This is a discussion on Gun Philosophy Internal Conflict within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Originally Posted by OD* The study done by Gary Kleck (I should say one of the gun control studies done by him)? I really don't ...
Now let’s turn our focus to the ‘or you’re dead’ part. First the SD schools I’ve been to, and I’ll get to those momentarily don’t teach such a fatalistic mindset. I can’t number how many times I’ve heard, “If I can’t get it done in five _____ (fill in your favorite caliber), then…and they make some kind of unsupported fatalistic statement.
However, I had an opportunity to talk to Ernst Langdon and learned some things that were quite interesting. Ernst used to train people from civies to ‘operators’ and because of his training clientele (agencies) he had access to studies, data, and gunfight analysis that we can only dream about.
At the time, I very much wanted to carry a revolver and already had procured several revolvers, so I asked him about carrying a revolver as a civilian. He didn’t hesitate, he said they just don’t carry hold enough ammo to cover minimal expectations for a civilian gunfight. So I replied that there was an NYPD study making the internet rounds that revealed that LEOs involved in gunfights only fired an average of 2-3 shots. Ernst knew exactly the study I was referring to and said that’s not exactly right. The officers that fired 2-3 rounds lost the gunfights! The officers that won fired more like 6-9 shots! Of course that’s LE and not civilian, but I use it as an example to show how ‘facts’ are not necessarily really facts. Plus, it reveals another thing, if 5-6 shots aren’t enough, that doesn’t mean you’re finished as many would have us believe.
One other thing Ernst said that hit me between the eyes. He was discussing what it takes to stop some threats. He said that what they’ve found is that firing 6 shots as fast as possible seems to stop them most effectively. He went on to say, it’s similar to what makes a subgun so effective – rapid multiple hits. Of course we can’t shoot as fast as a subgun but thankfully the slower rate of fire still very effective. Integrated Threat Focused Training Systems teaches a tactic along those lines. At Gunsite, I was emptying my 6 shot 686 in about a 1.25 seconds. Oh, and that’s DAO too.
And I might as well address this too - carrying a revo in a pocket. Go to the range with a timer and tell us how fast you can present your gun from your pocket. I.e. on the beep, get your hand into your pocket, fire the gun while in the pocket and tell us the time from the beep to the bang. Now, one can argue all he wants to that in all cases I would have already had my hand in my jacket pocket on my gun, etc. etc. etc. Of course you would, even in 95° weather; you’d be walking around with your hand in a jacket pocket. I’ll let the reader sort out the ramifications and complications of depending on having your hand already in your pocket.
What about the training schools and aren’t they pretty much a joke?
The schools I’ve attended are SD shooting schools, Gunsite, Thunder Ranch, Blackwater, and Integrated Threat Focused Training Systems, and some others. Many poo-poo shooting schools or unjustly discredit them as teaching the wrong stuff, not teaching real-world stuff, and on and on the inaccurate claims go, So let me say this about these shooting schools. All these schools are fully SD schools. They do not teach or address competitive shooting at all. They base their teaching course content and drills on a broad collective of street encounters. It is easy for us as individuals to see the ‘world’ from our perspective or world - we’ve seen a lot of that in this thread alone - we’ve seen it claimed that since so and so is true in my world, it’s true for everyone.
The SD shooting schools I listed, as well as others, LFI, Front Sight, etc., look at a much bigger picture. They can’t limit the scope of their training to what happens in one area of the country, nor do they assume that every gunfight will be the average gun fight of that proverbial 2-3 rounds. So, they look at the whole or the collective implications of a broad spectrum of gunfights and analyze them. By keeping close alliances with LE communities, attending LE conferences, etc., they gain deep insights to what’s going on in the streets with both civies and LEO and are able to keep up with developing trends. In fact, in every class I’ve taken, which is a lot, the bulk of the classes are often made up of LEO and many are repeat students attending a higher level course.
