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Thread: Question: When Does a Pistol Caliber Become a Rifle Caliber?

  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by indianalex01 View Post
    You can go professional or what ever you want. I know what we test at Federal Ammunition. I know what the threshold that are validated by thorough testing. You can bring some 6000 FPS BS all you want too. Professional or unprofessional, I still call your post BS. I’m done wasting my time with you.
    You still didn’t read the study/paper he linked, which clearly states how these velocities were achieved, and what type of projectiles were used, with help from Aberdeen.
    RLTW
    “Yep, it's definite. I simply don't care enough what you think.” -SteyrAug

  2. #42
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    Deleted- done.
    Last edited by MegademiC; 10-19-19 at 12:41.

  3. #43
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    Now that Ruger has come out with their Ruger-57 pistol chambered in 5.7x28mm:

    https://ruger.com/products/ruger57/models.html

    It's got folks talking:
    https://www.ar15.com/forums/General/...tol/5-2283563/
    https://www.m4carbine.net/showthread...Ruger-5-7x28mm

    And it prompted me to revisit this thread.

    Here's a commercially available 5.7x28mm load -- Elite Ammunition T6B. Pushes 27 gr at 2480 fps = 369 ft-lbs:
    https://eliteammunition.com/T6B-p139748066

    Question #1. Could you make the argument that this is a rifle-caliber? e.g. If you were the safety officer at a pistol-caliber only range, would you still allow it? (Does it matter whether it's fired out of a pistol or out of a carbine?)

    Question #2. If we're pushing a lightweight projectile with high sectional density at over 2200fps, does that mean it'll have some of the same characteristics (e.g. dumps all of its energy quickly, breaks up in walls) that have made .223/5.56x45mm increasingly popular for home defense?

    "Statements are made that the shotgun or pistol should be used because of the over-penetration problem with 5.56 carbine ammunition. This could not be further from the truth. If you conduct a little research you will find that numerous law enforcement departments, to include the FBI, have proven this to be false in most cases. The fact of the matter is that many of these bullets will penetrate numerous walls, but standard 5.56 loadings are the least of your worries when compared to pistol and shotgun fodder, which continue to take top honors in the category of over-penetration." US Army Sergeant Major Lamb (former Delta/CAG)
    https://www.americanrifleman.org/art...xperts-opinion

    "Common pistol rounds easily penetrated all 4 walls spaced out at room distances. This is a critical issue. Think about the inside of your house and imagine if you shot through 4 walls. Could you hit a loved one? Know your target and what is behind it....The 5.56 rounds deviated greatly from the original flight path once they started tumbling. This occurred after the second wall." Old_Painless (certified Pistol, Rifle, Shotgun, Personal Firearms Defense, and Home Firearms Safety Instructor)
    http://www.theboxotruth.com/the-box-...sulated-walls/

    "Proponents of the pistol for home defense like to think that because it’s 'just' a pistol round, overpenetration really won’t be an issue. Such is not the case. Drywall sheets and hollow-core doors (which are what you’ll find in the majority of homes and apartments in this country) offer almost no resistance to bullets....For years many people just assumed they knew what would happen to a rifle bullet fired indoors—it would go through every wall available and then exit the building. While armor-piercing and FMJ ammunition is specifically designed to do this, extensive testing has shown that light, extremely fast-moving .223 projectiles (including FMJs) often fragment when they hit a barrier as soft as thin plywood." James Tarr (former police officer; contributing editor for Guns and Ammo)
    http://www.gunsandammo.com/ammo/long...fense-caliber/

    "The .223/5.56 is moving at around 3,000 feet per second, and while it isn’t magic bullet, it’s a far cry better than any pistol round. Another advantage of the .223/5.56 is its limited penetration. The shape and velocity of the round cause it to immediately expend or dissipate its energy once it strikes something." Tiger McKee (adjunct instructor at Thunder Ranch)
    https://gundigest.com/reviews/ar-15-...e-defense-guns

    "The pistol rounds were seemingly unaffected by the drywall and/or wood barriers. There was no observable deviation or fragmentation of the 9mm projectiles. You’d be safe counting on a pistol round to keep going, and going, and going. After all, premium pistol ammunition is designed to expand, and lose energy, when striking liquid-based targets—not walls. The full metal jacket .223 rounds tended to tumble rather than break apart when they encountered barriers." Tom McHale (contributor at AmmoLand and OutdoorHub)
    http://www.outdoorhub.com/stories/20...ration-issues/

    "FBI and Independent Testing Has Consistently Shown .223/5.56 NATO Fired From AR-15’s Do Not Over Penetrate More Than Pistol/Shotgun." Caleb Lee (NRA Certified Basic Pistol & Personal Protection Inside The Home Instructor)
    http://preparedgunowners.com/2016/07...ation-testing/

    "Since all of the 5.56 mm/.223 bullets fired through the interior wall had significantly less penetration than 9 mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP, and 12 ga. shotgun projectiles which were fired through an interior wall, stray 5.56 mm/.223 bullets seem to offer a reduced risk of injuring innocent bystanders and an inherent reduced risk of civil litigation in situations where bullets miss their intended target and enter or exit structures. As such, 5.56mm/.223 caliber weapons may be safer to use in CQB situations and crowded urban environments than service caliber handguns or 12 ga. weapons." Dr. Gary Williams (ballistics expert)
    http://www.recoilweb.com/ar-vs-shotg...#ixzz4zCOCPykZ
    I remember less than a decade ago, there were still many knowledgeable shooters who condemned the AR-15 for home defense because "bullets are just going to go through walls and hit your neighbor!" Thankfully, the tide has turned, and we have good people like Mr. GunsnGear dispelling the myth (starting at 13:40):


