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I was reading a thread this morning where people were discussing what they believed their most accurate carry gun is.

I wonder how much of a difference might that really make?

Here's what I mean, I doubt the mechanical accuracy of any of my pistols varies any appreciable amount at any reasonable handgun distance (I'll define that as say 25 yards).

I also doubt there's any significant difference in handgun ammunition accuracy at those ranges.

What I mean by significant is enough difference to affect the outcome of an encounter. I would think training, random chance, movement, etc would make a much bigger difference than the mechanical accuracy of your system.

Now, having said that, I find there is a big difference in the practical accuracy of my handguns. Like most people, I shoot a full-sized gun better than a sub-compact.

Anyway, just some thoughts while I'm cooped up.
 

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I have some handguns that I shoot OK. I have a few handguns that I shoot well. I have one handgun, for whatever the reasons, I shoot best with.
 

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I have some handguns that I shoot OK. I have a few handguns that I shoot well. I have one handgun, for whatever the reasons, I shoot best with.


This, I think ..... I have two .45's that I cannot miss with. One 9mm and three .357's that I feel the same way. I'm just not as accurate with one of the 9's and the 380 - the sum total of my carry rotation in these three sentences - as I am with the others.
 

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"What I mean by significant is enough difference to affect the outcome of an encounter. I would think training, random chance, movement, etc would make a much bigger difference than the mechanical accuracy of your system." ~~ @mrtimm

That is an excellent addendum to the question imo. Given that your carry system is reliable and your markmanship is at least acceptable, my answer is there in bold.
 

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It depends. Certain guns, like snubnose revolvers, can have noticeable differences between POA/POI, especially with varying bullet weights.
 

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Under 10 yards in a life or death situation, it likely doesn't make much difference. For accuracy testing a handgun or target practice, I shoot a large handgun better than a small handgun. I shoot a longer barrel handgun better than a short barrel handgun. I shoot a hammer-fired handgun better than a striker-fired handgun. I shoot a 1911 or revolver single-action trigger batter than any other trigger. I prefer to carry a 5" steel 1911 because it is the handgun that I shoot best for self-defense at any distance. I prefer a big bore revolver for woods carry or hunting. I can qualify with any handgun, but prefer to carry what works the best for me.
 

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Some guns you just mesh with, and some you don't.

Everyone has different size arms, hands and fingers. Different grip strength, shooting stances, styles, & different eyesight.

If someone laid out 5 different handguns on a table and asked us to shoot them all, and pick which one is the most accurate, my "most accurate" most likely wouldn't be your "most accurate". Jmo.
 

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I've written the following on several occasions, I've shot enough Bullseye match's in my life time to fill multiple 55-Gal Drums with the empties. If your basic fundamentals' are sound you should be able to shoot with reasonable accuracy dependent on the weapon type employed. As an example you are not going to employ a S&W M640 to shoot Bullseye course of @ 50Yds as opposed to shooting the M640 at 10Yds and under at IDPA humanoid targets. Different applications thus different weapons.
 

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I've seen some people operate a 1911 .45 better and faster than others who were fast and accurate with .22 autos. That was not the norm however. I've also seen some operate a single action revolver faster and more accurately than other "good" shooters could with any of their handgun choices. Again, not the norm. Training and dedication with handguns as with anything in life is the key. There was a time when I could probably turn in faster times with my wife's 3" S&W model 36 than most shooters in our club could with their medium and large frame revolvers.

We all have to find out what we shoot the best. I don't care for Glocks but I remember the time in the late 80's when a fellow competitor handed me his model 17 - which I'm sure was smoothed and tuned - and I was really impressed with how fast and accurate I was with it. In my hands, it outperformed my revolvers, my 1911 .45 and just about anything else I'd shot except for a .22 auto. I've not played with .40 or .357 Sig (have shot 10mm), so for me, I'd have to say for concealed carry purposes, a compact 9mm is the ideal compromise between size, power and speed of repeat shots. Especially if you place a high value on a well placed first and subsequent shots at varied distances. Once I go beyond 15 yards and out to say 25, practical accuracy for me, is aided by a bit more weight, barrel length and reduced recoil for accurate follow up shots.
 

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Practical accuracy. One way to compare:
Of the concealable pistols that you own, which is quickest to draw from concealment and consistently put two rounds in/on a 6 inch circle at 6-7 yards.
 

