MemberDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
I am a new shooter. I recently purchased an M&P Shield EZ 380 ACP and went to the range for the first time the other day. I bought the recommended ammo at the range and had a pretty good time. For background, this is my first gun and I chose the 380 over 9mm because i have a disability which causes a slight balance issue and I thought the recoil might throw me off balance. Turns out, I don’t seem to be phased at all with the 380. I have a couple of newbie questions I hope you can help with;
1. The range sold me Aguila 90gr FMJ rounds. What is a good, recommended brand for the range?
2. Conversely, what should I get for personal protection rounds?
3. I was told that by the instructor that he thought I could handle 9mm rounds, so I thought I might look into getting one. Should I get a full sized 9mm or get a compact 9mm for EDC to replace the 380? Any recommendations?
4. What are some good 9mm rounds for both range and defense?
5. Where do you guys usually get ammo at a good price?
As for budget for the 9mm, sub 700 would be nice, but the budget isn’t as much of a concern.
Thanks for the help!
-Something-Generic-GuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
1. Aguila is a fine brand. Range ammo should be whatever you can get the cheapest; that’s usually steel, but some ranges don’t allow steel-cased ammo (specifically the projectiles) and it doesn’t behave well in some guns.
2. 90gr Hornady Critical Defense is a good defensive .380 load.
3. Practice with the .380 EZ first, then look into a 9mm later. Remember that *generally speaking* the smaller the gun, the less pleasant it is to shoot (assuming they’re the same caliber).
4. There’s quite a variety of 9mm defensive loads available: Hornady Critical Defense/Critical Duty, Sig V-Crown, Winchester Ranger T, and so on.
5. Online, often through /r/gundeals.
MyUsernameIsJudgeGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
Whatever you do probably best to rent a 9mm first and make sure it won’t be an issue for you. To dump so much money into a handgun and then you find out it’s not for you would suck (ask me how I know).
Gun shop should have a good selection to fondle or shoot. Just stick with a reputable brand, stay around from Taurus or most Remington stuff. Glock, Smith, Ruger, HK, Walther, etc. are good to go.
GrandSackoGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
If you like the EZ’s trigger then move up to a full sized M&P. Or try out a bunch of guns and see which trigger/manual of arms you’re most comfortable with and go from there
PwnApeGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
[Blazer Brass Black Pack .380 18 cents per round after rebate](https://www.academy.com/shop/pdp/federal-premium-black-pack-380-auto-95-grain-fmj-ammunition-200-rounds)
[Lucky Gunner Labs .380auto JHP](https://www.luckygunner.com/labs/self-defense-ammo-ballistic-tests/)
See if you can rent or test fire some 9mm before you buy. My 60 year old mom shoots her 380EZ I bought her well but she doesn’t like any 9mm.
Walmart is discounting handgun ammo currently, they sell a Remington green box 100 rounds of JHP .380auto for $30 or less. I’d buy one of those for now. And grab 1 or 2 more 380EZ mags.
BigAngryPolarBearGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
1. Range ammo doesn’t matter so much as long as it runs fine and doesn’t malfunction. So cheap shit is okay. In my rifle I run steel ammo almost exclusively, in my pistol I get the federal brass cases because it’s cheap at Walmart.
2. Federal HST, Speer gold dots(what I use in 9mm) are some of the most recommended, lucky gunner did a test on defensive ammo that I’ll find for you in a second so you can try to make an informed decision for yourself
[here it is, but it’s a bit of a read](https://www.luckygunner.com/labs/self-defense-ammo-ballistic-tests/#380ACP)
3. Maybe rent a 9mm. If you’re more accurate with the .380 then keep that. Maybe someday you can move up to 9mm but it’s not a question of “can I handle this?” And more so “can I get good accurate shots with this?”
4. I use Speer Gold Dots, 124gr +p
5. I like to use lucky gunner for bulk ammo, Walmart if I just need a box or two, SGammo is supposed to be pretty good too, and if you haven’t spent enough money yet, r/gundeals is a good place to look for stuff on sale
hop_a_long_fritzGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
Range ammo is whatever you want really. Winchester white box for getting used to manipulating the firearm.
For carry ammo I like to run hydra-shok ammo, +p. There are loads of videos doing comparisons on different ammo on ballistic gel, and you can look those up on YouTube and choose what trips your trigger.
As far as replacing what you purchased… Do what feels right. Try a few different full size and compact 9mm and see what fits your hand the best, has controls that work the best for you, and has the most natural aim point and recoil control. I love my Glock 43, but that doesn’t mean it’s the best for you.
9mm ammo for range and defense? Personally I keep them separate. Cheaper range ammo for lots of practice, and the more expensive defense ammo for carry (again, I prefer hydra-shok +p). I do suggest that you should at least run one mag of your carry ammo through your weapon, so you’re familiar with how it acts. Many times carry ammo is hotter than range ammo.
Ammo at a good price… Onesy twosy boxes I just grab from a local sporting good store. But if you want bulk ammo, like 500 or more, I go on ammoseek.com.
radguy07GuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
What about getting a 9mm Shield once you are ready? A S&W 380 EZ followed my home on Black Friday, I havent had a chance to shoot it yet but it doesnt look much different from my 9mm Shield, not identical of course, so switching from the 380 to 9mm wouldnt be a big leap. Less of a leap then if went from a single stack small EZ to a double stack in a different brand, or a full size especially if you are looking to concealed carry it. Plus any gun range that rents guns should have a shield in 9mm that you could try out. Just my 2 cents.
EveRommelGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
What’s your budget on the 9mm?
Janneyc1GuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
My recommendation would be to look into a glock 19 or 17. the 17 will be slightly bigger. Try them on the range and see if they affect your balance. I would try the 17 first, though this sub loves it Glock 19.
OIFvet06-08GuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
See if the range you are going to offers any classes like “Basics of Handgun Shooting” or “Personal Protection in the Home” or things like that. Some of these classes are very very simple but even for an experienced shooter you learn something new every time, even just from your interactions with others in the class.
DisjrbskallbGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
If you do get a 9mm the felt recoil will be considerably harder on a polymer carry sized gun compared to like a Beretta 92. I shoot Federal 115g FMJ at the range, and Hornady Critial Defense 115g HP for defense rounds.
Archaic_1GuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
I pretty much live by the lucky-gunner tests for selecting defensive pistol rounds, for the .380 they suggest the remington 88gr HTP or the Hornady 90gr Crit Defense (which is what rides in mine)
DeskMonkeyDenverGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
My local police department carries Speer Gold Dots, so that’s what I carry. If I’m ever on trial for a defensive shooting, it will be very difficult for the prosecuting attorney to question my choice of ammunition.
hyintensityGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
If you are worried about recoil, get a full size, steel or alloy, 9mm like a CZ or 1911 9mm
The heavy pistol may feel heavy in the store, but remember, weight reduces recoil. The heavy pistol will feel great while shooting.
My petite wife (5’2″ 115lbd) favorite handgun is my (now hers) CZ SP01 Tactical.
We had a Glock 19 and she hated it due to recoil.
ProbablyAFuddGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
If you like the Shield just upgrade to the 9mm one. Nothing wrong with them.
AndThatsHowIgotHSVGuestDecember 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm