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Old January 31, 2009, 10:24 PM   #1
LoneStarWings
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Best .40 Factory Round for SD (165gr JHP vs 180gr JHP)

Hi,

I realize there have been a lot of threads on this, and I've read a dozen or so from searching, but I'd like a few more up-to-date opinions. I also realize that accuracy and shooting ability are about 100 times more important than ammo choice.

I'm leaning toward Remington 180gr Golden Saber. Is this a good choice?

With that said,

I've been looking at this: http://www.firearmstactical.com/ammo_data/40s&w.htm

And this: http://www.handloads.com/misc/stoppi...=11&Weight=All

Resuts from the second link seem to indicate that the lighter 155 and 165gr loads are much more effective stopping wise than the 180gr loads (actual shootings). Results from the first link seem to indicate slightly better performance from the 180gr loads in gelatin/clothed gelatin, despite slightly lower muzzle velocities.

Also, in terms of avoiding over-penetration should, god forbid, I miss a shot, what would be the better choice (I live in a multi-residence building)?

Thanks for the info,

LSW
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Old February 1, 2009, 12:45 AM   #2
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Also, my weapon is a S&W M&P with a 4.25" barrel. I've heard that with barrels over 4" you get better results with the 180gr rounds, don't know if that's true or not.
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Old February 1, 2009, 01:03 AM   #3
Ben
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Cor bon 135 & 150's are the only rounds I carry for my personal .40's. At work we carry. Winchester ranger 165's.

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Old February 1, 2009, 01:50 AM   #4
LoneStarWings
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Quote:
Cor bon 135 & 150's are the only rounds I carry for my personal .40's. At work we carry. Winchester ranger 165's.

Ben
Thanks for the reply.

What do you like about the Cor Bons? Recoil and accuracy?

I was looking at this site: http://stevespages.com/page8f40sw.html over the past few minutes.

And the 180 gr PMC Starfires seem to have the best penetration/expansion combo. It has.792 expansion and 20" penetration, whoa! That's a 10 cubic inch would channel. 2nd in that test would probably go to the 155gr PMC Starfire JHP's with .87" expansion and 14" penetration for 8.3 in^3 wound channel. 3rd is the 155 gr Federal JHP with .786 expansion and 17" penetration for an 8.24 cubic inch wound channel. Granted he was using milk juggs filled with water, hard to saw how accurate.

The complaint I seem to be hearing about the PMC starfire is reliablity...it seems to have problems feeding/ejecting for some reason. I hear the Federal HST is based off the same technology and has similiar ballistics, perhaps I should consider those too.

I know I'm splitting hairs, but I actually find the research interesting.

Last edited by LoneStarWings; February 1, 2009 at 02:18 AM.
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Old February 1, 2009, 02:25 AM   #5
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LoneStarWings
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And the 180 gr PMC Starfires seem to have the best penetration/expansion combo. It has.792 expansion and 20" penetration, whoa!........
I think Starfires have been out of production for several years now. Anybody else heard something similar?


Nail
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Old February 1, 2009, 02:55 AM   #6
LoneStarWings
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I think Starfires have been out of production for several years now. Anybody else heard something similar?


Nail
I heard similair things in my reserach, but they seemed to be part of some kind of Korean Conglomerate now, and the ammo is still on their website. Rather or not they still make I have no idea.

http://www.pmcammo.com/starfire.html

Now I'm actually kind of leaning toward the Federal HST 180gr, but I hear they're only sold to Law Enforcement now. Bummer.
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Old February 1, 2009, 03:12 AM   #7
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Now I'm actually kind of leaning toward the Federal HST 180gr, but I hear they're only sold to Law Enforcement now. Bummer.

Sometimes when you're willing to give looking for it a try, success can be at your finger tips. Streichers. 180 and 165 in stock. Back order ok for 155 gr.-- 50 rds.

You can buy Golden Saber, DPX and Gold Dot--not necessarily at Streichers. All good ammo.

Personally, I don't know how you can have a serious discussion about "best" for .40 S&W ammo without bringing up DPX.

Shoot DPX thru however much clothing you want. Petals expand to very large diameter, and the gaps in the petals allow the base of the bullet to drive it deep-- but not overly so. Midway.

Last edited by Nnobby45; February 1, 2009 at 03:21 AM.
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Old February 1, 2009, 04:07 AM   #8
LoneStarWings
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Sometimes when you're willing to give looking for it a try, success can be at your finger tips. Streichers. 180 and 165 in stock. Back order ok for 155 gr.-- 50 rds.

You can buy Golden Saber, DPX and Gold Dot--not necessarily at Streichers. All good ammo.

Personally, I don't know how you can have a serious discussion about "best" for .40 S&W ammo without bringing up DPX.

Shoot DPX thru however much clothing you want. Petals expand to very large diameter, and the gaps in the petals allow the base of the bullet to drive it deep-- but not overly so. Midway.
Great, the DPX sounds intriguing. Does it only come in 140 gr? That's interesting. I think I would like to try a box of DPX's and 180gr HST's (although it seems like a wash between the 160 and 180 gr HST's). Those sound like they are the two leaders. I realize the DPX's are a lot more expensive too, but I can afford an extra 10 or 20 bucks to try a box I guess.
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Old February 1, 2009, 04:08 AM   #9
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Personally, when selecting ammo, I try to find one that I like the "feel" of in whatever platform I'm shooting it in.

