38 spl +p soft lead bullets for self defense


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klutchless
July 14, 2011, 10:10 PM
I was at the range today shooting my EAA 38 and a older gentlemen came over and asked what I carry in it.I told him Hornady critical defense.His response was it was a waste of money and that a soft lead bullet loaded in the +p range was just as effective and that I shouldn't get caught in such trends.I'm not new to shooting or terminal ballistics and have killed a few deer with a semi jacketed soft point 357 but never had a one hit quitter until I switched to a semi jacketed hollowpoint. He said that's different out of a six inch barrel than out of a two inch and a hollow point won't expand anyway so the best you can hope for is bullet deformation which soft lead has the highest ability to do.My question is if it has the vilocity to deform a bullet shouldn't it expand a hollowpoint.

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DougW
July 14, 2011, 10:17 PM
He may be talking about the old Federal 9BP load (if my memory works a little bit), which was a 158gr semi hollow point lead bullet. It was the FBI load back in the day of the Miami shoot out (again, I think) and was always an effective round. Even the Winchester Silvertips (which I keep in one of my .357's) was an effective round from the practical reports of shootings and the study done by Ed Sannow (sp).

joeq
July 14, 2011, 10:21 PM
No, a lot of hollow points will not expand out of a snub nose. I carry Buffalo Bores 158 grain LSWCHP +P load. It does a legit 1000 fps out of a snubbie and I really like it. Like Doug said, this is the "FBI load" and is still carried by a ton of people. Another good one is the 135 grain gold dot short barrel load.

klutchless
July 14, 2011, 11:11 PM
So hornady critical defense out of a 2 inch is all hype?It seemed to blow decent 'exit wounds' through water jugs definatly going to look for some buffalo bore .I thought they just made bullets for my cap and ball revolvers.He was refering to a plain semi wadcutter soft lead bullrt like what I shoot into targets.

Bojangles7
July 14, 2011, 11:19 PM
I carry Buffalo Bores 158 grain LSWCHP +P load

That's what I carry.

Jim Watson
July 15, 2011, 12:31 AM
No, Doug, 9BP is Federal 9mm plain JHP, not Hydrashok or HS2. Plain but accurate and reliable, I stay with it instead of burning money to test the Bullet Of The Month.

I don't know the stock number(s) of the various .38 lead hollowpoints. Nearly everybody makes one. It isn't glamorous, it just works. Maybe the latest rubbernose is, too; but I just don't care enough to try to find out.

MikeNice
July 15, 2011, 05:37 AM
I carry the Federal LE 158gr+P LSWC-HP. It has put down 130lb feral dogs. It has also passed my personal testing in water. Through four layers of heavy cotton the round achieved FBI level performance numbers. It also expanded reliably.

I carry a Taurus 85b3. So, I have a three inch barrel instead of a two inch barrel. That might make a little difference. I say order a box or two from SG Ammo and test it out.

Of course you could just run some back yard testing on what you carry. If it works it works. Don't just take some random old man's word.

silversport
July 15, 2011, 09:45 AM
I carry the Federal LE 158gr+P LSWC-HP. It has put down 130lb feral dogs. It has also passed my personal testing in water. Through four layers of heavy cotton the round achieved FBI level performance numbers. It also expanded reliably.

I carry a Taurus 85b3. So, I have a three inch barrel instead of a two inch barrel. That might make a little difference. I say order a box or two from SG Ammo and test it out.

Of course you could just run some back yard testing on what you carry. If it works it works. Don't just take some random old man's word.
and nearly all the bigs make it (or at least did)...sometimes called the Chicago Load, FBI Load, St. Louis Load...you get the idea...l-o-n-g track record of positive results...not saying it's better but should do you just fine in guns that can use it...
Bill

joeq
July 15, 2011, 10:15 AM
So hornady critical defense out of a 2 inch is all hype?

