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Old March 23, 2010, 02:41 PM   #1
wilkup
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.45 ACP +P vs. 10mm

Before this thread begins I want to be clear that I don't want this to turn into a ******* match. I know people get all upset when threads like this get started and someone usually gets offended and am NOT interested.

I was recently stalked by a cougar while on a hike with my girlfriend for the last mile or so to the car. I irresponsibly was hiking towards dusk and realize that's the first and best way to avoid getting placed into such a bad circumstance, but in the event I do accidentally find myself in a similar situation I'm hoping to be better prepared next time.

After spending the better part of an hour at the local gunshop and picking the brains of 2 highly respected dealers, I thought I'd come on here and hear what you all have to say before making any decisions or purchases. I'm interested in the .45 ACP +P and the 10mm. I have included the two rounds I would most likely be packing with me in the woods.

Here's the rounds, from Buffalo Bore:
.45 ACP +P Ammo - 255 gr. Hard Cast FN (925 fps/M.E. 484 ft. lbs.)
Heavy 10mm Ammo - 220 gr. Hard Cast - FN (1,200 fps/ME 703 ft. lbs.)

My pistol choices are the Glock 29 or 30 for these rounds since I already shoot well with Glocks and don't want to learn a new platform.

I will also be using whichever gun I end up choosing for my CCW as well, but obviously will be carrying a different round for SD as opposed to the woods gun.

Now I want to know what the pros and cons to each of these calibers are. I want to feel safe in the woods and right now I'm leaning heavily towards the 255 gr. 45 round! Please help me pick the right caliber for the job. I live in the northwest (Seattle area) so the ability to take down a black bear would be a nice feature as well...

Thanks ahead of time for your help.
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Old March 23, 2010, 02:53 PM   #2
Doc Intrepid
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1. You want a "woods gun" capable of taking cougar and black bear;
2. It must be a Glock pistol; and
3. You are wondering which round would be most effective against critters?

While energy isn't everything, against critters it is still the way to bet.

The formula for kinetic energy is 1/2 mass times velocity squared...

Your own ballistics numbers point the way -- the 10mm muzzle energy value is nearly half again as much as the muzzle energy value for the 45 ACP.

Given that you MUST carry a Glock pistol, chambered ONLY for one of those two rounds, IMHO the 10mm is likely going to be more consistently effective against wild critters...especially wild critters that may try to harm you. (Not that that is terribly likely to occur...)

If you reload, it will allow you to come up with effective 10mm rounds for range and CCW as well...

Just my opinion, for what its worth.

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Old March 23, 2010, 03:00 PM   #3
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Full power 10mm. Critters are much tougher than humans.
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Old March 23, 2010, 03:00 PM   #4
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Quote:
I live in the northwest (Seattle area) so the ability to take down a black bear would be a nice feature as well...
That right there tills me 10mm. Can you shot 40 cal in the G29?
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Old March 23, 2010, 03:31 PM   #5
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Ok so here's the part where ppl start answering questions u didn't ask. With glock, u can buy the 45 and it will later take a 10mm bbl. Research this before buying.

Happy glocking.
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Old March 23, 2010, 04:11 PM   #6
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For 4-legged critters, full-power 10mm. Still, against a cougar or black bear, I think 10mm is weak. If' you're talking handguns, I'd probably be looking at .44 magnum at a minimum. I'm sure others have different opinions than mine - just my 2 cents.
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Old March 23, 2010, 04:22 PM   #7
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The 10mm will be more effective but will also be less controllable from a recoil standpoint.
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Old March 23, 2010, 04:34 PM   #8
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Whichever you choose don't get lured into a false sense of security. You'll have to draw awful fast and shoot awful straight to save your life. Practice Practice Practice.
Chances are you'll never see the cat anyway til its too late
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Old March 23, 2010, 06:06 PM   #9
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No one's mentioned it but I will. The 3.8" barrels of the G29 & G30 may not deliver the quoted velocities. You probably better consider that in your thinking.

Also, I've shot G29s, carried G30s and currently own a G21, a G20 and a G20T. The recoil of the 10mm as experienced in the Glock is nothing like some would portray it to be. My personal opinion is that 230g +P 45 ACP rounds have more felt recoil than full power 200g 10mms (I've shot both the Double Tap and the Buffalo Bore). YMMV!

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Old March 23, 2010, 06:49 PM   #10
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Mountain lions are not that hard to dissuade. They are not near as tough as a black bear. I would feel adequately armed with 10mm, .45acp (no need for +P), or the .40 I currently carry. When wounded, they retreat like crazy. They don't come after their pursuers.
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Old March 23, 2010, 07:09 PM   #11
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when I get into reloading I'm planning on getting a glock 20
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Old March 23, 2010, 08:29 PM   #12
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Since you didn't ask, wilkup, I'll tell you: I don't venture into the woods without a .44 magnum. I'd choose a 10 millimeter over the .45 ACP, but a .44 magnum over either of those.

