9mm or 45cal

Discussion in 'The Great Outdoors' started by SGT Rocket, Jan 29, 2012.

  1. newsman

    newsman One of the Regulars

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    Modern ammunition made a major change in the mid-1980s as a result of a number of bad shootings. There is no doubt that a good load with enough power should help do the job.

    But I have seen a case where a felon took 19 rounds of .45 and still managed to fight on until he died. I've seen suspect shot in the head who have walked into an emergency room to complain about a head ache that would not go away. Unless someone gets a central nervous system hit...they are likely to be dangerous for some time. Some guys don't get the memo they are dead...and still hurt or kill people. For example the famous Miami shootout of 1980 with the FBI...one suspect took a .38 to his brain stem. He was all but dead when he killed to more agents.

    Eighty percent of people shot with a pistol round...survive it. And if you have to shoot it...twice is a good start. Handguns are a bad choice for personal protection...but at the same time easier and more practical to conceal or carry.

    The last officer at my department to be killed was shot with a .25. A lousy round. It was a hot summer night and he took his vest off before he was called to a scene. We found him at sunrise. He fell into a grassy area...flash light down...the suspect was a few feet to his right...and dead.

    Anyway. Whatever the nice people here do...get all the training you can...from someone who knows what they are doing.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2016
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  2. jkingrph

    jkingrph Practically Family

    I can remember back in my hospital days, getting first hand info from some of the surgeons. One occasion the victim was hit by a large caliber handgun round, it went straight through the abdominal cavity, did some damage that would have been fatal if not repaired, but it was so he survived.

    Another was hit with a .22 round, and apparently it bounced around in there it did so much damage tha that victim died before everything affected could be patched up.
     
  3. newsman

    newsman One of the Regulars

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    A lot of people disregard the .22LR round. It's not a stopper...at least not right away unless something truly critical is hit...but it does and can cause a lot of blood loss...it's just slower. .22 Magnum is a wicked little round. Again, not something I'd bed the farm on...but if I had nothing else it would beat a sharp stick.
     
  4. Willybob

    Willybob A-List Customer

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    "The purpose of a handgun is to fight your way to the long gun you should have had in the first place." Im not sure who said it, probably someone smarter than me, but it makes good sense. Due to current "sensitivities" we can't stoll around with our handy AR or scatter gun, so pick a pistol caliber that is easy to shoot acurately, a pistol that is comfortable in your hand and then shoot alot to become proficient. Fortunately the only way to determine which one is the best is to buy is to shoot it. That my require you purchase several before you find your favorite. Took me years to settle on my favorite so I had to get a bigger safe. Darn.

    Ive heard mention of Massad Ayoob in this thread. I think one of his best books is titled, "In The Gravest Extreme." A must read for all. While everyone is talking about preparations leading up to the use of lethal force, he discusses what to expect afterward. You must consider this. He is a big promoter of Tactical Communications, verbal judo if you will. For those readers who are new to the game, take a class in Tactical Communications and hope that if it comes down to it you can talk your way out of a gun fight. It may go against our manly, take control, dominate, macho male egos but it will save you a lot of pain and $$$ in the end. The lawyers are always watching and they want your house, car and retirement savings.

    Thirty + years as a Govt gun slinger and I never had to pull the trigger because I learnt how to talk my way outta stuff. If you've been married for any length of time your probable already pretty good at it. If all else fails, shot placement is your best chance at survival, with the bad guy I mean. Not your wife. Resort to expensive jewelry for that.
     
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  5. Atticus Finch

    Atticus Finch Call Me a Cab

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    ^ Excellent post.

    Several years ago, one of our off duty deputies and his wife were picking up their kid from school when they were approached by a man brandishing a handgun and demanding the wife's pocketbook. The deputy drew his off duty weapon and killed the would be robber. The case was thoroughly reviewed by the SBI and was determined to be a clean shoot. Our office declined prosecution and no criminal charges were filed.

    But that was far from the end of the deputy's troubles. For years, he had to fight through a civil wrongful death action brought by the robber's survivors. It pretty much bankrupted his family and ended his law enforcement career. I'm not sure the deputy had any choice but to kill the guy, but it clearly would have been much better for everyone if he could have figured out a way around it.

    AF
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2016
  6. newsman

    newsman One of the Regulars

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    Good ole Mos...he's made a lot of money over the years teaching some things i totally agree with and some...well...we have our differences. He liked to hold just the tip of his pocket knife between his fingers and stand behind me on the firing line and poke my elbows with it. That famous police department he worked for? It had about five officers. He's still a good instructor.

    Anyway. He's right about talking your way out of a situation. It's clearly more advisable.

    The next post after this mentions a deputy with a clean shot...and he still went to court. Of the last seven cases locally every one of the officers, right or wrong, went to a grand jury. Every one of them was let found not guilty....every one of them spend years in civil court defending themselves. You can expect in the best of situations to spend as much as $20,000 more defending yourself in court.

