The lowly .380

Pete F

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  • Autobiographer
  • Woke Up Like This
  • National Rifle Association
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So many people have a love/hate relationship with their LCP because of how snappy it can be. I love mine all the time. Everyone who has shot my LCP with the Hogue grip, even those who said they hated the LCP, has said "wow, that is a LOT easier to shoot". The only reason I don't carry it all the time is target acquisition outside of point blank range (~5 yards for me) just takes too long with the sights.

Mine is so nicely broken in now, I don't think I will ever sell it. It works wonderfully with hardball and defensive ammo. During the summer months, it just goes automatically with my car keys, wallet, chapstick and EDC knife.
Same reason that my Walther PPK/s sports a Pachmayr grip. Better grip and takes up some of the "snap." It makes it slightly wider through the grip, but worth it. Fits my hand better and makes it more accurate for me.
 

mm93

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I’m curious then, do we tend to see the same thing happening with .22lr pocket guns? My understanding is the ballistics of the two are nearly identical from a mouse gun as all of the figures for .22lr’s much higher velocity come from firing from rifle barrels.
There's a fair difference between .25 ACP and .22LR. Not so much in diameter or bullet weight, but in velocities. And even more so if it's high velocity .22LR ammo. I'd take a handgun in .22LR with high velocity ammo over the .25ACP any day.
I had a childhood friend who was shot from across a pond while fishing by some jackass who thought it would be funny to scare him, but hit him. He was sitting, and the bullet entered his upper leg, traveled into his abdomen, and bounced around inside him damaging all sorts of organs.The damage didn't kill him because he got medical help quickly, but it messed him up for life.

I personally was accidentally shot in my leg by a friend I was plinking with about 50 years ago. The bullet entered just below my knee and traveled down my calf, stopping when it hit my ankle. A good 15"-16" of penetration. Doubt a .25ACP would have made it that far.
I carry a Walther .22 that fits in my back pocket when I'm fishing, or hiking, just so I've got some protection from critters 2 or 4 legged. Sure, a bigger caliber would be better,; but a .22LR is better than a .25 or nothing.
 
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Years ago I had my one and only negligent discharge. Pointing my 380 at my dresser drawer after returning home (normally carry without a round chambered) pulled the trigger (STUPID) and shot my sock drawer. It was a cheap dresser (particle board) and the round penetrated the particle board and stopped in the socks. IT DID NOT EVEN PENETRATE THE BOTTOM OF THE DRESSER. I usually carry a Glock in 357 Sig. but at times shove the 380 in a jean pocket when in a T-shirt BUT I now use premium ammo but its just to have something with me - better than nothing.
 

raftman

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Was able to conduct my experiment today. Seecamp .25 (using Herter’s 50 grain FMJ) vs Sterling .22lr (Remington Cyclone 36 grain high velocity), fired at a DOT-certified motorcycle helmet at <10 feet away. Both managed to break the outer shell, leaving holes considerably larger than the diameter of the bullet but neither made it through to the other side, in fact while both punctured the outer shell both lost enough velocity afterwards that they didn’t punch through the fabric lining the inside of the helmet.

Long story short, neither noticeably outperformed the other and both seemed to perform rather poorly. Pics below (apologies for their lack of quality). Top image is .25 bottom is .22.

8009DCC6-7C7F-4B45-82A8-F5E0762ABFE5.jpeg
F6A5F91C-7202-46FC-896D-744099376C55.jpeg
 

po18guy

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Über small cartridges may require an eye shot. At least a face shot. They basically mark the perpetrator for later I.D. The "lowly" 380 does not necessarily suffer from this. .50 Action Express, 480 Ruger, 454 Casull, 500 Smith - you name it - all require hits in order to be more than noisemakers. The psychology of the perp is to harm others and they do not often seriously entertain the idea of taking one. Exception: Suicides.

First hit example: When Clyde Barrow was taken out, it was the first shot fired: a .35 Remington(?) to the temple. Done. Sure, it was a rifle, but .38 Super ball or 45 ACP ball in the same place would have done the same thing. Make the first shot count and the fight is 'often' (but not always for those argumentative types) over.

It's like street fighting: take you oppononent to the ground, making sure his head hits first. Bell having been rung, the fight is usually over. A lesson I was taught long ago by my bar-fighting brother (RIP) as I became a cop.
 
