This is a discussion on Barrel length? 3" vs. 4" for accuracy and CC? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; At self~defense distances there is zero difference in accuracy between a 3" barrel and a 5" barrel. Even at longer distances the major difference is ...
At self~defense distances there is zero difference in accuracy between a 3" barrel and a 5" barrel.
Even at longer distances the major difference is that most folks will shoot a longer barrel more accurately.
In semi-automatic pistols there MAY be a difference in reliability between a short barrel pistol and a longer barrel pistol.
It is much more critical that pistols with short barrels are perfectly fit and perfectly tuned.
Plus they can be more ammo particular.
Reasons being less slide mass. Steeper cartridge feed angle.
Recoil spring configuration. Also on shorter barrel pistols it is more important that the extractor be perfectly tensioned and the breech face be smooth.
Very short barrel pistols also benefit by being bushing-less for reasons that I probably don't need to get into.
For a 1911 pistol I think Commander length is ideal but, that is just my personal opinion.
I agree that the accuracy difference between 3-5" barrels is negligible at self defence ranges.
I do wonder if one should go to a 4"barrel simply for the increase in bullet velocity. A 3" barrel is not very effecient at burning all of the powder in 45acp. The increase in velocity is similar to the increase seen when going from standard pressure loads to +P loads.
One gets the velocity increase from standard pressure loads with none of the drawbacks such as muzzle blast, recoil, and slower follow-up shots. Or if you are comfortable with +P, then you just get a slightly more powerful cartridge.
The only downside seems to be a slightly longer gun. The barrel is the easiest part to conceal. The grip seems to be the hardest.
Just thinking out loud....... mike