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Old 10-04-2012, 09:59   #1
gusbuster
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357 SIG LE GD Duty Ammo

Speer lists two GD loads for 357 SIG. Load# 53918 at 1350 fps, and load# 54234 at 1375 fps. That's just 25 fps difference, is there a difference in bullet construction? Does any one know which one is used by LE agencies such as the Secret Service and Texas Public Safety? Any info would be appreciated.

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http://le.atk.com/ammunition/speer/handgun/default.aspx
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:29   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gusbuster View Post
Speer lists two GD loads for 357 SIG. Load# 53918 at 1350 fps, and load# 54234 at 1375 fps. That's just 25 fps difference, is there a difference in bullet construction? Does any one know which one is used by LE agencies such as the Secret Service and Texas Public Safety? Any info would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Gus

http://le.atk.com/ammunition/speer/handgun/default.aspx
I doubt that there is any significant difference in construction. What are the bullet weights of the two?
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:38   #3
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The 53918 is the unofficial "short barrel" load and uses the 5 petal Gold Dot which is designed open up faster. The 54234 is the standard load which uses the 6 petal Gold Dot. Both bullets are proprietary to the .357sig. A picture showing the difference is below. I prefer the 54234 version myself.

Caliber Corner


I wish TNoutdoors would do a test of the 54234 as he already tested the 53918.
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Old 10-04-2012, 11:07   #4
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Originally Posted by dkf View Post
The 53918 is the unofficial "short barrel" load and uses the 5 petal Gold Dot which is designed open up faster. The 54234 is the standard load which uses the 6 petal Gold Dot. Both bullets are proprietary to the .357sig. A picture showing the difference is below. I prefer the 54234 version myself.

Caliber Corner


I wish TNoutdoors would do a test of the 54234 as he already tested the 53918.
Are the bullet weights the same?
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Old 10-04-2012, 11:15   #5
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Are the bullet weights the same?
Yeah, 125gr. Both measure around 124.7 -124.8gr on my scale.

Last edited by dkf; 10-04-2012 at 11:18..
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Old 10-04-2012, 11:16   #6
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The hotter load gives more tactical penetration..or so they say.

Probably the issue load for Highway Patrol and State Police, that's
earned such a fantastic reputation for stopping power.

Double Tap's 125 gr. Bonded Defense (Gold Dot) uses the 6 petal
design at an advertised 1,450 fps out of a 4 inch barrel.
Caliber Corner
5 inch barrel is listed @ 1,525 fps. Most police issue guns for uniform
carry are the 4.9 inch Glock 31s.

The slower SPEER loads do have less recoil.
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Old 10-04-2012, 11:18   #7
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Yeah, 125gr.
So it is like having a .357 magnum 125gr load. Not bad at all.
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:16   #8
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For some reason I always thought the 1350 fps was the faster one.

sgammo sells both but the faster is $2 more per box.

Glock 31 barrel is 4.49", not 4.9".

Last edited by cowboy1964; 10-04-2012 at 12:21..
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:37   #9
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Fams

FAMS use a number of training rounds, but only use one duty load...357 Sig 125gr.GDHP thats been modified for FAMS.
Attached Thumbnails
Caliber Corner - Click for larger version   Caliber Corner - Click for larger version  
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Old 10-04-2012, 15:54   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clarkstoncz View Post

Double Tap's 125 gr. Bonded Defense (Gold Dot) uses the 6 petal
design at an advertised 1,450 fps out of a 4 inch barrel.
Caliber Corner
I still have some Double Tap .357sig ammo I bought in 2007 when DT still had access to Speer's Gold Dots. The bullet in the advertised 125-grain round looks suspiciously like the 124-grain Gold Dot 9mm bullet and not the 125-grain shallow cup .357sig Gold Dot bullet.

I also have some of DT's 147-grain .357sig Gold Dots bought the same year that look exactly like the 9mm bullets.

I've read that when the ammo panic hit in late 2008 Speer quit selling its bullets to some boutique ammo makers, DT being one of them. Do you know for a fact that DT is back to offering Gold Dot rounds?
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Old 10-04-2012, 15:59   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SHOOTER629 View Post
FAMS use a number of training rounds, but only use one duty load...357 Sig 125gr.GDHP thats been modified for FAMS.
I asked Speer about its 5-petal .357sig Gold Dot and got the reply that it's not available to reloaders. I'm thinking that the 53918 round may be the one you mention is made according to the FAMS specifications. Like someone else already wrote the 6-petal .357sig Gold Dot is the standard LEO round.
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Old 10-04-2012, 21:49   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unit1069 View Post
I asked Speer about its 5-petal .357sig Gold Dot and got the reply that it's not available to reloaders. I'm thinking that the 53918 round may be the one you mention is made according to the FAMS specifications. Like someone else already wrote the 6-petal .357sig Gold Dot is the standard LEO round.
It's possible that the FAMS had a say in the bullets design and power factor, they buy 50-60 pallets a year. Speer would never release that info due to SSI...
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Old 10-05-2012, 06:19   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SHOOTER629 View Post
It's possible that the FAMS had a say in the bullets design and power factor, they buy 50-60 pallets a year. Speer would never release that info due to SSI...
This was before 53918 I believe, and one of the reasons for the load.

