small carry conceal handguns. 9mm or .380 , Why you carry one over the other ? - Page 4

small carry conceal handguns. 9mm or .380 , Why you carry one over the other ?

This is a discussion on small carry conceal handguns. 9mm or .380 , Why you carry one over the other ? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I also love my full SS Series-80 Colt Mustang, and it's gone wherever I've gone for the past 25 years or more regardless of what ...

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Thread: small carry conceal handguns. 9mm or .380 , Why you carry one over the other ?

  1. #46
    Member Array Eaglebeak's Avatar
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    I also love my full SS Series-80 Colt Mustang, and it's gone wherever I've gone for the past 25 years or more regardless of what else (if anything) I'm carrying. After doing a little TLC of ramp polishing and installing a SS slide spring guide, and machined aluminum trigger after I first bought it, I've gone through a few thousand rounds of every conceivable type of bullet style over the years without a single hitch, glitch, jam or failure of any type - which I can't say for anything else I own or have ever owned. Additionally, as I've mentioned before, I'd sell every other gun I own before I'd ever part with my Mustang because I can instantly point-shoot and rapid fire more accurately with it than anything else (regardless of caliber or type) I've ever intently practiced with.

    I was taught the art of point-shooting many years ago and routinely practice (both point-shooting and successive rapid/aimed shots) using little 6" red paper party plates at 25 feet because I'll go for a head-shot over a heart-shot if at all possible since there's been way too many BGs running around with body armor for a number of years. If I miss the plate even once in a box of 50-rounds, then I shoot another 50 to practice up a little more - so I will not entertain any bunko from anyone who claims a .380 isn't "accurate enough" for close range self defense (unless you've got a bum gun or need more practice).

    I agree that specialized 9mm+p ammo is considerably better; but comparing ballastics of most all other like-brand & type ammo won't show enough appreciable difference between a .380 and 9mm at close range to even bother arguing about. Would I trust my life to a .380, would I trust a .380 to save someone else's life, is a .380 effective at stopping a threat - you damn betcha (with a well placed shot) because my Mustang has efficiently done all three. As mentioned in some earlier posts, I've had the unpleasant experience of having to drop the hammer at different times on two perps during my previous LE years; and one of those instances was to save my partner's life during a major domestic donneybrook with a head-shot using my BUG (Mustang) from about 12 feet away. Trust me, a "9mm short" HJHP does a head like a dropped cantaloupe - and whatever little more (if any) could have been done with the slight increase of a "9mm long" would have been insignificant. It only takes 1" penetration for an instantly fatal head-shot, 3" penetration for an instantly fatal heart shot, and zero penetration for a knock-down crotch-shot.

    Out of common sense, I also prefer big-bore/heavy bullet because its extra whomp and bigger hole helps offset a poorly placed shot for either a quick knockdown or spinaround whether it's a fatal shot or not; but I'll let all the brave, ignorant and/or foolish scoff all they want at a close-range .380 when they're looking down the bore of one in the hands of someone who knows how to use it.
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  2. #47
    VIP Member Array artz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eaglebeak View Post
    I also love my full SS Series-80 Colt Mustang, and it's gone wherever I've gone for the past 25 years or more regardless of what else (if anything) I'm carrying. After doing a little TLC of ramp polishing and installing a SS slide spring guide, and machined aluminum trigger after I first bought it, I've gone through a few thousand rounds of every conceivable type of bullet style over the years without a single hitch, glitch, jam or failure of any type - which I can't say for anything else I own or have ever owned. Additionally, as I've mentioned before, I'd sell every other gun I own before I'd ever part with my Mustang because I can instantly point-shoot and rapid fire more accurately with it than anything else (regardless of caliber or type) I've ever intently practiced with.

    I was taught the art of point-shooting many years ago and routinely practice (both point-shooting and successive rapid/aimed shots) using little 6" red paper party plates at 25 feet because I'll go for a head-shot over a heart-shot if at all possible since there's been way too many BGs running around with body armor for a number of years. If I miss the plate even once in a box of 50-rounds, then I shoot another 50 to practice up a little more - so I will not entertain any bunko from anyone who claims a .380 isn't "accurate enough" for close range self defense (unless you've got a bum gun or need more practice).

    I agree that specialized 9mm+p ammo is considerably better; but comparing ballastics of most all other like-brand & type ammo won't show enough appreciable difference between a .380 and 9mm at close range to even bother arguing about. Would I trust my life to a .380, would I trust a .380 to save someone else's life, is a .380 effective at stopping a threat - you damn betcha (with a well placed shot) because my Mustang has efficiently done all three. As mentioned in some earlier posts, I've had the unpleasant experience of having to drop the hammer at different times on two perps during my previous LE years; and one of those instances was to save my partner's life during a major domestic donneybrook with a head-shot using my BUG (Mustang) from about 12 feet away. Trust me, a "9mm short" HJHP does a head like a dropped cantaloupe - and whatever little more (if any) could have been done with the slight increase of a "9mm long" would have been insignificant. It only takes 1" penetration for an instantly fatal head-shot, 3" penetration for an instantly fatal heart shot, and zero penetration for a knock-down crotch-shot.

