What is the minimum caliber you need to feel safe?
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Thread: What is the minimum caliber you need to feel safe?

  1. #1

    What is the minimum caliber you need to feel safe?

    I carry .45 acp (Glock) every day. But when I can't carry a gun it's the kel tec .380 that I take. I have to admit that the .380 makes me feel a little under gunned. But a .380 in the pocket is better than a .45 in the safe.

    So what is the minimum caliber you need to carry to feel safe?

  3. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Drakes Creek, AR
    I feel the same way..380 is minimum for me..since I have sold all of my 45's a few years ago, I am currently 45less so now I am packing two 380's. A 45 is in my future agn, but for now, the 380's will go with me. I do have a 9mm but feel it's too big and bulky to conceal effectively..have it in a leg holster and it works just fine there here on the farm.
    Drakes Creeks, AR
    "A gun unloaded and cocked aint good for nuttin!"--Rooster Cogburn

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    New Orleans, LA
    I bought my .32 before I really got into concealed carry, actually the day I was getting my permit. After reading a lot, it seems that .380 was the lowest caliber to really use. But I still carry just my .32 sometimes, its better than nothing. When I get a revolver it will be a .38 or larger, I think.

  5. For me I wouldn't feel confident with anything below a 9mm.

    ALWAYS carry! ~ NEVER tell!

  6. #5
    Yaaaay! Caliber war!

    (I'm kidding... <ducks for cover>)

    Well, to be quite honest... if one looks at the problem of lethal self-defense from the two extreme positions, that is a difficult question to answer simply because all of the potential variables are impossible to consider, likely or not...

    - A .22lr pistol would be adequate in most circumstances simply because one would be more likely to be able to precisely hit a vital area, and fire both rapidly and accurately.

    on the other hand...

    - One never knows just how much meth/crack/cocaine the BG(s) you are facing have just partaken, and it could literally require removing large amounts of tissue to stop them... in that case, most handgun calibers are insufficient.

    Personally, I like the .357sig for SD. It hits as hard as a decent .357magnum load, with less felt recoil, and higher capacity.

    I would have no qualms about carrying a 9mm or .38special. I have before. I've carried a .32acp... but I did so knowing that it was up to me to make them count.

    All a bigger caliber does is provide the user with slightly more margin for error.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    St. Louis Metro Area (IL)
    A .22 is better than nothing, but I stick to 9mm or above.
    NRA Rifle Coach
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  8. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Tornado Alley
    Asked my nephew (an undersheriff who has been through the FBI academy) what his thoughts were on this. He says, somewhat tongue in cheek, that the FBI's idea is that unless the caliber starts with .4, it is ineffective.

    With modern ballistic technology, and the availability of decent ammunition specifically designed for self defense, just about any caliber can be used.

    Unless it was all I had available, I certainly wouldn't want to depend on anything less than a 9mm. I have both 9mm and .45acp at present and carry either a G19 or 1911 as circumstances dictate.

    This is a subject that will generate many differing opinions. Use what you have, and with what you have, practice, practice, practice and more practice. That way any disparity in caliber between you and the bg's becomes a minimal factor in any armed confrontation.
    NRA Life Member
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  9. #8
    I feel confident with a 9mm. I prefer my 40 or 45 though. I also have a Kel Tec 380. as you said, I would much rather have that with me than have to through rocks at a bg :)

    The only person available to protect you 24 hours a day is you.

  10. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by kscchtrainer View Post
    With modern ballistic technology, and the availability of decent ammunition specifically designed for self defense, just about any caliber can be used.
    I think this is the key. If you look at most ballistics tests, penetration and expansion most anything between 9mm and .45 acp perform about the same (with the exeption of maybe .357 mag. which penetrates like mad).

    As you said any quality sd ammo can be used well in just about any caliber.

  11. i carry a 380 most of the time.a 45 the rest of the time.i prefer a swc in my revolvers.bought a lyman 4 cavity 451460 to try out in my 1911.a swc cuts a hole and will still penetrate.i am hoping for 950 fps from a 5" barrel.

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