In the past it was a prophecy, but in the future the past has ocurred!


After waiting for quite a while, the other day I finally got my first 1911. It is a Rock Island Armory 5” Tactical model, sweet. A little bit of history: The M1911A1 was designed by John M Browning and was the standard issue sidearm for the US military forces from 1911 to 1985 (and is still used by some US forces). This model saw action in WWI, WWII, Korean War, and Vietnam War.

So anyway, I wanted to go break this thing in, and see what it can do. I had some empty jugs laying around (2 milk, and one OJ), and decided to take these along.

After going through a box of 50 FMJ + one or two more magazines, I decided to try out the JHPs. As anyone knows, JHPs (or Jacketed Hollow Points) are the way to go for defensive rounds, in order to attempt to prevent overpenetration and transfer as much inertia as possible. The problem is, some guns do not like to feed them—and 1911s are known to be particularly…particular.

Test 1: I lined up 1 OJ jug, 1 Milk Jug, and 1 pumpkin in a row on a fallen tree. I loaded 1 Winchester White Box 230gr JHP round, and fired directly into the line. The idea is to see how far it will penetrate, and (if we can find it) how much the JHP bullet will expand. I crouched down to try to get a level shot, approximately 15 ft away from the target.

[caption id=“” align=“alignnone” width=“382” caption=“Test 1: Pumpkin entry hole”]Test 1: Pumpkin entry hole[/caption]

This pumpkin was positioned AFTER the two water-filled jugs, so the round should have already been expanded at this point. It definitely looks like it was. I don’t know why I didn’t take more pictures at this point, but I observed there was no exit hole in the pumpkin, so I tore into it excitedly (yeah yeah, I had always wanted to recover some lead!). As you can see in the picture, there is a crack running from the hole so I pried the pumpkin open from there. Through the center of the pumpkin…stuff….there was a type of wound channel that had been created that was pretty cool. Then I saw the projectile was resting against the back side of the pumpkin—not embedded very deeply or anything, but holding still. Here are a few pictures of it once removed:

[caption id=“” align=“alignnone” width=“420” caption=“1911 and expanded vs unfired round”]1911 and expanded vs unfired round[/caption]


Test 2: Winchester Ranger .45 ACP +P. water-filled milk jug, pumpkin from test 1, and a new pumpkin [caption id=“” align=“alignnone” width=“420” caption=“the setup”][/caption]

Once again, I crouched down low (practically sitting) and leaned against a tree. I lined up my shot, and POW…I was soaked! The impact from this +P round splattered me with water from the jug.

[caption id=“” align=“alignnone” width=“420” caption=“The entry hole to pumpkin 1”]The entry hole to pumpkin 1[/caption]

The water jug got blown away, and the entry hole into the first pumpkin was clearly visible. The JHP round had already expanded from going through the water, I imagine.

[caption id=“” align=“alignnone” width=“420” caption=“Pumpkin 1 "exit wound"”]Pumpkin 1 "exit wound"[/caption]

And…I missed the second pumpkin entirely, it only got a slight scratch:

[caption id=“” align=“alignnone” width=“314” caption=“Pumpkin 2 was missed”]Pumpkin 2 was missed[/caption]

…and the round slid into and embedded somewhere in the tree—I couldn’t find it to recover it. Which is unfortunate, because these Ranger +P rounds are “Law Enforcement” ammunition, and are supposed to be pretty impressive performers.

The Winchester Ranger .45 ACP+P ammo fed better in my 1911, but since it is still in its break-in period only time will tell what will work better for me. I thought this was a pretty interesting experiment, and besides I had always wanted to try it. I’ll have to do it again sometime, maybe next time with the AK :–)


Posted by: jamba

Category: ##Random

Tags: #.45-acp #ammo-test #m1911

Published Date: Mon, 08 Nov 2010 21:51:55 +0000

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