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View Poll Results: Would you use your own reloads for your Self Defense carry ammunition?
Yes 97 66.44%
No 49 33.56%
Voters: 146. You may not vote on this poll

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Old February 4, 2012, 10:38 PM   #1
amathis
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Reloads for Self Defense

Would you use your reloads for Self Defense purposes?

Reasons that I carry my own ammunition for personal protection.

1. The ammo is more accurate than factory ammunition.
2. The ammo is more affordable than factory ammunition.
3. There is no difference loading your own rounds than buying a box of "Critical Defense" XTP's at your local gun shop.
4. You know that if you did everything right, every round in that magazine will go "bang" when needed.
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Old February 4, 2012, 10:49 PM   #2
excelerater
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hard to explain to the jury you made your own killer ammo....
for CCW do yourself a favor...keep the gun and its ammo stock!
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Old February 4, 2012, 10:54 PM   #3
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The Staff has this topic stickied now, because it has been fully explored and often leads to puerile bickering and people getting banned.

Thats not to say it can't be discussed rationaly, but both sides of the poor old horse have been beaten into the dust.

An Archive Regarding Reloads and Self-Defense

Every conceivable pro and con point has already been put forth and debated. It can all be found in the archive.
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Old February 4, 2012, 10:57 PM   #4
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Ahhh sorry bout this. . . . I didn't mean to start something bad, I just wanted to start a new thread as the conversation had gotten diverted in another thread.

Staff - I certainly won't take offense if you all choose to shut this thread down.
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Old February 4, 2012, 11:26 PM   #5
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I trust what I'm doing compared to someone I don't trust what they're doing. I see recalls on ammo all the time. I haven't had to recall any of mine.
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Old February 5, 2012, 12:48 AM   #6
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I've seen this conversation get turbo stupid almost as much as any topic discussed on the whole site. Something in the chemistry turns normal folks in to screeching gargoyles on amphetamines.

The folks who really want to carry their own loads often cite that they don't trust factory ammo as the biggest point.

There is one "idea" I cooked up (I'm likely NOT the first...) that nobody ever seems interested in debating or considering, and I'm not sure if that's because it's a CRAPTASTIC idea or if it's because it hurts both sides major bullet points:
  • If you are concerned that it's not loaded to your standards, why not buy a factory defense round, break it down and re-assemble to your standards?
You want it faster? Up the charge.
You want to ensure the powder weight is right? Weigh it.
You think their primer is suspect? Insert your own.

All the components are factory new... and you'd be the guy assembling it. In any way you want to define it, you'd be carrying handloads.

Yes, it's expensive because you'd be paying 100% of the cost of high-dollar defensive fodder, but I can't see where anyone who is convinced that his handloads are better than the premium, expensive ammo can't simply re-load that ammo and get the best of both worlds.

Never seems to be a popular solution in the discussion.

Full disclosure: Hell no, I don't do it, either! I carry factory. But I've considered it.
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Old February 5, 2012, 01:13 AM   #7
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Used to before factory loads got so much better, but there was a time when I carried them on duty as a LEO. Premium defensive loads are pretty good these days. FWIW the loads in my backup revolver when hunting hogs is handloaded as is my hunting ammo. Not all of it is reloaded as I often use new cases. Sometimes I use my own cast bullets, or should I say re-cast wheelweights. Quality ammo is quality ammo, if I could load better defense ammo than I can buy I would.
Let's surprise the mods and keep this one civil, OK?
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Old February 5, 2012, 01:15 AM   #8
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It'll be interesting how the anonymous poll turns out. The rehashed discussion? not so much.
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Old February 5, 2012, 08:17 AM   #9
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I don't know how valid the whole jury issue is related to handloads vs reloads but I decided a while back to negate the issue by carrying commercial. I created a practice round that hits same point of aim, similar recoil and velocity to practice with. Once a year I buy two boxes, one I shoot to make sure it's still doing what I expect. The other I carry. After a year I get two more boxes and put the ones I've carrying (I've yet to fire a single round in anger) away for the zombie apocalypse.

