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45ACP?

earlyearly Senior MemberPosts: 4,950 Senior Member
Can this cartridge be effective beyond it's roll as anti personel at standard service ammunition velocity? As in hunting or SD from black bears.

I have tested a couple different loads for penetration in comparison to bullets at higher speed from big bore revolvers. The 45acp comes up short.

I have a target load that launches Oregon Trail 200gr RNFP bullets in tight little groups at around 760fps with W231 powder and run great with standard springs. I've considered loading them hotter as the flat nose metplate would deliver a good punch on impact. But it's like trying to fix something that's not broke.

I've also read that much of the new SD ammunition is as good or better than the old match ammo. I'm thinking maybe some of the 200gr swc or truncated cone type stuff might do well as a woods load. Or maybe even Federal HydrShok or other HP designs reputed to deliver good weight retention.

Can this cartridge be pressed into woods carry from an auto loading pistol or are the big bore revolvers just too good to be left behind?
My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.

Replies

  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,262 Senior Member
    Suggest you adjust your formula a little bit. If penetration is your goal, you want higher weight. The 200 grainers are a great option for low recoil wife/kid/old folks loads, and are perfectly OK for defense against the 2-legged, but for larger critters, neither low weight nor expansion are your friend with that round. Guys run heavier than the standard GI 230, but as load data is short and pressures can get spooky, it's not my preferred approach. 230 is the long-proven choice.



    This the the LBT 230 grain LFN with about a .32 caliber meplat that I cast from water-quenched wheelweights at a Brinnell hardness of about 22-23. Bullet on the left is unfired. Bullet on the right was recovered from gallon milk jug number NINE in the row. The load was duplicating GI hardball at a chronographed average of 826 fps. The first three jugs in the stack get rupturing from hydrostatic displacement; the remainder get a nice hole as the bullet just keeps on truckin'.


    Here it is in profile. Feeds slick as greased eel boogers - there's ZERO feel of the round striking the ramp or the top of the chamber as it goes through its process. . .none that I can detect anyway.

    With regards to the full size 1911 platform, 16# is the standard for the GI recoil spring, which I think was probably so the slide could be forced backward against the REALLY horrid sand and mud encountered in military conditions - or at least military trials torture tests. It's a happy way to go for standard pressue 200 grain loads as well, but for my pretty much constant use with GI hardball spec rounds, I find the Wolff 18.5# chrome silicon recoil and extra power firing pin springs to be a combination which makes the guns run VERY smoothly.

    A similar or more aggressive meplat (WFN) out of a .41-.45 caliber magnum revolver at higher velocities will get you a somewhat greater bow wave of destruction through soft tissue and a quicker bleed-out, but I no longer have any doubts that the standard pressure .45ACP, properly tweaked, can dig deep enough to poke lethal holes in the vitals of large critters.

    My conclusion with that bullet hardness was that I had enough penetration for anything that a .45 ACP would be called on for, and when I run out of them, I'll try that same bullet test with much softer 30-1 lead tin at about 8-9 Brinnell to see what the difference is. For bears and large pigs though, I'd be inclined to leave as is.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 16,928 Senior Member
    I would not hesitate for a second to carry a 1911 loaded with 230 grain Hornady TAPS (or any other premium defensive ammo of the same weight ) in the woods around here (largest thing would be black bears). Were I in Grizzly Country, I might opt for something a bit more potent (alongside the long gun I'd likely be carrying)
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • NCFUBARNCFUBAR Senior Member Posts: 4,324 Senior Member
    I am a .45acp guy but even with our small black bear down on the NC coast I'd want more than even a full sized one loaded with 230gr Gold Dots. It would be better than barehanded but I am of the opinion on bear penetration is just as important as expansion and weight retention. A lot of older guys in western NC swear a .41 Magnum (yep a .41 Magnum) loaded with hardcasts is about the best handgun. As to semi-autos ... I say 10mm loaded a little hot with hardcasts might be a little comforting.
    “The further a society drifts from truth ... the more it will hate those who speak it."
    - George Orwell
  • earlyearly Senior Member Posts: 4,950 Senior Member
    Nine milk jugs is very impressive. Just the kind of information I needed. I use this cartridge mostly for target shooting and HD.. The times when I want more juice would be so rare that working up a load or changing springs would be a bit much. Sounds like a factory loaded 230gr swc or 230gr SD ammo would do the job and be better than the 200gr stuff.
    My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,262 Senior Member
    early wrote: »
    Nine milk jugs is very impressive. Just the kind of information I needed. I use this cartridge mostly for target shooting and HD.. The times when I want more juice would be so rare that working up a load or changing springs would be a bit much. Sounds like a factory loaded 230gr swc or 230gr SD ammo would do the job and be better than the 200gr stuff.

    There are a number of factory 230 grain truncated cone FMJ's out there, that, while not as sexy as my LBT's, will probably be close enough for Gummint work.

    The problem with S.D. hollowpoints for what you are talking about is that they are DESIGNED to adhere to the FBI protocols of 12-18" of penetration, and they deliver that exceedingly well with boring consistency, usually only surpassing it when the clothing, plywood, drywall, or auto sheet metal tests clog or collapse the cavity. Keep in mind that administrative paranoia about "over-penetration" and misconceptions about "energy transference" are a driving force in that industry. Neither are going to serve you very well if you have to poke through over two feet of bear meat to stave off your own version of The Revenant.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • earlyearly Senior Member Posts: 4,950 Senior Member
    Sound advice.