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Lots of factors affect an individual's, or a platform's accuracy.
 
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Most of my handguns are capable of outperforming the operator particularly so with the revolvers. There are platforms that are more accurate than others in my hand. LCP, 1911 Commander, Glock 36/19 to name a few. There are wild hairs too that have larger groups around 4 to 5 inches such as the Sig 298.

Does any of that matter? Not really in my opinion. All are accurate enough to get the job done.
 

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Practical accuracy. One way to compare:
Of the concealable pistols that you own, which is quickest to draw from concealment and consistently put two rounds in/on a 6 inch circle at 6-7 yards.
I hate to say it, because I carry a 1911 and Glock, but the snub nose revolver from the pocket is by far the quickest.
 

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I think that practical accuracy must be defined for its purpose.

My definition is that which is accurate enough to allow for the consistent placement of shots in to a target size that fits within the vital zone of a human chest.
For that purpose, I don’t know of any handgun that does not possess that mechanical capability that is in good working order and using correct ammunition.

Adding distance and time, it’s all on the user.
 

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I hate to say it, because I carry a 1911 and Glock, but the snub nose revolver from the pocket is by far the quickest.
If it’s in your hand already.*
 

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I hate to say it, because I carry a 1911 and Glock, but the snub nose revolver from the pocket is by far the quickest.
For years I practiced double taps at 6-7 yards pretty much to the exclusion of slow fire at 20 yards.
Few weeks/months ago I started doing slow fire at 20 and got my 6-7 yard skill jacked. (below)
I have to acquire the front sight to consistently hit a 6 inch circle at 6-7 yards.
Trouble is there are POA/POI differences in different pistols and different sights, ex: a Glock 20SF with Truglo versus Glock 23 with Trijion HD.

Two weeks ago, draw and aim on 6 inch circle at 6-7 yards with Glock 35 with Trijicon HDs, hit right on.
Last week I draw and aim on circle with Glock 20SF and TruGlo, hit right on.
Two days ago draw and aim on with Glock 23 with Trijicon HD, low/low (bottom of circle) - what the crap!!!, aim the same, hitting low again.
Try again but with Glock 20SF and I hit the dang circle like I expected.
Both pistols AIWB, 20SF is quicker to draw due to larger grip.

I need to refocus on speed & accuracy at 6-7 yards (like I use to), aim and hit on 6 inch circle without thinking. I despise aiming off target.
The dang 1911 thread (thanks to @bmcgilvray) got me thinking about 1911 and I need to see how I do with it, cold. (Have not shot it in a few months)
1911 gets carried strong side IWB, as does the Glock 35, but those are both quick to draw due to grip length.

My wife has about the same enthusiasm for shooting as I do mowing the yard, shooting is a task to her.
Couple days ago, I persuade her to engage in some quarterly (or bi-annual) :rolleyes: practice.
In addition to her Glock 19 I though she might give Glock 22 a try - see if the longer grip was quicker for her to draw.
She shot the 19 first, then the 22; didn't take long for her to decide the 22 was quicker to draw (critical difference). Accuracy between the two pistols was comparable for her. Initially she shot 180 FMJ, then 165 Ranger Bonded, she didn't think the recoil was bad with either. She decided she preferred the Glock 22 rather than the 19 and said she wanted to shoot it again today/tomorrow.
 

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Unless your pistol is defective its going to be more accurate than you. Will YOU be more accurate with one particular firearm over another?? Sure. As stated by others different grips different barrel lengths etc etc.
 

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I think that practical accuracy must be defined for its purpose.

My definition is that which is accurate enough to allow for the consistent placement of shots in to a target size that fits within the vital zone of a human chest.
For that purpose, I don’t know of any handgun that does not possess that mechanical capability that is in good working order and using correct ammunition.


Adding distance and time, it’s all on the user.
Yeah, that's what I was trying to say earlier.
At the risk of being chided as I was in another thread for "expanding" beyond the original post -- The important stuff imo is; After you can hit the chest-sized target consistently and quickly -- 1) can you overcome the brief (even if it's a millisecond) moment of hesitation that comes from the ancient taboo of killing another human, and 2) do you know when to shoot and when not to. For those of you who scoff at #1, overcoming that hesitation is a main aspect of military training.
 
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