Two basic stopping power questions

Two basic stopping power questions

This is a discussion on Two basic stopping power questions within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I don't know much about stopping power or ballistics, so I had a few basic questions. First of all, why do people talk about penetration ...

Page 1 of 6 12345 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 90
Like Tree39Likes

Thread: Two basic stopping power questions

  1. #1
    New Member Array Carl777's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    US
    Posts
    13

    Two basic stopping power questions

    I don't know much about stopping power or ballistics, so I had a few basic questions. First of all, why do people talk about penetration so much? Thirteen inches of penetration is talked about like a minimum for handguns, but I don't know many people that thick.

    Also, when you have to stop someone who is also armed with a gun, what is the purpose of the debate over stopping power? In order to stop someone from hurting you who has a gun, you'd need to do it almost instantly since it doesn't take long to pull a trigger. The only way to do that is through pain or by hitting the central nervous system. All the other methods of stopping discussed deal with blood loss, or hitting a vital organ (other than the spine or brain), and none of those methods produce an instant stop. I'm assuming all handgun rounds are going to produce basically the same level of intense pain, so isn't stopping power sort of irrelevant for that type of situation?


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Posts
    3,676
    The whole x inches of penetration is due to the possibility that the bullet may have to pass through other parts of the body before it hits something vital, say through an arm and then on its way to the chest cavity.

    Stopping power is for the most part a myth. It's pretty rare for one bullet to just stop somebody or especially knock them down.

    Shot placement is always key. I'd rather be hit with a 45 in my toe than a 22LR to the eye.
    "Was there no end to the conspiracy of irrational prejudice against Red Ryder and his peacemaker?"

    Revolvers, “more elegant weapons for a more civilized age.”

  3. #3
    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Kentucky
    Posts
    9,505
    Quote Originally Posted by Carl777 View Post
    I don't know much about stopping power or ballistics, so I had a few basic questions. First of all, why do people talk about penetration so much? Thirteen inches of penetration is talked about like a minimum for handguns, but I don't know many people that thick.

    Also, when you have to stop someone who is also armed with a gun, what is the purpose of the debate over stopping power? In order to stop someone from hurting you who has a gun, you'd need to do it almost instantly since it doesn't take long to pull a trigger. The only way to do that is through pain or by hitting the central nervous system. All the other methods of stopping discussed deal with blood loss, or hitting a vital organ (other than the spine or brain), and none of those methods produce an instant stop. I'm assuming all handgun rounds are going to produce basically the same level of intense pain, so isn't stopping power sort of irrelevant for that type of situation?
    Yes, no, and maybe. The reason that there is a minimum is due to the FBI requirements after the infamous FBI shooting. I wont go into detail, but you can Google it and read for yourself. But a quick answer is that even though the human torso is rarely that thick, a bullet has got to be able to penetrate and perform if the shot is less than a perfect angle.

    Forget words like "stopping power" and shocking power. Also, do not feed into the myth that handguns are ineffective.

    Pain cannot be counted on to effect a person. Regardless of caliber, shoot until they are on the ground, shoot for the center of the chest, and apply liberal applications of lead to the threat. Thats the best definition of stopping power.
    gasmitty, sgb, WHEC724 and 7 others like this.
    Ignorance is a long way from stupid, but left unchecked, can get there real fast.

  4. #4
    Ex Member Array apvbguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    NE FL
    Posts
    1,076
    shot placement negates most penetration issues. train to hit COM and head shots
    mano3 likes this.

  5. #5
    New Member Array Carl777's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    US
    Posts
    13
    Quote Originally Posted by rammerjammer View Post
    The whole x inches of penetration is due to the possibility that the bullet may have to pass through other parts of the body before it hits something vital, say through an arm and then on its way to the chest cavity.
    Still seems like people worry about penetration a lot for just that. How often would a round really have to go through someone's arm or something really? And your arm is only like three inches thick anyway.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Array marcclarke's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Loveland, Colorado USA
    Posts
    765
    Many popular street drugs such as angel dust render their users effectively immune to pain.

