I have read that the Military use a Benelli Semi automatic with 00 Buck. Very rugged and fast action.
PS: Retired policeman said that if assailant is within 20 feet and coming at you, even in states where you are NOT allowed to just shoot an intruder that is in your house, this is considered "deadly force". It is assumed that the assailant is trying to disarm and kill or injure you and may do so driven by adrenaline even if you hit him with light loads. So "stop, do not kill" seems like a PC thought. You want him DOWN or you maybe! I also understand that police do NOT shoot to wound, if the decision is made to shoot, but to put him down. I have also asked our volunteer location security guy who was our police chief and a street cop in his day and he confirmed that at least some police are trained to do two to the chest and one to the head. That is not an intend to slow or wound but to take the assailant out.
I don't disagree. But I said stop not slow. If the two to the chest stops the assailant then nothing else is needed except to call the police/ambulance and a lawyer (Yes, you will need a lawyer.)
And the retired policeman said that should you have to shoot, DO NOT MAKE A STATEMENT TO THE POLICE until you have a lawyer with you. Legal shootings within the law are then subject to a potential civil case and, of course, "my son (daughter) would never do that" and then it is up to the potentially unfortunate mix that is on the jury.
This article's data backs up what I am saying about .22 caliber.
Now if you are going up against
Then maybe you want to get a .44 caliber Magnum just to be sure.
I used to have .22 cal with a 27 clip and I felt secure as could be.
Interesting conversation. It’s been a number of years since I was active, but a couple comments on what has been written:
Using a 22: As others have said, assassinations and such are performed by professionals, up close, as a surprise, and where a lack of noise is desired. With a silencer, these are close to silent!
shotgun: You could probably get by with a 16 gauge. Number four shot is probably more than enough. You would also probably want the weapon to be as short as possible for maneuverability. I would say a pump action.
Handgun: if you’re not experience/trained, you’re better off not having a gun. Assuming you are one of those two, a 38 caliber is probably an absolute minimum. A 45 caliber, or something near that, probably has the most stopping power. Wheelgun is probably the most idiot proof. Automatics are, in my opinion anyway, most useful in terms of having large clips. If you’re never going to be in a firefight; maybe you don’t need an automatic.
This article's data backs up what I am saying about .22 caliber.
Good article. The author doesn't exactly support the idea of a .22 in his article but I consider a psychological stop where the assailant flees after one shot to be as successful as incapacitation. The problem is a psychological stop isn't guaranteed. Still, its a whole lot better than nothing.
Practice often and be safe.
I remember when I was a kid my father had a few boxes of stubby 45 cal ammo that he kept from the war. He told me they were designed for stopping power because in the Philippines there were problems with the 9 mm were not stopping the enemy, and they would keep charging in close quarters. The 45 even with a fairly small powder load would knock you down even if you were shot in the arm. I don't think this was just due to the larger caliber but more because of the shape of the blunt head, and of course the weight.
My first recommendation would be a S&W 38 Special with a 4 inch barrel and external hammer. Second choice is a toss up; either the S&W 380 EZ mentioned earlier or the Taurus Judge. First round would be a defensive load or a shot shell.
My youngest daughter, 59, with MS, living alone, was sold a SCCY 380. It worked but so hard to operate or load the magazine that even I could hardly **bleep** it. We got her a S&W 38 Special and she is very competent with it.
I bought an EZ and like it but have not shot it enough to establish reliability. The Judge is a 5 shot revolver that can handle 410 shells or 45 Longs.
You might also consider some Umbrella Insurance.
A hammer is needed for many older people. In our late 70's. Slides or double action revolvers can be hard to operate. My wife has a S&W 36 and uses 148 gr wadcutters. While meant for target practice, wadcutters have manageable recoil and the flat front gives good impact. Myself I use a 9mm with hammer for single action. I shoot several times a week. I have trouble racking the slide of my Cold Gold Cup .45 (or any of my autos) unless I **bleep** the hammer first. While my wife does well with double action close range which is mostly likely the distance for self defense, longer distances are much better single action.
