It occurred to me that with a potential sheep-stampede next month I thought I ought to see what ammunition I have on-hand so I could make up any shortfalls. While I was searching around to figure out exactly what ammunition I had on hand I came across six boxes of these leftovers from my friend’s estate last year.
These are New Generation Sentry 9x19mm+P rounds from South Africa. The bullet is a nickel-plated monolithic copper round with a composite cap to aid in feeding. On impact the cap disintegrates and the bullet does it’s thing. They were developed initially in the late 1990s as a low-recoil police round for the Singapore police that would offer good auto-body/glass/barrier penetration and expansion in soft tissue. They will supposedly penetrate laminated glass windshields at angles as steep as sixty degrees. They were successfully used by the South African Police Anti-Carjacking Unit and apparently some other branches of the police as well. These rounds were marketed in America early this century either as the Sentry or Eliminator rounds. Eliminators were lighter and had a significantly higher muzzle-velocity.
The bullet weighs 80 grains and has a claimed velocity of 1375fps (Chronographed at 1350 avg. from a Glock 19.) Expansion was reported to be about 12mm/.5 inches in test media. Some testers reported caps separating in the magazine and causing jams. Glocks and Berrettas do not seem to experience this issue but the sample-size is very limited. One thing of concern is noted for the .45 Sentry or Eliminator ammunition, and that’s split case-heads in guns without fully supported chambers, notably the Glock 21 and many 1911s. Personally I try to avoid any +P ammunition in automatics without fully-supported chambers.
I fired off a box of this ammo without any problems, though in my 2″ Taurus revolver I would not characterize them as ‘Light Recoil’ . I won’t use them in the Taurus again; +Ps are hard on it, and the velocity loss from the very short barrel might seriously limit this round’s performance. I did not experience any cap separations in the revolver despite the open cylinder and quite snappy recoil. I plan to try them in my Helwan Brigadier and see how they work.
I tracked down a lot of opinions about this ammo and very little in the way of facts. Most people on forums thought it was anywhere from useless to dangerous, but then reading further I’d discover that they had no experience with the ammunition. I did eventually find a post from a South African police officer that said he never experienced any problems with this ammo. Take that for what it’s worth because, well… internetz.
New Generation Ammunition is out of business, possibly because as near as I can tell they never actually got the contract with the Singapore police and their reloaded ‘range ammo’ had an abysmal record for inconsistent quality and using worn-out casings. While they used all-new components for Sentry and Eliminator ammunition they could not help but be tainted by the reputation of the company’s more common loads.
So- forgotten super-ammo? Probably not; while it seems to have worked well enough I think if it was any sort of real improvement over conventional ammo someone would have taken up the design. As it is they are an oddity, yet another forgotten chapter in the ongoing attempt to improve small-arms ammunition.