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threegun
July 1, 2008, 07:20 PM
In several threads here on TFL we have debated the pro's and con's of primary carry gun caliber. We have seen both sides make great points to support or disagree with both large and small calibers. One issue was raised but never really got debated and that was odds of being attacked and what kind of attack. I took the time to look at the FBI's 2005 Uniformed Crime Report and was really shocked to see the stats.

Robbery's totaled 338,100 in 2005. 42 percent were armed with a firearm.

Aggravated Assault's totaled 720,115 in 05. 21 percent used firearms.

Both of the above groups had over 60 percent of attackers armed with some type of weapon.

That means we have a 1 in 280 chance of being a victim and a 1 in 933 chance of being a victim to someone armed with a firearm.


Now given the odds of having to face an firearm armed adversary does caliber still mean little to you guys?

Scattergun Bob
July 1, 2008, 09:47 PM
I think caliber is an important consideration, I'm just not sure it is the most important consideration. I feel real comfortable packing my 625-4 on my hip, it is one of a long line of .45 revolvers I have carried, and I have faith in gun. That said, I really can not say that .45ACP/Auto Rim is anymore successful than .40 or 9MM or 38+P.

I know that dressed up in my Sunday go to meeting clothes, my p-7M8 packs a lot better and does not print like my big N-frame's.

I still stick with my first rule of a gunfight, "have a gun, within reason most any gun will do!"

Good talking with ya, 3 gun, Good Luck & Be Safe

chris in va
July 1, 2008, 10:32 PM
Just from what I've read and seen in videos, it seems to me ANY shooting back will turn an attacker on their heels. Most aren't expecting that.

Of course there's the 2% that are hopped up on something sick and don't feel much.

tshadow6
July 1, 2008, 10:42 PM
In 1992, a Hillsborough County Deputy shot a bad guy twice with a .45 Sig. The bad guy made a full recovery. Two weeks later, a Tampa Firefighter shot a bad guy once in the chest with a .380 pistol. That bad guy was DRT. During the same year, a fellow deputy with my agency shot a bad guy once in the chest with a 12 gauge shotgun police load. Six weeks later, that bad guy recovered enough to walk into the county jail under arrest. Please, enough with the caliber wars. We need to stop trying to change someone's mind because that person happens to carry a different caliber than someone else. We just won a major victory over the anti-gunners. Let's start working together to get nation wide carry. Not nation wide concealed carry, nation wide carry, period.

OnTheFly
July 1, 2008, 10:57 PM
I fail to see why knowing your statistical chance of being attacked would encourage someone to carry a particular caliber. I don't believe most people on TFL choose to carry a .38 or a 9mm "because their chances of being a victim are slim" or "I carry 45 because my chances of being attacked are better". I think most people have stated that they carry their caliber of choice because they believe it is sufficient to do the job.

Fly

JohnKSa
July 1, 2008, 11:49 PM
Here's a quote by Chuck Taylor in his "Combat Corner" column from the August 2008 issue of Combat Handguns.

"Though too often overlooked these days, in the high-speed world of combat pistolcraft, control is a major factor and is as important as accuracy, stopping power and functional reliability. It doesn't matter much how accurate or powerful a given load might be if it recoils so much that the typical shooter cannot "deliver the goods" to his target quickly enough or accurately enough under stress."

He's speaking about the difference between standard pressure and +P in .45ACP loadings, but the comment applies in general as well. Based on what I see at the range, there are a lot of people who would be better armed with a .22 than the hand-cannon they've picked primarily on the basis of caliber reputation. At least they might be able to hit something with a rimfire pistol.

According to Mr. Taylor, one needs to pick the best balance from among the following characteristics because all are equally important.

Accuracy (The ability to hit one's target.)
Control (The ability to fire repeatedly at a reasonable pace without significantly degrading accuracy.)
Stopping Power (Caliber)
Reliability (Does the gun, in your hands, work consistently?)

People like to focus on caliber because it takes the onus off them. If they can convince themselves that handgun effectiveness is measured by numbers on an ammunition box then they don't have to feel guilty about not practicing to gain and maintain a reasonable level of proficiency.

.300H&H
July 2, 2008, 02:26 AM
I have a variety of handguns. I tend to think a .38/.32mag snubbie is the most practical self-defense gun for me - but it too is an amalgam of compromises. If it's ever used to shoot someone in a self defense situation, it will likely be done so at a range of about 7ft.or less. Yet, at the range, I see all these suburban commandoes in states of hypervigilance shooting .40S&W's out to 25yds. In the back of my mind, I note that during WW2, Churchill's bodyguard used a .32 and that U.S.Generals were issued Colt .32's.


One of the joys of plinking - is the lack of recoil. The other joy in plinking - is to hit the target. If one has a lot of recoil to deal with - well, half the fun is gone. I think a lot of the folks - especially new shooters who shoot big calibers - would probably enjoy things a lot more with a smaller caliber. I also think folks need to study more about self-defense itself than 'caliber.' Better to master a .25acp than to bungle a .45. ;)

Socrates
July 2, 2008, 03:12 AM
I shoot 22lrs. I love em, and, I like to hit what I aim at. That said, I started really shooting 45 Super, and 454, and never looked back.

I'll turn this one over and say I'd rather take my new M44 carbine, in 7.62 X 54R to the party. Figure if that doesn't do a one shot stop, the guy will be blind, deaf, and, his partner in line will have an even bigger hole in him.;)

NEVER BRING A PISTOL TO A GUNFIGHT. The purpose of a pistol is to fight back to the rifle you should never have left behind...

threegun
July 2, 2008, 05:50 AM
This is not intended to be a traditional "caliber war" as much as a "whats the minimum" to reliably end a confrontation. More specifically the very weakest vs the 38's and up.

Considering our foes are going to be armed over 60 percent of the time with some type of weapon and a third of those will be armed with a gun.

I was lead to believe that the chances of facing an armed attacker was "rare" which 1 in 280 isn't IMO. Now considering my 1 in 933 chance of having to face down a gun toting assailant and understanding how valuable good hits are to my survival and further understanding the dynamics of a gunfight, how can I voluntarily choose the tiniest of calibers to carry primary?

I fully understand that most attackers will run at the sight of your gun or after a round buzzes their tower but that still leaves an awful lot of folks who will exchange gunfire while retreating or press the attack. This IMO disqualifies any of the tiny calibers from performing primary carry duty unless they are the ONLY option.

threegun
July 2, 2008, 06:14 AM
Also many have stated that folks increase caliber to make up for lack of ability or tactics. I believe that puny primary caliber carriers push forth this notion to justify carrying puny and while it may be true for a sizable part of the gun carrying world, I believe it is not true for most of the folks here on TFL nor does it increase punys punch. Most of us have given much thought to our self preservation and I would speculate even more so those of us in this debate on both sides. Most of us train on both sides. Most of us have developed tactics that fit our needs.

So when you feel the need to tout training just remember the bigger is better crowd trains also. All the training in the world won't make puny penetrate better.

Sigma 40 Blaster
July 2, 2008, 06:33 AM
I think people believe that a .45 ACP or .357 mag = one shot stop. Period.

Most think that if they go to the range a few times a year and can hit a pie plate at 7 yards consistently with one of those calibers they are good to go. I'm not talking shooting from holster, I'm talking about picking the gun up from the bench.

I prefer to carry my XD .45 because I've shot a few thousand rounds through it and am fast and accurate out to fifteen yards with it. I can slow down and get nice hits with it out to 25 yards also. I will not hesitate to walk outside with only my Bersa .380 because I've shot about 800 rounds through it and am also fast and accurate with it. I have also practiced malfunction clearing, speed reloads, one hand firing (dominant and non-dominant) and so forth with both weapons.

As soon as I get that kind of round count through my M&P 9mm it will probably see more holster time as it heats up.

The most important consideration of a carry weapon to me is how it fits my hand and how many rounds I have put through it to know I trust it to perform and that I am familiar enough with it that I can operate it (load, reload, clear a stove pipe, manipulate safeties et al.) and shoot it quickly and accurately without consciously thinking about it.

I personally would not carry a .22 but if someone has trained with it and can hit 3 shots to the chest with it quickly and accurately more power to them. Better to have a gun you can shoot than to trust the mythical one shot stop power of a handgun that you likely could not get a SOLID chest shot with at 10-15 feet. I know that I would probably be a better shooter today had I started with a .22 and moved up instead of having to break myself from the flinching I picked up from my .40 cal.

Beauhooligan
July 2, 2008, 06:41 AM
.300 H&H wrote: I see all these suburban commandoes in states of hypervigilance shooting .40S&W's out to 25yds. In the back of my mind, I note that during WW2, Churchill's bodyguard used a .32 and that U.S.Generals were issued Colt .32's.

A slight comment. Winston Churchill was his, when it got down to the bottom line, own bodyguard. He carried a Webley revolver in the pre-war days, then an American officer gave him a .45 Colt automatic, which he carried from that point forward. If you look at the photos of him wearing his ulster, the shape of old slabsides can be clearly seen in his right pocket. ;-P

I came to bet my life on the 1911 in the Navy in Vietnam, carried one as an LEO back home, and now as a civilian I sleep with one on the headboard of my bed loaded with Cor-Bon 230 gn. HPs. If I had a CCW permit I would carry my Springfield Armory GI .45, with the alternative being a S&W Model 19 .357 Magnum with a 4" bbl. But, I live in LaLa land where our local police or sheriffs agency gets to decide if you get a CCW permit based on a sliding scale of need.:confused: There are 7 permits issued in a jurisdiction with a population of 300k, and they are all issued to people who are worth more than 50 Million.:mad: Maybe the Supreme Court will address the CCW laws on the next round.:rolleyes:

Beauhooligan NRA Life, LMLRA Life, SASS Life

threegun
July 2, 2008, 07:45 AM
Sigma, I agree that many folks are under false illusions about their handguns power. Many believe, like you said, that .45 equals instant stop and we know this to be very very wrong.

My contention is that there are also many folks who believe that a 22/25 isn't putting them at greater risk if they every had to use it.

U.S.SFC_RET
July 2, 2008, 07:56 AM
As stated in a prior posting. Accuracy, control and follow up shooting.
Accuracy had better be dead nuts on.
Think you are going to be accurate under stress? You are more than likely going to be squeezing the hell out of that pistol grip when you have to shoot. Get a gun that fits you accordingly.
Make sure that if and when you have to shoot that the caliber you are shooting returns to Point of Aim quickly..
I/net caliber wars are for the birds.

cyprian
July 2, 2008, 09:19 AM
...About 2 weeks ago... I mean 2 decades, all right... I was a hotshot hothead with a Glock. My girlfriend and I get attacked by 2 dudes and I try to evade, we walk fast, I yell for cops, we weave across the st, you know the usual.. LSS, I pop the guy.

Lesson 0: Don't get your legal advice from Guns and Ammo.

Lesson 1: don't think that evading and yelling for help will help, during or after in court.

Lesson 2: don't shoot to stop. Shoot to kill. The prosecutor is going to look at it as "If you truly felt you were in enough danger to draw (a crime in our supposedly free country), then why didn't you shoot the chest?" ("Because not everyone who carries has police-style training, but whatever") [Implying that the gun is too much force when one guy is kicking the **** out of your girlfriend while the you tangle with the other, but whatever].

Corollary: If someone's chasing you when you've fought them off once already, just kill the dudes. It's probably better in court. Better to be judged by 12...
Theorem: Always use more than just one shot. I know it's basic, but don't forget it!

Lesson 3: Don't aim at the legs. Too hard to hit.

Lesson 4: Carry something bigger than a 9mm.
Corollary: don't deviate from your carry load and start carrying FMJ for some dumb reason.

Lesson 5: Don't wear a cheap holster. Get a thumb strap.

Lesson 6: Don't carry your Glock chambered. Or maybe don't if you have to use a cheap holster. But again, don't get the cheap holster.

Lesson 7: Don't let them get close enough to make a grab.

