Best SHTF Pistol?
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Old 05-18-2012, 10:38 PM   #1
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Default Best SHTF Pistol?

I want to start by saying I am not a pistol guy, but pistols do have their purposes. First and most important purpose, which I believe someone else here stated, is to allow you to get to your long gun. Second is to serve as a back up in case your primary weapon fails. So what are some opinions as to the best pistol(s) for those purposes?

At the moment I'm thinking the best pistol to fulfill the first purpose is a high capacity semi auto probably in 9mm or 45acp.

For the second purpose I'm thinking .357 revolver with a decent length barrel. A .38/.357 would be useful for hunting if absolutely necessary. I can't imagine a semi-auto ever being useful for hunting, and any gun that is going to serve as a backup for my rifle has to be useful for hunting.

So for the moment I'm thinking keep a semi auto in the truck just to make to sure I can get home. Keep a .357 ready to go with my rifle and BOB. If I'm ever on foot and have my .357 then I can ditch the semi-auto (I'm not carrying two pistols).

So what are some thoughts on pistols and SHTF?

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Old 05-18-2012, 11:07 PM   #2
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I've drunk the 1911 KoolAid, and I'll tell you, I think its the best KoolAid out there.

BUT. I think a 6" .357 would be my optimal SHTF pistol. Preferably a Smith 686. (just my personal preference on the model there.)

There are also the BP options. I have a recipe for home made BP, and casting ammo is pretty simple.

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Old 05-18-2012, 11:16 PM   #3
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I can't imagine a semi-auto ever being useful for hunting
Why is that?
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Old 05-18-2012, 11:37 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Black Talon

Why is that?
Good question, I would like to know your reasoning as well.
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Old 05-18-2012, 11:38 PM   #5
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I would see a .357 or .44 mag revolver being good for hunting, a 357 sig or 45 acp would be fine in close quarters. No more than maybe 25 yards on larger game.

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Old 05-18-2012, 11:40 PM   #6
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I can see these being useful for hunting:

Auto Mag Pistol (.44 AMP), Colt Delta Elite (10mm Auto), Coonan (.357 Magnum), Desert Eagle (.357 Magnum, .44 Magnum, .50 Action Express), Glock Model 20 and 29 (10mm Auto), Guncrafter Industries Model 1 and 2 (.50 G.I.), LAR Grizzly Win Mag (.45 Winchester Magnum), and the Wildey (.44 AMP, .45 Winchester Magnum, .475 Wildey Magnum).

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Old 05-18-2012, 11:41 PM   #7
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Why is that?
I've never seen one accurate enough (at least in my hands) for hunting. The Ruger bull barrel semi auto 22's are accurate, but I would want a little more power if I had to hunt with it. I just can't imagine anything from 9mm to 45acp being accurate enough for hunting, but please correct me if I'm wrong.


Trip,

The BP option might be the way to go if EOTWAWKI but I have enough metallic cartridges to get me buy for some time (hopefully). If it gets that bad, once I run out of ammo BP pistols should be pretty easy to come by? Besides, I would just about rather go with a bow and arrow than anything BP. I really hated hunting with a muzzle loader just because I knew after I got through cleaning the deer I was going to half to clean the muzzle loader. If you figure out a non-corrosive recipe let me know!!!!!
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Old 05-18-2012, 11:44 PM   #8
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Why is that?
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Good question, I would like to know your reasoning as well.
I'm curious, too.

I have a .357 magnum revolver as my primary HD gun. I know I could hunt with it. I have a .22 pistol for fun shooting but I know I could hunt with that, too. I have a pocket pistol .380 for self defense. So far, I don't own any long guns. Shot guns are not comfortable for me to shoot. Not even the 16 gauge.
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Old 05-18-2012, 11:49 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Black Talon View Post
I can see these being useful for hunting:

Auto Mag Pistol (.44 AMP), Colt Delta Elite (10mm Auto), Coonan (.357 Magnum), Desert Eagle (.357 Magnum, .44 Magnum, .50 Action Express), Glock Model 20 and 29 (10mm Auto), Guncrafter Industries Model 1 and 2 (.50 G.I.), LAR Grizzly Win Mag (.45 Winchester Magnum), and the Wildey (.44 AMP, .45 Winchester Magnum, .475 Wildey Magnum).
How would any of those compare in accuracy and range to a SW686 or Dan Wesson in .357 with a 6in or 8in barrel?

