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Posted: 6/16/2002 1:35:00 PM EST
I have seen some tests of the Winchester Black Talon and the Winchester Ranger T rounds. They gave a good account of themselves in ballistic gellatin, even when clothing was added to the gellatin. I would like to switch to the Ranger in 147 gr. for my 9mm, but it is my understanding that this is LEO only ammo. I assume this ammo isn't illegal for civilians to have, but that Winchester just doesn't market it to the public. Is this correct and if so does anyone know where it can be bought? What about the older Black Talon rounds? Are any of those still around? Thanks.
Link Posted: 6/16/2002 2:02:38 PM EST
I have heard that Black Talon ammo can be found at gunshows here and there, winds up in civillian hands through various police ammo trade-ins and such.

Keep in mind, though, that Black Talon really isn't much better then any good hollowpoint, and that if you have to shoot someone with it, the ambulance-chasing lawyers will probably have a field day with your choice of ammo.
Link Posted: 6/16/2002 2:30:07 PM EST
You are correct Ranger SXT / Black Talon ammo is NOT illegal just not marketed to the public bt Winchester.

I tested both the 147 gr. and 127 +P+ rounds for my agency.  In short I would strongly recommend the 127+P+ round and would strongy advise against  any 147 gr. round.

Hopes this helps .

PS : NOT all hollow points are the same , in fact quite the opposite.
Link Posted: 6/16/2002 2:49:56 PM EST
I am civilian and can buy locally the Ranger T and have done so. It is not marketed to civilians, but you can buy it if the seller is willing.

That being said, I have done my own informal tests and have come to the conclusion that so far I prefer the Gold Dots.

The Ranger T does expand and expose the sharp claws like the Black Talon, but I had a lot of TOTAL core separation where the lead fragmented terribly. Some don't mind separation, but I prefer the round to stay intact. YMMV
Link Posted: 6/16/2002 3:24:49 PM EST
I saw some interesting data at [url]www.firearmstactical.com/ammo_data/9mm.htm[/url]. If this data is accurate, and I feel confident it is, then it appears the 147 gr. 9mm round performed better than the 115's or 124's. It also seemed the Remington Golden Saber and Winchester Ranger in 147 gr. loadings were the top performers in terms of penetration and expansion. I am not too thrilled about the results of many lighter loads as well as the light +P and +P+ loads. Some expand nicely but many don't penetrate deep enough to satisfy my requirements. I want my rounds for self defense to penetrate a minimum of 12" per FBI criteria. While penetration of 8" may be sufficient in a straight on frontal shot, shooting at angles and through arms, etc may require a bit more penetration. Check that site out, it has a wealth of test data for all sorts of other calibers as well.
Link Posted: 6/16/2002 4:57:57 PM EST
The Ranger is the same as Talon. Don't pay outlandish prices for older Black Talon. We used the Federal HydraShock 147 gr nine in the past and now use the Ranger in 40. Either on seems OK. Any gun will kill a man so don't worry too much about your load. Just use good ammo, lube your gun, and shoot them three times with whatever you got.
Link Posted: 6/16/2002 5:03:25 PM EST
Or, shoot a .45 and not worry about expansion/penetration.[;)]
Link Posted: 6/16/2002 7:15:34 PM EST
Yeah, that's why I carry a .45.  It's so effective I don't even need to put cartridges in it- I just tell the bad guys I'm packin' a man-stopping .45 and they run off screaming.  
Link Posted: 6/16/2002 8:40:45 PM EST
OK, let me correct myself. I did find two lighter loads that performed very well. The Winchester Ranger 127 gr +p+ and the Black Hills JHP +P expanded to nearly twice their original diameter and penetrated to 14" or more. These two rounds seem to be as good as anything available today, and the Black Hills can be bought from Tommy at Georgia Precision. I never saw or heard of any problems of core/jacket seperations with either of these two rounds. In fact in all tests, they held together nicely. You can view these results and pics at ammolab.com if you wish. I also have more lengthy and detailed posts in the ammo forum regarding the 9mm and other calibers as well. While the .45 is a bigger round, some of these high performance loads for the 9mm and .40 cal narrow that gap considerably. I would not feel outgunned with a 9mm and either of the two rounds mentioned above.
Link Posted: 6/17/2002 12:40:34 PM EST
Charging Handle , The info I gave you is based on a three year study conducted by my agency and another very large agency .

You have to be careful when you look at the many studies that are out there . A test of a particular round can be skewed simply by using improper testing methods , etc...

Also remember that NOTHING is more telling of a rounds performance than the actual use of said round in combat .

Now here's a good example . Our study rated the 127 gr. +P+ a the Top performer in our T&E ( we tested aprox. 15 loads.) We were however prevented from authorizing the BT by our Brass for political reasons , that said we authorized the Gold Dot 124 gr. +P HP . Since 4/00 we have had many , many shootings with this round and to date it has NEVER failed to incapacitate a perp IMMEDIATELY. Now I'm sure some will say that that does'nt necessarily mean anything because not all shootings were the same ( ex: some were one shot stops others were 2 , 3 rd stops etc...)

Now that all may be right but when you are consistently dropping guys with this round you have to say " Hey the thing works "

All that said the most important factor after reliability is placement of the rd. on the bad guy . So make a selection of a good round , make sure it works in YOUR gun and PRACTICE , PRACTICE , PRACTICE.

Take care and stay safe.
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