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Most test I have read have to do with jhp ammo jell penetration. I recently read another test concerning bone penetration. Since the chest area is protected by bone. The test indicate that jhp ammo may not penetrate through the bone into vital area. Whereas fmj Ammo would. Tests seem to be in conflict 9mm round nose may in fact ricochet off the bone and not penetrate. 40 cal flat nose would crash through the protective bone and penetrate the vital area.
 

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I don't see why JHP would fail to penetrate a rib cage, and the great popularity of JHP with law enforcement indicates that it's not a problem.

As for deflection, it makes sense to me that a flat-nosed .40 would tend to keep a straighter course going through bone than a round-nosed 9mm, but it seems unlikely that it would actually fail to penetrate a rib for that reason, unless it was a glancing shot hitting at an extreme angle.
 
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Don't overthink it... If you need to shoot something, use any quality self defense ammo. If it fails to perform, it's most likely not the failure of the ammo. They'll do their job if you do yours.
 

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Most test I have read have to do with jhp ammo jell penetration. I recently read another test concerning bone penetration. Since the chest area is protected by bone. The test indicate that jhp ammo may not penetrate through the bone into vital area. Whereas fmj Ammo would. tests seem to be in conflict 9mm round nose may in fact ricochet off the bone and not penetrate. 40 cal flat nose would crash through the protective bone and penetrate the vital area.
Could you provide a link to the "test" you read about on bone penetration? I'd be interested to know who's putting out that type of information that may be confusing to many people, and how the testing was performed, and their findings.
 

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No matter what firearm, ammo and caliber you're using, I can come up with a scenario where there's a better choice. The best decision you can make is to find a combination that works in most scenarios. No ammo is going to be the best choice in every situation. What if you're assaulted by a squirrel and an elephant wearing body armor in an elevator? You'll be kicking yourself for carrying your 9mm. Too much penetration for shooting the squirrel and not enough for the elephant.
 

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http://www.americanortho.com/downloads/aarhus/Bone_types.pdf

There are 4 types of bone density. Correlation between them and some wood densities are discussed in the link. The hardest wood is oak and moves down to styrofoam.

I don't think we have to worry too much about common sd calibers punching through a sternum/breastbone
 

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Most test I have read have to do with jhp ammo jell penetration. I recently read another test concerning bone penetration. Since the chest area is protected by bone. The test indicate that jhp ammo may not penetrate through the bone into vital area. Whereas fmj Ammo would. Tests seem to be in conflict 9mm round nose may in fact ricochet off the bone and not penetrate. 40 cal flat nose would crash through the protective bone and penetrate the vital area.
Your best bet is to go with any of the top shelf hollow point offerings. They're all good. No need for analysis paralysis.
 

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Bullets are strange little creatures, they will or won't do any number of things depending on weight/bullet design/velocity/barrel length/mass of target/ clothing/etc. Don't get caught up in gel tests or tests in general. Nothing tells you the full story other than a bullet going into a living organism, which is what street statistics are for. You are always better sticking to a tested and well regarded JHP, as the expansion can cause more threat stopping damage and will generally stop inside the target. FMJ is a target round and will likely just pass through the target. I mean, a hole in you is a hole in you and will still kill you..but we don't want holes in anything beyond that living target in a defense situation.

"But the military" you might be saying..the military generally does not have to worry about the wrong people standing behind the right people. Plus, the military is governed by outdated rules and bureaucratic BS. They operate in a different world and on a different level than the rest of us do.
 

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Caliber does matter. Your defensive choice should be able to reliably penetrate and expand. There are plenty of concealable choices from 9mm up. .38+P for revolvers.

Going with a heavy for caliber bullet will minimize deflection and maximize penetration. Choose a grain above the median weight for your carry caliber.
 

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Don't think FMJ is the best for SD, but I would not want to be on the receiving end of any bullet. 9MM is what I carry the most and it is always top end defense ammo. If I carry a 45 ACP I also use the best defense ammo I can find. I practice with FMJ and I have a few rounds put away for TEOTWAWKI.
 
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