Skip to comments.Stepping up from my Browning 9mm (FReeper advice needed for higher caliber pistol)
Posted on 08/05/2010 12:13:58 AM PDT by wac3rd
I bought a 9mm and love using it, but am debating what to get for home protection at a higher caliber.
I like the looks of the 1911 45's and I also like the idea of a 40 caliber Glock or 10mm Glock. I think I want a semi-automatic, so the revolver is out...
Finally, should I get a shorter barrel (4" or less) or stick with the standard 4.5 - 5" barrel?
Your advice would be very much appreciated...
Home defense? You 9mm is OK. Get Hornady Critical Defense or XTP rounds for it, and you are good to go.
That said, if you don’t have a 12 guage shotgun, get one. Preferably a pump. The sound of a shell being chambered will make most thugs wet themselves and run (have been there). If they don’t, it’s the ultimate close quarters home defense weapon.
If you already have a 12 guage, I’ll defer to other Freepers re handgun choice. (My preferred is a .357 magnum wheel gun, but you stated that wheel guns are out.)
Thank you, I have a 12-gauge pump shotgun with 7 shells loaded right now...I may buy some of your ammo, thank you.
10mm is probably overkill, but sure sounds like a lot of fun.
Uncle Ted seems to like his 10.
I like the Glock 23.
I prefer the ED-209 for home protection.
I've always felt that the .45 has more of a push type recoil and the .40 is more of a slap type recoil. Both are manageable for most shooters with reasonable hand strength.
I am in federal law enforcement now and carry an HK P2000 SK as a concealed gun. It's okay, but the Glock was smaller. We have also had problems with corrosion on the HK since some of our agents are on the water a lot.
It’s hard to get a CCW permit here in California for the obvious reasons that Boxer, Pelosi and Feinstein prefer the citizenry to be less armed than the illegal drug cartel members who shoot up our towns and cities...but I digress...I like the Glock 22 or 23 in concept and will shoot one next weekend.
Thanks for the advice.
You need to go somewhere and try out several different things if you can. What you got used to and transitioning to something new is the biggest thing. I have friends who had a hard time getting used to something new and others who tried a half dozen different things before they could shed the handgun they first got used to. So, everyone has an opinion but what fits you is the most important thing.
I know jack about firearms. At least right now. In theory, BCT will change that. ;-)
Still, I want to get something for my wife, so maybe some FReepers can chime in as to what is a good option for a 4’10 woman with small hands. My brother has given some great advice, but I enjoy talking to people about this stuff.
Heck, if anyone that reads this is in the DFW area, I’d like to get to know you folks as I want some shooting buddies for my wife to go with while I am away.
Colt 50 cal. revolver.
It's like a friend of mine (who happens to be a firearms expert with my local PD) says: "Spreading is nice, but it's all about penetration, baby."
Should anyone here discount my fondness for the larger caliber, I used to swing both the M-60 and M1911, and would have married them both if the Army (and polygamy laws, I guess) had let me.
Longer barrels are always better than short unless you are trying to conceal it. Conceal Carry almost demands a short barrel. If it's something in the nightstand drawer, I would go with longer for the sight radius and heft.
1911 is the best thing since, oh, ...bacon? The one ideal gun.
I bought a Model 88 a while back,,,8 shot(2 3/4”)
It holds about $40.00 worth of Flechettes,,,
Can't beat that up close with a tommygun!,,,
I guess I'm like many folks around here,,,
1911 all the way,,,
A pocket full of mag’s and your good to go...
For home defense? A handgun more robust than a 9mm? Not necessary, so your desire for a heavier caliber goes beyond home defense — carry? Competition? Esthetics? Which of those is the primary motivation should drive your decision.
That being said, a home defense handgun is notoriously under-maintained and poorly secured (not saying you in particular, just the public in general). So honesty in consideration of those two factors should weigh in your choice.
A home defense handgun is most commonly used in a crisis situation, not a deliberate response. So something you (or your spouse / kid / partner can grab and use safely, effectively, and reliably should be the next thought. When the adrenaline’s pumping, a single-action trigger can be a dangerous thing.
Finally, try to find something that is comfortable to shoot and points naturally for you. To be competent with it means practice, and if it is uncomfortable to shoot, or it makes you look like Barney at the range, you are not going to practice. And pointing naturally (pick a target, close your eyes, bring the pistol up to where you think the pistol is aiming at it, then open your eyes — how far off is it?) is a good thing in a darkened home regardless of what sights you have on it.
But for one of the other considerations, you have other factors to work out. Esthetics? In the eye of the beholder, and you want to show it off. Competition? Depends on the sport. Carry? Weight, location, access, comfort level.
Good luck with your shopping.
Kimber 1911 .45 with built in laser.
