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Old 01-30-2013, 09:28 PM   #1
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Question Help me. Lol...

Okay so now I am not so sure. Which one is better or preferred for self defense? 9mm or .40? Also which Sig would be best for carry? Size is not an issue. Thank for the help.

P.S. I have big hands.
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:41 PM   #2
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Okay, maybe a Sig P229 Elite Dark in .40 cal? Whatcha think?
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Old 01-31-2013, 02:20 AM   #3
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If you go the 229 you will like it and be served well.
The arguement on ballistics will go on forever. I like 40, but there are quality 9mm HP rounds available no problem.
The nice thing about a 40 Sig is a simple conversion will make your gun do 9mm equally well.
I have a 229 that does 9mm for fun, and 40 for serious.
I have a 229, but if I bought again I would go for the 239. Just a tad smaller and feels real good in my hand. The 229 is just a hair big in my hand so I put G10s on it from Midway.
Made a world of difference for me. Made it right for me.
I think stick to the P guns Sig had made long term. The new small Sigs are good, but the Ps are tried and true for decades.
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Old 01-31-2013, 05:23 AM   #4
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Time to work...

I have found that my attitude towards caliber and gun size and configuration has changed a lot over the years. Here are just a few of those thoughts. About caliber: Can we just acknowledge that any bullet will make you bleed and die? From that platform it becomes a question of Efficiency of Purpose. Now is when you get into ballistics, penetration, area/scope of damage (expansion). There are so many components to this area of round performance that most people forget how critical the gun itself is. Barrel length is what is important in velocity/accuracy of a round (powder burn/round rotation). As you can see the argument begins to become how will a specific caliber (also manufacturer and product quality) perform in a specific gun (also manufacturer and product quality). Starting to get confused? Well, after you wade through that, then what do you want the gun to do or accomplish, Target, Home Defense, Personal Defense (yeah it's different), Hunting etc.? How will you carry/store the weapon and what specific needs will that impose?

These are only SOME of the questions you need to work through. As you do, you'll find, like many before you, that you'll acquire multiple guns & round types for differing applications. Example: If you live in cold climes in the winter you might consider using a FMJ and scrap the FMJHP. Why? When a HP cuts through multiple layers of cloth, winter layers, the hole is plugged, round velocity deteriorated equaling severe performance shift (you now have a lower velocity Wadcutter). Potentially deadly for sure, but not what you believed you would be shooting. In this case I would have suggested 9mm FMJ for it's penetration qualities. Is it warmer with less clothing? I could go with .45 FMJHP lower velocity, less penetration (less clothing layers) but incredible tissue and structure (bone) damage potential. Just one of many arguments or comparisons you need to work through. Unfortunately, I haven't found the one perfect gun. If someone has a lead on one please share it with me because I'm still looking! I have and carry anything from a .22, 9mm and .45 commonly CC (I do own other cal.s also), each with its time and place. From Pocket to Shoulder to ITW or OTW, I could go on but I'm sure I would bore many. Let me sum it up this way, no ONE gun/cal/rd can do it all. Really think long and hard on what you want your FIRST purchase to accomplish because, believe me, you'll find you need more. So, get good trusted advice from someone not trying to sell you something. There are no shortage of knowledgeable people here. I would read some post's to find who you think they might be and PM them for some assistance. I betcha they'd love to help you.




Last edited by SouthernYankee; 01-31-2013 at 05:28 AM. Reason: grammer
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Old 01-31-2013, 06:42 AM   #5
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If you speak with the medical people that work in emergency rooms, they cannot readily ascertain any difference between handgun caliber used and resulting injury. (Rifle is a different story!)

That being said, I prefer to carry 9mm for self defense. Traditionally easier ammo to acquire, less expensive and with less recoil, easier to put repeat shots on target.

My $0.02 worth.

YMMV.

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Old 01-31-2013, 07:33 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SouthernYankee View Post
I have found that my attitude towards caliber and gun size and configuration has changed a lot over the years. Here are just a few of those thoughts. About caliber: Can we just acknowledge that any bullet will make you bleed and die? From that platform it becomes a question of Efficiency of Purpose. Now is when you get into ballistics, penetration, area/scope of damage (expansion). There are so many components to this area of round performance that most people forget how critical the gun itself is. Barrel length is what is important in velocity/accuracy of a round (powder burn/round rotation). As you can see the argument begins to become how will a specific caliber (also manufacturer and product quality) perform in a specific gun (also manufacturer and product quality). Starting to get confused? Well, after you wade through that, then what do you want the gun to do or accomplish, Target, Home Defense, Personal Defense (yeah it's different), Hunting etc.? How will you carry/store the weapon and what specific needs will that impose?

These are only SOME of the questions you need to work through. As you do, you'll find, like many before you, that you'll acquire multiple guns & round types for differing applications. Example: If you live in cold climes in the winter you might consider using a FMJ and scrap the FMJHP. Why? When a HP cuts through multiple layers of cloth, winter layers, the hole is plugged, round velocity deteriorated equaling severe performance shift (you now have a lower velocity Wadcutter). Potentially deadly for sure, but not what you believed you would be shooting. In this case I would have suggested 9mm FMJ for it's penetration qualities. Is it warmer with less clothing? I could go with .45 FMJHP lower velocity, less penetration (less clothing layers) but incredible tissue and structure (bone) damage potential. Just one of many arguments or comparisons you need to work through. Unfortunately, I haven't found the one perfect gun. If someone has a lead on one please share it with me because I'm still looking! I have and carry anything from a .22, 9mm and .45 commonly CC (I do own other cal.s also), each with its time and place. From Pocket to Shoulder to ITW or OTW, I could go on but I'm sure I would bore many. Let me sum it up this way, no ONE gun/cal/rd can do it all. Really think long and hard on what you want your FIRST purchase to accomplish because, believe me, you'll find you need more. So, get good trusted advice from someone not trying to sell you something. There are no shortage of knowledgeable people here. I would read some post's to find who you think they might be and PM them for some assistance. I betcha they'd love to help you.
Really good advice here! +1

I don't carry often but when I do its usually a 380. I like it because of its conceal-ability and accuracy. My advice is to shoot a lot of guns and choose the one that feels good in your hand and you shoot accurately. Accuracy is so much more important than worrying about supposed "one shot stopping power." With that said anything from a 380 to a .45 will typically do ya.

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Old 01-31-2013, 08:07 AM   #7
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Ah the age old question.....

First, look up wound ballistics. If you don't understand that, you won't understand anything of which I am about to tell you. Make sure you take special notes as to permanent and temporary cavities.....

It all comes down to total energy. A small bullet that flies fast has lots of energy, as does a heavy bullet that flies slowly. HOWEVER, if the bullet flies THROUGH the target, you lost a lot of that potential "stopping" energy, as we are talking about defensive purposes. Thus the inherent problem with 9mm FMJ. They are fast and don't expand, thus have a propensity to over-penetrate. So what do we do here...

We find a bullet that delivers all of its "stopping power" INSIDE the target. And expanding hollowpoint does a great job at this. The expansion causes the bullet to screech to a halt, thus delivering all of its energy inside the target.

Stopping power is defined in many ways. I will not go in to them all. My view is that stopping power is directly related to the shockwave created when a bullet enters soft tissue. Think about throwing a stone into a lake. The larger the ripples, the larger the shockwave. The larger the shockwave, the more likely you are to stop an assault.

So now we know why hollowpoints are the leader in terms of self defense TYPE rounds, lets go on to calibers.

The 9mm round, which is small (ranges between 115-147) are relatively small. They fly FAST though (generally over 1000 ft/sec), thus has a flater trajectory, even though for shorter distances, due to its relatively low weight. They are also among the easiest to shoot, easiest to control, easiest to find, they are lighter overall, handgun magazines tend to carry more, and cheapest to acquire. This, in and of itself, makes it a VERY popular round. Now, consider the potential lethality. Being a small bullet, especially in fmj, it has the propensity to over-penetrate. Being that small and going that fast, it travels through soft tissue with relative ease. Again, this is why a hollowpoint round in 9mm is a great idea for self-defense purposes. Being a lower weight round, they also tend to not create the shockwave of a heavier round. The solution to this problem is easy: FIRE MORE ROUNDS. Easy enough. The problem with this is you are creating more wound channels and causing a slow bleedout. This is why I NEVER RECOMMEND FRANGIBLE AMMO FOR SELF DEFENSE. Most people WILL NOT STOP after the first shot, contrary to popular media. Most people are riding too high on adrenaline to realize what is happening. Hence why people can get shot multiple times and still drive away.

Now, on to .40 s&w. The .40 is heavier than a 9mm but smaller than a .45 (165-180 and some over). This makes them, obviously, larger in size. Magazine capacities tend to be less, they are heavier to carry, they aren't quite as fast (just under and over 1000 ft/sec). They are a "best/worst of both worlds" kind of round. They are faster than a .45 and weigh more than a 9mm, but are not as heavy as a .45 and not as fast as a 9mm. It is EXACTLY this intermediary reason why LEO/MIL are starting to move towards the .40. These rounds are easier or harder to find, as they are not as popular as 9mm or .45, so some may stock them and not sell them, while others just don't stock enough. They are more expensive than 9mm but less than .45 The .40 also has a propensity to over-penetrate, but not as much as the 9mm, so some do not feel the need to purchase hollowpoint rounds in .40. The .40 was developed with the idea of hydrostatic shock in mind, that is, the shockwave created by said bullet can cause hemmoraging from the sudden increase in blood pressure created by the shockwave of the round entering the body. Bigger shockwaves, less shots fired, faster stoppage. On a side note: This is the round I choose to arm myself with.

The .45 wasn't the topic, so I won't discuss it. It is considered the "legendary man-stopper" though.

Now, whats the point of all this if you CANT HIT the target? It's all for naught. I hope you never have to shoot anyone, but if you do, don't miss. Training is really more important then any ammo you shoot. And any ammo is better than no ammo. I would rather get stuck in a dire situation with .380 (not ideal) than nothing.

So, now the choice is yours.
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Old 01-31-2013, 08:10 AM   #8
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I also agree with southernyankee in that different situations call for different arms. I just gave you facts, he is actually giving you practical information.
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Old 01-31-2013, 08:33 AM   #9
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+1 on the 40
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Old 01-31-2013, 08:37 AM   #10
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LEO has moved to .40 for reasons I won't get into on this thread.

Advances in modern ammo make the differences between 9 and .40 a non factor. You can get the exact same affect with quality hp ammo now and as pointed out earlier, docs cannot tell the difference between the wounds from a 9 and 40 because they are 99.9% the same.

Choose the round you can shoot best and quickly get back on target. If that's a 9, then great. If that is a 40 or 45, great.

But rent the gun you want in different calibers and try it out.
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Old 01-31-2013, 10:05 AM   #11
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LEO has moved to .40 for reasons I won't get into on this thread.

Advances in modern ammo make the differences between 9 and .40 a non factor. You can get the exact same affect with quality hp ammo now and as pointed out earlier, docs cannot tell the difference between the wounds from a 9 and 40 because they are 99.9% the same.

Choose the round you can shoot best and quickly get back on target. If that's a 9, then great. If that is a 40 or 45, great.

