To those using Golden Saber...

Discussion in 'P-3AT' started by GoldenLoki, Mar 28, 2009.

  1. GoldenLoki

    GoldenLoki New Member

    Dec 6, 2008
  2. usdm

    usdm New Member

    Nov 8, 2008
    Ouch, Thats no good! :eek:

    Should have the Corbons instead.

  3. billjohnso20

    billjohnso20 Well-Known Member

    Dec 7, 2008
    Sobering results. Thanks for checking this, GoldenLoki. I had grown a little concerned after another KTOGer posted the same results on a single round. I bought some Hornady Critical Defense recently. I guess I'll switch over to it completely. Hornady has a video on their website showing the .380 round fully upsetting completely with 10 inches of penetration after going through a layer of down. It was shot out of an LCP. If it works in the Little Copied Pistol; it will surely work as designed in the original P3AT as well. Since I own both, I'll use it in both. I know that shot placement is still the most important thing but it sure does help when a bullet performs they way it should. Thanks again.
  4. CJP32

    CJP32 Active Member

    Jul 24, 2008
    I have a full box of GS sitting here, it was one of the only jhp's I could find in 380. I am carrying Critical Defense right now because I was able to test fire a couple magazines, they shot very nicely a 4" +/- group at 7 yards. What I don't understand is how the GS expanded so nicely in the test on Brassfetcher :-? they shot it out of a P3. I guess they just got lucky, I won't be carrying those GS in my P3 thats for sure.

    GL is the Critical Defense on you list of ammo to test?

  5. Hoopster

    Hoopster New Member

    Jan 10, 2009
    I'm no expert but I don't think these gelatin tests are reason enough to totally dismiss the Golden Saber. For one, gelatin may accurately predict penetration rates but it cannot simulate bone. In addition, the Golden Sabers that I've shot did not fully expand either but expansion isn't everything. Even if just a few petals of the bullet flare out, the brass jacket will act like blender blades, slicing tissue, veins etc. This uneven expansion could also cause the bullet to change directions or catch on bone etc. causing adequate damage. Lastly, the Golden Saber is one of the heaviest .380 rounds I know of and that has to be worth something.
    I don't know if the Golden Saber is the best round for the P3at but I bet it's currently one of the top 5, regardless of ballistic test results.
  6. Sangueffusor

    Sangueffusor New Member

    May 13, 2007
    GL, judging by the nickel case, the Fiocchi you tested was 380XTP with the XTP hollow point. Will you get a chance to test 380APHP with the (I assume) Fiocchi bullet?
  7. YooperP3at

    YooperP3at New Member

    Oct 12, 2008
    It looks like from your test that the GS did worse than the full metal jacket rounds.
    less pen. and less energy.

    hmmmm. not good.
  8. GoldenLoki

    GoldenLoki New Member

    Dec 6, 2008
    Not on the list, but I will put any on the list that I can get my grubby paws on.

    You are correct, I will clarify that on the web page. As above, I'll test em if I can get my grubby paws on em.


  9. Hoopster

    Hoopster New Member

    Jan 10, 2009

    Top performing rounds for the P3at according to my research and in my humble non expert opinion.
    In no particular order and excluding FMJ's:
    Rem. Golden Saber
    Corbon DPX
    Buffalo Bore hollow point
    Buffalo Bore lead flat nose 100gr
    Double Tap 90gr gold dot.

    I know there are some other good rounds out there and I wouldn't want to be shot with any of them. I also feel that the Buffalo Bore 100gr might be a little much for the P3at and don't like the fact that the Corbon DPX is so light, FMJ's can over penetrate, etc. etc.
    Therefore, I feel the Rem GS is still a very good choice. I would rather have a Golden Saber not expand than have a DPX or some other hollow point under penetrate because it expanded to easily. BTW I also stagger my magazines with FMJ and sometimes carry the Double tap Gold Dots as well.
  10. forestranger

    forestranger Well-Known Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    I know it not "meat & bone" or ballistic gel but these were shot into wetpack( newsprint soaked 24hr) covered w/denim & towel. This is consistent with results of testing 8-10 GS in wetpack. About half didn't open. Avg. velocity was 787fps.
  11. oldgranpa

    oldgranpa New Member

    Sep 23, 2004
    Something is not right. Has Remington changed the 380 GS loading to give lower velocity? Even with the std. deviation added, GL's velocity was below 800fps. In many, many tests with P3AT's in past years the average velocity with Rem GS 102gr that I got was in the 850fps range. With a LCP recently I got 838fps average. I use a Shooting Chrony at about 10ft.
    Or could it be a bad box of ammo that wasn't loaded properly?
    Always got good expansion in my wetpack tests but I won't argue about that.
    Instead look at these two old KTOG threads....

    KTOG GS test in meat....

    another in chicken....

    Very curious about this.

  12. KelTex78

    KelTex78 Active Member

    Jan 10, 2009
    I tried firing a Golden Saber into 1 gallon jugs filled with water and got a poor result with no expansion. I tried again shooting into water-soaked phone books as media and got partial to full expansion with good penetration on all three rounds I fired. I think it really has to do with the test media. You can see the results here: Unfortunately, I can't afford better media and more thorough testing, but I am happy with the results I got.

    I have a box of Critical Defense coming Monday evening; I'll try the paper test to see how it performs, but as it stands right now, the Golden Saber is still my carry ammo.
  13. Apiarian

    Apiarian New Member

    Jan 19, 2005
    This is one reason I took to developing a reload using 102gr Rem SG bullets. I like the bullet, but the Remington loading seems to vary quire a bit. One thing I have noticed, it seems that if the GS is 850fps or better, it usually has good expansion. Under 800pfs many fail to expand at all.

    I will be happy to take any GS bullets people do not want. I'll pull them and use them in the reload work up. ;)

    Currently I have a nice load of Solo 1000 3.6-3.7gr under a 102gr Rem GS running at an average of 872fps. Recoil is soft for the P3AT in a defense load.

    I always enjoy seeing GoldenLoki's work. Good stuff!
  14. GoldenLoki

    GoldenLoki New Member

    Dec 6, 2008
    With all due respect. Using tests shooting into roast beef, cooked pasta, water soaked newspaper or phone books to refute tests using proper calibrated gelatin is just plain silly.

    I mention this not to start an argument or to change the mind of those who put stock into such tests, but for the benefit of those reading who may be confused by the conflicting test results.

    Properly calibrated gelatin is the best test medium. It is generally accepted as the best substitute for human flesh, and the results are comparable from round to round.

  15. frankmako

    frankmako Well-Known Member

    Mar 11, 2006
    Chattanooga TN
    well to me it looks like what i have in my p3at works the best,,,,good old fmj ammo. my p3at is my "bug" on duty and if i need it things have gone bad. it will be put the trigger untill gun goes dry and hope backup is close by.
  16. forestranger

    forestranger Well-Known Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    oldgrandpa, I've seen GS averages in other guns listed higher than I've ever gotten. Highest reading obtained was 806fps. I use Shooting Chrony at around 10' too and try to stay in 60-80 degree temp range. I bought 200 rds several years ago when they were "cheap". Maybe I got a "weak" lot? or maybe just my gun? I have noticed 40-50fps variation between different lots of 45 GS in same gun on same day?
  17. oldgranpa

    oldgranpa New Member

    Sep 23, 2004
    Nobody is refuting gelatin tests. On another famous site using gelatin tests, the administrator recently said, regarding all methods:"Gelatin ain't people either". Actual street results are rare. LE agencies just don't share autopsy reports with the public. But I'm not going to get into a ****ing contest about it. I'll leave it at that.

