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View Poll Results: What bullet weight do you prefer for 45 Auto?
230g 62 66.67%
200g 22 23.66%
185g 8 8.60%
Other (please comment below) 1 1.08%
Voters: 93. You may not vote on this poll

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Old November 2, 2022, 07:30 PM   #26
RickB
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"Better", in what way?
In general, I think of 200 as a compromise bullet weight, not too heavy, not too slow, which smacks of the thought process behind the popularity of .40 S&W, which turned out to not be the best anything.
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Old November 2, 2022, 09:14 PM   #27
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My thinking was in the terms of defensive use of ball ammo. A lighter bullet going faster will have more energy, and decelerate faster transferring more of the energy due to the reduced momentum. 230g ball ammo penetration is sometimes like 29in. Which if you figure the fbi standard of a max of 18in thats 11in of over penetration and wasted energy/liability.
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Old November 2, 2022, 09:42 PM   #28
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I shoot pure lead 210gr hollow points. They start out looking like this.

Then end up looking like this.
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Old November 2, 2022, 10:56 PM   #29
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Hollow points are expensive, even cast ones. And in my limited experience of casting my own jollow points, they are tricky and frustrating things to get to drop cleanly from the mold/pins and are not something i would want to cast in bulk. I prefer plated, and powder coated lead is a great 2nd choice.
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Old November 3, 2022, 01:40 AM   #30
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Quote:
"Better", in what way?
In general, I think of 200 as a compromise bullet weight, not too heavy, not too slow, which smacks of the thought process behind the popularity of .40 S&W, which turned out to not be the best anything.
Okay, never thought I would ever find myself running to the defense of the .40 S&W but...

"The Best" still has never been found... not round, not weight, not load, not gun, not gunmaker, so let's toss out this superlative.

Back circa 1994, when you needed Grandfathered magazines to go beyond 10 rounds, .40cal was a pretty damn solid choice for a lot of folks.

I went through a long period where I loathed the .40cal but it has a place and I get fine use from it. When it comes to slapping steel plates, I see a noticeable upgrade in how it tosses steel when directly compared to 9mm on exactly the same array of plates which vary in size, shape and weight.

Sure, "but I have never been attacked by steel plates!" and yeah, great argument, doesn't do much for me cause I also don't carry .40cal, 9mm works for me, but it seems like gun forum sport to just slag cartridges left and right for no real purpose beyond, well, gun forum sport.
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Old November 3, 2022, 06:12 AM   #31
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I cast 230 gr and it shoots plenty well in a Sig P220 and all of my 1911's. At one point, I cast 200 gr SWC plated ammo and it was a nightmare to get it to run in the Sig. It was before I had the 1911's so it was my only .45. I may still have some that are not loaded up so I may try it again for the 1911's.

The 230 is my go to for the time being just because I can shoot it. For SD, I use Black Talons that I still have from way back when. And no, I haven't had to use it in a SD setting thankfully.

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Old November 3, 2022, 11:34 AM   #32
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Quote:
My thinking was in the terms of defensive use of ball ammo. A lighter bullet going faster will have more energy, and decelerate faster transferring more of the energy due to the reduced momentum. 230g ball ammo penetration is sometimes like 29in. Which if you figure the fbi standard of a max of 18in thats 11in of over penetration and wasted energy/liability.
The classic measures of "stopping power", both for hunting and self-defense, are based on momentum, beyond the most important factor, penetration.
I'd be happy to get two holes per shot (since I'm aware of my target and what's behind it).
I find it interesting that it's rare to hear about overpenetration and misses in LEO involved shootings? I watched a long car chase video, and cops fired at least 80 rounds at the perp (in his car), some at no more than 8-10 feet, but the perp was able to crawl out of his vehicle and beg the cops to stop shooting at him; if I'm going to miss 70+ times, why should I be concerned about overpenetration?
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Old November 3, 2022, 02:46 PM   #33
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I agrew having an extrance and an exit is ideal. However too much exit it wasted energy. 29 in is a lot, i would prefer to have 18 to 20in and dump the exta 9in or so of energy into the target.
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Old November 3, 2022, 03:17 PM   #34
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Mr Browning thought 200 grains was about right. I think the only reason it ended up 230 is that the Army could not cram the 1873 era 250 into a short automatic's case.
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Old November 3, 2022, 03:21 PM   #35
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230gr ball has been a fight stopper for over 100 years, so I use that.
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Old November 4, 2022, 06:25 PM   #36
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I like the feel of 185gr at close to 1100fps from a 5" 1911.
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Old November 5, 2022, 05:28 PM   #37
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Quote:
Hollow points are expensive, even cast ones. And in my limited experience of casting my own jollow points, they are tricky and frustrating things to get to drop cleanly from the mold/pins and are not something i would want to cast in bulk. I prefer plated, and powder coated lead is a great 2nd choice.
Hollow points are easy to cast if you know how.

