Heavier or faster?


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G29
September 16, 2011, 04:46 PM
Heavier or faster?

looking at some ammo options. Im considering a 10mm 200gr 1180fps Hornady XTP vs 10mm 180gr 1325fps Hornady XTP.


Does the 180 gr have an advantage at a higher FPS coming in at 701ftlbs vs the 200 gr coming in at 620ftlbs?

Which one is better for SD?
Which would be better for a trail round?

could use some advise

thx

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JShirley
September 16, 2011, 04:49 PM
Historically, heavier handgun rounds tend to penetrate more deeply, while lighter ones tend to have much more dramatic expansion and/or fragmentation and shallower penetration. Absent testing or testing data, I would go for the lighter of the two for SD, and the heavier bullet for "trail use" (if by that you mean potential large dangerous animals like black bears).

J

MachIVshooter
September 16, 2011, 11:32 PM
Historically, heavier handgun rounds tend to penetrate more deeply, while lighter ones tend to have much more dramatic expansion and/or fragmentation and shallower penetration. Absent testing or testing data, I would go for the lighter of the two for SD, and the heavier bullet for "trail use" (if by that you mean potential large dangerous animals like black bears).

This.

However, 180's generally perform quite well at 10mm velocities, acheiving good penetration and expansion. With the XTP, I would wager that the 180 will penetrate at least as deep.

The real penetrators in 10mm are the 220 or 230 Gr. WFNGC hardcast from BB or DT.

Steve C
September 17, 2011, 01:39 AM
Lighter for people, deer sized game and smaller. Heavier for larger game and bear. Either will work if that's only what you have in time of need.

JERRY
September 17, 2011, 01:46 AM
since youre not handloading those rounds, expect the velocities to fall quite a bit short of box flap claims. save for a very select few ammo makers who actually make real 10mm ammo.

Prosser
September 17, 2011, 02:40 AM
I'd do a search for tests of these rounds, out of a gun like a G29, and see how they work.

Another choice would be looking at the real 10mm ammo expert, Doubletap/Mike
and see what he's loading.

Odd, but I think doubletap uses a G29 for testing.

If there is one thing I've learned, find specific tests when you are looking for 'magic' SD rounds...

My position is that unless you have specific tests, runs the potential for penetration channel with unexpanded bullets, using a penetration channel calculator, and go from there. After a certain point, with handgun rounds, you don't gain much/point of diminishing returns, in wound channel from adding velocity. The XTP's I've used are pretty tough, and designed for deep penetration. The rounds you ask about are really intresting, since you are taking heavy bullets for caliber, with a tough hollowpoint, and pushing them.

I would think, given a rural situation, they are an excellent choice, if they expand or not. Given that 1350 seems to even get LFN's to expand, the faster bullet might ensure if not expansion, at least a bigger wound channel, and expansion by deformation, if the HP fails....

I use XTP's. 1350 fps out of my gun, .475 caliber, and 400 grains. Kind of solves any problem you might have;)

That's exactly what Hornady says they should do, and they are factory rounds. FA83, custom Douglas bull barrel, by Jack Huntington..Custom, hand fitted conversion to .475 by Jack Huntington. 7.5" barrel. Pretty much flatten hogs and deer...

Loosedhorse
September 17, 2011, 06:25 AM
Offered as a perspective:

Outside of heavy coat time here, my prefered SD 10mm load is a 135gr JHP. I've picked up some 125gr recently...might switch to it if I like it.

So I would consider both of your mentioned loads as "heavy loads." (I do have 200gr FMJFPs "for black bear," and I think either XTP would work well for whitetails). If you're using the Glock factory barrel, I'd avoid hardcast rounds.

1911Tuner
September 17, 2011, 10:37 AM
Guess I'm one of the odd men out on this question.

I prefer bullet mass to speed, for several reasons...not the least of which is blast and recoil. IMO, far too much is made of the velocity/energy debate, and I'm much more concerned with missing than with overpenetration.

Many years ago, the British figured out the stopping power question.

"Heavy ball, light charge."

It worked well in 1750 and it still does.

