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View Poll Results: Go ahead...Pick your favorite caliber...
9mm 61 32.62%
40 31 16.58%
45 95 50.80%
Voters: 187. You may not vote on this poll

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Old July 15, 2001, 04:38 PM   #1
vyper005
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Whats your favorite caliber between...9mm...40..and 45 ??

Let me set things straight...I like and shoot all 3 calibers...With todays bullet technology...The stopping power and expansion rates are real close between all 3...If I had to put them in some kind of order,my preference would be...The 9mm 1st followed by the 45 then the 40...It seems I'm most accurate with the 9mm,probably because of the soft recoil,followed by the 45...Cost is another reason the 9mm is at the top for me...Sometimes you hear stories about the 9mm not doing the job...not enough power etc...But then again...It's all about shot placement...In regards to the 45...If you cant hit where you're aiming,it's still gonna cause alot of damage...It seems the 45 theory about,"Bigger bullet...Bigger hole" holds rather true...I guess it all boils down to what you feel most comfortable with...If we do our part...All 3 calibers should serve us well
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Old July 15, 2001, 05:32 PM   #2
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I wish the 357 sig was on your list its better than all the rest.
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Old July 15, 2001, 06:01 PM   #3
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355Sigfan...

Somehow I knew you were going to say that...
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Old July 15, 2001, 09:12 PM   #4
proximo
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I recently took John Farnam's Defensive Pistol class where we shot heavy metal spinners (two 9" square metal plates on either end of a vertical bar that spun around a horizontal axis) I shot a Kimber .45 and a number of other folks shot 9mm. The effect of a 230gr FMJ .45 on the plate compared to hits with a 9mm was impressive and convinced me that the .45 hits a lot harder than a 9mm. The difference was less pronounced comparing .40S&W to .45, but the .45 still obviously hit harder. One stat given in the class was that something like 5% of all shooting nationwide are fatal (don't remember the exact percentage but that's in the ballpark). The Chicago Housing Authority police found that when using Federal Hydrashock .230gr .45 ACP loads, their percentage of fatal shootings went to 30%. I'll be sticking with .45 ACP from now on.
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Old July 16, 2001, 01:23 AM   #5
1031
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357 SIG for compact guns, and 10mm for sull sized guns.
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Old July 16, 2001, 01:48 AM   #6
Bob Locke
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.45 ACP for me as well.

Shot a nice IDPA match in NC at the Blackwater facility last summer. Some of the stages involved cherry poppers and spring-loaded steel targets. I watched MANY of my friends make solid hits with their 9mm's (mostly Glock 17's and 34's) and the targets didn't drop. I think most of them were shooting 115-gr. FMJ. I was shooting 230-gr. FMJ through my Glock 21, and every time I made at hit the target dropped.

That being said, my carry gun is a G19!

Go figure.
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Old July 16, 2001, 02:04 AM   #7
Richard
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1) 45acp, 2) 9mm, and 3) 40 S&W. No surprises here. I like big bores but shoot more 9mm than 45acp. Why? I own more 9mms and they are cheaper to shoot. I have yet to become awe struck with the 40 S&W. It is a good defensive caliber and probably is at its best with lighter bullets. What do you have then? a 9mm on steroids. Regards, Richard
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Old July 16, 2001, 02:22 AM   #8
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The .40 and the .45 are tops for me.

I live in Kali, where the politicians have virtually eliminated crime with their feel-good-do-nothing-gun-laws. Because of them and their sheeple, only criminals can carry, and nothing over 10 rounds can be purchased (unless you're a criminal). Because of this, I've stayed away from smaller guns and the 9mm (also, I just don't shoot it as well as the other two). I'ts full-size high-caliber defensive guns for me.

I'm convinced that recoil is subjective. I shoot the .40 (SIG P226)and the .45 (Ruger P97) equally well, and neither are difficult to control for me.
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Old July 16, 2001, 02:28 AM   #9
Richard
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TCW, I find the recoil of a 40 S&W 180gr bullets to be heavier than the recoil of a 45acp with 200gr SWC on top of 6gr of Win 231. I base this on recently shooting my CZ40 and one of my 1911A1s on the same afternoon. Regards, Richard
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Old July 16, 2001, 07:06 AM   #10
STEVE M
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With all of the 40 bashing that goes on, on this forum I thought it would rank a lot lower.
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Old July 16, 2001, 11:05 AM   #11
DocSWAT
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45

The .45 Caliber is THE MOST proven of all the calibers mentioned. 9mm is good for practicing--less expensive, but for self-defense you will not beat the 45.

Larger Bullet & Greater Energy Transfer = Better Knock Down!

