All Of These Hand Gun Calibers Why? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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9mmParabellum
10-27-2010, 09:02
I don't want a fight here, this is just my opinion like many others here on these forums you have to take things with a grain of salt.

Revolvers: .38spl, 357mag, if you like big bore then 44spl.

Semi auto: 9mm, 40cal, 45acp.

Which ever one you choose out of this batch I do believe for your personal protection while going about your daily business you should be fine.

Before the .40cal the good guys where getting the job done with 9mm, .45acp.

5.7mm, 9mm, .357sig, .40cal, 45Gap, .45acp, 10mm?

10mm is good for Mountain Lion, and bear country so is .44mag

Understand I am just talking about the two legged animal here.

Ok, I choose three and focused on the semi-auto only for personal protection. I am only open to constructive comments only.

Markasaurus
10-27-2010, 09:25
It's a long story isn't it? Calibers have changed since firearms were invented and will no doubt continue to do so. Witness the Glock 45 GAP - what else could this be besides a sales tool?

Calibers have been changed throughout history both for practical reasons, but mainly in order to fatten someone's bank account. To use an absurd example, the Maxim gun was marketed in the 19th century with a choice of two bullets - round ones for Christians and SQUARE bullets for muslims. The madness has been unabated since.

The 45 auto was created in direct response to American military efforts in the Phillipines in the early 20th century. Charging moro tribesmen were often not put down by the 38 revolvers then in use by the Americans and so eventually the browning designed 45 auto was adopted. This naturally proved to be the supreme manstopper of handguns and served the USA well until the desire for NATO 9mm commonality over-rode it in the 1980's.
The 5.56 round was rammed through by "political soldiers" in the Pentagon during the vietnam era. And its value was a mixed blessing, since the 7.62 round for shoulder weapons was simply too powerful, and the M-14 was obviously the wrong weapon for jungle fighting.

There are literally hundreds of accounts of the ineffectiveness of the 5.56 round in battle, from 1960's Vietnam to todays Afghanistan conflict (where the abandoned M-14 might actually be superior).

The point of this post is that the super-abundance of calibers in the 21st century, in handguns or rifles, probably came about sheerly because of someones desire for profit. If logic ruled the small arms industry, we'd have only the following -

22 lr
223/5.56
.270 (will take most American big game)
7.62 (it is a standard)
either 6.5 or 6.8 caliber (for the next American battle rifle).
30-06 (good enough for Grizzly).
.458 (if youre hunting hippo or elephant that day)

9 mm (a world standard that's not going away.)
45 auto (still around after 100 years)
38/357 (for revolvers).

However we know this is not going to happen, ever, and the odd calibers will no doubt continue to proliferate.

1SGMP
10-27-2010, 09:26
I don't want a fight here, this is just my opinion like many others here on these forums you have to take things with a grain of salt.

Revolvers: .38spl, 357mag, if you like big bore then 44spl.

Semi auto: 9mm, 40cal, 45acp.

Which ever one you choose out of this batch I do believe for your personal protection while going about your daily business you should be fine.

Before the .40cal the good guys where getting the job done with 9mm, .45acp.

9mm, .357sig, .40cal, 45Gap, .45acp, 10mm?

10mm is good for Mountain Lion, and bear country so is .44mag

Understand I am just talking about the two legged animal here.

Ok, I choose three and focused on the semi-auto only for personal protection. I am only open to constructive comments only.
Different Calibers for different situations. Most people choose a caliber from personal expierence or what has worked over the years (i.e 9mm 38 spl 45acp) for yrs the 38/357 were the choice of Law enforcement, many people stuck with that. To me the 5 shot chief special (md36 for me) is an awesome carry piece. my current edc is my 26 9mm, its all peference but its also nice to have a choice.

bowtie454
10-27-2010, 09:34
1. People like to play around with stuff and think they can improve on what already exists. Look at how many wildcat/improved rifle cartridges there are. And don't forget the .357 is an improvement of an existing cartridge.

2. Opinions are like ..... You are obviously a 9mm fan, and your sig indicates you realize that there are a large number of people who aren't. People differ in thier opinion of "what is enough gun". Just like I disagree with the earlier poster's comment that a .30-06 is good for all big game up to and including grizzly bear.

3. Gives me an excuse to by a new gun (I don't have one in THAT caliber yet!)

Daryl in Az
10-27-2010, 09:59
Well, the various cartridges are a result of someone, or several someone's at any given time trying to "make it better". Someone took a .40 S&W and decided to speed it up a bit, and now we have .357 sig. Things change, and change is the basis of firearms development.