I only own one .40, and that's a Hi Power. I've shot 155, 165 and 180 grain bullets through it, and prefer the 180's. They feel more like a 230 grain .45 ACP than the lighter loads. The heavier loads tend to have less "muzzle flip" IME, and they allow me to shoot more rounds with less fatigue. That to me, is an important factor.

YMMV.

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Old February 1, 2009, 08:39 AM   #10
wnycollector
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I have shot LOTS of 155, 165, 180gr loadings (and even sone 200gr doubletaps!) in both my CZ40B and Keltec Sub2K rifle. The I have settled on 165gr for the 40B and 155gr for the sub2k. The groups are a slight bit smaller and more consistent with both of those bullet weights...but in all honesty the difference is minimal vs the 180gr loadings.
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Old February 1, 2009, 08:51 AM   #11
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When the GunBlast website reviewed the S&W M&P 40, they tested it with all of the various CorBon loads, and chronographed the velocity they produced. Here are the results:

Load Velocity
Cor-Bon 165 grain JHP 1147
Cor-Bon 135 grain PowRBall 1337
Cor-Bon 135 grain JHP 1334
Cor-Bon 140 grain DPX 1256
Cor-Bon 150 grain JHP 1157


The two 135 gr loads produced the greatest power, over 530 ft/lbs of energy with either load.

Here is a link to the full review:

http://www.gunblast.com/SW_MP.htm


And here is a photo of the CorBon .40 S&W loads:




(left to right): Cor-Bon 135-grain JHP, 135-grain PowRBall, Cor-Bon 150-grain JHP, and Cor-Bon 140-grain DPX.
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Old February 1, 2009, 09:34 AM   #12
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I can understand why work would use a heavier round, but for personal defense I don't foresee having to penetrate car doors or walls. I want a faster bullet to ensure expansion. Typically less chamber pressure in the lighter rounds as well. Double bonus.

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Old February 1, 2009, 01:06 PM   #13
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increased velocity means less expansion and less penetration. Heavier grains are better. I use Federal HST 180g. in my walther P99 .40.
http://ammo.ar15.com/project/Self_De..._FAQ/index.htm
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Old February 1, 2009, 03:29 PM   #14
LoneStarWings
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Quote:
increased velocity means less expansion and less penetration. Heavier grains are better. I use Federal HST 180g. in my walther P99 .40.
http://ammo.ar15.com/project/Self_De..._FAQ/index.htm
Wow, that's a great article, thanks for that link. They too speak highly of the Federal HST's.
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Old February 1, 2009, 04:50 PM   #15
Ben
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Indy

That runs counter to everything I've read about ammo for YEARS. I know that I'm not the only person who is a firm believer that lighter bullets have more reliable expansion because of their greater velocity.

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Old February 1, 2009, 04:52 PM   #16
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You would think so Ben, but read that article with the other links in it and tell me what you think.
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Old February 1, 2009, 04:58 PM   #17
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I firmly believe that the lighter bullets penetrate less, but there isn't any evidence ti show that they expand less reliably. s.

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Old February 1, 2009, 05:02 PM   #18
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Hey, I'm no ballistics expert but those test results show me that penetration (no pun intended) and reliable expansion is a must have. I believe that the HST and Ranger T-Series are the best out there. No sense in arguing here, but we are talking about the "best" load, not just a good load.
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Old February 1, 2009, 05:11 PM   #19
Ben
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I would have liked to see some 135 & 150 grain rounds tested. He took a very small sample of the available products.

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Old February 1, 2009, 05:12 PM   #20
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Another vote for Federals HST rounds, very impressive ammo. I carry the 180 grain as well.

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Old February 1, 2009, 06:48 PM   #21
Nnobby45
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Quote:
increased velocity means less expansion and less penetration. Heavier grains are better.
The heavier vs. lighter is an ongoing debate with subjective opinions usually based on what someone read somewhere.

With limited street results available, I believe 155 HST has been more effective than either 165 or 180. As a matter of fact, I don't think 155 gr. .40 S&W has taken a back seat to anything in actual shootings. Unless it's some hot 135 gr. loads.
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Old February 2, 2009, 03:30 PM   #22
#18indycolts
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I know its an ongoing debate, but of all the ballistics I've read, the heavier round performed better. I'm sure some brands don't do as well, but as far as the HST the heavier did show it to be a better performer. I'll never carry another round for pers.defense.
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Old February 2, 2009, 05:57 PM   #23
Nnobby45
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I know its an ongoing debate, but of all the ballistics I've read, the heavier round performed better. I'm sure some brands don't do as well, but as far as the HST the heavier did show it to be a better performer.

For some, the criteria is excellent penetration with reasonable expansion--180grain.

For others, their standard is great expansion with reasonable penetration--155. For some, the 165 is the best of both worlds-- for other it's not the best of either world.

For some, it has to penetrate car doors and windshields.

Pick what ever criteria you want. You get something, you give something up.

My standard is how it works on Bubba in an extreme emergency in my hallway, or in the parking lot.

Last edited by Nnobby45; February 2, 2009 at 06:11 PM.
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Old February 2, 2009, 07:29 PM   #24
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nnobby45
I agree completely. You arm yourself for what you're likely to encounter. For personal defense, I like lighter. At work during traffic stops, 165-180 are better.

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Old February 2, 2009, 08:27 PM   #25
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I have carried 165 grain Golden Sabers or 165 grain Gold Dots for many years. My own humble testing and the reading I did at the time showed them to be tops on expansion and penetration.
The differences between common .40 S&W loads are very small in a close range. Simply put just about any good .40 S&W load will do the job.
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