Ammo for competition

Discussion in 'General Competition' started by GlockDiving, Oct 16, 2020.

  1. GlockDiving

    GlockDiving

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    Hi everyone. I started competing recently with my Glock 17 Gen 5. I've got 2 IDPA matches under my belt, and will be competing in my first USPSA event this weekend. I've upgraded to Dawson sights and a Zev connector and have Talon grip tape on the way. I shoot in SSP/Production. I feel confident that this pistol can take me pretty far in the sport.

    One thing I'm not too sure about is ammunition. I know that most of the serious competitors are loading their own rounds, I'm guessing 147gr that barely make power factor. I don't want to start reloading yet, so that I can just focus on my shooting skills. Up until now I've just been using whatever cheap ammo I happen to get my hands on - usually Winchester USA Forged 115gr steel case or 115gr white box when I can get it. I can get that stuff locally for around $0.25/round if I wait in line in the morning for the store to open.

    When I take my time, I can shoot zero-down/alpha from most distances, so I don't think pure accuracy is a problem with this ammo. But obviously less recoil and better accuracy when shooting fast are desirable.

    Do you all think that just going with the cheap ammo is best for a novice competitor like myself? I don't mind paying more for quality ammo for competitions if it will help my performance, but I don't know if I'm at a skill level where it will make much difference.
     
  2. oogy_pls

    oogy_pls

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    I have only shot competitively a few times and I shot whatever I had around. I don't really think it matters.

    But then again there are people who say you MUST have a race gun stuffed with special **** so to each his own.
     

  3. W@rbirds

    [email protected]

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    Run a few matches with 150 grain Federal Syntech & then decide for yourself.
     
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  4. Bradley T

    Bradley T

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    $10 a box 9mm works fine. Likewise $15 a box .45 and .40. You could probably use commie block steel and be just fine. Whatever's cheapest. I'd be wary of Perfecta though- it's loaded up about like 9mm Kurz. That kind of pud ammo might not cycle the slide fully!
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2020
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  5. ronin.45

    ronin.45

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    You're way too new to competition to worry about ammo holding you back. Especially during an ammo shortage. Shoot what you can find until you're expert or better. Then you may be good enough to take advantage of minor changes.
     
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  6. GlockDiving

    GlockDiving

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    Thanks for the feedback, guys. This gives me one less thing to worry about, I'll just shoot what I've got for a while...
     
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  7. MajorD

    MajorD

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    Honestly except at the highest levels of competition ammo makes very little difference. I have shot at national level competitions and am a gssf master, and considering the size of gssf uspsa and idpa targets, ammo with extreme accuracy is simply not required. The concept of having light recoiling reliable ammo just above the minimum power threshold for the given match to minimize recoil and such is logical, but most of the gains found in such efforts are very small and really not appreciated at entry level.
    Much of these efforts result in minuscule fractions of a second improvements in stage scores. Won’t matter until you are competing at a level where a fraction of a second over the course of multiple stages is the difference between first and second or third place.
     
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  8. Snoopy47

    Snoopy47

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    Agree strongly with every point.

    If the ammo is working without malfunction that's the most important thing. Accuracy within 8 inches at 25 yards is all that's needed, and should be easily reachable with essentially any ammo short of complete junk reloads that aren't assembled correctly.

    Light recoil ammo is nice. I totally game this with reloads just to meet minimum requirements. HOWEVER, limp wristing malfunctions can easily happen if I'm not focusing on holding a strong grip. Then, as well, I have to take the time to measure each charge because if the hopper drops on the (-) variance chances are there will be a malfunction. I also had to change powder that was immune from temp changes because I tested my loads late in the day when it was hotter out, and went to match early in the day 20 degrees cooler, and the ammo failed on me because I was trying to be too close to the minimum power needed to function the gun.

    All in all it's a lot of work for something that can be easily ruined with a brain fart, and poor trigger pull. When factory ammo, or just mild power reloads would suffice.

     
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  9. burnsoft

    burnsoft

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    When I first started shooting matches! It was with 115 g Winchester white box for idpa and uspsa production minor. If your were going to go for the bullseye type machine from the nra, then a better load or quality ammo might be needed to get tighter consistent groups. If you eventually want better groups at a cheaper,price, then reload or if you plan to shoot these matches a lot, then reload.
     
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  10. 9x45

    9x45 Millennium Member

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    Glock, the reason to shoot 147/160 9mm is to have less felt recoil for the same power floor than a 115/124. But you are far too new for that to be a factor. WW 115 is fine. IDPA is scored straight time, but USPSA is hit factor, points divided by time (minus penalties). So speed is the real factor. 2 hits anywhere inside the A zone is as good as a double. Like the motto, DVC, but it's mostly C (speed).
     
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  11. waktasz

    waktasz Gamer Scumbag

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    Buy whatever stuff you can find on the shelf. There isn't very much out there, and it's not like 9mm is a hard recoiling round that you need to load magic ammo for in order to compete.
     
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  12. hardluk1

    hardluk1

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    With limited choices of ammo out there to try and with primers if you did reload very limited Just try to stay consistent and better . You might find a 115gr 1100fps load with a lighter recoil spring is the way to go for you or a slow poke 890 to 900fps 147 load like my little 5-2 wife prefered fired in her very tuned up from her 4.25" m&p . I made a pile of these that my wife used in matches some years ago but factory ammo is common under normal times too . She likes the more pushy recoil feel of the 147gr and has faster splits over the snappier lite bullets !! .

    Buy a nice selection of different recoil springs to try and other club shooters may be able to help but a shot timer will tell you what you like .
     
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  13. GlockDiving

    GlockDiving

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    Thanks again for the great advice. I shot a USPSA match yesterday, my first, and used the Winchester USA Forged steel case 115. It further reinforced the idea that the ammo won't make much difference at my level. All of my shots were in the A and C zones, which I was proud of, but my time was the slowest in the match. I have a hard time regaining my sight picture between shots, and I think that's what I need to work on the most right now.
     
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  14. 9x45

    9x45 Millennium Member

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    You can struggle for years in competition and not see much improvement, or you can take lessons from a USPSA GM/M and jump from D class to B class in a couple of weeks.
     
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  15. GlockDiving

    GlockDiving

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    That's a great idea. I'll ask around and see if someone in my area can give me some lessons.
     
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  16. waktasz

    waktasz Gamer Scumbag

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    Where are you located?
     
  17. GlockDiving

    GlockDiving

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    El Paso, Texas.
     
  18. Bomber Nav

    Bomber Nav

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    Just be thankful you have ammo to shoot right now! And good luck with your competition...
     
  19. waktasz

    waktasz Gamer Scumbag

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    hmm, can't think of anyone I know that lives out that way. Sorry
     
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  20. GlockDiving

    GlockDiving

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    Thanks! I am grateful for sure. I know that many are not so lucky in that regard. I don't think I could afford to compete, or even practice live-fire, if I had to buy ammo online and pay $0.60 per round!