    One local case involved a drug deal that went bad. Suspect pulled a pistol and shot through the police detectives unmarked car. That officer while wounded shot back with a .357 while the backup officer put 7 rounds of .45 through the car's rear windows and into the car seat. Crippled in a wheel chair with one arm...the court case went on for 20 years. In fact the back up officer left his job, joined the army, came back...went back into law enforcement before it was over.
     
  7. BriarWolf

    BriarWolf One of the Regulars

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    Probably Jeff Cooper, though I'm sure it was said by cowboys and foot soldiers long before.

    No need for me to repeat what has already been said by many wise men in this thread; the best gun is the gun you have, the best caliber the one you can hit with. I myself admire the .45, but have small hands, and prefer single stack autos and revolvers. I'd take a .380 or .38 Special over a larger caliber because its what I can hit with. The 9mm is too snappy for me.
     
  8. t4halo

    t4halo Familiar Face

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    I carry what Walt Longmire carries.

    T4
    [​IMG]
     
  9. newsman

    newsman One of the Regulars

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    It was Col. Cooper who said that. I heard him say it a few times.
     
  10. MikeKardec

    MikeKardec One Too Many

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    It is interesting that, in more violent days and places, everywhere from the old west to "colonial" areas of the early to mid 20th century, quite a few people who's lives were threatened regularly opted for firearms which we would today consider under powered. An early example would be Hickok insisting on carrying .36 navies (and loading with ball rather than bullets I believe) to the incidence of use of the .380 among gangsters and soldiers of fortune.

    Granted this was an era when many men hunted and defended themselves much more often than today and were as a whole probably more comfortable with weapons and under pressure. I'm not trying to make any specific point, because I'm guessing people were also smaller on average but, as above, they were also more used to conflict and might have been somewhat harder to dissuade when they got homicidal thoughts in their heads. If given the choice I'd pack a .357 or .45, but the numbers of people who theoretically really knew what they were doing and still chose more "medium power" calibers does get your attention. Though you'll hear people from the era complain about the recoil of the .45 but my experience is that .45 is easier to shoot than most 9mm, so I'm not sure that's really the issue. And, yeah, .22 is almost mythically under-rated.
     
  11. newsman

    newsman One of the Regulars

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    You made an interesting point about medium calibers. Most of us don't get a choice as to the time and place where conflict will happen. If we did we'd make better choices. There is a considerable reduction in bullet mass and caliber directly proportional to the intensity of the event. I call it ballistic myopia. Suddenly my 9mm just isn't big enough.

    My personal experience is a .45's recoil hardly felt when the organically generated waste material hits the oscillating ventilation device.
     
  12. Stearmen

    Stearmen I'll Lock Up

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    I have been reading up on Winchester Lever Actions and It is amazing the small calibers that a lot of professional hunters used in the early smokeless powder days. We have been brain washed, I blame Dirty Harry!
     
  13. MikeKardec

    MikeKardec One Too Many

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    Bigger is better if you can handle it well ... but if I had the choice of time and place I'd choose to be absent the area and era of any sort of violence.

    I've always felt that .45 LC or ACP was sort of a big slow jolly recoil and found controlling it or rolling with it easier than 9mm or .357. If I have to shoot something that disorients me I'll go for .44 mag, just like many a modern man who compensates for lack of expertise or confidence with better technology. It's a bit overwhelming but I'm a pretty good shot.

    Recoil is odd though, what fits one person does not fit another. I have often wondered if my somewhat large hands didn't make certain guns easier to shoot or to spread the recoil out. I also don't carry a pistol as a regular thing and wouldn't choose to, so a heavier gun is acceptable to me and that reduces recoil too.

    The fascinating thing about guns and cars and motorcycles and such ... especially those developed by serious users rather than general purpose engineers (with firearms this would, to a great extent, be up until the WWII era) is how human engineered they are and how specific to a certain personality or body type. I dislike 911 Porsches and 356s but love the Alfa Bertone GTVs. One fits my body and my mind, the other, wonderful as it is, does not. The trouble with many of the amazing things of today is that they have been designed to death, built to fit everyone somewhat yet no one perfectly. They just didn't know how to do that in the past so being a customer or an aficionado was actually a bit of an art form.
     
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  14. jkingrph

    jkingrph Practically Family

    I have a multitude of handguns, 44 mags are too big to carry, a couple of compact 45 acp models are ok and I can hit fine with them, full sized are again a bit hard to conceal. My 9mm high power as been modified with good trigger and barrel is is super accurate, but still large. I have one of the super lightweight, hammerless j framed S&W 38's, the scandium framed job. It's so light it hurts even with 38 spc ammo. for a practical carry, I have a 3" barrel stainless fixed sight S&W .357, loaded with 38 special ammo. There is something about that K framed S&W series, that just works for me. I have several, including an earlier model 10 with lightweight barrel, a K 38, and K 22 and all are accurate and easy to shoot for me.

    My feelings are that you are better served with a firearm that you are comfortable with and can hit with well. I'll take six in a cylinder vs 8-10-12 in a magazine that I do not shoot as well.