  7. #7
    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Kentucky
    Posts
    9,505
    Quote Originally Posted by Carl777 View Post
    Still seems like people worry about penetration a lot for just that. How often would a round really have to go through someone's arm or something really? And your arm is only like three inches thick anyway.
    How often are people really in a gunfight? How often do people in a gunfight stand facing each other presenting a perfect chest shot? How thick is the bone in the arm, and how much does it effective the momentum of the bullet?
    jace33 and sgb like this.
    Ignorance is a long way from stupid, but left unchecked, can get there real fast.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Array marcclarke's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Loveland, Colorado USA
    Posts
    765
    Quote Originally Posted by Carl777 View Post
    Still seems like people worry about penetration a lot for just that. How often would a round really have to go through someone's arm or something really? And your arm is only like three inches thick anyway.
    Assume your attacker is lunging at you with a knife. Your bullet has to penetrate his hand, his forearm, his upper arm, his shoulder muscles, and then his rib cage and chest to reach his spine or heart.

  9. #9
    Member Array Moops's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    200
    Welcome to the forum.

    This is a can of worms.

    I'm not an expert, by any means, but what I've read on the subject of penetration refers to over-penetration and under-penetration (that's what she said--sorry). There really isn't any "golden rule" of penetration, since everyone is made of different ratios of bone, muscle, fat and water, not to mention clothing. Thirteen inches of penetration on a "98lb weakling" might be overdoing it, but the same velocity on a 400 fatso wearing two winter coats might be little more than an outpatient procedure. My understanding is that, generally speaking, for handguns 9mm and up, the expansion of JHPs prevents over penetration (in theory) while for smaller calibers, JHPs may not provide enough penetration.

    As far as stopping power, ending a threat immediately is a lot like sinking a half-court shot. It happens, but usually after shooting a lot of misses, and/or after a lot of practice. So to answer your question, the purpose of the debate over stopping power is because a lot of people feel the need to defend their near-religously-held belief that their particular caliber is the best/only caliber worth defending yourself with, and trusting your life to anything less is akin to walking up to a rapist and handing over your wife. The only things I have read that make any sense on this issue basically boil down to the following: be accurate, put your rounds COM, stop shooting when the threat stops or you're out of ammo.

    Also, take cover.
    BillK likes this.
    "Your mind is the weapon, all the rest are just tools." --gasmitty

  10. #10
    New Member Array Carl777's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    US
    Posts
    13
    Quote Originally Posted by glockman10mm View Post
    Yes, no, and maybe. The reason that there is a minimum is due to the FBI requirements after the infamous FBI shooting. I wont go into detail, but you can Google it and read for yourself. But a quick answer is that even though the human torso is rarely that thick, a bullet has got to be able to penetrate and perform if the shot is less than a perfect angle.

    Forget words like "stopping power" and shocking power. Also, do not feed into the myth that handguns are ineffective.

    Pain cannot be counted on to effect a person. Regardless of caliber, shoot until they are on the ground, shoot for the center of the chest, and apply liberal applications of lead to the threat. Thats the best definition of stopping power.
    The FBI 's bullets wouldn't penetrate through some kind of barrier (a car door, right?) to hit the bad guys, correct? But that kind of shootout is pretty rare, isn't it? A self defense shooting is usually going to happen with the bad guy a couple yard at most from the shooter without any barriers.

    And even when shooting so many times like that, wouldn't pain be what causes him to drop? Even ten shots to the chest wouldn't physically stop someone as long as they didn't damage the CNS.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Array mano3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Wetumpka, AL
    Posts
    1,039
    Most gunfights occur at close range and all calibers are dangerous up close. Still, I use the largest caliber I can fire accurately - .45 ACP.

    My Dad was a cop for 20 years and he carried a .45 1911. He told me that if he ever had to shoot somebody, he wanted them to go down fast.
    US Air Force, 1986 - 2007

    "To disarm the people is the best and most effective way to enslave them..." George Mason

    http://www.appleseedinfo.org/

  12. #12
    New Member Array Carl777's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    US
    Posts
    13
    Quote Originally Posted by glockman10mm View Post
    How often are people really in a gunfight? How often do people in a gunfight stand facing each other presenting a perfect chest shot? How thick is the bone in the arm, and how much does it effective the momentum of the bullet?
    I'd frankly be more concerned with the bullet going through him and hitting someone behind him though, then worrying about that. Besides, if he's lunging at me with a knife already, I don't know if shot placement much matter anymore, it's kind of too late to stop him through anything other than pain. Right?

