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Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) vs Full Metal Jacket Boat Tail (FMJBT)

Introduction

When it comes to selecting the ideal ammunition for your firearm, you’ll often hear terms like Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) and Full Metal Jacket Boat Tail (FMJBT). Although they sound similar, there are differences that set them apart. This blog post aims to break down the distinctions between FMJ vs FMJBT, their best uses, and their relative accuracies.

Understanding Full Metal Jacket (FMJ)

What is FMJ?

FMJ ammunition features a soft lead core encased in a harder metal shell, typically copper. The design ensures that the bullet holds its shape upon firing, providing consistent accuracy. FMJ is prevalent in many types of handgun and rifle calibers.

Best Uses for FMJ

  • Target Practice: FMJ rounds are generally less expensive, making them ideal for target shooting or plinking.
  • General-Purpose Shooting: They can be used for various applications, although they are not typically recommended for hunting or self-defense.

Understanding Full Metal Jacket Boat Tail (FMJBT)

What is FMJBT?

FMJBT ammunition is essentially an FMJ bullet with a tapered, or “boat tail,” rear end. This design increases the bullet’s aerodynamic efficiency, making it more stable and accurate over long distances.

Best Uses for FMJBT

  • Long-Range Shooting: The boat-tail design significantly improves accuracy over long distances.
  • Competitive Shooting: The added accuracy makes it popular in various shooting sports.
  • Sniping and Tactical Missions: Specialized units often prefer FMJBT for its superior long-range performance.

Is FMJBT More Accurate than FMJ?

The answer is generally yes. The boat-tail design reduces air resistance, enabling the bullet to maintain a more consistent trajectory over long ranges. This translates to improved accuracy, especially at distances beyond a couple of hundred yards.

Additional Considerations

Cost

FMJBT bullets are generally more expensive than standard FMJ bullets due to the additional manufacturing steps required for the boat-tail design.

Availability

While FMJ ammo is widely available in numerous calibers and brands, FMJBT is often limited to specific long-range calibers and brands.

Ballistic Coefficient

FMJBT usually has a higher ballistic coefficient compared to FMJ, which means it will maintain its velocity better over longer distances.

Conclusion

Both FMJ and FMJBT have their distinct advantages and ideal use-cases. While FMJ rounds are an economical choice for general shooting and target practice, FMJBT offers superior long-range accuracy, making it ideal for competitive shooting and tactical scenarios.

So, if you’re deciding between FMJ and FMJBT, consider your specific needs: if you need better accuracy at long distances, FMJBT is the way to go. If you’re just hitting the range for some plinking or short-range target practice, FMJ will suffice.

 

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