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Old June 16, 2012, 10:15 AM   #1
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Am I right about best HD Ammo?

I am new to the site so please excuse the length. I own 2 Glocks for home defense, a 17 and a 34. I have been doing some research for the best way to go for ammunition in a situation where there are children in the house. As far as I can tell from my reading, low penetration of wallboard is only a option for 12ga bird shot. (I do have a shotgun also). For HD with a 9mm is the best option to find a JHP (bonded) that works 100% of the time in my gun, then practice firing making sure that POA=POI all the time, and practicing low light shooting as well so that I have good target acquisition? To me this would seem to reduce the chances of inadvertent wall shots greatly, but still give me the best chances of protecting me and my loved ones against an intruder. I was looking to try Federal Tactical HST 124gr first.
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Old June 16, 2012, 11:57 AM   #2
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Welcome to the forum.

There are no 100% reliable anythings in shooting. Your best safety option, regarding wall penetration, is still rule 4. I also highly recommend taking a class that will put you through simulators with shoot-no-shoot situations and that trains you to clear rooms and generally not to behave like TV script writers think police do.

Your choice of a tactical round is reasonable. You can also buy Glaser Safety Slugs that break up into shot at impact, so they are less likely to do damage after going through a target, but they can still penetrate wallboard. There are revolver cartridges that have shot-filled capsules, and that would remain deadly at short range, but I don't know that there are any made that will function semi-autos reliably. But be aware that anything that penetrates less may also fail to produce as immediate a stop. The reverse can be true if everything works the way it is supposed to, but that's sometimes a big if. The best thing is to practice and hit where you intend to.
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Old June 16, 2012, 01:07 PM   #3
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Darn good advice from Unclenick, I would say. I am not a fan of Glasers because doubt has been cast on their penetration, as alluded to by Unclenick. The only other thing I have to add is that it is best to think extensively about your lines of fire while you are awake and have a plan so that you won't have to make critical decisions in the fog of being newly awakened in addition to being highly stressed with your family in danger.
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Old June 16, 2012, 01:23 PM   #4
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And I agree with Unclenick and TailGator. Both have provided excellent and spot on advice.
"It is long been a principle of ours that one is no more armed because he has possession of a firearm than he is a musician because he owns a piano. There is no point in having a gun if you are not capable of using it skillfully." -- Jeff Cooper
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Old June 16, 2012, 02:03 PM   #5
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My opinion is that if a round can be trusted to be stopped by 2 layers of drywall, I won't trust it to reliably penetrate to vital organs.

Keep a decent hollowpoint in your Glocks, and practice with them. Walk through your house and look for areas that are a safe backsto and those that aren't safe. Come up with a plan in case an intruder comes in, and walk it through with the family.
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Old June 16, 2012, 02:04 PM   #6
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The Hornady Critical Defense is a good option but the best option is not If you miss you must ensure that you have picked the best line of fire. Birdshot is never a good SD option. Go with a single projectile and hit your target and pick the best possible line of fire.
From the Truth About Guns site:

Shotgun Penetration With Various Rounds
Posted on February 27, 2010 by Robert Farago
"Wounds inflicted from birdshot tend to be gruesome yet shallow as they lack the penetration required to reach vital cardiovascular or central nervous system structures."
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Old June 16, 2012, 02:11 PM   #7
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Yes, a good hollowpoint is the best bet for getting a quick stop with a 9mm handgun. Some of the newer "good" hollowpoints include Federal HST, Winchester PDX1 Bonded and Ranger bonded, and Hornady Critical Defense.

The problem with rounds that don't penetrate drywall is that they don't penetrate bad guys very well either. If you are shooting for center of exposed mass, like many recommend (including myself), there is a good chance that that will include things like ribs that slow and/or deflect lighter, smaller projectiles. That is a big reason why many dislike bird shot for self defense.
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Old June 16, 2012, 03:14 PM   #8
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The HST is what I carry as well, but it is not a bonded bullet. You actually may not want a bonded bullet anyway because they tend to expand a little less and penetrate more due to less expansion. The good thing is the HST is probably the best at bullet retention of the non bonded bullets.
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Old June 16, 2012, 05:58 PM   #9
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Thank you all for the help making sure I was headed in the right direction, and the advice about looking at the house in a different way before I really need to.
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Old June 16, 2012, 07:02 PM   #10
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I have twins and an open plan house. I made heavy wood bookshelves and placed them to cover the kids rooms, and I have placed a couple of large gun safes as backstops also. My 9mm load of choice is a hot 115gr JHP, non bonded. It carries a lot of energy to help it fragment and deform, letting it stop quickly. I also have a shotgun with #2 birdshot in it, and at the ranges I have in the house it works for me.

A few years back when I worked at a larger gunshop than I do now, we ordered a guy a couple of "Bomb Blankets" Large Kevlar blankets that he had built into the walls of his infant's room. It was big $$$$ though.
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9mm , federal , home defense , hst

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