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Posted: 3/1/2005 9:51:13 AM EST
Okay, it's not what you think.

No terrorists were injured in the making of this thread.

Several people have asked me, "What about thick clothing? Will that stop or slow down bullets considerably? Will it clog-up hollow points and prevent them from expanding?"

Well, there's only one way to know.

Today's question: What are the effects to a bullet of passing through thick clothing before hitting a bad guy?

Here's the set-up.



We have several inches of cloth clamped to a cardboard holder in the Box O' Truth, just to keep it together. Then, a milk jug of water to catch the rounds that exit. Then three pine backer boards, in case the jug doesn't stop the round.

The cloth includes 2 layers of blue jean material and then several layers of terry cloth towels. It would represent very thick clothing worn by a bad guy in very cold weather. I realize that there would be an almost infinite number of variables and combinations of types of cloth, leather, down, and plastic that could be worn. This is just a common example of thick clothing.

Let's see what happens.

First, a .22 LR from a pistol.

I shot a CCI Minimag HP. It went through the clothing and through the water jug and embedded itself into the first pine board. I dug around the bullet to help you see it.



It did not expand, but was slightly sideways in the board.

Then the mighty .32 ACP from my Keltec P-32. Tman caught me in full recoil.



Just kidding. There was very little recoil. We shot a Federal Hydroshock.

The round went through the clothing and water jug and was in the first pine board. I dug it out to see it better. Here it is:



As you can see, it did not open up at all. This was puzzling, as we have shot water jugs before with this round and they expanded perfectly.

How about a 9mm JHP. I used a 115 grain JHP out of a Beretta 92FS.



It went through the clothing, water, 3 pine boards, and somewhere beyond. We were unable to recover the bullet.

We then realized that we needed something to stop any bullet that went through the BOT. We then added a solid cement block in case any other rounds went through all the pine boards. It was solid cement.



Then the .45 ACP JHP. I used a Black Talon I had.



It went through the clothing and water jug, and two pine boards. It was found laying on the bottom of the box, un-expanded, but crushed slightly sideways.



You will also notice a piece of green cloth that it drug through the water jug with itself.

Then the .357 S&W Magnum, 158 grain JHP.



A nice pic of the mighty .357 Mag at work.

The bullet went through the entire set-up and was found on the bottom of the box after the last board. Here it is:



Damage to the bullet was mostly sideways. It did not expand very well.

Rumors had it that the .30 Carbine had problems penetrating the thick clothing of the North Koreans during the Korean War. Let's see what happens.



The bullet, a military Ball, went through the entire box set-up, blew up the water jug, and flattened itself out against the solid concrete block, knocking out a big chunk of cement.



Then the favorite of AR15.com, the AR15 (what else?). Using XM-193.



And what a fine job it did.

Here's the first pine board.



Notice the hole by the bullet tip. It was traveling sideways.

We felt that we needed some "control" rounds to compare with the first results.

We shot the .357 Mag again, without the clothing in front of the jug.



Notice the prefectly mushroomed bullet on the left that was recovered, as compared to the first one on the right. Big difference in performance.

We tried the .45ACP again, without the clothing.



I included that photo as it is pretty neat. The pistol is in recoil, the slide is coming back, the bullet is in route to the target, but has not hit the jug yet. That bullet is in the air somewhere between the pistol and the jug.

Here's the result.



Notice the Federal Hydroshock on the right, perfectly mushroomed, compared to the poorly expanded bullet on the left. Big difference.

Lastly, a round of Corbon 9mm into the clean jug.



Here's all we could find of the bullet after the water jug.




Lessons Learned:

1. As Forrest Gump said, "You never know what your going to get." We were surprised by the difference the clothing made in the pistol rounds performance. It sure seemed to make a big difference in whether the bullets expanded or not.

Conclusion: Heavy layers of clothing can prevent Jacket Hollow Points (JHP) from expanding.

2. The clothing didn't seem to be much of a factor for rifle rounds.

3. If the North Koreans seemed uneffected by the .30 Carbine rounds, they were probably not being hit. Because clothing won't stop a 30 Carbine.

Thanks to Tman for taking the pictures and for donating his best pair of blue jeans for the tests.


(For those that are interested, this and all other Box O' Truth posts can be viewed at www.theboxotruth.com/.)

