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Old March 6, 2018, 11:40 PM   #3
Senior Member
Join Date: January 7, 2008
Location: Colorado
Posts: 1,757
.357 would be a great choice. But I might go for a 9mm instead.

For plinking, carry, and home defense, 9mm is ideal.

For hunting, (I'm not sure about legality) I bet there are some really hot 9mm loads, utilizing good bullets, that would be capable of taking down a good percentage of North American game animals out to 100 yards, if you absolutely had to that is. And in a "survival" situation, you could probably kill just about anything with a 9mm, as long as you had a hot load, long enough barrel to reach max velocity, good shot placement, and possibly the option to take repeated shots, if the game hadn't gotten away from you by then... or you hadn't already been trampled/gored/mauled/attacked.

One of the most important reasons I would choose 9mm aside from it being "generally & adequately" effective, affordable and easily available, is that there are so many firearms chambered in 9mm...
I could collect a seemingly endless number of handguns. Revolvers, 1911s, polymer guns, aluminum guns, steel guns, small guns, big guns, double action, single action... on and on and on. Also, these days there are a large variety of rifles chambered in 9mm even in bolt action rifles if I recall correctly? So I feel like I could enjoy many different types of firearms even while being limited to just one caliber. There are probably a lot less options for rifles (and even handguns) chambered in .357, or other less popular auto cartridges like 40 s&w or 45 acp... and then as soon as you start talking rifle or shotgun cartridges, your handgun options are reduced dramatically.

When it comes down to the number and different types of available firearms, cartridge effectiveness & capability, affordability, availability, capacity, shootability, reliability, and general enjoyment, If i had to choose one cartridge to do it all, 9mm would get my vote!

Although it does have its limitations. So I'm curious what other might say.

P.S. Now I need to go and check... Is there a 9mm bolt action rifle? How about a lever action?

Edit: Did a bit of searching and there are indeed bolt action 9mm rifles. I couldn't find a lever gun though. But there are obviously lots of semi autos... All the different types of sub guns as well as modern commercial rifles, and even ARs and AKs chambered in 9mm!

Last edited by mellow_c; March 7, 2018 at 04:30 AM.
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