Yes, each gun includes a learning curve, and yes, the average .44 magnum revolver probably is both heavier and bulkier than a Glock; as well as I've ever been able to discern, however, more gun is less worry.
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Old March 23, 2010, 09:02 PM   #13
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I would choose the Glock M29. You can get a 40 S&W barrel for it
and have a dual caliber gun. You can also get 357 Sig and 9x25, also.
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Old March 23, 2010, 09:03 PM   #14
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The 10mm has more terminal energy.

There is a thread in the hunting forum about an Oregon man that killed a black bear with a .45acp. The round will do the job, it just depends on how you feel about it.

I'm surprised you ran into a cougar in Seattle. But then again I ran into a 3x3 blacktail in a park right next to Boeing's Everett plant so I guess not real surprising.
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Old March 23, 2010, 09:38 PM   #15
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Either cartridge would be adequate for cougars. Mountain lions really aren't all that large or tough so I'd imagine that any cartridge suitable for self-defense against two-legged predators would work equally well for cougars (the four-legged kind). The 10mm will have a slight advantage with black bears due to its increased penetration when loaded with heavy bullets (more velocity and better cross-sectional density).

Another though to consider is ammunition availability, .45 ammo is simply much more common and less expensive than 10mm ammo is. Of course if you're handloading, that's not really an issue.

Neither cartridge will have prohibitive recoil. Personally, I find full-power 10mm (Double Tap 180grn XTP from a S&W 1076) to have less felt recoil than a .45 ACP (Federal 230grn HST +P from a S&W 1911 with 5" barrel). Be aware that you should probably re-think your ammo choices for a Glock as both of the loadings you mentioned use cast bullets, a big no-no for polygonal barrels. I'd suggest you look at some of the loadings from Double Tap with jacketed bullets, specifically their .45 ACP 230grn Controlled Expansion and 10mm 180grn Controlled Expansion as these would work nicely for double duty against both two and four-legged predators.

http://www.doubletapammo.com/php/cat...roducts_id=277

http://www.doubletapammo.com/php/cat...roducts_id=122
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Old March 23, 2010, 09:44 PM   #16
wilkup
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Buzzcook:

Quote:
I'm surprised you ran into a cougar in Seattle. But then again I ran into a 3x3 blacktail in a park right next to Boeing's Everett plant so I guess not real surprising.
I didn't get into details as to where I was, but it definitely wasn't in Seattle. Since you're from the area I assume you'll have a better idea of where I was if I tell you I was up near Snoqualmie Pass (off exit 45) hiking Bandera Mountain.
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Old March 23, 2010, 10:07 PM   #17
wilkup
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Is "hard cast" the same as saying lead? What's the difference in hard cast vs. FMJ when they're each Flat Nose and the same grain size? What would be the advantages/disadvantages of each for what I'm interested in?
As far as the .45 ACP +P is concerned from BuffaloBore here's what they say about their rounds:
"... the two non-expanding loads [230gr. FMJ-FLAT NOSE & 255gr. HARD CAST-FLAT NOSE] are designed to shoot through large shoulder bones or the skull on a black bear. These non-expanding bullets also work well if you need to shoot through cover like car doors or stick frame walls."

Part of me wants the .45 ACP simply because finding ammo is going to be easier and cheaper, whether I load or go to the store and purchase the stuff. The other part is saying that it's my life I'm trying to protect and that I should be willing to spend a little extra to ensure my well-being. It sounds like the recoil on these two is pretty similar and at the store today I was told that if I can handle an XD subcompact .40, then I should be able to shoot the Glock 29 no problem - so that is not an issue.

Quote:
Dr_2_B
Ok so here's the part where ppl start answering questions u didn't ask. With glock, u can buy the 45 and it will later take a 10mm bbl. Research this before buying.
Tell me more about this option... or where I could find this information at? I'm interested even though I really only am interested in 1 caliber. The option to run either through the same gun is DEFINITELY appealing!

