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JHPs do they really make a big difference?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by shephard19, Sep 7, 2009.

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  1. shephard19

    shephard19 Member

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    It seems sometimes that many forum members would never even consider the use of ball ammunition in their pistols for the purpose of self defense... I know that JHPs expand and therefore make a larger wound, but are there not also some instances where penetration through cover may be needed? It seems to me that ball ammunition is fine for self defense and JHPs are a little better in most situations that are likely to occur but is the difference that strong?
     
  2. PandaBearBG

    PandaBearBG Member

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    As simple as it gets, JHP most blunt force trauma at short distances with the least amount of penetration = best for HD. Standard ball ammo can do the penetration you describe, but in a HD situation, penetration is what you don't want. Collateral damage and possible injury to family members or neighbors thru walls, and shooting a perp thru a wall or dresser won't really stand up in court if he survives.

    But any bullet is better than no bullet.
     
  3. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Member

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    There are plenty of JHP bullet designs (at least in 9mm Luger and up) that both penetrate light cover and expand when they hit the target.
     
  4. content

    content Member

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    JHP less chance of thru and thru

    Hello friends and neighbors// IMHO this is where the 3,3,3 rule applies.

    /// 3 shots, within 3 yards, in 3 seconds///

    This applies to the vast majority of SD shootings // Mainly you want to dump all bullet power on target (expansion).

    JHP also help to avoid thru and thru. (thru target and into unwanted area )/// IE : another person behind target, or thru wall into something expolsive.

    This is a pic of round I developed for 44mag. (Ruger Redhawk SS 7.5 inch ) in 1992.////Using Hercules red dot smokeless shotgun powder with JHP fired into box filled with loose sand.///// Penetration was 6 inches. 44 mag over quarter.jpg

    As you can see just short of covering quarter
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2009
  5. xXxplosive

    xXxplosive Member

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    IMO.....JHP Ammo works fine if you have enough FPS / energy behind the round allowing it to expand properly. Many smaller caliber handguns do not have the required FPS therefore you wind up with a HB round anyway with lesser penetrating properties.

    It's nice to ensure that no pass through would ever occur to injure the innocent...........but not to sound callous here.....I couldn't care less if my Arse is on the line.

    It's Hard Ball in my CCW for me.......always.
     
  6. laktrash

    laktrash Member

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    I ask about this on another forum referring to compact 45s and it got a little complicated (to me) reliability ? Lighter grain because of short barrell? Penetration of clothing in winter. I plan to try some JHP but for now I have 235 ball at bedside just me and wife in house.
     
  7. HiVelSword

    HiVelSword Member

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    "It's Hard Ball in my CCW for me.......always."

    You live in NJ so it's not like you really have much in the way of choice. ;)
     
  8. AZAviator

    AZAviator Member

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    My friend uses a bullet for HD, I don't remember what its called. Its a jacketed glass bullet that shatters on impact so it wont go through walls. This sounds ideal for being in a house with kids or an apartment. The downside is $1 per bullet, or so Im told.
     
  9. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

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    shattering glass in a bullet doesnt seem legal as glass fragments wont show up on medical xrays. I know they probably arent designed to shatter inside someone but you know....
     
  10. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    Frangible ammo has little penetrating power, I would never hang my life on it.

    We spend hours arguing in here about caliber, shot placement, brand of bullet, etc. I think ultimately the difference may be subtle.

    Handguns are not ideal for self defense at all. We carry them because they are portable and concealable. They are inferior for putting someone down quickly. This is why we spend so much time, energy and money trying to develop new and improved bullets that will make the odds better. When you are using a handgun, you need to give yourself every possible advantage. I carry the round which is the most likely to make the biggest holes, (230 gr HSTs) but it's ALSO the gun I shoot best and I'm the most likely to get multiple good hits with. As stated above, 3,3,3 is a good rule to start with.