Link Posted: 3/1/2005 9:56:02 AM EST
[Last Edit: 3/1/2005 9:57:03 AM EST by Dolomite]
Did the 193 go through more than one baord?

(Great job as always Tman & OP)

Very telling how you were able to recover a chunk of cloth on the .45 JHP.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 9:56:15 AM EST
[Last Edit: 3/1/2005 9:56:31 AM EST by roboman]
Another great study. Thanks Old_Painless & TMan. You guys rock!
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 9:57:16 AM EST
Will you adopt me?

G23c
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:00:33 AM EST
[Last Edit: 3/1/2005 10:01:47 AM EST by markl32]
Wow! I am surprised the clothing had such a radical effect on hollow point performance.

What happening here? The cloth plugs the hollow point turning it into a ball round?


ETA: Thanks Old_Painless!
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:00:36 AM EST

Originally Posted By Dolomite:
Did the 193 go through more than one baord?

(Great job as always Tman & OP)

Very telling how you were able to recover a chunk of cloth on the .45 JHP.



The XM-193 went through the clothing, the water jug, and all three boards.

The chunk of cloth was indeed important.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:00:55 AM EST
Don't forget lesson #4: "as always, it is really fun to shoot stuff".

Thanks, OP.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:01:21 AM EST

Originally Posted By glock23carry:
Will you adopt me?

G23c



Are you a really pretty woman with lots of money?
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:01:42 AM EST
Do you have any plans to re-do this particular test, possibly using a wider selection of ammo, or maybe a modified test with a bit less cloth?

(part of me would love to see what would have been different had you used some different hp's in the .45, like maybe gold dots.....)
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:03:00 AM EST
Oh, and BTW, do you have any future plans to use real live North Koreans for further testing?

(just curious.....)
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:03:06 AM EST

Originally Posted By markl32:
Wow! I am surprised the clothing had such a radical effect on hollow point performance.

What happening here? The cloth plugs the hollow point turning it into a ball round?



I would be unable to make that statement from my tests.

But that is indeed what I have read others think can become a factor with very thick clothing and hollow points.

All I can say for sure is that they did not expand as expected.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:04:06 AM EST
" We were surprised by the difference the clothing made in the pistol rounds performance. It sure seemed to make a big difference in whether the bullets expanded or not."

This tendency is well documented. The clothing plugs the hollowpoint turning it into JSP/Ball profile. FBI has been testing for it for at least 10 years. Modern bullet designs, and the Black Talon and Hydroshok are not modern, are designed to expand even after passing through heavy clothing.

Some loads that do really well through heavy clothing are:

CCI/Speer 124Gn (+P) GDHP 9mm
Winchester Ranget RA9T 147Gn 9mm
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:04:13 AM EST
Old_Painless is the man! WOOT! Another great production from the box of truth
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:04:30 AM EST
very nice. well done.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:05:04 AM EST

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:
The XM-193 went through the clothing, the water jug, and all three boards.



Ha! It wasn't supposed to - it was supposed to prevent less "wounding" damage to objects after penetration of non-solid objects when compared to common JHP pistol rounds!

Oh wait - you're not the FBI.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:05:50 AM EST
OP, you need your own forum, or tv show. It's like watching Bill Nye the Science Guy, only MUCH cooler.

I love these threads, keep it up OP!!!
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:06:51 AM EST
Damn...

O_P,
Your Box O' Truth threads have got to be the best on this web-site.

Keep up the great work,
Dg84
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:09:58 AM EST
Very interesting!!!

Great job O_P and Tman!

Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:11:49 AM EST
Another outstanding test. Thank you!

I guess my only question would be whetehr there would have been a difference in the 45acp if the first round had been a HydraShok, as opposed to a Talon?

Wonder what Federal would have to say about this?
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:13:10 AM EST
Another great source of information from OP. Thanks alot.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:13:17 AM EST
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:14:27 AM EST

Originally Posted By arowneragain:
Do you have any plans to re-do this particular test, possibly using a wider selection of ammo, or maybe a modified test with a bit less cloth?

(part of me would love to see what would have been different had you used some different hp's in the .45, like maybe gold dots.....)




le.atk.com/pdf/Pierce%20County%20Workshop.pdf

www.tacticalforums.com/cgi-bin/tacticalubb/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=forum;f=78
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:15:49 AM EST
Thanks!

No 12Gauge slugs this time?
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:16:29 AM EST
You da' Man!
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:17:22 AM EST

Originally Posted By shootr:
Another outstanding test. Thank you!

