Ammo Review: Hornady Critical Defense vs. A Frying Pan

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Our potentially life saving Hornady Critical Defense and Critical Duty ammunition tests have already revealed that…

Hornady Critical Defense 45 ACP 185 grain

The Hornady Critical Defense .45ACP round expanded after passing through the frying pan – just not in the traditional way.

With all the testing we’ve done with Hornady Critical Defense and Critical Duty ammo in our Will It Expand series, there are still some cliches that need to be put to bed.

For example, the defense from a frying pan attack. This one is legitimate as it’s portrayed in Disney’s ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ ride. Just ask that drunken pirate running eternal from the angry frying-pan-wielding wench. Around and around they go. When he gets whacked nobody knows.

We’ve been slack on testing the .45 ACP loading of Hornady Critical Defense and this caliber somehow seemed appropriate for the frying pan test.

So we headed off to the range with a genuine Teflon-coated frying pan and a gaggle of cardboard milk jugs filled with water. An iron frying pan would have been more authentic to the cliché, but we weren’t willing to give up homemade cornbread for this story.

Weighing in at 185 grains with a velocity of 1,001.5 feet per second as measured by our Shooting Chrony out of a Springfield Armory TRP 1911 full size pistol, we figured the round would have no problem perforating the pan.

As you can see by the photo, the Hornady Critical Defense .45 ACP bullet expanded – although in a non traditional manner. The projectile compacted inwards, rather than expanding outwards – just like Hornady claims in its hard barrier tests.

AVAILABLE HERE: Hornady Critical Defense 45 ACP 185 grain 20/box

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  1. Any chance you can revist this test using the 9mm loads?

    I’d be very interested in seeing the results.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Sounds like a plan and we’re on it! We’ll try both the 9mm Critical Defense and 9mm Critical Duty loads to see what happens…

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