Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

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Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by jor-el » Mon Mar 30, 2015 6:30 pm

http://concealednation.org/2015/03/arme ... ver-again/

Home invaders burst into their home while they were home.

Wife held at gunpoint. Husband forced to the ground... next to where he kept a loaded firearm in a table drawer, presumably a revolver. Husband retrieved said firearm.

Husband fired several rounds, nailed two perps out of three, no criticals. Perps fled, arrested later.

BY his own admission some of the rounds failed to fire. No mention of a malfunction drill, presumed he simply pullled the trigger again. He stated they were reloads.

Another point in the article, if you carry, carry in the home. Husband was lucky he was close to a hidden firearm.

Point not mentioned: how did the perps get into the house? Cheap door? Unlocked door? Souds like a secure door could have mitigated or prevented the home invasion.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Hollis » Mon Mar 30, 2015 7:00 pm

Not sure on blasting reloads.

The only issue that I heard was someone creating a really nasty slice and dice round. The family of the deceases sued on that. Reloads open another door on the wealth redistribution agents. IIRC, it is a good idea to know what you local DA thinks about such things.

I have been reloading for a long time and never had that issue. Like anything, some people can, some people should not and some people are, well, in between.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Paladin1 » Mon Mar 30, 2015 7:02 pm

I know I seen one to many jams, squibs, and screwed up primers to ever use them in a defensive situation unless I was out of premium SD factory loads.

But that's just me.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Hollis » Mon Mar 30, 2015 7:04 pm

Paladin1 wrote:I know I seen one to many jams, squibs, and screwed up primers to ever use them in a defensive situation unless I was out of premium SD factory loads.

But that's just me.

Among reloaders, Never ever trust someone else's reloads. :)
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by eeb » Mon Mar 30, 2015 7:46 pm

Meh
I've seen factory rounds fail to fire, too. Stuff happens. That's why we do malfunction drills. Normal capacity magazines help too, but aren't always viable for concealed carry.

I have a "Sound of Shotgun Slide" app on my phone. Ne'er-do-wells hear that, and scamper the other way.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by jor-el » Mon Mar 30, 2015 8:39 pm

eeb wrote:Meh
I've seen factory rounds fail to fire, too. Stuff happens. That's why we do malfunction drills. Normal capacity magazines help too, but aren't always viable for concealed carry.
So have I.

Not to the frequency of reloads. The vast majority of failures to fire with factory ammo from the big four can be summarized

1) Bad primers/ reversed primers. Seen it on some Federal .38 and Winchester 9mm. Once each, over a twenty year period. You can catch this if you inspect your ammo before you load it into a magazine.

2) Damaged cases/bullets. The most common example I've seen is the first cartridge loaded from a magazine into a pistol repeatedly until the round is battered into unservicability.

3) Bad/improper powder type or load. I've personally never seen this with department ammo. Usually a bad batch of ammo is caught before they ship to us. Problems with reloads powder wise quite often.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Mon Mar 30, 2015 11:19 pm

I think you meant to type "you should not use shitty reloads in a defensive gun." I'll put my handloads against Hornady in terms of trusting them to go boom every time. Someone else's handloads, get fucked no way. Inspect your ammo, pay attention when reloading, and never buy reloads from anyone who doesn't have a license and a big insurance policy to settle out of court if their ammo blows up your gun.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by emclean » Tue Mar 31, 2015 7:49 am

jor-el wrote:
eeb wrote:Meh
I've seen factory rounds fail to fire, too. Stuff happens. That's why we do malfunction drills. Normal capacity magazines help too, but aren't always viable for concealed carry.
So have I.

Not to the frequency of reloads. The vast majority of failures to fire with factory ammo from the big four can be summarized

1) Bad primers/ reversed primers. Seen it on some Federal .38 and Winchester 9mm. Once each, over a twenty year period. You can catch this if you inspect your ammo before you load it into a magazine.

2) Damaged cases/bullets. The most common example I've seen is the first cartridge loaded from a magazine into a pistol repeatedly until the round is battered into unservicability.

