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US Secret Service Adopts Gen 5 Glock 19 MOS; Retiring P229 .357 Sig Login/Join 
fugitive from reality
Picture of SgtGold
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quote:
Originally posted by Sheepdogged:
quote:
Originally posted by RichardC:
Sheepdogged, is that study available for us to read?


https://www.buckeyefirearms.or...ndgun-stopping-power


I ran across that study several years ago. While I think it's a good example of how shot placement is a critical factor in the wounding mechanism, it in no way proves which caliber is more accurate. There are simply too many factors involved in an actual gunfight to try and correlate accuracy to a single factor such as bullet weight.


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Posts: 6385 | Location: Newyorkistan | Registered: March 28, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by snoris:
quote:
Originally posted by Sheepdogged:
There is a logical fallacy called "post hoc ergo propter hoc", and the Latin roughly translates in English as "after that therefore because of that."


Engineers and physicists who didn’t have to take Latin in school have simplified that to: “B follows A; therefore, A caused B.”
Cool Big Grin


Post hoc ergo propter hoc!
 
Posts: 29 | Location: Ohio | Registered: November 27, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by SgtGold:
quote:
Originally posted by Sheepdogged:
quote:
Originally posted by RichardC:
Sheepdogged, is that study available for us to read?


https://www.buckeyefirearms.or...ndgun-stopping-power


I ran across that study several years ago. While I think it's a good example of how shot placement is a critical factor in the wounding mechanism, it in no way proves which caliber is more accurate. There are simply too many factors involved in an actual gunfight to try and correlate accuracy to a single factor such as bullet weight.


I've known about this study not long after it came out, so it's nothing new to me either and I've thought about it for a long time now, and to your point, that's why I wrote "I won't claim the study is flawless or deny how averages can be misleading"; however, there is a good possibility that if we had another set of similar-sized data it might yield similar results.

I was in no way trying to prove which caliber is more accurate. However, to completely dismiss the results of this finding would be a bigger mistake my opinion.

If this was limited to one particular type of ammunition, for example, or if we knew for sure it wasn't comparing apples to apples, or some other bias existed that wasn't controlled for and sure to skew the results, then it would hold even less weight, but because these are real-life scenarios and I have no reason to believe any sort of preference for the type of ammunition, shooter experience, firearm etc. existed, it isn't worthless information by any stretch even if it upsets a few people (though it shouldn't). Personally I was happy to see the results because I'm sick of anecdotal evidence and gel tests.

Most of the percentages are so close that they're within the margin of error anyway, but .45 ACP and .44 Magnum do stand out as far as accuracy is concerned (as does .357 SIG to a lesser degree), and that makes sense. Those are heavier, heavier & faster, and faster bullets respectively compared to 9mm (so it follows they would be more accurate).

Shooters have also known about the superior accuracy of the .45 ACP for a long time, for example (and there is certainly no shortage of 1911 fans who love to point this out), so this shouldn't have surprised anyone.

I've studied statistics in college and grad school so I am fully aware of the holes (biases) that exist in every study, but Greg Ellifritz's study does help closes some larger ones in my opinion (compared to tests that can only simulate how shooters are going to perform in real life).

For example, it was an eye-opener for me to see that .357 SIG & .357 Mag were just as accurate and just as effective at incapacitating a target as centerfire rifles & shotguns. When you look at the data, both the latter are certainly much more lethal, but as far as stopping power at typical engagement distances (for breaking contact), the .357 SIG/Mag is just as effective.

Is it more effective than 9mm? We can debate that as I briefly mentioned in my earlier post, but the study at the very least buttressed what LEO's have been saying for decades concerning .357 Magnum. Obviously 9mm fans have nothing to worry about with the FBI and Secret Service converting (and the military sticking with the round), but if we .357 SIG fans want to continue admiring the round, I really do think it has a lot to offer. But of course these numbers are so close there are advantages either way. However, as dpast32 pointed out, the bottleneck design is superior for feeding and, ballistically speaking, it can do everything the 9mm can do and more, but it's expensive. Personally I don't think there is any data supporting the idea that capacity is a significant factor. If you look at the study and round up how many rounds it takes to incapacitate someone on average, the small advantage 9mm has becomes a wash.
 
Posts: 29 | Location: Ohio | Registered: November 27, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
fugitive from reality
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One of the things the author mentions is that the data collected shows that 32 ACP has a better, i.e. higher incapacitation per round, than 45 ACP does. This runs contrary to just about every established ballistic trend in terms of stopping power. The author also warns against skewed results in 9 mm due to FMJ ammo being used in over 50% of the recorded shootings. There are numerous other disclaimers, but you get the point. What I take away from all this is it almost doesnt matter what pistol caliber youre packing. They all take two rounds to get the job done, and you need solid torso and head hits to make it happen.

On a side note, 9 mm now surpasses 45 ACP in terms of mechanical accurace in the bullseye pistol world. The only reason it hasn't become more popular is you still have 22 LR and 45 ACP stages that can only be fired with those respective calibers.


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Posts: 6385 | Location: Newyorkistan | Registered: March 28, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I am known to be intellectually challenged so bear with me. The definition of accuracy from the Ellifritz opus is, and I quote, "Accuracy. What percentage of hits was in the head or torso". So I am sitting here and trying to understand what's more retarded, I am, or expressing caliber's accuracy irrespective of the distances, pistols used to launch the projectiles, users' skills, or even absolute number of rounds fired.
 
