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Old March 9, 2012, 10:16 PM   #26
Old Grump
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Sheesh, enough with the knock down power posts already, I think he has the idea by now. Get the gun you shoot best and is reliable, that is the one you will have the most confidence in. About a quarter of the local city cops around here have switched to the 45 from their issue 40 cal and I don't think any of them are worried a bit by the reduced capacity. One carries a 9, he is a city boys and a bit smaller than average so they find it easier to handle. I don't want any of them shooting at me for I am an old, soft, large, slow moving target and bleed easily.
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Old March 9, 2012, 10:20 PM   #27
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............and human skin hasn't gotten any thicker in the subsequent 150 years.
Perhaps not, but on average we certainly HAVE gotten fatter. Sorry I couldn't resist.

Pick which ever one you can shoot the most effectively. 9mm, .40s&w, 45acp....they can all make equally good or poor choices depending on how effectively they are used. I like shooting .40s&w handguns, a lot of people don't; only you can decide what is the best choice for your situation.
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Old March 9, 2012, 10:49 PM   #28
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I roll with the .45 because .40S&W is for noobs.
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Old March 9, 2012, 10:52 PM   #29
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.40 has been proven to be the best all around. Theres a reason the fbi and most police use it. The .40 is atleast equall to the .45 in power. It has better penetration and more ammo capacity. The very small advantage the .45 has in size it loses in wound channel because of the increase in hydrostatic shock and penetration of the .40. In reality it doesnt matter if either one is loaded with a good hp. In my opinion the .40 out performs the .45 in almost every way. I would pick the 9mm over either one and practice alot and focus on shot placement.
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Old March 9, 2012, 11:21 PM   #30
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Most people who live an otherwise decent life, are going to panic to one degree or another when confronted with a life or death situation. Fine motor skills that got you bull's eyes at the target range are gone. Now, you are going to hope that you even hit your target, let alone get a three shot group the size of someone's heart.

If all you're probably going to get is a hit in the bad guy's arm, or a glancing rib shot - wouldn't you want the biggest hole there as possible?

Go with a .45!
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Old March 9, 2012, 11:33 PM   #31
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I agree with sham to an extent, average accuracy rate for shootings with even LE is what under 11% IIRC? In a time is life situation or high stress situation, life or death whatever you want to call it, you fall back on training. Sure accuracy at the range is good, there is no disputing that but casually shooting at the range and training under stress are two entirely different things. Ever CCW case i read about constantly reverts to falling back on training and most with the exception of one lately don't shoot that accurately, which is human nature, that much stress and adrenaline is hard to overcome to shoot accurate shots unless you've done it before or constantly train for it so training takes over even then it's not guaranteed as everyone is different. People can talk 40 beating out a .45 on paper energy wise etc. and i'm not saying it doesn't but the 45 has been effectively killing for almost 100 years now, and i for one like that extra diameter in wound channel, given the fact i don't trust myself to shoot accurately in the situation. I still like a .40 a lot but i'm a big 45 fan. After my 1911 M&P 40 is next on my list.

The latest case i read guy took out two thugs using a failure drill IIRC 2 shots to COM 1 in the head, and he executed to perfection with his 1911. Humans are also extraordinary when it comes to things like death. In the victims write he stated the HPs to the COM both of which were hit twice didn't put them down which caused him to use a final shot to the noggin.

This is JMO on the matter.
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Old March 9, 2012, 11:35 PM   #32
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In that case go with a 50 gi since the bigger hole is always better. Maby people should hunt deer with a .45 instead of a .30-06. The .45 is a bigger bullet so that means it works better than the little .30-06. The larger the caliber the more damage it causes i guess
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Old March 9, 2012, 11:38 PM   #33
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Who's statement are you referring to? After it's all said and done shot placement in any situation is going to be key.
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Old March 9, 2012, 11:43 PM   #34
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Hy blackops that must be why the cops use the 9mm and .40. If there accuracy is so poor then they needed the extra ammo capacity. So you say 11 percent that means if there using a 1911 45 then they will probally run out of ammo before they hit anything. From what your saying then more ammo is a big advantage.
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Old March 9, 2012, 11:46 PM   #35
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Firstly i said IIRC, as i wasn't sure can't remember where i heard that. And yes to an extent LE likes the 9mm and 40 S&W for the capacity it has over the 45. Though 13 in a Glock 21 wouldn't be bad IMO. What are you getting at here? In no way did i say that a bigger bullet is better i said i prefer a bigger bullet and if i remembered correctly that most accuracy ratings in firefights were under 11% with a question market hinting to the fact i wasn't sure.