Lesson 9: Don't try to arrest anybody. Don't try to give them 1st aid. Don't get next to them. They may be playing possum. See Lesson 2.

But maybe most importantly, SEEK OUT TRAINING AS SOON AS YOU'RE LEGAL AGE! I was in the navy but before that has been a complete non-gunner. Even though I got .45 training and was surrounded by guns ranging from .45s to 16", I didn't take guns to heart until I got out. Learn as much as you can as soon as you can! All the above were bonehead mistakes which added up to near-catastrophe. I had to plea bargain for 4 months in County and lost my CCW as a result of being young and dumb--when I was the victim.

Lesson 10: Don't accept victimhood. I just used the word in the legal sense. Accept responsibility instead.

Creature
July 2, 2008, 09:29 AM
Now given the odds of having to face an firearm armed adversary does caliber still mean little to you guys?

Yep, caliber doesn't mean as much to me as my returning accurate fire. Just as long as I hear a bang every time I pull the trigger and get hits with every bang. I am not very concerned whether I am killing or just wounding my attacker. I just want to convince my attacker to abandon his intentions of harming me and mine. If my hits hurt my attacker like the dickens, I am not all that concerned whether my bullets are .22's or .45's.

Glenn E. Meyer
July 2, 2008, 09:35 AM
Gee - I wonder if there will be a new insights in this thread. :rolleyes:

By the way for stats - according to Gary Kleck - award winning criminologist - 95% of DGUs have NO shots fired. Since I move in academic circles, I asked him and several other criminologists if gun caliber has been shown to affect gun based deterrence and the answer is no.

So, this is a big yawn.

Is having a gun better than none - yes. The crazed biker who doesn't stop is not a high probability event as compared to the lack of efiicacy of having no gun.

Is it better to have the max power that you can shoot well? Yes.

So what - I explained it - everyone go watch Oprah. Or let's continue the same old crap on a thread driven by folks who just want to argue with each other.

buzz_knox
July 2, 2008, 09:36 AM
There is no question that caliber is important. Equally, there is no question that there are things more important, such as situational awareness, the ability to function under stress, at least a rudimentary knowledge of tactics, skill with the firearm, and reliability and availability of the chosen weapon.

.22lr
July 2, 2008, 09:51 AM
[off topic]

Shooting to stop - Shooting a target in the center of available mass until the threat stops.

Shooting to wound - taking aim at a perceived non vital area. (this is illegal in my state, because if you had time to take aim at a non vital area, the threat wasn't immediate)

Shooting to kill - Murder. The only intent is to kill.

The keyboard commando stuff needs to stop. If you want to kill a bad guy, please go tell the cops, hopefully they will reconsider your CCW.

We want to STOP the threat. That's it. if the threat is stopped, and we continue shooting, we have committed MURDER or ATTEMPTED MURDER.

And the ludicrous idea that "dead men don't testify" needs to be rooted out of our community. 1) dead men testify, its called forensics, its when the dead get to speak volumes. 2) Having the idea that you want to kill any attacker to avoid troubles in court is PREMEDITATED MURDER.

So PLEASE, PLEASE, stop the bravado and the chest thumping. If attacked, defend yourself with whatever means necessary to defend your life and the lives of others. But please, we need to be adults cognizant of the law.

[/off topic]

The best advice I was ever given was "shoot the biggest caliber that you shoot best / are comfortable with". Its a personal choice, let people make the determination on their own, but be willing to help if requested.

cyprian
July 2, 2008, 09:51 AM
Yeah what buzz and Glenn Meyer said. Personally I wouldn't have a 9mm, but I wouldn't want a .25 unloaded in my face either.

Hard Ball
July 2, 2008, 10:13 AM
"Lesson 6: Don't carry your Glock chambered. "

So it's not safe to carry a glock with a rond in the chamber?

Glenn E. Meyer
July 2, 2008, 10:18 AM
Geez - the chambered Glock thread rivals the caliber thread as:

NOT THIS STUFF AGAIN!

:D:D

threegun
July 2, 2008, 10:44 AM
Is it better to have the max power that you can shoot well? Yes.


Some have suggested otherwise..........which is what continues the debate. The same guys who tout how they would bring a rifle to a gunfight and not a handgun refuse to admit that bigger is better. Thats hypocritical thinking in my book.

Double Naught Spy
July 2, 2008, 11:08 AM
Shooting to kill - Murder. The only intent is to kill.

It matters not if in the course of self defense (in regard to legal use of lethal force) whether one intends to shoot to stop or shoot to kill. Within the guise of the law, one can shoot to kill so long as the shootee remains a threat warranting lethal force.

threegun
July 2, 2008, 11:14 AM
DNS, I think its just not good to say "shoot to kill" at minimum for our shooting community.

cyprian
July 2, 2008, 11:17 AM
Well, having lived through that, that's what I took away from it. Bicker all you want.

threegun
July 2, 2008, 12:02 PM
Cyprian, You just hit several nerves (I only hit one "caliber war").

Always use more than just one shot

What if they stop after the first?

don't shoot to stop. Shoot to kill

Not good for our shooting community at minimum (this kind of talk).

Don't carry your Glock chambered.

I won't even go here.............as a Glock man.

MLeake
July 2, 2008, 12:33 PM
There are a few reasons why bigger isn't always better.

1) Too much gun (IE shooter can't control it) is arguably worse than too little gun (lesser caliber). "It's better to be missed by a .45 than hit by a .22."

2) Impractical to conceal (Some of us can effectively conceal a 1911 or similar sized auto; not everybody is built well for that.)

3) Uncomfortable to carry (Unless the perceived need is really strong, IE regularly transiting really nasty areas for work, etc, most of us won't regularly carry a gun that is uncomfortably bulky or heavy). If I don't feel the need for the round capacity of a 92FS, or the controllable power of a 1911, or the versatility of a 4" GP100, then I am much more likely to carry a P239 or SP101. The gun I have will beat the gun at home every time.

Frankly, where I'm going next, I'll carry an M16 with a bunch of magazines, an M9 with a bunch of magazines, a SOG Daggert1, and one or two lockback folders, not to mention an Interceptor vest. There are times and places for loading for bear. However, around my hometown, I tend to go with what is comfortable, concealable, ultra-reliable, and reasonably effective.

Derius_T
July 2, 2008, 12:37 PM
IMHO, training with the gun you carry, so as to be proficient and accurate with it in a split second scenario, is alot more important than caliber. If you can't draw it, or hit whats trying to kill you, it doesn't matter if its a .22 or a rocket launcher.

The second thing I would consider is the reliability of the weapon you choose. If you wanna bet your life on a piece or crap gun thats just as liable to stop you instead of the threat, then I can't help you. Do some research. Find the carry gun that you are the most comfortable and the most proficient with, and that is mechanically reliable, and carry it.

Who cares if its a .32 or a .45? A well placed bullet to a vital area from a small caliber = just as dead as one from a larger caliber. Machoism has no place in concealed carry decisions.

threegun
July 2, 2008, 03:49 PM
"Dead is dead" right? Whether it be caused by a 22lr or a 10MM. Thing is the time to incapacitation and the ability of our foe to return fire after being hit. The 22/25's I would argue have the longest time to incapacitation and cause the least damage to a BG allowing them to return more fire and more accurate fire.


"It's better to be missed by a .45 than hit by a .22."


For sure but the real question is whether or not it is better to hit with a .22 or with a .45. No one would argue that one shouldn't carry a weapon they are not both comfortable handling and competent shooting.

threegun
July 2, 2008, 04:09 PM
Again this isn't about carrying the biggest hand cannon going. This is about carrying something who's caliber is powerful enough to consistently get the job done in the real world dynamics of a gun fight. For me thats 38 special and up.

I agree that machismo has no place in carry gun decision making but neither should the wishful thinking of folks who believe range groups will transfer to the street or that the BG is just going to stand square and receive your fire.

MLeake
July 2, 2008, 05:08 PM
The majority of posters seem to prefer .32 and larger, with most .32 carriers having either the Seecamp or Kel-Tec. The .32 carriers argue in favor of the convenience of carry.

Another argues for his .25, but he seems to be an exception. (Personally, I've never seen the point of the .25auto; the .22LR has similar energy and seems to have better functional reliability, plus it's easy to find at any gun shop... but the .25 has its adherents.)

Most posters advocate .380 or bigger.

While I can see scenarios where smaller guns in smaller calibers have distinct advantages, I would tend to agree with the "carry the biggest you can handle" argument, with the caveat that handling the caliber should include the ability to:

1) hit the target
2) fire reasonably rapid, accurate follow-up shots
3) deal with flash and blast in a nighttime scenario
4) comfortably carry and conceal the weapon used

For me, this means either a compact 9mm or .45, or a .357 snub loaded with .38+P. In jacket weather, a 4" .357 becomes feasible.

For some people, this will mean a .45Super or a 4" .44mag.

But for others, this will mean a .22LR revolver or auto, or maybe a high standard derringer in .22WMR. It will depend on their shooting ability, and the environment in which they will carry.

Sigma 40 Blaster
July 2, 2008, 10:01 PM
So what - I explained it - everyone go watch Oprah.

I'll be tuned in tomorrow. Maybe the MODS will add a new rule to this forum like they did General Discussion...no more "best handgun caliber/caliber war" threads?

.300H&H
July 3, 2008, 03:49 AM
Bigger is not necessarily better. There's this weird notion that somehow something 'magic' occurs when a .45 is used, but that everything smaller is somehow less lethal. I would argue that all the calibers are quite lethal, but they all require dedicated tactical efficiency...and tactics can vary.


A lot of folks seem to advocate a .357 over a .38, but firing a .357mag from a little J-Frame is a bit masochistic - and I would argue that a J-Frame is more efficient when its firing .38's...and the shooter is more likely to fire .38's from a J-Frame more efficiently. Two rapid well-placed shots from a .38 beat one big not-so-well-controlled shot from a .357mag. At close range a .38 is not exactly an anemic round.


In regard to .25's, .22's and .32's...I'll just say that someone who knows how to shoot them with confidence is not exactly naked - and at close range, well, they can kill a person quite nastily. If I've trained well to rapidly and accurately pop off 7 shots from a .22 at a bad guy who is 5ft away, I'm a few steps ahead of the person who has a .45 but who hasn't really trained to rapidly fire at anything in a close quarters situation.


It comes down to training and proficiency and two mechanical factors:1)power ie. the ability to deliver energy 2) controllability ie. less recoil and the ability to rapidly draw and fire. The snubnosed .38 is hard to beat. It draws quickly. It's concealable. It delivers a powerful but controllable round.


One can step up the power and go up in caliber, or one can step up the controllability and go down in caliber. Whichever direction one goes, there's the challenge to become proficient in the tactics to be used.


At the extreme end of controllability is the .22/.25acp ie. it's as light as a toy and has no recoil. It can be whipped out and fire 7 shots in less than 2 seconds. It's extremely concealable. At the extreme end of power there's .40S&W's and .357mags and one reasonable shot will usually be all that's needed. In the middle is the ol'.38.


One nice aspect of the SP101 in .327mag. is the .327 mag. has the power of a .357mag. - but it can also shoot .32longs and .32H&R mags. - so in theory one could plink and practice with it in .32's and .327mag and have the best of both worlds. My biggest beef with the .22's/.25's is not so much the caliber size inasmuch I believe revolvers are better than semiauto's for close quarters self-defense.


The revolver is less likely to malfunction. When one's adrenaline is rushing, the revolver is more controllable<especially to someone not as experienced>and the revolver is more easily fired from a weakened hand.
I would not pick a .22 revolver because ironically the trigger pull is likely to be heavier than the trigger pull of revolvers used on centerfire rounds. A .32/.327 or .38/.357 would be my top choice.


However, there's times when concealability is what's really needed - and a Seecamp or a little .22/.25acp is the most concealable. There's lots of choices - lots of viable options to fit one's needs.

