Help with making ballistic gel

Perfect day for some science here.

I’ve been thinking of how to get clearer pictures through the gel, tried slicing closer to the track but couldn’t get a clean surface, then as I washed the knife I thought “hot knife?” so I put my big kitchen chopper into a pot of boiling water and used the side of it as a screed, the hot knife melted the very top mm or so and smeared it out and it set smooth.
Like a jelly Zamboni.

First test was the Sellier & Bellot 38gn HV HP at 50m

Next was the Aguila 30gn 1700fps composite HP

Next I reused the first small block that had the S&B sub track in it and fired one of the utterly pointless Aguila 60gn “Sniper Subsonic” in beside it from 15m.
I have no idea where they go past that range, I’m pretty sure it’s very random, it did as expected and tumbled through.
The track on top is the S&B

After looking at that beautiful spiral expansion cavity made by the Aguila 30gn I was so impressed I was close to needing some alone time.

I have two more big blocks left before I have to remelt, worked out a flawless way to do that without getting jelly from arsehole to breakfast time as well.

Turns out the Aguila isn’t composite, that’s the CCI Copper I was thinking of.


Horizontally wet here today so I reused a big block to test the BSA Super Meteor inside at 10m.

I only have 2 types of pellets, Gamo Hunter round nose on the left and EXP pointy.

I fired one of the EXP backwards, it travelled nicely and expanded like a pearler, no wonder it makes such violent love to the rodents at close range

Then I excavated the pills from yesterday

The Aguila penetrated farther and despite expanding less, made a far more dramatic permanent cavity.



Hughie paused the waterworks just long enough to do one more comparison test.

This time, duelling Power Points at 50m, Australia vs USA.

Both blitzed right through 34cm of gel so I don’t have the bits that exited, they are buried with a pile of copper and lead scrap at the bottom of the bullet stopper.

Colour me impressed by both though, I reckon stopping one would be unpleasant.
The pics show the blocks facing opposite directions because they were side by side OZ on the left the USA on the right :wink:

The Australian Power Point and below it the only fragment remaining

The American Power Point and it’s impressive leavings

Accuracy issues in my rifle aside, I can live with that for rabbits at 50-75m, they certainly hit a lot harder than the S&B.
More surgery, melting and pouring and fingers crossed, 75m tomorrow.


Today, 75m.

This is a CCI Mini Mag 36gn HP 1260fps that I put in next to the WinPP(on top) for a comparison. It made a very nice cavity and exited the 34cm block leaving no shrapnel.

Next I fired an S&B 40gn HV HP 1270 fps.

Then I put an S&B 40gn subsonic HP 984 fps next to the S&B HV.
I love science when I get results I expect but when some counter intuitive results come back it’s positively wood inducing.
In the pic below I have removed the HV pill from where it stopped, the pale spot on the right, the dark spot above is the exit hole from the subsonic. I put a dot on it with a marker to make it visible, the fact that it mosied right on through while the HV stopped had me intrigued until I remembered a mythbusters episode where they fired several different guns into a pool.
All the supersonics, even a .50, fragmented on impact but subsonics went further.
The expansion cavities are equal width with the HV cutting a wider path at the end of it.
There is so little difference in the expansion of the HV pill at 75m than at 50m that I didn’t bother with a pic.

I have 2 more blocks 15x15x34cm I"ll use for the final .22 tests at 100m, S&B HV vs WinPP.

I found the perfect mold at Bunnings, a plastic storage box 240x243x452mm which will make a 26lt block for the .223 tests.
I’m going to town tomorrow to get that and some extra gelatin so I can fill it.


Looks like you’re having fun with all this, mate! :nerd_face::+1:
Have you considered using something that might analogous to typical game skin in front of the blocks for more realistic indication of expansion & penetration?


I was waiting for it… :joy:

Waiting for the meme, or expansion & penetration - because I look nothing like your sister.

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G’day Gwion,

Mate, the fantasies that have inhabited my tiny scone since starting this(like holes in warm jelly blocks :shushing_face:) but reality is a bitch.

I didn’t bother with the .22s but when I move to the .223 I will be taking measures to insure I don’t accidentally blow my jelly all over the paddock.
So to speak.

I have some plastic sheet I bought to line the original mold. It’s like 1mm thick glad wrap.
I’ll wrap the block with that and hold it in place with real glad wrap.

I thought of chamois but it’s pricey and probably too thin.

I’d welcome any suggestions from anyone on any aspect.