    Out of common sense, I also prefer big-bore/heavy bullet because its extra whomp and bigger hole helps offset a poorly placed shot for either a quick knockdown or spinaround whether it's a fatal shot or not; but I'll let all the brave, ignorant and/or foolish scoff all they want at a close-range .380 when they're looking down the bore of one in the hands of someone who knows how to use it.
    Bravo !!!! Well said !!!! Thank you Eaglebeak !
    EsCrasston likes this.
    " Refuse to be a victim, make sure there is a round chambered ! "

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  3. #48
    Member Array TommyGun4169's Avatar
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    9mm over 380. After being raised on 357 and 44 Magnum the 9mm feels like a 22lr to me.

    Outlaw Guns and Only Outlaws Will Have Guns !!

  4. #49
    VIP Member Array zonker1986's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by artz View Post
    Bravo !!!! Well said !!!! Thank you Eaglebeak !
    I agree, but he left out:

    1. better to have a .380 with you than have a .45 home in the safe
    2. better than nothing
    3. I wouldn't want to get shot with one
    4. better than a sharp stick
    5. conceals anywhere
    6. has little recoil (and little power)
    7. hmmmmm.....sorry I ran out of mouse gun cliches and rationalizations.
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  5. #50
    VIP Member Array artz's Avatar
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    thats ok zonker, some of us mousegunners DO know what we are doing.
    " Refuse to be a victim, make sure there is a round chambered ! "

    Just call me a pessimistic optimist !

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  6. #51
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    I have an XD40 subcompact, and will soon be carrying a P238.
    The XD40 subcompact goes with me (in a SuperTuck IWB) almost everywhere, except where prohibited by law.
    I originally bought an LC9 for my wife (she likes smaller guns, since she has small hands), but the recoil on that sucker is pretty sharp, and it bothered her. We shot the P238 the other day at our local range, and she loved it. While not ideal, a .355 bullet penetrating 7" - 8" is better than no bullet at all. If she'll carry it, that's what matters!
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  7. #52
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    They are called mouse guns for a reason. The way I see it, it's because they are only powerful enough to kill a mouse. :-)
    Stop whining and go do something that makes a difference!
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  8. #53
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    Better the one you have with you than the one left in the safe, whether it was too big, or if there's concern about the ability to handle it. I'd prefer at least a 9mm, but my circumstances at the moment typically dictate an LCP in an inside pocket. I've never NOT wished that I had something bigger, but better than than wishing I had something other than a knife or flashlight.

    One thing I found with smaller 9mm's like the LC9 was that getting some good training with something bigger leads to confidence built up around handling (especially grip) and accuracy, then a much smaller number of shots with the smaller pistol can validate that the principles are the same and that they hold over. No, the small ones never really get to be 'fun' range guns, but valid tools...so that's something to possibly consider as well.

  9. #54
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    To try and address the original question - why choose a small .380 over a 9mm, or the other way around.

    My needs are more discrete. Simply put, both my professional and personal life would be a lot more complicated if folks who didn't need to know found out I was carrying. So, carry around the waist is a no-go...too much risk of a bump frisk, printing, hugs, etc.

    Thus, dual pocket carry is what works for me. With some pants, especially suits, the pockets are too shallow to fully conceal even a PM9 - the grip peeks out at the top of the pocket, to where someone behind you could see it. This is when I carry two LCPs, instead of a PM9 and a LCP. While the difference in size between the LCP and PM9 does not seem like much, the LCP will disappear inside ANY (men's) pockets - while the PM9 will fit in MOST (but not all) pockets. Folks forget to add the additional girth of the pocket holster, when comparing pocket guns. Once you put the gun in the holster, the size difference gets magnified.

    As far as the caliber war goes - head over to the sticky on the Ballistics sub-forum, and read:

    http://www.defensivecarry.com/forum/...rspective.html

    Basically, once you get to .380/.38 Spl and above, there isn't a whole lot of difference between calibers. In particular, the "failure to stop" rates are very similar across the common calibers.

    If you are smart, you will realize that all handguns suck at stopping people, and that the best way to mitigate that is to keep shooting until the threat is over.

    My last comment is this - I ran a "hard to shoot" LCP through a low light pistol class earlier this year. With the CT laser, and a basic understanding of how to pull (not jerk) a trigger, I out-shot all the other students there, who were all using service-sized sidearms. Mozambique drills and zippers were boringly easy to do. With 16-17 inches penetration with FMJ ammo, you can get some darn good results with these little .380s - if you do your part.

    Whatever you shoot...2 to the chest, 1 to the head. Repeat as needed.

