Firearm & Gun Forum -

Firearm & Gun Forum - (
-   General Rifle Discussion (
-   -   Are Rifles always better than Handguns? (

rman598 12-08-2013 04:58 AM

Are Rifles always better than Handguns?
I know a rifle bullet travels a lot faster than a pistol's, but is it always for effective? Ive heard that hanguns only punch holes and rifles are the best you can use to stop someone but lets say at close range would 45 cal or a 44 have more stopping power than a 223/556. The handguns are throwing over 200 grains while the rifle is about 60 grains. Which would stop someone at close range better.

Vikingdad 12-08-2013 05:16 AM

Rifles are better at longer distances and pistols are better closer in. I would put that threshold at 25 yards myself. That having been said it has long been said that the .223/5.56 rounds used by the military is insufficient to stop threats, but that is using FMJ 55-62 grain bullets as I recall. I know of guys who have been in combat who say they would shoot the bad guys and couldn't tell if they scored a hit despite knowing that they must have owing to their marksmanship.

Pistol rounds smaller than 9mm/.380 are less effective as man-stoppers. The bigger the chunk of lead you throw downrange the more "stopping power" it has.

Jstrong 12-08-2013 05:21 AM

Handguns are for when you can't carry a rifle,I would much rather have a rifle in any circumstances including CQC,just make it a short barreled rifle

JonM 12-08-2013 05:25 AM

at close range a .223 will outperform a 44 mag easily.

if the 44 is close range and the 5.56 is at 400 yards the 44 will win.

so it depends.

rifles always trump handguns unless your talking something like a 22lr or 17hmr or something silly like that or unless the pistol is ridiculous like the 500swmag where the pistol is chunking lead in the same category as a rifle.

the break point where pistols edge into rifle territory is about 1500fps.

nitestalker 12-08-2013 05:33 AM

Wounds from small bore handguns are very often fatal. The small caliber handguns do not often exit the victim. The small caliber weapons enter the body and expend their energy moving about tissues and organs causing massive damage.
Rifles depend more on shock and hydraulics induced by a smaller high velocity projectile. Rifle bullets tend to tumble when entering a target causing extensive tissue damage. Bullet tumble refers to a destabilized bullet after striking a target. The bullet is rotating its base not folding over as it travels.
Larger low velocity pistol bullets depend on creating an extensive wound channel and exerting heavy energy against a target. Heavy bullets are more likely to damage bones and connective tissues before exiting the wound.:eek:

Axxe55 12-08-2013 05:44 AM

IMO, the intendend usage dictates the firearm needed for the application.

in some cases, they can be used interchangeabily. some cases, but not all.

nitestalker 12-08-2013 05:51 AM

The .44 Mag. 240 gr. bullet can develop 311 FPs at 500 yards. The 5.56 round can develop about 300 FPs at 500 meters. The chances of hitting a 500 yd. target with a 5.56 mega-times greater.
The 5.56 MM Military round must be able to penetrate a standard helmet at 500 meters. I really doubt the .44 pistol bullets fired from a rifle would do that? I really doubt the ability to hit that target with a .44.:confused:

robocop10mm 12-08-2013 05:53 AM

Given the choice, I would ALWAYS opt for the rifle of ANY handgun caliber. I have seen several people shot at close range with an AR. They DROP. Any sort of torso shot is VERY incapacitating. The trauma is massive. The ony thing better inside 25 yards is a 12 ga w/OO buck

Donn 12-08-2013 10:28 AM

If there's gonna be a gunfight, bring something that takes two hands to carry and operate. It ain't one of Murphy's Laws, but it oughta be. When I was in-country, we had a word for anyone who brought a handgun to a fire fight. Dead.

WebleyFosbery38 12-08-2013 10:51 AM


Originally Posted by Donn (Post 1452477)
If there's gonna be a gunfight, bring something that takes two hands to carry and operate. It ain't one of Murphy's Laws, but it oughta be. When I was in-country, we had a word for anyone who brought a handgun to a fire fight. Dead.

Yo BRO (Ha I loved to hate Ft Riley the entire time I was there), Thank you for your service even if you had to spend time there or the sandbox!

I agree rifles are awesome if your prepped and ready but sometimes you just dont have space in your pockets for a Carbine! And the speed of the bullet is less a concern than the quickness of the draw in most civilians lives. They dont often walk around the 'Ville with their weapon at the ready!

Why choose one over another anyway? You dont always wear a raincoat yet it could rain! Just as weather dictates the dress of the day, your ability to pack heat and the possible threat dictates one over the other. Sadly, unlike when I was a kid, you really cant walk around with a rifle anymore in NY unless youve got a tag on your back and in the field, youre gonna get a hassle for sure! A nice little 38 special is probably gonna draw less attention!

All times are GMT. The time now is 02:43 PM.

Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.