:cool:

Glenn E. Meyer
July 3, 2008, 09:50 AM
Today on Oprah:

You get a 38
and
You get a 38
and
You get a 38
and
You get a 38
and
You get a 38
and
You get a 38

This is so boring. I've learned nothing from this thread except that we rehash the same old crap.

Why do I read it - because it's there! :D

threegun
July 3, 2008, 05:33 PM
Most threads are a rehash of some type or another. I click on them and say the same thing as the last post by Glenn..........to my self. Then I click to the next interesting thread.

Some folks don't like FOX News but instead of watching CNN they try to get Fox shut down.

I feel it is very important to inform folks of the limitations of carrying puny caliber weapons as primary. Others may not. Still others may be preaching pro puny without understanding fully the dynamics involved in an armed confrontation.

A long time ago I was one of those guys who thought my one hole groups at the range would make hitting a bad guy easy. Friends with much more knowledge than I helped me understand what happens in a gunfight physiologically and dynamically. Things they said were confirmed somewhat by statistics (particularly hit ratios) and so many shoot out videos now available.

I fully understand, as David Armstrong so often points out, that the odds of ever having to trade rounds with a bad guy is very slim. Even slimmer are the odds of someone continuing to fight after getting shot.

Still I feel advocating, as some do, the voluntary carrying of a primary gun chambered in puny calibers is not proper. It is tactically unsound IMO to chose a PCG that isn't capable of doing what professionals agree needs to be done to stop a threat or to increase your chances of survival if things get ugly.

Again this is not for folks who simply cannot carry bigger for whatever reason.

David Armstrong
July 3, 2008, 05:56 PM
Now given the odds of having to face an firearm armed adversary does caliber still mean little to you guys?
Victimization chances have no bearing on caliber effectiveness, so yes, caliber still means very little to me when it comes to DGUs. As chris in va stated, “it seems to me ANY shooting back will turn an attacker on their heels.” That is the case. Determined adversarys, willing to advance against an armed opponent, are statistically non-existent for most of us. As tshadow6 points out, if you do encounter that mythical unstoppable BG, no handgun caliber is going to stop him right away (unless you get a good CNS hit). And if you get a good CNS hit, it doesn’t matter what the caliber is. Way too many examples out there of that to ignore. The overwhelming number of situations end because the BG decides to stop, not because he is physically forced to stop.
I fully understand that most attackers will run at the sight of your gun or after a round buzzes their tower but that still leaves an awful lot of folks who will exchange gunfire while retreating or press the attack.
If they are retreating then the caliber doesn’t matter. And it isn’t an “awful lot” that will press the attack, it is “very few”.
This IMO disqualifies any of the tiny calibers from performing primary carry duty unless they are the ONLY option.
Your opinion is duly noted, but it is worth pointing out that your opinion is in conflict with known history, where the small calibers have shown themselves to be excellent performers in the self-defense arena, which is one reason they are still chosen over large guns by most people.
The same guys who tout how they would bring a rifle to a gunfight and not a handgun refuse to admit that bigger is better. Thats hypocritical thinking in my book.
Rewrite your book. What so many others have said is that the bigger does not equal better. As I’ve pointed out over and over, you don’t carry a S&W 6” .44 Magnum, although it is bigger. You don’t carry a full size Glock, although it is bigger. So perhaps the hypocrisy is yours. As for rifles and handguns, if you fail to understand the difference there in terms of tactical use, it does no good to try to continue.
This is about carrying something who's caliber is powerful enough to consistently get the job done in the real world dynamics of a gun fight.

Well then, that seems to be .22 and up, at least according to history. NO traditional handgun caliber has ever been shown to regularly fail to get the job done in the real world. Just the opposite is true, in fact, that all calibers have consistently been found effective in most DGU incidents, just as all calibers have been found to fail in few DGU incidents.
I feel it is very important to inform folks of the limitations of carrying puny caliber weapons as primary.
Just as other feel it is very important to inform folks that your so-called limitations are for the most part totally irrelevant to the real-world use of the handgun in a CCW environment.

Hawg
July 3, 2008, 06:04 PM
I've carried everything from a .25 to a .45. I'm a trucker now and I don't carry on my person much but I do keep a .45 in the truck. Our drop yard is in a bad section of New Orleans. If I go there after dark the gun is in my hand at all times. Why a .45? Chances are if I get accosted in that neighborhood they're going to be hyped up on something and I want something that will put them down but don't want my unprotected ears subjected to the blast of a .357 or .44 magnum.

threegun
July 3, 2008, 06:55 PM
If they are retreating then the caliber doesn’t matter. And it isn’t an “awful lot” that will press the attack, it is “very few”.

It does if they are shooting while retreating and your hits penetrate well at the different angles you may encounter by a moving bad guy. That is if the commonly professed notion that good hits decrease an opponents ability to hit you is true.


Your opinion is duly noted, but it is worth pointing out that your opinion is in conflict with known history, where the small calibers have shown themselves to be excellent performers in the self-defense arena, which is one reason they are still chosen over large guns by most people.


Unfortunately history isn't going to smash the bad guys bones or penetrate deeply for me when Mr Murphy sees to it that I get the long shot.

Rewrite your book. What so many others have said is that the bigger does not equal better. As I’ve pointed out over and over, you don’t carry a S&W 6” .44 Magnum, although it is bigger. You don’t carry a full size Glock, although it is bigger. So perhaps the hypocrisy is yours. As for rifles and handguns, if you fail to understand the difference there in terms of tactical use, it does no good to try to continue.


And as I have also pointed out many times I'm not for bigger is better in the traditional debate. I'm simply saying that the caliber should be big enough to consistently do what needs to be done to force compliance by a bad guy under gun fight dynamics.

I understand the rifle like this. I want it over my handgun and depending on the situation over my shotgun. One of the reasons is power and the ability to do what needs to be done to stop a threat. Just as I feel my larger handgun caliber hits will better help me survive in a shoot out than puny handgun hits, the rifle hit will further increase my odds for survival over handgun hits. Its one of the reasons you and most folks in the know will chose a rifle if a known threat was eminent.

Well then, that seems to be .22 and up, at least according to history. NO traditional handgun caliber has ever been shown to regularly fail to get the job done in the real world. Just the opposite is true, in fact, that all calibers have consistently been found effective in most DGU incidents, just as all calibers have been found to fail in few DGU incidents

The shortest list in the world would be that of folks who would chose the 22 or 25 if a shootout was eminent. You keep justifying puny and I'll keep debating against it.

Because David in the end even with all your stats indicating just how adequate the puny calibers are, even you will choose bigger if a shoot out was eminent. For me that speaks volumes.

I would chose bigger if I knew "it" was coming. I prepare for "it" by choosing to carry. Since I can't conceal a rifle and most of the upper handgun calibers are similar in power, I have decided that my caliber have at minimum, the ability to penetrate and smash bones. Something that the puny ones simply cannot reliably do.

threegun
July 3, 2008, 06:57 PM
Hawg, Your ears will be damaged by that 45 without a doubt.

Scattergun Bob
July 3, 2008, 07:16 PM
Dave, one of the ideas that I miss reading about is the idea of confidence. I "think" that is what 3 gun and others are making reference to. As a "old" trainer who is no longer "in the know" i stressed gaining confidence in whatever weapon was at hand. I strongly feel that this little used word makes a great difference on the battlefield. I understand how much of a leap of faith it is to believe that a 25ACP can end the gunfight as well as a .40 S&W. However, as you point out it is the history and it is hard to dispute.

3GUN, I am the last person in the world that will tell you to carry something other than what you choose. In the final result NO ONE will be there to extract your ASS from a bad situation even if their advise caused you harm. That said, everyone gets to decide BEFORE they leave the house what flavor of caliber they will take with them this day. I value your opinion, and you read my reply to you earlier in this melee. Good Luck and thanks for the warning.


Glenn E. Meyer glad to see your watching Oprah, from your history and posts I think it is a better past time for you than this forum! I have been in the personal defense business since 1969 and I still learn something new with each thread, with this one I learned to always log in, since you are on my ignore button and that way I don't have to read your drivel.

Good Luck & Be Safe

c4v3man
July 3, 2008, 08:12 PM
Robbery's totaled 338,100 in 2005. 42 percent were armed with a firearm.

Aggravated Assault's totaled 720,115 in 05. 21 percent used firearms.

Both of the above groups had over 60 percent of attackers armed with some type of weapon.

That means we have a 1 in 280 chance of being a victim and a 1 in 933 chance of being a victim to someone armed with a firearm.

Am I the only one who sees a problem with these statistics? It's actually 27.7% of these crimes are committed with a firearm. That changes the dynamics of this discussion quite a bit IMO.


I carry a 380 to work, and a 45 on the weekends. I'm proficient in both, however I'm not as fast drawing from my pocket carry 380 as I am from my IWB 45. I carry as much gun as I can, but I can't always carry as big as I want.

c4v3man
July 3, 2008, 08:18 PM
Let me also add that these statistics are annual, not extrapolated over a lifetime either. So while there is a 1 in 280 (not my number) chance of you becoming a victim THIS YEAR, your chances only increase through the years (or so I would imagine).

I didn't look at the report, I'm only working off the numbers given by the original poster.

Hawg
July 3, 2008, 08:49 PM
Hawg, Your ears will be damaged by that 45 without a doubt.

My ears are already damaged but the .45 won't hurt nearly as much as the .357 or .44 mag.

Deaf Smith
July 3, 2008, 08:55 PM
The only reason to carry a more powerful weapon, presuming you can conceal it and control it while shooting fast with one hand if need be, is that you will actually have to fire it and stop someone with it!

As long as you don't have to fire it, well any old gun will do. But...

While all handgun cartridges will kill, some TEND to stop the attacker better than others. It's well known from such as Ayoob that, all other things equal, then the more powerful rounds tend to stop attackers better. This is modified by such as bullet construction (not all JHPs are equal you might say.) A poorly constructed .45 bullet might not work as well as a well constructed .380 ACP!

Do any of them stop attackers 100 percent of the time? No. Even the .44 magnum has failed.

Do any of then stop attacks zero percent of the time? No. Even the .25 ACP as dropped some right there.

But, as you go up the scale in power, they do tend to be more sucessful. That's just a fact. And that is why you see LEO organizations go from 9mm or .40 S&W or .357 Sig or .45 ACP & GAP. Some prefer the 9mm, others the .40, others the .45. Each has it's assets and each it's liabilities. None are perfect, but all, if talking about actually using it (as in shooting someone with it), are more sucessful than the .25 or .22 lr!

What is more, when you carry a weapon, there is more than just the cartrige to think about (weapon platforms that is.) But that's another thread!

.300H&H
July 4, 2008, 01:19 AM
Jesse James could defend himself quite well with a single action revolver.

James Bond did quite well with his .25acp and his .380acp.

Tactics and Practice and Confidence...are most important.

If I'm carrying only a mousegun, my tactics are going to be different than when I carry a .357mag. Likewise my tactics are going to be different if I'm carrying a high capacity 9mm instead of a 5-shot .38. A person using a single-action revolver<if he/she knows how to use it well>can get off a 1st shot faster than someone using a double-action revolver or a semiauto.
Blackbeard the Pirate with a flintlock has a tactical advantage over Barney Fife with a double-action revolver.


:cool:

cyprian
July 4, 2008, 01:41 AM
That's all reet :)

threegun
July 4, 2008, 06:44 AM
300, Please list the tactics that will makeup for the 22/25's limitations in power. I'm gonna guess from your past posts that its 7 fast shots to the torso. I can see it now BG approaches begins to jerk a pistol from his waist. I respond by pulling my puny pistol. BG begins to bob and weave and cant his body while launching bullets wildly. I fire 7 fast shots which all hit his torso. Never mind the pressure. Never mind the movement (which isn't predictable).

We know movement is likely. We know hits are difficult to get under the duress of a life and death struggle (low hit ratio's in actual shoot outs). We know that 22/25's lack sufficient penetration to reliably penetrate at the different angles we are likely to encounter much less if bone is contacted.

