Scientific wood block test; .32 S&W (short) [Archive] - Glock Talk

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Berto
09-06-2012, 22:30
.....Ok, not scientific at all, actually.

But it's caliber corner, so maybe interesting to someone, maybe not.

I frequently hear people talk of the lack of power in this ancient pocket revolver round....a .312 lead pill going maybe 650fps (if you're lucky), maybe 80-90ft lbs of energy or thereabouts.
I've read stories of it bouncing off 2x4's, won't shoot through both sides of a garbage can, etc.

I figured I'd test those theories by shooting a few random household objects with an old .32 Top break, in this case an Iver Johnson 3rd model safety hammer and even older Smith and Wesson 1 and 1/2 single action revolver.(shown compared to S&W 442 .38sp)

http://img21.imageshack.us/img21/5701/oneandahalfpics005.jpg

Both these guns shot factory smokeless 88gr lead round nosed loads from Remington. These are good for 600fps (<or >20fps) in 3" barreled revolvers.

http://img684.imageshack.us/img684/5645/80002.jpg

First thing I wanted to do was wet phone books, so to the dungeon I went....

http://img36.imageshack.us/img36/8088/oneandahalfpics006.jpg

Two bars of Irish Spring and two waterlogged seattle phonebooks *just* stopped .32 S&W round, when fired in the 1888 era S&W. It stopped about 3/4 the way through the second book, about 6" of wetpack traversed.

http://img52.imageshack.us/img52/826/phonebooks002.jpg

Berto
09-06-2012, 23:01
...and two bars of soap.

http://img171.imageshack.us/img171/6519/phonebooks003.jpg

Going straight after the books, no soap, it sailed though both with enough gusto to clang audibly into my Cratsman toolbox. 7-8" of wetpack.

http://img189.imageshack.us/img189/999/phonebooks005.jpg


So, against soft stuff, the little anemic .32 SW doesn't seem all that bad- that would translate to about 12" ballistic jello (correct me if I'm wrong- 2/3 conversion ratio?)

Berto
09-06-2012, 23:02
So what about something hard, like a decently seasoned block of pine?

For that, I used the IJ revolver.

http://img707.imageshack.us/img707/7008/woodtest002.jpg

Wood blocks and backstop;

http://img831.imageshack.us/img831/6092/woodtest001.jpg

Some yaw showing at this close range, but they're in there.

http://img100.imageshack.us/img100/8369/woodtest003.jpg

Lower hit nailed a knot in the wood, upper hit went deeper.

1st shot penetrated 3/4 inch, second went 1 inch to the hard pine 2x6.

http://img214.imageshack.us/img214/1462/woodtest005.jpg

Boolit looked like it had slammed into a block of hard wood.

http://img337.imageshack.us/img337/8903/woodtest008.jpg

Conclusion:

.32 Smith and Wesson IS pretty low powered. Still, it will handle flesh without much trouble. It penetrated the stomach and assorted nearby giblets of President William Mckinley, causing him to die.....but the first of the two shots fired by his assassin was deflected by a button on his coat.
Against hard objects, low velocity limits any real penetration, as shown with the wood.
It didn't bounce off, but penetration was low. Even my .38 S&W Enfield would blast through a 2x6 like this.
Hopefully anyone curious about these old obsolete guns and cartridges might find this interesting.

Foxtrotx1
09-06-2012, 23:20
very interesting

c01
09-06-2012, 23:23
Love it.

Thanks

D

Glock19Fan
09-06-2012, 23:46
A 36 grain Federal Bulk HP blasts through a 2x4 like nothing from a Jennings .22LR single shot pistol.

Im honestly suprised by the results you got, I figured they would have done better against the wood.

Thanks for the post!

Berto
09-07-2012, 18:02
A 36 grain Federal Bulk HP blasts through a 2x4 like nothing from a Jennings .22LR single shot pistol.

Im honestly suprised by the results you got, I figured they would have done better against the wood.

Thanks for the post!

That's my experience too, the .22lr even from a snubby will usually go right through a couple inches of pine. The harder copper plated ones especially....but they have velocity, about 300-400fps over the .32 SW, even if half the bullet weight.

They have similar sectional desity, but the .22 is just going faster.

M 7
09-07-2012, 20:01
Berto,

Wasn't there a deringer chambered in .32 S&W? I remember reading quite sometime ago that it had the penetration problem you've just demonstrated- just can't remember if it was in this caliber. :dunno:

Thanks for posting the this test- very interesting.

Berto
09-08-2012, 14:27
The Rem mod 95 Derringer shot a .41 rimfire that was notorious for bouncing off wood....IIRC about a 130gr pointed lead bullet at 450fps.

Glock19Fan
09-08-2012, 14:42
I wonder if the .41 REM Rimfire ever killed anyone from blood loss rather than infection? Its hard to image that penetrating very deep.

Berto
09-08-2012, 14:44
Good question....I'd imagine a throat shot could do it...or groin.:faint:

concretefuzzynuts
09-08-2012, 14:45
Thank you Professor Berto.

concretefuzzynuts
09-08-2012, 14:46
Did you wash the phone books on the delicate cycle?

M 7
09-08-2012, 20:59
The Rem mod 95 Derringer shot a .41 rimfire that was notorious for bouncing off wood....IIRC about a 130gr pointed lead bullet at 450fps.

THAT'S THE ONE!!!

Thanks. :)

Berto
09-08-2012, 23:07
Did you wash the phone books on the delicate cycle?

I don't like my phone books starchy.

Foxtrotx1
09-17-2012, 18:13
I don't like my phone books starchy.

How many pine boards does a 7.62 Nagant penetrate? :whistling:

RWBlue
09-17-2012, 19:35
I have a S&W in 32S&W long. Your results are just like my results.

I have a quarter I shot that just got dented.

janice6
09-17-2012, 19:48
Good enough to start a war.

Wife likes Tomcat.

FFR Spyder GT
09-23-2012, 08:58
Pretty neat!

Back in High School a friends uncle tried to kill himself with a H&R revolver shooting the .32S&W. he shot himself 5 times in the head and because of the angle the bullets penetrated the scalp and skidded along the skull to the other side of his head.

2nd time he placed the barrel in his mouth and shot off the left side of his lower jawbone.

3rd time he used a sawed off double barrel 12ga.

concretefuzzynuts
09-23-2012, 09:50
Pretty neat!

Back in High School a friends uncle tried to kill himself with a H&R revolver shooting the .32S&W. he shot himself 5 times in the head and because of the angle the bullets penetrated the scalp and skidded along the skull to the other side of his head.

2nd time he placed the barrel in his mouth and shot off the left side of his lower jawbone.

3rd time he used a sawed off double barrel 12ga.

Wow. Just, wow. You have a way of pooping in every thread you post in.

Berto
09-23-2012, 10:34
Damn, no kidding.

SCmasterblaster
09-27-2012, 18:29
Nice study of this old cartridge.