Posts: 321 | Registered: April 03, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Isn't the Buckeye study a newer riff on the widely discredited Marshall-Sanow study? Why would this have any more validity?

quote:
Originally posted by Sheepdogged:
quote:
Originally posted by dpast32:

1) The Bureau has been experiencing an increasing problem with the MARKSMANSHIP of it's new recruits, & also with a percentage of it's on duty personnel also. They, the FBI needed to find a 'sufficiently effective', yet controllable duty caliber cartridge that would [ hopefully ] fill their needs. Enhanced weapon controllability equates into less training / range time, along with higher qualification scores.


Excellent post.

Regarding the FBI, based off of the Buckeye Firearms Association study I mentioned earlier (and subsequently linked), I am not sure why agents can't hit with .40 S&W. After reviewing gunshots from bodies involved in 1,800 gun fights over a period of ten years with various calibers, this is the accuracy reported by Columbus PD officer Greg Ellifritz who conducted the study (head and torso hits):

.380 ACP- 76%

.38 Special- 76%

9mm- 74% (remember, every idiot and their brother shoots 9mm)

.40 S&W- 76%

.45 ACP- 85% (btw, this is why Massad Ayoob said often competes with a .45 ACP over a 9mm)

.357 SIG/Mag- 81% (Massad also carries .357 SIG at home)

.44 Mag- 88% (most accurate)

Centerfire rifles- 81% (remember, .357 SIG also tied with center fire rifles with the lowest failure to incapacitat rate [9%])

Shotguns- 84%

Remember, this isn't practice time at some range, nor is it hypothetical. I won't claim the study is flawless or deny how averages can be misleading, but—on average anyway—it appears accuracy in FBI testing is different than that of actual gunfights if they are hitting better with 9mm, and they're taking a bit of a hit not carrying .357 or .45. Again, all sorts of bias can come into play (i.e. what kind of ammunition, the training of various shooters etc.), but this is better data than I've seen because we don't have to simulate what happens under stress (this is what actually happened under stress).
 
Posts: 19225 | Registered: November 05, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
E tan e epi tas
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That study seems to confirm that most calibers are within the statistical noise of each other. Which I believe to be true. If barriers or animals are concerned then I really do believe caliber can offer various pros and cons. That said in the VAST majority of real world shootings there is pistol caliber (keep squeezing till they stop wheezing) vs rifle and shotgun calibers / gauges which tend to be fight stoppers no matter the caliber/round type.

Pistol calibers matter in regards to external barriers (glass, metal, bone, etc.) but beyond that they are all very similar. Now there might be a bigger psychological effect/stop chance with a bigger/flashier/louder round but generally speaking going into a fight with a handgun expecting a one or two shot stop is folly.

The BIGGEST benefit of most small arms in self defense is making the other guy(s) realize that they left the iron on, left the door unlocked, forgot to fold the laundry etc. whatever.....and they decide to exit stage left either with or without holes in them.

The hard core bad ass folks are probably gonna give you a FIGHT until your find their CNS off button so to speak.

Point is different calibers absolutely have different capabilities. They do not, however, have drastic ballistic differences on 2 legged threats.


"Guns are tools. The only weapon ever created was man."
 
Posts: 4446 | Location: Nashville, TN | Registered: July 25, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Peace through
superior firepower
Picture of parabellum
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Where's the study that confirms that 9x19mm pistols hold more cartridges than the same pistols in .40 or .357? Big Grin

More boolits = more better

Maybe we can put that into a pie chart or something.
 
Posts: 88640 | Registered: January 20, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by SgtGold:
One of the things the author mentions is that the data collected shows that 32 ACP has a better, i.e. higher incapacitation per round, than 45 ACP does. This runs contrary to just about every established ballistic trend in terms of stopping power. The author also warns against skewed results in 9 mm due to FMJ ammo being used in over 50% of the recorded shootings. There are numerous other disclaimers, but you get the point. What I take away from all this is it almost doesnt matter what pistol caliber youre packing. They all take two rounds to get the job done, and you need solid torso and head hits to make it happen.

On a side note, 9 mm now surpasses 45 ACP in terms of mechanical accurace in the bullseye pistol world. The only reason it hasn't become more popular is you still have 22 LR and 45 ACP stages that can only be fired with those respective calibers.


You made a good point, but I also believe what you're doing is akin to throwing the baby out with the bathwater. The devil is in the details, and it's important to put everything in the correct context.

First, you said "that the data collected shows that 32 ACP has a better, i.e. higher incapacitation per round, than 45 ACP does. This runs contrary to just about every established ballistic trend in terms of stopping power."

To be fair to the author of this study, your statement is dubious because, although you later refer to another caveat and vague disclaimers, you didn't mention what he said specifically about this caliber. Ellifritz said, "I also believe the data for the .25, .32 and .44 magnum should be viewed with suspicion. I simply don't have enough data (in comparison to the other
calibers) to draw an accurate comparison."

Obviously he was pointing out that his sample was too small compared to the others to draw any definite conclusions, so you're point about .32 v. .45 was redundant (if not moot).

