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 Optimum Caliber for Pocket-Pistol (Semi-Auto, that is) 
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 13, 2008 7:47 pm 
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I never get the point of that post, as I carry a 40 or 45 every day, all day, and it's never in the gun safe.

I think its supposed to mean that if we say we carry a 45, we are somehow lying about it because it "not possible" to carry a .45 all day?

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 13, 2008 8:40 pm 
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1911fan wrote:
I never get the point of that post, as I carry a 40 or 45 every day, all day, and it's never in the gun safe.

I think its supposed to mean that if we say we carry a 45, we are somehow lying about it because it "not possible" to carry a .45 all day?


Means exactly what it says.

For a POCKET pistol, even a .22lr semi auto is better than nothing.

Only 2 guns I currently would carry are a Beretta 92FS or a Sistema 1927.

but I would not deny anyone the option of a .22 if that is what they feel comfortable with.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 13, 2008 9:57 pm 
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1911fan wrote:
I never get the point of that post, as I carry a 40 or 45 every day, all day, and it's never in the gun safe.

I think its supposed to mean that if we say we carry a 45, we are somehow lying about it because it "not possible" to carry a .45 all day?


I take it as "it don't matter what you carry.........just carry something"

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:56 pm 
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Thanks so much for all the additional input; this is very helpful.

Presently I plan on checking into a firearms dealer before the end of the month to get a much-better feel for the various pieces.

In the meantime, can someone either direct me to a website or otherwise speak to the issues of "caliber" and the different types of bullets within a caliber (FMJ, Plus-P, etc.)? My understanding at this point is that there is a general consensus that the smallest caliber (to be found in a pocket or mousegun, that is easy to conceal) that still provides enough "punch" at the target is around .380 with 9mm the being "optimum" for such-sized arms. Yet it appears that a different type of .380 (FMJ or Plus-P?) can match or, perhaps, even exceed the effectiveness of a "regular" 9mm bullet. I'd just like some thoughts (facts would be nice, too....) on this topic and the advantages/disadvantages in using "non-standard" bullets.

Again, thanks very much for the guidance.

Brian


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:53 pm 
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FMJ means full metal jacket -- a lead bullet clad in copper, generally with a round nose. Most practice ammo is FMJ.

Plus-P designates a higher-pressure round -- pushing the bullet faster.

There is no official specification for plus-p in .380 auto.

Round nose bullets (FMJs) are often recommended for .380s because of the concern that a .380 hollow point round, being an anemic caliber already, won't get through clothing and skin to do significant damage.

A higher-pressure round (which may be marketed as plus-p) can help improve the performance a bit, but a .380 round doesn't approach the "stopping power" of a 9mm, even one of standard pressure.

Here's a good article on the subject:

http://hunting.about.com/od/guns/l/aast9mmv380a.htm

Quote:
9mm Versus .380 ACP For Self-Defense
By Dick Metcalf, Technical Editor, Shooting Times.

<...>

The results of my side-by-side review firings with today’s premium defense loads are listed in the chart on page 23 and closely correspond to the Firestar versus Baby Sigma results from four years ago. Overall, the 9mm provides a 40 percent greater wounding effectiveness (based on wound channel surface area) than does the .380. When equivalent bullet designs in the two cartridges are compared directly (for example, the Winchester SXTs and Remington Golden Sabers), the distinction is obvious. The .380 is simply not in the same performance class as the 9mm, even though the subjective experience of firing the two pistols is very much the same.

If your personal-defense handgun is going to be a small autoloader, and you are buying it because the chance exists that it may someday have to save your life, the choice between a .380 or a 9mm is still a no-brainer. Get a 9mm.



With compact 9mm choices like the Kahr PM9, the Keltec P11 and even the Taurus PT111, you can have small and powerful in one package.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 9:43 pm 
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Go to some of the ammunition mfgs websites and you will find descriptions and specs on bullets and loads ie: Remington, Federal. Speer etc

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 7:47 am 
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nmat wrote:
I don't think I could live with myself if I carried a Hi-Point. No self respecting gun owner I've met so far relies upon a Hi-Point (correct me if I'm wrong). In fact, the only people that I've seen using a Hi-Point at the range usually shot them one handed, and sideways (if you get my drift).

I will say however, that it does fix the first rule of a gunfight; Have a gun.


