practice with the ammo you carry for self defense??

Discussion in 'General Handgun Discussion' started by freetobefree, Mar 1, 2013.

  1. freetobefree

    freetobefree New Member

    I've heard a lot of people say you should practice with the ammo you carry for self defense what's your thoughts on this ?

    Personally I carry critical defense but I'm not going to take it out for targets... I think same gr and a few defense rnds is good to shoot
  2. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

    I try to "rotate" my carry ammo.

    That is when I shoot my carry stuff. Your weight and power factor the same thinking is okay, as long as, the bullets are the same.
    Practice with hard ball and carry hollow points if you feel that hollow points feed as good as hard ball.

  3. kytowboater

    kytowboater Active Member

    I shoot ball ammo and carry hp. I have run 40 or so rounds of carry ammo and a few hundred generic hps through my CCDW to know there is no issue.
  4. jpattersonnh

    jpattersonnh Active Member

    It is not about the ammo for practice/targets. It is about trigger time and having everything about your handgun being second nature. Sd shootings ussually happen within 7 yards. A 2" poi is not going to make a difference.
    I shoot quite a bit of cast lead. It gives me lots of trigger time. I shoot 2 1911's, P6, P230, in 4 different calibers. Shooting each as much as possible makes everything automatic, no thought needed. Now switching to a revolver take some thought. But at the range it only takes a few rounds for the muscle memory to come back.
  5. chloeshooter

    chloeshooter New Member

    what he said ^^^^^^^
  6. StainlessSteel215

    StainlessSteel215 New Member

    For me its simple, I ensure that every one of my guns feeds and cycles HP ammo. I dont shoot it often because its expensive, but I do run it on occasion to ensure feeding reliability. Otherwise, its ball ammo for the range which nowadays isnt very often due to ammo shortages.
  7. drvsafe

    drvsafe New Member

    I think it's good a good practice to shoot your SD ammo, not necessarily regularly but you should be at the very least familiar with how your firearm performs with that particular ammo. I make sure to fire the same exact ammo I load in my firearm when I carry, but I mostly shoot FMJ at the range.
  8. gearhead396

    gearhead396 New Member

    Whenever I get a new carry gun I always run all kinds of ammo they usually have for that caliber because I want to know before hand if a particular brand will fail. Even with my hollow points I shoot at least two boxes just to be sure ya it hurts the wallet but better safe than sorry! Right now I use either hornady critical defense or customs or the Speer gold dot in my sr40c.
  9. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

    My carry amo is +P+. So I have to hand load to get the same velocity and recoil with FMJ bullets.

    But I am a 100 percent advocate of training with what you carry (or equivalent)
  10. bluez

    bluez Well-Known Member

    Practicing w/ your carry round is great in principle its certainly a good habit to be in and thats seems to make common sense.

    it's also conventional wisdom and of course many police departments have accepted that principle.

    But allow me to challenge this a little:

    Ponder this:

    When the adrenaline rush comes, even a guy who only practiced with 38 spc will rarely notice the extra recoil from .357 Mag.

    But many folks practicing with .357 mag may develop a fear of firing the gun which will mess with their skillset.
    Much better to practice with 38 spc, which is cheaper less punishing and will not teach bad habits of fearing the gun.

    I am a 220 lbs weight lifter but even for me a full training day with .357 mag <hurts> and I will mix it up 2/3rds to 3/4 38spc , then finish with .357 mag for the "feel"

    Another example is say an AR15.

    The 5.56 has pretty mild recoil
    the 223 even more so.

    I practice with .223 for cost reasons but load up with 5.56 in my ready stick.

    I dont think I will learn poor habits this way and will save alittle money in the proccess.

    Also getting a 22LR upper is no unreasonable IMO either since the recoil is small even in the standard 5.56 so little difference in "feel" to throw u off.
    a 22LR upper however will enable many to spend more rounds practicing their stance and aim, which is invaluable.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2013
  11. kbd512

    kbd512 Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporter

    Unrealistic practice or training will not help you in a violent confrontation.