Regarding your point about 9mm, if you look back to my earlier post, I mentioned that specifically and how it could have possibly been better had more HP had been used. So again, that's one more point that was already made both in the study and in my original post about it.

I also stated earlier that most of the calibers were close, which was Ellifritz conclusion as well, so again, you're pointing out what we obviously already said.

You also stated incorrectly that they all take two rounds to get the job done. As I also mentioned earlier, you can't shoot 2.45, 2.36, or 2.08 rounds out of a gun (the results for 9mm, .40 and .45 respectively), so you have to round the numbers up. So considering the averages, you have to shoot 3 rounds from each of those calibers if you want to ensure you are hitting your target with the minimum average bullets necessary to stop someone. I'm not saying you must be that picky, especially if you feel strongly about a particular type of ammo, but the study certainly does not show two rounds will get the job done for each caliber. You're saying that, but on average, the data shows 3 for those three calibers mentioned while .44 Magnum (1.71), .357 Mag/SIG (1.7), .38 Special (1.87), and .380 ACP (1.76) can each be rounded up to 2.

You might also ask yourself how .380 beat out 9mm and my suspicion is this. We know from Ellifritz that the 9mm's contained over 50% FMJ, but he didn't mention the mix for .380 ACP. We know, however, that traditionally speaking, even today, many people hold onto the belief that .380's must be FMJ to ensure adequate penetration, and this data was collected in the first decade of the 21st century (and not the second which we're almost finished with). In other words, it's very possible that both .380 and 9mm had more than 50% FMJ, and it's also possible .380 had significantly more than even 9mm, but because .380 is a relatively weak round and people therefore commonly rely on FMJ .380 ammo to compensate, Ellifritz probably didn't feel it needed mentioning. I we were to place .380 FMJ's side by side with 9mm FMJ's, .380 might not over penetrate as much, and one of the key tenets of wound ballistics is that a bullet staying in the body is going to dump more energy (and thus do more damage). In other words, it's possible for .380 FMJ's to work even better than 9mm FMJ's which have a higher chance of leaving the body.

As I maintained from the outset, the study isn't perfect and it's not Ellifritz fault. If you study statistics, there is no such thing as a perfect study. To get even close would require more money and resources than most studies can come close to raising, so everything is less than perfect, yet we rely on studies anyway to provide an estimate of what we think might happen.

Going back to the .357 argument, someone made a great point in the comment section of one of Underwood's .357 SIG cartridges that he loved. And it backs up something I've alluded to in the past...

"The 357 SIG was made with the idea to mimic the legendary 125 grain 357 mag at 1450 fps. Sadly, most just settle with 1350. Not Underwood!! They make this cartridge shine like it should, and I HAVE NOT found a single over-pressure sign. I ran the UW 125, the DoubleTap 125, and the factory Speer 125 (53918) through my Glock 32 and Glock 33. The numbers speak for themselves.

"Glock 32
Underwood - 1527 fps, ES=39
DoubleTap - 1438 fps, ES=57
Speer - 1325 fps, ES=58

"Glock 33
Underwood - 1480 fps, ES=42
DoubleTap - 1367 fps, ES=45
Speer - 1283 fps, ES=30"

I had mentioned earlier that I had found all the different loads for all the calibers I could find a few years ago and averaged them out to get an idea what kind of loads on average might have been used in these 1800 shootings. It's far from a perfect estimate, but not having any specific data, I figured I would use the best average muzzle energy I could find. The average I found for .357 SIG was 526 ft. lbs. By the time it leaves the barrel, even if it doesn't hit anything other than the person's clothing, it's going to drop down to about 500 ft. lbs. (or less). My average for .357 SIG happened to work out very closely to 125 grain Speer Gold Dots which are rated at 525 ft. lbs. (I was 1 lb. off). Given the popularity of this round and most others (which are similar), it's a safe bet that the .357 SIG rounds in this study were likely very similar (and thus similarly underpowered). In other words, they were nowhere near the energy that the 125 grain .357 SIG traveling at 1450 fps was designed to emulate (which works out to around 600 ft. lbs.). The muzzle energy for the 125 grain Underwood load is rated at 604 ft. lbs. In other words, it is very possible that these loads really might meet the venerable .357 Magnum loads officers loved in years past. Most commercial .357 SIG rounds, however, don't come anywhere close to that, but Underwood does. In fact, as I also mentioned, they have a 65 grain XD round with 636 ft. lbs.

So even though 9mm very well may have benefited from a higher mix of HP rounds, .357 SIG almost certainly would have benefitted from rounds truly matching the power of what was once considered the ideal .357 Magnum round. Moreover, we also have to consider that the FMJ's might not have handicapped 9mm nearly as much as they would have skewed .40 S&W and .45 as those rounds are significantly heavier and more prone to over penetration. In fact, think about what kind of 9mm FMJ loads people are carrying in their pistols. These are typically inexpensive underpowered rounds that might fair only a little better than .380 ACP. As such, they surely would penetrate better, but if they didn't leave the body, there would have been little need for a HP. How many weak 9mm FMJ rounds didn't over penetrate compared to .40 or .45 HP rounds that failed to expand and passed through the body? It's just one of the limitations to the study. The point is that we don't know enough to say for certain how much the FMJ's would have skewed the numbers. I'm not saying they didn't, none of us know what rounds were used, but it is plausible.

