Newbie with Ammo Questions

Discussion in 'Glock Forum' started by Shawncfer, Sep 28, 2014.

  1. Shawncfer

    Shawncfer New Member

    Hey guys,

    First, I'm an absolutely new to this whole world. I've never owned a firearm in my life. I just bought a Glock 19 with the main purpose of home defense, but also to enjoy recreational shooting at the range.

    That being said, I wanted to educate myself a little on different aspects of firearms. First, I wanted to start with ammo. I've been researching, and reading different articles. I'm starting to understand a few differences between different ammos, but I have some questions still that I can't seem to find straight answers to.

    First, I'm wanting to buy two sets of ammo: one for self defense, and the other for shooting at the range for fun. As far as the self defense ammo, I think I've narrowed it down to three different types. I wanted to get y'all's opinion, and see if there are any other SD ammos I should consider.
    1. Remington Golden Saber
    2. Winchester SXZ Personal Protection
    3. Federal Premium Guard Dog

    As far as range shooting, I've just been using Remington Luger 115 grain.

    At some point, I will use all four of those at the range. I would like to test the three home defense ammos to see what feels/works best for me. But my local range has this posted on their website:

    "We only ask that you not bring steel or aluminum cased ammunition, or steel core, steel jacketed, copper coated steel jacketed or armor piercing projectiles."

    Do any of the above ammos fall into one of these categories? I'm not exactly sure what ammo falls in this category to be honest.

    Anyways, thanks for helping out the new guy!
  2. Mercator

    Mercator Active Member

    Partial answer. The Golden Saber is tried and true, I trust it myself. The Guard Dog is new relatively, and the STZ I had to look up, turned out to be a basspro exclusive. The saber is brass, STZ probably is, guard dog may or may not be aluminum alloy. None of these are armor piercing.

    Given that you just might test a box of 20 expensive rounds, you might ask the range for an exception, with the promise to pick up every non-brass shellcase.

  3. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

    I'll try to answer starting with your last question first. None of your listed loads use steel or aluminum cases or steel containing projectiles. Many ranges make you leave your brass cases so that they can make more money on reselling them for reloading or for recycling.

    Many steel and aluminum shells cannot be reloaded. Projectiles that contain steel or use steel jackets may increase wear on range backstops.

    9mm is a common beginners round. It is widely used around the globe. Because of that it is often a source of confusion for new shooters because it comes under many names. 9mm Parabellum or Para, 9x19mm, 9mm NATO, 9mm Luger all are the same round. Other cartridges that use 9mm diameter projectiles exist and shouldn't be confused with the 9x19 round. .380 is refered to as a 9mm short round in many countries, (9mm Kurtz, 9mm corto, etc.)

    When considering practice ammo there are lots of good brands. Remington is ok, Winchester, Federal, PMC, Fiocchi, Speer, CCI Blazer Brass (their regular blazer line uses aluminum cases), are all brands I've had good luck with.

    For defensive ammo, try several brands. Function and accuracy are first and foremost in my consideration. Lots of good brands are out there once again. If your gun won't feed them or if you can't hit your target, it doesn't matter how good the bullet performs on a bad guy. Golden Saber, Winchester PDX, Winchester Ranger, SXT, Speer Gold Dots, Federal HST and lots of brands that use Hornady XTP bullets all are worthy of consideration. Then find the one that feeds the best and gives you the best accuracy.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2014
  4. rn-cindy

    rn-cindy Active Member

    To avoid any problems, and in support of my LGS. I just buy their reloads for use on the indoor range. It's good stuff (Precision Cartridge) never had a problem with it, and it's priced right.
  5. kycol

    kycol New Member

    For defensive ammo, try several brands. Function and accuracy are first and foremost in my consideration. Lots of good brands are out there once again. If your gun won't feed them or if you can't hit your target, it doesn't matter how good the bullet performs on a bad guy. Golden Saber, Winchester PDX, Winchester Ranger, SXT, Speer Gold Dots, Federal HST and lots of brands that use Horned XTP bullets all are worthy of consideration. Then find the one that feeds the best and gives you the best accuracy.[/QUOTE]

    This is spot on, some guns have a hard time feeding hollow point. Even the owners manual tells you the gun was not designed to. However doesn't mean it won't. I like the zombie ammo for this reason. It has a filler material in the hollow point and seems to help it slide on the feed ramp.