As far as control, most handle a 45 just fine and practice for qualifying with 2 & 3 shot taps from the 3,7,15 yard lines. Our PD, Sheriffs, & Marshalls in Columbus, GA ALL use 45---S&W, but still a 45. (I do not like S&W semi--sorry just me I have seen toooooo many malfunctions--H&K, 1911s, Sigs I think are the way to go...and these in no particular order,,though I think I am going to be partial to my Ed Brown Classic Custom when it arrives)

One NEW Police style (if you call it that--let me how many years allot of us have used this...uhmmm) is to put your weak hand on TOP of strong hand wrist while firing. Actually with the study just written up last month in an LEO magazine officers have improved their scores by 13-28%. As most of you already know this is not a new grip hold--it was just discontinued by many that had their weak hands eaten up by a slide...but on the glocks the testing was done with this was a non issue.......

With practice I believe most could to do the same! My wife can handle a 45 well, she qualified with my USP45c with a score of 89...and no she is not an LEO, but she has learned to shoot for obvious reasons. I taught her on a 45 because that is the standard issue carry here where I live, these are the people we hang around..... and thus the weapon she might be most likely called upon to use--plus I own 4-45s---fixing to be 6 of them---YEAH!

45 Hammer of Thor!

Sorry for the length of the post, I'm just committed to this round!
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Old July 16, 2001, 11:16 AM   #12
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Love the .45

I just gotta buy in bulk or learn to reload! 9mm is my second HG cal, because it's so cheap and my BHP is such a great gun (except with that mag safety, that is)
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Old July 16, 2001, 11:34 AM   #13
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.45 ACP, without doubt . . .

Lots of good information here -- with more to follow, no doubt -- supporting the .45 ACP.

I will add one strictly non-scientific and non-analytic observation: Just this weekend, I took my two favorite carry handguns (a full-size Springfield 1911A1 TRP and a Ruger, four-inch barrel GP-100) to our indoor range for extensive firing sessions. The targets were nine-inch paper plates. It is amazing how much larger the ~11mm hole (from the .45 ACP) appears when compared to the ~9mm perforation from a .38 Special or a .357 magnum.

That increment is the basis for a greater wound cavity, which is clearly an important wound/incapacity parameter.
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Old July 16, 2001, 11:49 AM   #14
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40S&W, 45ACP, 9x19mm, in that order.
 
Old July 16, 2001, 11:52 AM   #15
Jack Carson
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.45acp for serious .22 lr for fun

If cost and light recoil play into it I'll choose the .22 l.r. and my Ruger Bull Barrel Target Model. Almost as accurate as a rifle and hours of fun.

For the serious stuff such as CCW, dispatching feral dogs, and competition I go with the .45acp. It's accurate in my Kimbers and Custom Colts and I don't have to wonder if the critter, plate, BG is going to react to a good hit.

Just my 2 cents. Jack
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Old July 16, 2001, 12:56 PM   #16
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proximo

Shooting steel plates has nothing nada to do with stopping power. Yes the 45 has more momentium than the 40 sw and 357 sig so what. Energy and stretch cavity is what stops not steel knocking over ability. Also the actual stat for lethal handgun shootings is 25% and 75% for rifles. ALso who cares if the guy dies or not I want him to stop. If he dies thats another issue. The 45 is a good round but its no better than a 40 or 357 sig and its only a little better than a good 9mm load. The 45 will not stop them cold in their tracks all the time. In fact like most handgun rounds its very lackluster at stopping a determined attacker. I know of one good cop who died after putting 4 rounds of 45 into a rifle armed sucidal subject who wanted to take some cops with him. Don't bs me about the Hammer of thor its more like a trim hammer.
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Old July 16, 2001, 03:17 PM   #17
1031
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Sometimes I fear for people that put so much faith in the .45.
What are they going to do when they face a determined attacker and put 5 rounds of .45 into him and he keeps coming? In their vision of the .45 they see the guy falling quickly to their mighty .45 and they will be very shocked when that does not happen. There are plenty of accounts of bad guys soaking up many rounds of .45 just like other calibers, and plenty stories of dogs and such that reacted no differently to being shot by a .45 than a 9mm or any other.
At least people that carry a 9mm realize that it is not the hammer of Thor and they may need many shots and good placement (and time for the BG to bleed) to win.
I wonder about .45 lovers though, who seem to be delusional enough about the .45 to think that because it knocks over a steel plate it is going to knock down a person.

Study up all you can about all the calibers and their history of effectiveness, and what makes them effective, and you soon find out that they all work about the same.


It is better to go into combat realizing that it may take several good shots, and time for bleeding out, for the BG to drop, than to go in overconfident with a .45 and think that you are going to hit the BG once with your mighty hammer of Thor and he is going to fall over.
Plan for the worst, hope for the best, and realize that a BG can just as easily soak up 7 rounds of .45 and keep coming as he can soak up 7 rounds of 9mm and keep coming.

I am realistic enough to know that no matter what caliber I carry, bad guys travel in packs, I am not a perfect shot, and sometimes they take several bullets each to drop. If nothing else, do the math and carry adequate ammo, whatever caliber you carry.


