.38 vs 9mm

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  • .38 vs 9mm

    I'm far from a gun expert, I own, shot from time to time but don't collect or go deep in my research of guns. To me, if I can point it, shoot it and it does what it was designed to do reliably, it's all I need.

    That said, I have "friends" that think they are gun experts (self proclaimed), they often make fun of the .38 I own. granted it's no .45 but it's also not a .22. If everything I know is right a .38 is a larger round then a 9mm, so why does a 9mm get love and a .38 gets guff? Is it because it's an "old" round, I just don't understand it.

    Please explain the lack of love for the .38 vs the 9 mm. Thanks in advance
    This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties either expressed, written or implied and confers no rights.
    You assume all risk for your use. The author is not responsible for your inability to understand logic, ambiguous references, sarcasm, the imaginary friends living inside my head or William Shatner's acting ability.

  • #2
    22lr aint shabby
     

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    • #3
      I'm no gun expert either, but I'll give it a shot (heh):

      9mm round generates 632 joules of energy.

      .38spl +P generates 256 joules of energy.

      Energy delivered is what causes damage. For the record, I don't want to catch either of them.

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      • #4
        We own .22, .25, .32,and .38. All handguns my wife can handle, the first 3 are semi auto the .38 is a revolver with a 3" barrel.

        I love the smaller stuff and will use it if needed, penetration alone isn't the only factor, I do know you want force behind the hit and you want the bullet to do as much damage as possible, not just go through and through.
        Last edited by LFBB; 11-20-2021, 04:46 PM.
        This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties either expressed, written or implied and confers no rights.
        You assume all risk for your use. The author is not responsible for your inability to understand logic, ambiguous references, sarcasm, the imaginary friends living inside my head or William Shatner's acting ability.

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        • #5
          I wouldn't want to be shot with any of them.

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          • #6
            I love the .38 special..

            As of April 2nd, boatless for the first time in many years.
            2019 Tidewater 252 CC Twin F150's- SOLD
            2016 Tidewater 230 CC VF250 SHO- SOLD
            Mobile, Al.
            Dauphin Island, Al.

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            • Tiretyme
              Tiretyme commented
              Editing a comment
              Kyle, I have a small Glock 380, Glock 9mm and a 38.
              I can put 380 in short pants pocket and nobody would even know it’s there.
              If I’m in an unfamiliar place, like stopping for gas while traveling it goes in my pocket ready to fire. It lives in my truck

              On a trip the 9mm comes along to keep 380 company.
              The 38 stays in my bedside drawer just in case.

              Everything lives in the safe except for 380 & 38.

              Have way too many long guns that have found there way to my house—even a bolt action 20 gauge with a clip.
              One of my AR’s I have sighted in (iron sights) with .223 at 50 yards
              My other AR also has iron sights and she’s dialed in at 100 yards with 5.56

            • KMac
              KMac commented
              Editing a comment
              Paula carries the Glock 42 as well.. The 380 is a good round for her.. Small platform, not much kick.. Placement is everything with smaller caliber rounds..

          • #7
            My wife has a LadySmith. It’s a J frame revolver chambered in .38 & .357.
            First time she’s shooting it I loaded it with .38’s.
            Next I put in the .357’s. She shot two of the five rounds in it and handed it back with the instruction not to ever put those in it again. 😀

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            • #8
              I inherited a 25 cal. midnite special. Supposedly you don't want to shoot anyone with it because it will only piss them off.

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              • blaster
                blaster commented
                Editing a comment
                Shot placement is everything with that caliber. I heard a story where a round bounced off someone’s forehead.

            • #9
              There is a reason that law enforcement used the .38 special for so long. The .38 uses a much heavier bullet in general than 9mm. .38 is also more reliable as it is generally a revolver chambered for .38 special. The way to go is get a .357 so you have the option of either cartridge.


              9mm can over penetrate with FMJ, especially the lighter bullets.



              BTW the .38 super is hotter than a 9mm and really nice to shoot.
              2010 Sea Ray 205 Boston Whaler dauntless 15 W/75 merc 14' Shakespeare Wondercraft W/Merc110 17' Gheenoe W/Johnson 4.5 Other assorted watercraft

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              • #10
                for home..
                While taking advantage of state of the art testing equipment, this high performance ammunition by Underwood is field tested using popular, real firearms...

