Sunday, February 8, 2015

Berry Bullets, Target Hollow Points

I received my shipment from Powder Valley.  I did not make the call in time to get them to switch the order to Hornady XTPs.  I am looking at a box of about 1000, 124 grain, 0.356" diameter, Target Practice Hollow Point, part number 32871.

This is a fairly blunt bullet.  The flat area on top is 6.5mm across.  The bullet is 14.3mm long, the same length as the Speer Golddot and 0.1mm shorter than the Remington hollow point of the same weight.

The hollow point is 3.5mm in diameter, straight sided and 6mm deep.  The sides of the cavity are not pre-scored or pre-segmented.

Straight sides and no pre-segmenting suggests that it will exhibit sub-par terminal ballistics if the target is covered with heavy hair (like a boar or a bear) or denim.  The cavity fills up with "fiber".  The packed fiber does not exert pressure on the sides of the cavity and, therefore, it does not initiate expansion.  Mentally picture stuffing the cavity with a spit wad that you allow to dry out.  That is how a cavity packed with fiber behaves.

Tapered sides perform better than straight sides because the packed fiber acts as a wedge.

An elastomer plug bulges when compressed which should disrupt the sides of the tip, initiating expansion.

There is a way to "save" the straight sided cavity design.  Hornady has been designing innovative bullets with "flex tips".  The actual flex tip is a stiff elastomer.  Elastomers act like liquids.  Pressure on one surface generates pressure on all surfaces that attempt to contain it.

Picture from HERE
These look promising.  Soft beads.  An additional advantage is that they glow in the dark which will make it easy for the coroner to locate since they will not show up on X-rays.

Note added later:  Rainier LeadSafe plated, 124 grain 9mm hollow-point bullets do expand when fired into test media at 1100fps.


  1. Interesting thought there... I do wonder how that would work...

  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  3. I will report out later. I also intend to electrolessly plate some with silver. You just KNOW that there are people who will pay a buck a bullet for a silver plated, light emitting bullets. Vampires, you are on notice. The new ERJ Vamp-Fire bullets are under development.

  4. Actually, a bullet packed with fiber will continue to penetrate like a FMJ bullet, which ain't a bad deal when penetration is good. Like, for example, on hogs.On a hog, I'd rather have penetration than expansion.

    But, your experiment looks interesting. Rock on, old man, and let us know how it turns out.