Energy transfer vs tissue damage


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jackslayer
March 18, 2011, 08:38 PM
So I've heard a lot of people talk about energy transfer being the most important thing and then others say it's tissue damage. One group says they don't want over penetration another says they want a bullet to pass through both sides. This is discussed both for self defense and hunting. Any experts out there that can clarify this? Thanks

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Balrog
March 18, 2011, 08:42 PM
You are a little late to that party...

General Geoff
March 18, 2011, 08:42 PM
The point is to stop a threat, which can be accomplished in a number of ways. The most relevant three are:

1. Disrupt central nervous system.
2. Shatter a supporting bone structure (pelvis, femur, etc)
3. Exsanguinate the target (bleeding out).

Energy transfer is conducive to producing effects 1 and 2. Exit wounds are conducive to 3. Exsanguination should be noted as significantly slower to take effect than the other two, but is all but guaranteed if no medical attention is given.

atblis
March 18, 2011, 08:43 PM
The primary wounding mechanism of firearms is simply putting a hole in something. Nothing more, nothing less.

jiminhobesound
March 18, 2011, 09:54 PM
Somewhere there is a post by a coroner type discussing what he has seen with many bullet wounds that killed. I think his report is the most reliable and acceptable.

NMGonzo
March 19, 2011, 06:10 PM
Many holes going through the intended target around the thorax works well.

Loosedhorse
March 19, 2011, 08:06 PM
a post by a coroner type discussing what he has seen with many bullet wounds that killed.
A coroner's experience would be limited to those killed--even killed hours after being shot. An armed defender would be chiefly concerned with those stopped, stopped immediately, even if they survived.

A good boxer can drop most people with a punch to the jaw or midsection, and yet no "disruption" of the CNS or circulatory system (in the sense of a bullet wound) has occurred. So something besides penetrating wound tracts can in fact stop people.

The debate will continue about whether or not certain calibers and loads are better at incapacitating an attacker given a non-fatal hit--at this point it is chiefly a matter of opinion and philosophy. We will not get any dispositive facts any time soon.

Enjoy the debate, and decide for yourself. Most people on either side of the debate will tell you to carry the most powerful gun you can shoot accurately and quickly (and conceal, if applicable), and to load it with good factory HP ammo.

Shawn Dodson
March 19, 2011, 08:49 PM
A good boxer can drop most people with a punch to the jaw or midsection, and yet no "disruption" of the CNS... The punch to the "jaw" causes the head to move suddenly and violently. The head moves but the brain doesn't. The cranium collides into the brain. The mechansim of collapse is blunt trauma directly to the brain.

Body hits produce internal blood lood loss. Blood flows into the abdominal/thoracic cavity. One or two holes on the outside don't make any difference in rapidity of incapacitation - it's what the bullet hits inside that counts.

The permanent cavity crushed by a handgun bullet is the primary wound mechanism. What structures the bullet pokes holes in determines how quickly incapacitation occurs.

"Permanent disruption" is all the tissue that is permanently damaged. It includes perment cavity and tears/ruptures and hyper stretched tissues produced by the bullet's temporary cavity. Rifle bullets usually produce greater permanent disruption than handgun bullets.

mljdeckard
March 19, 2011, 08:55 PM
Yep, think 'cavity trauma'. This is the one thing you can say with certainty a bullet will do. Make a hole. The more holes you make, the more likely it is that these holes will displace something critical to the target's motor activity. In this, pretty much any premium defensive round, 9mm or bigger will do the job, regardless of +P rating, etc.

While I think that the real world difference between calibers and brands matters much less in the real world than it seems to on the internet, I use .45 HSTs. They make holes about as big as you are going to get.

Jeff82
March 19, 2011, 08:57 PM
The Myth of Energy Transfer

http://www.firearmstactical.com/briefs3.htm

Don't get hung up on energy numbers. Energy is what allows a bullet to perform "work" so some is needed. That work is done by the bullet striking the target and damaging vital structures/organs within it. So long as the bullet can penetrate to the required depth and you can hit vitals organs that is all that is needed. Mushrooming bullets are preferred as they increase their striking (frontal) area. Energy beyond that needed to do this damage is wasted and results in less desirable effects such as longer followup shot time, more recoil, more muzzle flip, etc. This is for handgun class cartridges. The game changes significantly with rifle class cartridges (they add a temporary cavity that can cause damage too.)

Loosedhorse
March 19, 2011, 09:11 PM
blunt trauma directly to the brain.
No. Unless the cranial vault is broken, the mechanism is indirect trauma, caused by pressure waves in fluid and tissue. The same shock waves caused by "energy transfer."
Body hits produce internal blood lood loss.
You're saying that the incapacitation produced by a good boxer's body punch is due to "blood loss"? Or you haven't addressed that question?

Again, it is easy to say what will kill an attacker. What will incapacitate him may be different. We have many cases of people wounded nonfatally who stopped fighting, and a few of people who were fatally wounded, but kept right on killing people...for a while.

The question remains whether caliber and bullet choice have an influence on whether attackers (not hit in the CNS) stop fighting sooner than later. But I do understand that everyone has an opinion--opinions that (as I said) usually don't affect the final recommendations on which most people agree.

(Example: .357 Magnum out of 4 inch revolver--what's the preferred load for self-defense? Most everyone says 125 gr HP, so does it matter if it's energy transfer or tissue damage?)

481
March 19, 2011, 11:27 PM
So I've heard a lot of people talk about energy transfer being the most important thing and then others say it's tissue damage. One group says they don't want over penetration another says they want a bullet to pass through both sides. This is discussed both for self defense and hunting. Any experts out there that can clarify this? Thanks

Yep. Duncan MacPherson.

His book, Bullet Penetration is a solid technical read on the topic and addresses the fallacy of employing energy relationships to describe wound trauma incapacitation and soft tissue damage created by the passage of bullets through soft tissue.

"Energy Transfer" (aka: "Energy Dump" and "Blast Pressure Wave Theory") is a failed concept whose time has passed.

Shadow 7D
March 19, 2011, 11:55 PM
OH HO
another 'hydrostactic shock' going to blow up yer brains
v.s.
a gotta touch it to hurt.