Put some hollow point teflon tipped bullets in her and knock down a bear.
Wow! Looks like something Charles Bronson would’ve carried.
what he said,,use the 9mm as backup, your as well armed as you need to be for home protection. Load it w/ #1 or 0 buck, not bird shot.
Practice with both, bigger pistol calibers have more recoil and can cause flinching. One COM hit w/9mm is better than 10 misses with a .50 cal.
9mm has the cheapest ammo, therefore, more practice.
I love the 1911, but, how are you going to keep it? If one round is in the chamber, the hammer is back, safety on. I prefer a double action only, round in chamber, no safety to worry about. (point, click, repeat)
Piytar, When I took my 12 Guage to a gunsmith to
have the barrel and stock shortened, I told him to
listen. I pumped it... and it made the world familiar
chouk chouk sound... he said, yes? I said, when I pick
it up I want it to be just as noisy as it is right now.
He smiled and said, I know exactly what you mean.
I think a shotgun is a very good idea. Before my TRAGIC boating accident where the boat tipped over..and everything was deep sixed..I had a Saiga 12 semi auto 12 gauge. It did lack that outstanding sound of shotgun being racked. However it threw lots of lead at the zombie that came in the door..very quickly! (Phew..I kept everything in the past tense.)
Rethink your decision regarding revolvers. NO handgun is safer or more dependable. Double action is the way to go. Many calibers to choose from. .38 Special should be the minimum for human targets. Hope this helps, and that you never need the gun, but are always prepared if you do-!
Remington Model 870 12 ga pump. This was the shotgun we had in the military and the balance was such that you could fire it one handed like a pistol. Smooth pump action for quick chambering the next round.
And as stated before the noise, flash and sound are such that an intruder will run and not fire back. Plus the fact that a shotgun will be less likely to harm your neighbors property.
Ditto. I have (and carry all day, EVERY day) a Kimber Ultra Covert II. The Crimson Trace is nice, but I really like the Meprolight night sights. It is comforting to see those three dots softly glowing on the nightstand any time of night.
You’ve received a lot of good advice.
I prefer a large .45 semi — my Sig P220 fits my hand perfectly. And with a ProMag magazine in it, It’ll hold 9 rounds. Plenty for home defense. Plus I keep an extra mag with the pistol in the bio-metric gun safe bolted to the bed.
MY thought is that you should get a .45 with the right self defense rounds in it. But more importantly get the .45 you’ll take to the range a lot and become both confident and competent in its use. Shoot enough so that you have reliable, dependable combat accuracy at 12 - 25 feet. In other words you hit your 12” aim point circles with two or three shot groups at the fastest pace you can maintain accuracy. The practice at the range with a variety of rental guns will help you get a feel for which gun is right for you.
Also, get the tritium or other glowing sights (or pop for the built-in flashlight/laser) and practice taking aim in your darkened home at likely defense points. Just so you know what’s it’s like to “aim” at what you can’t really see - and what you won’t really have time to get a good sight picture on before you HAVE to make the choice to fire (or not).
Raz,,,The problem I have with that “noise” factor is that
it gives away your position to the other guy,,,
If I rack my Mossberg very sloooowly I can be pretty quiet.
I’m sure most crooks will run when they hear that sound,,,
Hopefully the first/last sound is !BOOM!...;0)
For close quarter living areas like where you have neighbors I would suggest .45 or .40 frangibles.
Where I live in rural Alaska where two and four footed vermin wear heavy winter coats its a maxed out 10mm Glock for me.
Good home defense is quick access to a gun. That usually takes more than one gun place around the house.
The most important thing is consistently hitting the target while scared shitless.
It is not "stopping power", it has nothing to do with ballistic gelatin or watermelons on youtube.
If you miss, you're probably going to get killed, perhaps with your own gun.
Taking that into account, try a number of different loads at the range, if you can arrange a session where you are placed under stress, so much the better.
There's a reason more bad guys die from 9mm rounds than any other - find out what it is before you quit it.
“Rethink your decision regarding revolvers. NO handgun is safer or more dependable. Double action is the way to go. Many calibers to choose from. .38 Special should be the minimum for human targets. Hope this helps, and that you never need the gun, but are always prepared if you do-!”
This man speaks the truth. If you’re not going to extensively practice with the gun (clearing malfunctions etc) a revolver is the way to go. Simple to use under stress and if it doesn’t go bang all you have to do is pull the trigger again.
A couple of other comments...
1) Don’t get hung up on lasers. The primary benefit of a laser is to increase the profit margin of the manufacturer. I’m a big believer that it’s faster to bring the gun up and to acquire a proper sight picture than it is to search your background for a red dot while also tracking your attacker who will be moving fast. Keep the gun simple and your shooting technique as repetitive as possible.