But rent the gun you want in different calibers and try it out.
I forgot to mention that......... Current bullet designs between the 9mm and .40 are similar in wound ballistics. Of course, I don't really know of any doctor's who study wound ballistics to be able to discern specifics..... In any case, if you can't hit what you are shooting at, whats the point anyway?
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Old 01-31-2013, 10:17 AM   #12
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45 for me
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Old 01-31-2013, 11:23 AM   #13
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I carry them all ( .380 9mm .40 45 ) but what I carry from day to day changes by what I'm wearing and what I'm doing for that day . If I have to recommend only one then it would be the 229 .40
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Old 01-31-2013, 11:58 AM   #14
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These are only SOME of the questions you need to work through. As you do, you'll find, like many before you, that you'll acquire multiple guns & round types for differing applications. Example: If you live in cold climes in the winter you might consider using a FMJ and scrap the FMJHP. Why? When a HP cuts through multiple layers of cloth, winter layers, the hole is plugged, round velocity deteriorated equaling severe performance shift (you now have a lower velocity Wadcutter). Potentially deadly for sure, but not what you believed you would be shooting. In this case I would have suggested 9mm FMJ for it's penetration qualities. Is it warmer with less clothing? I could go with .45 FMJHP lower velocity, less penetration (less clothing layers) but incredible tissue and structure (bone) damage potential. Just one of many arguments or comparisons you need to work through. Unfortunately, I haven't found the one perfect gun. If someone has a lead on one please share it with me because I'm still looking! I have and carry anything from a .22, 9mm and .45 commonly CC (I do own other cal.s also), each with its time and place. From Pocket to Shoulder to ITW or OTW, I could go on but I'm sure I would bore many. Let me sum it up this way, no ONE gun/cal/rd can do it all. Really think long and hard on what you want your FIRST purchase to accomplish because, believe me, you'll find you need more. So, get good trusted advice from someone not trying to sell you something. There are no shortage of knowledgeable people here. I would read some post's to find who you think they might be and PM them for some assistance. I betcha they'd love to help you.
I still never recommend carrying FMJs in a CCW gun. There's still more of a chance that a plugged hollowpoint will expand, whereas an FMJ only expands when it hits something REALLY hard. The only time I recommend carrying FMJ for CCW is when it is in a reserve magazine if you need to punch through a wall, glass, or car door. There are some hollowpoint designs that, regardless of being plugged, still expand in gelatin after passing through four layers of denim. The Federal HST comes to mind. Hollowpoints loaded in high-quality self defense cartridges are developed with very advanced technology and have an extremely high chance of expanding, as long as it has the velocity to do it.

I'll point to a series of videos on youtube of an independent tester...

TNOUTDOORS9 Guns & Ammo Reviews - YouTube

TnOutdoors9 has done lots of ammo reviews in 9mm, .40, and .45 Auto. Watch some of his playlists. I'm always impressed with modern hollowpoints. Pick one for max penetration during wintertime (heavy-for-caliber), and go high-speed, light-for-caliber for summertime (less penetration). Regardless, I doubt that "heavy winter clothing" is going to make much difference on a full-metal-jacket round, which is easily capable of passing through FEET of water (read: really effin' dense material).
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Old 01-31-2013, 12:44 PM   #15
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Ah the age old question.....

First, look up wound ballistics. If you don't understand that, you won't understand anything of which I am about to tell you. Make sure you take special notes as to permanent and temporary cavities.....

It all comes down to total energy. A small bullet that flies fast has lots of energy, as does a heavy bullet that flies slowly. HOWEVER, if the bullet flies THROUGH the target, you lost a lot of that potential "stopping" energy, as we are talking about defensive purposes. Thus the inherent problem with 9mm FMJ. They are fast and don't expand, thus have a propensity to over-penetrate. So what do we do here...

We find a bullet that delivers all of its "stopping power" INSIDE the target. And expanding hollowpoint does a great job at this. The expansion causes the bullet to screech to a halt, thus delivering all of its energy inside the target.

Stopping power is defined in many ways. I will not go in to them all. My view is that stopping power is directly related to the shockwave created when a bullet enters soft tissue. Think about throwing a stone into a lake. The larger the ripples, the larger the shockwave. The larger the shockwave, the more likely you are to stop an assault.
This makes no sense when you apply it to a caliber like .300 Win Mag
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