380 Gone, Caliber Changes for 2011?

380 Gone, Caliber Changes for 2011?

This is a discussion on 380 Gone, Caliber Changes for 2011? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; First, I would like to say that I got rid of my 380 several months ago, that being said it was a personal decision and ...

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Thread: 380 Gone, Caliber Changes for 2011?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array MichSteve's Avatar
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    380 Gone, Caliber Changes for 2011?

    First, I would like to say that I got rid of my 380 several months ago, that being said it was a personal decision and it was not enough cartridge for me. Listen to the podcast of Bob Mayne and Jon Hodoway episode 99 on the Handgun World Show.

    Jon Hodoway makes some really good points about concealed carry and calibers, that 22lr thru 380 acp have killed people but very few stop the fight or attack and the wounded died much later. The smaller calibers are in question, and please listen to the podcast before you make a comment about that 380 in your pocket.

    Now to caliber changes for 2011, I have a two 9mm's and a 38 special +P, I am looking at a 45 acp for another carry gun, I like the Kahr PM9 so I will lean toward the P45 or PM45 from Kahr. I know bullet technology has made the 9mm and the 38 special very effective defense calibers. I live in the murder capital of the US or at least in the top three, I want to stop an attack, not concerned about killing the attacker just stopping the attack on my loved ones or myself.

    Another caliber I would like to add in 2011 is 357 magnum, a Ruger SP-101 or the S&W Model 60 either in 3" barrel.

    Please listen to the podcast and give me your opinion on the 380.


  2. #2
    Senior Member Array Adkjoe's Avatar
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    I don't own any 380's I personally have never been a fan of the pocket guns. I tried a little keltec and hated it (quality gun just didn't do it for me) I bought my dad a few boxes of 380 for x-mas to put through his LCP and looking at the rounds this morning after he opened them they look like little mouse turds. With a good HP round I'm sure they will get the job done but I much prefer a larger gun, with the right hoster you can conceal a large gun no problem I do it every day (except today because I'm visiting the family in the peoples republic of New York)
    Vermont does not issue Permit/Licenses to Carry a Concealed firearm. Vermont allows anyone
    who can legally own a firearm to carry it concealed without a permit of any kind.

  3. #3
    Member Array mattwestm's Avatar
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    I own one pocket pistol, Kel-tec P-32 in 32ACP. I don't doubt that it would kill someone, but my 9s of 45s will do a better job. I rarely carry the kel-tec, just for taking out the trash or checking the mail; when I don't want to strap on any gear. I don't have much of an opinion on 380ACP. I do know that it has more recoil than a 32ACP; something I didn't like in a mouse gun. When you are shooting something smaller than your hand, you want control. I didn't feel like I was in control with a P3AT. Anything below 9x19, I carry FMJ. I care more about getting adequate penetration than worrying about expansion.

    I hope my first gun purchase of the new year is a Ruger Service/Speed/Security Six with a 3 - 4" barrel. They are classics! Built really well too. If you are looking for a collectible, durable revolver for cheaper than a Smith, I'd suggest a Ruger in .357Mag. They can handle pretty much any power 357 load, unlike the older Smiths (i.e. Mod.19) that might have cracked forcing cones. I've never been much of a revolver guy, but I'll make an exception for a 357 magnum!

    Good luck and Merry Christmas!

  4. #4
    VIP Member Array Rollo's Avatar
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    It REALLY depends on how you look at it. And No, I promise I'm not trying to skirt the subject. This is what I mean. If your in a position where you CAN carry something larger then a .380 then the .380 is a less effective cartridge. HOWEVER, if your in a position where circumstances dictate that your choice is something like a LCP in the pocket or IWB and your other option is no gun because of concealment issues or whatever then the .380 starts to look a lot better. I wouldn't carry the .380 as a primary EDC unless I had to and I have found myself in positions where it was the .380 in the pocket or no gun at all. I think that the .38 +P is a better pocket gun round however it's also larger and harder to carry in the pocket. Don't look at a cartridge and try to make it fit a given role or situation, look at the situation and pick that largest caliber that fit's into that role.

    There are also external factors that you do have control over that effects your choice. Style of dress is a big one. Personally, I COULD carry a full size .45 or .40 every day if I wanted but it would require me to wear much larger clothes and I don't spend 6 days a week in a gym so I can wear over sized clothes. On the flip side many other people don't care about style and would call me stupid for letting how I want to dress dictate what kind of gun I carry. It's all in the perspective.

    Then there is the philosophy that I have recently adopted that revolves around carrying based on your AO (Area of operation). My SP101 is going to be quite effective in the vast majority of area's/places that I go on a daily basis. But let's say that I am going to a movie with my girl and it's going to get out at midnight. I know that groups of younger people frequent late night movies and the potential for trouble is a bit higher. Because of that I might stick a S&W 642 in my pocket in addition to my regular SP101. Or perhaps forgo the SP101 all together, put on a larger shirt and carry a Glock 23.

