practical .380 use?


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redraider1109
May 20, 2010, 03:03 AM
Hey guys, looking at a Bersa Thunder .380 for CHL. It seems like it is a great gun from a ton of different reviews. Although the .380 does seem to get relegated to a backup gun because of its lack of punch, a while back I came across a youtube video with some company talking about a new version of .380 which gave amazing penetration through ballistics gel. I could have sworn it was hornady TAP, but I have not been able to find it since.

So basically I am looking for anyone, either police or otherwise, that have ever found themselves using a .380. Is it a viable round? Or is this more like a "make noise and run" type weapon?

Thanks for all the help and experience!

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snooperman
May 20, 2010, 10:34 AM
However, with the right kind of new ammo on the market today , it would be fine as a back-up gun. I would prefer at least a 38 special loaded with +P loads or a 9mm for primary carry gun. The 380 does not have enough cross-sectional density in the bullets to give enough energy in my opinion. You have a higher probability of stopping an attacker with the 38 special +P or a 9mm .The best ammo for the 380 can not match the best or hottest loads one can get for the 38 special or 9mm. Yes, there are so many nice 380's being made for conceal carry and it is a good thing that more people are carrying something, even if it is a 380.

gofastman
May 20, 2010, 12:22 PM
You're probably thinking of Hornady Critical Defense.
The .380 is certainly a man stopper, however its what I personally consider the bare minimum.
I think flat nose FMJ or hardcast bullets are better suited to the .380, but thats just my opinion.

CoRoMo
May 20, 2010, 12:32 PM
Stops Texas coyotes on contact.

David E
May 20, 2010, 02:18 PM
The problem with a Bersa .380 is that it's big and heavy for not enough power.

For the same size and weight, if not LESS, you can get a 9mm, 40 or even .45

So why wouldn't you?

kludge
May 20, 2010, 03:15 PM
I have a Bersa .380 Thunder. It is quite accurate and recoil is quite a bit lower than similar sized (Kel-Tec, Kahr) 9mm pistols.

It is much easier to rapid fire than the Kel-Tec P11. (FWIW I sold the P11 and got a SP101)

I have not had any feeding or reliability issues with mine with any of the ammo I've tried so far.

For .380 find the fastest 90-100gr stuff that runs in your gun regardless of whether it HP or not. I tend toward Gold Dot for mine. I've not tried the FTX.

It's not my carry gun, or even my backup. But for some of the people that take NRA Basic Pistol, it's the berries.

rcmodel
May 20, 2010, 06:24 PM
The only big problem with .380's right now is the unavailability of .380 ammo.
It is out of stock everywhere.

You can find 9mm cheaper all over the place.
The current .380 ACP ammo shortage that has lasted two years now and is just now beginning to get better.

Still, 9mm is cheaper, and available at Wal-Mart even..

rc

David E
May 20, 2010, 07:08 PM
I have a Bersa .380 Thunder. It is quite accurate and recoil is quite a bit lower than similar sized (Kel-Tec, Kahr) 9mm pistols.

And herein lies the real purpose of a larger .380: if it's all you can control, then it's a good caliber choice.....but I bet most folks could control a more potent caliber with proper training.

harmon rabb
May 20, 2010, 07:24 PM
The only big problem with .380's right now is the unavailability of .380 ammo.
It is out of stock everywhere.

no. it's not. just walmart is out.

try www.classicarms.us right now. they have all the brass cased .380 you could want. so do jgsales and aimsurplus, iirc.

harmon rabb
May 20, 2010, 07:25 PM
The problem with a Bersa .380 is that it's big and heavy for not enough power.

For the same size and weight, if not LESS, you can get a 9mm, 40 or even .45

So why wouldn't you?

kel-tec pf-9 is smaller and lighter than a bersa thunder, and then you can fire 9mm+p instead of .380.

the bersa, however, is one SWEET firing gun. i love mine.

The Lone Haranguer
May 20, 2010, 07:44 PM
I think the cartridge really shines nowadays in little pocket autos like the LCP, SIG P238, Kahr P380, etc. With compact, subcompact and even some pocket-sized pistols (think Kahr PM9) in 9mm Luger, I see little use for the .380 in this size gun when you can have more power in the same package.

Marlin 45 carbine
May 20, 2010, 07:54 PM
I shot a new Bersa .380 an off-duty cop was trying out for his off-duty carry. favorably impressed me. the .380 is plenty enough at practical s-d range. past about 50-60' I'd prefer something stouter though.

MedWheeler
May 20, 2010, 11:07 PM
Ditto on what Harmon Rabb said. I also have both. The Bersa is definitely the nicer gun to spend time at the range with. The Kel-Tec is the nicer gun to have on my hip or in my pocket, but it's downright rude on the hand after any extended time firing it.
I carry both, sometimes one, sometimes the other. The Bersa is loaded with 95-grain UMC FNEB loads most of the time, though I do have plenty of 88-grain JHPs from the same maker here, too. The extra barrel length of the Bersa and its better sight radius add to that more comfortable shooting grip to make the gun potentially more lethal as a defensive weapon than the same shooter being armed with one of the more popular "keychain" 380 pistols available, though more difficult to actually have on ones person than they are.
If .380ACP ammo was the same price as, and as available as, .22LR, the Bersa would be my favorite pistol to shoot (and I do have a .22LR Ruger.)

mongo4567
May 20, 2010, 11:27 PM
I carry a Keltec P3AT all the time. It is a great pocket gun for quick trips. I would feel more comfortable with something bigger, but I trust my life to it and it is better than throwing rocks. If I want something bigger, I carry a Kahr PM40...it is about the same size and weight as the Bersa with a lot more energy.

The Lone Haranguer
May 20, 2010, 11:39 PM
I did have a large .380 at one time, a Beretta 86. But I bought it as more of a "collector" or "fun" gun because of its unusual design, I liked it and had the money. I still went to my Glock 19 for a defensive sidearm; it is a 16-shot 9mm Luger the same size as the nine-shot .380.

Weevil
May 20, 2010, 11:49 PM
Control is always something to consider.

The almighty 9mm and even that Hammer-of-Thor .45acp often require more than one shot to bring a man down. One shot stops look cool on TV and in the movies but are a lot more rare in real life.

The ability to make rapid and accurate follow-up shots may well be what decides whether you live or die.

Those wee little 9 & .45s are a real bear to shoot and very difficult to control and keep centered on the target, who may well be hard charging down on you real fast to rip your head off.

Shot-placement is what is critical, well aimed on target shots from a .380 will be far more effective than misses from the most ground-pounding nuclear .45 loads you can find.


Frankly I've found that itty-bitty little pistols in powerhouse calibers don't offer enough control for me and .380 is better suited to small CCW type pistols.

cwbjaxfl
May 21, 2010, 12:17 AM
cabelas has s&B .380 in stock for 17.99 for 50

MICHAEL T
May 21, 2010, 02:40 AM
Talk with a lot of 380 thunder owners

http://bersachat.com

FLAvalanche
May 21, 2010, 08:55 AM
I found out where all the .380 ammo is going. I walked into Shoot Straight in Ft. Myers, Florida and they had a little castle built in the middle of their showroom, gun safes at each corner for turrets, all made with CASES of .380...

rkammer
May 21, 2010, 09:48 AM
Plenty of 380 ammo available here in Orlando. Shoot Straight has a huge display of it. I believe it was $22 a box.

Taurus 617 CCW
May 21, 2010, 10:33 AM
FWIW, my parents live next door to the county sheriff. They keep four of them loaded around the house and carry them when off duty. I have a bersa as well and have not been disappointed with it.

huntsman
May 21, 2010, 12:22 PM
So basically I am looking for anyone, either police or otherwise, that have ever found themselves using a .380. Is it a viable round? Or is this more like a "make noise and run" type weapon?

So you want first hand ballistic proof that the .380 kills?

Move on to something else, like a wonder nine.

Water-Man
May 21, 2010, 12:30 PM
It is a viable round but I would suggest the use of flat-nose FMJs.

Old Shooter
May 21, 2010, 12:46 PM
.380.

A: Puts a hole in the bad guy and he decides to go somewhere else.

B: Puts a hole in the bad guy and he decides to keep on coming!

Which do you think is a realsitic scenario?

searcher451
May 21, 2010, 12:54 PM
http://www.goldenloki.com/ammo/gel/380acp/gel380acp.htm

http://www.handloads.com/misc/stoppingpower.asp?Caliber=0&Weight=All

http://www.ballisticstestinggroup.org/

http://www.ktrange.com/articles/a10/a10-14.html

http://www.brassfetcher.com/

etc.

christcorp
May 21, 2010, 02:26 PM
Simplest answer: The 380 is perfectly adequate for self defense needs. Don't let anyone tell you differently.

Having said that: The 380 is rare and expensive when it comes to buying ammunition. It is not worth the expensive price tag. Not when you can get 9mm or 9mm makarov ammo for 1/2 the price and both rounds can perform equal to or better than the 380. (Depending on the ammo you buy). I.e. you can buy weaker versions of the 9mm/9mm mak that is like shooting a 380. Or, you can buy much hotter if you like it.

Nothing wrong with a 380. It's just not the financially smart choice of calibers. And don't let anyone tell you about reloading, unless it's something you WANT to get into. I've reloaded for years, but except for hunting rounds, I don't reload anymore. I don't care to. I have other things I'd rather do. Anyway, that's the only reason I wouldn't buy a 380. Not unless it was basically free or I already reloaded for it. It's too expensive to shoot.

thunder173
May 21, 2010, 02:50 PM
About the the bottom line round I'd want to carry for SD,..tho I have carried .32 and .22 as well,..having said that, I do carry a Keltec P3AT every day,..and often a Firestorm version of the Bersa in .380 when concealment isn't a big issue, even tho it conceals well. I have the FS in .22 LR for plinking and such as well. Both are very good shooters in my opinion. I have had Walthers in both .32 ACP and .380 over the years. I personally like the fit and feel of the Bersa/Firestorms, although the finishes are a bit rougher than the Walther's,..their prices are right. They work. I'll keep mine. The older I get, the less I appreciate heavier recoil. Two in the chest, ...one in the head,...I don't think a .380 should be disccounted.

btg3
May 21, 2010, 03:35 PM
.380 Thunder
.38spl 642
9mm M&Pc

I have all 3 with holsters and ammo. The Bersa was a gift -- glad I didn't spend my money on it, but I understand it's appeal as it's not as pricey. Of course, depending on how often you practice, the ammo can eat up the cost difference.

redraider1109
May 21, 2010, 04:10 PM
searcher and gofastman, the Hornady critical defense is what I was thinking of. I know that a lot of people look at .380 like a pop gun but 11 inches of penetration is nothing to sneer at.... the CorBon DPX is impressive also, .645 of expansion is nuts. The main reason for this pistol is something for me to teach the wife on and hand off to her soon. Thanks for all the great info and suggestions guys.

and btw, weevil I totally agree. I don't care if you are packing a desert eagle, if you can't hit the broad side of a barn and I can put 3 or 4 .380s in your face and neck area, I win =)

Wishoot
May 21, 2010, 04:56 PM
The Cabela's in Richfield is swimming in .380 ammo now. I've never seen so much .380 in my life.

redraider1109
May 21, 2010, 04:58 PM
thunder, you might want to take a look at the below link, they use your exact pistol and got some pretty impressive results for .380. And thanks for the heads up, it DOES seem like more and more people are discussing handloading- i am in your bag, I might get into things with a rifle, for pistols I am okay with getting a box or such as needed.

http://www.handgunsmag.com/ammunition/HG_acriticalchoice_200903/index.html

TEXMEX
May 22, 2010, 02:29 AM
I used to carry .380's, but not after penetration tests I did shooting into 2x4's. Neither hardball or JHP's would go deeper than one. But maybe they were extra hard or something? On the other hand, a 9mm will penetrate +/- 4.

But............that was olde days .380 ammo.

Since some 9mm's are just as small and light as .380's now days, why carry a much weaker 380??? And .380 ammo costs more than 9mm too. So why a .380?

Buck Snort
May 22, 2010, 03:14 AM
gofastman wrote: "I think flat nose FMJ or hardcast bullets are better suited to the .380, but thats just my opinion."

That'd be my choice to try and gain some penetration and yet not have to use a RN bullet.

psyopspec
May 22, 2010, 03:34 AM
1) Get a gun that you are willing to carry as much as possible.

2) Get a gun in the largest caliber you can shoot consistently/accurately.

Yes, .380 has killed. So has .22LR, but that doesn't make it an ideal SD round. You can do much better, and you can do much worse, but I recommend sticking by the two points above.

christcorp
May 22, 2010, 03:44 AM
I used to carry .380's, but not after penetration tests I did shooting into 2x4's. Neither hardball or JHP's would go deeper than one. But maybe they were extra hard or something? On the other hand, a 9mm will penetrate +/- 4.

But............that was olde days .380 ammo.

Since some 9mm's are just as small and light as .380's now days, why carry a much weaker 380??? And .380 ammo costs more than 9mm too. So why a .380?
Next time I'm attacked by a 2x4, I'll definitely keep that in mind.

Losov
May 22, 2010, 08:13 AM
Since some 9mm's are just as small and light as .380's now days, why carry a much weaker 380??? And .380 ammo costs more than 9mm too. So why a .380?

It's a matter of how much one is willing to compromise and at what point. Given the likelihood of my ever having to draw a weapon within the context of my daily activities, I am unwilling to make the significant adjustment to my attire to carry even the smallest 9mm, which I believe is presently the Kel-Tec PF9.

I want a gun that absolutely disappears on my person and does not interfere with movement and gait. For me, that is the Ruger LCP in a pocket holster. The alternative, again for me, is not to carry.

I know many do not agree with this, but the question was asked. That's my answer.

christcorp
May 22, 2010, 11:50 AM
Interesting data:
http://www.smallestguns.com/

Nushif
May 22, 2010, 12:33 PM
There was a thread about the ballistics behind a .380 a while ago.

After a couple of laughs the impression was that it penetrates people, steaks, gelatin and ham and swiss sandwiches.

Oh yeah, I think it's been established that getting shot with a couple of .380s until one doesn't pose a threat anymore is just as unpleasant as getting shot with a couple of HAMMER-OF-THOR .45s until one doesn't pose a threat anymore.

Weevil
May 22, 2010, 12:45 PM
searcher and gofastman, the Hornady critical defense is what I was thinking of. I know that a lot of people look at .380 like a pop gun but 11 inches of penetration is nothing to sneer at.... the CorBon DPX is impressive also, .645 of expansion is nuts. The main reason for this pistol is something for me to teach the wife on and hand off to her soon. Thanks for all the great info and suggestions guys.

and btw, weevil I totally agree. I don't care if you are packing a desert eagle, if you can't hit the broad side of a barn and I can put 3 or 4 .380s in your face and neck area, I win =)


Yes it is interesting how some people "sneer" at the .380.

They act as if the badguy is gonna catch the bullets from a .380 with his teeth and spit them back at you, where as a 9mm is gonna pick 'em off the ground and hurl them through the air and of course a hit from a .45 will cause them to burst like a blood filled water-balloon.

Come on people we're talking about handgun rounds and even the best of them aren't especially effective. I forget the exact figures off the top of my head but it's something like 70 to 80% of all victims of a handgun shootings survive.

However that being said even a .22 can kill you IF it hits a vital area.

The trick isn't having the biggest, baddest caliber, it's being able to put those shots on target with the gun you're using.

The most effective caliber you can have is the one you can shoot most accurately with the gun you're actually gonna carry.

doc2rn
May 22, 2010, 01:14 PM
Be sure to check the crowning on the muzzle, cause the one I got looked like it was made out of playdough and shot area of cornfield at 7 yds

gofastman
May 22, 2010, 01:36 PM
It's a matter of how much one is willing to compromise and at what point. Given the likelihood of my ever having to draw a weapon within the context of my daily activities, I am unwilling to make the significant adjustment to my attire to carry even the smallest 9mm, which I believe is presently the Kel-Tec PF9.

I want a gun that absolutely disappears on my person and does not interfere with movement and gait. For me, that is the Ruger LCP in a pocket holster. The alternative, again for me, is not to carry.

I know many do not agree with this, but the question was asked. That's my answer.

And its very insightful! There is a niche for the .380.

btg3
May 22, 2010, 01:43 PM
The most effective caliber you can have is the one you can shoot most accurately with the gun you're actually gonna carry.

Reminds me of David and Goliath. Anyone carry a concealed slingshot? Hard to argue with the effectiveness, given the results. :D

TEXMEX
May 22, 2010, 03:21 PM
You .380 guys can think whatever you want, but I guarantee you will suddenly understand what the rest of us are talking about when you come face to face with a shotgun armed felon, or 2-3 armed robbers carrying pistols!

At that exact instant you are going to be hit by a lighteningt bolt of understanding and wishing you were carrying the most powerful pistol you could shoot well!!!!!!!!!!!!

It happened to me when I unexpectedly came face to face with a big aggressive bear at 10 feet and all I had was my pocket pistol. Never realized how punny my small 9mm was until at that moment of devine understanding.

By the way, I'm not "sneering" at the .380, just facing reality. I've owned and carried several .380's, but after seeing in person their ineffectiveness on the street, I said, "Never again!"

TEXMEX
May 22, 2010, 03:32 PM
LOSOV, says: It's a matter of how much one is willing to compromise and at what point. Given the likelihood of my ever having to draw a weapon within the context of my daily activities, I am unwilling to make the significant adjustment to my attire to carry even the smallest 9mm, which I believe is presently the Kel-Tec PF9.
---------------------------------------------------------

If you ever need a gun for self-defense (and I have, multiple times) you are going to need a powerful gun. Besides that, the LCP has a lousy trigger pull and when shooting two-handed the trigger finger tends to get stopped mid-pull by hitting the thumb of your other hand = not good in an emergency! (The reason is the grip is too small, and the trigger-pull too long.)

The KAHR PM9 is the smallest, lightest, full-power (+P rated) pistol I personally recommend, has a great trigger and is very accurate. (That doesn't mean it's the smallest or lightest, just that it's the best small auto for self-defense pocket carry in MHO.) YMMV!

Weevil
May 22, 2010, 03:35 PM
Reminds me of David and Goliath. Anyone carry a concealed slingshot? Hard to argue with the effectiveness, given the results.



Actually you've hit upon a good point.

It's not the size buy how you use it. ;)


I think a lot of it is people go out and buy a gun for CCW and they've never actually fired a gun before or maybe plinked with a friend's or a relative's gun.

In an attempt to make up for their lack of shooting skills they want a big ol' honkin caliber that'll blow 'em away just like it does in the movies.


David could kill a man with a slingshot and I'll bet money that most people would be hard pressed to keep the rock from falling out as they swing it.

Same with a gun, the gun can't do anything by itself no matter how deadly the caliber, it's the hand and more importantly the mind that wields that weapon that kills.



A big caliber won't make-up for a lack of shooting skills.


What's more that big ol' killer caliber round in a wee little pistol is going to a lot harder to shoot and try to be effective with than a smaller caliber that they might actually be able to learn to shoot well with.

TEXMEX
May 22, 2010, 03:49 PM
Wee says: A big caliber won't make-up for a lack of shooting skills.
-------------------------------------------------

True, just as it's true that a too-small caliber pistol isn't likely to stop a determined attacker as fast as a bigger caliber pistol.

And.....why are you assuming any shooter is more skilled with a smaller caliber pistol than with a bigger caliber??? Shooting ability isn't caliber related except "maybe" in the case of the inexperienced, and even then only in a very minor way.

Losov
May 22, 2010, 04:03 PM
when shooting two-handed the trigger finger tends to get stopped mid-pull by hitting the thumb of your other hand

Not if you practice and use the appropriate grip. I do.

Weevil
May 22, 2010, 04:04 PM
True, just as it's true that a too-small caliber pistol isn't likely to stop a determined attacker in time.


There's no quarantee a larger caliber will either.

But I will guarantee that if you can't shoot that big ol' caliber pistol well your misses won't do a darn bit of good stopping him either.


Only hits count regardless of caliber.



And.....why are you assuming a smaller caliber shooter is a better shooter than the same shooter would be with a bigger caliber??? Shooting ability isn't caliber related except in the case of the inexperienced, and then only in a very minor way.


Yes caliber does matter and not in a "minor" way inexperienced or not.

A larger more powerful caliber will have more recoil and muzzle-rise in a pistol that is the same size and weight.

No matter your level of skill you cannot change the laws of physics.


Now I'm not saying that no one can learn to shoot a big caliber in a small pistol effecively but it does require a much higher skill level and even so you will always have faster follow-up times with the lighter shooting caliber.

Yes larger calibers are more effective but they are also more difficult to shoot in small lightweight pistols.

If it were simply a matter of power then why not carry a lightweight alloy framed snubnose .44 magnum or even better a .454 Casull or .500 S&W???

Power is a fine thing but so is control and it's hard to keep a gun on target when it's knocking holes in your forehead after every shot.

CTGunner
May 22, 2010, 04:38 PM
A police officer sold me a Ruger LCP. His advice "Get a gun that you will have no excuse not to have on you because the gun you have on you is worth a lot more than the one you don't". Another guy (Gun store owner) carried his Keltec P3AT in a back pocket "I keep it with my keys, so I never forget it". His other advice..."no one wakes up in the morning expecting to get in a car wreck, you can't pick and choose these things". I remember those snippets of advice. With that said, if you are going to carry a Bersa you might as well just get a 9mm, unless there is a recoil issue.

Warhawk83
May 22, 2010, 04:44 PM
The only thing my LCP was practical for, was as a shotput. I won't speak to whether the cartridge is adequate, because I could never get the cartridge in the first place.

Ala Dan
May 22, 2010, 11:49 PM
I think any .380 acp is a last ditch, go too weapon, when the chips
are down. I own several [including the Bersa Thunder Duo-tone], that I
use primarily as a BUG of some sort. Lets face it, NO ONE that I know
would want to have a magazine of Hornady Critical Defense ammo headed
for their onion~! It just does not make sense, as they more than likely
would be dead as a door nail~! :uhoh: :eek: :cool:

So, point is- don't under estimate the power of the little .380 ACP, with
the proper loading.

IMTHDUKE
May 23, 2010, 12:13 AM
I can shoot this one for the same price....
http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/imthduke/GUNS/62520996593739.jpg

as I can shoot this one...
http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/imthduke/GUNS/62520996595328.jpg
Never thought that would be but not much diff in the ammo price between the two.

Buck Snort
May 23, 2010, 01:57 AM
Weevil wrote: "They act as if the badguy is gonna catch the bullets from a .380 with his teeth and spit them back at you, where as a 9mm is gonna pick 'em off the ground and hurl them through the air and of course a hit from a .45 will cause them to burst like a blood filled water-balloon."

