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Old July 21, 2005, 04:37 PM   #1
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Stopping power variables

Here is a true incident concerning a State Trooper armed with a .357 magnum vs. a bad guy with a .22 magnum. The trooper was over 6 ft tall, athletic while the bad guy was under 6 ft and extremely fat. the trooper hit 5 out of six in the chest, all stopped by the bad guy's body fat. the trooper took ONE .22 magnum in the armpit, it nicked a vein, and a hero died. Now, what's all the discussion about 9mm vs. .40,vs. .45 etc.? There are too many variables involved to claim one caliber is superior to another. I just wanted to get this out in the open.
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Old July 21, 2005, 07:56 PM   #2
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Here's an applicable quote by Jeff Cooper taken from the August 2005 Issue of Guns & Ammo Magazine.

"Stopping-power debate continues ... there are no such things as black-and-white conclusions to this matter. The effect of bullet impact on living tissue must be discussed as a matter of tendency rather than absolute. is pointless to say that we saw such-and-such happen once and therefore that is what happens when those circumstances are repeated. There is a tendency to predict stopping-power effect, but we must remember it is never certain. A correspondent recently asked me if a .44 Magnum ought to have greater stopping effect on a human target than a .30-30 hunting cartridge. I responded that any comparison would be quite useless. Both rounds should be quite adequate if properly placed, whereas neither would work if improperly placed."
Did you know that there is a TEXAS State Rifle Association?
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Old July 21, 2005, 08:06 PM   #3
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I used to put some confidence in the "stopping power" concept, . . . but an incident which occurred a couple of decades ago turned me toward shot placement as number 1 criteria, . . . followed by additional shots placed as needed.

It happened in Marion, Ohio, . . . at one of the watering holes. Two guys got into a rucus, . . . went outside, . . . whipped out shooting irons and commenced to shoot each other.

One had a .22 revolver, the other a .357 revolver: both took several hits to vital areas. The guy hit with the .357 died on the scene, . . . the guy hit by the .22 died several hours later at the local hospital.

So much for "stopping power" as far as I can figure.

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Old July 21, 2005, 09:47 PM   #4
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Stopping power can be altered by the victims state . That is adrenalin, alchohol, drugs,mental and physical all can play a part if the effect of a bullet.In addition bullet variables of velocity, weight,diameter , construction [hollow point etc]. And a big difference in exact bullet placement. This is why you can't accurately predict it. However a 45 will do more damage than a 22 !!!
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Old July 21, 2005, 11:25 PM   #5
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However a 45 will do more damage than a 22 !!!
Nope, it won't. It MIGHT. It's very easy to empty a 45 and do no damage at all to your target. The amount of damage done depends on if and where it hits the target.

And, even if it hits the target, without proper placement, the amount of damage done is irrelevant. A big hole through an attacker's weak arm might not reduce his effectiveness a whit whilst a little tiny hole though his forehead will probably stop him immediately.

As Mr. Cooper says, you can discuss TENDENCIES of certain calibers to produce stopping effects, but nothing is certain.
Did you know that there is a TEXAS State Rifle Association?
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Old July 22, 2005, 03:27 AM   #6
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Many variables are in effect. Number one is shot placement. Practice often.
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Old July 22, 2005, 03:30 AM   #7
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just goes to show..

how important good aim is....

I am sure that the BG did not aim for the guys arm pit, but you get the point,
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Old July 22, 2005, 05:15 AM   #8
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A couple ideas. The first post here is a varialble itself. Sure you have strange cases like this but generally 5 357's to the chest will stop anyone as long as you can do just that. Sounds like the officer could shoot and did everything well. Its too bad he had a revolver though. I wonder if he froze because they had no effect, or was reloading without cover when he was shot. Its a good lesson to us all though. Stay in the fight, Carry spare ammo, Practice reloading
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Old July 22, 2005, 06:40 AM   #9
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The lesson to be learned here is to avoid gunfights, although the unforunate officer certainly couldn't have in this case.

You can have superior weapons, great training and all the courage in the world, and still lose a gunfight on bad luck alone. You can get all the bad guys, and one little "bank-shot off the dumpster" can kill you just as dead as a direct hit from a scud missile.

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Old July 22, 2005, 06:54 AM   #10
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If you avoid the gunfight altogether then you have the most effective stopping power available.

I hope i never need to draw my weapon and i will do all i can to avoid doing so.
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Old July 22, 2005, 09:33 AM   #11
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Most stopping power pistol of all...

There IS a pistol that outclasses every other pistol, even the 45, with undeniable stopping power:
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Old July 24, 2005, 01:15 PM   #12
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That's a pretty cool little revolver. The 45-70 cylinder is huge. I wonder wha the recoil is like shooting 45-70 and .410 shot through a small gun like that.
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