But look at the bright side its not likely that any of you will ever find out these limitations......just ask DA. I guess that alone makes them "adequate".

threegun
July 4, 2008, 06:46 AM
How are your tactics going to be different for the 38 snubby vs the hi-cap 9mm?

Deaf Smith
July 4, 2008, 09:05 AM
Jesse James could defend himself quite well with a single action revolver.

James Bond did quite well with his .25acp and his .380acp.

Jesse's attackers ALL had SSA to. That's how.

James Bond? Bond's a BS mythology weenie actor that never was. That's how he kocks them dead.

How are your tactics going to be different for the 38 snubby vs the hi-cap 9mm?

You have more rounds to play with. You can fire three or four rounds and not worry about reloading. That's one of the real advantages of any simi-auto, not just HC 9s.

Tactics to make up for the .22 & .25s lack of power? It's kind of like the tactics need to make up for being smaller and weaker.

Yes there are cases where those with smaller weapons have prevailed. There are cases where people with larger weapons have failed. But like they say, "the race is not always to the faster nor the stronger, but that's the way to bet".

nate45
July 4, 2008, 09:38 AM
Today on Oprah:

You get a 38
and
You get a 38
and
You get a 38
and
You get a 38
and
You get a 38
and
You get a 38

Thats the solution! Lets all get .38 Special snub-noses and carry 158 grain lead round nose ammo. Then the caliber war will be over. As far as 'stopping power' goes don't worry, I saw an episode of Hawaii 5-0 once where McGarret shot down a helicopter with his! How much more power do you need.

http://www.thejacklordconnection.com/Photo%20Galleries/Jack%20Lord/BW_JL_gun_2006.jpg

Hard Ball
July 4, 2008, 09:51 AM
"Winston Churchill was his, when it got down to the bottom line, own bodyguard".

He carrie a 7.62mm Military Mauser when he went to war, He wrote that it was the best weapon in the world and that he lilled 5 men for certain with it..

Glenn E. Meyer
July 4, 2008, 10:13 AM
"the race is not always to the faster nor the stronger, but that's the way to bet".


"the jockey with no horse usually is left in the horsepoop".

That's the point, isn't it. That if you only have a lesser caliber (for whatever reason), it can be useful. Otherwise, we repeat oursleves.

Scattergun - since you ignore me - you won't see me say that you contribute little but hot air.

As far as saying the same old thing - I imagine it has some utility but it just seems like a family fight between a long married and hateful couple, rehashing the same business till they pass on.

I was dead serious that we are just saying the same arguments.

1. The most powerful, reliable gun that you can actually and practically carry/shoot is best
2. From what we know, in the very large majority of defense gun usages - caliber doesn't seem to make a difference
3. Because of #2, it would be not reasonable to carry a lesser gun as compared to NO gun.

The quoted stats that 3G used to start the thread really doesn't impact the analysis.

David Armstrong
July 4, 2008, 03:14 PM
It does if they are shooting while retreating and your hits penetrate well at the different angles you may encounter by a moving bad guy.
If the BG is running away you don't need to keep shooting at him, IMO. Hunker down and stay safe.
Unfortunately history isn't going to smash the bad guys bones or penetrate deeply for me when Mr Murphy sees to it that I get the long shot.

Sigh. Once again simple logic just goes whizzing by. Since you seem to have missed the point, history indicates that you don't need to do that stuff. As for Mr. Murphy, you have chosen to compromise what you carry, why do you think it OK for you to now criticize how others compromise in what they carry?
And as I have also pointed out many times I'm not for bigger is better in the traditional debate.
Strange. Let's see now...."The same guys who tout how they would bring a rifle to a gunfight and not a handgun refuse to admit that bigger is better. Thats hypocritical thinking in my book." Looks like you are having a hard time figuring out just what it is you believe. One post you are all for bigger is better. Next post you are not for bigger is better. Sort of hypocritical??
I'm simply saying that the caliber should be big enough to consistently do what needs to be done to force compliance by a bad guy under gun fight dynamics.
Everybody knows what you are saying. We are simply pointing out that what you say is contradicted by the reality of gunfights. You are mandating a performance parameter that is virtually irrelevant in the conventional CCW environment. Very few BG need to be forced into compliance. They do it anyway!
One of the reasons is power and the ability to do what needs to be done to stop a threat.
Those are two reasons. For me it is simple, and it is one reason--it improves my chances to get rounds on the BG. Again, caliber is fairly irrelevant.
The shortest list in the world would be that of folks who would chose the 22 or 25 if a shootout was eminent.
Well, we might disagree. As we have seen here, I think that short list would be folks who would choose any handgun if a shootout was imminent. You don't carry a CCW handgun because you think a shootout is imminent, so that entire line of thought is rather silly.
You keep justifying puny and I'll keep debating against it.
You can debate all you want, but until you can come up with some reasons to explain why we should ignore the history of success it is sort of like arguing that birds cannot fly.
Because David in the end even with all your stats indicating just how adequate the puny calibers are, even you will choose bigger if a shoot out was eminent. For me that speaks volumes.
For you to continually have to resort to a situation where few folks would pick ANY handgun at all in order to justify your selection of handgun speaks volumes also.
Something that the puny ones simply cannot reliably do.
And which they apparently do not need to do. That is your main problem on this issue.

Dave, one of the ideas that I miss reading about is the idea of confidence.
I think I addressed that in the other thread, or at least tried to do so. And I agree, confidence is important. Some people put confidence in their tools, some have confidence in themselves.
However, as you point out it is the history and it is hard to dispute.

You would think so, yet so many regularly try to argue against the lessons of history. This is only one of those areas.

We know movement is likely. We know hits are difficult to get under the duress of a life and death struggle (low hit ratio's in actual shoot outs). We know that 22/25's lack sufficient penetration to reliably penetrate at the different angles we are likely to encounter much less if bone is contacted.
And we also know that doesn't seem to matter much to the success of a DGU incident. We know you usually don't have to get a hit. We know that any hit, with any caliber, usually stops the incident. We know that sufficient penetration usually has no impact on the BG stopping. Strange that you keep ignoring all those other "we knows".

JohnKSa
July 4, 2008, 03:41 PM
If the BG is running away you don't need to keep shooting at him, IMO.Not always true. A person can retreat to cover and may do so while firing or not firing. If the BG is TRULY exiting the situation then you don't need to keep shooting. If it seems likely that he's just looking for a better vantage point from which to shoot back then that's a different story.Strange. Let's see now...."The same guys who tout how they would bring a rifle to a gunfight and not a handgun refuse to admit that bigger is better. There is no contradiction.

YES, a rifle is more powerful than a handgun. So much so that it is very likely to make a practical difference in stopping ability.

In general, particularly if one compares performance within the service pistol class, there is little practical difference in stopping ability. That's exactly why this debate rages on.And we also know that doesn't seem to matter much to the success of a DGU incident. We know you usually don't have to get a hit. We know that any hit, with any caliber, usually stops the incident. We know that sufficient penetration usually has no impact on the BG stopping.This is all exactly correct. Handgun caliber makes a difference in only a very small percentage of self-defense gun uses for the following reasons.

1. The gun is only rarely fired.
2. If the gun is fired most give up regardless of whether they're hit or not and regardless of the severity of the wound.

It's a very rare case where a defender is required to actually "break down" an attacker by physically damaging him with bullets to the point that he's completely unable to continue the attack.

Scattergun Bob
July 4, 2008, 04:59 PM
Damm, I hate it when I make the same mistake twice!

I would have thought the CORRECT insult would go something like " waisted or useless bytes" since "thank God" I don't have to be bored by your ramblings in person. I think that psychologists like yourself cornered the market in "hot air" many years ago! :rolleyes:

agtman
July 4, 2008, 05:17 PM
Wow ... came into this thread a bit late, but had to chime in after reading this:

"I saw an episode of Hawaii 5-0 once where McGarret shot down a helicopter with his [.38 Special snubnose] ***"

I saw an episode of Miami Vice 1.0 once (2nd Season, pilot episode, title "Prodigal Son," to be exact), where Det. Sonny Crockett shot down a helicopter with his Bren Ten 10mm handcannon - much more realistic, and guess what? Vltor's bringing out a modified, improved version of the Bren, to be called the Fortis, so all the 10mm-haters out there can just wring their little hands and stay tuned.

Plus, Colt will be releasing a "limited run" of Delta Elites later this year. And from certain "inner circles," there's a rumor about hush-hush experiments with a 10mm M&P ... ... interesting - especially for a cartridge that "eveybody knows is way dead," to quote an on-line critic.

Well, after 25 years and despite its detractors, the 10mm AUTO is still the most powerful service cartridge that can be stuffed inside a semi-automatic pistol of reasonable size and weight.

Finally serious about stopping power?

Good. Ignore the critics and step up to the 10mm ...

http://bren-ten.com/agtman/id10.html

http://bren-ten.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderpictures/agtman-tibbets-ud06.jpg

:cool:

Hawg
July 4, 2008, 05:30 PM
Jesse James could defend himself quite well with a single action revolver.

True but when he died he was carrying a S&W Schofield double action.
Y'all can argue what's best all day long and not accomplish anything. Carry what you're comfortable with and hope like Hell you never need to use it. I carry a 1911 .45 ACP in my truck and if I ever need it that 255 gr. Keith will put a whompin on whoever it hits.

tenusdad
July 4, 2008, 06:00 PM
If I thought I was going to a gunfight I'd run or call the cops - if I couldn't I'd pack a 12 guage shotgun, extra ammo and a pair of 1911's with 10 spare magazines - but my carry gun is just another contingency escape plan - not for an extended firefight which is very very unlikely for me - soooooo - a Kel-Tec 32 works fine for most of the real world, is a big suprise for a bad person and would at least spoil the day of anything that gets in front of it's muzzel (then I run and call the cops) - save the N frame for the bedroom drawer

.300H&H
July 5, 2008, 12:34 AM
McGarret, Cannon, Barnaby Jones, Mannix, Kojak...all carried .38's.
James Bond carried a .25acp and then switched to a .380acp.
:cool:


Yawning...


Blackbeard the pirate carried flintlocks that delivered about the same energy as a modern mildly loaded .38.


U.S. Brigadier Generals in WW2 were issued .32's.


Tom Selleck in Magnum P.I. used a .45.


I prefer a .38, but also carry at times a .25acp. Call me old-fashioned.:D

Bill DeShivs
July 5, 2008, 01:31 AM
Bond never used a .380. It was a .32-just for the record.

KD5NRH
July 5, 2008, 05:46 AM
That means we have a 1 in 280 chance of being a victim and a 1 in 933 chance of being a victim to someone armed with a firearm.

Per year.

I plan to be around for at least another 30 years, so that works out to about 1:9 of being a victim and 1:31 of facing a firearm. I'll stick with my .357.

Derius_T
July 5, 2008, 01:57 PM
Scattergun Bob,

Why don't you keep your posts relevant to the discussion please? No one wants to read through posts which have no value in regards to the topic at hand. Also, attacks of a personal nature allowed on this forum.

If you don't like what Glenn E. Meyer or anyone else has to say, great. But the rest of us really don't care. Please contribute to topic discussion, or keep your attacks to yourself.

HKFan9
July 5, 2008, 02:14 PM
My two carry firearms are both 9mm. Maybe a .45 be more effective, maybe, but I can belt well placed shots out of my 9mm's a lot quicker than any .45 I've shot. They are easy to control and I can dump the whole magazine as fast as I can and keep it well within COM. I'm not to good with a .45 so I keep my carry pieces in 9mm. I never get into caliber wars with people, if you can't control it why carry it? I can target shoot fine with a .45, but more than likely a SD shooting situation is going to be FAR from ideal, and more than likely would require 1 hand shooting, ect.

