Why so much disdain for the .25 acp?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Guvnor, Dec 10, 2012.

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  1. Fiv3r

    Fiv3r Member

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    Once upon a time in the mid-late 70's, my father and mother were dirt poor and lived in a crappy neighborhood. My mother's parents, not being rich themselves, wanted to provide them with SOMETHING to protect their home and hearth.

    My grandfather, a man of meager means, secured my father with a Glennfield Marlin Model 60 .22 rifle for the house and a .25 caliber pocket pistol of some Saturday Night Special brand.

    Even though my parents are no longer married, my dad still carries that little .25 in his truck for protection. It's kind of funny seeing my burly barrel chested dad driving around in his stacked diesel truck knowing that this very manly construction worker "risks" his life carrying a 35 year old Saturday Night Special .25 pistol under the seat.

    But I'll tell you what...the man PRACTICED. He used to shoot match boxes at 15-20 yards (not from rest). If my dad drew a bead on you with that .25, that little pill was going right where he wanted it. Is it the BEST, of course not, but it has served him well for 3 decades.

    Same goes for my dear ol' granddad. His hands aren't what they used to be, but he carries a little snubnose .22 in his pocket every day. It's what he answers the door with. I have no question that the tough ol' buzzard couldn't drop someone with that little .22 in a hurry.

    Now, I don't carry anything that small. The LCP has made a .25 a moot point for me. I can get .380 ammo cheaper, it packs more punch, etc. On top of that, I generally carry a 9mm or .45 most days. But the idea of a vest gun lives on in these little .380's. I'll probably never be as good of a shot as my dad, but I have no doubt that some little "small" caliber weapon will be found in the stash of weapons I leave behind when I'm done on this earth. I certainly wouldn't mind a Baby Browning in my collection, and I wouldn't hesitate to carry a .25 as a Back up Back up:)
     
  2. MagicD

    MagicD Member

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  3. orionengnr

    orionengnr Member

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    Considering the fact that a KT P32 weighs less than your average .25 POS and fires a more effective round, I cannot see how anyone can justify carrying a .25...except for "tradition"...:rolleyes:
     
  4. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Member

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    Does it fit in your vest pocket? :uhoh:
     
  5. Swing

    Swing Member

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    Disdain for the .25 ACP? Naw. But, ya-know, you can get a .32ACP and .380 ACP in the same package these days. Time was the 25 Auto Colt was the only game in town for a true vest pocket auto, but that has changed. Anywho, back to the original point, .22LR v .25 ACP? Who cares, the difference is minuscule.

    P.S. The ".22LR/.25ACP/.32ACP won't punch through a leather jacket" thing is so 80s. Ah-ha-ha!
     
  6. Kayaker 1960

    Kayaker 1960 Member

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    My great uncle Andy used to always keep a .25 in his pocket. We took it out into the back yard and fired it from about 4 feet away into a douglas fir 2 x 4 . The bullet went in about 1/2 of the legnth of the bullet (about 5/16 of an inch) Granted, it was a cheap Saturday Night Special but I would rather have a .22 L.R. at least it will penetrate better. For defensive purposes I'll say a .380 is my very minimum.
    P.S. Just to be clear on the penetration of that shot; The nose of the bullet was only 5/16" into the wood. The base of the bullet was sticking out. Bouncing off of a forehead, I beleive that.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2012
  7. TennJed

    TennJed Member

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  8. kludge

    kludge Member

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    For a "bedside" gun until ready to move up in caliber I would recommend the following...

    Bersa Thunder .380 (or the Thunder .380CC)

    This gun is easy to shoot and recoil is no problem for most people. Nobody that I know likes to the shoot a Kel-Tec P-3AT or Ruger LCR. I've have a few women come to our class either having just bought one or wanting one. After shooting them, all of them have left with a different opinion.

    Ruger SP101 in .357 Magnum.

    Shoot .38 Special until you are ready to move up... and it gives you three choices .38 Special, .38 Special +P, and .357 Magnum. Even wadcutter target loads are much better than any .25 ACP or .22 rimfire load.
     
