Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby BertMacklin » Sun, 30 Mar 2014 19:17:51

Loading up a satchel type bag with ammo and magazines I can grab in a hurry. I'd like to add an IFAK but my main problem is I have a finite amount of 40. S&W defense rounds, mostly Speer Gold Dot, such that I have more magazine space than ammo with no way of procuring any more. I do however have some WWB, Ranger and Federal FMJ ammo. I'm curious if its worth the weight over more 22. LR and 20 Gauge, everything else I have in the bag.
From what I have read it has no value over hollow points for the role but I want to know if it's still practical as a lethal round. Any input is appreciated.


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby HighExpert » Sun, 30 Mar 2014 20:23:11

Beats throwing rocks. I wouldn't want to be on the wrong end.


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby Palladin » Sun, 30 Mar 2014 20:29:09

IMO, the best you can hope for at pistol velocities is a hole the size of the projectile, and ball ammo will deliver that in a pinch. Center mass and T box, it's lethal. I'm sure folks will differ, but I'm ok with that. :)
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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby MarcSpaz » Sun, 30 Mar 2014 21:14:24

I am a firm believer in a proven method that demonstrates that "almost" no matter what ammo you use, you will kill your enemy...

2 to the chest... 1 to the head.

If you are talking gab bag / go bag for SHTF... I think ball ammo would be a better way to go for overall versatility. If you need to drop a target while firing through objects such as car doors, through glass, wood/drywall walls, etc., FMJ's, especially steel cores are going to perform better.

I had a 5.56 steel core go through a half inch think steel plate at 200 yards. I felt bad for messing up my buddy's target too. Unless the target is behind the engine block, a car between us wont help.


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby ShotgunBlast » Sun, 30 Mar 2014 21:31:16

HighExpert wrote:Beats throwing rocks. I wouldn't want to be on the wrong end.


^This


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby BertMacklin » Sun, 30 Mar 2014 21:48:21

Alright thanks for y'all's input, I'll adjust accordingly. It just didn't seem like the best idea at first.


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby Taggure » Mon, 31 Mar 2014 08:40:58

Yeap if it puts holes in them they will leak and bones will break.
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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby 0ne5hot » Mon, 31 Mar 2014 08:55:57

BertMacklin wrote:From what I have read it has no value over hollow points for the role but I want to know if it's still practical as a lethal round.


A wound is a wound the body doesn't care what caused it. There is no magic bullet/caliber, what you hit (Center mass, T box, Spine, Pelvis, or any major organ) matters more then what round you use.

Taggure wrote:Yeap if it puts holes in them they will leak and bones will break.


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby BertMacklin » Mon, 31 Mar 2014 11:14:50

MarcSpaz wrote:I am a firm believer in a proven method that demonstrates that "almost" no matter what ammo you use, you will kill your enemy...

2 to the chest... 1 to the head.

If you are talking gab bag / go bag for SHTF... I think ball ammo would be a better way to go for overall versatility. If you need to drop a target while firing through objects such as car doors, through glass, wood/drywall walls, etc., FMJ's, especially steel cores are going to perform better.

I had a 5.56 steel core go through a half inch think steel plate at 200 yards. I felt bad for messing up my buddy's target too. Unless the target is behind the engine block, a car between us wont help.


Not sure if comparing steel core 5.56 to watered down pistol ammo is the best comparison. I definitely see the how non-expanding rounds would be deadly but had concerns about over penetration and lack of physical stopping power. I'm not saying one could withstand an fmj without flinching but these kinds of issues is what helped give 9mm a bad rap over 45. acp. Either way thanks for y'all's help.


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby dorminWS » Mon, 31 Mar 2014 12:25:38

Well, if you were in a SHTF situation and ball ammo was all you had and you felt you needed to make a bigger hole and/or do more damage, I guess maybe you could do it the old-fashioned way and make your own "dum-dums" by scoring the jacket 4-6 times across the nose of the bullet. I can remember WWII vets talking about doing that with the surplus rifles and ammo they hunted deer with. (They also used to talk about scoring a shotgun shell around the bottom of the shot charge and making a "slug" out of #6 shot to poach the occasional deer with during squirrel season) Anybody got any thoughts on that? Safety/performance issues? Danger the bullet would split and leave part in the bore (doesn't seem likely)? I guess you'd at least have to do a little trial and error research on it, but it might be worthwhile.
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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby BertMacklin » Mon, 31 Mar 2014 14:33:07

dorminWS wrote:Well, if you were in a SHTF situation and ball ammo was all you had and you felt you needed to make a bigger hole and/or do more damage, I guess maybe you could do it the old-fashioned way and make your own "dum-dums" by scoring the jacket 4-6 times across the nose of the bullet. I can remember WWII vets talking about doing that with the surplus rifles and ammo they hunted deer with. (They also used to talk about scoring a shotgun shell around the bottom of the shot charge and making a "slug" out of #6 shot to poach the occasional deer with during squirrel season) Anybody got any thoughts on that? Safety/performance issues? Danger the bullet would split and leave part in the bore (doesn't seem likely)? I guess you'd at least have to do a little trial and error research on it, but it might be worthwhile.


