The Firearms Forum banner

1 - 20 of 28 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,172 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What is the ideal size handgun for home defense? I understand a compact, or even sub-compact is necessary for concealed carry, but what about the pistol at your bed side? Would a full size pistol be preferred? I'm having trouble understanding what pistols are best in certain situations. I have little handgun experience... I noly shot a few .22s, a 9mm and .45. :confused:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,556 Posts
I am no professional, but this is my opinion.

The pistol that you are most familiar with and can shoot and handle efficiently will be your best bet.

If you are in a panic or high adrenaline situation you want your actions to be automatic and simple, if you don't get the safety off or a round chambered the handgun will do you absolutely no good.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
34,532 Posts
What is the ideal size handgun for home defense? I understand a compact, or even sub-compact is necessary for concealed carry, but what about the pistol at your bed side? Would a full size pistol be preferred? I'm having trouble understanding what pistols are best in certain situations. I have little handgun experience... I noly shot a few .22s, a 9mm and .45. :confused:
My vote is also for what you shoot best, but there are limits that you must face, the pistol being the least powerful of all guns. I perfer a 12ga shotgun for home defence, but there is a pistol by my bed, and it's a .45. Yes, the adrenaline will be flowing, you may have tunnel vision, you will probably lose your fine motor skills, and your hearing will deminish! Do you really want a small hand gun with a short sight radius as your primary SD handgun? One that has been proven to not be all that accurate, and is not a one shot stopper? And remember, you may have to shoot thru a wall!
 

·
Armed Infidel
Joined
·
1,470 Posts
1. - 12 guage, 2. - .40 S&W with jacketed hollow points for back up. I can use the 12 guage to slow them down so I can be more accurate with the .40. 3. - Wife has .22 LR hollow points as last defense or if she decides to shoot me LOL.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,953 Posts
Since you asked about size rather than caliber, I'd recommend one that is big enough to be an effective club when you run out of ammo. Which is why I like my .41mag Blackhawk. ;) :)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
34,532 Posts
Big bullets make big holes!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,953 Posts
Yes, the adrenaline will be flowing, you may have tunnel vision, you will probably lose your fine motor skills, and your hearing will deminish!
I don't totally agree with this, except in the case where it's a persons first rodeo. Training and experience (military/combat ) can and usually does make a big difference in firefight discipline in my experience. And you often read reports of this in the news. Been several recently in fact involving vets (military/leo) who's training, etc. allowed them to overcome what you mention.

Similar to 'buck fever' in a first time hunt.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,036 Posts
What is the ideal size handgun for home defense? I understand a compact, or even sub-compact is necessary for concealed carry, but what about the pistol at your bed side? Would a full size pistol be preferred? I'm having trouble understanding what pistols are best in certain situations. I have little handgun experience... I noly shot a few .22s, a 9mm and .45. :confused:
ditto what RC said.

I'm no expert.. and whatever gun you are familiar with is a good one.

the wife and I have a good selection of guns.. but we each have a 38spl by the side of our bed. hard to jamb, adn ya got 5 shots each to make it count.

no safety to dink with.. no slide to work.. etc.

mind you i do have a couple backup guns / shotgun at arms reach if the 38 snubs don't quell the tide of invaders running thru the choke point / kill zone at my bedroom door.. but the revolver is my first go-to gun.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
34,532 Posts
I don't totally agree with this, except in the case where it's a persons first rodeo. Training and experience (military/combat ) can and usually does make a big difference in firefight discipline in my experience. And you often read reports of this in the news. Been several recently in fact involving vets (military/leo) who's training, etc. allowed them to overcome what you mention.

Similar to 'buck fever' in a first time hunt.
I understand what you are saying. Proper, and I do mean proper, training will allow one to over come most of these problems. The thing is that most of us have never been in combat of any kind. For us proper training is a must, and most of us just haven't had that either!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,202 Posts
The simplest; S&W Model 60 .38. follow up with shotgun when you launch out of bed.
No safety, no slide, just pull the trigger.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,608 Posts
38 Spl stubby loaded with Hyda-Shok in the night stand. 16 ga loaded with #1 buck under the bed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17,292 Posts
If you mean size as in "22 vs. 45", I'd say the biggest you can shoot comfortably and accurately. Since I started keeping a gun by the bed, low these many years, the gun itself has changed often, but the caliber usually started with a 4.

If you mean physical size of the gun, bigger is usually better.

A bigger gun, if you can grip it correctly (since, as the gun gets larger, the grip normally gets larger, and some folks have small hands) has many advantages. It is heavier, so has less recoil. It has a longer barrel, which makes for less noise and less muzzle flash. The extra weight of the barrel hanging out in space will usually improve the balance, making it easier to shot and to hit.