2) Shotguns are great HD weapons. If you’re going to use one use 00 buck - not bird shot. Also, don’t buy into the “the sound of racking the pump will scare them away” comment. That’s bad tactical advice. If someone’s in your home you should assume that person means you harm and the last thing you want to do is give away your exact position.
3) If you do go with an auto pistol, the HiPower is an excellent gun from an ergonomic standpoint. My advice would be to send it to Cylinder and Slide for an action job to smooth out the trigger and a reliability job to minimize malfunctions. My advice would be the same for any 1911 - action job and reliability package. However, for autos I would recommend a Glock in 9mm (G17/34 for home or 19/26 if you want to carry concealed). They are cheap, simple to use, reliable, have a very low bore axis which minimizes muzzle flip, and have the same trigger pull -no DA/SA. I recommend 9mm because that’s what the platform was designed for and seems to function the best with.
Finally, caliber is not as important as shot placement. The minimum I would recommend is 9mm or 38SPC. Going up the ladder only increases one shot stop percentages by a point or two. So, you’re trading recoil management and faster follow-ups for ~94% (40SW) one shot stops versus ~90-92% (9mm). Shot placement is king.
Hope this helps.
That's a good idea if the guy kicking in your door has a normal view of risk/reward.
Most people with that normal view are in bed with a beautiful woman at 3am, not kicking in doors.
If you're comfortable giving up your position before you have to pull the trigger, be my guest.
Me too. I keep an S & W 357 in my bed stand and a 12 gauge with double ought buckshot in my closet.
The 12 ga for my money is the gun for home protection, it's just a bit large for conceal carry.
a shotgun works best. Remington 870
Amen brother! The sound of an 870 being racked makes the hairs on my arms stand up. If I were an intruder and heard that sound I’d drop a load.
you’ve got a high power and a pump.. you’re set.
speaking in terms of home defense, the only thing you really need a handgun for is to get you to the pump.
if you want more handguns to place around the house to help you get to that pump, go with a 1911. controls will be very familiar.
Don’t feel bad. I get the same reactions carrying a Walther PPK/S. I love that pistol and at 6’3”, 220 lbs I have lots of places to hide it depending on the weather ;).
If you like the DPX ammo take a look at the new Critical Defense from Hornady. It was manufactured to FBI specs and can penetrate drywall, light plywood, and clothing and still maintain expansion and stopping power> I did my own tests and I’m quite confident that when needed it will get the job done :).
Get a Glock 22 .40 caliber and then buy a 9mm and/or .357 barrel for it. You can use the .40 for home protection and the 9mm for plinking around with cheap ammo. Takes about 5 minutes to switch, assuming you will linger over barrel with a cleaning rag.
One of my teachers when I was young was Bill Jordan,,,
He only used a .357 magnum,,,wheel gun,,,
His book “No Second Place Winner” is a great read,,,
(if you can find a copy),,,
Also, if you are strictly interested in home defense, consider a Taurus Judge. 6 shot revolver that will chamber .410 shotgun shells and .45 Long Colt. Put in 2-3 .410 buckshot loads backed with .45 Long Colt. Intruder will either be dead or have bleeding ears and a pant load.
I think it is always tempting to buy “one gun for everything.” What you end up doing is compromising on all of your requirements. For example, a good 12 gauge goose gun is probably not a good choice for a 12 gauge home defense gun. You need a long, full choke barrel to goose hunt. In the house, you need a short barrel with a more open bore.
Write all of your requirements down and buy a gun or guns that meet those requirements. Don’t compromise.
You are a very lucky man to have known and learned under Jordan. Without a doubt one of the top, if not best, gun guys of all time.
I do have a copy of the book and thought it was a great read - a lot of very valuable points. I also liked the fact that he seems to have a good sense of humor which I didn’t expect.
Go fire a Kimber
10mm is something of a curiosity. You have to consider ammo availability.
My personal preference is the Colt, but Kimber is very nice. My carry gun is either the Sig P245 or a Colt Combat Commander. I have never liked Glocks - fit and finish don't compare to the Sig or Colt, and trigger guards should only have triggers in them.
Very fond of my Springfield XD40. Good service too. I live
within minutes of both them and Rock River Arms and have
done my best to support the local economy!
Your 9MM is fine, but use frangible ammo for home defense so that you don’t have to worry as much about misses traveling, god forbid, into other rooms or the neighbors. Remember, in home defense your target will be within feet of you. Same idea goes for shotgun; use #4 Buck, devistating in close but won’t carry much energy past the first wall any flyers hit.
I also would stay away from lasers, you could hit a shiny object and “daze” yourself at the worst possible time, not to mention that you also provide the buy guy(s) with a perfect point to aim at.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.