Oxide
September 17, 2011, 11:35 AM
Also, it is legally recommended to not use handloaded ammo for self defense. Anything the prosecution can use to paint you as nuts, they will, and that includes super lethal hand tailored cop killer armor piercing exploding rounds that they will say yours are.

If any police around are using 10mm, use what they use. Or the 10mm equivalent, that way you can say "I looked up what the police use and used that."

MachIVshooter
September 17, 2011, 11:54 AM
Guess I'm one of the odd men out on this question

I wouldn't say that.

I, too, generally prefer the heavier bullets. But I also believe there is a happy medium. For SD, we really don't need to penetrate more than ~15", so a heavier bullet that will go further really doesn't help. And because the heavier bullet is expending more energy penetrating than expanding, it will, theoretically, do less damage in the first 12-15" than the lighter, faster bullet producing the same amount of energy.

So, IMO, the way to shop for a handgun bullet for SD is to find one that will have used up it's energy and stopped with good expansion and having reached 12"-15" penetration.

Let's stick with our 10mm loads. If choosing between:

135 gr. @ 1,600 FPS for 768 ft/lbs. penetrates 10"

180 gr. @ 1,350 FPS for 729 ft/lbs. penetrates 14"

220 gr. @ 1150 FPS for 646 ft/lbs., penetrates 20"

I would go with the 180 gr. load. Sure, the 135 is going to have more violent upset and the greater energy translates to an ability to cause more damage, but 10" is already below the accepted minimum of 12", and may become only 7" or 8" if heavy clothing is involved.

Similarly, the 220 gr. load is most likely to overpenetrate the target, and energy that is not used up expanding the bullet and penetrating the target is wasted.

The 180 gr., in this case, provides a happy medium of penetration and expansion.

ms6852
September 17, 2011, 12:03 PM
As an individual that is using this particular round for self defense I would have to use the lighter round. Because it is traveling at a faster velocity most of its energy will be transferred upon impact of the target. The penetration may not be there but the hydrostatic shock is. In a self defense scenario it is very likely that innocent bystanders may get shot by the slower and heavier bullet because it will go through the attacker whereas the lighter bullet will remain inside the attacker and the hydrostatic shock will render the attacker useless.

Loosedhorse
September 17, 2011, 12:10 PM
10" is already below the accepted minimum of 12", and may become only 7" or 8" if heavy clothing is involved.True...but it also may experience delayed or absent expansion after clothing, and penetrate deeper.

I'll ask because I don't know: do those 4-layer denim tests usually cause HPs to penetrate less, or more? It seems to me that in most cases, I hear the denim prevents expansion, and causes greater penetration.

Deaf Smith
September 17, 2011, 12:12 PM
If you can... get both.

Heavier AND faster!

Deaf

CraigC
September 17, 2011, 12:31 PM
180gr for self defense, 200gr for trail use. I'm looking forward to trying both the 180gr Gold Dot and 200gr XTP on deer this season.


A lighter round going more quickly might have more energy, but it is also more liable to waste energy by bursting out the other side of the target.
There is nothing 'wasted' about an exit wound. Shooters would get to a much higher level of understanding if they look beyond silly energy figures.

MachIVshooter
September 17, 2011, 04:18 PM
True...but it also may experience delayed or absent expansion after clothing, and penetrate deeper.

I'll ask because I don't know: do those 4-layer denim tests usually cause HPs to penetrate less, or more? It seems to me that in most cases, I hear the denim prevents expansion, and causes greater penetration.

Yes, that is often the case. I've found it in my own testing, too.

However, I also found that some bullets I fired through thin leather and a couple layers of cotton fabric (to simulate a leather jacket, shirt and undershirt) both failed to expand and got less penetration than the same bullet fired against a bare block of clay. It appeared that they may have upset and tumbled from the initial barrier.


As an individual that is using this particular round for self defense I would have to use the lighter round. Because it is traveling at a faster velocity most of its energy will be transferred upon impact of the target. The penetration may not be there but the hydrostatic shock is. In a self defense scenario it is very likely that innocent bystanders may get shot by the slower and heavier bullet because it will go through the attacker whereas the lighter bullet will remain inside the attacker and the hydrostatic shock will render the attacker useless.

