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Old 01-18-2010, 19:44   #1
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Why do we choose rounds differently?

For rifles used for hunting and tactical or other purposes we look for loads that are fast, penetrate and expand. Then for handguns I see the same guys advocating heavy and slow 45's. Seems to me that terminal ballistics work the same for rifles as they do for handguns. Rifles that shoot bullets at higher velocity do more damage on target than bullets fired at lower velocity. Example: .308 vs 10mm, both with 180 grain bullets. When it comes to damage which one wins? Duh, the .308. It just doesn't make sense to me. If I were to make a conclusion I'd say velocity is a very important part of terminal ballistics. For those who say that BPW isn't valid, explain why a 180 grain .308 does more damage than a 180 grain 10mm. Same weight bullet, the 10mm is even larger in diameter, but the .308 wins because it has a higher velocity. If all we are doing is punching lead through tissue it seems that the two rounds would perform the same. I guess the fact that .308 beats 10mm with the same weight bullet has something to do with a pressure shock. I dunno, not tying to start a fight, but I want to point out how silly it gets on here when we debate BPW and people say it doesn't exist. If it didn't exist 10mm 180 grain loads would equal 180 grain .308 loads every time, but they don't.
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:16   #2
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Popcorn anyone?
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:46   #3
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Popcorn anyone?
I'll pass you some.
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Old 01-19-2010, 07:11   #4
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Most handgun calibers cannot create more BPW than a body can handle...most bottle-neck rifle calibers create a lot more BPW than a body can handle. This is why BPW is considered irrelevant when discussing handgun caliber, because the BPW they are able to create is within the levels that a body can reasonably absorb and is thus irrelevant. And most people will not say that slower is better, but rather that slower is acceptable in exchange for bigger/heavier. Larger bullets make larger holes. The larger & longer a hollow point bullet is, the larger a size it can expand to. The heavier a bullet is, the more inertia it has and thus will typically penetrate deeper. It takes all three...size, weight, and velocity...there is no "one" that trumps all. Since handguns typically do not have the velocity to deliver damaging BPW, one is left with the initial bullet size, it's maximum expanded size, and it's penetration capacity for creating adequate damage. Most of the 45 crowd are not advocates of "big and slow"...most 45acp defencive ammo is loaded hot (+P). I think the 45 crowd is really more of a "biggest, heaviest, fastest" crowd...use the biggest, heaviest bullet and push it as fast as possible.

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Old 01-19-2010, 08:00   #5
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Most handgun calibers cannot create more BPW than a body can handle...most bottle-neck rifle calibers create a lot more BPW than a body can handle. This is why BPW is considered irrelevant when discussing handgun caliber, because the BPW they are able to create is within the levels that a body can reasonably absorb and is thus irrelevant. And most people will not say that slower is better, but rather that slower is acceptable in exchange for bigger/heavier. Larger bullets make larger holes. The larger & longer a hollow point bullet is, the larger a size it can expand to. The heavier a bullet is, the more inertia it has and thus will typically penetrate deeper. It takes all three...size, weight, and velocity...there is no "one" that trumps all. Since handguns typically do not have the velocity to deliver damaging BPW, one is left with the initial bullet size, it's maximum expanded size, and it's penetration capacity for creating adequate damage. Most of the 45 crowd are not advocates of "big and slow"...most 45acp defencive ammo is loaded hot (+P). I think the 45 crowd is really more of a "biggest, heaviest, fastest" crowd...use the biggest, heaviest bullet and push it as fast as possible.

+1. Sincerely. brucev.
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Old 01-19-2010, 09:09   #6
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Originally Posted by thegriz18 View Post
For rifles used for hunting and tactical or other purposes we look for loads that are fast, penetrate and expand. Then for handguns I see the same guys advocating heavy and slow 45's. Seems to me that terminal ballistics work the same for rifles as they do for handguns. Rifles that shoot bullets at higher velocity do more damage on target than bullets fired at lower velocity. Example: .308 vs 10mm, both with 180 grain bullets. When it comes to damage which one wins? Duh, the .308. It just doesn't make sense to me. If I were to make a conclusion I'd say velocity is a very important part of terminal ballistics. For those who say that BPW isn't valid, explain why a 180 grain .308 does more damage than a 180 grain 10mm. Same weight bullet, the 10mm is even larger in diameter, but the .308 wins because it has a higher velocity. If all we are doing is punching lead through tissue it seems that the two rounds would perform the same. I guess the fact that .308 beats 10mm with the same weight bullet has something to do with a pressure shock. I dunno, not tying to start a fight, but I want to point out how silly it gets on here when we debate BPW and people say it doesn't exist. If it didn't exist 10mm 180 grain loads would equal 180 grain .308 loads every time, but they don't.
Because you are talking apples & oranges. The faster handgun loads can make about 1500fps. The 308 about 2700fps. The increase in tissue damage is not linear w/ vel. but expontial. So yo ucan not compare handgun rounds to rifle rounds. Maybe when you get into some of the magnums, 41mag & 44mag or heavy 45colts, but service rounds are just not making enough vel. w/ a heavy enough bullet to give reliable penetration. I'm sure someone can get a light wt solid copper HP to get good vel & still give adequate penetration.
BTW, not all rifle rounds are selected for high vel. Even in the age of super magnums, DG hunters in Africa still choose heavy & slow for whacking the largest DG. You can have too much vel which reduces penetration & when DG is the target, penetration is king, even to the point of using solids. Not completely diff form SD rounds against humans but then we aren't talking 400gr bullets @ 2200fps.
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Old 01-19-2010, 11:14   #7
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Because you are talking apples & oranges. The faster handgun loads can make about 1500fps. The 308 about 2700fps. The increase in tissue damage is not linear w/ vel. but expontial. So yo ucan not compare handgun rounds to rifle rounds. Maybe when you get into some of the magnums, 41mag & 44mag or heavy 45colts, but service rounds are just not making enough vel. w/ a heavy enough bullet to give reliable penetration. I'm sure someone can get a light wt solid copper HP to get good vel & still give adequate penetration.
BTW, not all rifle rounds are selected for high vel. Even in the age of super magnums, DG hunters in Africa still choose heavy & slow for whacking the largest DG. You can have too much vel which reduces penetration & when DG is the target, penetration is king, even to the point of using solids. Not completely diff form SD rounds against humans but then we aren't talking 400gr bullets @ 2200fps.
I don't think that they are apples and oranges. They both operate off the same basic principle. Also, I don't consider a 400 grain bullet at 2200 fps slow in the whole scheme of launched projectiles. Let's not forget that some service caliber rounds achieve 1100+ fps. The 357 Sig, 40 S&W, 9mm and 10mm are all capable of achieving 1100-1400 fps within their respective caliber range. High velocity handgun rounds, say, 1100 fps+, should create more BPW than rounds in the 950-fps range. I think that we give weight too much consideration and not enough consideration to speed. We have the technology now to create bullets that are light and can with stand higher velocity and still hold together and penetrate. Handgun rounds may create a BPW that the body can handle, but it will cause a disruption to the system non-the-less.
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Old 01-19-2010, 12:22   #8
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Most handgun calibers cannot create more BPW than a body can handle...most bottle-neck rifle calibers create a lot more BPW than a body can handle. This is why BPW is considered irrelevant when discussing handgun caliber, because the BPW they are able to create is within the levels that a body can reasonably absorb and is thus irrelevant. And most people will not say that slower is better, but rather that slower is acceptable in exchange for bigger/heavier. Larger bullets make larger holes. The larger & longer a hollow point bullet is, the larger a size it can expand to. The heavier a bullet is, the more inertia it has and thus will typically penetrate deeper. It takes all three...size, weight, and velocity...there is no "one" that trumps all. Since handguns typically do not have the velocity to deliver damaging BPW, one is left with the initial bullet size, it's maximum expanded size, and it's penetration capacity for creating adequate damage. Most of the 45 crowd are not advocates of "big and slow"...most 45acp defencive ammo is loaded hot (+P). I think the 45 crowd is really more of a "biggest, heaviest, fastest" crowd...use the biggest, heaviest bullet and push it as fast as possible.