How bout this happy medium
much like real estate
LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION
with the minor foot note, that it's 3D vs a 2D silhouette, so penetration is part of that.

Malamute
March 20, 2011, 12:24 AM
These discusions are often interesting, nearly always amusing to a point. I'm usually surprised (should I be?) by the number of comments from folks that I believe have not killed things before, or not payed much attention when they did kill things. Not saying that's the case in this thread yet, just saying,....

I for one would prefer to be slightly, or even way "overgunned" than under, given the choice. What may be "enough" in "most" cases, may not be enough in the one time it matters, to me (like say, a 6'4" 345 lb psycho). "Pretty good" doesnt sound as comforting as "outstanding" when I consider the issue.

I choose penetration and tissue damage. Energy may be a byproduct, but not the determining factor to me. I don't believe energy per se kills. How well a particular bullet functions is important. Round nose bullets perform very poorly compared to flat points, semi-wad cutters or working hollowpoints. Go kill some game with the various types and report back if you don't agree. Not wanting to cause conflict, just my observations after shooting game over a number of years with various guns and loads. I certainly don't mind if a particular bullet exits something. If it didn't, it may not go deep enough on a poor shot. I'd as soon a bullet go through anything I want to shoot from any angle, and no matter the size of the critter, and still expand well.

McCall911
March 20, 2011, 05:04 AM
A little story. But it's a bit graphic.

My Siamese cat Sadie (RIP) was a great hunter. She would catch almost anything that walked or crawled. Mostly they would be dead when she brought them to the house, but some would still be living (gifts of gratitude for the household, like lizards and non-venomous snakes.) One such living animal was a small rabbit. The rabbit was still living, although Sadie had bitten a large chunk out of its back. I don't think it could move its back legs. (Apparently she had deliberately disabled the animal so that she could transport him easier, but that's only a guess.)
Since I live in an unincorporated area, there was only one thing I could do. I had to put the poor animal out of its misery, but the only firearm I had was a 10mm handgun at the time. It was a S&W 1006 loaded with Winchester 175 grain Silvertips. (A pretty hot round.) After securing Sadie in the house, I shot the rabbit. The result was devastating to say the least.
Except for the head, the poor animal was reduced to a small mound of entrails. The bullet had apparently passed completely through the rabbit and into the ground, so it was not recovered. Since that's a pretty accurate description of the result, I will call this the end of my story.

So my two questions are: Was this massive damage *not* due to energy transfer? If there were no energy transferred to the animal, why then wouldn't there have been simply a smallish .40 caliber hole through the rabbit?

mljdeckard
March 20, 2011, 05:35 AM
There is a big difference between a bullet hitting a large object and a smaller object. The tissue that is stressed in a larger object will be torn in the smaller object because there is less to stretch. If there is less tissue to destroy with cavity trauma, the trauma will be more significant. If a bullet will do (x)cm3 of damage in a human-sized object, (x)cm3 of damage will appear greater in a smaller object because there is less to hold the object together. I've shattered plenty of jackrabbits with .45 HSTs. Even though they appear to shatter, there's nothing magical about it. It's just a hole.

Sunray
March 20, 2011, 05:39 AM
"...both for self defense and hunting..." Those are two very different things that have very little to do with one another. Hunting is about causing the least amount of pain to the animal you kill. Self-defence is about making a threat to your life go away. Isn't always about killing. Humans are not as tough as any game animal. Break a deer's leg with a bad shot, it just carries on. Break a human's leg/arm/rib, etc., they usually stop bothering you. Just damaging tissue doesn't guarantee anything. Neither does a through and through.
"...I shot the rabbit..." Ever think about stepping on its neck?

McCall911
March 20, 2011, 07:29 AM
"...I shot the rabbit..." Ever think about stepping on its neck?

No. I didn't want to hurt it. :D
Besides it's too late, by about 20 years!

McCall911
March 20, 2011, 08:15 AM
There is a big difference between a bullet hitting a large object and a smaller object. The tissue that is stressed in a larger object will be torn in the smaller object because there is less to stretch. If there is less tissue to destroy with cavity trauma, the trauma will be more significant. If a bullet will do (x)cm3 of damage in a human-sized object, (x)cm3 of damage will appear greater in a smaller object because there is less to hold the object together. I've shattered plenty of jackrabbits with .45 HSTs. Even though they appear to shatter, there's nothing magical about it. It's just a hole.


Good answer. Makes sense. Now I don't have to bring up the rabbit story anymore. :D

The Lone Haranguer
March 20, 2011, 09:04 AM
Is not the tissue damage a result of the energy transfer? For example, a FMJ that zips through a fleshy part of the body can hardly be said to have "transferred its energy."

06
March 20, 2011, 09:30 AM
Worked as an EMT many yrs and saw numerous bullet wounds-mostly handgun. Very few stopped the victim/assailant/subject in their tracks. Some walked/ran away to a phone, some continued the attack, and some panicked. Even with mortal wounds most lived many minutes. What stopped them quick were hits to the spine, kidneys, and head. One was shot 8 times and kept coming before a spine shot dropped him. Another, 14 times(22 rifle) and still took it away from the shooter(assailant). My solution: lots and lots of rounds then reload or a shotgun at close range. A shotgun stopped a perp who was kicking his way into a bedroom. She nearly blew his leg off. We got the bleeding stopped in time to save his life but the leg was to far gone. Good shot!!!!

Deanimator
March 20, 2011, 09:43 AM
I place NO confidence in "energy transfer" in a reasonably controllable handgun cartridge for self-defense.

I count on mechanical bone and tissue damage and blood loss.

J-Bar
March 20, 2011, 12:02 PM
Count me in with the "location" group.

Every day, in packing houses, I see 1000 lb bovines rendered unconscious by a .22 long rifle bullet between the eyes. Technically it does not kill them; it stuns them sufficiently that they are unaware of the knife stick that exsanguinates them. But the .22 is enough with precise placement (animal standing still, muzzle inches from forehead). The same .22 round shot into the animal's side, might not even penetrate the skin.

Deer hunters are often humbled by the absence of "knock down power" when they see that 120 lb. doe run a hundred yards after being hit with a high powered rifle.

