OK. Good to know.
This is a discussion on .380 on Guns and Ammo TV within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Did anyone see them shoot a .380 through a jacket and several layers of clothing into a block of gel? They were using Hornaday ammo ...
Did anyone see them shoot a .380 through a jacket and several layers of clothing into a block of gel? They were using Hornaday ammo and at a good distance. Not only did they penetrate the clothing - but 10" into the gel. The bullet mushroomed perfectly. It made me rethink the .380. And it is the size of a 9mm. I think I will start carrying my .380 more frequently now.
OK. Good to know.
"Just blame Sixto"
I reserve the right to make fun, point and laugh etc.
No ,I did not but I wish I had seen it.
I,ve been thinking about adding a 380 to
my carry armory.
But gel without bones around it like a ribcage does not
tell the whole story does it !
I'm still not sold on the .380
Zoe: "Preacher, don't the Bible have some pretty specific things to say about killing?
Book: "Quite specific. It is, however, somewhat fuzzier on the subject of kneecaps."
I believe they used a Ruger LCP for that test.
I don't think I would ever be completely sold on .380 for a EDC gun. However with the improvements in ballistic of the round, I don't hesitate to carry one when larger caliber/guns aren't practical.
Freedom doesn't come free. It is bought and paid for by the lives and blood of our men and women in uniform.
NRA Life Member
I was just curious if anyone else was as impressed as I with the performance of their "test" of the .380? I am not in no way saying toss your .45 in lieu of the .380 - but rather a more comfortable/confident option when needed.
Keep in mind penetration depth of gell is not 1:1 toward same of a living breathing human body dense with varying degrees of skin thickness, fat, fluids, musculature, bone, and organs...all of which are generally bullet resistant to varying degrees of elasticity and puncture resistance capability.
As well consider that ballistic gel is generally uniform in consistency for sake of comparison in testing. While human beings they are not consistent in same.
Carry what you can but consider when you need it and expect as much to work, it's really got to do the job in right here and now manner of speaking.
As my PT-145 is about the same size as my BT-380, I will stick to the 45 cal.
Life is too short to be serious!
Who would ever need more than 10" of penetration once breaking the clothing boundry?
FBI now states they want no less than 12" and want up to 18" of penetration for their agents in the field. They choose their ammo based on the above.
From one of their reports. I found this to be interesting:
"It is essential to bear in mind the single most critical factor remains penetration".
"No law enforcement officer has lost his life because a bullet over penetrated his adversary"
"tragically large numbers of officers have been killed because their bullets did not penetrate deeply enough."
The mind is the limiting factor
Quick Kill Rifle and Pistol Instructor
Agreed, or rather yep. ^^
Seriously look at the way human beings are coming off the assembly line these days!
Sixteen year olds standing 6'2" and pushing 250 lbs. wrestling and playing football looking like grown men. Even middle schoolers are tipping the scales at 150 to 170 lbs these days.
Grown men in their 30's and older carrying 300+ lbs wearing shirts that now can be bought in Target sized at XXXL, a size that just a decade ago could only be found at 'Big & Tall' stores or ordered by catalog from obscure specialty providers.
Women too, they are now days built like refrigerators as the wide norm.
The old days of a .38 or even a 9MM just aren't enough to stop folks now days. Pain tolerances are higher, incidences of persons walking around all day as their norm under prescribed medication/self medication drugs of all sort including those that numb onesself, along with the very much obvious fact that half our country is overweight and every fourth person obese...all of this results in bullets that have a more difficult time penetrating and busting through flesh, fat, muscle, fluids, and bone.
I normally carry full size 1911s in 45 and 9MM.
For days and times when I need to be very discrete such when wearing a tank top/A shirt I'll run my Colt Defender compact, chambered in .45 and running hot Corbon DPX.
I'm not willing to bet my life, nor my familys security, on anything less than optimal even as carry may be less than comfortable or convenient.
In my world everything comes with a price, there is no free lunch, and to get you have to give somewhere.
Living in Florida with our 10 month long summers, I pocket carry a P3AT 380 all the time.
Sure if the chips where down, I'd prefer to have my Glock 9 mm on my side, but regardless how big he is, put a couple 380 Ranger T's in his chest, and he'll leave you alone real quick.
This quote from the FBI Miami shooting back in the 80's always sticks in my mind, when they summarized the best ammo at the time for different calibers:
".380 - there isn’t one. The full metal jacketed round is the best of a bad choice, but only because it might penetrate."
I've never cared for the .380 round, due to the weak ballistics, and a G26 is as small a gun as I care to carry. It took me a long time to warm up to the 9mm for carry, and I only carry mine loaded with +p+ ammo. I prefer my G21 and it's .45 acp chambering.
In the event I need my gun, the most important thing will be shot placement, but I would rather sacrifice a little concealability and carry the most powerful and accurate gun that I can manage, not the other way around.
Last edited by packin45; September 30th, 2008 at 07:47 PM.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil...
As has been noted, and no doubt discussed ad nauseum in a thousand posts on a dozen forums, people put WAY too much stock in ballistic gelatin. It's great for simulating tissue penetration when comparing round A to round B, but as a rule for how it will penetrate a living, breathing human walking around with a full compliment of organs and bones, it's hardly accurate.
The FBI requirements for penetration have already been mentioned. Just think about the depth of a grown man's chest area. I'm 6'2" 265#, my chest from front to back probably measures around 12-14". The heart (the only COM vital organ very likely to make a fast stop if struck) sits deep within the chest, with a very hard sternum, plus ribs, in between you and it. A lightweight .380 round will not hold up well AT ALL against bone, more likely to result in total stoppage (even bounce-back) or fragmentation resulting in the "lead snowstorm" commonly seen in gunshot X-rays, than it is to penetrate through to the vitals. Even if you miss bone entirely, 10" of penetration on a grown man is likely the best case scenario and just barely deep enough to reach the vitals with the energy required to do much damage.
Not to start yet another caliber debate, and not saying the .380 isn't useful in its place, such as when conditions or availability preclude anything else. And of course it's always better than nothing! I'm just saying I wouldn't be considering backing down to it for EDC if you have better options. Personally, 9mm is my comfortable bottom limit. .45ACP is my standard.
Kimber Pro CDP II • Colt Combat Commander • Glock 26 GNS • Ruger Mark III 22/45 • Kahr CW9 (sold)