For my personal self though i like 45 are we on the same page now?
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Old March 9, 2012, 11:51 PM   #36
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Blackops i wasnt directing the bigger is better part at you that was for the guys that keep saying the .45 is bigger. 45 fans just irritate me. they act like its better than everything else when it really aint. Like you said accuracy is more important.
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Old March 9, 2012, 11:53 PM   #37
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Oh sorry then i was mistaking your statement for sarcasm, my mistake.
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Old March 10, 2012, 12:00 AM   #38
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Its ok man i like the .45 too. I like all calibers and guns. I dont think it matters much between the 9mm 40 or 45. They will all work i have and like all 3. Alot of .45 fans just dont give other calibers the respect they deserve. They all have pros and cons.
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Old March 10, 2012, 12:11 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by Emuricah
So I've been debating on which caliber is best to use for self defense as my conceal carry.... I can't imagine I would need a higher capacity magazine. Also I am looking at either a Glock 21 gen 4 or Glock 23
Some contradictions in the OP - both of those Glocks are hi-cap double stacks and neither would be much fun to conceal daily.

I figure a ccw is a self defense weapon, 6+1, plus a spare is hopefully enough.

I'm a big fan of .40, but I see it as a better option to 9mm, not better than 45.

I've found one pistol that I think does it all really well... the Glock 27
Its not perfect at anything - its not a tiny ccw and its not 13+1 of 45ACP either - but 9+1 of .40 is a bunch of firepower in a small concealable very shootable package, making it suitable for almost any type of defensive use.

For a .45 for carry you might really like the Glock 36 plus a spare mag on the opposite hip.

For general use and home defense you might like the Glock 30.

Last edited by Dashunde; March 10, 2012 at 09:54 AM.
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Old March 10, 2012, 12:18 AM   #40
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Band of Brothers swear by the .45!!!

Whichever one you shoot best!!!

The .45 has a long track record of success ... so why reinvent the wheel! If you ask the "Band of Brothers" as I did:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UR8dZypYBq4

Donald Burgett, swears by the 1911 .45 ... not some theories by folks who read or watch or Watch TV ... This man, shot Germans face to face in the deep snow of Bastogne!

Listen to Donald, or someone who has never shot real people with a real .45 in life and death to the max situations!!!
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Old March 10, 2012, 12:53 AM   #41
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Donald Burgett, swears by the 1911 .45 ... not some theories by folks who read or watch or Watch TV ... This man, shot Germans face to face in the deep snow of Bastogne!

Listen to Donald, or someone who has never shot real people with a real .45 in life and death to the max situations!!!
They didn't exactly have a lot of options back then for service pistols...Don't get my wrong, I love a 1911, but that comment is a bit of a stretch.
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Old March 10, 2012, 01:04 AM   #42
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Use what you shoot the best, functions the best, and you have the most confidence in.
+1!!!

I have most confidence in .45 which is why I carry it. My father? 9mm. Neither would make anyone staring down the barrel laugh. If your shots don't go where you need them to then it doesn't matter if its a .22 or a .500 magnum..

Carry whatever you shoot best and practice practice practice
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Old March 10, 2012, 02:06 AM   #43
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If you can't go for a hit, go for suppression. Shot placement is only one of the ways to win a fight.
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Old March 10, 2012, 02:06 AM   #44
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From a pure power perspective a Glock 20 +650ft/lb or higher 10mm ammo (I like Underwood Ammo) is considerably better than 9mm, .40, or .45.
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Old March 10, 2012, 09:29 AM   #45
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Shot placement is only one of the ways to win a fight
In a firefight on Iwo Jima, Yes, but on the streets of the USA with a thug before you, NO!!!
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Old March 10, 2012, 09:37 AM   #46
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I feel is crucial but usually a .40 will have a higher ammo capacity. I am leaning more towards a .45 because in the event I ever I had to use it (god forbid) I can't imagine I would need a higher capacity magazine.
If you have been to Africa you probably noticed that Pro Hunters do use high capacity rifles unless forced to by finances! They love Double Rifle with only two shoots, quick, reliable, and simplistic! Dangerous game up and close and personal ... and man is the most dangerous game ... does not give you the time to shoot much. You must shoot accurately the first time every time or die, before your adversary kills you with his weapon of choice: gun, fangs, tusks, etc.

