Try one of these.
This is a discussion on Largest caliber legaly justified for defense within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Try one of these....
"Trust in God with hand on sword" -Inscription on my family's coat of arms from medieval England
---Carry options: G26/MTAC, PF9/MiniTuck, PPK/Pocket, USP40/OWB---
---NOTE: I am not an expert. If I ever start acting like a know-it-all, please call me on it immediately. ---
Obviously..in an SD situation if a hand cannon is your only thing available...
Pull out the artillery and do work. You obviously will save yourself a little grief by using a "normal " caliber. But if you are in the woods and carrying a hand cannon for that duty and a SD situation of the two legged predator kind arises, so be it. Thats what good lawyers and expert witnesses are for.
Friends don't let friends be MALL NINJAS.
I am just as nice as anyone lets me be and can be just as mean as anyone makes me. - Quoted from Terryger, New member to our forum.
That .41 will kill them a whole lot less deader than the .454!
I had a .41 Ruger and loved it until someone wanted to love it more than I. That and anything upward in power is a handful to control in any SD situation, Dirty Harry the exception.
I wouldn't worry too much about being "justified." I don't know that I would carry a heavy firearm in the care, etc. because of the range and penetration involved. but in the woods? Why not. The home too. You're tresspassing on my land, my home, my "castle."
Retired USAF E-8. Avatar is OldVet from days long gone. Oh, to be young again.
Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... "For What It's Worth" Buffalo Springfield
lets take the size of the wounds out of the equation for a moment and realize that there have to be hits to stop a threat...regardless of how good you believe you are you may be firing a gun while moving and under a great deal of pressure...you arent shooting in a box at stationary paper...the ability to place multiple shots on target is what is going to stop an aggressor in many instances and you have to consider what your ability is with a larger, heavier and heavy recoiling firearm...
this is the real world guys...bad doesnt cut it....accurate and repeatable performance does....and for the "one shot is all it will take with a .454 c crowd...youd be surprised how resiliant the human body is...just becasue they are bad guys doesnt mean they give up the fight when they arehit...
If I could , I would like to make a couple of reccomendations on guns/calibers based on what you described are YOUR needs. A good 4 inch barrel revolver in either 44 mag or 357 mag gives you as much versatility as anything. Load with with magnum rounds in the outdoors for protection against 4 legged critters, or download to the special...ie 44spl and 38spl for social purposes against two legged varmits. There are many shapes and sizes made in these two revolver cartridges to choose from, as well as the choice of double or single action. If a semi auto is more to your liking, a glock 20 or 29 in 10mm is hard to beat. Full power rounds are availible from double tap ammo. The 10mm is in between the 357 mag and 41 mag power range. You can purchase a 40 s&w barrel for it giving you two in one. Additionally, you can purchase a 9x25 dillion barrel for it, which is a 10mm necked to a 9mm, firing a 115 9mm at 1800 fps! Now you have GLOCKZILLA, and a 3rd caliber in one gun. I really think this is what you are looking for. Hope it helps, let me know what you decide.
Thing is with those, they are for suckas.
Your first shot had darn better well be a very good shot.
Because by the time you recover so as to make a second shot...You will be firing that thing off as from inside the gullet of the beast you tried to hit (and miss) with the first shot.
I would _not_ carry a .500 of any sort.
The weight alone of those is significant....And people complain about full size full steel 1911s for EDC (!).
As well it's overall package size is huge.
Real world the 4" ported version makes most functional sense for carry, if one were silly enough to carry a .500.
BTW I've shot both the .500 and the .460 XVR 6.5" models back to back while working a Smith product test & demo day last summer as a company SO. The 500 to my hand was an easy gun to shoot. Very easy.
Yeah recoil is stout but it's not like the mag rags make it out to be...My wrists did not shatter nor did my body turn to gelatin. Frankly .44 Magnum hurt more and .357 Mag by sound (double eared) is more unpleasant.
The .500 just feels like firing off a volcano...at 2/3rd speed. As to recoil just ride it like you would a big magnum rifle. Most anybody including women and young teens were firing it with no problem, though just for one shot as assigned to day event visitors.
Meanwhile though the best kept secret, IMHO, is the .460 XVR!
It can chamber all manner of other items such as .45 LC and the commercial .460 round from Hornady is one hell of a mother!
