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A gel expert explains

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by labnoti, Oct 21, 2019.

  1. Shawn Dodson

    Shawn Dodson Member

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    Most people don't know how to interpret disruption observed on ordnance gelatin. Gelatin tears when the temporary cavity exceeds it's ability to stretch. It tears to relieve stress. These tears record the temporary cavity but are misinterpreted as permanent disruption.

    Properly prepared and calibrated 10% type 250A ordnance gelatin has been the standard soft tissue simulant for over 30 years. It has withstood all the criticism aimed at it by the misinformed/uninformed for all these years. Terminal performance and wounding effects in gelatin have been verified and validated against thousands of actual shootings.
     
  2. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    Okay, but reference to widely accepted, extensive scientific research should not be discounted.

    It is not based solely on terminal ballistic performance, to be sure, but it is based on performance.

    The oft-repeated comments about diversity and brawn are pure drivel. Anyone can shoot a 9mm more effectively than a .40. That's basic physics.

    And that's why Rob Pincus switched to 9MM some years ago.

    It never ceases to maze my how people will, from their experience in hunting (involving different species, different conditions, and different objectives) believe they know more than an entire group of expert forensic ballisticians with their extensive body of knowledge, when it comes to human use of force requirements.

    "Stopping power"? Really!
     
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  3. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    I find it equally amazing that people who use a highly-abstracted model/simulation (gel) that was backfit to the observations of people (surgeons) who were not even there to observe the immediate behavioral effects of gunshots think that the observations of hunters (i.e., those who have frequently shot live animals and have observed the immediate behavioral reactions) are irrelevant.

    Both groups have something of value to add to the discussion.
     
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  4. sequins

    sequins Member

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    9mm is good enough, that's all the FBI has claimed. 40 is also good enough.

    I went to the 44 mag example because when we hunt stopping power is exactly what we want. 9mm won't stop a deer in one shot, and it would be unethical to even try. In contrast even an unethical 44 mag shot will probably get a dirty buck, it certainly has a much better chance.

    9mm is indeed easier to shoot. I personally carry 9mm for all the same reasons the FBI chose it- it's cheaper, lighter packing, with more rounds and adequate performance.

    My only complaint is the belief that the FBI chose 9mm because it is => 40, 45, or 10mm. 9mm is lesser, but all four will get the job done and 9mm has every other advantage off the field, a significant enough factor to outweigh superior terminal ballistics in this case because all 4 meet the threshold and more time is spent off the field.

    IMO 9MM will lose a "Miami shootout", but the FBI no longer cares. The agency has changed. Heavy weapons teams with rifles, snipers, helicopters, etc. Would be standard for such a raid. The 9mm wouldn't have the power but the FBI doesn't think it's officers need to be equipped for such an occasion during their regular duties, basically. For their regular duties 9mm is plenty.

    The math is basically thus: If I'm not planning for a fight 9mm is just as good as 10mm in the holster, and in most confrontations equally effective when deployed. In the situations a 9mm would be insufficient, like a battle, the answer isnt 10mm it's a swat team with tanks, rifles, and air support. If however you were going to a battle armed only with a handgun, would you choose 9mm or 10mm? Miami shootout was exactly that scenario and the agency responded first by trying to equip their agents for such a situation. Now though in the modern world an agent won't wind up in a surprise battle so why bother?

    Anyways, 10mm > 9mm by far, I choose 9mm anyways.
     
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  5. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, there is a lot more than that. Unfortunately, there are numerous real data from which we could conclude that the recommended ammunition does not do the trick, if that were true.

    OTE="ATLDave, post: 11275645, member: 164358"]I find it equally amazing that people ... think that the observations of hunters (i.e., those who have frequently shot live animals and have observed the immediate behavioral reactions) are irrelevant.[/QUOTE]Again, different species, different conditions, different objectives.
     
  6. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    See, this is a nice illustration of the fallacy of a lot of terminal ballistics analysis these days. Efficacy of something like a gunshot in bringing a swift end to a fight is always going to be a probabalistic matter. There is not some binary "enough" or "not enough" that will hold true across all conditions.

    This is easy to understand. We all know that there are times when people (heck, even bears) have been stopped in their tracks by a .22lr bullet. Similarly, all you have to do is read some military honor citations to find instances in which men have continued to fight furiously despite receiving multiple high-powered rifle round wounds. Yet only a fool would contend that, therefore, a .22lr and a 7mm mauser round are equivalent as fight-stoppers. Both will work and both will fail some percentage of the time - but the percentages will not be the same.

