Author Topic: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?  (Read 3525 times)

Offline Moonclip

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FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« on: November 05, 2008, 08:01:19 AM »
Anyone use it and if so why?  Reliablity in certain guns?  Penetration in the samll calibers like .25 and .32acp? Softpoints or some other weird design like Glasers?

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Offline Little Bruddah

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2015, 07:26:35 PM »
I have a puny pistol loaded with Glasers.  A shotgun loaded with Winchester PDX, which can be categorized as strangely exotic.  A 22LR derringer (also a junky pistol) loaded with snake shot in one chamber.

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Offline cockedandglocked

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2015, 08:06:42 PM »
I use Xtreme Penetrators for when I might come across bears or mountain lions. For around town, and at home, just JHP's.

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Offline floogy

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2015, 08:16:27 PM »
I doubt I'll have occasion to carry anything other than JHP anytime soon. At most I'd buy some .40 hard cast from Underwood. I really want a Glock 20 but since two legged predators are the only thing I'm worried about around here I wouldn't have much need for it. As if need dictates my gun purchases.  ::)

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Offline cockedandglocked

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2015, 08:47:48 PM »
You NEED a glock 20!

Ya I can't see using anything other than JHP's for personal defense at home and around town. The only exception being maybe .380, where JHP's don't have much penetration. Xtreme Defenders might be a good choice for that cartridge. But for 9mm and up, JHP's are the tried-and-true answer. Honestly, it's borderline irresponsible to use FMJ in the city, too much risk of overpenetrating and hitting someone else. Plus it just isn't very effective - tiny hole and very little energy transfer. If you don't hit the heart, brain, or spine, the bad guy will just keep going. Those are very small targets when you're panicking. Better odds of ending the fight sooner when the holes are bigger - even if you miss the vitals, the trauma alone would be enough to stop the guy in most cases where the perp isn't heavily drugged up (in those cases, heart, brain, and spine trauma are the only game enders)

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Offline floogy

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2015, 09:16:16 PM »
You NEED a glock 20!

Ya I can't see using anything other than JHP's for personal defense at home and around town. The only exception being maybe .380, where JHP's don't have much penetration. Xtreme Defenders might be a good choice for that cartridge. But for 9mm and up, JHP's are the tried-and-true answer. Honestly, it's borderline irresponsible to use FMJ in the city, too much risk of overpenetrating and hitting someone else. Plus it just isn't very effective - tiny hole and very little energy transfer. If you don't hit the heart, brain, or spine, the bad guy will just keep going. Those are very small targets when you're panicking. Better odds of ending the fight sooner when the holes are bigger - even if you miss the vitals, the trauma alone would be enough to stop the guy in most cases where the perp isn't heavily drugged up (in those cases, heart, brain, and spine trauma are the only game enders)


AHHHH! I know. I also need a Sig P238, Springfield MC Operator and a Ruger Match Champion.

Yeah there's no reason to use FMJ nowadays. If the gun can't cycle JHPs, get it fixed or get a new gun. My carry guns are loaded with Federal HST. I used to carry Hydra Shok but it's just not very efficient when it come to clothing blocking it up. Just picked up 250 rounds of Golden Saber with the Remington rebate this month. $57 shipped for 250 rounds of 40 and 45 after rebate. Could not pass that up.

I think that .380 is the very bare minimum for a defensive round. It's really about the lowest powered pistol round that can expand AND reach about 12" of penetration and even then with only a few types of bullet. Any caliber that needs FMJ to reach minimum penetration is inadequate. Yeah yeah. Hundreds of people a year are shot deader than a doornail with 22lr every year, but I'm sure many more survive. Only way I could justify carrying a 22, 25 or 32 is if I was carrying something else at the same time.

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Offline cockedandglocked

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2015, 09:29:06 PM »
AHHHH! I know. I also need a Sig P238, Springfield MC Operator and a Ruger Match Champion.