    Another example. I get off work, get home and change into sweat pants and a t-shirt. I look in the fridge and notice I'm out of milk so I need to run down to the corner store. It's not dark, the stores parking lot is not large and I'm in a good neighborhood. I feel perfectly safe with a Ruger LCP in the pocket. However let's say that it's 11:00 at night and I walk into my bathroom and see that I am out of Toilet paper. Ug.... The corner store is closed so I have to go to the Meijer a few miles away. It's dark, the parking lot is huge and it's not in as good of a neighborhood. I'm going to loose the sweats for a pair of jeans so I can strap on my SP101 in that situation.

    What it comes down to is that every caliber is effective it's just might not be effective at what we want it to be effective at. Choose accordingly.

    To address you specific comments - It's hard to beat a .45 Something like a PM45 or Glock 36 is going to offer you a lot of fire power and pretty quick reloads. As far as a SP-101 or any other type of wheel gun my first thought's are that you aren't going to be happy with it. I say that because it seems like you feel you need more fire power and while It doesn't get much better then .357 they are are slower and require more fine motor skills to reload. Keep in mind my primary EDC is a SP-101 but I feel that on a daily basis I don't need a lot of fire power and the SP-101 is a good compromise between capacity and ballistics. Since it seems like your looking for more raw fire power I would stay away from wheel guns.
    Last edited by Rollo; December 26th, 2010 at 10:05 AM.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rollo View Post
    It REALLY depends on how you look at it. And No, I promise I'm not trying to skirt the subject. This is what I mean. If your in a position where you CAN carry something larger then a .380 then the .380 is a less effective cartridge. HOWEVER, if your in a position where circumstances dictate that your choice is something like a LCP in the pocket or IWB and your other option is no gun because of concealment issues or whatever then the .380 starts to look a lot better. I wouldn't carry the .380 as a primary EDC unless I had to and I have found myself in positions where it was the .380 in the pocket or no gun at all. I think that the .38 +P is a better pocket gun round however it's also larger and harder to carry in the pocket. Don't look at a cartridge and try to make it fit a given role or situation, look at the situation and pick that largest caliber that fit's into that role.

    There are also external factors that you do have control over that effects your choice. Style of dress is a big one. Personally, I COULD carry a full size .45 or .40 every day if I wanted but it would require me to wear much larger clothes and I don't spend 6 days a week in a gym so I can wear over sized clothes. On the flip side many other people don't care about style and would call me stupid for letting how I want to dress dictate what kind of gun I carry. It's all in the perspective.

    Then there is the philosophy that I have recently adopted that revolves around carrying based on your AO (Area of operation). My SP101 is going to be quite effective in the vast majority of area's/places that I go on a daily basis. But let's say that I am going to a movie with my girl and it's going to get out at midnight. I know that groups of younger people frequent late night movies and the potential for trouble is a bit higher. Because of that I might stick a S&W 642 in my pocket in addition to my regular SP101. Or perhaps forgo the SP101 all together, put on a larger shirt and carry a Glock 23.

    Another example. I get off work, get home and change into sweat pants and a t-shirt. I look in the fridge and notice I'm out of milk so I need to run down to the corner store. It's not dark, the stores parking lot is not large and I'm in a good neighborhood. I feel perfectly safe with a Ruger LCP in the pocket. However let's say that it's 11:00 at night and I walk into my bathroom and see that I am out of Toilet paper. Ug.... The corner store is closed so I have to go to the Meijer a few miles away. It's dark, the parking lot is huge and it's not in as good of a neighborhood. I'm going to loose the sweats for a pair of jeans so I can strap on my SP101 in that situation.

    What it comes down to is that every caliber is effective it's just might not be effective at what we want it to be effective at. Choose accordingly.

    To address you specific comments - It's hard to beat a .45 Something like a PM9 or Glock 36 is going to offer you a lot of fire power and pretty quick reloads. As far as a SP-101 or any other type of wheel gun my first thought's are that you aren't going to be happy with it. I say that because it seems like you feel you need more fire power and while It doesn't get much better then .357 they are are slower and require more fine motor skills to reload. Keep in mind my primary EDC is a SP-101 but I feel that on a daily basis I don't need a lot of fire power and the SP-101 is a good compromise between capacity and ballistics. Since it seems like your looking for more raw fire power I would stay away from wheel guns.
    BINGO! You hit the nail on the head Rollo.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Array MichSteve's Avatar
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    Rollo, great comments, please take the time to listen to Jon Holoway on the podcast it is an eye opener, I agree a 380 is better than nothing, however, if you can carry any gun then you can carry enough gun if you want to.

