Modern ammo got self-defense calibers down to 9mm, why hasn't the same happened for wilderness?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Martin248, Mar 22, 2021.

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  1. MAKster

    MAKster Member

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    I think there are far fewer human defense rounds because people are generally closer in physical size, while hunting animals there is a much greater variation in size of game and how dangerous they are.
     
  2. AK Hunter

    AK Hunter Member

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    The last few years they have developed many new calibers for the wilderness shooters.
    Take a look at the .300 AAC Blackout or the 350 Legend (a super sized 9mm) both are great rounds for pistol or rifle shooters.
    But the big difference in rounds has to do with penetration. The urban defense rounds can't penetrate & the wilderness rounds you want a complete pass through to get faster bleed out because it takes more to bring down a wild animal that is in good shape & panicked from being shot. If you shoot the fat guy in a bar there is a good chance he won't get back up.
     
  3. Martin248

    Martin248 Member

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    The urban rounds are designed not to penetrate to limit the odds of harming an innocent person behind the bad guy. A lot of technology went in to making rounds that penetrate through barriers and then stop quickly in meat. A hard cast 9mm wadcutter or fmjfn round will not slow down the way HST has been carefully designed to.

    Point being while you would certainly choose a different type of bullet it's not clear you need much more power.
     
  4. Mosin77

    Mosin77 Member

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    In terms of sheer stopping power, a .45” - .50” hole, preferably two of them (entrance and exit) is going to be, at the very least, psychologically more comfortable than a smaller diameter which may or may not guarantee a stop or a humane kill when you need it. 9mm is good, and for a variety of pragmatic reasons, including economic ones, is preferred nowadays for service and self-defense use, but nobody likes the idea of “probably good enough” when making preparations in advance for a hunt or possible bear attacks during a wilderness trek.

    It’s the same reason that many hunters use a thirty caliber magnum for deer, when everyone knows that a .22 rimfire will do the job just fine with proper shot placement. (We’ve also heard of the lady who killed a grizzly with a .22 or the guy who stopped an attacker with a single .380.) A centerfire magnum is not appreciably more difficult to carry than a 10/22, and a .44 magnum is not appreciably harder to carry than a Glock 17. Everyone has also heard stories about the guy who took a full mag of 9mm to the chest and checked himself into the hospital to get patched up. There are less stories about the guy (or critter) who absorbed a full cylinder of .44 magnum.
     
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  5. Rexster

    Rexster Member

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    There can be a need for more penetration in circumstances other than against animals. For a while, in the Nineties, when I was carrying .357 Mag duty revolvers, I kept an additional GP100 available, inside the patrol car’s passenger compartment, loaded with 180-grain Castcore, a hard-cast load, specifically for felony vehicle stops, or, to reach for, in the event that a normal traffic stop went south. As controlled-expansion JHP ammo improved, it became less necessary to carry a separate type of ammo for hard-cover penetration. By the end of my LE career, in early 2018, I carried Federal HST Tactical .45 ACP, in my 1911 duty pistols.

    Actually, during the final few months of my career, when I had to patrol in one of the tiny Fords, rather than a much-loved Tahoe, I carried a Glock G19 in my duty rig, on the nights I had a partner who was driving, because a 1911’s grip tended to catch on the right seat bolster, when I was riding in the passenger seat. By then, I had a fresh supply of Federal Truball Penetrator 12 gauge slugs, for the Benelli, to provide ample penetration, and I kept that Benelli right next to me, while literally “riding shotgun.” PD rules limited the times it was OK to exit the patrol car with an AR15, but exiting the car with the shotgun was always at our discretion. I worked straight nights, by choice, when/where the shotgun rules. Who needs an AR15, anyway? ;)
     
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  6. Daveboone

    Daveboone Member

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    I didnt bother reading all the other replies except for a quick skim...but...
    Essentially small high speed bullets kill with hydrostatic shock....the shock wave sent through the mainly liquid content of a body disrupting it. The .270 Winchester became a huge hit largely due to its hydrostatic shock (and ballistics). The bigger the animal, the lesser the hydrostatic affect, esp. with heavier bones and fatter heavier outer layers. I once shot foolishly a young bear with a .300 win mag...almost tore it in half, and did partly eviscerate it. Horrifying to see. And the poor creature still ran about 45 yards. After that, I went to big and fat .45-70 rounds. All succeeding bears where full grown. And dropped from the bone breaking shock of the heavy slow shock...What silhouette shooters call Time On Target..
    Humans are wimps. Lightly built, little survival drive compared to most wild things. Hit them anywhere with a small caliber bullet and they fall over and die.
     
