The Best .44 Magnum Ammo for Self-Defense

.44 Mag ammo

The .44 Magnum has been called “the most powerful gun on earth” and, at one time, that was true. While other guns have stolen the title from the iconic round, the .44 Mag remains a favorite with handgun hunters and those looking for a solid self-defense ammunition. It hits its target hard and fast, leaving a deep channel in its wake. The .44 Magnum intimidates novice shooters with good reason, its strong muzzle flash and heavy recoil are hard to handle without ample practice.

History

Elmer Keith designed the .44 Remington Magnum in 1955. Keith, an Idaho rancher, writer and firearms enthusiast, had made a name for himself when he created the .357 cartridge. Keith’s goal was to make an all-purpose round to be manufactured by the Remington Arms Co. Remington produced the cartridge but it was slated to be used in the Smith & Wesson Model 29. As such, S&W is usually credited with introducing.44 Mag ammo to the public. However, Ruger introduced its ammo first, attached to their new single-action .44 Magnum Blackhawk.

Unlike John Browning and other designers, Keith’s aim was to create a round that was practical for multiple uses. The premise paid off, making Keith’s ammunition popular with a wider audience.

Development

Keith spent years making custom loads for the .44 Special before he created the .44 Magnum. He based the new ammunition the .44 caliber bullet but used a high-pressure load to ensure that the new ammo could fire a heavy bullet. The bullet made the ammo faster and stronger than anything the public had seen.

Design

Keith had originally intended for the .44 to be used for self-defense, hunting, and target shooting. The round is strong and packs a hefty punch. The .44 is precise, giving the shooter as much as a 90% accuracy rate.  However, the high-pressure causes it to have a heavy recoil and muzzle flash, making it less than ideal for novice shooters. Those that find the .44 Mag a bit too intense may opt for the .44 Special, a slightly smaller cartridge with less recoil.

Specs

Remington created the .44 Mag as ammo for a revolver, however, it can also be used in other guns including lever action rifles, carbines, and semi-automatic pistols.

The .44 Magnum cartridge uses a bullet with 240 grain (gr), has a velocity of 1,350 feet per second (fps), and puts off a muzzle energy of 971 foots pounds (ft-lbs). The .429-inch lead bullet sits in a straight-walled case that measures 1.285 inches long. The total length of the ammo is 1.61 inches. It uses a large pistol primer. It can be loaded to a max pressure of 36,000 pounds per square inch (psi).

.44 Special

Some shooters revert to the .44 S&W Special, a smaller round with has less recoil. Experts say shooters should test both types of ammo to choose the one with the most comfort. The .44 Mag has high pressure, so it can only be used in guns chambered for the round.

Popularity

The .44 Magnum wasn’t selling well in the marketplace until 1971 when Clint Eastwood made his debut as “Dirty” Harry Callahan. Dirty Harry was the lead character in the movie, a hard-boiled San Francisco police detective who routinely faced off with criminals that plagued his city. Dirty Harry stands toe to toe with a wounded bank robber when he delivers his famous speech:

“I know what you’re thinking: ‘Did he fire six shots or only five?’ Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I’ve kinda lost track myself. But being this is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: ‘Do I feel lucky?’ Well, do you, punk?”

After the movie hit the theaters, Eastwood’s devotion to his S&W Model 29 and .44 Mag skyrocketed sales and kept the Model 29 and its ammo at the top for decades. It’s hard to tell how many thousands have practiced that very line in front of the mirror.

The .44 Mag is no longer the most powerful handgun in the world, but its popularity will live on forever.

Self-Defense

Seasoned shooters often disagree regarding the .44 Magnum as a top choice forself-defense purposes. Experts claim that the .44 Mag is too powerful because of the round’s deep penetration. Inexperienced users can easily cause collateral damage through over penetration or run the risk of shooting innocent parties.

Shooters should know that .44 Magnums aren’t all the same. Some guns can be used for  home defense while other, less powerful weapons are better suited for sports and target shooting.

Best .44 Mag Self-Defense Ammo

Buffalo Bore: Anti-Personnel 180 Grain Lead Hollow Point

This round is touted as one of the best for self-defense. It is a no nonsense ammunition designed for self-defense and eliminating two-legged targets. It has a Muzzle Velocity of 1500 fps and a Muzzle Energy of 899 ft-lbs.

