Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Terminal Ballistics Testing Remington UMC 380 Auto 88 Grain JHP

Walk into just about any mass retailer that sells ammo, and you will probably find several boxes of these on the shelf.  Sold in bulk packs of 100 rounds per box, I can usually find this available in one of several local locations if I'm looking for some ammo before heading out to the range.  One thing that I've not found is plentiful information about how this JHP round performs in terminal testing.  Perhaps it's the very reasonable price point that keeps people away from doing any serious testing on this load.  I'm more open-minded and since Remington is an Arkansas company, I decided to give the home team, and their product, a thorough terminal test.
Pistol Specs:
Kahr P380 with 2.5" barrel
Testing Protocol:
My testing process is pretty simple.  I take one shot at the end of a SIM-TEST block that is loosely draped with 2 layers of medium weight denim.  I take the shot from 8 feet away and impact velocity is measured 2 inches away from the SIM-TEST block.  My SIM-TEST blocks are now closely calibrated to 10% ballistics gel density.  I shoot the blocks at the range and then bring them home and recover the bullets.  Immediately prior to the terminal test, I shoot a five shot velocity test string from 8 feet over a Competition Electronic ProChrono Digital chronograph.

The test shot velocity was close to the 5 shot average velocity test.  The terminal performance should be representative of what you can expect from this load.  The video below documents the entire test from range testing to bullet recovery.

My Thoughts
I've terminal tested this load previously and had mixed results.  In previous tests, one bullet totally failed to expand and another bullet expanded slightly and shed its jacket.  This test is the third strike and you are out on this ammo.  It just doesn't develop the velocity required to cause the bullet to expand.  While available at a reasonable price, there are other cheaper full metal jacket loads that are heavier and run faster.  The 146 ft lbs of energy developed by this load is on the low end of the 380 energy curve.   On the plus side, this is a very comfortable and accurate load in my experience.  It also runs reliably in any 380 pistol I've tried it in.

Blog exclusive photo of my previously recovered bullets and the bullet from this test.

I'll continue to shoot up my stash of this as practice ammo at the range, but won't be buy additional stocks of this anytime soon. 

Disclaimer....This test should not be considered an endorsement or recommendation for the product(s) tested. It is up to each individual to make their own personal decision about 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 should not be used in any firearm unless the firearm manufacturer specifically states you are permitted to do so. 

1 comment:

  1. I will try to get my hands on some of this to try in my Remington Mod 51's, with their 3.5" barrels. Wonder if that will provide the velocity necessary to expand this bullet?