The censor needs to get their mind out of the gutter.
"Is a rifle better than a shotgun?"
Better for what?
Each has its' purpose. Shotguns are made for much shorter distances, think less than 50 yards.
Rifles on the other hand can easily reach out and touch someone from 100 to even 500+ yards.
There are reports of snipers with rifles making kills from 2500 yards.
With all respect.
If you are asking these questions because you want a gun, then I don't think you are ready for a gun. Go to your local gun range. Take a gun safety course. You will learn all about guns and how to handle them. You will be better able to decide if you then want a gun and if so what kind. People who have never had any training with gun safety should not be buying a gun. When I was young I took a course from the local Izaak Walton League, I don't know if they are still doing that. But you can find a place.
And what if your wife gets angry at you and finds that new gun? Look out then!! Probably best just to have a meat cleaver around.
A rifle is better for distance and accuracy. Shotgun for close or near with wider spread. On our sailboat we had a rifle and handgun, recommended to us when sailing to Bahamas.
Is a rifle better than a shotgun?
My wife had a background in policing; she taught personal defense to women. Her most common handgun recommendations were 38 Special, .380 and 9mm. Smaller calibers are not reliable enough when accosted by an aggressive male, much stronger and rounds like .357 magnum, 10mm and .45 acp are too much recoil for most women. The main concern, and one often overlooked, is one's willingness to use the weapon, where few experiences can determine this. Even some hunters have fail to fire weapons when attacked.
Be sure this issue is addressed. I think other self defense methods are available.
I agree with FatKat about other self defense methods.
I am a subscriber to ASP and find his videos useful.
I carry Sabre Red Pepper/Tear gas
Warning... physics to follow:
Energy delivered is directly proportional to mass x velocity^2. It would seem, then, that you'd want velocity at the expense of mass - However - You want ALL of the energy to be transferred to the target; so the mass of the bullet can be as much or more important than how 'hot' the bullet is. A lot of rounds would pass THROUGH the target and continue on THROUGH the wall; so a large portion of the energy is NOT being delivered to the target; it is wasted. A shotgun throws a LOT of mass. So, too, does a 45. This is why they have a LOT of stopping power. Additionally, it is the MASS/SIZE of the round which produces a lot of the internal damage and hydrostatic shock to the tissue. Velocity simply makes it more likely that the bullet will punch through the body. That's one reason that hollowpoints are suggested for hunting/personal defense; they will expand and most likely remain inside the target.
If manipulating a hammer, a double-action trigger, a slide, etc. are issues, there is no better solution than the Heckler & Koch P7M8 with its “squeeze cocking” grip. These were made from 1978-2008 and are now a collectors item. Perhaps the best engineered pistol ever made. I have a brand new, nickel-plated P7M8 in a safe deposit box back home.
Second choice: a Glock 17 (or any 9mm Glock).
Both of these pistols are well engineered, have negligible recoil, have various safety features, and can be easily manipulated.
What's the pattern width on a 410 shell with say number 6 shot at say 15 feet or less when fired from some type of pistol--like a Taurus?? Would it be even a foot across? I'd guess not.
I've got ordinary pistols (Ruger Single 6 22 magnum and 45 Colt ACP), but question them for self-defense emergency close range purposes because in a semi-panic situation I'm probably going to be inaccurate. Lots of noise from the 45 but zero stopping power if I don't hit anything.
So, I think of a shotgun for the wider pattern, but I'm not sure how much of an advantage that might be at home or bedroom interior ranges.
I used to test fire shotguns at butcher paper to see their pattern at 30 or 40 yards--that's 50 years ago. Patterns over a yard wide at that range with skeet chokes, but probably quite narrow inside a home.
I've got shotguns too, but they are awkward if they need to be shoulder-fired with 3 or 4 seconds notice.
What legal weapon fires the widest splatter at 15 feet? Maybe not a firearm at all?
