Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Drywall test ammo

Sorry I didn't get to this over the last couple of days. I meant to, but between the flu and my kids, it was too much for me to do.

This is the full version of the test discussed earlier, and includes much more information.

There's no date on my notes, oddly enough, but I do recall it being hot and humid, as you can see:



I used my 16" barrelled DPMS AR15, and my buddy shot his 16" barrelled Ruger Mini-14 just to make sure that we were getting good data. The velocities I did record are posted, and I took pictures of the shot holes where either the bullet was keyholing or breaking apart; I generally passed on taking pictures of the 1st wall because I expected the bullets to be passing through it point first. I'm only going to link to the pictures instead of posting every one of them because there's like sixty or seventy pictures here:

Remington 55 grain FMJ handloads with 25 grains of Accurate Arms 2230
1st shot - AR15
- 3rd wall entry
- 4th wall entry
- 5th wall entry
- 5th wall exit
2nd shot
- Ruger Mini-14
- 4th wall entry
- 5th wall entry
- 5th wall exit

Barnes 50 grain Varmint Grenade handloads with 26 grains of Accurate Arms 2230
3rd shot - AR15 - 3,138 fps
- 2nd wall entry
- 2nd wall exit
- 3rd wall entry
- 3rd wall exit
4th shot - Ruger Mini-14 - 3,124 fps
- 2nd wall entry
- 2nd wall exit
- 3rd wall entry
- 3rd wall exit

Black Hills Blue Box 52 grain hollow points
5th shot - AR15 - 2,955 fps
- 3rd wall entry
- 4th wall entry
- 5th wall entry
6th shot - Ruger Mini-14
- 2nd wall entry
- 3rd wall entry
- 4th wall entry

Remington 55 grain Metal Case
7th shot - AR15 - 2,949 fps
- 2nd wall exit
- 4th wall entry
- 4th wall exit
8th shot - Ruger Mini-14 - 3,005 fps
- 3rd wall entry

Wolf 55 grain FMJ
9th shot - AR15 - 2,943 fps
- 3rd wall entry
- 4th wall entry
- 4th wall exit
- 5th wall entry
10th shot - Ruger Mini-14 - 2,940 fps
- 3rd wall entry
- 4th wall entry
- 5th wall entry

Federal Premium 55 grain hollow point
11th shot - AR15 - 3,088 fps
- 3rd wall
12th shot - Ruger Mini-14 - 3,088 fps
- 3rd wall entry
- 4th wall entry
- 5th wall entry

Hornady TAP 55 grain ballistic tip #83276
13th shot - AR15 - 2,927 fps
- 2nd wall entry
- 2nd wall exit
- 3rd wall entry
- 3rd wall exit
- 4th wall entry
- 5th wall entry
14th shot - Ruger Mini-14 - 2,953 fps
- 2nd wall entry
- 3rd wall entry
- 3rd wall exit
- 4th wall entry
- 5th wall entry

Remington UMC 50 grain jacketed hollow point
15th shot - AR15
- 2nd wall exit
- 3rd wall entry
- 4th wall entry
16th shot
- Ruger Mini-14

M855 62 grain ball
17th shot - AR15 - 3,005 fps
- 2nd wall entry
- 2nd wall exit
- 3rd wall entry
- 4th wall entry
18th shot - Ruger Mini-14 - 2,927 fps
- 2nd wall entry
- 4th wall exit
- 5th wall entry
- 5th wall exit

9mm Black Hills Red Box 124 grain +P
- 5th wall entry

Winchester Super X #1 buckshot
- 1st wall entry
- 5th wall entry



Here's front and back pictures of the walls after the shooting was over:

1st wall front
1st wall back
2nd wall front
2nd wall back
3rd wall front
3rd wall back
4th wall front
4th wall back
5th wall front
5th wall back

Keep in mind with the velocities that they were recorded as a single shot, and not averaged over a large sample. After we finished shooting the drywall, we put some wet phonebooks behind the first wall to see if the bullets would still expand after penetrating the drywall. We didn't do this with all of them; some of the bullets we knew we would not be using for a home defense situation, like the 55 grain handloads for example.

Also, here is what happens when you are hunched over trying to make an off hand shot on a one inch dot with iron sights and as you're shooting close to the screens on your chronograph you fail to take into consideration the sight-offset:



In the end, the Barnes Varmint Grenade got our nod as the best home defense ammo, with Black Hills Blue Box 55 grain hollowpoints coming in second. You can see in shots 3 and 4, on the 3rd wall, all the little pieces of the bullets that didn't even fully penetrate. It's comforting knowing that a bullet fired from your rifle will break up into pieces when it hits a couple of walls.
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