David Armstrong
July 5, 2008, 03:04 PM
Not always true.
Very few things in life are always true, particualrly when it comes to decision making in situations with multiple variables, which is why I tossed in the "IMO" qualifier. However, I will stand by my original statement: "If the BG is running away you don't need to keep shooting at him, IMO." But yes, I do agree that if he is just moving to a position of vantage to continue the fight you should keep shooting.
There is no contradiction.
We'll agreeably disagee. When someone make a declaration of fact and then claims not to have made that same declaration, there is a contradiction IMO.
YES, a rifle is more powerful than a handgun. So much so that it is very likely to make a practical difference in stopping ability.
But the value of the rifle goes far beyond the simple issue of stopping ability. Ease of control, greater accuracy, and other such factors can become the dominant factor, not the power. I'd much rather take a .30 M1 carbine into a fight than a 1911, for example. For that matter, if I knew the fight was coming, I'd probably go for a Ruger 10/22 over a 1911.
It's a very rare case where a defender is required to actually "break down" an attacker by physically damaging him with bullets to the point that he's completely unable to continue the attack.
Exactly.

Water-Man
July 5, 2008, 03:11 PM
Wow! There sure are alot of folks on this thread who have been in a gunfight before. Amazing!

.300H&H
July 5, 2008, 03:56 PM
Actually, I have interviewed quite a few folks who have survived gunfights.
One thing that always impresses me is that the gunfights are messy and have a strong element of surprise/anarchy - and placement almost always trumps power. The last interview I had was with someone ambushed by a man firing a .357. The assailant shot the victim in the leg<grazed the leg>and the victim ran back to their car , pulled out a .38 snubbie and from about 15yds. away and nailed the assailant with one shot to the chest. Lots of folks have been put out of commission with a .22. On the other hand, I'm always amazed by folks who get excited and can't hit the side of a barn - and by folks shot muti-times by every caliber imaginable but still survive.


In a sense there's no 'self-defense' - but only 'counter-offense.' The ability to rapidly recover and deliver a well-placed shot to preserve one's life - no matter what the caliber is - is what's most important. Incidentally, the fellow who made the good shot from 15yds with a .38 was charged with involuntary manslaughter.<seems they were in an ongoing chronic violent conflict>


The tactics of the mousegun that make up for its anemic power - is simply that of quickness and conealability. I can easily carry without anybody knowing I'm carrying it, and in 2secs I can draw and fire 7 shots at close range. Also the mousegun forces one to think and focus on situations with a mougun tactical frame of mind ie. the gun is for close quarters and for getting one out of a bad situation. In an ugly sense , it's a kind of counter assasination weapon rather than a gunfight weapon. It's a weapon meant to turn the tables rather than rearrange the entire dining room.


Bigger calibers are fine, but smallness,speed and controlability are good features too. I like the .38 because of its revolver platform - and while it too is best for close quarters, it extends the range a bit and delivers more power. I'm not opposed to 'power.' Power is a good thing, but it's only a part of the equation. The .32/.327 and .38/.357 calibers are perhaps ideal.

Creature
July 5, 2008, 04:06 PM
In a sense there's no 'self-defense' - but only 'counter-offense.' The ability to rapidly recover and deliver a well-placed shot to preserve one's life - no matter what the caliber is - is what's most important.

That's it in a nutshell...

CSG
July 5, 2008, 04:21 PM
I've carried a Beretta .25 950 BS, to .38 snubbies, to 9mm compacts, to compact .45's.

The main reason I carry a weapon is to escape harm. My first choice is flight and preventing the bad guy from attacking me or my family.

As a deputy sheriff, the only time I had a weapon out was off-duty to prevent an attack from a much larger individual but who was not, obviously armed. Had I shot him, I probably would have lost my badge and gone to jail (I was only about 24 then). Fortunately, he changed his mind and allowed himself to be arrested. FWIW, my thinking was I couldn't take the guy in a fight and he may have gotten my weapon and used it on me. As this was San Francisco in the 1970'w, what happened to me had I shot would have been iffy.

I generally feel well-armed with a small 9mm or my nearly 18 year old 442. Not so much with the Beretta although chances of the statistics quoted by the OP of being attacked are somewhat skewed. Those of us who live in places like Idaho have a smaller chance of a dangerous confrontation than those of you in larger more urban areas, I suspect.

threegun
July 5, 2008, 04:30 PM
If the BG is running away you don't need to keep shooting at him, IMO. Hunker down and stay safe.


I said if they are shooting while retreating, something I see frequently on robbery turned shootout video's. You hunker down and pray David, I'll try to put as many rounds on them as I can while hunkering down as long as they pose a deadly threat to me or mine.

Sigh. Once again simple logic just goes whizzing by. Since you seem to have missed the point, history indicates that you don't need to do that stuff. As for Mr. Murphy, you have chosen to compromise what you carry, why do you think it OK for you to now criticize how others compromise in what they carry?


Sigh. Ok what I was trying to say is that history/odds/statistics aren't a guarantee and that Murphy's law will see to it that I get the long shot. Hope that cleared it up for you.

As for compromise......I really don't see that much difference in the larger handgun calibers in terms of stopping power, as long as they can penetrate after striking large bones.

BTW, Carry what you want just don't say that carrying smaller is not a disadvantage.

Strange. Let's see now...."The same guys who tout how they would bring a rifle to a gunfight and not a handgun refuse to admit that bigger is better. Thats hypocritical thinking in my book." Looks like you are having a hard time figuring out just what it is you believe. One post you are all for bigger is better. Next post you are not for bigger is better. Sort of hypocritical??


I was talking about handgun caliber wars. Bigger is better if long guns and shotguns are added. With handguns you have a plateau in stopping power. None (in a concealable package) can deliver consistent stops. They force us to rely on blood loss to stop a determined attacker. Thats why once your chosen carry cartridge has the power to penetrate through likely obstacles, muscle and bones, the difference is not worth arguing.

P.S. You know darned good and well we were arguing 22/25 vs 38's &+ anyway and bigger here is better.

Everybody knows what you are saying. We are simply pointing out that what you say is contradicted by the reality of gunfights. You are mandating a performance parameter that is virtually irrelevant in the conventional CCW environment. Very few BG need to be forced into compliance. They do it anyway!


And if you meet one of those few.......you get to call a timeout........no you die.

For you to continually have to resort to a situation where few folks would pick ANY handgun at all in order to justify your selection of handgun speaks volumes also.


Of the choices you can conceal and considering how you would choose bigger (rifle) if you knew in advance something was going to happen my comparison is accurate and points out your hypocrisy.

And we also know that doesn't seem to matter much to the success of a DGU incident. We know you usually don't have to get a hit. We know that any hit, with any caliber, usually stops the incident. We know that sufficient penetration usually has no impact on the BG stopping. Strange that you keep ignoring all those other "we knows".

Usually, almost never, rare, is not never.

obxned
July 5, 2008, 09:15 PM
I'm a 45ACP guy. I love that round, and have been shooting pistols in .45 for about 1/2 the time the cartridge has been around. I've shot varmints and small game with it, often at very long range, big game once or twice, and a huge amount of paper, cans, old cars, and various other targets. I have nearly absolute faith in this cartridge.

However, my daily carry is a P3AT. I can dress the same way as I would if I was unarmed. It never interferes with my activities. Because of this I have it with me always. I practice enough to know mine is 100% reliable, and can rapidly place my shots where they are needed. Even the smallest .45 would get left at home some of the time, but not the tiny .380.

The .380 is a huge step down in power from the .45, but the .45 is a huge step down from a BAR, which is a huge step down from 16" naval guns. Everything in life requires some compromise. All you can do is analyze your lifestyle and the threats you might face, and make an intelligent choice based on that. If you ever have to use your pistol, I bet you wish it was at least the BAR.

threegun
July 5, 2008, 10:18 PM
If the handgun is a compromise to the rifle and a "step down" is it not safe to conclude that the puny caliber handguns are a compromise to the larger bored handguns and likewise a "step down"?

Carry what you wish...everyone.....just don't try to suggest, insinuate, allude, hint, imply, or smack that being armed with a 22/25 is equal to being armed with the bigger caliber handguns.

When you do this, it encourages those who don't have much experience, to carry puny without understanding its short comings.

threegun
July 5, 2008, 10:48 PM
To be frank, I had no idea how high the odds were that I be attacked by a BG armed with a gun. With a 1 in 933 chance of getting attacked by a BG armed with a GUN, hoping for compliance is just insane. After all regardless of stats you are one squeeze of a BG's finger from death.

We have highly educated gun guys on this board who push tactical training, mental conditioning, and FOF training because it increases your chances of survival.

So David?????Why bother expending the time and money training if simply showing my gun or popping off a few rounds will end most attacks? You once told me that my competitive experience was nothing compared to FOF. Now you say that it is very unlikely, very rare, almost never, that I will need anything more than just showing the carry gun or perhaps letting a couple rounds go. The hypocrisy is so thick you can cut it.

This whole justification of puny is scary.

We practice tactics, fire tons of expensive ammo, and perhaps pay expensive fees to attend top notch gun schools to prepare ourselves to fight at the best of our ability with the knowledge and skills to help us come away from a gun fight alive. We are taught what it takes to stop a BG (in the real world and not fantasy land). We are taught that putting a bad guy under duress of fire increases your chance of winning.

WHY??????????????
We are simply pointing out that what you say is contradicted by the reality of gunfights. You are mandating a performance parameter that is virtually irrelevant in the conventional CCW environment. Very few BG need to be forced into compliance. They do it anyway!


Just as you and many other knowledgeable gun guys advocate something they will very very likely never even need.

Socrates
July 6, 2008, 12:35 AM
I'm going to pull this back, since I have been assaulted, battered, and survived by three big guys, drunk and high, and, it really had nothing to do with me.

I was in Mel's bowling Alley in Alemeda. We had bowled in a league, and, they gave us free bowling after the league.

The manager was an *******, and, he was white. Prior to all this, he kicked the 3 black guys out for being drunk. They came back. They watched me kiss this *******s' ass so we could get the lanes turned on, and, thought I was his friend.
NOTHING was further from the truth. They waited until I went to the bathroom, cornered me, and tried to intimidate me. I started yelling, pushed through the 3 of them to the door. At this point, all the rules to the game changed. I had trained in martial arts for 20 years, and, the guy pulled a Walther PPKS, and hit me over the head with it. At close quarters, I would have tried to kill all three as fast as I could, eyes first, etc. the guy hit me over the head, and, I dropped down on my haunches, ready to go, if he pointed the gun at me. He didn't. No one else hit me. They left. It would have been a good day to die, and, I was ready.

If I had a gun, the guy with the PPKS would be dead first, shot in the head, at point blank range. For this purpose, a 22lr would have worked. Maybe 22 short, but, I'm not sure it would get through the frontal skill consistently.

I'm pretty sure the guys .380 would have done me in at that range. So, I guess the question is, for me, at point blank range, what caliber will consistently penetrate the thick skull of a 260-340 pound person?

Now, for a safer shot, I could have shot each guy in the chest. First getting off three aimed shot would have very hard in that situation, double taps out of the question, before the other two grabbed me.

So, at point blank range, COM shot, what would have been most likely to stop these guys, drunk and high?

I'd start with a 357 Snub, then think about the Glock 29, with 10mm full house stuff, and then 45 Super, maybe out of my Detonics, like 1200 fps with a 200 grain bullet. Given the situation, I'd probably go for 125 grain in the 357, 155 or 165, maybe even 135 grains in 10mm, and, 185 @ 1350 fps in the Detonics, or the 200's. Why? Light recoil, hope the velocity and muzzle blast at that range give radical, quick expansion, and that I can get the 3 shots off before they can.

threegun
July 6, 2008, 09:33 AM
Nope Socrates all you've gotta do is pull a gun and according to "history" they will run like a Gerbal from Richard Simmons.

Hawg
July 6, 2008, 03:19 PM
you've gotta do is pull a gun and according to "history" they will run like a Gerbal from Richard Simmons.

