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Old January 5, 2013, 05:46 PM   #26
jmortimer
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"That is not BS."
Really?
Name the prosecution of a citizen charged with a crime for using reloaded ammunition? There are none. There was a prosecution of an individual where the jury felt using a 10mm was too much power, more than the police. And the prosecution used advanced firearms training against the shooter. I'm sure you mention that every time someone wants to go to Gunsite or some other vendor of advanced firearms training. I'm sure you mention in every 10mm thread that the 10mm owner should never use the 10mm for self-defense. Right, you don't and no one else does. So the real threat is ignored and the theoretical threat is so scary. So it goes with the P.C. nonsense.
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Old January 5, 2013, 05:54 PM   #27
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Quote:
the jury felt using a 10mm was too much power, more than the police
I don't understand that argument? The police use 12g shotguns and a 10mm is not more powerful then that nor is a .44 Magnum?
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Old January 5, 2013, 06:01 PM   #28
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It is all right here. There were many other "facts" that would apply to most any of us that were used against Mr. Fish.
http://www.haroldfishdefense.org/
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Old January 5, 2013, 06:04 PM   #29
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jmortimer, it was not that I did not believe you I do. It is just of my opinion (Worthless) that it was a poor argument from the State but it was enough to convince the jury! OJ got off I guess anything can happen in court~!
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Old January 5, 2013, 06:09 PM   #30
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Everyone's opinion counts. To be totally safe, it does makes sense to use the exact duty gun and ammunition your local LEOs use. When they change you change. I like revolvers and non-expanding bullets that have large/max meplats that make two holes, in and out. I'm in a minority in that and the use of reloads. I just don't see it as a problem but to be totally safe....
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Old January 5, 2013, 07:35 PM   #31
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In the Fish case the thing that was used to sway the jury the most was that he used hollow point bullets.

I would carry my own reload for self defense. My bedside gun is loaded with hand loads. The larger issue than what the gun is loaded with is weather or not one is justified in using deadly force.
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Old January 5, 2013, 09:39 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RHafleyJ
I'll try to get a pic up of the results after i shot them into some old phonebooks.
Make sure the phonebooks are saturated with water before this testing. (At least the first one in the stack. Put a wrap of tape around it and soak it about 24 hours in a ice chest or something.

Dry phone books are about like shooting into lumber and won't tell you anything about expansion performance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gster
I figure that if (God forbid) I have to shoot someone (and I would to protect me and my family.) I'm gonna be in a world of %#@& any how.
So true.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gster
When they find that I was just using published data and their published components, every will come out just fine.
There's lots of data out there. They can probably find a published load that makes your's look like an overcharge...

When you combine the chances of ever having to use a gun in self defense with the chances of whether or not your ammunition being reloaded matters in court I think the liability issues are very, very small.

I carry factory ammunition because I trust it as much as my reloads and I don't want to take that very, very small chance. When you pull the trigger the odds of a factory round firing are pretty much the same as the odds of a store bought primer working.
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Old January 6, 2013, 12:28 AM   #33
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Wet phone books are a not a good indicator of hollowpoint expansion. milk jugs full of water are probably the easiest, the plastic isn't too thick to clog the cavity.

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Old January 6, 2013, 12:32 AM   #34
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^ Not really. Water opens up bullets that will not open up bullets in "real life." Wet phone books/newspaper are good mediums.
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Old January 6, 2013, 10:28 AM   #35
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jmortimer,

I've never seen anyone use wet newspulp for an expansion test, only for penetration tests for hunting revolver loads and dangerous game loads for rifle.

I agree that water is an "ideal medium" to test hollowpoint expansion. That is why I recommended it. But since neither wet newspulp nor water contain skin, muscle, bones, you can can only predict bullet performance so much and say "this is what this bullet will do."

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Old January 6, 2013, 11:11 AM   #36
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What I was saying was that water is too good at making bullets expand and will give a false sense of how well a bullet will open up. As bullet that opens up in water may not open up in "real life." I agree that wet paper is best used for penetration but I believe it has a place in general bullet testing. Water is a good medium for testing penetration as well. Ballistic gelatin is the best compromise with expanding bullets, especially with barriers, clothing, "bone simulant," etc.
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Old January 6, 2013, 12:02 PM   #37
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"It is all right here. There were many other "facts" that would apply to most any of us that were used against Mr. Fish.
http://www.haroldfishdefense.org/ "

I'm not sure this case really supports the concern against using reloads in self-defense. Based on my read, it seems the real issue raised came from the fact that he used a handgun against someone who(allegedly) was unarmed or only had a screwdriver in his backpocket in defense.