Without doing my own testing, I can't answer that. I know a lot of rounds are Hype. For instance, Winchester's 130 grain PDX1 is probably carried by a lot of people now. After watching this video on youtube I wouldn't carry it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-VSb8_ClcVQ&feature=channel_video_title

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Od1LgsHdLmc&feature=relmfu

You should check out this guy's testing on all calibers. His video's are really good. I know you're interested in how the 38 special critical defense works, I did find a test using 380ACP, you might check it out just to see how the FTX bullet works.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-H9M6cZGd18&feature=channel_video_title

Water-Man
July 15, 2011, 10:33 AM
Here's another "random old man" who says it works. ;)

hermannr
July 15, 2011, 10:35 AM
I also use Buffalo Bore 158 gr, however, I do have a 6" barrel and get very good action out of it. Most very definately supersonic+ out of a 6", you can hear it.

Murcielago
July 15, 2011, 10:45 AM
My only misgiving about the Buffalo Bore +P 158gr is that it is PUNISHMENT out of an airweight snubbie.

Jac
July 15, 2011, 10:47 AM
The "problem" with the newer premium defense ammo in .38 Special is not that it won't expand... there've been a lot of huge strides in bullet design lately. But, they're all pretty new, so they're not *proven in the field* to reliably expand at snub velocities.

Whereas the FBI load has a record as a stopper and a killer that belies it's "paper performance". (I'm paraphrasing what someone else said about it; probably the late Stephen Camp)

doc540
July 15, 2011, 11:20 AM
all-copper Barnes .38 Specials do, indeed, expand out of a .38 snub

so do Speer 135 grain Gold Dot's

There are many old wood choppers out there who'll tell you a chainsaw won't do the job of a sharp axe.

Then when you actually fire it up it confuses the heck out of them.

joeq
July 15, 2011, 11:25 AM
My only misgiving about the Buffalo Bore +P 158gr is that it is PUNISHMENT out of an airweight snubbie.

I use it in my 442 and don't mind it. It's accurate and I can still get back on target quickly. Anyone recoil sensitive should stay away from the +P Buffalo Bore, they have a standard pressure load using the same bullet.

ball3006
July 15, 2011, 11:25 AM
A soft lead bullet at high velocitys will lead your barrel. Just stick with jacketed bullets if you want a big bang out of your gun. Just be sure you are proficient shooting hot loads out of your SD gun. chris3

Loosedhorse
July 15, 2011, 11:26 AM
So hornady critical defense out of a 2 inch is all hype?I doubt it. But their .38 it is not a short-barrel-specific load; the listed velocities are out of a 4-in barrel. A 2-in barrel might reduce the muzzle velocity for a +P 110 .38 by about 100 fps, and increase flash and blast.

Not sure what the older gentlemen mean by "soft lead." Usually the softest lead out there in commercial bullets was thought to be the standard-pressure Nyclad (the nylon coating was meant to reduce barrel leading from the soft lead). But I understand that the +P loading used a harder alloy (this is old info, from Marshall and Sanow's Handgun Stopping Power book).

Deanimator
July 15, 2011, 11:27 AM
I have the Federal "FBI" load in all of my .38 and .357 revolvers. It's accurate and controllable. As stated by others, the "FBI" load has a good reputation for stops.

joeq
July 15, 2011, 11:28 AM
A soft lead bullet at high velocitys will lead your barrel. Just stick with jacketed bullets if you want a big bang out of your gun. Just be sure you are proficient shooting hot loads out of your SD gun. chris3

Buffalo Bore's LSWCHP is gas checked. I have had no leading at all.

doc540
July 15, 2011, 11:30 AM
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v334/doc540/Guns/Ammunition/DSCN4019-1.jpg

they expand out of a .38 snub

klutchless
July 15, 2011, 11:33 AM
His reference to soft lead was that of cast lead bullets in the semi wadcutter style.It is actually what I reload to shoot at the range.

Loosedhorse
July 15, 2011, 11:52 AM
Thanks.

I would hesitate to use non-HP .38 loads for defense, and would not plan to use hand-loaded ammo for that purpose. His mileage varies.

antiquus
July 15, 2011, 01:23 PM
Well there was about 100 years of data that said a 158gr .38 slug kills bad guys dead. I tend to agree with the old guy, they work fine.

Much more important than which bullet is placement of course. Also, penetration though barriers, arms, etc might be better with lead slugs or FMJ than with HP's. The .38 does not have a reputation of overpenetrating even with FMJ, unlike the more powerful rounds.