Last edited by wilkup; March 23, 2010 at 10:12 PM.
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Old March 23, 2010, 10:20 PM   #18
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Ill take the 10mm.
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Old March 23, 2010, 10:31 PM   #19
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Quote:
Is "hard cast" the same as saying lead? What's the difference in hard cast vs. FMJ when they're each Flat Nose and the same grain size? What would be the advantages/disadvantages of each for what I'm interested in?
As far as the .45 ACP +P is concerned from BuffaloBore here's what they say about their rounds:
"... the two non-expanding loads [230gr. FMJ-FLAT NOSE & 255gr. HARD CAST-FLAT NOSE] are designed to shoot through large shoulder bones or the skull on a black bear. These non-expanding bullets also work well if you need to shoot through cover like car doors or stick frame walls."
Yes, hard cast bullets are lead. "Hard Cast" means that other substances such as antimony have been added to the lead alloy in order to make it harder and thusly reduce barrel fouling at higher velocities and decrease bullet deformation thereby increasing penetration. While the bullets are not made of pure lead, they are a homogenous alloy. FMJ is an abbreviation for "full metal jacket" and means that the bullet's lead core is covered with a jacket made of a harder metal such as copper, brass, nickel, zinc, or mild steel (copper is the most common). Jacketed bullets are not homogenous, rather the lead core and jacket are separate pieces that are bonded together. The issue with shooting cast bullets in a Glock is that the polygonal rifling used in these handguns will accumulate lead deposits very quickly. While this will also happen in a standard cut-rifled barrel, it happens so quickly in a polygonal-rifled barrel that in can cause dangerously increased pressures very rapidly. If you want to shoot cast bullets in a Glock, you should install an aftermarket barrel such as those available from Lone Wolf with standard cut-rifling.
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Old March 23, 2010, 10:32 PM   #20
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A 9mm will take down a cat with out a problem just use a good bullet 124-147 gr. , no light personal defense stuff . But the 10mm would be much cooler ! As for a bear defanatly 10mm over 45acp.
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Old March 23, 2010, 11:30 PM   #21
wilkup
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So the 10mm appears to be the winner as far as everyone is concerned...
If I were going to do my own HOT reloads for the woods, are there any companies you'd recommend I pick up my bullets from? I want them to be as heavy as possible, but Flat Nose rather than rounded. I'd also be interested in some FMJs for practice... probably of the 180 gr variety =)
Anyone have any ideas on where I could pick these rounds up at? Also... when it comes down to numbers, how much do you estimate it will cost me per round if I reload my own?
Thank you so much for the advice so far and if anyone feels that the .45 will be a better option, please speak up still, it's just that most have said the 10mm is going to be better and as of right now that's what I'm going to run with.
The BIGGEST downside to this round being picked is that it's tough to find - so I've heard, but when it is found it's REALLY expensive compared to most other ammo. At least it will get the job done right though =)
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Old March 23, 2010, 11:55 PM   #22
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Reloading for the 10mm isn't particularly hard or expensive. The only components that are cartridge-specific are the cases as 10mm uses .400-diameter bullets, large pistol primers, and relatively common powders. Flat-nosed bullets should be quite easy to find as they're quite popular for the .40 S&W cartridge (180grn is also standard weight for both cartridges) and 200grn bullets probably won't be hard to get either should you want to use them.

As far as factory ammo goes, it is more expensive and you probably won't find it at Wal-Mart (though one local Wal-Mart does occasionally have a box or two of Winchester Silvertips in stock), but the situation isn't as bad as many make it out to be. Most decent gun shops in my area will have either Remington or CCI Blazer FMJ's in stock and either Federal Hydra-Shok or Winchester Silvertip JHP's. Typically, 10mm FMJ's will cost $25-30 for 50 rounds making it comparable to .357 Magnum ammo, and better prices can be found by going mail-order (Georgia Arms remanufactured seems to be about the cheapest).

http://georgia-arms.com/10mm-1.aspx

Be advised, however, that most commercial 10mm ammo is loaded very mild (about like a warm .40 S&W). Winchester Silvertips are the only big-name commercial loads that are noticeably more powerful, and even they aren't really up to what the cartridge is capable of. If you really want to realize the 10mm's full potential, you're going to have to get ammo from either Double Tap or Buffalo Bore or load it yourself.
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Old March 24, 2010, 12:11 AM   #23
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No one's mentioned it but I will. The 3.8" barrels of the G29 & G30 may not deliver the quoted velocities. You probably better consider that in your thinking.
Go to Double Tap's website and Mike lists velocities from Glock 29s also.

Up at my place, I use a Glock 29 with DT's 200 gr XTP and find it my perfect load. We have black bear at most. We are also supposed to have cougar, lynx, and bobcat, though nobody has ever seen the former.
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Old March 24, 2010, 09:37 AM   #24
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wilkup...google handgun recoil table to see the difference between 10mm & .45 acp
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Old March 24, 2010, 01:11 PM   #25
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Wilkup look on the glock forums & read about aftermarket barrels & interchangability & such. There's a lot of interchangeability in glocks: magazines, barrels, etc
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