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Mixing ammo in mags

Discussion in 'GATE Self-Defense Forum' started by Jayock, Feb 26, 2011.

  1. Jayock


    Dec 8, 2004
    Boulder, Colorado
    Happy weekend!
    Concerning CCW/SD/HD, I hear of various people mixing loads in their mags. Mixing controlled HP, HP and ball ammo in a mag to have a range of penetration, expansion and everything in between in a few shots. What are the pros/cons of this, all together or separately for the above three uses? Of course this is all assuming that the individual rounds feed well in the firearm.

    I've always carried my round of choice by itself. But I've always wondered if there is any merit to the logic these people use for their choices.

  2. Mas Ayoob

    Mas Ayoob KoolAidAntidote Moderator

    Nov 6, 2005
    The theory is that if you're shooting a JHP for every "odd number shot" and a ball round for every "even number shot," the first few rounds will put both expanding bullets and deep penetrators on target so whichever you need, some of that type gets into the target.

    Unfortunately, it also guarantees that one out of every two shots will be the wrong type of bullet. This increases the likelihood of an overpenetration if multiple shots are fired.

    In most cases, once the shooting gets hot and heavy, the shooter loses count of his rounds. Now, a few seconds into the fight, he has the opportunity to take a shot but has lost count, and DOESN'T KNOW WHAT TYPE OF BULLET IS GOING TO COME OUT OF THE MUZZLE. This is generally not a good thing.

    Best bet is to determine the optimum ammo for your particular needs and "threat profile" and stay with it. This will usually be a street-proven JHP. It might make sense to carry a separate magazine of deep penetrating ammo elsewhere than the regular ammo pouch on the belt (to prevent mix-up), so if there's a particular need for deep penetration, you can tac-load it into the gun from behind cover, sort of like tac-loading a rifled slug into a buckshot-loaded shotgun when you determine that a precision shot is needed.