HP's are important to avoid overpenetration with 9mm, .357's, .40, all should be using HP's to reduce overpenetration. I know this forum thinks man-stopping is the reason for HP's wide use in law enforcement, but I think differently, I think it's the threat of lawsuits from bystanders that drives HP adoption. I also think gelatin is a very even and repeatable was to rank bullet capabilities, but a block of totally uniform ballistic gelatin is a damn sight different than any body.

klutchless
July 15, 2011, 03:01 PM
I went out today and did some backyard test and a soft cast 38 went through two 4x4 yard timbers at 15 yards . A second test proved it penitrated through two water jugs and stopped in the third.In contrast the critical defense went through both 4x4 and took a chunk the size of my fist out with it.the second shot went through two water jugs entering the third.the first two jugs had almost split in two when the bullet expanded.So they have the same penitration just one expands and one didn't.I'm making gelatin now to test.

mgmorden
July 15, 2011, 04:35 PM
I'm not too picky on my carry loads myself. I DO carry Hornady Critical Defense in my LCP at the moment, but have carried FMJ in that gun plenty of times. My home defense gun is my S&W Mod 64 which has some 158gr LSWC handloads in it because, well, that's what I have on hand right now.

To me, for the most part, a bullet is a bullet. As long as they're accurate and reliable in the gun I don't get too caught up in name brands or "premium" bullets.

Steve C
July 15, 2011, 04:44 PM
From a short barrel the .38 spl is a marginalized cartridge. You can only do so much with a bullet when velocity is reduced. Even soft lead hollow points only offer a relatively small improvement. The Hornady critical defense solves the problem with the HP's clogging from clothing but from a 2" barrel the velocity will still be an issue.

Regardless of whether the bullet expands or not it is still deadly. If one round doesn't do it you have 4 more to try again with.

Video's shooting through 4 layers of denim may simulate winter wear in some areas of the country but in warm areas a single layer of T shirt would be more appropriate.

Ogie
July 15, 2011, 06:17 PM
I carry Remington 158 gr. +P LHPSWC in my S&W 642. In my Bianchi speedloader I carry Speer Gold Dot 135 gr. +P hollowpoints.

I am much more likely though to be carrying a Glock 19 with 16 rounds of Speer Gold Dot 124 gr. +P rounds in it.

David E
July 15, 2011, 10:15 PM
That random old man was talking thru his hat.

Placement rules, but expansion and penetration are very important as well.

Expecting a solid, but "soft" lead bullet to expand in softer flesh is naively optimistic.

GCBurner
July 15, 2011, 10:40 PM
Free unsolicited advice from random strangers is worth what you paid for it.
Like this.

klutchless
July 15, 2011, 10:43 PM
While free info is not always the best I would not like to pay for it with my life.

zxcvbob
July 15, 2011, 10:46 PM
There are many old wood choppers out there who'll tell you a chainsaw won't do the job of a sharp axe.

Then when you actually fire it up it confuses the heck out of them.

"What's that noise?"

Ogie
July 15, 2011, 10:51 PM
Quote:

"Placement rules, but expansion and penetration are very important as well.

Expecting a solid, but "soft" lead bullet to expand in softer flesh is foolish."


Penetration is more important than expansion.

Expecting a hollow point in a .38 snubby to expand reliably in softer flesh is also foolish.

Loosedhorse
July 15, 2011, 10:59 PM
Seems like we've gone from discussing bullets to calling folks fools.

klutchless
July 16, 2011, 12:07 AM
OGIE
[penetration is more important than expansion]I would have to disagree with you on that one .If that were entirely true why wouldn't everyone carry fmj instead of hp in any gun.I agree shot placement is key but having the ability to create a half inch wound channel with hp is a extreme advantage over being able to shoot through a brick wall at 30 feet.

Ogie
July 16, 2011, 12:33 AM
Quote:

"OGIE
[penetration is more important than expansion]I would have to disagree with you on that one .If that were entirely true why wouldn't everyone carry fmj instead of hp in any gun.I agree shot placement is key but having the ability to create a half inch wound channel with hp is a extreme advantage over being able to shoot through a brick wall at 30 feet."

