Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Encoreman, Jul 7, 2020.
Do you intend to use all these pistols for self defense and/or home defense?
Do you have large reserves of ammo, or are you planning to build large reserves?
Are you concerned about having enough ammo available now? Or are you more concerned about future availability?
Do you have a reason to own different sizes of pistol, and different calibers for different applications? Meaning a small pistol for concealed carry, and a larger caliber pistol for woods defense etc.
I have several handguns each in most popular calibers, .22 LR, .38, .357, 9mm, .40, .44 Spl .44 mag, .45 ACP, .45 Colt etc. Each one has a different size, feel, capacity or purpose. Some are for duty, some for home defense, some for carry.... but all are for fun.
I have only a few true duplicates though. Those I got a smoking deal on or I would’ve bought something different.
Nothing is wrong at all with having several guns in one caliber.
C96 "Broomhandle" Mauser
Beretta 92 INOX
Remington R51 (Really the only looser of the bunch.)
CZ 75 compact
All of them very different, no dups, all unique and all enjoyed at the range. I have several other calibers too but I think 9mm is the most numerous. A double stack 1911 of some sort will be added some day... right now it looks like it will be an RIA... but the Dan Wesson DWX does have a lot of appeal if I ever have the spare change.
I have ~10k 9mm cases and ~eh... a lot of bullets.
Is there some kind of ammo shortage or something going on?
I think it depends on a lot of factors. What follows is all keeping “2 is 1” in mind....
If you have one use case for a gun...in other words, one thing you are going to be doing, be it target shooting, concealed carry, or whatever, then two identical guns makes a lot of sense. Same make, model, caliber. You are paying more money than just buying one gun, but you get redundancy for your money.
If you have two use cases that are similar, e.g. home defense and low difficulty concealed carry, then you have a more complicated choice. You can choose to use the same (or very similar) type of gun for both cases (e.g. a G19 is fine for either role, and a G19 and a G17 have enough overlap that either can be used for either role), so there are two strategies make sense: two slightly different guns, or two identical guns that can work for either role. Either way, choosing one cartridge for both makes sense. Ideally, there would be magazine compatibility too. Cost is probably about the same as the previous scenario but now you get redundancy and expanded capability.
When you get into dissimilar use cases, things look very different. For example if you need to cover home defense and deep concealment, it’s a real challenge to find true deep concealment guns in anything above .380, and 9mm is a good floor for home defense. So now you have a choice: four guns in two cartridges, or two guns in two cartridges with the understanding that a failure of either will leave you compromising your other use case. The choice becomes a matter of money, so you need to start asking yourself, “how much does maximizing the capability per dollar matter to me?”
The more kinds of dissimilar use cases you have, the more guns and potentially calibers you need. Add that if you like having guns, it’s pretty easy to justify having another 30 or so that are redundant but aren’t for redundancy. At this point the whole, “maximum reliability for minimum dollars,” thing is out the window anyway so your goal becomes maximizing capability, supply flexibility, and other values.
The last time I was in a store that sold ammo, their entire stock consisted of rat shot in various forms, rimfire, and .380. If I had needed ammo, I would have been happy to have a .380 pistol at that moment. But it could has easily have been .40, or .32H&R mag, or whatever else. If you want the greatest chance of being able to buy ammo, having guns that can fire a range of cartridges has an advantage.
What does all of that boil down to?
If you have only one or two similar use cases, and your goal is maximizing reliability and effectiveness per dollar, standardizing on one caliber and two guns that can both cover your uses is going to be your most bang for the buck.
If you have a range of dissimilar use cases, deliberately choosing different but overlapping guns in different calibers will give you the same or better redundancy, a greater range of uses, and better supply options, but the cost per unit of redundancy will be higher.
That higher cost may or may not matter to you. The only wrong answer at this point is to have a mismatch between your choices and actual needs. If your actual needs are for a danger predator defense gun, a deep concealment gun, a low difficulty concealment gun, a new shooter training gun, a small game hunting gun, and a home defense gun, but you buy a pair of midsize polymer 9mms because that’s the max redundancy per dollar sweet spot, you’ve done yourself a disservice.