    As for recoil and control, most folks would probably be better served with a lower power load as the 38 special or of similar power. It may not give immediate total incapacitation, but given a body shot, the target will know it has been shot, and yes I have heard the tales of druggies taking a full cylinder of .357 mag and not going down, ect.
     
  15. MikeKardec

    MikeKardec One Too Many

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    The Smith K frame, in a 2" to 3" is such an excellent choice. There is no reason I've ever seen to load them with 357, it's really just a waste of powder. .357 rocks with long barrels to the point it's great in a carbine but it's a disorienting and inefficient in a smaller gun. .38 Special also comes from a time when the people who armed themselves with it were people who had grown up shooting and couldn't call for any sort of SWAT like back up (it was also before body armor, however!) and revolvers are just more stupid proof than autos. I think they are a great choice. I shoot autos better, they are easier to shoot accurately, but the revolver, especially the 357/38 Smith is the Small Block Chevy of the shooting world. Not exotic but effective, eternal and impossible to fault.
     
  16. RJR

    RJR

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    Makes a lot of sense.
     
  17. newsman

    newsman One of the Regulars

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    He could be harsh and did not tolerate fools easily. He was direct, to the point and enjoyed excellence.
     
  18. oak1971

    oak1971 Familiar Face

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    I have shot many, if not all handgun calibers. I tend to stick with .45 and 9mm because I reload and don't like to mess with my setups much.
     
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  19. MikeKardec

    MikeKardec One Too Many

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    And, ya know, the practice actually counts for something if you're not distracted by too many guns. An old friend of mine, once a Vietnam era Marine sniper and more recently the dude in charge of the international police mission to Iraq, was asked, "how do I improve my shooting?" He wisely answered, "Sell all your guns but the most accurate one ... just shoot that."
     
  20. LuvMyMan

    LuvMyMan I’ll Lock Up.

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    In our household we own a great variety handguns and rifles, shotguns. My favorite handgun is my Springfield Armory 9mm XD with the short barrel. I do not notice much recoil while shooting the XD and I am not a very large person, 5 foot and about 104 pounds. My Husband was a great teacher, and right now I would be considered shooting as an expert marksmen with a handgun. I am now learning to master larger weapons, we have a fairly new Noreen AR-15 platform custom 30.06. The recoil is somewhat buffered by the design and I handle it well. As this was designed for long range use, I am setting up handgun targets using the scope system on the rifle and can hit 4 of 10 rounds at 800 yards.

    I was not very interested at all in even owning any weapons until I married my Husband and am very thankful for having taken the time to learn as much as I can. I have had to use my Handgun to protect life. Not an easy feeling however, doing everything properly in a calm manner makes as much a difference in my opinion as to what weapon you may be using. Having to actually shoot another human is not what many people may think it is. Once you pull the trigger, and you hit what you have aimed at, there is no taking back that moment. But there is a flip side to that. Once you have had someone place themselves in a scenario where you have to defend yourself, having the training behind you is a blessing and in no way would I ever allow anyone to bring harm to me or anyone else in that same given situation. Not more than two weeks ago, someone was attempting to come into our home by a side door. The noise made me aware and of course all our dogs were barking. Thankfully that person decided to leave and not to continue to enter our home. The way it would have played out, a 12 gauge with every other round a slug or buckshot would have been applied to that situation. I had my Husband on his cell phone calling our police department and I did let the person outside the house know, if you come inside you are going to be shot that I am armed and have called the police.

    I had to shoot a person a few years ago. You never leave the picture of that being in your mind. My Husband was not as bad off medically and he would have taken the shot had I not done so. As things happened, the State Police did not put us through any large hassles and the family of the person I shot, did not take me to court or any drastic issues. In fact they felt badly that a member of their family would engage in criminal activity. The person I shot was armed. I already have my weapon out of the holster but behind me and they had no clue that I was carrying a weapon. As that person was not going to engage in any further conversation and raised his handgun up, I then took aim and fired one round to the center chest area. My ammo used are the home defense type round 9mm. In my mind and thoughts every single thing my Husband has taught me about handling weapons and situations came in a flash. Had I not fired when I did, there would have been a great chance that individual would have shot me and my Husband both. He (my Husband) had his handgun in his coat pocket and was about ready to pull the trigger just as I did mine. We had the State Police take both of our handguns for a few days and then they called and said I could come and pick them up. I guess that was something standard as they made mention it is a normal process on their part. They gave us receipts and documented it in the Police Report. The Local news did not make too much a spectacle about the event and thankfully it went away rather rapidly to the public's eye.

    When ever I see a topic on what caliber is best or anything like the topic, my response is and will always be, just have a weapon you can use, period. Practice use of your weapon in such a way that is real life settings and be calm. Take control of every moment of any situation and do not ever make yourself a victim. Talking and keeping the other person talking may help but when the talking stops you need to focus and make that choice of pulling the trigger.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2016
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