.45 or 9mm?

.45 or 9mm?

This is a discussion on .45 or 9mm? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I am personally a fan of .45's, but I am helping family friends pick out their first pistol to be used for home defense. I ...

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Thread: .45 or 9mm?

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    Question .45 or 9mm?

    I am personally a fan of .45's, but I am helping family friends pick out their first pistol to be used for home defense. I don't think that he will want or need to carry concealed but may decide to later. I am asking for peoples' advice on what would best suit his needs.

    .45 or 9mm? or maybe .40S&W

    There are some basic considerations that the man of the house will be the primary shooter, but his wife may also need to be able to fire it. Recoil should not be much of an issue with him, but she is very little and may have troubles with the recoil of a .45

    Any recommendations and advice would be appreciated, and if you have a good idea for not only caliber but also gun manufacturer and model, please send it my way.

    For a final note, not to say that cost is not an issue (he doesn't need a custom 1911) but he is willing to spend good money for a good gun so he doesn't need to go cheap.


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    Member Array NC Buckeye's Avatar
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    How much is planning on shooting? Why is a 12ga not a consideration? Why not .38 or .357? How big are her hands? How often does she plan on shooting? Too many questions left unanswered.

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    VIP Member Array xXxplosive's Avatar
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    What kind of experience does each family member have in handling and shooting a pistol...?

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    VIP Member Array gottabkiddin's Avatar
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    If he wants a .45, I'd recommend the Glock 36. Very nice .45 caliber and with a slimmer grip for the ladies over the normal Glock. For a 9mm, The Glock19 is another quality pistol. You can't go wrong with a Glock.
    "He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one." Luke 22:36

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    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NC Buckeye View Post
    How much is planning on shooting? Why is a 12ga not a consideration? Why not .38 or .357? How big are her hands? How often does she plan on shooting? Too many questions left unanswered.
    He is not planning on shooting often, and she will rarely shoot more than just trying the gun out at the range. A 12ga could be a good solution with the possibility of a backup pistol. I don't know exactly how big her hands are but lets just say small.

    I am not against a .357, but the recoil may be to great for her to handle. A .38 is just not powerfull enough in my opinion.

    A combination of 12ga, larger caliber for him and smaller caliber for her could be a good solution.

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    Senior Member Array nosights's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gottabkiddin View Post
    If he wants a .45, I'd recommend the Glock 36. Very nice .45 caliber and with a slimmer grip for the ladies over the normal Glock. For a 9mm, The Glock19 is another quality pistol. You can't go wrong with a Glock.
    Sorry, this is just plain not good advise. The Glock 36 is a great "carry" gun, it is small, light and thin. It is also a low capacity gun, that will kick lick a mule in the wrong hands (like a small woman with poor shooting skills)...this makes it a poor home defense weapon when compared to other/larger weapons of similar caliber. *edit* I should add, I have personally carried a g36 for a few years (no longer do) and it made a good carry weapon. **

    I would be a BIG advocate of a shotgun for them if they are open to it. I would consider a 20 gauge if she can not handle the size/weight of a 12 gauge. Or check out Junior size 12 ga.

    As for choosing 9mm, .40, .45, ... They MUST go to a gun shop and at least hold different models...most preferably they should each shoot multiple models and calibers.

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    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
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    I think the answer is the same for every new shooter. Go to the range and rent a couple of guns in each caliber and let them make their own decision.
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    VIP Member Array jwhite75's Avatar
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    Remington 870, in 12ga, or 20 ga for the lady HD, and a backup pistol as youcalled, I would go for a Glock 19, in 9mm. Both are the over all best deals in their IMHO.
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    My wife's is also very small. She isn't comfortable with my G19 or G26. The width of the grip makes it necessary for her to turn her hand in order to reach the trigger, causing a bad shooting grip. The only guns she has been happy with so far are a S&W 642 and a Kahr CW9. She has no problem handling the 642 with +P loads. She'll shoot mostly std. .38's for practice and end the session with a cylinder full of +P's. She says they hurt her hand, but if someone's trying to hurt her, she won't even notice it.