By that logic, I guess Mr. Fish should have only responded with a screwdriver? I'm still looking for actual case law that would create a precedent. Until then, I'm happy to stay with a load, handload or not, that I can count on to perform.
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Old January 6, 2013, 12:11 PM   #38
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"I'm not sure this case really supports the concern against using reloads in self-defense."

You missed the point. There is no such case. The point of the case in question was that he used a too powerful 10mm hand gun with hollow points, engaged in firearms training, and had too many guns and bullets all of which were used against him effectively. The main issue was self-defense shooting.
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Old January 6, 2013, 12:15 PM   #39
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xtp

RHafleyJ - - - Well the expansion question and the Montana Gold results scared me so I loaded a Hornady XTP 124gr with the published max of 5.7gr Power Pistol and loaded a 125gr Zero with 6.2gr of the same. I'll try to get a pic up of the results after i shot them into some old phonebooks.

I don't have data for the xtp but it sounds like you're starting about right. What pistol are you using?
Please post up what you get!

Jeff
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Old January 6, 2013, 03:22 PM   #40
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Water and newspaper don't contain bone, but neither does ballistic gelatin or ballistic putty contain bones or other objects normally. You could put some in, I suppose, but bone properties change after the animal expires, typically becoming more brittle. It is indeed a complicated matter, and for that reason all terminal ballistic testing is a compromise of some kind.

Most of the wet newspaper testing I recall from magazine articles thirty years ago involved putting newspaper in a plastic bag with vinegar and letting it sit for weeks until it digested into a sort of clay. When sectioned, this media did indeed maintain temporary cavities like a poor man's ballistic putty. IIRC, one fellow poured plaster of Paris in from the entry hole and let it set to form a permanent model of the cavity. I never had the patience to do this, so that's all from memory of magazine articles and not of personal experience.

The FBI wound up with the tests devised by Duncan McPherson and Martin Fackler. They shoot five rounds into a bare block of ballistic gelatin and five into a block with several layer of clothing over it to see if a hollow point clog develops, then use average results for each of the five. (They also test for barrier penetration in situations far more likely to be encountered by law enforcement than in civilian defensive engagements; e.g., shooting through windshields.) McPherson and Fackler also tried pig skin over the gelatin. McPherson's book, Bullet Penetration:…, describes all this and is worth reading if you're interested in terminal ballistics.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jmortimer
Once again, there has never, ever, in the entire history of the United States, been one single person convicted of any crime for using reloads for self-defense.
I have to ask how we know this? Masaad Ayoob (who pretty much started the whole debate by advising against handloads for SD) argues that handloads as factors in prosecutions have not, thus far, set any recognized legal precedents, and for that reason you couldn't find these cases in law journals or on Lexisnexis or in other legal research media (I don't know about newspaper stories, though, which might show up in LN if it were mentioned in one). So he thought the only way you could find out for sure was to go to every county courthouse in the country and read enough of all firearm homicide cases on record, looking for handloads as a factor. AFAIK, nobody, either pro or con on the use of handloads in self-defense has done that. It would be expensive and require an army of researchers to do. But if you know otherwise, please explain.

Ayoob has posted three cases he's found over time in which the use of a handload became a complication for the defense, though none of them are self-defense situations like we are discussing here. The one that interested me most is the one Ayoob testified in as an expert witness in which a homicide conviction may have occurred because CSI's screwed up powder stippling testing by comparing findings for commercial loads to powder evidence of the handload on the corpse. I can't tell from that case description whether the conviction was righteous or not, but it's interesting because we all know that some powders burn cleaner than others, especially at lower target load levels, and that the bulk powders used in commercial ammunition are often a poor match to the canister powders sold to handloaders.

That case is also interesting because the problem stems from how low power the load was, rather than from the commonly assumed problem of a jury being convinced a load was so potent as to imply the gun owner was bloodthirsty and itching to try it out. Instead it was technically dubious law enforcement findings proving inconsistent with the shooter's story. Ayoob thinks using a round that the CSI's can go buy off the shelf for comparison be an advantage in a self-defense case for that reason. I'm not sure how well that would really work, since manufacturers often change powders with different lots of a given round, so the CSI's might need some from that same lot. If you had spares, at least you'd have some to share with them, where with handloads they can't know whether the one you used was loaded differently from the others or not. Ayoob's three cases are here.