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    VIP Member Array Rollo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichSteve View Post
    Rollo, great comments, please take the time to listen to Jon Holoway on the podcast it is an eye opener, I agree a 380 is better than nothing, however, if you can carry any gun then you can carry enough gun if you want to.
    I did indeed listen to the pod cast. He makes some great points and I agree with the majority of them. I do feel however that everything I said is still applicable.
    -It is a seriously scary thought that there are subsets of American society that think being intellectual is a BAD thing...

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    Senior Member Array MichSteve's Avatar
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    Rollo, great I am glad you listened, Take a look at my 642 in the picture of my avatar and you will see the clip draw on the side this has made the 642 my favorite carry so far, the Ruger SP 101 can have a similar clip check it out. The clip allow me to just slip appendix style behind my belt and the gun rides well all day.

  9. #9
    Distinguished Member Array alachner's Avatar
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    MichSteve, thanks a lot for sharing that wonderful podcast...it was very interesting and informative.

    When I was shopping around a few months ago for a pocket pistol, I was dead on set on buying the Ruger LCP .380 since it was highly recommended by many owners of this pistol online, on YouTube, magazines and I was also mainly attracted to it due to its small size. My second option was the S&W 442 in .38+P. I already owned at that moment an H&K USP Compact .40 S&W and a Walther P99 9mm but I just wanted a small pistol to conceal easily in any dress attire whenever I could not carry my main carry pistol (work, the beach, quick errands, lounge pants, etc.). I started by calling all 6 of my local gun shops and asking them which gun they would choose for pocket carry between the Ruger LCP or the S&W 442. Of all the 6 gun shops I called, 5 of them suggested the S&W 442 and only 1 gun shop chose the Ruger LCP. Nonetheless, the gun shop that chose the Ruger LCP was the only that did not have a J Frame for sale so perhaps his decision was biased thinking about a possible sale or otherwise he would've probably chosen the S&W 442 as well. This shocked me! I was dead on set on a Ruger LCP because of all the recommendations I read online, the reviews in magazine and how awesome the gun was in "theory". But then in reality all the experienced gun salesmen and shooters recommended to go with a wheel gun. So I decided to try out a J Frame and a Ruger LCP at the range and as soon as I saw the ammo I knew what they were talking about. The .380 rounds looked like little mouse pellets and the .38+P looked like it could do some serious damage. The Ruger LCP was equal or more snappy than the J Frame and the only upside was that I could hold one more round and reloading was easier. Nonetheless, I felt more confident with the J frame. I chose to buy the S&W 442 in .38+P and I have been extremely pleased with my decision ever since. I have never had any reliability issues with my snubbie, it is easy to conceal and I feel very confident to carry it as my main carry whenever my bigger caliber guns cannot be carried.

    I think that Ruger, Kel-Tec, Beretta and other manufacturers are producing small .380 and .32 pistols mainly as a marketing gimmick to attract new buyers that are a little skeptical about purchasing bigger guns of larger calibers. Whenever I show pictures of handguns to inexperienced family members and friends they are immediately attracted to guns like the Ruger LCP, Kel-Tec P-3AT, Beretta Tomcat and Walther PPK/S instead of a Glock, M&P, H&K, Sig Sauer and others. This is understandable, since they are new, attractive and look cool to carry concealed in a purse or a pocket. Nonetheless, they are amateurs with no knowledge of caliber, firearms handling or anything to do with self-defense.

    I do understand a situation where if someone can ONLY carry a small .380 or no pistol, then yes, carry a .380. But if you can carry something bigger...then do it! In my case, I would never carry a gun less than a .38+P revolver.
    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. That's ridiculous... If I have a gun, what in the hell do I have to be paranoid for?" [Clint Smith - Thunder Ranch]

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    I am in the same camp as you regarding the .380 on down.

    Might I suggest if you have the money to spend on .45 ammo, look into .357 Sig.


    Heres a good place to start for comparing It to 9mm.

    http://www.handguninfo.com/Archive/w...57.compare.htm

    If that doesn't float your boat, and you are set on .45 cal, I, personally would go with something like the S&W M&P,

    XDM, or one of the Glocks, in whatever size you find comfortable.

    For that matter I would also choose one of those manufacturers for .357 sig, in addition to SIg themselves.

    You are getting a higher round count than a traditional 1911.

    I like 1911's but for the same size pistol, or smaller/ligher, you are increasing your round count, aond in some cases ,(the XD platform)
    Doubling it.





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    Distinguished Member Array Fitch's Avatar
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    I carry a Glock 19 when I can conceal it, a Glock 26 when that's the biggest thing I can hide, and a Ruger LCP as a last resort when that's the only thing I can conceal. I haven't carried my PPK/S (.380) since I bought the G26. I'm finding the G26 to be remarkably concealable. Next on my list is a Glock 30 - I'll trade the PPK/S in on the G30 because it doesn't have a place in the line up. Then the order of preference will be 30, 19, 26, LCP. I'd rather have the LCP than nothing at all.

