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The best defensive caliber and load

Discussion in 'The 10 Ring' started by Jitterbug, May 3, 2012.

  1. Jitterbug


    Aug 27, 2002
    Since we seem to have quite a few which is the best bullet questions I thought I’d pose this. It might be fun and educational.

    I recently read somewhere, maybe the 1911 Forum or even here, about an exercise to put some thought into the caliber wars that I believe if I read and remember correctly was poised by a Guns and Ammo writer.

    You are placed in a small, locked room and every 5 minutes a 250 pound felon who is in excellent shape and armed with a large, sharp knife comes in with the intent of killing you, this happens 10 times, 1 felon every 5 minutes.

    You have your choice of defensive handgun in either 9mm or .45acp, you only have 10 rounds total.

    So let’s add a 10mm defensive pistol to the above scenario, you have 10 rounds and the 250 pound felon has been doing lot’s of forearm exercise’s and bicep curls and you have to shoot through that beefy arm and you only have 1 round per felon.

    What will you choose and why?

    To be clear, you can choose either 9mm, .45acp or 10mm and you have 1 round per felon, you choose the caliber and load, the barrel length of your defensive pistol is 5" or less.
    Last edited: May 3, 2012
  2. chrisbritt15


    Mar 28, 2012
    well if i have 10 rounds of each, i guess i would go with the 10mm its a good median between the two, I dont have to worry about recoil or follow up shots since i only get one round

  3. deadandgone


    Jul 27, 2010
    10 mm for me....loaded with gold dots of 180 gr at 1300 ft per sec.....penetrate 16 inches or so, expand to over 1 inch diameter....if felon is still alive after being hit, he won't have much fight in him as I take the knife away and wait for the next guy.....and keep on stacking bodies
  4. Meathead9


    Aug 23, 2009
    The PRK
    In a controlled situation, with those exact restrictions, I think the 10mm/45 have a slight edge. Being restricted to only fire one shot per threat, shot placement will obviously be the deciding factor with any of these calibers. In this scenario, I don't think any of us would make it to the 10th round. You'd have to be 10 for 10 with perfect head shots, against a charging 'roid freak with a knife. I don't like those odds...
  5. oldways

    oldways phat&ghey

    Nov 20, 2008
    pensacola, fl
    Since I have to shoot thru that big arm, I will take the 10mm loaded with 180 XTP @ 1300fps and have my will made.
  6. Cwlongshot


    May 31, 2011
    It's. It in your list... But bear with me.

    A 357 Mag with Fed 125 HPs

    It's consistently the highest ratings for one shot stops, consistent penetration and expansion.

    Having said that and keeping within your caliber list. I choose the 10MM as well. I would need to look into loadings but if I where to choose now I would take the Win Silvertip 175g.

    I have long trusted the 185 +P 45 for these duties and still feel its a excellent choice. But we know the record of the 357 Mag. It's documented fact and the 10MM is the closest performance wise plus it has the advantage of being more controllable!

  7. TomAiello


    Jan 8, 2012
    Twin Falls, ID
    Isn't your scenario kind of biased toward the larger calibers?

    If you leave out the ability to make follow up shots and restrict all calibers to the same number of rounds, isn't the correct answer likely to be "12 gauge"? Or perhaps "thermal detonator"?
  8. WoodenPlank

    WoodenPlank Who?

    May 15, 2010
    NW Florida
    I would have suggested it's semi-auto cousin, 357SIG loaded with Speer Gold Dot due to the deeper penetration compared to my usual choice of Ranger T.
  9. tyr0981


    Apr 9, 2012
    Portland OR
    10MM, without a second thought. Better penetration then the 9, and more kinetic energy then the 45 could even dream of!
  10. post-apocalyptic

    post-apocalyptic magnifi ba$tard

    Jul 27, 2011
    lol.. :supergrin:

    The obvious answer is, of course, full-power 10mm Auto. It's superior to 9mm, .45 ACP, and all other even remotely feasible combat semi-auto cartridges in all cases, and exceptionally lethal with even approximately good shot placement...

    E.g. 135gr JHP @ 1600fps is one of the most efficient loads for 2-legged target elimination ever devised. ;)
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
  11. Jitterbug


    Aug 27, 2002
    Thank you Gentleman!