:lol: Your post has a very good point in that you get what you pay for. As the "all in one solution", the Hi-Point is too good to be true. They're blocky and heavy and you probably won't enjoy carrying one.

The guy selling them at gun shows in the Cities is a snake oil salesman (he sells Carry badges as well and last time I went by his table, the two other guys selling for him gave me the creeps). Anyway.

The place the Hi-Points excel is in the "Have a Gun" department. They're cheap, they're reliable, they're available. Just depends on the purpose. For the Original Poster, a hi-point would be a poor fit. In their niche, they fit well.

I have a friend who owns a couple. They're not carry guns but rather access guns. Cheap enough to have a couple in concealed access boxes around the property in case the need should arise.

I'd own one for a trunk gun or shop gun or etc... But then I'd have less money for ammo and other guns.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 9:31 am 
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a compact 9mm shooting +p ammo is going to be brutal. Try it sometime and you will see what I mean.

Smaller package with big cartridge is not always pleasing to shoot.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 12:24 pm 
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BUT you do not have to always shoot +P+ just a mag or two full to make sure the gun runs on them, the rest can be generic FMJ for plinking.




A carry gun does not have to be fun to shoot. It just has to go bang when you pull the trigger. Same can be said about Joels S&W on the logo, or my chief's special with Speer short barrel loads, or a scandium framed anything shooting full house loads. shoot mild stuff for practice, if and when the time comes to shoot it in dire straights, you will not feel the gun go off.

I have helped two women become proficient shooting with very mild wadcutter loads in model 10 heavy barrels. both have no trouble shooting in the black at 15 or 25 yards. Both have a box of FBI load .38 specials that they reload the gun with when they get home. They understand that when they need it, the greater kick with never be felt.

This is the same idea as down loading deer rifle loads for kids, Both my kids were below the curve in size when they took up hunting, both learned to shoot smaller caliber rifles shooting mild reloads. both HUNTED with the same rifles and full house loads because I knew that when sitting in a tree stand and a deer in the sights, they would not even feel the gun bounce.

Carry full house loads, the strongest the gun will handle, after all, the chances you will need it are slim, and the odds of feeling that gun recoil when you need it are almost none existant.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 1:26 pm 
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My opinion is as follows:

Keeping the word "optimum" in mind, and putting that in context with a pocket pistol, you still have a lot of options, and you still end up with a religious argument about what caliber is the best (.380, 9mm, 40, 45, 357 etc)

Personally I look at the fact that fairly small pistols can be had in all of the above calibers. Glock and XD just for instance, make small compact and sub-compact pistols which chamber most of the rounds listed above. What you sacrifice is width of slide (minimal in my mind) and width of grip (again minimal in my mind) and final magazine capacity (not so minimal).

I see no reason to go smaller than 9mm, .380 is a hair smaller for the size of the gun, but its ballistics are lacking and its more expensive to shoot. I go between 9mm and 45acp, my glock 19 is much smaller than my fullsize 45, so I guess you could call my glock 19 my pocket pistol :)

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 1:33 pm 
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EJSG19 wrote:
I guess you could call my glock 19 my pocket pistol :)
For some values and sizes of "Pocket" sure :-)

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 1:52 pm 
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Heh, fair enough. Had to slip some humor in.

Moral of the story I feel is that a Sub-compact semi auto is able to be concealed in the majority of circumstances, unless you prefer to carry while sporting a speedo, then I have no answers for you.

A Glock 36 for example still is a .45 acp, and fits my definition of small pocket pistol.

If I can get my hands on a .45 in a bad situation I'm a whole lot happier than if I'm launching a .380 and hoping for the best. The usual arguments for shot placement, and having a gun in the first place can be made, but I like larger diameter with everything else equal.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:49 pm 
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As long as you are right handed I will happily recommend a glock 23. All my glocks go bang every time I pull the trigger regardless if I clean them or not. I usually carry a 357 sig caliber but its not real popular and it does kick. I would not go below 40 cal unless it was nessesary.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:55 pm 
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dmr-22 wrote:
As long as you are right handed I will happily recommend a glock 23.


Why right-handed?

-Mark


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2008 11:12 am 
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mrokern wrote:
dmr-22 wrote:
As long as you are right handed I will happily recommend a glock 23.


Why right-handed?

-Mark


It’s the mag release. Some lefties have no problems but most don’t like it. It’s something that can be learned but some folks don’t want to deal with it….

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