I see we have a Courtney disciple.

You might visit the other thread we have going about hydrostatic shock and read a bit. It seems that even though there is evidence of ballistic thoracic trauma causing remote cerebrovascular damage on a small scale, to say the least it remains very contested that it is a consistent and reliable wounding or incapacitation mechanism. And that was with rifle bullets; A service caliber handgun bullet (10mm included) will not cause nearly the shockwave that a high velocity rifle round will.

It's also said by Courtney himself that the bullet must pass close enough to a major vessel to cause this pressure wave. If you don't get adequate penetration, you can't get near the major arteries he cites as propogating this ballistic pressure wave. Therefore, even if you subscribe to this theory, you still have to recognize the need for penetration.

Expecting to be presented with an ideal target in a SD situation is unrealistic. You have to consider such possibilities as the bullet you fire may first need to pass through an arm before entering the chest. So it will not only have the flesh to contend with, but potentially 3 times however many layers of clothing the person is wearing.

All of these things factored into the FBI's 12" minimum penetration figure.

G29
September 17, 2011, 04:46 PM
Good info guys, you've given me alot to conisider. I am now leaning towards the the 180gr... ill have to test both

Loosedhorse
September 17, 2011, 06:47 PM
I see we have a Courtney disciple...

...Therefore, even if you subscribe to this theory, you still have to recognize the need for penetration.Sure. The Courtneys say penetration first, too.

However, they are not FBI "disciples" (as long as we're throwing around the term disciple, perhaps to mean unthinking, uncritical faithful?). If you decide that 10 (or 9.5) inches is adequate, you may have good company. And some of the newest projectiles (like the Barnes all-copper X-bullets) seem to do great in both expansion/energy dump AND penetration (because of minimal weight loss), as well as resisting plugging of the HP cavity by either denim or bone simulant.

MachIVshooter
September 17, 2011, 10:05 PM
(as long as we're throwing around the term disciple, perhaps to mean unthinking, uncritical faithful?)

More like the Websters definition:

One who accepts and assists in spreading the doctrines of another

Insult is neither made or implied.

And some of the newest projectiles (like the Barnes all-copper X-bullets) seem to do great in both expansion/energy dump AND penetration

Yes, they do. As do Gold dots, Golden Sabres and a host of others so long as they're loaded within their design parameters.

And on that note, this is the problem with some of these light/fast loads: They're too fast for the bullets. The X-bullet, of course, is light because it contains no lead. But it has been my personal experience and that of others that grossly exceeding the velocity window of a bullet has a definite negative aspect for penetration.

Like I said before, there is a happy medium, and though I don't subscribe to the hydrostatic shock theory, the parameters of the Fackler school of thought end up giving us the same thing:

If you subscribe to hydrostatic shock as the wounding mechanism, You want to drive the bullet deep enough, and use the rest of it's energy to expand it and destroy tissue

If you subscribe to maximum crush cavity as the wounding mechanism, You want to drive the bullet deep enough, and use the rest of it's energy to expand it and destroy tissue

mokin
September 17, 2011, 10:17 PM
Personally, I like the 180 grain rounds.

Expect the real life velocities to be lower than what is advertised.

For self defense I think either round would be sufficient - provided you can put the bullet on target.

snakeman
September 17, 2011, 10:57 PM
I would just shoot whatever my gun likes the best. Since handguns of this nature have mostly low recoil anyway I would just assume pick the most accurate of the two for my gun. That accuracy provides a boost in confidence and therefore less of a chance of missing due to nerves. It's just one thing less to worry about.

orionengnr
September 17, 2011, 11:27 PM
I am not in the league of some here, but I'll throw in my .02 worth.

I shoot .45 acp and 10mm, along with a few others, and handload for each.
I tend to go with the bullet weight that the round was designed for.
In the .45 acp, that would be 230 gr.
In the 10mm, that would be 180 gr.
Absent some extremely compelling evidence to the contrary, I would (and will) stick with a well designed bullet in the 180 gr weight.