Moreover, in addition to the .357 SIG rounds likely being underpowered, even the average .357 Magnum round was lower than the traditional 600 ft. lbs. loads. My data shows .357 Magnum averaged 574 ft. lbs., and since .357 SIG and .357 Magnum were grouped together in the study, the average of the two was surely considerably less than that, so it is a safe bet the .357 ammo wasn't the stuff legends were made out of (I'm using that term half heartedly, but you get the point).

The problem with caliber debates in general is that everyone likes to sh** on data that doesn't support their conclusions. I carry .380, 9mm, and .357 SIG, and I carry 9mm the most, so I don't have a dog in the fight one way or another, but I feel I have spent more time on the details than most people I've discussed this matter with, and in my opinion most people are suffering from confirmation bias. It's easy t tell by the way they approach information that doesn't comport with what they believe to be true. The observations in their feedback are always negative and less than thorough. I often have to point out the obvious which tells me they really didn't want to see anything else. We can all fall victim to this once in awhile, but I wish people would be as critical of their own preconceived notions as they are those held by others, and this goes beyond the caliber debate and into other topics (like politics where everyone thinks they're an expert). I am not an expert ballistician, but I have heard from ballisticians who clearly didn't have all the facts either, so sometimes you don't have to be an ant to be an entomologist.
 
Posts: 29 | Location: Ohio | Registered: November 27, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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OK, I guess I'll throw my .02¢ in again, for what it's worth. Basically, ANY projectile will kill, and or incapacitate, that's a fact. It's not the killing that we have to focus on, but rather the length of time it takes to fully incapacitate 'something'. Once we have agreed upon the previous fact, now, here is where all the debate / controversy begins. As others before me have correctly stated, everybody as their own opinions, with some being correct & relevant, some others being not so relevant, while some tend to be in the realm of fantasy. I've said this numerous time before, & via numerous venues, but will briefly state it again here. { Just for the record, if you don't agree, or here vastly differing opinions, so be it ! You may believe whatever you choose to, & hopefully things will work out for you. As for me, I prefer to rely upon proven facts, & of course my observations of over the past 35+ years or so. For some unknown reason, I've been seriously intrigued by the study of forensic ballistics ever since 1978 or so, & have watched all the dynamics, studies, trends, 'early' caliber wars, & so on. And FWIW, I can almost guarantee that a few years from now we'll be watching a debate regarding the potential replacement of the 9x19mm cartridge within the L.E. community. But, that's another story for another Post.

So, to state briefly, there are 2, repeat 'two' mechanisms in which to cause a 'hostile' to cease all hostile action. 1st is, & usually agreed upon by most in the business is a nice clean 'CNS strike'. Provide the striking projectile has enough of the velocity / weight combination to indeed reach one of the CNS regions, it will almost assuredly cause the subject to cease all hostile action, & darn quick !! OK, that's the 1st, but due to the relative accuracy required to land a good CNS hit, it may, or may not be possible for you, depending of course upon your shot angle, protective gear worn by suspect, & any number of scenarios which ma preclude you from 'putting them in the boiler room' so to speak.

Now, we move to the 2nd. This is nothing more than good old fashioned 'bleeding out' / aka Exsanguination. This will occur when you've struck your target with numerous hits, although it can, & does occur sometimes after just 1 strategic hit, in which an artery, vital, & or major blood bearing organ has been impacted. Usually though, IMHO, this occurs after subject has sustained multiple hits, thereby facilitating 'somewhat' rapid & continuous blood loss, ultimately resulting in a critical loss of blood pressure causing either loss of consciousness or the subject to expire. I

As unfortunate as it is, bad people just keep on going, just like the Energizer Bunny !!! That good old Adrenaline just keeps surging through them, keeping them in the well known 'fight or flight' mode, oblivious to pain, etc. That's why in numerous cases, the subject will keep up the rampage, until finally, either his 'overwhelming injuries' causes a cessation, or they finally sustain a wound that physically disables them. They stop only because they're no longer capable of continuing, NOT due to pain nor any other concerns. ( Read that as; broken bones causing loss of mobility, shattered pelvis, etc. ) Remember, they're not quitting because they're tired !!! ) AND, even with their loss of mobility, be advised that they remain extremely dangerous. ONLY when they've bled out, & or you've stopped the oxygen to their brain will they 'cease all hostile action '.

Now, we could go on about which caliber / loading is the best, but in the end, it's all about getting hits & using basic tactics to stay alive long enough for the 1st Responders to arrive.
[ Hopefully !! ] YES, a 9x19mm pistol will work, provided you do your part in the equation. [ I always notice that when people that champion the '9' for all around use, they almost all choose the +P, or even +P+ loadings. Ummm, please correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the .357 Sig versus similar to an 9mm+P++ ?? ] Allright, I'll stop talking about the 9 so as not to hurt anyone's feelings.

