Mm M Ball Penetration Data

Distance Concrete

Pine Boards


25 meters




100 meters




200 meters




400 meters




600 meters




flying bullet—and even reposition yourself to exploit such a backstop.

The other aspect of media is learning exactly what kind of penetration you can achieve when engaging a barricaded enemy or suspect. We have U.S. Army data from several ballistic tests, fired both for the 5.56mm and 7.62mm NATO rounds. Keep in mind that these are full metal jackct military rounds, not softpoint or hollowpoint.

It's important to observe that the 5.56mm is a most peculiar bullet that penetrates deeper into media like pine boards and sandbags at longer range than at close range. This is because the bullet initially flies so fast that it fragments on impact and loses its momentum. According to this same test, the 55-grain M193 bullet will penetrate a military flak vest at up to 700 meters and pierce a helmet with liner at 550 yards. All these results are a bit better than some tests one of my NCOs, SSgt. Gary Gamradt, and I conducted a few years ago, which we'll cover momentarily.

Another U.S. Army test, this of the M80 147-grain 7.62mm ball round, was fired at 200 meters (220 yards) and had the following effects:

4 Penetration of pine boards: 50 inches 4 Penetration of loose sand: 10 inches 4 Penetration of solid concrete: 3 inches

I interpret these results as meaning I could engage a hostile who'd taken cover behind even a sizable softwood tree by shooting ball ammo directly through it. We'll have more data on penetrating concrete and sand from the next test, but I hope you are starting to note that different tests don't necessarily yield identical results, a significant concern for media penetration. Inconsistencies can create an uncomfortable level of unpredictability.

Our next data includes 7.62mm M80 ball fired as five-shot bursts from an M60 machine gun, with the recorded penetration that of the deepest bullet. Since some but not all of these projectiles benefited by following a round into the medium, there's a degree of random chance that's too random for me.


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Hunting Mastery Selected Tips

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Deer hunting is an interesting thing that reminds you of those golden old ages of 19th centuries, where a handsome hunk well equipped with all hunting material rides on horse searching for his target animal either for the purpose of displaying his masculine powers or for enticing and wooing his lady love.

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