narrowing things down a bit...maybe; need to choose a caliber

Discussion in 'Semi-Auto Handguns' started by Owl1024, Jan 7, 2011.

  1. Owl1024

    Owl1024 New Member

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    OK, so I've decided to trade in my BRICK...also known as my S&W Sigma SW9VE. I may have to 'save my pennies' for my replacement pistol, but first, it would help if I settled on a caliber....40 S&W or .45 GAP? I haven't been to my gun shop yet, but (I hope) I've narrowed my 'candidate pistols' down to these:

    Springfield XD SC .40: Overall Length: 6.25 inches; Weight: 26.5 oz.; Trigger Pull: 5.5 - 7.7 lbs.***

    Glock 23: Overall Length: 6.85 inches; Weight: 21.16 oz.; Trigger Pull: 5.5 lbs. ? ***

    Glock 27: Overall Length: 6.29 inches; Overall Weight: 19.7/21.87; Trigger Pull: 5.5 lbs. ? ***

    Glock 30: Overall Length: 6.77": Weight: ; 23.99 oz; Trigger Pull: 5.5 lbs. ***

    Glock 38 .45 GAP; Overall Length: 6.85"; Weight: 24.16 oz.; Trigger Pull: 5.5 lbs. ***

    Glock 39 .45 GAP; Overall Length: ; 6.30"; Weight:19.33 oz. ; Trigger Pull: 5.5 lbs.

    I have no special affection for Glocks; they just seem to be the 'standard' against which all other pistols are measured. So, first, as someone coming from a 9mm pistol, which of the two calibers mentioned above would have less felt recoil, choosing from one of those 6 pistols? I understand that heavier guns absorb recoil better, but my pistol will also be my EDC. So, which of those six is the best 'balance' of size/weight on one hand, and least 'muzzle flip'/most controllability?

    If it helps, I'm 5' 7" tall and weigh about 165 pounds.

    Many thanks for your input.
     
  2. NGIB

    NGIB New Member

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    The first thing I'd do is price ammo in your area. In many places, .45 GAP is hard to find and expensive. Smallish .40s are very snappy and not the easiest guns to shoot well. You will want to try out a Glock before you buy one as they don't work well for some folks - me included. The grip angle is unique and the finger grooves are either loved or hated.

    All the guns you list will recoil more than your Sigma, the Glock 23 would probably be the softest shooting of the bunch IMHO...
     

  3. DrJason

    DrJason New Member

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    I would echo what NGIB said.

    I am curious as to why you are not considering staying with 9mm?
     
  4. Owl1024

    Owl1024 New Member

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    Everything I've read says 9 mm doesn't have sufficient, '1-shot stop' capability; so, I'm now exploring .40 S&W and .45 G. A. P.
     
  5. NGIB

    NGIB New Member

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    No standard pistol caliber has a guaranteed 1 shot stop capability - none, period, end of story.

    If you do your part, any caliber from .380 on up will provide you with adequate defensive capability. Don't get trapped by the interwebz caliber wars as the perfect caliber does not exist. Practice is much more important than caliber and choosing a pricey round like the .45 GAP makes practice expensive. Also many smallish large caliber guns are not enjoyable to shoot - which makes folks practice less.

    Your 9mm is just fine as a defensive gun...
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2011
  6. Owl1024

    Owl1024 New Member

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    My preferred retailers are all online: Ammo-to-Go; Midway USA; Natchez.
     
  7. spittinfire

    spittinfire New Member Supporter

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    I personally would steer clear of 45gap. It's expensive to shoot, hard to find ammo and you'll have a hard time selling the gun should you ever want to. If you want a 45, go acp.

    I'll echo NGIB, I think 9mm is fine for self defense. I carry a 45 but have carried a 9mm and a 38 and never felt unsafe. IMHO, anything from 380/38 and up will serve you well in a defensive situation. Practice and familiarity with your weapon will go a long way over a larger caliber in a weapon you aren't familiar with.
     
  8. DrJason

    DrJason New Member

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    I feel like NGIB's shadow and echo on this thread. I personally choose the 9mm for cost, availability, and ease of shooting. Obviously there is no such thing as the "perfect" caliber all have compromises.
     
  9. Gojubrian

    Gojubrian New Member

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    9mm is fine for a defensive weapon, like everyone is saying. My bedside companion was my cz75b 9mm for a long time and I never felt under armed.

    Practice shot placement and follow up shots for defensive protection. This is done best with practice and 9mm is cheaper to buy.

    The sigma is fine for what you want. Unless you just want to change things up and get a different gun that is.

    Having said all of that I carry an xd40sc. ;)

    [​IMG]
     
  10. JTJ

    JTJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Rather than the 45 gap look at the Glock 36 in 45 acp. 27oz fully loaded with 6+1. They are slightly thinner than the G23 etc.
     
  11. General_lee

    General_lee New Member

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    I'm probably just repeating what others have said, but there is nothing wrong with 9mm.
    I normally Carry a .45 acp, but I'm looking to add a 9mm to the collection soon.

    I'll also agree on steering clear of the .45 GAP.
    Take it from someone who works at a gun store, .45 GAP guns sit on the shelf a LONG time and the ammo is expensive and can be hard to find.
    If you go with .45 go with .45 ACP.
    I also recommend handling a few different pistols before you decide on what to buy.
    As has been said before, Glocks are a love em or hate em kind of thing, the grip angle is different and if you're used to the grip angle of a Sigma, the Glock will take some getting used to.
     
