Quantcast

M1 Carbine - Help me settle the penetration argument

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Newton, Aug 22, 2003.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Newton

    Newton Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Messages:
    1,267
    "M1 Carbine ammunition will not penetrate pyjama armor, bounces off helmets, can't penetrate heavy clothing".

    We M1 owners have all heard these statements, but I have yet to find any credible testing of 110 grain FMJ ammunition to show just what it will, and will not, penetrate.

    To me at least, a .30 caliber, 110 grain FMJ doing better than 1900 fps would penetrate like the bejeezus, compared to a pistol round at any rate, and essentially that's what we are talking about here.

    Car doors, heavy clothing, and 300 pound bikers wearing a heavy leather jacket with 3 denim shirts underneath it must all be through and through shots, right ?

    I would appreciate any numbers or facts you guys may have, just spare me the "my Grandad shot a Chicom with one in Korea and it bounced right off" stories. The carbine may not exactly be the most powerful rifle in the World, but it has higher energy numbers than a .357 Mag carbine, and that sure aint too shabby.
     
  2. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    4,333
    That would explain the dent on the stock of my SKS. :D

    Seriously though, I also tend to get exasperated by people that "ape" what they've heard from others as the all-holy gospel.
    I'm sure the .30 carbine bounces off plenty of things, but these are the same thing that would defeat any pistol round, what the .30 carbine was originally designed to replace in some positions of the military.
    I personally don't buy into the "Korean wool-clothing bodyarmor" that we so often hear about consistantly stopping .30carbine fodder.

    Just one of those "have-to-see-to-believe" kind of things.


    You'll notice that these same folks that mindlessly hark this regurgitated gossip without reserve are the same folks that also listen and nod when someone speaks of that .45acp slug that knocked that dirty German 10' out of the bunker or the like (and then repeat this to everyone they know).

    Some just like to sensationalize the attributes of particular cartridges to spice things up just enough to bend one's ear... just got to recognize it when you hear it. ;)

    Bottom line, I wouldn't doubt that odd events have happened in war that are hard to explain... a bullet lodging in one's Zippo, belt buckle... or even in one's clothes. However, I don't believe the entire bulk of negative feedback concerning the underestimated .30carbine meets the status quo of reality.
     
  3. Sunray

    Sunray Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2003
    Messages:
    11,573
    Location:
    London, Ont.
    Hi. The key is ball ammo. Most of the "proof" it's no good is anecdotal from Korea. I've never seen much regarding it from WW II. I know a guy who was at Kap Yong with our PPCLI. Says he doesn't care if it take two or three rounds to put a bad guy down. He loves the carbine. 2PPCLI mostly alone but with a US arty unit and one other unit stopped the Chinese advance and made it possible for our side to sort the rest of it out. They held off the whole Chinese attack for a few days and were air dropped a bunch of M1's and ammo. Their actions got them your PUC. Took our politicians 8 years to let them wear it though.
    The Carbine is only a real powerhouse out of an handgun. As a rifle round it's light. Until you handload it. Makes a .357 puny in a handgun, but the .357 is puny in a rifle too. Still, my carbine is my get up and go rifle of choice. Those 110 HP's will blow a hole the size of a grapefruit in a groundhog, so Bubba's biker jacket won't help him.
     
  4. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2002
    Messages:
    46,547
    Location:
    Terlingua, TX; Thomasville,GA
    Staying with Ball ammo: Why would a GI Carbine's bullet penetrate less than that from a 9mm Parabellum? It's going some 600 ft/sec faster, and is somewhat "pointier". 110-grain vs. 130-ish, so the weight is fairly comparable.

    Art
     
  5. Newton

    Newton Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Messages:
    1,267
    I would think that a .30 Cal 110 grain round would penetrate more than a 9mm 124 grain NATO FMJ, and those things will zip right through a fully clothed bad guy.

    Gelatin tests anyone ?
     
  6. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2002
    Messages:
    19,911
    Forgot where I read it but one GI shot up a fleeing German who fell down and was captured. He was unwounded. They unrolled his blanket and tinkle tinkle. John George (Shots Fired in Anger) wrote highly of the carbine. But then again he's a head shot man. :)

    Oh, the blanket story is nothing new. I found one example where one Union soldier was wounded during the charge at the stone wall at Mayre's Heights at Fredericksburg. He pushed his tightly rolled blanket ahead of him to form a "wishful" breastwork. At least he got was concealment. Nightfall allowed him to retreat back into town and crawl he did (until found by his friends and placed into a cart). When at the hospital someone picked up his blanket, they were curious what he had in it. They unrolled it & about 17 minie balls fell out. Talk about wishful breastwork.
     
  7. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2002
    Messages:
    46,547
    Location:
    Terlingua, TX; Thomasville,GA
    The layers of cloth in a blanket roll will "give", much like a chain-link fence. More than one chain-link fence has stopped a car...