Buffalo Bore: Anti-Personnel 200 Grain .44 Spl Wadcutter

According to Buffalo Bore: “This load is designed to permanently and quickly disable human threats.” This powerful round offers a Muzzle Velocity of 1300 fps and a Muzzle Energy of 751 ft-lbs.

Federal Ammunition: 240 Grain Fusion

This medium-priced American-made Fusion bullet with brass casing delivers 887 ft-lbs Muzzle Energy.

Federal Ammunition: Hydra-Shok 240 grain Personal Defense

The new production Hydra-Shok 240 grain Personal Defense round is an excellent choice for concealed carry and law enforcement agencies. The center-post design delivers controlled expansion. The notched jacket gives maximum penetration. It offers a Muzzle Velocity of 1180 fps and Muzzle Energy of 742 ft-lbs.

Fiocchi Ammunition: 240 Grain JSP

Coming in at the same price as the Remington, this foreign made 240 grain self-defense round offers 1838 FPS velocity.

Hornady Ammunition: JHP XTP Load

Hornady XTP is highly recommended by seasoned shooters. The American-made self-defense cartridge makes the list for the best .44 self-defense ammo. It’s slightly more expensive than the Remington, but also more powerful. It boasts 1150 FPS Muzzle Velocity.

Remington Ammunition: 240 Grain HTP Rounds

Top of the list of the best .44 ammo for self-defense. Available in 240 grain SP and SJHP rounds, this American-made defense load is inexpensive, but powerful. It boasts 1180 FPS Muzzle Velocity and 742 ft-lbs Muzzle Energy.

Speer: Gold Dot Handgun Personal Protection 44 S&W Special

Speer Gold Dot has an excellent reputation for quality and accuracy. This 200 grain hollow point has plenty of what it takes for self-defense. It offers 875 fps of Muzzle Velocity.

Winchester Ammunition: Platinum Tip 250 Grain JHP

A bit more expensive than the other brands, Winchester offers this American-made self-defense cartridge with 1250 FPS Muzzle Velocity.

Conclusion

The .44 Magnum is a powerful gun that is not well suited to concealed carry. It is an excellent choice for self-defense although some claim that the .357 Magnum is easier to carry and aim. In the end, personal comfort and performance wins the day, leaving the choice to the shooter.

357 Sig: Old Ammunition Has Value

Compact .357 SIG with ammunition

SIG SAUER and Federal Premium Ammunitions introduced  .357 SIG ammunition in 1994. The cartridge has a rimless, bottlenecked case. The companies wanted to have the same power as the .357 Magnum, but designed it for use in a semi-automatic pistol. The ammo was launched four years after the .40 S&W, a round created for the FBI.  The .40 S&W has the stopping power of a .45 ACP and ease of use of the 9mm parabellum. Although the .357 SIG performed better than the .40 S&W, it never became as popular with law enforcement or the public.

.357 SIG Design

The designers took a .357 bullet and pared it down to .355-inch to make it easier to handle. The .357 SIG was the first commercial bottleneck ammunition sold since the 1960s. The cartridge base diameter is .424-inch, the case is .864-inch in length. The full length of the cartridge is 1.140-inches.  It uses a bullet with 125-grains, the same as a .357 Mag. It has a velocity of 1,350 feet per second (fps), and muzzle energy of more than 500 foot pounds (ft·lbs). The round is also referred to as the .357 SIG, .357 Sig, and 9x22mm.

.357 SIG vs. .357 Magnum

Although the .357 SIG never became popular, it remains a favorite of some law enforcement agencies, as well as target shooters and those who are in range training or carry for self-defense. Unlike other small rounds, the .357 SIG has the ability to cause hydrostatic shock, immediately disabling or fatally wounding its target upon impact. While the .357 Magnum remains more popular, the .357 SIG still packs a punch. The smaller casing makes it optimal for self-defense.

Popular Firearms

Because of its lack of popularity, the .357 SIG has a limited number of firearms chambered for the ammunition. They include the full size SIG SAUER P226 (combat pistol), the compact 229, the 320 (designed for concealed carry), as well as a traditional 1911. Glock models include the full-size G31, compact G32, and G33, designed for concealed carry. S&W has discontinued their .357 SIG pistol from their M&P line.