    What drives me crazy are reports of "defender fired X shots into the suspect's chest, but the suspect continued to attack..." For heaven's sake - it's a handgun, not a howitzer. If 2 or 3 shots to the chest do not stop the attacker - SHOOT THE HEAD. Kinda makes all the ballyhooing about calibers moot.

    Carry on.
    Last edited by 10thmtn; December 1st, 2011 at 09:33 AM.
    VBVAGUY, artz and gottabkiddin like this.
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  10. #55
    Member Array CDRGlock's Avatar
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    The minimum I carry is a 38 or 9mm.

    Availability and cost of 380 is what deters me more than anything. I couldn't find the ammo around for a reasonable price.

    For most cases, I carry a 27 or my 30 Glock. With the right holster, anything can be concealed easily.


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  11. #56
    VIP Member Array AZJD1968's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zonker1986 View Post
    I agree, but he left out:

    1. better to have a .380 with you than have a .45 home in the safe
    2. better than nothing
    3. I wouldn't want to get shot with one
    4. better than a sharp stick
    5. conceals anywhere
    6. has little recoil (and little power)
    7. hmmmmm.....sorry I ran out of mouse gun cliches and rationalizations.
    One rationalization that you forgot
    "Oh, well, I will just shoot the bad guy in the head".
    artz and zonker1986 like this.
    Stop whining and go do something that makes a difference!
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  12. #57
    Member Array EsCrasston's Avatar
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    One thing I don't understand is how we went from comparing 9mm to .380ACP to 9mm +P and not speaking about the .380 +P? I completely agree with Eaglebreak's above post.
    I am 100% confident with my P238 with the .380 +P ammo I have loaded in it. I train with it. Drawing and firing from every condition I carry it, from every holster I own for it, and firing countless shots is what makes me confident. These arguments are everywhere, and they all come down to opinion if you think about it. Many still have the theory that bigger is best. While a .45ACP absolutely has more stopping power, it won't do anything if you can't hit your target. Carrying anything bigger than a "mouse gun" may not be practical or even impossible for some people and yet some folks still seem to say that they are better off throwing rocks at the target. I don't care what caliber you carry, it should not be the focal point of the argument or the decision to buy a particular gun. The gun you buy and choose to carry should be one YOU are comfortable with (both carrying and firing), not what everyone on these forums tells you. Focus more on training yourself with whatever weapon you choose to carry. Train, train, train. I guarantee you that a well-placed .380ACP shot will beat a miss with a .45ACP every single time. ;)

    P.s. Do some searching around the web. You will find that many, many fatal shootings in the United States come from a .380ACP weapon. If they are good enough to kill good guys, they are most definitely good enough to kill bad ones!

  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by EsCrasston View Post
    One thing I don't understand is how we went from comparing 9mm to .380ACP to 9mm +P and not speaking about the .380 +P?... I am 100% confident with my P238 with the .380 +P ammo I have loaded in it...
    What's that supposed to mean, ".380 +P"?

    Neither SAAMI nor C.I.P defines a specification for a ".380 +P" round, so the bottom line is that any ammo marked ".380 +P" is just .380 loaded to beyond the established safe pressure for the round. I won't use it in any of my .380's. NO reputable firearms manufacturer will approve the use of ".380 +P" ammunition in their guns (AFAIK), since there's no such thing.

    Regards,
    Jim

  14. #59
    Member Array EsCrasston's Avatar
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    Any +P ammunition is just that round loaded beyond the original established safe pressure. Just because SAAMI has not tested it, does not mean that it doesn't exist. SAAMI currently has no specification for a "+P+ round, yet some manufacturers are producing them. Do they not exist as well? Does the .45 Colt +P exist? Does SAAMI test every reputable ammunition maker? I think not. There are many other companies that produce ammo that is carried and trusted by a lot of people.The SAAMI standard for +P ammunition is 10% over the original safe pressure determination. If these manufacturers are making the ammo to that specification, does it exist then? The .380+P ammunition is relatively new to the playing field because of the mouse gun popularity. Maybe one day SAAMI will update their publication (I think the most recent version is 1993) and include some of this new ammunition that has been developed.

    No reputable firearm manufacture will approve the use of handloaded ammunition either. Yet many use that on a regular basis. Does handloaded ammunition exist?

    I'm not trying to be a smartass. I understand where you are coming from, I just disagree with it, or at least the way you said it. There may not be a specific .380 +P specification, but in my opinion if a manufacturer complies with the 10% over the original safe pressure guideline, it is still within SAAMI's guidelines. If certain foods are not tested by the FDA, does that mean they don't exist? Millions of people use products not tested by the FDA, yet they are completely comfortable because of the independent lab testing that is done on them. It is no different for this ammunition. There are countless tests out there of this ammo both by manufacturers and private individuals. It definitely exists.
    artz likes this.
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  15. #60
    VIP Member Array zonker1986's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by artz View Post
    thats ok zonker, some of us mousegunners DO know what we are doing.
    so do I.
    artz likes this.
    "Said I never had any use for one.....never said I didn't know how to use it. " Matthew Quiqley

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