This is the Box.​

Having some time for study of this fascinating sport, I built the "Box O' Truth".

The purpose of the Box is to test the penetration of various rounds.

People often say, "I think...". "I suppose...", "I bet...", when discussing facts like penetration of ammunition.

There is only one way to know how much a certain round penetrates.

You must shoot it into a medium and see for a fact.

This is the entrance of the last sheet.

This is the entrance of the last sheet.​

My shooting buddy, Tman and I took it to the range with a variety of guns and ammo. Here's what we did.

First, we loaded the box with 12 sheets of 5/8 sheetrock, which is also called wallboard in some areas.
Since it takes 2 sheets per wall, this is the thickness of 6 interior walls.

Why twelve? It seemed like a good number and I thought it might stop most rounds.
I was about to learn something.

First, I shot it with my M-17 S&W, .22 LR HP. It penetrated 6 sheets and bounced off the seventh sheet.
That would be the equivalent of 3 interior walls.
And that's only a .22 pistol.

Long story short, we proceeded to shoot several rounds and they all penetrated all 12 sheets and exited.


Notice that the XM-193 is tumbling.

We pulled the sixth sheet and that's about where it first tumbled.

Here I am shooting a .45ACP at the box.

Here I am shooting a .45ACP at the box.​

We then replaced the sheetrock with something tougher, 3/4 inch Ponderosa Pine boards.


We fired several rounds and saw the following Penetration:

.22 Long Rifle (Wildcats) - 4 boards and bounced off 5th board.

9MM JHP (Federal) - 8 boards, bounced off 9th.

.45ACP (Federal Hydrashocks) - 7 boards, bounced off 8th.

Amazingly, none expanded at all. The nose just filled up with pine.

Here I am busting the Box.

Here I am busting the Box.​

It was time to get out the rifle.


Here are the two exits. Notice, again, that they were tumbling.​

I shot my 16" AR with XM-193.

We don't know how many boards it would have penetrated, as it was still moving after exiting the twelfth board.

Lessons learned:
  1. Sheetrock (drywall) doesn't slow any round down much. If you shoot in the house, walls will not stop any serious round.
  2. Twelve pine boards will not stop a .223 round.
  3. Shooting stuff is fun.