I agree to a poiint. However, carrying a 2" snubby does not allow for reliable expansion. Penetration with the 158 gr. +P load I mentioned is about 18 inches. That will make up for the fact that you may not get expansion OR sufficient penetration out of a hollow point load.

The reason that it is not as much of an issue with pistols that have longer barrels chambered in 9mm and higher is because expansion does become more reliable so that you have expansion and sufficient penetration.

Personally I prefer my Glock 19 with 124 gr. +P or one of my .45s to the .38 special loads. However, if I am carrying my S&W 642 I prefer certain penetration over possible expansion.

David E
July 16, 2011, 12:38 AM
Why?

I like to get both!

As with any hollowpoint, there's a chance it won't expand. But it has a much higher chance of expanding than any solid bullet. If it doesn't expand, it'll perform like a solid, so what are you losing to the non-expanding solid?

If it does expand, then, ideally, all of the available energy is dumped into the target. As long as there is also adequate penetration (almost 100% guaranteed with modern loads in plausible situations) then even better.

klutchless
July 16, 2011, 12:51 AM
Kind of like a 9mm might not expand but a 45 will never shrink.

David E
July 16, 2011, 12:56 AM
Kind of like a 9mm might not expand but a 45 will never shrink.

Except that we are talking about two bullet styles of the same caliber.

In which case, you have one that will NOT expand vs one that very probably will.

Ogie
July 16, 2011, 01:40 AM
Apparently, very few .38 Special rounds do expand reliably through denim, the Speer Gold Dot 135 gr. +P apparently being the exception. Through 4 layers of denim ther results are:

4-layer denim 13.6" penetration 0.53" expansion 134.1gr recovered weight

I'll stick with my opinion and we can agree to disagree.

http://ammo.ar15.com/project/Misc_Images/DocGKR/38_Sp_BUG_load_sample.jpg

David E
July 16, 2011, 02:48 AM
Obviously, not all hollowpoints are created equal. Choose wisely.

Four layers of denim is pointless, since many who carry a .38 snub do so in the hot summer months. Not too many badguys wear four layers of denim when it's over 100 degrees.

But the argument seems to be choosing a "soft" lead bullet, expecting it'll expand more consistently than a properly selected HP. Show us the gelatin pics (or post-mortem pics) that back that up, please.

Or that a properly selected HP won't have enough penetration for plausible real life encounters. Sure it does, expanded or not.

If solid bullets were just as effective as HP's, then why do 99.99% of law enforcement agencies issue HP's?

Ogie
July 16, 2011, 03:29 AM
Quote:

"Obviously, not all hollowpoints are created equal. Choose wisely.

Four layers of denim is pointless, since many who carry a .38 snub do so in the hot summer months. Not too many badguys wear four layers of denim when it's over 100 degrees.

But the argument seems to be choosing a "soft" lead bullet, expecting it'll expand more consistently than a properly selected HP. Show us the gelatin pics (or post-mortem pics) that back that up, please.

Or that a properly selected HP won't have enough penetration for plausible real life encounters. Sure it does, expanded or not.

If solid bullets were just as effective as HP's, then why do 99.99% of law enforcement agencies issue HP's?"

You are either just being argumentative to be argumentative or you just don't get it.

Testing in denim is a standard protocol regardless of the temperature that day.

The load I suggested does not expand well, but it does penetrate very well. You must have missed that point, so no, I can't show where it would expand better than a hollow point. That wasn't the point.

And now it has to be " a properly selected HP"? :confused:

Are you not understanding that I am referring to a snub nose revolver in .38 Special? One with a barrel length of two inches or less? Perhaps you could list the LE agencies that use HPs in their standard issue snub nose revolvers.:rolleyes:

At any rate, we will agree to disagree. I don't think there is much else to be said on this issue by me. Have a good night!

David E
July 16, 2011, 04:04 AM
You said that already, yet......

The protocol is what it is, it just doesn't apply well to all scenarios ....... like on 100 degree days. It's a standard protocol and as such, it can be scrutinized with simple common sense. :rolleyes:

Does anyone think that 13+ inches of penetration of a fully expanded .38 is inadequate for typical SD scenarios?