I’m only a sperm at this, and as the man in the song says:

When I was a Sperm

Haha… waiting for one of you to do the online version of pointing and giggling like a school girl and turning it into some double entendre! :joy::joy::joy:


I’m not going to bother with 100m for the .22s.
The WinPP are fairly random at 75m and wildly unpredictable past 75m and I’m too lazy to be bothered doing all that walking up and down for what would most likely be marginal results.

I have a new mold, a 27lt kitchen swing

top bin that should suffice for the .223.
I bought another 1.2kg of gelatin, which went up $6 in 2 weeks, fuck Vladimir Shit-can.

Today I’m remelting the existing blocks to mix in with the new gelatin.
It’s currently 2° in my kitchen so it should set fairly fast but most likely won’t be hard enough until tomorrow.


I now have one 30kg block ready to go, I was worried that so much might take a while to set hard enough but according to my little weather station it was -1.7° in the kitchen overnight and the block is not only set but on inspection should come out with fuss under gravity.

I’m busting to start the .223 tests but I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about Gwion’s suggestion of a skin analogue, but a little testing on my limited resources found nothing suitable.
Everything’s either too thin, too thick, too tough etc.

Before I test, does anyone have a suggestion?

If not I’ll just have to use the plastic to stop the block from disintegration and leave it at that

Today, purrfick day for science.

Hornady RooMax 55gn SP at 100m

The block was well big enough with 29.5cm max penetration, stopping 16 cm from the end.

There was only 35gn remaining, with 20gn lost as scrapnel

I forgot to photograph it before I started trimming towards the cavity, but at the bottom of the block, a lobe of the chamber extended a crack about 120mm to the surface.

Next test will be a Nosler 50gn ballistic tip.


I’ve been thinking this thread has gone way past “help making gel”, I’m pretty sure I could do it as an artform now, question is does it need renaming?

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I would really like to see you do some 17 HMR tipped projectiles at 120m and more and compare to the CCI TNT which is a hollow point. I will even send you cash, a present or get @juststarting to service you as payment.

My goodness, look at the wound channel. Be a real shame if some country put these in the armed forces magazines instead of fmjs.

What the actual fuck @JizzFlinger - you’re only telling me now that I can get paid for it?


Funny you should say that Jizz, I’m currently asking people I know to bring something I don’t have, like the HMR.

What I’d like to see on that end is the HMR compared to the WSM, I used to have a Bmag in WSM and it was vicious.

The top pic is an accidental hit on some W strap at the shearing shed from 65m, the hit was at the edge where the 3mm steel was doubled.

This rabbit was hit at 135m, went in behind his left shoulder, blew 3in out of the spine and exited halfway down the right side

This one was at 150m

I went through my supply of projectiles, I have:
Hornady 35gn vmax
Hornady 55gn RooMax
Nosler 50gn varmint tip
ADI SS109 62gn steel core FMJ
Hornady 68gn HP match
Nosler 70gn RDF HP match
Berger 70gn VLD HP match

I also have a pile of 40gn .22 magnum pills.
There are flat nose FMJ, HP and SNHP.
Every time I’ve tried to load one it’s gone astray and I’ve given up on them.

Further to that, in the response to your suggestion of soft nose instead of fmj, I’ll test the ADI SS109 next. So we have a direct comparison.

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As promised Jizz, just for you.

The NATO standard ADI SS109 steel cored penetrator at 100m.

The steel core exited the 41cm long bock with the same sized hole as the entrance, leaving everything else behind and creating a huge vaporised cavity.

I want to try OO buckshot and a Brenneke as well…

I decided to do another view of the cavity and found it was bigger than I thought.

After melting down and repouring the block I only found 8.1gn of shrapnel.
My earlier impression that only the penetrator exited was badly off the mark, all the shrapnel was lead so the entire case exited as well.
Buggered if I can work out how it could leave such a small, perfectly round exit hole if 54gn of ripped up case went out.


Can you load slugs?
I can send you few of mine if you like.

Thanks bentaz, I appreciate the thought mate but I’m limited to the .223 for reloads unfortunately.

If you have any .223 pills not on my list above I could load them though.

I have a pack of 5 Fiocci Brennekes and some ancient slugs of some sort in cardboard cases with the rolled top.

Don’t know if I have the plums to try the oldies.
I have most of a box of the buckshot.

oof, I’ve got some .223 Frangibles and many others. Wanna try? I can post on Monday.
I am loving your work here mate, this is just unreal!

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This is one of the old Brennekes, could you, or anyone else, hazard a guess at their approximate age.
I can remember having them in the early 70s.