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Recoil Firearms

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  1. #1

    FTX vs V-MAX bullet for home use

    I’ve been contemplating using an AR PDW in an HD role, and as usual, I like to over analyze.

    Here’s the conditions:

    Condo unit, connected to a mirrored condo unit by drywall in the living room. Bedroom hallway faces this drywall. So missed shots/ over penetration will send lead into the adjoining unit into their living room and down their respective hallway. Current HD setup is a .45 for me and a KSG for the wife with 00. Both will sail through drywall.

    A caliber that will fragment and dissipate energy quickly is what I’m after.

    My thought is my AR pistol/ PDW loaded with one of Hornady’s wonder bullets. Specifically the V-MAX and Critical Defense (FTX) both in the 55gr range. The AR pistol in question is a 7.5” (yeah, I’m aware it’s not an optimal length for the caliber). But, again, here’s my thought process. The 7.5” AR throws a 55gr bullet at about the pace a 16” AR does at 250 yards. The gel tests I’ve seen on V-max at 250 yards with a rifle yield about 6” of penetration with a lot of fragmentation and expansion. About the same energy as a 10mm, but with significantly less penetration. The V-MAX also likes to come apart in drywall as well, limiting how far it will travel into other rooms.


    Hornadys new Critical Defense load has caught my eye, though I’m unfamiliar with the FTX bullet in .223, and it’s performance. Cross sections of it make it look an awful lot alike the V-MAX, but with a flattened poly tip. The other features of the cartridge claim to be a nickel plated case (neat, but not needed), and a flash inhibitor. The flash inhibitor is what grabs my attention, as the 7.5” barrel likes to throw some flame with full power 5.56 (not so much on weaker steel case .223).


    V-MAX





    FTX






    Is my analysis of the FTX correct in that is is essentially a flat tipped V-MAX in 55gr instead of 53?


    The final goal here, is to have a light maneuverable gun with a decent amount of bangs on tap, with a large amount of energy available to be dissipated in a soft target, but with minimal risk of over penetration, and the ability to fragment/ fall apart when in contact with barriers.

  2. #2
    MGO Member Ol` Joe's Avatar
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    Is my analysis of the FTX correct in that is is essentially a flat tipped V-MAX in 55gr instead of 53?
    Same general design and performance goal of rapid expansion even at reduced velocity with the addition of the Hornady Inter-Loct belt in the jacket shank that is meant to halt or deter further expansion and, hold the core in place. I suspect the main reason for the flat tip is to keep OAL down allowing them to be loaded in magazines @ SAAMI COL.
    As for how they act in dry wall or other barriers I can not say.
    "Saepe errans, numquam dubitans --Frequently in error, never in doubt".

    The trouble with the Internet is that it's replacing masturbation as a leisure activity. ~Patrick Murray

  3. #3
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    I'm no ballistics expert, but can almost guarantee that any 5.56 MM, even thru a 7 1/2 inch barrel is probably going to penetrate drywall.

    Think your 45 with frangible rounds. Load the KSG with 7 1/2 shot

    Just my opinion, and no I did not stay in a Holiday Inn last night.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by jeff s View Post
    I'm no ballistics expert, but can almost guarantee that any 5.56 MM, even thru a 7 1/2 inch barrel is probably going to penetrate drywall.

    Think your 45 with frangible rounds. Load the KSG with 7 1/2 shot

    Just my opinion, and no I did not stay in a Holiday Inn last night.
    Oh, I’m sure it will. I just want the things to fall apart once they come in contact with that first layer, and disintegrate through the second and third...which V-max is more or less known to do.....and hopefully be less lethal if it then continues through the neighbors living room, two more layers of drywall and closet full of clothes before entering their sleeping area. (again, I’m probably way over analyzing)


    Current load in the 45 is federal HST, which has a monster HP and deeply cut jacket. I’m not sure how they would come apart in barriers, but at 230 grains they’d definitely still carry some energy. This guy is both my nightstand and vehicle gun for down state. Again, with the thought being the combination of it being .45 and HST would minimise overpenetration in a soft target if used in a congested/ crowded area.

  5. #5
    MGO Member Quads's Avatar
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    It will go through 4 or 5 walls.
    Box O' Truth did a 223/556 in / through wall(s) test. For entertainment value:
    https://www.theboxotruth.com/the-box...uns-and-walls/

  6. #6
    MGO Member Roundballer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeff s View Post
    I'm no ballistics expert, but can almost guarantee that any 5.56 MM, even thru a 7 1/2 inch barrel is probably going to penetrate drywall.