Over penetration can be worse than under penetration with that whole "hitting an innocent bystander" thing.

I don't know of a single LE agency that issues non HP ammo for standard duty use, regardless of the handgun. If you do, please cite one.

You missed the point that the "random old man" is the one that postulated "soft" lead bullets would expand in softer flesh and would do so more reliably than any HP. That's simply not true.

mrvco
July 16, 2011, 04:54 PM
Here's another "random old man" who says it works. ;)
This must be the same "random old man" who told me:

1) .32 ACP won't penetrate a pair of overalls.

and

2) the .357 Magnum is a "borderline" man-stopper.

Funny how that guy gets around :p

Water-Man
July 16, 2011, 05:20 PM
mrvco...what's really funny is that you believed him. :eek:

c1ogden
July 16, 2011, 06:58 PM
"He may be talking about the old Federal 9BP load (if my memory works a little bit), which was a 158gr semi hollow point lead bullet."


The load you're thinking of is the 38G, a 158gr lead semi-wadcutter hollow point +P load. It was, and still is, a very good load. It is what I carry most frequently in my 38/357s.

The 38H and 38C use the same bullet but in a solid nose (non HP) design. The C is a standard load and the H is +P.

mrbro
July 16, 2011, 09:18 PM
This horse just won't stay down.

Penetration is what you have to have. Expansion is nice if you can get it. Paying for expansion with penetration is not recommended, but hey, you load yours your way and I'll load mine my way.

woad_yurt
July 17, 2011, 10:04 AM
Expecting a solid, but "soft" lead bullet to expand in softer flesh is naively optimistic.

What normal target isn't softer than any bullet? Bullets can deform by being shot into water alone. On Mythbusters, .223 rounds were falling apart upon impact with water.

The reasoning quoted above doesn't hold up.

mrvco
July 17, 2011, 02:22 PM
mrvco...what's really funny is that you believed him. :eek:
The sacrificial pair of overalls didn't fit anyway :p

David E
July 18, 2011, 12:54 AM
Yes, fmj .223's fired from 10 feet away disintegrate in water....

But most .38 Special snubnose guns do not launch a projectile of any weight, much less one that's 158 grains, at 3250 feet per second, so the comparison is ludicrous. If yours does, then it's a keeper!

easyg
July 18, 2011, 01:18 PM
I told him Hornady critical defense.His response was it was a waste of money and that a soft lead bullet loaded in the +p range was just as effective and that I shouldn't get caught in such trends.
You should have asked him....

"How many people have you shot with soft lead .38+P rounds, and how many people have you shot with Hornady Critical Defense rounds?"


Unless he has shot folks with both rounds then he's just speculating.

Cop Bob
July 18, 2011, 06:17 PM
There was an old FBI load that was made by several manufacturers, one being Federal, another Winchester, and Smith & Wesson marketed it as well, I still have a few boxes of all of them,,, The S&W was a Nyclad plated bullet, All were made with VERY soft lead, and a huge hollow point punched into them.. They were very good rounds, opened very well and were good accurate rounds. I know we shot some WW off a machine rest and they printed very well, as good as some match HB Wadcutters. Not much recoil at all, muzzle blast was nominal...

I wish it was still available... Maybe not the greatest ammo ever made, but some pretty good stuff... But then again, greatness is subjective..

Creature
July 18, 2011, 06:28 PM
I carry Buffalo Bores 158 grain LSWCHP +P load
That's what I carry.

As do I.

Remllez
July 19, 2011, 10:29 AM
I use a variation of the jacketed round...semi jacketed hollow point standard pressure at around 800 fps. Mag-Tech catalog number 38-E 158 grain. Unscientific test shows modest expansion in water jugs at 10 feet out of my J-Frame.

They are nothing fancy to be sure, but affordable so I practice with them and use them for self defense. I feel they are a compromise between a full jacket and a full lead slug.
I hand loaded full wadcutters and carried them for many years and never felt underpowered but my equipment has long since migrated to one of my sons houses.

.38 specials at self defense ranges have ended many altercations in their history and were carried by PD and FBI for many years. It's hard to argue they are a marginal cartridge when they were carried and used by those departments.