    Sent from my iPad using Firearms Talk
  6. kycol

    kycol New Member

    The couple ranges I go to around here, one free and one fee ( membership ). They don't care what ammo you shoot. And I shoot a wide variety. Some like Tula will function well in some guns and not at all in others. But I do think brass is the best by far. As far as ball ammo goes, I don't think you will have any problems with any brass case ammo out there.

    Sent from my iPad using Firearms Talk
  7. therewolf

    therewolf New Member

    Hey, Shawncfer, welcome to the FTF

    from Tampa Bay.

    Get a reloading manual. Even if you

    never reload, they are a wealth of

  8. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

    FMJ/range ammo- Buy what's cheap and suits your needs. Buy more than you need...because sooner or later it will be tough to come by at a fair price for a matter of months (or longer). Most of mine is either Federal Champion or Winchester White Box. All else equal, I prefer 100rd boxes of WWB. They're loaded a little hotter than most and packed like sardines...which occupies less space at home or in the range bag. I buy my FMJs locally at Walmart, Bi-Mart, etc for $10-14 per 50.

    JHP/defense ammo- There are a dozen or more great options. The affordable staple options will be Speer Gold Dots, Rem Golden Sabres, Federal Hydrashoks, and Winchester Rangers. My preference is the Winchester Rangers in 124gr or heavier, and I like to buy them in the 50rd boxes to keep the cost down. All of the above are fine choices and there are several others that could be added to this list. Just about anything from CorBon or Hornady is golden, and PMC and Fiocchi have always treated me well too. You can get into some really good 9mm JHPs for about $20-30 per 50rds here.

    Everything listed above is brass-cased, although Hornady does sell some steel cased ammo.
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2014
  9. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

    First- welcome to the forum- we're glad you found your way to us. When you get a minute, stop by the intro thread and say hello.

    You have been given some good information by the folks up there ^^^. One additional point- you DID say you have a Glock 19? The Glock uses a different type of rifling than most handguns, and should not be fired with unjacketed lead bullet ammo. They will build up lead in the barrel, and become unsafe to shoot.

    The rounds you listed are all metal jacketed, and should work fine. But eventually you will run across some low cost range ammo (reloads in many cases) that has unjacketed bullets.

    Gold Dot, Golden Saber or Hydra Shock are all good defensive rounds, but DO make sure that the cycle in YOUR gun.
  10. ScottA

    ScottA FAA licensed bugsmasher Lifetime Supporter

    For practice rounds, I typically buy the cheapest round I can find, often at Wal-Mart. That means I have a real mish mash of full metal jacket (FMJ) ammo in my supply at any time. There's no scientific thought to it, but it does give me an opportunity of how my guns perform with all kinds of rounds.

    For defensive rounds, I settled on Hornady Critical Defense years ago shortly after it was introduced. There are many other rounds that would probably work just as well, but its never let me down.

    Another piece of advice... You're going to want to get a 22 sometime soon, probably once this ammo scare is over and there's a regular supply of 22 on the shelves again. 22's are less expensive to shoot and a lot of fun. And that means more practice.
  11. DeltaF

    DeltaF New Member

    For defense carry:
    Federal HST provides the most expansion out of all the usual JHPs if that's what you're looking for.

    That being said, Winchester, Remington, Speer, Federal, etc. are all within several tenths of an inch of each other for the most part. The important thing is that you use a modern JHP that cycles well through your weapon. Stay away from old stuff on craigslist or cheap JHPs, and stay the hell away from gimmick rounds with ultra-super-amazing fps speeds and exploding fragmenting tips that will dismember a bad guy but wont penetrate walls etc.

    For plinking:
    Whatever's cheap and doesn't screw your stuff up. It really doesn't matter. If you've got money to burn, whatever brand JHP you buy will sell a comparable practice load in ball round form.
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2014
  12. JonM

    JonM Moderator

    personally i use hornady critical duty or critical defense in 115grain 9mm. im not a fan of remington as their primers have issues. the golden saber is a great design but the ignition source is not that great in my opinion.

    i load 115 grain fmj to the same velocity as my defensive ammo for practice.
  13. toroboy

    toroboy New Member

    Welcome to the FTF from North Carolina. We're glad you're here!

    While I've learned more through this forum than most of the experienced members have forgotten about guns, ammo, etc. in their lifetimes, I really enjoy reading posts like this since it helps me stay sharp.

    I cant add to anything that's already been posted. But, in the event you haven't done so already, take the time to sign up and attend a quality concealed carry class.