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The idea that the .22 lr outperforms the .25 acp seems to be pretty prevalent, but when you compare apples to apples (same size guns) it just isn't so.

Having killed lots and lots of different things with my little short barrel. 22, I can tell you I quit using the .25 when it failed to perform. I have no qualms about using my .22 to dispatch livestock when butchering. The .25 won't even knock some if them down with the exact same hit. Real life performance doesn't always follow stats.
 
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Having killed lots and lots of different things with my little short barrel. 22, I can tell you I quit using the .25 when it failed to perform. I have no qualms about using my .22 to dispatch livestock when butchering. The .25 won't even knock some if them down with the exact same hit. Real life performance doesn't always follow stats.

And when I decided to get rid of my .25. It was after the hollow-points failing to penetrate and some bouncing off a 2x4 scrap. The .22 punched through. Bullet construction is a factor too. .25 is larger diameter, therefore take more to penetrate than a smaller diameter.
 
OP
CLT65
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I wouldn't use hollow points in a .25. Too small and slow for hollow points, in my opinion; you need FMJ in the tiny calibers for penetration.

I have some stories about .22 rimfires and livestock. Long story short, I would never try to dispatch anything bigger than a rabbit with a .22 lr out of a short barrel handgun. The mobile butcher on the farm always used a .22 magnum rifle. It worked quite well with proper shot placement. My dad one day had to put down a sick cow, and he just went and got his Ruger .22 Standard pistol. I tried telling him that a long-rifle round from a pistol was a far cry from a FMJ magnum in a rifle, but he wouldn't listen. I felt terrible for the poor cow when he had to shoot numerous times to put her down.
 
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I wouldn't use hollow points in a .25. Too small and slow for hollow points, in my opinion; you need FMJ in the tiny calibers for penetration.

I have some stories about .22 rimfires and livestock. Long story short, I would never try to dispatch anything bigger than a rabbit with a .22 lr out of a short barrel handgun. The mobile butcher on the farm always used a .22 magnum rifle. It worked quite well with proper shot placement. My dad one day had to put down a sick cow, and he just went and got his Ruger .22 Standard pistol. I tried telling him that a long-rifle round from a pistol was a far cry from a FMJ magnum in a rifle, but he wouldn't listen. I felt terrible for the poor cow when he had to shoot numerous times to put her down.
Shot placement us a huge factor with the smaller arms. Had a friend whose family butchered 1-2 beef a year. His dad always used .22 rifle. One year the steer tilted his head back at impact. His dad didn't care to have to vault the fence to escape with his life. The .22 hornet became the standard after that.
I found the .25 fmj performed horrible compared to the .22 solids. I hoped for more velocity so tried the hollow points. They bounced worse.

If anyone remembers though, years ago a middle eastern national was caught smuggling arms into the US, through Canada at one of the Washington ports of entery. I remember there was a "1000" involved. Thousand rounds of .25 ammo, 100 pocket pistol?? Something like that
They were to supply an assassin squad in the USA. Don't recall if the squad was already in the USA or not. Anyway, their boat anchor if choice was the .25
 

Certaindeaf

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  • Woke Up Like This
Having killed lots and lots of different things with my little short barrel. 22, I can tell you I quit using the .25 when it failed to perform. I have no qualms about using my .22 to dispatch livestock when butchering. The .25 won't even knock some if them down with the exact same hit. Real life performance doesn't always follow stats.
"Short barrel", like whar, a 4" field pistol?
 
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Strange that such a low-powered pistol cartridge as the .380 could cause this much damage: View attachment 721869


That is funny


But consider what the world was like when the .25 ACP, 32ACP, and 380ACP were conceived.
Back when the healing process from getting shot was no sure thing.

Today they pull the bullet and anything else in the wound.
Clean and stitch you up. And send you home with antibiotics to heal.

Back in the day. You may or may not get the round and anything else pulled out.
And cleaned or no. You were almost certain to have some degree of infection.

Possibly a bone infection that caused parmesan like granuals of puss and bone to drain from a wound that may never heal.

During the civil war. Puss draining from the wound was considered part of the healing process. :confused:

How much all this acted as a deterrent to getting shot back then, I'm not sure?
But dying days, months or even years after getting shot? And what all it may entail?

It probably had at least some weight on a rounds effectiveness.
 

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