Best caliber for defense?

Best caliber for defense?

This is a discussion on Best caliber for defense? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Greetings: I am a former Marine who owns a Sig 229 with both a 357sig & 40 S&W barrels. This sig 229 is part of ...

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Thread: Best caliber for defense?

  1. #1
    Ex Member Array Sneaky's Avatar
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    Best caliber for defense?

    Greetings: I am a former Marine who owns a Sig 229 with both a 357sig & 40 S&W barrels. This sig 229 is part of my home defense. My question is what (357sig or 40S&W) with
    good shot placement will have the better chance of incapacitating a home invader who is threating to use lethal force?
    Thank-you for your time.
    Semper Fi


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array Cuda66's Avatar
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    Yes.
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    There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.--RAH

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    There is a reason they try and make small bullets act like big bullets--Glockmann10mm

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sneaky View Post
    Greetings: I am a former Marine who owns a Sig 229 with both a 357sig & 40 S&W barrels. This sig 229 is part of my home defense. My question is what (357sig or 40S&W) with good shot placement will have the better chance of incapacitating a home invader who is threating to use lethal force?
    The one you're most capable of striking vital organs with, I'd say. That'll depend on the ammo/caliber selection, to a degree, but it'll depend far more on your accuracy, keeping your "head" under fire, etc. For my money, I'd suggest selecting ammo that offers up some independent figures on penetration, expansion. Lacking that, do some basic range testing of your own on some meat (whole hams, sides of beef, whatever).

    Anything from a hot and effective 9mm on up ought to do just fine, presuming you strike vitals accurately, multiply and quickly. But between your two choices, I'd be happier with the .357SIG, but that's just my own preference. Myself, I like the improved feed reliability and the penetration/expansion stats from tests. Can't imagine either would fail you, .357SIG or .40S&W, particularly in a full-sized gun.


    Some test info: BallisticsByTheInch.com.

    Article at GunBlast, on the .357SIG with reference to use in a SIG P229: click.
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    VIP Member Array Brad426's Avatar
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    .357Sig. There, end of discussion.
    I have a very strict gun control policy: if there's a gun around, I want to be in control of it.
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    I think you would be hard pressed to see an actual, measurable difference.
    Don't try to be fancy. Shoot for the center of mass. The world is full of decent people. Criminals we can do without. -- Jeff Cooper (19202006)

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    Senior Member Array bigpapa's Avatar
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    Thank you for your service sneaky, but my money will be the .357 although any hot hp ammo will kill you dead. On all of the rounds their have being people who live from the .44 to .380 but the odd is greater with the larger calibers, someone said that shot placement is important and I agree totally. A friend in my church told me that he got shot three time with a .45 and live of course but if you can focus the chest area you will have a winner. So any one but I think that it's a preference but just have some good HP which almost any will work, you can get dead with a .40 also.
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    I'm going with my answer of both/and. If I have to get off the fense, I'll say they one you shoot more accurately followed by the firearm with greater capacity.
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    Senior Member Array AmmoFan01's Avatar
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    Both calibers have their ups and downs. The .357 Sig is a smaller slug that shoots faster and flatter which would penetrate better, the .40 S&W is slower with a larger slug that would probably do more damage from close range. I'd say you couldn't go wrong with either, it's probably more about personal preference than anything.

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    VIP Member Array Cuda66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AmmoFan01 View Post
    Both calibers have their ups and downs. The .357 Sig is a smaller slug that shoots faster and flatter which would penetrate better, the .40 S&W is slower with a larger slug that would probably do more damage from close range. I'd say you couldn't go wrong with either, it's probably more about personal preference than anything.
    Actually, the warpspeed 125gr .357 sig will typically penetrate less than a 180gr .40.

    OP--which one can you put consistently put hits on target faster, and with greater accuracy?

    Choose that one.
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    There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.--RAH

    ...man fights with his mind; the weapons are incidental.--Jeff Cooper


    There is a reason they try and make small bullets act like big bullets--Glockmann10mm

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    Local police are all changing to .40. There's got to be a reason for it. They also told me they are loading their mags by alternating one hollow point then one full metal and another hollow and so on. This way they are ready for different scenarios.

  11. #11
    JD
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    Looking at your started thread history there is really no need to go down this road again....like ever again.

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  12. #12
    JD
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    Quote Originally Posted by wysh View Post
    Local police are all changing to .40. There's got to be a reason for it. They also told me they are loading their mags by alternating one hollow point then one full metal and another hollow and so on. This way they are ready for different scenarios.
    Also..."cocktail" magazines are stupid and I have never heard of any "legitimate knows what they're doing officer" doing this. FMJ sucks for defensive purposes and JHPs in .40 and .45 do pretty good on soft skinned vehicles and auto glass.

    So...to the masses. Stick with a 9mm, .40, .45, .357Sig...or whatever other flavor of the week duty caliber you prefer and select a good (read non exotic) JHP and call it a day.

    SPEER Gold Dots, Winchester Ranger and Federal HST are all good choices and pretty safe bets.

    And....

    Out.

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