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The High Power Revolver Defense Option.

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Zorro, Aug 18, 2004.

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  1. Zorro

    Zorro Member

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    I do not proscribe to the spray and pray philosophy.

    Well-aimed shots end fights, that was true in the old west and it is true now.

    I prefer a Magnum revolver in .41 or .44 Magnum to any high capacity semi auto pistol.

    Explain if you can why a 9mm or 10mm Semi auto is superior to one well-aimed Magnum Revolver bullet?

    Semi Autos may fire fast but a Magnum punches through Body Armor and helmets.

    Throwing 100-200 Rounds per minute in the air with a Semi Auto is counter productive.

    Practice on Aim, Fire, and Recoil Recovery is the better way.
     
  2. Tamara

    Tamara Senior Member

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    So, uh, you get a lot of muggers and rapists wearing helmets out there in California? :scrutiny:
     
  3. natedog

    natedog Member

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    Platform doesn't necessarily dictate the use. I could "spray and pray" with a bolt-action, while making aimed shots with an AK.

    I'd say that an autoloader is superior to a revolver because it can be reloaded faster, has a higher capacity, has less recoil, is easier to conceal, is easier to shoot quickly and accurately, and has a level of reliability and accuracy at least equal to that of a revolver. You may not necessarily need the higher capacity, or the faster reload, but if you're trying to stay alive, any and every advantage is a good thing.

    There is no magic bullet. The ballistics of magnum revolver rounds are impressive, but just because it says "Magnum" on the box doesn't necessarily mean a one shot kill.
     
  4. saltydog452

    saltydog452 Member

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    Semi vs. wheelgun

    Once someone questioned the preferences of a retired U.S. Border Patrolman about his choice of a revolver in lieu of a semi.

    It was pointed out that the semi had more rounds available than the revolver. The ex law dog agreed to this but replied that "I wouldn't want to be among the first six that tried".


    salty.
     
  5. MrAcheson

    MrAcheson Member

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    Have you actually read any historical accounts of old west gunfights? If I recall, the gunfight at the OK Corral had something like 30 shots fired and only a handful hit. Its the same now as it is then. Once the adrenaline kicks in you will miss so you better plan on it.

    Also keep in mind that too much gun brings overpenetration issues. You better make sure of your backstop, because hit or miss those bullets have a lot of power to penetrate through a person, department store, or a residence. You are responsible for them for their entire flight path.
     
  6. Damon

    Damon Member

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    A revolver would work. A .44 magnum would slow the split times for multiple shots.
     
  7. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    Wheelguns

    Ain't a thing wrong with a good revolver. I would hesitate to recommend your caliber choices without suggesting that you employ some of the reduced loadings available. A full-house .41 or .44 mag is a little too much of a good thing in a defensive revolver. As to that, the .357 has a lot going for it. Out in the boonies...fine. On a city street may be courting disaster.

    It's not the weapon...it's the man wielding it. if you do your part, a six-shooter will protect you well. If you don't do your part, a fifteen shooter
    won't help much unless you get lucky. I'm a believer in the 1911 pistol,
    and if I had to grab one and run, that would be my hands-down choice...
    but I have carried revolvers and will again at some point.

    For the mean streets, my choice is a 3-inch, round butt Model 13 Smith
    stoked with Remington 125 JHPs or 145-grain Silvertips...depending on the season.

    For the boonies, it'll be a Model 58 with cast SWCs and a healthy dose of
    2400 powder...maybe with a LW Commander backing it up....again, depending on climate/season, and whether or not I have a rifle with me.
     
  8. armoredman

    armoredman Member

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    Sir, that is a disturbing commentary. First, let me state my 4 year old Safariland Hyperlite 2, level IIIA vest IS rated to stop 44 mag ammo. This negates your "vest" point. Yes, some felons are wearing vests now - nothing we can do but aim for another vital point, if it becomes obvious they are wearing vests - at which time a larger ammo supply might be nice - as it probably took one or more rounds to find this out!
    Second -helmets? OK, I have YET to see a criminal wearing a Kevlar helmet in action - but I DO see PD and military wearing them. The only helmet I would reccomend as a target would be a UN helmet invading the US, otherwise - NON TARGETS!
    I agree that spray and pray is always a bad idea, and I teach sight alingment and shot placement always. I also don't like overpenetration, as YOU ARE LEGALLY LIABLE FOR EVERY ROUND FIRED!
    If you can use that 44 effectively and safely, go for it, and good luck. I wouldn't, but that's me.
     