High school dropout does not understand what BPW means. What I do understand is that if I have to shoot someone it will be at a close range and I don't want the bullet to exit the body and hit someone else. I shoot a .45ACP (a lot) and I don't want the recoil of a +P spoiling my chance for a followup shot so I am not in your "biggest, heaviest, fastest" crowd. My .45 carry ammo is a 165gr HP Winchester Silvertip which is not +P or in 9mm it is a 115gr HP Hornady Critical Defense. The perfect self defense or military ammo would be one that penetrated about 6" with a permanent 6" wound channel.
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Old 01-19-2010, 12:39   #9
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I don't think that they are apples and oranges. They both operate off the same basic principle. Also, I don't consider a 400 grain bullet at 2200 fps slow in the whole scheme of launched projectiles. Let's not forget that some service caliber rounds achieve 1100+ fps. The 357 Sig, 40 S&W, 9mm and 10mm are all capable of achieving 1100-1400 fps within their respective caliber range. High velocity handgun rounds, say, 1100 fps+, should create more BPW than rounds in the 950-fps range. I think that we give weight too much consideration and not enough consideration to speed. We have the technology now to create bullets that are light and can with stand higher velocity and still hold together and penetrate. Handgun rounds may create a BPW that the body can handle, but it will cause a disruption to the system non-the-less.
Velocity needs to be around Mach 2 or better (2250 fps) to begin to see levels of BPW that are significantly in excess of what a body can handle and, thus, cause damage/disruption. Most SD handgun calibers fall way short of that mark. And even in rifle calibers, it's still about weight and speed. The 180 grain loads for the 308 are very popular among those that hunt with the 308...and that is one of the heaviest bullets for the 308. The 168 grain is one of the second heaviest for the 308, and it is the standard weight bullet for match ammo. When hunting dangerous game...what do hunters look for...they look for the biggest, heaviest bullets being pushed as fast as possible in a gun they can carry and shoot accurately.
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Old 01-19-2010, 12:42   #10
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I don't think that they are apples and oranges. They both operate off the same basic principle. Also, I don't consider a 400 grain bullet at 2200 fps slow in the whole scheme of launched projectiles. Let's not forget that some service caliber rounds achieve 1100+ fps. The 357 Sig, 40 S&W, 9mm and 10mm are all capable of achieving 1100-1400 fps within their respective caliber range. High velocity handgun rounds, say, 1100 fps+, should create more BPW than rounds in the 950-fps range. I think that we give weight too much consideration and not enough consideration to speed. We have the technology now to create bullets that are light and can with stand higher velocity and still hold together and penetrate. Handgun rounds may create a BPW that the body can handle, but it will cause a disruption to the system non-the-less.
You are comparing apples to oranges.

There is no BPW.