    I'll see what I can dig up before vacation time draws near.
    My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.
  • jbohiojbohio Senior Member Posts: 5,575 Senior Member
    Buffalo Bore has some loads that fit the bill, Early. Easier, probably cheaper than completely retooling to load a round you hopefully never use.
  • earlyearly Senior Member Posts: 4,950 Senior Member
    jbohio wrote: »
    Buffalo Bore has some loads that fit the bill, Early. Easier, probably cheaper than completely retooling to load a round you hopefully never use.

    I forgot about them. I'll check am out.
    My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.
  • NCFUBARNCFUBAR Senior Member Posts: 4,324 Senior Member
    Buffalo Bore does have some hot load 45acp +P loads that would do. If you do go with hotter loads again I'd swap recoil springs (up say 4 - 6 lbs maybe) just to keep it from beating itself a little to hard.
    “The further a society drifts from truth ... the more it will hate those who speak it."
    - George Orwell
  • jbp-ohiojbp-ohio Senior Member Posts: 10,167 Senior Member
    Don't forget the .45 Super.....................

    large_215_45S255_Large.png
    "The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not." Thomas Jefferson
  • earlyearly Senior Member Posts: 4,950 Senior Member
    NCFUBAR wrote: »
    Buffalo Bore does have some hot load 45acp +P loads that would do. If you do go with hotter loads again I'd swap recoil springs (up say 4 - 6 lbs maybe) just to keep it from beating itself a little to hard.

    Yea, I was looking at their 255gr cast lead. Its not only expensive, but I think it's beyond the design perameters of my pistols.

    Magtech and UMC offer 230gr swc loads in 50 round boxes.

    Just a question of what I can find on shelves reserved for hp or if I have to mail order or maybe drag my timid butt to a gun show.
    My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,262 Senior Member
  • earlyearly Senior Member Posts: 4,950 Senior Member
    They look good :up:
    My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.
  • earlyearly Senior Member Posts: 4,950 Senior Member
    Anyone have any experience with the 450 SMC?

    http://www.ammoland.com/2014/11/450-smc-ammo/#axzz3ymrESl8J

    Interesting read. I think if I were inclined to a regular use if such ammunition I would use a pistol set up and dedicated to such use. Full size steel frame/slide, heavy spring etc. For punching paper, home defense, and once in a blue moon camping trip it's an over reach.
    My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.
  • BAMAAKBAMAAK Senior Member Posts: 4,484 Senior Member
    There was a story about 6 months ago about a guy in Alaska that killed a grizzly in SD with a .45 cal Hipoint. I think he emptied the mag on him.
    "He only earns his freedom and his life Who takes them every day by storm."

    -- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, German writer and politician
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 10,798 Senior Member
    My personal experience with shooting a feral hog with .45 ACP 230 grain hollow points did not go well. I got two into the lungs, one bounced off the skull, and one point blank behind the ear. These shots were after a friend had gut-shot him with a .222.

    It might be a different story with a souped up charge and hardcast lead, but personally, I'll try to have the 10mm along next time, loaded to ~.41 magnum power.
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 10,798 Senior Member
    Wambli Ska wrote: »
    Maybe be we can convince Zee to do some testing for us... for science :tooth:

    Yes, I would like to see one of his excellent science projects on this subject.
  • jbohiojbohio Senior Member Posts: 5,575 Senior Member
    I look at it like carry/protection ammo. I'd buy either the Buffalo Bore, or 450 SMC, run a mag through to make sure it functions. Load the rest into "bear" mags, forget about it. Keep the bear mags in the truck, swap out at the trail head.
    No way I'd carry 230 ball.
    I'm a wuss, I bring a 44mag when I head to CO.
  • earlyearly Senior Member Posts: 4,950 Senior Member
    Well the hog story don't bode well.

    Not likely to need defense from a black bear, but I'm taking a trip that includes some camping among other more urban destinations. Leaves a mix of circumstances. One do all gun would be easiest minus a lot of extra paraphanalia.

    We'll see.
    My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 16,928 Senior Member
    bisley wrote: »
    Yes, I would like to see one of his excellent science projects on this subject.

    As long as it involves fire and some kind of accelerant...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 16,928 Senior Member
    As we talk about 4-legged threats in the woods...need to keep in mind that an encounter with a 2-legged one is far more likely...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • NCFUBARNCFUBAR Senior Member Posts: 4,324 Senior Member
    My wife reminded me the smaller eastern NC black bears IN GENERAL are easily scared. Not saying all blackies or if injured or mama with cubs, but I have seen them run just at a simple yell ... or worse a little old lady with a broom protecting her bird feeder. For defense and protection a .45acp would likely do the job on 2 legged varmints and up to blackies where you are really just looking to stop and run them off.

    You being in CO know the things about bear encounter dos and don'ts and acting smart and a .45 should be okay ...
    “The further a society drifts from truth ... the more it will hate those who speak it."
    - George Orwell
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