Ballistic/Penetration Tests by Huts        

 

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Bullet Penetration Demonstration Fact Sheet

Presented by Bill Hutson - City of Boulder, Facilities Coordinator

In Attendance

William Boyes - City of Boulder, Facilities Manager

Eric Harris - City of Boulder, Assistant Personnel Director/Safety Officer

James Tydings - City of Boulder, Assistant City Attorney/Risk Manager

Wendy Testa - City of Boulder, Facilities Coordinator

Gary Mancuso - General Contractor - Lone Wolf, Inc. (Louisville Colorado)

& Energy Concepts, Inc. (Jamestown Colorado)

 

The purpose of this demonstration is to evaluate only one small aspect of the much more complex "security" issue, and is not meant to be a complete solution to the much broader issue. I intend to provide you with a fair sampling of building alternatives for protection against the use of firearms, in the hope that one will satisfy both sides of the protection versus costs issue, and will help us obtain a level of protection that is acceptable to staff while balancing that within a cost range that is not prohibitive.

This demonstration will provide you with a reasonably accurate representation of what might be expected of various building materials ability to withstand penetrations by a number of commonly used bullets.

For your convenience, I have attached a chart showing the cost per installed square foot of each of the assemblies we will be testing.

The firearms I am using have been selected based on press coverage of incidents around the nation, as weapons/calibers commonly used in attacks on citizens. These range from what are commonly referred to as "plinking" to "big game" calibers.

There are several commercially available products that are designed to resist bullet penetration ranging from polycarbonate to ballistic fiberglass and Kevlar. I have specifically excluded Kevlar as its cost is at least three times that of the next most expensive product we have here today.

We also have the option of using steel plate as we installed in our City Hall lobby, and we will demonstrate on a sample today, however, it is extremely difficult to work with and the necessity for welding inside occupied offices presents its own hazards.

In this demonstration we will include a normal or standard wall, the type that the majority of which all our offices are constructed, as well as several derivations and some commercially available products.

I will fire a single round of a given caliber at each wall, and after I determine the range is safe we will perform a brief evaluation, then we will repeat with each of the calibers I have provided. My hope is that we will be able to come to some consensus of cost versus benefit.

You will each be required to wear eye and hearing protection during the tests or wait in a vehicle until I give the "range clear" command.

 

 

Material Cost

  Labor Cost  

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs (standard wall)   

$ 0.30 / sf

$ 1.63 / sf

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1" OSB both sides with concrete poured in between     

$ 1.06 / sf

$ 2.04 / sf

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1/4" steel plate in between     

$ 7.50 / sf

$ 4.41 / sf

   5/8" Gypsum on " Polycarbonate

$ 3.95 / sf

$ 3.85 / sf

   5/8" Gypsum on Level I ballistic fiberglass

$ 19.00 / sf

$ 3.27 / sf

   5/8" Gypsum on Level II ballistic fiberglass

$ 33.86 / sf

$ 3.71 / sf

   5/8" Gypsum on Level III ballistic fiberglass

$ 48.33 / sf

$ 4.14 / sf

   5/8" Gypsum on Level IV ballistic fiberglass

$ 108.14 / sf

$ 5.27 / sf

 

OSB - oriented strand board
sf - square foot
Gypsum - drywall

RESULTS

 

Calibers Used

Calibers That
Penetrated

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs (standard wall)     

.22
12 ga #4 shot   

.22
12 ga #4 shot   

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with sand filled

.22
9mm
12 ga #4 shot

.22
9mm
12 ga #4 shot

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1/2"  polycarbonate   

9mm
.45 auto
12 ga #4 shot



12 ga #4 shot

note: 12 gauge completely destroyed polycarbonate and pushed broken pieces 20 yards downrange

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 2 layers of 1 1/8" OSB

9mm
.45 auto
.357
12 ga slug



.357
12 ga slug

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1/4" steel plate

.22
9mm
.45 auto
.357
.44
12 ga. Slug
.223
.270 Win







.223
.270 Win

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1/2" plywood
   both sides and cavity filled with concrete

9mm
.45 auto
.357
.44
12 ga. Slug
.223
.270 Win

 

   5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1 1/8" OSB
   both sides and cavity filled with concrete

9mm
.45 auto
.357
.44
12 ga. Slug
.223
.270 Win

 

   5/8" Gypsum on Level I ballistic fiberglass

.45 auto
.357

 

   5/8" Gypsum on Level II ballistic fiberglass

.44

 

   5/8" Gypsum on Level III ballistic fiberglass

.223 *

 

   5/8" Gypsum on Level IV ballistic fiberglass

.270 Win

 

* I fired 13 rounds of .223 into the same hole and there was no penetration

 

OSB - oriented strand board
sf - square foot
Gypsum - drywall

 

All Targets Set At 7 Yards Downrange
Targets Prior To Firing

Targets After Firing
(Steel #4 Shot, Lead 12 gauge Slug & All Others Jacketed Solid Points)
Back of Targets After Firing

 

 

Material Cost

Labor Cost

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs (standard wall)
Typical office wall per lineal foot $ 15.44
Typical 42" front counter wall per lineal foot $ 6.76

$ 0.30 / sf

$ 1.63 / sf

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1" OSB on both sides
Typical office wall per lineal foot $ 24.80
Typical 42" front counter wall per lineal foot $ 10.85

$ 1.06 / sf

$ 2.04 / sf

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1-1/8"
OSB on both sides and concrete filled
Typical office wall per lineal foot
Typical 42" counter wall per lineal foot