    Art
     
  8. 444

    444 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    8,312
    Location:
    Ohio
    I don't have any hard ballistic evidence on the .30 Carbine, and my intention here is to take nothing away from the weapon or the caliber, but I disagree wit some of the statements made in this thread so far.
    First of all, let me say that you can easily push a 110 grain bullet out of a .357 HANDGUN at 2000 fps. This is not some crazy load, this is a load put out by a reputable powder manufacturer and is within SAMMI pressure limits.
    "To me at least, a .30 caliber, 110 grain FMJ doing better than 1900 fps would penetrate like the bejeezus, compared to a pistol round"
    This is a pretty bold statement. Do you honestly believe that a 110 grain .30 Carbine bullet is going to out penetrate a .44 Mag using a similar bullet ?
    "it has higher energy numbers than a .357 Mag carbine"
    See above: if you can fire a bullet of the same weight at the same or higher velocity out of a handgun, I hardly think that the same load out of a .357 carbine would be less.
    "The Carbine is only a real powerhouse out of an handgun."
    It actually lies somewhere just above a .38 Special out of a handgun.

    As far as penetration, sure if you are using a FMJ bullet you are going to get more penetration than if you were using an expanding bullet. But as far as penetrating car doors, "zipping right through" humans, etc. I think you have a very minor caliber. True, since the diamter is rather small and you are using a FMJ bullet, it will have pretty decent penetration; at the expense of wounding potential.

    I like the .30 Carbine and obviously you guys enjoy yours. But let's not make it into something it's not. The caliber is very mediocre. Without having any legitimate test data, I wouldn't put it up against very many other calibers in terms of penetration or terminal effects.
     
  9. Gordon
    • Contributing Member

    Gordon Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    9,806
    Location:
    Southern Oregon
    A thirty carbine ball ammo in the classic shoulder shot on a 150lb goat lets them run about 50yards and pile up death in 30 seconds. Remington soft point ammo dumps them on the spot and they die in 10-20 seconds. This is about the same as a .357 173 grain hard cast Kieth out of a carbine and 180JHP out of same. :)
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2003
  10. Newton

    Newton Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Messages:
    1,267
    Oh for some gelatin blocks and a few hours to spare, we're still in the rolled blankets and .357 Phaser zone ;)

    One day I'll do right by this sweet little rifle and test it myself.

    I do like those anecdotes though.
     
  11. telewinz

    telewinz Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    2,305
    Location:
    Ohio
    As during the Korean War many people thought that because the carbine was 30 caliber (measure of power?) that it was intended to perform like the 30/06. Of course many were disappointed when the .30 carbine fell short of their expectations. It was ignorance and poor training that caused most of the failures. The M2 had a very high rate of fire and many troops would consume their entire combat load (accidental ?) before the battle was over and withdraw from the line "I'm out of ammo". If you view the .30 carbine like a semi-auto .357 magnum it will give people a better indication of it's true performance. BTW, at extended ranges the bullet would bounce off the chicom's padded winter coat, but I bet it left one heck of a mark.
     
  12. Sven

    Sven Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,808
    Location:
    Los Gatos, CA
    Time for some testing. What could I set up?

    Thick wool winter jacket over denim over t-shirt over a side of beef?

    Help me construct a test - anything short of pouring gelatin.

    I would want to test the following carbine ammos:

    -43 Lake City (one or two rounds)
    -91 Lake City
    -Remington HP
    -Winchester HP (Super X)
    -Georgia Arms HP
    -S&B Ball

    ...and anything else I could get my hands on. Get a chrono, and then shoot and photograph.

    Who's with me?

    Compare it to 44 mag, 357 mag, 38 special, 9mm.
     
  13. P95Carry

    P95Carry Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2003
    Messages:
    16,338
    Location:
    South PA, and a bit West of center!
    All I seem to recollect is that - the .30 carbine bullet carries approx same energy as 44 mag ......... make of that what you will.
     
  14. 444

    444 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    8,312
    Location:
    Ohio
    I really don't think this is nessessary. I am sure other people have done this before and the results are available. I just don't know where to look.

    There are a number of test mediums you could use to test raw penetration. Bundled phone books or newspaper. Gallon jugs filled with water in a line. The important thing is to keep everything on an equal playing field. In order for the test to be of any value, you have to have the same conditions for all shots fired. You would also need to test like ammo, for example if you are firing FMJ ball out of the carbine, you should test the other calibers using FMJ ball also.
    Then we get into the loads being tested. Are we talking about handloads or are we dealing only with factory loads ? If we are talking handloads, are we using max loads in all calibers that provide the best performance in all calibers ? If we are using factory, that doesn't nessessarily tell us a whole lot because the load may not be utilizing the full potential of the cartridge, but in most cases they will be.
     
  15. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2002
    Messages:
    46,547
    Location:
    Terlingua, TX; Thomasville,GA
    444, that .357 load, was that 4227? I loaded some of that hot stuff, one time, and it's impressive. :) So's the 125-grain, for that matter.

