Another backwoods handgun question [Archive] - Glock Talk


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02-01-2012, 13:32
Dear Mas,

.44 Mag is the most often recommended handgun choice if large predator type critters may be around, but you have also mentioned the Glock 20 in 10mm as being viable choice if a semi-auto is preferred. I can also see the logic about the revolver performing better at muzzle contact distances which are so often the norm when animals that are big and fast attack, but can also understand why someone would want more rounds.

I know your partial to the S&W 44 Mag. Mountain Gun, but Smith also has a few .44 Mag Scandium models with 2.5" barrels that are popular with hikers and campers.

My question is does the .44 Mag round lose too much velocity in these short barrels that they might not really be anymore effective in actual performance than a hot 10mm round coming from a 4-6 inch barreled Glock?

Thank you for your time,

Mas Ayoob
02-01-2012, 17:17
Y'know, I've never chronographed .44 Magnum loads out of a snubby. Might want to check at Brassfetcher or Box o' Truth on that. A Scandium .44 Mag with full loads is something close to a torture device to most in terms of recoil. I'm kinda partial to the Mountain Gun, myself, but to each their own.


02-01-2012, 20:44
I did find this website

If comparing the same bullet weight of 200 gr.,the 10mm from a 4-6" barrel does in fact outperform the .44 Magnum from a 2-3" barrel at least in these two examples & providing they are accurate stats.

200 gr XTP 10mm
4" barrel 1077 fps
5" barrel 1133 fps
6" barrel 1174 fps

200 gr Speer Gold Dot Shrt bbl .44 Magnum
2" barrel 833 fps
3" barrel 964 fps

Of course.44 Mag is available in much greater bullet weights than 10mm, but I imagine they would also suffer extremely significant velocity loss if shot from a snubbie irregardless of bullet weight.

02-02-2012, 10:28

Between the two,would you choose the Glock 20 or the Scandium 44 Mag. Snubbie for backwoods carry?

Thanks again,

Mas Ayoob
02-02-2012, 17:46
Dan, those are fairly light anti-personnel loads that you posted for the .44, not "bear loads."

If I was worried about bears, I'd probably carry one of my 4" .44 Mags with 320 grain SSK bullets loaded max. CorBon used to make such a round, and may still. Garrett and Buffalo Bore also offer excellent choices.

Of the two guns you mention, since I just have mental block with a snub-nose revolver as a bear gun, I'd probably choose the Glock 20, loaded with heavy 10mm hunting rounds and mounting a light on the dust cover. While the light would certainly be useful when caught in the woods at night with scary things about, it would also create a "stand-off effect" that would keep the muzzle from being pushed out of battery with a muzzle contact shot.

As mentioned elsewhere in GATE, when you study large animal attacks on humans, you'll find that the critters are often already ON the human victims before they can get their guns out. This makes muzzle contact shooting ability an important feature of a "defense against large animals" gun.


02-04-2012, 17:29

Buffalo Bore and DoubleTap are marketing some of their 9mm and 40 ammunition as suitable for a "woods gun" for hikers,campers etc. This ammo is really hot and the 9mm is flat nose FMJ, but I've never seen too many people who considered these two calibers to be backwoods calibers although there are many documented cases of them getting the job done even against the Great Bears. While not ideal would they be at least acceptable or marginal if a 9mm or 40 is all one had available considering the following specs...

Buffalo Bore 9mm+P+ 124 Gr. Flat-Nose FMJ @ 1600 fps muzzle
Double-Tap 9mm +P 147 Gr Flat Nose FMJ @ 1135 fps

Double-Tap 40 S&W 200 Gr. WFNGC @1100 fps

Thank you very much,

Mas Ayoob
02-04-2012, 19:19
Dan, the whole meme of "what concealed carry antipersonnel handgun should I use for bear?" is fairly recent. I'm a bit bemused by it all.

As a parent and grandparent, I've spent a lot of my life uttering the phrase, "Use things the way they're meant to be used." Works with cars, works with power with firearms, too.

Bear guns and boar guns and their appropriate loads aren't optimal for street self defense. Street self defense guns and their appropriate loads aren't optimal for big wild hogs, nor a "bruin bent on ruin."

It's an interesting exercise in theory for each of us to consider how we'd adapt our city streets self-defense gun to wilderness carry, but the fact is, anyone who is actually out where they are likely to be attacked by large animals would be best served with an always-on-the body LARGE ANIMAL HANDGUN AND LOAD, with the understanding that it was only for when they could not access a LARGE ANIMAL LONG GUN AND LOAD!

Feeling an urge to open the gun safe and fondle my .44 Magnums (and my Ruger Model 77 rifles in .416 Rigby and .458 Winchester Magnum),