Sidenote: modern stats for average number of shots a person fires in a defensive shooting is between 9 and 13. The old saying that "the average number of shots fired is 2 or 3 so I have plenty of ammo in my gun" is wrong! That average is only that low if you consider suicides which are one shot per incident.
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Old July 16, 2001, 03:57 PM   #18
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No Walther .45's

Im partial to the .45ACP myself. Unfortunately, Walther has yet to release their .45ACP Big Bore 1911 style pistol so most of my hardware is 9mm.

I do have a USP Tactical and a Kimber Classic Custom Target though.

That keeps my appetite for .45ACP satisfied...for now.
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Old July 16, 2001, 04:28 PM   #19
proximo
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Hmmm, sigfan, you sure do throw some colorful language around, but you're the one calling the .45 the Hammer of Thor. I just said it was more effective against steel plates proving the momentum advantage which coupled with a proper bullet design (Hydra-shock) [/i]and[/i] a particularly large diameter bullet to start with is going to result in significant wound channels and bleed out over lesser bullet designs and calibers. Street evidence shows that the Hydra-shock, particularly in the .45ACP 230gr JHP, is a very effective defensive round. Of course, you could have the Hammer of Thor and if you can't hit the perp in a vital area with it it isn't likely to do you much good. I'm working on that part.

Whatever caliber you use, I hope you're comfortable with it. I'm comfortable with my choice.
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Old July 16, 2001, 04:43 PM   #20
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.45ACP, 40 cal, 9MM in your ranking.

Actual carry order of preference:
1) .45ACP Kimber or Paraordnance
2) 9MM H&K P7
3) .357 Sig in Sig P229
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Old July 16, 2001, 06:08 PM   #21
DocSWAT
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Effectiveness of the 45

1031 to answer some of your questions:

If you are not going to put faith in the handgun you carry--don't carry it.

I carry a 45 because I train with it, it has served me well in the past in real life situations and I have never had to use more than 2 rounds to end a fight. I will fire until the perp is down, but always BEGIN with a double tap! LEOs are not trained to wound except in a couple of special situations which I will not discuss at this point. Remember a wounded man is still a life threat in most cases.

The stats you quoted were not from ALL TRAINED pofessionals using ONLY pistols, but include rifle shoot-outs, and others on the street when a gang sweeps an area with a MG. They also include individuals firing Saturday night specials .................and missing their intargets several times. If your going to take stats of trained professionals, which I am assuming most on this list are--whether or not they are LEOs or not (actually I have seen several civilians out shoot LEOs--of course Ft Benning is right down the street and the #10 ranked man in the world in IPC happens to be stationed there now......) than use them correctly. Look at the stats for LEO shoot outs and see how many shots were fired by LEOs in total and the # you quoted goes down drastically--and remember in that number you still have the unusual scenes like the Miami FBI shootout, the LA shootout and so on. In actuality, most normal pistol shootouts end with not more than 5 round TOTAL (from both sides) being fired. Even a current gun magazine--sorry I can not remember the name --now says the the 9-13 figure is way off because of what it includes.

If you study ballsitics and the shootings of the past the 45 is seen as a great round and I do put my faith in it when I do MY PART. Training and shot placment are GREAT KEYS and add to it the most proven and potent round, (just in case of your error in shooting). See we don't live in a perfect world and when it all goes wrong and you wound a guy, I would rather wound him with a 45 than a 9mm--because of the general overall impact it does.

Go to an autopsy of a shooting victim and discuss with the coroner...or whoever...the effects of what the individual was shot with...you may become surprized.

Here is some Reading Material:

http://www.sightm1911.com/Care/45acp.htm
http://www.firearmstactical.com/wound.htm


In jest I will say:

If I put 5 rounds of 45 in a person and he is still coming at me I'm am going to empty my other 5 into him...if he is still coming..I will reload and put 10 more in him..if he is still coming I will take out my shotgun and unload that in him and then I will turn off the Hollywood picture called Rambo and get back to reality.
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Old July 16, 2001, 07:40 PM   #22
355sigfan
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If I put 5 rounds of 45 in a person and he is still coming at me I'm am going to empty my other 5 into him...if he is still coming..I will reload and put 10 more in him..if he is still coming I will take out my shotgun and unload that in him and then I will turn off the Hollywood picture called Rambo and get back to reality.

IF the first 2 don't work I am aiming for the head. IF the first 5 did not work the next 5 probably will not.
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Old July 16, 2001, 08:15 PM   #23
RWK
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Come on 1031 . . .

Nothing in life is certain, however, I strongly suspect -- even with my level of proficiency -- that any goblin I hit with five rounds of .45 ACP 230 grain HydraShok is going to be immediately incapacitated (or, more likely, quickly dead).

Analytically, I would estimate that the probability of surviving five .45 ACP rounds -- even if all are not delivered to the center-of-mass -- approximates zero.
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Old July 16, 2001, 08:19 PM   #24
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Vote for 10mm as write-in candidate.

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Old July 16, 2001, 08:45 PM   #25
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9x32

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