    I don't care what people say about the ballistics of the .380 - the fact is that a .380 in your hand is better than the bigger gun at home you couldn't conceal. I've never gone unarmed when I wanted to be armed since I bought the LCP. That's what it's good for.

    That said, when the SIG P290 comes out I'll take a good look at that. It may fit in between the G26 and the LCP in terms of concealability, and if it does, I'll buy one, but I won't sell the LCP when I do. There is always a place in the line up for a gun that can be concealed 99.9% of the time, even if it is only a .380.

    Fitch

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    I normally carry a Charter Arms 44 special. I like the ballistics, which are similar to 45 acp, and I like revolvers. But sometimes the bulldog was just too big to carry concealed. So when I was watching the news a while back, around Christmas time, the feature was a little girl and several other people were shot by Santa. He actually shot the little girl in the face. Apparently the shooter was the estranged husband of one of the party goers and shooter dressed up as Santa and went to the party and did his dirty deeds. I decided then I would never be unarmed again. So I bought the Keltec 380. I shot the little pistol alot and figured it was better than nothing. But the P3AT is so small, too small for my hands. I now have the Ruger LCR with 38+P when the bulldog is at home. I am still determined I will never be unarmed again.
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    VIP Member Array Brass63's Avatar
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    There were a couple of fascinating points made during the pod cast.
    The first was...if you're an average/big guy...and a BG still decides to target you...it likely means that they believe they have disparity of force on their side.
    It might be numbers. It might muscle/fighting skills. It might be weapons...or their tactics (ambush). So the bigger you are, the more likely the 'bigger' your attacker will be.
    Second, if you're going to carry a 'mouse gun' you'd better be training with it. (And not just shooting a few rounds at the range.)
    Apparently, these mouse guns are hard to find at training courses. (cost, embarassment, discomfort??)
    A lot to think about. Thanks for the post.
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    I have listened to the above, and as Rollo said, he makes some good points. However, I am attaching a file showing data on shootings using different ammo and the 2 calibers involved
    380 ACP Stopping Power, all bullet weights
    Brand Bullet Shootings One Shot Stops Percent Diameter Penetration Notes
    Corbon 90 gr JHP 42 30 71% 0.59" 8.8"
    Federal 90 gr HS 96 68 71% 0.56" 9.4"
    Triton gr JHP 10 7 70% 0.58" 9.1"
    Federal 90 gr JHP 178 23 69% 0.55" 8.7"
    Winchester 85 gr ST 103 70 68% 0.51" 8.2"
    CCI gr JHP 78 52 67% 0.48" 9.2"
    Remington 88 gr JHP 75 52 67% 0.49" 9.7"
    Federal 90 gr FMJ 231 127 55% 0" 10.9"
    38 Special Stopping Power, all bullet weights
    Brand Bullet Shootings One Shot Stops Percent Diameter Penetration Notes
    Federal 129 gr HS 77 50 65% 0.56" 10.2" 2" revolver
    Federal 125 gr Nyclad 46 29 63% 0.56" 10.4" 2" revolver
    Federal 158 gr LRN 421 208 49% 0.357" 17.1" 2" revolver

    The facts here are comparing a 2" barrel 38 with 380 using similar barrel lengths , and real world guns. 380s are meant to be used in small guns. This is street level data. Therefore, any test data comparing the two calibers using 6 or 8" lab grade test barrels.
    There are some of us, because of our ability to conceal a hand cannon carry a J-frame or a 380. Also as stated above.
    I have a full size 9 I keep in a safe in the truck, because I am not allowed to carry inside where I work. I open the safe when I leave the house, and put the 9 where I can get at it, then, after parking the truck, it gets put back into the safe and locked. Yes, its more powerful. Yes, its a lot bigger and bulkier. No, I can't possible conceal it witout dressing like a homeless person.
    Now, all that said. being of a smaller man, the 380 and J frame fit my hand a lot better. I can pick up either, and its centered in my hand, directly in line with the bones in my forarm. So, if I point my arm toward a target, the gun is also pointed there. I can pull either out of my pocket, and point toward a standard man-with-a-gun target at 20' and put that round withing 3" of where I want with out using sights. A 380 or 38 in the COM or head is better than a 9 which misses COM or head by 6". Thats the way I look at it.
    To answer the original question, try a 640 PD smith in 357. Even with a 2"+ barrel, it would be a fight stopper. One with an internal hammer is easy to draw, especially in a pocket or IWB holster.
    Note: even though I have a 380, I usually carry the 642 smith. I, personally, like a revolver. Call me technology challanged, but my 642 with +P SWCHPs look hi-tech enough for me.

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    Senior Member Array MichSteve's Avatar
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    Hi Mastercapt, is your information on the stopping power from a source that I could link to? Thanks.

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