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45 apc self defense loads?

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  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    I load a 250 grain truncated cone bullet, cast as hard as woodpecker lips. I worked up the load as a last-ditch defense load for a buddy who hunts bear with a muzzleloader, after he emptied a 1911 into a mortally-wounded bear that was running downhill toward him. He decided that 230 grain hardball just wasn't good bear medicine. He's not certain if the bear was charging, or just hadn't realized it was dead yet, but he wasn't taking any chances.

    My AMT Backup likes the round, so I'll trade off a little velocity from the 2" barrel for more weight, and possibly better penetration.
    Jerry
  • 104RFAST104RFAST Senior Member Posts: 1,281 Senior Member
    1974 I bought my first handgun, a Colt Combat Commander. Being young and clueless I asked The Old Codger behind the counter what a good defense load for it would be.
    He wrinkled his nose and said "Son , you're shooting a .45, anything you get will do just fine" and handed me a box of GI Ball.
    If shooting the latest Atomic Powerball Black Ops Magic Gold Talon CIA Approved Wonder ammo makes you happy go for it but at todays prices for premium ammo I'll stick with the plain jane stuff.It's not like you're trying to get the most oomph out of a 32 auto.

    I kinda go along with the old codger, Although I have a small qty of so called SD ammo for my 45 & 10MM (1911)
    I consider both powerful enough that Ball ammo should take care of business if the . Its very likely the
    larger Cal bullets ( 45,10mm SD JHP ) will pass through all but the largest of BGs anyway?? Inside my home I do prefer
    SD+P atomic,black ops ammo in my smaller cal guns ( 9MM 357 ect) However, for use outside my home pass through shots are not as much of concern as having a large qty of 45 & 10MM less expensive ball ammo.
  • Pez_FartolaPez_Fartola Banned Posts: 116 Member
    when i first started carrying my Ruger P90 DC i always kept 230 gr rounds in it HPs and a lot of times a couple of FMJs in the magazine also. then about the last couple of years i carried a .45acp i switched to Cor-bon 165gr JHPs because i figured the extra velocity and the deep hollow cavity would help the bullet open up nicely in the target. and in the few little tests i did with them the 165 grainers seemed to have more impressive results on the targets which were mostly water bottles and boxes of wet newspapers. when i first got my 45acp i was a heavy bullet, low velocity guy and then a few years later for whatever reason i changed to a light bullet, high velocity guy and i'm pretty much still a velocity nut to this day. i think the more i learned about the .357 magnum the more i started leaning to the high velocity train of thought.
  • Zapp BraniganZapp Branigan Member Posts: 108 Member
    104RFAST wrote: »
    I kinda go along with the old codger, Although I have a small qty of so called SD ammo for my 45 & 10MM (1911)
    I consider both powerful enough that Ball ammo should take care of business if the . Its very likely the
    larger Cal bullets ( 45,10mm SD JHP ) will pass through all but the largest of BGs anyway?? Inside my home I do prefer
    SD+P atomic,black ops ammo in my smaller cal guns ( 9MM 357 ect) However, for use outside my home pass through shots are not as much of concern as having a large qty of 45 & 10MM less expensive ball ammo.

    Thank you for the affirmation.
    I've always thought that filling someone with holes a half inch wide should pretty much take the steam out of their sail, sUpAr HoLLoW POiNT hiVel magic BOOLITS aside.

    I'm sure the stuff that costs 30 bucks for a box of 20 rounds is really great, but just give me something i can shoot and practice with that I know works and i'm cool.
  • jaywaptijaywapti Senior Member Posts: 4,961 Senior Member
    Took the Hornady 185 tsx to the range yesterday, they feed great, I was able to put 5 rds. into about 1 1/2in off sandbags at 20ft. havnt tried them in wet paper, let you know when i do. Bass pro had them for $26.00 for 20.
    jay
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT
  • Zapp BraniganZapp Branigan Member Posts: 108 Member
    jaywapti wrote: »
    Took the Hornady 185 tsx to the range yesterday, they feed great, I was able to put 5 rds. into about 1 1/2in off sandbags at 20ft. havnt tried them in wet paper, let you know when i do. Bass pro had them for $26.00 for 20.
    jay

    Wow so shoot three magazines for 30 bucks ?
    No...thanks.......
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,497 Senior Member
    I'd imagine after he makes sure they function in his firearm he'll do like most folks do and practice with inexpensive ball ammo.