If no one since the 1800's had been willing to do that, we might very well still be shooting black powder. After all, in it's time a single shot black powder firearm was considered "all we need" by a lot of folks.

As recently as the mid-1980's, LEO's were carrying .38 special +p ammo in revolvers. Now one would be hard pressed to find a single agency that still issues .38 special chambered firearms. Things change.

Do we NEED all the various cartridges? Probably not, but it's nice to have choices. To not change is to become stagnant, so I like things to keep improving.

If nothing else, "new" stuff created enough profit for manufacturers to keep them in business, and I like firearms manufacturers to stay in business.

fredj338
10-27-2010, 13:00
It's inherent in man's personality, the search for a better mouse trap. Why do we have 8 diff car manuf making 8 diff models of car when they all get us from point A-B?
Back before quality expanding bullets, the 9mm was pretty lacking in it's ability to end a fight, so "experts" & professionals upgraded to larger bullets. Why, bigger bullets make bigger holes. Enter the JHP, now you can make a 9mm into a 45. Things now start to get pretty even across the caliber playing field. So the only thing left to do is add velocity (357sig, 10mm, etc). Then throw in firearms design & it's evolution along the years. Why the GAP, to get a 45 into a 9mm platform. Why the 40, to get the 45 "power" into a 9mm platform. We are not done yet either. There will be new developements in cartridges & gun designs that will give us new things to debate.
Today, one could do everything w/ two guns IMO; a 9mm for SD/HD & a 4" 44mag for serious woods carry (sorry guys, the 10mm is NOT a serious woods gun IMO). There you go, mice to moose & good enough for two legged vermin.:dunno:

9mmParabellum
10-27-2010, 14:50
I appreciate all of the positive feed back so far guys I consider myself a shooter, fighter etc. with a pistol I never really got into bullet weights, tech specs on and on.

My experience with the 9mm has been 84gr BAT Geco, Federal 115gr +P+, 124gr Speer GD +P+ loaded by Buffalo Bore Ammo.

All bullets are lethel some more than others, I focus on shooting and hitting, flash front sight picture depending on the distance, lots of malfunctions and gun handling two and one handed.

Very important lots of schools do not focus on gun handling. I carry one weapon system. Some people have many types of handguns different triggers, sights, levers.

Jeepnik
10-27-2010, 16:00
Sorta like asking why Ford, Chevy & Dodge.

fredj338
10-27-2010, 18:31
Sorta like asking why Ford, Chevy & Dodge.
GM, Lincoln, Cadillac, Toyota, Nissan, Mazda, BMW, Mercedes, Volvo......... In the good old USA, we still get freedom oc choice, for now.:whistling:

OkieGunNut
10-27-2010, 18:33
"2. Opinions are like ..... You are obviously a 9mm fan, and your sig indicates you realize that there are a large number of people who aren't. People differ in thier opinion of "what is enough gun". Just like I disagree with the earlier poster's comment that a .30-06 is good for all big game up to and including grizzly bear."

Well, my father killed three grizzly bears using a M1895 30-06 with one shot each. Their mounted hides are currently on my mothers living room floor. So, I'd have to disagree with you.

DEADEYEGUY
10-28-2010, 01:44
Just like mouthwash, deodorant, or whatever product being sold. Once sales have peaked on a product they have to come out with something "new and improved". It sells pistols, bullets, reloading equipment, sights amd so on. Stirs up controversy. The new Super-X Atomic caliber is faster than a 9mm, bigger than a .45, and can knock over a semi-truck with one shot! Yeah right! Then the gun rags get hold of it and stir the pot up even more. Got to have the latest and greatest right?
The .38 Special/.357 Magnum, .44 Special/.44 Magnum in revolvers and the 9mm and .45 in Auto's have been around for a long time. Their is a reason. If you do your part they will do their part. If you don't learn to use your weapon well no handgun/caliber combination is going to save your bacon. .22long rifle/.22 Manum same thing for small game and backwoods fun. Too many folks think that adding 1/10th of an inch in frontal area or adding a 125 f.p.s. extra is going to turn a handgun into a tactical nuclear device. Sorry kiddies it just isn't so. The truth is choose a handgun in a decent caliber, that is reliable, that you can shoot well, get some good training, and practice. Lots.
No it's not as exciting as the latest and and greatest "death ray gun" with Nitroatomic bullets made from a secret recipe known only to Shaolin Monks. But no handgun in the world in any caliber or configuration can save your life. A gun is an inanimate object. A tool. It is only as good as the person using it. Used properly a handgun can save your life. But no hardware is going to make up for bad software (this gun will save me because it's a XXXXX caliber). Oh crap you mean I have to work at it to be good with a gun? Yes you do. Not as exciting as the gun/caliber of the week. Just hapens to be the truth. That's why calibers have come and gone. But 9mm and .45 (and their revolver counterparts) have been around for a long time. Used right they work.

