Would You Trust Your Life With A .380?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Crazy Coot, Feb 7, 2017.

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  1. C0untZer0

    C0untZer0 Member

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    Surprisingly, some of the most consistent penetrating rounds in the Lucky Gunner tests are Remington's 88gr "High Terminal Performance" they are hollow-points and they don't expand at all !!

    They're very closely grouped in the test, the bullets all wound up close to one another and they penetrated an average of 16.9 inches !

    I guess the non-expanding hollow-point acts like a reverse parachute, creating drag and slowing down the bullet - I don't know, but very consistent and very good penetration from the Remington HTPs. I'm sure Remington didn't mean for it to turn out that way. You gotta wonder what the folks at Remington are thinking...
     
  2. kokapelli

    kokapelli Member

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    Apparently Erich doesn't know about the XTP bullet.
     
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  3. Zendude

    Zendude Member

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    For concealed carry, sure I would trust it. Most likely, your target will be within 10 yards. Tests have shown that both the Hornady FTX and XTP 380 bullets expand reliably. 380 is a good match for the small and light concealed carry guns.
     
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  4. Mayvik

    Mayvik Member

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    I feel I have much better odds winning a fistfight against someone with several holes in them than someone without, so worst case any caliber is better than none.
     
  5. chardin

    chardin Member

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    I've never liked the idea of trusting my life to any conventional pistol round. They are all pretty small and weak compared to powerful shotgun and rifle rounds.

    I think it's bad logic to cite how one would feel if threatened by a .380. There's an inherent asymmetry in what I want done unto me and what I'd prefer to do unto others. "Tragedy is I cut my finger. Comedy is you fall into an open sewer and die." I don't want to be inconvenienced by a 2.7mm Kolibri. I want my attackers to die in a hail of .50 Browning.

    However, that's not generally practical for me, so I carry the most powerful handgun I can manage, and try to stay within a short trot of a powerful longarm. In the worst case, I hope the pistol buys me safe passage to the longarm.
     
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  6. hemiram

    hemiram Member

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    I have two .380's, a Beretta 84BB, and a Beretta 85F. I haven't shot the 85 yet, but if it shoots as good as the 84, and I totally expect it will, I would trust my life to it. My former Browning BDA 380 was another totally trustworthy gun. If the ammo was good, it was good to go. When I did carry the 84 or the 380, I rolled the cartridges on a flat surface, putting any wobblers aside, and loading the mags with the good ones.
     
  7. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Administrator Staff Member

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    Given that most self-defense gun uses are resolved by the deterrent power of the firearm, not its actual terminal performance, it's probably excellent logic. One should not neglect the possibility that the deterrent factor won't be there for one reason or another, but it's certainly true that the deterrent factor is a major contributor to a successful outcome 90% of the time or more.
     
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  8. .308 Norma

    .308 Norma Member

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    I'd like to add that it mostly depends on where I am. I mean, if I'm in church, on Sunday morning, in Pocatello, Idaho - you bet I'd feel safe "carrying a .380 only." On the other hand, just going by what I've heard because I've never been there, I don't think I "would feel safe" in downtown Detroit, Michigan on a Saturday night even if I was carrying a short barreled 12 gauge shotgun under my coat!:)
     
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  9. redbullitt

    redbullitt Member

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    I do and have. I shoot our small kahr well enough to be a threat, so with a bit of practice I see no issue. Sometimes it is all you can carry, so thats what you carry! Most people never even think about being armed, so you are a step ahead by even considering if a 380 is okay lol.

    Use proper ammo, hornady XTP and their ftx both do very well.
     
  10. bugsbunny45

    bugsbunny45 Member

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    Yes I would. You are just as dead when shot with a 380 and with a 45acp.
     
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  11. edmo01

    edmo01 Member

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    As a 54 year old who has been carrying for quite a few years, no... I don't have a firearm chambered in 380 ACP and currently consider my minimum caliber as 9mm.

    However, I tend to more often carry firearms chambered in 40 S&W or 45 ACP.

    Will I transition to 380 ACP in the future? Maybe, if I develop an aversion to recoil of my current calibers.

