Skip to comments.Thoughts on a good carry gun (caliber, make) and holster type.
Posted on 08/13/2010 9:46:25 AM PDT by Pessimist
Seems like a bit of a slow news day, so I thought I'd crank out my first vanity.
I've been shooting for a couple of years now (since around October of '08 - go figure) and I'm looking at getting my CCW. I'd like some opinions of caliber / make and also holster options and ramifications.
I am a wheel gun fan, .357, but he has a .45. We ran across a deal on 185 Gr hollow points in .45, to me a deal. The problem I have, I qualified on the 45 in the Army, is how it effects how the gun is shot in a situation where you have to have to fire more than one round.
By the way Milt Sparks has a six month lead time so order early!
Speaking as an NRA Instructor with 21+ years of experience; as a former Law Enforcement Officer and as a former US Army Infantry Captain, Ill give you some feedback and you can take it or leave it.
First off, I wont even join a thread like this. You are going to get a ton of uninformed abeit will meaning replies.
Choosing a firearm is a lot like choosing a mate. Ya sorta gotta TOUCH them before you make a decision! So whatever advice you get, go to a gun show and FIND that exact model firearm and handle it! Trust me when you find THE ONE (not our Prez!) youll know it as surely as the Boy King drew Excalibur from the stone! Youre looking for that ineffable feel in your hand. How does it balance? Does it point naturally? Lay your finger along side the frame and POINT. Do you get the feeling that the barrel is aligned with your finger so that if you pulled the trigger the bullet would go near the point of your finger?
So Ill tell you what to absolutely avoid and a reason for that. Side by side or over/under shotgun: TWO SHOTS and very slow to reload under pressure.
Any PUMP action shotgun. Under extreme pressure, too easy to SHORT STROKE the reload in order to fire the second round. This means that there is a failure to bring the pump forcefully to the bottom of its cycle and then start back up to chamber the round. This results in a double feed jam and can only be cleared by a detail strip of the weapon (usually a gunsmith job) difficult to stay alive under these circumstances.
Here is what I recommend to paying clients (no charge to freepers like you) in the way of defensive firearms. All the way from handgun to shotgun to assault rifle.
I recommend to my clients (I just finished a consulting job in south Miami Dade for a guy who specializes in kidnap insurance in Latin America) a good semi auto with extended tube. Either the Benelli M2 or M4 or a tactical version of the Remington 1100 12 ga:
Semi auto pistol is something that is reliable after firing an extended number of rounds without lubrication or cleaning and that lets out the majority of guns including the venerable 1911A1 Colt Government model. I can only suggest three brands: H&K, Glock and Sig Sauer. Caliber choice depends on your level of expertise, but I suggest either a 9mm or a 45acp. REMEMBER, bullet size does NOT "end the fight." Only shot placement does that! That's why both the British SAS and the FBI's famed Hostage Rescue Team used the Browning Hi-Power for a good many years. The SAS stuck with the 9mm and simply segued to the newer and proven Sig P226 while the FBI is still futzing around with calibers and makers. Not sure what they're currently using. Last I heard it was a Les Bauer custom 1911.
NOT the 40 because it offers a vicious barrel whip that will induce FLINCH and quikly start degrading accuracy. Thats what wins a gunfight, you know. ACCURACY under stress. Not caliber. 9mm is as small as I ever recommend and 45 is as big. I have used both. I do recommend that you use a DA first shot. Not a shot from the cocked and locked mode like you find on a 1911 Govt model. Its waaaay too easy to trip off the shot without being CERTAIN youre on target. You also have to remember to wipe off the safety and thats tough under life and death circumstances, especially as you age.
I carried a 1911 for 20 years both in the army and places I cant tell you about. But it was in a stupid IDPA ( I recommend you join: http://www.idpa.com) match several years ago that I lost precious time because my muscle memory failed me and I failed to wipe the safety off. If it had been real, Id have been dead. Now I know that MUSCLE MEMORY isn't unlimited. I went to a gun that didn't require that step for a very long time. However, recently the 1911 bug once again chomped on me and I decided it was simply time to REFRESH my "muscle memory." That just requires some practice. So, while I'm saving for the purchase of a new Sig Sauer C3, I'm doing exactly that. I'm practicing with IDPA and I'm carrying a 1911 once again to reinforce the need to keep a good mindset as a precursor to muscle memory. FOCUS is the key.