G26S239
10-28-2010, 02:37
Out of my handguns I can shoot;
1. 22lr
2. 32 auto
3. 7.62 X 25
4. 380
5. 38 Special in my DS and j frames + 357 Magnum as well in my SP101
6. 9mm Para
7. 357 Sig, 40 S&W
8. 44 Special, 44 Magnum
9. 45 ACP
10. 45 Colt, 454 Casull, 460 S&w Magnum. I don't count the Schoefield for my XVR because its size is overkill even for the Colt ctg.

alwaysshootin
10-28-2010, 06:58
Real simple answer!

If there were only two handgun calibers, how many handguns would you have/need?:wavey:

jlavallee
10-28-2010, 18:20
It's inherent in man's personality, the search for a better mouse trap. Why do we have 8 diff car manuf making 8 diff models of car when they all get us from point A-B?
Back before quality expanding bullets, the 9mm was pretty lacking in it's ability to end a fight, so "experts" & professionals upgraded to larger bullets. Why, bigger bullets make bigger holes. Enter the JHP, now you can make a 9mm into a 45. Things now start to get pretty even across the caliber playing field. So the only thing left to do is add velocity (357sig, 10mm, etc). Then throw in firearms design & it's evolution along the years. Why the GAP, to get a 45 into a 9mm platform. Why the 40, to get the 45 "power" into a 9mm platform. We are not done yet either. There will be new developements in cartridges & gun designs that will give us new things to debate.
Today, one could do everything w/ two guns IMO; a 9mm for SD/HD & a 4" 44mag for serious woods carry (sorry guys, the 10mm is NOT a serious woods gun IMO). There you go, mice to moose & good enough for two legged vermin.:dunno:

A logical post. Pro and con to almost any argument and yep, people cartridges and animal cartridges are two different things.

ColCol
10-28-2010, 18:49
Even before the advent of the 357 Magnum, 44 Magnum, 40 S&W, 357 Sig, etc., there were quite a few choices in the black powder days such as the 45 Colt, 45 Schofield, 44 Russian, 38-40, 44-40 44 Colt, etc. Man likes variety and the firearms industry has obliged. Most cartridges today are descendants of some black powder cartridges to one degree or another.

gatorboy
10-28-2010, 20:46
The 45 is about 11.5mm and you have the 10mm. I always thought a 11x25 at about 30K with a 200 gr. truncated bonded HP @ 1200 would be perfection. If I could, I would. Why not?

fredj338
10-28-2010, 22:39
Even before the advent of the 357 Magnum, 44 Magnum, 40 S&W, 357 Sig, etc., there were quite a few choices in the black powder days such as the 45 Colt, 45 Schofield, 44 Russian, 38-40, 44-40 44 Colt, etc. Man likes variety and the firearms industry has obliged. Most cartridges today are descendants of some black powder cartridges to one degree or another.
Also some calibers were done to meet specific demands or needs. The Army wanted a cheaper/lighter 45colt round, so someone shortend it & the Schofield was born. Then they wanted round that gave 45colt like performance in a semiauto, bam, the 45acp was born. I believe the 38-40 & 44-40 were orignally rifle rounds & chambered later in pistols to provide western bound settlers w/ a simpler logistics of one caliber for both.:dunno:

G26S239
10-28-2010, 23:07
Also some calibers were done to meet specific demands or needs. The Army wanted a cheaper/lighter 45colt round, so someone shortend it & the Schofield was born. Then they wanted round that gave 45colt like performance in a semiauto, bam, the 45acp was born. I believe the 38-40 & 44-40 were orignally rifle rounds & chambered later in pistols to provide western bound settlers w/ a simpler logistics of one caliber for both.:dunno:

I believe you are in error fred338, as I recall the 45 Schofield was developed for the revolver of the same name and the Army adopted it because it had both Peacemakers and Schofields in inventory and the smaller ctg could be used in either.

