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Old 10-12-2017, 05:35 PM
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What factory loads to you guys use to ensure you can meet a 125 power factor in you 9mm?
I have been using Freedom Munitions for years until I received a DQ at a state IDPA match. Was using their target hollow point 115 gr. Came up about 12 fps to slow.
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Old 10-12-2017, 06:29 PM
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I would suggest that you look at American Eagle 124 grain 9mm ammunition. The listed velocity for this load is 1150 fps and that will give you a power factor of 143,000, well over the 125,000 minimum requirement.

Another option would be the 115 grain American Eagle, that has a listed velocity of 1180 fps for a power factor of 136,000. Note, while the specifications indicate a decent "reserve" with this load you have to keep in mind that different pistols will produce different velocities with the same ammunition.

Which is why I think the 124 grain load is a better choice. I also find that the recoil produced by heavier bullets is less "snappy" than loads featuring lighter bullets. As for muzzle flip, my target reacquisition skills just aren't fast enough where a bit more muzzle flip impedes me in any measurable way. However too much hard punching ammo sent downrange will typically lead to me "pushing off" and shooting low. Quite simply I am more accurate over an extended range session when shooting with heavier bullets.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:45 PM
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Scooter,
Thanks for your input. I will for sure take your advise into consideration. The 115 gr Freedom list a velocity of 1120 so at best it would only be 128. My next major match will be June 2018 and I will run some experiments before I risk the match on ammo that does not perform. I will probably invest in my own Chronograph also.
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Old 10-13-2017, 11:06 AM
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S&B 124 is also one to look at
MV:1181
ME:384
I go back and forth between AE S&B and Lawman 124.
those 3 have been the most consistent out of my 9L PC core
and online they are now all 3 relatively cheap to buy in bulk
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Old 10-18-2017, 09:37 PM
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I've been using Freedom 124 gr. RN with good results. The math gives a power factor of 132. Enough room for margin of error. Honestly, I don't feel any difference in recoil from 115. 147, yes.
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Old 10-19-2017, 10:58 PM
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If you rely on the velocities printed on ammo boxes, you are asking for trouble. The factory numbers are recorded from test barrels that may well be much longer than your pistol. Buy a chrono and find out what the ammo does in YOUR gun!

Good luck and good shooting.
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Old 10-20-2017, 01:35 AM
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All else being equal, it is easier to make PF with heavier bullets. Most standard 9mm in 124gr easily make minor in 5" barrels. We make available the IDPA chronograph at our club to check loads in specific guns.
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Old 10-21-2017, 12:16 PM
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Well I don't understand just why these power factors are used in USPSA and IDPA. Pin shooting power factors are what it takes to move a bowling pin back three feet. PF 210 is where you start with pin shooting.
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Old 10-21-2017, 01:06 PM
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Well I don't understand just why these power factors are used in USPSA and IDPA. Pin shooting power factors are what it takes to move a bowling pin back three feet. PF 210 is where you start with pin shooting.

The power factors are used in USPSA and IDPA so that competitors can use available commercial ammunition in the calibers normally used in the respective Divisions. Although many competitors handload, there is no requirement to do so in these sports. Also, when shooting in a foreign country, it is simpler to buy the ammunition from the sanctioning body at the match than for each competitor to deal individually with foreign restrictions.
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Old 11-02-2017, 04:03 PM
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Well I don't understand just why these power factors are used in USPSA and IDPA. Pin shooting power factors are what it takes to move a bowling pin back three feet. PF 210 is where you start with pin shooting.
A small history lesson then for those who don't know.

Power factors were developed by Jeff Cooper at Gunsite when IPSC was being developed. Cooper was convinced the only reliable combat load was a 230 gn .45 projectile at 750 fps or more and wanted to reward shooters who used this load over those that shot 9mm.

He worked out the PF formula (velocity )750 fps) X bullet weight (230 gn) divided by 1000 which equaled 170) and this earned "major" points (5/4/3) on the newly developed IPSC targets A/B/C/D scoring zones (A and B zones both scored 5).

Anyone showing 9mm had to achieve a PF of at least 125 and earns "minor" points on target (5/3/1).

Other shooting sports adopted the PF formula as they developed and set their own minimum levels.

Last edited by Kiwi cop; 11-03-2017 at 10:49 PM.
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Old 11-02-2017, 06:37 PM
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A small history lesson then for those who don't know.

Power factors were developed by Jeff Cooper...

He worked out the PF formula (velocity )750 fps) X bullet weight (230 gn) divided by 1000 which equaled 180) and this earned "major" points <snip>
Game players & gamesmanship--what a surprise!

For the OP, I've found 115/124/147 FM reman, all universally
very soft-shooting stuff.
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Old 11-02-2017, 11:36 PM
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KIWI;

You apparently have different maths down under. In North America 230 x 750 = 172,500 or a power factor of 172.5. To get to 180 power factor one needs a velocity of at least 782.61 fps.

Good day!
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Old 11-03-2017, 10:53 PM
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Game players & gamesmanship--what a surprise!

For the OP, I've found 115/124/147 FM reman, all universally
very soft-shooting stuff.
Well why else would someone bother about PF if not for gamesmanship?

In real life the round in your cylinder or magazine, no matter the calibre or bullet weight, is going to have to get the job done not matter what it's PF. But everyone should be carrying a decent round anyway.

I prefer to shoot my .45 ACP in IPSC competition. It tends to score better than the 9mm's in Classic Division. But when on duty I'm quite happy with the 9mm Hydra Shock 147 gn ammo in my Glock 17.
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Old 11-03-2017, 10:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S&WIowegan View Post
KIWI;

You apparently have different maths down under. In North America 230 x 750 = 172,500 or a power factor of 172.5. To get to 180 power factor one needs a velocity of at least 782.61 fps.