  13. #13
    Ex Member Array barstoolguru's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    under a rock in area 51
    Posts
    2,548
    First of all, why do people talk about penetration so much? Thirteen inches of penetration is talked about like a minimum for handguns, but I don't know many people that thick.

    The FBI standards are 14 inches of penetration for a round to be considered for service use. The cavity of a man’s chest is from front to back is 12 inches so if you hit them in the side the shot it would have to penetrate 14 inches to do enough internal damage to stop the threat.

    So now when someone is shooting at you their arms are in front of them so you want a bullet that has enough power to penetrate the forearm and still have enough energy to cause internal damage in the chest cavity.

    The chest/stomach area is the biggest target to hit and does the least amount of moving.. This is why on a silhouette target it gets the highest scores

    For these reasons I don’t carry anything less than a 9mm (340 ft lbs of energy at the muzzle)

    edit: use hollow points; when they hit soft/ hard surfaces they expand and delivery all the energy to the target and have less chance of exiting the body
    mano3 and Gunrunner61 like this.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Array marcclarke's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Loveland, Colorado USA
    Posts
    765
    Quote Originally Posted by Carl777 View Post
    The FBI 's bullets wouldn't penetrate through some kind of barrier (a car door, right?) to hit the bad guys, correct? But that kind of shootout is pretty rare, isn't it? A self defense shooting is usually going to happen with the bad guy a couple yard at most from the shooter without any barriers.

    And even when shooting so many times like that, wouldn't pain be what causes him to drop? Even ten shots to the chest wouldn't physically stop someone as long as they didn't damage the CNS.
    The FBI's specifications do call for reliable expansion after penetrating barriers. Civilians generally don't shoot through barriers, so that part of the FBI's specifications don't concern civilians much.

  15. #15
    New Member Array Carl777's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    US
    Posts
    13
    Quote Originally Posted by Moops View Post
    Welcome to the forum.

    This is a can of worms.

    I'm not an expert, by any means, but what I've read on the subject of penetration refers to over-penetration and under-penetration (that's what she said--sorry). There really isn't any "golden rule" of penetration, since everyone is made of different ratios of bone, muscle, fat and water, not to mention clothing. Thirteen inches of penetration on a "98lb weakling" might be overdoing it, but the same velocity on a 400 fatso wearing two winter coats might be little more than an outpatient procedure. My understanding is that, generally speaking, for handguns 9mm and up, the expansion of JHPs prevents over penetration (in theory) while for smaller calibers, JHPs may not provide enough penetration.

    As far as stopping power, ending a threat immediately is a lot like sinking a half-court shot. It happens, but usually after shooting a lot of misses, and/or after a lot of practice. So to answer your question, the purpose of the debate over stopping power is because a lot of people feel the need to defend their near-religously-held belief that their particular caliber is the best/only caliber worth defending yourself with, and trusting your life to anything less is akin to walking up to a rapist and handing over your wife. The only things I have read that make any sense on this issue basically boil down to the following: be accurate, put your rounds COM, stop shooting when the threat stops or you're out of ammo.

    Also, take cover.
    So basically, the differences between the different calibers and loads are somewhat meaningless unless your opponent requires several minutes to hurt you? lol

Page 1 of 6 12345 ... LastLast

Sponsored Links

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Search tags for this page

best bullet for stopping power forum

,

forget stopping power

,

most lethal 22lr ammo

,

powered by mybb back pain nerve

,

powered by mybb body works

,

powered by mybb defence

,

powered by mybb job loss

,

powered by mybb job loss arguments

,
powered by mybb massive attack
,

powered by mybb middle back pain

,

powered by mybb small ball

,

powered by mybb stop animal abuse because

Click on a term to search for related topics.