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Old 01-19-2010, 12:45   #11
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High school dropout does not understand what BPW means.
Ballistic
Pressure
Wave
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Old 01-19-2010, 12:51   #12
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High school dropout does not understand what BPW means. What I do understand is that if I have to shoot someone it will be at a close range and I don't want the bullet to exit the body and hit someone else. I shoot a .45ACP (a lot) and I don't want the recoil of a +P spoiling my chance for a followup shot so I am not in your "biggest, heaviest, fastest" crowd. My .45 carry ammo is a 165gr HP Winchester Silvertip which is not +P or in 9mm it is a 115gr HP Hornady Critical Defense. The perfect self defense or military ammo would be one that penetrated about 6" with a permanent 6" wound channel.
Well, yes & no. You are using a 185grWSTHP & the perfect round would NOT make 6" deep wound. A large man's forearm can be almost 4-5" across. hit that in front of his chest & you will disable the arm but not get near vitals. A large, heavy man will have 3-4" of fat & muscle on his chest, hit that & you will not hit vitals, we won't even discuss oblique or 90deg angle shots into the torso. It's why the FBI came up w/ the 12" min. penetration. It allows you to get to vitals from any reasonable angle.
So the perfect round would penetrate 100% from any angle then drop to the ground. Those do not exist.
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High velocity handgun rounds, say, 1100 fps+, should create more BPW than rounds in the 950-fps range. I think that we give weight too much consideration and not enough consideration
There isn't much diff in temp cav form 950fps-1100fps. You have to get the vel. up, well over 1200fps to see significant diff. Again, bullet design has a lot to do with that. So in the end, I don't think rifle shooters look for anything really diff. It's just as vel goes up, bullet design is even more important to sustain vel. Vel. alone will not kill. Roy Weatherby tried selling that in the 1950s. It helps a properly designed bullet do more work, but there is no magic to HV impacts at what we would term normal vel. of 1200fps-3000fps. The bullet still has to do the work.
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Old 01-19-2010, 13:31   #13
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Using the OP's "logic" and giving it a twist.

The OP's example is two bullets of the same weight traveling at different velocities...and from that he concludes that speed is everything...

...so let's flip that on it's head...

5.56 NATO - A 55 grain bullet traveling at 3240 fps
vs.
50 BMG - A 700 grain bullet traveling at 2978 fps

Per to OP's assumption, the 5.56 should be a much more devastating choice given it's blistering 262 fps advantage over the 50 BMG...

Ah heck, let's throw one other in the mix...
7.62 NATO - A 168 grain bullet traveling at 2650 fps
(now this just has to be a poor performer when compared to the faster 5.56)

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Old 01-19-2010, 14:00   #14
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Originally Posted by dosei View Post
Using the OP's "logic" and giving it a twist.

The OP's example is two bullets of the same weight traveling at different velocities...and from that he concludes that speed is everything...

...so let's flip that on it's head...

5.56 NATO - A 55 grain bullet traveling at 3240 fps
vs.
50 BMG - A 700 grain bullet traveling at 2978 fps

Per to OP's assumption, the 5.56 should be a much more devastating choice given it's blistering 262 fps advantage over the 50 BMG...

Ah heck, let's throw one other in the mix...
7.62 NATO - A 168 grain bullet traveling at 2650 fps
(now this just has to be a poor performer when compared to the faster 5.56)

You're totally wrong. That wasn't my logic. I required the bullets to be the same weight. I said speed was very important, not everything.
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Old 01-19-2010, 14:21   #15
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I required the bullets to be the same weight.
Here's as much as I can figure.

If the bullets are the same weight, then the one going faster is better. If the bullet is hard, it will mean more penetration. If the bullet is soft, it will mean more expansion. Either way, at the end of things where the bullet is hitting, faster is better, just choose the type of bullet you want.

But faster will cost you in increased recoil, increased cartridge and gun size, and increased gun weight. You want your handgun to weigh little, and have little recoil.
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Old 01-19-2010, 14:35   #16
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You're totally wrong. That wasn't my logic. I required the bullets to be the same weight. I said speed was very important, not everything.
So...have you ever given this a read:
http://www.firearmstactical.com/hwfe.htm

Speed can be important...if in excess of 2000 fps. For typical SD handgun calibers, speed only equates to better penetration and better expansion of soft-point/hollow-point projectiles.

BPW trauma is a lot like a sonic boom...it doesn't exist until something is going fast enough.
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Old 01-19-2010, 14:43   #17
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Here's as much as I can figure.

If the bullets are the same weight, then the one going faster is better. If the bullet is hard, it will mean more penetration. If the bullet is soft, it will mean more expansion. Either way, at the end of things where the bullet is hitting, faster is better, just choose the type of bullet you want.