  9. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

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    So you don't discredit the "spray-n-pray" mentality?
    I'm just joshin' ya... I know you meant to type prescribe (the two words practically mean the opposite of each other). :D

    I personally don’t feel an auto chucker is going to entice someone who's properly trained to spray lead, just as I don’t feel a Mustang is going to allure a conscientious driver to hit 110 in a 35mph zone… sure it happens for some, but it’s not an assured exploit for all.

    As for ballistic energy, if anyone feels the supreme need for more whomp than a 9mm, .40S&W or .45acp can dish out, they’re likely in need of a reality check.

    Until the T800s start their search for Sarah Conner, your .45acp will do just dandy.
    [​IMG]
     
  10. Tamara

    Tamara Senior Member

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    [Conan the Grammarian voice] Ja, but what he really meant was not 'proscribe' or 'prescribe', but 'subscribe'.[/Conan the Grammarian voice] :D
     
  11. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

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    Christ, you're right... what the heck was I thinking?

    I suppose I'd better just take a nap or something. :confused:
     
  12. TonyB

    TonyB Member

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    ONCE AND FOR ALL.......CARRY WHAT YOU SHOOT BEST!!!:banghead:
    Gun,caliber..if you can make hits(and not kill the 5 good guys behind the BG)you're good to go......the only time I think most of us civi's will be attacked by 6 bad guys is on the IDPA field...:p
    That being said.......IF I am attacked by 6 guys...after my reload..I'm throwing the gun at them:D
     
  13. Mikul

    Mikul Member

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    A .44 can be just fine for carry. I carry one on occasion, but I'm aware of the limitations. The pentration is horrific. If you manage to get four bad-guys to line up, I suppose it's a good thing. Follow up shots will be slow. If I need to reload, I'm probably dead because it will take forever.

    My wondernine does give me a warm fuzzy, not because I can throw 3 rounds into each bad guy for every one with the magnum, but because if I have 8 bad-guys, I have a chance.

    Of course that one time that I thought a deer was going to charge me, I would have rather had the .44 than the 9. Maybe I should carry the .44 as a backup gun.
     
  14. MJRW

    MJRW Member

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    "Well-aimed shots end fights, that was true in the old west and it is true now."

    It is also true that at house ranges, you don't have to be good when luck can suffice. The only thing we know about ending the fight is that it is over when it is over. We don't know beforehand how many shots it will take and who will actually make them. Given that, I'll take the weapon I am best with which may or may not be the one with the biggest crazy butt stomping round.

    "I prefer a Magnum revolver in .41 or .44 Magnum to any high capacity semi auto pistol."

    And I prefer not to be putting holes in my neighbors TV sets because I am responsible for where that bullet ultimately ends up. For this I prefer a .38 special or a 9mm without silly deep, yet deep enough, gelatin penetration.

    "Explain if you can why a 9mm or 10mm Semi auto is superior to one well-aimed Magnum Revolver bullet?"

    Because of everything before that "one well-placed Magnum Revolver bullet." I don't reload. I have a budget I allow myself for practice. I can shoot far more 9mm than I can .44, .41, .357, .32 for the same amount of money. Therefore, the chances of me hitting my target, dealing with failures, and every part of the interaction except for the size of the hole created is superior for me using 9mm.

    And also because of everything after that "one well-placed Magnum Revolver bullet." You may stop your attacker after one shot. Then again, you may not. You may also have multiple people. Criminals are not entirely against working in groups. You have 5 more chances to get it right, with my G19, I've got 15 more and I can get 17 more in there quicker than you can get 6 more in there. I don't have to shoot more than 1, but with a revolver, you don't have a choice of shooting more than 6 (5, 7, 8, whatever your cylinder holds) before you have to reload. I've increased my options.

    "Semi Autos may fire fast but a Magnum punches through Body Armor and helmets."

    Which magnums in particular punch through which classes of armor? Let us suppose you have encountered a thug in armor, how do you know whether or not your round is sufficient to handle it? You going to ask him to see the tag and then cross reference your handy dandy ratings table in your pocket? I'm preparing for the likely events, not every possible event. If I were to do that, I'd set up claymores and have sand bags in my room with some form of squad weapon and TOW and Patriot missiles in case criminals revive the panzerblitz. No, my preparation for body armor is to shoot where they are not armored. At least I don't have to reference that to my handy dandy ratings table.