Good day!
Yep, you're right. I was in a bit of a hurry when typing the post and messed up with my maths.

Back to remedial class for me.
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Old 11-06-2017, 06:35 PM
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I've had a hard time finding .38spl that meets ICORE PF of only 120. Used Armscor USA (NOT Precision) and it barely made it.

For those that ask about gaming. For Bowling Pins and Silhouette shooting the sport itself requires a certain amount of momentum to compete. No artificial rules are necessary. BUT...

For Bullseye and PPC you can just lob them down range at what every mild load you'd like. Evidently it got so bad in PPC they had to put in this rule:

Quote:
Ammunition must be loaded to produce sufficient velocity to pass
through the target AND the backer.
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Old 11-07-2017, 12:25 AM
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I've had a hard time finding .38spl that meets ICORE PF of only 120. Used Armscor USA (NOT Precision) and it barely made it.

For those that ask about gaming. For Bowling Pins and Silhouette shooting the sport itself requires a certain amount of momentum to compete. No artificial rules are necessary. BUT...

For Bullseye and PPC you can just lob them down range at what every mild load you'd like. Evidently it got so bad in PPC they had to put in this rule:
I agree that it's often the case that factory 38 Special ammo may well not make IDPA power factor. Of course, one can buy personal defense 38 Special ammo and make power factor. I have been told by our local IDPA match director that IDPA deems factory made 38 Special ammo acceptable even if it can't meet minor PF. The powers that be feel it would be unwise to turn away people who want to shoot but only have store bought ammo.
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Old 11-07-2017, 09:11 AM
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Just a another note on power factors. Not all identical guns shoot the same power factor. My 929 is 4 power factor higher than my wife's. I also bought another 929 that failed chrono at a USPSA match that is about 4 power factor lower than mine. He was using a remanufactured 9mm round that made around 121-122 pf. I don't recall the ammo manufacture, but it probably would have just made chrono in my 929.
USPSA has been sending out articles about Federal making ammo for matches that make the power factor. I wouldn't complain if USPSA allowed certain factory loads that skirted the Chrono stage. But "if" they still have to get chrono'ed, then you are out at 124.9 pf.
Its important to have a chrono, whether you reload or buy store bought ammo. At least in USPSA.
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Old 11-07-2017, 01:20 PM
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The PF 220 I shoot for is with .45 ACP 255gr SWC bullets. My 255gr bullet must exceed 860 FPS to reach PF 220. This load will reliably push a pin back three feet.
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Old 11-07-2017, 04:06 PM
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I remember showing up at a match decades ago with 2 boxes of WWB 115 gr. They didn't make 1000 f/s. The match directer gave me minor on the basis that it was factory ammo.

For those who wonder why, the idea of a minimum power factor is to make sure there's a relatively level playing field so far as recoil recovery is concerned. There's a big difference between, say .38 wadcutters and 125 gr JHPs in a full loaded .357 Magnum.

For us old coots, the major PF has been dropping for decades (too many broken guns). I've still got some lying around that would easily make 180 PF.
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Old 11-08-2017, 08:07 PM
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Everyone should also keep in mind most powders are temperature sensitive. As winter comes on us, the lower temp's may show a load that made it when it was 80 degrees out may fail when the temp drops to 30 (or lower).
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Old 12-09-2017, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scooter123 View Post
I would suggest that you look at American Eagle 124 grain 9mm ammunition. The listed velocity for this load is 1150 fps and that will give you a power factor of 143,000, well over the 125,000 minimum requirement.

Another option would be the 115 grain American Eagle, that has a listed velocity of 1180 fps for a power factor of 136,000. Note, while the specifications indicate a decent "reserve" with this load you have to keep in mind that different pistols will produce different velocities with the same ammunition.

Which is why I think the 124 grain load is a better choice. I also find that the recoil produced by heavier bullets is less "snappy" than loads featuring lighter bullets. As for muzzle flip, my target reacquisition skills just aren't fast enough where a bit more muzzle flip impedes me in any measurable way. However too much hard punching ammo sent downrange will typically lead to me "pushing off" and shooting low. Quite simply I am more accurate over an extended range session when shooting with heavier bullets.
FYI Scooter, I have been using the 124G American Eagle with good results. Just purchased 1000 rds. Ill get them through a Chronograph before my next major match.

Thanks
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Old 12-09-2017, 10:49 PM
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Scooter,
Thanks for your input. I will for sure take your advise into consideration. The 115 gr Freedom list a velocity of 1120 so at best it would only be 128. My next major match will be June 2018 and I will run some experiments before I risk the match on ammo that does not perform. I will probably invest in my own Chronograph also.
that would give you a PF of 128, which IMO is still too close for error. I would suggest their 124gr FMJ. with a fps of 1065 that would give you a more acceptable PF of 132. You have to allow room for "error" so you don't get dairy queen'd again. (DQ'd)
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Old 12-10-2017, 07:32 PM
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One other thing that hasn't been mentioned is the chrono being used and the distance it's set up at.Everyone will show some variation in velocity. Back when I was shooting, major was 175.00PF. Local club hosted a couple of sectionals, and we were able to get the individual who ran the chrono stage at nationals to run our chrono stage. There was almost 2PF difference between what I chrono'd vs what was recorded at the sectionals.
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Old 12-11-2017, 12:07 PM
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About those factory claimed velocities.....they're obtained in test barrels in universal receivers. Most of the products won't clock the same velocity out of an actual firearm. This is especially true of many value line products. Oddly, back in the day, the Blazer aluminum cased stuff usually left claimed velocity in the dust. Their 115 gr JHP was my load for major matches.
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