$ 3.16 / sf

$ 2.87 / sf

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1-1/8"
plywood on both sides and concrete filled
Typical office wall per lineal foot $ 45.04
Typical 42" front counter wall per lineal foot $ 11.43

$ 2.76 / sf

$ 2.87 / sf

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with "
steel plate in between
Typical office wall per lineal foot $ 95.28
Typical 42" front counter wall per lineal foot $ 41.69

$ 7.50 / sf

$ 4.41 / sf

5/8" Gypsum on " Polycarbonate
Typical office wall per lineal foot $ 62.40
Typical 42" front counter wall per lineal foot $ 27.30

$ 3.95 / sf

$ 3.85 / sf

5/8" Gypsum on Level I ballistic fiberglass
Typical office wall per lineal foot $178.16
Typical 42" front counter wall per lineal foot $ 77.95

$ 19.00 / sf

$ 3.27 / sf

5/8" Gypsum on Level II ballistic fiberglass
Typical office wall per lineal foot $300.56
Typical 42" front counter wall per lineal foot $131.50

$ 33.86 / sf

$ 3.71 / sf

5/8" Gypsum on Level III ballistic fiberglass
Typical office wall per lineal foot $419.76
Typical 42" front counter wall per lineal foot $183.65

$ 48.33 / sf

$ 4.14 / sf

5/8" Gypsum on Level IV ballistic fiberglass
Typical office wall per lineal foot $907.28
Typical 42" front counter wall per lineal foot $396.94

$ 108.14 / sf

$ 5.27 / sf

OSB - oriented strand board         sf - square foot          Gypsum - drywall

 

 

Calibers Used

Calibers That
Penetrated

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs (standard wall)

22 & 12 ga
#4 shot

.22 & 12 ga
#4 shot

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with sand filled

.22 & 9mm
12 ga #4 shot

.22 & 9mm
12 ga #4 shot

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1/2"
polycarbonate

9mm & .45 auto
12 ga #4 shot

12 ga #4 shot

note: 12 gauge completely destroyed polycarbonate and pushed broken pieces 20 yards downrange

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 2 layers
of 1 1/8" OSB

9mm & .45 auto
.357 & 12 ga slug

.357 & 12ga
slug

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1/4"
steel plate

.22
9mm
.45 auto
.357
.44
12 ga. Slug
.223
.270 Win

.223 & .270
Win Mag

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1/2"
plywood both sides and cavity filled
with concrete

9mm
.45 auto
.357
.44
12 ga. Slug
.223
.270 Win

None

5/8" Gypsum on 2"X4" studs with 1 1/8" OSB
both sides and cavity filled with concrete

9mm
.45 auto
.357
.44
12 ga. Slug
.223
.270 Win

None

5/8" Gypsum on Level I ballistic fiberglass

.45 auto & .357

None

5/8" Gypsum on Level II ballistic fiberglass

.44

None

5/8" Gypsum on Level III ballistic fiberglass

.223

None

5/8" Gypsum on Level IV ballistic fiberglass

.270 Winchester

None

note: After the test I fired 13 rounds of .223 into the same hole
on Level IV ballistic fiberglass and there were no penetrations

OSB - oriented strand board         sf - square foot          Gypsum - drywall

 

 

Level

Typical Applications

Description

I

Most homes, small businesses
As well as the majority of City
of Boulder buildings

Average/standard operations
Complete access to buildings
No special attention to security

II

A few City buildings and
most public schools and universities

Registered key systems
Security lighting
Employee training
Safe areas
plus Level I

III

Our City Police Dept

Restricted entries, computerized
and monitored door entry systems
plus Levels I and II

IV

Large Stores

Video systems, restricted entries
plus Levels I-III

V

Courts, banks and large corporations

Metal detectors, armed guards
plus Levels I-IV

VI

Rocky Flats, nuclear reactor plants
and some large corporations,
Las Vegas Casinos

Psychological evaluation of
Employees, background checks
access granted to limited areas
plus Levels I-V

VII

Cheyenne Mountain and Missile silos

Biological and bomb screening
equipment including bomb and
bullet proofing measures
plus Levels I-VI

VIII

President of the United States

Employee armed or provided with
armed security guards and bullet
proof vehicles
plus Levels I-VII

IX

Nuclear attack submarines and
Russian Underground Plutonium Mines

Employees, eat, sleep, work, live
without ever leaving facility
plus all previous levels

 

Conclusion:

Based on these tests, it is my professional recommendation, when practical, that we utilize the combination of Oriented Strand Board (OSB) and concrete. For new construction this combination appears to offer the best results at a cost far less than the commercially available ballistic fiberglass. I would also recommend the use of the level I ballistic fiberglass underneath countertops as it is impractical to use concrete in these applications and the ballistic fiberglass is certainly the most appropriate when an existing area needs to be retrofitted with protection.

 

Personal Profile/Qualifications

                   

45 year member of the National Rifle Association (NRA)

25 year member of the United States Practical Shooting Association (USPSA)

25 year member of the International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC)

Past president of the Boulder Practical Shooting Association

Certified Range Officer

Certified Course Designer

Reloader

Over 400,000 assorted rounds of ammunition fired

Performed various ballistic tests for Mike Walters (City of Boulder Police Armorer)

Performed various ballistic tests on glass assemblies for City of Boulder Housing Department)

Class A Licensed General Contactor

20 years as Facilities (Building) Coordinator for City of Boulder (Retired)

 

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