The Seven Deadly Sins of Concealed Carry: Using the Wrong Ammo

Good self-defense ammunition comes in all shapes and sizes. The fourth round standing from the left is a 9mm full metal jacket practice round. The one on the far right is a Federal Guard Dog expanding full metal jacket round.

I had a lot of fun with the “Seven Deadly Sins of Handgun Shooting” series a couple of months ago, and hope you did too. I got to thinking about other sins—yeah, I know, thinking can hurt your brain—and it occurred to me that there are plenty of deadly sins when it comes to concealed […]

Choosing Ammunition for the Springfield Armory XD-S & Other Short Barrel Handguns

These Speer Gold Dot .45 ACP 230 grain Short Barrel bullets were shot from an XD-S through four layers of denim and still expanded properly.

The performance of any gun is only as good as the ammunition you put into it. And I’m not just talking about using any quality self-defense ammunition. One of the reasons that 9mm guns are more effective today than ever before is the performance of modern 9mm ammunition. Of course, improvements are not limited to […]

Ammo Test: Winchester PDX1 Defender .38 Special +P 130 Grain

Winchester's PDX1 Defender .38 Special +P self-defense load.

When I lug my ammunition testing setup to the range, I get more strange looks than Michael Bloomberg lactating at a Mayors Against Legal Governing (MALG) press conference. That’s because I bring a couple of now-perforated trash cans full of soaking wet newspaper, some old boots and a bunch of discarded clothing. Shooting into water […]

Ammo Review: Speer Gold Dot .40 S&W 180 Grain Hollow Point

Speer Gold Dot 40 S&W 180 grain ammunition

Speer Gold Dot .40 S&W 180 Grain Hollow Point Ammunition It’s a good thing these Speer Gold Dot .40 S&W 180 grain self-defense rounds don’t have dystychiphobia. That’s fear of accidents. I say this because in our testing we had a high-speed wreck. One of our projectiles crashed right into the back of another during the […]

Ammo Review: Speer Gold Dot .357 Sig 125 Grain Bonded Hollow Point Ammunition

Speer Gold Dot 357 Sig ammo Glock 32

Speer Gold Dot .357 Sig 125 Grain Bonded Hollow Point Ammunition It’s no secret that we’re big fans of the .357 Sig cartridge around here. We’ve had a lot of fun and learned a few things while checking out the Glock 31 Gen 4 and Glock 32 Gen 3. So we jumped on the opportunity […]

Buyers Guide: Federal Guard Dog .45 ACP EFMJ Ammunition

Federal Guard Dog .45 ACP EFMJ Ammunition

Here’s an interesting ammo design. Expanding Full Metal Jacket. That’s called an oxymoron. Or something like that. Recently we reviewed the Federal Guard Dog EFMJ Ammunition in .45 ACP caliber and were pleasantly shocked with its expansion performance. Even though it’s loaded to standard pressures, it expands easily due to the jacket design. The other benefit to […]

Speer Gold Dot 9mm +P Bonded Hollow Point Ammunition

Speer 9mm Gold Dot 124gr HP bonded hollow point ammunition

With all the ammo testing we do here, we keep coming back to Speer Gold Dots. Is it the newest? No. Does it contain exotic metals called something-illium? No. Does it play tricks with hyper-velocity? No. It just works. We find it expands reliably after penetrating all sorts of barriers. Just as importantly, the 124 […]

Ammo Review: Hornady 125gr FTX Critical Defense .357 Magnum

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A Ridiculously Unfair Evaluation Street Price: ~ $20 / 25 rounds www.hornady.com The Good It does in fact expand – apparently under the worst conditions. The Bad We were impressed. The only bad thing about this ammo is the pending impact on the checkbook to try out other calibers like 9mm, .40 S&W, and .357 […]