Friday Tip-Off: Alternate Ammo Choices

We are living in interesting times no doubt. The shortage of guns, parts and ammo is unlike anything we’ve ever seen before. Unfortunately, we may not have access to our best/first choice of defensive ammo. So, I figured we could take a look at some alternative loads for the guns you probably already have that are hopefully a little more available than buckshot/JHP.


This is really where you have the most choices. As I’m writing this, MidwayUSA shows a few different #4 pheasant/turkey loads to be in stock. Are they going to be as effective as 00 buckshot? Not at any sort of distance, but if we’re talking 10 feet across the bedroom, I’d bet on getting the desired attitude adjustment. Again, we’re talking about substitutes for what you would normally use.


Handguns are a somewhat trickier, since your options tend to be FMJ or JHP in most service calibers. However, if available, I’d pick a high quality lead round nose or in appropriate calibers, a Semi-wadcutter over straight FMJ anyday. Hard cast lead will still deform and give at least some expansion, making a far better choice for defense than hardball. Jacketed Soft Point would also be a solid choice, though it’s only commonly available in revolver calibers.



Rifles are really tricky at this point, since there’s basically no ammo of any kind available. On the bright side, rifle rounds tend to be pretty universally effective. I try to stick with some sort of ballistic tip since I live inside a city and have over-penetraton concerns, but YMMV on that front.


Next week, we’ll talk about alternate training options while having to save ammo for matchs. Until Then, Train To Triumph!

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