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Old 06-10-2010, 22:55   #1
hurley842002
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Testing out the 165gr HST and 180gr Ranger T for carry in my G23

Hello all, I've purchased some 165gr Federal HST's (P40HST3) and 180gr Winchester Ranger T's (RA40T) for carry in my Glock 23. I didn't choose the different weights for any reason other than, it is what was available to me at the time. As always, I like to test at least 100 rounds of any SD ammo I plan to carry, for functionality and reliability.

This time I decided to do a little backyard ballistics testing just for fun, using four one gallon milk jugs per test, filled with water and paper shreddings from a paper shredder. Each row of jugs was covered with two layers of denim and two layers of an old rag (which I think due to the type of material and thread count, proved to be a tougher barrier than just a normal cotton T or similar fabrics.)

First up was the 165gr HST

Caliber Corner

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Recoil for this round in my opinion, was just slightly stouter than your average 180gr fmj target round. However the impact on the Jugs from 10 feet away, was quite impressive (lets just say I was covered in wet paper shreddings.) Being a 165gr round, I didn't expect it to penetrate past the 3rd Jug, but it actually made it about 2 inches into the 4th jug, making an approximate penetration depth of 20 inches. After recovering the bullet, it was somewhat apparent why it penetrated as far as it did.

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I'm not an HST expert by any means, but when comparing to other expanded HST's i've recovered, it appears that this one didn't expand to its full potential, thus allowing it to penetrate a bit further, than one could normally expect, just my opinion. It did however retain all of its weight which is good.

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Old 06-10-2010, 22:56   #2
hurley842002
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Next up was the 180gr Ranger T

Caliber Corner

Caliber Corner

Recoil for this round was VERY mild, and seemed to kick less than the 180gr Federal Champion that I'm used to shooting. As I expected, this round didn't have nearly the impact on the jugs as the 165gr (I didn't get any paper shreddings on me with this one). I actually expected this one to penetrate into the 4th jug, but it didn't. Instead, it made it thru the 3rd jug, impacting the back wall of the jug enough to cause it to crack, and then crack the 4th jug, giving this round approximately 18 inches of penetration.

Caliber Corner

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Once recovered, the Ranger was intact and symetrical, tho the face of the bullet did appear to take a bit of a beating (again, I blame it on the rag I used). Unfortunately, the Ranger did shed a bit of its weight.

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Backyard Ballistic test aside, after shooting 100 rounds of both the HST and the Ranger, I've opted to carry the Ranger, due to the fact that It shot alot better for me, and I was alot more accurate with it, and as far as i'm concerned that far outweighs any makeshift ballistic testing one might conduct. I don't think you would be making a bad choice using either of these rounds for carry, just make sure they function in your gun, and you can hit your target. Stay Safe!
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Old 06-10-2010, 23:00   #3
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Here are a couple pics of the bullets side by side HST on the left Ranger on the right

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Last edited by hurley842002; 06-10-2010 at 23:00..
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Old 06-11-2010, 02:33   #4
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thanks for sharing your results. i interested in the diameter of the expanded HST round.
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Old 06-11-2010, 03:59   #5
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thanks for sharing huley, very nice report....
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Old 06-11-2010, 09:59   #6
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thanks for sharing huley, very nice report....
Yes, nice job
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Old 06-11-2010, 10:29   #7
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Thanks for the info. anyone familiar with the Federal .40 sw 180gr HST product number XM40HC. I was gonna do some test for them when i get to my familys property but until then i was trying to see the results any one else already has

and like you my friend, i opt for the 50rd boxes. Alot of people i know have the cash to pay $1 per round but i prefer to what i can get the most out of for my cash. And at $5-10 more than the 20rd boxes i go for the 50rd boxes
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Old 06-11-2010, 11:26   #8
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I knew I left something out of the test, the diameters. Numbers for the original bullets as tested are:

HST .57
Ranger .61
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Old 06-11-2010, 11:29   #9
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Below, are pictures and numbers for another Ranger and HST. The Ranger was one I tested in the same type of Jug/paper shred combo as above, but didn't use any denim or cloth. The HST was one that passed thru a freshly downed aspen about 6-8 inches in diameter (i'm quite impressed by the outcome, after passing thru that type of material.)

Ranger left .74 , HST Right .68

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Old 06-11-2010, 11:42   #10
rome2240sw
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The 180gr Ranger T is some great stuff. Those peddals almost look symetrical compared to the peddals on the HST. Maybe you can try a 180gr HST load compared to the 180gr Ranger T.
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Old 06-11-2010, 11:45   #11
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The last couple pics for the thread, I promise lol. These are multiple recovered bullets, to include the original two tested.

From left to right:

1. Original 180gr Ranger T
2. Original 165gr HST
3. 165gr HST thru Aspen
4. 165gr HST thru Aspen
5. 165gr unexpanded HST, perfect condition, could probably reload it lol.
6. 165gr HST, not sure what it hit.
7. 165gr HST, again not sure what it hit.

Caliber Corner

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The above bullets, just go to show, no matter what the circumstances, you never know just how well or bad, a particular bullet is going to perform, there are no magic bullets. The best bullets can fail on any given day, and they can also do awesome things as well. I don't doubt that with perfect shot placement, even the worst looking round above, would have more than likely done its job.

(disclaimer: I'm not a ballistics expert by any stretch of the imagination, just a guy who likes to see what different bullets may or may not do, in different circumstances. Also, the tests were done on a large plot, of privately owned property, any Aspens hurt in the testing of these bullets, were going to be used as firewood anyway, I was always aware of my target and what was behind it (miles and miles of desolate forest). Stay safe!

Last edited by hurley842002; 06-11-2010 at 11:50..
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Old 06-11-2010, 11:48   #12
hurley842002
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Originally Posted by rome2240sw View Post
The 180gr Ranger T is some great stuff. Those peddals almost look symetrical compared to the peddals on the HST. Maybe you can try a 180gr HST load compared to the 180gr Ranger T.
The Ranger in that pic, was tested in ideal conditions for nearly perfect expansion, the HST next to it however was not. So putting them next to each other may be a bit misleading. The fact that the HST didn't clog, going thru that Aspen, is quite impressive, I can't say many other Bullets would have passed thru, without clogging and not expanding.
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Old 06-11-2010, 11:55   #13
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Through an aspen? that's pretty impressive. As of right now i have my mags loaded with the 180gr HST product #XM40HC. Looking to conduct a few of my own ammo tests when i get out to Ridgeway some time soon.
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Old 06-11-2010, 12:04   #14
hurley842002
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Through an aspen? that's pretty impressive. As of right now i have my mags loaded with the 180gr HST product #XM40HC. Looking to conduct a few of my own ammo tests when i get out to Ridgeway some time soon.
Yeah, I was quite impressed. Those 180gr HST's are great stuff, from what i've read, they should serve you quite well, in the event you have to use them. Have fun with your testing, just don't let it dictate what you carry. Regardless of how either of these tests came out, I would have still opted to carry the 180gr Ranger. It shot quite well, and I was doing some impressive grouping at around 20 yards, and that is why i'm carrying them.
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Old 06-11-2010, 13:34   #15
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I have done similar tests using gelatin with the 165 and 180 grain HST's and Ranger "T"-Series, but I was using a G27 instead. I currently have my G27 stoked with the 165 grain Rangers, but will soon be testing some 165 gr Hornady Critical Defense to see how they will perform through the various barriers. I have done bare, denim, plywood and steel testing into gel, and like you said, there is absolutely no magic bullet out there.

I had someone tell me once that he had never seen an HST that didnt expand. Well, I have about a dozen HST bullets that failed to expand after encountering denim. It was 6-layers, but even in the 4-layer testing I have found that some barely expanded, most just peeling back the jacket and exposing the sectioned lead inside.

That is why so many people keep emphasising about shot placement, shot placement, and shot placement. If you hit the right spot, it doesnt matter what youre using...

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Old 06-11-2010, 14:31   #16
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I personally like the 165 grain Ranger T (RA40TA).
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Old 06-11-2010, 16:42   #17
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I personally like the 165 grain Ranger T (RA40TA).

Ditto...
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Old 06-11-2010, 18:14   #18
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180gr HST always performed better than the 165gr HST in my informal testing. It's 180gr hands down. By the way, that's a 180gr HST shot out of a G35 laying on top of a quarter in my avatar.

In Ranger Tseries, I lean slightly towards the 165gr version but I'd carry the 180gr version with equal confidence. Make sure the box says "Tseries" on the flap to ensure that you have the latest generation.

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Old 06-11-2010, 18:17   #19
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I had someone tell me once that he had never seen an HST that didnt expand. Well, I have about a dozen HST bullets that failed to expand after encountering denim. It was 6-layers, but even in the 4-layer testing I have found that some barely expanded, most just peeling back the jacket and exposing the sectioned lead inside.

Burk

please be clear it was the 180gr. that failed to expand(i always tell folks to stay away from 180gr. just for this reason but many seem to take no heed). next time im shooting a G27 thru 6 layers of denim ill make sure and stay away from that round.



anyway the 165gr. er' looks like a hot tamale like i have been saying right along.

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Old 06-11-2010, 20:09   #20
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please be clear it was the 180gr. that failed to expand(i always tell folks to stay away from 180gr. just for this reason but many seem to take no heed). next time im shooting a G27 thru 6 layers of denim ill make sure and stay away from that round.



anyway the 165gr. er' looks like a hot tamale like i have been saying right along.