I do not carry a handgun, and fortunately I have never had to defend myself with a firearm against another human. But it seems to me that choice of ammo and caliber for that situation is always a compromise. If you could place your shot precisely, even a .22 would work, but will you bet your life that you can place your shot that precisely?

Shawn Dodson
March 20, 2011, 01:30 PM
No. Unless the cranial vault is broken, the mechanism is indirect trauma, caused by pressure waves in fluid and tissue. You're incorrect. The mechanism is direct trauma to the brain. The cranium slams violently into the brain.

You're saying that the incapacitation produced by a good boxer's body punch is due to "blood loss"? Or you haven't addressed that question? The boxer falls down and either hits is head or his head violently moves from the impact - the mechanism is the same - physical collision between the brain and cranium.

Shadow 7D
March 20, 2011, 03:24 PM
Come on Shawn
you are being nice
(good read or two on ballistics if you check out his website)

You know he was talking about the mysterious pressure spike that comes from the majik boolit a .40/10-45 slamming into your toe or arm, and popping you brain like a champagne cork

Loosedhorse
March 20, 2011, 08:12 PM
You're incorrect. The mechanism is direct trauma to the brain.
So, you mean that a high-velocity penetrating missile to the brain represents the same mechanism of injury as a punch to the jaw causing no bone fracture?
You're saying that the incapacitation produced by a good boxer's body punch is due to "blood loss"? Or you haven't addressed that question?The boxer falls down and either hits is head or his head violently moves from the impact
Hmmm. Obviously not a student of good abdominal blows and their effects. Perhaps you also believe that when a man is incapacitated by a solid blow to the testes, it's because he hits his head (cranium) when he falls? :rolleyes:

And in any case, unless the wound-tract-only theory says I shouldn't use the 125gr HP in .357 that the Evan Marshall recommends, what difference does it make?

I've read Marshall and Sanow, I've read MacPherson. One says the .38 Special FBI load shouldn't have worked, one says the 9mm ISP load shouldn't have. But both worked. And today, you can load Gold Dot or DPX with either. Big debate!

Shawn Dodson
March 21, 2011, 02:32 PM
So, you mean that a high-velocity penetrating missile to the brain represents the same mechanism of injury as a punch to the jaw causing no bone fracture?From WebMD:

What causes a concussion?

Your brain is a soft organ that is surrounded by spinal fluid and protected by your hard skull. Normally, the fluid around your brain acts like a cushion that keeps your brain from banging into your skull. But if your head or your body is hit unexpectedly hard, your brain can suddenly crash into your skull and temporarily stop working normally.



Hmmm. Obviously not a student of good abdominal blows and their effects.

Like this? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gyHlX1PR-gY

I'm a serious student of Bart Simpson's "Touch Of Death" - http://www.hulu.com/watch/28728/the-simpsons-touch-of-death

One says the .38 Special FBI load shouldn't have worked, one says the 9mm ISP load shouldn't have.

I'm unaware of anyone saying any .38 or 9mm load "shouldn't work". Provide citations please.

481
March 21, 2011, 04:24 PM
I'm unaware of anyone saying any .38 or 9mm load "shouldn't work". Provide citations please.

Loosedhorse,

Yes, please. You claim to have read MacPherson yet this claim...

I've read Marshall and Sanow, I've read MacPherson. One says the .38 Special FBI load shouldn't have worked, one says the 9mm ISP load shouldn't have. But both worked.

...matches nothing attributable to MacPherson that I've ever read by MacPherson.

Let's see some evidence of this claim. (Links, .pdfs, scanned articles...what have you)

Remo223
March 21, 2011, 04:56 PM
Shawn Dodson:

A concussion is not required for a knockout or a temporary stun.

A blow to the stomach temporarily incapacitates by disrupting nerve signals. Actually, technically it only stops the diaphragm from working for a short period. It is a psychological effect that causes the person to stop moving. A determined person can continue fighting even while they can't breath.

The diaphragm is not the only muscle that can be temporarily paralyzed via blows to nerves. You can temporarily paralyze an arm or a leg by hitting them in the right place...but the target area is much smaller and thus more difficult to achieve. Kick boxers will try to kick just to the inside of the shin bone in attempt to hit a nerve that will temporarily paralyze the foot.

Loosedhorse
March 21, 2011, 05:09 PM
What causes a concussion?
Ah, so a bullet to the brain causes a concussion? If not, then bullets and jaw punches have different mechanisms of injury, no?
JHP Ammunition Selection

...JHP bullets should be designed to meet the following guidelines:
1) Average penetration should be about 14 inches.
2) Velocity should be between 800 and 1000ft/sec.
3) Weight should be the maximaum practical for the caliber (147...grains in 9mm...)MacPherson, D: Bullet Penetration (@nd Printing, 2005), p. 298.

According to Marshal and Sanow (Hangun Stopping Power, p.188--referenced here (http://www.firearmstactical.com/afte.htm)):[T]he Winchester 9mm +P+ 115-grain JHP Q4147 [is] used by Illinois State Police (ISP). The +P+ bullet penetrates as little as 7.9 inches of gelatin

So, the ISP load is too light, too fast, and penetrates too shallowly for MacPherson's "shoulds." (I guess you two need to do some reading, huh?) :D

Shawn Dodson
March 21, 2011, 05:19 PM
Remo:

See "Differential Pressure Across Diaphragm Muscle: The Mechanism Responsible for Sensations of Intense Internal Pressure and Pain Caused by Blow to 'Solar Plexus'" at http://www.firearmstactical.com/tacticalbriefs/volume4/number1/toc.htm

You can temporarily paralyze an arm or a leg by hitting them in the right place...but the target area is much smaller and thus more difficult to achieve. Kick boxers will try to kick just to the inside of the shin bone in attempt to hit a nerve that will temporarily paralyze the foot. In a similar vein, when you hit your "funny bone" you've physically traumatized the ulnar nerve. The blunt trauma disrupts the synapses of afferent nerves (which transmit info to the brain) and sometimes disrupts efferent nerves (which transmit info from the brain). This explains why you feel an intense tingling sensation in your lower arm and hand (your ulnar nerve is in essence "seeing stars") yet, in most cases, you can still wiggle your fingers.

See "Blunt Trauma Concussion of Spinal Cord as Mechanism of Instantaneous Collapse Produced by Centerfire Rifle Bullet Wounds to the Torso" at http://www.firearmstactical.com/briefs28.htm

Shawn Dodson
March 21, 2011, 05:27 PM
So, the ISP load is too light, too fast, and penetrates too shallowly for MacPherson's "shoulds."

Nice try. You claimed "shouldn't work".

Evan Marshall once posted a similar claim on his discussion board, something like (I'm paraphrasing): "So-called experts said 9mm 115gr +P+ won't work." I challenged him to provide citations because I was unaware of anyone who disagreed with him that claimed 9mm 115gr +P+ won't work. Marshall deleted the entire thread instead.

Loosedhorse
March 21, 2011, 05:43 PM
Nice try. You claimed "shouldn't work".
Yes, as MacPherson specified what a good load "should" be, and the ISP load ain't it. (By the way, I also said that the "energy dump" folks say the Treasury load "shouldn't work"--perhaps you'd like to defend Marshall and Sanow now; maybe they didn't say it shouldn't work?).

So, if MacPherson recommends one thing, yet a load that is the exact opposite of his recommendations has a great street record and reputation--that means he expected the light, fast, shallow round to work great, too? Wow, I guess he's got all the numbers covered.

Bottom line, guys: the wound-tract theorists (MacPherson among them) like penetration. They usually ask for 12 in minimum and prefer 14. Yet the ISP load worked just fine. A bit of a hole in the theory, don't you think?

Like this?
Maybe more like this:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3nKE8LME4sQ

(Must've been an invisible head shot there, huh?)

Actually, while you're here, could you go back to explaining how a bullet through the brain is the exact same mechanism of injury as a punch to the jaw. I don't quite see the equivalence yet--maybe MacPherson says so somewhere?

brickeyee
March 21, 2011, 05:45 PM
1. Disrupt central nervous system.

Just striking a suitable blow to the CNS can result in a person going down.
That is how the boxer's punch works.

You know how it feels when you bump the nerve in your arm ('the funny bone')?
Imagine that same thing in your brain.

A blow can cause the nerves to spontaneously depolarize ('fire') resulting in recovery time and the temporary inability to control whatever those nerves control.

2. Shatter a supporting bone structure (pelvis, femur, etc)

Not likely with most handgun calibers except the vary largest.
And the targets are small and not always easily located with ebough precession from a distance.

3. Exsanguinate the target (bleeding out).

Could be just a few seconds to minutes to hours depending on how big a bleed you create.
Blow the heart, hit the aorta, major pulmonary circulation, etc. the person will be down very quickly.
If they make it a full minute they are doing very well.

Hit a femoral artery and they might last a few minutes if the wound bleeds freely (no tamponade effect from the surrounding tissue).

Smaller bleeds take longer.

Killing quickly is not a simple matter with a handgun.
Compared to most rifles they are far lower power and simply cannot create the often massive destruction of a rifle bullet at much higher speed.

Head wounds that may not prove lethal if you are close to care can be very lethal if they disrupt breathing.

It take a lot of muscle coordination to breath, and it can be disrupted by damage that does not appear that significant.
Breathing support after head trauma is a relatively knew thing.
For a long time it was assumed if you stopped breathing as a result of head trauma you were as good as dead.

The army finally figured out that breathing may stop, but can resume of pulmonary support is provided to avoid brain death.

KodiakBeer
March 21, 2011, 06:21 PM
It all gets rather silly. You can't reduce a living thing to a table or chart showing energy and penetration and reach any sort of valid conclusion. There are too many variables within shot placement, individuals and even the state of mind of individuals.

You can't even count on a CNS hit, because too many people have walked away from head shots with little more than a headache. Every year or so some story gets floated in the media about somebody seeking care because of a long standing headache and the X rays reveal a slug in their brain from years before.

With that said, HP's do more damage than FMJ's. Bigger HP's do more damage than smaller HP's. Carry the biggest gun you can conceal (dependent on time of year), load it with HP's and keep shooting until the threat stops wiggling.

Fast and accurate shooting trumps caliber, choice of cartridge, handgun type and anything else. Shoot your carry gun, a lot. Shoot at a variety of distances and targets. Shoot from cover. Shoot while moving. Nearly everything else is a matter of chance. The only variable you can control is how well you shoot.

Shawn Dodson
March 21, 2011, 06:25 PM
Yes, as MacPherson specified what a good load "should" be, and the ISP load ain't it.

MacPherson is not claiming that the ISP load "shouldn't work" is he?

By the way, I also said that the "energy dump" folks say the Treasury load "shouldn't work"

Citation?

Loosedhorse
March 21, 2011, 06:32 PM
MacPherson is not claiming that the ISP load "shouldn't work" is he?
So, his recommendations mean nothing? He says, "Use this." You bring him the exact opposite, and you think he'll say, "Yeah, those will work, too."

In that case, forget his recommendations--because whether you follow them or not, you get an effective round!
By the way, I also said that the "energy dump" folks say the Treasury load "shouldn't work"Citation?
The citation that shows I said that? Post #26, this thread. ;)

Kodiak, your post makes perfect sense--how is that even possible unless you pick a side on the "energy" vs. "wound tract" debate? ;)

Ben86
March 21, 2011, 06:40 PM
I'm not an expert, but I can tell you what I have learned from hunting.

Shot placement trumps any magic bullet philosophy. I put the bullet were it needs to be and get a clean kill (unless its an especially determined critter), if I don't, well I've got lots of walking to do, a damaged ego and a bothered conscious. The bullet needs to be on the correct path and penetrate deep enough to hit the vitals you are shooting at above all.

Energy transfer does happen, but mostly only with high powered rifle calibers (not so much in handgun calibers, hence multiple, quick shots being generally the best approach to a quick stop) and shouldn't be counted on. Expanding ammo helps more energy transfer happen. Energy transfer should not be relied upon, only actual permanent wound channels created by the diameter of the bullet can be counted on.

Shawn Dodson
March 21, 2011, 06:42 PM
You bring him the exact opposite, and you think he'll say, "Yeah, those will work, too." MacPherson will tell you there are better choices. He provided terminal performance guidelines and rationale. Whether you choose to accept them or not is your business. He doesn't care what you or anyone else decides to use.