http://thefiringline.com/forums/arch...?t-213345.html

Correction, the load was already out when this article came out. Interesting read anyway.
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Old 10-05-2012, 07:11   #14
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Thanks for the very informative replies guys. I have been carrying the 54234 six pedal JHP in my Gen4 G27 with a G33 barrel. I thought a little extra velocity would be good in the shorter barrel. Maybe I should try the 53918 five pedal design for greater expansion? I'm currently trying to buy a Gen4 G32 with my GSSF coupon, waiting for my blue label dealer to get a shipment in.

Last edited by gusbuster; 10-05-2012 at 07:13..
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Old 10-05-2012, 09:38   #15
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357 Sig

Quote:
Originally Posted by Glockbuster View Post
This was before 53918 I believe, and one of the reasons for the load.

http://thefiringline.com/forums/arch...?t-213345.html

Correction, the load was already out when this article came out. Interesting read anyway.
Unfortunately, The round the Washington post is talking about is the same round prior to 2006 and was with the agency at the start and still being used today.

Good read, can't believe I missed that one...
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Old 10-05-2012, 09:52   #16
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Always glad to have "FAMily members" on board. The agency got smart after 9/11 with how their agents dressed. No more "high and tight" haircuts and suits when a flight is going to Hawaii. ;-)
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Old 10-05-2012, 10:28   #17
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Yes, thank you for the info.!!
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:57   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unit1069 View Post
I still have some Double Tap .357sig ammo I bought in 2007 when DT still had access to Speer's Gold Dots. The bullet in the advertised 125-grain round looks suspiciously like the 124-grain Gold Dot 9mm bullet and not the 125-grain shallow cup .357sig Gold Dot bullet.

I also have some of DT's 147-grain .357sig Gold Dots bought the same year that look exactly like the 9mm bullets.

I've read that when the ammo panic hit in late 2008 Speer quit selling its bullets to some boutique ammo makers, DT being one of them. Do you know for a fact that DT is back to offering Gold Dot rounds?
It was'nt just "botique" mfgrs. that got cut for a while unless you consider Georgia-Arms botique. They've rolled a lot of ammo year in, year out for many years now, great company IMO.

There is only one 147 gr. GD so if you got those from DT, you got what you paid for. Many did not. I bought an entire case of 9x25 from him advertised as 125 GD's and they were Montana Gold. Not happy.

I know BB, DT and G-A all have GD's back in their lineups. Other's to check out include Reeds and Underwood.
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Old 10-07-2012, 19:46   #19
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I know BB, DT and G-A all have GD's back in their lineups. Other's to check out include Reeds and Underwood.
Since the big American ammo companies provide an excellent array of .357sig ammo I've decided to stick with their factory rounds, although I'm happy that the boutique companies finally have access to the Gold Dot bullets again.

Now if some reputable company decides to offer a substantial line of .357sig JHP self-defense rounds in the 130-150 grain weight I'd really be tempted. The Double Tap 147-grain Gold Dot expanded well into three water jugs in the one and only backyard test I ever conducted. I also fired a 147-grain Hornady XTP on that same outing but the bullet passed through three jugs, glanced the side of the fourth and was never recovered. tnoutdoors' test of this XTP showed 16+" penetration with somewhat less expansion than the brand name self-defense bullets.

However, given the excellent results from the bonded and non-bonded .357sig "name" loads I don't want to overthink the issue. At this moment in time it seems to me the 125-grain Gold Dot, Golden Saber Bonded, and HST provide a self-defense profile exactly where they're supposed to be. A heavier bullet might yield an advantage for barrier penetration and shots at distance, as well as additional advantage against wild animals.
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Old 10-08-2012, 22:00   #20
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For my G23/357 sig it will be 125gr Gold Dots. For my G24/357 sig it is currently 125gr GDs. However, a nice 130-150gr loading would be tempting in the G24/357 sig. It just has to be the right loading, one that uses a great bullet designed for the 357 sig velocities.
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