You're right glocksterr, I forgot to mention that they were 180's. I didnt do too much gelatin testing with the 165's to find out if they didnt expand. After the initial testing with the 165's in bare gelatin, I found that they didnt expand quite as well as the 180's and dismissed them as a carry round. But after researching the numbers later on, I now wish that I didnt sell the three boxes that I had in stock. The 165 grain loads, from most of the manufacturers, have ~60 ft-lbs of energy more than the 180's do.

That is another reason that I went with the 165 grain weight in the Ranger 'T', was because of the added power. Penetration is on par with the 180's as well, as is expansion.

I am in no way knocking the HST, because it was my prefered carry ammunition in my G22, but I was looking for something that would perform in possible/various scenarios out of the short barreled G27, and the Ranger round fit the bill.

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Old 06-11-2010, 20:54   #21
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I love amature testing, to see the results, and even more when I do it! Good post/test!

Although I understand the six layers of denim as a kind of real test of the anti-clogging capabilities of a bullet, it's not even close to realistic. I don't know of anyone who even wears a jean jacket anymore. I don't plan on shooting someone in the butt, although a solid groin hit on a BG migh prevent future problems. Anyways, next test I am going to do, I will put a t-shirt or maybe a jacket over the jugs to simulate a real chest hit. It is so hard to really test a bullet. There are bones, harder muscle tissue, fat, internal organs, even skin will play a huge role in the effects of that round. We need better test media, and of all the numerous sex offenders out there, we aren't allowed to use them for that purpose.
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Old 06-11-2010, 21:05   #22
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I love amature testing, to see the results, and even more when I do it! Good post/test!

Although I understand the six layers of denim as a kind of real test of the anti-clogging capabilities of a bullet, it's not even close to realistic. I don't know of anyone who even wears a jean jacket anymore. I don't plan on shooting someone in the butt, although a solid groin hit on a BG migh prevent future problems. Anyways, next test I am going to do, I will put a t-shirt or maybe a jacket over the jugs to simulate a real chest hit. It is so hard to really test a bullet. There are bones, harder muscle tissue, fat, internal organs, even skin will play a huge role in the effects of that round. We need better test media, and of all the numerous sex offenders out there, we aren't allowed to use them for that purpose.
As far as the denim is concerned, I totally agree. Seriously who wears denim anymore from the waist up? Not sure why its still part of the FBI test protocol, I only used it because an old pair of jeans was the only clothing I felt like cutting up. Maybe i'll hit up the Goodwill or something and get some different types of clothing. An old Carhartt jacket would work well as a barrier, but those things just don't seem to wear out to the point of wanting to destroy one. I've also got some old Toyota fenders and some other stuff I may throw in for a test on down the road. I will have vacation coming up again in August, so i'm sure some more testing will be in line, next will be some .38 special 135gr Gold dot short barrel ammo, out of my 642.
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Old 06-11-2010, 21:09   #23
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I appreciate seeing what others have done during their testing and what kind of results they have as compared to my own. I do notice alot of similarities between them all though, whether the medium be water, water/paper or gelatin.

Have fun with your tests, and please, dont ever keep them to yourself, share your experiences with the rest of us so that all can learn from them.

And y'all are right, I dont know of anyone that wears denim on their uppers anymore either, but the four layers is a substitution of what could be the worst possible barrier. The FBI also uses heavy winter wear during their testing of possible carry loads, but I dont have a parka just laying around that I could shoot (living in Texas, I seldom need anything too heavy), and even with the cost of one, I dont think I would shoot it.

I read a story of a man who wore a bunch of t-shirts to try and keep the bullets from penetrating too deeply into him. He knew he was going to be shot, but he prepared for it. I wish I could find that write up for you all to read.

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Old 06-11-2010, 21:40   #24
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As far as the denim is concerned, I totally agree. Seriously who wears denim anymore from the waist up? Not sure why its still part of the FBI test protocol, I only used it because an old pair of jeans was the only clothing I felt like cutting up. Maybe i'll hit up the Goodwill or something and get some different types of clothing. An old Carhartt jacket would work well as a barrier, but those things just don't seem to wear out to the point of wanting to destroy one. I've also got some old Toyota fenders and some other stuff I may throw in for a test on down the road. I will have vacation coming up again in August, so i'm sure some more testing will be in line, next will be some .38 special 135gr Gold dot short barrel ammo, out of my 642.
I wasn't bashing your test, just pointing out that the denim is obsolete and kills the realisim. The FBI is a government agency, so the wheels turn very slow. However, if it expands after six layers of denim, you know it's probably going to expand under any other clothing.
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Old 06-11-2010, 21:42   #25
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Interesting test. I have some of the Ranger T's in 165 gr and also the 165 gr HST's. I'm going to find out how you prepare some ballistic gelatin and try that rather than mu usual test material...wet phone books. It couldn't be that difficult to make.

Well, It got the best of me and I had to look it up. the "recipe" is given but as you scroll down toward the bottom, their "other experiments" listed were a blast to read. Makes you wonder how serious they were making the gelatin.

http://www.myscienceproject.org/gelatin.html
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