The citation that shows I said that? Post #26, this thread. Nope.

Loosedhorse
March 21, 2011, 07:03 PM
MacPherson will tell you there are better choices.
You feel comfortable telling us what he will say? Do you have a citation where he used the exact phrase, "are better choices"? ;)

Just so I have this straight: you're kicking up all this fuss because you would have prefered that I'd said that MacPherson said there "are better choices" than the ISP load, and that the energy-dump folks said there "are better choices" than the FBI load?

Seems like a small point to get into a tear about. (But maybe distraction is part of your game.) Tell me, Sean: 'Djever hear of a rhetorical device called hyperbole? Especially an innocuous one, as I applied it equally to each side of this tempest-in-a-teapot? But fine, if it makes you happy: "are better choices"--consider my statement so revised!

My point remains: the ISP load is an effective load, despite not meeting any of MacPherson's recommendations.

Now that we're all calm, again: how is a bullet hole in the brain the same mechanism as a concussion, again?

KodiakBeer
March 21, 2011, 07:16 PM
Rifles aren't handguns, but I've shot hundreds of deer, as well as caribou and other large hoofed critters.
I've never seen the "deer shot through the heart and ran 100 yards" scenario. When I shoot a critter it's dead right there and I've done it with anything from .243 to black powder rifles on up to .350 Rem Mag. I could go into my "most people don't know where the heart on a deer is" rant, but sufficient to say that shot placement is everything.

I also once shot a deer with a Federal 165 grain "reduced recoil" .45acp slug (don't ask me why I was carrying that at the time...) from a Kimber compact. That deer too, dropped right there - not a single step.

Hunting is a very different thing than shooting when your life is on the line simply because when hunting, you either have a perfect shot or you don't take the shot. You don't have that luxury when somebody is trying to kill you. And you don't have a high velocity rifle either! But... It's still all about shot placement.

On a separate (but related) rant, on this board as on every board, you always have somebody showing off a picture of their 7 yard pistol target with a group the size of a lap dog. And everybody says "great" "nice shooting" "very good", etc, etc, etc. When they should be saying "Is your gun broke, or is it just you?"

I'm quickly approaching codger status, but there was a time when any group under ten yards had better be one ragged hole or you'd be hanging your head as you left the range. Now, if people hit something black on the target it's good shooting. They don't even know they're bad shots. I don't know if the general degradation of marksmanship standards is due to the new generation of handguns where the worse the trigger the more highly recommended the gun is, or it's something more general like ammo prices being high. Probably both...

I'll sum up with my standard rant. Gun and cartridge choice won't make up for bad shooting. Buy a .22 handgun and shoot tens of thousands of rounds at every conceivable distance and from every vantage point and every possible stance. Shoot until you can hit a target the size of a playing card or beer can instantly at any reasonable distance - 25 yards is a reasonable distance.

Then buy a gun that you like. A gun that feels right in your hand. A gun that points naturally. A gun that has a good trigger. Whatever caliber it's in will be fine.

Shawn Dodson
March 21, 2011, 07:29 PM
You feel comfortable telling us what he will say? MacPherson is a personal acquaintance.

Just so I have this straight: you're kicking up all this fuss because you would have prefered that I'd said that MacPherson said there "are better choices" than the ISP load, and that the energy-dump folks said there "are better choices" than the FBI load? I'm not kicking up any fuss that I'm aware of. You made claims that I have reason to believe are untrue. I merely asked you to cite your sources so I could review these alleged statements for myself. You failed to provide them, which is what I expected. No big deal.

Now that we're all calm, again: how is a bullet hole in the brain the same mechanism as a concussion, again? It isn't - but then I suspect you already know that.

Loosedhorse
March 21, 2011, 09:20 PM
MacPherson is a personal acquaintance.
I have many personal acquaintances, but I don't often decide to speak for them.
You failed to provide them, which is what I expected.I provided sources (just as you expected?) demonstrating my point: that MacPherson's recommendations don't predict or explain the success of the ISP load (just as you already knew?). The ISP load argues against considering his recs as reigning principles, and you have provided no reason that we should consider his recommendations the determining word.

Oh, and now that we agree about bullets and punches being different, perhaps you're up to explaining TKO by abdominal punch? Blood loss and neural "disruption" are still the only ways to end an attack?
I've never seen the "deer shot through the heart and ran 100 yards" scenario
Different animals are different. Cape buffalo shot through the heart then going 80 yards are not unusual.
any group under ten yards had better be one ragged hole
Different styles of shooting. For defensive shooting, many would say if your group is smaller than an open hand then you're shooting too slowly. If I've misunderstood, and you meant you get one-hole groups at 10 yards shooting as fast as you can go, my hat's off.

Remo223
March 21, 2011, 10:46 PM
Just striking a suitable blow to the CNS can result in a person going down.
That is how the boxer's punch works.

You know how it feels when you bump the nerve in your arm ('the funny bone')?
Imagine that same thing in your brain.

A blow can cause the nerves to spontaneously depolarize ('fire') resulting in recovery time and the temporary inability to control whatever those nerves control.



Not likely with most handgun calibers except the vary largest.
And the targets are small and not always easily located with ebough precession from a distance.



Could be just a few seconds to minutes to hours depending on how big a bleed you create.
Blow the heart, hit the aorta, major pulmonary circulation, etc. the person will be down very quickly.
If they make it a full minute they are doing very well.

Hit a femoral artery and they might last a few minutes if the wound bleeds freely (no tamponade effect from the surrounding tissue).

Smaller bleeds take longer.

Killing quickly is not a simple matter with a handgun.
Compared to most rifles they are far lower power and simply cannot create the often massive destruction of a rifle bullet at much higher speed.

Head wounds that may not prove lethal if you are close to care can be very lethal if they disrupt breathing.

It take a lot of muscle coordination to breath, and it can be disrupted by damage that does not appear that significant.
Breathing support after head trauma is a relatively knew thing.
For a long time it was assumed if you stopped breathing as a result of head trauma you were as good as dead.