Just one example of the attention to detail they have gleaned from the streets. This involves the manipulation of a gun at intersections such as a T in a hallway. In a simulation drill, I pointed my gun in the direction I looked but stole a quick peek over my shoulder to check the other way. The instructor immediately asked me why I didn’t point my gun in the direction I ‘peeked’. I explained my thinking and he asked this, “What would you have done if you had seen a threat with your gun pointed in the opposite direction?" He went on to explain that what they’ve been seeing in the streets from officers that do what I did is this: they have their gun pointed in the direction they’re looking. They sneak that peek behind them and see a threat. They start swinging their gun and as they do, due to the stress produced by the imminent danger to them, they start firing early, i.e. while they are still swinging the gun! We all can see the problem there. So how’d they pick up on that? Through their close relationships and feedback from the streets.
A friend of mine that is a 1911 guy took his 1911 to a SD school and came back and bought a hi cap 9mm XD. Why? Not because he was convinced that his 1911 wouldn’t do, but because by observing the students around him in the class, he realized they were able to do some things better than he could with his 1911. Yet before he went to the school, there would have been no way he would have switched from the 1911.
Before I’m misunderstood, let me make this clear, I’m not at all saying that SD schools are anti-revolver, its more about the student learning about his and his gun’s limitations and often they see that they could benefit from more rounds in the gun and an easier gun to reload and in many cases an easier gun to shoot. I took a 686 2-1./2” revo to Gunsite for the Advanced Tactics Handgun class (5 days). I actually impressed my instructor on a number of occasions. One was a rapid fire drill; I was hanging right in there with the semi guys. In fact, in one rapid fire drill, I could have got off another shot, if I hadn’t run out of ammo. I couldn’t wait to get back home and stick my Sig 226 back on. Just too many benefits to deny.
BTW, one of my classmates at the end of the course volunteered a comment along these lines: “I’m impressed with his ability with a revolver, but they seem so complicated.” He was referring to the reload process I presume.
My instructor at Gunsite in the Advanced Tactics class was an ex-Border Patrol; he started out carrying a revolver. Because I was carrying a revolver, primarily to understand it better and see how I’d perform with it under stress and see what the limitations were, he said the ubiquitous cliché: “I wouldn’t feel under armed with a revolver.” I asked do you ever load your Glock 17 or 1911 with only 5 or 6 rounds? He looked down and didn’t answer. Was he going to say, “Why yes I do, if I can’t get it done with six I’m dead anyway.”? And of course if he said no, I’d ask him why?
So, I’m not so concerned about dyed in the wool revo guys, I respect them, I really do. You don’t know how bad I want to carry a revolver. I have a bunch of them, and I do carry them on occasion, but it’s purely because I want to, not because I feel I’m as well armed as I would be with my Glock17, M&P, or P250. And, I’m not trying to pitch you or your notions under the bus. I’m trying to keep newbies out from under it.
BTW, I do shoot revolvers – and very well – 63 yards with snub nose revos shooting only in DA:
I'm too young to be this old!
Getting old isn't good for you!
what they’ve found is that firing 6 shots as fast as possible seems to stop them most effectively
This is the concept of "firing a burst" (or "shooting to the ground") which I completely agree with. This concept has implications for gun selection (pistol over revolver) and caliber (9mm vs fewer, larger caliber rounds that recoil more).
Think of it like this...a handgun is nothing more than an incremental shotgun. What buckshot can do with one trigger pull takes numerous trigger pulls with a handgun to even begin to approximate.
I regularly train to fire the "zipper" at contact to arms-length distances, and the failure-to-stop (aka Mozambique) drill at further distances. All of these drills involve the concept of "burst" fire.
Excellent post, Tangle!
Tangle, I commend your efforts to obtain and pursue self defense training. I would like to add another perspective to a well thought out and written post here, not for arguementive purposes, but from my own experience.
Having been a gun enthusiast all my life, and a LE for over 21 years of that, I have made it a personal study to take note of every type of shooting either I have investigated, or my fellow officers have investigated. What I have taken from this has in part largely made me feel very comfortable with my choice. I realize this these are geogaphically specific to my area, but there have been litterally hundreds of shooting, some involving us, some involving citizens vs perps, and some involving criminals against criminals, and have yet to see a situation that would make me feel handicapped with my choice.
One example is an idiot that shot one of our officers in the jaw and took off just because he wanted to shoot a cop. He was cornered by another neighboring agency and hit 8 times with their 45 acp pistols, and still lived, although he lost some large intestine and other non vital organs. Now this many shots fired could have been easily(and was by some} construed to suggest that one or two rounds were not sufficient to bring down this 130 pound punk. But the officers I spoke with later who were there, made it clear that it was the result of 5 officers firing at the same time, firing a total of 11 shots. It was observed by those that he was on the way down from the first shot, but the shooting was fast and furious, so more rounds were fired than were really needed.
There have been many home invasions over the years, and many involving multiple attackers. On every single one that has happened, the armed home owner prevailed with little or no shots required. The latest example was last night, 2 men , 1 armed with a handgun forced their way into a mans home. They fired a shot, he fired back, and they fled.
A woman was being mugged by 2 males in the parking lot of a store. She fired 2 shots, one striking the perp, they both fled and were picked up later.
I could go on and on with real honest to God accounts of events like this happening over the course of over 21 years of first hand information, of either being a first responder, or reading other officer reports, and I have not seen a single instance of an armed citizen who needed more than a couple of shots to stop aggession.
From what I have seen, criminals almost always look to get away from physical harm to themselves, and look for easy prey.
These are the types of situations that real everyday people are probably going to encounter IF anything at all.
The scenarios of facing down someone determined to kill you and put their own life at stake doing it are just not as common as we think unless we are in a high risk type of job, nor are the multiple attackers who are willing to engage in a gunfight in a public place for a ladies purse or a little monetary gain.
From what I have seen, the real threat we are likely to encounter are petty crooks or stupid young wanna be bangers who will $##! their britches when confronted with deadly force.
My greatest fear, is not being able to access my weapon, due to a violent attack that renders me incapable of fighting back, or having someone get the drop on me first. Both of these situations negate any training, and put you at the mercy of the attacker, who has the upper hand. That is where a little j frame strategically located may be an ace in the hole. Forget the jacket pocket. Imagine me reaching in my back pocket to hand you my wallet, complying as you fully expect me too, and suddenly you are seeing flashes coming from that brown flat object you thought was my wallet as you reached for it.....
Not trying to argue that more bullets isnt a good thing, it could never hurt. I am just sayin from what I have seen and investigated over a 21 year period, I have never seen a time that hi capacity was the deciding difference in thwarting real crime against citizens in real everyday, common occurences.
When I read this:
I began to prepare an answer in my head. Then I read Tangle's rather lengthy but comprehensive response. Upon finishing that, I think the original answer I was planning on remains essentially valid, so here it is: A lot of the SD tactical training courses out there heavily favor the use of high-capacity semi-autos.Why do you promote the high-capacity semi-auto so fervently here on the Forum?
There's one guy who's a popular trainer here in Florida, and in reading his posts, and the comments from his students, it's manifest that his training, his drills, his target runs - everything is geared toward the use of a high-capacity Glock or similar semi-auto (no manual safety). To get the best results in his classes, you should probably bring a Glock and 3 to 10 magazines. Revolver owners can attend, but they won't have much fun.
And in time, to such persons, it becomes a self-evident truth: hi-cap autos rule and revolvers are inherently handicapped. Their experiences reinforce the concept.
I've recently made the switch from revolver carry to high-capacity semi-auto for my own reasons, one of which is that I really do like the idea of sending lots of lead downrange. But in a critical situation it's hard to imagine feeling undergunned with my 686+. For one thing, the Smith is wicked accurate, but it's also somehow more lethal-feeling in the hand, more confidence inspiring - and that's a hard thing to quantify.
And then, of course, there's this:
It isn't just criminals; anybody anywhere will try to get away from a muzzle spitting bullets. It is not likely that anyone would approach you while you are punching holes in their body. Over and over, in the Armed Citizen column, you read these accounts of successful gun owner defense, accounts where the defender wins, and it's either because the gun was brandished, or because one or two shots were fired.From what I have seen, criminals almost always look to get away from physical harm to themselves, and look for easy prey.
Often, in these accounts, the perp isn't even wounded. Sometimes, the perp is hit once and is DRT. Yes, I've read and watched accounts where an entire magazine had to be emptied to stop a threat, but now we're talking about odds so long that you're more likely to be hit by lightning than face that. And in such desperate situations, one or two accurate rounds of .357 would probably do what 5 or 8 wildly fired 9mm would.
