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Old July 11, 2006, 08:38 PM   #1
Stump1
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Loading for Personal Defense

I have heard (and can see valid points in) both sides of the argument of loading your own personal protection rounds.

My biggest pro is that for my .357 and .45ACP, I can reload quality rounds that will suffice for personal defense, and I can do it cheaper than I can buy range rounds. Therefore, I spend less money than the average guy AND practice with what I will shoot for personal defense.

1. If you think I'm crazy, please say why you think so.

2. What bullets should I be using if I do this?
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Old July 12, 2006, 04:31 AM   #2
WESHOOT2
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no offense, but

Your question about bullets suggests maybe you're not ready to make your own defense ammo.

Points to consider:

1) will the ammo I make go bang every single time, without exception?

2) how much will I save over buying a $25 box of 'factory' ammo? or even two boxes?

3) does my ammunition-making process ensure my ammo will go bang?

I hope you read these questions carefully, and provide honest answers.
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Old July 12, 2006, 04:38 AM   #3
Bud Helms
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Quote:
I hope you read these questions carefully, and provide honest answers.
At least to yourself. Handloading should be studied before taking the dive.
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Old July 12, 2006, 07:25 AM   #4
Win62a
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Build reloads that best approximate your chosen SD factory loads and shoot them in practice.

Then use factory ammo for your SD carry ammo.

Best of both worlds IMHO.
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Old July 12, 2006, 08:15 AM   #5
Ausserordeutlich
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Just from a reliability standpoint, seems to me that one could load a small batch of carry ammo, being extra careful about every step, particularly including primer seating, powder charge inspection, etc., and produce ammo that's just as reliable as factory ammo. (Particularly if one used Federal primers, to insure ignition)

I have on rare occasions carried my reloads (or just handloads with new components) for s.d.; however, I must admit that my practice is to carry factory rounds.
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Old July 12, 2006, 08:05 PM   #6
amamnn
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handloads for personal defense

I have no qualms about loading my own defense ammo. I get to use the actual premium rounds I carry for practice at a better price than buying premium factory rounds. I did not load up a few rounds and put them in the gun and walk off, though. I kept the guns I carry loaded with factory fodder while I worked up my own loads. When I was happy with them, then I made the switch.
A lot of people just have reservations about trusting their own work, I guess. In over 40 years of handloading I have had exactly one round fail to fire, and never a misfire or a squib load. I've had or seen maybe 20 rounds of factory ammo fail to fire or misfire, or fail to operate an auto loader.
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Old July 13, 2006, 06:24 PM   #7
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I pondered this question myself… and have come up with a plan, at least for me.

It goes without saying (so I will say it) you must be sure that you are ACTUALLY reproducing a Premium Factory Load. So if you have not already done so; get a box of what you like and a Chronograph and test it. Then build your own load and see how it compares. They should be close with no signs of excessive pressure.

Then Practice with your load and carry the Factory load.

The problem in my view is liability, if the lawyers can make the manufacture withdraw Black Talon Ammo because it is too deadly… they will make dog meat out of us.

I hope we never need to use any ammo in self defense… but if we do the last thing we need is trying to answer in a court how you just made some “Extra Deadly” round and just had to use it.
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Old July 13, 2006, 09:50 PM   #8
918v
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Stump,

You won't be able to replicate the subdued muzzle flash of premium ammo, especially in 357 applications. You can easily replicate the "feel" of factory ammo for practice, but not the performance.
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Old July 14, 2006, 02:06 PM   #9
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I agree with 918v and the muzzle flash is the main reason I keep factory SD rounds in my CCW and nightstand gun. The Federal Premium SD loads (and other SD loads I'm sure) have very little noticeable muzzle flash compared with any of my handloads in both 357 and .40SW.
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Old July 14, 2006, 05:40 PM   #10
Stump1
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Thanks

I've been reloading for a while, and I am more than comfortable with my loads. The question that I really had was what actual bullets do you like for personal defense application. However, since muzzle flash is a huge issue for my little .357, I may give some of those Federal SDs a shot.
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Old July 14, 2006, 11:34 PM   #11
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I like Speer JSP for my 9mm loads, but I have to carry 124gr. +P Gold Dots. Sucks :barf:
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Old July 15, 2006, 08:02 AM   #12
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fireball 357

Can test with 3N37, N350, N110, WAP/Silhouette under 125g JHPs.
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Old July 16, 2006, 09:07 AM   #13
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Personal defense...........Factory ammo.
Range..........My Reloads.