The army finally figured out that breathing may stop, but can resume of pulmonary support is provided to avoid brain death.
As a former boxer, I can verify for you that getting your bell rung(pugilism terminology) is absolutely NOTHING like hitting your funny bone. A knockout worthy blow(knockout or near knockout) to the chin does not hurt, is not uncomfortable, and causes ZERO sensation.

You simply lose all strength, all sensation, coordination, and balance. You can't lift your arms, sounds are strange, your vestibular system ceases to work, and you can't tell if your feet are touching the floor or not. It even effects your vision somewhat, in that you lose all depth perception. You simply cannot tell how far away things are from you. your feet appear to be 15 feet away and the walls only 5 feet away. It is completely disorienting and you are utterly helpless.

My description is what it feels like to receive a TKO punch to the chin. I've never been knocked out cold but they say it's just like someone hit your power switch and turned you off. No pain, no sensation, no memory, no nothing.

Ok, I had to edit after reading my comment. I've never been knocked out cold while boxing. I have been knocked out cold from falls, motorcycle accidents, etc. The strangest one was while riding a 3 wheeler with no functioning brakes. I hit a tree...woke up very confused. you see, my memory was that I saw the tree, swerved, missed it, then ended up in the shallows of a pond...then suddenly I woke up and realized I didn't miss the tree. Not only did I have no memory of the impact but while I was out cold, my brain continued in a dream, continuing the event as if the impact never occurred.

Remo223
March 21, 2011, 11:30 PM
Remo:

See "Differential Pressure Across Diaphragm Muscle: The Mechanism Responsible for Sensations of Intense Internal Pressure and Pain Caused by Blow to 'Solar Plexus'" at http://www.firearmstactical.com/tacticalbriefs/volume4/number1/toc.htm

In a similar vein, when you hit your "funny bone" you've physically traumatized the ulnar nerve. The blunt trauma disrupts the synapses of afferent nerves (which transmit info to the brain) and sometimes disrupts efferent nerves (which transmit info from the brain). This explains why you feel an intense tingling sensation in your lower arm and hand (your ulnar nerve is in essence "seeing stars") yet, in most cases, you can still wiggle your fingers.

See "Blunt Trauma Concussion of Spinal Cord as Mechanism of Instantaneous Collapse Produced by Centerfire Rifle Bullet Wounds to the Torso" at http://www.firearmstactical.com/briefs28.htm
I havn't yet clicked on your link. I will in a minute though.

First I just want to tell you I already know what a serious blow to the solar plexus will do FIRST HAND. I don't know what your talk about pain and sensation is all about. There is no pain except in the first split second. Then after that your diaphragm is simply paralyzed. You do not feel pain. You cannot breath in no matter how hard you try. Then little by little, your diaphragm begins to work again. First shallow breaths is all you can muster. The process can take a whole minute before you can get any air at all and you will wonder if you will pass out before you can get air into your lungs. And I'll tell ya what, that minute feels like ten. While you are convulsing your torso trying to get air in and gulping with your mouth like a fish trying to make air go in, people watching you that have never experienced it themselves before will think you are having epilepsy or going into shock.

This is what happens when you receive a TREMENDOUS blow to just below the ribcage...as in a dirtbike handlebar into your solar plexus when wiping out at a high rate of speed.


OK, I read your link. I have NEVER felt pain in my diaphragm from having the wind knocked out of me. And I have had the wind knocked out of me too many times to count. I do not know what the author of this short essay is talking about.

Now, since we're on the subject of debilitating or incapacitating effect of trauma on the body, I would like to touch on something that I havn't seen anyone else here do. That is the effect of a serious blow to a bone with a hard object...a baseball bat or a hammer for instance. There is a very strong immediate effect BEFORE the pain sets in. I'm talking about an elbow or a shin bone or the bone on the top of your shoulder. You know how in the old fashioned cartoons when someone gets hit hard the character will vibrate like a tuning fork? That's because that's exactly how it feels. you get the sensation that your entire skeleton, or part of your skeleton is vibrating...for about a 1 second duration. It is tremendously incapacitating for that second and for an additional second or two after while you gather your wits.

Larry E
March 22, 2011, 12:01 AM
Mostly the only things I shoot anymore are prairie dogs, and any jackrabbits that happen along. The guy I've been shooting pd's with the past decade or so has never shot anything larger than a woodchuck, but is a firm believer in high velocity and bullets that disintegrate on impact or virtually so. He's very intelligent and a good observer, but trying to convince him that larger animals from deer to the rogue H sapiens on up require that the bullet hit the right place and penetrate enough to disrupt bodily function. Energy dump might kill small animals fantastically well, but is otherwise sort of like a fairy tale. It's virtually impossible to transfer the results to a larger animal short of a .50 BMG or 20 mm cannon

Whatever causes the disruption of bodily function had best do it as quickly as possible if it's a self defense situation. Arguments about whether it's due to this or that or what is best for the job is sort of like arguing about haw many angels can dance on the head of a pin. From what I've seen a bigger hole that goes deeper is best on larger animals. Going all the way through isn't too good for self defense because of safety concerns, but it's likely to put the opponent one the floor as fast or faster than not.

ghostwriter
March 22, 2011, 01:04 AM
...and on a lighter note... anyone watch the movie, "Scarface"?

he took a LOT of rounds and it didn't seem to stop him much but that shotgun to the back sure did.
say hello to my little friend...

481
March 22, 2011, 10:43 AM
...and on a lighter note... anyone watch the movie, "Scarface"?

he took a LOT of rounds and it didn't seem to stop him much but that shotgun to the back sure did.
say hello to my little friend...
Movies and anything else emanating from Hollywood are as far from reality as one can get.

Remember, these are the folks who frequently portray people being flung through the nearest plate glass window by a shotgun blast, cars being blown up by one or two handgun rounds to the rear of the vehicle and all sorts of other silliness like the scenes in Scarface.

Still, it was a great movie with a lot of really good lines.

Ben86
March 22, 2011, 11:50 AM
The strangest one was while riding a 3 wheeler with no functioning brakes. I hit a tree...woke up very confused. you see, my memory was that I saw the tree, swerved, missed it, then ended up in the shallows of a pond...then suddenly I woke up and realized I didn't miss the tree. Not only did I have no memory of the impact but while I was out cold, my brain continued in a dream, continuing the event as if the impact never occurred.

