Skip to comments.THE STOPPING POWER OF DIFFERENT HANDGUN CARTRIDGES
Posted on 02/22/2003 8:34:22 PM PST by 2nd_Amendment_Defender
General Julian Hatcher, a noted forensic pathologist, in the early 1900s developed a good formula to determine the theoretical stopping power of a firearm cartridge. His formula has withstood the test of time and validation from other studies and data related to stopping power.
You want a handgun cartridge that has a Hatcher value of over 50 for the most effective stopping power. Values over 55 have diminishing returns in that you dont gain any significant increase in stopping power for the extra recoil and control you must cope with. Handgun cartridges that dont make a value of at least 50, should not considered for self-defense. If the rating of your handgun cartridge is under 30, it only has about a 30% chance of producing a one shot stop. Hatcher Ratings of 30 to 49 raise a one shot stop to approximately a 50% chance. Ratings of 50 or higher produce a one shot stop about 90% of the time.
Handgun Cartridge Type ..................... Hatcher Rating
.45 ACP full metal jacket 230 grain .......... 49.1
.45 ACP jacketed hollow point 230 grain ...... 60.7
.44 Magnum full metal jacket 240 grain ....... 92.3
*.44 Magnum lead wad cutter 240 grain ......... 136.8
.44 Special full metal jacket 240 grain ...... 51.6
*.44 Special lead wad cutter 240 grain ............. 76.5
.41 Magnum full metal jacket 230 grain ............. 54
*.41 Magnum lead wad cutter 230 grain .............. 80
10 millimeter full metal jacket 180 grain .......... 50.3
10 millimeter jacketed hollow point 180 grain ..62.1
.40 S&W full metal jacket flat nose 180 grain ...... 53.4
.40 S&W jacketed hollow point 180 grain ....... 59.4
.38 Special full metal jacket 158 grain ...... 26.7
*.38 Special lead wad cutter 158 grain ............. 39.7
**.357 Magnum full metal jacket 158 grain ..... 32.7
**.357 Magnum lead wad cutter 158 grain ............ 48.5
.357 SIG full metal jacket 147 grain ................ 36.6
.357 SIG jacketed hollow point 147 grain ..... 45.2
9 millimeter full metal jacket 147 grain ............ 32.3
9 millimeter jacketed hollow point 147 grain ... 39.9
.380 Auto jacketed hollow point 95 grain ..... 18.3
.32 Auto jacketed hollow point 71 grain ...... 11.1
.25 Auto jacketed hollow point 50 grain ...... 3.7
.22 Long Rifle jacketed hollow point 40 grain ... 4.2
* Jacketed hollow points will have the same rating as wad cutter bullets if the bullet hollow tip is greater than 1/2 of the caliber of the bullet.
* .357 Magnum ratings are taken from a firearm with a 3 inch barrel. Longer barrels will raise the rating of the round.
Of course, and welcome.
I am not a big time pistolero. For defense purposes I am partial to the Model 1911 in .45 ACP. I am not a fan of the .44 magnum handguns for defense or hunting (use a shotgun or a rifle instead). For relatively close range work I am an advocate of large diameter, heavy bullets at moderate velocity. Sounds like a souped up .45 Colt has potential.
He was a loudmouthed self proclaimed authority. Try Marshall and Sanow. They have catalogued every law enforcement shooting for many years and last I heard the 357 was at the top of the heap. It was barely above the rest. The modern 9mm cartridge was ranked very high
Every time you pull the trigger the bullet leaving your barrel is a liability. I want as few liabilities as I can get if I am ever involved in a self defense shooting. Your accuracy in a pressure situation will only be about half as good because of your high adrenaline rate.
If the 9 X 19 round is so great why are almost all police departments now going to the .40 S&W round? The 9 millimeter round has much less stopping power than the .40 S&W and .45 ACP rounds. If you ever fire a .40 S&W or .45 ACP you can feel the difference in power.
I'd like to know the Hatch ratings on the various prefrangible rounds such as the GLASER series or the MagSafe rounds, which I carry in my Glock (M27) 40 and M1911 series 45's. I also have them for my Beretta M92 9mm.
"If you have not fired a firearm within six months you are probably incompetant with your weapon."
My wife is the exception! Geeze, she is a QUILTER for godssakes! She shoots to please me. ONCE a year, she takes her Combat Commander 45 out to the range, draws from a holster and BLAM! BLAM! BLAM! BLAM! She scores all "A" ZONE hits and goes home.
Me? I'm not a warm weather competitor. So my IDPA season is fairly short. I get in some practice when I take clients to the range to check them out for their Florida CCW Permit apps. But that's about it. December to May I'm on a range with IDPA at least twice a month. June thru November, forget it. I think my next gun (to be purchased this weekend) is going to be a Colt Defender, in .45. That will be my new all around carry gun. I'll just need to put some tritium night sights on it.
Kinda strange to see Harpseal's posts here. He was a good guy.
I found this thread by accident today after doing a Yahoo search for stopping power / wound ballisics.
Just discovered recently that I shoot 158 gr. .357 mag rounds more accurately than I shoot the 125 gr. variety (out of my Ruger GP-100, 4"), and I wanted to see if there was any data on their relative effectiveness in self-defense applications (in HP design). From what I've read so far, there seems to be no consenus.
Assuming identical accuracy, of course.
Glaser rounds are not good for self defense purposes. Glaser rounds expand very quickly and cause shallow wounds. Shallow wounds equal no vital organ damage. No vital organ damage equals you can guess.
Get the heaviest round possible in grains that are hollowpoints for all your handguns. I would not however take over 135 grain bullets for your 9 x 19 handgun. The 135 grain are more effective than the 147 grain. Navy SEALs were using 147 grain in sound suppressed submachine guns for less sound signature. 135 grain have more powder behind the round I believe than the 147 grain.
About all U.S. forces prefer the 1911 .45 handgun over the Beretta 9 x 19. There was a rally to dump the 9 x 19 and go back to the .45 ACP because .45 ACP has much more stopping power. 230 grain bullet versus 135 grain bullet. I think they didn't do it because our N.A.T.O. allies use handguns with the 9 x 19 round.
IMHO the main difference in stopping power between modern pistol cartridges is the user. The 9mm ranks a little lower because of all the poorly trained shots using it.
Also the Special Forces and others are using the 45 today.
Here's a link below you can read about stopping power of pistol cartridges:
That was Glaser Blue Glaser Silver penetrates more deeply and has been known to penetrate car windows and then disable or kill the target. Also MagSafe is an order of magnitude more effective than either of the Glasers and all prefrangibles are not equal!
Plus there is not any body of sufficient studies on the new round known as RBCD which my buddy in SpecOps swears by. RBCD Picture a 45ACP round screaming along at 2000 fps! I understand that there are currently studies underway on these rounds. I just have to believe that we've not reached peak development in ammo technology.
We can agree to disagree on "stopping" power of handguns but I say if a modern hot 9mm hollowpoint to the chest won't stop a gunfight a 45 wouldn't either. Now with ball ammo BOTH are shitty stoppers but the 45 has a definite edge. If I had to carry a handgun using only ball ammo it would be a 45.
BTW the Nato 124 gr load is right next to a duplicate load to the 125 grain 357 load. I know everyone here is big bore happy but even most of them will admit the 357 WILL stop a gunfight fast. As you know there are 4 load standards for the 9mm Saami, +P, +P+, and Nato. The Nato load is a 124 grain bullet at 1350 fps. It is also loaded to 42,000 PSI if I remember correctly. No American Manufacturer will load to that pressure. The top pressure loaded in the USA is +P+ which is plenty hot and will get the bullet out plenty fast enough. If the 9mm was available with Nato pressure loadings and a modern hollowpoint it would be my personal favorite. As it is I just carry the Corbon 115 gr but I feel real good about that round doing its part if I do mine.
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