Use mould release on the pins.

I use Frankford Arsenal stuff.
https://www.amazon.com/Frankford-Ars.../dp/B00EVNSFKY

Crank your pot up as high as it can go and leave it there. Hotter the better. pure lead will not frost.

The cost is only as much as you get your lead for. Even if you buy it at market price it's way cheaper than any store bought hollow points in any caliber.
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Old November 22, 2022, 02:11 AM   #38
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I always did 200xtp with unique, but as I am getting further away from my targets, I am liking the lighter weight bullets moving faster because they drop less. 230 grain bullets would require some adjustment at 100 yards, whereas the 185 grain bullets moving 175 fps faster still hit at the original aiming point.

I don't really have much use for any pistol round under 1000 fps for this reason.
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Old November 22, 2022, 03:48 AM   #39
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I don't think I've ever used anything for 45 acp except 230 grain. Mostly FMJ but for a while I reloaded some 230 RNL "Zero" bullets with my Lee-Loader. That was a long time ago though.
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Old November 22, 2022, 11:20 AM   #40
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200 gr. coated SWC
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Old November 22, 2022, 01:06 PM   #41
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https://www.grafs.com/retail/catalog...roductId/75780

Might consider these if your pistol feeds them reliably. After years of loading 230 jhps for high velocity, am transitioning to these at moderate velocity. Less recoil and more controllable in smaller/lighter 45's..

While consideration is given to expansion tests/etc, am more inclined to prioritize the unexpected and go with heavier bullets. For vermin want some barrier/bone penetration at non-standard angles.
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Old November 22, 2022, 01:26 PM   #42
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Came back to the thread after a few days away, and I need to comment on some of the things said...

Quote:
A lighter bullet going faster will have more energy, and decelerate faster transferring more of the energy due to the reduced momentum. 230g ball ammo penetration is sometimes like 29in. Which if you figure the fbi standard of a max of 18in thats 11in of over penetration and wasted energy/liability.
I understand your reasoning, but I think there are some points you're not considering. First the math we use for energy numbers is very heavilty weighted towards velocity. The faster bullet will have a higher energy number, but that doesn't mean anything other than a higher energy number.

Energy numbers alone do not tell the entire story of bullet effectiveness. They are a handy number to use for relative comparison but energy alone isn't all that meaningful, other than as an indication of potential. Potential, not results. Results depend on many other factors, besides just energy.

One can. for example, load a .22-250 and a .45-70 to identical energy numbers. Which would you choose to stop a buffalo or bear?? With identical energy, math says they should be identically effective, right? Real world results says otherwise. Mass, momentum area, as well as penetration and, of course the most important, aim are all just as, or more important than ft/lbs of energy alone.

Next, "wasted" penetration... a common concept, but one I don't see as having any real application. There is a difference between what is important to a police agency and what is important to individual survival in a defensive shooting situation.

This is the important lesson from the 1986 FBI Miami shoot out. The round that got the "official" blame (a 9mm JHP) met all the FBI standards (at the time) but stopped just short of immediately stopping the bad guy. It delivered a fatal wound, but not an instantly incapacitating one.