    Some folks even use cast bullets for practice!
    Overkill is underrated.
  • NNNN Senior Member Posts: 24,720 Senior Member
    jaywapti wrote: »
    Took the Hornady 185 tsx to the range yesterday, they feed great, I was able to put 5 rds. into about 1 1/2in off sandbags at 20ft. havnt tried them in wet paper, let you know when i do. Bass pro had them for $26.00 for 20.
    jay
    I will be interested in the wet paper test---- get some pictures if you can.
    Shut up-----KAREN; OK Cynthia
  • NNNN Senior Member Posts: 24,720 Senior Member
    Remington HD Ultimate Home Defense .45 acp 230 gr BJHP, anyone try them? They have striations on the bullet at an angle instead of parallel to the bullet as most SD rounds do.
    Shut up-----KAREN; OK Cynthia
  • DoctorWhoDoctorWho Senior Member Posts: 9,496 Senior Member
    "The biggest reason I carry the HD/SD HPs is the lesser chance of through and thought along with the fact they penerate walls and such which could be bad news for non-threats on the other side."

    Uh, hate to break it to you, but My Dad had a ND with My S&W 645, with Rem HP +P+ , and it penetrated a lathe & plaster wall, most of My Dads suits and coats, another lathe & plaster wall, missed My clothes hung higher, and lodged in the other wall, only penetrated 1/2 by then very little expansion, not bad for a HP round ???
    "There is some evil in all of us, Doctor, even you, the Valeyard is an amalgamation of the darker sides of your nature, somewhere between your twelfth and final incarnation, and I may say, you do not improve with age. Founding member of the G&A forum since 1996
  • bobbyrlf3bobbyrlf3 Senior Member Posts: 2,543 Senior Member
    DoctorWho wrote: »
    Uh, hate to break it to you, but My Dad had a ND with My S&W 645, with Rem HP +P+ , and it penetrated a lathe & plaster wall, most of My Dads suits and coats, another lathe & plaster wall, missed My clothes hung higher, and lodged in the other wall, only penetrated 1/2 by then very little expansion, not bad for a HP round ???

    Wouldn't the extra pressure from a '+P+' load cause the bullet to perform differently than a standard pressure HP round?
    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.
  • samzheresamzhere Banned Posts: 10,923 Senior Member
    There are many excellent SD rounds for the .45. If you use a major brand, you'll likely be just fine -- this assumes of course that your pistol digests those rounds reliably and that you find them sufficiently accurate.

    Myself, I use the Cor-Bon +P "PowrBall", a high velocity, lightweight round. I like it for several reasons: 1) it's a major brand that functions perfectly and is nicely accurate, 2) the round is fairly light compared with 230gr rounds, and a full magazine is noticeably lighter to carry, 3) the ammo has a rounded plastic nose which makes it more likely to feed smoothly compared with deep-cut hollow point ammo, especially if you're shooting a compact pistol with a steeper feed ramp.

    These points don't make the PowrBall superior to other SD ammo. It just offers those few teeny advantages that I personally like. But I'd also be happy using Gold Dot or HydraShok, too.

    That's what's nice about the .45acp -- there are many excellent SD rounds available. Use a major brand that functions reliably and is accurate, and you'll be fine. As far as stopping power, shot placement is more important anyway, and all the major top quality brands will function about the same.
  • JeeperJeeper Senior Member Posts: 2,954 Senior Member
    bobbyrlf3 wrote: »
    Wouldn't the extra pressure from a '+P+' load cause the bullet to perform differently than a standard pressure HP round?

    In Doc's case there, it sounds like the first thing it hit was a sheetrock (gypsum) wall. Sheetrock is just one of a MULTITUDE of substances that will frequently "clog up" the HP tip of a bullet and cause a lack of expansion. But yes, in general, higher velocity *should* cause greater expansion.

    Luis
    Wielding the Hammer of Thor first requires you to lift and carry the Hammer of Thor. - Bigslug
  • samzheresamzhere Banned Posts: 10,923 Senior Member
    .... when i first got my 45acp i was a heavy bullet, low velocity guy and then a few years later for whatever reason i changed to a light bullet, high velocity guy ....

    I pretty much agree. I'd generally say that hardnose FMJ ammo is probably not the best for modern self defense, but when it comes to top quality JHP ammo, it's about equal for the heavier but slower bullet vs higher velocity lighter bullet. I've carried both and thankfully have never needed to find out the actual results in a genuine "target". I prefer the higher velocity lighter bullet mostly because the actual rounds are lighter to carry. Just a small preference but the other side (heavier and slower) is fine.

    If you calculate energy, both of these get you about 500 to 550 ft-lb, which seems to be pretty much the same for all modern .45 self defense ammo.
  • DoctorWhoDoctorWho Senior Member Posts: 9,496 Senior Member
    "I pretty much agree. I'd generally say that hardnose FMJ ammo is probably not the best for modern self defense,"

    I would have to disagree, past results say otherwise, while modern JHP do fare better, the old stuff still does the job.
    "There is some evil in all of us, Doctor, even you, the Valeyard is an amalgamation of the darker sides of your nature, somewhere between your twelfth and final incarnation, and I may say, you do not improve with age. Founding member of the G&A forum since 1996
  • samzheresamzhere Banned Posts: 10,923 Senior Member
    How did we ever get along with the plain old vanilla flavored .45 GI ball ammo?
    People must have been like, really weak an stuff back then since it had a reputation of being teh awesome manstopper back then but now is just barely acceptable.

