Armory, Self Defense, And EDC > Firearm Self Defense

Reloads for Self Defense Good Idea?

<< < (4/4)

The other elephant in the room of this discussion is that jury's are fikkle creatures, and common sense is not a pre requisite for service on them. Knowingly doing anything that could increase the chances of altering even one jurors perception of you is a bad idea, imo.

Is using handloads based on published data any significant difference than factory ammo? No. Could a juror or 2 still be convinced by a slick lawyer that there is and use it to cast you in a bad light? Unfortunately, yes. And can that perception of you by a juror or 2 be used to flip what would have been an aquittal into a guilty verdict? Yes.

This is the reason why you will not find any law enforcement agency carrying handloads even in situations where the argument for them carry the most weight such as accuracy for snipers. When liability gets shifted from one place to another it's always best to be able to have liability fall on someone else.

At least for me, knowing that hand loaded ammo has the potential to make life more difficult for me you're my attorney is enough to stay away from it in my carry guns. Mounting the best defense possible starts with doing everything I can to reduce all these wild cards that could come into play. Hand loaded ammo, non factory-spec parts in my gun, etc, are all things that can be used to put the spotlight back on me. Why add complexity to the case when it is so easily eliminated before the fact.

Unfortunately, sometimes with juries fact has to compete with perception and feeling, and sometimes it comes down to luck, and whether or not a juror "likes" you or not.

Let me be Clear I do not carry reloads for self Defence.
 I think it's a bad idea Most of the time.
 I think it's a bad idea the Vast Majority of the time.

But I can think of some times where it might be a Good Idead. Hear me out.

1. It's what your gun will handle best.
      Example: I know a man who I have shot many competitions who shoots with an old top break Weably Revolver re-chambered in .45 ACP. His loads while still deadly  are not as "hot"  as factory .45 ACP
That guns not built for that. But this guy is better and faster with this gun than most people with a Glock 19
If he wants to carry that gun with 200gr lead SWC and 4.1 700x because his gun handles that and he's well practiced in it. Ide say that's a good choice.

2. Purpose built load for a certain job. Let's say you live in Alaska or Montana. Your an outdoorsman / hunter who likes to carry a .44 mag. You load 325gr cast lead. Hunt with it, you have that gun with you mostly for animals but it is your main carry gun "my father does this" he has taken many animals with this load it's what's in his gun. Should he constantly switch to buffalo bore of Hornady every time crosses into city limits because it's a factory load and re adjust his Leupold scope to match the load ? I say in this situation it's better to carry the hand load.

Personally I have factory hollow point ammo in my SD pistols. BUT, I keep handloads in my .44 mag (woods) and AR-15 (home SD), and my "secondary defensive pistols.  Carrying any ammo means you should have shot at least a couple of hundred rounds of it to prove reliability in each pistol, and that you shoot it often enough to to be familiar with it.  I really can't afford to be doing this for more than one caliber and a few pistols, but I make that investment with my .40S&W Glocks.  It was pretty expensive to re-test when I switched from the old HydraShoks to the new Win PDX ammo.  I practice with handloads that are similar to the factory, but I periodically run a box or two of factory through each pistol.

I am not likely to use my .44 mag for human defense and my secondary pistols likewise are not likely to get employed for SD.  So I just load them with my practice ammo all the time, usually hardcast lead or plated, or sometimes with factory FMJ.

The AR-15 would be very expensive to prove out and practice with premium factory ammo and is less likely than my pistols to be used for SD. So I load them with my most accurate handloads.

If my funds were even more limited I would probably just carry factory FMJ and practice with hardcast lead.  If for some reason I had run out of factory ammo, I would hesitate to carry handloads until I could acquire and verify some factory ammo.

NW pilgrim
You may look into Winchester Train and Defend ammo.
Great idea great product.
 Even though I reload I use it for just this reason.
Winchester makes the Train line with the same bullet profile same weight velocity feeding characteristics and same point of aim point of impact as there defend line in the same caliber. And it's not overly expensive $14 for 50 9mm. then you can load your carry gun with the Defend line which are the same just with a defensive projectile. Hollow point defensive rounds. My Berettas Glocks 1911s and J frame love this stiff it's top shelf. Gets good marks in ballistics gel to boot.

I'll look into that, I had not heard of this line from Winchester.  I shoot a ton of reloads for practice and fun, and only periodically load up factory ammo.  About every five years or so I look around to see of there have been any significant changes to factory offerings that would make it worthwhile to changeover.  The bonded HP was the last big change I thought was significant.

I always wondered why the factories did not make at least one FMJ load to exactly match their HP bullet profile and loading specs.  In .40S&W for a long, long time the only FMJ you could find was for 180 gr, yet the HP ammo was available in 135, 155, 165 and 180.  I like the 165 gr load for my pistols and seems just in the last year or so a couple of brands are now offering 165 gr FMJ (I think PMC and Blazer at least).  I try to approximate the factory load with my handloads but that can be tedious when various powders go out of stock for long periods.

I'll look into the Train and Defend ammo concept, thx!


[0] Message Index

[*] Previous page

Go to full version