MachIVshooter
September 17, 2011, 11:48 PM
I tend to go with the bullet weight that the round was designed for. In the .45 acp, that would be 230 gr. In the 10mm, that would be 180 gr.

It was actually a 200 grain bullet at 1,200 FPS in the beginning.

That said, I agree that 180 is the current "standard"

ArchAngelCD
September 18, 2011, 02:12 AM
How about using a heavier bullet in a round with more velocity? Double Tap makes a 200gr Hard Case 10mm (http://www.doubletapammo.com/php/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=21_25&products_id=105) round that does 1300 fps from a Glock 20. That produces 750 ft/lbs of energy and give you more mass too. If you don't want to carry a hard cast round they also make a 200gr Nosler JHP (http://www.doubletapammo.com/php/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=21_25&products_id=40) round too.

With that ammo you don't have to choose between velocity and mass, you get both...

JERRY
September 18, 2011, 02:25 AM
DT doesnt make ammo like they use to. it falls about 150 fps slower in real life than what they claim on the box flap. theyve been outed on youtube now for a while.

whatever DT did, they did it good. what they do now is another story.

Loosedhorse
September 18, 2011, 05:51 PM
I tend to go with the bullet weight that the round was designed for.
In the .45 acp, that would be 230 gr.
In the 10mm, that would be 180 gr.As MachIVshooter says, the "original" 10mm load from Norma was a 200gr bullet (but they also had a 170). I think the FBI introduced the 180 in its 10mm "Lite." So those who like the Lite load might want to use that 180 at 980 fps (or just buy a .40)--that's the "standard 10" loaded by many ammo companies.

But the load that the round was "designed for" was 200 gr at 1200fps; and Cooper's original idea was a 200 at 1000fps.

But I'm not sure any of that matters. The load the .357 Magnum was designed for was a 158 gr semi-wadcutter; I don't think this is the .357 load that most of us would choose for self-defense. So, the "load the round was designed for" may be a bad reason to choose a bullet weight. I sure think so.

gofastman
September 18, 2011, 06:03 PM
I think the 180gr XTP moving along really quick is about the perfect SD load for the 10mm, at least at a reasonable price.

180 gr. @ 1,350 FPS for 729 ft/lbs. penetrates 14"

220 gr. @ 1150 FPS for 646 ft/lbs., penetrates 20"

I think you'd get a bit more penetration out of the XTP's than that.

Id throw out:
180gr = 18" of bare gel
200gr = 22" of bare gel

G29
September 18, 2011, 10:07 PM
I appreciate the responses!

Tallinar
September 19, 2011, 02:05 PM
I haven't done a lot of research on the matter, but I am a little surprised to see so many folks advocating the lighter, faster bullet for SD.

It's my understanding that the original .45 ACP loading of a 230gr bullet at around 800-850 fps seems to have performed well - or the blackpowder loading of a 255gr bullet around 950 fps in .45 Colt for that matter. Seems to me that as long as you're not using FMJ, you would be fine at those weights/speeds as far as over-penetration is concerned.

I guess I haven't encountered much reading about over-penetration being an observed issue with 230-250gr bullets at less than 1000fps. If anyone could direct me to some good literature involving this, I would appreciate it.

Loosedhorse
September 19, 2011, 03:11 PM
Back when the .45 Colt was state of the art, we didn't hear a lot about overpenetration, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen. The tests I've seen routinely list about 18" of gel penetration for nonexpanding .45 Colt rounds going about 900fps.

The 10mm lite (and the .40 that came from it) is a good round. If you want to make it better, you can increase the speed (and increase your recoil), or increase your speed AND decrease your bullet weight. A 135 at 1300 fps should recoil about the same as a 180 at 980.

The 155 gr (157, actually) 10mm has about the same sectional density as the 125 gr .357, so going that light (at least) shouldn't be a problem for SD. And with newer bullet techologies (like all-copper HPs that don't shed weight), you can achieve the same depth of penetration of conventional HPs while using a lighter bullet that still expands fully.

