The 9mm over-penetrating round has come a long way since it was first introduced back in 1902. The wide array of ammo makers, grain size bullets, and designs make this the go-to round for many. But, there is one problem: The 9X19 cartridge or 9mm over-penetrates much farther than one would hope. The home defense ammo can also put innocent bystanders in danger.
Over-penetrating Round | 9mm Overpenetration
Over Penetrate Definition
Over penetrate is when the bullets go through walls and flesh more compared to other self-defense projectiles. Full Metal Jacket, which is a round tip, ball, target ammunition goes the farthest. This is because it is a fast-moving bullet narrow enough that it takes a while to slow down in a body, wall or car. Jacketed Hollow Points are also famous for traveling through walls as they do not expand when they hit something hard.
These 9mm rounds are courtesy of our friends at HPR Ammo.
The Issues Surrounding 9mm Overpenetration
Most people are ill-informed about what a home-defense gun should look like. A lot of newcomers feel a 9mm projectile is sufficient for home-defense because of what they hear or read about. Of course, the 9mm is great for recoil management and allowing the shooter to get back onto target quickly. However, it does have its issues.
Say, for example, a criminal is stupid enough to attack you with your 9mm handgun in your home. When you are under attack, your body will exhibit a “fight or flight” response. When this happens, a gun that weighs just a few pounds begins to shake in your hands as your vision starts to blur. The result could be several missed shots that might go in the direction of your kids before one connects with your attacker.
Do I Give Up On My 9mm and the Over-Penetrating Round?
Though still a great self-defense round for concealed carry, the 9mm over-penetration goes much further than you’d want it to, especially in your own home, as it can go through several layers of sheetrock before stopping. Instead of using a 9mm as a home-defense gun, you might want to look into a long gun on this list that is properly set-up for home defense. You have a better chance at being effective with it, without as much penetration like frangible rounds.
Establish a home invasion defense plan and make sure everyone in the household knows it to avoid accidental shootings. Also, you should at least educate yourself on handling home defense handguns to ensure no over-penetrating round will hit the wrong target. Train as often as you can to develop muscle memory. Furthermore, you should never place your finger on the trigger until you are certain that whoever is on the receiving end needs to die.
Learn more about 9mm overpenetration in this YouTube educational video by John Lovell below:
Honestly, anything that has enough power to do damage to the human body, can actually over-penetrate further than you’d want it to. It’s just been proven time and again that it occurs with the 9mm more often than the others. Lastly, on the 9mm as a personal protection round vs home defense, it is very important for you to understand the over-penetrating round and its impact if it hits the wrong target.
Do you have any other thoughts about over-penetrating rounds? Let us know in the comments section below!
Editor’s Note: This article was first published in April 2016 and has been updated for quality and relevancy.