  7. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Member

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    I have to take exception to humans being wimps.
    They are unequivocally the most dangerous species in existence.
    I’ve seen fatally shot subjects fight and hold off several officers, for longer than you’d believe.

    During my 25yrs in L.E. I never carried a 9mm unless you want to classify the .357mag as a”9”.
    Even then, the handgun was carried when I wasn’t expecting trouble.

    If trouble was expected, (ie: stake outs or serving high risk warrants) the shotgun or rifle was primary. Usually had both close by...
     
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  8. jeff-10

    jeff-10 Member

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    The Navy Colt was a .36 caliber revolver and quite anemic compared to the 9x19. So people have been shooting each other with .36 (9mm) projectiles for at least 160 years if not longer. Modern CQB is about "hits on target" and current thought is that it is easier with a 9mm than a 40 or 45. If you watch videos of modern gunfights involving 9mm pistols people rarely go down after a single round. They either continue to struggle and get shot again or run away.

    When you hunt you want a one shot stop every time. If the animal runs away it can effect your ability to later consume it. Also, it is considered very inhumane. Similar though to .36/9mm in handgun projectiles people have been harvesting game in North America with .30 caliber bullets for a very long time and there definitely has been significant improvement in bullet design.
     
  9. Roknstevo

    Roknstevo Member

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    10-4 to that. The only way to get a human to do that is to put a couple of rounds by his ears so he can hear the buzz.....he’ll probably run further than that.
     
  10. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    The point is that reaching critical body parts of a standing human takes less penetration than does an elf hit by a rear-angling shot.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2021
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  11. Goosey

    Goosey Member

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    9mm was always powerful enough for self-defense against humans, 44 Magnum was always a small gun when faced with a charging grizzly bear. Modern technology hasn't improved the 9mm much that matters since the 80s and for the .44 perhaps never.
     
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  12. gyp_c2

    gyp_c2 Member

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    I dunno' 'bout that.
    All the elves I put down turned into pixie dust instantly!
    :rofl:
    Sorry...couldn't resist.:evil:
     
  13. Bill Raby

    Bill Raby Member

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    Here is a slightly different take on it. For a long time pretty much the only people that carried guns were cops and such. That is open carry of full size duty guns. So the trend was for using the most effective round without much concern to the size of the gun. Now concealed carry by people who are not cops is rather common. I think the popularity of 9MM is not because it is any better than anything else. I think it is because smaller guns for concealed are becoming much more popular and 9MM is good enough. 380 is also extremely popular even though it is generally considered marginal for self defense, but some of the guns that use it are tiny and very easy to carry. That might be part of the reason why 9MM is so popular now. Also 9MM is easy to shoot. You don't need to practice as much with it. My opinion is that the larger calibers are better for self defense but 9MM is easier and still good enough.
     
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  14. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    Police officers generally carry full size 9mm handguns.

    The FBI Training Academy at Quantico has concluded that, with modern premium defensive ammunition, 9mm is the best choice tor their agents and for their law enforcement partners.
     
  15. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    Probably not.

    Where have you been?
     
  16. tipoc

    tipoc Member

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    A few comments on the original post:

    Someone else mentioned this, but it's worth noting, that the list here and the description of the progression of the rounds mentioned is off. The 45 Colt and the 45 acp had approximately the same energy and close to the same mass (230 gr. vs.250. grains) and diameter (caliber) bullet as one another. The U.S. Army wanted that to be the case with the 45 acp designed for a semi automatic pistol. The Army by passed the 38 Automatic Colt round (essentially a 38 caliber/9mm) which Browning and Colt at first offered the military in 1898. The 38 acp was technically a more powerful round than the 45 acp in terms of energy. Both rounds, 38 acp and the 45 acp, were smokeless powder and ball ammo. The military wanted a 45 caliber pistol and so the 1911. The step was from a smaller to a larger caliber.

