.45 ACP recommendations

Discussion in 'Handguns' started by flatwater bill, Feb 10, 2020.

  1. Tanks

    Tanks AH Veteran

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    Well, for bear and in .45 I'd recommend a Les Baer in (or 10mm).
    Whatever gun you get though make sure you dry fire a ton and practice live fire as well. I would also take some competent training to get you started right.

    I dry fire every day and shoot 50K+ rounds a year between training and USPSA/IPSC matches I can't emphasize enough the value of proper formal training so you can practice correct techniques. A trip here for a 3 day handgun mastery course would be well worth it. https://tacticalperformancecenter.com/
     
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  2. perttime

    perttime AH Enthusiast

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    A Les Baer isn't in the budget.

    A person who is not very familiar with handguns might even require additional gun safety indoctrination. A pistol is easier to point where it shouldn't be, than a long gun. Even enough to shoot yourself.

    Cue: police officer who sued Glock. "I just pressed the trigger and it went BANG!!!??!"

    Cue: 3-gun competitor with a holster that lets the gun wiggle a little. Required to run with a holstered handgun. He keeps his hand on the gun. Wiggle wiggle. Safety lever moves to Off. Wiggle wiggle. Trigger contacts a part of holster mechanism. Jump. BANG!!!?!

    Cue: a guy with a holster that has a relese button in line with the trigger. He draws under some pressure. Index finger stays in line with the trigger. And contracts while the gun is coming out of the holster. BANG!!!?!

    Cue: drawing from a cross draw or chest rig. Where's your other hand? Are you sure you didn't just "sweep" your forearm? With your finger on the trigger?
     

  3. Tanks

    Tanks AH Veteran

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    Yes, NDs happen. That's why I recommended training and dry fire practice once someone is exposed to proper techniques.

    I would not recommend cross draw or chest rig to anyone not in the movies btw. There are faster and safer methods of concealed carry.
     

  4. JMM

    JMM AH Member

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    I am a long time .45 guy. Have and carry a custom built Commander. My favorite is the Glock 30S. 10 + 1 capacity and just as accurate as my Commander. Trigger is fine. I use Taran Tactical trigger kits in all my Glocks.
     

  5. fourfive8

    fourfive8 AH Fanatic

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    IMO for the OP for a self/home defense handgun- a Glock of some fashion that fits your hand and you shoot enough to become proficient with. For carefully pressing a light, crisp trigger, single action on a motionless, paper bullseye on a nice Sunday afternoon, somewhere USA, then maybe not a Glock. :)
     

  6. 375 Ruger Fan

    375 Ruger Fan AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    I have several 9mm and 380 autos, but nothing larger........yet. Eventually, everyone should own a 1911 in 45 ACP. For now, I am leaning towards a Walther PPQ. A lot of gun for less than $500.

    Hickok45 did a review on the Walther PPQ in 45 ACP

     
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  7. Tanks

    Tanks AH Veteran

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    Pick a manual of arms (SA like a 1911/2011, striker fired like Glock, Walther, or DA/SA like CZs) and stick with it as triggers and feel of them are very different. That is why I CCW a SA in 9mm as my competition gun that I shoot tens of thousands of rounds each year is a SA gun. Top is my competition gun, below it is my CCW. The only difference other than caliber (.40 s&w VS 9MM) is that the top one has a 1.25 lbs trigger pull and the bottom has 3.5 pounds, not a significant difference to matter for me. 16+1 gives me plenty of rounds.

    [​IMG]
     

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  8. Mike53

    Mike53 New Member

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    Looking at your criteria, with.45 Super perhaps being used, I’d suggest you consider one of the Heckler and Koch offerings.
     

  9. 450 Dakota

    450 Dakota AH Senior Member

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    Find something that fits your hand well. You can pick one on line and when you pick it up find it feels uncomfortable and you won't like it. The new Springfield Ronin 45 looks like a nice package. Their XD's are great in striker fired. S&W M&P are good as well. I have a kimber and I know people have good luck with them but mine jams a lot. It is at the pistol smith now.
     

  10. One Day...

    One Day... GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Amen!

    In addition, since the quest is for a self defense pistol against bear, a whole lot of criteria can be refined:
    1. Forget any "match" focused pistol. Super tight actions are a liability in the field, and match triggers are a liability in high stress situations.
    2. Forget lightweight, small pistols. Bear woods carry is open carry, or at least it is not business suit carry. A substantial holster and belt are OK, hence a reasonable weight and size pistol is OK. They are easier to shoot too.
    3. High stress defensive shooting has a way to lower the paper score, and since bears typically do not shoot back, and weight and volume are not at a premium, a high capacity magazine can make a lot of sense.
    4. Condition One carry sounds very sexy, but it is (or at least it should be) reserved to an elite qualified through intense and continual training. I would consider it the height of folly for the average folk to rough it in the woods with an open holster and a Condition One 1911.
    5. DA/SA is great, because it alleviates the Condition One potential risks. My personal view is that the first shot DA is generally too long, and the transition to SA for the subsequent shots has surprised more than one shooter. For defensive situations I prefer the consistent trigger pull of a striker-fired pistol
    When all is said and done, I envision few or no better pistol for the job described than a Glock 21 in .45 ACP (or a Glock 20 in 10 mm) although the medium size/medium capacity Glock 30 in 45 ACP takes notoriously less space on a belt. I especially like the combo Glock 30 & spare Glock 21 magazines.

    All this being said, .45 ACP or 10 mm are light on big bear... I would prefer .44 or .50...

