Today being one of those nice days we get this time of year, and having enough jugs to make three, maybe four test shots(I thought) to try out the .30 Carbine load I worked up, I loaded up and headed for the range. Few days ago I'd put together my own 'Box o' Truth', displayed below on the dolly.
Sheetrock slightly the worse for wear. The dolly because I had no desire to carry a minimum of three gallon jugs of water and the box 50 yards for the first shots, then 100 for the next.
Set it up first at 50, aligned by eyeball with the bench, then made two shots on paper to make sure no gremlins had messed with the sight since the last outing for the Carbine. I'd stuck a black bullseye low on the first jug, and- since the box would hold five jugs- I'd filled it, figuring it'd save carrying one or two out for the next shot. The jugs are 6" square, and I put the aiming point low to make sure I'd get the full width.
Having nobody available to shoot pictures I have no dramatic 'jug exploding' pics. There was a very nice splash, and when I walked down to check found
jugs 1 and 2 pretty well torn apart,
jug 3 split on one side, hole on the other,
jug 4 with a hole on each side,
jug 5 with a hole on one side and the spent bullet in the bottom, looking like this:
Interesting. It penetrated right at 24" of water; the hollow point didn't upset at all that I can tell, but the jacket split down one side and the core is loose inside(something I did not expect from this bullet).
I now had only enough jugs for one more shot. And the wind was picking up so I decided to make another at 50, and try 100 later when I had more jugs and the wind wasn't gusting so strong. The visual was the same, and the number of jugs penetrated and their condition duplicated the first shot, again the bullet in the bottom of #5:
This bullet deformed worse than the first, the jacket ripped open and the core almost falling out. And again, you can see that hollow point looking unchanged(except for pointing sideways).
This is not the result I expected. I'd figured, this bullet at this velocity, I'd get one of three:
Bullet expanded somewhat or
bullet deformed somewhat or
bullet looking much like unfired.
I've had several people say the bullet, at just under 2000 feet per second, would not expand or deform at all. Well, that was wrong. But it didn't expand anything like I'd hoped for/expected, either. And it gave more penetration than I'd expected(note to self, in future try this with ball to check penetration).
At 50 yards, probably a realistic distance for shots in many SHTF situations, I think this load would do the job: that bullet would leave a mark. At 100? Guesswork until I can get more jugs together. This bullet should hold velocity fairly well, so might get similar results, but...
Note: reason for the jugs of water instead of ballistic gel? Have you ever looked up how much that stuff costs?