    You can practice with .38 Special in a .357 Magnum revolver, but the muzzle blast/flash/recoil from .357 Magnum is not the same as .38 Special in the same revolver. In the dark of night, can you acquire and repeatedly hit the target with .357 Magnum as fast as you can with .38 Special?

    Can you hit the target with the second .357 Magnum just as fast and accurately as you can after you light off the first round as compared to .38 Special?

    If not, would that indicate that perhaps that's not the best round for defense use?

    Is .357 Magnum so much more effective at poking a hole in the target that .38 Special will not do?

    If you can't or won't train with a certain type of firearm or ammunition because it is painful or unrealistically expensive to do so, would that indicate that perhaps you should evaluate alternatives?

    I carry and use a 9MM pistol because I can hit the target faster and with greater accuracy than I can with .45 ACP, .38 Special, or .357 Magnum. No amount of training is going to change physics and nothing is going to change the fact that a round of ammunition with twice as much weight in materials costs more and a cartridge that's twice as big reduces your magazine capacity in an equivalently sized magazine.

    There's a point where having the best firearm, the biggest bullets, or the most bullets is a moot point, but there's also a purpose to marksmanship training, realistic defense training, and carrying what you train with.

    If I could not afford to shoot 556MM through my AR, I would opt for a different type of ammunition or different weapon for training and carry/use. A 556MM AR may be the best home defense weapon on the planet, but if I can't afford to shoot and maintain the weapon and an AK74 or .223 ammunition in the AR is almost as effective, I think I would make the decision to use the weapon and ammunition that I could afford to maintain and shoot.

    Apart from experimentation to determine which type of ammunition is most reliable in my weapons of choice, I see no upside, apart from economy, to practice or training that is not consistent and realistic. Is defense something you really want to apply serious bean counting to? I'm not suggesting that you need gold plated bullets or anything like that, but you can't achieve much more realism than by practicing and training with what you actually intend to use to defend yourself with.

    A Mosin Nagant may be a perfectly acceptable infantry rifle, assuming all the other infantrymen are carrying something similar, but to imply that it is a sniping rifle equivalent to a M24 or M40 because both are 5 shot bolt action rifles, have scopes attached, and shoot cartridges of equivalent power is just laughably absurd.

    If the only practice you can afford is the use of snap caps, then it's better than nothing. To imply that using .357 Magnum snap caps is equivalent to shooting .357 Magnum ammunition is silly.

    If cost was not a consideration, and I had a choice between a .357 Magnum revolver and a 9MM pistol for carry, I would choose the 9MM pistol every day of the week. The fact that the revolver weighs more, carries 1/3 as much ammunition ready to use, takes longer to reload, is more difficult to fire quickly and accurately, and both the revolver and revolver ammunition cost more than the pistol and pistol ammunition makes the choice really easy (for me).

    I don't own a single .22LR rifle or pistol because I'm never going to take a .22LR to a gunfight and I don't hunt. I have .357 Magnum revolvers that I shoot for nostalgia, but I shoot .38 Special through them. If I were to ever carry one of my revolvers, it would be loaded with .38 Special because that's what I can afford to shoot the most through it, less recoil, less wear and tear on the gun, and that's what I can shoot most accurately with at any appreciable speed. I'm sure .357 Magnum would work just dandy in a gunfight, but after thousands of rounds of .38 Special I see no compelling reason to switch to something I am less practiced at shooting when my life depends on my shooting skills.
  12. jigs-n-fixture

    jigs-n-fixture Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporter

    It is called muscle memory. The important thing is to shoot lots of rounds at things, in the approximate ranges you expect to be firing. Fire for accuracy, transition to firing for speed while maintaining accuracy. Put lots of rounds down range and into targets. Do this until the whole thing is running on "instinct".

    In a self defense situation I'm not sure you consciously acquire a site picture. The gun comes to bear and just goes bang.
  13. StainlessSteel215

    StainlessSteel215 New Member

    Great post, even after years of shooting thats still the basic philosophy I try to practice