    "Throwing 100-200 Rounds per minute in the air with a Semi Auto is counter productive."

    Counter productive to what? Ammo conservation? And remember, just because you can do something, doesn't mean that you should or must do that thing. I may be able to empty all 6 magazines in X amount of time. It doesn't mean I have to. But I'd also rather not limit my access for artificial reasons. I can choose not to use what I have, I cannot choose to use what I don't have.

    "Practice on Aim, Fire, and Recoil Recovery is the better way."

    On paper. I prefer the Soil Self, Fire, Hope to Escape method as these are three things I'm pretty sure that I'll be allowed to do in a fire fight. Are we still lining up in formations? If so, I didn't get the memo. If your attacker permits you the time to really aim, fire at your whim, and prepare your follow up, you've got nicer attackers than I expect to meet.
     
  15. Johnny Guest

    Johnny Guest Moderator Emeritus

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    Personal preference - - -

    You know, sometimes you make certain choices just because they're available to you. I'm a shooter. I like to shoot nearly all kindsa firearms. I have an excellent M1A rifle which is fun. I also have a rather nifty little .308 Savage Scout. And a couple of larger-bore rifles, all of which are somewhat neglected because I end up shooting my handguns a lot more.

    On ALMOST any given day, I'm carrying a Colt Commander, because I believe it is MY optimum choice for power, weight, compactness, controlability, concealability and a couple of other factors. I practice with 1911s pretty regularly and have confidence in it. I've carried it to a few dark and scary places where I couldn't have a rifle, and any trepidation I felt was never about my sidearm.

    Today, though, I'm packing my model 65. I recently acquired it, tried several ammo types in it, and put a couple of hundred rounds through it. Qualified with it last week and now have my agency's blessing to pack it on duty. :p Kinda like a new version of an old friend, because I've been shooting S&W K frames for forty years.

    And WHY am I totin' the 65 rather than my CLW, or Browning High Power, or any of, say, six other perfectly suitable service-type handguns? Because I felt like it on a fine Wednesday morning. :cool:

    Way down deep, I may believe the 1911-type is The One True Sword, but that doesn't mean it's the only blade that'll cut. I think the fight is won by the warrior and not the particular weapon. It's rather nice to be able to exercise one's choices.

    I have now enscribed my thoughts, describing them above, prescribing that each should subscribe to their own choice, proscribing none. ;)

    Best,
    Johnny
     
  16. magsnubby

    magsnubby Member

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    quot:
    "So,uh,you get a lot of muggers and rapists wearing helmets out there in California?"


    Yup. shore do. They disguise 'em to look like backwards baseball caps.
     
  17. Iggy

    Iggy Member

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    Reality Check..

    Many years ago, I was a Highway Patrolman.. I carried a mdl 58 S&W .41 mag.

    Circumstances on a traffic stop developed to where I fired a round at the rear of a fleeing 73 Ford Bronco at about 50 yards and going away fast.

    When I finally got him corraled a few miles down the line, I checked to see if I had even hit the vehicle.

    My 210 grn SWHP went through the spare tire on the rear tail gate, the tubular spare tire rack, the tail gate, the back of the passenger seat, and into the radio in the dash board.

    Had that round been about a foot to the left, that 15 year old kid that had tried to run me down and sent me flying out through the thistles on the side of the road might not have gotten to see 16.

    I didn't and don't consider that old .41 an appropriate pistol for home defense in town, but it was just what the doctor ordered for dealing with BG's using a vehicle for a barricade on a lonely Wyoming Highway..

    I got into several little squabbles out there on the road and .41 mag served very well.

    When I moved on to other endeavors, I retired that old revolver and started packing one of those new fangled 10mm's. I still do.

    I realize this doesn't answer the question posted about the difference in Magnums and lesser rounds, but it might give one pause before making their decisions about penetration and errant rounds.
     
  18. The Rabbi

    The Rabbi member

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    Shouldnt that original post be moved to the "Gun Rumors" thread??

    The people who support the "carry what you are comfortable with" have my vote.
    There are tons of conflicting stories about different guns and calibers. Are 9mm's really effective? Well, some are and some arent. Apparantly the 9mm in 115gr HP didnt penetrate enough to stop the BGs in some famous shootout in CA. OTOH, the round has been around for probably nearly 100 years so it must be good for something. Then too, the ammo is so cheap that practicing with it is feasible for most people. Lots of pros and cons. I have 2 9mm's and I love both of them and would happily carry them.