Well dang it all Weevil, ain't you never gone to the movies?!

Buck Snort
May 23, 2010, 02:03 AM
Weevil wrote: "Power is a fine thing but so is control and it's hard to keep a gun on target when it's knocking holes in your forehead after every shot."

It's just really upsetting when that happens.

Buck Snort
May 23, 2010, 02:10 AM
I just don't get this "caliber don't make no difference" talk. If that were the case then people would be hunting cape buffalo with pellet guns.

christcorp
May 23, 2010, 03:50 AM
Handguns are the most INEFFICIENT means of protecting oneself with a firearm. As such, shot placement is everything. Whether it's a 22, 32, 9mm, 40, or 357 magnum. The only advantage heavier and larger diameter bullets give you is a slightly better chance of hitting that vital organ or CNS. But for everything you gain on caliber, you give up something. The only reason we even have pistols is because it's too inconvenient to walk around with a high powered rifle or a shotgun.

Airman193SOS
May 23, 2010, 05:07 AM
For all the arguments that are made about ammunition, it really comes down to shot placement. If you hit someone repeatedly in a vital area it makes no difference what you hit him with.

The typical rhetorical argument in this regard is to challenge someone who thinks that a particular caliber is poor or useless to stand there and let you shoot him with it. Of course, the implication is that they will change their tune very quickly.

I certainly would not recommend that you do anything like that, but the point stands: while a larger caliber is undoubtedly better overall in all categories, a smaller round with appropriate placement is just as lethal.

For the record, I have no qualms carrying a .380 ACP handgun. You shouldn't either.

easyg
May 23, 2010, 06:45 AM
If you hit someone repeatedly in a vital area it makes no difference what you hit him with.
This is simply not true.
Bullet caliber does make a difference.

If I feel that I need to shoot someone then it's going to be because I think that my life is in danger.
And if I shoot them I want them to stop as quick as possible.
And real life shootings have shown than some calibers are more effective at quickly stopping a human aggressor than other calibers.
With equal shot placement, a .22 Short is simply not going to have the same effect on the target as a .45ACP or a .357 Magnum.

Those who say that caliber makes no difference are just lying to themselves.

As for the .380....
Yeah, it can get the job done, but it's not as effective at quickly stopping human aggressors as the 9mm Luger, the .40S&W, the .357Sig, the .45ACP, the .45GAP, the .357 magnum, and the 10mm.
Even the .38 Special can best the .380 in some loadings.

I wouldn't want to be shot with a .380, but if I had to be shot, and I could choose the caliber from the list above, I would choose the .380 because my chances of surviving the shooting would be greatest with the .380 (all other things being equal).

Full Metal Jacket
May 23, 2010, 06:56 AM
So basically I am looking for anyone, either police or otherwise, that have ever found themselves using a .380. Is it a viable round? Or is this more like a "make noise and run" type weapon?

most .380 jhp's don't have enough momentum to expand reliably.

using .380 fmj's are certainly better than nothing, but i personally wouldn't carry any less than a 9mm. .380 statistics are less than encouraging.


not sure why there's a surge of pocket .380 popularity all of a sudden. nobody carried them a few years ago when it costed less than .45acp :eek:

TEXMEX
May 23, 2010, 09:04 AM
Buck Snort says: I just don't get this "caliber don't make no difference" talk. If that were the case then people would be hunting cape buffalo with pellet guns.
----------------------------------------------------

Right! And the police and military would all be carrying .380's as primary weapons, and .25's as BUG's!!!

Old Shooter
May 23, 2010, 11:43 AM
TEXMEX wrote: It happened to me when I came face to face with a big aggressive bear at 10 feet and all I had was my pocket pistol. Never realized how punny my small 9mm was until that moment of devine understanding.

That would be quite an event and I can understand your feelings, but you evidently survived the encounter. Did you kill the bear or out-run him?

Weevil
May 23, 2010, 12:15 PM
This is simply not true.
Bullet caliber does make a difference.

If I feel that I need to shoot someone then it's going to be because I think that my life is in danger.
And if I shoot them I want them to stop as quick as possible.
And real life shootings have shown than some calibers are more effective at quickly stopping a human aggressor than other calibers.
With equal shot placement, a .22 Short is simply not going to have the same effect on the target as a .45ACP or a .357 Magnum.

Those who say that caliber makes no difference are just lying to themselves.

As for the .380....
Yeah, it can get the job done, but it's not as effective at quickly stopping human aggressors as the 9mm Luger, the .40S&W, the .357Sig, the .45ACP, the .45GAP, the .357 magnum, and the 10mm.
Even the .38 Special can best the .380 in some loadings.

I wouldn't want to be shot with a .380, but if I had to be shot, and I could choose the caliber from the list above, I would choose the .380 because my chances of surviving the shooting would be greatest with the .380 (all other things being equal).




Good post.


Yes there is indeed a difference in calibers.


That's why we have all those different calibers in the first place.


And bigger calibers are better stoppers that's why my HD pistol is a 10mm.


I also agree that if it came down to it I'd rather take my chances getting shot with a .380 instead of a 10mm.


However big powerhouse calibers are not the end all and be all, especially when used in small lightweight pistols. With that power comes a loss of control, you don't get something for nothing, that's why the bigger calibers are called "duty" rounds and are carried by the police and military in large full-size "duty" pistols not wee little CCW size pistols.

I'm not going to be hunting cape buffalo with a derringer and being able to control my weapon and put my shots on target is a high priority. If I'm hunting large game with a handgun then I want that .44 magnum or 500 S&W but in a big huge gun that can handle that kind of power and give me some control not an itty-bitty little pistol I can stick in my pocket.


It all comes down to having the right tool for the job.


In small lightweight pistols for CCW use the .380 gives a good balance of power and control.



If you feel the need to carry an itty-bitty CCW size pistol that's capable of bringing down cape buffalo then by all means do what you gotta do.


:D

CraigC
May 23, 2010, 01:50 PM
I heard about a feller that had a custom Single Six built in .380 and it's all he uses for squirrels.

IMTHDUKE
May 23, 2010, 03:43 PM
That would be quite an event and I can understand your feelings, but you evidently survived the encounter. Did you kill the bear or out-run him?


Only bear a man out runs is one that wants to be out run.

Buck Snort
May 23, 2010, 03:53 PM
Christcorp wrote: "The only advantage heavier and larger diameter bullets give you is a slightly better chance of hitting that vital organ or CNS."

Well, if penetration counts for anything (and the FBI seems to think so) then a heavier bullet should be expected to penetrate deeper. Yeah, I'll carry a .380 if conditions prevent me from pack'n my Colt Commander, otherwise I'm opting for the heavier bullet.

Buck Snort
May 23, 2010, 03:56 PM
Airman193SOS wrote: "For all the arguments that are made about ammunition, it really comes down to shot placement. If you hit someone repeatedly in a vital area it makes no difference what you hit him with."

Patently false on the face of it.

christcorp
May 23, 2010, 04:48 PM
Christcorp wrote: "The only advantage heavier and larger diameter bullets give you is a slightly better chance of hitting that vital organ or CNS."

Well, if penetration counts for anything (and the FBI seems to think so) then a heavier bullet should be expected to penetrate deeper. Yeah, I'll carry a .380 if conditions prevent me from pack'n my Colt Commander, otherwise I'm opting for the heavier bullet.
That's great buck. Now, consider that approximately 70% of shots miss their target in self defense situations. These are reported stats by New York City and Los Angeles Law Enforcement agencies of THEIR OWN PATROLMEN. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/09/weekinreview/09baker.html?pagewanted=print
I will put my 66 year old mother, and her Walther PPK 32acp, up again MANY of the people on this forum who think they are some spectacular "Gun fighter". There is a lot to be said for carrying a 32acp or 380acp and hitting your target; under stressful conditions, more times than shooting with a 45acp or 40sw, and hitting the target less times.

btg3
May 23, 2010, 05:51 PM
hmmm... why doncha see .380 at IDPA? Defensive Pistol or "not exactly"?

IMTHDUKE
May 23, 2010, 06:03 PM
hmmm... why doncha see .380 at IDPA? Defensive Pistol or "not exactly"?

Just reading and learning here. A novice....what is IDPA?

Airman193SOS
May 23, 2010, 06:28 PM
Airman193SOS wrote: "For all the arguments that are made about ammunition, it really comes down to shot placement. If you hit someone repeatedly in a vital area it makes no difference what you hit him with."

Patently false on the face of it.
Is that so? Which weapons account for the majority of firearms deaths in the United States every single year? Small caliber handguns.

I can think of several thousand people that would take issue with your abject dismissal of my assertion, but they can't because they're dead. More's the pity.

Weevil
May 23, 2010, 07:07 PM
hmmm... why doncha see .380 at IDPA? Defensive Pistol or "not exactly"?





Because they don't have a division for small CCW type pistols???



From the IDPA rule book:


The firearms are grouped into five (5) divisions:
1) Custom Defensive Pistol (.45ACP semi-automatics only);
2) Enhanced Service Pistol (9mm(9x19) or larger caliber semi-automatics);
3) Stock Service Pistol(9mm (9x19) or larger caliber double action, double action only, or
safe action semi-automatics);
4) Enhanced Service Revolver (.38caliber or larger double action revolvers);
5) Stock Service Revolver(.38 caliber or larger double action revolvers).


The IDPA is for service weapons which are generally considerd open-carry types, not small pocket pistols or BUGs.

I doubt very much you're gonna see anybody trying to compete with any itty-bitty 9mm's like a Kel-Tec or Rohrbaugh R9 either.

I wouldn't go any lower than 9mm in a full-size service pistol either, especially when pistols of this size have excellent control with 9mm.



Another thing to consider is most IDPA shooters compete with light target loadings, not full-house-ground-thumping-nuclear +P+ self-defense loadings.

Now why do you suppose they do that???

Could it possibly be because they get faster follow-ups and better times with light easily controlled loads???

;)

M&PVolk
May 23, 2010, 07:29 PM
The .380, like all pistol calibers, is a trade off of sorts. You must decide the criteria of your individual needs and select a caliber accordingly. All calibers (even the lowly .22 LR) can be deadly when they hit a vital area, and the opposite is also true, as many a man has failed to fall from even .357 or .44 mag rounds, which I hold as far superior to any autoloader round on the market.

The .380 gives an advantage in compactness of the platform, as they range from tiny pocket guns like the LCP to ultra-slim larger guns like the Bersa .380. With good ammo, they meet FBI penetration standards sufficiently. The offer low recoil out of larger guns like the Bersa, and moderate recoil out of true pocket guns. Very accurate rapidfire shots are easy from a Bersa, and the recoil you gain from the smaller guns is a trade off for being able to slip the gun in a shirt pocket completely unnoticed. Noise from a .380 is significantly less than a large caliber and may be a boon in indoor situations. Muzzle flash is also greatly reduced vs. a .45.

Problems with the .380 include the need to select really good ammo for maximum performance. Lighter bullets tend to need very high velocity to achieve maximum penetration, and they will lose a lot of that velocity if they must go through an intermediate barrier. Thick or heavy clothing might also be an issue. Contact with major bone structures may also create yet another obstacle to as deep a penetration as you want. You may not get as dramatic a psychological effect on your attacker (which is what actually is responsible for the majority of handgun "stopping power") with a .380.

If you can shoot and carry a larger caliber comfortably, then there may be advantages to going up from the .380. How far bigger is up to you and you should not feel pressured by the "caliber wars" you see so much of on these forums. If you can become a surgeon of sorts with the .380, buy the package that works for you and feel totally comfortable that it will get the job done.

btg3
May 23, 2010, 07:34 PM
Another thing to consider is most IDPA shooters compete with light target loadings, not full-house-ground-thumping-nuclear +P+ self-defense loadings.

Now why do you suppose they do that???

Two possible reasons:
1. 125,000 minimum power floor (bullet weight x velocity)
2. Cost of ammo.

Is there any .380ACP that will satisfy #1?

Weevil
May 23, 2010, 07:48 PM
Two possible reasons:
1. 125,000 minimum power floor (bullet weight x velocity)
2. Cost of ammo.

Is there any .380ACP that will satisfy #1?



Not that I'm aware of but the Hornady XTP will get 90900 and that's out of a 3.8" barrel. It'd be interesting to see what kind of velocity it would get out of the barrel of a full-size service pistol.

Even so 1000 fps out of a 125 or 124 gr. 9mm bullet?

That's a really tame loading for the 9mm and far below the normal 1200+ fps we expect from 9mm SD loadings.

christcorp
May 23, 2010, 07:55 PM
That might be true; but I am quite content with 1000 fps and a 95-115 grain out of my 9mm Makarov. I'm also content with my 75 grain at 1150 fps for my 32acp. And I feel just as comfortable with my 900 fps, 230 grain 45acp. I do prefer the large diameter; hence why I like the 9mm makarov. But even the 32acp will do it's job if you do your job. That's why I spend MORE TIME practicing and handling stress, than I do stressing over different calibers and weight bullets.

David E
May 23, 2010, 08:24 PM
The only advantage heavier and larger diameter bullets give you is a slightly better chance of hitting that vital organ or CNS.

This is quite funny! One doesn't choose a large caliber hoping an extra couple 1000th's of an inch will allow the bullet to hit an organ or blood vessel it would otherwise miss, they choose it for the power of the round, the energy it dumps into the target, the depth of penetration it acheives. Proper bullet selection helps this, of course, and shouldn't be overlooked.

Now, consider that approximately 70% of shots miss their target in self defense situations.

SO?? Saying that a specific round won't perform as advertised because it misses the target is asinine. I would agree that people should get the largest caliber they can control. A .32 might be the top end for some people.

I am quite content with 1000 fps and a 95-115 grain out of my 9mm Makarov. I'm also content with my 75 grain at 1150 fps for my 32acp.

What a wonderful world this would be if our feelings of content mattered or changed the cold hard facts one whit! :rolleyes:

Many people make the mistake of thinking "a gun is a gun is a gun," meaning that one gun, or caliber, is just as good as the next. They're not. If they were, then there'd be no reason at all for anything above a .25 for defense. And I've not heard of any American agency issuing .25's or even .32's as a primary gun.

Lvl21nerd
May 23, 2010, 09:19 PM
look at it this way...1. Would you rather be shot by a .22 or a .45?

now look also at it this way...2. would you rather be shot by a .22 or a .25? (prolly wouldnt make much difference)

relative size is what matters

btg3
May 23, 2010, 09:27 PM
That's a really tame loading for the 9mm and far below the normal 1200+ fps we expect from 9mm SD loadings.
SD loads are roughly 4x the price of ball ammo, so not too much SD gets shot at IDPA. I get 9mm ball ammo --
115g x 1150 fps = 132,250 power
124g x 1150 fps = 142,600 power
And it is indeed a bit lower than the SD ammo power.

I shoot for fun. The serious competitors are the folks that download to the minimum IDPA power floor to enhance recoil management.

christcorp
May 23, 2010, 09:32 PM
Well, I have guns of just about every caliber. "Except for the niche calibers that I have no need or respect for, like the 10mm, 357 sig, 45gap, and some others". I have different carry guns for different situations and conditions of carry. If you have your one gun/caliber and you're confident in it, then by all means use it. If I have 4 different calibers/guns for 4 different types of carry, then some of you will say: "Why not just use the biggest one all the time". Fine, have at it. I personally don't put my trust and my life in my guns. My guns are simply a tool. I put my trust and my life in "ME". And because of that, and the fact that ALL PISTOLS are a compromise, I have absolutely no problem using different guns and calibers for different times. There are times when I won't use a 32acp. And there are times when I think it's perfectly fine. But you don't have to do that. If you put more faith and trust in your gun than you do yourself, then you probably need your largest gun you have. Or if you have less faith in both you and your gun, then you probably need a gun with a 15-18 round magazine. Again, that's your choice. I personally, am quite confident in "MY" capabilities. Therefor, I have more choices apparently than you do when it comes to choosing a "TOOL" to assist me. Have at it. Carry whatever you want.

sonier
May 23, 2010, 09:48 PM
I am one of those revolver guys so off course it hink a .380 is horrible for self defense thats why i carry a .357 magnum, BUT I do think the .380 is a cats meow for those who reload ;) it deffinately is cheap to shoot, and packs more of a punch at close range than a .22lr I personally would get one for plinking at small game or targets, just seems like it would be so much fun to lob 1000s of leadcast with 4 grains of herco behind it, thats what 1750 loads per pound of powder ;) lot of lead probally on the ramp though, even berrys plated ammo would be awsome :)

orionengnr
May 23, 2010, 11:18 PM
The advice of someone far wiser than I was:

Carry the largest caliber that you can deliver accurately.

If that is a .380, then so be it. For many of us, a .380 is a sub-par caliber.

I am not young (50+ y.o.) or large of stature (145 lbs), but I carried a Kahr PM9 easily for three years. I currently carry a Kahr P45 with almost as much ease.

I own an LCP, but I do not carry it. If the day comes that I can no longer carry and conceal something larger, I will carry the LCP.... Maybe.

gofastman
May 23, 2010, 11:29 PM
I think any .380 acp is a last ditch, go too weapon, when the chips
are down. I own several [including the Bersa Thunder Duo-tone], that I
use primarily as a BUG of some sort. Lets face it, NO ONE that I know
would want to have a magazine of Hornady Critical Defense ammo headed
for their onion~! It just does not make sense, as they more than likely
would be dead as a door nail~!

So, point is- don't under estimate the power of the little .380 ACP, with
the proper loading.
I would replace that with handgun or maybe just gun

David E
May 23, 2010, 11:35 PM
Those that champion the Mak in 9x18 (also known as .380 magnum) baffle me. For the size and weight, there are lighter, smaller, better guns out there in better calibers.

If you were on a budget, maybe, but otherwise.........

TexasBill
May 24, 2010, 12:22 AM
A Bersa .380 is definitely a good weapon for SD use. It is large enough that firing the gun for long periods of time is not tiring and, more importantly, not painful. The baby 9s and 45s, like the Ruger LCP and a S&W Airweight loaded with +P ammunition, are dandy for those who think recoil is a test of manhood, but useless for those who think that realistically matching the gun to the ammunition is a mark of intelligence because it offers better control and will lead to more frequent practice.

I don't have a Bersa, although both of my brothers-in-law have them. I have a Beretta 84FS Cheetah and a Walther PK380. The Beretta gives me 14 rounds (13 in the mag plus one in the chamber) and the Walther gives me 8+1. I feel perfectly confident carrying either one. They are loaded with Hornady Critical Defense, Federal Hydra-Shoks or Remington Golden Sabers. I can conceal either gun very well in a IWB holster.

That being said, I do prefer a full-house 9mm and have two, a FNP-9 and a Beretta PX4 Storm, but they are more cool weather pistols for when I can wear a jacket.

David E
May 24, 2010, 12:30 AM
Me, if I'm going to go with belt carry, I'd rather have a Kahr P-9 over any .380

The P-9 is smaller, thinner and lighter than all but the tiniest of the pocket .380's and shoots a 9mm round. Anything the .380 Critical Defense can do, the 9mm Critical Defense can do better.

easyg
May 24, 2010, 12:47 AM
Is that so? Which weapons account for the majority of firearms deaths in the United States every single year?
Small caliber handguns.
But how quickly does the small caliber actually STOP an attacker during the attack?

It does me no good at all to shoot an attacker with a .380 pistol only to have the attacker continue the attack and beat me to death with a baseball bat, and then die six hours later in the local ER.

If I need to shoot someone, then I need to stop them immediately!
And small calibers just don't have a good record for quickly stopping human aggressors.

Sure a .22 or a .25 or a .32 or a .380 might eventually KILL my attacker, but will it STOP my attacker before he can kill me?
That's what really matters.

TexasBill
May 24, 2010, 12:55 AM
If I am going for belt carry, it's going to be the FNP-9 or PX4 Storm. They're about an inch longer and taller and about 3/8-inch thicker. The FNP-9 is just 7 ounces heavier than the Kahr. For that I get twice the ammo capacity and more controllability.

The Kahr is a fine weapon, but like some people won't have new Smith & Wessons because of the "Hillary Hole," I won't own a Kahr because I don't want to subsidize the Reverend Moon and the Reunification Church.

Weevil
May 24, 2010, 01:00 AM
A Bersa .380 is definitely a good weapon for SD use. It is large enough that firing the gun for long periods of time is not tiring and, more importantly, not painful. The baby 9s and 45s, like the Ruger LCP and a S&W Airweight loaded with +P ammunition, are dandy for those who think recoil is a test of manhood, but useless for those who think that realistically matching the gun to the ammunition is a mark of intelligence because it offers better control and will lead to more frequent practice.




Good point.

I have a Kel-Tec P11 and it is a brutal pistol to shoot and certainly not any fun at the range. Practice with it is a chore I do not enjoy.

To me it's just a last ditch belly gun for blasting away at point-blank range.

On the other hand one of my previous CCWs was a Browning BDA and I recently picked up a PK380 myself.

Yeah a lot of the power fanatics will scream that these guns are too big for a lousy .380, you should have a 9 or a .45 instead.

But these size and caliber guns are a pleasure to shoot and I look forward to range time with them, and needless to say I'm much more accurate and confident taking aimed shots with them.

I regret selling the BDA but I hope to someday replace the P11 with the PK380.

I just feel better carrying a gun I enjoy shooting and get a lot of practice time in with.

Weevil
May 24, 2010, 01:15 AM
But how quickly does the small caliber actually STOP an attacker during the attack?

It does me no good at all to shoot an attacker with a .380 pistol only to have the attacker continue the attack and beat me to death with a baseball bat, and then die six hours later in the local ER.

If I need to shoot someone, then I need to stop them immediately!
And small calibers just don't have a good record for quickly stopping human aggressors.

Sure a .22 or a .25 or a .32 or a .380 might eventually KILL my attacker, but will it STOP my attacker before he can kill me?
That's what really matters.


So basically you're saying you're counting on a bigger caliber to save your hide?


Personally I'm counting on my own skills and fighting ability, I'm really not counting on any handgun to instantly kill the badguy, it's not the movies, but if I can seriously wound him or at least take some of the fight out of him, then I'll take that bat and make him look like a popsicle. ;)


Don't count on any handgun regardless of caliber, as being a magic death-ray that will save your life. No handgun caliber can be counted on to guarantee an instant and immediate death, even with a .45 or a 10mm it may still take them awhile to bleed out.


If all else fails run, you should be able to out run a guy that's just been shot 8 or 9 times, don't just stand there like a deer in the headlights as he beats you to death.


:D

psyopspec
May 24, 2010, 02:05 AM
The baby 9s and 45s, like the Ruger LCP and a S&W Airweight loaded with +P ammunition, are dandy for those who think recoil is a test of manhood

That's certainly the first time I've heard of a person shooting a 9mm handgun referred to as "a test of manhood." Even a Kahr PM9, even with +P loads, I've never heard that sentiment before. Interesting times we live in...

At a certain point, I think everyone develops their favorite for different reasons, and along with that comes the minimum caliber they feel comfortable with in a defensive handgun. For most who have BTDT, .380 is absolutely out of the question. I have yet to read or hear of any gunfight in which a participant found him or herself wishing that they had a smaller caliber. I maintain: Get a platform you're willing to carry with you whenever you are able, in the largest practical caliber you can control.

David E
May 24, 2010, 02:30 AM
If I am going for belt carry, it's going to be the FNP-9 or PX4 Storm.

Are you saying that you pocket carry that 23.3 oz, 1.4" thick, large-for-a-.380 Beretta 84?

But when you add 15/100th's to the thickness 1.4 oz additional weight and 6/10th's of an inch in length with the FNP9, then you need a belt holster? Odd....

I'm not a fan of pocket carry, but if I was, I'd get either a PM-9 or PM-40

David E
May 24, 2010, 02:34 AM
The baby 9s and 45s, like the Ruger LCP and a S&W Airweight loaded with +P ammunition, are dandy for those who think recoil is a test of manhood

One needs to understand the dynamics involved.

Proper stocks, grip and technique go a long way to controlling recoil. Of course, there is a point where recoil IS more than most can handle, like a Corbon .357 load in a wood stocked scandium gun. Put some +P's in there, tho, and it's a pussy cat.....well, comparatively speaking.

TexasBill
May 24, 2010, 06:01 AM
Are you saying that you pocket carry that 23.3 oz, 1.4" thick, large-for-a-.380 Beretta 84?

But when you add 15/100th's to the thickness 1.4 oz additional weight and 6/10th's of an inch in length with the FNP9, then you need a belt holster? Odd....

I'm not a fan of pocket carry, but if I was, I'd get either a PM-9 or PM-40

As I said in a previous post, I carry the Beretta or Walther in an IWB holster. I also have a very nice shoulder holster for the Beretta which is handy for when I am driving long distances. If I am in a situation where attire allows me to carry on my belt, I would rather have one of the larger pistols.

For those rare occasions when I pocket carry, I have a Smith & Wesson M637 Airweight loaded with .38 Special ammunition and an HKS Speedloader. In my own (totally unscientific) experiments, I have found the little Smith snubbie loaded with light bullets to be easy to handle.

Also as I said earlier, I have no interest in Kahr firearms but that's just my personal taste. If the Kahr rings your bells, go for it.

oldfool
May 24, 2010, 08:53 AM
on the one hand...
"it ain't the size of the gun in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the gun"
on the other hand...
I remain continually surprised at the number of people who ignore the ballistic shortcomings and shootability compromises inherent in "bad boy" loads out of dinky-doo barrels

all CCW handguns represent compromise
all handguns represent compromise vs rifles well suited to offense

then again, some people do live in places heavily populated by -
grizzly bears
MS-13 machete yielding gang bangers on dope
ninja clad terrorists
aliens and/or zombies
all of the above (simultaneously 7/24)

and some people do not

pay attention to your environment, and dress accordingly
:rolleyes:

PS
there is no such thing as a "make noise and run" CCW gun
running is good, given a choice, do that
the noise is only for when you cannot
in which case aiming is highly recommended, best done when not on the run
in which case, 380 will do, or not, depending on how big grizz is
(for ninja clad Grizz, RPG recommended, preferably not the snubbie length RPG)

Old Shooter
May 24, 2010, 09:29 AM
But how quickly does the small caliber actually STOP an attacker during the attack?

I would think this is the key question.

Not having been in the situation myself, I wonder how often a BG after having been shot once, not fatally or totally incapacitating, will continue their attack?

I suppose it happens but I don't recall reading any news accounts mentioning it. Usually it is "shots were fired and the suspect was found lying on the sidewalk two blocks away" or something like that.

MCgunner
May 24, 2010, 10:59 AM
As a "night porter" at a local hospital when I was in high school (primary desire, pay for a motorcycle) I watched a guy walk though the door of the emergency room holding his guts in his hands, shot at close range with a 12 gauge shotgun. He survived.

These small caliber discussions always come down to shot placement, but I contend that ANY handgun relies on good shot placement. I am not thrilled by .380's ballistics, the numbers, but I know it will work fine if you can put your shots in the sweet spot center mass. With the heavier guns like the Bersa, a follow up is fast, too.

I rarely carry my .380, prefer my 9. But, I do carry a 9mm mak a lot lately because I like the gun and it is very accurate and I shoot it quite well, which I can't say for my .380. The 9mm Mak is pretty much a glorified .380, only alightly better in the numbers, but I bet not much different in the real world. Thing is, from this gun, I know I can put the shots where they count. I'm a lot faster, more accurate with it than my .380 and it point shoots with amazing accuracy. Confidence is important, too.

BTW, my 9x18 is a Polish P64, closer to the Bersa than is my old .380, a Grendel P12. That Grendel is reliable, has the firepower, but a sucky, sucky trigger and it's only paper plate accurate at 25 yards. That's good enough accuracy, but it's slow and takes concentration to work that trigger. The little P64 is much, much more accurate and shootable. I'd suspect the Bersa would be similar as it's a similar gun, a lot more similar than is, say, and LCP. I do not feel inadequately armed with that P64 despite the paper ballistics.

christcorp
May 24, 2010, 11:05 AM
I think the problem with this topic/question in the never ending caliber wars, is a difference of perspective. If a person only owns a couple of handguns, and you're trying to find a handgun for many different scenarios and carrying situations, then you should most definitely find the largest gun/caliber that you can and will carry. Because while a 32acp or 380 will do fine when you're scantly dressed and in a position where your self defense situation is in public and it won't be a "Gun Fight" that many people refer to; it wouldn't be a good gun in the winter going through heavy clothing or as a home defense gun where barriers may come into play. In those cases, a 45, 357, 40sw, etc... would be so much better. But for a person who can afford to own a lot of guns, then options increase. There will be times when the 32 or 380 will work perfectly fine; times where a 9mm might be the minimum; and times where a 40sw or 45acp is the right answer.

Me personally, I have 4 guns/calibers that I carry; depending on the situation. When dressed in formal or similar environment, I carry a 32acp walther. It's thin and I have jacket/suit pockets that fit the pistol nicely. When I am in a pair of jeans and a t-shirt and walking over to the mini-mart, or going to a friend's house for bar-b-que where there might be some guests that don't feel comfortable around guns, and I don't want to wear certain clothing all day to hide my concealed weapon, I carry a 380 backup in my front jeans pocket. Can't even notice it. For my NORMAL day to day conceal carry, I carry a CZ-82 9mm makarov. It's the most comfortable and very effective. Then again, there's some that think the police and military of eastern block countries weren't effective using such a caliber. I think otherwise and am very confident with it. Then, in the very cold winter months, where there's a lot of clothing involved, I will carry my Sig P220 45acp.

I don't carry my 9mm's or any of my revolvers. I prefer small and flat guns. However, in the house, my #1 defensive pistol is my S&W Model 13-1 357 magnum revolver. So there is definitely times and environments where the 32acp or 380 is a perfectly fine and adequate pistol for self defense. But for the person who doesn't or can't own a lot of different guns, it would be better to find a gun that is more of an all in one caliber/gun. If I was in that boat, I'd find a good 9mm. Ammo is cheap and abundant. And a good 147 grain bullet can do a lot of damage. And some good buffalo-bore will definitely do it's job. Assuming you can do your part. And if I could only have one pistol, for whatever the reason was, and a 2nd was not an option, then it would have to be a 357 magnum revolver. With a combination of ammo in 38spl and 357 magnum, you can get ammo as light as a 380, or as powerful as the full 357 mag and even equal to a 41 magnum. And of course, everything in between. The 357 magnum revolver is the BEST all in one pistol. Unless of course you don't have a lot of trust in your capabilities or the gun. Then you'll probably want a semi-auto with 15-18 rounds. But for those who don't "spray and pray", the 357 mag revolver is the best all around.

easyg
May 24, 2010, 12:04 PM
So basically you're saying you're counting on a bigger caliber to save your hide?

Personally I'm counting on my own skills and fighting ability, I'm really not counting on any handgun to instantly kill the badguy, it's not the movies, but if I can seriously wound him or at least take some of the fight out of him, then I'll take that bat and make him look like a popsicle.
I too am counting on my skills and fighting ability to save my hide.
But why would I handicap myself by using an inferior caliber?
I'll take any advantage I can get when it comes to quickly stopping someone bent on killing me.
And there's just no denying that a 9mm (or a .40, .45, .357) are more effective than a .380 at quickly stopping attackers.

Don't count on any handgun regardless of caliber, as being a magic death-ray that will save your life. No handgun caliber can be counted on to guarantee an instant and immediate death, even with a .45 or a 10mm it may still take them awhile to bleed out.
I agree.
I don't think anyone here has said that any caliber is an instant stop "death ray"....

But only a fool would really believe that all calibers perform the same with equal shot placement.
There's just no getting around the fact that some calibers are more effective against human targets than other calibers.

Now I can understand and respect the compromise of choosing a smaller handgun for ease of concealment.
But some folks on here have declared that there is no difference in bullet performance....and that is simply not true.

To the folks who say something like "Yeah, I know the .380 doesn't perform as well as a 9mm or a more powerful caliber, but I carry it because I want a tiny pocket pistol" I say "fine".

But to those who say something like "Caliber does not matter" I say "BS!".

sonier
May 24, 2010, 12:21 PM
8 TO 9 SHOTS!!!! WTH are you thinking? if bad guy has a gun that packs a bigger punch it wont take him 8 to 9 shots to put you down.

THIS IS SIMPLE BIGGER CARTRIDGES PACK A BIGGER PUNCH if the bad guy has a bigger gun and it takes him 5 shots to put you down and it takes you 9 too put him down YOU LOOSE.

sonier
May 24, 2010, 12:24 PM
I wonder how many here hunt, because there IS SUCH THING as one shot kills DRT dead right there. AND GUESS WHAT!!! they dont even have to be central nervous hits!!!! wow what amazing fact, I shot my elk broadside and HE DROPPED RIGHT THERE DEAD!!

easyg
May 24, 2010, 01:01 PM
...wow what amazing fact, I shot my elk broadside and HE DROPPED RIGHT THERE DEAD!!
With a handgun?

esquare
May 24, 2010, 02:55 PM
I like revolvers better, but I don't see anything wrong with carrying a .380 if that's what you are most comfortable with, will realistically carry it, and you can realistically practice enough to get to be a good shot with it. Some of the 9mm and .45 pocket guns are just too much for many people to shoot well - or be fun to shoot, and if you don't like shooting it at the range, then I would argue that it's probably a poor choice for a gun to get very proficient with.

christcorp
May 24, 2010, 03:28 PM
8 TO 9 SHOTS!!!! WTH are you thinking? if bad guy has a gun that packs a bigger punch it wont take him 8 to 9 shots to put you down.

THIS IS SIMPLE BIGGER CARTRIDGES PACK A BIGGER PUNCH if the bad guy has a bigger gun and it takes him 5 shots to put you down and it takes you 9 too put him down YOU LOOSE.
Considering that even among police officers, missing 70% of the time isn't uncommon, I can see where it might take some people 8-9 shots. Especially bad guys who normally commit crimes for economic reasons; and therefor aren't spending money on extra ammo and range time to practice.

As for your elk hunting, if you don't know the difference between a rifle bullet at 2500-3000+ fps and a handgun 900-1200 fps; and the difference in damage that can be done, then you know very little about firearms.

David E
May 24, 2010, 04:41 PM
I carry the Beretta or Walther in an IWB holster.

This is where I have a hard time justifying a .380. If you're going to wear it in a belt or shoulder holster, then why not carry a "real" gun/caliber?

There are 9mm's, .40's and even some .45's that are as small, or smaller, than a chunky .380. If you don't like Kahr, then consider a Springfield EMP in 9mm or .40. Very thin, light and small. It would be at least as easy to carry as the Beretta.

The same applies to a Walther PP, especially in .32. One can "feel confident" all they want to, but the fact remains the .32 isn't much of a manstopper....personal "confidence" notwithstanding.

Weevil
May 24, 2010, 10:09 PM
I too am counting on my skills and fighting ability to save my hide.
But why would I handicap myself by using an inferior caliber?
I'll take any advantage I can get when it comes to quickly stopping someone bent on killing me.
And there's just no denying that a 9mm (or a .40, .45, .357) are more effective than a .380 at quickly stopping attackers.



Well that's kinda the reason I like the .380 so I don't "handicap" myself.

Not trying to brag or toot my own horn but I am a very good shot with a pistol. I've been shooting since I was a kid and it's one of my favorite pastimes.

I know what I'm most accurate and can shoot my best with. I can empty a "big" .380 into a pie sized target at 20' as fast as I can pull the trigger. There is no way I can do this as fast and as accurately with the KT P11.

So yeah the 9mm is indeed more effective but I can't get as many rounds on target as quickly or as accurately as I can with a .380.


By using the small 9mm I'm sacrificing some of my ability to use my shooting skills in exchange for a more powerful caliber.

Personally I like the idea of using my ability to shoot straight more than I do the increased power of a bigger caliber.

9mm, .40, .45, 10mm, or .500 S&W won't be any more effective than throwing rocks if it can't put the rounds on target quickly and accurately.


As mentioned only hits counts regardless of caliber.




I agree.
I don't think anyone here has said that any caliber is an instant stop "death ray"....

But only a fool would really believe that all calibers perform the same with equal shot placement.
There's just no getting around the fact that some calibers are more effective against human targets than other calibers.

Now I can understand and respect the compromise of choosing a smaller handgun for ease of concealment.
But some folks on here have declared that there is no difference in bullet performance....and that is simply not true.

To the folks who say something like "Yeah, I know the .380 doesn't perform as well as a 9mm or a more powerful caliber, but I carry it because I want a tiny pocket pistol" I say "fine".

But to those who say something like "Caliber does not matter" I say "BS!".





And I agree caliber does matter!


Given my choice I'd much rather have my Glock 20 or one of my 1911s in my hand, but unfortunately I don't like carrying big monster service pistols stuffed under my clothes.

I've tried it I don't like it.


So that means I need a small lightweight easy to carry pistol that I'll actually carry.


I've tried a few hand cannons and frankly I'm not impressed.

Yeah they pack a wallop but the fierce recoil and wicked muzzle-rise make them slow and difficult to shoot quickly and accurately.


So if I want to have the sort of control I feel comfortable with I need to step down to a less effective and less powerful caliber.

Now a .22 or a .25 would be the absolute dream for pure control but they're way too weak, .32's a little better but I've experienced the dreaded RIMLOCK with this caliber and lost all confidence in it.

So that leaves .380, 9mm MAK, or 9mm Luger.

Tried a Makarov and a PA63 didn't like them and honestly I don't really care for blowback .380s either. The recoil is just as bad or worse than a 9mm of the same size with a tilting barrel design.

The only ones I really like to shoot in the small pistol mid-range caliber catergory are the tilting barrel .380s like the Beretta 84, Browning BDA type pistols but they are kinda big and even worse being double-stack mags they have a wide grips.

That's why I picked up the PK380.

Slim, light, great ergonomics and absolutely great control, a real pleasure to shoot.

Still way too new to make a decision on or actually carry but it is something I'm considering.



Yes caliber does matter!

Not only when it comes to effectiveness but also when it comes to the shooter's ability to put his rounds on target.

A powerhouse caliber can be very effective but only if it's in the correct size pistol that allows the shooter to maximize his shooting skills and put his shots on target quickly and effectively.


Why handicap yourself with a pistol that you can't shoot quickly and accurately???


As many have mentioned it is a compromise.

Whether it be full-size, compacts, sub-compacts, or micro-pistols, it's always gonna be a trade-off between power and control.

griff383
May 24, 2010, 10:18 PM
My usual carry is a 239 in 40 IWB and love it

With summer around the corner though I have a Kel Tec P3AT with a pocket holster that I am fully confident in. I also (or my wife) have a Bersa Thunder PRO (15+1) that shoots VERY nice. Several females have shot it for CHL qualification and love it. My friends wife is in the process of obtaining one just from holding it and hearing what the other women had to say about it. The ONE problem with the Bersa is mag availability for the PRO.

The ammo is a big factor as well, I reload so I dont worry about target stuff. I do have some HP and JSP that I load for carry while hunting or walking a friends ranch which works great. For her daily carry though I put Buffalo Bore in it, it is a +P load which that frame can more than handle. My wife can also handle it very well and is super confident in her ability to put multiple shots on target in a short time. I just got some Win bonded stuff that I put in the Kel Tec so I will have to test in the Bersa as well.

TexasBill
May 25, 2010, 07:52 AM
This is where I have a hard time justifying a .380. If you're going to wear it in a belt or shoulder holster, then why not carry a "real" gun/caliber?

There are 9mm's, .40's and even some .45's that are as small, or smaller, than a chunky .380. If you don't like Kahr, then consider a Springfield EMP in 9mm or .40. Very thin, light and small. It would be at least as easy to carry as the Beretta.

The same applies to a Walther PP, especially in .32. One can "feel confident" all they want to, but the fact remains the .32 isn't much of a manstopper....personal "confidence" notwithstanding.

I don't want a gun with a lot of recoil. I have owned or fired lots of guns with lots of recoil over lots of years. I owned a 4-inch Model 29 before "Dirty Harry" made the .44 Magnum popular. I also owned both a .357 and .44 Auto Mag (the one Dirty Harry used in "Sudden Impact"). I can handle an LCP, I just don't want to. I want to be able to draw and fire three fast rounds on target and I can do that with the guns I have chosen to buy and carry. I make no claim to be a Bill Jordan or Jerry Miculek, but I practice regularly and I think I'll be all right.

The Beretta and Walther are "real" guns. The New Jersey State Police and Indiana State Police issued .380 pistols. A Walther PPK in .380 was standard issue for the plainclothes officers on the NJSP, the ISP issued the Beretta. Sure, they've gone to larger calibers, but their needs differ from mine.

I have become very fond of my PK380. I got a First Edition and, in the six months I have had it, I have found it shoots very well, reliably handles any .380 I have been able to find, and is compact enough to fit in the big pocket in a pair of cargo shorts. Because it is a delayed blowback design, it's even easy to rack the slide. I can shoot a couple hundred rounds at the range and still be ready for more. I like that.

RatDrall
May 25, 2010, 09:52 AM
I don't want a gun with a lot of recoil. I have owned or fired lots of guns with lots of recoil over lots of years.

Most .380s are straight blowback, and have more felt recoil than a similar sized 9mm because of it :uhoh:

winchester '97
May 25, 2010, 10:40 PM
The makarov is a better pistol and the round is about the most powerful that can be run out of a straight blowback handgun of carry size, one of the small Polish maks is about the size of a Ruger LCP and the round is superior, also they run between 150 and 200.
heres a link to AIM for reference, they are sold out though. http://www.aimsurplus.com/product.aspx?item=F1P64&groupid=3
Makarovs are also very accurate, mine is a Baikal IJ-70 with adjustable sights, it outshoots my friends Ruger p95 all the time, no matter who shoots either, recoil is snappy but not unpleasant, and it is easy to keep on target.
Don't let the people that say 9mm or smaller is inadaquate fool you, its about shot placement, not caliber, assuming we are talking .32 or larger, it doesn't matter what caliber the gun is, if you don't hit something vital the person will not stop/die, and will likely kill you before their adrenaline rush wears off and shock/blood loss sets in. You may very well have killed them, but they took you with them.

Fastcast
May 26, 2010, 10:42 AM
The only ones I really like to shoot in the small pistol mid-range caliber catergory are the tilting barrel .380s like the Beretta 84, Browning BDA type pistols but they are kinda big and even worse being double-stack mags they have a wide grips.



I own a Beretta 84 and the pistol is a straight blow back design. The barrel is removable for cleaning (not pinned) but there is nothing tilting about it. Trust me. ;)

I've agreed with a good part of what you've said in this thread, as far as the caliber snobs go but you're incorrect about the Beretta/Browning design.

I'm sure no bad guys are gonna want anything to do with 14 rounds of .380 coming out of a Beretta 84 with a full 4" barrel, as fast and accurate as could possibly be imagined. That's what those pistols are all about, fast, accurate and high cap to assure the job gets done.

I can put 3 rounds from the 84 in a softball size group at 7 yards faster than one can imagine. If that doesn't get the job done (highly unlikely) there's 11 more coming at ya.....Yea the larger .380s may not be popular anymore but I promise you, good, bad, ugly or caliber snobs won't want to see the business end of my Beretta 84, even if it's only .380. ;)

I have no fear of that pistols ability to protect my arse in a SD scenario......None, nada, zilch!.....If Gov. Perry could swat a coyote with one shot from a LCP with 2.75" barrel, no two legged critters are gonna shake off a double or triple tap out of a 4" barrel .380 and for the 1 in 10,000 that may enjoy getting shot, I'd be obliged. ;)

easyg
May 26, 2010, 11:40 AM
I'm sure no bad guys are gonna want anything to do with 14 rounds of .380 coming out of a Beretta 84 with a full 4" barrel, as fast and accurate as could possibly be imagined....

I can put 3 rounds from the 84 in a softball size group at 7 yards faster than one can imagine. If that doesn't get the job done (highly unlikely) there's 11 more coming at ya....

no two legged critters are gonna shake off a double or triple tap out of a 4" barrel .380....
The problem with this line of thinking is this:

You identify the threat, he has a gun and is turning his attention toward you, you draw and fire....

Bang!

And then you pistol jams!

He fires....

Bang! Bang! Bang!



My point being this:
If you're relying upon triple taps to compensate for a weaker caliber, then you're setting yourself up for failure.

A semi, with a round in the chamber, is almost guaranteed to fire....ONE TIME.
Follow-up shots are never guaranteed.

Buck Snort
May 26, 2010, 12:07 PM
Fastcast wrote: "I've agreed with a good part of what you've said in this thread, as far as the caliber snobs go but you're incorrect about the Beretta/Browning design."

So if somebody disagrees with your thoughts on caliber they are "snobs"?

Fastcast
May 26, 2010, 12:13 PM
The problem with this line of thinking is this:

You identify the threat, he has a gun and is turning his attention toward you, you draw and fire....

Bang!

And then you pistol jams!

He fires....

Bang! Bang! Bang!



My point being this:
If you're relying upon triple taps to compensate for a weaker caliber, then you're setting yourself up for failure.

A semi, with a round in the chamber, is almost guaranteed to fire....ONE TIME.
Follow-up shots are never guaranteed.

Life is full of uncertainties. :rolleyes:

Hits aren't guaranteed either, nor are one shot stops, just because the caliber is larger.....LMAO

NEVER, ever a malfunction in the 84 so just because you have fears of your skinny wrist, limping your Glock, while you quiver in fear, I have no doubt my well maintained 84 will do its job if called upon. :neener:

Fastcast
May 26, 2010, 12:21 PM
So if somebody disagrees with your thoughts on caliber they are "snobs"?


Yes, some.....Particularly the ones who act like the BG will take a chest full of .380s with nearly a flinch. As if .380s are Air Soft pellets and they (BG) will still come strangle the life out of me. Yep, I'd call those folks caliber snobs and I could really care less if that bothers you. :eek:

christcorp
May 26, 2010, 12:40 PM
The problem with this line of thinking is this:

You identify the threat, he has a gun and is turning his attention toward you, you draw and fire....

Bang!

And then you pistol jams!

He fires....

Bang! Bang! Bang!



My point being this:
If you're relying upon triple taps to compensate for a weaker caliber, then you're setting yourself up for failure.

A semi, with a round in the chamber, is almost guaranteed to fire....ONE TIME.
Follow-up shots are never guaranteed.
guess I need to swap out my semi-autos for my revolvers. They are more reliable.

As for shooting multiple rounds, EVERYONE should practice automatically shooting 3 rounds minimum. Why? Because even with trained police officers like in New York and Los Angeles, stats show that they miss their target more than 70% of the time when under the stress of shooting at someone. So practice always shooting 3 rounds - 2 rounds - 2 rounds. This will take care of just about any and all pistols. From a 7 round semi-auto to a 6 round revolver. Point is, don't shoot 1 shot and re-access the situation. Shoot 3 shots and re-access. If you're going to shoot, then do it right. Whether I'm shooting my 45acp or my 32acp I always practice to shoot 3 rounds for the first volley of rounds.

And Fastcast, many people share your position. And we all have variances. For instance, I totally believe that during the right time of year, my 32acp is very effective as a self defense pistol. Other times of the year, it isn't effective. Also, I have NEVER, and will NEVER, buy a gun based on how many rounds it can hold. Anyone who does that is actually compromising. They are potentially turning down the best gun "FOR THEM", or taking a gun that they aren't the most comfortable with, all because it doesn't hold the "right amount" of ammunition. The problem with this, is most people don't actually try out guns. They buy based on what people tell them they should buy. I only have one gun that is considered "Hi-Cap". It's a 12 round for the CZ-82. Of course, those who think it's better to have too many than not enough, will say something witty, or stupid, depending on how you view it, like: If you think 6 in a revolver is enough, then why don't you just fill your magazine up to 6 rounds. These people are idiots so I don't respond.

But Fastcast, if you think you are most proficient and most confident and comfortable with your 380, then most definitely carry that pistol. And don't listen to anyone who tells you that you should have a different gun/caliber. They are simply trying to rationalize what they have. The best way to feel good about the car you own, neighborhood you live it, gun you have, clothes you wear, etc... is to get others to own, wear, live, etc... the same as you. Then you don't feel "Different". If you like and feel best with your 380, then use it. My mother is getting ready to turn 67 years old. And I will put her and her walther 32acp PPK up again most people on this forum who "THINK" they are some Doc Holiday gun slinger type. She shoots that gun at least once a month, and has been for a very long time. I know that she can hit whatever she aims at. Without thinking. And that's why you practice shooting 3 rounds immediately. You need to be able to hit your target without thinking. Your mind is thinking about other things in that scenario. You don't have time to think about aiming. Muscle Memory is what you need. And if you're good, then you should have no problem with a 380 or a 32.

Grey Morel
May 26, 2010, 01:14 PM
It never ceases to amaze me how some people conclude a calibers worth: 2x4's, muzzle blast, perceived recoil, ect.

Such things are extremely unscientific; neither are they practical means of judging weaponry.

EMC45
May 26, 2010, 02:53 PM
I have carried everything from a 22 Mini revolver to a 1911A1 .45 auto, and everything in between. I have no doubts about the .380 as a defense caliber. For years it was considered a "big" caliber by lawmen and Gangsters alike. It will kill! It was issued by many police departments in and around Europe for a long, long time. I assure you that a .380 leveled at your face looks like the tunnel of doom! And a eye socket full of .380 ball ammo will stop an attacker...As will several slugs to the spine/brain stem! I now realize the folly of carrying a 22LR revolver for SD. It was truly a back off weapon.

FLAvalanche
May 26, 2010, 03:58 PM
I sometimes carry a .380. Why? Because a full size 1911 is uncomfortable in the Florida heat and hard to conceal in shorts and a tank top.

David E
May 26, 2010, 04:14 PM
Not trying to brag or toot my own horn but I am a very good shot with a pistol.

No offense to the poster of the above, but everyone thinks they're a "very good shot".......

I know what I'm most accurate and can shoot my best with. I can empty a "big" .380 into a pie sized target at 20' as fast as I can pull the trigger. There is no way I can do this as fast and as accurately with the KT P11.

The P-11 isn't a gun many can shoot fast, but it well may take fewer rounds on target to be effective. And there are other guns that can be shot "just as fast" as a chunky .380, it just requires practicing the proper technique.

So yeah the 9mm is indeed more effective but I can't get as many rounds on target as quickly or as accurately as I can with a .380.

As I stated, it would likely take fewer 9mm rds to achieve the desired result. But, if someone is truly unable to handle anything more effective than a chunky, but easy to shoot .380, then maybe that's the best choice for them.

David E
May 26, 2010, 04:18 PM
The New Jersey State Police and Indiana State Police issued .380 pistols. ....... Sure, they've gone to larger calibers, but their needs differ from mine.

Most cops carry a gun so they're can stop a deadly attack before the attacker kills them, so how do their needs differ from yours? :confused:

They switched to larger calibers for a reason !

Fastcast
May 26, 2010, 04:34 PM
if someone is truly unable to handle anything more effective than a chunky, but easy to shoot .380, then maybe that's the best choice for them.

LOL ..... I doubt you're insinuating all .380s are chunky? :confused:

If so you must of never held a Beretta 84 or CZ-83 because those two are no doubt about as natural as it gets for the quick point, shoot and hit target, one would want for SD. ;)

christcorp
May 26, 2010, 04:35 PM
Most cops carry a gun so they're can stop a deadly attack before the attacker kills them, so how do their needs differ from yours? :confused:

They switched to larger calibers for a reason !
Their need differs because they are in a position of authority, which by nature, puts them into an "offensive" mode against a criminal. And the criminal most times will resort to being on the defensive; and act accordingly. When a criminal is going after a victim, they are the ones on the offensive. They do not believe that the victim is armed or going to defend themselves. If they thought this way, they would choose an easier victim. And YES, criminals do have a thought process. As distorted and you might think it is, it is rational and thought out in their minds. Even the assailant that knows the victim, and is attacking for non-monetary reasons is not anticipating much resistance. That's why more than 95% of the time, a victim merely pulling out a gun and displaying it, is usually enough to stop the threat. The criminal wasn't expecting this. With police, their presence alone is enough many times for the criminal to react in a defensive manner, which may include opening fire on them. There is most definitely a difference in the situation that a law enforcement officer or similar agent enters into, and the crime victim being mugged, robbed, raped, etc...

Fastcast
May 26, 2010, 04:38 PM
Most cops carry a gun so they're can stop a deadly attack before the attacker kills them, so how do their needs differ from yours? :confused:

They switched to larger calibers for a reason !

Ummmm.....Their needs differ because they don't need to conceal their service pistol and they are normally on the offensive, not the defensive. IMO

David E
May 26, 2010, 09:49 PM
LOL ..... I doubt you're insinuating all .380s are chunky?

If so you must of never held a Beretta 84 or CZ-83 because those two are no doubt about as natural as it gets for the quick point, shoot and hit target, one would want for SD.

Where did I say "all?" I didn't. A Beretta 84, dandy gun tho it may be, is pretty chunky when compared to a Keltec, Kahr or Ruger .380, among others.

In MY book, why would I carry a Beretta 84 when I could carry a more powerful gun that is smaller, thinner and lighter?

David E
May 26, 2010, 09:57 PM
Other than a SWAT team, or when reacting to a "shots fired" call or similar, cops are not "offensive" in nature. In truth, most of the time, the cops must react to the attack that the badguy initiates, often without warning.

When I was a cop, all the shootings our dept had, the badguy always initiated the action. One in particular got our Sgt. killed, another one seriously wounded. So cops often must react defensively, much like we "ordinary" folks do. And yet, inexplicably, no dept issues .380's for a primary duty gun......and there's a reason.

Look, you guys that want to carry a .380 or .32 or spitballs, go ahead. But don't try to convince the rest of us, as you apparently have convinced yourself, that they are "just as effective" as more powerful calibers just because you have "full confidence" in it. That just makes you look silly!

Fastcast
May 26, 2010, 11:07 PM
Where did I say "all?" I didn't. A Beretta 84, dandy gun tho it may be, is pretty chunky when compared to a Keltec, Kahr or Ruger .380, among others.

In MY book, why would I carry a Beretta 84 when I could carry a more powerful gun that is smaller, thinner and lighter?

Ummmm....Maybe because it's in a different league, than those guns mentioned, as far as build quality, reliability and capacity. I also owned this gun before all the little micro .380s hit the market and it's a fine weapon, that will kill a man dead.....Regardless of what you think.

I guess if you have fat, stubby, chunky little fingers and hands, you may find the ergonomics of the 84 chunky. I don't have fat, stubby, little fingers so I don't find it chunky. ;)


Look, you guys that want to carry a .380 or .32 or spitballs, go ahead. But don't try to convince the rest of us, as you apparently have convinced yourself, that they are "just as effective" as more powerful calibers just because you have "full confidence" in it. That just makes you look silly!

I've never said they're as effective as a .45 or other larger calibers. I'm saying if you were to take even 1 "spitball" to your vitals, someone would most likely be calling your loved ones. You're the one who comes across as a silly jackass to even insinuate that .380 is equivalent to a "spitball"......Like I said "caliber snob"......Shoot what you want, I really could care less. I haven't tried to convince anyone .380 is a .45.....I just said I'm confident I can defend myself with a quality .380 pistol.

For the record....Sergeant York's son said his father carried a .32 CZ for SD after the war, not the .45 1911.....Oh, the irony. :confused:

Weevil
May 26, 2010, 11:59 PM
I own a Beretta 84 and the pistol is a straight blow back design. The barrel is removable for cleaning (not pinned) but there is nothing tilting about it. Trust me.

I've agreed with a good part of what you've said in this thread, as far as the caliber snobs go but you're incorrect about the Beretta/Browning design.



Yes you're right!


My mistake. ;)


It's just they're such a soft shooter and don't have the traditional fixed barrel of a typical blowback, but yes they are indeed a blowback design, but not the usual Walther PP clone.

I suspect the large size and wide grip are what contribute to the minimal felt-recoil.



I did notice the PK380 is even softer shooting although it is lighter and has a thinner grip, and it's much easier to rack the slide on than the BDA I had, that would explain why.

David E
May 27, 2010, 12:01 AM
Maybe because it's in a different league, than those guns mentioned, as far as build quality, reliability and capacity.

Back in 1976 when the Beretta 84 was new, it DID have a place in the overall scheme of things. Subcompact Glocks, Kahrs, EMP's, etc, did not yet exist. So if you wanted a mid-sized gun, a large .380 that held a lotta rounds made more sense than, perhaps, a 5-shot .38 snub. But, that was then, this is now. For the same weight, size and bulk, if not less, I could carry a more powerful caliber. My power-floor is 9mm+P JHP and there is no need whatsoever to go under it.

I also owned this gun before all the little micro .380s hit the market and it's a fine weapon, that will kill a man dead.....Regardless of what you think.

Hell, I KNOW it'll kill a man dead. That's the caliber used to kill the aforementioned Sgt. But that it can kill isn't the point. A knitting needle can kill.......so what? My goal is to stop the guy from trying to kill me. Therefore, I want something that will STOP the badguy sooner rather than later. But your goals may be different.

I've never said they're as effective as a .45 or other larger calibers. I'm saying if you were to take even 1 "spitball" to your vitals, someone would most likely be calling your loved ones.

Maybe you haven't, but some in this thread have, as have many others in threads past. No one cares how much "confidence" you may have in your gun or caliber. It's being able to put the round where it'll have the most effect in the shortest time. The smaller you go in caliber/power, the more precise you must be in placing those rounds.

You're the one who comes across as a silly jackass to even insinuate that .380 is equivalent to a "spitball"......

Quite the "High Roader," aren't you ! :rolleyes: Look, I didn't say the .380 is equal to a spitball or vice versa (please re-read the post) I listed a spitball in addition to the .380 and .32 to include .25 acp or even .22 short, as others have stated they carry, either in this or other threads. You sure are touchy.

Like I said "caliber snob"......

With all due respect, that title belongs to you. Maybe "Caliber Elitist" might fit better, since you seem to dismiss any large caliber as overkill. Apparently, you think that only a great shot under pressure can make a .380 work for them when micro-seconds count when someone is actively trying to kill you. The lesser skilled, by your standard, must use larger calibers.....

I just said I'm confident I can defend myself with a quality .380 pistol.

Frankly, no one cares how "confident" you are with a .380. It only matters how fast you can put the shot(s) where they must go to be effective in the shortest amount of time. And, again, the smaller you go in caliber and power, the more precisely you must place your shot(s) to be to be effective. I hope you're up to the task.

For the record....Sergeant York's son said his father carried a .32 CZ for SD after the war, not the .45 1911.....

So? I've long held that any gun with you beats any gun not. If you'll carry a .380 or .32 or even .25 acp, then that beats the .45 acp you left at home. Maybe it'll be enough to get you back there.....

Weevil
May 27, 2010, 01:08 AM
Frankly, no one cares how "confident" you are with a .380. It only matters how fast you can put the shot(s) where they must go to be effective in the shortest amount of time.


Exactly and that is why very few people carry a .44 magnum for SD purposes.

It's certainly a manstopper that has your common pistol calibers beat eight ways to Sunday, but with that power comes fierce recoil and muzzle-rise making it difficult to shoot quickly and accurately especially in any sort of CCW size weapon.


So at what point do we stop sacrificing power for control???

9mm?

Come on we all know 9mm is a wimpy round and is not as effective as a .45 or even a .40, and 10mm beats them all.

So why carry some wimpy 9mm when you could be carrying a real man's caliber, even with +P ammo it's still not the most effective.




And, again, the smaller you go in caliber and power, the more precisely you must place your shot(s) to be to be effective. I hope you're up to the task.




Me too!!!


:D

David E
May 27, 2010, 02:05 AM
So at what point do we stop sacrificing power for control???

9mm?

At least one in this thread draws their line at .32 acp. :eek:

Some in other threads draw their line with 2 shots of .22 rimfire in a High Standard derringer. (double :eek:)

Come on we all know 9mm is a wimpy round and is not as effective as a .45 or even a .40, and 10mm beats them all.

So why carry some wimpy 9mm when you could be carrying a real man's caliber, even with +P ammo it's still not the most effective.

My carry gun right now is a compact, lightweight .45 acp. It's small and light enough for me to carry comfortably and I shoot it fairly well. But I've carried a small, light 9mm before and would do so again. For me, there is no reason to go below 9mm Parabellum power, ever.

The best defensive use for the .380 caliber is two fold:

1) In pocket guns, ideally as a backup.

2) The larger guns like the Beretta if someone can't handle anything larger. (altho this is usually, but not always, a matter of technique, or lack thereof)


a

Weevil
May 27, 2010, 02:58 AM
At least one in this thread draw their line at .32 acp.

Some in other threads draw their line with 2 shots of .22 rimfire in a High Standard derringer.




Well for a round to be effective you of course need good shot-placement and also penetration to hit those vital organs you're aiming at.

The problem with a .22 or a .25 is that they lack the power and bullet weight for adequate penetration, heavy clothing, bone, or even an obese attacker, can cause them to come up short.

A .32 also suffers from a lack of power and having a light bullet with very little momentum to carry it deep into the target and the added drawback of a semi-rimmed case that can cause feed problems.

.380 with an FMJ is my own minimum. With an FMJ the .380 gets decent penetration through light clothing, but it really doesn't have the power or bullet weight to drive an expanding bullet deep into a target.



My carry gun right now is a compact, lightweight .45 acp. It's small and light enough for me to carry comfortably and I shoot it fairly well. But I've carried a small, light 9mm before and would do so again. For me, there is no reason to go below 9mm Parabellum power, ever.


Well that's my gripe with small .45s I can shoot them "fairly" well too, but not as quickly or as accurately as I can with a smaller less powerful caliber in the same sort of small lightweight pistol.

So it goes back to do I want a potent caliber I can shoot "fairly" well or a lesser caliber that I can shoot really well.


To me personally there is no magic power level that suddenly and abrubtly stops at 9mm.

9mm is simply the smallest caliber that will reliably expand a hollow-point in service size pistols, and even then the penetration can be a bit lacking. That's why we have +P ammo to give the expanding bullet from a 9mm HP better penetration.

Of course if you use FMJ this is not an issue and the 9mm will have plenty of penetration, and with good shot placement it will be lethal as proven on many a battlefield over the last century.

Well a .380 is the same exact diameter and while not as powerful it will with FMJ have good penetration and with proper shot-placement will also be lethal.


Now I would agree that 9mm is the bare minimum for using HPs but let's keep in mind HPs are notorious for not expanding. I don't have a link but as I recall even premium HPs only expand roughly 70% of the time. They have a bad habit of clogging up with clothing and failling to expand thus acting like FMJ anyway. And let's also keep in mind that out of the short barrel of a CCW type pistol there will be even less velocity to expand the HP.

And let's say they do expand what is it you gain over FMJ?

A slightly more severe wound?

Yes you will increase wound volume with an HP but unless it's in a vital area this isn't gonna help much.

Certainlly not penetration as the expanding bullet acts like a parachute that slows and stops the bullet as it travels through the target. Many of the early HP designs for 9mm were woefully inadequate when it came to penetration, so choose your ammo wisely and stick to modern premium HP bullets and in a CCW pistol you might want to consider using ammo specifically designed for short barrels.


Psychological?

This is perhaps an HPs greatest advantage the ability to let an attacker actually know they've been shot. It hurts more to get hit by one. This is also most likely the reason a .45 is a better "stopper" HP or FMJ, it's a big slow moving bullet that hurts like the Dickens as it grinds through your body. But still you can't count on psychological effects on a truly determined or intoxicated attacker who's so pumped up on adrenalin or dope that they feel no pain.


Now if we look at it from a purely lethal, stop them by death point of view, all that's really gonna work is shot placement and penetration.

So if a smaller caliber than 9mm can be shot accurately and has adequate penetration to hit vital organs why should we scoff at it and doubts it's abilities to be lethal???


Not just trying to argue but I don't really understand why you have this line in the sand you're drawing at 9mm?


Why not go below 9mm "ever" if the caliber will give adequate penetration?

David E
May 27, 2010, 03:42 AM
Well that's my gripe with small .45s I can shoot them "fairly" well too, but not as quickly or as accurately as I can with a smaller less powerful caliber in the same sort of small lightweight pistol.

So it goes back to do I want a potent caliber I can shoot "fairly" well or a lesser caliber that I can shoot really well.

This is a matter of technique and practice. Let's define "control" and "fairly well," as these terms mean very different things to people. Here's what I did recently with my Kimber 4" Compact Aluminum stainless loaded with FMJ equivalent ammo:

http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g311/Sooper1/Shooting%20Related%20Things/DSCF0016.jpg

Range was 5 yds, start position was hand on holstered gun. I used a shot timer, not a stopwatch. At the random signal, I drew and fired 5 rounds. (I was comparing to a 5-shot snub) The 1.35 means I reacted to the beep and fired those five shots on paper in 1.35 seconds, total elapsed time.

But let's define "fairly well" as being able to put 5 rds on a sheet of typing paper in 2 seconds or less, starting at high or low ready. (I'll leave out the draw, here)

Maybe we can define "really well" as firing 6 rounds on a sheet of typing paper at 5 yds, from the holster, hands starting at sides. (if I use this definition, then I must confess that I actually shoot that Kimber "really well.")

These skill levels can be acheived with 9mm or larger, by anyone willing to learn the proper technique and put in a bit of practice.

If anyone would like to offer their idea of these skill levels, please present it.

To me personally there is no magic power level that suddenly and abrubtly stops at 9mm.

There is that thing known as foot pounds of energy. The best .380 load churns up all of 220 ft lbs, while a 9mm more than doubles it at 466 ft lbs. (Corbon 90 grain .380 vs. Corbon 115 JHP) Using your preferred FMJ load, however, the foot pounds drops to 192 or so. You might add some to the .380 from a longer barrel and subtract a touch from a shorter 9mm, but never the twain shall meet. The 9mm will always be ballistically superior to the .380

My modest testing of this Corbon 9mm load has shown me that it'll expand just fine, even thru multiple layers of denim. One thing I'll gain over fmj (which I'm not a fan of) is more transfer of the energy into the target. In addition, a bigger, badder hole which to bleed more from.

So if a smaller caliber than 9mm can be shot accurately and has adequate penetration to hit vital organs why should we scoff at it and doubts it's abilities to be lethal???

No one is arguing lethality. it IS lethal. But I want more than having the guy die in the parking lot after chopping me up into little pieces with his machete. You see, I want a better chance at stopping him before he completes the act I'm shooting him for. Now, I understand that "stopping power" is largely a myth, but I want to stack the deck in my favor as best I can.

Placement is key, as even a .25 acp in the eye will stop most any fight. But what about when you're shooting center mass and he moves, you move and your shot hits 3" wide of your mark? I doubt that many people would argue an FMJ with less than 1/2 the energy of a JHP will be "just as effective" as the JHP that has more than twice the .380 energy.

why not go below 9mm "ever" if the caliber will give adequate penetration?

First of all, I don't agree with your premise that a .380 DOES have enough power for "adequate penetration" in all plausible defense scenarios.

Second of all, why would I want to carry a .380 when I can carry a 9mm/.40 that's the same size and weight, if not less?

David E
May 27, 2010, 04:03 AM
A .32 also suffers from a lack of power and having a light bullet with very little momentum to carry it deep into the target and the added drawback of a semi-rimmed case that can cause feed problems.

Hey.............wait a minute............ what if the .32 carrier has "full confidence" in it? Does that change the power, momentum and penetration issues?

:D :D :D

huntsman
May 27, 2010, 10:00 AM
Second of all, why would I want to carry a .380 when I can carry a 9mm/.40 that's the same size and weight, if not less?

This stuff never ends.

I'm starting to think the best reason to carry a .380acp is just to piss-off all those who think I shouldn’t.

Fastcast
May 27, 2010, 10:45 AM
Back in 1976 when the Beretta 84 was new, it DID have a place in the overall scheme of things. Subcompact Glocks, Kahrs, EMP's, etc, did not yet exist. So if you wanted a mid-sized gun, a large .380 that held a lotta rounds made more sense than, perhaps, a 5-shot .38 snub. But, that was then, this is now. For the same weight, size and bulk, if not less, I could carry a more powerful caliber. My power-floor is 9mm+P JHP and there is no need whatsoever to go under it.

For the record....The 84 is my wife's (I have to admit carring it at times) and she's very efficient with it. As a matter of fact she was the best shot of 16 people at the CC course, with her 84. Most of guys just rolled their eyes at her golf ball size, ragged hole. The instructor even said, "gentleman you wouldn't want to mess with this lady".......It may be outdated and insufficient to you but I can assure you anyone that messes with her will regret the 285gr. (95gr X 3) burst that suddenly has ruined their day.

With that said, you're correct the 84 is large by today's standards, for a .380 and she has had her eye on the LCP for summer. We just picked one up Tues. but she claims she's still going to carry the 84 in winter.....We'll see.


Hell, I KNOW it'll kill a man dead. That's the caliber used to kill the aforementioned Sgt. But that it can kill isn't the point. A knitting needle can kill.......so what? My goal is to stop the guy from trying to kill me. Therefore, I want something that will STOP the badguy sooner rather than later. But your goals may be different.

What?.....York was never shot and killed with .32 or .380.

"The last ten years of Alvin York's life were spent in bed or occasionally in a wheelchair for short periods of time. These were years of pain and suffering, but he maintained a keen interest in his world until the end was near. For more than ten years his body had been wracked with pain and he was virtually blind. His doctors agreed that the complications which he suffered would have killed a man of lesser fortitude long before they killed Alvin York. He was hospitalized ten times in the last two years of his life. Finally the old soldier just faded away for "old Soldiers never die; they simply fade away." The end came for Sgt. Alvin C. York at the Veterans Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee on September 2, 1964, at the age of 76 years. "


With all due respect, that title belongs to you. Maybe "Caliber Elitist" might fit better, since you seem to dismiss any large caliber as overkill. Apparently, you think that only a great shot under pressure can make a .380 work for them when micro-seconds count when someone is actively trying to kill you. The lesser skilled, by your standard, must use larger calibers.....

Did you fall and hit your head?:scrutiny:.....I never said such non-sense. I love the .45 too and have it as well and still do carry .45 sometimes, just not always.....I believe I can get the job done, no matter what I carry, you don't. That's the difference between you and me. Confidence in MY ability, not the caliber I carry.


Frankly, no one cares how "confident" you are with a .380. It only matters how fast you can put the shot(s) where they must go to be effective in the shortest amount of time. And, again, the smaller you go in caliber and power, the more precisely you must place your shot(s) to be to be effective. I hope you're up to the task.

So it sounds like you're NOT confident in your own ability to place accurate shots under pressure so you compensate with a larger caliber. Sounds like insecurity to me and I know these types all too well. Back a many of years ago when I was heavily into sports, there was always the guys that were unsure of their ability and they were always the ones who couldn't get the job done. :rolleyes: ....... Confidence inspires greatness! ;)


I really have no desire to carry on this conversation with you.....It's obvious you lack confidence in your ability to get the job done with anything but the largest of calibers so you have a false sense of security that you'll wound them more with a bigger slug so they'll just give up.....LOL....As someone else said, it's about accurate shots to vital areas, not big holes in arms, shoulders or shins. :rolleyes:

We have a philosophical difference and I doubt we'll ever agree but go ahead and continue to blather on. I think I've made my point and I understand yours quite well.....Good day and God Bless.

Holgersen
May 27, 2010, 11:12 AM
My advice would be to use the money that you will save by NOT getting a .380 and get a nicer gun in a better caliber.

Seriously. I just can't think of a real reason to buy a .380 anymore. I think the gun magazines have people brainwashed. Three years ago you couldn't give .380 away where I live and now you can't find it.

I don't have the time or the money to run around looking for it. If you do than you can afford something nicer than a Bersa .380.

christcorp
May 27, 2010, 11:19 AM
A .32 also suffers from a lack of power and having a light bullet with very little momentum to carry it deep into the target and the added drawback of a semi-rimmed case that can cause feed problems.
Gotta love ignorance and double-speak. So, the FBI's recommendation of penetrating at least 12" is good for other calibers, but NOT for the 32acp??? Hmmm; so, when the AVERAGE FMJ 32acp penetrates 14-15 inches, "That's not good"??? When they make HP ammo that can penetrate 10-12", "That's not good"??? When companies like Buffalo-Bore make rounds that are even hotter, "That's not good"???

http://www.goldenloki.com/ammo/gel/32acp/gel32acp.htm

I love how people rationalize. If it isn't what you shoot, or it isn't what you spent your money on, and it doesn't coincide with your opinion to make you appear to be an expert on the subject; then it MUST BE WRONG. Whether it's a 32acp for self defense, or a Hi-Point pistol compared to a glock. Hate to tell some of you "Experts", but the 32acp "Can" be a very effective self defense cartridge. I say "CAN", because there are variables and limitations. I never said there weren't. E.g. I would not use my 32acp in the middle of winter when my potential target is most likely wearing a very heavy parka type winter coat. Where I live, it easily gets below 0 degrees. However, in the summer, when people are wearing no more than a t-shirt or wind-breaker, I have total confidence in the 32acp.

And while we're at it, the people who say a 380acp is only really good as a "Backup" gun. If that isn't the STUPIDEST thing I've ever heard. People dog the 380 crowd because they say that you can easily get a 9mm pistol that's the same size and such as a 380. Well, if that's true, and they're carrying the smaller 9mm being talked about, then why not have the same type of pistol as a backup? If a gun/caliber is good enough to be a backup, it's good enough to be your carry weapon. If you think it has limitations for carrying, then you shouldn't be carrying it even as a backup.

And hell, I'm pissed and on a roll, might as well get the "We are equal to Police" crap out of the way too. No, as a civilian "Potential Victim" you do NOT have the same threats against you or the same similar scenarios that police, military, and other similar agencies have against them. Those people are in positions of authority. Their mere presence alone instills people to automatically become defensive in nature. Even criminals. And it's not uncommon for a criminal to respond defensively towards police and authorities. But these law enforcement type agencies are openly and offensively entering into a situation. Yes, it can be defensive in nature by shooting back at someone, but it isn't like the criminals are going around trying to Rob, Mug, Rape, etc... police officers. Which leads to the common "victim" and why we conceal carry. These criminals have accessed you as their target. They do not believe that there is a good chance that you are armed or that you will even try and fight back. If they were confident that you might, they would almost definitely choose an easier and more likely victim/target. These criminals are definitely offensive in nature. And the minute you present a firearm, this is NOT what they expected. That alone will eliminate the threat more than 95% of the time. Even none monetary crimes where the bad guy KNOWS the victim. They are not expecting the victim to be armed and willing to draw and fire that gun. Sorry, but the scenarios and situations of a typical civilian/potential victim is NOT the same as the local police, sheriff, military, or other similarly related agencies.

David E
May 27, 2010, 11:24 AM
Weevil asked: Not just trying to argue but I don't really understand why you have this line in the sand you're drawing at 9mm?

David E replied: Second of all, why would I want to carry a .380 when I can carry a 9mm/.40 that's the same size and weight, if not less?

Huntsman states: I'm starting to think the best reason to carry a .380acp is just to piss-off all those who think I shouldn’t.

1) The post to which you refer was my response to him asking why _I_ draw the line at 9mm.

2) I don't care what you carry!

3) Reading the posts in sequence and context might help in understanding them....

pockets
May 27, 2010, 11:59 AM
I'm starting to think the best reason to carry a .380acp is just to piss-off all those who think I shouldn’t.
Amen.

FLAvalanche
May 27, 2010, 12:37 PM
This stuff never ends.

I'm starting to think the best reason to carry a .380acp is just to piss-off all those who think I shouldn’t.
In the eternal words of Cousin Eddie...BINGO!

David E
May 27, 2010, 12:45 PM
David E wrote: I KNOW it'll (the .380 caliber) kill a man dead. That's the caliber used to kill the aforementioned Sgt.

What?.....York was never shot and killed with .32 or .380.

I never said York, nor was I referring to him. I was referring the the Sgt in our department that was killed that I mentioned in post #125. Did you even read it?

I believe I can get the job done, no matter what I carry, you don't. That's the difference between you and me. Confidence in MY ability, not the caliber I carry.

Yeah, but will that "confidence" carry you thru.....when you get hit with a harsh does of reality? :rolleyes:

We've all seen the "Yeah, I can do that with one hand tied behind my back, faster and better than you, etc, etc, etc." types. They always have one thing in common: they're a legend in their own mind.

Some try to BS their way thru, hoping you'll buy their line, but deep down, they know it's a line they're trying to sell. These guys usually shut up when you compare skills and best them, but not before the excuses start. ("the sun was in my eyes, I wasn't ready, you cheated," etc, etc)

But some.......some of them actually believe the line they're selling. You'll never hear the end of how good or "confident" they are, since they are soooo much more skilled than the next guy...maybe specifically you. But try and get them to show off that skill! Oh, no, they have "no need to showboat," or company rules prohibit them from showing off their skills. (I've actually heard these excuses) Regardless, they assure you (and mostly themselves) that they are, indeed, very highly skilled. :rolleyes:

I posted a picture of what I did with a compact lightweight .45, detailing the parameters as to how I did it. (I even had a witness) Where is their picture? Where is their proof? Exactly. Don't hold your breath waiting for it. Why go out and perform a simple drill when blustering arrogance might suffice online?

So it sounds like you're NOT confident in your own ability to place accurate shots under pressure ....

Wow, that's so me. :rolleyes: How about we agree on a plausible self defense scenario that has the gun starting in the holster, hands at sides.

I'll pose this one: 3 IPSC or IDPA targets placed at 5 yds, one foot apart from each other, edge to edge. Using a shot timer, at the random signal, draw and engage each target with 2 shots each. Add 1/2 second to the time for each point dropped.

If your range facilities don't make that feasible, then let's do 6 shots on ONE 5 yard target. Again, gun holstered, hands at sides.

A shot timer must be used. Surely, a serious handgunner such as yourself either owns one or can borrow one.

If you don't have access to those targets, staple sheets of typing paper to some cardboard at chest height.

Now, if I use a more powerful caliber than your .380 and beat your time, what would that tell you?

Let me be blunt: I highly doubt you can beat me, regardless of caliber. Use a .22 if you wish, it won't matter. I'm not suggesting the "challenge" to represent an "I'm better than you" kind of thing, I'm issuing it hoping you'll do it and discover where your actual abilities really are. I suspect they're not where you thinkthey are. Maybe you'll practice some more and improve your skill level, no matter where it is. I'd call that a "win-win."

So, if I can remove any pressure and get you or anyone else to do it, that'd be great!


I just hope the excuses don't start. ("I'm too busy, I already know what I can do, I have no need to show off," etc, etc, etc)

Weevil
May 27, 2010, 01:21 PM
This is a matter of technique and practice. Let's define "control" and "fairly well," as these terms mean very different things to people. Here's what I did recently with my Kimber 4" Compact Aluminum stainless loaded with FMJ equivalent ammo:

Range was 5 yds, start position was hand on holstered gun. I used a shot timer, not a stopwatch. At the random signal, I drew and fired 5 rounds. (I was comparing to a 5-shot snub) The 1.35 means I reacted to the beep and fired those five shots on paper in 1.35 seconds, total elapsed time.

But let's define "fairly well" as being able to put 5 rds on a sheet of typing paper in 2 seconds or less, starting at high or low ready. (I'll leave out the draw, here)

Maybe we can define "really well" as firing 6 rounds on a sheet of typing paper at 5 yds, from the holster, hands starting at sides. (if I use this definition, then I must confess that I actually shoot that Kimber "really well.")

These skill levels can be acheived with 9mm or larger, by anyone willing to learn the proper technique and put in a bit of practice.

If anyone would like to offer their idea of these skill levels, please present it.



Well that is some good shooting but come on Dave do you really consider that big ol' honkin metal and wood pistol a small thin lightweight CCW pistol???

Seriously it's just a bobbed version of a full-size pistol. If I was gonna carry something that big and heavy I'd want a .45 too! ;)



There is that thing known as foot pounds of energy. The best .380 load churns up all of 220 ft lbs, while a 9mm more than doubles it at 466 ft lbs. (Corbon 90 grain .380 vs. Corbon 115 JHP) Using your preferred FMJ load, however, the foot pounds drops to 192 or so. You might add some to the .380 from a longer barrel and subtract a touch from a shorter 9mm, but never the twain shall meet. The 9mm will always be ballistically superior to the .380

My modest testing of this Corbon 9mm load has shown me that it'll expand just fine, even thru multiple layers of denim. One thing I'll gain over fmj (which I'm not a fan of) is more transfer of the energy into the target. In addition, a bigger, badder hole which to bleed more from.



Yes the 9mm is a more potent round but once again that power comes with a price, that being less control in a "small" pistol of the same size and weight.

In a big service size pistol that gives good control for the caliber there is no doubt you're better served with the 9mm.

However in a small lightweight pistol the 9mm is difficult to control and shoot effectively, so do we stick with a the more powerful round even if we are sacrificing control??

To be effective we must be able to actually hit the target who like you say may well be moving as you may well be. Do we want to try and hit that moving target with a pistol that's difficult to shoot just because the rounds have more power???

Remember we're talking small lightweight CCW pistols not big ol' metal and wood compacts.


No one is arguing lethality. it IS lethal. But I want more than having the guy die in the parking lot after chopping me up into little pieces with his machete. You see, I want a better chance at stopping him before he completes the act I'm shooting him for. Now, I understand that "stopping power" is largely a myth, but I want to stack the deck in my favor as best I can.

Placement is key, as even a .25 acp in the eye will stop most any fight. But what about when you're shooting center mass and he moves, you move and your shot hits 3" wide of your mark? I doubt that many people would argue an FMJ with less than 1/2 the energy of a JHP will be "just as effective" as the JHP that has more than twice the .380 energy.




Well I define "stopping power" as the ability to stop an attacker without necessarily killing them, and there is no doubt that larger more powerful calibers are more effective at this.

You will indeed lose this ability with the smaller caliber and have to rely on precise and lethal hits and you may well wind up battling it out hand-to-hand if that fails. Being fit and healthy and knowing how to fight are also good skills to posess. It doesn't hurt to have a pocket knife either.

If you want better odds carry a full-size service pistol in a potent caliber on your hip and not some itty-bitty little CCW pistol in your pocket.


First of all, I don't agree with your premise that a .380 DOES have enough power for "adequate penetration" in all plausible defense scenarios.

Second of all, why would I want to carry a .380 when I can carry a 9mm/.40 that's the same size and weight, if not less?


No .380 does not work for "all plausible defense scenarios" that's why I only use it for CCW in small lightweight pistols.

I carry it because I can control it better in these type of "small" pistols.

It's not the best caliber for all situations but it does offer a good balance of power and control in small lightweight CCW type pistols.

easyg
May 27, 2010, 01:46 PM
And hell, I'm pissed and on a roll, might as well get the "We are equal to Police" crap out of the way too. No, as a civilian "Potential Victim" you do NOT have the same threats against you or the same similar scenarios that police, military, and other similar agencies have against them.

What?!?!
You can't be serious. :scrutiny:


It is true that the military, DURING COMBAT, will face threats that the average citizen will never face (artillery barrage, hand grenades, RPG's, roadside bombs, crew served weapons fire, sniper fire, chemical attacks, etc...whatever).


But the police don't face any threats that the average non-cop doesn't face.
The self defense needs of the cop are no greater than the self defense needs of the non-cop.
And when faced with a deadly threat you can bet that the cop wants to stop that threat ASAP.
This is why they carry firearms.
And when the average non-cop is faced with a deadly threat you can bet that he too will want to stop that threat ASAP.


As we all know, handguns are a compromise....we all want something that is powerful enough to stop a threat, yet controllable enough for accurate and quick shooting.
Luckily, others have already paved the way for us in discovering what calibers are controllable, yet consistently effective....and the .380 aint one of them.


There is a very good reason cops today don't rely upon .380 pistols, and even weaker handguns, to quickly stop threats....
Policing today is the result of knowledge garnered from centuries of prior police work.
And over the years it has been learned that the .380 (and weaker calibers) perform very poorly at quickly stopping human threats.

If you want to carry a .380, that's fine with me.
But don't come on a forum and make statements that might mislead a novice to shooting....
Statements declaring that the .380 is just as effective as a 9mm (or more powerful caliber) for self defense.
It just aint true.



Easy

Holgersen
May 27, 2010, 01:52 PM
Does anyone else think it's funny that this is like a 9mm vs. .45 thread but with .380 vs. everything else?

I still think .380 is too expensive to be worth it. At least for me.

Why are we arguing about this when we could be spending so much more constructive time arguing on the thread about Stephen Kings Dark Tower series and whether he has any idea what he is talking about when it comes to guns?

easyg
May 27, 2010, 01:52 PM
However in a small lightweight pistol the 9mm is difficult to control and shoot effectively, so do we stick with a the more powerful round even if we are sacrificing control??
What small light-weight 9mm pistols are you referring to?

I have never shot any small light-weight 9mm pistol that was any more difficult to control, or shoot effectively, than the average small light-weight .380 pistol.
And some small 9mm pistols (like the Glock 26) are very easy to shoot effectively and accurately.

FLAvalanche
May 27, 2010, 02:03 PM
But the police don't face any threats that the average non-cop doesn't face.


I had to quit reading there. You don't honestly believe that do you?

Sorry but when was the last time you pulled over a car full of thugs willing to protect the $100,000 worth of heroin in the trunk? When was the last time you were called to a domestic dispute on the wrong side of town? When was the last time you had to serve a warrant to a 3rd strike felon who is going to do anything in his power to keep from going to jail.

I'm not a cop. I've never done any of that...Saying that civilians face the same threats as cops just deserves the BS flag run up the pole.

easyg
May 27, 2010, 02:26 PM
Sorry but when was the last time you pulled over a car full of thugs willing to protect the $100,000 worth of heroin in the trunk?
The average cop will make his entire career in the force and never see that.
And they have the means to run the tag which can often give them a heads-up about what they might be facing.
And some of us live in neighborhoods where we encounter thugs everyday.

When was the last time you were called to a domestic dispute on the wrong side of town?
Heck, I've been IN a domestic disturbance on the wrong side of town!

When was the last time you had to serve a warrant to a 3rd strike felon who is going to do anything in his power to keep from going to jail.
And how often do they send a lone cop to serve such a felon?
When the cops think they are likely to encounter strong resistance, they always bring back up.


I'm not a cop. I've never done any of that...
I also bet you don't wear ballistic armor like cops do.
And I'll also bet you don't have a radio that you can call for back up when you encounter trouble....you can always call 911 and take your chances on how long it will take them to get there, but the cop in distress gets number one priority.
Maybe you just live in a very safe place or grew up with a sheltered life?

I don't have any beef with cops, but it aint like the movies, they don't really face any threats that the average Joe doesn't face.
Who do you think is more likely to get shot, a cop, or a third shift 7-11 store worker?

David E
May 27, 2010, 02:28 PM
Well that is some good shooting but come on Dave do you really consider that big ol' honkin metal and wood pistol a small thin lightweight CCW pistol???

The slide width, the part that goes inside my pants, is .920" thick. The grips are 1.056", so yeah, it's thinner than the 84, which comes in at 1.4" thick. It weighs about 27 oz, or only 3.7 oz more than the Beretta 84. It's just an inch longer than the 84 and it's a touch shorter height-wise than the 84.

Remember we're talking small lightweight CCW pistols not big ol' metal and wood compacts.

It appears we have different ideas of what "small, lightweight and thin" mean.

The Kimber Compact is merely the gun I'm carrying now, I wasn't really trying to compare it directly to the 84, altho it looks to compare quite favorably. The gun I would compare directly is the Kahr P-9. That gun is significantly lighter, shorter both in length and height and is thinner. And while it holds fewer rounds, each round has more than twice the energy of the .380. The Springfield EMP also compares quite favorably to the 84.

Seriously it's just a bobbed version of a full-size pistol. If I was gonna carry something that big and heavy I'd want a .45 too!

If I was going to carry a gun as big, heavy and as thick as a Beretta 84, I'd want it to at least be a 9mm. But that's me.

Yes the 9mm is a more potent round but once again that power comes with a price, that being less control in a "small" pistol of the same size and weight.

I'm glad you agree that it's a more potent round. Not everyone in this thread would acknowledge that fact!

As far as "control," I will put my "lighter-than-your-84 Kahr P-9 up against your Beretta on the above suggested drills anytime. In fact, I should be able to set it up this weekend, if not Friday. I'll post my results. What gun(s) would you like me to try?

However in a small lightweight pistol the 9mm is difficult to control and shoot effectively, so do we stick with a the more powerful round even if we are sacrificing control??

For purposes of this discussion, I defined a skill level ("control") threshold in a previous post:

But let's define "fairly well" as being able to put 5 rds on a sheet of typing paper in 2 seconds or less, starting at high or low ready. (I'll leave out the draw, here)

Maybe we can define "really well" as firing 6 rounds on a sheet of typing paper at 5 yds, from the holster, hands starting at sides. These skill levels can be acheived with 9mm or larger, by anyone willing to learn the proper technique and put in a bit of practice.

Let's use meaningful numbers instead of vague references.

With your 9mm, what are you shooting at, how far and how fast? How big is the group? How much better are you doing it with your .380?

I've said over and over, if a .380 is the largest caliber one can control, then it's a good choice for that person. It clearly beats a .32, "confidence" notwithstanding.

Weevil, I appreciate your civility in this discussion!


f

Weevil
May 27, 2010, 02:33 PM
What small light-weight 9mm pistols are you referring to?

I have never shot any small light-weight 9mm pistol that was any more difficult to control, or shoot effectively, than the average small light-weight .380 pistol.
And some small 9mm pistols (like the Glock 26) are very easy to shoot effectively and accurately.

The Kel-Tecs like the P11 and PF9 or the Rohrbaugh R9, pistols that have generally been .380 or .32 calibers in that size but are now being offered in 9mm.

A Glock 26 is just another bobbed version of a full-size pistol and certainly not a drop in your pocket type CCW.

David E
May 27, 2010, 02:40 PM
The Kel-Tecs like the P11 and PF9 or the Rohrbaugh R9, pistols that have generally been .380 or .32 calibers in that size but are now being offered in 9mm.

I have the P-11. I don't like the trigger pull, so I don't carry it. It does have its place in my modest collection, so I won't get rid of it, but it's not a gun I recommend to many.

But certainly the Kahr P-9 falls within your parameters. Being thinner and lighter than the P-11, it should be even harder to shoot, right ?

Weevil
May 27, 2010, 02:44 PM
It appears we have different ideas of what "small, lightweight and thin" mean.

The Kimber Compact is merely the gun I'm carrying now, I wasn't really trying to compare it directly to the 84, altho it looks to compare quite favorably. The gun I would compare directly is the Kahr P-9. That gun is significantly lighter, shorter both in length and height and is thinner. And while it holds fewer rounds, each round has more than twice the energy of the .380. The Springfield EMP also compares quite favorably to the 84.




Yes I tend to agree the 84 and it's various versions are a bit large for a .380 and it is once again a wood and metal pistol, so yeah I'll concede the point on that one.

However the 84 isn't a very common or popular .380 and I'd say you have explained why.

However the Kimber and the EMP and even to an extent the Kahr are positively huge compared to many of the small 9 & .380s now available. While they may compare favorably to an outdated design like the 84 they are nowhere near as small and concealable as many modern CCW pistols.


Weevil, I appreciate your civility in this discussion!


No problem, I enjoy discussing guns and I certainly don't think I have all the answers or know everything so it's good to hear the point of view of others who are actually thinking about the matters at hand and not just making knee-jerk reactions or spewing cliche's. ;)

David E
May 27, 2010, 02:50 PM
However the Kimber and the EMP and even to an extent the Kahr are positively huge compared to many of the small 9 & .380s now available. While they may compare favorably to an outdated design like the 84 they are nowhere near as small and concealable as many modern CCW pistols.

Now I'm curious what you categorize as a "modern CCW pistol." The P-9 is an utter delight to carry IWB.

I wasn't trying to compare any of them to a POCKET .380, only to the Beretta 84. One of my points is that a "modern .380" should be a pocket gun, not a belt gun. If you're going to carry a .380 on the belt, then you could just as easily carry a 9mm or .40 instead.

The Kahr PM-9 does compare favorably to a pocket .380, but I personally want a bit "more" in a primary defense gun.

Fastcast
May 27, 2010, 04:27 PM
Now I'm curious what you categorize as a "modern CCW pistol." The P-9 is an utter delight to carry IWB.

I wasn't trying to compare any of them to a POCKET .380, only to the Beretta 84. One of my points is that a "modern .380" should be a pocket gun, not a belt gun. If you're going to carry a .380 on the belt, then you could just as easily carry a 9mm or .40 instead.


LOL ..... No thanks. I'll take the tried and true 84 over the not always reliable P-9, PM9, or Keltec this or Taurus that.

You just see how much info you can find on unreliable 84's or BDA's......Good luck.....These pistols are bet your life reliable and have been for years. They go bang everytime, not just most of the time.

I'll take 14 rounds of absolutely reliable .380 over 7 rounds of somewhat reliable 9mm, because it's what you prefer and think is best for everyone.

I have no intentions of retiring the faithful 84 because you believe a more modern 7 shot 9mm with a not so perfect track record is a better CCW.

Weevil
May 27, 2010, 06:38 PM
Now I'm curious what you categorize as a "modern CCW pistol." The P-9 is an utter delight to carry IWB.

I wasn't trying to compare any of them to a POCKET .380, only to the Beretta 84. One of my points is that a "modern .380" should be a pocket gun, not a belt gun. If you're going to carry a .380 on the belt, then you could just as easily carry a 9mm or .40 instead.

The Kahr PM-9 does compare favorably to a pocket .380, but I personally want a bit "more" in a primary defense gun.


I was refering to the small .380 sized 9mm's like the Ket-Tecs or that new Taurus.

Very small and concealable but brutal to shoot.

I must say I'm not real up on the Kahrs as mentioned I've heard bad things about them too, especially the polymer models so I've shyed away from them.

sonier
May 27, 2010, 07:12 PM
hey weevil I know a good bit about firearms lol, I know I was at a buddy's house and it was deer season in georgia, he pulled out his 454 casull these two does in his backyard lined up perfectly and guess what, he shot the first doe broadside and BOTH HIT the ground right there dead both of them shot WITH ONE ROUND, broadside. DRT so yes even pistols can kill instantly on the first shot.

David E
May 27, 2010, 08:58 PM
I can't speak to the reliability of ALL Kahr's out there, only to the two that I own. They ARE 100% reliable. The P-9 holds 8, not 7. My other is a K-40.

My Kimber shown in the picture has been 100% as well. It's not difficult or uncomfortable at all to carry it in a BraveHeart IWB rig from www.kytac.com, but I guess some folks have different priorities on such matters.

I have no intentions of retiring the faithful 84 because you believe a more modern 7 shot 9mm with a not so perfect track record is a better CCW.

You must've missed my post where I said I don't care one whit about what you carry. I only care about what _I_ carry! Just don't expect thinking folks to accept your "my small and weak caliber is just as effective as your bigger one" garbage.

fastcast, I noticed two things:

1) you were not done discussing this topic, as you claimed. ;)

2) you totally ignored my range drills. I'm going to do them all! Which one are you going to do?

Weevil
May 27, 2010, 09:58 PM
I can't speak to the reliability of ALL Kahr's out there, only to the two that I own. They ARE 100% reliable. The P-9 holds 8, not 7. My other is a K-40.

My Kimber shown in the picture has been 100% as well. It's not difficult or uncomfortable at all to carry it in a BraveHeart IWB rig from www.kytac.com, but I guess some folks have different priorities on such matters.



Like I say I'm not to up on the Kahrs, no one I know owns one so I haven't been able to try one out. I've never even seen one for sale locally other than occasionally at the gunshows.

Basically all I've ever heard about them is internet rumors and we all know how accurate those are.

Maybe I'll keep a closer eye out for them in the future.


Aren't they owned by the Moonies or somehow associated with them???


I like Kimbers, I've got a full-size Gold Combat.


http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n200/srebough/KIMBER1911A.jpg


It's one of my all-time favorite shooters and I occasionally use it for CCW during the winter months.

christcorp
May 27, 2010, 10:09 PM
I, on occasion, carry an AMT Backup 380 in my front pocket. (no, lets not talk about the particular brand whether you like it or not, just the size and caliber). It is very easy to carry for certain scenarios. At 20 feet, I am extremely accurate with it. Doesn't require much aiming or anything. But a 380 out of that little thing is a monster. I can't even imagine how a 9mm would feel out of a gun that size. It would almost be unshootable

Now I know you mentioned that for a "pocket" gun, the 380 was fine, but if you were going to have a holster, then you should go up to the 9mm. There is a lot of logic to that. There are indeed 9mm pistols that mimic the size of 380's when it comes to the typical size used in a holster. Even the small ones. But it's still a matter of what a person feels most comfortable shooting. There's one person I know that ONLY shoots 45acp. He has a colt 1911A1 5", a short springer emp for carry, a sig p220, and a number of others. He thinks the 45acp is the BEST caliber against people and that's all there is to it. I don't even think he owns another pistol caliber. But I have to say, when it comes to the 45acp, I don't know anyone who is more proficient and knows more about a particular cartridge, than he is.

And there can definitely be others like that with the 380. Maybe they shot one, liked the feel of it, and that's the only caliber they shoot. They might have 2-3 different size pistols/capacities for different uses. And if that person really likes that caliber, and is really into it, then they are probably very proficient with it. As such, they are probably much better armed than the average person who shoots 2 times a year, and has a glock 17 with 15 rounds of 147 grain hollow points.

If a person thinks that another person is wrong in what they carry, because of the caliber or gun, then they are the one that is wrong. It doesn't matter if it's a 32, 380, 9mm mak, 9mm luger, 40sw, or 45acp. If the person is comfortable shooting their gun and caliber; and they practice and are proficient; then what more do you need. A 32acp can go up to 14 inches of penetration. Everyone says the FBI says you need a minimum of 12 inches. What's the problem. The 380 obviously can penetrate even more. If the person shooting is proficient enough to drop 3 round into the size of a baseball at 20-30 feet, and it's going to penetrate the minimum that the "Experts" suggest, then how can you say they are wrong.

I'll give some credit to those who criticize my opinion of the 32acp. Only because it's a slightly smaller diameter bullet. But the 380, 9mm, and 38 spl are all the same diameter bullet. And the energy in a bullet can't "Knock you down", so the only advantage of increased velocity and energy, is so it can expand the bullet; if it's a hollow point. And to be honest, the MAIN reason even for a hollow point, is to purposely SLOW down the bullet so it doesn't over penetrate. Yes, modern bullets also have the additional advantage of being able to create a virtual larger bullet diameter, and cause more damage, but that's a secondary purpose of the hollow point. If a person shoots a 380 in powerball, critical defense, or FMJ, and can penetrate 14-15 inches, how can you dog the caliber. That goes against all arguments for the caliber wars. Might as well just carry a 460. A 380, depending on the ammo, can penetrate anywhere from 10" to 17". So, what is so wrong with that???
http://www.goldenloki.com/ammo/gel/380acp/gel380acp.htm

I know there are some people that strictly believe in carrying the largest caliber that you can handle. That's fine and dandy. And if a person could ONLY afford 1 gun, then there is no doubt that I would recommend that they get a 9mm (If they just had to have a semi-auto) or a 357 magnum (If they could handle a revolver). The 9mm, while not a very versatile caliber, with only a few sizes; mainly 115, 124, and 147. (Yes, there are a few other unique brands). But the 9mm is very common in use, that it's availability and price is very good. If a person could handle the revolver, then the 357 magnum is the BEST ALL TIME ALL AROUND pistol there is. Everything from the 380 up to the 45acp and into the 357 magnum full loads into the 41 magnum. There is a round for EVERYTHING.

But in the "Better" world, people can have MORE than 1 pistol. If you can own more than one pistol, then there's nothing wrong with having different pistols and different calibers to take care of different scenarios. My AMT Backup 380 or my Walther PPK 32acp, both have scenarios in which they are BETTER than my Sig P220 45acp, my EMT, my Beretta 9mm, or even my cz-82 9mm mak. Now there are definitely times when the 32 and 380 aren't the best choice. But to say that they are never a good choice is silly.

Then again, there's the pessimists who insist that you "Never Know" what might happen. So you need to be prepared for the worst. Sorry, but I'm not buying it. You don't even believe that. If you really did, you'd never leave home. And if you did, you'd always be carrying a 44magnum or a shotgun. Because pistols by their very nature are a compromise. So there's definitely no way a 32 or 380 can handle all situations. But they are definitely adequate for certain scenarios. And for the person who only has one gun, get a 9mm or a 357 magnum.

David E
May 27, 2010, 10:14 PM
It looks like I'll be going to the range Friday (Saturday for sure)

Some folks may not be able to draw from concealment, no cover garment will be used.

Since no one offered up any other drill suggestions, I'll shoot a sheet of typing paper @ 5 yds with 5 or 6 shots, both from "high ready" (gun retracted against chest, not sighted in) or from "Low Ready," where arms are extended, pointing down at a 45 degree angle. From the holster, remember, hands start at sides. I will use a CED shot timer set on "random start" for all strings.

Remember, the "I-can-shoot-fairly-well" threshold time for this drill is 5 shots in under 2 seconds from high ready.

OR, 6 shots from the holster, hands at sides, in under 2 seconds for the "I-can-shoot-very-well" threshold.

If time permits, I'll set up the 3 target drill, also.

I plan on shooting the following guns:

1) 4" Compact Aluminum Stainless Kimber in .45 acp

2) Kahr P-9

3) Colt Mustang .380 (all steel) (from high ready only)

4) Keltec 3AT (from high ready only)

5) Keltec P-11 in 9mm

Does anyone have any "gun requests?" Is anyone else up for the challenge?

p

btg3
May 27, 2010, 10:55 PM
Look forward to the results! How about a larger 9mm (eg: M&Pc), or do you not consider the P-9 and P-11 a tad redundant?

Buck Snort
May 27, 2010, 11:04 PM
Hey.............wait a minute............ what if the .32 carrier has "full confidence" in it? Does that change the power, momentum and penetration issues?

:D :D :D
I'm sure he'll have "full confidence" in it right up the the point where his assailant cancels his ticket.

Buck Snort
May 27, 2010, 11:20 PM
Huntsman wrote: " 'm starting to think the best reason to carry a .380acp is just to piss-off all those who think I shouldn’t."

I'm starting to think the best reason to carry a .45 ACP is to stop an attack by an aggressive felon.

David E
May 27, 2010, 11:49 PM
Look forward to the results! How about a larger 9mm (eg: M&Pc), or do you not consider the P-9 and P-11 a tad redundant?

I don't have a compact M&P, but I do have a Glock 26. I can do that one.

I do find the Keltec P-11 and Kahr a bit redundant, but since the P-11 is specifically mentioned by one of the posters as being "uncontrollable," it made sense to include it. Likewise, since my direct comparison to the Beretta 84 is the Kahr P-9, it makes sense to include that, as well.

Thanks for the comments!

David E
May 27, 2010, 11:50 PM
I'm sure he'll have "full confidence" in it right up the the point where his assailant cancels his ticket.

Now, THAT'S funny right there!

LibShooter
May 28, 2010, 12:22 AM
You can't prepare for EVERYTHING. If I stumble over a grizzly bear on my way to the parking lot, my CCW will not be enough. If I turn the corner into a Colombian Cartel in a shootout over drugs, I'm not going to be ready. If those are likely threats in your neighborhood, I recommend a 12 Ga. loaded with slugs, a fully auto AK, body armor and an appointment with a realtor.

Luckily, the most likely threats in my life are low-life meth addicts or shivering gangsta wannabes. A .45 would be great for dealing with those. So would a 9mm. But I'm betting a smaller gun would suffice. (In my case it's a .38 snubbie, but I'm shopping for a .380.)

As for the higher cost of .380: I'm lucky to find time to shoot 5 full boxes of my CCW ammo per year. That would make the price difference about 30 bucks a year. That's one dinner, out.

Yes, I realize I'm betting my life. Just like I'm betting my life every day I drive my little-bitty Honda instead of a Hummer H2. Life is full of compromises. I'll compromise a little power to carry a lightweight gun that's comfortable to shoot.

David E
May 28, 2010, 12:36 AM
If you'll carry a .380, but not something larger, then you're better off with the .380.

You raise a more difficult question: Which is better, a large .380 (Beretta 84) or a similarly sized 5-shot J frame .38 snubby?

Hmmmmmmmmm.............

David E
May 28, 2010, 01:07 AM
But I'm betting a smaller gun would suffice. (In my case it's a .38 snubbie...

Here's a pic of what I did a couple months ago at the range with a .38 snub with 158 grain LSWCHP +P factory ammo in the "I-can-shoot-fairly-well" drill:



http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g311/Sooper1/Shooting%20Related%20Things/DSCF0001.jpg

Fastcast
May 28, 2010, 01:22 AM
Just don't expect thinking folks to accept your "my small and weak caliber is just as effective as your bigger one" garbage.

fastcast, I noticed two things:

1) you were not done discussing this topic, as you claimed. ;)

2) you totally ignored my range drills. I'm going to do them all! Which one are you going to do?

Did you fall off your highchair as a baby and puncture your Cerebral cortex? :eek:

Can you please go back and find where I said what you claim: "my small and weak caliber is just as effective as your bigger one".......Uh, oh that's right, you can't because I never said that. As a matter of fact I've said numerous times, that I'm not saying the .380 is just as effective, all things being equal of course. All I've said is the .380 can be very effective if you hit the vitals.....What part of that do you find difficult to understand? :what: The part about me not believing your assertion that .380 is no better than a "spitball", as you claim with such asinine authority? :rolleyes:

No, I'm not playing your games or doing as you tell me to. You want to twist and turn everything I'm saying and you now want me to participate in some unofficial shootout, including shooting times and papers punched full of holes from 2 feet.....LMAO..... No thanks, I find no legitimacy in you do this and I'll do that and we'll then post our results on THR. :rolleyes:

sonier
May 28, 2010, 01:31 AM
simple 380 will work so will a 44 mag, but 44 mag has better stopping power its simple 380 is small but it is light and more comfortable to carry, 44 mag is big but is not as easy to carry.

David E
May 28, 2010, 02:12 AM
The part about me not believing your assertion that .380 is no better than a "spitball", as you claim with such asinine authority?

Why the hostility? Are you off your meds?

First of all, I didn't say the .380 was no better than a spitball. I said "if you want to carry a .380, .32 or spitball, go ahead." A 3rd grader knows that I didn't say that a .380 IS a spitball.

I even clarified this for you in post #128. All you had to do was read it. :rolleyes:

Can you please go back and find where I said what you claim: "my small and weak caliber is just as effective as your bigger one".......Uh, oh that's right, you can't because I never said that.

Let's see.........Post #110: I'm sure no bad guys are gonna want anything to do with 14 rounds of .380 coming out of a Beretta 84 with a full 4" barrel, as fast and accurate as could possibly be imagined. That's what those pistols are all about, fast, accurate and high cap to assure the job gets done.

That sounds rather declarative and final to me. But, ok, you didn't actually say the .380 was "just as effective" as a larger caliber. You simply inferred it multiple times...so, my mistake....:rolleyes:

No, I'm not playing your games or doing as you tell me to. You want to twist and turn everything I'm saying and you now want me to participate in some unofficial shootout, including shooting times and papers punched full of holes from 2 feet.....LMAO.....

It was more of an invitation, or an excuse to go to the range! And the distance is 5 yds, not 2 feet. Again, all you had to do was read the post....

No thanks, I find no legitimacy in you do this and I'll do that and we'll then post our results on THR.

Just as I predicted in Post # 141: But try and get them to show off that skill! Oh, no, they have "no need to showboat," .....Regardless, they assure you (and mostly themselves) that they are, indeed, very highly skilled.

As fastcast claimed in Post #110: I can put 3 rounds from the 84 in a softball size group at 7 yards faster than one can imagine.

I doubt it.

But why go out and perform a simple drill when blustering arrogance might suffice online?

Fastcast
May 28, 2010, 08:52 AM
Saying .380 can get the job done "multiple" times is hardly saying it's just as good as the larger calibers......It's simply stating that it can be effective in personal SD roles for civilians. I realize now though, that you have a very hard time with comprehension 101. :what:


Look, you guys that want to carry a .380 or .32 or spitballs, go ahead.

I think it's pretty clear that you're equating both the .380 and .32 in the same league as a spitball....Your words above, not mine.....Stop trying to back pedal. :banghead:

I know what I'm capable of with my pistols and I don't need to prove it to you. As if posting some pictures of paper and times on the internet proves anything....LOL

Guess what, I can do the same thing with my newly acquired CZ-82 in 9Mak.....As a matter of fact my 1911 buddy, who believes no other pistol is worthy to be carried, shot my 82 and double tapped a softball, wedged in an old, rotted tree stump at 5 yards (like you set up, I normally go 7yrd.). He was shocked and you could see the surprise all over his face. :what: He could never do that with the .45 nor could I with .45 or .40.

So my point is since you obviously hate these rounds and the larger guns that shoot them and most likely have no first hand experience with them, you are showing your ignorance of what they're capable of. For the record, that hard core 1911 buddy really liked that CZ-82 and said "I'd carry that in the summer, it even has the same controls as the 1911". .......Maybe someday your light will turn on too but I doubt it.

David E
May 28, 2010, 02:54 PM
He could never do that with the .45 nor could I with .45 or .40.

Yeah, it's that whole "proper technique and practice" thing again.......:rolleyes:


I "know" what I'm capable of with my pistols and I don't need to prove it to you.

No.........but I was hoping.......that instead of having delusions of your proclaimed skill I can put 3 rounds from the 84 in a softball size group at 7 yards faster than one can imagine. .......you'd want to find out your actual ability........ for yourself.

christcorp
May 28, 2010, 04:45 PM
Fastcast; you're definitely on the right track. You don't have to have a 9mm luger or larger to have an effective self defense gun. Obviously, guns and calibers have their limitations. I routinely carry a 32acp (10% of the time), 9x18 9mm makarov CZ-82 (70% of the time), and Sig P220 45acp (20% of the time). There's an occasional time when I will throw an AMT 380 backup into my front pocket, but that not too often.

Point is: The 32acp with FMJ, penetrates on average, 13-15". The 380acp does 12-15" with Hollow Points and 16-17" with FMJ. And the 9x18 9mm makarov does 15-18" with FMJ and 12-14" with Hollow Points. And NONE of these measurements include ammo like Buffalo-Bore that's got some pretty good rounds for the 32, 380, and 9x18.

It's sad when when people quote FBI recommended standards of penetrating greater than 12"; yet when the caliber you want to use DOES THIS, those who don't "Like" the caliber, will discard it's specs. I'll be the first to admit that I don't use Hollow Points in the 32acp. (Unless it's some of the RARE 60grain Fiocchi). Normally, it's Fiocchi FMJ. Average gelatin penetration is 15 Inches. So, what is wrong with that again???? I also use FMJ for the 380 (Unless I'm using buffalo-bore). The 9x18 I use both FMJ and HP. Some people think the HP were invented to create a larger virtual caliber hole. The main reason for HP was for high velocity bullets to eliminate over penetration. Yes, expansion is a side benefit. But there's nothing wrong with with FMJ or Cast bullets in the 32, 380, or 9x18.

But what's most important, is that if you are faster and more accurate with the 32 or 380, than you are with the same size gun chambered in 9mm, 40, or 45, then you should DEFINITELY use that 32 or 380 caliber. Anyone saying differently really doesn't understand. I am most accurate with my Sig P220 45acp. However, the gun is pretty big. It is not the easiest to carry. I also have a shorter 45acp model, but I'm not as accurate with that. With my CZ-82 9x18, I don't think I could miss if I wanted to. I love that caliber and size of gun the best. Definitely choose the one that you are the fastest and most accurate with. And don't worry what others say. Chances are, you will be more proficient with your smaller caliber gun than you would be with the same small gun in a larger caliber. FWIW, that AMT Backup 380 is a freaking bear to shoot. Yes, within 20 feet, it will definitely work. So it's great in the front pocket. But I couldn't even imagine a front pocket size pistol shooting a 9mm luger or 40sw. I wouldn't even want to shoot that gun.

emilianoksa
May 28, 2010, 05:21 PM
Here we have to make the most of 380, since nothing more powerful is allowed.

