Winchester SXZ ammo in .380 ACP
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  • Black Talons were introduced in 1991 and were almost immediately attacked for being inhumane flesh rippers (as if there's anything humane about shooting someone, but that's another issue for another time)
  • Another problem is that there is an argument out there that hollow points in


    • by HawgWyld

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      Before getting into a review of what the Winchester SXZ ammo is, it is important to discuss what it is not. There are people who will swear up and down that this ammo is the direct replacement for Winchester Black Talon ammunition. That is simply not the case.

      Black Talons were introduced in 1991 and were almost immediately attacked for being inhumane “flesh rippers” (as if there’s anything humane about shooting someone, but that’s another issue for another time). Black Talons, see, had a reputation for mushrooming into particularly nasty, sharp petals that shredded flesh.

      Black Talons were never banned, but Winchester apparently bowed to public pressure by revamping the ammunition and releasing Ranger SXT bullets in 2000. Another direct successor to the Black Talon is the Bonded PDX1 line released in 2009. The PDX1 bullet


      on .40 S&W has been adopted by the FBI and, yes, civilians can buy it.

      So, that brings us to Winchester SXZ. These bullets have absolutely nothing to do with Black Talons, Ranger SXT or Bonded PDX1 ammo. The only similarities are that the name sounds kind of like SXT and the bullets are black.

      As for the black bullets, that has to do with something Winchester calls its Lubalox coating — a material that is supposed to keep your gun barrel cleaner. That feature does appear to work OK, but only to a minor degree.

      The real selling point of these bullets is that the PDX is made in two components — one for self defense and one for practice. The practice rounds are very inexpensive and are typical “ball” ammunition that share very similar ballistic characteristics

      with the actual hollow points. That could be a big deal for some shooters because practice ammo and hollow points often feel very different — you can get proficient with your practice ammo and then have your self defense stuff take you by surprise as your pistol will just “feel” different with hollow points. Let me put it this way. If that pistol kicks differently and you aren’t expecting it — that could throw off your aim or make it more difficult to follow up with a second shot. If you are in a combat situation, you want to know with certainty how your gun will behave.

      So, in comes the PDX system. Use your practice rounds to get a feel for the gun and then load up with your hollow points for self defense and ...


      • Winchester SXZ ammo in .380 ACP
      the gun will behave just like it does with practice rounds. Honestly, that is a great idea.

      But, how do these bullets perform? They are decent self defense rounds, but nothing really extraordinary. You get a 95-grain bullet that travels at 955 feet-per-second and hits with 192 foot-pounds of energy. The bullets mushroom as expected and can cause a significant amount of damage and blood loss, which can lead to shock (exactly what you want if you are in a situation where you have to shoot an attacker).

      The ballistic data is decent with these, but there are some rounds out there that hit harder and travel faster. Another problem is that there is an argument out there that hollow points in .380 ACP are less effective than inexpensive, ball ammo because they don’t penetrate as deeply

      and energy is a real problem with the .380 caliber (yes, the bullets are the same size as 9mm, .38 Special and .357 Magnum, but a lot less powder and power is behind them).

      The final verdict on these is that they are very average for .380 ACP hollow point rounds, so don’t let the misguided statements that they are almost identical to Black Talons fool you. The only thing unique about them is that they are sold in both “practice” and “self defense” configurations, so you can shoot cheap practice ammo and know it will perform like the self defense stuff. Still, you might want to do some research and figure out if you’d be better off with self defense rounds that hit with more energy or, perhaps, whether you should use hollow points at all.




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The review was published as it's written by reviewer in October, 2015. The reviewer certified that no compensation was received from the reviewed item producer, trademark owner or any other institution, related with the item reviewed. The site is not responsible for the mistakes made. 1213101650130631/k2311a1013/10.13.15
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