3) Bad/improper powder type or load. I've personally never seen this with department ammo. Usually a bad batch of ammo is caught before they ship to us. Problems with reloads powder wise quite often.
allow me to add another malfunction, I have had 2 squib loads from factory loads. both federal .38 spc.

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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by 00dlez » Tue Mar 31, 2015 8:20 am

eeb wrote:Meh
I've seen factory rounds fail to fire, too. Stuff happens. That's why we do malfunction drills. Normal capacity magazines help too, but aren't always viable for concealed carry.

I have a "Sound of Shotgun Slide" app on my phone. Ne'er-do-wells hear that, and scamper the other way.
How will they hear it over the sound of your house alarm going off?
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Neptune Glory » Tue Mar 31, 2015 8:23 am

jor-el wrote: Another point in the article, if you carry, carry in the home. Husband was lucky he was close to a hidden firearm.
Completely agree. I heard it said once: "If it's not in your hands or on your person when the emergency happens, it might as well be on the moon."
"When it comes to justifiable use of deadly force, you should seek to avoid confrontation, unless you have no choice and your life is on the line. This is easier to say than to do because it requires that you be calm and peace-loving throughout your life, but ready to use deadly force at any moment."

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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Hollis » Tue Mar 31, 2015 8:58 am

Doctorr Fabulous wrote:I think you meant to type "you should not use shitty reloads in a defensive gun." I'll put my handloads against Hornady in terms of trusting them to go boom every time. Someone else's handloads, get fucked no way. Inspect your ammo, pay attention when reloading, and never buy reloads from anyone who doesn't have a license and a big insurance policy to settle out of court if their ammo blows up your gun.

^^^ pretty much says it all, what a person needs to know.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Hollis » Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:02 am

Neptune Glory wrote:
jor-el wrote: Another point in the article, if you carry, carry in the home. Husband was lucky he was close to a hidden firearm.
Completely agree. I heard it said once: "If it's not in your hands or on your person when the emergency happens, it might as well be on the moon."

Probably one of the biggest challenges in home defense, especially if a person does not live alone and even a bigger issue if there are little children. The availability issue, where is it?

You are in the hot tub in the back of the house, your super sweet home defense pistol is in on of those quick to unlock boxes under your bed. Thieves do not call ahead when they plan on visiting.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by crypto » Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:17 am

jor-el wrote: Point not mentioned: how did the perps get into the house? Cheap door? Unlocked door? Souds like a secure door could have mitigated or prevented the home invasion.

How many hard kicks do you think a door should be able to witihstand? Short of buying a steel security door in a steel frame and having it lag-bolted to masonry at a cost of 5K per exterior door, I can't think of anything that would really hold up to more than 2-3 hard kicks by a determined breacher.

Assuming 2 entry doors, even after spending $10K on security doors, that still leaves one with a dozen windows on the first floor alone. If someone wants in, they're coming in. Ask your SWAT team. :D
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by jor-el » Tue Mar 31, 2015 12:25 pm

crypto wrote:
jor-el wrote: Point not mentioned: how did the perps get into the house? Cheap door? Unlocked door? Souds like a secure door could have mitigated or prevented the home invasion.

How many hard kicks do you think a door should be able to witihstand? Short of buying a steel security door in a steel frame and having it lag-bolted to masonry at a cost of 5K per exterior door, I can't think of anything that would really hold up to more than 2-3 hard kicks by a determined breacher.

Assuming 2 entry doors, even after spending $10K on security doors, that still leaves one with a dozen windows on the first floor alone. If someone wants in, they're coming in. Ask your SWAT team. :D
Yeah, they came through a back door. Considering where I work, I'm not surprised I encounter steel security doors on a routine basis, and perceive lack of same as unusual.

http://www.kten.com/story/28627103/madi ... e-invasion

Even so, you would want a door to hold up for at least enough time to go from condition white to red. A servicable solid wood door with a Fox lock and a piano hinge on a decent frame would last four hard kicks at least. Ask me how I know. No, it won't cost ten grand.