Don't know why, in past threads, some people get so heated up over the issue. Ultimately its a personal choice that may or may not have consequences ONLY for the adult making the choice.
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Old February 5, 2012, 08:27 AM   #10
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As an aside, if the underlying issue is a lawyer convincing a jury that the shooter cooked up "the most deadly handload possible" what would the same lawyer do if the same shooter carried something like Cor-Bon or Buffalo Bore. I could see some lawyer arguing the same issue, "No, the killer couldn't be satisfied with plain old Winchester or Remington, he had to have what is advertised to have the most power and make the biggest hole".....
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Old February 5, 2012, 08:47 AM   #11
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Quote:
As an aside, if the underlying issue is a lawyer convincing a jury that the shooter cooked up "the most deadly handload possible" what would the same lawyer do if the same shooter carried something like Cor-Bon or Buffalo Bore. I could see some lawyer arguing the same issue, "No, the killer couldn't be satisfied with plain old Winchester or Remington, he had to have what is advertised to have the most power and make the biggest hole".....
I guess that was my original line of thought. If I purposefully go to the store and purchase a load specially designed for self defense, isn't that hammering a nail into my own coffin? A lawyer can come after me and say I premeditatedly went to the store and purchased this "man killing ammo." If my lawyer can't defend me against that, there's no chance he could portray my reloading as innocent.

I thought it was interesting as I poured over the other threads regarding the topic the variety of views presented. One thing that stood out to me was a post by Buzz_knox. He posed this line of questioning that I think applies very well.

Quote:
March 6, 2008

The issues with handloaded ammo are:

1. can you really make it more reliable than factories?

2. if using hollowpoints, do you fully understand the design so you understand the velocities required for the bullet to function properly? Are you chronographing regularly to insure you are matching those velocities?

3. are you saving all records of what components you used (including lot numbers) as well as saving rounds from each batch to serve as exemplars? Hopefully, if you did save actual rounds, you seal and certify the rounds to establish they were made long before you ever needed to use them as evidence. Factories retain this kind of information, because the ammunition they produce may end up in court, and they need to be able to explain its characteristics. If your ammunition leaves unusually low powder residue (in the eyes of a forensics examiner), your self-defense shooting might be interpreted as occurring further away than you indicated in your sworn report. They might believe you lied, and are deserving of further "attention."

4. Do you have a legitimate and rational reason for using handloads versus factory ammuntion, and can you articulate that reason?
Ultimately I think if you're screwed, you're screwed. If any one of us are brought to court for a self defense shooting, its not going to matter what you are carrying. You just shot a man and you're going to have to live with that for the rest of your life. That always is floating in the back my mind as I carry.
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Old February 5, 2012, 08:50 AM   #12
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BTW guys thanks for keeping this civil!
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Old February 5, 2012, 08:58 AM   #13
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There are a lot of variables I am not going to go into here. As far as using handloads for self defense. There are quite a few variables. Like:

What state do you live in? What area of that state?(Some prosecutors in areas will give in to public outcry. They are elected, and usualy want to be reelected too.)

Is this woods carry? Street carry? Just in the home?

Woods carry for critters should be a no brainer here folks.

Now for self defense in the home. You are most likely to go before a grand jury in most states, and the type of ammo used by the home owner is not what is going to be put in front of the jury. If you used deadly force in the home it comes down to two outcomes 1. Justifiable (States with castle doctrine type laws the person is now waived of civil liabilities. Meaning they can not be sued.) 2. Not Justified. If this one then an indinctment will be returned and the person arrested, and chaged with some type of homicide.

Note that Carl Fish was convicted by a jury that said due to the prosecution using the fact that he used a 10mm loaded with hollowpoints (Factory Loaded Ammo) Was a big factor in them returning a guilty verdict against him. He spent years in prision before his appeal was heard. The prosecutor painted him as an arm chair commando wannabe due to his weapon choice. Made it seem like he had an itching trigger finger for the first person willing to give him the reason to shoot.

Oh and ammo choice can go either way. A man murdered his soon to be exwife's boyfriend, and attemted murder of the woman. He tracked her down, kicked in the door went in shot them both called his daughter talked for a few minutes. Then called 911 hysterical that he just shot two people. He had a CHL and the ammo type and caliber were not used in court. The DA basicly came to the conslusion that he prety much shot both execution style anyway. He was sentenced to 80 years for 2nd degree murder of the man. He had a team of expensive attorneys. Otherwise he would have wound up on death row. Note he has not been charged wit hthe attempted murder yet. That case is seperate, and will be tried at a later time.

If I had no other choice I would carry my own handloads knowing the risk involved.
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Last edited by m&p45acp10+1; February 5, 2012 at 09:10 AM.
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Old February 5, 2012, 09:27 AM   #14
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Muzzle Flash