  12. HKSlinger

    HKSlinger New Member

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    I'll make your choice real simple for ya. Any H&K in .45. Now..... go out and sin no more with inferior brands. :p
     
  13. USMC-03

    USMC-03 New Member

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    Why would you only shoot once in a defensive situation anyway? I'm putting at least 2 or 3 rounds into someone if I am forced to use my firearm. That being said, I have guns ranging from .22 up through .45. My normal carry gun is my Springfield XD9...I have a Glock 27, an XDM in .40 and 3 .45's...I carry the XD9 because I have put countless rounds through it and am the most proficient nd confident with it, I never feel under powered because it's a 9mm. I do carry my G27 and PF9 when I'm dressing a little lighter. If you want a bigger round, then by all means go for it. I'm just saying that the people who want to complain the 9mm is not sufficient for self defense are sadly mistaken. As far as the .45 GAP...I'd stay away. .45 ACP is tried and true and you will always be able to find ammo for it.
     
  14. BombDoc

    BombDoc New Member

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    45 GAP is getting harder to come by. I will have to start reloading my own soon enough. I have a 38 and a 39. GAP is a great round it just never caught on. I think there were, at one point, only three MFG that even made something chambered for it. As others have said; not your best bet.

    9mm is just fine. I like my 27 but I switched to a 9mm conversion barrel and 26 mags/spring. I made up the investment in the conversion in one summer's range time.

    The 30 or 36 would probably be your best choice if you have to have 45. I prefer the 30 for it's thicker grip and 10 round cap.
     
  15. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

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    As has been said the .45 GAP really is a round that was a created solution for a problem that didn't really exist. It's expensive, hard to buy "off the rack" at most places and just not very popular.

    It will give you a smaller grip profile, but that is about all you are getting out of it in your new purchase. It's just a round that isn't really needed in the world other than to market to small handed people who want A LOT of ammo in their magazine, to be perfectly honest.

    The 9mm, with something like 135 grain or 147grain, I prefer +P for my gal's weapon, has MORE than enough umph to get through exterior clothing and into meat. That means each shot is most likely going to be doing damage to flesh.

    The mystique of the one shot stop WILL get you in trouble and possibly killed if you are ever called upon to use your weapon. You know who gets' one shop stops?

    There called snipers and they are using rifle rounds to several the spinal cord of the bad guy.

    Ideally you should be looking for a weapon that is:
    • comfortable in your hand,
    • isn't too thick or heavy to carry,
    • one that you will practice with ( so not punishing or expensive to feed)
    • feel comfortable pointing and shooting at the target, not just how it feels in the store
    • and one that you can put multiple rounds, on target, in repeated fashion.
    We have a lot of folks here with real world experience and all of them, I will bet, will tell you the same thing. One is none. Firing one round into an adversary is dangerous. You need to plan on firing as many rounds as it takes to end the threat.

    Having a fire breathing magnum that launches 300 grains of lead at 2400fps isn't going to do you a damn bit of good if you miss and your second shot takes 3 or 4 seconds to line up on target. You understand?

    Comfort, practice and one you will actually be carrying. Than you can tailor ammo for defensive purposes. Even in a 'little old 9mm' because that round can, and has, stopped people dead in their tracks when accurately applied.

    JD
     
  16. Owl1024

    Owl1024 New Member

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    Thank you all for your input and incite. You've given me something to think about before foolishly rushing out to get a 'hand cannon' to replace my 9mm. Truth be told, in 9 mm, my preferred loads are: 115 grain Cor•Bon DPX and 124 grain Speer Gold Dot (might add 147 grain Gold Dot at a later date). I'd also like to try Winchester PDXI 9mm at some time.
     
  17. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    If you are proficient with what you have, why change?

    But then, I would rather be missed by a .45 than hit with a 9mm.
     
  18. victorzamora

    victorzamora New Member

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    My question is why are you selling your Sigma? If you don't like your Sigma, there's no reason you would like the Glock it's emulating. The Springfield XD to me is basically the same gun as the Glock and the Sigma.

    If you're looking for a bigger caliber because 9mm isn't enough protection for you, you're doing something seriously wrong.

    If I were you, I would also look into the Beretta Px4 Storm in all three sizes. Also, the S&W M&P series deserves a consideration.
     
  19. Owl1024

    Owl1024 New Member

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    ...and now, for its safeties, the xd9sc looks interesting...as does the xd40sc. My SW9VE is just too bulky.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2011
  20. utf59

    utf59 New Member

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    FYI, the Glock 30 is a .45 ACP. It's surprisingly accurate for a small gun, and .45 ACP recoil isn't all that bad — it's more of a push than a snap. I like the way it shoots and conceals, and that's why I carry mine.

    With that said, I don't think you should abandon your Sigma because of the caliber. There's a story in a police publication online (can't find it right now) about a cop who had a shootout with some guy who it turned out was NOT doped up. The cop hit him multiple times (14 in the torso, IIRC) and the guy managed to drive off, though he died at the wheel very shortly after. The guy kept shooting back at the cop and even advanced on him. The cop was hit (twice, I think) and had to retreat behind the cover of his vehicle for a reload. The cop was shooting a .40. Shot placement is everything.

    So buy whatever gun you want, and sell whatever gun you want. But don't lull yourself into a false sense of security that because you're carrying a .XX caliber pistol that the fight is going to be over when you hit the bad guy once.