Terminal Ballistics Part 1: Taylor KO Factor

Terminal Ballistics Part 1: Taylor KO Factor

There has been much debate on which bullet is better or is this round good enough. This debate is as much opinion based as it is with practicable field experience. The main difference from this and the agelong debate on who is hotter Ginger or Mary Ann is the conclusion. The results of this debate has much more consequence. It may mean the difference from the drug crazed home intruder continuing its aggressive threatening actions… or simply being quickly rendered to a state of compliance.

It may also have a moral implication as in hunting. The ethical hunter simply wants to cull the herd to maintain its health while providing meat for the family without promoting suffering to the game. Choice in hunting ammunition is key.

Before the Taylor KO there was only Kinetic Energy or Momentum. Kinetic Energy or KE is Mass times the Square of Velocity. KE gave the advantage to smaller faster moving projectiles. The adaption of the Military 5.56 is a result of the fact a quicker object has more energy than a slower object. Momentum is simply Mass times Velocity. This gives advantage to larger heavier bullets. During our Civil War these large 50-54 cal slow moving bullets did horrific damage to the receiving soldier. During the Vietnam War the .556 tumbling did horrific damage as well but more efficiently.

John Taylor was a famous professional hunter or infamous poacher depending on the historic source. Never less he has shot a lot of animals, mostly large game and based on his experience, he has developed the following formula for best describe best terminal  ballistics…

TKOF=(Mass of Bullet x Velocity of Bullet x Diameter of Bullet)/7000

This simple formula can still complicate the the original question on which round is best. But is still valuable.

To go back to the age old question who is hotter Ginger or Mary Ann?

It  depends on application. The 50BMG would be best for most everything including anti material applications such as sever vehicle incapacitation. Yes a 50 BMG is a hoot to shoot at 1000 yards but as a club we would not have it in our golf bag of guns for most applications.

A fishing guide in Alaska would not consider the 50BMG a viable bear defensive gun but based on the experience of John Taylor may consider a 44 Lever Action or Revolver as viable and the most practicable defensive gun available.

For the record we will not endorse any option as being best but only provide the information to let the end user choose whats best.

On a personal note I was hunting whitetail deer with a 458 Socom in central Wisconsin  My daughter was using a 300 Blackout. The 458 has a similar TKO as the 45/70 and the 300 Blackout has a similar TKO as a 7.62 Soviet or 7.62×39. The Deer hit with the 458 Socom expired instantly from a quartering shot behind the shoulder. The wound channel was so large it drove the heart through the sternum. The result looked like something from an Alien Movie.  The wound channel of the 300 Blackout was smaller but given the shot placement was just as effective in the end result. The deer expired quickly without knowing what happened and less meat was damaged.

Life and death is full of compromises. The bullet of choice for assassins is the 22LR. This rates at the bottom of the list but given shot placement has the same end result of a 950JDJ. Mission specific application of each type of round should be considered as well as generic application. As a LEO we are given a HK USP40 and for my generic application the 40 Cal has a TKO of 10.4. Center mass shot placement and a TKO of 10 is good. The 9mm rates a 7.3.  Both will stop an aggressive intruder but history has shown that intruders and combatants can use the chemical advantage of several drugs.

In the Philippines there were two pistols in combat. The 38 Relover and the 45 1911. The 38 with a TKO of 6.2 was reported not to stop the drug induced combatants quickly. The 45ACP with a TKO of 12.3 was reported to stop the drug induced combatants almost instantly…There is much more to this story which will be described in later  parts of terminal ballistics…

This is only Part1 of terminal ballistics and here are the results of TKO calculations.

TKOFactor BulletName Mass (gr) Velocity (fps) Bullet Diameter (in)
1074.9 950 JDJ 3600 2200 0.95
147 .50 BMG 660 3050 0.51
70.3 .458 Winchester Magnum 500 2150 0.458
42.9 .500 S&W Magnum 500 1200 0.5
41 .375 H&H 300 2550 0.375
37.7 .500 Linebaugh 440 1200 0.51
36.5 .45-70 450 1250 0.458
35.5 .338 Lapua Magnum 250 2940 0.338
35.2 .475 Linebaugh 370 1400 0.475
34.7 .405 Winchester 300 2000 0.4115
30.2 .454 Casull 260 1800 0.452
29.8 .480 Ruger 325 1350 0.475
24.9 .300 Winchester Magnum 180 3146 0.308
22.8 .38-55 Winchester 255 1650 0.3775
21.1 .35 Remington 200 2100 0.358
20.8 .30-06 Springfield 170 2850 0.308
20.8 7.62×54mmR 181 2580 0.312
19.9 .44 Magnum 240 1350 0.429
19.6 .308 Winchester 168 2650 0.308
14.9 .30-30 Winchester 150 2250 0.308
13.3 7.62mm Soviet 123 2420 0.312
12.3 .45 ACP 230 830 0.452
11.3 .357 Magnum 158 1400 0.357
10.4 .40 S&W 165 1080 0.4
8.7 .243 Winchester 85 2950 0.24
8.56 .357 Sig 125 1350 0.355
7.31 9mm Parabellum 115 1250 0.355
6.2 .38 Special 158 770 0.357
5.78 .223 Remington 55 3300 0.224
4.72 .380 ACP 95 980 0.355
4.64 5.45x39mm 49 3000 0.221
2.83 .32 ACP 71 900 0.309
1.33 .25 ACP 50 750 0.251
1.33 .22LR 30 1400 0.222

In short when considering a rifle or hand gun using the TKO is a valid consideration.

Other writers have given their opinions on the value of TKO. Even comparing wound channels to TKO values. We feel that a complete knowledge of all data is invaluable in determining or having an opinion on which bullet is better is key. Our Mission is to provide the facts and experience of our staff to help you make your own decision on which is best. Our last review is in the works and will include Ballistic Gelatin Tests to the Journals of surgeons like Emil Theodore Kocher, Dr. Fackler or Dr. Kocher before him and interviews along with published details from Cook County Surgeons who deal with gun shot wounds on a daily basis.

Part 2: Hornandy Index of Terminal Standards AKA Hits is next.








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