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The .25 ACP

By Chuck Hawks

.25 Auto
Illustration courtesy of Hornady Mfg. Co.

The advantage of the .25 Automatic Colt Pistol cartridge is that it is shorter and fatter than the .22 LR, and therefore feeds more reliably in autoloading pistols. Several manufacturers have solved the feeding problem with .22 pistols, however, so that argument only holds water if a particular model of pocket pistol doesn't function as well with .22's and does with .25's. The obvious answer would seem to be buying a different brand of pistol.

Needless to say, its tiny case is a nightmare to reload, and practically no one ever bothers. However, according to the 26th edition of the Hodgdon Data Manual 1.2 grains of HP38 powder can drive a 50 grain jacketed bullet at a MV of 761 fps, and 1.4 grains of HP38 can give a MV of 848 fps with the same bullet. These velocities were chronographed in a 2 3/8 inch barrel.

Winchester ballistics claim their 45 grain Expanding Point bullet leaves the muzzle of a 2" pistol barrel at 815 fps with 66 ft. lbs. of energy. At 50 yards the midrange rise would be 1.8" although it is a little hard to imagine anyone sighting a .25 ACP pistol for 50 yards.

Note: A full length article about the .25 ACP can be found on the Handgun Cartridge Page.

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Copyright 2004, 2016 by Chuck Hawks. All rights reserved.