    I say this even if you have no plans to CC. First, the class will teach you so much that you need to know about your new Glock. Second, you'll be in a classroom environment and have the chance to get many questions answered that you might not have even thought of yet. Third, you'll get to meet a lot of good people who share similar interests; and, have some fun too!

    While I'm a huge proponent of the 2A, CC, and firearms in general, after many years of firearm ownership and use, I thought I knew a lot. I was humbled in my CC class and learned more during that experience than I ever imagined.

    As so many posters have already detailed in this thread, there's a lot of information out there to digest. So keep asking questions and don't hesitate to post your own insight. Newbie or not, everyone brings something good to the table...

    Sent from my iPhone using Firearms Talk
  14. John_Deer

    John_Deer New Member

    I have been shooting Freedom Munitions ammo for plinking and target practice with my G19. Freedom Munitions is very good ammo, it is accurate in a G19. I do not want to shoot practice ammo that has the same velocity as my carry ammo. My carry ammo has a velocity of 1,300 fps. To be frank my carry ammo is more accurate than any ball ammo I have shot. I would have to be involved with a SD situation at over 100 yards to notice more than a fraction of an inch between my carry ammo and ball ammo. At 25 yards my carry ammo shoots less than on half inch higher than my ball ammo.
  15. Shawncfer

    Shawncfer New Member

    Hey everyone,

    I want to thank you all so much for all the advice. You've made this incredibly easy for me. I'm going to swing my Gander Mountain on Saturday and pick up a lot of ammo. I will run a few rounds of the different Home Protection Ammos you guys have mentioned through my glock, and let y'all know after which feels the best in my gun!

    Sorry for the delay in responding, it's been a crazy week at work.

    Thanks Again!
  16. clr8ter

    clr8ter New Member

    OP, +1 more for the Hornady Critical Defense, or Critical Duty, and Hornady ammo in general. I can see why the range may not want steel core ammo being shot, if it's going to tear up their range, fine. But as far as what the case is made out of; if they started telling me what kind of cases I could use, or that I could not pick it up, I wouldn't patronize them. I bet this is one of those commercial indoor ranges, right?
  17. Vincine

    Vincine New Member

    First, if you're new to firearms, take a self-defense pistol course.

    I've had a Rugar 22/45, a 22lr pistol, and a Glock 19, a 9mm pistol for a couple of years now. Below are a couple of things I've found/learned. I've underlined search terms you could use. If a Hickock45 video shows up on any of the search results, watch it.

    Ultimately, self defense = bullet placement. The following concerns bullet placement.

    The biggest improvement in my marksmanship of the 9mm was dry-firing it at home, NOT shooting the 22. This develops trigger control. Shooting the 22 is fun, but as far as training for the 9mm, you're better off spending the money on 9mm ammo. If anything, getting a handle on shooting the 9mm made me better with the 22lr, not the other way around.

    The second biggest improvement came from finessing my hand grip. I've got long skinny fingers. I don't use a backstrap, but I put a rubber sleeve on the G19 so as to make the grip thicker, not wider. I found a good comfortable supportive place for my thumbs. When I bought my G19, they didn't come with 'beavertails'. If yours doesn't have one, be careful how you hold your pistol so you don't get 'slide-bite', or worse, loose a thumb.

    Something to keep in mind; should you actually have to use your gun for self defense, it will likely be in a less than ideal range like situation. After you've obtained repeatable decent marksmanship, start training with one hand holds, weak hand holds, clearing jams, having it snagged on clothing when you draw, being down on the floor, etc. But all this comes later. If you practice all of the above at first, you just delay developing the muscle memory required to become proficient in the basics.
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2014
  18. rn-cindy

    rn-cindy Active Member

    My indoor range wont let you collect brass mainly for safety reasons..They dont want crumb snatchers crawling around on the floor, and some of it ends up out in front of the lanes (im sure they get some kind of credit for sending the empties back to the re-loader) On the outdoor range they dont care what you do during a cease-fire....collect your brass, call your Mom, or whatever...
  19. Shawncfer

    Shawncfer New Member


    Do you guys think it's better to dive right into a Concealed Carry class? Or is it better to take a basic pistol class, get some practice in, and then do the Concealed Carry? I want to get my CHL at some point for sure, but I've only had my Glock for a week now, and only been to the range twice.
  20. St8LineGunsmith

    St8LineGunsmith New Member

    first learn and heed the ten commandments of gun safety
    learn how your firearms function, know how to field strip and reassemble your firearms