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Discussion Starter #1
I know the PF-9 is rated for +P in limited use, but what effect does that limited use have on the pistol? What would happen if I exclusively fired +P rounds?

I ask this because I want to shoot more than 100 rounds of my defensive ammo before I trust it. However, wear and damage the the pistol is a huge concern for me. Is there anything I should know before I hit the range?
 

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The PF-9 will handle +P ammo safely, at least in "limited" usage (KT does not define what it considers to be limited), but the thing to remember is that the PF-9 is very lightly built, and not designed as a robust, shoot anything pistol. Extensive use of +P ammo will eventually result in the battering of parts, early wear out of things like recoil spring assemblys, and will likely shorten the life span of the pistol. That said, I doubt the firing the necessary 50 rounds or so of +P to test a desired carry/self defense round is going to hurt the pistol all that much.

One note on the use of +P ammo in the PF-9 (and any short (3 inch bbl) handgun is that in that short barrel you really do not gain much, if anything. Average velocity increase of +P ammo over standard JHP is only around 50fps, and that comes at the cost of greatly increased muzzle blast and recoil. The increased recoil makes it much more difficult for most to recover for a second shot if needed as well. The case for and against +P in the PF-9 has been discussed at some length in several threads before, so you might want to do a search on the topic to see some of discussion.

Jim R
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The PF-9 will handle +P ammo safely, at least in "limited" usage (KT does not define what it considers to be limited), but the thing to remember is that the PF-9 is very lightly built, and not designed as a robust, shoot anything pistol. Extensive use of +P ammo will eventually result in the battering of parts, early wear out of things like recoil spring assemblys, and will likely shorten the life span of the pistol. That said, I doubt the firing the necessary 50 rounds or so of +P to test a desired carry/self defense round is going to hurt the pistol all that much.

One note on the use of +P ammo in the PF-9 (and any short (3 inch bbl) handgun is that in that short barrel you really do not gain much, if anything. Average velocity increase of +P ammo over standard JHP is only around 50fps, and that comes at the cost of greatly increased muzzle blast and recoil. The increased recoil makes it much more difficult for most to recover for a second shot if needed as well. The case for and against +P in the PF-9 has been discussed at some length in several threads before, so you might want to do a search on the topic to see some of discussion.

Jim R
I actually wouldn't want to shoot +P, but the golden saber rounds that are bonded appear to only be available in +P. I guess I could spend more and get Gold Dots, but even their "short barrel" versions are only +P (which is annoying).
 

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When I got my first PF9 (2006), I wanted to use +ps. After many years of mostly 357s and 45s, I didn't think much of 9mm (blame Jeff Cooper/Elmer Keith/etc) and figured it needed all the help it could get. Two more PF9s and over 8000rds later including at least several hundred +ps, I don't use +ps in PF9s anymore. The guns never blew up, the +p I mostly used, 124+P Gold Dot was accurate/reliable, I shot it well, it tested well in wetpack and chronographed an avg of 1126fps. Two of my three guns have either been replaced or rebuilt by KT though. Bottomline IMHO, a 12+oz 9mm is just not best platform for hotter loads. I use my 24-33oz 9mm "platforms" for 9mm+ps now. There are lots of good non-+p loads that aren't as tough on the little gun. My 2 cents worth.
 

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When I got my first PF9 (2006), I wanted to use +ps. After many years of mostly 357s and 45s, I didn't think much of 9mm (blame Jeff Cooper/Elmer Keith/etc) and figured it needed all the help it could get. Two more PF9s and over 8000rds later including at least several hundred +ps, I don't use +ps in PF9s anymore. The guns never blew up, the +p I mostly used, 124+P Gold Dot was accurate/reliable, I shot it well, it tested well in wetpack and chronographed an avg of 1126fps. Two of my three guns have either been replaced or rebuilt by KT though. Bottomline IMHO, a 12+oz 9mm is just not best platform for hotter loads. I use my 24-33oz 9mm "platforms" for 9mm+ps now. There are lots of good non-+p loads that aren't as tough on the little gun. My 2 cents worth.
+1. +P ammo is not only tough on the pistol, but in a sub-1lb (fully loaded) PF-9, they are pretty tough on the hand and wrist, especially for the minimal gain. In my experience, the better standard loadings (Gold Dot, Corbon DPX, etc) are pretty effective, even in the short barrel, so no need to subject myself to added recoil/blast. Also my $.02 worth.

Jim R
 

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I have had problems with +p in that the increased slamming of the slide has made my firing pin stick so bad it took 2-4 hammer drops to fire another round. On examination the firing pin was slightly bent. That was enough to convince me it's not worth it. Yes the gun will stay together but so will the engine in my car at 125mph. The increased wear and pushing the limits of what it's engineered for don't make up for the small amount of time I save getting to my destination. There is a reason critical defense is not +p and the reason is you don't gain anything. A bad guy dead with 2 holes of +p is just as dead as he is with 3 holes of standard ammo and you have a better chance of getting the 3 shots off and where you want them to be.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
So, I guess that rules out +P...

At this point my concern is whether or not jacket separation is a big deal.

From what I've seen, Golden Saber is $15.19 for 25 rounds ($0.61/each) and Gold Dot is $18.69 for 20 ($0.93/each).
(cheaperthandirt.com prices before shipping)

Is a bonded bullet worth $0.32 more per round? Are there other alternatives to Gold Dot that perform as well?
 

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As others have stated, I'm not a fan of +P ammo in these ultra-lights.

Disadvantages:
Increased/accelerated wear and tear, increased flash and muzzle flip, resultant flinching, decreased accuracy, slowed followup shots, increased limpwristing = possible function degredation...

Advantages: Few to none worth mentioning for the average concealed carrier. I do not believe that good quality, standard pressure 9mm SD rounds have issues with penetration/expansion, but then again, I mostly carry the P3AT, so I am obviously not much worried about so-called stopping power.
 

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I would also take a look at the 147 grn. Out of a short barrel they are effective at not losing as much velocity compared to other SD loads in longer barrel 9's the bullet moves slower,takes longer to exit the barrel,therefor burning more powder and building more velocity. I use them in my P11, G26 and my PF9, reliable and consistent. I like the Gold Dots best, but Golden sabers are not bad either.
 

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So, I guess that rules out +P...

At this point my concern is whether or not jacket separation is a big deal.

From what I've seen, Golden Saber is $15.19 for 25 rounds ($0.61/each) and Gold Dot is $18.69 for 20 ($0.93/each).
(cheaperthandirt.com prices before shipping)

Is a bonded bullet worth $0.32 more per round? Are there other alternatives to Gold Dot that perform as well?
With quality JHP ammo of just about any of the brands, I don't think jacket separation is much of an issue (especially at handgun velocities)

While cost of practice ammo is or can be an issue for many, I don't think cost of your self defense ammo should be that much of a factor in your decision. After all, you are measuring your life, or your families, and what is that worth? For one, except for the initial testing/selection, you are not going to be using that much of it. In any case, you can get 50 round boxes of Speeer LE Gold Dot (same ammo as the 20 round boxes) from Ammo to Go (check their website) for far less per round, including shipping(though 9mm ammo is jumping in price right now).

Jim R
 

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I asked another hand gun manufacturer about +P ammo & here's their response...


1. +P loads require at least a 4" barrel to burn the additional powder transforming the bullet to higher velocity.
2. +P loads in a 2" barrel revolver result in more muzzle flash.
3. +P loads will result in more recoil, making it harder for the shooter to come back on target.
4. +P loads cost more.
 

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I think most members of the forum agree on not using +ps
 

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From what I've seen, Golden Saber is $15.19 for 25 rounds ($0.61/each) and Gold Dot is $18.69 for 20 ($0.93/each).
(cheaperthandirt.com prices before shipping)

see if you can find "Law Enforcement Duty Ammo" Gold Dots .
same bullet, just in 50 rnd boxes ...for WAY cheaper than what they hammer you for 25rnd boxes (I think I'm paying $32/50rnd box)
If there are any stores/gun shops that cater mostly law enforcement, you'll likely find them there




I don't think jacket separation is much of an issue (especially at handgun velocities)
not so sure of that.
Did you note Doc's pics and evaluations of different bullets ?
His results for Cor-Bon matched mine exactly .
jacket completely separated from bullet and lead broke into three pieces ..one large chunk and two small fragments.
the jacket and two small fragments wouldn't penetrate enough to do much damage ..what would be left to penetrate is a chunk of lead 2/3 of it's original wt

Hornady XTP is another bullet that easily loses it's jacket (at least in 45 cal)


having said that, I'm not one to get all wrapped up in the "great bullet debates"
But i carry a 45 90% of the time...no matter what, it's a half inch chunk ripping thru @ 850 fps in my 3" pistol and 900+ in my 4" (Ranger T-Series 230gr HP chrono'd thru "my" pistols)

I'll admit though, i am rethinking my thoughts about the smaller, much lighter 9mm bullet.
If/when my PF9 proves reliable with Gold Dots, that's what it will be stoked with.
Gold Dots are still the "gold standard" in defense rnds ...imHo


PEEE-ESS

I'm with the others on +P
while the chamber may safely handle the pressures, the slide is too light to handle the pounding ..imHo


..L.T.A.
 

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I tried +p ammo and it just took too long to get my second shot off and it was not where I wanted it. After trying a bunch I just settled on ordinary rounds with not much recoil. What is the sense of blasting away and not hitting your target. You can plant a 22 in the right spot and it will knock anyone over.
 

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I tried +p ammo and it just took too long to get my second shot off and it was not where I wanted it. After trying a bunch I just settled on ordinary rounds with not much recoil. What is the sense of blasting away and not hitting your target. You can plant a 22 in the right spot and it will knock anyone over.
Veryy true, shot placement above all.
 

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I've never fired a 9mm +p round. I think the kt pistols would take a few without much wear. One of the p11s i bought and fired a big baggie of max reloads before i got home with it had one of the recoil spring missing. It did'nt hurt the pistol any.

I have backed off on my reloads having battered up a few just shooting max loads. Yeah if you need more get a bigger gun!!!
 

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That is the real problem for sure Toney D. You get a light weight gun so you can carry it without being all weighted down then try to make it into a magnum. It used to be for that weight and size you could only get a 380 or smaller to carry. With the advent of polymer all the ratios went out the window. My S&W 357 Magnum is heavy and has a bull barrel. It was designed to take that round and recoil. The PF9 jumped in and became the lightest and smallest 9MM on the market. You are propelling a bullet out of a very small barrel that weights less than a Big Mac. And to beat everything it can take a +P round. Maybe it is a man thing that you must be able to fire the +P or it is just good advertising that insists you can't protect yourself without a high pressure round. They never had a round more powerful during the Civil War that even compares to the normal 9MM and look how many people died. I think it is just our upbringing that says we need bigger, faster, most destructive. I just think that a person should spend the money at the range working on fast shot placement with round that they can work with than putting their faith in a round that will stop all. Some people become over confident and get in the mind set that the +P round means they don't have to practice because that round will take care of business every time you pull the trigger. How many times on the forums have we heard that they carry +P but fire normal at the range.
 

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Give Hornady XTS 124's a try. They are very accurate and not hard to handle . They are not plus P and feed good in my PF-9.
 
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