     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2020 at 4:45 PM
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  11. sgt_zim

    sgt_zim AH Elite

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    Honestly, if I were carrying a handgun in bear country, I've come to the point that 5 shots is plenty, so something in .454 Casull or bigger fills the bill. Nice to have 10 or 12 in the magazine, but there's no way you'll be able to shoot all of that if you REALLY need to pull the trigger. If you don't get it done by #5, and more likely if you don't get it done by #3, it's probably not going to get done at all.
     
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  12. One Day...

    One Day... GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Amen again!

    At bayonet range with a determined surprise charge I completely agree. This is why I am OK with five rounds in the S&W 500, or 10 rounds in the Glock 30.

    If things start a little less dramatically beyond bad breath range, and the concept of warning shots is applicable (this is not a human felon self defense situation), a few more rounds on board can be comforting I guess.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2020 at 4:50 PM

  13. One Day...

    One Day... GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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  14. BWH

    BWH AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    I’d say go 1911...... (Remington, browning, Kimber, etc.) or go Glock.
     

  15. perttime

    perttime AH Enthusiast

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    Which kind of jams?
    How many rounds do you have through it?
     

  16. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    I like Kimber and have a couple of them in .45. I would also check out STI. They are making some great .45’s.
     

  17. One Day...

    One Day... GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Pistol...

    It was clarified that flatwater bill is looking for a bear self-defense pistol. A Condition One 1911 in open holster may not be the ideal choice when trashing in the woods...

    See Art Lambart II's and sgt_zim's posts. Also see mine above re. match-focused pistols.

    Cartridge...

    There is another similar thread re. 357 for bear (https://www.africahunting.com/threads/357-magnum-for-bear-defense.39074/). I thought I would copy here some relevant cartridge data I posted there:
    • The common wisdom for stopping DG in Africa for the last 100 years has been that about 4,000 ft/lbs represent a safe minimum (i.e. 300 gr .375 H&H). 5,000 ft/lbs is markedly safer...
    • A healthy brown/grizzly bear can weigh 1,500+ lbs. For comparison, a Cape Buffalo weighs around 1,300 lbs. It makes sense to consider that the same type of stopping power is needed on grizz as is needed on buff...
    • The .357 and 10 mm deliver about the same power. Buffalo Bore 180 gr 10 mm ammo delivers 728 ft/lbs. Similar .357 loads deliver 750 ft/lbs. This is about 19% of the DG stopping threshold. Good luck!
    • The .41 Mag and .44 Mag are a big step forward. The .41 flies a lighter bullet faster, the .44 flies a heavier bullet slower, but both get to about 1,100 ft/lbs. This is a 50% increase over the power of a .357 / 10 mm but still only 28% of the DG stopping minimum. Again: Good luck!
    • Higher velocity .454 Casull 335 gr and .460 S&W 395 gr respectively deliver 1,800 ft/lbs and 2,000 ft/lbs. That gets us to 45% and 50% of the DG stopping minimum. Yet again: Good luck!
    • The .500 mag S&W loaded with 440 gr hard cast bullets from CorBon delivers 2,580 ft/lbs. This is more than double the .41 & .44 mag power but this is still only 65% of the DG stopping threshold. Still, luck will not hurt, but there is a fighting chance...
    2,580 ft/lbs is not far from what a 30-06 delivers at the muzzle, so it is nothing to be sneezed at, and a .50 cal .440 gr flat nose bullet flying at 1,625 fps delivers quite a bunch of frontal area brunt force trauma... Is it enough to turn some or most charges? That is the gezillion $ question, isn't it?
    • Shotgun 1 3/8 oz 12 gauge slugs deliver at short range over 3,000 ft-lbs. This is yet a step up. Now we are at 75% of the DG stopping threshold. The odds start to get better...
    To put this data in perspective for this thread, the .45 ACP +P 230 gr load delivers 461 ft/lbs. Each will come to their own conclusion...
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2020 at 4:34 PM

  18. Major Khan

    Major Khan AH Fanatic

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    I would highly recommend a Heckler & Koch USP .45 ACP calibre pistol . I have shot M1911A1 configuration pistols , the Glock Model 21 , the Smith & Wesson Model 4506 and the USP , in my life .
    There is nothing wrong with the others , but I fell in love with the USP design when l shot it . Germans know how to make reliable hardware .
    Oh , and they make a compact version as well .
    That said , when l next visit America l hope to try out 1 of those new double stack M1911 configuration pistols . I never tried 1 of those , but they look promising.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2020 at 4:55 PM

  19. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    As some have said, think revolver. A person not well acquainted with handgun shooting and safety is best to start with a revolver. You can get much more power in a revolver, generally, than in a pistol. I shoot both, but have been shooting handguns for many years.
    For a bear gun, there are lots of good choices and they wont beat your revolver to death like hot loads in a semi.

    So for the first handgun, start thinking revolver and graduate later to other things. Now single action or double action. Think Colt single action army (cowboy) type or S&W and Dirty Harry (double action). As a starter handgun, the best thing is start low, like a .22LR. But one can rent guns at the range usually to get acquainted
    For a bear protection gun I would get a S&W Mountain gun in .44 mag or .45 Colt, not ACP. Even .44 Special, loaded up with good loads is a good choice for bear backup.

    Nice thing about a double action is no safety to worry about, no mags,, if you need it. You just point it and pull the trigger. If time you can pull the hammer back for single action, best of both worlds.
     

  20. perttime

    perttime AH Enthusiast

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    Shooting a revolver WELL double action isn't easy. It takes practice.
    It is easier to get a good hit when your trigger pull is short and less than 3 kg / 6lbs. That is one reason why some prefer and recommend a single action revolver.
     

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