    I just threw this together yesterday during a brief escape from work, while pondering all the recent threads regarding the best personal defense bullet, style and weight for 10mm.

    I just made a recent move and I’m WAY behind on my hand loading schedule as I set up and try to find my stuff in my new home and I need to get back to loading and I’m considering various loads, so I thought I’d throw this out.

    I carry mostly 9mm, .45acp and 10mm as CCW pistols and they get carried in about that order with a 9mm pocket pistol being my “all the time, go everywhere pistol”

    As I stated, recently I read a thread, I can’t recall where. Which had a similar scenario and the choice of which would you choose a 9mm or .45acp?

    The 9mm verses .45acp argument has been going on forever as all caliber wars do, however being locked in a room with only one round and adding the 250 pound well built felon with beefy arms one needs to shoot threw is a adding new twist to an old argument and it’s curious to see what one would choose and why. Having to do it 10 times removes the lucky shot part of the equation.

    Since 10mm is a favorite why not add it?

    Picture said felon coming at you with the knife held cross body, right over COM, of course he’s moving rapidly and bobbing and weaving, head shot… maybe? But you only have one round in the pistol so use it wisely.

    With all due respect to the wheelgun fans, I like them too! But let’s keep it to semi-auto defensive pistols and add 40 Smith & Wesson and .357 Sig for those who prefer them.

    The pistol HAS to be a semi-auto service pistol in 9mm, .357 Sig, 40 Smith & Wesson, .45acp or 10mm.

    Pick your caliber and load.
  12. OP, this gets easier as the felons accumulate on the floor. Stack them in front of the door to slow down the next guy. Heck, by the time you stack 4 of them, guy #5 might not even get the door open! :). While he's working at it you can take more time for that perfect head shot. Also, you should be taking all those knives in case you run your 10mm dry.

    But for me it would be heavy 10mm loads. Assuming I couldn't use 12guage slugs.
  13. gofastman


    Jan 29, 2010
    I choose 9mm, chicks dig knife fighting scars.


    assuming we only have 10 rounds, and in this situation:
    I'd call it a dead heat between a .45 with BB's 185gr Tac-XP load and a 10mm with their 155gr Tac-XP load
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
  14. tyr0981


    Apr 9, 2012
    Portland OR

    Though i'm always debating in my mind, which would be the "best" heavy response, the 12ga with 00-Buckshot, or the 30rnds of 7.62x39 from the AK.... both would do the trick, but you have to aim and all that with the AK :couch:
  15. Cwlongshot


    May 31, 2011
    No doubt or argument the 12 will always trump all at close quarters power.... But that not with in the OP's perameters.

    Just saying' ;)

  16. datnvan


    Apr 30, 2008
    does not matter which caliber. .45 or 10mm will not stop all of them with one stop, of course neither will the 9mm. there is absolutely no empirical data that any one handgun caliber stops attackers 100% of the time. after the first guy your adrenaline will be pumping and who knows where shot placement will be after each consecutive bad guy. all it takes is for any one of them to keep coming and you will freak out and dump a whole mag on them or even just 2 shots in one guy. if you put this in the equation it wouldnt matter if this happened on the first bad guy or the second to last because all it takes is one to cut your guts open.

    i will take my chances with any of those calibers but being how this is real life, i carry a g19 with 124+p GDHP and for the summer a g26. that is the caliber i practice and am proficient with so i will take a 9mm.
    Last edited: May 5, 2012
  17. Your room full of felons is going to be PISSED at you for shooting them with a 9mm. :dunno:
  18. alwaysshootin


    Nov 14, 2005
    10MM, C.O.M., with any "real" 10 load offering, in any bullet weight. You will be pleased with the outcome!
  19. datnvan


    Apr 30, 2008
    forgot this was asked in the 10 ring :embarassed:
  20. In 9mm: Winchester Ranger or Federal HST in 147 grain +P

    In .357 Sig: Speer GDHP 125 grain

    In .40: Speer GDHP 165 Grain or Winchester Ranger T

    In .45 ACP: Federal 230 grain Hydrashok

    In 10MM: Hornady 155 grain XTP, or a 155 grain XTP loaded by Underwood

    Revolver: Anything in .41 Mag :wavey: