gold Dots. I have others, Critical Defense, Golden Sabers and HSTs. But when I buy now, it's always Gold Dot.

    All the HD ammo I shoot at the range is accurate enough. So I guess for me, it boils down to what I think will penetrate and expand reliably. Based on penetration and expansions tests I've seen on various sites, knitepoet's tests included, I get the warm fuzzies loaded up with Gold Dots.

    Trying to buy up all the Gold Dots I can before the laws here change and I can no longer buy online. Don't want to go through a background check to buy ammo.

    Edit to add: I have also fallen into the light and fast camp. I prefer lighter bullets for the velocity. 115gr 9mm, 185gr .45 ACP and 125gr .38 Special.
    Oppressors can tyrannize only when they achieve a standing army, an enslaved press, and a disarmed populace.  ~ James Madison
  • LMLarsenLMLarsen Senior Member Posts: 8,337 Senior Member
    Oh, and Federal Personal Defense 00 12ga in my 870.
    “A gun is a tool, no better or no worse than any other tool: an axe, a shovel or anything. A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it. Remember that.”

    NRA Endowment Member
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 10,700 Senior Member
    I use any name brand hollow points. Lately, I've been buying Hornady XTP 147 gr. 9mm, and the same in 230 grain .45 ACP. For years, I carried the Winchester White box hollowpoints, when they were widely available. They were the cheapest thing on the market and were sold 50 to a box.
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,921 Senior Member
    Wambli Ska wrote: »
    Mostly Gold Dots.

    I'm no authority on hand guns by any stretch, but I like something that expands well and won't go through three walls. I've been using Winchester Train and Defend. It's relatively low velocity and expands well. I'm thinking I like it, but I'm not sure of anything until I've used it. And thank God that hasn't happened yet. I'm guessing it will work well enough if I do my part. I need to send Zee a couple boxes and let him test it on a pig.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • bobbyrlf3bobbyrlf3 Senior Member Posts: 2,467 Senior Member
    I feed 'em what they shoot well.
    For the .45s, they get Winchester PDX-1 230gr and ProGrade (loaded with 230gr Hornady XTPs).
    For the .357s, it's Hornady Critical Defense 110gr (.38spl), and Hornady LeveRevolution 140gr (.357mag).
    For the .44s, Hornady LeveRevolution 225gr (.44mag), and Hornady 300gr. XTP for 4-legged encounters.

    Of course, there are additional options that each of them shoot well, for the after-cleaning ammo switch.
    Knowledge is essential to living freely and fully; understanding gives knowledge purpose and strength; wisdom is combining the two and applying them appropriately in words and actions.
  • KSDeputyKSDeputy Member Posts: 55 Member
    I carry Federal 165 gr. Hydra Shok in my CS 45.
  • JasonMPDJasonMPD Senior Member Posts: 6,135 Senior Member
    I'm closely familiar with the lethality of HST and HydroShok ammo at practical distances. Either will work.

    Just deliver in multiple rapid doses.
    “There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers
  • JasonMPDJasonMPD Senior Member Posts: 6,135 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    This.
    And I'll add, since all testing is done in gel and gel only shows how bullets react in gel not people, I'll take my chances. I'd wager 90% of all "performance" is pure advertising driven tactical operator BS.

    To some degree. There are time tested hollow point designs, like Winchester Ranger, Speer Gold Dot, et al. There are generic designs also, and they will wound.

    However, police shoot and kill hundreds of people a year with hollow point ammo. Even if this doesn't draw a comparison to "generic" hollow points it makes a very strong anecdotal case that they work handily.
    “There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers
  • GunnerJackyGunnerJacky New Member Posts: 19 New Member
    Gold Dots anytime! They are my first preference in my .40 and .45. These bullets expands very well and are highly reliable.
    Get firearms safety training only from NRA certified schools
  • shotgunshooter3shotgunshooter3 Senior Member Posts: 5,425 Senior Member
    Right now I'm using Hornady 115gr Critical Defense. However, it is nearly time for my annual "shoot up my SD ammo and buy more" and I might switch to Gold Dots.
    - I am a rifleman with a poorly chosen screen name. -
    "It's far easier to start out learning to be precise and then speeding up, than it is having never "mastered" the weapon, and trying to be precise." - Dan C
  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 8,729 Senior Member
    I have a lot of Ranger 180gr ammo in .40SW so will continue to use that
    In my carry guns (G43 or SW Shield) all magazines got swapped out after the last range session. Now loaded with Speer Gold Dots 124grs.

    Z's science test helped change my mind
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • bobbyrlf3bobbyrlf3 Senior Member Posts: 2,467 Senior Member
    Zed's work has also given me the notion that some additions to the supply are in order. HST and Gold Dots in all of my current chamberings will be added over the course of the next few months.
    Knowledge is essential to living freely and fully; understanding gives knowledge purpose and strength; wisdom is combining the two and applying them appropriately in words and actions.
  • bobbyrlf3bobbyrlf3 Senior Member Posts: 2,467 Senior Member
    Has anyone else made any changes in light of the R&D Zee has provided?
    Knowledge is essential to living freely and fully; understanding gives knowledge purpose and strength; wisdom is combining the two and applying them appropriately in words and actions.
  • JRLJRL Member Posts: 355 Member
    I use Hornady XTP in my CC guns. They cycle well in the guns I have (that's the primary reason why)

    I have NOT done extensive testing, research or comparisons, however, with other possible choices
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 18,964 Senior Member
    bobbyrlf3 wrote: »
    Has anyone else made any changes in light of the R&D Zee has provided?
    Not from Zee's R&D, from from my own, when I conceal carry my 10mm, it's now loaded with 135gr EFMJ with a moderate charge of BlueDot. (Because there is NO published data for that bullet, and it has a LOT longer bearing surface than any other 135gr bullet, So I picked a midrange load for Nosler 135gr)

    They're the best SD bullet I've found at being able to perform with the 10mm's higher velocity. I COULD load other bullets down to 40S&W velocities to be within their design parameters, but why carry a 10mm if you're going to castrate it?