I agree with those about shot placement instead of relying on marginal hits with whatever $2.00 a round wonder pill is en vogue at the time. Placement is more likely to end an altercation there's just no denying it.

doc540
July 19, 2011, 10:56 AM
Currently we have the option of combining shot placement with improved bullet technology.

win/win

wlewisiii
July 20, 2011, 01:41 AM
Another vote for the Buffalo Bore 158 gr LSWCHP +P. My carry is a 4" Model 64.

camar
July 20, 2011, 11:09 PM
I use 173gr. LSWC in my loads for .38 Spl., .38 Spl. +P and .357 mag. I look the size of the meplate for my stopping power.

.45FMJoe
July 20, 2011, 11:28 PM
Hornaday Critical Defense has suck engineered right into it, they purposefully try to get less penetration out of the bullet.

Penetration to disrupt the central nervous system or to cause enough tissue damage to facilitate rapid blood loss is the only thing that reliably stops an attacker. To intentionally try to get less penetration is stupid.

.45FMJoe
July 20, 2011, 11:39 PM
Well there was about 100 years of data that said a 158gr .38 slug kills bad guys dead. I tend to agree with the old guy, they work fine.

Much more important than which bullet is placement of course. Also, penetration though barriers, arms, etc might be better with lead slugs or FMJ than with HP's. The .38 does not have a reputation of overpenetrating even with FMJ, unlike the more powerful rounds.

HP's are important to avoid overpenetration with 9mm, .357's, .40, all should be using HP's to reduce overpenetration. I know this forum thinks man-stopping is the reason for HP's wide use in law enforcement, but I think differently, I think it's the threat of lawsuits from bystanders that drives HP adoption. I also think gelatin is a very even and repeatable was to rank bullet capabilities, but a block of totally uniform ballistic gelatin is a damn sight different than any body.
No, Platt and Matix murdered and maimed multiple FBI agents during the infamous Miami Shootout because LSWCHP didn't work. Matix was struck in the head and neck with two rounds of the "FBI Load" +P issued ammuntion and was able to eventually get back into the fight.

I just figured I would point that out.

In my snub nosed .38s I carry Speer Gold Dot 135 gr hollow points that were designed for 2" barrels. Doc Roberts says they perform beautifully in testing.

Oh, and I forgot to add. Your assumption is completely wrong. We are issued ammunition that expands to create enough tissue damage to facilitate the rapid incapacitation of an assailant. PERIOD. We're responsible for every round fired. The ones that miss are as much of a liability as ones that pass through a person.

HammerheadSSN663
July 21, 2011, 12:44 AM
I keep hearing all this talk about 'threat of lawsuits' due to over penetration. Frankly, I don't give a rip about any impending lawsuits or shooting an innocent bystander when MY life, and/or my children's father's life is on the line. I'm using whatever I happen to prefer in a defensive round. The overpenetration lawsuit thing seems to always assume one going to get a center mass shot every time. Really? So why aren't you worried about that semi-wad cutter or HP going through that bicep or grazing that thigh and hitting somebody? Why are those same 'over penetration' posters also the same one consumed with the latest and greatest manstopper on the market? How can such great manstoppers be gauranteed that they won't over penetrate or deliver a glancing blow and go on to injure a bystander? That's right, because we must master 'controlled shooting'. Like,..... at the range? Give me a break. Only the most seasoned and disciplined with perhaps decades of experience can handle a real firefight situation which does NOT apply to 99.99% of gun owners (including military and police). So what am i supposed to do? Call timeout and ask everyone to stand back in case they get accidently hit? If anyone is that worried or has time to sit and think about a lawsuit from hitting a bystander in a TOTALLY chaotic situation, one shouldn't be carrying in the first place. It not my fault, its the criminal's and he/she should be held responsible for the situstion - NOT ME! And don't chime in about why the police went from .308 to .223 - we know that reason a million times already (controlled shots).

Real world situations do not match firefights dreamed up behind a keyboard.

For me, I'm packing the most destructive defensive round I can carry (Ranger Ts or HST). If a lawsuit comes, I accept that for defending MY life, MY family's life - its the cost of the situation.