    Having said all that, yes, I think that the real world difference is negligible a lot of the time. (I won't try to put a percentage on it.) If my HSTs fail to expand, I'm still getting hits with.....a 230 gr .45 bullet. I think that you would have to compare one end of the extreme (say, .44 mag in Corbon defensive loads) with the other (115 gr 9mm fmj) to really see a gap in performance if you are getting three hits, in three seconds, at three meters. I am not one of these "your .40 is inferior to my .45 JHP" guys.
     
  11. joeoim

    joeoim Member

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    Yes

    Shepard19,

    I doubt if you will find many lawmen who prefer ball ammo for self defense.

    Ball ammo, and wadcutters, are not as destructive in tissue as jhp's.

    A hollow point will make a larger wound and channel provided it has the velocity to make it expand.

    I use semi jacketed hollow cavity for general carry.

    I use jacketed soft point when in the woods.

    A hollow point or soft point would not be preferred if you had to shoot through a windshield.

    ymmv

    Joe
     
  12. GunNut

    GunNut Member

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  13. AZAviator

    AZAviator Member

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    Actually they are. I found what he was talking about. I think its called the Glaser bullet, not really glass but it does leave fraggments in your body which cut you up after the fact.
    Heres a pic http://img222.imageshack.us/i/15794423.jpg/

    Does anyone know if these are good or worth the $$??
     
  14. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    As I said above, I would not trust my life to frangible ammo. It does not penetrate deeply enough to be likely to stop the actions of the target. It's a gimmick, a small step above 'Extreme Shock" ammo.
     
  15. DAVIDSDIVAD

    DAVIDSDIVAD member

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    That's just gunshop Diva HURR and DURR, man.
     
  16. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    There is no glass in a Glaser Safety slug.

    What you got is a bullet jacket full of lead bird-shot, with a blue plastic cap on it.

    Glaser is the name of the guy who invented them.

    Not a workman that goes around repairing broken glass windows.

    rc
     
  17. edrice

    edrice Member

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    You know, over the years I've been moving more and more in this direction.

    I really started getting interested in ammo choices beginning around 1980 and have still been following it all these years and I have seen just about every theory and principle presented in a wide variery of styles, including from Jan Libourel's math formula (remember that?) to Evans and Marhshall's stats, to the Taylor knock out factor and everything else in between and if I've heard it all once, I've heard it a thousand times. But the more I started learning about bigger and heavier bullets, especially in the use of hunting large game, the more it more it's occurred to me that penetration is so much more important than expansion. You'd hear more and more about how a heavy .45 would shoot completely through a buffalo or bear and that you definitely didn't want expansion to inhibit penetration. And these are large wild animals and I'm thinking to myself, will a heavy .45 fired at a human do any less? It has to stop shorter to be effective? I'm not one that puts much stock into the energy-dump theory and consider a longer wound channel a greater benefit. Anyone that puts much thought into the physics of the energy-dump theory will realize that this is really not that much energy at all being dumped by a tiny projectile. It's not like you're knocking the guy backwards 30 feet like they used to show in Hollywood movies. The gun just recoils in your hand a little and that same energy is what drives a less than half inch projectile into flesh and bone. As an example, grab that same gun by the barrel and hit someone in the chest with the butt with the same energy as the recoil and see just how much energy you dump. Might bruise the thoracic cage a little but you won't be doing much damage. So dump energy-dump.

    Many hunting rounds are made to not expand at all, such as this Barnes Buster -

    http://gunsandammomag.com/cs/Satellite/IMO_GA/Story_C/Barnes+Buster

    Well, if it's so effective on a large wild game animal, which are harder to kill than humans, what makes it so less effective on a BG?

    I do keep hollow points loaded because I think there is an advantage, but likewise, I don't think it's as big a gap as most people have built up in thir minds if you start out using a heavy enough bullet. HPs compare very poorly to shot placement. I wouldn't feel undergunned with solids.

    Ed
     
  18. orionengnr

    orionengnr Member

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    I've said this before and I'll say it again (as often as this question is posted, likely)

    As soon as anyone, anywhere, shows me that a major PD uses ball ammo, I will consider using it for carry. Briefly.
    Major PDs have to worry about barrier penetration far more than you or I do.