Since then, the FBI has "revised" its standards. The point is that a round that meets those standards can still fail to have sufficient penetration in a real world situation due to variables that cannot be well accounted for or reproduced in testing. There is no magic bullet , and I much prefer a round that goes to its intended target, and then through it, over one that doesn't.

I happily accept "waste" in order to have a reasonable expectation of performing the desired task under any conceivable circumstances.

Quote:
Mr Browning thought 200 grains was about right. I think the only reason it ended up 230 is that the Army could not cram the 1873 era 250 into a short automatic's case.
This is sort of correct...Browing's original ammo offering was a 200gr @900fps, and certainly would have worked, but it wasn't what the customer (US Army) wanted. The choice of 230gr had nothing to do with cramming a 250 into the short automatic's case, it had to do with what the Army had experience with and trusted, a 230gr at 830-850fps range. This was the load for the .45 Schoefield, which they had been using for decades. While they were ok accepting the new semi auto pistol, the demanded an old tried and true loading, so that's what Browing gave them, but with an FMJ bullet not a lead one.
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Old November 22, 2022, 01:58 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zeke
https://www.grafs.com/retail/catalog...roductId/75780

Might consider these if your pistol feeds them reliably. After years of loading 230 jhps for high velocity, am transitioning to these at moderate velocity. Less recoil and more controllable in smaller/lighter 45's..
Those look interesting. They're a bit light, but it looks like they might also be useful load in .45 Colt.
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Old November 22, 2022, 03:32 PM   #44
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Look no further than Luckygunner's test on 9mm.

Second largest expanding 9mm is the "Micro HST" 150gr moving at 888fps--super slow from a 3.5" barrel. It went an avg of 17", which is beyond the average of all.

Drag increases faster than velocity.

FPS and energy are meaningless these days. This forums as long ago agreed the beginning of rifle damage is 2700fps.

It's how the bullet performs. You can't cast skiving like is done on the HST bullet.

As it turns out, Federal "tactical" and HST are placed 3, 4, and 5 in the Luckygunner tests for expansion and all are noticeably slow. They all penetrated just fine.

Will they all "work"? Of course. But if asking for the best, there it is. And it's not FPS that creating it.
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Old November 22, 2022, 09:13 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aguila Blanca View Post
Those look interesting. They're a bit light, but it looks like they might also be useful load in .45 Colt.
Have a custom Lee mold for 230 lrnfp's with a wider flat nose and no cannelure, but am not a caster. There may very well be commercially hard cast /coated 230 rnfp's by now, but ain't looked in a while.
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Old November 23, 2022, 08:21 AM   #46
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Typically 230gr but in loading warm .45 Super it ranged from 185gr to 300gr.
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Old November 23, 2022, 09:20 PM   #47
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It's actually too bad the standard wasn't 200 grains because it was about 100fps faster at around 950fps and if they had designed a flat point bullet like the 200gr truncated style for the military in 1905 it would probably have given a bit better stopping performance closer to the british webley manstopper ammo. I guess nobody really complained about the stopping power of 230 grain ball compared to a 38 colt round. The biggest advantage would have been for SMG use with significatly lighter stick magazines to carry around. I'm not against 185 grain flying ashtrays at 1050 fps as a decent carry and home defense round but most of the 185s are around 950fps too like most 200s. The nice thing about 230 grain ammo at 850fps is it's not all that snappy and therefore it's probably easier to control. I'm not a big fan of commander sized 45 1911s and find the 38 super to be much more controllable in a commander sized gun. 230 grain ball out of a 5 inch 1911 barrel however is pretty comfortable to shoot.
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Old December 1, 2022, 09:45 AM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aguila Blanca View Post
Those look interesting. They're a bit light, but it looks like they might also be useful load in .45 Colt.
https://www.montanabulletworks.com/p...-230gr-lfn-pb/

ran across mention of these today, and they offer 230 gn rnfp with wide meplat for 45 acp , no cannelure. they look familiar.

They also offer a gas checked 250 gn version for 45 LC
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Old December 1, 2022, 11:14 AM   #49
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From a 3.8" Glock G36, 4-layers of denim, and 2 1-gal. water jugs (12"):



0.87" Average Expansion.




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