So there really isn't much of a slam-dunk argument for semi-autos. You should build your arsenal to suit your personality and shooting style, carry and shoot what gives you confidence, but by all means get familiar and comfortable with all common platforms and weigh it all out for yourself. If your life is on the line, whatever tool you select will have to get the job done.
"It may seem difficult at first, but everything is difficult at first."
Shockwave, very well said. I think you made valid points, including the one about choices that fit your personality, because I think that is partly what I do. On some occasions I carry a glock also, but , as you stated there is something about the power of the 357 mag that cannot be put into words. Good post, and a good different perspective.
Tangle's post is good and he is a first rate shot too. You will not be seeing me sticking up clips of 63-yard double action snub shooting because the misses will become all too evident.
I've not taken a single self-defense pistol class in my life and surely it is obvious, but I don't subscribe to the notion of "burst firing," the 9mm cartridge, "the incremental shotgun," suppressive fire, nor extensive training on such techniques. Sorry, but all of that still smacks of a "spray and pray" attitude. I can, and have accomplished most of these "burst fire" techniques with both revolvers and automatics, and with effectiveness, but have never put a lot of stock in the concentrated practice of such techniques. I absolutely intend to rely on accuracy and applying accurate shots as needed. I am supremely confident in my ability to make the accurate shots, even under the stress of a gun fight or other attack. Call me unrealistic if you like but don't bet the farm on the assailant's(s') chances. Self-confidence and mind-set are vitally important too when considering placing a firearm into action in any setting, the most important being self-defense.
I don't see firearms as one-dimensional, or only for self-defense. Firearms have always been primarily an avocation, for me a hobby, rabidly pursued. I grew up around firearms, shooting, and hunting and have spent my entire adult life pursuing accuracy first and foremost whether it be hunting, shooting sports competition or handloading for same. I've mimicked what I've seen in gun rags and elsewhere with rapid-fire techniques, Mozambiques and what-have-you but don't seen any of it as that "big a deal." Accuracy is final, and though accuracy, delivered with speed is certain to be twice as nice, using a handgun as an "incremental shotgun" is not the highest and best use of the weapon. Comments such as "burst firing," "suppressive fire," and "the incremental shotgun" only solidifies an opinion that there is an element within handgunners who, in fact do subscribe to the "spray and pray" method of using high-capacity handguns, despite claims made to the contrary by those who worship at that alter. Too much stress appears to be placed on techniques and styles rather than good old fashioned shot placement. Some of the firearms and techniques promoted would have more application for the battlefield soldier who is on the offensive or whose foxhole is being overrun by hordes of enemy troops rather than for the private citizen concerned with personal self defense. Some so-called technique and tactics frequently seen at ranges and even occasionally seen here on the Forum are only excuses for slopping handgun shooting and diminished accuracy expectations.
And, it matters not that all and sundry "combat handgun" trainers subscribe to "lots-a-bullets." "But Mom, everybody's doing it" doesn't necessarily make such application with the handgun the most correct method. At the least it is imperfect in its scope, since the common thread which seemingly courses through all of these schools as most essential is high-capacity. The whole premise behind such training is a bit suspect. It could be said that, rather than instilling a proper measure of confidence, this type of training serves to keep the devotee off balance and forever unsure of himself, his equipment, cartridge, bullet style, and his personal skills levels (and incidentally, promoting devotees to seek ever more instruction and schooling).
Schooling is great fun and attending them could be considered a valid and worthwhile hobby all its own, so there is no implication intended here to denigrate schooling and those who pursue it. A proper course of study also provides both short cuts and insights on acquisition of shooting skills and methods that someone like me will never acquire through wiling away the hours and the rounds competing in bulls-eye competition, inventing shooting games, shooting up paper targets, tin cans, mesquite stumps and cactus along with participating in the odd action-pistol competitive event (a total of 3 in 35 years). So yes there is benefit and advantage to be gained by attending the better shooting courses. I have attended a few rifle courses over the years and I took away some valuable insight while straining out some personal opinion, conjecture, and some downright foolishness.