I guess my only question would be whetehr there would have been a difference in the 45acp if the first round had been a HydraShok, as opposed to a Talon?




A fair question.

I will admit to making a mistake. I thought I had packed 2 rounds of each type, but had only packed 1 of each. Therefore, I couldn't compare "apples to apples" as I wanted too.

But, I feel that the results are representative, as I have shot these rounds into jugs of water before, and they open up as expected.

Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:18:20 AM EST

Originally Posted By AR15fan:

Originally Posted By arowneragain:
Do you have any plans to re-do this particular test, possibly using a wider selection of ammo, or maybe a modified test with a bit less cloth?

(part of me would love to see what would have been different had you used some different hp's in the .45, like maybe gold dots.....)




le.atk.com/pdf/Pierce%20County%20Workshop.pdf

www.tacticalforums.com/cgi-bin/tacticalubb/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=forum;f=78



The terminal effects forum.......


Cool.

That'll keep me occupied for a few days.

Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:18:24 AM EST

Originally Posted By Dolomite:

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:
The XM-193 went through the clothing, the water jug, and all three boards.



Ha! It wasn't supposed to - it was supposed to prevent less "wounding" damage to objects after penetration of non-solid objects when compared to common JHP pistol rounds!

Oh wait - you're not the FBI.



Am I missing something? 9mm went right through all the boards too, and a jug of water isn't people. I will keep this in mind when shooting milk jugs outside my daughters room with my M4

Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:18:50 AM EST
Thanks again O_P.
I would say that The Box of Truth is the most popular
of recurring ARFCOM threads. Great info!

Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:18:54 AM EST
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:19:09 AM EST
thnx again
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:19:22 AM EST

Originally Posted By Punani:
Thanks!

No 12Gauge slugs this time?



I had brought the shotgun and a couple of other rifles, but the first two rifles answered all questions about rifle rounds (and the slug).

Thick clothing doesn't make much difference to a rifle or slug.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:19:58 AM EST
Re: .30 carbine and North Koreans: either they were not hit, or the small wound channels produced didn't do the job very well. The early British .303 (a heavy .303 bullet @ 1,900 fps) as well as the .30-40 Krag proved to have marginal performance in the 1890s timeframe. In the case of the .303, the result was "Dum-Dum" bullets, hollow point bullets, and hypocritical bullet restrictions at the Hague, pushed by the Germans and French . . .

But in any case, .30 RN FMJ bullets @ mvs below 2,000 fps have not proven effective, despite good penetration . . . it has to come down to wound channel.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:21:30 AM EST
great info... thanks for sharing that with us...
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:22:13 AM EST

Originally Posted By shootr:
Another outstanding test. Thank you!

I guess my only question would be whetehr there would have been a difference in the 45acp if the first round had been a HydraShok, as opposed to a Talon?

Wonder what Federal would have to say about this?



Very cool and informative, I love these posts.

Do you think anything would have been different had the jug of water been inside the clothing (like a body)? All I'm thinking of is the bullet not having time to "tumble" before it gets to the H2O.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:22:34 AM EST
Somehow I think the next time I shoot at a waterjug it just wont be the same...
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:23:32 AM EST
OP,
You really need to get your hands on some surplus kevlar flack jackets (PASGT) or police trade in body armor.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:23:36 AM EST
tagged as usual. Thanks OP!!!
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:23:44 AM EST
Excellent work as always OP.


Thanks
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:26:47 AM EST

Originally Posted By shootr:
Wonder what Federal would have to say about this?

ATK/Federal would tell you the hydroshok is an outdated bullet that was state of the art 18 years ago, and you would be better suited with their "tactical" or "HST" line of ammo, or their sister companies GDHP.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:26:57 AM EST
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:29:45 AM EST

Originally Posted By arowneragain:

Originally Posted By AR15fan:

Originally Posted By arowneragain:
Do you have any plans to re-do this particular test, possibly using a wider selection of ammo, or maybe a modified test with a bit less cloth?

(part of me would love to see what would have been different had you used some different hp's in the .45, like maybe gold dots.....)




le.atk.com/pdf/Pierce%20County%20Workshop.pdf

www.tacticalforums.com/cgi-bin/tacticalubb/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=forum;f=78



The terminal effects forum.......


Cool.