That's wild. Your experiences and assessments of being k.o.'ed and smacked in the solar plexus are spot on. Debilitating as they are, I don't remember feeling pain. I've been kicked in the head hard enough to cause a momentary black out. There was just a split second feeling of helplessness and paralysis, then I fought through it and came back. After getting kicked in the solar plexus I was just wondering why the hell I can't breath. It felt like it took half an hour to start breathing again. Scary feeling, but not painful.

Remo223
March 22, 2011, 01:50 PM
9mm+P+ ballistic performance meets or exceeds 38super factory loads. It also meets or exceeds 357magnum in uber short barrels and similar to 357sig in uber short barrels. I don't think anyone would question the effectiveness of 357mag or 357sig. I believe the prejudice against 9mmLuger comes from the visual impact of the diminutive size of the cartridge. Hold a 9mm in your hand along with a 38special and you will instinctively prefer the 38special.

I prefer revolvers so I'm not biased against 38special. But there's no denying the 9mm is a very impressive cartridge for its size.

brickeyee
March 22, 2011, 04:42 PM
As a former boxer, I can verify for you that getting your bell rung(pugilism terminology) is absolutely NOTHING like hitting your funny bone. A knockout worthy blow(knockout or near knockout) to the chin does not hurt, is not uncomfortable, and causes ZERO sensation.

Is is exactly the same mechanism, trauma induced nerve depolarization.

The nerves depolarize (fire) in response to being struck.

In you brain EVERYTHING pretty much stops working.

Luckily the lower level functions (like breathing) are in the medulla and recover quickly enough.

The brain while it is the seat of sensation, actually cannot feel pain.

Brain surgery can be done (and in some cases is done) with conscious patients with nothing more than local anesthesia for the skin and skull that have been opened.

If you want to understand what you are doing to your body, a little physiology would not hurt.

Remo223
March 22, 2011, 04:49 PM
I don't think we are understanding each other. I responded to a comment that described the tingling sensations from hitting your funny bone, and then insinuated that a blow to the head would be similar experience but more extreme.

That is just plain false.

If you are trying to tell me I am wrong when I say that is false, then you are wrong.

Diggers
March 22, 2011, 05:58 PM
Remo223

What they are saying is it's actually the same physiology at work, however it feels different because your "funny bone" are sensory/ motor nerves in you arm, which does a different task than your CNS.

SO, YOU will experience trauma to these different nerves in a different way even though the same physiology is at work. When you get your "bell rung" the trauma is caused to your brain (part of your CNS which really doesn't have sensory nerves like the rest of our body does) the neurons in the brain stop sending signals as they should, which is why our perception of distance or if our feet are on the ground gets all messed up. The same disruption of neuron signals in say the "funny bone" results in that odd tingling pain we all have felt.

It's the same physiology at work caused by similar trauma, it just feels different to us AND has a different effect due to the location and job of the nerves affected.

Remo223
March 22, 2011, 06:31 PM
I don't see how that is important info, Diggers. This thread is about the effects of body blows(energy transfer) and tissue damage and what results in being incapacitated. You are arguing academics which have no bearing on real world situations. Nobody cares if there is a similar phenomena occurring at the synaptic level.

Geckgo
March 22, 2011, 07:19 PM
back on topic, "energy transfer" to what? Tissue damage to what??? Some organs under intense stress (like being hit from rifle bullets) can liquify, or so I'm told. Sorry, no references and I've never seen it, so that's just another rumor unless someone can verify.

I think in general, the answer to your question is neither. If you shoot someone in the pinky they are going to keep coming, so keep your shots confined to something more vital and see better results. It's all about shot placement.

McCall911
March 22, 2011, 07:36 PM
I'm offering only a guess here: I think energy transfer and tissue damage are related concepts.

Probably most here are familiar with Firearms Tactical, which is one of the go-to sites for anybody interested in terminal ballistics.

http://www.firearmstactical.com/tactical.htm

Of course everybody is likely familiar with our own Brassfetcher, JE223, who has done a ton of testing over the years. If you're interested in terminal ballistics and you've never visited, then I could well recommend it.

http://www.brassfetcher.com/

JE223, you've gone above and beyond. Thanks for your contribution.

Another one I'd like to brag on is our own Zak Smith. He gives a pretty comprehensive listing of testing of various handgun bullets in ballistic gelatin, both bare and denim-covered. These may be the FBI's test results, but they're laid out in a concise and easy to read fashion.

http://demigodllc.com/~zak/firearms/fbi-pistol.php

Again, great work, Zak.

One thing that might be missing from some sites is cavitation. I don't think there's any question that cavitation, if and when it occurs, is important when you're looking to evaluate tissue damage. And I don't think there's any doubt that tissue damage is important to both stopping either an attacker during self-defense or an animal during hunting. IMO you have to look at the overall tissue damage that might be done, whether there is cavitation or not. But how to add cavitation area, or volume, to penetration area or volume is something I can't as yet wrap my head around.

But my question is: What is the mechanism of cavitation, if not energy transfer of some kind? In most of the ballistic testing I've seen, expanding bullets generally create wound cavities which are larger, by varying degrees, than the bullet's expanded diameter. This is also generally the case with fragmenting bullets as well, such as the military 5.56 mm's.

Sorry to be so long winded. I think I'll take a break now. :D

KodiakBeer
March 22, 2011, 08:59 PM
OK, you're in trouble. Somebody is kicking down your door and screaming that they are going to kill you. Two handguns are lying in front of you; a 10mm that you shoot badly, and a 9mm that you shoot very well.

Which do you pick up?

Diggers
March 22, 2011, 09:36 PM
Remo223, I'm just clarifying a point that YOU were talking about. I'm not arguing academics or anything else, just explaining something you didn't seem to understand.

However, it DOES matter because WHERE the energy is transferred is paramount to the question of if the attacker is incapacitated or not.

IF, and itís a big if, an attacker doesn't stop due to the pain and psychological effects of being shot, then the only way that attacker is stopped is by disrupting the CNS. i.e. the ability to receive information and send commands to the body.

Which is the difference between someone being shot in the arm or being shot in the head.

So, back to shot placement.

