Grains?

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by Saber8g, May 10, 2006.

  1. Saber8g

    Saber8g New Member

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    I just purchased an XD .40 to replace my mossberg 835 for home defense. I've spent a few years in the Army and having transitioned to civilian life again, I was introduced to a new "problem" We never had a choice of what grain ammo we fired through our weapons, and frankly I know nothing about it. My first thought was the higher the grain the higher velocity but after looking at some ballistic charts I realized thats not true. Can anyone break down the process of choosing how many grains to use?
    Dave
  2. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    Hello saber8g and welcome to tff. I would recommend that you buy several different bullet weights to shoot in your weapon. You will also find that the higher weight bullets lends itself to increased recoil. The higher the bullet weight the lower the velocity and this will also impact point of aim. Shoot them all and see what is the most comfortable for you. Remember that the higher the bullet weight the more penetration will be also. You do not want to shoot at an intruder and miss and kill someone in another room. If I were you I would stick with the Mossberg with # 7 1/2 birdshot.
  3. Saber8g

    Saber8g New Member

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    For home defense and concealed carry I would say the chances of firing at a target over 25 yards would be highly unlikely. How much of a drop would occur at that distance with a heavier vs lighter round? I don't imagine it would effect my point of aim all that much. As for the Mossberg Vs XD I've consider the pros and cons. I had the Mossberg loaded with #7 shot and just switched to #4. Over penetration is not TOO big of a concern simply because we have no children yet and my Fiance and I live alone. Would federal Hydrashocks 155/165 grain rounds go through an average household wall with enough penetration power to injure a person?
    Thanks Much for the help and the welcome!
    Dave
  4. inplanotx

    inplanotx New Member

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    The bullet placement at home defense distances would be negligable. However, penetration of wallboard walls at that distance, with a .40 S&W, would be most highly probable.
  5. southernshooter

    southernshooter New Member

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    Chances are most handgun loads will go the a wall. Magsafe cliams their's won't.
  6. Saber8g

    Saber8g New Member

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    Thank you both for the help, I appreciate it.
  7. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

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    Saber8g:

    To answer your basic question, "Grains" is a measure of the bullet weight, not a measure of the velocity or power of the round. There are 7000 grains to the pound. Your choice for bullet weight are always limited as the bullet weight is dictated by the physical restraints of the chamber size (fixed by nature of 40S&W chambers), the case size, and the pressure limit for your caliber of choice. In 40S&W you can have bullet weights from about 155 grains to about 200 grains with about 180 grains being nominal.The lighter the bullet the higher the velocity. But "knock-down" power is typically somewhat reduced with lighter bullet weights.

    It is said that almost any modern full sized gun caliber will penetrate wall board and risk shooting your neighbor. It is best to use ammo that breaks up on wall board and as such has limited penetraion capabilities beyond your own home's walls. There are special ammo choices for home defense different than you would use for almost anything else. See your knowledgeable dealer.

    LDBennett
  8. Xracer

    Xracer *TFF Admin Staff Mediator*

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    Minn-eeee-sota, ya, sure, you bet!
  9. Saber8g

    Saber8g New Member

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    X racer, those were excellent sites. Very helpful! Throws out the idea of bird shot which I though would work just fine. And about my .40 going through walls, I guess that was a given.
  10. Light Coat

    Light Coat New Member

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    My house load is factory ammo. I use Corbon Power Ball and Glaser Safety slugs. I use very light shot in my shotgun. Enough to disperse from wall to wall; but, enough at under 10 feet to give a nice warm feeling to an intruder.
  11. Saber8g

    Saber8g New Member

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    What exactly is that light shot that you use in your shotgun?
  12. polishshooter

    polishshooter Active Member

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    I have NEVER had a "birdshot" load penetrate the SECOND (inside) sheet rock wallboard in ANY of my tests (or accidents, but that's ANOTHER story.. :eek: ) Even if there was NOTHING "extra" like insulation, siding, or panelling one side...the FIRST wall will have a jagged hole, the inside of the SECOND will be "peppered," with SOME protruding INTO the outer paper, but not THROUGH. YOU can test it too, with some scrap wallboard and some scrap 2x4s, it's EASY. Although the CLOSEST I've shot is 10 feet away from the first "wall," MAYBE if you put the muzzle closer...

    And Buckshot penetrating 6 boards? That's a wall and a person at LEAST.

    As far as somebody getting hit at "6 FEET" and "walking to the ambulance..." well one must ask what was he WEARING, a 2nd chance vest? At 6 feet that ounce and a half of shot would be concentrated into less than 2 inches from a CYL bore...and the FULL force would be transferred, with NOTHING lost on "penetration..." He IS going down, if NOT out.

    Birdshot is "meant for small birds"... at 30 yards!!!

    Shoot a "small bird" at 6 FEET and see what happens. My son shot a good sized Fox squirrel I had wounded with a .22 from rather long range that was running along a thickly grown up fenceline between two cut cornfields at about 10-12 feet, THROUGH some thick vegetation with his 20 guage modified with #6s...and it was "pre gutted..." we didn't get much usable meat off of THAT one...we still chuckle at it today, I'm trying to find it after I shot it, I hear it running but couldn't see it, He says "There it is!" I say 'Shoot it!" He says, "Are you sure, I'm kinda close..." And I say "SHOOT IT!" (I know it's hurt, I don't want it to get away and hide and die slowly like some do...) and he does...it happened in a "flash" but is one of those "father/son" moments that last a lifetime...(Remember the time I "gutted" that squirrel, Dad?) :)


    There STILL is nothing better than birdshot for "home defense" at living room ranges...ESPECIALLY having to explain to a possible LESS than sympathetic prosecutor, or jury that it WAS self-defense and you "had no choice" so you "grabbed a hunting gun as a last resort"...they JUST might think your Glock or Springfield "XD" with 14 rounds of "dum dum" bullets makes YOU the dangerous one...

    Just make sure the FIRST ones up the spout and next in the mag are "bird..." then step it up from there...my FOURTH round in the mag is 00B, the LAST one is a slug... :p


    And as per the "slack slack" not making anyone dirty their pants AT THE RANGE? DUH...

    30 rounds of some yahoo's 7.62x 39 going downrange rapid fire from his "new" AK makes me LAUGH...at the RANGE. :D ESPECIALLY when he sees that most MISSED the entire target at 50... :cool: One shooting AT me would cause a different reaction I'm sure...maybe I would need clean underwear.

    And I HAVE had a single barrel 12 guage pointed at me ONCE...and that big old hole was SCARY to look at...as well as the forceful "who's there!?" coming from the person HOLDING it. (Sobered ME up, REAL quick! That was the LAST time I EVER "forgot" to call home and tell my wife I might be home late when I went out for a "few" with some guys after work and stumbled in the back door after having trouble with the key in the FRONT door at 2:00am... :cool: )(come to think of it, it just might have been the LAST time I might have "gone out for a few with the guys," too! :D )(Which is why I am also a FIRM believer that a 12 guage is BEST for a lady! AFTER I calmed down, I had to admit I was PRETTY IMPRESSED with my then "still new" wife! :D )

    To a pissant thief sneaking around your LIVING ROOM in the dark at 3:00 am thinking he's home free and untouchable, the "slack slack" would be a MUCH different story... :D IMHO...as WELL as if ANY of the anecdotal stories I've heard from MANY leos over the years are true...

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