Speer 124gr Gold Dot HP - Standard Load or +P Load for Self Defense?

Bill2905

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I plan to test some Speer 124gr Gold Dot HP ammo for reliable function in my Glock 45.

For a self defense round, would you recommend the standard load or the +P load in this pistol?

Thanks
 

bwframe

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Differerent brand and bullet weight, (Fed HST 147gr,) but the last info I seen on this subject was that +P in 9mm didn't add much in performance. It did add recoil though.

IIRC, our own BBI confirmed this. Maybe he'll be along to comment?
 

Bigtanker

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I think I remember something about the +P being better paired to shorter, sub 4", barrels.

But then recoil could be a factor.

I think you/we are really splitting hairs here. As Turnerdye says above, get what you can get and make sure it runs in your pistol and shoots to point of aim.
 

two70

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There isn't really any hard and fast answer. Sometimes the +P provides a significant boost in velocity that leads to more reliable expansion out of short barrels. In other loads the +P is more marketing than actual increased performance. Best bet is to chrono some of both from your pistol and see what the actual difference is, then you can decide if it is worth it.
 

BehindBlueI's

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Differerent brand and bullet weight, (Fed HST 147gr,) but the last info I seen on this subject was that +P in 9mm didn't add much in performance. It did add recoil though.

IIRC, our own BBI confirmed this. Maybe he'll be along to comment?

HST 147, the velocity is nearly identical. The testing showed that there was more batch to batch variation than variation from standard and +P. My *assumption* was +P was marketing driven.

124 gr +P loads do tend add some velocity, although that may or may not be desirable based on the bullet design. Gold Dots are good to go in either flavor, but there were some early batches of G2 that failed to expand reliably and were recalled or resold as "training only" cartridges in black/white packaging. That shouldn't be an issue today unless you're buying used.

Smaller guns *may* not run +P as reliably due to the faster slide velocity outrunning the magazine's ability to present a new cartridge quickly enough. Factors like worn springs, aftermarket magazines with added capacity over OEM, or just lousy mags can exacerbate this. As such, I'd want a bit more vetting of my carry gear if any of those things were present.

Terminal ballistics wise, both will perform within acceptable parameters. Which one is better will actually depend, as in some instances the standard pressure penetrates more and in others the +P penetrates more. Both expand reliably and robustly. The biggest difference is in auto body where the +P is noticably better. +P is slightly better at auto glass, which is also a good predictor of performance with bone strikes.

If I was running a full size gun with OEM mags and had a valid concern about having to shoot in situations involving automobiles, I'd lean toward +P *assuming the gun shot them well and to point of aim*. Absent those criteria, I'd lean standard pressure. The differences *again assuming reliable function and point of impact matching point of aim* are minimal and given availability concerns I would not hesitate to use either. I would want more vetting with +P in smaller guns, though, for the reasons mentioned above.
 

DadSmith

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I like 147gr for self-defense in 9mm for the extra penetration. 124gr is better than 115gr penetration wise. Lately I've been running 124gr because at the time I needed to replenish supplies 147gr in any type was out of stock. So you shoot what you have or can get in that case.
 

BehindBlueI's

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I like 147gr for self-defense in 9mm for the extra penetration. 124gr is better than 115gr penetration wise. Lately I've been running 124gr because at the time I needed to replenish supplies 147gr in any type was out of stock. So you shoot what you have or can get in that case.

Availability is certainly a key factor these days. I also tend to favor heavy for caliber and like the 147gr, but the 124gr +P actually does penetrate more in one metric: Auto body testing. Of course how relevant that is to any given person depends on their circumstances.

115gr is very tough to get to pass the full FBI battery, as it tends to under penetrate in several of the tests. I don't know what the voodoo of 9 more grains is, but there's a definite trend of 115gr failing while the 124gr of the same brand will pass. That's not to say it's useless, you're still usually looking at 10" or so which is *generally* going to be good to go. Forearm strikes, shoulder/bicep shots from the side, etc. and it starts to get more iffy.
 

DadSmith

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Availability is certainly a key factor these days. I also tend to favor heavy for caliber and like the 147gr, but the 124gr +P actually does penetrate more in one metric: Auto body testing. Of course how relevant that is to any given person depends on their circumstances.

115gr is very tough to get to pass the full FBI battery, as it tends to under penetrate in several of the tests. I don't know what the voodoo of 9 more grains is, but there's a definite trend of 115gr failing while the 124gr of the same brand will pass. That's not to say it's useless, you're still usually looking at 10" or so which is *generally* going to be good to go. Forearm strikes, shoulder/bicep shots from the side, etc. and it starts to get more iffy.
I did buy 350rds on 115gr Nosler JHP Match awhile back because it was to cheap considering now days prices to pass on. It was almost the same cost to buy the same components and load it as it was to buy it factory made. Cannot pass in those deals.
 

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