High capacity is a worry of poor shooters.

If you are a cop or military, it is a different story as you GO TO the fights, not AWAY from the fights as civilians should do!@
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Old March 10, 2012, 09:41 AM   #47
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A bunch of factors outweigh power...

... those factors have something in common - they affect the ability to score fast, reliable hits.

If you are not a reloader, .40 will cost less than .45, and 9mm will cost less than either, so it's financially easier to practice more with a 9mm than with a .40, and with a .40 than with a .45. More practice = more hits.

Even if you are a reloader, small primers, lighter bullets, and less powder = lower cost for the 9mm, with the .40 more expensive, and the .45 even more expensive. Tolerances are tighter on the .40, though, due to pressure levels.

Practice makes a big difference as far as getting good hits goes; practice also helps one determine the real world reliability of one's choice of weapons and ammunition (with regard to reliable cycling and feeding).

For some people, the snappier recoil of .40, or the pushier recoil of the .45, will make those rounds slower to shoot than the 9mm (longer recovery time between shots). If raw power were king, more people would use the .44 magnum, or .460 or .500 S&W for defensive pistols. Those rounds are very expensive, and their recoils are high and punishing, so shooters probably won't practice much with them; even with practice, follow-up shots are not normally fast. (Though I have seen a couple shooters who can unload a S&W 29 pretty quickly and accurately.)

While I like .45s, and several of my carry guns are .45s, I don't shoot them as quickly as I can shoot my 9mm pistols. I haven't done a time comparison with .40s, but from watching friends who shoot all three calibers in competition, given similar platforms, 9mm allows faster recovery than does .40, and .40 allows faster recovery than does .45.

If I had to carry a single shot pistol, I'd probably go with a .45.

If I want a compact, easily concealed pistol that I can still shoot quickly and accurately, then it is going to be a 9mm.

I own a .40, and like it well enough, but it's almost never my carry weapon.
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Old March 10, 2012, 09:53 AM   #48
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A lot of good responses here along with the requisite few crazy ones, LOL.

I've seen the .40 used in LE since its inception and I have attended or reviewed more than a few after-action reports and postmortems involving its use. It is not Thor's Hammer, but it is enough. I'll use it with confidence as long as my issued ammo is 165 grains or heavier and constructed for lots of penetration.

My personal handguns are a .45 ACP and .45 Colt, if that tells you anything. I do have a .38 snub that I can hit pretty well with and my plan for that one is 2-3 on the centerline followed by one more on the bridge of the nose, if they don't produce results as needed.

Don't get too hung up on what the police or FBI use. Keep in mind that for ages, they both used .38 RLN. Even that works OK if placed properly and there's a lesson in that.

Copshops are just as prone to fad-driven selections as anyone else. In the case of the .40 S&W, it just happened to work out pretty good. There was, however, no 'need' for it. The Feds tend to make a selection based on their own agenda and then 'test' until that selection is justified.
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Old March 10, 2012, 11:38 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by MLeake
the snappier recoil of .40, or the pushier recoil of the .45, will make those rounds slower to shoot than the 9mm (longer recovery time between shots)
I agree it's definitely something to think about when considering defense in a time is life situation. Thats the way i felt about the .40 snappy, where as the 45 while having more muzzle flip was more comfortable to shoot. That being said i can nowhere near empty a mag with my glock 21 as accurately and as fast as i can with my S&W 9mm. Just kind of have to balance both i guess and as always comes down to personal preference.
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Old March 10, 2012, 11:43 AM   #50
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I have never understood why people think the best strategy in a self defense situation is to empty your magazine as quickly as possible, making recovery time the God of all factors. I seem to remember reading that the average self defense shooting involves firing 2-3 shots. My split times with a 45 versus a 9 aren't seconds apart. That said, shoot what YOU feel comfortable with.

Also, I love that this is viewed as an old west shootout, where you need to be able to outdraw and then places as many rounds on target as quickly as possible, as if you and your assailant are standing 7 yards apart and are kind enough to only draw at the same time. That is very, very rare. To me the keys are 1. staying level headed enough to make your shots count 2. hopefully react in a preemptive manner so as to avoid a shootout. This isn't the OK Corral folks.
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