But faster will cost you in increased recoil, increased cartridge and gun size, and increased gun weight. You want your handgun to weigh little, and have little recoil.
This pretty much sums up my point. Thanks deerslayer.
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Old 01-19-2010, 14:52   #18
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Popcorn anyone?
No, but a beer would be nice.
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Old 01-19-2010, 15:00   #19
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No, but a beer would be nice.
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Old 01-19-2010, 16:10   #20
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If I had a choice of the two weapons for a BG take down I'd choose the rifle every time!
Pistols are great for most SD situations! But if you want complete take down damage any high powered soft nosed bullet will decapitate at close range/ blow big nasty holes!
Now if you want rifle performance with out the High powered rifle round go with a pistol carbine/levergun! Same damage as a rifle with out the recoil!

Don't believe me talk to a Vet of WWII/Korea and ask them what a rifle round will do at close range! Ask them how good they were when they did CCQB! And that was with Ball ammo! Try soft nosed bullets!
Of course where talking about "Real Rifle" rounds of .30 Caliber!
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Old 01-19-2010, 16:35   #21
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You're totally wrong. That wasn't my logic. I required the bullets to be the same weight. I said speed was very important, not everything.
Unless the bullet is designed to perform well in that vel envelope, vel. means little. Shape & composition matter more than the vel. on impact. Stable solids hitting @ say 2200fps don't do the same damage as heavy siofts @ the same vel. Increasing the vel of the solid at that point doesn't destroy more tissue. If it hits bone, that again changes the result. It's not just as simple as more vel is better.
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Old 01-19-2010, 21:47   #22
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So...have you ever given this a read:
http://www.firearmstactical.com/hwfe.htm

Speed can be important...if in excess of 2000 fps. For typical SD handgun calibers, speed only equates to better penetration and better expansion of soft-point/hollow-point projectiles.
I don't know what you think you read in that link, but I for one would like to know in the context you're claiming.

The ONLY place in the link you posted where 2000 fps is brought up is in direct relation to fragments of a bullet at that velocity actually penetrating tissue far enough outside the direct path of the main projectile to inflict enough damage to be worthwhile. And the speed and amount at which the permanent wound cavity expands outward. Nothing is brought up in terms of a ballistic pressure wave or any other terms many wrongly associate with BPW (hydrostatic shock...).

Quote:
BPW trauma is a lot like a sonic boom...it doesn't exist until something is going fast enough.
This clearly shows you're not up to speed with Dr. Courtney's theory of BPW. BPW trauma is NOTHING like a sonic boom. BPW is pressure in psi measured at a location well beyond the temporary wound cavity produced by the projectile as it penetrates producing a pressure wave that continues traveling outside the temporary cavity.

So...have you ever given this a read:
http://<b>http://arxiv1.library.corn...2107v1.pdf</b>
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Old 01-19-2010, 21:49   #23
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You're totally wrong. That wasn't my logic. I required the bullets to be the same weight. I said speed was very important, not everything.
I was wondering where dosei got that from too, because it certainly wasn't from your post.

Good Shooting,
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Old 01-19-2010, 21:51   #24
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I suspect this thread will soon be closed, looking at recent Glock Talk history.

A declaration that the possibility of BPW effect in handgun calibers is a myth has been made.

So we'll have no further discussion, debate, or introduction of scientific studies, pro or con, which only serve to confuse the unwashed masses.
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Old 01-19-2010, 21:55   #25
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Originally Posted by dosei View Post
When hunting dangerous game...what do hunters look for...they look for the biggest, heaviest bullets being pushed as fast as possible in a gun they can carry and shoot accurately.
How does what dangerous game hunters choose for a round have anything to do what we choose for SD against BGs???

Doesn't recoil of the 460 Wby Mag automatically rub you the wrong way against BGs because of over penetration and recoil hindering follow up shots? Or no?
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Nov 11, 2013 at 11:42