.380 ACP Ammo

The .380 Automatic Colt Pistol was designed by John Moses Browning in 1908 for Colt. The .380 ACP has been a popular round ever since. Also referred to as the .380 Auto, 9mm Corto, 9mm Browning, 9mm Kurz, 9mm Short, or 9x17mm, the 380 ACP was designed to be totally rimless. Armory Shop 45 stocks a wide range of 380 ammo to satisfy the needs of plinkers, hunters and competitive shooters, as well as the avid ammunition aficionado. We enjoy trying out new 380 Auto (ACP) ammo and try to offer you 380 Auto (ACP) at very aggressive prices so that you can share in our most favorite pastime.

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The .380 ACP Ammo

Sometimes components for reloading are more readily available than factory-loaded ammo, as was the case with the 380 ACP. The author fashioned enough handloaded .380 ammo to keep his pocket pistol up and running.

Because of the recent scarcity of just about all factory-loaded ammunition, especially the .380, finding new ammo in the local gunshops has been awfully hard. But I found an easier way to have enough ammo in order to practice with my little .380. All I have to do is handload. Luckily for me, loading components–even primers–have not been hard to come by.

.380 ACP Ammo

And handloading the 380 ACP is quite easy. You follow the normal routine of resizing and decapping, expanding the case mouth, priming, throwing a powder charge, and seating and taper crimping the bullet. My biggest obstacle is handling the small cartridge case.

Compared to the 9mm Luger, the .380 case is 17mm versus 19mm. It is not tapered. Because the .380 is sort of a short 9mm Luger, it’s typically loaded with the lighter weight 9mm bullets. Of course, 9mm bullets are 0.354/0.355 inch in diameter, so you might wonder how they can be correct for loading the .380. It’s because the .380 moniker refers to the case instead of the bullet diameter.

The .380 operates at lower chamber pressure compared to the 9mm Luger, so propellant charges and bullet velocities are correspondingly reduced. Muzzle energy of the 380 ACP is about 40 to 50 percent less than the 9mm Luger. However, it will launch 80- to 95-grain bullets fast enough to ensure adequate close-range energy to stop a perpetrator.

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