    As for shotguns, she is able to handle a youth model 20ga. 870, better than the 12ga.
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    VIP Member Array rammerjammer's Avatar
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    I forgot to mention that I will be taking them to the range and letting them fire my .45, .380 and 22lr and renting a 9mm from the range to give them a chance to feel the various recoils.

    I will also have them try out many models in gun stores and get a feel for various models in their hands.

    Thanks for all the advice so far and keep it coming.

  11. #11
    Distinguished Member Array BlueNinjaGo's Avatar
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    I'd stick with a 9mm personally. Less recoil would help with the accuracy. Also helps with follow up shots. Looking at the statistics, a .45 doesn't offer THAT much more stopping power. Shot placement is key, not caliber.

    You said cost is no issue on buying the gun, but what about shooting? Everyone who plans on using it should be practicing regularly. 9mm is cheaper where I live than .40 and .45.

    Also, you'll get more rounds per magazine with a 9mm. If they aren't sharp shooters (especially in a panic) then you'll need as many rounds as you can.

    Just my opinions. My g/f and I both enjoy my SA-XD9sc.

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    Ex Member Array MadMac's Avatar
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    Oh, boy! Just like clockwork: another caliber war!



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    Choice is a very personal thing while I won't enter the type of revolver/pistol or cailber debate... this time... I would recommend an easy gun to point and shoot for both, perhaps DAO, just point and pull trigger, may even consider SxS/OU shotgun with one trigger. (kids in the house may alter this...) A small / midsized gun may entice CC one day also...

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    VIP Member Array gottabkiddin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nosights View Post
    Sorry, this is just plain not good advise. The Glock 36 is a great "carry" gun, it is small, light and thin. It is also a low capacity gun, that will kick lick a mule in the wrong hands (like a small woman with poor shooting skills)...this makes it a poor home defense weapon when compared to other/larger weapons of similar caliber.
    And you think a little woman can handle a larger heavier higher capacity pistol better? Why, cause the recoil is less due to weight? If the little lady can't hold onto the thinner but full grip of the G36, what makes the larger one any better. And as far as "kick like a mule". The .40 cal kick is equal or even worse. IMO the worse thing anyone can do is buy a pistol for the wife and not take her out and fire the thing and become accustomed to the recoil and become proficient with its use. IMO, recoil is worse with the smaller pistols but I wouldn't consider the G36 a small pistol either. At best I would call it a compact model with a thinner grip. 26oz loaded isn't that light and IMO, with a little training anyone can shoot a .45. As far as not a good home defense gun, I say BULL .40 or .45 is by far a better round for SD, and capacity shouldn't be your main concern, knowing how to shoot and put the rounds where you want um is, especially in a home with walls and other homes beyond your interior walls.


    Quote Originally Posted by nosights View Post
    I would be a BIG advocate of a shotgun for them if they are open to it. I would consider a 20 gauge if she can not handle the size/weight of a 12 gauge. Or check out Junior size 12 ga.
    IMO, that's far worse that anything I suggested. I can't see a small lady under duress trying to defend herself or her family in a house with a 30" barrel over a fit in your hand point and shoot hand gun of any make and model. In the hands of an experienced shooter sure, but then again we're not talkin experienced are we. And I'd say, anyone that can handle a shottie can handle a .45


    Quote Originally Posted by nosights View Post
    As for choosing 9mm, .40, .45, ... They MUST go to a gun shop and at least hold different models...most preferably they should each shoot multiple models and calibers.

    nosights
    Ahh, something we can agree on...
    "He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one." Luke 22:36

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  15. #15
    Member Array medicineball's Avatar
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    If this is strictly for home defense, forget a pistol. Use a simple pump action shotgun with "low-recoil defense" loads, and any adult will be able to handle it.

    Like other posters, I strongly disagree with the Glock 36 recommendation, which is a powerful caliber in a small (than thus harder to control package). It's about the last .45 I would give to a small inexperienced shooter.

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