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Anyone here believe a .380 is inadequate?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by ColeK, Sep 12, 2018.

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  1. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    I think its a poor choice in this day and age and here's why: 9mm has more power, 9mm is cheaper, 9mm has a larger selection of good rounds available for practice and defense, there are many 9mm pistols available today that are reliable and affordable that are about the same size as most 380 pistols. Some that come to mind are the S&W shield, Glock 43, Ruger LC9, and others.
     
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  2. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart Member

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    In our Country Bigger is always better. A big gulp of soda is more powerful than a 12oz of Tea. A "All you can eat Restaurant" is better and more powerful than a even proportioned meal. A Big Mack is more powerful than a standard Burger.

    The 380. has plenty of Ballistic test proving that certain rounds pass the FBI standard protocols. However, many feel like it is NOT BIG ENOUGH. These will never satisfy the appetite of Bob the Big Blast.

    So forget the 380 debate and lets debate what size of Big Gulp is best to carry. Which one will get the job done right.
    What size do you feel is adequate?

    OA0jvbL.png
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018
  3. Wichaka

    Wichaka Member

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    The Big Gulp debate has to bring the fact of how large ones bladder to how far away a restroom is, add in the time factor for liquid to flow thru the body, and that should give you each one's correct answer. o_O
     
  4. WrongHanded

    WrongHanded Member

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    I bought a G42 (.380 acp) recently. And I thought quite hard before I did it. I needed the gun to be able to conceal deeply into my waistband whilst doing strenous work in odd positions, but still be still allow accurate fire at a decent distance (I won't go into the situation further).

    Could I have gone with a G43 and have the same capacity in 9mm? Well yes, and also no. For its intended purpose, even the G42 is a little big, and though the G43 would have been a better fit to my hand, it would not have concealed so well and would have been less comfortable (really, more uncomfortable). Plus, I'm not entirely sure the added size would have completely mitigated the increased recoil I would likely have experienced.

    Of course, if you're arguing against the .380 in favor of the 9mm for general EDC, I understand. For general EDC, I go higher than 9mm. I shoot .357 Sig, .40sw, .45acp, and .357 mag well, and believe them all superior to 9mm. Which means I would never carry a 9mm when I could carry one of those. So as I said, I understand this point of view.

    I think the .380 has its place, which is why I own one.
     
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  5. bassjam

    bassjam Member

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    There's certainly a lot of the "bigger is better regardless of facts" mentality in this country, and probably this thread. That's why the F150 is the top selling vehicle when 98% of them on the road are never hauling anything. Most of those people could be served just as well with an Accord, or maybe a Tacoma, but they just convince themselves they need something bigger "just in case" they need to haul 2,000 lbs of gravel someday. Likewise in the gun world there's many convinced they need to EDC a Glock 21 with 4 extra mags "just in case" one day they're attacked by a gang of drug induced ninja's.

    So, back to facts, I'm surprised this link hasn't shown itself yet in this thread. It's a good one to look at and study because it might change your mind if you think bigger bullets are always better. The .380's numbers aren't that far off from the .357 mag/sig's.

    https://www.buckeyefirearms.org/alternate-look-handgun-stopping-power
     
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  6. WrongHanded

    WrongHanded Member

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    I for one have actually seen that before. Now perhaps I missed it, but I didn't see any data on the type of firearms usage. Meaning whether it was self defense, LEOs shooting in defense of others, gang crime, close quarters ambush, or whatever else.

    As an example: I have seen enough horses put down with .22lr to believe it absolutely capable of killing a human with a contact distance head shot (say, a gang member walking up behind a member of an opposing gang and putting the gun to the back of their head). But I doubt its ability to stop a threat in a self defense scenario where the attacker is moving against the shooter quickly.

    Usually when we talk about calibers for defensive handguns, we are talking about self defense. As in; responding to a direct and immediate threat to our own lives. And if I were to take such a study seriously, the data would have to come solely from situations of that nature. Because that situation is exactly where I believe "bigger is better" to apply. Though only up to the point where control and speed of follow up shots becomes unreasonable compromised. And that is a decision everyone must make for themselves. Hopefully with a sense of objectivity.
     
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  7. fxvr5

    fxvr5 Member

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  8. CDW4ME

    CDW4ME Member

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    Lucky Gunner testing has two 380 loads that penetrate at least 12'' and consistently expand to at least .50
    If I was stuck carrying a 380 I'd want one of those two in it.
    https://www.luckygunner.com/labs/self-defense-ammo-ballistic-tests/

    If one can step up to 9mm (a decent minimum) there are about 28 loads available that meet that basic criteria.
     
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  9. Pudge

    Pudge Member

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    Isn't this discussion fun? I wonder how many who argue against trusting your life to a 2" .38 special are willing to carry a .380 when it's convenient. Fortunately this question is overwhelmingly hypothetical for those of us pondering it.
     
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  10. drband

    drband Member

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  11. rskent

    rskent Member

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    Not me. I think a 38spl is a fine self-defense caliber, just like the .380. You have to carry what you are comfortable with. If you don’t feel comfortable with anything less than a 44Mag, then you better carry a 44Mag.
     
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  12. Hasaf

    Hasaf Member

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    That's what I was thinking as I read that post; but I do understand the point he was making. Of course, I carry a .380. There is another thread here that indicates that, after 9mm, .380 is the most popular pistol caliber on this site.
     