I'd think it would be the other way around.:D

JohnKSa
July 6, 2008, 03:39 PM
...all you've gotta do is pull a gun and according to "history" they will run...According to Lott, about 76% of the time a successful defensive gun use doesn't involve the gun being fired.

If you figure that about half the time when the gun IS fired the criminal is not hit. then 9 times out of 10 what caliber you carry has absolutely no effect.

I think that Kleck's numbers indicated that the gun was fired in only 1 case out of 50, even less than Lott's data suggests.

It's also important to remember that just because a criminal gives up after being shot, it doesn't mean that he COULDN'T continue the attack. Many give up regardless of the severity of the injury.

So, when you stack all that up, YES, the odds are heavily against caliber affecting the outcome of a defensive gun use.

How you use that information is up to you, I guess.

One interesting observation. It seems to be quite commonly accepted that it's reasonable to prepare for the "average gun fight". That is, a gunfight involving less than 4 shots in less than 10 seconds at less than 25 feet. However, when it comes to caliber, it's quite commonly accepted that it's unreasonable to prepare for the average defensive gun use--one that doesn't involve the gun even being fired. Interesting, no? ;)

Deaf Smith
July 6, 2008, 03:51 PM
Keep in mind the term, "average", is 1/2 or 50 percent. Average don't mean squat. Why do you know almost 1/2 of the population is below average?

If LEOs when by that idea, six shooter would still be the order of the day.

So I don't sit and think about averages. I know I can't prepare for every last possibility but I can sure do more than 'average'.

JohnKSa
July 6, 2008, 03:53 PM
I should have been more clear. I'm not advocating that a person prepare for the average, just commenting on the contradiction.

Glenn E. Meyer
July 6, 2008, 04:20 PM
Keep in mind the term, "average", is 1/2 or 50 percent. Average don't mean squat. Why do you know almost 1/2 of the population is below average?

------- Nope, that's the median - not the average if by that you mean the mean.

One shouldn't ignore the correct meanings of the terms or you make decisions not based on the actual distributional properties.

I've argued in other threads that one should not plan for the ill defined average but instead think of a cutoff value that gives you a reasonable risk - as you want to define it based on distributional shape.

As John reviewed from Kleck, the success rates are such in DGUs without shots fired and then in them with just a hit - that the implicit mantra that carrying a lesser caliber has a high probability of NOT being useful (what Threegun seems to imply most of the time) is incorrect.

If one wants to state that you should carry a bigger caliber that you shoot well for the instances where you do have to make a physically based stop, that's fine - I agree - but one shouldn't ignore the fact that if you want to carry a smaller caliber it is much more likely to help you than not.

It's very simple if one really does understand the idea of decision and risk.

That's why taking a psych research design/stat course or one from a similar discipline - sociology, CJ, business, economics, biostats, engineering, etc. would enable folks to have thoughts which are not so scatterbrained and full of hot air.

There are great texts on human engineering, accident prevention and risks that would lay this kind of thing out, instead of gong on and on about the risk of the Buggering Behemoth of a Biker who absorbs 32 ACPs and keeps coming - if that nightmare makes you not carry a gun at all.

For the record - I carry 32 HR Mag/38 SPL +P or 9mm based on dress issues. My 45 ACP is just too big for comfort here.

Socrates
July 6, 2008, 04:45 PM
So, at point blank range, COM shot, what would have been most likely to stop these guys, drunk and high?

I'm taking this out of the realm of statistics to an actual situation, which is what this topic is about, I think.

Any answers?

threegun
July 6, 2008, 04:50 PM
Glenn and John given the highly unlikely event of having to dispatch a determined attacker why do you guys push tactical training?

You guys seem to think that you are better served having a knowledge and skill set that statistics tell us you will likely never need. Now I push for being prepared for a determined attacker with a heavier caliber and I'm wrong according to stats.

Any yahoo with 10 minutes of practice can draw and pop off a few rounds. Stats say hits don't even matter in making a BG retreat. No need for a heavy caliber and no need for premium tactical training...........according to your own stats. To me it is hypocritical to push training only to compromise with regard to caliber.

threegun
July 6, 2008, 05:22 PM
Socrates, The biggest, deepest, hole that will cause the most blood loss possible.

And for a 260-300 pounder it better be able to penetrate deep.

JohnKSa
July 6, 2008, 05:59 PM
Glenn and John given the highly unlikely event of having to dispatch a determined attacker why do you guys push tactical training?First of all, no one's saying that caliber means NOTHING at all, only that statistics show it contributes nothing in most cases. *

Second, tactics & training is not just about shooting your attacker, it's also about learning to prevent/avoid situations. GOOD tactical training is useful in EVERY situation whether you pull your gun or not.

Third, it's not crazy to prepare for the statistical outlier, but there needs to be some balance.

People want to buy stopping power in a box. They can't. They will have to earn it at the range.

Many seem to think that the things that will make the biggest difference are gun choice and caliber choice. Not so, they don't make ANY difference in most cases. *

Try this simple research project. Go through the forums in Hogan's Alley on TFL (T&T, Gen Handguns, Revolvers, SemiAutos) and count up all the "what gun" & "what caliber" threads. Now do the same but make a total of all the "what training" & "how can I improve my shooting/how am I shooting" threads. If that's not enough of an eye-opener, I don't know what will convince you. The point isn't that caliber means nothing, the point is that the amount of attention focused on it is far out of proportion with reality.

* "in most cases" is not the same as "in all cases".

threegun
July 6, 2008, 06:44 PM
Second, tactics & training is not just about shooting your attacker, it's also about learning to prevent/avoid situations. GOOD tactical training is useful in EVERY situation whether you pull your gun or not.


The tactical training I was referring to focuses on better dealing with threats. The gunsites and thunder ranches.

First of all, no one's saying that caliber means NOTHING at all, only that statistics show it contributes nothing in most cases. *


Don't these same stats show that good tactics aren't going to be needed?

Many seem to think that the things that will make the biggest difference are gun choice and caliber choice. Not so, they don't make ANY difference in most cases. *


Neither do tactics.......which is why I raised the comparison. Still everyone "in the know" stresses the need for tactical training.............myself included.

JohnKSa
July 6, 2008, 10:56 PM
The tactical training I was referring to focuses on better dealing with threats.Ok, so let's take your somewhat restrictive definition of tactics and call it "tactics a'la threegun" or TaT for short. By TaT, we mean only what happens while the trigger is being pulled.

So I'll modify your comment here so that it's addressing only our newly defined term.Don't these same stats show that TaT aren't going to be needed?No. This is still not what I said, besides redefining tactics, you've constructed a strawman argument and used it in place of what I actually said. There IS a difference between "in most cases" and "in all cases". There is a difference between "not needed" and "not needed in most cases".

So, let's modify that one more time to change it so that it actually addresses the comments I made.Don't these same stats show that TaT aren't going to be needed in most cases?Yes. The stats show that TaT will only rarely be of use in defensive gun uses.

It's much less complicated if you will not construct strawmen and just address what I actually post... I have NEVER said here or on any other thread on TFL or any other forum that caliber selection is of no value or that it shouldn't be considered at all. I have REPEATEDLY asserted that too much attention is paid to it and that most people have an unrealistic expectation of the difference that caliber selection will make.

Finally, I note that you completely failed to address the last paragraph in my post--sort of the summation of everything I was trying to say. That's unfortunate because it clearly would have answered some of your concerns. What I said was that I don't believe tactics (not TaT--the actual definition of tactics) gets enough attention while caliber gets too much. Balance--it's all about balance.

threegun
July 7, 2008, 06:01 AM
John, I agree that tactics aren't given the weight that they deserve. I understand that caliber and advanced tactics play a small role in the over all defense of self scheme of things because they will only come into play if we face a determined attacker.

My point was only to show the hypocrisy of some here on TFL that say caliber is of little use because of statistics yet tout advanced tactics like FOF training with their next breath. One such highly regarded member even belittled me for not obtaining such training.

If the litmus test for caliber is "DGU history" "DGU stats" and not prepare for as much as possible beforehand then advanced tactics will hardly ever come into play and like caliber only against a determined attacker.

I think the main sticking point in this debate is the suggestion that smaller (22/25) isn't a disadvantage over the 38-45's. Clearly it is despite the higher odds of it never coming into play. Same goes for advanced training.

buzz_knox
July 7, 2008, 08:16 AM
People want to buy stopping power in a box. They can't. They will have to earn it at the range.

This is simply beautiful. I don't think I've ever seen this articulated so well.

Glenn E. Meyer
July 7, 2008, 12:09 PM
My point was only to show the hypocrisy of some here on TFL that say caliber is of little use because of statistics yet tout advanced tactics like FOF training with their next breath. One such highly regarded member even belittled me for not obtaining such training.


Again, a misinterpretation - I never said caliber is of little use. I have always said that given the choice of no gun vs. a smaller caliber, I find that the smaller caliber gives me much added utility in my behaviorial response set.

Second - the reason for FOF training is that it does aid you in the extremes and I've said that I make my decision based on a reasonable risk take. The majority of DGUs may be no shots fired DGUs, but some may not be. Thus, I choose to have that training.

FOF also teaches you a range of responses beyond the simple gunfight. For example, Insights SVT and the NTI train you in a continuum of responses that the square range or IDPA match never consider. Most of you don't practice being engaged by two large panhandlers at contact distance or being in a bank when a domestic dispute erupts. So you have a large caliber handgun - is that the solution?

FOF stress innoculation is far and away more than that of a match.

I might never need them but my personal style is that if I want to engage in something, I want to know about it.

I think I said in the beginning, I didn't value the thread because it was the same old thing with folks making the points they made in other posts as they are trying to win some verbal battle. It would have little real evaluation discussion. I got some insightful PMs about me being a tad harsh - sorry for that but it was frustration.

One thing about quality FOF like at the NTI, Insights, KRtraining, etc. is that you move quickly beyond the caliber wars to talk about the total package of self-defense issues. In fact, if you try to raise the issue of caliber wars as the central focus - you get shut down. The quality trainers regard that as not the main focus. Most subscribe to being able to use the gun and understand the situation. I don't think any of them, given the choice of having a minor gun or NO gun would go for the former. That's my point.

I wonder why the military and police are spending so much on FOF and simulations now? Why not just take their folks to the square range with a big gun?

threegun
July 7, 2008, 04:48 PM
FOF also teaches you a range of responses beyond the simple gunfight. For example, Insights SVT and the NTI train you in a continuum of responses that the square range or IDPA match never consider. Most of you don't practice being engaged by two large panhandlers at contact distance or being in a bank when a domestic dispute erupts. So you have a large caliber handgun - is that the solution?

The advanced training academies I have researched spend the VAST amount of time teaching us how to efficiently and effectively put rounds on target. They teach us how to deal with failures in equipment and body parts. Very little of what they teach is useful except when facing a determined attacker (one who fights back).

So you have advanced training-is that the solution?

BTW You needed to be trained in how to deal with a domestic dispute in a bank? Call the cops on your way out.....training over :D.

The mere pulling of my gun is statistically proved to be almost always enough to frighten away a foe. Again I'm comparing the two (caliber vs adv training)because both are mainly significant when facing a determined attacker. Yet one is said to be insignificant and the other very significant.

