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12ga slugs and bulletproof vests

Discussion in 'Caliber Corner' started by glock39, Jul 30, 2011.

  1. glock39


    May 26, 2005
    Tyler, TX
    I've heard it said that one of the disadvantages of a shotgun is that even cheap bulletproof vests will stop buckshot (and encountering a Bad Guy wearing a vest is no longer unheard of).

    However, I remember watching an episode of "Mythbusters", where they got hold of an old piece of bulletproof glass and decided to find out just how bulletproof it really was. They went out to the rifle range and set it up against a safe backstop:

    They shot it with various pistol calibers and found that it would indeed stop pistol bullets. 00 buckshot was also easily stopped.

    Next, they tried a 223 rifle. The 223 took a big chip out the glass, but didn't penetrate (Note: I don't remember them saying exactly what type of 223 ammo they were using. I would expect some of the military ammo to penetrate better than a civilian hollowpoint).

    After the 233, they tried a 30-06. Which punched a neat little 30 caliber hole through the glass.

    Lastly, just for fun, they tried a 12ga shotgun slug. The slug actually shattered the bulletproof glass, rather than just punching a hole through it.

    Which leads me to wonder if, in event of being attacked by someone wearing a bulletproof vest, you might do just as well to carry a few slugs for your shotgun? Or is a fabric vest more bulletproof than bulletproof glass?
  2. lethal tupperwa

    lethal tupperwa

    Aug 20, 2002
    if you get hit by a truck it won't matter what you are wearing

  3. OctoberRust

    OctoberRust Anti-Federalist

    Jun 15, 2011

    Not dropping after plenty of shots to COM? Better start shooting whatever else you can hit on them. With buckshot this would be very devastating regardless of where he/she was hit. Like the other guy said in other words, even if he is wearing a bullet proof vest and is hit with 00 buckshot, his day isn't probably looking so great for him.
  4. Decguns


    Dec 29, 2003
    I've seen several demonstrations where lvl 4 vests soaked up 12GA slugs no problem even without trauma plates. On the other hand, we had a local PD officer shot by a lever action 45-70 rifle. The vest stopped the projo, but he died anyway. The projo actually penetrated 4-5 inches into his body by taking the vest with it. Nasty.
  5. JBP55


    Mar 4, 2007

    I have seen a few demo's also. Very few LEO wear a level 4 vest and you will die from the blunt trauma. Place the vest around a metal barrel and look at the huge bulge in the metal from the slug after removing the vest.
  6. dkf


    Aug 6, 2010
    The new modern 3" slugs are capable of putting out 3000 ft lbs of energy a few yards from the muzzle. That is more energy than a lot of the rifle rounds used for deer hunting.
  7. ScrappyDoo

    ScrappyDoo Tacticool brah!

    Jan 16, 2010
    I was under the impression a 12ga slug is of the most devastating things most people can readily get to fire, within range of course. I am not real up on modern ballistics regarding vest technology (whereas I was quite a student when daddy used to school me on his bullet proof vest and their technologies as a cop and a young kid) but I thought a 12ga will do massive destruction to the body up close.
  8. I think you are pretty much correct!! I remember about 25 years ago some African Lions escaped from the San Francisco Zoo and officers hunted them down with tranquilizers and 12 gauge shotguns with slugs in case the tranks did not work before an attack.
    I always thought that Harry Callihan would have been MUCH more effective using a 12 gauge semi auto with slugs instead of a 458 Win Mag against the sniper in "Dirty Harry" but that was the movies!

    Durring the 92 riots LAPD had officers armed with 12 gauge shotguns and slugs on the roof of police stations to detour driveby shootings on the station. They worked very good, shooting down into a vehicle!!