Uses for the .357 SIG

Law enforcement agencies prefer the 9mm, but many still use the .357 SIG as a standard issue ammunition for the SIG SAUER and Glock pistols. The Texas Highway Patrol took it on in 1995, followed shortly by The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS). The DPS used the .357 SIG as standard issue from 1998-2013. Other notable agencies include the Bureau of Industry and Security, Federal Air Marshal Service, The United States Secret Service, Pennsylvania Game Commission, and the Texas Rangers. It is also used by several state police troops and highway patrol units, including Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Virginia.

Many experts refer to the .357 SIG as being obsolete but the fact that it is still used by so many law enforcement agencies shows that it has its place in the market.

 

 

 

.40 Cal S&W Replaced the .38 Special

.40 Cal S&W comparison

Designers from Smith & Wesson and Winchester introduced the .40 Cal S&W cartridge in 1990. The ammunition was designed along with Smith & Wesson’s Model 4006 pistol, months after receiving a request from the FBI for a new type of ammunition.  However, one week before the ammo went to market, Glock introduced the Glock 22 and Glock 23, chambered in .40 cal.

Development of .40 Cal S&W

The Federal Bureau of Investigation requested that S&W create a new ammunition to replace their standard issue sidearms. The request came after a 1986 shootout in Miami. Two bank robbers confronted FBI agents and a shootout ensued. During the standoff, agents realized that they could not reload and fire fast enough to take down the criminals. The bank robbers killed two FBI agents and wounded five. Agents killed the bank robbers.

The FBI stated that the .38 Special revolvers were no longer sufficient for their agents. They requested to replace them with semi-automatic pistols. Agents asked Smith & Wesson to develop a new type of ammunition that could be retrofitted into 9mm semi-automatic handguns. S&W and Winchester developed the .40 Cal, based on 9mm and .45 ACP ammunition. The new medium-velocity round had the same accuracy as a 9mm while using the specs of a 10mm load. The FBI approved the ammo and hoped it would prevent another catastrophe like the one in Miami. Shortly after the FBI adopted the round, law enforcement agencies across the country switched to the new ammo. Although the FBI no longer uses the .40 Cal S&W, it endorses the Sig Sauer P226 and P228, both of which can be chambered in 9mm and .40 cal. The U.S. Coast Guard uses the .40 Cal S&W as a standard issue sidearm.

Specifications

The .40 Cal S&W is a medium velocity cartridge ideal for concealed carry and self-defense. It uses a 0.40-inch diameter lead bullet that can range from 105 to 200 grains. The casing measures .85 inches long, .424-inch at the base. The cartridge has an average pressure of 35,000 psi. The muzzle energy is higher than the standard pressure of a .45 ACP, with 350-500 foot-pounds of energy. Ballistics performance tests in the 1980s and 1990s prompted experts to refer to the .40 Cal as “the ideal cartridge for personal defense and law enforcement.”

Use for Self-Defense

Civilians choose the .40 Cal for the fact that it is easy to use. It has a light recoil, which makes it an accurate round. Self-defense and home defense situations require accuracy and adequate stopping power. Consumers can choose a variety of options for design and bullet weight. Shooters choose the .40 Cal S&W for the same features that were required by the FBI and law enforcement, including a high magazine capacity, light recoil and high muzzle energy. Although the .40 Cal S&W isn’t a highly sought after ammo, most firearms manufacturers offer compact and sub-compact models chambered for the round.

History of the .38 Super Auto

.38 Super's legendary climb

In 1929, law enforcement faced a dilemma. Their ammunition was no longer effective against the gangsters and bootleggers. The gangsters had taken to wearing ballistics vests and often shot from inside autos, both of which were impenetrable by an average ammunition round. As a result, Colt developed the .38 Super Auto. The round was supposedly based on the .38 Automatic Colt Pistol, but designed to be used in a 1911 style semi-automatic, magazine-fed pistol. The .38 Super uses a .356-inch 130 grain lead projectile, housed in a semi-rimmed, straight-walled case measuring .900 inch. The total length of the cartridge 1.280 inches.

The Super Auto cartridge carries more powder than the .38 Auto, which makes it a more powerful round. The .38 Auto’s 130 grain cartridge had a muzzle velocity of 1,050 feet per second (fps). Since the .38 Super used more powder and higher pressure, its velocity is 1,280 fps. Sadly, law enforcement stopped using the Super Auto when, in 1934, the .357 Magnum entered the market.

