Bullet Crimp

 Key Holing Bullet Strikes

Bullet Keyholes

When a bullet strikes the target at an angle other than point forward, it creates a hole that is not round. This out-of-roundness may vary from barely perceptible to slightly ovoid to completely sideways.

Not all out of round bullet holes are keyholes. Note the hole to the right. Looks like the bullet went through the target sideways. But it didn't. The target was printed on cheap 20 pound copy paper and the paper tore as the bullet passed through. The torn part of the paper is folded back away from the front of the target.

When this happens, there will be a flap of paper attached to one side of the hole at the back of the target. A dead-giveaway that this is what happened is the perfectly straight end of the hole where the paper is folded. This fold will almost always be perfectly straight.


Bullet keyhole
Here is the same hole as above with the flap folded back. Now you can see that the actual bullet hole is round and you can see the tears in the target paper below the hole. Bullet keyhole
This is a real keyhole bullet strike.  Note that where the square base of the bullet passed through, the hole is straight but not perfect. It is ragged. Unlike the hole above where the paper is folded.

This bullet is a textbook example of a key hole. The odds of hitting exactly sideways are quite slim. Usually the bullet will strike at some angle to the surface of the target.
Bullet keyhole
Here is the example above with the actual bullet that created the hole. - Well not the "actual" bullet but another bullet just like it. Bullet keyhole 




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