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Old 06-04-2010, 07:39 PM   #1
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Default New to Ammo

I just purchased a SIG Sauer p226 9mm. This is my first firearm and all other times I've rented and fired the range's guns. Therefore, I've had to use their ammo. So I have a few ammo questions:

1. Are there any "ratings" of ammo? I've heard about "Grain" but I don't know what this means.

2. Are there a few reputable brands in the industry that I should buy from?

3. Are there any names that I should avoid?

Thanks a lot!

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Old 06-04-2010, 10:34 PM   #2
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"1. Are there any "ratings" of ammo?

No

---I've heard about "Grain" but I don't know what this means.


In our terminology, a grain is a unit of weight while an individual "grain" of powder is a kernel.
We weigh both bullets and powder in grains, 7,000 to a pound.


2. Are there a few reputable brands in the industry that I should buy from?

Any common brand is common because it's popular. Any popular ammo is popular because it's good.


3. Are there any names that I should avoid?

I know of no ammo that doesn't function well. Accuracy is determined by your gun liking the load. That's chance, not the brand, as such.
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Old 06-04-2010, 11:20 PM   #3
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Default ammo

What Fuzzball said.

I would like to add one.

For practice use,

Hardball.

Full metal jacket.

Don't need special bullets,
such as hollow point,
or any other super bullet.
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Old 06-05-2010, 03:46 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewGunz View Post
I just purchased a SIG Sauer p226 9mm. This is my first firearm and all other times I've rented and fired the range's guns. Therefore, I've had to use their ammo. So I have a few ammo questions:

1. Are there any "ratings" of ammo?
If you're referring to "ratings" as velocity & energy readings then yes.

Ammo weight, shape, and construction from different mfg's will effect
ballistic ratings. Velocity variations due to barrel length depend on the baseline bullet speed & the load. Velocity in and of itself is interesting, but isn't a definitive measurement of something as complex as stopping power.
Construction; +P ammo is a more powerful load than traditionally manufactured for that particular caliber.
For example: 9mm +P ammo will have more energy, ft-lb than standard 9mm ammo.
If you're interested in ballistic ratings I would go to several ammo mfg's websites and compare 9mm ballistic charts, but be advised that your reading may vary from the mfg's.
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Old 06-05-2010, 11:29 AM   #5
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For the common 9mmLuger caliber, the most common bullet weights you will find are 115 grain and 124 grain. The 115 is the defacto 'standard' weight, while the 124 grain is more a defensive weight. There are also 147 grain loads, but not all pistols will handle them reliably.
There is the "+P" ammo - this is geared more towards defensive use, being a bit 'hotter'.

Your primary manufacturers will be Winchester, Remington, Federal - all widely available. You'll see others too - Walmart now carries the Swiss RUAG brand - good ammo! The Swiss are serious about shooting - but you will pay more.

As stated, for practice, the Full Metal Jacket is good, and "MC" or Metal Clad is now common. The Hollow Points are best left to defensive duties - no need to waste that kind of money on paper punching!

IF you find any Russian or East European steel-cased 9mm ammo - I'd avoid it - it's cheap but some pistols don't like it. My Egyptian Maadi Cadet will not chamber it.

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Old 06-05-2010, 01:42 PM   #6
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I would suggest that you buy a few boxes of different brands. Take them out to the range and see what your gun likes the best. Also keep in mind, the first 100 rounds or so don't count. You will need to break in your gun.

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Old 06-05-2010, 02:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzball View Post
[I---I've heard about "Grain" but I don't know what this means.[/I]

In our terminology, a grain is a unit of weight while an individual "grain" of powder is a kernel.
We weigh both bullets and powder in grains, 7,000 to a pound.
No, and yes. A grain is a unit of weight regardless if it is used in reference to bullets or powder (smokeless). In Black Powder terms a grain is actually a measure of volume. 7,000 grains = 1 pound. No "kernels" here.
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Old 06-05-2010, 10:59 PM   #8
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Thanks for all of the info! One more question I have is what's the fundamental difference between FMJ and JHP in a defensive scenario? I understand JHP can do more damage to humans but if the person has body armor on, is FMJ better? Will it penetrate? Also, if they do not have body armor is FMJ still at least a little effective in stopping an intruder? Thanks.

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Old 06-06-2010, 04:11 AM   #9
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JHP: Upon impact, the bullet is forced to open up and expand. This results in less penetration, but greater tissue damage due to the larger diameter of the now expanded bullet.

FMJ: The bullet design prevents either expansion or deformation. Allowing for deeper penetration.

Quote:
Also, if they do not have body armor is FMJ still at least a little effective in stopping an intruder?
Any well placed shot is effective against stopping a threat.
With FMJ you may have to consider over penetration; passes through the bad guy with no body armor and through bedroom walls.
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Old 06-06-2010, 08:11 AM   #10
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Your Sig 226 will almost certainly cycle any 9x19 round pretty well. What's just right as a defensive round is for you to determine.

Practice Ammo (FMJ): It's generally a good idea to buy American. Try Walmart. Look for 115gr examples from Federal, Winchester, Remington, or CCI Blazer. Expect to pay $9-12 per box of 50. The 124gr Swiss RWS ball they've got at some Walmarts ($12.97) is outstanding ammo. It burns clean and is a nice heaver round ideal for breaking in a new gun.

Defense Ammo (JHP): You really can't go wrong with most of the offerings from Winchester, Rem, Federal, Speer, Corbon, DoubleTap, Hornady...and there are plenty more. I like Winchester Ranger 127gr +p+ best, but like most people I've got several flavors of JHP sitting around.

Try this link for defense ammo.

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