End of story
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Old July 16, 2006, 11:11 AM   #14
BillCA
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If cost is a major factor, then those who duplicate factory performance by handloading can, and should, practice with their handloads. When it comes time to holster the gun and hit the street, loading factory ammo means;

Nearly identical performance as your practice load.
You remove the "handloaded ammo" equation from any litigation.
A supposedly more reliable product.
Flash suppressants when you need them.
Latest expanding bullet technology.

Those who carry their own handloads should keep some detailed notes about the development of those loads. The purpose here is to show how you selected a commercial load, noted its ballistic performance, bullet type, etc. and worked to safely replicate that load. Notes on the accuracy of the load along with any chrono data would show a jury that you were following "industry norms" and not trying to create extra-lethal ammo.
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Old July 16, 2006, 11:49 AM   #15
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factory ballyhoo

If you believe the ammo makers ballyhoo, then you would have a hard time believing anyone was ever stopped by a gun previous to whatever the latest marketing campaign is pushing. That being said, I like the idea of a reduced muzzle flash. That's one reason I don't carry a .357 mag. or bigger. Still, my home gun is still the trusty old shot barreled pump shotgun loaded with 00.
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Old July 16, 2006, 02:47 PM   #16
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There is no legal liability for using reloads for s.d. That has nothing to do with my choosing to use factory loads.

Black Talons weren't taken off the market because they were "too deadly." According to a now-deceased Superior Court Judge friend of mine, a letter he wrote to Winchester regarding the potential HIV hazard to health care professionals in fishing the shards of Black Talons out of wounds probably precipitated their taking Black Talons off the market. Don't know if his letter was just coincidental to Winchester's decision, but I do know that he wrote the letter.
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Old July 16, 2006, 11:35 PM   #17
BillCA
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This has been mentioned before,

Quote:
he wrote to Winchester regarding the potential HIV hazard to health care professionals in fishing the shards of Black Talons out of wounds
However, not being in the medical field, I was under the impression that surgeons used foreceps to remove objects from the body rather than their hands. Still, I can see the potential though, should a surgeon use his finger(s) to keep some organ or tissue out of the way while he grabs one piece and another sticks him.
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Old July 17, 2006, 12:46 AM   #18
JJB2
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my reloads have AWAYS been more consistant and just as reliable as factory ammo.... altho i have loaded some of what i call super hollow points by loading hollow based wadcutters in backwards over 6 gr. bullseye in a .357 magnum case.... still i'd use federal 158 gr.jsp factory loads for defense because of the liability factor.. who knows what a jury might decide......
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Old July 17, 2006, 09:50 AM   #19
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Bill: I'm pretty sure that surgeons sometimes have to probe with their fingers. As I said, don't know if the judge's letter had anything to do with Winchester's policy, but I do believe that he wrote the letter. He was a "gun person." Carried a concealed pistol always.
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Old July 17, 2006, 12:44 PM   #20
temmi
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Not to beat a dead horse… I understand “words mean something” and perhaps I used the incorrect word when I used “liability” and some can infer “legal”.

That said, my point is during the Civil Litigation that may accompany the use of Deadly Force, there will be no “Deadly Reload” questions to cloud the issue if you use factory Ammo. “BillCA” seemed to express the though clearer than me.


Thanks
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Old July 17, 2006, 12:52 PM   #21
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You remove the "handloaded ammo" equation from any litigation.
Handloaded ammunition is irrelevant in any subsequent litigation. The only relevant question is whether the use of deadly force was justified.
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