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Discussion Starter #1
Can anyone rank the damage these calibers do from least to most please? .380, 38 special, 9 mm Luger, .357 magnum, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP
I realize some of these calibers are for revolvers and som for semi-autos. Thank you in advace.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I Just remembered, if anyone can also include any +p calibers it would also be nice. Either way thank you again.
 

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LikeABoss said:
It's a huge debate, all over the forum and on youtube.
Oh, I didn't know. I'm new to handguns and was wanting to learn about the different calibers and how they ranked on their damage caused. Hope this isn't a taboo topic or too general of a question, but if it is, please feel free to not answer me. Thank you again
 

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Sam78 said:
Can anyone rank the damage these calibers do from least to most please? .380, 38 special, 9 mm Luger, .357 magnum, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP
I realize some of these calibers are for revolvers and som for semi-autos. Thank you in advace.
I can say .357 mag will do more than the .38 special . The .38 special will do more damage than the .380. I however cannot speak on the semi auto calibers.
 

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While there may be some discussion, polygon is pretty much right on.

There are only 4 TRUE +P cartridges- .38 Special, 9mm Parabellum, .45 ACP- and ALL .38 Super ammo is +P. Those are the rounds for which a standard +P loading has been established by SAAMI. The +P is simply loaded hotter than the standard load.
 

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c3shooter said:
While there may be some discussion, polygon is pretty much right on.

There are only 4 TRUE +P cartridges- .38 Special, 9mm Parabellum, .45 ACP- and ALL .38 Super ammo is +P. Those are the rounds for which a standard +P loading has been established by SAAMI. The +P is simply loaded hotter than the standard load.
Thank you.
 

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Sam78 said:
Can anyone rank the damage these calibers do from least to most please? .380, 38 special, 9 mm Luger, .357 magnum, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP
I realize some of these calibers are for revolvers and som for semi-autos. Thank you in advace.
I'm not an expert, but I'd put em here:

.45 ACP, .357 Magnum, .40 S&W, 9mm, .38, and .380.

The first two are quite close, but the .45 ACP has been around a LONG time and is a very proven combat round. How many special operations units use the .357 Mag?

I've personally seen the .45 ACP AND the .357 and the damage they cause. The .45 seemed to do quite a bit more...... And it left the guy extremely dead, too. .357 Mag man lived after being shot center mass.....
 

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My bad, I went backwards. Haha.

.380, .38, 9mm, .40, .357, and .45
 

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There are tables available all over the internet that will show foot-pound-energy per round.

I am glad that you came here to get your information. It saved you a lot of time searching for yourself.
 

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danf_fl said:
There are tables available all over the internet that will show foot-pound-energy per round.

I am glad that you came here to get your information. It saved you a lot of time searching for yourself.
That's why we join a specific forum I guess. Specific info by experts. Most of the times a google search brings you right back to a forum :)
 

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.380, 38 special, 9 mm Luger, .357 magnum, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP

My 2¢:
1. .357 magnum
2. 38 special, 9 mm Luger, .40 S&W and .45 ACP
3. .380

You could make a case for including .380 with number 2.

I'm sure .45 does a little more damage than a .40, which does a little more than the 9mm and .38 sp, but it isn't enough to overcome other variables.

And I would rank a perfectly placed shot with any caliber at the absolute top of the list.
 

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Shot placement does the most damage. However nowadays ammo is made so much better, proper load and placement makes you deadly, not your ammo :)
 

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303tom said:
The .45 ACP makes the biggest hole............
True....

Whoever lumped a .380 in with 9mm & .40 needs to read a little bit more!
 

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I would put them in the following order:

.380, .38 Special, 9mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP, and .357 Magnum
I agree with this, although have also heard the 40 and the 45 are almost equal. I don't have a 40 though and have never shot it.

I have shot all the others however.

You can also plug the 10mm between the 45 and the 357.

Desert Eagle makes a 357 and 44 rem mag and 50AE semi-auto and these are the hottest semi-auto around.
 

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I would put them in the following order:

.380, .38 Special, 9mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP, and .357 Magnum
I'd go with this answer.
 

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I always like throw this into the conversation. All of these handgun calibers are virtually side-by-side in damage caused if viewed on a chart that includes rifle cartridges. The 150 ft-lbs of .380acp even up to the 600 ft-lbs of the hottest .357mag is nothing compared to the 2000ft-lbs of the .30-30 Win or the 4000ft-lbs of the .338Lapua.

My only point is that we get all bent out of shape when it really comes down to reliability of the handgun and the ability of the user to get shots on target. Handgun calibers when viewed from the larger perspective, are all VERY similar. What's a couple hundred foot-pounds among friends?
 
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