    Question #3. If my priority was less about lethality and more about replicating some aspects of .223/5.56x45mm performance (e.g. less penetration into my kid's room), is there anything else in this category?
    - commercially available (which rules out the .22 Jet)
    - centerfire (which rules out the .22 WMR)
    - lightweight (30-70gr)
    - spitzer projectile with high sectional density (which rules out the .22 TCM)
    - traveling in excess of 2200fps (which rules out most pistol calibers)

    So far all I can come up with is .22 Hornet (5.6×35mmR), .221 Remington Fireball, 5.7x28mm, and 5.45x39mm. I think there are "true" (i.e. no brace) pistols chambered in all of these except for the 5.45x39mm, which again, blurs the line between pistols and rifles.

    Not trying to make this a debate about the 5.7x28mm per se; just trying to have a better understanding of terminal ballistics.
    Last edited by butlers; 12-31-19 at 15:27.
    "The nation that will insist on drawing a broad line of demarcation between the fighting man and the thinking man is liable to find its fighting done by fools and its thinking done by cowards."
    William Francis Butler

  4. #44
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    At $50 for $25 nobody is going to use the Elite Ammo stuff even if it does offer some sort of increased lethality.

    Sent from my SM-G930P using Tapatalk
    “The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles."

  5. #45
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    Tokarev,

    Thank you for your reply. That being said, I expressly said I was less concerned about lethality.

    Quote Originally Posted by butlers View Post
    If my priority was less about lethality
    Quote Originally Posted by Tokarev View Post
    At $50 for 25 nobody is going to use the Elite Ammo stuff even if it does offer some sort of increased lethality.
    My three questions are:
    1. Could you make the case that 5.7x28mm is a "rifle-caliber" cartridge since it breaks the 2200fps threshold?
    2. If so, can it replicate some aspects of 5.56x45mm performance that have made the latter popular for home-defense (e.g. dumping energy quickly, less likely to go into other rooms, etc)?
    3. Is there anything else like this? Commercially available, centerfire, lightweight (30-70gr), spitzer projectile traveling at over 2200fps?
    "The nation that will insist on drawing a broad line of demarcation between the fighting man and the thinking man is liable to find its fighting done by fools and its thinking done by cowards."
    William Francis Butler

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by butlers View Post
    Tokarev,

    Thank you for your reply. That being said, I expressly said I was less concerned about lethality.





    My three questions are:
    1. Could you make the case that 5.7x28mm is a "rifle-caliber" cartridge since it breaks the 2200fps threshold?
    2. If so, can it replicate some aspects of 5.56x45mm performance that have made the latter popular for home-defense (e.g. dumping energy quickly, less likely to go into other rooms, etc)?
    3. Is there anything else like this? Commercially available, centerfire, lightweight (30-70gr), spitzer projectile traveling at over 2200fps?
    I stand by my earlier post. Nobody will pay $2 per for a theoretical magic bullet.
    Anyway:
    1--probably. The elastic threshold of human tissue is a point around 2200 fps. Have we had other cartridges prior that make rifle velocities? Various necked cartridges like 218 Bee and such? Nobody uses that stuff for defense. Varmint and target shooting only.

    2--depends on bullet design and construction. From what little I've seen on the 27gr FN stuff it breaks apart immediately in gel. Even with a high velocity the round still needs penetration.

    3--in a "regular" sized auto pistol? Maybe some various 22 Mag loads. Again not a mainstream self-defense cartridge.

    The 5.7 is pretty niche. I look forward to the Gold Dot load (not 2200 fps by the way) but it won't be a huge seller outside of a small crowd.





    Sent from my SM-G930P using Tapatalk
    “The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles."

  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tokarev View Post
    1--probably. The elastic threshold of human tissue is a point around 2200 fps. Have we had other cartridges prior that make rifle velocities? Various necked cartridges like 218 Bee and such? Nobody uses that stuff for defense. Varmint and target shooting only.

    2--depends on bullet design and construction. From what little I've seen on the 27gr FN stuff it breaks apart immediately in gel. Even with a high velocity the round still needs penetration.

    3--in a "regular" sized auto pistol? Maybe some various 22 Mag loads. Again not a mainstream self-defense cartridge.
    Thank you for your replies. I still have a lot to learn, and I appreciate you taking the time to teach me.
    "The nation that will insist on drawing a broad line of demarcation between the fighting man and the thinking man is liable to find its fighting done by fools and its thinking done by cowards."
    William Francis Butler

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by butlers View Post
    Thank you for your replies. I still have a lot to learn, and I appreciate you taking the time to teach me.
    I'm no expert.



    Sent from my SM-G930P using Tapatalk
    “The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles."

  9. #49
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    From what I’ve read, no. The loads are too light or too slow. You have only so much energy/momentum. The round has to expand to a certain frontal area, and have enough speed and momentum to cause a tc and penetrate enough.

    That said, Id be interested in seeing a professional test of the Elite stuff, as they seem to have maximized potential.
    Last edited by MegademiC; 12-31-19 at 17:34.

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by MegademiC View Post
    From what I’ve read, no. The loads are too light or too slow. You have only so much energy/momentum. The round has to expand to a certain frontal area, and have enough speed and momentum to cause a tc and penetrate enough.
    Physics.

    Thank you for your reply.
    "The nation that will insist on drawing a broad line of demarcation between the fighting man and the thinking man is liable to find its fighting done by fools and its thinking done by cowards."
    William Francis Butler

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