Which pistol caliber is best for home defense in an urban enviroment? - Page 3
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:24 PM   #21
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Using modern self defense ammo, the only time over penetration presents a problem is when you miss your target. In that case, most pistol bullets will go through one or two walls, unless encountering a stud.

I have several to choose from, but my .40 XD is my go-to home defense pistol. My SD/HD ammo of choice is Hornady Critical Duty, but I live in a rural area, with no close neighbors to worry about.

Practice a lot at night with a tactical LED flashlight, or weapon mounted light / laser, to minimize the chances of a stray bullet.

That's my choice. Your mileage may vary.
Actually a bullet will go through a lot more than 2 walls if you dont hit a stud. The concealed carry class that I took built a frame work for a test. They had a piece of sheetrock then a stud, then rock then stud. Believe it or not a 45acp went through 18 peices of sheetrock. They only had 18 pieces of rock. The bullet reached the backstop. Think about that. That is 9 walls and still moving. Don't miss.
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Old 03-06-2013, 12:41 AM   #22
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I use Air Marshal loads made by federal. 9 mm 90gr they open up on contact and all the energy is with in the first 2in. If you miss and hit drywall they break up. $26 for 20 Good luck!

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Old 03-06-2013, 12:53 AM   #23
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Any gun of any caliber will work, IF you can put every round into the bad guy(s), with your vision impaired, your heart racing, your senses reeling from the adrenelin. But since that is unlikely, I'd prefer the shotgun with birdshot for a few reasons; you are more likely to hit your target, and if you don't you are less likely to kill your neighbor next door with a missed shot. We all think we won't miss, but when the drama begins in the middle of the night you may shoot at a noise, rather than a perp...and that is a tragedy for any innocent nearby.

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Old 03-06-2013, 10:57 AM   #24
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When it comes to home defense I worry less about walls and more about shooting the bad guy. Whatever is going to penetrate clothing and flesh will go thru a wall if you miss. As mentioned select something you can shoot decent with and I'd add to that practicing retrieval in the dark.

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Old 03-07-2013, 05:10 AM   #25
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In an urban setting i would go with something not as likely to go through a wall. Maybe a 380 or a 38 special good luck in finding what is best for you.

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Old 03-07-2013, 12:24 PM   #26
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Whatever you decide is your perfect caliber: practice, practice and practice. Take your home defense gun to the range and use it. Having it there "just in case" isn't good enough, you have to be comfortable and accurate with it.

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Old 03-07-2013, 12:38 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glockcj
I use Air Marshal loads made by federal. 9 mm 90gr they open up on contact and all the energy is with in the first 2in. If you miss and hit drywall they break up. $26 for 20 Good luck!
A bullet that breaks up if it hits drywall....i dont believe that one bit. I used to hang drywall and do residental framing, nearly anything will penetrate drywall with ease. Its way to brittle to stand up to anything.
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:03 PM   #28
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40 s&w, 45 acp, or 9mm?
YES.

And yes for 12ga. And 38sp, 357mag, 44mag, 357sig, and even 10mm.

Each has its own advantages, and each advantage is relative to the individual expectations and needs of the shooter/consumer in question. There is generally no wrong answer here. But there may be better fits for you.

I prefer 9mm and 45acp. Both are quick handling rounds because in trained hands the muzzle tends to stay on target for faster follow-up shots. 45acp is a heavy round that tends to get the job done in short order, while 9mm offers both greater capacity and a more affordable training budget. There are advantages to each.

40sw/10mm/357sig- I believe in the quality of all of these calibers and own each. 40sw is sort of a 9mm/45acp compromise, in terms of affordability, weight, and capacity. But it does not handle as quickly as either. 357sig and 10mm are both excellent rounds, but like 40sw, they're not as (successfully) quick as 9mm or 45acp for me. Personally, I like 357/10mm as woods guns. And 40sw is a fine general defense round. Any of these will likely get the job done every bit as well 45acp...but the 45acp will be quicker and more controllable on follow-up shots, in my experience. And that matters to me.

38sp/357mag/44mag- Are all fine choices. I'm good with any of them in a controlled, single action situation. But not so much in DA, so I personally don't depend on them. But with proper preparation, these are all viable options as well.

In other words: There are plenty of good options. Figure out your own needs (and anyone else who may have to depend on this gun) as a shooter, and make an informed decision.
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:47 PM   #29
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JonM is right about the shotgun. BB is the smallest reliable defense load with the least wall penetration. You have to AIM (point accurately) a shotgun. Typical pattern at 7 yards is 6 inches with a cylinder bore unless you are using spreader loads which have a very uneven pattern. Stay with a butt stock as they are much easier to use and aim. Avoid magnum loads.
With the possible exception of the Critical Defense not the Critical Duty rounds most hollow points plug on drywall and act like fmj. Critical Duty are designed to penetrate windshields. Frangible rounds like the Air Marshall, Glasser and others are a possible choice but are expensive and can you afford to shoot enough to ensure reliability in your handgun. Also what do those rounds do on dry wall which is not the same as the interior skin of an aircraft? Someone suggested a laser which might be a good idea. Reports from police departments that use the lasers indicate a drop in shooting incidents.
At very close range a 55 grain 5.56x45 NATO round has less penetration through walls than a 9mm HP. The bullet upsets and tumbles at first contact but it is a moot point if it penetrates 4 boards or 16 boards as it will still get into the neighbors dwelling. One of these days I will try some .223 45 grain hp or poly tip on some drywall.

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Old 03-07-2013, 05:02 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by glockcj View Post
I use Air Marshal loads made by federal. 9 mm 90gr they open up on contact and all the energy is with in the first 2in. If you miss and hit drywall they break up. $26 for 20 Good luck!
FYI, the Federal Marshal field office in Atlanta still uses Sig 357 and is not anticipating a change.
The 357 sig is used by Air Marshals for several reasons, which I can't discuss.
You'll have to ask someone from the Viper Teams , I'm not an Air Marshal, but I do know this to be a fact.
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