I've seen people make homemade slugs and you either know what your doing or you don't. Basically cutting the shell around the wad but leaving an overlap enough to keep it together before firing. Not sure about the homemade dum-dums seems like a lot of risk for an unconfirmable reward.


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby MarcSpaz » Mon, 31 Mar 2014 14:51:55

I was using the steel core to over exaggerate my point about a 40 S&W FMJ will stop a target, but has the advantage of staying together as it goes through objects to get to your target.

I am not sure about the 9mm having a bad rep. I think it's like 22LR. If you want a gun that will drop a target instantly with a single projectile if you hit "somewhere" center mass... go luck. You will be hard pressed to find something that you can carry... 50 maybe. If you want to carry a smaller, low velocity round, you will need to make up for the smaller stature with volume and shot placement.

I have spent a long time researching gun deaths. According to FBI and CDC, an extreme majority of self defense situations required at least 3 shots into the perpetrator's center mass to stop them, regardless of the round used. There are actually more occurrences of needing 5 rounds or more for a single person then there are of a single round.


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby BertMacklin » Mon, 31 Mar 2014 15:29:17

MarcSpaz wrote:I was using the steel core to over exaggerate my point about a 40 S&W FMJ will stop a target, but has the advantage of staying together as it goes through objects to get to your target.

I am not sure about the 9mm having a bad rep. I think it's like 22LR. If you want a gun that will drop a target instantly with a single projectile if you hit "somewhere" center mass... go luck. You will be hard pressed to find something that you can carry... 50 maybe. If you want to carry a smaller, low velocity round, you will need to make up for the smaller stature with volume and shot placement.

I have spent a long time researching gun deaths. According to FBI and CDC, an extreme majority of self defense situations required at least 3 shots into the perpetrator's center mass to stop them, regardless of the round used. There are actually more occurrences of needing 5 rounds or more for a single person then there are of a single round.


Fair points you made here and in your earlier posts. It's just that when all the projectile is doing is pushing weight and making holes then the heavier weight and bigger hole is going to win. I agree there are no one hitter quitters for any of this but a few differences. But since you have the ability to buy handgun ammo there are a few hollow points available with the ability to defeat barriers and still expand, Hornady Critical Duty is the first to come to mind.


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby M1A4ME » Mon, 31 Mar 2014 17:57:03

I've carried ball ammo in my 1911's since I got the first one in 1978. No worries.

I do carry HPs in the smaller calibers (9MM, .357 SIG, .357 magnum)


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby Chasbo00 » Mon, 31 Mar 2014 19:10:17

Here is a paper with a lot of detail from a credible source:

http://www.handguncombatives.com/resour ... g_6_13.pdf
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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby dorminWS » Tue, 01 Apr 2014 07:56:59

BertMacklin wrote:Not sure about the homemade dum-dums seems like a lot of risk for an unconfirmable reward.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Like I said, I'm not sure, either. But like I also said, it used to be pretty commonly done way back when, and a little experimentation beforehand would surely resolve the questions one way or another.
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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby bryanrheem » Tue, 01 Apr 2014 10:47:13

HighExpert wrote:Beats throwing rocks. I wouldn't want to be on the wrong end.


so true! and when you run out of ammo, throwing rocks is better than going hand to hand...


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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby Taggure » Tue, 01 Apr 2014 11:07:52

Chasbo00 wrote:Here is a paper with a lot of detail from a credible source:

http://www.handguncombatives.com/resour ... g_6_13.pdf


that was a good read thanks
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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby rlbellco72 » Thu, 03 Apr 2014 06:59:14

Like other people have stated here, if ball ammo was all I had, it would have to do. It can be just as deadly when placed in the right spots.
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Re: Ball Ammo for Self-Defense:

Postby dorminWS » Fri, 04 Apr 2014 08:34:51

Chasbo00 wrote:Here is a paper with a lot of detail from a credible source:

http://www.handguncombatives.com/resour ... g_6_13.pdf

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

For some reason, I can't open that link. But here's something of dum-dums from the Box-o-Truth:

http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot32.htm
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