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.223 stopping power record and the .45

2254 Views 7 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  fremont
looking at the .45acp and the 223 it just looks like in close distances the 45 will do more damage because of the big slug. Which is a better stopper and what kind of record does the 223 have for stopping people?
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It depends on who you ask! I'd take a look at Dr. Fackler's research, complete with his "wound profiles" showing approximately what each type of round will do to you insides. It's really a function of how much tissue is destroyed, which in turn depends on the diameter and depth of the hole. A .45 FMJ will punch a good-size hole and penetrate more than enough. Expanding ammo is even better, as you give up some of the excessive penetration for greater diameter.

The .223 is a different matter. Military FMJ will do nasty damage in close, because at high velocity the round will tumble and fragment, ripping a hole in the target that is pretty big relative to the size of the bullet. Expanding .223 will probably do even better. I imagine lightweight, ballistic-tip varmint rounds might be great for close-in defense in .223, but that's just my conjecture.
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I don't think there is going to be much comparison between a pistol carttridge and a high powered rifle cartridge. It would seem the rifle cartridge would win everytime. Greg can you post the data your referencing?

I have seen data (can't recall where) that showed the .223 to be 100% effective. It didn't mention distance though.

What ever the data shows, one thing for certain there is no substitute for shot placement. If you want results, the placement better be good.
If you limit the variables to simplify the comparison, a 230 gr. M1911 .45ACP round out of a 5" 1911 does not come close to the wounding potential of a 55 gr. M193 round out of a 20" M16, unless of course it's a CNS shot. Even if you start changing things like bullet configuration and barrel length, the .223 will generally come out way ahead in wounding potential unless the velocity drops below the threshold necessary for the bullet to cause permanent tears in soft tissue, whether through the violent expansion of a sp/hp/ballistic tip round, or the violent breaking of an fmj round at the cannelure. Witnessing the effects of .223 rounds versus .45 or other pistol wounds makes this all the more apparent. HTH!

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Checking with Forker's "Ammo and Ballistics" book, .223 has 1175-1322 ft/lbs of energy whereas the .45 has .245-530 ft/lbs of energy. The vast ranges are dependent on powder type and load and bullet weight.
I have used the .223 on a suspect. I used a Rem 60gr Match JHP fired from a HK #53. I would not hesitate to use a .223 on a suspect. In my case it worked very well and the threat was immediately stopped. I happened to be carrying my 1911 (hip) at the same time. I wouldn't trade a .223 for a 45 ACP. My agency now almost uses the .223 for all entries.
What is your odd job by the way?
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