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                • #11
                  Nothing wrong with a 38.. There maybe other rounds that perform a little better BUT ultimately a pistol is not ideally what you want to take into combat. A long gun is always the choice if you going into a gunfight..

                  Obviously a pistol is the only choice for CCW. Don't get hung up on caliber, placement is the key. Any gun can incapacitate a suspect....

                  Personally, all my CCW guns are 40 cal BUT I have carried a 38 snub with confidence. My only concern is the 5 round capacity but that 5 shooter hides easy. I like to have a little bigger capacity is my personal preference... but YOU ARE GOOD WITH A 38..

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                  • #12
                    Originally posted by Cracker View Post
                    Nothing wrong with a 38.. There maybe other rounds that perform a little better BUT ultimately a pistol is not ideally what you want to take into combat. A long gun is always the choice if you going into a gunfight..

                    Obviously a pistol is the only choice for CCW. Don't get hung up on caliber, placement is the key. Any gun can incapacitate a suspect....

                    Personally, all my CCW guns are 40 cal BUT I have carried a 38 snub with confidence. My only concern is the 5 round capacity but that 5 shooter hides easy. I like to have a little bigger capacity is my personal preference... but YOU ARE GOOD WITH A 38..
                    I have a Police trade in Glock 22, 40 cal... It is a FINE weapon. Smooth operating.. I have had it for years..
                    As of April 2nd, boatless for the first time in many years.
                    2019 Tidewater 252 CC Twin F150's- SOLD
                    2016 Tidewater 230 CC VF250 SHO- SOLD
                    Mobile, Al.
                    Dauphin Island, Al.

                    Comment


                    • Tori645
                      Tori645 commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Got ya beat in age.. gen1, although it wasn't called that when i bought it, G19.

                    • V_Thirteen
                      V_Thirteen commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Yeah? Well, my G17's so old, it came with a powder horn and a ramrod!

                    • Tori645
                      Tori645 commented
                      Editing a comment
                      pfft... sure it's not you that came w......

                  • #13
                    Originally posted by Cracker View Post
                    Nothing wrong with a 38.. There maybe other rounds that perform a little better BUT ultimately a pistol is not ideally what you want to take into combat. A long gun is always the choice if you going into a gunfight..

                    Obviously a pistol is the only choice for CCW. Don't get hung up on caliber, placement is the key. Any gun can incapacitate a suspect....

                    Personally, all my CCW guns are 40 cal BUT I have carried a 38 snub with confidence. My only concern is the 5 round capacity but that 5 shooter hides easy. I like to have a little bigger capacity is my personal preference... but YOU ARE GOOD WITH A 38..
                    Agreed, the 5 round capacity will make you spend shots carefully, but being able to control the weapon is most important.
                    This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties either expressed, written or implied and confers no rights.
                    You assume all risk for your use. The author is not responsible for your inability to understand logic, ambiguous references, sarcasm, the imaginary friends living inside my head or William Shatner's acting ability.

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                    • blaster
                      blaster commented
                      Editing a comment
                      There are always speed loaders. Also, most gunfights are Over after just a few shots. More ammo is more weight and makes concealed carry more challenging.

                    • LFBB
                      LFBB commented
                      Editing a comment
                      The reason I only have "small" cal. weapons is so that every member of my house can grab any of them and reliably hit a target, It just seems that a 9mm is more sexy or desired then the .38 or .380 and I don't get why.

                  • #14
                    Y’all should look up the FBI wound studies, as the 38 Spl is anemic at best, even a 380 w/ modern self-defense ammo out performs it …

                    I forget the Doctor’s name, but the info is found on the M4 Carbine forums.
                    Life is too short for an ugly boat!

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                    • #15
                      Originally posted by DaleH View Post
                      Y’all should look up the FBI wound studies, as the 38 Spl is anemic at best, even a 380 w/ modern self-defense ammo out performs it …

                      I forget the Doctor’s name, but the info is found on the M4 Carbine forums.
                      Without a link I wouldn't know where to begin looking, but as you recall, what makes the .38 so poor?
                      This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties either expressed, written or implied and confers no rights.
                      You assume all risk for your use. The author is not responsible for your inability to understand logic, ambiguous references, sarcasm, the imaginary friends living inside my head or William Shatner's acting ability.

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