OK, my fingers are getting a little tired, so I'll save the dreaded caliber effectiveness debate for another Post. But, I have said over & over that I too frequently use an 9, & have no plans to replace it for any other caliber. For certain situations, the 9 can, & does fill the role perfectly. Take care Folks,

Regards, dpast32
 
Posts: 115 | Location: New England Region, of USA | Registered: January 07, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Peace through
superior firepower
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The fact of the matter is that 9x19mm becomes more popular each day and its use in law enforcement agencies becomes more widespread each day. You can sit at your keyboard and declare these private citizens to be uninformed and make the claim that law enforcement agencies are abandoning .40 S&W and 357 SIG pistols for 9x19mm pistols solely on the basis of economy, and it won't change a thing. If 9mm wasn't effective- if the bad guys didn't fall down when shot- then, it wouldn't matter if 9mm could be had for free. There are stories of people having entire magazines of pistol caliber cartridges emptied into their bodies, yet they continued to fight for some length of time, and that includes the vaunted 357 SIG and the nostalgic .40 S&W. As the saying goes, all handguns are poor stoppers, though it's certainly a bit more complex than that. Nevertheless, if given the choice, which would you take to a gunfight- a quality AR15 in 5.56, or a handgun in 357 SIG?

+P? +P+? Y'know, in years past, I would not have dreamed of using standard pressure 147 grain 9x19mm ammunition, but you can buy Federal HST and other premium hollowpoints in the 147 grain weight these days, that seems to be quite effective. The 147 grain HST I keep in my G26 is a pussycat to shoot. Take the a G27 or a G33 and shoot a few rounds and see how much longer accurate follow up shots take you.
I do stock some +P loadings in 9x19mm, and if such loadings were available in 357 SIG or .40 S&W, so would you, but 9x19mm hollowpoints are light years in performance ahead of what they used to be, and +P is simply not necessary to get good performance from the efficient little nine. Speaking of the HST, the standard pressure 124 grain 9x19 load has a great reputation. I have the +P version as well, but I keep the standard pressure 124 HST in my G19 and I don't feel in the least bit undergunned.

And, as I've already pointed out, the 9x19mm chambering of a given pistol holds more cartridges than the same pistol in 357 or 40. I'd be curious to hear from anyone who can find disadvantage to the 9mm in this. A bird in the hand, and all that...

As far as "hurt feelings" go, well, let's just say that the 9mm fans aren't the ones playing the role of the jilted lover in this affair. Frankly, I'm a bit amused by it all. Lamenting the demise of cartridges which are slower on follow up shots, harder on pistols, and more costly to shoot, while their quantifiable superiority in effectiveness over the 9mm is clearly a matter of debate is kinda funny.
 
Posts: 88640 | Registered: January 20, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by dpast32:
OK, I guess I'll throw my .02¢ in again,


Again, well stated dpast32.

I want to piggyback by sharing something a trauma room surgeon said regarding the caliber debate. He wasn't necessarily taking sides, but as far as incapacitation vs. lethality is concerned, he made a great point. An attacker can be shot and live up to 15 seconds—————————————————without a heart, which is all the more reason in my opinion that we try to up the chances of incapacitating someone without solely relying on rapid blood loss. However, as you pointed out, direct CNS shots are hard to make reliably (which is why we're generally taught to hit center of mass and not head shots).

Along this vein, I personally have a belief that I am going to preface by stating that everyone has a reason to vehemently disagree with me given all the alleged myths surrounding an alleged myth. After all, I am not a FBI ballistician (perpetuating a myth), nor am I one of the folks who developed the ballistic gel tests which the FBI adopted (note: contrary to popular belief, the bureau did not invent the testing protocol utilizing 10% ordnance gelatin). I have also spent more hours than I'd like to admit defending the following opinion, and I've heard from many people who poo-pooing or otherwise viciously attacked another study I oft mention (which I don't understand), but thus far the majority of the attacks on its authors were ad hominem in nature. The others made claims that were more dubious than the ones they were alleging in my opinion.

With that said, my personal belief is this. When it comes to standard self-defense distances (I'm not talking about making a 100+ yard shot), there are essentially two separate but distinct "sweet spots" regarding what I consider to be the ideal ballistics for pistol rounds (ugh, I already feel the agita coming on typing that; even when people are civil, I hate my idea being dismissed).

Anyway, the first sweet spot in my opinion is not very controversial. I merely believe it is best satisfied by either standard pressure 9mm (not +P or +P+) or in some cases even the hottest .380 ACP loads (such Underwood's +P 65 gr. XD 380 round, for example which has 1 more ft. lb. than SIG Sauer's 365 9mm self defense ammunition). Personally, I prefer 9mm standard pressure self defense rounds for a small to mid-size/weight pistol. For example, my S&W PC M&P M2.0 Shield carries standard pressure 9mm rounds, and I also use them in my Beretta PX4 Storm Compact Inox.

The second sweet spot is where the controversy usually takes place, and it involves—wait for it—the infamous hydrostatic shock (https://www.researchgate.net/search?q=hydrostatic%20shock), and until I hear a credible argument dismissing the Courtney & Courtney study, I am going to assume that Dr. Frank Chamberlin, a World War II trauma surgeon and ballistics
researcher, was right all those years ago about the “explosive effects” and
“hydraulic reaction” of bullets in tissue. As he stated, "...liquids are put in motion by ‘shock
waves’ or hydraulic effects...with liquid
filled tissues, the effects and destruction of
tissues extend in all directions far beyond
the wound axis." As the husband & wife ballistics research team also point out that:

"Col. Chamberlin recognized that many theories have been advanced in wound ballistics. During World War II, he commanded an 8500 bed hospital center that treated over 67,000 patients during the fourteen months that he operated it. P.O. Ackley estimates that 85% of the patients were suffering from gun shot wounds.[2] Col. Chamberlin spent many hours interviewing patients as to their reactions to bullet wounds. He also conducted many live animal experiments after his tour of duty. On the subject of wound ballistics theories, he wrote: 'If I had to pick one of these theories as gospel, I’d still go along with the Hydraulic Reaction of the Body Fluids plus the reactions on the Central Nervous System'".

Courtney & Courtney also explains not only why the FBI dismissed the theory of hydrostatic shock in the 1980's, they also point out why it was an error (one the Bureau maintains to this day).

As Courtney & Courney point out, the FBI listened to "Dr. Martin Fackler, a Vietnam-era
trauma surgeon and ballistics
researcher" who "claimed that hydrostatic
shock had been disproven. Specifically,
he said the assertion that a pressure
wave plays a role in injury or
incapacitation is a myth." And as they also point out, "Fackler
argued that a lithotriptor (a medical
device used to break up kidney stones
with sonic pressure waves) produces no
damage to soft tissues. Since a
lithotriptor produces pressure waves
larger than those caused by most
handgun bullets, he concluded that
ballistic pressure waves cannot damage
tissue either. However, Fackler’s
claim by analogy has been disproven.
Tissue damage due to lithotriptors has
been widely documented", and the reason why the error was made is simply that the equipment sensitive enough to detect the damage wasn't readily available when Fackler made his conclusions. In other words, Fackler and the FBI likely got it wrong while Col. Chamberlain was likely right all this time. Even in 2014 the FBI was not citing current studies like the one I linked here. They weren't even directly citing studies. They were citing their own 1980's-era report written by an agent dismissing hydrostatic shock, and all of the subsequent FBI testing that I've read from FBI reports ever since was focused on comparing .40 S&W, 9mm and other calibers, but and not .357 SIG.

This study, often casually referred to as the West Point Study (or Courtney & Courtney), was conducted by ballisticians with PhD's. I'm not saying that alone makes them right, it doesn't, but the evidence I've heard challenging their work in recent years doesn't come from people equally credentialled, and more importantly, the arguments leave a lot to be desired and sound more to me to be the bravado of 9mm enthusiasts because that cartridge isn't powerful enough to deliver over 500 ft. lbs. of energy (which these and other researchers believe is the minimum [however not even ideal] threshold for delivering hydrostatic shock consistently.

We have to also acknowledge that this study, and the others cited within, coincide with anecdotal evidence law enforcement agencies maintained supporting the .357 Magnum cartridge in the 20th Century (which I pointed out delivered somewhere in the neighborhood of 600 ft. lbs. of energy like the Underwood .357 SIG offerings). Tests have been performed on swine and canines in America and China, for example, that prove hits made to the rear leg can shut down the central nervous system of these animals (through the effects of ballistic pressure waves which disrupt the CNS [hydrostatic shock]). The theory isn't suggesting that hydrostatic shock alone accomplishes incapacitation in all cases of such, it is merely stating that, in conjunction with rapid blood loss, projectiles missing the CNS can still shut it down, at least momentarily, with remote strikes in the body as the energy travels through body fluid like ripples in a pond.

This also helps explain the results in Ellifritz's data. When we consider margin of error, .380 ACP, for example, performs as well as .45 ACP (and in some ways arguably better), and 9mm performed as well as any pistol caliber but .357 SIG and .357 Magnum. Remember, .357 SIG/Mag performed 5% better than .45 ACP (which is statistically relevant). As I pointed out, these were likely done with .357 rounds barely making the 500 ft. lb. requirement, so anything north of that seems to function well in both the hard data and anecdotal evidence unless you go too far which is evidenced with .44 Magnum. Even though the sample was small, it was two dozen people who were shot and the incapacitation average was no better than 9mm (but slightly inferior to .357). As such, I feel .357 SIG is the best choice for a lot of people especially when carrying guns large & heavy enough to be controlled well by the shooter (so long as we're using the rounds that ballistically emulate the .357 Magnum police raved about in the 20th Century).

What I am essentially saying is that there is a first sweet spot within standard pressure 9mm offerings (so there is little or nothing gained by going beyond this unless we get into the 500-600 ft. lb. muzzle energy realm which appears would give the best chance of stopping someone IN MY OPINION (particularly the latter). Delivering 500 ft. lbs. seems to give a modest 4-5% increase in incapacitation (going by the data available), but the warmer 600+ ft. lb. loads would be more in keeping with the famous .357 Magnum loads which were likely as effective as they were because hydrostatic shock aided rapid blood loss to stop targets. It is this gap between 9mm and .357 SIG which is filled by 9mm +P, 9mm +P+, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP, and this is why, when we consider the typical margin of error, they perform no better arguably than .380 ACP (which having a 16% failure rate compared to .45's 14% is within the margin of error).