A revolver should be something you can hit with. Either from a range of 6 to 10 FEET from the hip (two handed grip, elbows locked into your sides) at rapid unaimed fire. OR at a greater range of 21 feet using the sights. 38sp or 357 magnum only unless you opt for the Taurus JUDGE with the 410 shotgun and 45 Colt caliber. I just bought one of those for trips out of town. Its a specialty gun for anti carjacking that I bought for my wife. Otherwise, I have everything I need. But certainly NOT everything I want!!! In a short barrel (3 or less) best to go with 38+P rather than 357 because the magnum will degrade in velocity so as to be less than optimal.
STAY AWAY from the AK47 family in 7.62x39 cal. Yeah, its an awesome assault rifle. Designed to be cleaned in a muddy creek, shook dry and resumed firing by some little illiterate commie drone. The problem is the ammo. There are damned few makers in this country. Most is WARSAW PACT surplus and can be choked off much more easily.
You want to stay with a caliber that your own military and police forces use. That means NATO compliant. 5.56x45 and 7.62 x51 IOW 223 and 308 Winchester. I own an M1 Garand because the hunting aspect of the caliber makes it easy to come by everywhere and there are some specialty angles that are available to that round that are still LEGAL and decidedly not so to the other calibers. Remember the 30-06 was a US military round since the early 1900s. So it is still legal and possible to get ammo that is AP, API and most desirable of all APIT: Armor Piercing, Armor Piercing Incindiary and Armor Piercing Incindiary Tracer. Great for work on engine blocks and gas tanks. Plus the Garand is a very good (not perfect) battle rifle and of course if you run out of ammo there is that bayonet and club aspects available. Its heavy but I dont expect to hump it in any more jungle jaunts.
Stay with the AR platform because of its ease of maintenance, accuracy and caliber symbiosis. lol. Remember something else, youve got to have the WILL to win no matter how bad it all looks. Youve got to have the soul and mindset of a sheepdog:
Saiga makes a "sport" version of the AK in .223. It's the best of both worlds.
hope yer server doesnt melt with the poopstorm thisll open...
I was referring to being in a situation where you need to use it outside a range...my view is that a larger caliber is better than smaller in that situation.
Like anything else, it's a compromise, like the old saying that the .380 you have is better than the .50 Desert Eagle or the 1911A1 in the trunk.
Where I live, if one ends up in the Dark Place, there had better be powder burns, and the magazine should be emptied, as is appropriate for a crime victim in Mortal Fear. Were I to put one shot in a perp's forehead, and have 6 or 7 rounds left, you just know the Liberal DA would call it a vigilante execution.
Were I to do this with a Hydrashock laden .45 the ME would be mad, and I'd probably have to pay to have the resulting mess shovelled up...hahahaa.
Yes, I agree a bigger caliber is better, of course. I doubt anyone would dispute that, if for no otherr reason than the BIG HOLE at the end of the barrel and its intimidation factor. Perhaps if I were larger framed I could carry the CCCMKIV for more hours without feeling I was trying to hide a 105 Howitzer. Cops look at me funny when I walk, and they are very clued-in about the "Shoulder Holster Shrug"..It makes for strained feelings all around.
I thoroughly enjoyed the post and it was a genuine contribution.
Gotta choose appropriately sized shot. That said, nobody wants a face-full of #8.
the only way to know...i tried a few cheap nylon varieties and couldnt get the angle of the 1911 to fit right...
the ugly ole Crossbreed super tuck is adjustable and i can manage to contour around my side with the grip...took a good 40 plus hrs of wear to really get the leather to conform to me...
all good info, thanks for posting...
Of course there is a small caliber that I really like...North American Arms that holds 2 22mag rounds. I keep it next to my wallet...pull out my wallet and let em have it :)
Heh. Check this out:
"Used for self defence in a revolver, the .22 WMR has compiled a 42% one shot stop rate according to Marshall and Sanow. This is far superior to the .22 LR and .25 ACP, and makes the .22 WMR the best of the small bore handgun cartridges." Something like Mach 1.5 out of a 6-1/2" barrel.
Oh good. A shopping excuse. Now I want one.
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