Wound Ballistics: An Overview

Discussion in 'Video How-To's and Tutorials' started by Paul Gomez, Mar 21, 2012.

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  1. V-Tach

    V-Tach Well-Known Forum Sponsor

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    This thread is full of "win".....

    Thanks.....
     


  2. OlyMedic

    OlyMedic New Member

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    Great info, thanks a lot for posting.
     
  3. Sapper740

    Sapper740 TGT Addict

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    The 5.56 NATO cartridge's wounding ability is all out of proportion to both it's bullet size and muzzle energy because the bullet is over-stabilized and yaws when it hits flesh creating lots of cavitation of soft tissue. If the bullet doesn't yaw, it's effects are much diminished.

    From Wikipedia:

    "Combat operations the past few months have again highlighted terminal performance deficiencies with 5.56�45mm 62 gr. M855 FMJ. These problems have primarily been manifested as inadequate incapacitation of enemy forces despite them being hit multiple times by M855 bullets. These failures appear to be associated with the bullets exiting the body of the enemy soldier without yawing or fragmenting.This failure to yaw and fragment can be caused by reduced impact velocities as when fired from short barrel weapons or when the range increases. It can also occur when the bullets pass through only minimal tissue, such as a limb or the torso of a thin, small statured individual, as the bullet may exit the body before it has a chance to yaw and fragment. In addition, bullets of the SS109/M855 type are manufactured by many countries in numerous production plants.
    Although all SS109/M855 types must be 62 gr. FMJ bullets constructed with a steel penetrator in the nose, the composition, thickness, and relative weights of the jackets, penetrators, and cores are quite variable, as are the types and position of the cannelures. Because of the significant differences in construction between bullets within the SS109/M855 category, terminal performance is quite variable�with differences noted in yaw, fragmentation, and penetration depths. Luke Haag's papers in the AFTE Journal (33(1):11�28, Winter 2001) also describes this problem."

    Large bullets don't need to yaw to put a bad actor on his butt. Consider these two cartridges with virtually the same M.E., the .30-30 WCF (1873 Ft/Lbs) and the .45-70 Gov't. (1748 Ft/Lbs) The .30-30 sends a .308" 170gr. bullet down range at 2227fps, The .45-70 sends a .458" 405gr. bullet downrange at 1400fps. Both intuition and field experience (in my case anyway) have shown that the .45-70 is much more devastating on game than the .30-30. I once watched a hunter empty his Win. M1894 magazine into a cow moose's boiler room. She walked off (yes, walked) and expired about 50 yds away. I shot a big B.C. Mule deer buck once with a handloaded .45-70 using cast 500gr. RN bullets from my venerable M1888 Trapdoor Springfield. That big Muley never took a step. Let's look at the TKOF of the two similarly powered cartridges:

    .30-30 WCF .308 X 170 X 2227 / 7000 = 16.65 TKOF

    .45-70 Gov't .458 X 405 X 1400 / 7000 = 36.45 TKOF

    In any event, thank you for the opportunity to hold an interesting discussion. I believe some of the old "saws" still have value today. There is a lot of wisdom garnered from decades in the field, on the range, and from military experience although I firmly believe wisdom doesn't necessarily come from years spent on the Earth, it comes from the number of years one has spent paying attention.
     
  4. Sapper740

    Sapper740 TGT Addict

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    You might work with the son of a friend of mine. Do you know Sgt. Hubbard? I believe he's in Afghanistan right now.
     
  5. Mike from Texas

    Mike from Texas Active Member

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    I have some of the DT 10mm 200 grain rounds and they aren't even close to 1600fps. They are 1200 fps. The 135 Nosler rounds run about 1600fps out of my Glock 20.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
     
  6. M. Sage

    M. Sage TGT Addict

    Jan 21, 2009
    San Antonio
    The bolded part is kind of the point. Even if less-effective bullet designs are used, a 5.56 NATO is not going to be less effective than a 10mm auto. Both will poke a hole at worst, and even without the yaw and fragment effects of the M193 I used in my example, you will still get a decent stretch cavity simply from the velocity of the round.

    There are two problems with knock-out factors. One: They ignore bullet design, as there's no way to evaluate that on paper. Two: They're simplified to the point of uselessness because there are a multitude of factors beyond the ones used, and the effectiveness of those factors is not always (or almost never) linear. Take velocity. The effect velocity has on wounding potential is not linear at all unless you look at everything under 2000 FPS. Velocity has no effect on wounding potential (assuming equal penetration) until you get to about 2000 FPS. That's when you start getting more damage from stretch, and it would show on a graph as a big step in the "curve", which would then rise slightly as velocity went up.
     
  7. OlyMedic

    OlyMedic New Member

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    Is he an xray tech? Name rings a bell.
     
  8. Sapper740

    Sapper740 TGT Addict

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    Yes, I believe he is. If he's ever mentioned being a member of Civil War and Vietnam War reenactment groups, he's the one.

    P.S., thank you for your service.
     
  9. Sapper740

    Sapper740 TGT Addict

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    Yes, absolutely, bullet design is very important in determining a cartridge's lethality. You might remember that the Hague Convention's vote to ban expanding bullets in 1899 was a direct result of Germany complaining of Britain's use of bullets with an exposed lead tip in cartridges from their Dum Dum arsenal in India. The canny Brits got around this ban in later years by putting a wood tip in the nose of the bullet in their Mk VII cartridge. Canada emulated the Brits by putting an aluminum tip the nose of the carridges made at their Dominion Aresenal. The effect of the lighter material in the nose of the bullet made it inherently unstable when it hit flesh.
    Same thing today, if I had a bad actor shooting at me, I hope he's using FMJ bullets instead of Hydro-Shocks so, yes, bullet design is important.
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2013
  10. leVieux

    leVieux Active Member

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    I believe Paul Gomez, AKA "the Training Bum", has passed away. I didn't know Paul personally, but we had several mutual friends.

    If this is not correct, would someone please tell me?

    On another subject, I teach courses on imaging of gunshot wounds to young medical doctors and medical students.

    The great lethality of the 5.56 // .223 has been massively exaggerated. Think: most deer hunters feel that it is too weak for our little Hill Country whitetails.

    And, several years back, when the two "armored" bank robbers were slaughtering FBI & cops in metro Miami, with 5.56's bouncing off them; one round from a .338 Win Mag killed each, clean through their armor.

    If you had to get shot; would you rather a 5.56 or a .338 Win Mag ? Lots of folks have survived the 5.56, haven't they? How many survive a .338 Win Mag hit ?

    Still, thanks to the late Mr. Gomez for his analyses.

    leVieux
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2013
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