Shoots completely different than the .500. It IS scary!
And it'll make a priest, pastor, nun and atheist say curse words as related to God and damnation.
Recoil is very sharp.
When you touch it off it's what I imagine touching a live 220v line would be like with a tool to form a circuit.
Click and with immediate no delay BANNNNNNAAGSAHVDWHVDHgbG....is what you get.
You had darn well better have a C- clamp grip, double ears minimum (and I was outdoors!) along with a good stable stance platform because this thing is a Space Shuttle.
Recoil is as the understated English might say; Significant.
I could hit a metal man sillouhette target at 50 yds. with either at will from first shot fired to last.
But if I had to shoot a gun just for fun it would be the .500, hands down....As long as Smith or someone else was handing me free rounds (~$2/per trigger pull!) to 'test' or have fun with.
If I needed to shoot polar bears, the Incredible Hulk and/or invading aliens that stand 20' tall and are made of steel with laser beams for eyes...I'd grab the Marlin 1895 45/70 lever gun in my safe or I'd head over to Smith and place my credit card up as collateral against a .460 XVR and a box of shells.
Smith And Wesson 460 XVR Magnum Range Review
That day at the Smith event visitors were offered _ONE_ free shot toward both the 500 and the 460 VXR.
Additional shots fired for them came with a fee of $2 per round, retail cost. At the end of the day the assigned SOs had made some $20 or so. The line for the .500 was long out to the parking lot morning to close as everyone has heard of this gun.
Where as in the next bay over for the 460 XVR not only did they have ammo left over for the day as people would watch others and then comment out loud; 'I don't want any part of that!', but nobody who did shoot it ask to pay money to shoot it again for a second time. Their SOs spent much of the day just standing around in between dribs and drabs of folk who would walk over.
I was the only person the whole days event to shoot it more than once.
Now that's saying something.
You have been warned.
I was at the range yesterday and a nice gentleman that I was talking to offered to let me shoot his gun after about 5 minutes of checking out my CBOB. He said "here you gotta try one round through this"........I had no idea what kinda boom it made. He told me before I fired it but I guess it didn't register that it was the .460XVR. Hooollyyy WOW that was a boom... and a fireball.
NRA Certified Rifle/Pistol Instructor
Accuracy ALWAYS WINS! So carry what you can hit with.
If you find yourself in a fair fight your tactics stink.
One might consider the effect of extreme muzzle flash when selecting gun and cartridge. My limited experience with .50 AE is that, besides looking ridiculous trying to present it from your shoulder holster in a timely fashion, it can light up a city block and can be seen....from Space.
No matter what my personal opinions are on the x frame smiths, I gotta admit they are cool. I still have trouble in my mind carrying a handgun that weighs almost as much as a lightweight rifle. Then again, after 44 years I have just now been able to accept the 45acp in any other gun but a 1911. It may be that I am just slow or getting old.
Glockman, I understand your perspective re: the 1911. This isn't 'legend' or 'battle proven' or any other dern crap, IMO...it's a design that provided the best for about a century, and provided the basic foundation for anything that could ever claim to be the best for I believe another century. Still, it is with great surprise and astonishment that I will carry an MP45c. I would hesitate to ever call it 'magnificent' or 'legendary' or an engineering miracle. But, in a world where folks think 400 failure-free rounds means 'proven', recoil springs are actually replaced occassionally, a 10 year old gun is considered an old gun and folks worry about 'should I replace my barrel' after 10,000 rounds...it's quite impressive as a .45. In my mind, anyway.
Something to think about too is what's going to happen to your ears if you have to touch off one of those hand-cannons inside a small room or hallway in the house.... , .357MAG, .41MAG and bigger is gonna hurt... (yeah, i know... adrenalin blah blah.... but, it doesn't change the physics of the pressure wave doing damage to the ear drum...). I'd be worried about the same thing with a 5.56/.223 carbine as well. In the house, 20ga or 12ga is probably a better choice.
Outside the house, .357MAG, .45ACP, or .40S&W is probably sufficient unless bears etc. might be involved, and might save some explaining to the jury if you have to use it. If bears are an issue, I would carry the biggest caliber revolver you can shoot well under stress, with a 4-5" compensated bbl.... but that's just me and my armchair talking....