I got my first handgun at 18 and by the time I reached 20 years of age I had attained probably 90% of my foundational skills with a handgun and was likely more proficient at that time than 99% of the bad guys who were packing heat. They scarcely ever get to know their guns and loads like an firearms aficionado does. During the 30+ years since my skill levels further increased before age and life's time constraints diminished them. Though I had never stopped shooting regularly, retirement has given me more time and opportunity to shoot and I can see the positive results. If I was to begin packing my Hi-power with 15 round magazines or some other high-capacity pistol, each shot will still be delivered very deliberately, one round at a time, though I can be pretty deliberate, pretty speedily if the need presents itself.
"...I’m trying to keep newbies out from under it.
Well, I’d agree that revolvers catch some flack, but I don’t know that there’s an effort to stamp out revolvers."
It is a disservice to the Forum to denigrate the use of the revolver as wrong-headed thinking, dissuading the novice who is making a reasoned consideration of revolvers and auto-pistols with a view to choosing one. The revolver might actually suit him and his needs best. Revolvers don't deserve any "flack" as they are a viable and very reasonable choice. I wouldn't rally to their defense if the fans of high-capacity didn't insinuate that they are unsuitable. It is easy to find threads here on Defensive Carry on a regular basis where someone is struggling or having issues with semi-auto pistols or else is having doubts about their choice, whether they are willing to speak of it or not, indeed whether they are even aware of it or not. They have bought into the auto-pistol and "lots-a-bullets" notion but, in reading between the lines, it may be seen that it isn't a fit for them. Obviously the same thing could be said about some revolver posters and that's ok too. The degree of acceptance of "Tap, Rack, Bang" as a feature of auto-pistol shooting is only one indicator of the unspoken admittance that the auto-pistol has an out-sized need for a system of corrective action to keep it shooting on occasion. Some folks apparently even practice clearing drills. It almost is a case of "can't see the forest for the trees" for, in my view they aren't seeing the signs that the malfunctions are presenting for their consideration. In 35 years of shooting I've only had a double action revolver go down four times: three times due to mis-assembled handloads used on a target range with no thought of using them for serious purposes and once with a hundred year old antique revolver known for having a weak action design. Clearing malfunctions is scarcely part of the revolver's operation in my personal experience.
But that is only my view and the relative reliability of the two has been discussed in past threads. We certainly need to know our handguns and knowing how to keep our choice in the fight is essential.
Don't short-sell the revolver which has some real positive attributes. There are folks here who are able to make highly effective use of revolvers for personal self-defense. There are readers here who could best incorporate a revolver into their personal concealed carry practices.
Please take the above pontificating in the spirit that it is offered. It is enjoyable to consider the two types of handguns along with their strengths and weaknesses. It is fun to debate them too and such a discussion should never have to become heated. I enjoy writing just for the fun of it and no one is required to read the drivel. Being able to have a thread like this is the truest definition of "forum."
“No possible rapidity of fire can atone for habitual carelessness of aim with the first shot.”
Theodore Roosevelt, The Wilderness Hunter, 1893
Do not confuse the tactic of firing a burst with unaimed "spray and pray." They are not the same thing. Your burst is still aimed (in the Mozambique you do 2-3 to the upper torso, followed by 1-2 to the head if needed).
You can have perfect accuracy - and still not stop the threat as quickly as you'd like. Weird things happen in a fight - bullets do not penetrate as deeply as you'd think, BGs wear body armor, the BG can still fight while technically "dead" (you can have up to 30 seconds of function even after your heart is destroyed), etc.
The "burst" concept acknowledges the fact that ALL handguns are marginal defensive tools, and the best way to make up for that fact is to be as generous with bullets as you can be in the shortest time possible.
A subgun or shotgun (with buckshot) is so effective because of the large number of projectiles delivered near-simultaneously. This both produces a lot of trauma, and also increases the chance that one or more of those projectiles will hit something vital. The concept of "burst" firing a handgun merely seeks to replicate that effect as much as possible with a handgun.