    Think your 45 with frangible rounds. Load the KSG with 7 1/2 shot

    Just my opinion, and no I did not stay in a Holiday Inn last night.
    I am no ballistics expert either, but 71/2 is insufficient for use as a self defense round. Bird shot is for birds, the kinetic energy of the individual pellets is too low to be of any use. Number 4 buck is an absolute minimum for use on larger game. You can not alter the velocity very much with shotgun ammo, but you can play with the mass of the projectiles.

    For the .45 or the .223/5.56 I don't really have anything, just read up on low penetration ammo. Just remember that to have the firearm function correctly you will have certain "power" requirements. For a gas gun, you will need a high enough pressure pulse to unlock and operate the action, the same for a recoil action, except it is a momentum impulse that operates the action (pure blow back for those types, like 380s)


    Life Member, NRA, Lapeer County Sportsmen's Club Disclaimer: I Am Not A Lawyer. Opinions expressed are not representative of any organization to which I may belong, and are solely mine. Any natural person or legal entity reading this post accepts all responsibility for any actions undertaken by that person or entity, based upon what they perceived was contained in this post, and shall hold harmless this poster, his antecedents, and descendants, in perpetuity.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Roundballer View Post
    I am no ballistics expert either, but 71/2 is insufficient for use as a self defense round. Bird shot is for birds, the kinetic energy of the individual pellets is too low to be of any use. Number 4 buck is an absolute minimum for use on larger game. You can not alter the velocity very much with shotgun ammo, but you can play with the mass of the projectiles.

    For the .45 or the .223/5.56 I don't really have anything, just read up on low penetration ammo. Just remember that to have the firearm function correctly you will have certain "power" requirements. For a gas gun, you will need a high enough pressure pulse to unlock and operate the action, the same for a recoil action, except it is a momentum impulse that operates the action (pure blow back for those types, like 380s)

    Even with the 7.5” barrel, this manufacturer did a good job of designing the gas system. It behaves like a full size rifle, runs like a top. I haven’t had a single malfunction in it, even when using junk Tula.


    As far as delivered energy out of that stubby barrel.....it’s no rifle. Energy-wise it’s more like a pistol (about 700 ft/lbs, the same range as a hot 10mm). Muzzle velocity with a 55 gr bullet is about 2400 fps when using m193. That’s considered right at or just below the threshold where a FMJ will tumble....making FMJ unreliable....but I’m talking about a Frangable alternative. According to the almighty and all knowing u-tubez, at 210 yards a 55gr V-max out of a 16” barrel still completely fragments within 3-4” of gel, and the mushroomed base of the bullet stops around 6”......for whatever that’s worth.

    2400 fps is about what a 16” rifle will do with a 55 gr bullet at 200-220 yards. Even with FMJ, an AR is still plenty effective at 200 yards. My thought process is that this 7.5” gun would only ever be used at a range less than 10 yards. So if an AR rifle is effective at 200 yards, and a 7.5” AR pistol performs like an AR rifle at 200 yards, then a 7.5” AR pistol should be effective in a CQB role. This is definitely not a 100+ yard gun, and I want the projectile to be less-lethal after the first impact with a barrier, and dump all of its energy within a soft target with minimal (or no) overpenetration.

    Or am I off base?

  8. #8
    MGO Member Ol` Joe's Avatar
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    If I was pondering these two bullets as deeply as you seem to be I would take the questions right to the best source of well tested info with them I could, the manufacture. Not the cartridge manufacture, the actual bullet maker.

    Hornady tech line: 800 338 3220

    Edited, let us in on what they say..
    "Saepe errans, numquam dubitans --Frequently in error, never in doubt".

    The trouble with the Internet is that it's replacing masturbation as a leisure activity. ~Patrick Murray

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Ol` Joe View Post
    If I was pondering these two bullets as deeply as you seem to be I would take the questions right to the best source of well tested info with them I could, the manufacture. Not the cartridge manufacture, the actual bullet maker.

    Hornady tech line: 800 338 3220

    Edited, let us in on what they say..
    Both the Critical Defense and Superperformance V-MAX are pressed by Hornady. Bullet, cartridge, and all.

    I’m not one to press my own loads for anything other than range use.

  10. #10
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    Taking a "holistic" view of the scenario, would it be viable in your situation to put some bookshelves along the dividing wall opposite your hallway? Books or densely packed magazines/paper will take a lot of oomph out of a bullet by themselves, maybe even enough to prevent a pass through entirely, depending on the thickness of the reading material and shelf back.

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