Full Metal Jacket Bullet - Interesting Things To Know.

A Complete Guide To Know what does a full metal jacket means, its uses & pros & cons.

When it comes to choosing the right type of bullets for your firearms, there are two options you will always find: full metal jacket bullet vs. hollow point bullet. Hollow point bullets are ideal defense ammo for concealed carry, while the Full metal jacket bullets are a better option when going to the range.

Full Metal Jacket Bullet

Full Metal Jacket is one of the most famous types of ammunition today because of its affordable price, availability & versatility. Previously we have covered the topic hollow point bullets.

In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss what a full metal jacket means, its uses, its pros & cons & how it differs from other types of ammunition.

Let's get started.

What does full metal jacket mean?

What does full metal jacket mean?

"Full Metal Jacket" refers to a type of military ammunition that has a metal casing covering the entire bullet, also known as a full metal case (FMC) or full metal jacketed (FMJ) bullet. The metal jacket helps the bullet penetrate its target more effectively and reduces the lead residue left in the firearm's barrel.

These bullets were invented in 1882 by Swiss Colonel Eduard Rubin while working for the Swiss Federal Ammunition Factory and Research Center, which developed ammunition for the Swiss military.

These rounds are ideal for target shooting since they do not expand much when hitting their target.

FMJ bullets are commonly used for target shooting and shooting because they are cheaper than JHP. In addition, they are more streamlined and designed to pass through the target with minimal bullet deflection or distortion.

Some popular full metal jacket bullets calibers include 9mm caliber, .223 Remington, .308 Winchester, 45 ACP & more.

Types of Full Metal Jacket Bullet

Types of Full Metal Jacket Bullet

Bullets with a full metal jacket (FMJ) are generally used in weapons for hunting, target shooting, and training. They are known as full metal jackets because the lead core of the bullet is fully enclosed by a metal jacket, usually made of copper. FMJ bullets are less likely to deform and fragment thanks to this design, enabling deeper penetration and less damage to the target.

There are several types of FMJ bullets, including:

  • Round nose (RN): This is the most common type of FMJ bullet. It has a rounded tip and a flat base and is typically used for target shooting and training.
  • Full metal jacket flat nose: This specific ammunition is completely covered in a metal jacket and features a flat nose at the front of the bullet. The flat nose increases the surface area for impact and is helpful when protecting yourself or hunting.
  • Boat-tail (BT): This FMJ bullet has a tapered base that reduces drag and improves long-range accuracy. It is commonly used in military and long-range shooting applications.
  • Spitzer: This FMJ bullet has a pointed tip and a boat-tail base, making it more aerodynamic and accurate at long ranges. It is commonly used in hunting and long-range shooting applications.
  • Full metal jacket truncated cone: This type of ammunition has a conical shape with a flat top and is fully encased in a metal jacket. The truncated cone shape can provide better penetration and be used for hunting and target shooting.

Exciting Things To Know About Full Metal Jacket Bullet

Before buying a full metal jacket ammo, there are many exciting things to know.

Full Metal Jacket Bullet vs. Regular Bullet

Full Metal  Jacket Bullet vs. Regular Bullet
  • Let's get to know how a full metal jacket bullet differs from others. How are these particular bullets different?
  • Design: Full Metal Jacketed (FMJ) bullets have a metal coating that covers the entire bullet, while regular bullets have an exposed lead or copper tip. FMJ bullets are designed for target shooting and military applications, while standard bullets are designed for hunting and self defense.
  • Purpose: FMJ bullets are used primarily for target shooting as they have a smooth surface that allows them to travel further and more accurately. Regular bullets, such as hollow-point or soft-point bullets, are designed for hunting and self-defense as they have an exposed point that expands on impact, creating a more effective wound channel.
  • Accuracy: FMJ bullets are often more accurate than regular bullets, due to their smooth surface and uniform shape. This makes them ideal for target shooting and long range shooting. Traditional bullets, on the other hand, can have variations in shape and weight that can affect accuracy, although they are designed to expand on impact for maximum effectiveness.
  • Price: FMJ bullets are usually less expensive than regular bullets, as they are simpler in design and made for target shooting, which requires less specialized ammunition.
  • Availability: FMJ bullets are widely available at most gun stores and online retailers as they are commonly used for target shooting and military applications.

Are full metal jacket bullets legal?

Many shooters ask: Are full metal jacket bullets legal in the USA? A full metal jacket bullet is permitted in the USA except in some regions. Just be aware that some parts ban FMJ bullets in public areas unless it's full metal jacket ammunition.

What Are The Common Uses for FMJ Ammo?

Full metal jacket (FMJ) ammunition is a bullet with a lead core covered by a hard metal casing, usually copper or brass. FMJ bullets are commonly used for a variety of purposes, including:

  • Target Shooting: FMJ ammunition is often used for target shooting and range practice, as it is typically less expensive than other types of ammunition and provides reliable accuracy.
  • Hunting: FMJ ammunition can also be used for hunting small games such as varmints and rodents. However, FMJ bullets are not recommended for hunting big game due to their limited stopping power and lack of expansion.
  • Military and Law Enforcement Training: FMJ ammunition is commonly used by military and law enforcement personnel for training purposes, as it provides consistent and reliable performance.
  • Competition Shooting: FMJ ammunition is also used in firearms competitions, where accuracy and reliability are essential.



Full metal jacket bullets are one of the most popular types used in target shooting, hunting, competition & military training. Still, they have some pros & cons that make them a good or bad choice over other types of bullets.

