loading defense rounds?

Discussion in 'Ammo & Reloading' started by brutusvk, Feb 28, 2012.

  1. brutusvk

    brutusvk New Member

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    Anyone load rounds for home defense? I have only loaded for target ammo but I am planning on loading rounds for home defense for my AR15.
     
  2. Happysniper1

    Happysniper1 New Member

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    Against a lot of opposition, all my ammo (except 12-ga and .22LR) is handloaded, even my defensive rounds.
     

  3. brutusvk

    brutusvk New Member

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    I was going to buy some fragmenting 223 and then I saw how cheap the projectiles were. Yeah, I am going to load them. lol

    Plus, when I have chrono'd the handloads to factory stuff it is no contest. Handloads are WAY more consistent. I have my 357sig stuff between 1420 and 1430 fps with the hotter stuff. Nowhere near that close with facotory ammo. There can be 70 to 100 fps difference.
     
  4. Consistency is irrelevant. The fact is that a handloader will never even begin to come close to the level of reliability that high quality factory ammunition has acheived. That's the key. Reliability.
     
  5. Happysniper1

    Happysniper1 New Member

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    Absolutely! Most people think of reloading in terms of saving money, but it also yeilds consistently more accurate loads, and loads that perform better, than equivalent factory.

    Heh-heh, you can even by Hornady Z-Max bullets for reloading! :D

    Not too long ago, my neighborhood stood on the brink of a biker war, and there were strange vehicles at odd hours of the night crusing up and down our otherwise quiet residential street. So now, 2 full AR15 mags stand by each 2nd floor bedroom window, loaded with steel-core "penetrator" rounds. But for more relevant home defense, I want to get into shotshell reloading and make my own sabot slug recipe!
     
  6. brutusvk

    brutusvk New Member

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    Never had a round that didn't work while loading single stage. I have had a squib from using a progressive press.
     
  7. Happysniper1

    Happysniper1 New Member

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    First of all, let me begin by saying I am not knocking factory ammo.

    Having said that, consider that factory ammo is made by a company, and the company will buy the parts and components that meet their specifications from the lowest bidder. I would imagine that these specifications do not include weighing each empty case before loading, or weighing each bullet before seating.

    Ammo is like a car: it is a series of compromises. While it is sure to meet SAAMI specifications, it is the only guarantee. When I buy a box of factory ammo, I do not know the muzzle velocity, nor the chamber pressure (which is not really important, since it will be below SAAMI specs), nor do I know if the bullets are of similar weight. I have found variations of as much as 3-5 grains in bullet weight in factory ammo.

    Notice that most loading data charts specify the test barrel length, and this is important.

    For my '26, I load fast-burning, hot powders, because the 3.5" barrel is too short to allow full pressure to develop to maximum velocity of the same round as compared to any other pistol with a longer barrel. This helps ensure that the rounds I fire more closely meet my ballistic requirements (in terms of muzzle velocity and flat trajectory with faster bullets) than factory ammo would. The net result of this would be an ammunition lot that would more closely fit my particular firearm, resulting in more accurate shots when they count.

    Also, a lot of factory ammo is not loaded to maximum velocities, specifically because of the varations in barrel length. A "hot" round at max fps in a 3.5" barrel could potentially overpressure a 4" barrel and be downright dangerous in a 6" barrel. So the factory ammo has to compromise, and compromise on the safe side.

    Now, having said all that, I will say that I have been using a single-stage press for all my loading work, and I did experience some bad loads (CCI primers, not worth the money IMHO) which was a "poor ingredient" choice, and incorrectly seated primers, and incorrectly seated .38SPL rounds, way back when I was first learning how to do this. Now, I know better, and have actually gotten somewhat anal about it (note that I weigh and sort empty cases by number of reloads, brand, case length -if it needs sizing/trimming or not- and by weight, and I weigh all the bullets individually).

    I believe my loads are more accurate out of my gun than factory ammo would be. But that's just me.

    Cheers!