9mm versus .45: The final answer.

Stolen without shame from the Thunder Ranch Facebook page.
thunder ranch 45
They both suck as defensive rounds delivering a final punch, OK? We carry sidearms because they are portable and concealable and not because they will send your attacker to the great beyond with one shot, or even several.

The other advantage is that most criminals (just like us) do not like to bleed and do not like to feel pain so they tend to avoid being shot as much as possible. I was told many moons ago that you have a 80% of recovering from a pistol caliber wound and some criminals know that so, if the reward is big enough, they will take the chance on being shot. That percentage also tell us that, just because you were shot does not mean you should die.

Stay on the fight….but use cover just in case.

13 Replies to “9mm versus .45: The final answer.”

  1. My favorite take on the caliber war was from Tom Givens at Rangemaster in Memphis.

    Essentially the handgun’s job is to make holes in your opponent, so they bleed and stop fighting. If it isn’t working, make more holes. To him the only one who cares how big the holes are should be the coroner.

        1. The big question in the 9mm vs. .45 debate has always been whether big and slow is better than small and fast. The 10mm (with thanks to Col. Jeff Cooper ) made the entire debate pointless by compromising only slightly on the physical size while maintaining higher velocity. Big bullet at high speed = best possible result. If I KNEW I was going to be involved in a gunfight and there was no way I could bring a long gun, I would be bringing a 10mm.

    1. Bleeding does not in itself cause someone to stop fighting in a reasonable amount of time for a typical handgun encounter. If you completely cut the carotid arteries, they still have 10-15 seconds worth of oxygenated blood in their brain to fire back.
      A bunch of holes in the lungs would take even longer. If people continued to fight until bleeding physically stopped them, both sides of every gunfight would be left looking like Swiss cheese.

      The handgun’s job is to *persuade* the opponent they want to stop what they’re doing; making holes in them tends to be very effective. When someone’s bleeding a lot, sitting down and waiting for an ambulance looks like a good idea to them. People tend to instinctively know that will increase their chance of survival. Unfortunately it’s not perfectly reliable but it’s the best there is in terms of practical options.

      If one insists on a medically predictable way of stopping someone that’s actually fast enough to prevent them shooting/stabbing/whatever, there really isn’t any option but to sever the connection between the brain and hands; e.g. sever the spine. I guess training a lot and carrying a good polearm or sword would be the way to go.

  2. Seems to indicate that, excessive as it may be, my Marlin Model 1895 is a perfectly legitimate home-defense weapon.

  3. “We carry sidearms because they are portable and concealable and not because they will send your attacker to the great beyond with one shot, or even several.”

    Uh, they make .44 Mag, .45 Colt Rugers, .454 Casulls, and .460 and 500 Magnums for a reason.

    1. And can you give us a number on how many of them are carried for CCW or LEO uses? If you leave it at home or in the car because it is too big or to prone to liability (that pesky shoot-through-and-hitting-an-innocent thing) is as bad as if you were carrying a nerf gun for self defense.

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