Then the only questions that remain are how much penetration is enough/too much; how much recoil is enough/too much; and how much cost is enough/too much.

ATLDave
September 19, 2011, 04:17 PM
Another way to think about this is that the heavier bullet will have a higher sectional density. That will mean that it penetrates more. As others have noted, how much penetration you want will depend on what the circumstances are.

For home defense, or urban/suburban civilian carry, in a relatively warm climate, I'd tend towards relatively light and fast. That way, you get very reliable expansion, but little risk of shoot-through, and you have a chance of a barrier taking enough out of a missed shot to save some third party's life. The chances are better than even that, if a bullet from my gun hits a car door, I want the bullet to not perform well on the other side. I'm not supposed to be out hunting down trouble, only handling that trouble that's coming right at me. If I were a LEO, or lived in a very cold climate, or lived in the woods surrounded by bears or other large, dangerous animals, I'd probably move towards the heavier end of the spectrum.

In all fairness, a 10mm load at anything like full pressure ought to be plenty, regardless of how you've made your speed versus mass tradeoff. It can be on a different power band than the 9mm-.40-.45 spectrum. Remember that even a light&fast 10mm load (like a 155 gr.) is still heavier and bigger around than even the heaviest 9mm, and even a heavy 10mm is going to be faster than a .45 (and should therefore expand pretty well, perhaps even exceeding the .45 in final diameter).

winter1857
September 19, 2011, 07:00 PM
Physics: Velocity diminishes; mass is constant.

tipoc
September 19, 2011, 07:20 PM
The actual weight of the bullet is less a factor in penetration than is the type of bullet being shot. Meaning that bullet construction makes the dominant difference. A 180 gr. FMJ 45acp round will out penetrate a 230 gr. JHP in virtually every medium being fired into if the jhp expands as it should.

Select the bullet type that fits the job. elect the weight and velocity that you can handle well from the gun that you have chosen for that job.

tipoc

MachIVshooter
September 19, 2011, 10:34 PM
I haven't done a lot of research on the matter, but I am a little surprised to see so many folks advocating the lighter, faster bullet for SD.

Lighter and faster, but not really "light and fast"; 180 is just a good bullet weight for the 10mm in the 1,200-1,400 FPS range, providing excellent expansion and good penetration (12"-15").

Physics: Velocity diminishes; mass is constant.

And? No matter the bullet you choose, it is going to slow down. The greater momentum of heavier projectiles will tend to make them penetrate deeper all else being equal, but momentum still drops with velocity (Momentum=Mass*Velocity).

The point remains that 180's provide a good balance in this chambering. I say again, the ideal load is one that will penetrate adequately and use the rest of it's energy expanding the bullet.

Think of it this way:

If you're trying to make a fast 1/4 mile car, you want to balance your gear ratio with your torque and horsepower. You want to cross the line at the top of your power band in top gear. Gears are too tall, you get off the line slow and don't make good use of peak power in the last part of the run. Gears are too steep, you run out of RPM and are redlining the engine the last couple hundred feet, not accelerating thus losing ET. Bullet selection is no different; Too heavy, you overpenetrate and don't make the most of your available energy. Too light, it uses everything up too soon and fails to get to the vitals.

tipoc
September 19, 2011, 11:09 PM
Sometimes folks may think too much.

If we have two 10mm jhp bullets intended for self defense one at 180 gr.s and one at 200grs both going about as fast as you may want them to, they will both penetrate and expand to somewhere between 10-14 inches in 10% ballistic gelatin. Let's take a 10 mm jhp round at 220 gr.s and it also will penetrate to about 10-14". The velocity is irrelevant they will about all do it (there may be a couple that go deeper but mostly they will stay about the same).

No mystery here, it's just that since the late 1990s the FBI figured that that was the depth of penetration that they wanted in defensive ammo and the ammo manufacturers have worked hared to provide that across a variety of calibers.

tipoc

clang
September 20, 2011, 12:25 AM
I bet either one would ruin someone's day. Try them both out and see which one you shoot more accurately and quickly.

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