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Yoda-Dad, you ever make ballistic gelatin, or are all your tests done on water jugs?

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  • Yoda-Dad, you ever make ballistic gelatin, or are all your tests done on water jugs?

    I've been searching the Net for sources of bulk gelatin powder, so that I could make ballistic gelatin. There are several meat sellers (butchers, packing plant, whatever you want to call it) near me, I think I could probably convince them to give up some scrap beef bones to stick in the gelatin.

    Reason I asked that question, and told about my desire to make ballistic jello, I'd like to get a better idea of what different types of bullets do in something other than water. And I dont think that any morgues would let me 'borrow' a body for a couple hours. Things I've read lead me to believe that the ballistic jello would be a very good way of testing the bullets, better than a water jug.

    I'm just curious if you ever used it, and if so, if you liked it or not.

    Or do you just use water jugs because they are quicker and easier, and you're not trying to get totally scientific?

  • #2
    'puter back up and running again

    Wyrm ;

    seriously , what i do is as scientific as you can get . first of all , water is as near a perfect BULLET TESTING media as you can get .

    1) its density varies only in the 3rd decimal place with normal , comfortable temperatures .
    its density most closly resembles that of humans however , it has no structural integrity .

    2) it has been said that water tends to slightly overstate bullet expansion and , i find that to be true but , only in that water is a pure uniform substance whereas , humans aint pure or uniform and vary conciderably no matter how ya slice 'em . since that is true , cadaver testing is likly to produce a w-i-d-e variation of minimum/maximum values with point-expanding types of bullets tested , depending on exactly where/what those bullets hit . as for the bullet quality of YAW , water = jello , a near perfect match

    3) what you cant do BULLET TESTING in water is - describe the exact particulars of that wound .

    its impossible to examine the water afterward .

    you certinly can examine the bullet afterward and , COMPARE it to others that HAVE been tested in scientificly controled jello , compare its GENERAL performance and rank it into CLASSES . this is what i've done . the 7.62x39mm WET RATEING chart i put up around here isnt based on opinion or voodoo but direct COMPARISON of my water tests to the openly published jello tests .

    for selfdefence against the two-legged ,
    at the top of the ranking in 7.62x39 with open-tip (meaning the jacket is open at the tip , softpoints or hollowpoints)expanding bullets is the Uly HP (8M3) no doubt . the most flesh damage obtainable at 762x39mm power levels . frightening . in a class of its own .
    below the ULY HP , in the controled expansion category ( just barely controled ) the Federal SP bullet . it opens the quickest with the largest recoverd diameter but , better chrono some first as the Federal LOADING i tested was quite underpowered .

    the Remington and Winchester SP BULLETS are midland smack daub between the Federal and the next class of BULLETS which are better for hunting than the above as they have higher expanded sectional densities and penetrate straight through , the Sierra and PMC 125grn SP bullets .

    it takes a hellova lot of pre-shot-setup and post-shot-examination to do jello tests that mean anything , on the scale of testing that i do , 50ft. too 500M , the number of types , brands , and materials . i get tuckered out just THINKING ABOUT running some ligitemate jello tests also .

    whew !

    if you got it in you to do some jello following protocalls and procedures , more power to ya ! yer a better man than i GungaDin

    there is a nice jello-setup artical by 14.5mm (David Fortier) over at Snipers Paradise , in the magizine archives , year 2000 i believe .

    [ July 11, 2004, 22:04: Message edited by: Yoda-Dad ]


    • #3
      Well, if you were here I'd offer to help you with it. I'd really like to do a jello test sometime, with all of the calibers that I own, just to see what the results are. I've got a lot of FMJ and thats part of why I'd like to do the jello tests, so as to compare various calibers and brands of FMJ against each other and against hollowpoints. See which ones fragments and at what ranges, etc. All the fun stuff, you know?

      Now if only I could get to the range more often and there NOT be a trap shoot going on.

      PS> Thanks for the info. I am thankful that you do all the test you do and post the results here. Makes for some interesting reading, to say the least.


      • #4
        recheck my first reply as i updated/corrected it friend !


        • #5
          Thanks. I'll have to check and see if I can find that article.


          • #6
            i almost forgot , there is also a varygood article/test in there somewhere about expanded sectional density too ...


            • #7
              just as a bump to the question of Water vs Jello for bullet testing , a quick comparison of my water tested 762x39 Winchester softpoint with the same from Tactical Forums , DocGKRs' jello test gives near identical recoverd bullet measures (even the chronoed velocities are near identical) .

              also , from his test of the Lapua Mega 762x39 softpoint , i know i can class it with the Sierra and PMC softpoints in the high (for 762x39 125grn bullets that is ) Terminal-Sectional-Density category . these bullets maintain expanded-end-first travel through 20"+ of water .
              to do this apparently requires a recoverd length of longer than .400" supporting a .5" to .6" frontal diameter . this makes for a superior hunting bullet for quartering-angle or faceing shots on the 4-legged . furthermore , bullets like the PMC that maintain a flat-faced expanded end do more damage than bullets that expand to a 'rounded' frontal profile .

              bullets like the Winchester SP expand to .5" to .6" but at less than .400" recoverd length cannot maintain that through more than about 12" .

              a bullet like the Federal SP , with a recoverd length of ~.375" supporting .6" to .7" diameter frontal (that measured on the same bullet , not numerous bullets) is sliding off that frontal diameter at less penetration than 12" but , does more damage within that shallower depth area , dumping what it has there .

              while any of the above would do for selfdefence from humans , the action of the Federal i find preferable .

              [ July 17, 2004, 01:29: Message edited by: Yoda-Dad ]


              • #8
                If only we could get some volunteers to donate thier bodies to "science" when they pass away. I'm sure we could come up with a few scientific experiments.

                (Hey I just realized what convicted rapists are good for!)


                • #9
                  Crom , like i said above ...

                  humans aint pure or uniform and vary conciderably no matter how ya slice 'em . since that is true , cadaver testing is likly to produce a w-i-d-e variation of minimum/maximum values with point-expanding types of bullets tested , depending on exactly where/what those bullets hit .
                  i've read that most game critters have muscle tone , density and tensile strength that makes humans look like the most delicate "veal" on the table . yet , just the variations within the human torso can drive a bullet experimentor nuts .

                  the only solution to this variablities nightmare is pure substances . its the only way that you can say 762x39 load-1 is better (or different) than load-2 . properly made jello and purewater most closely resembles the overall density of humans and give the 'closest' effect to expanding/yawing bullets .
                  with jello you can measure/compare the total wound size/depth in an 'ideallic' state .

                  the same thing applies to materials .
                  cars , appliances , living trees and natural lumber , dirt ... are all a variability nightmare . the best you can do is select a few representatives of those materials in pure form and compare 1 and 2 against them . the material tested has to be such that the resulting 'measured values' can be determined in mostly "single digit whole units" rather than the .000" scale or the x50 scale.

                  Lollygagger did a vary nice test with good pics
                  however , his choice of materials for discovering differences between LeadCoreBall and common MildSteelCore ball was too heavy , with results in the .000" scale . seemingly meaningless at first glance ...
                  ... likewise , comparing these and other rifle calibres against say , a 20GA steelsheet baffle is likely to produce in the x30 to x50 scale as modern autobody sheetmetal is almost invisible to rifle bullets . how many such sheets could 762x51 ball penetrate , 30? , 50? more ?. how many cars have that many 20GAbody layers through any point/angle ? does penetrating 41 20GA sheets = a tangable useable 'end value' , compared to say 28 (or whatever) for 762x39PS ?

                  not really .