David Armstrong
July 7, 2008, 05:32 PM
You hunker down and pray David, I'll try to put as many rounds on them as I can while hunkering down as long as they pose a deadly threat to me or mine.
As will I. If they pose a deadly threat just hunkering down is not a recommended course of action, prayer or not.
Ok what I was trying to say is that history/odds/statistics aren't a guarantee and that Murphy's law will see to it that I get the long shot.
There are no guarantees in this, only probabilities. Murphy is just as likely to see to it that you don't get the long shot, or that you will miss the long shot. You wish to base your defense on Murphy, that is fine, but don't knock folks who know better.
BTW, Carry what you want just don't say that carrying smaller is not a disadvantage.
It is a disadvantage in some ways, it is an advantage in others. Fortunately the disadvantages don't seem to matter much in DGU incidents.
You know darned good and well we were arguing 22/25 vs 38's &+ anyway and bigger here is better.
You seem to be arguing that. Most of us are arguing that bigger doesn't matter for DGU incidents.
And if you meet one of those few.......you get to call a timeout........no you die. Which is exactly the same when you meet one of those outside of your particular performance parameter.
Of the choices you can conceal and considering how you would choose bigger (rifle) if you knew in advance something was going to happen my comparison is accurate and points out your hypocrisy.
No, the hypocrisy is to continue to try to use a situation where virtually NOBODY would choose a handgun to justify choosing a bigger handgun. And I would choose the rifle on other factors, not on "bigger."
Usually, almost never, rare, is not never.
Umm, so what? One chance in a googol is not never also.

So David?????Why bother expending the time and money training if simply showing my gun or popping off a few rounds will end most attacks?
Because it is a fun experience and gives you the chance to play a lot in an environment that you might not get otherwise. As a fringe benefit you learn skills and techniques that can serve you in a variety of formats, and hopefully learn something that will (A) keep you out of trouble; and (B) help if you get into trouble. Certain types of training in particular will focus avoidance, defusing situations, determining risk accurately, and so on. And as a benefit you get some insight into techniques that might, in some very rare situation, help you in a gunfight. Sort of like the Bondurant Racing School. I'll never get to run a Corvette at 175 mph out here on the streets, but it sure is fun to learn how!

threegun
July 7, 2008, 05:37 PM
Glenn,

I think I said in the beginning, I didn't value the thread because it was the same old thing with folks making the points they made in other posts as they are trying to win some verbal battle. It would have little real evaluation discussion. I got some insightful PMs about me being a tad harsh - sorry for that but it was frustration.


I have a very thick skin so no problem.

I don't think any of them, given the choice of having a minor gun or NO gun would go for the former. That's my point.


I never argued that though Glenn. I just get miffed when someone says that they are as well armed with a puny mouse as a larger calibered gun simply because stats say needing bigger is a bigger long shot.

I get more miffed when the same folks (not you BTW) then tout advanced training.

I get even more aggravated when the same folks would choose bigger if they knew in advance of pending danger.

For the record I am a proponent of training as much as possible and carrying at minimum a caliber that can penetrate after bone is struck. Folks who cannot (for whatever reason) carry bigger then any gun is better than no gun. I think we agree more than you think.

threegun
July 7, 2008, 08:52 PM
No, the hypocrisy is to continue to try to use a situation where virtually NOBODY would choose a handgun to justify choosing a bigger handgun. And I would choose the rifle on other factors, not on "bigger."


Still the same bottom line if you knew "it" was coming you would want something bigger than a 22/25. You know thats the point I'm trying to make but would rather go round and round with words than concede the point.


Because it is a fun experience and gives you the chance to play a lot in an environment that you might not get otherwise.

This reason I like.

Certain types of training in particular will focus avoidance, defusing situations, determining risk accurately, and so on. And as a benefit you get some insight into techniques that might, in some very rare situation, help you in a gunfight.

From what friends who have taken much training have told me and my own research into the itinerary of the bigger schools MOST of the training is focused on helping you survive the gunfight. You can twist it to avoid the appearance of being hypocritical but that does change things.

Do you remember suggesting that I was ignorant because I thought that I was adequately prepared for a gun fight despite not having attended any of the formal schools? You verbally scolded me like a great professor annoyed at his student. You were adamant about trainings value in surviving a gunfight. Now its " get some insight into techniques that might, in some very rare situation, help you in a gunfight." a total flip flop......you running for president?

Also you make every effort to poke, insult, or take a jab at my persistence in challenging those who voluntarily chose to carry puny. Now I have pointed out one of your peeves (formal tactical training) that doesn't seem to matter much in most DGU incidents. You gonna stop stressing the value of training? Same answer for me stressing caliber.

Deaf Smith
July 7, 2008, 09:20 PM
------- Nope, that's the median - not the average if by that you mean the mean.

Glenn,

http://education.yahoo.com/reference/dictionary/entry/average

No, I was correct. Like the 'average' distance of a gunfight is supposed to be 20 feet or so. 50 percent are inside, 50 percent are outside that distance. And the 'average' number of shots fired. Same thing. I dislike averages or mean or median or standard deviation. Average didn't mean squat to those on the Titanic.

What is more, while most encounters don't end in shootings, those that do end in shootings, this is where one needs to look at effectivness of their weapons. Sure some just miss (and a miss with a .22 is just the same miss as a .45) but when it comes to hitting and you are playing for keeps, one then gets as powerful a weapon as they can control and hit with (and conceal if it's CCW.) Think of it as an 'average' inside an 'average' inside an 'average'.

As for which one, even the cops can't decide as many a LEO organization uses 9mm, .357 Sig, .40 S&W, .45 GAP, .45 ACP, etc... Not to mention some cops still drag around .38s and .357s. And they do all kinds of testing.

David Armstrong
July 7, 2008, 11:21 PM
One interesting observation. It seems to be quite commonly accepted that it's reasonable to prepare for the "average gun fight". That is, a gunfight involving less than 4 shots in less than 10 seconds at less than 25 feet. However, when it comes to caliber, it's quite commonly accepted that it's unreasonable to prepare for the average defensive gun use--one that doesn't involve the gun even being fired. Interesting, no?
Yes, quite interesting, and further proof that many are selective about what data they consider and reject without understanding the ramifications of it.

David Armstrong
July 7, 2008, 11:35 PM
No, I was correct. Like the 'average' distance of a gunfight is supposed to be 20 feet or so. 50 percent are inside, 50 percent are outside that distance.
Not really. Let's have 10 gunfights. 9 of them occur at 5 feet, 1 is at 155 feet. The average (your definition) distance in the fights is 20 feet, but 9 (90%) are inside the average while only one (10%) is outside. That is why the median is important for, as Glenn put it, understanding "actual distributional properties".
Average didn't mean squat to those on the Titanic.
Putting aside which definition of "average", of course it did. Using probability one could easily have seen that if there was an incident being female or juvenile significantly improved the chance of living, as did your assigned rooms on the ship. The average survival rate was strongly influenced by those factors.

.300H&H
July 7, 2008, 11:39 PM
I handled 3 firearms today - a P95 Ruger, a CZ75B and a Glock 26. I kinda like the CZ and the Ruger about the same...but thhey are all fine firearms. In fact, I'd say the P95<imho>is just about the best bargain in a semiauto one can find. However, these semiautos are all not exactly the most concealable fireams and they require a tactical learning curb that <imho>that requires much more intense training and practice than does a snubnose revolver.


Even a semiauto mousegun is easier to deploy in a close quarters situation than the bigger semiauto. In a close quarters situation I don't want something that will snag or get grabbed by the bad guy. It's gotta be quick, small, and reliable in regard to rapid fire. Caliber and power are great, but they don't mean anything if they can't be concealed and be brought to use.


The average gunfight might be at a distance of 25ft., but that's a bit misleading ie. the average mugging is not 25 ft. and the close quarters situations one might encounter a thug aren't 25ft. If someone breaks into my home - yeah, they might be 25ft.away, but that's not a situation I'm necessarily reaching for a concealed weapon or mousegun.

David Armstrong
July 8, 2008, 12:00 AM
Still the same bottom line if you knew "it" was coming you would want something bigger than a 22/25. You know thats the point I'm trying to make but would rather go round and round with words than concede the point.
No, I would want something other than a handgun of any type. That is the point. I believe I made it clear earlier that in all but the rarest situations I would take a .22 rifle over any handgun if I knew in advance there was going to be fight. There is no point to concede---caliber is virtually irrelevant to the outcome of DGU incidents.
From what friends who have taken much training have told me and my own research into the itinerary of the bigger schools MOST of the training is focused on helping you survive the gunfight.
So I take it you are now commenting on what goes on at these schools without ever having taken a class. Perhaps we have identified the source of the problem here. Actually most of the "gun" part is usually focused on improving your accuracy and gunhandling skills, neither of which, again, is caliber dependent.
Do you remember suggesting that I was ignorant because I thought that I was adequately prepared for a gun fight despite not having attended any of the formal schools?
I think that, as ususal, you are not presenting an accurate summary. IIRC, I told you that shooting IPSC and IDPA and such did not prepare you for a gunfight, and that if you wanted to improve those skills you needed to take some formal training and get some FoF behind you. I don't recollect saying that doing so was necessary to survive a gunfight.
Also you make every effort to poke, insult, or take a jab at my persistence in challenging those who voluntarily chose to carry puny.
Gosh, let's not let me take all the credit. Seems there are a lot of other fairly knowledgable folks here who are also pointing out how that position does not seem to be accurate. Your persistence in ignoring reality in favor of your own imaginary world view is admirable, but it is also worth pointing out how out of touch with reality it is.
Now I have pointed out one of your peeves (formal tactical training) that doesn't seem to matter much in most DGU incidents.
As so often happens, you apparently miss the point entirely. Formal training goes far beyond shooting. I believe Glenn has already pointed that out.
You gonna stop stressing the value of training?
Well, if you do a really good search you should find more than a few places in the internet where I have said that there is little relationship between success in the typical DGU incident and training, and that in most successful shootings the CCWer has had little or no training. So I think that once again you try to make a claim about what I do that is not quite accurate.

threegun
July 8, 2008, 06:30 AM
So I take it you are now commenting on what goes on at these schools without ever having taken a class. Perhaps we have identified the source of the problem here. Actually most of the "gun" part is usually focused on improving your accuracy and gun handling skills, neither of which, again, is caliber dependent.

Yes since I have friends who have taken many of the courses. BTW I clearly said most of the time is spent.... The advanced training academies I have researched spend the VAST amount of time teaching us how to efficiently and effectively put rounds on target. They teach us how to deal with failures in equipment and body parts..........doing what you just said.

My problem? You base your carry caliber choice on statistics? You choose to buck the odds by carrying since you will probably never even need the gun. Then I'm the problem for preparing for the even longer shot............pure hypocrisy.

Jim Watson
July 8, 2008, 10:04 AM
Such sturm und drang.

I am an "enthusiast" as referred to in the Liberal press as a "gun nut." So my choice of a sidearm is not primarily based on ballistics, statistics, war stories, or distant authorities.

I carry what I am interested in at the time. There are certainly factors for what I consider adequate power, convenient carriage and the inventory at the time. There were a couple of occasions when I was darned glad to have a .22 at hand and no thought of anything "better." For a while I was willing to hump a magnum revolver or an all-steel .45 auto. Phew.

Now it shakes out to a 9mm auto or .38 Spl +P revolver, action type depending on what I have been shooting the most lately.

I do have a dinky .32 which is better than nothing and easy to have along but it leaves me feeling a little out of sorts.

But it occurs to me that the last authoritative source I saw to recommend a .22 for self defense was none other than the Gunners' Guru, Jeff Cooper. With a condition, of course: "When you can hit a tennis ball from anywhere on the court."

Oh, yeah, from some of the posts above...

James Bond (Fleming original or Connery movie versions) did not carry a .380. His PPK was a .32; but he was provided with a .38 Special for when more power was needed. Not to mention "the long barrelled .45" stashed in the agency Aston Martin.

The S&W Schofield was not a double action revolver. And best evidence is that Jesse James had a No 3 New Model .44 single action rather than the Schofield .45.

Breadslinger
July 8, 2008, 05:46 PM
This quote is from an FBI report written in 1989 regarding the optimum sidearm caliber for LEO's. I found it on another forum and was impressed enough that I wrote it down. However, I failed to write down the name of the report. IMO this statement has validity.
"Any bullet which will not penetrate through vital organs from less than optimal angles is not acceptable. Of those that will penetrate, the edge is always with the bigger bullet."

threegun
July 8, 2008, 07:19 PM
Breadslinger, It is acceptable if you don't expect to have to actually fire the gun.