Development of the .38 Super Auto

Experts say that there are discrepancies in the origin of the .38 Super. It is commonly believed that the round was based on the .38 ACP. Law enforcement did require a stronger round than the .38 and 9mm, but could deliver a better performance than the powerhouse .45 ACP. Colt offered a solution in the .38 Auto. Secondly, some claim that the development of the .38 Super was an afterthought. The 1911-style pistol had been introduced, designed to fire .38 ACP. Shortly after it was introduced, wildcatters began to handload their own version of the round, increasing the powder load. Colt heard about the change and began to produce a similar version which they named the .38 Super Auto. The name .38 “Super” was simply a way to distinguish it from the traditional .38 Auto.

Law Enforcement

The FBI adopted the .38 Super partly because of its carry capacity. It could hold 9 to 11 cartridges in a single stack, which was much larger than what was offered by the .38 Special. The .38 Super could also penetrate body armor. This was a benefit with the rise of American gangsters who openly fought police, and often used their cars as shields against return fire.

However, police weren’t the only ones who adopted the .38 Super. John Dillinger, infamous bank robber and all-around bad guy, carried a .38 Super when he was apprehended by police.

He also owned a custom-built, fully automatic Colt M1911A1. Dillinger had the gun modified to include a Cutts compensator and a magazine with extra capacity.

In 1941, Colt shifted its focus from law enforcement to the military due to WWII. The war changed the face of munitions, and the .38 Super all but disappeared for nearly 40 years.

Popularity Worldwide

The .38 Super never lived up to its potential in the U.S. However, the round has been widely used in other countries such as Australia, Mexico, Canada, and South America, where civilians are banned from using guns chambered in military cartridges, such as the .45 ACP or 9mm.

Fiocchi: Born at the Right Time

 

Fiocchi Ammunition

Fate has a way of stepping in at the right moment. Giulio Fiocchi discovered fate when he went to collect on an overdue loan made by his bank in 1876.

A bank in Milan, Italy employed Fiocchi as an accountant and he was sent to Lecco to visit the deliquent manufacturer of muskets and black powder. Fiocchi researched the company’s ability to pay the loan and found it was not possible. The accountant returned to Milan thinking about the opportunity to buy the bankrupt company. Giulio spoke with his brother Giacomo and, together, the men decided to go into the ammunition business. Fiocchi’s bank lent money to the brothers to begin their business, Giulio Fiocchi Enterprises.

Never Say Die

The Fiocchi brothers founded Fiocchi Ammunition (Fiocchi Munizioni in Italian) at the right time in history. The breech-loader had replaced the muzzle-loader, so Fiocchi began to make reloadable primer cases. Black powder went the way of the dinosaur, and Fiocchi adapted once again.

Pre-war, Fiocchi was dedicated to making ammunition for sport shooting and hunting. During World War I they had the opportunity to produce ammo for the Italian army. The Fiocchi factory was seized by Germans in World War II, but the employees were able to hold them off on the ground. However, the employees failed to keep Allied planes from destroying the factory.

The Fiocchi family rebuilt a new factory in 1946. This enabled Fiocchi to make more advanced ammunition, encouraging expansion and new partnerships through the 1950s and 1960s.

Innovators

Initially they were throwing away its scrap metal. The company found a way of recouping the money spent on the metal. In addition to manufacturing ammo, the company began to make metal snaps. The garment industry bought the snaps which became a staple in fashion. One of the largest clothing manufacturers in the world bought the snap manufacturing business in the 1980s.

Fiocchi gave to the community that supported his manufacturing operations. In 1904, the company built houses for its workers to ensure that they had nice places to live. They also provided childcare and medical care to their employees and still do to this day.

Fiocchi of America, Inc.

Fiocchi came to the U.S. in a roundabout way. In the 1950s, the company shared a factory with Smith & Wesson in Illinois. The companies had disagreements and Fiocchi sold its shares, halting their presence in the Americas. Then in 1980, Carlo Fiocchi, the great-grandson of Giulio Fiocchi, came to the United States on his honeymoon. Carlo researched the possibility of the company’s return to the U.S. and, in 1983, Fiocchi of America began to import products.

