Irv, in your recommended book by Jim Cirillo; "Guns, Bullets, and Gunfights", the most interesting part of it to me was his extensive ballistic experimentation trying to find the most effective bullet form. Since then I've done a lot of thinking about what I have to carry for self defense. Practice ammo is another matter, I just go cheap!IM(not very)HO any of the jacketed hollow point works fine (presuming it feeds well in your gun). Full metal jacketed is ok for plinking but not much else. However shot placement is always king, no bullet anywhere can make up for the bullet that didn't quite hit the mark.
I didnt see anywhere in the thread any mention of "the Debate" and the OP has already chosen his gun and caliber of choice.I have been hearing that there is a debate about which is the most effective....9mm. .40 S&W .45 ACP. While I've heard of it, I never actually seen it. Does anybody have a link to this debate article??? I use...what ever I happen to choose....but 9mm is pretty cheap to shoot......which means that you may shoot more. Shot placement is always important.....no matter what you use!!!
I would think that, a bigger .45 ACP bullet, would be more effective than the smaller.....WITH THE SAME TYPE BULLET!!!! You can't compare apples to oranges!!!! But, why is there a debate? Bob
At the risk of completely hijacking the OP's thread, I'd point out that there are numerous articles, studies and books written by person's that have been in actual shootings supporting a particular caliber, load, bullet weight, configuration, etc. The data is there, but just like with our amateur opinion's, the experienced 'experts' don't all agree, what a surprise! Today we have many effective ammo configurations for nearly every caliber that simply wasn't available even 10 years ago. My advice to the OP and anyone is to research what's available for your weapon and decide what you as the owner and operator thinks is best. After that, practice, practice, and practice even more, then begin to consider if whatever it is you're carrying has sufficient capacity to carry on an extended battle, things like that. For 12 years my police officer son carried a Glock 21 in 45 ACP, but 3 years ago moved to a 9mm platform based on demonstrated advancement in ballistic performance for that caliber ammo and because he could carry much more ammo in his weapon/extra mags. He's been in two shootings over the past three years; one with his rifle, but the last one was using his 9mm and it proved to be lethally effective even when having to penetrate automotive windows and car doors. That said, he won't part with his original Glock 21!The debate happens on just about every gun board and for the most part is supported by fans of this caliber or that based on performance in gel tests ... Ummm which we all know are real life results right
If the debate is to be taken seriously then there should be enough data available on real life shootings to quell the fringes. From what I have read to date ... the caliber that IS the stopping champ is the .357 in 125gr.
What if there is only time for one shot?One other thought. My identical-twin brother (deceased) was a career LEO. One night we were sitting up watching a cowboy movie, etc. I was looking at a Colt SAA that he had just bought ... .45 LC. He was opining about the merits of the various cowboy calibers. Something he said stuck w/ me. He said, when it come to bullets holes, a hole is a hole. Put holes in people and they calm down. If one is not enough, use more. I mentioned about officers dumping a magazine into someone and he said it didn't matter. He'd seen folks go full automatic with revolvers. Training was fine. Never enough of it. But the minute things get bad, no one is playing target shooter. Told me ammo was cheap compared to hospital, recovery, therapy. Told me if it came to it, shoot till the criminal is down. If they stand up, shoot some more till they stay down. I think the key word was "down." I figure it still applies. Sincerely. bruce.