    Field load is a 180 XTP with a worked up max load of BlueDot

    It spends a LOT more time loaded with "field carry" ammo, than it does my SD loads
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • bobbyrlf3bobbyrlf3 Senior Member Posts: 2,467 Senior Member
    knitepoet wrote: »
    Not from Zee's R&D, from from my own, when I conceal carry my 10mm, it's now loaded with 135gr EFMJ with a moderate charge of BlueDot. (Because there is NO published data for that bullet, and it has a LOT longer bearing surface than any other 135gr bullet, So I picked a midrange load for Nosler 135gr)

    They're the best SD bullet I've found at being able to perform with the 10mm's higher velocity. I COULD load other bullets down to 40S&W velocities to be within their design parameters, but why carry a 10mm if you're going to castrate it?

    Field load is a 180 XTP with a worked up max load of BlueDot

    It spends a LOT more time loaded with "field carry" ammo, than it does my SD loads

    There's no substitute for real science! It is interesting to me to know the motivations behind more experienced shooter's ammo selection. If one takes the use of a firearm seriously, I think the ammo deserves at least as much thought as the gun.
    Knowledge is essential to living freely and fully; understanding gives knowledge purpose and strength; wisdom is combining the two and applying them appropriately in words and actions.
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 18,964 Senior Member
    group shot of a bunch of the SD loads I have tried into wet newsprint
    10mm-1_zps5f100fb5.jpg

    2 of the EFMJs shot into water jugs
    20160330_181948_zpsikcsfcna.jpg
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • horselipshorselips Senior Member Posts: 3,628 Senior Member
    For big, powerful (.357Mag, .44Special, .45ACP, .44Mag, .45Colt) calibers, it's all good, whatever's on sale. For lesser calibers like .22WMR, .380ACP, and .38Special, I have found that Hornady Critical Defense works reliably and accurately in my guns, so that. My only 9mm guns are military - a Luger and a Walther P1, so for reliability's sake, I use FMJ.
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    Mostly Gold Dot and XTPs.
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    Don't discount some good oldies like the 158 grain SWCHP factory cold/soft swagged lead bullets to use or reload in .38 SPl or .357

    Even if they don't expand you still got the SWC design which was an improvement over Lead Round Nose bullets in itself. And even LRNs can be lethal (any bullet can and has) and have been used to good effect, but depends more on shot placement and where they are hit, not the best choice especially with all the great choices out there these days

    Same in .44 caliber like 240 grain SWCHPs in .44 Spl, not a bad choice and better than RN.

    .45 ACP, the 230 grain FMJ/Hardball is pretty good like it is and has proven to work for many decades, but again use a better design and if that fails you still got a .45 cal hole which is bigger than a lot of smaller calibers even if they expand to their max. The lower (in comparison) velocity @ 830-850 fps also helps leave more of its energy in a target than smaller diameter bullets zipping along at 300 fps faster like a FMJ 9mm is one rationale I read about for its effectiveness.

    There are no Magical Bullets.

    Just some thoughts on this topic. I think we can debate forever and some will argue until the cows come home about this or that load. Just pick what you shoot well, shoots and functions well in your guns and you feel comfortable and confident in.

    Best is Have A Gun, know how to use it, practice practice practice with said or similar loads and remember, any gun is better than none.

    Be safe!
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 7,080 Senior Member
    Heavy-for-caliber. Flat-nosed and non-expanding for anything .380 or smaller. Got to feed and function. Within those considerations, I'm largely indifferent - top-shelf hollowpoints, flat nosed FMJ's, big meplat cast bullets, unjacketed lead SWC's and HP's, even Hickock's .36 round ball was no slouch. . .I'll avoid hard, round noses if I have a choice, but beyond that, load it up.

    It's all lead and copper. It's all generally guided by SAAMI pressure specs. It's all governed by the laws of physics much more than marketing. Everybody has access to what the FBI says a combat pistol round needs to do - be shot accurately, penetrate to hit important stuff, and maybe, once it does that, we'll take some expansion too. I'm more worried about a bullet not penetrating enough than too much - misses kill more bystanders than pass-throughs.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • Cheetoh734Cheetoh734 Senior Member Posts: 714 Senior Member
    Gold Dot in revolvers. Hornady in the autos. I used to carry TAP, they don't call it that anymore, now they call it "Critical Duty."

    Are you guys mostly carrying hand-loads or factory SD ammo?

    ETA: On a side note, I this last summer decided it was time to change out the carry ammo in my XD9. I had TAP that was from 2008 IIRC. In and out of the mags countless times. The copper was green in some areas, the black cases were chipped and worn...fired 13 + 1 in the short mag and 16 in the backup. All 30rds fired perfectly. I expected they would at the premium SD ammo price point but I was a little worried that 7 year old ammo that had been carried daily for years would possibly have a hiccup, anyone else try this? How old is the ammo you guys usually carry, and how often do you change it out?
  • bobbyrlf3bobbyrlf3 Senior Member Posts: 2,467 Senior Member
    Never had issues with ammo no matter how old. Admittedly, I haven't seen many rounds more than 30 years old.


    Edited to add: The shotguns get Hornady Critical defense 00 buckshot & Remington 1oz. Sluggers.
    Knowledge is essential to living freely and fully; understanding gives knowledge purpose and strength; wisdom is combining the two and applying them appropriately in words and actions.
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