That'll keep me occupied for a few days.



The search function there will answer nearly any question you have about a specific load.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:30:24 AM EST
[Last Edit: 3/1/2005 10:32:17 AM EST by Hokie]
it's also a testament to the 5.56 cartridge
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:31:52 AM EST
Thanks for including the .30carbine in this test, I will point to it every time someone recites the winter clothing myth.

Great pictures, Thanks a lot!

Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:32:13 AM EST

Originally Posted By AR15fan:

Originally Posted By arowneragain:

Originally Posted By AR15fan:

Originally Posted By arowneragain:
Do you have any plans to re-do this particular test, possibly using a wider selection of ammo, or maybe a modified test with a bit less cloth?

(part of me would love to see what would have been different had you used some different hp's in the .45, like maybe gold dots.....)




le.atk.com/pdf/Pierce%20County%20Workshop.pdf

www.tacticalforums.com/cgi-bin/tacticalubb/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=forum;f=78



The terminal effects forum.......


Cool.

That'll keep me occupied for a few days.



The search function there will answer nearly any question you have about a specific load.




Thanks!





­



Originally Posted By Lumpy196:
Id like to state for the record, photogrphic PROOF of why Corbon 9mm SUCKS ASS.



I suppose if your average bad guy was 95 pounds, had no arms, and wasn't wearing a shirt, it would be OK.

(Cornbread wouldn't agree, though, and he's more tactical......)
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:32:25 AM EST
[Last Edit: 3/1/2005 3:10:53 PM EST by AR15fan]

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:

Originally Posted By Punani:
Thanks!

No 12Gauge slugs this time?



I had brought the shotgun and a couple of other rifles, but the first two rifles answered all questions about rifle rounds (and the slug).

Thick clothing doesn't make much difference to a rifle or slug.




Loaded magazines worn in a chest righ mag the biggest difference. M855 only pentrates a few inches of flesh after passing through an AK chest rig.

www.tacticalforums.com/cgi-bin/tacticalubb/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=78;t=000512;p=10


Can you get some cheap steel AK mags and shoot through those?
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:32:32 AM EST

Originally Posted By Lumpy196:
Id like to state for the record, photogrphic PROOF of why Corbon 9mm SUCKS ASS.



But but but . . . Ayoob & Marshall & Sanow all told me it was the stuff to get . . .
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:34:14 AM EST
[Last Edit: 3/1/2005 10:35:56 AM EST by fight4yourrights]

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:


3. If the North Koreans seemed uneffected by the .30 Carbine rounds, they were probably not being hit. Because clothing won't stop a 30 Carbine.




Incorrect Test Parameters


You would need to wet and freeze/partially freeze the clothing layers
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:34:48 AM EST
When I grow up, I wanna be Old_Painless.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:36:19 AM EST
[Last Edit: 3/1/2005 10:36:47 AM EST by macman37]
Awesome test as usual O_P.

Re: the M-1 carbine in Korea: I'd read the theory that the silk underwear/clothing the Koreans used would get infused with and stiffen from sweat and that was why the carbine was perceived to be a less than capable weapon. YES, it's a technicality. The BO'T vs. Rags test stands on its own. In all honesty I think the controversy is bunk- the l'il carbine served well in WWII as Audie Murphy and many others will testify.

Great stuff!

Edit: FFYR beat me to it!
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:37:55 AM EST

Originally Posted By AR15fan:

Loaded magazines worn in a chest righ mag the biggest difference. M855 only pentrates a few inches of flesh after passing through an AK chest rig.

Can you get some cheap steel AK mags and shoot through those?



I guess if there is enough interest and enough donations on the website at www.theboxotruth.com/ I could shoot some up.

It's all a matter of expense. I usually do "poor-boy" type tests as I am footing most of the bill and try to keep the costs down as much as possible.

I enjoy these tests, but they can get expensive.
Link Posted: 3/1/2005 10:40:03 AM EST
[Last Edit: 3/1/2005 10:40:36 AM EST by DonS]

Originally Posted By fight4yourrights:

Originally Posted By Old_Painless:


3. If the North Koreans seemed uneffected by the .30 Carbine rounds, they were probably not being hit. Because clothing won't stop a 30 Carbine.




Incorrect Test Parameters


You would need to wet and freeze/partially freeze the clothing layers



Then you wouldn't need to shoot the NKs, just stack 'em in a pile.
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