I agree with Gster that one can hand load more reliable ammunition than you can buy. It's for the simple reason that you can afford to have a human being inspect every individual component and individually check every stage of their assembly, where the mass manufacturer cannot. On another forum a fellow who did contract testing of commercial ammunition for government agencies said that when you've fired tens of thousands of rounds you eventually see the manufacturers make every kind of error any reloader could make, plus a few he can't or is at least much less likely to let slip past him. Cases without flash holes, for one. How do you reload a case that's never been fired? I had two of these in a 1000 piece bulk purchase of new Winchester .223 brass a few years back. Bullet jackets with no core was another example. An empty primer cup was another. But also all the usual stuff: No powder, too much powder, backward primers, sideways crushed primers, excessive seating depth, a high bullet, bullets loose in the case mouth, etc.

That said, the prospect of confusing CSI's in a self-defense case is not an entirely unreasonable concern (more so in some jurisdictions than in others). If you choose to use commercial SD loads, you can improve on their reliability by visually inspecting each round, plunk testing them all in your particular barrel, and sorting them by weight so as to select out only those within a half a standard deviations or so of the mean weight, then using only those for actual carry. None of that's a guarantee, but it should greatly reduce the probability of a problem round being in your carry gun. Buy a quantity of 500 rounds and from the ones you didn't select for carry, fire a statistically significant random sample once a year until you retire the lot. That's to make sure there are no duds or aging or storage problems developing. Rotate out and fire the carry rounds periodically to make sure no gun oil or anything they are subjected to in your holster has contaminated them.
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Last edited by Unclenick; January 6, 2013 at 03:35 PM. Reason: typo fixes
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Old January 6, 2013, 03:36 PM   #41
jmortimer
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As I've have stated twice now in this thread, the most prudent course of action, if you are concerned, is to use the exact gun and ammunition the local LEOs use and change when they change. For me, I'll use my reloads. But, something that has never been addressed, and I have asked this over and over, is how we can get the vapors over reloads when we know for a fact that using 10mm hollow points has caused criminal legal problems in a self defense case, and getting firearms training has caused a problem in a criminal self-defense case, and having many guns and lots of ammunition has caused a problem in a criminal self-defense case, but no one ever mentions that, only the "don't ever use reloads." Obviously, I'm for all the above: reloads, training, hollow points, high-power, lots of guns and ammo. But logic, common sense, wisdom, whatever, all dictate that the same standard should apply to all the above. That's why I keep at it. Don't tell someone to never use reloads, when no one ever, as far as we can know, has ever once in the history of the United States, been convicted of a crime for using reloads. But we know for sure everything else listed above has contributed to a conviction that was later overturned, Thank God. Let's keep it real.
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Old January 6, 2013, 04:51 PM   #42
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I used sand in a gallon pale to do some bullet expansion tests in
The sand was a little less of the proper coefficient for the ballistic medium, but the cost was a lot less then the ballistic gel at that time. I was working on a PhD at the time in Engineering and did not have much money. After cleaning the sand off the bullets they gave some nice expansion results.

By the way the Judge in the case "Mark Moran, Arizona Superior Court"
was not well thought of and ruled against gun owners a lot during his career.
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Old January 6, 2013, 06:08 PM   #43
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jmortimer,

Quote:
Don't tell someone to never use reloads, when no one ever, as far as we can know, has ever once in the history of the United States, been convicted of a crime for using reloads. But we know for sure everything else listed above has contributed to a conviction that was later overturned, Thank God. Let's keep it real.
It isn't about not being convicted, it is about not getting prosecuted.

A criminal trial takes time and money. Two things that I don't have enough of. In the history of the United States there have been a number of cases that were "later overturned" as you yourself have said. That means someone's life was turned upside down in the meantime.

You agree that the safest way to go is to use what the local LEOs use, and yet you insist on being contrary as if any of us ever wrote the words, "use reloads and go to jail" which I do not recall anyone writing in this thread.

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Old January 6, 2013, 09:55 PM   #44
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Like I said the whole issue is made up. It has never happened. If your scared then don't go there.
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Old January 7, 2013, 12:16 AM   #45
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jmortimer, I think you are mistaken.