    There is no such thing as a service caliber handgun round that either "does the trick" or does not. That's just nonsense. But a LOT of terminal ballistics "thinking" (if it even merits that name) these days is based on the notion that there's one single bright-line test of efficacy, and rounds are either across that line or not. It's preposterous.

    I've made this same argument in the past by pointing out that both Mark Grace and Albert Pujols were MLB first basemen. Nobody would contend that either of them was not good enough to play in the majors. They were both clearly "good enough." Equally, neither one of them was immune to failure. Yet only someone who is completely ignorant of baseball would contend that "they both do the trick," and, therefore, a team with a time machine and the ability to get either one of them at their peak should simply pick the one willing to play for less money.
     
  7. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    You misread my comment,

    True indeed.

    But some round do not perform well enough enough of the time, either in terms of terminal ballistics or contolabiliy, to be considered acceptable.

    There are rounds that are considered much less effective in terms of terminal ballistics than others, such as the once very popular .32 S&W and the long version, the .38 Long Colt, and the .38 S&W. The .380 ACP is probably borderline.

    There are others that have not performed well in law enforcement applications because of the difficulty in making rapid hits with combat accuracy. The 10MM and the .41 Magnum, both of which were developed for law enforcement usage, come to mind.

    Users tell us that the new premium 9MM defensive loads are performing adequately in the real world.

    They are doing the trick.
     
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  8. labnoti

    labnoti Member

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    Anyone can shoot a .40 with proficiency equal that of theirs with a 9mm if the .40 simply weighs more. Increasing the weight of the 9mm will also help many people, but there are diminishing returns and at some weight, more does not meaningfully help.

    I am gaining an increasing amount of personal experience with the experts and researchers (who publish in peer-reviewed journals) in defensive handguns, especially elite firearms-specific law enforcement trainers and those civilians who I would consider "celebrities" in the field. By personal experience, I mean spending time with them in person. Frankly, the more time I spend with them, the more I listen to them, the more of their classes, seminars, and training I attend, the less I revere them. That is not to say that I think they're wrong. I just see more and more the actual substance their rhetoric is based on and I have less and less confidence in it. The fact is, a lot of these guys have simply figured out how to play their field successfully enough to be perceived as authorities and they've learned to exploit that to stay in business. I would absolutely not hesitate to question their conclusions based on my own experience. That isn't to say I think I know better, but that their knowledge and understanding is far from complete. Very far. If they are honest, they will admit they do not know. And I do not think it is unusual at all for them to be wrong.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
  9. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    True indeed.
     
  10. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    Your subsequent reply comports entirely with how I read your earlier comment.
     
  11. Apuesto

    Apuesto member

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    Do take note that many people also blindly accepted the opinion of the entire group of surgeons & physicians and their "extensive" body of knowledge as irrefutable fact when they claimed that pumping smoke into patients' rectums was medically sound, circa1900's.

    "Facts" that run contrary to observation aren't facts, they're smoke.


    Well something drops the animal, and it's not the tooth fairy ...
     
  12. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    It is a standard (as kleenbore pointed out) MUSCLE simulant, assuming muscle is a uniform tissue. It is not a lung simulant. It is not a kidney simulant, etc. etc. Terminal performance and disruption or breaking effects (type 250A ordnance gelatin is not alive and does not "wound") has been verified, except when the real life cases don't fit the gelatin results. People and animals are not type 250A ordnance gelatin. Hence real life results often do vary. The results from using type 250A ordnance gelatin is a hypothetical optimal situation, that does sometimes occur.

    That it has been a standard is due largely to the fact that it is fairly inexpensive and relatively easy to make, while at the same time producing consistent results which is interesting compared to live targets where you don't always get consistent results.

    These guys explain it a little better. Bolding is mine
    http://www.firearmsid.com/Gelatin/Ballistic Gelatin Report.pdf
    Permanent cavities like the ones seen with fragmenting bullets in muscle are not well reproduced in gelatin. There is also less visible damage in muscle response to temporary cavity than seen in gelatin simulations. There are many more concerns with translating tissue simulation research to human muscle information,and the situation is worse yet when extended to entire living human beings. Simply put, gelatin blocks prepared correctly are homogeneous, where as living humans are heterogeneous.
     
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  13. Shawn Dodson

    Shawn Dodson Member

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    I refer you to "Wound Ballistic Misconceptions," by Duncan MacPherson in Wound Ballistics Review, Volume 2, Number 3, pp. 42-43, specifically the section "Tissue Simulation." You can find that article here - https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B_PmkwLd1hmbd3pWYVVJeGlGaFE
     
  14. Shawn Dodson

    Shawn Dodson Member

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    I refer you to the article "The Wound Profile & The Human Body: Damage Pattern Correlation" by Martin L. Fackler M.D., in Wound Ballistics Review Volume 1, Number 3, pp. 12-19. The conclusion states:
    You can find the article in the link I posted above.
     
