7.62x39 bullet types

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by rust collector, May 30, 2004.

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  1. rust collector
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    rust collector Moderator Staff Member

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    I've shot mostly Chinese FMJ through my Norinco SKS, and most of my shooting so far has been plinking and range work. I'm looking at picking up a case of Sapsan hollowpoints, and wondering about accuracy and effects on varmints such as coyote, fox and coon.

    I would appreciate the benefit of your experience if you've used 7.62x39 as a critter-gitter. Is softpoint or HP the way to go? And what about those silver bear rounds with the protuberance on the point?

    Thanks for the benefit of your observations.
     
  2. mondocomputerman

    mondocomputerman Member

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    The only thing I've ever used are wolf HP rounds. I do have a few fmj and a few plastic rounds, just haven't used them yet.
     
  3. Gary G23

    Gary G23 Member

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    Soft point is the way to go. Steel jacketed hollow points do not expand. In some rifles they cause feeding problems. The Silver Bear "nipple" ammo was not designed to expand, just to give better accuracy. I prefer Barnaul soft points or Silver Bear soft points.
     
  4. mondocomputerman

    mondocomputerman Member

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    I remember once I shot some steel jacketed hollow points in the mud and recovered them. They didn't expand, they were just a little squished.
     
  5. Splat Shot

    Splat Shot Member

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    Ditto on the soft points.
     
  6. yesterdaysyouth

    yesterdaysyouth Member

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    i've taken rabbit with 762x39 fmj, DRT... i wouldn't hesitate to use it on any varmint...

    i've used the soft point in .223 and 762 on deer, both made large holes and plowed right through....
     
  7. ny32182

    ny32182 Member

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    What sort of bullet was used in old Russian mil-spec 39?
     
  8. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

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    If I were serious about taking coyote-size game with any rifle in 7.62x39, I would probably consider Georgia Arms 125gr Ballistic Tips. If I were pinching pennies, I could settle on SPs.

    However, just for the record, Russian HPs do expand in many situations.
    As many already know, I shoot just about any JHP/JSP I can find (though usually in handgun calibers) into play dough. Why play dough? It's reusable, easy to use and yields quite similar results as ballistic gelatin in terms of penetration. I presume it's quite similar to ballistic gelatin in consistency. Last year, I conducted a test of Wolf HPs into play dough with interesting yet uniform results.

    Apparently in every test, the HP traveled forward for about 8 inches, yawed and began to travel backwards. As soon as the exposed lead base made contact with the play dough, the bullet expanded violently, tearing the jacket from the rear forward. In none of the tests did the HP expand in the traditional manner, but all did fragment to a degree in a most unconventional way.

    Bottom line, it appears to take a minimum amount of flesh to yield enough resistance and space for a 7.62x39 HP to become unstable and tumble into a backwards position before expansion can take place whereas SPs begin to expand immediately. I wouldn't count on a shot against a coyote that guarantees 8-9" of flesh before vitals.
    HPs may work well against humans, especially considering the many angles in which impact may take place, but it appears the only humane way to take coyote with current 7.62x39 offering are with SPs or Ballistic Tips.

    Typical results of a 7.62x39 HP against playdough
    [​IMG]
     
  9. rust collector
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    rust collector Moderator Staff Member

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    Yow, Snowdog, that looks nasty. I never would have suspected that the bullet would swap ends and open up bass ackwards. That means it acts like FMJ for small targets, and more like black talons for bigger stuff, eh?

    Thanks for the benefit of your research. I think I'll use HP for plinkin and SP on varmints.
     
  10. ny32182

    ny32182 Member

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    Hmm.... thanks for the info, Snowdog. My next question was going to be: how about Wolf 39 for shtf type stuff? It comes sealed in plastic, with sealant around the primer and bullet...

    I was just wondering how "mil-spec" it really is. I don't see why it wouldn't kill you just as dead as the next bullet, and your test seems to support that.

    How do you know that playdough is about the same viscosity as ballistic gelatin though? Also, I've just got to know... how much playdough did you have to buy to conduct those tests??
     
  11. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

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    Glad to help, Rust Collector. I believe that hollow cavity serves to destabilize the bullet more rapidly than an FMJ profile/design.
    I have yet to try 7.62x39 FMJ on play dough, but I'm confident the FMJ has the potential to tumble as well, just a bit further in. Due to this extra travel/deceleration, I doubt the upset would be as drastic.

    ttbadboy,

    I guessed :D
    Seriously though, I've found the depths of penetration I've encountered in my testing using play dough closely mirror those I read about in gun rags and books such as Street Stoppers who've tested using ballistic gelatin. If anything, my JHPs tend to penetrate just a tad less, perhaps an inch or so. The expanded diameters of various JHPs tend to mirror their findings as well.


    Around 70 pounds (that I added to some play dough I already had on hand and keep in two 5 gallon paint containers). I completely cleaned out a local Wal-Mart of their well-stocked play dough shelves. Even with a cart conspicuously full of both Play Do and a few generic brands, I didn't think of what to say if asked what my plans were with the stuff. Of course, I was asked... twice.
    The first reply was a shrug of shoulders followed by "I don't know". This really confused the inquiring fellow shopper, so I told the next to ask that I was was going to make a "giant play dough dog". That didn't seem to go over too well either.
    As you can see, you don't want me on your team if making excuses is an obligatory part of the game!

    Too bad I didn't know about the do-it-yourself recipe at the time; the play dough purchase cost a pretty penny.

    All told, I'm still happy I have it. It's been shot hundreds of times with various JHPs, rifle SP and HPs and a couple shotgun slugs. Still as good and fresh as the day I bought it, but perhaps with a greater lead content.
     
  12. DMK

    DMK Member

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    LOL! :D You didn't do too bad. I'd supect that "I'm testing terminal expansion of hollow point rifle bullets" wouldn't have gone over too well in Asheville either.
     
  13. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

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    In all reality, it was a Wal-mart closer to Asheville than Hendersonville (somewhere deep in Fletcher off 25).

    I was tempted to let the next person have it by telling them I was planning expansion testing on JHPs... but pretty much chickened out. Had I any guts, I would have said "I'm going to test terminal expansion of hollow point rifle bullets on a giant play dough dog". :D
     
  14. mondocomputerman

    mondocomputerman Member

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    "I'm going to test terminal expansion of hollow point rifle bullets on a giant play dough dog"

    -That's too funny!!! :)
     
  15. Sam Adams

    Sam Adams Member

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    Snowdog

    OK, what is the recipe?
     
  16. SteelyDan

    SteelyDan Member

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    Take this with a grain of salt.

    I've read three, and possibly four, "reviews" on common 7.62x39 cartridges, where a guy with a few AKs or SKSs tried to compare things like accuracy and penetration and wound channel. All of these experiments appeared to be well-intensioned but somewhat amateurish. I'm not dissing the experimenters; they probably did as good a job as I could do, but it just wasn't all that "scientific." Anyway, the interesting thing was that all of these "studies" rated the Barnaul soft-points at or near the top of the list in all categories.

    For what it's worth.
     
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