GVFlyer
10-28-2010, 23:17
It's a long story isn't it? Calibers have changed since firearms were invented and will no doubt continue to do so. Witness the Glock 45 GAP - what else could this be besides a sales tool?

Calibers have been changed throughout history both for practical reasons, but mainly in order to fatten someone's bank account. To use an absurd example, the Maxim gun was marketed in the 19th century with a choice of two bullets - round ones for Christians and SQUARE bullets for muslims. The madness has been unabated since.

The 45 auto was created in direct response to American military efforts in the Phillipines in the early 20th century. Charging moro tribesmen were often not put down by the 38 revolvers then in use by the Americans and so eventually the browning designed 45 auto was adopted. This naturally proved to be the supreme manstopper of handguns and served the USA well until the desire for NATO 9mm commonality over-rode it in the 1980's.
The 5.56 round was rammed through by "political soldiers" in the Pentagon during the vietnam era. And its value was a mixed blessing, since the 7.62 round for shoulder weapons was simply too powerful, and the M-14 was obviously the wrong weapon for jungle fighting.

There are literally hundreds of accounts of the ineffectiveness of the 5.56 round in battle, from 1960's Vietnam to todays Afghanistan conflict (where the abandoned M-14 might actually be superior).

The point of this post is that the super-abundance of calibers in the 21st century, in handguns or rifles, probably came about sheerly because of someones desire for profit. If logic ruled the small arms industry, we'd have only the following -

22 lr
223/5.56
.270 (will take most American big game)
7.62 (it is a standard)
either 6.5 or 6.8 caliber (for the next American battle rifle).
30-06 (good enough for Grizzly).
.458 (if youre hunting hippo or elephant that day)

9 mm (a world standard that's not going away.)
45 auto (still around after 100 years)
38/357 (for revolvers).

However we know this is not going to happen, ever, and the odd calibers will no doubt continue to proliferate.

Good post and while I'm sure knocking down Moro tribesmen was an ancillary benefit, the real reason the Army wanted the .45 ACP was in actuality, they wanted a caliber that could stop a charging horse.

The prestige units of the day were cavalry units, the best way to defeat them was to kill their mounts.

glock20c10mm
10-29-2010, 00:33
All Of These Hand Gun Calibers Why?

Because only one choice in anything either becomes a rip off (no competition) or just plain boring. Gosh, just think, without them, caliber corner wouldn't exist.:shocked:

fredj338
10-29-2010, 00:40
I believe you are in error fred338, as I recall the 45 Schofield was developed for the revolver of the same name and the Army adopted it because it had both Peacemakers and Schofields in inventory and the smaller ctg could be used in either.
I believe you are correct. I was going of research memory. Original point beign, there are many reasons fo rdiff calibers, many that have nothing to do with performance.:dunno:

This cartridge was originally designed as a black powder round. This revolver was patented in the USA on 20 June 1871 and 22 April 1873 by Smith and Wesson. It was a Smith and Wesson Model 3 that was modified by Major George Schofield to make it easier for a cavalryman to reload while riding. While the Colt 45 had more power, the speed at which a cavalryman could reload a Schofield was less than 30 seconds, half of the time for a Colt 45. By 1879, the U. S. Army had purchased 8285 of the revolvers. Due to its lesser power and recoil compared to the Colt .45, it became the standard cartridge of the Army, though the Colt 1873 still was the main issue side arm of the Army.

The .45 Schofield cartridge was shorter than the .45 Long Colt. It could be used in both the Schofield and the Colt 45 Peacemaker, but the .45 Long Colt was too long to use in the Schofield. As a result, by the 1880s the army finally standardized on a .45 cartridge designed to fire in both revolvers, the M1887 Military Ball Cartridge. The M1887 was made at Frankford Arsenal, and was issued only to the military. It had a shortened case and reduced rim; as it was short enough to fit the Schofield, and its rim was not needed for the rod-ejector Single Action Army, the M1887 would fire and eject from both revolvers.[3]
.

minkis18
11-04-2010, 03:01
I know aht your mean about there seeming to be too many calibers. I know a guy at work who carries a 7.62 pistol for CCW and two other guys who both carry different calibers (9mm and 45acp) during their day jobs. My brother bought a .357SIG because he likes the velocities while I am a fan of the .40S&W for it's middle-of-the-road weight and speed. I work with ex-Marines that love the 5.56 cartridge and others that won't buy a rifle unless it's some variant of 7.62.

so why so many calibers? because someone always has an opinion. and when that someone works for a company, their opinion becomes a new product.