That's what I read on THR.
10mm is the only somewhat common caliber that I don't own a handgun for. I own at least one handgun in all of the other calibers that I'm likely to see at a big box sporting goods store. When ammo is scarce, I can shoot anything likely to be in stock anywhere nearby.
The 23 is my minimum carry wherever pistol, easy to conceal AIWB or strongside.
22 is preferred AIWB if wearing a stripe, plaid, pattern polo or button up (more than a t-shirt).
35 preferred strong side wearing more than a t-shirt (stripe, plaid, print, polo or button up)
In a shirt like this, I'm going with the 22 or 35 - typical summer attire:
I firmly believe in the multiple handguns in as many calibers as possible.
I have multiple handguns in .22LR/Mag, 9mm, .38Spl, .357Magnum, .41Magnum, .44Spl, .45ACP, .44Magnum and .45Colt.
For some reason, I only own one handgun in .45AutoRim .40S&W and .375SuperMag. I do not own a 10mm but shoot both of my son's 10mm handguns just about every week.
Always on the lookout for another handgun that interests me...and it doesn't take much to get me interested.
What am I missing?
The Boy Scouts say "Be Prepared" and that's good advice.
It doesn't matter if you can or can't find certain ammo on the shelves during a buying panic if you prepared for this by stocking up when ammo was cheap and plentiful. I try to have roughly a 2-3 year supply for each centerfire cartridge I shoot, and a 5 year supply for .22lr. The cartridges that I reload for I can stretch out a little longer.
I can shoot 9, 40, 357 Sig, and 22lr from 3 of the pistols I own.
And those 3 use the same mags, holsters, etc.
I think having backup calibers for the same platform is a decent idea.
I keep a set amount of the ammo and reloading supplies on hand. I have not had to sweat about ammo being available. Now that's not to say those are the only calibers that I own. I have several others but I don't feel the need to stock up on it by the boat load. I keep a little bit and some reloading supplies for things like 40S&W, 44Mag and so on. I could all most drop the 45Acp off the list as I don't shoot it as much as I use to. I grouped the 38Spl and 357Mag together but I don't keep that much Mag ammo around. The hard part for me was when I was looking at a new gun if it was in a caliber other then the above I didn't have a lot of interest. I did the same thing with rifles. If its not in one of the following I most likely won't have a lot of interest in it.
I got rid of a bunch of the Russian calibers and guns year back. I have a couple of 8MM Mausers but I never have fired them and don't own a round of ammo for them. Most of the guns that are not in any of the listed ones are on the chopping block as time moves on.
I realize its not for everyone but it works for me.
I prefer going with the Big and small combinations for maximum CC options.
I tell this story a lot but I'll try to keep it brief.
I started out buying a lot of different calibers and I found it almost impossible to keep any kind of stock on hand. I got caught really short by The Obama Ammo Panic and I decided I was never going to get caught short like that again.
In 2013 I sold off all my guns (with 3 exceptions) and started over with an emphasis on consolidation. It was a process but I decided to limit myself to 9mm Glocks. I only have to stock one type of ammunition and two kinds of magazines to cover all my bases. It makes my life a lot simpler, we have an ammunition budget. We put a little back from every paycheck and when we find a good price we buy regardless of how much we already have on hand. As a result we didn't get caught short by the current panic.
In total I only stock four calibers
Depending on finances over the years I bought 2 boxes, bricks, battlepacks or cases, shot one, saved the other. Rotate and repeat! Today I have 3K to 5K of each caliber!
For weapons I like to have a full size and a compact of each.
Full size 1911, Officers model 1911, CZ 75B full CZ 75D compact, In 357 a 4 inch 357 3 inch and 2 inch etc You get the idea.
Did this with 22, 380, 359 45, 9mm,.
On the rifle side I Have Carbines in 22, 9mm, 357 and 45.
Separate names with a comma.