    The point is still velocity. Pretty much agreed below 800fps JHP ain't gonna expand 100%. Cavity shape affects it too and the brass jacket on GoldenSabr bullets is really stiff. Maybe something changed there too, heavier brass or different grade of brass. Who knows? Does it come from China now too??

    Remington's own ballistic page reports 940fps muzzle velocity with .380acp Golden Sabr from a 4" barrel.

    Even assuming a 50fps loss per inch, the P3AT ought to develop at least 840fps. With a Sig P232 (3.6"barrel) I got as high as 950fps on some tests, and with a Bersa (3.2"barrel) I got 894avg. Always good expansion in my "silly" wetpack tests. So I'll leave you all to figure this out any way you wish.

    Cheers, CU on some other thread.
    og.....over and out.

    (damn, I've ruined my excellent "Newbie" status!! ;D
  18. billjohnso20

    billjohnso20 Well-Known Member

    Dec 7, 2008
    The last time I checked, the P3AT ain't a Bersa or a Sig. The barrel on the P3AT is only 2.745 inches. The Bersa is 3.2 inches and the Sig is 3.6 inches. That's a lot more barrel than the P3AT has. Also, where did you get the 50fps loss per inch formula? I've noticed that most rounds lose a lot more than that in very short barrel guns. By Rems own test results, the GS was developed for guns with 4 inch barrels not barrels under 3 inches. I trust GL's results and agree with him that ballistics gelatin is the best testing media. Every ammo manufacturer uses ballistics gelatin to develop their HPs. It may not be human flesh but it's the best substitute we have; that's why the ammo makers use it.

    Also, I know that shot placement is the most important factor in SD situations but it sure doesn't hurt when a HP performs as it should. For that reason, I've decided to go to the Hornady Critical Defense round for SD. It was developed for use in the Ruger LCP. Since the LCP is a clone of the P3AT, I figure it will work just fine in it as well. Since I own both the LCP and the P3AT, as long as it functions properly tomorrow at the range, the Hornady Critical Defense ammo will be my new carry ammo.

    As far as using FMJ as SD ammo, no way no how. Most ballistics charts clearly show that .380 FMJ will over penetrate. That means more than the BG being shot is in danger of injury and possibly death. Yes, it's better than nothing but why risk it. Some SD situations require you to shoot even if there are innocent people behind the BG. Yes, we should always endeavor not to shoot if someone is behind the BG but if you're being stabbed, you must shoot! There is no way I will carry FMJ. I couldn't live with myself if an innocent was hurt because I had no choice but to shoot. The only exception to this would be the Federal expanding FMJ. But since I can't find any, I won't be carrying it anytime soon.

    As usual, this is my $.02. YMMV.
  19. GoldenLoki

    GoldenLoki New Member

    Dec 6, 2008
    billjohnso20, I appreciate the note of confidence.

    oldgranpa, I never said wet pack tests are "silly", They are useful for comparing relative performance of round A to round B. (plus it is plain fun to shoot stuff) They are not useful for comparing round A tested in a wet pack to round A tested in gelatin. Doing so, with the addition of meat and pasta tests is what I called "silly". Sorry if my choice of words hurt your feelings, but I felt the point needed to be made.

    As for "Gelatin ain't people either", did somebody say it was?

    In my opinion. Gelatin tests are MORE useful than autopsies and reports of actual shootings. In real shootings there are many, many variables. Some variables may not even be known. You certainly can't control the variables in actual shootings. Etc. Etc.

    Gelatin tests are controllable. The characteristics of rounds can be analyzed and compared. If and when you ever have to put those rounds to use in self defense, their actual performance will be subject to ALL of the same variables that make anecdotes of actual shootings and autopsies unreliable.

  20. pocketgun

    pocketgun Guest

    May 4, 2005
    What I don't understand is why the velocities on one set of tests were so much lower, and I think that was OG's point too. GL, we need to get you more GS for a repeat chrono test, if nothing else.