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Choosing ammo should involve a little more than just asking the guy behind the gun counter what his favorite brand is.  Sometimes you have to match your gun food to the gun you’ll be shooting, and this is perhaps most true with self defense ammo. Last April, we showed you how differently Buffalo Bore’s .45 Colt JHP performed from three different barrel lengths, and how the exact same bullet performed great from one barrel, and less so from a different-length barrel . . .

In this video, ShootingTheBull410 is back with the same guns, this time trying Winchester’s PDX1 Defender in .45 Colt. It’s Winchester’s premium defensive bullet, but is it a good performer? Well… that depends on what barrel length you shoot it from.

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  1. These reviews have been a real eye opener,showing how velocity sensitize modern projectiles are. In that regard I would love to see some top notch 9mm and 45acp tested in carbine rifle length barrels. The classic dream of pistol and carbine combo seems it would be hard to feed them the same ammo.

    • (Spoiler for those that haven’t watched!!!)

      It was markedly better (near perfect) in the short barrel, and not as good in the longer barrel (bullet started coming apart and penetrated to high end of desired range). He tested in carbine as well and said it was similar to longer barrel performance.

  2. Nice review.

    The short barrel results looked borderline perfect, and the 6.5″ barrel results still looked pretty good to me. A .45 caliber already starts life with a large diameter, so overpenetration and excessive expansion still results in a nasty wound channel. I wouldn’t call a .75″ plus slug penetrating in excess of 18″ through ballistic gel to be a failure. That’s a whole lot of tissue (gelatin) destruction.

    I would also note that 225 grains at 975 FPS is hitting with about 475 foot pounds of energy. Based upon the velocity results, it appears that 950 FPS or so is the point at which those 225 grain slugs begin to fragment. As long as the main mass of the slug expands and penetrates deeply, the goal of a large wound channel is still achieved.

    Then again, I’m not going to load my 8 3/8″ .460 with these and use them as a self defense gun, so there is no need for me to be picky with their performance.

    • I’d agree that the RJM results weren’t a failure, they’d still be punching a big hole in whatever they hit, but — not nearly as big a hole as the Gold Dots did. But they were close to the limit of fragmentation, which could really limit their results. It’s actually interesting to see that even from an 18.5″ barrel they didn’t cross the threshold into complete fragmentation; they still held together; Winchester did well in balancing that out. But I’d still much rather use the Gold Dot from the long barrel, as its results were ideal, and save the PDX1 for the short barrel.

  3. Looks to me like the rounds out of the 6″ (in this particular test) would probably cause more tissue damage than the ones out of the 4″.

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