One item that that has been listed an attribute of a good SD round is muzzle flash. I've never tested it in my Gold Dots (have never fired any of my firearms at night), how do they stack up? What loading would you use say in a 45 ACP with a 185 or 230 gr hollow point for good velocity vs low muzzle flash?
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Old February 5, 2012, 09:38 AM   #15
dunerjeff
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I'll use my own loads,I'm not worried about being "found guilty"because of it.This has been round and round about no actual court case that someone was ever found guilty because he/she used reloads.That says it all.It just doesn't matter to me what anybody else feels is right or wrong,we are adults and free to do as we decide for ourselves.
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Old February 5, 2012, 09:52 AM   #16
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Quote:
As an aside, if the underlying issue is a lawyer convincing a jury that the shooter cooked up "the most deadly handload possible" what would the same lawyer do if the same shooter carried something like Cor-Bon or Buffalo Bore. I could see some lawyer arguing the same issue, "No, the killer couldn't be satisfied with plain old Winchester or Remington, he had to have what is advertised to have the most power and make the biggest hole".....
As with all of these types of threads, it's mostly "what if" and speculation.
If one is worried about his/her choice of ammo, he/she should also be worried about the choice if firearm as well.
If a lawyer can put you in the hot seat for your ammo, he can most certainly do the same for your choice of firearm.

"Ladies and Gentleman of the jury, this is the 45 caliber handgun Mr. X use to kill poor Leroy. That's right a 45 caliber, the biggest baddest handgun caliber made. Mr X has several other handguns in smaller more friendly calibers like the 9mm. When Mr X armed himself that night he did not take his smaller more friendly 9mm, NOOOO, he took the biggest baddest handgun he owned. He new if he was going to shoot someone the 45 caliber would do the most damage and without a doubt kill his victim instantly. If Mr X would have taken the smaller 9mm poor Leroy might still be alive today."
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Old February 5, 2012, 09:59 AM   #17
Cascade1911
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I think you nailed it Steve. I'm gonna get me one of those little 22 revolvers and some CB caps. Then I'll just be convicted of being stupid.
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Old February 5, 2012, 10:09 AM   #18
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I think choosing self-defense ammo based on what a prosecuting or plaintiff attorney may say or what a jury may decide is pure folly. I'll just carry the best I can afford and practice with it when I can. I'll also do my damnedest not to ever put myself in a situation where these choices can be demonized.
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Old February 5, 2012, 10:12 AM   #19
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The more prevailing factor will be if the shooting was justfied. Not what was used to do the shooting. That would come up later if the shooting were not deemed justified.
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Old February 5, 2012, 10:15 AM   #20
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And here I thought we were going to have a serious descussion on this. Steve and Cascade, you two know how to add hummor to a thread (LOL).

Quote:
hard to explain to the jury you made your own killer ammo....
for CCW do yourself a favor...keep the gun and its ammo stock!
Nope, keep the gun working right with your own ammo, and then you will still have the oppertunity to explain to a jury instead of to Saint Peter.

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Old February 5, 2012, 10:17 AM   #21
Wag
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Your best self defense tactic will include the best attorney you can get.

In the past, I've thought that store bought ammo would be better to have and best of all, use whatever the local PD or FBI are using. "If it's good enough for them. . . ."

I once read about an Ayoob case where handloaded ammo was an issue, mostly because the residue indicated a range other than what the shooter claimed but they couldn't verify it because the guy didn't keep good records. While that part of the case might not have been necessary with factory ammo, would it make a difference in whether or not the shooter was convicted? Will it make a difference for you and I in future cases?

Here's a link but the source could be questionable. http://www.gunatics.com/forums/gener...mas-ayoob.html

Further reading is in order.

Either way you go, you will have an opposing attorney using every trick he can think of to paint you as a bad guy and your attorney working to counter those tricks with tricks of his own.

The only detriment to handloaded ammo, I think, will be whether or not you can prove the forensics required for your defense.

--Wag--
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Old February 5, 2012, 10:26 AM   #22
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Quote:
And here I thought we were going to have a serious descussion on this. Steve and Cascade, you two know how to add hummor to a thread (LOL).
We aims ta please.
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Old February 5, 2012, 11:04 AM   #23
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I thought we were being serious.....LOL

To be serious, I was thinking how I've read where people advise that you create a relationship with a lawyer versed in self defense cases on the chance that you might find yourself needing his services one late night. How would a opposing attorney twist that action? "the killer even arranged to have a lawyer on call BEFORE he even shot my client...". ya carry what you think will work, do what you have to do to protect you and yours and hope right prevails.

Still interested in handloading tactics to reduce muzzle flash with out reducing power.
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Old February 5, 2012, 04:07 PM   #24
steve4102
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Quote:
Still interested in handloading tactics to reduce muzzle flash with out reducing power.
Muzzle flash is often times more to do with choice of powder than amount of powder. Blue Dot for example is notorious for extreme muzzle flash while powders like Silhouette have special coating to reduce muzzle flash.
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Old February 5, 2012, 04:26 PM   #25
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The question is not fell formed

Use of the conditional "would" implies there is more to the question.

For example, "Would you...on the street vs in you home?"

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