    Anyhow, while one test = 1,000 expert opinions, it's easy enough to just keep in mind that the Carbine is approximately equal to a .357, and superior to a 9mm Parabellum--as far as muzzle energy and all that.

    After that, as to "effectiveness", it seems to me that you gotta think about what sort of bullet you're using: RN, HP, SP, etc.

    Art
     
  16. Sven

    Sven Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,808
    Location:
    Los Gatos, CA
    Over on Jouster.com I saw a guy who loads his own for his carbine:

    Nice group!
     
  17. 444

    444 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    8,312
    Location:
    Ohio
    Art, the load I actually tried (and chronoed) was using Alliant Blue Dot. It can be seen here: http://recipes.alliantpowder.com/rg...=.357&cartridgedescr=Mag.&bulletdescr=110 JHP 2040 fps from a 5.6" barrel.

    I was just thumbing through the Accurate Powder manual and they also show a .357 load using a Speer 110 gr. JHP and Accurate #9 at 2006 fps. This is from an 8" barrel.

    I chronoed the Blue Dot load out of my 6 1/2" Blackhawk and got right around 2000 fps a few below and a few above. Tried this load on coyote and jackrabbit. :what: I also fired it out of my 2" Ruger SP-101 but I don't recall the numbers, I was just happy to get the brush fire out.:uhoh:
     
  18. JShirley

    JShirley Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Messages:
    21,591
    Location:
    Atlanta
    .30 Carbine SP fired at close range- about 5 yards- will go through about 18" of water, and at least that much soft soil, 'till you get tired of trying to dig it out. It might also penetrate a soft old log and a hollow steel door in the middle. Unfortunately, no expansion information is available.

    John
     
  19. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    4,333
    Sven,

    Be sure to conduct these tests during the dead of winter (or freeze the ammunition overnight) to drop the velocity 100fps or so. Double this with the target 100-200 yards downrange and maybe we'll have a decent recreation (as most complaints/stories I've heard date back to the Korean War more so than WWII).

    If we still see plenty of penetration, maybe tack on an cheap old cotton bandolier to boot.

    I'm betting it still easly reaches vitals-depth, but I don't believe that was ever the problem to begin with.
    I'd venture to say the problem was with the short stubby 110gr bullet. When it did begin to destabilize, yaw and tumble, it just didn't have the overall length to impart much more additional energy, thus yielding less-than-ideal trauma to the target.

    That's where I'd put my money.

    Nonetheless, the M1 carbine allowed its users to engage the enemy at much greater distances than any handgun, held nearly twice the capacity of the much bulkier M1 Garand, all in a small and handy package. I believe it deserves the accolades it's rightly received over the years.
     
  20. Jeff Timm

    Jeff Timm Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2003
    Messages:
    933
    Location:
    St. Augustine, FL
    Shall we return to the days of the pine board penetration box?

    Geoff
    Who is old enough to remember 60's Gun Rags
     
  21. El Rojo

    El Rojo Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Messages:
    2,540
    Location:
    The People's Republik of California
    I unfortunately have tested a standard 110 gr. FMJ .30 Carbine bullet on penetration through glass and wood house framing. I shot a hole though the window of my front door, the bullet traveled approximately 30-40 yards across the street, through my neighbor's wall of their house, through the glass of a dry aquarium tank about 4 inches from the wall, struck a petrified rock and stopped right there with no real damage to the rock. I don't recommend trying to mirror my test and I don't really know what good the results are. Just know that an M1 Carbine will pentrate standard house glass and 30-40 yards later a structure wall and glass aquarium. You know just in case you are battling it out with the Chicoms and one of them is hiding in the neighbor's dry aquarium tank and they are not on the otherside of a petrified rock.
     
  22. RustyHammer

    RustyHammer Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    1,336
    Location:
    Louisiana
    El,

    That's a tough test to duplicate. What did you neighbor think of your "test"?
     
  23. Sven

    Sven Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Messages:
    3,808
    Location:
    Los Gatos, CA
  24. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    4,333
    El Rojo,

    You really should have asked the neighbors to pad that petrified rock with a military issue wool coat typical to the era and increased your range by about 70 yards. I just can't accept your test as accurate for the conditions. :D Maybe try again?
     
  25. Mannlicher

    Mannlicher Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    3,433
    Location:
    North Central Florida and Miami Florida
    Rojo, a number of years back, while out at the dump plinking across the hood of my '63 Falcon, I put a 110 grain JSP Remington through the darn hood. Penetrated that easily, and shot up the carburator, after blowing through the air cleaner. Had to walk home, no cell phone then.

    I used the same RockOla carbine later, to hunt feral dogs in a control hunt in Nassau County up by the Georgia line. It had no problems with dogs either.

    Now I know that many of my other guns should be more effective, but I know that the little .30 Carbine will do its job.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice