Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #11
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    In handguns regular old FMJ 7.62x25mm Tok will penetrate a IIIA vest at close range, even fired from a pistol.

    The new Rock Island Arsenal .22 TCM shows a lot of promise, but i've not seen any vest tests with it yet. It may penetrate level IIIA, it may not.

    Your best bet though is the FN Five Seven. There are rounds from Elite ammunition and Clark ammunition that will defeat multiple Level IIIA panels. FN's own now discontinued SS192 will also defeat a level IIIA vest. I've shot that bullet through 48 layers of soft Kevlar personally.

    Short of hard ballistic lvl III/IV inserts, soft body armor is not going to stop hot 5.7mm rounds, even at extended ranges. Given the Five Seven's huge capacity, super low recoil and extreme light weight, it is IMO the best PDW caliber pistol on the market today.

    But there are still room for improvements IMO. Some people find the FsN's controls to be a bit quirky.

    A lot of people have previously scoffed when i suggested that it is very wise to have a carry piece and especially a home defense piece that is capable of defeating 20 year old ex police surplus body armor. Well...i think this will open some eyes.

    You can get level IIIA body armor that will stop any 9mm, .40. .357 or .44 on the civvie market for all of $75 used on ebay. ANY criminal can afford $75, let alone a serious criminal like a home invader, serial killer or a mass murderer.

    If your home defense gun is a shotgun, only .50 caliber 3" magnum high velocity sabot slugs (12 ga) will penetrate a level IIIA vest. I'd go with the solid copper barnes type sabots. Remington sells them.
    Last edited by Valorius; July 20th, 2012 at 03:28 PM.

  2. #12
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    Wow we got some great responses already along with some other options, thanks everybody.

    Quote Originally Posted by Valorius View Post
    In handguns regular old FMJ 7.62x25mm Tok will penetrate a IIIA vest at close range, even fired from a pistol.

    The new Rock Island Arsenal .22 TCM shows a lot of promise, but i've not seen any vest tests with it yet. It may penetrate level IIIA, it may not.

    Your best bet though is the FN Five Seven. There are rounds from Elite ammunition and Clark ammunition that will defeat multiple Level IIIA panels. FN's own now discontinued SS192 will also defeat a level IIIA vest. I've shot that bullet through 48 layers of soft Kevlar personally.

    Short of hard ballistic lvl III/IV inserts, soft body armor is not going to stop hot 5.7mm rounds, even at extended ranges. Given the Five Seven's huge capacity, super low recoil and extreme light weight, it is IMO the best PDW caliber pistol on the market today.

    But there are still room for improvements IMO. Some people find the FsN's controls to be a bit quirky.

    A lot of people have previously scoffed when i suggested that it is very wise to have a carry piece and especially a home defense piece that is capable of defeating 20 year old ex police surplus body armor. Well...i think this will open some eyes.

    You can get level IIIA body armor that will stop any 9mm, .40. .357 or .44 on the civvie market for all of $75 used on ebay. ANY criminal can afford $75, let alone a serious criminal like a home invader, serial killer or a mass murderer.

    If your home defense gun is a shotgun, only .50 caliber 3" magnum high velocity sabot slugs will penetrate a level IIIA vest.
    Thank you Valorius, my only concern with the 5.7 round and even the 7.62 Tok round is the ballistic effect on an unarmored target. Will the rounds just over-penetrate and leave the target standing with minor wounds?
    Sanity, yours if you can keep it.....

  3. #13
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    Quote Originally Posted by kbcobra26 View Post
    10mm hurts like a bitch apparently..

    I think he said he had 2 layers of armor, the initial was "3A" and the other was "second chance." I don't know much about body armor, so please correct me if I heard it wrong. I wonder if this was his first time being shot. I could see his anxiety, but later it almost seemed like something he did before. The shot was less disabling than I thought, but a shot to the chest (where there's less "natural" cushioning) with broken ribs may be more disabling. Once again, it's all about shot placement.
    ...and they have a plan...

  4. #14
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    Quote Originally Posted by LifeInPa View Post

    Thank you Valorius, my only concern with the 5.7 round and even the 7.62 Tok round is the ballistic effect on an unarmored target. Will the rounds just over-penetrate and leave the target standing with minor wounds?
    The 28gr aluminum core projectile of the SS192/SS195 and Elite S4 is a .82" long spitzer. The instant it comes into contact with gel (or tissue), it begins to tumble. S4 is driven to such velocity that the jacket is torn apart and creates a secondary wound channel, usually about .55-.60" at it's widest point in diameter.

    If the same round penetrates a IIIA vest first, the jacket explodes into a cloud of shrapnel inside the gel, and creates a large cone shaped wound pattern several inches deep. Penetration of Elite S4M is in the 12-13" range vs bare gelatin...which is absolutely ideal. Against a lvl IIIA vest S4M has shown 11" penetration in tests that can be seen online, or here on Pafoa in the huge Five Seven thread i started a while back.

    In it's summary of ballistic tests conducted on Elite S4, Brassfetcher ballsitics lab said that the 28gr OTM round, even at the SS195's reduced velocity, is slightly more damaging round for round in a target than Federal .45 ACP 230 grain hydrashok- a round that was for a long time considered to be the gold standard in handgun stoppers.

    In the Fort Hood shootings, several soldiers attempted to charge or attack the maniac with tables and chairs. All 4 of them were dispatched immediately where they stood with 5.7mm center mass hits. The shooter was mostly using SS192.

    The officer that got hit that day was hit in the knee. Her knee was shattered into hundreds of pieces, and she required something like a dozen surgeries to have it completely rebuilt. She is on permanent disability, and has to walk on crutches to this day (or so i've seen it reported)....and that's from a hit in a "non stopping location."
    Last edited by Valorius; July 20th, 2012 at 03:42 PM.

  5. #15
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    The projectiles ogive profile and bullet structure play more of a factor than anything. Hollowpoints, softpoints, all lead, etc will have a hard time penetrating armors. While FMJ's stand a better chance. Also, the more pointed the projectile, the better it will penetrate. ...thus is why the 5.7 and other .22 caliber cartridges, even though they have lessor energy, can penetrate greatly.

    After ogive profile and bullet structure comes sheer momentum and energy.

    Your standard line-up of handgun cartridges will fail miserably versus armor. Shots to the extremities will be your only choice if you want to draw blood.
    RIP: SFN, 1861, twoeggsup, Lambo, jamesjo, JayBell, 32 Magnum, Pro2A, mrwildroot, dregan, Frenchy.

  6. #16
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    The best thing a legal carrying person could do in self defense against someone is body armor would shoot one of the areas that doesnt have armor.That would mean the face and possibly the extremities.Im sure now not only are the anti gunners gonna go after firearms but im guessing there will be a push to ban body armor ,which isnt protected by the 2nd amendment.

  7. #17
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    Quote Originally Posted by herplover View Post
    The best thing a legal carrying person could do in self defense against someone is body armor would shoot one of the areas that doesnt have armor.That would mean the face and possibly the extremities.Im sure now not only are the anti gunners gonna go after firearms but im guessing there will be a push to ban body armor ,which isnt protected by the 2nd amendment.
    But why bother with extremities? Just carry a five seven and shoot center mass. You wont even know you need to start shooting extremities with a regular handgun caliber until you realize your bullets are doing nothing.

  8. #18
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    The 5.7 was built as a high capacity AP handgun but when sold to the civilian public the bullet selection is limited to weaker non penetrating rounds. Yes I know about Elite Ammo but good luck actually getting their ammo. Also everyone is bringing up how they would have fired for spots not covered in body armor... It was a dark theater and he was probably wearing clothing over his body armor so good luck knowing that you were going against a target in armor and even more luck hitting the extremities in a dark theater. It was one of those situations we call a worst case scenario. Bad situation.

  9. #19
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    Quote Originally Posted by Valorius View Post
    The 28gr aluminum core projectile of the SS192/SS195 and Elite S4 is a .82" long spitzer. The instant it comes into contact with gel (or tissue), it begins to tumble. S4 is driven to such velocity that the jacket is torn apart and creates a secondary wound channel, usually about .55-.60" at it's widest point in diameter.

    If the same round penetrates a IIIA vest first, the jacket explodes into a cloud of shrapnel inside the gel, and creates a large cone shaped wound pattern several inches deep. Penetration of Elite S4M is in the 12-13" range vs bare gelatin...which is absolutely ideal. Against a lvl IIIA vest S4M has shown 11" penetration in tests that can be seen online, or here on Pafoa in the huge Five Seven thread i started a while back.

    In it's summary of ballistic tests conducted on Elite S4, Brassfetcher ballsitics lab said that the 28gr OTM round, even at the SS195's reduced velocity, is slightly more damaging round for round in a target than Federal .45 ACP 230 grain hydrashok- a round that was for a long time considered to be the gold standard in handgun stoppers.

    In the Fort Hood shootings, several soldiers attempted to charge or attack the maniac with tables and chairs. All 4 of them were dispatched immediately where they stood with 5.7mm center mass hits. The shooter was mostly using SS192.

    The officer that got hit that day was hit in the knee. Her knee was shattered into hundreds of pieces, and she required something like a dozen surgeries to have it completely rebuilt. She is on permanent disability, and has to walk on crutches to this day (or so i've seen it reported)....and that's from a hit in a "non stopping location."
    Impressive, I didn't know the 5.7 round behaved that violently once it hit flesh. I only have to ask when, if ever the price of 5.7 ammo will come down and if more companies will make firearms chambered in the round? It's very hard to train with rounds that cost $20 per 50 rounds. What I am trying to say is we need more options so the price on the ammo/firearms in this caliber will drop. I'd add a 5.7 pistol to my collection if I can get a pistol for $500 and get plinking ammunition for $10/50 rounds.
    Sanity, yours if you can keep it.....

  10. #20
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    Default Re: Thinking of calibers best suited for use on body armor?

    Here's a question. If a IIIA vest can stop most common handgun calibers, how many round of a would it take to eventually defeat the vest or is that not possible? Let's say I have a G17 with a 33rd mag, is that enough rounds to damage the vest to the point of failure?

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