ArfinGreebly

March 31, 2011, 05:23 PM

One of the things that's puzzled me from time to time is a pair of assertions for which I have inadequate data to draw a solid conclusion.

Assertion #1: the .357 mag cartridge is a hard-hitting man-or-game stopper, and

assertion #2: the .30 Carbine cartridge is a wimpy pistol-class cartridge with no stopping power.

Now, I'm not a ballistics expert, and my high-level math skills are weak, but I'm reasonably literate and simple math isn't a real hurdle.

Given the numbers for the .357 standard factory load (110 gr, 1500 fps MV, 550 ft lbs ME) and the same numbers for the .30 Carbine factory load (110 gr, 1990 fps MV, 975 ft lbs ME), and given that using ball ammo (or soft points) in both should be something resembling apples-to-apples, what is it then about the .30 Carbine cartridge that makes it anecdotally so much less effective than the .357 mag?

I mean, just looking at the numbers, the .30 Carbine has not quite twice the ME for the same projectile weight.

So, I chuck a hunk of lead downrange at 1990 fps and it gently bruises the target, who limps away.

Then I chuck a hunk of lead (of the same weight) downrange at 1500 fps and the target falls like a sack of potatoes. DOA. Terminated. Paid in full.

Now, I'm presuming that my .357 numbers are derived from the cartridge fired from a four-inch barrel, and that the .30 Carbine numbers are done with an 18-inch barrel.

Somewhere, and I wish I could recall the source, I read that the .30 Carbine delivers effectively the same energy at 100 yards as the .357 does at 50 yards. Never personally tested that theory.

Now, just for clarity, we're not talking about the .357 fired from a rifle. Just a stock factory load fired from a stock factory pistol.

Are the numbers misleading?

Are the anecdotes statistically "salty" and given too much weight?

I've known guys who hunted deer with the .30 Carbine and had no complaints. I knew a guy in Reno who took down a bison at 70 yards with a .357 hard cast lead round. (My grandfather hunted deer with the .357, but he was a bullet and cartridge inventor, so maybe not the best example.)

So what I'm trying to grasp is the contradiction of ".30 Carbine weak, .357 mag strong" when the numbers would seem to indicate otherwise.

Perhaps someone with more miles on those cartridges can shed a little light?

Assertion #1: the .357 mag cartridge is a hard-hitting man-or-game stopper, and

assertion #2: the .30 Carbine cartridge is a wimpy pistol-class cartridge with no stopping power.

Now, I'm not a ballistics expert, and my high-level math skills are weak, but I'm reasonably literate and simple math isn't a real hurdle.

Given the numbers for the .357 standard factory load (110 gr, 1500 fps MV, 550 ft lbs ME) and the same numbers for the .30 Carbine factory load (110 gr, 1990 fps MV, 975 ft lbs ME), and given that using ball ammo (or soft points) in both should be something resembling apples-to-apples, what is it then about the .30 Carbine cartridge that makes it anecdotally so much less effective than the .357 mag?

I mean, just looking at the numbers, the .30 Carbine has not quite twice the ME for the same projectile weight.

So, I chuck a hunk of lead downrange at 1990 fps and it gently bruises the target, who limps away.

Then I chuck a hunk of lead (of the same weight) downrange at 1500 fps and the target falls like a sack of potatoes. DOA. Terminated. Paid in full.

Now, I'm presuming that my .357 numbers are derived from the cartridge fired from a four-inch barrel, and that the .30 Carbine numbers are done with an 18-inch barrel.

Somewhere, and I wish I could recall the source, I read that the .30 Carbine delivers effectively the same energy at 100 yards as the .357 does at 50 yards. Never personally tested that theory.

Now, just for clarity, we're not talking about the .357 fired from a rifle. Just a stock factory load fired from a stock factory pistol.

Are the numbers misleading?

Are the anecdotes statistically "salty" and given too much weight?

I've known guys who hunted deer with the .30 Carbine and had no complaints. I knew a guy in Reno who took down a bison at 70 yards with a .357 hard cast lead round. (My grandfather hunted deer with the .357, but he was a bullet and cartridge inventor, so maybe not the best example.)

So what I'm trying to grasp is the contradiction of ".30 Carbine weak, .357 mag strong" when the numbers would seem to indicate otherwise.

Perhaps someone with more miles on those cartridges can shed a little light?