.380 stopping power.
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.380 stopping power.

This is a discussion on .380 stopping power. within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Main Category category; I have been thinking about changing from my Ruger SR9 as a concealed carry and go mostly to a small ...

  1. #1
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    Default .380 stopping power.

    I have been thinking about changing from my Ruger SR9 as a concealed carry and go mostly to a small gun like a .380 caliber possibly a Ruger or the Walther PPK .380 . I'd be gratefull to get some opinions on the stopping power of a .380.

  2. #2
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    I think it's a minimum caliber.I carry a 380 and until recently it was all I carried and some days I still do,but then I decided I wanted something with a little more stopping power and got a 40 caliber. On days I have it I still carry the 380 as a backup.

  3. #3
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    i have an old browning that uses .380 ammo being the only gun i have i will use it for my carry when i get used to it and the gear to carry it and it will do it's job imo
    i know i certainly wouldn't want to get shot by one
    i think it would certainly help protect me if the need should arise
    gun control is being able to hit your target

  4. #4
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    For me I picked up a bodyguard 380 and found that the gun was so small I had a hard time shooting it with any kind of consistency. I found that by the time I got the trigger pulled far enough for the gun to fire I had the gun so twisted to the side I had problems hitting what I wanted to. I ended up giving the gun to my wife she shoots it far better than I can. I will keep my EMP as my EDC.
    As far as the .380 as a defense round, using the modern hollow points and a couple well placed shots will do the job on the BG.

  5. #5
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    Carry a ruger lcp. I recently have been trying to trade someone online for a bigger caliber . As for stopping power I think that it would stop me in one hit. So it's good

  6. #6
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    This is another subject that will never be settled, IMHO, any gun you carry is better than no gun, so dont have one thats so uncomfortable it stays in the bedroom drawer, for a close up encounter, a 380 caliber would certainly get the job done, but those little guns, LCP, TCP, Keltech, DB, are tough to shoot accuratly when in a relaxed situation, even close up, in a tense situation, unless your 2 or 3 ft away your not going to hit jack, on purpose anyway, what I'm trying to say carry the largest caliber you can at least somewhat comfortably, and keep your little 380 as a back up, and ck out a Glock 19/23 or SR9c, XD 9 or 40 compact, if your just dead set on carrying a 380, ck out the Bursa Thunder, its a little larger than the others but very good handling gun, and super easy to shoot

  7. #7
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    Default re: .380 stopping power

    .380's and .25's bounce can bounce off of windshield but human skin is differentat close range. I have a ruger LCP which I like because can be hidden and pulled fast because easily concealed OWB. My Ruger LC9 I prefer carried same way. Very small 9mm, I like it and keep the safety off. The .380 doesnt have a safety. I believe the walther PPK has a safety.

  8. #8
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    Yes the Ruger LCP is very concealable. HOWEVER Smith & Wesson now has the M&P9 Shield. A single stack 9mm that is .98 Inches at its WIDEST. Hold 7+1 or 8+1. It also has an AMAZING trigger that is comparable to the Walther PPQ. Meant to be able to be pocket carried if need be. Definitely a better choice in my opinion. More power and super concealable. Accurate even with it's 3.1 inch barrel. Seen people hit an 8 inch target with all but two rounds at 50ft. and 1 1/2 inch groups at 7 yards. All at around $380-$400.

  9. #9
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    I confidently carry a well-broken in Kel-Tec .380 in summer and tucked dress w/ 90gr Speer Gold Dot HPs.
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    Here is a fascinating recent study (within a year) indicating the stopping power results in actual shootings over a 10 year period. The .380 caliber was the most effective, with the .22 a close 2nd. The .40 & .45 were last.

    Here is an interseting presentation from a colorful martial arts & firearms instructor making a case for the .22LR over the .45 for self defense (from which I got the study link above).

    Whatever you decide, make sure the firearm feels very comfortable in your hands and PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE!

    All the best,

    Michael Ray

  10. #10
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    There is no magic caliber (other than a howitzer or similar) that will always perform a one stop shot into a drugged up 290 pound thug coming at you so to me the whole caliber argument is more for the Internet that real life. I know that a .45 or .40 is more likely to stop someone determined to come at you than a .380 but the scenarios most given about the need are far and few. Unless it is a very unusual situation when you start shooting the BG is going to run. It is going to be rare that any of us, although I agree that it may happen, get into a shootout with someone. When someone gives you cause to actually have to use your gun such as a robbery or break-in when they see you mean business and take one bullet the whole situation changes. They are probably going to run which is what I would hope they would do or they are going start shooting if they have a gun. The only way to prevent that would be the one-stop-shot which doesn't exist as a guarantee.

    What I am trying to say in my rambling method is that I have plenty of faith in my .380 to be able to defend me if needed and carrying a .45 or .40 doesn't raise the guarantee enough to justify the extra problems of carrying a full size gun. I read yesterday I think it was where the police in NY shot some fellow 5 times didn't kill him. I doubt that they were using .380's or .22's. The caliber of the gun is not nearly as important as the likely hood that you will have it when you need it. For me given the laws around here it is much more likely that I will have my P238 on me than a .45 or even my full size FNX-9.

    I little side note that came to me the other day about the caliber wars. Some people claim that using a 9mm is too likely to over penetrate and go completely through someone shot with it. A .40 or .45 makes a bigger hole than a 9mm so they have to be better. But one of the two things that a person who is shot will die from is blood loss. Since the 9mm goes all the way through the BG then the hole it makes may be smaller but it make two of them so the blood can get out twice as fast. Therefore the 9mm must be better by making a hole in front and back rather than one hole in the front.

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