So what I am saying I guess is that both 9mm and .357 SIG advocates are right as there are two sweet spots that should be considered depending on the level of proficiency and the firearm used. Personally, I owned a Glock 33 (the .357 SIG version of the G26) for a year and I feel much better wielding a G26 (or the guns I currently carry that I previously mentioned). However, I also have a SIG P229 in .357 SIG because I feel that, when it's convenient to carry, there is enough data to satisfy me that it will statistically increase my chances of incapacitating someone (especially using the more rare ones loaded with 600+ ft. lbs. of energy). So instead of 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP which might fail to incapacitate 13-14% of the time, and instead of the typical .357 SIG rounds that might fail 9% of the time (beating out shotguns while tying centerfire rifles), I prefer a hotter (albeit standard pressure) .357 SIG load with around 600+ ft. lbs. of energy that I am hopeful would translate to a failure to incapacitate rate substantially below the 9% which belongs to .357 SIG & .357 Magnum in the Ellifritz study. Where this failure rate is rests between 0% and 9% is beyond what I can say because we lack data, but it seems to be consistent with the reputation of the 20th Century 125 grain projectile traveling at 1450 fps that is .357 Magnum. Not the .357 Magnums on average today, but the .357 cartridge that was so revered by law enforcement in the wheel guns of the previous century. Even if I can't prove that the current corroborating hydrostatic shock studies are correct, the fact that such corroborating studies exist is something considering many if not most of the studies in life we're often bombarded with are not (or at least are paid for by companies who have a vested interest in the outcome). I don't know who could possibly have anything to gain by promoting .357 SIG, especially when it gets people so upset and they have other more popular calibers to sell. Hydrostatic shock merely helps provide a third layer of protection. In addition to direct CNS hits and rapid blood loss, indirect hits may disrupt or disable the CNS to increase your chance of survival , so if it's convenient for you to use the round, the level of accuracy required to hit the brain, brainstem, or spinal cord might be removed with rounds capable of delivering sufficient hydrostatic shock. Anyway, that is my nuanced (however long-winded) opinion on the subject. Like dpast32, I'm done debating it for now.
 
Posts: 29 | Location: Ohio | Registered: November 27, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Sheepdogged:
Again, well stated dpast32.
Are you guys dating? It's like the buddy system.

"You're terrific!"

"No, you're terrific!"

"No, no, you're the terrific one."

Meanwhile, the efficient little nine keeps ticking along, selling like hotcakes and winning contracts.
 
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Larry Vickers carries a G19. Given his reputation and past employment experience that's enough of an endorsement for me.


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Posts: 6385 | Location: Newyorkistan | Registered: March 28, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Sheepdogged:
This study, often casually referred to as the West Point Study (or Courtney & Courtney), was conducted by ballisticians with PhD's. I'm not saying that alone makes them right, it doesn't, but the evidence I've heard challenging their work in recent years doesn't come from people equally credentialled, and more importantly, the arguments leave a lot to be desired and sound more to me to be the bravado of 9mm enthusiasts because that cartridge isn't powerful enough to deliver over 500 ft. lbs. of energy (which these and other researchers believe is the minimum [however not even ideal] threshold for delivering hydrostatic shock consistently.


The reliance on ft lbs was a bit misplaced. Much more recent research into this subject has shown that depending on bullet design and construction, a projectile needs to be moving at minimum of 1,800 to 2,200 FPS in order to cause incapacitation via hydrostatic shock. Taken another way, 38 Special and 308 Winchester both use similar weight bullets in the 150 gr range. Which one does more damage at 25 yards? The question is retorical, but I await your long winded reply.


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Posts: 6385 | Location: Newyorkistan | Registered: March 28, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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This whole thread has been interesting to read, and thanks to the OP and the intelligent discussions posted.

I hope the OP doesn't mind the thread sidetracking into discussions of the performance of the cartridge involved.


Just out of academic interest, for fun with numbers, and for the sake of discussion, if granted that

a) hydrostatic shock is a significant incapacitation factor, and

b) that 500 ft-lbs is the needed minimum,

some standard 357 Sig loads reach or exceed that even out of 3 1/2" real life handguns, like the P239.

Some standard and even +P 9MM loads do not.

Who carries five inch barreled defensive handguns? A Glock 17 is 4.49", and a P226 is 4.4".

Even given a 5" barrel, some standard and +P 9MM loads do not reach the 500 ft-lb level of KE.

These numbers are from ballisticsbytheinch.com .


http://ballisticsbytheinch.com/megraphs/357sig.html

http://ballisticsbytheinch.com/megraphs/9mm.html


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Posts: 10892 | Location: Florida | Registered: June 23, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by RichardC:
Just out of academic interest, for fun with numbers, and for the sake of discussion, if granted that

a) hydrostatic shock is a significant incapacitation factor, and

b) that 500 ft-lbs is the needed minimum,

some standard 357 Sig loads reach or exceed that even out of 3 1/2" real life handguns, like the P239.

Standard and even +P 9MM loads do not.

Who carries five inch barreled defensive handguns? A Glock 17 is 4.49", and a P226 is 4.4".

Even given a 5" barrel, some standard and +P 9MM loads do not reach the 500 ft-lb level of KE.