  15. Shawn Dodson

    Shawn Dodson Member

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    You do not appear knowledgeable in interpreting wound profiles exhibited in ordnance gelatin. I hope to obtain an illustration that graphically demonstrates how to interpret a wound profile.
     
  16. Shawn Dodson

    Shawn Dodson Member

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    "These guys" obtained Fackler's wound profile illustrations from me, as well as some of the information in their paper.

    They also cite Duncan MacPherson's excellent book, "Bullet Penetration," which can be purchased in ebook format from Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/Bullet-Penet...2479857&sprefix=bullet+penetrt,aps,226&sr=8-1

    I have a few copies of MacPherson's book (new condition) in hardcover format, some personally signed by him. (I used to sell his book on my website and found a few copies in a box when I moved.)
     
  17. Shawn Dodson

    Shawn Dodson Member

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    I refer you to these two articles which will help you to better understand the genesis of ordnance gelatin testing (I don't have links to share with you, sorry):

    1. Fackler ML. Bellamy RF. Malinowski JA. "The wound profile: illustration of the missile-tissue interaction." Journal of Trauma-Injury Infection & Critical Care. 28(1 Suppl):S21-9, 1988 Jan.
    2. Fackler ML. Malinowski JA. The wound profile: a visual method for quantifying gunshot wound components. Journal of Trauma-Injury Infection & Critical Care. 25(6):522-9, 1985 Jun.
     
  18. labnoti

    labnoti Member

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    Great link. I really enjoyed reading Fackler's opinions in the editorials. It made me a bigger fan of his than I was.
     
  19. Apuesto

    Apuesto member

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    IOW gel fails to take into consideration skeletal tissue and air cavities such as found in lungs, which do result in big differences in both bullet penetration and tissue damage in real life.

    While gel will show comparative performance between calibers and differences in bullet construction/deformation, so can simple alternatives like stacks of boards and jugs of water. Gel is simply a more sophisticated version of the latter.
     
  20. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    Physiological damage, well understood by most hunters, discussed before, no need to rehash.....
     
  21. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    Good post. Most people understand all of his, but it may be helpful to someone who might expect a bullet that openetrates 14 inches in ballistic gel to create 14 inch wound channels in humans.

    However, I do not agree that "the results from using type 250A ordnance gelatin is a hypothetical optimal situation, that does sometimes occur."

    I would change "That it has been a standard is due largely to the fact that it is fairly inexpensive and relatively easy to make, while at the same time producing consistent results which is interesting compared to live targets where you don't always get consistent results" to read something like "while the homogenous nature of gel differ from human bodies, it is used as a standard in ammunition testing because there is no practicable way to model the human body in actual penetration".

    I have not heard of many reports that premium ammunition that meets the test protocol is proving inadequate in practice, provided that the critcal body parts with in the body are struck.
     
  22. Apuesto

    Apuesto member

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    Nice spin.

    Stopping power is well understood by hunters and frequently discussed especially amongst big game hunters. I have not in more than 40 years of hunting ever heard of a single hunter, anywhere on this planet, use the phrase "physiological damage".
     
  23. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes, and I suggest that it is understood to mean the capacity for effecting damage caused by a well-performing bullet that penetrates adequately.

    Of course, with high velocity rifle rounds, there is also the damage caused by hydraulic pressure waves--often erroneously called "hydrostatic shock".

    I seriously doubt that there are many experienced hunters who do not understand that physiological damage is the underlying cause.
     
  24. Apuesto

    Apuesto member

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    It is meant to mean how effective a particular bullet (caliber/velocity/construction etc. etc) is at stopping a particular animal.


    That doesn't change the fact that the conversation revolves about how effective a particular bullet is at stopping an animal IOW the "stopping power" of "knock down power" of a bullet.

    It sounds like you're telling me a I cannot refer the color black as "black" because what I'm actually looking at is the absence of all colors and therefore there is no color. The underlying cause does not change what is observed, nor does is negate the conversation pertaining to what is observed.
     
  25. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    You did not observe a bullet knocking down an animal. Period.

    "Stopping power"? Okay, in casual conversation, but not in a serious discussion analyzing handgun wounding mechanics.

    It can be and is often very misleading, because so much more depends upon what is hit than on "power" per se.
     
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