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Informal bullet tests results

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by MTMilitiaman, Jun 27, 2006.

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  1. MTMilitiaman

    MTMilitiaman Member

    Apr 28, 2005
    Missoula, Montana
    Our household accumulates a decent amount of plastic 5 gallon buckets from laundry detergent and the like. Rather than immediately tossing them, I decided to set some of them aside for ballistics tests. These had been seperated from their lids when I found them, but I decided they could be used anyways. Of most immediate interest to me was a pair of loads for the 10mm Auto, and a pair of loads for the 7.62x39.
    First I'd like to emphasize a couple points. I choose my mediums (water and river sand) because they were cheap, common, and universal--meaning I or someone else could conduct the tests at a later date and get similar results. While this allows the relative performance of multiple loads or conditions to be compared, I never meant for these results to be extrapilated into other mediums, such as tissue or ballistics gel. Second, I did this for fun out of my own personal curiosity. I don't claim to be a scientist but I did try to uphold scientific method as best as I could. So while I found the results interesting, I am not so sure they are scientifically valid on the same plane as Fackler, for example.
    For the 10mm, I chose two loads to shoot through my mostly stock Glock 20. I say mostly stock because the barrel was a standard 4.6 inch length KKM Precision. One water bucket was set immediately in front of one bucket filled with sand at a distance of ten yards. The first load was a Hornady XTP loaded over a max listed charge of 14.9 grains of AA #9, for an estimated muzzle velocity of 1250 fps. This load was disappointing. It clogged with plastic upon entering the first bucket and failed to expand, coming to a rest aprox 4 inches into the sand. While slightly flattened, recovered mass was 180.2 gr and recovered diameter at widest point was .405 caliber. It looked like it could almost be reloaded again. The second load was a Double Tap 180 gr Gold Dot with an advertised velocity of 1300 fps. It was recovered several inches into the bucket of sand well mangled but still mostly in one peice. Several fragments were recovered in the water bucket. Total weight of all recovered material was 165 gr. Finished expanded diameter of the main projectile at its widest point was .571 inch. This may not sound too good, but it was the finished diameter after expanding to, and then past, its widest point and nearly inside out. Sand is a tough medium but the Gold Dot appeared to expand violently and still penetrate nearly as much as the unexpanded XTP. This is the load I carry for defense and the load I will try to duplicate once I get all my XTPs shot up as practice ammunition.


    Next I tried a pair of loads from Wolf Ammunition through my Romanian AK clone. Two 5 gallon water buckets were set immediately in front of each other and a sand bucket at a distance of 25 yards from the muzzle. The first was a bi-metal jacket boat tail, the second a bi-metal jacketed hollow point boat tail. Both projectiles are magnetic when removed from their cases. Jacket material from both projectiles is folded up at the base, resulting in a hollow exposed section of core material, and the forward 1/3 of the projectile is hollow as well when the bullet is disected lengthwise. The FMJ penetrated both water buckets and about halfway into the sand bucket, coming to a rest flattened and weighing 112.7 gr. Core material was lost through the base but was not recovered. I have been told the JHP performs nearly identically to the FMJ, so I wasn't expecting much. But that is not what I found. The JHP blew apart the first bucket and penetrated into the second, but did not exit and did not make it to the sand bucket. It appeared this bullet was torn nearly inside out. A mangled peice of jacket material and a ring of material from around the base, as well as some small peices of core material is all that could be found. Total weight of all recovered peices was 39.75 gr. I was very surprised by the performance of this load and intend to test it along side the FMJ at a longer range (lower velocity) and through various mediums (penetration) at a later date.


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