Or let me rephrase that question, what would be the most accurate and versatile pistol for hunting and in what caliber (small and medium game)?
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Old 05-18-2012, 11:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TLuker View Post
I want to start by saying I am not a pistol guy, but pistols do have their purposes. First and most important purpose, which I believe someone else here stated, is to allow you to get to your long gun. Second is to serve as a back up in case your primary weapon fails. So what are some opinions as to the best pistol(s) for those purposes?

At the moment I'm thinking the best pistol to fulfill the first purpose is a high capacity semi auto probably in 9mm or 45acp.

For the second purpose I'm thinking .357 revolver with a decent length barrel. A .38/.357 would be useful for hunting if absolutely necessary. I can't imagine a semi-auto ever being useful for hunting, and any gun that is going to serve as a backup for my rifle has to be useful for hunting.

So for the moment I'm thinking keep a semi auto in the truck just to make to sure I can get home. Keep a .357 ready to go with my rifle and BOB. If I'm ever on foot and have my .357 then I can ditch the semi-auto (I'm not carrying two pistols).

So what are some thoughts on pistols and SHTF?
I agree with you on the semi-auto pistol.

I also agree that a 357 revolver is a close choice as well.

As to which one I would ditch if I had two of them at the same time, I would ditch the 357 and keep the semi-auto.

Regarding hunting, a 44 rem mag is awfully lite compared with the other heavy hunting guns, such as 454 casull or 45-70 govt. So I would not want to drop down even more to a 357 for hunting. Having said that, the 357 and the 44 rem mag are fairly similar in all respects except for a slightly different diameter.

The pistol and the revolver (handguns as they are lately often called) have always been self defense weapons, similar to a sword in ancient times.

Whereas a rifle or shotgun (long guns as they are lately often called) have always been offensive or hunting weapons, similar to a spear or lance in ancient times.

For combat, therefore, your rifle is your primary tool, and your handgun is your backup. That's how they serve soldiers and marines.

For hunting dangerous game, such as big bears, lions, or boars, they serve in the same capacity and relationship. One of the super heavy revolvers, like the 45-70 gov, or the 454 casull, or the 44 rem mag, would be your backup, and a 300 or a 338 or a 375 or a 458 etc would be your primary rifle.

For defense against people, it seems like a semi-auto pistol is your best and quickest bet. And the rifle or shotgun would be your natural "backup" in this case. Note that this is how LEOs are organized and equiped. They carry a shotgun and/or combat rifle with them in their vehicles, but they wear a pistol (or revolve in some places, still) as their primary defense. The same thing applies to civilians.

I keep my 45ACP loaded and chambered with the hammer down (condition 2) at all times. My revolver is in my gunsafe unloaded waiting for hunting and scouting season (not far away now -- mid July in Calif). My bolt action scoped rifle is also in my gunsafe unloaded waiting for opening day. My shotgun is in my gunsafe unloaded but with shells attached to it in case I do need to load it.

I have done neighborhood watch for years and walked foot patrols in the military and on many occasions had my 45ACP with me, loaded & chambered in condition 2 in open carry mode. Late at night after midnight if you are going outside to check on odd metallic sounds around your home, I think open loaded carry is the fastest way to get to your weapon, short of condition #0.

But I have only needed to load the shotgun once, while waiting for the LEOs to arrive due to my 911 call. It was after midnight and there were half a dozen perps in our parking lot who had just disgorged out of a minivan, and they were working over the cars in the parking lot.
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