These numbers are from ballisticsbytheinch.com

http://ballisticsbytheinch.com/megraphs/357sig.html

http://ballisticsbytheinch.com/megraphs/9mm.html


That's exactly right. I love to point out how people love their 16" 9mm carbines these days, but ballistically speaking, they're basically turning that 9mm round into a .357 SIG using a 16" barrel.
 
Posts: 29 | Location: Ohio | Registered: November 27, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by SgtGold:
quote:
Originally posted by Sheepdogged:
This study, often casually referred to as the West Point Study (or Courtney & Courtney), was conducted by ballisticians with PhD's. I'm not saying that alone makes them right, it doesn't, but the evidence I've heard challenging their work in recent years doesn't come from people equally credentialled, and more importantly, the arguments leave a lot to be desired and sound more to me to be the bravado of 9mm enthusiasts because that cartridge isn't powerful enough to deliver over 500 ft. lbs. of energy (which these and other researchers believe is the minimum [however not even ideal] threshold for delivering hydrostatic shock consistently.


The reliance on ft lbs was a bit misplaced. Much more recent research into this subject has shown that depending on bullet design and construction, a projectile needs to be moving at minimum of 1,800 to 2,200 FPS in order to cause incapacitation via hydrostatic shock. Taken another way, 38 Special and 308 Winchester both use similar weight bullets in the 150 gr range. Which one does more damage at 25 yards? The question is retorical, but I await your long winded reply.


I'd like to read that, SgtGold. Is it available, please?? The more recent research?

Does only velocity matter in causing incapacitating hydrostatic shock, regardless of the size of the target organism? Projectile mass by velocity, ft-lbs is not relevant?


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Posts: 10892 | Location: Florida | Registered: June 23, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by SgtGold:
quote:
Originally posted by Sheepdogged:
This study, often casually referred to as the West Point Study (or Courtney & Courtney), was conducted by ballisticians with PhD's. I'm not saying that alone makes them right, it doesn't, but the evidence I've heard challenging their work in recent years doesn't come from people equally credentialled, and more importantly, the arguments leave a lot to be desired and sound more to me to be the bravado of 9mm enthusiasts because that cartridge isn't powerful enough to deliver over 500 ft. lbs. of energy (which these and other researchers believe is the minimum [however not even ideal] threshold for delivering hydrostatic shock consistently.


The reliance on ft lbs was a bit misplaced. Much more recent research into this subject has shown that depending on bullet design and construction, a projectile needs to be moving at minimum of 1,800 to 2,200 FPS in order to cause incapacitation via hydrostatic shock. Taken another way, 38 Special and 308 Winchester both use similar weight bullets in the 150 gr range. Which one does more damage at 25 yards? The question is retorical, but I await your long winded reply.


Actually, the reliance on velocity is technically misplaced. Remember, kinetic energy = 1/2 x mass x velocity squared. If you bump into something with great mass while you're walking, like a building, you're not likely going to get terribly hurt. Likewise, a photon traveling at the speed of light with zero mass isn't going to do any damage either (unless you give a lot of them long enough to cause sunburn). In terms of mass and velocity in ballistics, a round needs both mass & velocity to be lethal, and the result is kinetic energy. Since we're halfing mass and exponentially increasing velocity (by squaring it) changing the velocity will more radically change the kinetic energy potential, but it can be compensated for by increasing the mass at the expense of velocity or vice versa. That said, I have no problem with the study theoretically. So for example, the Underwood 65 gr. 357 SIG XD rounds in my SIG P229 at the moment travel at 2100 fps out of a 4" barrel to provide 636 ft. lbs. of energy (which, again, is going to do the actual damage, not the velocity). Underwood also has a 124 gr. bullet traveling at 1475 fps delivering 604 ft. lbs. of muzzle energy. Likewise, they also have a 125 gr. bullet that travels at 1475 fps also delivering 604 ft. lbs. of energy. See the trade off (and the lackthereof with the last two as mass isn't quite equal to veolcity)? These last two bullets exceed the famous 357 Magnum round (125 gr. traveling at 1450 fps equaling 584 ft. lbs.). Do you have a link or at least the name of the "much more recent research" you're referring to? I'd like to read it. It's also a bit suspect if they used velocity as the standard in lieu of energy. That's not something I imagine a competent ballistician doing unless they defined the range of the mass of bullets being used. I understand the science very well, and I am also trained to conduct statistical experiments, so I'd really like to take a look. There's my long-winded answer. Wink
 
Posts: 29 | Location: Ohio | Registered: November 27, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Sheepdogged:
Underwood also has a 124 gr. bullet traveling at 1475 fps delivering 604 ft. lbs. of muzzle energy. Likewise, they also have a 125 gr. bullet that travels at 1475 fps also delivering 604 ft. lbs. of energy. See the trade off (and the lackthereof with the last two as mass isn't quite equal to veolcity)? These last two bullets exceed the famous 357 Magnum round (125 gr. traveling at 1450 fps equaling 584 ft. lbs.).


I figured both the 124 & 125 grain bullets being rated 604 ft. lbs. of muzzle energy given the same velocity (1475 fps) was due to rounding, but then I thought about it and plugged the numbers in (figuring 1 grain should change it and it does). The 124 grain is technically 599 ft. lbs. of energy and not 604. I had to have Underwood change their numbers one other time when I noticed a mistake. It happens (not that it changes anything I said).
 
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