Today, my wife and I would have lost a child to the wards of the state, for the following anecdote. Fortunately this occurred 35 years ago, and not now:
Turns out, in a card game in College, the opposing bettor was out of money. He ran upstairs and returned with a German Military rifle, and put it into the kitty, and called my hand.
I won...but could never find any shells for the gun. I kept the gun.
Subsequently married, in a new four bedroom colonial, upstate NY. But only had one child to date. I put the German rifle under the unoccupied bed...a bed subsequently used by my youngest daughter.
At a second grade pupil/parents/teacher conference, the teacher asked my young second grader:
Are there any guns in the house?
Do you know where they are?
Where are they?
under my bed!!
My forgetfulness seemed no excuse to school authority, for this egregious malfeasance.
We kept the daughter...
And I still have the rifle.
Warning... physics to follow:
Energy delivered is directly proportional to mass x velocity^2. It would seem, then, that you'd want velocity at the expense of mass
@racqueteer That's not so obvious. Energy is ∝ mv^2, but momentum is ∝ mv.
Energy is what an object acquires when a force is applied to it over a distance (dE=Fdx). Clearly you want your bullet to have energy, since (if it comes to rest) it will apply a very large force to the target (over a short distance).
An object acquires momentum when a force is applied to it over an interval of time (dP=Fdt). Clearly you want your bullet to have momentum, too!
Why do you prioritize distance over time in your assessment of which physical quantity translates into more "stopping power"? If two children barrel into you, which will hurt more: the one with the higher energy or the one with the higher momentum?
Obviously, by a suitable choice of masses and velocities of two bullets, you can arrange for one of them to have the higher energy and the other one to have the higher momentum.
As it turns out, I believe you are right: energy beats momentum, because I recall reading somewhere that a well designed bullet creates a hydrostatic shock wave that results in "stopping power". Nevertheless, the slow-moving 230 grain .45 ACP is legendary for its stopping power and many law enforcement professionals prefer it to the light, high-velocity 125 grain .357 Magnum. I believe lighter bullets are more prone to fragmenting upon impact, while the blunt .45 ACP acquires a tumbling motion which can be very destructive.
I think the issue is actually somewhat complex.
@chang wrote:Nevertheless, the slow-moving 230 grain .45 ACP is legendary for its stopping power and many law enforcement professionals prefer it to the light, high-velocity 125 grain .357 Magnum. I believe lighter bullets are more prone to fragmenting upon impact, while the blunt .45 ACP acquires a tumbling motion which can be very destructive.I think the issue is actually somewhat complex.
Since when has the .45 ACP caliber been “a preferred caliber” with law enforcement? A few local agencies have used the .45 ACP but it has never been a “preferred” caliber.
The .40 cal was the standard/preferred for law enforcement for the longest time before they switched to 9mm because it was cheaper and the recoil was more manageable. Less recoil is important because it allows for faster & more accurate follow up shots.
The .45 ACP round doesn’t tumble. The .223 round, a rifle round, was designed to tumble and is used in the military M4 rifles (aka AR-15’s).
Lighter rounds don’t have a tendency to fragment. Bullet fragmentation is highly influenced by bullet design. Hollow point bullets are designed to fragment (spread) on impact.
My comment is accurate:
”Nevertheless, the slow-moving 230 grain .45 ACP is legendary for its stopping power and many law enforcement professionals prefer it to the light, high-velocity 125 grain .357 Magnum. I believe lighter bullets are more prone to fragmenting upon impact, while the blunt .45 ACP acquires a tumbling motion which can be very destructive.”
Do your own research, folks. Re law enforcement professionals, my sources are public and private both. The late Chic Gaylord of NYC, who made holsters for hundreds of police officers, is one public source. I also have extensive personal correspondence with the NRA’s late Col. Charles Askins, who wrote me once that his choice was a Colt Combat Commander. However there are other views. I also had a correspondence with US Border Patrolman Bill Jordan who favored the S&W Model 19 .357 Mag.
And yeah the .45 ACP can tumble. The smaller, faster .357 can enter and exit the body.