Which points me toward yet another hypocritical practice. Putting bullets in a puny calibered carry gun. If your reason for making the choice to carry puny is based on the small probability of actually needing to fire the weapon it is hypocritical thinking to load that weapon. Is this incorrect.

longcoldwinter
July 8, 2008, 08:21 PM
:rolleyes:Why is it whenever the small caliber debate comes up someone always comes up with the stupid reply of "well if your going by the odds, you might as well not load it". I mean really, you should be able to come up with something better then that.

No one considers not loading your carry gun as a vaild option

JohnKSa
July 8, 2008, 08:35 PM
If your reason for making the choice to carry puny is based on the small probability of actually needing to fire the weapon it is hypocritical thinking to load that weapon.Your arguments all seem to be based on taking actual facts and then isolating them and carrying them to such extremes (in the total absence of other contributing factors) that they become ridiculous. That doesn't prove anything other than, perhaps, your creative ability.

Caliber has a CHANCE to make a difference in perhaps 1 in 10 self-defense gun uses. That's what the stats say. They don't say it makes NO difference, they say that most of the time no one gets shot and therefore in those cases where no one is shot caliber can't possibly make a difference.

Those stats clearly are not a rationale for leaving your gun unloaded because SOME of the time (maybe in 1 out of 10 cases) you actually DO have to shoot. They don't tell you that caliber is meaningless because logic tells us that in at least some of the cases that make up the 10% of the time when the gun is fired caliber CAN have an effect.

Ok, the next step is obviously trying to determine what happens in actual shootings.

I've quoted this document repeatedly, but here it is again. In the FBI's document on handgun wounding and effectiveness the author speculates that in actual shootings, caliber might make a difference in 1% of shootings. He's talking about comparing service calibers, as you move significantly above or below that power level the significance of caliber selection obviously increases.

Again we find that while caliber CAN make a difference, it makes FAR less difference than the general public believes. The author makes the point that even a large bullet from a powerful handgun will destroy far less than 1% of the tissue in a human body--just a few ounces. Clearly the REAL issue is not whether 0.05% is destroyed vs 0.045% but rather WHICH 0.05% is destroyed.

The point isn't that caliber makes NO difference, the point is twofold. Caliber means nothing about 90% of the time. In the remaining 10% of the time it sometimes makes a small difference but not nearly as much difference as shot placement makes.

The moral isn't that you should ignore caliber altogether, it's not that you should leave your gun unloaded, it's that you should place the PROPER emphasis on caliber and the proper emphasis on shooting skills. The bottom line is that all the "caliber" in the world won't do anything if you can't make hits, but if you CAN make good hits then nearly any caliber will do the trick.

Once a shooter is making good hits in good time then he might want to consider trying to get the little bit of edge that a larger caliber might provide some of the time--as long as it doesn't hurt him significantly in the areas that matter more.

Stumper
July 8, 2008, 08:51 PM
John, You are dangerously reasonable and logical.:D

JohnKSa
July 8, 2008, 09:22 PM
You are dangerously reasonable and logical.It's a blessing...and a curse. :D

Socrates
July 8, 2008, 09:44 PM
John, you aren't that good.:rolleyes:

Caliber CAN make a difference, even if the gun isn't used. In a carry gun, a stainless bore, and a 45 caliber hole generally make a greater impression then my 22 short Beretta would.

Same theory as looking down the barrel of a shotgun...

I certainly would not want to find out if Lee Jurras' .500 Howdah was as effective on humans as it was on game....

I would think a view of this barrel, from the business end, might well deter even the highest of punks...


http://i45.invalid-sanitized.localhost/albums/f99/Socrates28/Model%2083%20FA%20475/DSC_0060FA83Barrelshotbulletsverycl.jpg

Deaf Smith
July 8, 2008, 09:45 PM
Not really. Let's have 10 gunfights. 9 of them occur at 5 feet, 1 is at 155 feet. The average (your definition) distance in the fights is 20 feet, but 9 (90%) are inside the average while only one (10%) is outside. That is why the median is important for, as Glenn put it, understanding "actual distributional properties".

These figures were the FBIs, so I dunno. I suspect there were a heck of a lot more than 10 gunfights david.

Which points me toward yet another hypocritical practice. Putting bullets in a puny calibered carry gun. If your reason for making the choice to carry puny is based on the small probability of actually needing to fire the weapon it is hypocritical thinking to load that weapon. Is this incorrect.

Something like what Jeff Cooper said about .25 autos and weither to keep them loaded or not. In fact, why not just use a plastic gun if most usages of guns never fire a round. Like I said, the rounds ability to stop some one is usefull if you really have to fight for your life. If one's not interested in that, sure carry a .22 or .25. Heck, carry a twinkie if twisted stats like those above are what you go for.

JohnKSa
July 8, 2008, 09:58 PM
Caliber CAN make a difference, even if the gun isn't used. In a carry gun, a stainless bore, and a 45 caliber hole generally make a greater impression then my 22 short Beretta would.I suppose it's possible. Then again, don't most shootings happen in low light? I would think that if the goal is to be visually imposing the argument would be stronger for a large GUN than for a large CALIBER gun. Someone might reasonably mistake a subcompact .45 or 10mm for a mouse gun in low light while the gun below would be quite forbidding, even if one were to observe the muzzle clearly.

http://www.kaehny.de/luftdruckwaffen/weihrauch_luftdruck/hw45ni_vollbild.JPG
http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=20796&d=1161473165

It's a .177 pellet gun with a recessed muzzle. :D

It would be interesting to see what a survey would say, but it seems the two most common responses to having a gun produced and pointed. One of them is that any gun being pointed at at a person seems to have a very large muzzle to the pointee. The second is instant flight by the pointee without any time taken to analyze the size/finish/caliber of the gun.John, you aren't that good.Back to reality--but I enjoyed the dream for 22 minutes... :D

Socrates
July 8, 2008, 10:19 PM
Advantages of the big bore snub is that when the trigger is pulled, grenade effect: the flash leave the guy blinded, and deaf, and, it appears a much bigger caliber then it is.

Nyeti
"on 357 close range
Wanna know why 125 gr. JHP .357 mag works so well on people? Noise and Flash. Several years ago I was talking about this load with some of the foremost experts in ballistic testing (and they don't write articles in gun rags). These are folks who use real labs, and have excellent access to L/E shootings. Their initial findings were that 125 JHP .357 mag is an "above average" performing round in gelatim testing, but nothing like its reputation. They began looking at L/E street shootings with the round and found an interesting set of similar circumstances existed during shootings with dramatic success. The shootings took place at night, at less than 6 FEET, with barrels 4" or less...................anybody want to raise their hand who wants to be in front of that. 125 gr. .357 mag's will throw a 15 yard ball of flame down range. Can you imagine what its like at 6 feet or less. The conclusion was that the blast and noise was a significant factor in making this round very succesful in shooting people at very close range.

I carried a Ruger SP101 for many years as a counter carjacking gun and a back up. My load of choice was the 180 gr. Winchester Black Talons which I understand is normally a Javelina hunting load. Many of the 145-158 gr. JHP's are excellent as well. All of them tend to be blasty out of the snubs.

During many disussions with true experts, the agreement was that typical human beings do not react well to having a grenade going off in their face. At these close ranges, that big blast going off will generally cause most folks to hit the ground out of normal reaction (similar to what we see when deploying flash bang grenades during SWAT operations), then realizing they have been shot as well helps in performance. Keep in mind that phyisically a human can remain in a fight for a minimum of 4-5 seconds (a lifetime in a gunfight) with any of the major arteries totally destroyed (aorta, brachial, femoral, etc..). This is why psychological reaction is important. Animals haven't watched enough TV to know that they are supposed to fall over and die when they get shot. The only way to be assured of a BG going down like a sack of potatoes is with a Central Nervous System shot. CNS shots need good penetration to make that happen, which is why I dislike the "gimmick" ammo so much.

I agree that the "sound and fury" of the full-load .357 may very well enhance its stopping effect on bad guys; the defender, who is already acquainted with the effect, is left unfazed. (The gun itself partially shades the shooter from the worst of it.) As for penetration, I have seen a shooting incident in which the Federal 125-grain JHP from a 4" GP100 went through the sternum, heart, one lung, exited the armpit, producing a plume of blood, avulsed tissue, and fragments of bullet jacket material which landed on the pavement, while the main part of the bullet entered the arm and lodged there. Was it a one-shot stop? Well, there was no rag-doll-drop-on-the-spot-like-a-sack-of-potatoes, but ALL the fight was gone from the perp, who dramatically changed direction from the line of attack, and staggered away for a bit. Good enough for me to still carry that same load in my 4" sixguns and much of the time in my snubbies. With the slightly lower velocity from the snubby, expansion will be less, which usually means deeper penetration."

David Armstrong
July 8, 2008, 11:18 PM
Yes since I have friends who have taken many of the courses.
So, again, you are discussing something that you have no personal or direct knowledge concerning the topic.
.........doing what you just said.
Except that I went on to point out that is totally irrelevant to selection of caliber and DGU success.
My problem? You base your carry caliber choice on statistics?
Nope. Once again, deal with what is said instead of what you wish someone had said. Statistics are only one part of the equation for me, and I think for most. Like Jim Watson said, I carry what interests me at the time and/or meets my needs at the time. But for typical CCW purposes I don't concern myself with caliber at all.
Then I'm the problem for preparing for the even longer shot............pure hypocrisy.
No, the hypocrisy is that you keep saying that others compromise is wrong and your compromise is right. There is the problem. You ignore all facts that fail to support your particular view and take isolated examples and claim they justify your view. That is hypocrisy. Nobody has said that you are wrong in your choice and you should not carry what you carry. You seem to be the one accusing others.

This quote is from an FBI report written in 1989 regarding the optimum sidearm caliber for LEO's.
Fortunately the role of the CCW and the role of the LEO are quite different, thus what might be optimum for LE may not be optimum for CCW.
Which points me toward yet another hypocritical practice.
I think you must have learned a new word. I would suggest that you learn how to correctly use the word if you are going to continue to use it in conversation. Many of the things you keep claiming as hypocritical have nothing to do with hypocrisy. This little rant of yours is a good example of that.

Why is it whenever the small caliber debate comes up someone always comes up with the stupid reply of "well if your going by the odds, you might as well not load it". I mean really, you should be able to come up with something better then that.
They should, but they can't, which indicates just how shallow their argument is when you get right down to it. When one has to resort to using completely implausible concepts or trying to restrict choice to obviously invalid responses it is usually pretty good evidence that they cannot make their point with facts and logic.

These figures were the FBIs, so I dunno. I suspect there were a heck of a lot more than 10 gunfights david.
Irrelevant. The issue was/is the proper understanding and use of the term "average" in the context of the discussion.
Something like what Jeff Cooper said about .25 autos and weither to keep them loaded or not.
Would that be the same Jeff Cooper who said, "What about the 22 for self-defense? We do not recommend it, but we certainly do not disregard it. In the first place, most defensive situations are solved by the presence of a gun, rather than by shooting. Nobody wants to get shot with anything, and a goblin confronted with a 22 is just as much affected as if he were looking into a larger muzzle." Or perhaps it was the same Jeff Cooper who said, "A good grade of pocket 22, fitted with a good trigger, has much to recommend it for house defense...." Or maybe it was the Jeff Cooper that said, "At risk of sounding loony, I maintain that the 22 long rifle is a considerably more practical cartridge than the 38 Special, or for that matter almost any other handgun cartridge."
Heck, carry a twinkie if twisted stats like those above are what you go for.
Sigh. The stats aren't twisted, but your ability to understand them certainly seems to be.

pax
July 9, 2008, 09:22 AM
Seems to me that 7 pages of the same endless caliber war, closed the day before this thread began, was plenty enough to last for awhile. Five pages of this and it's beginning to deteriorate.

Let's give this subject a rest for awhile, guys.

Thanks.

pax