With that in mind, it would be the 9mm KodiakBeer :)

fatcat4620
March 22, 2011, 10:45 PM
12 gage shotun, why worry about getting one or the other.

fatcat4620
March 22, 2011, 10:46 PM
Beer, light him up with the nine all day. IF you need more ammo pick up the 10mm.

d2wing
March 23, 2011, 03:37 PM
Oh boy, how many times has this horse been whipped. I don't remember all the details of the extensive military tests. In pistols like just about anything, bigger and faster is better. More energy is better, bigger hole is better. The energy of bullets that exit is not wasted as they make another hole for blood to exit. Damage is related to what part of the body you hit. Fluid filled tissue or bone makes a big difference in energy transfer.
Just about everything is a factor, shot placement top billing. If bigger and faster wasn't better they wouldn't make artillary. If shot placement, number of holes, and energy weren't important, they wouldn't field the 5.62 Nato. Energy transfer doesn't seem to be much of a factor in pistols. Fatter and faster, but some folks can take a lot of damage and still function. It's hard to predict who will win a close range shootout judgeing just by weapon. Who would you bet on between a 9 mm with 20 rounds ans a 6 shot .44 magnum at 5 yards, or 50 yards? A scared novice or cold killer? Being at the wrong place at the wrong time, I like being out of range as a good defense.

McCall911
March 23, 2011, 04:09 PM
Two handguns are lying in front of you; a 10mm that you shoot badly, and a 9mm that you shoot very well.

Which do you pick up?


Both! I don't want to leave one for the guy to shoot me with! :D

CZguy
March 23, 2011, 04:23 PM
Both! I don't want to leave one for the guy to shoot me with!


You must not have seen the same westerns growing up as I did. :D

Ben86
March 23, 2011, 05:07 PM
OK, you're in trouble. Somebody is kicking down your door and screaming that they are going to kill you. Two handguns are lying in front of you; a 10mm that you shoot badly, and a 9mm that you shoot very well.

Which do you pick up?

Both, and then I take him out while flying through the air. (Hot Fuzz reference)

gym
March 24, 2011, 02:52 AM
If you have studied boxing as I have since I was a kid. It is the only sport i watch other that a little MMA, and Football. Having grown up with several professional boxers, One was Marciano's only fighter who he held a contract on, 17 and 0, till he got hit with a 12 gauge in the groin. He was acting when last we spoke, As Burt Young and many others the allure seems to run parallel. But a shot to the liver, famous from guys like Roy Jones Jr, will end a fight as fast as a hook to the temple or jaw, sometimes with even more dire results, So Now we enter different pathway. This is pure pain. Unbearable pain that causes everything to shut down. Usually a delay of 1 to 30 seconds is not uncommon.Body punches can be more deadlly than any other type or blow. the brain just shuts down "I guess", not being a doctor the obvious answer has to be the unbearable pain confined to that area of the liver and pancreas, causes everything to stop. MMA is just brutal so I won't even go there. these guys are just ruining their lives as far as I am concerened. Having seen many of them work out, "I can't mention names" when I owned the gym, and having been friendlly with Don's Kings brother, Carl, I had many work out in my club, including Michael Moore, "he dosen't mind if I mention his name", But getting hit by some of there guys is like having a terrible car accident.I think shootig is more humane to be honest. And no matter how good they are, they seldom quit when they should. That energy transfer is devestating.

Loosedhorse
March 24, 2011, 02:26 PM
This is pure pain. Unbearable pain that causes everything to shut down.
I believe (I may be wrong) that MacPherson would consider pain a "psychological effect" and undependable as a fight stopper; and/or that the amount of pain is related to the permanent crush cavity of the bullet. So that permanent wound channel is the only thing that matters.

But I think you've got a point.

brickeyee
March 24, 2011, 05:05 PM
I responded to a comment that described the tingling sensations from hitting your funny bone, and then insinuated that a blow to the head would be similar experience but more extreme.

That is just plain false.

I was using it as an example of how trauma can cause nerves to depolarize and stop working.

As others have pointed out, it is far more devastating in the CNS than in peripheral sensory nerves, and HOW we perceive the trauma depolarization is going to be different.

The first thing to assessing impact is understanding WHAT is happening in the body from the trauma.

The trauma to depolarize nerves and make them STOP WORKING is not always that large.
A head blow (boxing or otherwise) can shut down everything in the CNS briefly over wide areas of the brain.
You do not feel anything, or remember anything, since a large area has been affected.

When you strike your head and 'see stars' the area affected is the visual cortex.
Striking it is very likely to be perceived as a visual disturbance.

Strike the area of the brain for hearing and you are likely to perceive sound from the depolarization.


One of the more recent discoveries was that head trauma that results in the cessation of respiration is NOT a death sentence as was previously thought.
If you can get the patient on a respirator and try and limit brain swelling (chemically or surgically or both) the patient may recover.

The brain is acutely sensitive to even minor pressure.

In Multiple Sclerosis the tiny localized swelling in the brain produces most of the symptoms observed, not the actual damage to any single nerve.
The damage from the temporary swelling can become more permanent the longer it is allowed to continue however.

We are talking about the immune system causing swelling around a small section of a nerve.
It can sometimes barely be seen on an MRI because there is a very slight change in the brain density at the site.

The CNS is remarkably easy to disrupt, but it is not always repeatable since the damage is rarely repeatable and every persons brain is slightly different.
The 'areas' that have been mapped as performing different tasks and functions are not hard and fast, just general 'areas' that in a number of patients have appeared to create similar symptoms.

Larger functions can be mapped (left side of brain controls right side of body) but mapping a particular muscle innervation to a spot on the brain is not nearly as sharp a boundary.

It took any years for effective treatment for bacterial meningitis to be developed.
The mortality rate in infants was 80%.
Antibiotics would kill off the bacteria, but the infant died 24-48 hours later from brain swelling (uncontrolled it can force the medulla of the brain through the base of the skull and suppress respiration).

Finally methods were developed to suppress the immune system to prevent the swelling, and the mortality rate dove to less than ~20%.

For self defense the brain is still a small target, inside a nice bone skull for protection.
You need to not just get past the bone, but do enough damage over a wide area.
Damage a less important area or small area and not much may happen.

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