Bullet/Pistol "signature"

This is a discussion on Bullet/Pistol "signature" within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I have a question for those of you who are knowledgeable about forensics/ballistics. From what I understand, each gun/pistol/rifle barrel has its own distinct identifying ...

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Thread: Bullet/Pistol "signature"

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    Senior Member Array MotorCityGun's Avatar
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    Bullet/Pistol "signature"

    I have a question for those of you who are knowledgeable about forensics/ballistics.

    From what I understand, each gun/pistol/rifle barrel has its own distinct identifying "signature" on a bullet, analogous to a finger print. Is it just as easy to identify the gun/pistol that a bullet was fired from when examining a FMJ/ball vs. a JHP bullet?
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    VIP Member Array mcp1810's Avatar
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    The identifying marks are carved into the bearing surface of the bullet by the rifling. Unless a hollow point is pushed so fast that it basically turns completely inside out it would not be significantly harder to identify than FMJ. It can be more challenging with rifle ammo. If the bullet strikes it's target above it's "frangible threshold" it will partially disintigrate. This is why we don't use match bullets for hunting large game. If the jacket is too thin and the bullet hits at too high a velocity you get what is sometimes refered to as a lead snow storm which can create a very impressive but very shallow wound track. If the bullet totally fragments a definitive forensic match can be impossible.
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    VIP Member Array Brad426's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MotorCityGun View Post
    I have a question for those of you who are knowledgeable about forensics/ballistics.

    From what I understand, each gun/pistol/rifle barrel has its own distinct identifying "signature" on a bullet, analogous to a finger print. Is it just as easy to identify the gun/pistol that a bullet was fired from when examining a FMJ/ball vs. a JHP bullet?
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    Senior Member Array MotorCityGun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcp1810 View Post
    The identifying marks are carved into the bearing surface of the bullet by the rifling. Unless a hollow point is pushed so fast that it basically turns completely inside out it would not be significantly harder to identify than FMJ. It can be more challenging with rifle ammo. If the bullet strikes it's target above it's "frangible threshold" it will partially disintigrate. This is why we don't use match bullets for hunting large game. If the jacket is too thin and the bullet hits at too high a velocity you get what is sometimes refered to as a lead snow storm which can create a very impressive but very shallow wound track. If the bullet totally fragments a definitive forensic match can be impossible.
    Then would a powdered metal bullet/round made by, for example, Dynamic Research Technologies be less or totally untraceable?
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    VIP Member Array mcp1810's Avatar
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    I would doubt it. If you notice what is powdered is the core. It still has a conventional jacket which is what the rifling is in contact with. It would be like a conventional bullet that suffered from a jacket separation.
    But it is possible. I think the key would be how tough the jacket is.
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