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Ammo Quest 380 ACP: Remington Golden Saber bare gel test



(from Jul 2013)

I am embarking on a quest to find the overall best ammunition for a Taurus TCP 738 micro-compact 380 ACP pistol. Using the ClearBallistics gel as a test medium, I will be putting several of today's most popular hollowpoints to the test, determining how well they penetrate and expand into the ballistics gel when fired from the TCP. In this first installment, I am testing Remington Golden Saber 102-grain jacketed hollow points. Future installments will cover many more rounds.

The ClearBallistics gel is a direct alternative to traditional 10% ordnance gelatin and, in my prior testing, deliverd results that were on average 94.4% the same with genuine ordnance gelatin, so I feel it is quite adequate for the task of evaluating these rounds.

I am chronographing the rounds as well as firing five rounds per block so that we get a more statistically relevant result, rather than the typical ammo test where only one round is fired. Ammo can behave a bit unpredictably, and the results of any one bullet are in no way representative of how the ammunition performs overall. In this test, I got penetration differences of 30%! Meaning, one round traveled 30% further than another round did. That's why, for real representative results, you need to shoot multiple rounds to gather a more relevant statistical sample. Five rounds isn't a lot, but it's about all you can reasonably fit in a single block of ballistic gel, and five rounds are vastly more representative than one.

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