Is a .380 too small?

Discussion in 'Cast & Blast' started by 05tacoma, Apr 7, 2008.

  1. 05tacoma

    05tacoma Member

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    Here's the deal. My compact XD .45 is just too heavy and patterns to easily so I'm retiring it to home defense and a "in the woods" carry gun.

    I've always liked Ruger and noticed they have a new .380 that would be a perfect little carry gun, particularly in the summer.

    Is the stopping power of a .380 just way too low to consider it as a primary personal protection gun? Would I be better off with a .38 snubby revolver of some kind?

    I'd love to hear your thoughts on this... it will help me determine what to purchase.

    thanks...
     
  2. ribka

    ribka Active Member

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    Based upon personal experience would not go with a .380.

    Not enough stopping power. I would suggest a S&W model 640 5 shot .357 and load it with 38 spl plus p rounds or a Taurus five shot .357 titanium is also a good compact gun to carry. ( I carry the S&W 640 at work for 15 years as a back-up and also take it with me hunting and fishing) Both are relatively rust-proof too and revolvers (wheel guns) are very dependable, easy to use and will typically shoot when dirty, wet. You can buy a couple speed loaders too for the firearm if 5 shots are not enough for you.

    As with all firearms become very familar with it and practice with it before you carry it. I recommend taking a handgun/personal defense type shooting course too.
     
  3. E'burg fisher

    E'burg fisher Member

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    I would agree with Ribka on this. S&W 640 as a back up as well. Airweight model that is light and easy to conceal. There are also tons of small framed 9mm and 40 caliber handguns that are easy to conceal. I have a Springfield XD subcompact in 40. Can be a handful in such a small gun but A 9mm would be no problem. Lots of places offer classes that will help with basic fundamentals if your not familiar with handguns. And lastly, I would recommend a small safe, even if it's one of those little ones for legal documents, for the house to securely store the gun.
     
  4. 05tacoma

    05tacoma Member

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    Thanks for the responses. After more search on the web, I agree that the .380 just won't have the penetration needed to consider it more than a backup to a primary weapon. I'll probably go with a small revolver or 9mm in a small 1911. I shoot at least 200 rounds a week through my various pistols and would never carry one I wasn't completely familiar with so I appreciate your concern regarding the safety issues. Carrying is a BIG responsibility and I don't take it lightly.

    Too bad there aren't more single stack 9mm polymer semi-autos to choose from... but I guess the market just doesn't support a 6 +1 or a 7 +1 9mm compact. A few are out there but they are either very cheap or very expensive.
     
  5. andrew

    andrew Active Member

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    "I'll probably go with a small revolver or 9mm in a small 1911"

    Grays Journal has an artical about the 1911 Browning and how the military has not learned it's lesson taught by history. The Marines originally carried .38 revolvers and found that they did not have enough stopping power, hence the development of the 1911 which was a 45 (the 1911 45 has one of the highest testing scores of any military weapon to date). Needless to say the Military in the late 80's wanted to be more or less insict with NATO and adopted the 9mm; which also boasted a larger magazine. Here's the history lesson...special forces don't want the 9mm an longer since it DOES NOT have the stopping power...where did we hear that before...to boot a 9mm is 'almost' the identical size as a 38. I believe how the article ended was something like this "you shouldn't substitue magazine capacity for killing power."
     
  6. 05tacoma

    05tacoma Member

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    Andrew - I have no reason to argue with your statement. But, if you had to shoot a 9mm, I bet this would at least get someone's attention LOL: http://www.extremeshockusa.com/cgistore/store.cgi?page=/new/product.html&setup=1&ida=60&idp=14&his=0|14&cart_id=2241821.4664

    At least let's put it this way... a 9mm or .38 +P round is definitely better than no round at all. But I won't disagree... a .45 acp is even better. And thankfully, 99.9% of us will never have to find out.

    take care...
     
  7. cuponoodle breakfast

    cuponoodle breakfast Active Member

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    A .380 is better than nothing. I don't see much reason for one though, because there are so many compact guns that are equally concealable but fire a more potent round.
     
  8. Charlie S

    Charlie S Confrimed Reprobate

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    You might consider the Taurus Model 44 double action revolver which fires either a .45 Colt round or a 2 3/4" .410 guage shotgun round. Very effective at close range which is all that should be asked of a self defense type pistol. Also very effective and a show stopper in an emergency.
     
  9. SightCast6X

    SightCast6X americanshotgunner.com

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    I agree. Single Stack or double there are a lot better choices in Compact and Sub Compact these days. The smallest I would go is 9mm.
    I have a derringer boot gun that fires .410 Buckshot. But you only get one shot.
    Glock, Springfield xd, M&P 9mm, Kahr, FN and Sig Sauer. I recommend shotting them first from the ready position.
     
  10. 2506

    2506 Active Member

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    Check out CDNN Sports, they offer some good prices on discontinued S&W autos. Some good buys on stainless compact 9mm and 40s.