That being the case, there is a place for the bigger 380.

If I were lucky enough to live in the States, I'd carry one of the smaller 9mm.

Here, I have to make do with a Mak or Glock 25.

But I'm not complaining.

If I were still in England, I'd have to beg the assailant not to shoot me, or try to overpower him physically, which is something of a problem even for a fit, young man, but out of the question for a sixty year old.

Provided I practise enough, I feel that 15 rounds of 380 in a Glock or even 9 in a Mak, at least gives me a fighting chance.

btg3
May 28, 2010, 06:05 PM
Plenty of .380 ammo in Lima?

emilianoksa
May 28, 2010, 06:26 PM
Yes, lots.

It's the caliber of choice.:D

christcorp
May 28, 2010, 09:05 PM
Don't the bad guys know that they 380 isn't really going to hurt them? That it's not efficient enough for self defense? I'm surprised the bad guys don't laugh to death at you if you pull a 380 or 9mm mak out on them. Then again, I don't remember a lot of people in Europe laughing when they were shot with a Makarov. Maybe it's a "Cultural" thing. American criminals are smarter, and they know the 32, 380, and mak can't hurt them, so that's why it's more ineffective here.

christcorp
May 28, 2010, 09:12 PM
Delete: Double Post

oldfool
May 28, 2010, 10:49 PM
TGIF !
:):):):):)
I think we got a real serious shot here at a 200 post count...
somebody put up a picture of holes in something shot quick at 5 yards (preferably something not holding a machete at high ready, unless it don't move), and I think we just might make it before Saturday !

0.4 second splits at 15 feet...
we could always try a poll, just to keep it rolling along...re: with a nice "tight" group like that, what do you say are your percentage odds of stopping machete man ?
or perhaps better stated, what are the odds of losing your head, (irrespective of handgun caliber, or where machete man spends the rest of eternity) ?
0%
20%
40%
60%
80%
100%

what say you, friends ?
practical is, as practical does ?
get a bigger gun ?
you can only have just so much fun ?
"he/she touched me first" ?
"my dawg's better 'n your dawg, 'cause he eats magnum size machetes" ?

PS
yo, whatever your opinion is, you are fully entitled to it (no BS)
but us wussies do got gun rights, too !
at least most of us don't have to live in a gun-free zone
life is, at best, too short, machete man or no, do learn to appreciate the silver lining in every dark cloud
me, I forgot they even made the Colt Mustang in all steel
if not for this thread, I wouldn't have bothered to put that on my search list !
but one inquiring mind still wants to know.. do a Sig 232 slice the top of your hand, or not ?
'cause I still can't talk myself into dropping the bucks required to find out 1st person :(

oldfool
May 28, 2010, 11:09 PM
Friday night foolishness aside..

if anybody knows about a really good/cheap deal on:
Colt Government model 380 acp
Colt Mustang (early all steel model) 380 acp
Sig 232 380 acp
Beretta "full size/too big/too wussie" single stack 380 acp


sure would appreciate a courteous PM, no kidding
I probably wouldn't buy it nohow
(great-grand-baby needs new clothes, mama needs new shoes)
but would enjoy thinking about it, anyway
practical not required :cool:

emilianoksa
May 28, 2010, 11:50 PM
I recall, about two years ago, watching a filmed American news report , in which a police officer approaching a wounded criminal on the ground who reached for his gun, put about nine or ten 9mm rounds into his torso at very close range (less than five yards).

The guy survived.

It reinforced for me the oft expressed view that if you want to make sure a man is completely immobilised, use a rifle.

No handgun is foolproof when it comes to self-defence, unless you're cool enough to deal clinically with life threatening situations, and an excellent shot.

I am forced to rely on an anaemic calibre when I venture out of the house, but for home defence, it is a source of great comfort to me that I have a pump shotgun.

Perhaps I should just stay at home.:D

David E
May 30, 2010, 01:13 AM
Ok, finally got to go to the range.

I only have one pic, so far. I have an idea for a different thread and plan on posting the future pics there.

Here was the target set-up:

IPSC target placed at 16-17 feet. Sheet of typing paper placed center chest.

http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g311/Sooper1/Mobile%20Uploads/DSC00378.jpg

All runs started from High Ready. All runs consisted of 5 shots ON the sheet of typing paper. The time started at the "beep" and ended on the last shot. (For those that don't know how a shot timer works, think of it as an "audio stop watch." It "hears" the shot and displays the elapsed time.)

I had my son-in-law run the shot timer, starting it at random times. (also providing a witness to the proceedings) I only did the runs 2-3 times to get a feel for each gun as I went. Sometimes, the best run was the first one.

The times listed are the best runs with the specific guns.

Since it was specifically requested, I first shot my Keltec P-11 9mm.

Best run was 1.78


Next up was the Kahr P-9

Best time: 1.54


Next was the Glock 26.

Best time: 1.53


Next up was a Colt Mustang .380, all stainless steel (heavy for its size)

Best time: 1.46


Then I tried a Sig 238 on loan. I'd never shot this gun before.

Best time: 1.41


Now, some may think that these drill results prove their point that a .380 IS, in fact, more controllable than a 9mm. I found it quite interesting, but 2 things come to mind:

1) The best .380 time edged out the best 9mm by by a mere 12/100th's of a second. Is that enough of a time difference to give up twice the power.....for each shot?

2) I found the time difference to be more of a function of the trigger type than the caliber.

I've not shot the Keltec, Kahr or Glock recently at all. In fact, it's been probably 10 yrs since I fired the Keltec and several months to a year or so for the other 9mm's.

That said, it's been several months since I fired the Colt and I'd never fired the Sig before today. However, they are mini-1911 designs and I shoot those all the time. Therefore, I was immediately more comfortable and "attuned" to the 1911 mechanism, even when reduced in size.

I then shot my current carry gun, the previously mentioned Kimber Compact Aluminum Stainless (alloy frame).

My best time with that?

1.32

:D :D :D

Agostini
May 30, 2010, 06:58 AM
Both my wife and I carry a .380 LCP as a BUG, or a BUG's BUG (J-frame), the primary being usually a 9mm for my wife and .45 ACP for myself.

At times the .380 is the only gun I grab when running to the store. It comes handy in many situations being so light, tiny and 'potential.'

With good SD ammo it's a very potential carry gun that requires some proficiency, but what serious SD gun wouldn't?

Naturally, it would be prudent always to carry you primary (preferably .45 ACP and up, your BUG 9mm and your BUG's bug minimum .357 with several spare magazines), but life hardly ever is perfect.

A .380 has its function, and it is darn sweet to shoot and carry. Did I mention that the gun-holster combo is light?

oldfool
May 30, 2010, 08:36 AM
I dunno, I am giving some real serious thought to the spitball option, myself
lightweight, easy carry, cheap ammo, low recoil, very shootable

I plan to sart with an IPSC target at 36 inches, work on accuracy 1st, then gradually work the distance on out to maybe 4 or 5 feet
I think I am going to need a lot of work on my "spit splits", though
(would greatly appreciate any user friendly technique tips on how to improve them spit splits)

anybody got any good ideas on how to fashion a high capacity "spit clip" magazine ?
would surely help my "spit split" time
penetration not being quite what I had hoped for, (I think I mebbe need a magnum caliber spit load) spit clip capacity could be real important if I have a run in with machete man, you know !

guess mebbe I better stick with my 380acp until I get my spit split under 3 seconds
but will post some pics just as soon as I do :)

http://www.instructables.com/id/how-to-make-a-spitball-gun/

David E
May 30, 2010, 11:22 PM
I've determined there are several "practical uses for a .380"

1) It fits in a gun the size that previously were chambered for .25 acp, so it's an increase in power in the same size platform

2) The micro-sized .380's make dandy pocket guns.

3) The larger .380's allow someone averse to recoil to become more competent with a centerfire handgun.

4) The .380 beats a .22 LR handgun for defense

5) Some of the larger .380's have a large ammo capacity.

6) Some countries don't allow much bigger, caliber-wise, so again a hi-cap .380 has much appeal.

7) It's just fun to shoot!

oldfool
May 31, 2010, 08:18 AM
David
you are a gentleman, sir

peace

PS
a good day to remember those who gave their lives to defend and protect our right to make free choices, and responsibly exercise those individual rights

TexasBill
June 1, 2010, 02:53 AM
I've determined there are several "practical uses for a .380"

3) The larger .380's allow someone averse to recoil to become more competent with a centerfire handgun.

I've determined there are several possible reasons you continue to beat this dead horse, having failed to persuade anyone.

1.) You just don't get it.

2.) You don't want to get it.

3.) You have no idea of what you're talking about.

Over the past 40 years, I have owned the following centerfire handguns: AMT: .357 Auto Mag, .44 Auto Mag; Beretta: 84FS Cheetah, PX4 Storm; Browning: High Power, .380 Auto, BDA; Colt: Agent, Cobra, Detective Special, Diamondback, Lawman, Police Positive, Python, Trooper, Government Model, Commander, Combat Commander; FN-Herstal: FNP-9; Mauser: P08 Luger; Ruger: Blackhawk; Smith & Wesson: Model 10, Model 12, Model 15, Model 19, Model 27, Model 28, Model 29, Model 36, Model 37, Model 39, Model 57, Model 58, Model 59, Model 60, Model 637. Walther: P-38, PP, PPK, PPK/S, PK380. How many of these could I control? All of them.

So why don't I bow down to the Dictums of DavidE? I don't have to.

If I really want to bust my knuckles, I can. I can load my S&W J-frame Airweight with hot +P ammunition or my Model 60 with full-boat .357 Magnums. Both are real attention-getters. I prefer to load them with .38 Special ammunition with a 110- to 125-grain bullet. But I really prefer the higher capacity of my .380s.

Larger-caliber automatics? No problem! I've got two 9 mm pistols and, weather and clothing permitting, I carry one when I can. .45 ACP? I don't like single-action pistols, I don't like beavertails and I think they are way overpriced. I realize that, to many, the Kimber is the Holy Grail of handguns, and that's fine for them; everything I have ever read about Kimbers says they are outstanding firearms. However, if given a Kimber, I would own it exactly long enough to sell it and get something else.

And the Kahr, while beloved by many, would never find its way into my collection: I refuse to support Reverend Moon.

Are you seeing a pattern here, DavidE? It's not that I can't handle a particular gun, it's that I don't want to. It's a choice, not a shortcoming.

Erik M
June 1, 2010, 06:23 AM
The problem with a Bersa .380 is that it's big and heavy for not enough power.


I have owned a bersa for 2 years and it performed so well that one ofmy brothers bought one new from a local dealer for his collection. It is very small in my hands, and it fills the occasional role of primary weapon in the hot months.

oldfool
June 1, 2010, 09:05 AM
some of y'all hard headed folks just don't get it
gentleman poster is obsessive compulsive about shot timers and IPSC/IDPA drills and power levels
hey, if you were into it real deep, you would be, too
which is why he is pumping the same theme song simultaneously though loud speakers on at least three "unrelated" threads here right now

(not that there is anything wrong with that, or CAS/SASS, or whatever else your "thing" is)

somebody just tell him that a 1.00 second draw plus 0.20 second splits is considered pretty good for IPSC competition
quit making fun of shooting loose groups at 5 yards as "the" defining attribute of good shooting
admit that anything too wussie for major or minor in IPSC is just too wussie for you too
let's all give him a big round of applause, praise the pics
and then maybe every post in the handgun forum will not be littered with pics of loose groups with quick splits

or... keep feeding the... post
we just might make that 200 post count yet :rolleyes:

Agostini
June 1, 2010, 09:56 AM
I'm happily missing the reason for the 'fight,' over the LCP - and I don't mind.

However, the .380 has its practical uses. It's a nice firearm.

As to 1s draws and .20 splits ... I recall doing better than that.

You all have a nice day and stay safe.

David E
June 1, 2010, 10:16 AM
It's not that I can't handle a particular gun, it's that I don't want to.

As I've said multiple times, _I_ am unwilling to make that choice. And, as I've also said multiple times, I don't care what you carry.

It's a choice, not a shortcoming.

This would be my #7 in post 185

Are you seeing a pattern here, DavidE?

Yes, I am. Some people ignore the words I actually wrote and instead, attack what they think I wrote. (seems to be consistently the same people, too.....)

IMTHDUKE
June 1, 2010, 10:31 AM
I just love it when friends agree:D

David E
June 1, 2010, 10:41 AM
gentleman poster is obsessive compulsive about shot timers and IPSC/IDPA drills and power levels

Not at all, I just use the shot timers to establish reality regarding defensive handgun skills. I realize that some folks would rather believe only their perception of their "skills."

As to drills, I asked for input or other ideas. old fool has not posted any alternatives.

somebody just tell him that a 1.00 second draw plus 0.20 second splits is considered pretty good for IPSC competition

Actually, that's considered "B" class.

quit making fun of shooting loose groups at 5 yards as "the" defining attribute of good shooting

First of all, it's not about bullseye shooting.

Second of all, the one thread I did start related to this one, "What is 'Control,'" has to do with trying to define.........(wait for it)...........control. IE; an attempt to remove the whole "perception" thing again and replace it with a factual time frame coupled with accuracy sufficient enough for defensive handgun skills.

I recognize that some people are far more comfortable with their supercilious self assessment of their handgun prowess than going out and proving to themselves that their generous assessment was way off.

Agostini
June 1, 2010, 11:51 AM
David E says: I just use the shot timers to establish reality regarding defensive handgun skills. I realize that some folks would rather believe only their perception of their "skills."

I consider a timer an essential tool to establish and gauge reality. I dry fire a lot, and having a timer as a start and end signal provides a whole different atmosphere. It's hard do dismiss the splits times (why the irregularity?) the timer registers that could be used to gauge one's improvement. It's like shooting without targets and ignoring hits and points.

A timer is a tool one does not need to utilize all the time. Shooting must also be fun. I know no single serious shooter / instructor that does not take advantage of the timer.

But, this is a free country, we are allowed to enjoy shooting any which way we want as long as it's safe.

Enjoy your day.

Fastcast
June 1, 2010, 11:55 AM
I then shot my current carry gun, the previously mentioned Kimber Compact Aluminum Stainless (alloy frame).

My best time with that?

1.32

:D :D :D

So I see you completed your scientific tests. :scrutiny:

Did anyone really think David was going to come to any conclusion, other than, he can shoot his .45 quicker and more accurately than all the spitball throwers? :neener:...... LMAO

David E
June 1, 2010, 12:20 PM
And I see you still refuse to see where your true abilities lie.........as you'd prefer to believe your own "I can shoot 3 rounds faster than you can imagine" fairy tale. :rolleyes:

But, as I showed in the post that contained the times, I did second fastest with a gun I'd never shot before! I was a little surprised by that. In fact, I shot the Sig 238 far better than my Keltec .380, to the point I'm considering a 238 of my own to replace the Keltec.

I'm sure I could tighten down the time frames for the DA guns if I shot them more often. The SA guns are pretty much where I think they'll be. IE; I don't see myself improving the times too much with the SA guns. But I shoot SA 1911's quite often, so this really isn't a surprise.

To be honest, I was little irritated that I shot the .380's faster than the DA guns, as some folks would conclude that I proved their point. Perhaps to a degree I did. The question would then become, "Is 12/100th's of a second enough to favor the .380 over a 9mm?"

I shot the Kimber .45 last and wasn't sure how that would go. (a previous 1.35 time that I shot a couple months ago with it had no guarantee of being repeated)

I did not think to bring a DA/SA gun like the Beretta 84. If I had, it would've been a 9mm S&W 3914. This has a much quicker trigger reset than the 84, but it still would've been interesting to compare another action type.

The runs posted were "clean" ones that represented current skill level. The Sig was, comparatively, easier to shoot than any of the DA guns. I had to work harder with the DA guns, not so much with the SA's.

I actually shot the 238 slightly more accurately than the .45

Fastcast
June 1, 2010, 12:43 PM
One of my buddies has a Star Model B - 1911 style 9mm with SA trigger and one day when shooting with him, just for the hell of it we loaded the 84 with 7-8 shots, whatever the Star holds and rattled 'em off as fast as we could, just to see. The 84 finished one full shot ahead of the SA Star. :confused:

Then we switched pistols, did it again and came to the same conclusion. Needless to say, we were both surprised.....Obviously we did this before .380 ammo was scarcer than hens teeth. :rolleyes:

sonier
June 1, 2010, 08:44 PM
Ill carry mine you carry yours :) theres my argument disagree with me :)

David E
June 1, 2010, 08:59 PM
Ill carry mine you carry yours theres my argument disagree with me

That's what _I_ said in multiple posts!

But someone asked me why _I_ wouldn't go below a 9mm for personal protection. I shared the reasons why that, FOR ME, it's unnecessary to do so.

TexasBill
June 2, 2010, 08:56 AM
...In fact, I shot the Sig 238 far better than my Keltec .380, to the point I'm considering a 238 of my own to replace the Keltec...

...I actually shot the 238 slightly more accurately than the .45

The SIG P238 is a sweet little gun: far superior, IMHO, to the LCP. I have only been able to fire the P238 one time, but I found it handled nicely. The locked breech and extra six ounces of weight make it much more fun to shoot than the LCP and I like the fact there's a bit more grip.

It's the only "pocket pistol" I would consider. My only concern is carrying a "cocked-and-locked" pistol in a pocket, so I would most likely go to a pocket holster.

We made it to Post #200! :evil:

oldfool
June 2, 2010, 09:19 AM
lookee here, 200 post count thread...:what:
Congratulations to all who put such extreme effort into it !

as usual, I find myself in agreement w/ Agostini, again
#190
"As to 1st draws and .20 splits ... I recall doing better than that."
I don't doubt it a bit
never said 1.00/0.20 was A class, nor a match winner, you know
just figured it was probably acceptable to friend David, as a benchmark for all us delusional joe-average folks, you know
likewise a big thumbs up on post #194

"As to drills, I asked for input or other ideas. old fool has not posted any alternatives."
sure I did, just not in this thread

I shoot rifles also
some folks use a chrony, it is a real useful tool for some, relevant to what they do, and why they do it
I don't have one because I don't need one, it's just not my thing
I don't tell others they don't want or need one, I obviously don't disparage others who don't want or need one

shot timers - essential tool if training for speed competition (IPSC/IDPA, CAS/SASS, etc.)
useful for tactical trainers
useful, or maybe not, for others
I don't have one because I don't need one, it's just not my thing
unless you are pretty certain you can already do aforementioned 1.00/0.20, you probably don't really need one either
but it's ok, if you want one anyway

me, I am pretty sure I can do 6 in 2, or 3 DT's in 3
(dry fire w/ a pulse laser, or live ammo on range, 22 rimfire, or WMR, or 380, or 357)
No need of 0.1 second precision required, much less 0.01 precision, to know that. Also certain beyond doubt, I will never get significantly better than that, shot timer or no, tactical trainer or no (shaky hands, accuracy goes to hell, letting the shot go when sight picture is "there" is good, but only goes just so far, even in point shooting, there is still a "sight picture" involved)

as for those who "can do", yes there is a reason for the longevity and popularity of the 1911 (it's called SA trigger)

if you compete against others and/or a clock, get a shot timer
if you compete only against yourself, you probably don't need one
me, I am pretty sure I know when having a good day and doing better, or a bad day and doing worse, no shot timer required. I know my own slow (pretend quick) shot rhythm, and I see where the shots are going against a reactive backdrop, instantaneous feedback

then again, I just might be a little delusional
must be some truth in that, because I choose to CCW a 1911 type action in 380acp :D

luckily for me, this ain't Dodge, because I ain't Bill Hickcock ;)

pockets
June 2, 2010, 10:01 AM
Wow....this bit of fluff thread is still going on?

shootr
June 2, 2010, 10:25 AM
Guess so. This sort of topic never fails to generate some amusing replies too!

The Tomcat
June 2, 2010, 04:15 PM
I think .380's are great! Considering the closeness of most defensive shots I think the round is just fine.

Some of my .380's
Kel-Tec P3AT
http://i197.photobucket.com/albums/aa25/tomphillips_2007/Gun%20Stuff/KelTec003.jpg
Llama Micromax
http://i197.photobucket.com/albums/aa25/tomphillips_2007/Gun%20Stuff/2009Purchase009.jpg
Bersa 383A
http://i197.photobucket.com/albums/aa25/tomphillips_2007/Gun%20Stuff/Pics085.jpg

christcorp
June 2, 2010, 04:47 PM
I still have 2 positions on this topic. The 380 is most definitely a satisfactory caliber for self defense. Especially for concealed carry. So, no arguments there.

However, on the other side of the coin, with today's prices of 380 ammo and the rare availability, it makes absolutely no sense to buy a 380. If you already have one, great. If you don't own one and are looking for a gun and caliber, the 380 is a terrible choice. Size is not an issue, because you can get 9mm makarove pistols in sizes as small as the 380. And with price of ammo being 1/3rd that of a 380, it's the better choice. It's also not much more on recoil than the 380. Also, there are now 9mm pistols that are small enough. And the price is about the same as the makarov, which is 1/3rd that of a 380. But I do understand that a 9mm might be a little too much for a small gun and for the person shooting it. But the 9mm makarov isn't too much to shoot. It's almost identical to the 380.

So, while I think the 380 is a satisfactory round, if you didn't already own one, it would be really silly to buy one because of the price and availability of ammo.

FLAvalanche
June 2, 2010, 04:55 PM
The availability and price of .380 is turning around. I can go to my favorite gun shop and he's got plenty at about $15 a box.

Shoot Straight had a fort built out of CASES of .380 in their showroom in Ft. Myers. Price was about $20 a box which is about what Bass Pro is selling 9mm for.

christcorp
June 2, 2010, 08:45 PM
What one place sells for vs another, is not a good indicator. I.e. Just because bass pro sells 9mm for $20 a box, doesn't mean that 380 prices at $20 a box are good. The going price for 9mm is around $10-$11. That can be found at those prices in MANY places. The going price for 380 is $18-$22; with very FEW below that, but still quite a few above that. If someone is thinking of buying a gun, that a 380 would normally be the right caliber for, I will continue to advise them to buy a 9mm luger or a 9mm makarov chambered pistol. There is still a significant difference in price. And online prices are the standard that you have to use, because that's the common denominator for anyone talking on the internet.

If you can buy 380 ammo at $15 a box, and you plan on buying say 20 boxes of it, so you will have enough to last you, then buying a 380 pistol might not be a bad deal. If you plan on buying 2-3 boxes, and believing that you will be able to get that same $15 380 ammo locally any time you want it in the future, then that's a risk. When the online sources start showing 380 ammo at $15 a box; (currently the low is around $17-$18;
http://www.ammoengine.com/find/ammo/.380_ACP ) and it's consistently available, then maybe I'll change my tune. But for now, 380 is a fine caliber if you already shoot it. If you're really into reloading; which I'm not - I've gone beyond that phase of my life; then 380 is a viable option. If you're looking for a new gun and caliber, and you're not reloading, then 380 is not a smart choice. The 9mm luger and 9mm makarov are better choices. Price and availability.