In the Army, one of the things we learned was that "no plan survives contact with the enemy," because the enemy does not do what you expect (usually). Flexibility is key - you need to adapt to changes in the situation. That means having a reserve force that can deal with the unexpected. Extra bullets in your gun is that reserve force - there to deal with the unexpected. Your capacity is one of the few things in the fight you can control. Why you would compromise that, absent some pressing need, is quite beyond me.
As Tangle noted, revolver proponents tend to make a lot of assumptions about how the fight will be. They assume they will make accurate hits while under stress. They assume their bullets will quickly have the desired effect. They assume multiple attackers will flee at the first few shots. They assume they will be faced by a street thug, instead of a crazy/terrorist active shooter. Problem is...if any of those assumptions prove false, you have little reserve to deal with the situation, due to the weapon's low capacity. In other words, the penalty for guessing wrong is very high. With a high-cap pistol, if you guess wrong, you just go home with more unused bullets in your gun.
As Napoleon noted - "God favors the bigger battalions."
I'm under no illusions that the revolver proponents will read this and start carrying high-cap pistols, nor do I care. As with Tangle, my only concern is for those newer folks out there who might be mulling this decision over. Hopefully this has generated more light than heat.
My (hopefully reasoned) opinion remains that revolvers are good tools for special applications, but that for general use, a (preferably high-cap) pistol is better
Last edited by 10thmtn; December 1st, 2010 at 08:13 AM. Reason: added additional thoughts
I am so glad you watched the video. I linked it for a number of reasons, one to refute two misconceptions about revolvers: one, that the effective range of a snubnose revolver is limited to arm's length ranges, and two, that one cannot shoot a gun with a DA trigger accurately - realize both of those are in defense of the revolver! Also, I thought you might find it a good resource to refute errant claims about revolvers lacking range, accuracy, etc. For shooting per se, it's the shooter that does the limiting, not the revolver.
I'm glad there are guys like you that carry revolvers, becasue for whatever the reason, and I'm not sure what it is, I find comfort in knowing there are champions of the revolver like yourself out there - I think that's a good thing. As a matter of fact, I sort of defended the revolver on another forum but it was more about the DA trigger. Some seem to forget how well the revolver served LEO and it would have done even better with better ammo. Some of the great LEOs could do remarkable things with the revolver. Jelly Brice could draw and fire his, I believe it was an N frame, revolver and fire it in two-fifths of a second! Jim Cirillo was probably in more gunfights than any LEO in modern times and he prevailed with a revolver. Although, in all truth here, he had control of the field of battle, he was waiting for the BGs, and he was essentially in an ambush setting and hence had cover or at minimum concealment. He shot one guy in the head three times with SuperVel ammo and the first two didn't work!
The only reason I'm aware of that LEO moved to the semi was capacity and reload speed. Of course LE is a different critter to some degree than the civie world, but there's a lot of overlap. About three months ago, four Chattanoog officers fired 59 shots at one armed assailent, hitting him some 20 times (it was really hard to tell) with .45 ACPs. They were investigated, the city was sued, and in both cases, the shooting was ruled as justified. Twenty hits before they were satisfied the man was stopped! It made me think, what if I run into a guy like that?
But, and here's what I really wanted to get to. It's ok for you to carry a revolver. Revolvers are not going away, if anything they are getting more popular as evident from the new offerings from manufacturers, e.g. the S&W Body Guard 38, the Night Guard line, Ruger's LCR, and there are all kinds of models and variations. Even Clint Smith of Thunder Ranch is promoting a large caliber, large size revolver.
But, it is reasonable and responsible to discuss real-world implications of limiting one's ammo to 5 or 6 rounds. Like the example I gave, assuming there was no place/time to refuel, no one would want to start a trip with just enough gas in the tank to reach the destination.
I doubt this will be any consolation but I'm just as heavy on guys that claim carrying a spare mag prepares them for the worst. A spare mag no more prepares one for the worst than carrying a violin makes one a violinist.
What I don't want to happen is your zeal and passion for revolvers to be diminished in anyway. And I think it is important that you continue to post about revolvers and that you carry one. But, we also need to realize that a revolver, due to capacity, and a complex, time consuming reload process, will have significantly more limitations than a hicap semi.