    My normal carry has been a 44Mag with a downloaded 240gr XTP bullet. My reading has been that underpenetration, not overpenetration is the major problem and this will certainly solve that issue.

    Also, I think capacity is hugely over-rated. In a recent book I read on the snubby revolver the author mentions a study of NYC cops from about the 1960s to late 70s. In those years the .38spc revolver was the standard carry weapon with a snubby for backup. There were, he says, no cases of officers running out of rounds or even reloading (other than the "NY reload"). Most civilian personal defense situations are resolved with one or two shots fired. After that someone is either dead, disabled, or running like heck.
    But everyone will have his favorite.
     
  19. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Member

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    People expecting spectacular results from "magnums" are doomed to disappointment.

    I recall reading about a police shooting where a man drew on two cops who were already pointing their revolvers at him.

    The two were partners and were carrying virtually identical 44Special revolvers loaded with HOT Elmer Keith style loads. Performance range similar to 41 magnum or even light 44mag loads.

    They both unloaded on the guy hitting him a total of 11 times out of 12 shots. He fell FORWARD.

    There were also lots of survivors from WWII who were hit by rifle rounds and shell fragments which have a good bit more oomph than any pistol round.
     
  20. The Rabbi

    The Rabbi member

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    But I'll bet he didnt get up afterwards!

    This is in the category of anecdotal evidence. As I mentioned, there are tons of conflicting stories. I account for them as being mostly a matter of sheer luck and not necessarily typical.
     
  21. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Member

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    He was dead when he hit the ground.

    However, the point was not that 11 rounds of very hot 44 special to the center-of-mass killed a criminal, the point was that all that energy/power/ooomph expended into his torso wasn't enough to push him backward even enough to unbalance him in that direction.

    The point is that to someone watching the shooting, expecting something spectacular from all that magnum firepower, it would have been, at best, anti-climactic.

    Magnums stop when the shot placement is good. Non-magnums stop when the shot placement is good. Neither are worth beans without shot placement.

    A guy I know ;) has this as his sig line on another forum.
    The point is that it's the shooter that makes the difference. It's not the style of gun used, not the type of ammo used, not the brand or caliber that makes the biggest difference. It's where the shot lands, and the responsibility for making that happen rests squarely on the shooter's shoulders.
     
  22. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge Member

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    Even if I make all my shots "well-aimed" I'll take my 11 rounds of .40 (with 10 more that can be added in about a second) over your 6 of .44.

    It may take more then one shot to take down each intruder ... lets say 4 guys break into your house. I understand it takes an average of two shots to bring a badguy down (which is not unreasonable even for a .44mag) so that 4th guy will take your empty wheel gun and beat you to death with it.

    High capacity is not just for "spray & pray"

    :scrutiny:
    If you're worried about Body Armored thugs maybe you should heed Col. Cooper's words and use a long gun ... if you think a Magnum punches through body armor nicely, you should see what a 12ga slug or .308 will do.



    At any rate, the most important thing to go into "battle" with is the proper mindset so if using a particular type of firearm, or particular brand of ammo, or wearing a particular brand of underwear gives you more confidence then you'll probably shoot better ... so if you feel better with your .44mag then we're all happy for you :p
     
  23. Croyance

    Croyance Member

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    A revolver doesn't make a person more accurate, or show better judgement in shooting.
    What were the police armed with in the Dialo shooting? Revolvers. Of the forty or so shots fired at him, a target that did not move much, how many hit? Did revolvers make the police better shooters? Were those misses better aimed?
    Everybody talks about a well aimed shot. I agree, but what about when that well aimed shot misses? For all the practice in the world, when stressed, it happens. Recovery time suddenly becomes important.
    Why is a 9 mm to .45 ACP better than a large magnum? Because the platform is not a huge hogleg. In urban areas concealed carry is a must. If I can't hide it, it isn't on me, it isn't useful. This is in addition to the weight factor, or does the idea of firing full .44 Magnum loads from a 22 oz gun seem fun to you?
    Other issues with heavy magnum rounds mentioned above.
     
  24. Tamara

    Tamara Senior Member

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    Glock 19's.
     
  25. Gunmeister

    Gunmeister Member

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    Vest or no vest, helmet or no helmet it's shot placement that counts. A well placed shot to the gonads will bring down most perps.:evil: :D
     
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