EMC45
June 2, 2010, 09:23 PM
I get my .380 ammo for about 2 bucks a box of 50. (reloads) I also cast bullets so I have an endless supply of bullets. And yes I would shoot someone with my hand loads. Without hesitation!

HB
June 2, 2010, 09:42 PM
As long as it can penetrate to the vitals, I think its viable. I see no problem with a .380 especially in the smaller pistols. No handgun round is powerful until you get into the 44 mag and up levels.

augustino
June 2, 2010, 10:47 PM
I had a Beretta model 70 380 and liked it. But I was/am concerned about stopping power of the 380. So I looked around and finally bought a model 30 Glock in 45ACP. I'm just as accurate with the 30 as I am with the 380. I also bought a model 19 Glock in 9MM. I'm as accurate with it as with any pistol EXCEPT my HK P7 M8. With the P7 I can drive tacks but I have shot it once, cleaned it up and put it up! It lives in my safe. So now I carry either the Glock 19 or 30. By the way I traded the 380 because the ammo is hard to find, quite expensive and the Model 12 Winchester 12 gauge pump I got for it I simply could NOT refuse.

Weevil
June 3, 2010, 12:22 AM
Yeah .380 it's going for $20 a box of 50 but I can remember not so long ago I could get a box of 100 rounds of 9mm at Wally-World for under $10 and now that same box of ammo is $23.

The cheapest I ever remember buying .380 over the last few years before the Obama panic, was $9 for Blazer and the normal price was around $15 give or take a dollar or two.

So actually even at $20 a box the price of .380 hasn't gone up as much as 9mm has.

As to availabilty locally almost no one has it including Wally-World except for two stores. One's a gun store that has lots, WWB, Federal AE,and some Independence brand. All around $20. And a sporting goods store that has Magtech for $26 a box but nobody seems to be buying that, I know I'm not.

Oh eventually supply will catch up with demand.

oldfool
June 3, 2010, 02:21 AM
retail ammo panic pricing has been hard on all of us, all calibers
even 22 rimfire is now near 4 cents a round, and bargain prices on 38+p or 357 are mighty rare these days
it is starting to turn around, but never will be back to where it was a couple years ago any caliber
don't plan on ever seeing $2 a gallon gasoline again, either

9mm always has been cheapest centerfire handgun ammo, always will be as long as the military is buying it, how it is, undisputed

the panic buyers and 1st time buyers are settling down, and 380 retail prices are coming back around to being proportionate with what other calibers are selling for
all things considered, the cost and availability of a brick of 22 rimfire is a pretty good benchmark for relative ammo pricing, I used to get 50 rounds of 380 for about same as a brick of 22, and still do
when 22 rimfire gets scarce, it all gets scarce, even 9mm (except maybe 40S&W that is)
there was about a year and a half I never bought a single round of ammo from wallyworld, but never ran out of any caliber I own, and never paid gouge prices on any of it, and never bought full cases either

most of us own multiple calibers anyway, not like anybody is being left helpless, no matter what wallyworld does or doesn't have on the shelf
just because I prefer 380 for carry doesn't mean I can't shoot my 9

time and tide

nitetrane98
June 3, 2010, 04:05 AM
Regarding the dearth of .380 ammo as a reason not to buy one. I don't carry my BDA ,380 because I carry a 10mm. But believe it or not, I actually would carry it. But that's not the point I want to make.

I have handguns in almost every caliber except .44 magnum. Some are more accurate than others. Based upon what I can do with the BDA at 10 yds from a rest, I can easily see that it is highly unlikely that in my hands it will ever be much more than adequately accurate for SD work regardless of how many rounds I send downrange. It will never be a favorite plinking gun. I have other guns that will reward my time and money spent much better.

Accepting this, I only have a couple hundred rounds laid in and don't sweat it if I can't find any regularly. I catch a box a WM occasionally and it's enough to allow me burn up a little .380 when the fancy strikes. Now 10mm, .45acp, .40S&W and .357, that's another story.

Of course I can understand the angst over .380 ammo being in short supply for those who intend to make their .380 their go to gun.

bikerdoc
June 3, 2010, 08:46 AM
Plenty of good 380 ammo at The Armory.com

How do I know - I ship it out :)

dogtown tom
June 3, 2010, 10:38 AM
christcorp: ...Size is not an issue, because you can get 9mm makarove pistols in sizes as small as the 380...

:scrutiny::scrutiny::scrutiny:

Whut?

I've yet to see ANY pistol in 9mmMak that's anywhere close to the size or weight of a Ruger LCP, Kahr P380 or KelTec P3at.
As a matter of fact, most pistols in 9mmMak are twice the weight of those three .380's.



.

christcorp
June 3, 2010, 10:59 AM
:scrutiny::scrutiny::scrutiny:

Whut?

I've yet to see ANY pistol in 9mmMak that's anywhere close to the size or weight of a Ruger LCP, Kahr P380 or KelTec P3at.
As a matter of fact, most pistols in 9mmMak are twice the weight of those three .380's.



.
So which is it? Size or Weight. I consider guns to be into certain classes. If you want to say that the LCP is lighter and smaller than say a P64, then you are definitely correct. If you want to tell me that the LCP is "Significantly" smaller than the P64 and that it has some carrying advantages over the P64, then I'd say you're rationalizing. If you think a 5.16" length is significantly better than a 6.3", then there's no sense of discussing. It's obviously so personal that it's a good enough reason to not like one. That's cool.

But my opinion stands. If you don't have a 380 yet, or have one but are having a difficult time shooting it because of ammo price and availability, then the 9x18 makarov chambered guns are a great alternative. For what you'd spend on 20 boxes of 380 (1000 rounds), you can buy the same amount of 9x18 ammo AND a P64 or PA63. I have no problem carrying a P64 in my front jeans pocket. Sometimes in my jean jacket pocket. Point is, for it's purpose, I can do anything with it that an LCP or other small 380 can do. If you want to get down to the ounce or similar, then fine, keep shooting the 380.

daehawc
June 3, 2010, 02:56 PM
due to slow internet on gov computers i did not read all the posts so far but here's my take...

I tend to subscribe to jeff coopers theory of "carry the largest gun in the largest caliber that you can shoot effectively." for me thats a 1911 in .45.

That being said, one of my favorite pistols is a sig p238. its a small, lightweight .380 colt mustang knock off that shoots amazingly well, has great sights and has controls identical to my 1911's.

From my research, the critical defense ammo is performing almost identically in .380 as it is in 9mm as far as penetration / expansion. If i could find some and test it I would likely carry that. As it stands right now I stoke mine with FMJ because I know it feeds 100% and I can actually find and practice with it.

Additionally, last time i researched it, most hollow points required about 1000fps to reliably expand (again, some of the newer tech like the critical defense may change this). For that reason and because I'm looking for reliability and penetration in the .380 I've been happy with FMJ.

I think .380 is a great round for SD in that you can carry a gun in a much smaller size that dissapears in your pocket for those time when you absolutly can not carry anything larger. 1st rule of gun fighting is to have a gun, the .380 in the p238 makes this possible anytime i have a pocket.

Are there better rounds and cheaper ammo? Definately. Does the .380 have its place? To me, it does. I do not carry 9mm's because if I am dressed to where I can conceal most 9mm's then I can conceal a .45. Otherwise I go with the .380 with a decent single action trigger and great sights of the p238. Of all the pocket guns I've owned, this is the only one I've kept. Most others lack any sort of decent sights and triggers to make them effective past contact distances.

FWIW, I shot a stage in my recent USPSA match using the P238 and the gun performed amazingly well. I was able to make quick A zone hits in all my targets out to 20 yards no problem. As far as stopping power, if its all I have, it will do the job but then again I'm going to hit the target with as many rounds as I have until the threat stops. Thats SOP for any caliber.

Charles Davis
June 4, 2010, 09:40 AM
You should pick a handgun/caliber combination that you will likely carry because it is compact. A big banger in your closet is no help on the street.
You should also carry as much stopping power as you can shoot accurately.
The FBI states that you need at least 400 ft/lbs of energy to stop a determined attacker. Our American solders found this out the hard way during the Philippine insurrection. They were attacked by Moro machete armed warriors. Our solders were not able to stop them with their issue .38 handguns before the warriors chopped of their heads. Ever hear of the leathernecks? Our marines wore leather collars to protect themselves. Our army went to .45 calibers (approx 400 ft/lbs of energy. Note that the little .380 has significantly less energy the .38 referenced above.
Once you pick up a suitable carry gun, select a good everyday carry system for you.
Some ideas, a Tactical shooting vest like a 5.11, a good Fanny pack, a real neat carry tool is Thunderwear. Check out http://www.thunderwearholsters.com/

MCgunner
June 4, 2010, 10:27 AM
So which is it? Size or Weight. I consider guns to be into certain classes. If you want to say that the LCP is lighter and smaller than say a P64, then you are definitely correct. If you want to tell me that the LCP is "Significantly" smaller than the P64 and that it has some carrying advantages over the P64, then I'd say you're rationalizing. If you think a 5.16" length is significantly better than a 6.3", then there's no sense of discussing. It's obviously so personal that it's a good enough reason to not like one. That's cool.

But my opinion stands. If you don't have a 380 yet, or have one but are having a difficult time shooting it because of ammo price and availability, then the 9x18 makarov chambered guns are a great alternative. For what you'd spend on 20 boxes of 380 (1000 rounds), you can buy the same amount of 9x18 ammo AND a P64 or PA63. I have no problem carrying a P64 in my front jeans pocket. Sometimes in my jean jacket pocket. Point is, for it's purpose, I can do anything with it that an LCP or other small 380 can do. If you want to get down to the ounce or similar, then fine, keep shooting the 380.

I know the LCPs are light and small. Actually, I was really thinkin' about getting a TCP and, actually, still am! Not sure how much I'd carry it. I have dies and a mold for .380, but even getting brass is a pain now days. I find a little at the range now and then. I have an old Grendel P12 that's as small, only thinker, 1" thick, due to a double stack 11 round capacity magazine. My new P64 is flatter, as flat as the little .380s, and pockets well. Yeah, it's all steal and heavier. It's more a match (only slightly longer) to a PPK than an LCP. It's one HELLA accurate, though! I sincerely doubt that any of the micro .380s can match its 3" at 25 yards accuracy, perhaps, don't know 'cause I haven't played with any of 'em.

I own and like very much a Kel Tec P11, only slightly bigger than my old Grendel and 11 rounds of 9x19+P (115 JHP at 1263 fps/410 ft lbs) on tap and also more accurate than that gun. My .380 shoots about 6-8" at 25, my 9 3.5", these being bench rested groups to test the actual accuracy of the gun.

I find I shoot the P11 and especially the little P64 much better than I do that Grendel. I'm not sure what a LCP or TCP would be like off hand practical accuracy, but I find it hard to believe it could be better than that little P64 which is one of the MOST easily accurate practical accuracy guns I've ever owned in a pocket gun. It's simply amazing and that accuracy gives me confidence to carry it even though it's in a less than powerful caliber, pretty much a glorified .380.

The little .380s fill a niche for some and if I had a restrictive dress code, I might want one anyway. But, I've chilled on the .380 once again. I don't think I'd ever carry one. I never carry that Grendel. It's the same size length and height, again, as the LCP. It's 12 ounces unloaded a 1" thick. I do like the firepower, but I just shoot the little P64 LOTS better and the Kel Tec P11 is the obvious choice being very accurate, shootable, and in a superior caliber and with firepower to boot! Truth be told, though I'm carrying the P64 a lot lately cause I'm still infatuated with it, of all my pocket choice, the P11 wins hands down. If I bought a PF9, I'd have a 12 ounce gun as flat as the P64 and about the same physical size. Id probably be better off getting a PF9 than a TCP or LCP, way I look at it.

Everyone must decide these things for themselves. The little .380s are very popular, so obviously few out there tend to think like I do. :D I mean, I still think about getting one now and then. You can't have too many choices for carry, too many guns, after all. That phrase "too many guns" just does not make logical sense. Hell, I've even convinced my wife of that over the years, either that, or she just flat gave up.

IMTHDUKE
June 4, 2010, 10:30 AM
Ever heard of the term letherneck?
Going to take a guess that your not a Marine.
The term “Leatherneck ” is one of many slang terms for Marines but few people know of its orgins. This term came into being because it referred to the high leather collar which used to be issued to British and American Marines.

One rumor about the purpose of this collar was that it was issued to Marines to protect the neck from sword blows. It was a 3and1/2 inch collar which fastened at the back. The true story behind this leather collar is that its purpose was to keep the head straight and erect thus improving military bearing.

MCgunner
June 4, 2010, 10:40 AM
You should pick a handgun/caliber combination that you will likely carry because it is compact. A big banger in your closet is no help on the street.
You should also carry as much stopping power as you can shoot accurately.
The FBI states that you need at least 400 ft/lbs of energy to stop a determined attacker. Our American solders found this out the hard way during the Philippine insurrection. They were attacked by Moro machete armed warriors. Our solders were not able to stop them with their issue .38 handguns before the warriors chopped of their heads. Ever hear of the leathernecks? Our marines wore leather collars to protect themselves. Our army went to .45 calibers (approx 400 ft/lbs of energy. Note that the little .380 has significantly less energy the .38 referenced above.
Once you pick up a suitable carry gun, select a good everyday carry system for you.
Some ideas, a Tactical shooting vest like a 5.11, a good Fanny pack, a real neat carry tool is Thunderwear. Check out http://www.thunderwearholsters.com/
__________________

The Philippine issurection thing is not comparable to modern JHP loads that make the same energy levels. At these energy levels, energy really isn't significant in wounding, anyway. A bullet like Hornady's Critical Defense that opens and penetrates is the answer. The one thing I find the .380 desirable for over the previously mentioned Makarov caliber is that there's better defense ammo advertised, if not always available, for .380. I carry Silver Bear JHP in 9x18, but penetration tests I've seen on it don't match Hornady's critical defense. BUT, that gun is so good, I can put 2 rounds in the same spot in the time I can put one there with my old Grendel.

Anyway, just forget about the Philippine insurrection in caliber discussions. :rolleyes: it does not relate.

Also, thunderwear sux. I bought one, it's slow. If you're seated, driving, whatever, just forget about it and give up. :rolleyes: The ONLY CARRY METHOD I find that works for me to allow me to be armed 24/7 is pocket carry. IWB sucks, thunderwear sux, I cannot wear anything, but a T shirt 10 months of the year down here so forget any coats are vests. Hell, if I didn't hunt, I wouldn't even need to OWN a coat in south Texas. YMMV

Nope, the only carry that's good for me is pocket carry and a little 9 like my P11 is like carrying a duty weapon in my pocket, anyway. So, that's what I've settled on. If you live and work on the north slope, go for a 1911.

pockets
June 4, 2010, 11:21 AM
Yep, the term 'Leatherneck' predates the Philippine–American War by about a century and has nothing to do with Moro machetes.
1798: "one stock of black leather and clasp" was issued to each U. S. Marine annually.
.

sonier
June 4, 2010, 02:05 PM
I feel like this thread is beating a dead dog lol

christcorp
June 4, 2010, 04:11 PM
I don't worry about how much energy a pistol has. That's just a mathematical formula. And MATH can't kill people. What I care about is that the bullet I am shooting at a person, has the capability of penetrating at least 12". And with today's ammo, a 380 can easily reach 12". Usually closer to the 15-16" range. Even the 32acp, with the right ammo, can get the 13-15" range. That is what I care about. And if a person still wants to say that a 32acp or 380acp is not effective, then I really don't care what they say. Granted, I don't normally use Hollow Points on a 32 or 380. (Except for certain brands). And I don't normally carry those 2 calibers in the colder months when most people are layered with a lot of clothing/coats. But for the spring/summer periods when the perspective target is most likely wearing just a shirt, and/or a light jacket, I have absolutely no problem carrying the 32 or 380. If people want to quote the FBI, and the FBI says they recommend at least 12"; and the 32 and 380 can do that; they can't change their minds on the FBI recommendations just because the numbers don't support their argument.

Now, 70% of the time, I carry the 9mm makarov caliber. Hollow points are close to the 12" and FMJ have a lot more penetration. That is my primary carry gun/caliber. But about 20% I carry my 45acp Sig P220. Especially in the coldest of winter months when people are layered with the most clothing. Could I carry this in the summer? Yes, but why? I don't need to. Yes, if I could only own 1 gun, it would probably be the 45acp or 357 magnum. But I'm fortunate that I can own all the guns and calibers that I want to. Therefor, I can also carry a 9mm mak, 380, or 32, and when used properly, they can all be effective.

Ledgehammer
June 4, 2010, 06:32 PM
Well Im no ballistics expert, but I can tell you guys this from first hand experience. My best friend was shot with a .380 from about 3-4 ft away. We were in my garage at the time. The bullet was jhp and it went all the way through him a can of tomato soup and stuck in the wall on the opposite side of the garage. We were 14 at the time and he was a bigger kid probably about 180 lbs. It didn't put him down at all. The shock did though. He was thoroughly messed up inside from the shot. Missed his spine by an inch they said.

So obviously penetration is adequate, but you will most likely need follow up shots. I carry a p32 as my back up and feel very confident it can back somebody off of me. I much rather have something bigger - but I will probably go for the pelvis and head with the smaller calibers.

christcorp
June 4, 2010, 09:28 PM
Well Im no ballistics expert, but I can tell you guys this from first hand experience. My best friend was shot with a .380 from about 3-4 ft away. We were in my garage at the time. The bullet was jhp and it went all the way through him a can of tomato soup and stuck in the wall on the opposite side of the garage. We were 14 at the time and he was a bigger kid probably about 180 lbs. It didn't put him down at all. The shock did though. He was thoroughly messed up inside from the shot. Missed his spine by an inch they said.

So obviously penetration is adequate, but you will most likely need follow up shots. I carry a p32 as my back up and feel very confident it can back somebody off of me. I much rather have something bigger - but I will probably go for the pelvis and head with the smaller calibers.
Just don't expect any handgun to "Knock Them Down". As you found out, the shock took him down. That's not to say that larger calibers and more velocity aren't more effective. Of course they are. With the higher velocities, you can ensure better use of Hollow Point ammunition to create larger holes and not over penetrate. With larger calibers, you definitely get the other person's attention better when they are hit. But a lot depends on the person shooting. Are you an accurate shooter? Also, I would never, ever, even think of just firing one shot.... and see what happens next. It will be, without a shadow of a doubt, be at least 3 rounds that come out of ANY gun I point at a person and pull the trigger on. That's what I practice, and that's what will happen. Whether it's a 32, 380, 9mm, 357 mag, or 45acp. They are getting 3 shots to center of mass. I'm not going to risk missing by aiming at their head. When 70% of police officers MISS when they shoot, there's a good chance that I could miss. I will do everything that I can, to ensure I hit my target. If I even think I can't hit my target, then I most likely wouldn't have aimed it and pulled the trigger. I don't even imagine drawing a weapon or firing a shot, HOPING to scare someone away.

Gun Geezer
June 5, 2010, 01:30 AM
no. it's not. just walmart is out.

try www.classicarms.us right now. they have all the brass cased .380 you could want. so do jgsales and aimsurplus, iirc.
True. I took deliery today of 1000 rounds of MagTech 380 FMJ. Paid 13.99/box plus $27 shipping. Not a bad total price considering it was tax free!

Check out SGUSA. Last I check they still had lots of .380 on sale.

Pilgram
June 7, 2010, 01:07 AM
When I was shopping for a CCW pistol, I visited three or four area gun stores several times and asked the clerks "So, what do you carry?"

The macho young guys working in gun stores usually pulled up their shirt to reveal some 'hog leg' that they claimed could stop the baddest bad guy with one shot.

The older (wiser) guys working in gun stores always reached into their back pocket and pulled out a Ruger LCP in 380. "This is easy/comfortable to carry" was the explanation.

I also polled several cops I know. Kel-Tec and LCP were prominently mentioned in what they prefer to carry when off duty.

huntsman
June 7, 2010, 10:04 AM
^ ahh you've discovered the secret of the gun world ;) I bet those demographics would play out about the same here also. Don't forget situational awareness too.

easyg
June 7, 2010, 10:41 AM
The macho young guys working in gun stores usually pulled up their shirt to reveal some 'hog leg' that they claimed could stop the baddest bad guy with one shot.

The older (wiser) guys working in gun stores always reached into their back pocket and pulled out a Ruger LCP in 380. "This is easy/comfortable to carry" was the explanation.
I don't know what gun stores you've been visiting, but in the gun stores around here, all the sales associates carry full-sized or medium sized pistols.
And they don't carry them concealed under their shirt either....they open carry them for easy and quick access.
I have never seen, nor even heard of, any gun store worker relying upon a .380 in the back pocket as their primary or only handgun.
The same is true of most pawn shop workers around here too.

Tony50ae
July 14, 2010, 05:23 PM
Lets face it. Every day we wake up life is a game of odds. Will we get blinsided by a car? Will your house catch fire? Will you have a heart attack or a stroke? Will you face someone that will try to harm you? We try to minimize these risks by wearing seatbelts, have a fire extinguisher, excersize and eat right, and carry some type of protection whether a knife, pepper spray or a gun. All we are doing is to try to increase the odds in our favor. And even then, there is still no guarantee of a favorable outcome.

Lets talk about someone trying to do you serious bodily harm. Lets face it, odds are if you are not looking for trouble and hanging out with the wrong crowd, most people go right through life with out any trouble. The odds are in our favor to begin with. You carry a gun regardless of caliber, odds are if you have to pull it out the other person will probably stop without a single shot fired. Its only after we might have to fire that gun will caliber probably have a say so.

And I say probably not definitely because the variables are just that, variable. Is caliber important? To a point but much more important is practicing with your CCW. Can you fire accurately? Clear any malfunction if one should arise? Know when you should run instead of fighting? Be aware of your surroundings so you don't get yourself in a bad situation? These things I think are much more important than the caliber of one's gun. If someone wishes to carry a 380 over a 9 or 45, I will not fault them. Are their odds of stopping someone if they have to shoot any less than someone with a larger caliber? Maybe maybe not. But they have increased their odds buy at least having their gun. Remember this, stopping power does not mean always mean having to shoot someone. You pull out your gun and the BG stops, you have effectivelly stopped the threat. I think we focus to much on caliber when we should be focusing on other things as well.

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