This is a discussion on Why a .45 within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Originally Posted by Metro 40 Momentum gets a bullet to a certain penetration depth. Since both the .45 and .40 demonstrate adequate penetration on human ...
Whilst in the Army a few years ago..., feeling old now.
I had to use a 9mm on a few occasions against enemy combatants. I was very unhappy with center-of-mass shots. Head shots always seemed to work fine, but in real-world scenarios, center-of-mass works best for me. Just a lot easier to hit.
While resupplying one time, I was talking to the armorer about my displeasure with the 9mm. He said he had some older 45's and plenty of ammo, if I wanted to give it a try.
A few weeks later I got the chance to try the 45. Impressive is not an understatement. One-stop-shot pretty much sums it up from my experience.
I was taught double-tap center of mass, then one head-shot. But "most" of the time, if I was using my pistol, it was cause I didn't have time to re-load my rifle. So I didn't "unload", as I was trying to save ammo.
So without getting to grotesque, I think the 45 is without a doubt, a much better man-stopper than a 9mm. Personally, for concealed carry, I will never own anything else.
Also, let me just apologize in advance if what I have said seems to harsh, as I was trying to write it as non-offending as possible.
There is ZERO explanation for the awesome effectiveness of the .357 magnum against human targets, unless it is attributed to the high energy levels created by that round. Otherwise, it's just a plain old 9mm sized bullet, and shouldn't really be any more effective than your standard velocity 9mm or .38 special. But it is more effective. There is no arguing that fact, documented police action shootings prove the effectiveness of the .357 magnum.
The Texas DPS went to .357 Sig a few years ago because their .45's weren't getting the job done. I've read that the .45 was lacking in penetration on automobile bodies, and the .45's just didn't have the "lightning bolt" effect of their old .357 magnum wheelguns. Maybe it was their .45 ammo, but they are VERY satisfied with the new caliber.
If energy doesn't matter, why is +P ammo the new standard in tactical .45s? The only difference between regular and +P is the increased velocity, and therefore, increased energy. Seems to me that tactical experts would not advocate a round with more noise, recoil and muzzle blast unless there was some kind of advantage.
The human body is largely made up of water. The heart is a fluid-filled sac. Shoot a water filled milk jug or a canteloupe with a hot hollowpoint in 9mm +P, .40, .357 or .45 +P, and tell me energy doesn't do anything to a target.
Slow is smooth.....smooth is fast.
I carry a 1911 .45 because it's grip fits my hand more comfortably than any other gun I have experience with, I shoot it better than other guns, it has the power I need to do the job and I just like them. They're not for everyone, obviously, but they work for me. I would add that it really doesn't matter what caliber or model anyone carries as long as it works for them.....
Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde; Beware the anger of a patient man.
For years I kept away from the .45 and I really didn't know why.
I have read a ton of good info and reports of the .45 acp, so I just had to jump on the bandwagon. I have been shooting about 40 years (since I was a boy) and I am a recent convert to the caliber (about 1 year). I'm sold....
" Refuse to be a victim, make sure there is a round chambered ! "
Just call me a pessimistic optimist !
U.S. Navy vet 1981-1992
I've been shooting the .45 in various pistols for nearly 40 years. I haven't found any reason to change.
"If we loose Freedom here, there's no place to escape to. This is the Last Place on Earth!" Ronald Reagan
"Handgun Wounding Factors and Effectiveness", temporary cavity does not contribute to the effectiveness of handgun bullets.
Originally Posted by FBIOriginally Posted by FBIHandgun bullets only affect the tissue they pass through directly. In order to get enough stretch in the temporary cavity to disrupt tissue that's not in direct contact with the bullet (or fragments thereof) you have to drive it at much higher velocities (over 2000fps) far faster than any service handgun caliber is capable of. As long as you have enough energy to penetrate to a sufficient depth, the amount of energy a handgun bullet has isn't really relevant.Originally Posted by FBI
I like the .45 because it's got the largest (while being easy to conceal) projectile diameter if it doesn't expand. Is easy find, has tons of different loadings, JHPs of all different shapes and weight, standard pressure, +P, LSWC, LRN, FMJ, PSWC, FMJTC, etc. etc.
I like the 1911 for it's grip dimensions and feel, ease of concealment and the mags aren't as bulky. Parts, when needed are plentiful, and I can customize it the way I want it. My one gripe is capacity, but double stacks just don't hide well on me, I'm shaped like a box and the double stack pistols and mags just print way too much.
I once tried a double stack Para . Still seemed too thick of grip.
"In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson
Nemo Me Impune Lacesset
I chose 9mm, there are several 9mm commercial loads out there that are literally equal to .45 energy. So you have essentially the power of a .45 (not quite the size), but 1.5 to 2 times the capacity. Guess what I choose?
Besides, if I want powerful, I'm just going to jump straight over the .45 and go for a 10mm, makes everything else seem mild in comparison. Or how about 9x25 :D
Perhaps the FBI would like to explain why the dinky .357 magnum is so effective. Since it's not the energy, maybe it's the magic fairy dust that Federal puts in every 125 grain hollowpoint.
Maybe these medical professionals would beg to differ. After all, they actually SEE gunshot wounds with modern ammunition.
Here is a pathology tutorial from Florida State University, discussing ballistics and gunshot wounds in general:
Note the mention of temporary cavitation in tissue as a mechanism of injury, at velocities above 1000 fps. Tissue that is inelastic in nature (spleen, liver, brain) is especially susceptible to injury, as are fluid-filled organs, which can burst from the pressure generated by even handgun rounds.
The speed of sound is 1128 fps. Any bullet going faster than that creates a sonic pressure wave. We have seen that this is devastating in rifle bullets with 2000 fps velocity and higher. I can't imagine that there is NO effect from a bullet that is going 1200 - 1300 fps. Or 1450 fps in a .357 magnum. It's common sense.
Energy is not the only thing that matters in a handgun bullet, but it absolutely DOES matter.
Slow is smooth.....smooth is fast.
The JSOnline article said 44 mag was in a class w/itself. And the ballistics chart from that 2nd link was interesting too...makes me wanna get a 44 mag now..(i've been looking to upgrade from 380 for awhile..)
Originally Posted by Milwaukee SentinelOriginally Posted by Florida State UniversityThey're close enough that I'd guess that the Milwaukee Sentinel story used the FBI report as a background source. All three of them are basically saying that there are only a few organs where the temporary cavity from a handgun bullet is going to have any effect: the brain, spleen and liver. These make up a very small proportion of the body. Damage to the liver or spleen probably isn't going to incapacitate the target very quickly. Any damage to the brain (temporary cavity or no) is going to have a significant effect. So I don't see where the temporary cavity is going to help incapacitate a target. If you want to incapacitate someone quickly, the only way to do it is to hit the central nervous system or a major artery directly. The temporary cavity doesn't help.Originally Posted by FBI
It only says that the cavitation (the size of the cavity) is significant over 1000fps. It doesn't say that the temporary cavity is a significant contribution to wounds from handgun bullets (that particular article deals with rifle and shotgun wounds as well).Originally Posted by Florida State University
Because they won't let me in Pizza Hut with my 870.Why a .45
"The pistol, learn it well, carry it always ..." ~ Jeff Cooper
"Diligentia Vis Celeritas"
"There is very little new, and the forgotten is constantly being rediscovered."
~ Tiger McKee