9mm vs. a .45 as a carry gun

This is a discussion on 9mm vs. a .45 as a carry gun within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; As an after thought, I have been trying to find the reason that the military switched from the .45 to 9mm in the 1980's. I'm ...

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Thread: 9mm vs. a .45 as a carry gun

  1. #46
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    As an after thought, I have been trying to find the reason that the military switched from the .45 to 9mm in the 1980's.
    I'm pretty sure it was a NATO thing. Same ammo as the Euros.
    It is surely true that you can lead a horse to water but you can't make them drink. Nor can you make them grateful for your efforts.

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  3. #47
    VIP Member Array KenpoTex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cwblanco View Post
    I disagree with you "That's all" comment. For example, the 1911 .45 ACP was originally adopted by the military because of insufficient stopping power attributable to smaller rounds.

    In addition to making a bigger hole, the .45 produces more foot pounds on impact. A way to test this is to put on a bullet proof vest designed to prevent penetration. Decide which round packs a bigger wallop, or stated otherwise, which is more likely to knock you on your butt without penetration.
    Or...someone could stand there and let me shoot them in the heart or the brain with both calibers...I highly doubt they'd be able to tell much difference (of course, in either case, they'd be dead so it doesn't really matter).

    If you want power, use a battle-rifle. Pistols poke holes, that's it. If you poke the holes in the right places (heart, brain, or spine) they will go down regardless of whether you used a 9, .40, or .45. If you don't poke the holes in the right places, they won't go down...regardless of what you use.
    "Being a predator isn't always comfortable but the only other option is to be prey. That is not an acceptable option." ~Phil Messina

    If you carry in Condition 3, you have two empty chambers. One in the weapon...the other between your ears.

    Matt K.

  4. #48
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    cwblanco,

    In addition to making a bigger hole, the .45 produces more foot pounds on impact. A way to test this is to put on a bullet proof vest designed to prevent penetration. Decide which round packs a bigger wallop, or stated otherwise, which is more likely to knock you on your butt without penetration.

    Regarding the first underlined:

    More foot pounds on impact? Not true. As an example the 115 grain corbon 9mm +p produces an average of 381.2 fpe. The 230 grain 45acp standard velocity produces and average of 329 fpe. You can play with the numbers like I did here using various loads and many 45 loading are lower in energy than some of the 9's. The point is that there is no absolute between the two where energy is concerned as you alluded to.

    On the subject of energy on threat, there isn't enough energy in any pistol bullet to state the second underlined above.

    No pistol bullet, nor rifle bullet for that matter will "knock you on your butt without penetration". If you believe your choice of caliber, any caliber pistol or rifle has the energy to knock someone down you haven't really done the research which is readily available on the subject which disproves your statement.

    To disprove that myth, others have donned vests and been shot with everything from the lowly 22 through the 44 Mag in pistol calibers at near contact distance to the chest, and up to and including the 308 and 30:06 Nato rifle rounds, and get this, while standing on one leg and didn't even lose there balance.

    There's been video of the above as far back as the mid 80's, though I'm unsure if there's anything available out there now. Maybe some research into that area would also be productive.

    For example, the 1911 .45 ACP was originally adopted by the military because of insufficient stopping power attributable to smaller rounds.

    That statement also incorrect sir and how legends are formed which perpetuates the misinformation on this subject. You said the insufficient stopping power was attributable to "smaller" rounds.

    The 357 magnum is "smaller" than the 45 and had/has THE BEST record on the street relative putting people down for the count for decades, including the venerable 45acp. It's not just about how big the round is in diameter which dictates it's performance on humans. There's just too many variables as others have mentioned in their posts to attribute any results from any bullet from any gun as an absolute.

    I've seen two men shot at point blank range with a 1911 45acp. One lived, the other didn't. Both took one chest shot. Happened to be the same load, 230 ball and 7 years between incidents one being in the military, the other standing next to a Boston cop that lived.

    A pistol bullet may have enough effect on the one who's shot for him to stop his actions, or it may take several and the caliber doesn't in any way dictate which will get it done sooner than another, because there are just too many variables other than caliber, fpe, bullet design, shot placement, blah, blah, blah. Bullets that don't shut down brain function or paralyze the electrical system producing a physiological non-response don't stop anyone or knock them over, or push them backwards, make them spin around, contort their body, blah, blah blah.

    The physical reaction to being shot, if any, is solely a product of that persons physical response due to bodies stimulus responses to pain.

    I have been trying to find the reason that the military switched from the .45 to 9mm in the 1980's.

    atctimmy is correct. We standardized on the 9mm with our nato allies. The "why" behind the scenes is not important, thats a political response which is irrelevant to this discussion.

    I carry both 9mm and 45acp [ 45acp for over 25 years on the streets for the most part ], either will do in the loads I carry presently if I do my part. It's up to me, not the bullet caliber I carried/carry that gets me home at night.

    Brownie
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  5. #49
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    Nicely covered Brownie.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KenpoTex View Post
    Pistols poke holes, that's it. .
    I prefer my BGs with LARGE holes. Now that you have admitted that all any pistol round can do is to poke a hole, wouldnt you really feel better if that hole is quite a bit larger????

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    Quote Originally Posted by coffeecup View Post
    I prefer my BGs with LARGE holes. Now that you have admitted that all any pistol round can do is to poke a hole, wouldnt you really feel better if that hole is quite a bit larger????
    But it's not "quite a bit larger"...I don't feel that 1/10" (or whatever the exact number is) is really that significant.
    "Being a predator isn't always comfortable but the only other option is to be prey. That is not an acceptable option." ~Phil Messina

    If you carry in Condition 3, you have two empty chambers. One in the weapon...the other between your ears.

    Matt K.

  8. #52
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    My first EDC for a Colt 45 Combat Commander. Loved it...

    And while I donít consider it's recoil as being to much, it is enough to prevent a fast fallow up shot.
    And considering "knock down power" is a myth, I don't see an advantage to carrying a 45.

    But I do see an advantage to multi hits on target.

    I now practice from the draw, and take out three targets at 10 paces, within 3 seconds.

    As a extra round we have add to that having to double tap the first BG . (right, left, center) as called out by a friend first.

  9. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by cwblanco View Post
    A way to test this is to put on a bullet proof vest designed to prevent penetration. Decide which round packs a bigger wallop, or stated otherwise, which is more likely to knock you on your butt without penetration.
    Neither. Here is a link to a video of a person wearing body armor being shot at very close range with a .308 Winchester rifle. That cartridge produces much more kinetic energy than any handgun round. Notice the guy merely reacts to the impact of being hit, not falling on his butt. Have someone whip a baseball at you as hard as they can. That's about the impact force of being struck by a bullet.

    "Knockdown Power" - GlockPost
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  10. #54
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    Have someone whip a baseball at you as hard as they can. That's about the impact force of being struck by a bullet.
    Actually,getting smacked by a ball bat will usually knock someone down faster than a bullet will if it's not a CNS shot.
    I would rather stand against the cannons of the wicked than against the prayers of the righteous.


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  11. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenpoTex View Post
    But it's not "quite a bit larger"...I don't feel that 1/10" (or whatever the exact number is) is really that significant.
    Same 1/10" argument may be made that the 9mm at .355" isn't "quite a bit" larger than the .25 ACP at .251".

  12. #56
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    Same 1/10" argument may be made that the 9mm at .355" isn't "quite a bit" larger than the .25 ACP at .251".

    Now if the available horsepower [ fpe and speed ] was the same for the 25 as the 9mm, the comparison might be considered valid as well.

    Unfortunately, we know that's not the case so the comparison is not valid in the 25/9mm comparison as it is in the 9/45acp comments due to the disparity on energy.

    You can find 9's that have the same fpe of the 45 but I don't believe you can find 25's that have anywhere near the energy of the 9mm.

    Brownie
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  13. #57
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    I shoot both, and carry both. They both have pluses and minuses.

    However, for carry, if I'm ever limited to FMJ, it's .45 all the way. Or, forget the auto for a nice .357 revolver and 158gr lead flat points :)

  14. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheGreatGonzo View Post
    I once saw a man shot at point blank range 37 times in the head and 14 times in the chest with a 9mm and he was still able to finish the Ironman competition (he only placed 4th, though) and then wrestle a grizzly bear into submission.

    On the other hand, I once saw a man shot from 75 yards with a .45ACP. The round grazed his left pinky which blew his right arm and leg completely off his body and caused his brain to explode. Then his goldfish died.

    Gonzo
    Now that was funny
    Ahhh, what an awful dream. Ones and zeros everywhere... and I thought I saw a two.


  15. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by HotGuns View Post
    Actually,getting smacked by a ball bat will usually knock someone down faster than a bullet will if it's not a CNS shot.
    I said baseball, not baseball bat.
    07/02 FFL/SOT since 2006

  16. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheGreatGonzo View Post
    I once saw a man shot at point blank range 37 times in the head and 14 times in the chest with a 9mm and he was still able to finish the Ironman competition (he only placed 4th, though) and then wrestle a grizzly bear into submission.

    On the other hand, I once saw a man shot from 75 yards with a .45ACP. The round grazed his left pinky which blew his right arm and leg completely off his body and caused his brain to explode. Then his goldfish died.

    Gonzo
    That's funny right there. I don't care who you are.

    I hope you don't plan to copyright this, 'cause I just copied it for future use.

    I remember a friend telling me that during Vietnam, he saw a guy shot with a 45 get lifted off his feet and knocked back about ten feet.

    Physics apparently works different in Nam than it does here.

    The reality is that a 45 can take a man out with one shot. A 45 can also fail to take the man out.

    A 9 mil can take a man out with one shot. A 9 mil can also fail to take the man out.

    If you want to carry real stopping power, get a holster for an AK-47. Otherwise, make your choice as to which underpowered firearm you will carry and live (or die) with it.

    Just remember: Shot Place is King!!!

    Sorry to hear about the Goldfish!
    fortiter in re, suaviter in modo (resolutely in action, gently in manner).

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