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Tool Talk Discussion Forum

Re: M1 .30 Carbine

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07-30-2020 13:40:45

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> Have you been in the Military?? If not your not likely to understand the truth of thing simple as that. Full metal jacket is design to wound more often then kill but yes it will kill if hit in the right place. As for how fast the bullet goes that again has to do with kinetic energy. A M-1 carbine bullet is a small light bullet where as the 357 if a heavy bullet an slow and heavy and slow means more kinetic energy. That is why the colt 45 was produced due it high kinetic energy and being a hard hitting round and was said to knock a man down even if hit in the hand. That statement is as told to us in boot camp by the way

I spent a decade of my life working on military installations alongside US servicemen. Not that military experience is a substitute for an education in classical physics, as evidenced by your post.

You are confusing energy and momentum. Energy equals 1/2 mass times velocity squared (1/2mv2). Momentum equals mass times velocity (mv). In practical terms, this means if you take two bullets, one light and one heavy, and drive them to the same muzzle energy, the heavier bullet will have greater momentum. Back when the 45 ACP (I think you meant 45 ACP rather than 45 Colt) was introduced, it was believed that high momentum translates to higher "knockdown power", but most folks agree these days that momentum is not as big of a factor in lethality as energy. On the other hand, momentum is important for metallic silhouette shooters who want their bullets to knock down targets rather than punch through them.

Let's compare three cartridges: .30 Carbine (110 grain bullet), .357 Magnum (158 grain bullet) and .45 ACP (230 grain bullet). Velocity is from Wikipedia, while energy and momentum were calculated using the Taylor KO Calculator.

.30 Carbine: Muzzle velocity = 1990; Muzzle energy = 967 ft-lb; Momentum = 31 lb-ft/sec

.357 Magnum: Muzzle velocity = 1240 ft/sec; Muzzle energy = 539 ft-lb; Momentum = 27 lb-ft/sec

.45 ACP: Muzzle velocity = 835 ft/sec; Muzzle energy = 356 ft-lb; Momentum = 27 lb-ft/sec

Interesting: The lowly .30 Carbine cartridge has both the greatest muzzle energy AND the greatest momentum. And the slow, heavy .45 ACP comes out dead last. In fact, the only advantage the .45 has is it makes a really big hole. Which isn't much of an advantage if it has to penetrate body armor.

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Sprint 6

07-30-2020 14:12:06

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 Re: M1 .30 Carbine in reply to MarkB_MI, 07-30-2020 13:40:45  
They'll all kill ya deader than a hammer. Even a .22 Short. Some may be better, some worse. Your comparison is kind of apples to oranges, though, due to likely barrel length discrepancies of those tests. Would need to compare data on the 30 Carbine out of a handgun chambered for it. Or compare the 30 Carbine from a rifle to 357 or 45 ACP out of a pistol caliber carbine. To do a true comparison, the barrel lengths need to be equal. There is no point in comparing energy of a rifle cartridge out of a longer barrel to a pistol cartridge out of a short barrel. One is meant for range, the other for short work. The news media did a similar display of how much more powerful .223 from a rifle is, than a 9mm is from a hand gun. Well, duh.

But, in the end, it really doesn't matter to me. Wouldn't want to get shot with anything.

BTW, watched a nice M1 Carbine sell at auction last weekend for $1200+tax and transfer, and the guy was glad to get it for that price. I was there for the 1903 A3 and the beat up Garand. I bid the Garand to my self imposed limit, guy went $25 more than me and paid $800+tax and transfer. The 03 went for $640, of it had sold after the Garand, I would have come home with it, it was cherry.

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07-31-2020 04:11:16

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 Re: M1 .30 Carbine in reply to Sprint 6, 07-30-2020 14:12:06  
> Your comparison is kind of apples to oranges, though, due to likely barrel length discrepancies of those tests. Would need to compare data on the 30 Carbine out of a handgun chambered for it. Or compare the 30 Carbine from a rifle to 357 or 45 ACP out of a pistol caliber carbine. To do a true comparison, the barrel lengths need to be equal.

You do have a point, although old didn't say his comparison used identical barrel lengths. I just assume he meant the different cartridges were being fired in the guns in which they're most commonly chambered: M1 carbine, revolver and M1911A1.

According my Lyman manual, the .357 Magnum has an astounding 1800 fps muzzle velocity out of a 20" Model 94. That 45 percent increase in velocity gives it a 111 percent increase in energy and a 45 percent increase in momentum, putting the 357 at the top of the heap. Much of that velocity increase is probably from eliminating the revolver's cylinder gap.

The .45 ACP is another matter. It has a modest powder capacity and a very big bore, so it requires pretty fast powders like Unique. Fast powders don't yield much additional velocity with longer barrel length. (357 and 30 carbine use slower powders like H110 which is why they benefit from longer barrel length.) Referring to the Ballistics by the Inch site, we see that a 16 inch barrel only increases the .45's velocity by 14 percent over a four inch barrel. That's not nearly enough to overcome its 3 to 1 disadvantage in muzzle energy versus the .30 carbine. In fact, the .45 actually SLOWS DOWN if the barrel is longer than 16 inches!

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