Tuesday, May 20, 2014

COP 10mm Copper Only Projectiles 155 Grain Mult Shot Test

C.O.P. or Copper Only Projectiles ammunition is currently manufactured by General Arms and Ammunition in the USA.  I previously tested other C.O.P. ammunition when it was manufactured by another company.  I'm only mentioning this because I believe this test is representative of the currently available COP 10mm ammunition available in the market.

COP ammunition is loaded with all copper hollow point bullets.  All copper hollow points continue to increase in popularity with the shooting community and more companies are bringing out new loads, and lines, of ammunition featuring solid copper hollow point bullet designs.  COP ammunition has been around for a few years.  Their retail prices are consistently lower than competitive ammunition products with all copper hollow point bullets.

I was really interested in this test because my previous tests of COP ammunition ended with disappointing terminal performance results.  I was hoping the new owners had revisited the load recipes to improve terminal performance. 

Test Pistol:

Test Protocol:
Step 1)  Measure and record temperature and relative humidity.
Step 2)  Run a 2 shot velocity average over a ProChrono Digital Chronograph at a distance of 10 feet.
Step 3)  Run various terminal test shots, with and without simulated clothing barriers, into a block of Clear Ballistics Gel that is calibrated to 10% Ordnance Gel density.  Shot distance is 10 feet.
Step 4)  Run a 600 fps calibration test bb shot into the Clear Ballistics gel block and record penetration depth to verify density.

Test Results:

Video Documentation of the Entire Test from Range to Bullet Recovery:

My Thoughts on This Load:
The ammunition appears a bit rough right out of the box.  Every single Starline brass case had some amount of blemishing.  It fed and fired fine so this was purely cosmetic.

As I watched the first two test shots fly over the chronograph, I was immediately disappointed by the velocity of this load.  This ammunition brand doesn't have a strong web presence at this time.  I did find a 1200 fps velocity listed for this load at a major on-line retailer's website.  We still missed that expectation by a significant margin.

Terminal performance was actually pretty good on the expansion front.  All test shots expanded fully and uniformly.  Penetration was the area of opportunity with this load.  Only one of our 3 test shots made our desired minimum penetration depth of 12".  The other two came up short.

Pick or Pan:
It's easy to like the much lower cost per round of COP ammunition over competing all copper hollow point loads.  Unfortunately, this load fails to demonstrate the desired terminal penetration performance of 12" to 18", in ballistics test media, that would make this load a pick.

Disclaimer....This test should not be considered an endorsement or recommendation for the product(s) tested.  All tests represent actual performance in ballistics testing media.  Terminal performance in all other media will show different results.  It is up to each individual to make their own personal decision on which specific ammunition to use for their needs.  It's also critically important to test any ammo in YOUR SPECIFIC FIREARM before relying on it for any purpose.

Ammunition labeled as +P or +P+ should only be used in firearms that have been certified by the manufacturer as safe for the additional pressures generated by these ammunition types.


  1. cant wait for more reviews. my 10 mm finally came in. Inexpensive target loads look like they are loaded about the same as .40S&W. Underwood has some good, hot loads. Hopefully you will be testing those. How much ammo do you need for a test if one wants to send you ammo to test?

    1. I stopped taking donations earlier this year. I'm just too far behind on testing stuff that it's not fair to make folks wait for me to get to their tests. More info here if you care to read about it. http://mousegunaddict.blogspot.com/2014/05/dude-whats-up-with-your-blog.html