Pros of Full Metal Jacket Bullet

  • FMJ ammo performs well ballistically — it doesn't lose speed or accuracy once fired.
  • FMJ bullets penetrate more profoundly, which is helpful when hunting large game like deer.
  • Full metal jacket bullets also have a higher velocity that is helpful to hit targets with more force.
  • FMJ bullets are typically more accurate than others because they have a consistent shape and weight. This makes them ideal for target shooting or precision shooting competitions.
  • FMJ bullets are often less expensive than other ammunition types, making them a popular choice for target shooting and practice.
  • Widely Available: Because of their high demand & affordable price, FMJ bullets are widely available. You can find these bullets online & offline easily.

Cons of Full Metal Jacket Bullet

Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) bullets have several disadvantages compared to other types of ammunition:

  • Bullets do not expand: The main disadvantages of FMJ bullets for hunters & shooters are that these types of bullets need to develop. It creates smaller wound channels for the target.
  • Overpenetration: FMJ bullets are designed to penetrate targets without expanding, which can lead to overpenetration, meaning the bullet can pass through the intended target and potentially harm unintended targets behind it.
  • Reduced Stopping Power: FMJ bullets don't expand upon impact, which reduces their stopping power compared to expanding bullets such as hollow points. This means that FMJ bullets may be less effective at stopping a threat.

While FMJ bullets have their uses, such as for target shooting and military applications, they are not necessarily the best choice for self-defense or civilian service.

FMJ Vs. Hollow Point: What Is The Difference?

FMJ & Hollow points are the 2 most common types of bullets. Knowing the difference between these 2 bullets is a really very interesting topic. Full metal jacket bullets are commonly used for target shooting, while hollow point ammunition is considered a good choice for self-defense.

FMJ Vs. Hollow Point

FMJ Vs. Hollow Point

Learn the difference between FMJ Vs. Hollow Point?

FMJ Vs. Hollow Point Bullet Design

Bullet design is one of the main differences between both types of bullets. Hollow point bullets have a concave shape at the tip, which causes them to expand upon impact. While the A Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) is a bullet that has a soft core, usually lead, and is encased in a harder metal alloy, such as cupronickel or gold metal.

FMJ Vs. Hollow Point": Bullet Uses

FMJ bullets are typically used for target shooting and training exercises by the military, law enforcement, and civilian gun owners. They have a lead core completely encased in a copper or brass jacket, providing a smooth surface for the bullet to travel through the barrel and reducing fouling. However, they have a lower stopping power than other bullet types and are less effective in self-defense situations.

On the other hand, Hollow Point bullets are designed to expand upon impact, creating a more effective wound channel and increasing the bullet's stopping power. This makes them ideal for self-defense and law enforcement applications. Hollow Point bullets are also used by hunters, as they are more effective in taking down game animals.

FMJ Vs. Hollow Point: Price

Hollow-point bullets are typically more expensive than FMJ bullets due to their design and materials. When choosing the affordable bullets between FMJ Vs. Hollow Point, the winner will be a full metal jacket.

FMJ Vs. Hollow Point: Availability

When we compare FMJ (Full Metal Jacket) and Hollow Point bullets for their availability, both are widely available and can be purchased from online ammo retailers and by visiting the store manually.

FMJ Vs. Hollow Point Pros & Cons

Hollow Point Bullets Pros & Cons


  • Image Hollow-point bullets are more accurate.
  • Image Good choice for self-defense and home defense
  • Image Great stopping power
  • Image A good choice for a concealed-carry gun


  • Image More expensive

Full Metal Jacket Bullet Pros & Cons


  • Image Affordable & widely available.
  • Image High muzzle velocity
  • Image Best for target practice
  • Image Great penetration


  • Image Expand upon impact.
  • Image It can be fatal to an unintended target.


Ultimately, we can say that the full metal jacketed bullet is a popular ammunition choice among firearms owners. It is designed to offer greater accuracy, penetration, and durability compared to other types of bullets.

It is famous for target shooting, hunting, and military operations. Understanding the design and performance of the full metal jacketed bullet can help people make informed decisions when selecting ammunition for their firearms.

Full metal jackets are extremely common and inexpensive, making them even more accessible. FMJ bullets will be your best bet for any shooting need and won't disappoint in accuracy and performance.


Q: What is a full metal jacket bullet used for?
Ans: A full metal jacket (FMJ) bullet is a type of ammunition commonly used in firearms for target shooting, training, and military applications.

Q: Are full metal jacket bullets legal?
Ans: Full metal jacket bullets are legal except in some regions. Some regions only allow FMJ bullets on public land if it is total metal-jacketed ammo.

Q: Is Full Metal Jacket ammo better?
Ans: FMJ ammo is generally less expensive than other types of ammunition, making it an attractive choice for target shooting and training. It also tends to penetrate targets more effectively, making it easier to assess accuracy.

Q: Why does the military use full metal jacket bullets?
Ans: The military commonly uses full metal jacket (FMJ) bullets because they have several characteristics that make them suitable for military applications.

Q: Is FMJ bad for self-defense?
Ans: Yes, because of its over-penetration & reduced stopping power FMJ bullets are not considered a good choice for self-defense.

Lisa Earnest

Lisa Earnest

Mar, 31, 2023

Lisa Earnest has been a part of the Bulk Cheap Ammo team since 2018 and serves as the editor of Bulk Cheap Ammo content.

With a flair for language and an unwavering dedication to shooting sports, Lisa's diverse expertise combines to create an unforgettable experience for our audience.

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