  9. Kiln

    Kiln Member

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    My Raven MP25 has worked fine after I adjusted the lips of the magazine. It was the first gun I owned and I was glad to have it when I was broke. I've upgraded to much more expensive guns now but honestly as long as the gun works I don't have an issue with it.

    The Raven shoots much more accurately than people would like to admit too.
     
  10. ceetee

    ceetee Member

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    [​IMG]



    Ooooooooohhhh... Pretty. lol
     
  11. MedWheeler

    MedWheeler Member

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    TennJed writes:

    Now that could be a tiny gun..! :D
     
  12. frankmako

    frankmako Member

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    on the job,,,,i have seen several that have been killed with a 25 acp. i have also seen several that has not been killed with larger cal pistols. so there you go. in the 70's and 80's i carried a beretta jetfire as my backup gun. never felt under gun with it in my pocket. now it is not a gun for a gun fight,,,but for a gun to shoot dry as fast as you can pull the trigger,,it is hard to beat.
     
  13. Frizzman

    Frizzman Member

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    My daughter started out shooting a handgun at a young age when she was pretty small. We started with a S&W 422 .22 pistol and fairly quickly worked up to bigger calibers. She eventually settled on my Colt Government Model .45 ACP. She shoots is very well and has confidence in her pistol and her ability to shoot it. If this is to be a handgun to be kept in the house, small size isn't an issue. Her size and being new to guns can be overcome by proper training and experience. Perhaps she might attend a good handgun familiarization course and learn to shoot a more capable handgun. My wife has no interest in shooting but she has learned well enough to shoot a .38 S&W M&P and keeps that available when I'm away...I wouldn't arm her with such a puny pistol. A BB to the eye may stop an assailant but I wouldn't want to depend on a BB gun.
     
  14. Preacher.

    Preacher. Member

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    I must say, reading all this has been quite entertaining. :D
     
  15. JERRY

    JERRY Member

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    the caliber is misunderstood by many and thus misused by the same uninformed.

    the guns can be had in an excellent sample such as the betretta 950BS so dont let the "cheap" guns stigma sway you; there are cheap guns in 9mm as well.

    when applied properly the .25acp is accurate but lets not fool ourselves into believing its something that it is not.

    asking a .45acp to do the job of a 30-06 and then saying the .45acp is a lousy round is the same as expecting the .25acp mini gun to do what a larger caliber larger gun does.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2012
  16. otasan56

    otasan56 Member

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    Yes, the .25 doesn't have to hit the brain stem to kill. Neither does any other caliber. But we are talking about DROPPING an attacker. With a .25, only a hit to the brainstem or upper spinal cord will DROP an attacker immediately.
     
  17. otasan56

    otasan56 Member

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    Good recommendation. I agree that the bare minimum is a .380.
     
  18. Cocked & Locked
    • Contributing Member

    Cocked & Locked Member

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    This thread needs more pictures....

    1908 Colt "Vest Pocket" .25 acp...when you don't want plastic in your pocket

    317273115.jpg
     
  19. 45_auto

    45_auto Member

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    Is there somewhere else you can you hit someone with a 9mm, .40 S&W, or .45 ACP that will DROP an attacker immediately?
     
  20. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    A friend of mine was killed with a .25 acp. Guy shot at him five times scored but one hit, in his back just below the left shoulder blade. The bullet passed between two ribs and clipped his aorta just above the heart.
    He didn't fall down or even stumble. Walked to a porch and sat down, was unconcious in about 15 seconds and dead in about one minute, bled out into his upper cheast cavity, the bleeding actually caused him to stop breathing in about ten seconds as the weight of the fluid prevented his lungs from functioning properly.

    I respect .25 acp as I do all calibers. The cartridge can and does kill people.
    That said, it would be my absolute last choice as a defensive cartridge, the stopping power of the round is pathetic.
     
  21. JR47

    JR47 Member

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    You mean that there's someone who actually believes in "stopping power"?