Then you got the bad side. If you are "house cleaning", the longer the barrel, the more gun comes through a door first. If the burglar is both smart and brave, he can stand off to the side of the doorway, and as that long steel tube comes through ahead of you, he can grab it and attempt to take it away from you. The longer the barrel, the easier this is to do - leverage. That, by the way, is why I don't recommend shotguns - 18 inches of barrel sticking out in front gives lots of leverage. But even with a pistol, it would be easier for someone to take a 7 1/2" Super Blackhawk out of your hand, than it would a 1 7/8" Chiefs Special.

For those reasons, my bedside gun is usually a 4" large frame double action revolver, in 41, 44 or 45.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,451 Posts
imo it is hard to beat a Glock 23 loaded with 180gr GDHP for home defense... i have this as my night stand gun and i mounted a tactical light on it
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
573 Posts
When you don't have to worry about concealing it, then a full size pistol or revolver is more accurate and easier to shoot than a snub nose, compact, or pocket gun.

Take a hint from the uniformed law enforcement or military. Full size handguns!

Like in the Willie Nelson song about Pancho and Lefty...."he wore his gun outside his pants, for all the world to see...." :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,036 Posts
harder to take a snub away from you.

if you can't hit a target 6' away with a snub.. but a full length makes a difference at that range.. then you need to visit the 'range' more often.

JMHO
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,970 Posts
Also remember what is behind the target. Rooms with kids. and wall material etc. Most ammo will go through a person and wall.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
34,532 Posts
If you are "house cleaning", the longer the barrel, the more gun comes through a door first. If the burglar is both smart and brave, he can stand off to the side of the doorway, and as that long steel tube comes through ahead of you, he can grab it and attempt to take it away from you. The longer the barrel, the easier this is to do - leverage. That, by the way, is why I don't recommend shotguns - 18 inches of barrel sticking out in front gives lots of leverage. But even with a pistol, it would be easier for someone to take a 7 1/2" Super Blackhawk out of your hand, than it would a 1 7/8" Chiefs Special.

For those reasons, my bedside gun is usually a 4" large frame double action revolver, in 41, 44 or 45.
I have no problem with your choice of weapon, or the reason behind that choice. I also like the big bullets. Pick up your hand gun, and take your stance. Now look at how far away form your body the muzzle of the gun is. A shotgun with an 18" barrel, and set up properly, or almost any carbine, doesn't stick out any further. Clearing a room is not recomended unless you have been trained. But with the proper training there is no reason why you could not do as well a job with a shotgun, or carbine, as with a pistol. The first half of this video shows proper technique for room clearing by one person, the second half is for two people. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yci6UwpYDoE Note the room he is creating. A long gun will work with this technique.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,953 Posts
I understand what you are saying. Proper, and I do mean proper, training will allow one to over come most of these problems. The thing is that most of us have never been in combat of any kind. For us proper training is a must, and most of us just haven't had that either!
There's a couple things that life time civilians can do tho, that will at least get them on first base. Lot of info on the net: Posted a couple since I've been here - USMC manuals, etc. Also a number of live fire training courses are available in some parts of the country. Kinda pricey tho from what I've heard.

Most people will never in their lives have to deal with a household shootout, statistically speaking, unless they live in certain high threat areas, so it doesn't always make sense to spend a lot of time and money getting advanced training, any more than it makes much sense for the average commuter to get advanced offensive driving training. We all play the odds.

But some backyard/house simulation can be beneficial. I think that's been discussed in previous threads, tho. :)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
34,532 Posts
There's a couple things that life time civilians can do tho, that will at least get them on first base. Lot of info on the net: Posted a couple since I've been here - USMC manuals, etc. Also a number of live fire training courses are available in some parts of the country. Kinda pricey tho from what I've heard.

Most people will never in their lives have to deal with a household shootout, statistically speaking, unless they live in certain high threat areas, so it doesn't always make sense to spend a lot of time and money getting advanced training, any more than it makes much sense for the average commuter to get advanced offensive driving training. We all play the odds.

But some backyard/house simulation can be beneficial. I think that's been discussed in previous threads, tho. :)
I can't speak for the rest of the country, but here where I live, I have access to training that is not cost prohibitive. http://www.greensguns.com/training-i-54.html Last I checked they were charging around $65 for each level of training, plus ammo.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,953 Posts
I can't speak for the rest of the country, but here where I live, I have access to training that is not cost prohibitive. http://www.greensguns.com/training-i-54.html Last I checked they were charging around $65 for each level of training, plus ammo.
Not bad for decent training :). Here's something most people don't think about. Furniture arrangement. A lot of folks arrange their furniture for ease of cleaning, visual appeal, conversation, feng shui, etc., but rarely think about it as potential cover/concealment. The two are not necessarily mutually exclusive, and furniture placement can offer a considerable advantage to the homeowner. Just something to think about. ;)
 
1 - 20 of 28 Posts
Top