Consumers bought ammunition faster than it could be imported from Italy. Carlo met with Paolo Fiocchi, the company president, to discuss building a manufacturing plant stateside. History repeated itself when Fiocchi purchased land from a farmer that had been unable to pay his mortgage. The locals embraced Fiocchi as they provided good jobs for the region. Today, the company sells over 75 percent of the company’s U.S. sales at that plant. Fiocchi is proud of its slogan, “Italian by birth, American by choice.”

 

 

Prepping With Remington Ammunition

With so much uncertainty in today’s government and around the world, prepping has become a new trend. People are preparing to be able to survive in the case of disasters that take them off of the grid or in the case of an outbreak of disease. People want to know that they have all that they need in order to be able to make it own their own without having to rely on stores, shops or even other people. One of the major items that they are stocking up on is Remington ammunition. Having plenty of ammo will ensure that they are able to defend themselves and their family.

Stocking Up on Ammunition

Stocking up on ammunition will also help people to know that they will be able to hunt for food in order to feed their family when there are no more grocery stores to do their shopping for food in. No matter where you live, in a large city or a small town or even a rural area you may find that you will become in need of a large stock of ammunition should things get off course in our country. Owning more than one type of gun isn’t such a bad idea either. You may even choose to teach your family members how to use a gun in order to make sure that the entire family is able to help take care of one another in times of crisis.

Ammunition is going to be one of the most popular items that preppers can have. Should you find yourself in a crisis situation without any ammo you will want to have a plan that allows you defend yourself as well as collect food for your family. One thing you may find is that you are going to have a hard time getting ammo once the crisis has started and certainly won’t be able to get ammo from those that have spent months and years prepping for the crisis.

Other Ways to Prep Yourself

Make the smart decision and prepare yourself and your family. Having an abundance of ammo, food, water, medications and other crucial items should be a goal that you set for your family. You may find that having a large stock of these items can very well save your life and the lives of your family. It’s not too late to start your stockpiling of ammo and other items today.

7.62x54r – Red Army Ammunition for Self Defense

7.62x54r, also known as the “7.62 Russian,” comes with a cartridge that is powerful, reliable and extremely versatile. Able to offer excellent performance in the military field and in the hunting field. In the late 1880s, two icons of weapon design joined forces to give rise to a BB legend. Russian Sergei Mosin and the Belgian Léon Nagant were the authentic progenitors of the 7.62x54r, a cartridge originally created to feed the legendary Soviet rifle Mosin-Nagant.

Thus, the birth of the “7.62 Russian” is closely linked to Mosin-Nagant’s entry into military rifles in 1891. Since then and until today, 7.62x54r has been progressively consolidated its position of leadership within the weapons of Soviet origin. This cartridge is still officially feeding weapons of the Russian army. As well as a good part of the countries that were under Soviet influence during the Cold War.

History of the Red Army’s 7.62x54r

The prominence of this ammunition has just increased since the Red Army adopted it as its official gauge in 1891 . The cartridge designed for Mosin Nagant participated in both world wars. In 1959, after the arrival of the Warsaw Pact, became official ammunition of countries linked to the Communist bloc.

In terms of their behavior, the “7.62 Russian” has excellent ballistic properties, like the popular American cartridge.30-06. This has helped the 7.62x54r to become the main ammunition of military rifles and weapons sniper during a good set of years.

7.62x54r Today

Today, in the 21st century and after that have passed more than 120 years since its first public appearance, 7.62x54r ammo still has a significant presence both in the military sphere and within the sector of sport shooting. In the first case, yet there are many military weapons that use this cartridge, as for example the rifle Dragunov SVD. Even the armed forces of some nations like China or Finland are still recognizing him as one of their official gauges.

Sportier Side

Regarding his sportier side, it was mostly during the second half of the 20th century when the use of this caliber began to expand to other areas. Specifically, the first who enjoyed the virtues of this powerful weapon was the hunting sector. Therefore had to take hold of new projectiles, both soft tip (soft point) as fully shielded (full metal jacket), which offered an excellent result in the depletion of game pieces.

Within this more sporty aspect, 7.62x54r also has incorporated in recent years to aesthetic military weapons designed for precision shooting. A good example of this presence in this type of weapons comes from the hand of the civil versions of the Dragunov, which include the Tiger model.

As a historical curiosity, an American weapon, the lever Winchester M1895 rifle, furnishes this cartridge. Even though, it is linked to the Red Army and a symbol of the Communist bloc. Additionally, for a few years it was one of the official gauges of the Spanish Civil Guard. There was a large amount of this ammunition in Spain at the end of their Civil War.

