A lot of internet knowledge has solidified both .30 carbine and .32 ACP as “inferior” loadings, an assertion that I have vigorously disagreed with but thus far have relied on anecdotal points such as “many Nazis were slain with the .30 Carbine”, etc. While it has a certain ring to it, there is a certain lack of proof when it comes to the terminal effectiveness of the chamberings.
However, modern bullet design has come a long way from taking these “weak” loadings into something that one can truly rely on. Bringing some actual science to the conversation is Tim from Military Arms Channel who tests the two thirty calibers with modern loadings.
Up first is the .32 ACP, a cartridge not commonly mentioned in self-defense circles, but continues to enjoy popularity with the ultra-small and ultra-concealable handgun crowd. In fact, Beretta and others still make semi-automatic handguns today. Loads tested include a Hornady and an Underwood with Lehigh Defense’s Extreme Cavitator machined bullet. The results? Fantastic by modern standards, especially considering the size.
Second is the more powerful .30 Carbine, which likewise is tested using a Hornady and Underwood/Lehigh Defense. The straight-walled cartridge is surprisingly capable, especially when one looks at the temporary stretch cavity.
What say you? Are the calibers obsolete or has modern loads brought them back to “relevance”?