    Edmo
     
  12. JayPee

    JayPee Member

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    Not unless I get forced into it, and I very well may. I recently bought a Turkish Zenith MC14 .380 pistol, which is very similar to the old Browning BDA. It is a DA/SA and it holds 13+1 rounds. I bought it because my hands are severely arthritic and my days of handling the recoil of a 9mm appear limited. So when the day comes that I have to step down from my 9mm, I'll have a hi-cap .380 I can protect myself with. But I will only do that if I absolutely can't handle the 9mm any more. I've watched all of the load reviews and the cartridge just doesn't inspire me to confidence. Anemic would be a good name for it. So I guess I'm in the "it's better than nothing" camp.
     
  13. ID-shooting

    ID-shooting Member

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    Yes, every single day. LCP filled with Horndy FTX's
     
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  14. Torian

    Torian Member

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    If I had to, but ammo choice would be critical to making it work.
     
  15. ritepath

    ritepath Member

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    Sure....I've done it many times. Hell for 35 years of my life I didn't carry anything. I carried my gen1 LCP for over a year while looking for something that was tolerable for CC (M&P 9c, 229, g26, PT145 all went bye bye) finally settled on a Shield. After laying my hands on a couple of LCP II's the past few weeks it's really looking like I'll be going to on body carry with 9's stored in each vehicle.

    I may build a 300blk out pistol just to balance out the equation.
     
  16. Candyman87

    Candyman87 Member

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    Not my first preference, but better than nothing. I definitely feel comfortable with just my LCP.
     
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  17. Jim NE

    Jim NE Member

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    Odd question, really.

    Haven't some police officers/soldiers/security guards/ armed citizens died defending themselves with much larger, more potent calibers than .380? Did that make them wrong for trusting their lives to a .40 or a .38 Spec. or a .357 Sig? Not trying to be contrarian. Just saying it isn't a mater of "trusting your life" to a caliber. What if you can shoot a .380 more accurately than a .40? Everything we do in life is a compromise of some sort. A smart car isn't as safe as a pickup truck, but it's safer than a motorcycle or a bicycle, I guess.
     
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  18. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    Sure, I used to carry one (Walther PPK) back before guns like the S&W shield, Ruger LC9, Glock 43, and similar 9mm handguns were available. I guess the question I have is why would you carry one NOW since there are better options?
     
  19. Fuego

    Fuego Member

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    NO!
     
  20. Kendal Black

    Kendal Black Member

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    One question, two answers: WOULD I? Yes, for it is the biggest cartridge choice among really small automatics. So choosing the .380 makes the best of it if you want a little auto pistol. That answers the question you actually asked. I note, further, that .380 ammo must be popular: It disappears promptly during an ammo shortage and people are always asking if you know where to buy any.

    The free bonus answer I'm supplying goes to a different question, DO I? Well, no. Years and years ago I considered it, for I needed a small sidearm and went with a .38 Special revolver instead. In those days, .380 automatics were not so highly developed as those available today. The PPK was popular, and a good gun, but there was nothing around in short recoil operated ultra compact polymer.

    I still have the .38, so the question of .380 is not one I have needed to revisit.
     
  21. kokapelli

    kokapelli Member

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    Because at my advanced age in addition to arthritis my hand strength has greatly diminished making it very difficult and even impossible to rack the slide on my 9mm pistols.

    Picked up my Browning 1911 380 yesterday and find it very easy to operate even with my lack of hand strength so yes I will depend on the same cartridge that John Brown did for so many years.
     
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  22. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    Yes I would.
     
  23. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    If that's what you can operate the best, go for it. The 380 probably punches harder than most people!
     
  24. JB357MAG

    JB357MAG Member

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    Yes, I carry a TCP 738 every day as my EDC.

    I trust my life to it and will continue to do so.

    It is just too easy to have with me all the time.

    Jimmy
     
  25. Robert101

    Robert101 Member

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    Yes I would as well. Still do. I shot both my .380 Browning DBA and my SA Loaded (45 Automatic) yesterday at the range. Yes, of course I shoot my 45 better at 25 yards but I hit just fine with my DBA at close range. Double taps were smooth too.
     
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