Ballistics tables spreadsheet - fun!


August 3, 2007, 12:24 AM
I don't know if anyone else shares this interest, but I spreadheeted ballistics info in Excel for a number of popular handgun calibers, both S/Auto and wheelgun. Here is what I included:

1) Bullet weight
2) Bullet type
3) Manufacturer
4) Barrel length
5) Velocity and energy data, both muzzle and 50-yards.
6) I calculated the drop-off in V and E at 50 yards
7) I calculated momentum = (Grains / 7000) x terminal velocity
Terminal Velocity was assumed to be at 50 yards

I know that momentum (foot pounds per second) is one of the most reliable indicators of stopping power, since it takes both bullet weight and terminal velocity into account. In close range SD situations, the terminal velocity point would be much closer (and therefore momentum higher), but that number would vary for each situation and is not standard in any event.

My goal was, basically, to compare realistic stopping power of different cartridges, a topic that gets a lot of ink on every gun forum. It accurately reflects the higher stopping power of .40 SW and .45 ACP, for example, compared to smaller cartridges, as noted in many other measures of stopping power. Shot placement and other factors are very important, too, but we all know that given identical shot placement, a .45 will be a better stopper than 9mm, for example (I shoot both, no flames, please). I'm not out to hawk or dismiss any caliber, just having fun. I'm thinking about adding the TKO (Pondoro Taylor knockdown) formula, too, but have assumed it will simply validate the better stopping power of bigger bullets + heavier weights. What do you think - would that be cool? Obviously, many calibers are left out, just ran out of gas.

Everyone is welcome to play with the spreadsheet - add, change, whatever. The base tables were taken from a gun magazine site site - I'm not even sure which one off the top of my head (probably G&A) - but I assume they are as accurate as any other ballistics information out there. I liked these because they incorporated both manufacturer and bullet type.

PROBLEM: The forum does not allow upload of an .xls file. Any ideas on how to post it?

Moderator: kindly move this to a better place, if this is not the right one. It seemed like the best bet.

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August 3, 2007, 09:49 AM
BB you may be able to use the Manage Attachments function to upload the spreadsheet as a ZIP file.

August 3, 2007, 11:15 AM
I have the same thing in a number of rifle calibers, so if you figure it out, I'll post mine as well. I graphed them so I could see easy comparisons.

Phantom Warrior
August 3, 2007, 01:45 PM
Just for some encouragement, I would be interested in both spreadsheets...

August 3, 2007, 04:06 PM
I would prefer not to zip the files, though that is an option. I am looking at alternatives, like maybe putting the spreadsheet on a webpage. I tried copying the data to a Word document, but it was still over 1 megabyte. I'll find a way. Current calibers already included:

.357, .357 Sig
.38 Special, .38 Colt Auto
.380, 9mm Para
9mm Makarov
.40 SW
.45 ACP, .45 GAP, .45 Long Colt

Need to add 10mm, .32 ACP. What else?

August 3, 2007, 04:30 PM
Brashboy, I can post it to an internet site if you like. I'd probably turn it into an Acrobat (PDF) document for everyone's ease of viewing. You're welcome to email me at admin "at" snufftalk "dot" org if you're interested.


August 3, 2007, 06:25 PM
Ok, I got my balistics charts in a PDF, and attached it. The 6.5 Grendel looks weird on the trajectory charts because the data I got has it zeroed at 600 yards.

Let me know if you think this was useful. It was for me. I had heard that teh 300 Weatherby was a great round, but didn't realize how great until now. I still bought a 300 Win Mag though, and it's not too shabby.

August 3, 2007, 06:30 PM
I would like this for handgun cartridges as well. If someone has the data, I could combine it with this and do it up in Excel. If you know how to set it up (I do), you can use a drop-down menus to select the weight and the chart will change to match. This reduces the file size because you only have one chart instead of several.

August 3, 2007, 06:44 PM
I would be interested in this as well.
I use Sierra ballistic software as well as this free software.

August 5, 2007, 09:34 PM
I zipped the ballistics tables. Handgun calibers included:

.25 Auto
.32 Auto
.357, .357 Sig
.38 Special, .38 Colt Auto
.380, 9mm Para
9mm Makarov
.40 SW
.41 Mag
.44 Mag
.45 ACP, .45 GAP, .45 Long Colt
.454 Casull

I have not added the Pondoro Taylor TKO "knockdown" computations, on the assumptions that they will not add much to the momentum number. The TKO does heavily weight for caliber, though.

I would love to have your thoughts, and everyone is welcome to add or change the data in any way.

August 5, 2007, 11:22 PM
Wheres the .500 Magnum :neener:

August 6, 2007, 12:01 PM
When I get some time, I'll take the info from the ballistics tables and make some charts to compare rounds. The graphic information is what was interesting to me.

August 6, 2007, 05:53 PM
The graphic charts are good, too, as long as comparing apples to apples, and are easy to visualize. I tend to skip right over the V and E data and go right to momentum, which translates more directly into stopping power. Charts of comparative momentum figures would be very revealing, I think, since momentum is a blend of V, E and bullet weight. The TKO calculation takes these into account, plus caliber.

For example, here's a momentum comparison of .40 SW to 9mm:

9mm-----124-gr.-----17.5 - 20.1
40SW----135-gr.-----18.7 - 22.1

40SW----180-gr.-----22.6 - 24.7
45 ACP---185-gr.-----18.5 - 27.5

45 ACP---230-gr.-----23.6 - 29.7

Not a real compelling difference at fairly close bullet weights; in fact, the 9 and 40SW are neck-and-neck at 125 grains. Increasing bullet weight really starts to tell, however, and the 40 starts to offer noticeably more stopping power. The 45 +P adds a point or two to the momentum score, since the highest score for non-+P is 28.2. Ah, fun with numbers!

Before anyone takes exception to putting so much emphasis on momentum, it is a better number for estimating stopping power than raw velocity or energy numbers, which do not take bullet weight or caliber into account - momentum figures in weight, so is a more reliable stopping power number, although no single number really captures the effect of a cartridge.

I have both 9mm and 45 ACP in my closet, so I really see no need for the 40SW, especially since I don't want to add more cartridges. However, the counter-argument could be made just as easily that in the stopping power department, the 40SW does a pretty good job in one gun (like any of us has only one gun) of replacing both 9 and 45, except for the heaviest loadings in .45 ACP.

I could not find good ballistic tables for 460 SW and 500 SW, but have not spent much time looking, either. If you know of some (especially with numbers for different ammo brands), please post the link in this thread.

August 6, 2007, 07:41 PM
Not to be picky...but at least one element of the diameter data is wrong. Specifically the 357 SIG, which is not a .357 diamter, but rather a .355, the same as the 9mm Para.

Where did you get the diameter data?

Just an FYI. Your time and effort is much appreciated. Thanks!

August 6, 2007, 09:39 PM
You're right, Kevin, and I knew that. I don't know where the mistake came from, but it is probably not the only one!

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