How do I find what my gun likes?

Discussion in 'General Handgun Discussion' started by redrover3569, Nov 1, 2010.

  1. redrover3569

    redrover3569 New Member

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    I'm looking for opinions on a good way to go about finding out what ammo a new gun likes. For example: Should I buy small boxes of a few different kinds of ammo and load different mags with it and cycle through the mags say 3 times. Kind of a best of sort of thing to see which ones hold continuously good groups. How will I know what's ammo related and whats technique?
     
  2. NGIB

    NGIB New Member

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    Kind of depends on the gun in question. TBH, I haven't found much difference in name brand commercial FMJ ammo like WWB, Blazer, Federal, etc. I don't use the steel stuff like Wolf so I have no experience there. Self defense ammo is a whole different ball game as their are tons of different bullet designs from "flying ashtrays" to ammo that mimics FMJ - so a bit of testing is necessary. In general I've found Speer Gold Dots to be reliable in every gun I own. In my .45s (all 1911s) I use either Gold Dots or Cor-Bon PowRball...
     

  3. FreedomFighter69

    FreedomFighter69 New Member

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    If the gun will handle a magazine full without any problems your usually good to go.
    This is pertaining to feed and function. Accuracy wise it will take you about a month to find what your gun shoots best. That's a lot of rounds and wear and tear on your gun.
    You'll also be spending a fortune ! Defensive ammo is double the price of standard or mil-spec ammo. When you find one that feeds well and shoots where you aim, stick with it.
    Most likely your gun will like a few defensive ammo's and you'll be able to have some variety too. Then instead of wasting money on trying ammo that your not sure of you could stock up on some. The magazine articles always tell which ammo works best for the gun they tested. Usually if it works for the testers gun, it will work in yours if it's the same make. If they tested a Springfeild XD in 40 S&W, and it worked best with lets say Winchester PDX 1 Bonded, then it should do pretty much the same in your gun as well.
    Now this doen't mean the groups will be the same, but the functionality will.
     
  4. redrover3569

    redrover3569 New Member

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    New...totaly new here.

    I feel quite dumb here. I know nothing of defensive ammo and I only get to go to the range about once a month. The gun is an FNP-45, which is my first handgun, which I bought simply because I liked it. Think of me as a kid here,which is pretty much what I am at this stage, with no one in my personal life to help direct me. I think maybe I'll try to find a local instructor that will work with my schedule and ask the question later when I have more knowledge to draw from.
     
  5. Squirrel_Slayer

    Squirrel_Slayer New Member

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    Trust me, I am far from the "be all, end all" when it comes to handgun knowledge, so I am just speaking from personal experience. My Kimber .45 will chew through any kind of ammo except for flat nose stuff. So I just tend to stick to 230 gr. round ball ammo. My pistol is a little quircky in that it shoots Blazer really accurately, and then I have shot a few boxes of STI Lawman through it and the groups opened up. When I buy factory ammo, I just save the moeny and get Blazer. But this is rare in that I reload for that pistol, and I like to taylor my ammo for my preferences. I load mine kind of on the light side. They still cycle the gun with authority but I can definietly feel they are not as hot as factory loaded ammo.

    I would think that Blazer should be a safe bet for you though.
     
  6. CA357

    CA357 New Member Supporter

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    Redrover,

    Unfortunately, the process is trial and error. You can save some time and money by trying the ammunition that the tests recommend. However, each gun is unique and results may vary.

    Start out by shooting inexpensive FMJ to break the pistol in and to be sure of function. After you trust the pistol to function, test the recommended ammunition and see what works best.

    Just buy single boxes of the expensive stuff to try out. If it won't work well, you'll know it quickly you won't go broke finding out. After you gain more experience in general, you'll be able to make your judgment more quickly based on personal experience.

    We all started somewhere and nobody knows it all, so enjoy the process and have some fun with it.

    CA357
     
  7. NGIB

    NGIB New Member

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    I've owned 2 FNP's (9mm & .40) and both were very forgiving ammo wise. For range fodder, stay with whatever is cheapest at Walmart - usually Blazer or Federal. For defensive ammo (JHP - jacketed hollow point) some experimenting will be required...
     
  8. redrover3569

    redrover3569 New Member

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    Thanks for the advice and encouragement. I called and talked to someone at the range and found that there is an instructor there for no more than the cost of admittance. I've only been twice. Now I can get my feel right then I'll worry about the gun. Expect to hear about improvements in the future.
     
  9. CA357

    CA357 New Member Supporter

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    I don't know what your experience level is red, but make sure you are a safe gun owner. A basic gun safety class will help you immensely and also broaden your knowledge base in general.
     
  10. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    First get the gun broken in. About 200 rds should suffice for the FNP. Then decide whether you want 185 gr, 200 gr or 230 gr. IMHO the Speer Gold Dot is very hard to beat for accuracy, reliable feeding, terminal performance and cost effectiveness.
     
  11. Biohazard2

    Biohazard2 Active Member

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    Since they have an instructor at your range, they must have some shooting matchs.
    You should go to one of the matchs in your area and observe and ask.
    You will find that most everyone there will help.
    Don't be afraid to ask questions, we were ALL new at one time.
     
  12. redrover3569

    redrover3569 New Member

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    To ease your fears CA357. While I'm very INexperianced I have taken my states hunters safety course. That and the range rules and supervision I think is adequate for the range. Although I meet the qualifications for a CCW in my state that is farther down the list. I want to take more types of safety courses. In my book good intentions are a bad idea. I WILL BE CERTAIN that no one gets hurt due to my ignorance.
     
  13. CA357

    CA357 New Member Supporter

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    Cool beans. :)
     
  14. FreedomFighter69

    FreedomFighter69 New Member

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    +1 !
    CA said it in a nutshell. Trial and error. Now that I know it's a 45 acp it's perfectly alright to carry it with FMJ Ball ammo. It is rated a 67-69% one shot stopper. It is the only full metal jacketed ball ammo that actually works well. Due to the size, bigger bullets = bigger holes. You are actually okay to use FMJ for defensive purposes with a 45. Of course there are lots of others too, Speer Gold Dots are excellent in 45 as someone mentioned as well as Remington Golden Sabres, Winchester Silvertips 200 grain +P's are the hottest out there. With a 200 gr bullet that hits with 503 ft-Lbs of energy these work well also. Winchester has the PDX1 Bonded ammo which is very good too. As far as FMJ go with UMC, Winchester White Box or American Eagles, these are inexpensive. About $22.00 to $26.00 for a box of 50.
    These are just a few to give you some idea. There is a barrel load of ammo types, and brands available. I have used all of these and never had a problem with them. You should get similar results too. Good Luck with your first gun !
     
  15. Highpower

    Highpower New Member

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    Excellent attitude there red. Good for you. :)

    Always remember... IGNORANCE can cured with EDUCATION, but stupidity is forever. ;)
     
  16. Hondo

    Hondo New Member

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    Start with WWB can't go wrong there.
     
  17. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

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    Maybe I'm just lucky, but all of my centerfires have gobbled up everything I feed them. I really wouldn't expect anything different from an FNP. Feed it a steady diet of Walmart's finest (WWB/Fed Champion) and both the gun and your wallet should be pretty content.

    For JHP there are a ton of options. I lean toward Rangers, Gold Dots, and Hydrashoks. I like that they're available in the 50rd LE boxes, which brings the cost per round considerably lower than many of their 20-25rd competitors. Winchester Rangers are my go-to HPs in all pistol calibers. You can get 50rd boxes of any of the above three in whatever weight you prefer for about $30-40 online.
     
  18. WDB

    WDB New Member

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    Red a truly good question and thank you for being honest with your expereince. Robo pretty much said it all when it comes to the FNP. I have a FNP-40 it seems to do well with all ammo. The Speer LE Gold Dot is what I found to be the best on target round for a defensive round. I prefer the 185 grain but that is a subjective choice.

    By the way you chose a fine pistol that will serve you well. Sound like you are on the right tract with getting additional professional training. That will dramatically improve your ability to use and enjoy your firearm.
     
  19. FreedomFighter69

    FreedomFighter69 New Member

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    I forgot all about Rangers !
    They are the best defensive cartridges of the lot.
    Basically a Black Talon without the Black Lubalox coating. They are a little harder to find but not impossible. Do some research on Black Talon and Rangers, this is some of the most potent, devastating, ammo out there !