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  13. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    That's sort of my point. And not only does the 9mm offer more power (while stepping onto the slippery "bigger is better" slope) in quality affordable pistols that are roughly the same size as the 380's and maybe a bit smaller in some cases, the 9mm will always be cheaper to fire. Which means, at least in theory, you will be able to fire it more, which means you can get better with it. It seems that very few people who are part of the "gun culture", and carry a pistol for defense, put much effort into really getting proficient with these little 380's, 32's, and the like (I know there are exceptions). The ugly fact is that these same people don't realize that they will be fighting for their lives with whatever they have on them at the time and place that someone else decides to do them harm. Chances are, these same gun owners have access to something better in their home, whether its a full-size/full-power handgun of some type, or a shotgun, or whatever, should the lethal encounter happen in the home. One can look at all the threads on "nightstand guns", EDC guns, etc. to understand this. I CCW a 9mm shield for the above reasons, and here in the sunshine state, it is the compromise I can live with regarding things like power, size, weight, reliability, and so on along with the t-shirt and shorts weather we have here most of the time. Should the situation arise where its in my hand and all that matters is me placing fast and effective fire on an adversary with what's in my hand, somewhere in the back of my mind I will probably be wishing I had my fully loaded, yet irrelevant (since is in the safe) G21SF in my hand instead. But I would much rather have a 9mm I am proficient with than a lesser caliber I am less proficient with.
     
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  14. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart Member

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    I have a Pico and have not seen a 9mm yet to the same size or even close. I will agree with you on two points. the Ammo of the 380 is more expensive. However, you can find good training ammo for low cost and of course reload. And I consider the extra cost of the 380 over the 9mm to be a price I have to pay for the convenience. And not many people train the way they should with the 380, but many do not with the 9mm either. I do consider myself a exception to the training. I enjoy shooting the small guns and run thousands of rounds through them and hit the training hard. They do require a a longer learning curve and they require frequent practice.
    As I mentioned, I love the small guns and I do carry the small Nano, and the Ruger LCR9mm. But again, they weight double and sadly they do NOT get worn with a pair of loose shorts and Tee Shirt on HOT summer days. And I do not want a tight Belt around my waist on a hot humid day, nor do I want my pants falling off from a Pound a Half of steel and lead in my Pocket.
     
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  15. OneFreeTexan

    OneFreeTexan Member

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    If it don’t begin with a 4, it ain’t worth shooting!:cool::cool:
     
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  16. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Four and a half is better. :)
     
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  17. drband

    drband Member

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    :):rofl:;)
     
  18. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart Member

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    Last edited: Sep 15, 2018
  19. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Member

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    .410?

    .40 S&W?

    .45 GAP?

    .45 Cowboy Special?

    .41 Short?

    :D
     
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  20. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart Member

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    bassjam, thankyou for that info. I saw if the other day and meant to post. Here is a Video of the same. Very interesting. fcIgSbJ.jpg Source:
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Sep 15, 2018
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  21. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    I live on a small, hobby horse farm and we dispose of undesirable critters that eat the barn cats' food and/or carry undesirable diseases from time to time. We trap the critters and put them out of our misery with 22 rimfire shots to the head. I assume they are rendered ineffective with one or two shots but ...

    Also, periodically I go out to South Dakota to help farmers.ranchers with their prairie dog infestation. Frequently, the Pdogs not hit with red mist results do not expire instantly. Frequently, they manage to crawl back to their burrow never to be seen again.

    Besides my critter disposal experience and anecdotal notes on hunting shots, I find it surprising as to the difficulty it is to put an animal down instantly with one or two shots. It does happen, but not with regularity

    The success of a one shot kill that stops the animal instantly in its tracks is few and far between.

    So, I have come to believe that the ole real estate saying, "Location, location, location" trumps other factors available at the time regardless of bullet diameter or kinetic energy.

    So, what ever cartridge one feels is the optimum or minimum for self defense, practice, practice, practice.
     
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  22. CDW4ME

    CDW4ME Member

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    Using the chart of "One shot Stops" o_O as a basis, police have it all wrong should be using 32 acp and 380.
    No way that is flawed. Of course... 32 acp and 380 make bigger holes than 40 S&W, 44 Mag and 45 acp ....
    No, they don't, so smaller holes are better, that makes perfect sense. o_O

    I should consider replacing 40 & 45 with a couple of 32 acp for carry, cause 32 is the king of "One shot stops" :rofl:
    :rofl:
     
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  23. Tallball

    Tallball Member

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    "roughly the same size as the 380's and maybe a bit smaller in some cases"

    That just isn't true. There are no 9mm pistols that I can carry as easily as my LCP, or I would.
     
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  24. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart Member

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    The LCP, Pico,Kahr etc. all carry so well. And I agree even the small 9mm's do not come close. I have one of the smallest, (Nano at 5.63 OAL) which carries IWB without a holster, but even that is not going to make it all day in Hot weather. The closest I have come for 9mm is my LCR. That little revolver carries very well IWB and I carry without a holster. I HATE IWB Carry on just about anything else. I am OCD about my pants fitting correctly and having to stuff a gun down them, just never works for me unless it is a small firearm. Never could understand how someone can put a 1911 or similar IWB and be comfortable all day.

    .
     
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  25. Zendude
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    Zendude Member

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    For civilian concealed carry, 380 is plenty adequate, especially if you are more proficient with the 380 than larger calibers.
    And like Jeb says, sometimes carrying a larger gun is just a no go. That’s why I also own a Pico in addition to other larger guns.
     
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