Quote:
While it’s a slam-dunk to defend your use of hollow point ammo, the use of handloads in a shooting presents much more serious problems to your defense team. Defensive shootings are often very close-range affairs in which gunshot residue (GSR) from your muzzle is deposited on your attacker’s body or clothing. This can become a critical evidentiary factor if the other side insists he was too far away from you to endanger you at the moment he was shot. The distance testing is done with exemplar ammunition, that is, ammo identical to what was in your gun, but not the same exact cartridges. Don’t count on the crime lab testing the remaining rounds from your weapon as taken into evidence at the shooting scene. If the fight was sufficiently intense, there may not be any rounds left in the gun that saved your life. Even if there are remaining cartridges in evidence, they may not be tested. The prosecutor can argue, “Your honor, firing those cartridges consumes them! It’s destructive testing! The defense is asking the Court’s permission to destroy the evidence! You cannot allow it!” Do you think that’s a BS argument? So did I…until I saw a judge accept it, in a case where handloads were used in the death weapon, but the state crime lab tested with a much more powerful factory load, based on the headstamp on the reloaded casings. That gave a false indication of distance involved, and the defendant – whom I have strong reason to believe was innocent – was convicted of manslaughter.
Unless you are calling Mas Ayoob a liar. http://www.gundigest.com/gun-blogs/b...oncealed-carry

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Old January 7, 2013, 12:21 AM   #46
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Do you know anything about the case in question? Did it involve self-defense? No. It was a murder. Never has been a case involving a crime for using reloads for self-defense. I believe there never will be someone convicted of a crime for using reloads for self-defense. For sure I believe more people will be successfully prosecuted and convicted for using "too powerful handguns" and advanced firearms training, and have too many guns and ammunition, and for using hollow points. That has happened before and will happen again.
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Old January 7, 2013, 12:23 AM   #47
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Mas thought the guy was innocent, so I'll take his word for it.

Anyways, I think we are about done here.

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Old January 7, 2013, 12:20 PM   #48
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Yep, this topic never ends in full agreement. Practically, you are trying to find a balance between minimizing chances of arrest or prosecution or conviction and maximizing your survival chances. That's like making investments. You have to know your own personal risk tolerances.

IIRC, Mr. Mortimer used to practice law, and I infer from the fact he could find the other kinds of convictions he mentioned and not handload-dependent convictions that the latter must be more unusual, assuming they occur. The question then is how well case law correlates to likelihood of arrest and prosecution. I also don't know how many plea bargains may occur in which the gun or ammunition choice are held out as arm-twisting factors to help persuade the defense to plead out, so that no trial occurs to go on record and the kind of load used isn't mentioned except in medical or autopsy reports. That's why I still think it's a good idea to check with your local prosecutor or sheriff for a sense of their attitude on the topic.

The novel point I took from Ayoob's example was that you can draw incompetent CSI's same as you can get a biased judge. There have certainly been some well-publicized instances over the last few years of crime labs that were providing bad results. So, you might want to find out what kind of reputation your local crime lab has, too. If it's poor, then you just have to decide how much you are willing to chance helping them screw up.

The bottom line is that it's all about personal risk management choices, and they really are personal so that you really do have to decide for yourself what's reasonable.
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Old January 7, 2013, 02:18 PM   #49
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Absolutely agree with all the above. Inevitably sacred cows get paraded, I just like to keep some prospective. There are a whole lot of things that can cause you problems in court, and in theory, reloads are one of many, 10mm ammunition, training, a decent (from my perspective) gun and ammo collection, etc.
BTW, still practicing law.
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Old January 7, 2013, 04:43 PM   #50
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For some reason a post you had long ago at The Shooter's Forum lead me to think you had ceased practicing, but I obviously read it wrong. Sorry 'bout that.

A friend of mine who's an attorney said a trial law professor in law school told his class that if you went into court completely in the right and with every verifiable supporting fact on your side, your chance of victory was about 60%. I suspect that's civil court rather than criminal court (at least I hope so). But all the same, it speaks volumes to the ability of good trial attorneys to spin a jury into seeing things the way they want them to. Going to court represents a significant gamble for both sides, which explains why so many cases are concluded with a plea. Like choice of defensive gun and ammunition, it's an example of a compromise made to limit risk of one kind or another.
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