    NO pistol caliber is a "guaranteed stopper". NONE. There are very few rifle calibers that guarantee 100% stopping power, and you won't find them used in a combat scenario.

    Use whatever you want. In the end, the person shooting the gun is far more likely to produce stopping power than the gun and caliber. The largest calibers in the world need to hit something vital, and a gun simply won't do that. The operator does.
     
  22. jimbo555

    jimbo555 Member

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    Let's.see,we have a tiny gun you can barely get a grip on and a low power tiny fmj cartridge with no expansion and iffy penetration. No thanks!
     
  23. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    I believe in stopping power, absolutely.
    Anyone who has ever hunted or has been in combat and has a rudimentary understanding of physics will be a believer in stopping power.

    Shoot a person in the pelvis with a .45 Colt, I am willing to bet they will stop what they are doing and not want to continue.

    Shoot a person in the pelvis with a .25 acp, I am willing to bet they will stop what they are doing until they recover their senses.

    Both bullets will stop a person from doing what they were doing, the larger bullet will simply do the job more effectively.

    Physics comes into play in the space between those extremes.
    A bullet smaller than say 1/2 inch in diameter and no less than 1/2 the weight of the larger bullet can be made to perform with similar results by upping the expansion capability and this is achieved through proper construction and increasing the velocity of the bullet.
    Actually, a bullet smaller than 1/2 inch in diameter and no less than 1/2 the weight of the larger bullet driven to a velocity capable of expanding the bullet to 1/2 inch in diameter once it strikes a foreign object and capable of penetrating to a depth similar to or exceeding that of an already larger bullet will perform as well or even exceed to capability of the larger bullet.

    The distance the target is from the weapon also comes into play due to declines in velocity and energy the farther away the target is from the weapon.
    A large bullet driven at high velocity is more effective than a small bullet at longer ranges even when the smaller bullet is driven to similar or higher velocities simply because the reduced weight of the smaller bullet will carry and impart less energy the farther the target is downrange.

    Because bullets designed for smaller semi automatic "Pocket Pistols" cannot be made heavier without a drop in velocity due to the smaller cartridge cases preventing current style or heavier bullets from being driven to higher velocities because of the space limitations of the cartridge case and current propellant technology, the power levels of these weapons will not and can not equal or exceed the capabilities of a larger caliber.

    Until someone comes up with a way of generating a pulsed electrically discharged laser or a pure energy pulsed plasma charge from a weapon capable of being easily concealed on or about the human body, this is the way it is and will be.
     
  24. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Member

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    Hopefully no one thinks that a little bullet is more likely to down an opponent then a big one. That's a non-issue, and those that bring it up are missing the point.

    Larger cartridges come in bigger platforms, and for many buyers who are not gun fans, size and weight matter. They want to be armed, but not pack a big iron. They feel secure in the knowledge (that's mostly true) no one really wants to be shot with anything. They do not live in a fantasy world where the next gunfight is just around the corner, but a common street thug might be.

    But… but now days we have pistols the same size that will hold a bigger (and therefore better) cartridge. Almost but not quite true. You aren’t going to get a .32 into a Baby Browning, and larger rounds in small guns come with blast and recoil some folks don’t want.

    During their golden years (about 1906 through 1968) more .25 automatics were made and sold worldwide then any other kind of handgun. In Europe the number of different large and small makers can fill a book. They were popular because by design they were simple, small and relatively inexpensive. The people who bought them shared none of the concerns that have been brought up in this thread. This doesn’t mean they were right, but it also doesn’t mean they were wrong. If these little pea shooters consistently failed they wouldn’t still be around today, and if some of our members wouldn’t be caught dead with one, those who did carry them wouldn’t give a hoot. Ya’ got two different cultures here.
     
  25. JERRY

    JERRY Member

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    i know a few old folks who have the beretta 950BS in .25acp....i cant talk any of them out of them.

    guess that easy S/A/ trigger and virtually no recoil in the reason they like'em.
     
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