Yeah there's no reason to use FMJ nowadays. If the gun can't cycle JHPs, get it fixed or get a new gun. My carry guns are loaded with Federal HST. I used to carry Hydra Shok but it's just not very efficient when it come to clothing blocking it up. Just picked up 250 rounds of Golden Saber with the Remington rebate this month. $57 shipped for 250 rounds of 40 and 45 after rebate. Could not pass that up.

I think that .380 is the very bare minimum for a defensive round. It's really about the lowest powered pistol round that can expand AND reach about 12" of penetration and even then with only a few types of bullet. Any caliber that needs FMJ to reach minimum penetration is inadequate. Yeah yeah. Hundreds of people a year are shot deader than a doornail with 22lr every year, but I'm sure many more survive. Only way I could justify carrying a 22, 25 or 32 is if I was carrying something else at the same time.


Well I'd rather carry a 25acp than nothing at all, but yes it's definitely not ideal. And those hundreds of deer killed with 22lr every year, are killed after meticulously placed shots, very little adrenaline and zero fear, and nothin' but time to line up the shot. If you have those luxuries with a bad guy, well, you'd have a heck of a time convincing a jury that it was self-defense.

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Offline floogy

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2015, 09:50:56 PM »
AHHHH! I know. I also need a Sig P238, Springfield MC Operator and a Ruger Match Champion.

Yeah there's no reason to use FMJ nowadays. If the gun can't cycle JHPs, get it fixed or get a new gun. My carry guns are loaded with Federal HST. I used to carry Hydra Shok but it's just not very efficient when it come to clothing blocking it up. Just picked up 250 rounds of Golden Saber with the Remington rebate this month. $57 shipped for 250 rounds of 40 and 45 after rebate. Could not pass that up.

I think that .380 is the very bare minimum for a defensive round. It's really about the lowest powered pistol round that can expand AND reach about 12" of penetration and even then with only a few types of bullet. Any caliber that needs FMJ to reach minimum penetration is inadequate. Yeah yeah. Hundreds of people a year are shot deader than a doornail with 22lr every year, but I'm sure many more survive. Only way I could justify carrying a 22, 25 or 32 is if I was carrying something else at the same time.


Well I'd rather carry a 25acp than nothing at all, but yes it's definitely not ideal. And those hundreds of deer killed with 22lr every year, are killed after meticulously placed shots, very little adrenaline and zero fear, and nothin' but time to line up the shot. If you have those luxuries with a bad guy, well, you'd have a heck of a time convincing a jury that it was self-defense.


25 and 32s are more or less novelty guns in the 21st century. I'm sure there are some guys carrying around a 100 year old .25 Baby Browning but again, 100 years old. A .25 is probably marginally better than a knife. I doubt the jury would get a chance to hear my side of the story once I got killed after shooting the bad guy 6 times. Sure, he'd bleed out in the hospital several hours later, but that's not going to help me any!  :)

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Offline Loopwell

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2015, 11:55:20 PM »
San Francisco bans hollow point ammunition.

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Offline cockedandglocked

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #9 on: November 25, 2015, 12:18:36 AM »
San Francisco bans hollow point ammunition.


Arguably. Their official stance is that only the 3 listed models of JHP are banned. Others argue that it applies to all of it. There isn't really a consensus on this, as varying agencies decribe the ban differently. An open letter by SFPD says that it is not a ban on all JHP, only the listed models, but other places have said it applies all JHP. Sorry I don't feel like digging up the links regarding this again... use your best judgment.

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« Last Edit: November 25, 2015, 12:20:34 AM by cockedandglocked »
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Offline LowThudd

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Re: FMJ or other non jhp/hp ammo for defense?
« Reply #10 on: November 25, 2015, 07:37:39 AM »
I currently have 230 grain ball ammo in my Kimber, simply because I just got it and haven't broken it in completely or used HP at the range. The local indoor range doesn't allow HP, I'll have to go  to the outdoor range. I trust it to run ball without malfunction. It may not be ideal, but a big heavy slow moving bullet is OK for defense even if non expanding. I wouldn't use JHP out of a 9mm, not only because of lacking effectiveness but because of over penetration.

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