    Likewise, as soon as any major PD uses frangible (Glaser, MagSafe, etc.) I will consider it. Not.
    I spent an awful lot of money on that crap back 10-15 years ago, (not a buck a round, more like 2-3 bucks a round) and it's all a gimmick. I've read that the Air Marshalls use it (supposedly, haven't seen any independent verification of that) but that is a very specialized situation. Police Officers need to worry about overpenetration too; also it is also reputed that they may miss from time to time :)

    Bottom line:

    No JHP for me (unless I live in NJ, and I'd probably shoot myself before I alowed that to happen):)
    No (more) frangible ammo for me.
     
  19. Prosser

    Prosser Member

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    Rich, I think this is a bit inconsistent:

    I think JHP makes a huge difference, I'm just not convinced it makes much difference in service calibers.

    If I can take a 185 grain .44 Magnum HP, send it into bello at 1630 fps, and still only get 15" of penetration, that is a wonderful thing. If I did that with a 185 grain Solid, it would penetrate forever, and keep going.

    Now, in the service caliber, self-defense guns, all they do is put the brakes on penetration at about 14", maximum. If you think that's enough, your a JHP guy.

    If you don't, you should probably be looking at either a tougher JHP, or, a flat nosed solid, similar to a wadcutter, or Keith style bullet.
     
  20. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Member

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    I don't think you can compare the two. Large game animals require deeper penetration to reach their vital organs because their bodies have much wider/deeper cross sections. Also, there is no concern of through-and-through penetration hitting bystanders.
     
  21. bigfatdave

    bigfatdave Member

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    Just because an ammo maker makes something called an "air freedom" round doesn't mean that anyone in particular uses it.
    I've yet to see a real rundown on what Air Marshalls pack, and not that I think about it, I don't really care.

    To everyone wondering about frangible ammo, or ball vs HP ... get yourself to The Box Of Truth and BrassFetcher's testing, and make your choice based on more than what the gun-shop counter guy or your cousin's friend are claiming to use.
    I wouldn't feel under-gunned if loaded up with ball ammo, but I'll take the improvement of HP in anything 9mm (or so) and up, just because ball ammo doesn't make the big cavity that a good expanding HP will. If I had a bigger ammo budget, I'd like to test out the EFMJ rounds coming onto the market, but they're just too rare, and I don't have the testing budget at the moment (lots of ammo, test stand, water jugs, ballistics gel, or an equivalent, etc etc).
    But in the end, all that matters is shot placement, depth, and width ... in that order. Sales gimmicks and marketing won't save your life, defend your home, or stop a rapist ... but good shots into center of mass will.
     
  22. Nicodemus38

    Nicodemus38 Member

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    the british kinda proved that a large diamter, heavy hollow point made of lead that expands is really good for self defense. it was called the .455 webley "manstopper' round. it was banned by the hague as being to barbaric.
    big caliber sized entry hole through sternum, big 70 caliberish exit hole on the other side.
     
  23. M2 Carbine

    M2 Carbine Member

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    If you have to be shot, which would you choose.
    A full metal jacket .224 or FMJ .452 diameter bullet or this .224 JHP that has expanded to almost .45 and this 45 JHP that has expended well beyound .452?

    And that's not even taking into consideration all those sharp cutting edges.

    A .224 JHP and 45 JHP will always be at least .224 and .45 diameter or larger but a .224 FMJ and a 45 FMJ will never be any larger than .224 and .45.

    Not that I ever want to have to choose between getting hit by a FMJ or JHP but I'd sure pick the FMJ.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2009
  24. makarovnik

    makarovnik Member

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    Depends on the caliber and also if the gun will reliably feed HP's.
     
  25. WC145

    WC145 Member

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    For those who care or are curious, the air marshals carry 357sigs loaded with 125gr Gold Dot HPs.

    And, yes, HPs make a difference and I only use FMJ for range work.
     
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