The year 2011, met 120 years of the official birth of 7.62x54r. A figure which makes it one of the more ancient cartridges, though not so old-fashioned. Despite this the demand for this ammunition is on the rise in recent years. This is thanks to its use in heavy machine guns, sniper rifles and sporting guns and hunting.

Glock – The Ideal Self Defense Weapon

Often, in the modern world, danger can seem ever-present. As the world continues to change rapidly, new threats continue to emerge as well. These threats come in a wide range: small-scale terrorism operations, acts of random violence and many other dangerous situations. Because of them, there are plenty of reasons to be diligent about the issue of protection. But, there is a way of being prepared for any situation which might pose a threat to a person or their loved ones, and it is called a Glock.

What Makes a Glock Ideal?

This handgun offers a complete solution when it comes to self-defense. It’s also simple and affordable. Additionally, when this handgun is equipped with 357 SIG ammunition, the result is a force that can stop any assailant right in their tracks.

History

Glock Ges, an Austrian firearms company, produced the first Glock several decades ago. Police all over the world use the handgun. This is thanks to its great precision, quality, design ingenuity and reliability. Today, almost two third of all guns sold to the US law enforcement agencies belong to the Glock family.

Key Features

One of the key features that make this firearm efficient for protection is the fact that is produced from a polymer frame. This makes it very light and easy for handling, carrying and concealing. At the same time, novice gun owners can quickly learn how to use it in a firing range. People who have never fired a gun or don’t have much strength will easily be able to use a Glock.

This fact, alongside its extremely low instance of any kind of failure like ammo jams, make the Glock very reliable. Also, the .357 type of ammunition is the perfect match for this gun, and just like the firearm, it is the first choice for many law enforcement agencies. Produced by SIG Sauer, a famous Swiss-German company, this ammo has an excellent balance of accuracy and sheer stopping power. A Glock 15 plus 1 round magazine capacity can deliver a powerful punch.

A Glock pistol, loaded with SIG Sauer ammo, is a fantastic home defense and personal protection weapon.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Owning a 380 Pistol

When talking about guns and ammunition stress is given to the large calibers and high powered rifles. Not a lot of attention is given to small handguns which are quite popular as concealed weapons. Super compact pistols like Sig Sauer P238 and Ruger LCP don’t have the firepower of a 9mm. However, these can easily be carried around in a small bag, ankle holster or even in a pocket. This is where these compact pistols have managed to create a market for themselves. They are small enough to be carried around anywhere and provide a basic level of protection. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of the 380 pistols as personal defense weapon.

Advantages

Light Weight: Thanks to the smaller rounds and compact design, the 380 pistols are significantly lighter. To give you an idea the Sig Sauer P238 weighs just 430g compared to 950g weight of a standard 9mm Beretta 92 pistol. This light weight makes it perfect for women to carry it in their purse or it can even be carried in pockets without being uncomfortable.

Easily Concealed: This is what this weapon system is all about. People carrying 380 pistols has no trouble keeping it hidden from view. Like a perfect defensive weapon, these pistols will suddenly seem to appear out of nowhere and serve as a decent protective tool.

Lot of Pistol Options: There are no shortages of options when you are looking for the perfect pistol that can fire the 380 rounds. Colt Mustang, Beretta Pico, Taurus 738, Kahr P380, Walther PK380, and many more, the list of 380 is seemingly endless. All of these pistols are great but be sure to select a model that fits nicely in your hand.

Cheap Pricing: 380 pistols are cheaper than 9mm pistols. Usually priced below $400, this is a great option for average individuals looking for a firearm for their personal protection.

Disadvantages

Lack of Stopping Power: Everything said and done, the 380 rounds definitely lacks stopping power. Thanks to modern technology, the penetration and fragmentation of the 380 ammo is significantly more than it used to be 10 years ago but it’s still not as effective as a 9mm pistol. This is a serious disadvantage as there is nothing more demoralizing than shooting an attacker who simply won’t go down.

Introduction of 9mm Compact Pistols: The introduction of compact 9mm pistols like the Beretta BU9 Nano and Kahr CM9 kind of questions the decision of going for a 380 pistol. These are slightly heavier and larger but deliver a lot more punishment when it’s needed the most.