    The 357 Magnum is the same caliber as the 38 Spl. The difference is power. What the old timers called "stopping power" or "knock down power". They were well aware that no bullet could guarantee a stop or the physical knockdown of a human. It was they who first developed the practical experiments that proved that. You can see some of those in Hatcher's Notebook.

    When the German army first looked to adopting the Luger as a service sidearm the famous gun was chambered in 7.65x21 Parabellum (the 30 Luger) with an 88 gr. and 93 gr. bullet did at or over 1200 fps and penetrated well. But the Germans wanted more, what they called "stopping power", more mass, a larger caliber. In short, power. So George Luger gave them the 9mm in 1902. This gave them about 1100 fps with a 124 gr. bullet. by the end of the 2nd World War it was the most widespread semi auto round used by militaries in the world. it was chambered in the best semis available at that time with increasing magazine capacity. In terms of it becoming the dominant semi auto round used by the armies of the globe it was all over but the shouting.

    Over the last 3 decades bullet design has improved for all handgun rounds and modern powders, and for many more power has been made available for the older rounds. This is especially the case for the 9mm. The 9mm of today is faster and has more power on tap than 118 years ago. It is also has modest recoil.
     
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  17. Goosey

    Goosey Member

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    The biggest improvement to the 9mm and most pistol rounds was being able to buy working hollow points on store shelves, they had those in the 80s. Moving from a 9mm FMJ to 9BPLE was a much bigger improvement than the comparatively minor step from 9BPLE to 147 gr HST or whatever is the best new thing today.

    And before that it was mostly just ball ammo, and the .45 and 9mm made small wound channels and sucked in a similar way. They FBI should have never adopted the 10mm or the .40 S&W. And the US Army should have adopted the 9mm in 1911. But that wouldn't be much fun.
     
  18. sgt127

    sgt127 Member

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    The FBI said:
    “We want duty ammo that will meet all of these criteria including depth of penetration.”

    The Ammo makers said: “We can do that.”

    They slowed some down, they sped some up, they tinkered with the jackets and, all duty ammo in all common calibers preformed exactly the same.

    It was then proclaimed that the 9mm is exactly as effective as all other handgun calibers.

    Well. Yeah. That’s what you wanted.

    We can argue all the details we want. There’s nothing inherently wrong with the 9mm.

    However, if a recently released 350 pound murderer is charging me with a machete raised over his head and, I have time to put one round in him, I would prefer a .44 Magnum 240 grain Hollow point or even a hard cast over any 9mm.

    It’s simply going to break more stuff, go in deeper and let more hydraulic fluid leak out faster. Period.

    Nobody hunts 100-150 pound White Tail deer with a 9mm. And, it’s not trying to kill you.

    I’m not advocating carrying a .41 or .44 mag for personal protection. (I actually carry a .357 Magnum, 357 SIG or a .45) But the recent revelation that 9mm is just as good as any other handgun caliber. I’m not buying it. It’s good. It’s adequate.

    The best part is the FBI has not yet designed the perfect hunting round. I can’t imagine what that would be. :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2021
  19. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    That's not what happened.

    Where he has been before the incident is irrelevant, and limiting yourself to one shot would be a big mistake.

    However, using a .44 magnum might well effectively impose that limit.

    The difference in what it breaks would be insignificant; only so much penetration will do any good; and a difference in leakage rate will not help in the situation you describe.

    As effective or more than any other service round.

    That conclusion was not based on emotion and untested assumptions.
     
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  20. sgt127

    sgt127 Member

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    It is now as effective or more effective because ALL duty ammo, In all calibers for LE is designed to meet the exact same criteria.

    The FBI criteria was not: “make the most effective round in any caliber”
     
  21. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    The current FBI criteria relate to minimum penetration, maximum penetration, and expansion in a specified medium in specified tests.

    They address terminal ballistics only.

    The FBI recommendation of the 9mm is based on more than terminal ballistics,
     
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