Until someone can guarantee that a HP is not going to overpenetrate and you can gaurantee a center mass hit everytime, its just words to make that person feel somehow superior to the rest of us dolts.

MikeNice
July 21, 2011, 02:37 AM
No, Platt and Matix murdered and maimed multiple FBI agents during the infamous Miami Shootout because LSWCHP didn't work. Matix was struck in the head and neck with two rounds of the "FBI Load" +P issued ammuntion and was able to eventually get back into the fight.


There have been several "studies" of the shootout. According to Dr. Anderson's reporting on Matix's first head wound.

The bullet hit Matix just forward of his right ear, below the temple, shattered the cheek bone, hit and fractured the base of the cranium, and entered the right sinus cavity under the eye. This hit bruised the brain (but did not penetrate the cranium or brain)... it most probably knocked Matix instantly unconscious.


That would be more than enough in a self defense shooting. The shot would have been non fatal even if it hadn't richocheted.

The second shot was also a shot that would not have been fatal if it followed a staight trajectory. What happened was much better for the agents.

The bullet entered the right side of his neck after he slumped unconscious momentarily forward against the driver’s side door. It penetrated his neck at a downward angle and severed the blood vessels behind the collar bone, ricocheted off the first rib near the spine and came to rest in the chest cavity. It bruised but did not penetrate the right lung. This wound interrupted the blood supply to his right arm and might have also disrupted the brachial plexus to cause dysfunction of the nerves that supply the arm. Dr. Anderson speculates that Matix’s right arm was probably paralyzed by this injury, either immediately by disruption of the nerves or eventually by total loss of blood circulation to the arm. Dr. Anderson feels this wound would have ultimately been fatal, due to the severed blood vessels. Bleeding from this injury during the next 2-3 minutes caused almost a liter of blood to accumulate in the chest cavity. However, for the next minute, it is believed that Matix slumped over onto his back and lay unconscious on the front seat of the Monte Carlo.


Matix never fired another shot during the event. Even after he woke up he was unable to continue fighting. He crawled in to one of the cop's car with Platt hoping to get away. He was completely incapable of fighting any more.

That is all that is required in any defensive shooting. If Platt was removed from the scenario it would have ended right then.

The third shot that hit Matix fragmented on the pillar of the car.

The projectile fragmented in two; the largest embedded in the bone beside the nose, a smaller fragment penetrating the left sinus cavity. According to Dr. Anderson, this wound was not significant, and probably was inflicted as Matix was looking at the approaching Mireles. The size and weight of the two fragments suggests the bullet probably hit the driver’s side window frame before it hit Matix.


The fourth shot that his Matix definitely took him completely out of the fight.

The bullet hit Matix’s face just outside the lower right edge of the right eye socket, at about seven o-clock. The bullet traveled downward through the facial bones, through the right side of the lower jaw, into the neck, and entered the spinal column between cervical vertebra number 7 (C7) and thoracic vertebra number 1 (T1) where it severed the spinal cord at the base of T1.


The "FBI Load" held it's own that day. When it struck true it did exactly what it was supposed to. It caused serious wounds that kept one man completely out of the fight. It was a shot with the "FBI load" that finally ended the fight for Platt. It hit his spine and bruised it causing paralysis.

There were a lot of failures that day. The .38spl+p load was not one of the failures.

All of the quotes regarding Anderson's work come from Firearms Tactical Institute.
http://www.firearmstactical.com/briefs7.htm

easyg
July 21, 2011, 11:33 AM
Penetration to disrupt the central nervous system or to cause enough tissue damage to facilitate rapid blood loss is the only thing that reliably stops an attacker. To intentionally try to get less penetration is stupid.
Not true.

Yes, we want enough penetration to reach vital organs, but over-penetration (penetration well beyond those vital organs and out the back of the target) serves no purpose whatsoever except to threaten those who are not the intended target.


If penetration were all that matters then neither hollow-points nor soft-lead tips would be desired.
Full metal jacket penetrates plenty.
Too much in fact.
And despite the penetrating ability of FMJ rounds, they're typically less effective at quickly stopping humans than the less penetrating hollow-point rounds.

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