Kegs
11-04-2010, 06:01
Good question. Bottom line is experimenters. Elmer Keith is the first name that comes to mind. He made the .38 and .44 hotter and was the key person behind the .44mag and .357 mag. Similar quests in history produced the various choices we have today.

One of the reasons I bought the G29 is because along with the G30, it can chamber the highest variety of rounds, including:

.22LR (I have an AA upper and mags)
9mm
9x25 dillon
.357 sig
.40
.45 (requires G30 slide)
10mm

...and more based on purchasing custom barrels.

Right now I only run 10mm and .22LR, which fits the uses of small game + rimfire (cheap) target shooting to deer and even elk hunting...all with a gun that will conceal quite nicely.

NonPCnraRN
11-04-2010, 11:50
Good question. Bottom line is experimenters. Elmer Keith is the first name that comes to mind. He made the .38 and .44 hotter and was the key person behind the .44mag and .357 mag. Similar quests in history produced the various choices we have today.

One of the reasons I bought the G29 is because along with the G30, it can chamber the highest variety of rounds, including:

.22LR (I have an AA upper and mags)
9mm
9x25 dillon
.357 sig
.40
.45 (requires G30 slide)
10mm

...and more based on purchasing custom barrels.

Right now I only run 10mm and .22LR, which fits the uses of small game + rimfire (cheap) target shooting to deer and even elk hunting...all with a gun that will conceal quite nicely.

The 44 mag came about because Elmer found that the Colt single action had enough metal in the cylinder walls of 44 cal guns compared to the 45 caliber guns. He destroyed a few 45 Colts finding that out. Too bad ole Elmer didn't have a Ruger Blackhawk in 45 Colt or we might have seen a 45 magnum first. He also found out you couldn't load .458 rifle bullets in .454 cal Colts without resizing the bullets. The man did have a sense of adventure...and an angel on his shoulder. A lot of what we take for granted today was learned the hard way by Elmer Keith. I sometimes wonder where we would be if he had the benefit of modern steels and powders. A lot of deer have fallen to 44 spl Keith loads that wouldn't have been any deader with a 44 mag. One of his greatest contributions is that this load can be used in a 357 sized (medium frame) Blackhawk compared to the larger 44 mag framed Super Blackhawk. Those smaller guns ride a lot easier on the hip all day than the SBH, yet will handle most hunting duties. Now if a big bear is in the vacinity the SBH with 340 gr hardcast bullets is good insurance but Keith's 44 spl loads will do for most shooting needs.

9mmParabellum
11-04-2010, 16:19
I know aht your mean about there seeming to be too many calibers. I know a guy at work who carries a 7.62 pistol for CCW and two other guys who both carry different calibers (9mm and 45acp) during their day jobs. My brother bought a .357SIG because he likes the velocities while I am a fan of the .40S&W for it's middle-of-the-road weight and speed. I work with ex-Marines that love the 5.56 cartridge and others that won't buy a rifle unless it's some variant of 7.62.

so why so many calibers? because someone always has an opinion. and when that someone works for a company, their opinion becomes a new product.


Very good point:yourock:

PghJim
11-07-2010, 12:11
Variety is indeed the spice of life. However, I have a problem in that it has been over a year since I bought a new handgun caliber, and I cannot think of one I want. It is hard enough convincing your wife that you want something you so not need, but I cannot even justify it to myself. If you can helpout I would appreciate it. I have: 22rimfire, 380auto, 9mm Luger, 357sig, 38spl/357mag, 9X25Dillon, 40W&W, 10mm, 44spl/44mag, 45ACP, 460Rowland, 500S&W Mag. My problem:

Will not go below 380 in a mousegun
38super or 9X23 have nothing over the 357sig and need a larger platform, not to mention what I can do with a 9x25Dillon if I want that platform.
45win mag or 45super - dead, but 460Rowland has it covered.
460S&W Mag. need full barrel to get velocity, too much gun (weight).
454Causul - Possibilities, but can cover power range with 500S&W.
45LC - Can cover the entire range with 45ACP and 460Rowland, and like most 19th Century rounds, it does not get my nipples hard.
41mag - Ha, ha.
50AE - 500S&W covered and I try to love the D. Eagle, but cannot
327mag - interesting, no good guns chambered for it yet

tuica
11-07-2010, 18:05
Sometimes its a case of progress. 45 GAP: 45ACP ballistics in a smaller package.