And I agree that a revolver can be fully adequate in a the 'average' gunfight, but all it takes is one non-average gunfight...
In the movie, "Unforgiven" with Clint Eastwood, there's a scene where one of the deputies challenges another deputy, "You've only got one arm, why do you carry three guns?" The deputy replied, "I just don't want to get killed for lack of shooting back." Well, of course we can't get too caught up with Hollywood, but in this case, a good point is made.
So anyway, please know I respect your position on revolvers, am glad to have you posting, and respect you as a fellow armed citizen and would be pleased to have you on my side in a life and death situation.
I'm too young to be this old!
Getting old isn't good for you!
Different philosophy of application is a very interesting subject for debate.
I remember as a young Marine, how it was impressed upon us that only hits count. Fire disipline was always instilled, no matter the capacity of our weapons. I remember several skirmishes that seemed to last a long time but in reality were very short, where the shots I fired were only well aimed, methodical shots at targets of oppurtunity.
Anyway, that really can't be compared to civillian applications of self defense. I suspect like most people here, I live in a place that would not be worth a terrorist time to attemt to harm. And if so, it would realistically be either an attack where a firearm of any type would be useless, such as a bombing. And in the very unlikely senario of it being against bullet proof clad attackers, anything short of a rifle would be pretty much useless. But in that senario, distance and cover is your commodity, not the ammo capacity. In with that said, if I had to engage from a distance, the accuracy of a good revolver over the auto pistol would give me alot more comfort. But these are still pretty unrealistic scenarios. But they are fun to talk about, and give self defense shooting schools something to add to the program.
No, the everyday reality is that for basic reality based situations, the revolver or 1911 with will do just fine.
I do admitt to carrying a hi cap sometimes, because it is more convient in some situations. Like when I go on vacation in areas I am unfamiliar with and I don't want to carry extra ammo. Or sometimes in the summertime, when I am dressing very casual, and carry IWB, the g26 or 19 make more sense. They are not as subseptable to sweat. Personally, there is a need I have for both of them, and would hate to not have the option.
However, there is no accuracy advantage of a revolver over the semi. Semis have long since displaced revolvers in bullseye competition - perhaps the ultimate gun/shooter accuracy test. There would be some slight advantage to having access to the SA mode of a revolver, but then that means the hammer would need to be exposed which has disadvantages in carry and concealment.
And a DA/SA semi would have the same hammer access as a DA revolver.
Plus, if you watch my P250 video, I hit three shotgun shells in a row at 40 feet with a DAO trigger, it pretty well shows semis and a DAO trigger has all the accuracy needed in a handgun.
There is benefit to hicaps against a vest, it allows multiple hits which is at minimum distracting, if not painful. It would likely result in temporary incapaciation due to the reaction of the person from multiple shots landing. Once we realize the torso shots are ineffective, we could literally walk the hits right up to the neck and head. We can go the opposite direction to the groin, pelvic, thigh, etc. The hicap would still have lots of rounds for those areas and alllow for some misses due to the more difficult target.
But what it all comes down to is the scope and magnitude of the situations for which we wish to be prepared, or perhaps 'equipped' is a better word. As 10thmtn pointed out, normally, we'll have little control over the gunfight itself; we simply don't know what it will morph into, how effective we'll be, how accurate we'll be, or how effective the hits will be, but we can have complete control of our gear and how much ammo we have in our gun. Then if we add a second assailant which is quite realistic, we may, or may not, have to deal with it too.
So I think the bottom line is the threat level we want to have the potential to address. And, I cannot accept the fatalistic point of view that if I can't get it done in x shots, then... My mindset is if x shots doesn't do it, change targets and keep shooting.
I'm too young to be this old!
Getting old isn't good for you!
It's all personal preference. I worry a single revolver wont be enough for me in a self defense situation because there could be multiple BG's 3-4 BG's and 5-6 shots isn't ideal for me. I like the extra rounds the semi offers and with a well used and tested firearm I feel safe, and if my glock 19 jams for the first time ever I wont try and clear the malfunction I will drop it and pull my other glock 19. I like having two of the same gun at the same time lots of capacity and just more familiar in a stressfull situation.
To crush your enemies, to see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women