5" VS 4"

Discussion in 'Centerfire Pistols & Revolvers' started by Gene Seward, Mar 18, 2010.

  1. Gene Seward

    Gene Seward Member

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    If you have or have had both a 5" and a 4" barrell in an M&P an XD or any other pistol could you really tell any difference in accuracy? I contacted Smith and Wesson the other day and was told the new M&P 40 in 5" would be out late summer and I really like the looks of it and plan to buy one. After holding the XD 5" I didn't care for the feel, however I have the sub-compact in 40 and had the 4" 9mm and loved them. I have always felt that if I couldn't hit it with the 4" I couldn't with the 5. LOL
  2. Helix_FR

    Helix_FR New Member

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    Don't get accuracy and range confused. Both guns can be accurate but the longer barrel can increase that range of accuracy. Its like a 2 in snub nose 38 compared to a 6 inch 38. Say at 7 feet both are capable of hitting a 2 inch circle. Move that target out to 20 feet. That 2 inch area on the snub nose turns into a 5 inch circle and the 6 inch barrel turns into a 3 inch circle. Both guns are accurate in their own respect but one has a better range of achieving that accuracy.
    Honestly you won't see much of a difference between a 4 inch and 5 inch barrel. You may experience a little more muzzle flip and faster target acquisition with the shorter barrel but its a matter of what feels balanced to you. I have a PT92 in a 5 inch barrel and a CZ in a 4 inch barrel both are about the same on range but the 92 doesn't rise as much b/c of its forward weight.
  3. Gene Seward

    Gene Seward Member

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    I get the range and accuracy idea. I have a 6" 44mag. and several 4" pistols and there is no comparison, but I was wondering about the real difference in like shooting paper at some what short range. I still think I have to have one cause they just look too good not to have one.
  4. old semperfi

    old semperfi New Member

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    i live in southern indiana,old country boy at hear
    the only reason a shorter barrel is not as accurate is the sight radius.i have seen it proven that a two inch will shoot just as accurate as a six inch or whatever.a rifle is more accurate or so they say but that also is sight radius.if the rifeling allows the bullet to spin it will hit where aimed.i know ill get some trash out of this but the only real difference would be the distance b-4 it starts to fall.the longer the barrel the more complete powder burn the more power.i have shot metal targets out to 200 yards with a custom model 29 with four inch barrel. old semperfi
  5. zfk55

    zfk55 New Member

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  6. navis128

    navis128 New Member

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    I debated. The 4" felt better in my hand, but I was also concerned with accuracy. My local guy told me that he's seen the older a person gets...the longer the barrel they prefer due to the sight spread. I'm sure I'll get there, but right now I prefer a 4" barrel
  7. Old Grump

    Old Grump New Member

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    I like them both, cannot tell the difference in accuracy, both shoot the same but the 5" is a little quicker for me to acquire sight picture with the same sights. That might just be psychological because paper results are basically the same. I can hit a milk bucket at 200 yards with either, I don't know how much further you want to shoot but my hold over point is the same with either gun. For carry the 4" has an edge, I notice the extra inch getting in and out of my vehicle. (Kawasaki Mule)
  8. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    I cannot speak to the difference of barrel length in autos but a 44 Magnum or 45 Colt with hot loads in 5" is a whole lot more tame than one with a 4" barrel.

    Ron
  9. jim brady

    jim brady Well-Known Member

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    That's right - the barrel length really does not count all that much for accuracy. Sight radius is the key. Once the bullet aquires spin from the rifleing, that is about all that it can do. You might have a little more sight radius with a barrel an inch longer.

    There was a demonstration by an FBI agent years ago who shot a number of pistols really well, from a .25 ACP pocket pistol to a .44 revolver. Hits impacting on target were about equal with them all at - as I recall - at about 25 feet. Talking ability to hit (accuracy) not power.
  10. zb338

    zb338 New Member

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    I have had and seen plenty of guns shoot very well with 4 inch barrels. I do have
    a S&W M&P with a 4 inch barrel and a Glock 17 with a 4 inch barrel. I also have
    a Glock 34 with a 5 inch barrel. the two 4 inch barrel guns are disappointing at
    25 yards. The 5 inch model 34 shoots fairly well at 25 yards. I don't know why.
    I have a S&W model 10 revolver with a 4 inch barrel and it shoots fine at 25 yards.
    Zeke

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