Why Preppers Use 223 Ammo For Self-Defense

The .223 Rem ammo is one of the most common centerfire rifle cartridges in the world, which also means that it’s some of the best ammo on the market. Although widely used as a sporting and hunting cartridge, .223 is also quite popular as a home defense round. This is because the cartridges are efficient and versatile. You can use .223 Rem cartridges for any situation or problem. With bullet weights of 35-90 grains, the .223 is ideal as a good all-around ammo. While it is popular for varmint hunting, plinking, range training, competition shooting, and small to medium game hunting, the rounds can also be used for self-defense. They also offer a good blend of range, velocity, and penetration power.

Versatility of .223 Rem Ammo

The reason behind the versatility of .223 cartridges is because they contain more powder than other types of cartridges. For example, the .22 LR cartridge has less powder. Furthermore, despite its relatively heavy build, the .223 can still travel at higher velocities than most other cartridges, which basically means that it can deliver a lot more power on impact. They can, for example, puncture through lead pipes and other similar materials, creating neat entry and exit points at the same time.

Aside from their versatility, it’s also worth mentioning that .223 Rem cartridges can deliver 90 grain VLD’s at approximately 1,000 yards. Furthermore, thanks to extensive customization, .223 Remington ammo can match the accuracy of more advanced cartridges when used in a good rifle.

Current Specifications

The standard .223 cartridge uses a .224-inch diameter boat-tailed bullet in a rimless, bottle-necked case. The bullet measures 1.76 inches in length with the overall length of the round is 2.26 inches.

Standard factory loads range in weight from 35 to 85 grains. However, the most common is the 55-grain bullet. It uses a small rifle primer and has a max pressure of 55,000 PSI.

Other Features

The .223 can create relatively large wound channels, and this is because of cartridge’s tendency to tumble upon impact. There’s also the fact that .223 cartridges have hydrostatic shock, which helps to increase their overall performance and power. In terms of performance, .223 Remington cartridges do offer a lot of range and power.

These features make the .223 cartridge an ideal option for a homeowner or hobbyist, but aside from pure performance, .223 rounds are also easy to store around the house. The light weight means there is hardly any recoil. Soft point and hollow point rounds will stop any intruder without the fear of collateral damage.

Furthermore, thanks to their popularity, acquiring .223 Remington cartridges is also relatively easy to handle and quite affordable. Even during a bad situation, you’ll have an easier time finding .223 rounds over other types of ammo.

Popularity

Since 9/11, the sale and use of ARs has skyrocketed. People fear for their homes, personal safety, and the threat of terrorism. Hobbyists have also learned that the military-style rifles can be fun to shoot.

Collateral Damage

Gun owners often express concern about rounds that will over-penetrate.  That concern is one reason why many choose handguns over rifles. The truth is that handguns are just as lethal. Choosing the correct ammo is the key to staying – and keeping your family – safe.

Experts talk about different types of bullets and how they impact a target. Ballisticians use terms like “temporary wound cavity” and “hydrostatic shock.” The important thing to know is simple: the amount of energy shot into a target determines the damage. Novices often think full metal jacket rounds are the best for home defense. The truth is that FMJ bullets tend to go straight through a target, often causing collateral and property damage. If you’ve shot a bad guy, there is a chance that he might bleed to death – eventually. Soft Points and Hollow Points expand and fragment upon impact. The round tends to stay inside the target rather than passing through. Therefore, SP and HP rounds are more likely to stop the target.

Bullet Types and Weights

Full Metal Jacket (FMJ)

The Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) is the most common type of ammo because it’s easier to manufacture and less expensive than other rounds. Standard bullet weights of FMJ ammo in .223/5.56 NATO are 55 and 62 grain.

Hollow Points (HP)

Hollow Point (HP) ammunition is most often related to personal and home defense. The cost of a hollow point is higher than an FMJ but is more effective for defense.  The ballistics of an HP are like an FMJ, only lighter.

Soft Points (SP)

Soft Points (SP) a popular type of home defense ammo. Law enforcement often use .223 SP round for accuracy when on patrol. The expansion of an SP is superior to an FMJ but has more control than the HP. The ballistics of SP ammo are excellent, particularly when paired with a boat-tail design.

M855 “Green Tip”

M855 ammo is often referred to as “green tip” because of its appearance. The round has a bad reputation with some factions as it is considered an armor piercing round. The White House claims that the round and its lethal abilities should be banned from the public. People may be misled by the development of this round. It is not new by any means and has been used in warfare for decades. The main difference is that the M855 uses a steel core rather than a soft lead core, allowing it to penetrate through steel and armor.

Boat-Tail

Boat-tail is a feature often seen in FMJ ammo. It refers to the hard metal casing around the bullet which looks like a boat. The main benefit to using a boat-tail for an AR is the easy assembly and protection against damage that could affect long range performance.

Best Self-Defense Ammo

Federal Ammunition: LE Tactical TRU 55 Grain SP

Federal LE Tactical TRU is a Soft Point round with the expansion capabilities of a Hollow Point (HP). This ammo was developed specifically for semi-automatics include the AR-15. The soft point offers excellent weight retention and penetration. It is ideal for home and personal protection. It is also an excellent choice for those on patrol.

Ballistics Info:

  • 3,241 FPS Muzzle Velocity
  • 55 Grain
  • Soft Point
  • Steel Casing
  • Berdan Primer

Prvi Partizan Ammunition: Soft Point 55 Grain

Prvi Partizan produces 400 types of ammunition, making it one of the biggest ammunition manufacturers in the world. The company is known for manufacturing high quality cartridges for military and civilian use. They specialize in rare and unusual ammo.

Ballistics Info:

  • 3,248 FPS Muzzle Velocity
  • 1,283 ft lbs Muzzle Energy
  • 55 Grain
  • SP Bullet
  • Brass Casing
  • Boxer Primer

Remington Ammunition: JHP Cartridge 45 Grain JHP

Remington .223 ammo is a versatile round that serves well as part of your varmint hunting arsenal. The brass casing has non-corrosive characteristics which allows you to spend time stalking your pesky prey without fear of damaging the ammo or your weapon. The JHP offers reliable expansion, accuracy, and a flat trajectory.

Ballistics Info:

  • 3550 FPS Muzzle Velocity
  • 1,259 ft-lbs Muzzle Energy
  • 45 Grain
  • JHP Bullet
  • Brass Casing
  • Boxer Primer

Federal Ammunition: Premium 165 Grain Nosler Ballistics Tip

Federal Premium tops our list for the best .223 ammo for varmint hunting. This new production ammo is designed for maximum reliability and performance. Hunters have been using Nosler Ballistics Tip Hunting bullets for nearly 25 years. These bullets are precision-made to provide the utmost quality and accuracy with every shot. The heavy jacket and polycarbonate tip prevent bullets from deformation during firing and remain intact at extreme velocities. Simply put, this is one hard hitting round that will get the job done.

Ballistics Info:

  • 3,240 FPS Muzzle Velocity
  • 1,282 ft-lbs Muzzle Energy
  • 55 Grain
  • Nosler Ballistics Tip Bullet
  • Brass Casing
  • Boxer Primer

Speer Gold Dot 64 Grain SP

Speer Gold Dot is one of the highest rated brands for home and personal defense rounds. The ammo is chemically bonded to guarantee accuracy and consistent weight retention. The .222 64-grain Soft Point is also a top choice with law enforcement.

Ballistics Info:

  • 3,000 FPS Muzzle Velocity
  • 1,279 Muzzle Energy
  • 64 Grain
  • Soft Point
  • Nickel-plated Brass Casing
  • Boxer Primer

Federal Premium Law Enforcement: Sierra GameKing 55 Grain BTHP

Federal LE Tactical created this .223 Remington specifically for law enforcement in urban areas. The boat-tail hollow point shoots straight and hard, with high accuracy.  This round is ideal for home and personal defense, range training, and tactical exercises.

Ballistics Info:

  • 3,220 FPS Muzzle Velocity
  • 1,266 Muzzle Energy
  • 64 Grain
  • Boat-tail Hollow Point
  • Brass Casing
  • Boxer Primer

Conclusion

The .223 Remington cartridge has proven to be an adaptable, reliable and accurate caliber with loads ranging from lightning fast varmint rounds, to ammo suited for range training, self-defense, precision marksmanship, and tactical sharpshooting. Aside from the .22LR, .223 Remington ammo may be the most versatile round on the market. Because it’s also an inexpensive ammunition, the .223 should be in every shooter’s armory.