The Caliber Myth

Is There A Silver Bullet Pistol Cartridge?

We’ve all heard the discussions, read the opinions in the blogs and been involved in the arguments. “The only self-defense cartridge worth carrying is the .45 Auto” or “You might as well throw a stone as try and defend yourself with a .380 Auto” — and on and on. The arguments and the opinions are endless and for the most part they are exactly that, arguments and opinions. Are you carrying a gun and cartridge combination that is effective or — is there some Achilles heel you don’t know about rendering your rig ineffective and useless?

Up to this point in my career, I’ve fired and tested nearly every caliber and brand of pistol ammunition in the free world. I have developed several pistol bullet designs and done probably in excess of 5,000 ordinance gelatin tests with these bullets. In the process of doing all this I feel I can share some things based on data, and not so much on opinion. Opinion is a good thing, but it needs to have a basis in fact. And that’s often the problem with many forum threads.

This whole discussion can really be brought down to two issues, relatively easy to get our brain around. The first involves us, the shooter and our abilities, preferences and physical statures. The second is the ammunition and it’s actual performance.
Story By Dave Emary

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May/June 2012

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