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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by crypto » Tue Mar 31, 2015 12:39 pm

Given that he had time to get from white to red and retrieve a weapon, I'd say the door he had bought him enough time to get the job done :D
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Hollis » Tue Mar 31, 2015 12:57 pm

jor-el wrote:
Yeah, they came through a back door. Considering where I work, I'm not surprised I encounter steel security doors on a routine basis, and perceive lack of same as unusual.

http://www.kten.com/story/28627103/madi ... e-invasion

Even so, you would want a door to hold up for at least enough time to go from condition white to red. A servicable solid wood door with a Fox lock and a piano hinge on a decent frame would last four hard kicks at least. Ask me how I know. No, it won't cost ten grand.

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Something that can be weaker than one's door. The Wall. A burglary, sometime back, a stolen car was used to ram through the wall. The driver ran off. So the owner had the construction people come out and cover the hole and plan on repairing the damage. The burglars, then made their entrance through the hole.

On doors, check to see how the door frame is mounted. In our old house after several years and was looking at our front door and the whole frame was moving away from the wall. The contractor never anchored the door frame to the studs.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by TheZone » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:13 pm

A major reason to use factory loads is civil liability, especially in some blue states. Its easy to convince a uneducated jury that a handloader is a social misfit sitting alone in a dark room talking to himself while he concocts murderous rounds intended to maim.

All the more so because the social misfit sitting alone in a dark room talking to himself does in fact describe several of my shooting friends. :mrgreen:


A factory load is the manufacturer's problem. I worked a home invasion once where a suit was pressed against the homeowner.

The plantiff's lawyer showed up with poster-sized charts, diagrams, and pictures, expert witnesses, etc.

The homeowner, a pretty woman in her thirties, was asked by her attorney (on the stand) "why did you pick this particular ammunition?"

Her answer: "The box was prettier than the others."
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by B9ev » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:23 pm

I have an expert witness and one of my states top defense lawyers on speed dial to use just in case I am that homeowner. The expert witness advises to always use commercial ammunition to avoid the angle of "they were using extra, dangerous, extra damaging, extra deadly rounds" in court.

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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by raptor » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:26 pm

B9ev wrote:I have an expert witness and one of my states top defense lawyers on speed dial to use just in case I am that homeowner. The expert witness advises to always use commercial ammunition to avoid the angle of "they were using extra, dangerous, extra damaging, extra deadly rounds" in court.
That is a good plan but I also suggest carrying this type of insurance.Since the phone call will start the billing process likely at ~ $500+/hour. Hopefully you never need it but it could be the best $165 - $600 a year you ever spent.

BTW there are other policies and coverage. Just be sure to check how they handle payment (is it re-imbursement or up front) and how they handle intentional acts and criminal acts. Many homeowner policies exclude intentional negligent acts. This may (not always) provide a way for the company to deny coverage.


http://www.locktonaffinity.com/nrains/defense.htm
NRA Self-defense Insurance includes coverage for:

Criminal defense reimbursement and civil suit damages, up to the limit selected
The cost of civil suit defense, in addition to the limit of liability for bodily injury and property damage
Criminal defense reimbursement for alleged criminal actions involving self-defense when you are acquitted of charges
Bodily injury or property damage caused by the use of a firearm
Annual Liability Limit Options:

$165 annually:
$100,000 combined single limit with a $50,000 criminal defense reimbursement sub-limit

$254 annually:
$250,000 combined single limit with a $50,000 criminal defense reimbursement sub-limit

$400 annually:
$500,000 combined single limit with a $100,000 criminal defense reimbursement sub-limit

$600 annually:
$1,000,000 combined single limit with a $100,000 criminal defense reimbursement sub-limit
Last edited by raptor on Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by B9ev » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:33 pm

Thank you for bringing that up! This insurance is an absolute must to have. A lot of people say their homeowners or umbrella policy will cover it. Read the fine print, most if not all homeowners will not cover it and most umbrellas are attached to said homeowners policies.
raptor wrote:
B9ev wrote:I have an expert witness and one of my states top defense lawyers on speed dial to use just in case I am that homeowner. The expert witness advises to always use commercial ammunition to avoid the angle of "they were using extra, dangerous, extra damaging, extra deadly rounds" in court.
That is a good plan but I also suggest carrying this type of insurance.Since the phone call will start the billing process likely at ~ $500+/hour. Hopefully you never need it but it could be the best $165 - $600 a year you ever spent.


http://www.locktonaffinity.com/nrains/defense.htm
NRA Self-defense Insurance includes coverage for:

Criminal defense reimbursement and civil suit damages, up to the limit selected
The cost of civil suit defense, in addition to the limit of liability for bodily injury and property damage
Criminal defense reimbursement for alleged criminal actions involving self-defense when you are acquitted of charges
Bodily injury or property damage caused by the use of a firearm
Annual Liability Limit Options:

$165 annually:
$100,000 combined single limit with a $50,000 criminal defense reimbursement sub-limit

$254 annually:
$250,000 combined single limit with a $50,000 criminal defense reimbursement sub-limit

$400 annually:
$500,000 combined single limit with a $100,000 criminal defense reimbursement sub-limit

$600 annually:
$1,000,000 combined single limit with a $100,000 criminal defense reimbursement sub-limit

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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by raptor » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:37 pm

Yes indeed. If you think about even if your shooting is justified in many states (not in LA, MS or TX though) the perp and/or family my sue you over the shooting. Even in states where self defense shooting have protection they can still sue to try and get around the statute. If you CC you should have some liability insurance.

I have never needed the NRA insurance (thank God!) but it appears to be a decent deal with a good form of coverage. I am not saying others are not as good just that I am familiar with this plan.

Back on topic.

As noted, factory ammo can also misfire. So practice your misfeed, misfire and malfunction drills.
Last edited by raptor on Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by jor-el » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:41 pm

crypto wrote:Given that he had time to get from white to red and retrieve a weapon, I'd say the door he had bought him enough time to get the job done :D
With a gun pointed at his wife's head to start, and the perps already inside the living room. The perps were likely watching the wife at that point, and the perps put him in the right spot. That could have gone south two ways; being put to the ground away from the gun, or the perps shooting the wife first.

Did you read the article?

The liability issue on the ammo is a bit more complex, and not necessarily addressed at Grand Jury. My guess is reloaded ammo gets used a bunch more often in Oklahoma than in NY, so a jury may be more sympathetic than in NY. YMMV.

Insurance? The NRA's version sounds good, as many local brokers may not understand the issue and money will almost certainly be involved should you get involved in a home invasion shootout.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Paladin1 » Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:15 pm

To be clear, I was not insulting all you handloaders. I'm sure all your rounds are perfect and are +2 to hit with +3 damage. :D

But that 'other' guy you have mentioned more than once, wow, his shit somehow has gotten around to a lot of ranges, 3-gun matches and training days I've been too. I don't know why people keep using that guys crap?

On a more serious note.....

I know that factory loads can fail too, and while I cannot produce any hard data, a few decades of shooting tells me that the handloads fail far more often. I'll take whatever edge I can get when my ass is on the line.

Not to mention the advances in bullet construction technology. I don't know how readily available the latest bullets are to handloaders or if people would ever frequently pony up for the top tier stuff since one of the main motivators is cost savings?

I actually want to get into reloading for my 300 BO, but I'll stick to factory loads for SD and use reloads for other shooting.
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Re: Why You Should Not Use Reloads in a Defense Gun

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Tue Mar 31, 2015 7:40 pm

TheZone wrote:A major reason to use factory loads is civil liability, especially in some blue states. Its easy to convince a uneducated jury that a handloader is a social misfit sitting alone in a dark room talking to himself while he concocts murderous rounds intended to maim.

All the more so because the social misfit sitting alone in a dark room talking to himself does in fact describe several of my shooting friends. :mrgreen:


A factory load is the manufacturer's problem. I worked a home invasion once where a suit was pressed against the homeowner.

The plantiff's lawyer showed up with poster-sized charts, diagrams, and pictures, expert witnesses, etc.

The homeowner, a pretty woman in her thirties, was asked by her attorney (on the stand) "why did you pick this particular ammunition?"

Her answer: "The box was prettier than the others."
Have handloads ever been the factor that turned a good shoot into a murder/manslaughter? Because I hear this repeated a lot, but it seems to be the kind of thing that's never actually happened...
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