    We got along with .45 ball ammo because that's all that was allowed by the Articles of War. The power of the .45 was simply lots more effective than anything currently in use by comparision for handgun calibers.

    Problem with FMJ ammo is overpenetration, not necessarily a big problem in combat but definitely a factor with drywall and innocent people nearby. And modern HP ammo is quite a bit more effective than conventional ball ammo.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    APC's have cured headaches, hangovers, and other maladies for GI's for lots of years. Too bad they got banned for some sort of imaginary risk.

    "APC is a mixture of aspirin, phenacetin, and caffeine which has been used in medicines intended to cure symptoms of colds and headaches but has been banned by the FDA due to phenacetin's potential for kidney damage and its carcinogenic properties. (noun)
    An example of a medicine that previously contained APC is Anacin."

    Taking 45 of them at a time might get a little hazardous, however!
    Jerry
  • NNNN Senior Member Posts: 24,720 Senior Member
    Now Teach, you know an APC is an amphibious personnel carrier and the threat is getting run over by one or it sinking and you cannot get out.
    Shut up-----KAREN; OK Cynthia
  • olesniperolesniper Senior Member Posts: 3,763 Senior Member
    NN wrote: »
    I will be interested in the wet paper test---- get some pictures if you can.

    These are the Federal HST 230gr. after shot into wet newsprint.

    HST2.jpg

    HST3.jpg
    Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
    I will fear no evil: For I carry a .308 and not a .270
  • NNNN Senior Member Posts: 24,720 Senior Member
    olesniper wrote: »
    These are the Federal HST 230gr. after shot into wet newsprint.

    [/IMG]
    They seem to work well, nice expansion.
    Shut up-----KAREN; OK Cynthia
  • DoctorWhoDoctorWho Senior Member Posts: 9,496 Senior Member
    What barrel length ?
    "There is some evil in all of us, Doctor, even you, the Valeyard is an amalgamation of the darker sides of your nature, somewhere between your twelfth and final incarnation, and I may say, you do not improve with age. Founding member of the G&A forum since 1996
  • olesniperolesniper Senior Member Posts: 3,763 Senior Member
    DoctorWho wrote: »
    What barrel length ?

    Ruger KP345 4.2 in. barrel
    Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
    I will fear no evil: For I carry a .308 and not a .270
  • DoctorWhoDoctorWho Senior Member Posts: 9,496 Senior Member
    "Sheetrock is just one of a MULTITUDE of substances that will frequently "clog up" the HP tip of a bullet and cause a lack of expansion."

    Now that I think back, the HP was indeed clogged.
    "There is some evil in all of us, Doctor, even you, the Valeyard is an amalgamation of the darker sides of your nature, somewhere between your twelfth and final incarnation, and I may say, you do not improve with age. Founding member of the G&A forum since 1996
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 16,928 Senior Member
    Then I suggest that you take up carrying a pair of Colt Navy 36s in your sash...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • Zapp BraniganZapp Branigan Member Posts: 108 Member
    If you're going to use a JHP in .45 Auto then the 185 grain bullet would seem to be the way to go, I don't see how a 230 grain bullet that's barely breaking 800 fps could expand, though they do look pretty in ballistic gelatin tests. If I'm ever attacked by people made out of jello I'll definately use them.
  • NNNN Senior Member Posts: 24,720 Senior Member
    I think
    not
    Shut up-----KAREN; OK Cynthia
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,497 Senior Member
    If you're going to use a JHP in .45 Auto then the 185 grain bullet would seem to be the way to go, I don't see how a 230 grain bullet that's barely breaking 800 fps could expand, though they do look pretty in ballistic gelatin tests. If I'm ever attacked by people made out of jello I'll definately use them.

    It expands because it's designed to. I would think that recovering an expanded 230 gr. JHP from a dead body would tend to indicate that they can and do expand...
    Overkill is underrated.
  • Zapp BraniganZapp Branigan Member Posts: 108 Member
    It expands because it's designed to. I would think that recovering an expanded 230 gr. JHP from a dead body would tend to indicate that they can and do expand...

    Let me know when you find some real world info on 800 fps bullets that have expanded in people instead of jello.
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,497 Senior Member
    Read about it in a few magazines, usually Mas Ayoob articles. Unfortunately, I don't have those articles. Not that I think it would matter to you, you seem to have a foregone conclusion....
    Overkill is underrated.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    I've seen the Starfire HP that a counterman at a LGS fired through the web of tissue between his left thumb and forefinger from a mil-spec 1911. No bone contact, just soft tissue damage, and a lot of it! It expanded pretty well in that 3/4" of flesh, and left an interesting star-shaped scar in the process. They found the bullet lodged in the sheetrock wall after it passed through his hand, with plenty of blood and meat caught in the expanded bullet.
    Jerry
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