About the Dueling Discussions category

.45 ACP is clearly superior to 9mm. But there are a lot of comparable personal-defense items that the jury is still out on. Whether you want to share your opinion or gain some insight before your next purchase, this is the place for you!


I have carried a .45 ACP for 20+ years in law enforcement as well as a CC weapon since retiring. I own both .45 and 9mm but personally go for weight over velocity. I will say that a person needs to have the proper hand size to handle a double stacked .45. I carried the same Glock 21 on duty and have a Glock 30 that I carry for CC. Never any issues with either weapon.

I like both, Proficient with both. During my service time 1911A1 was my PDW. I also favor the Browning HP. Both are great sidearms. A bit more hefty than other now day carrys. A friend mentioned the weight to me. I told him its nothing once you get used to carrying it. I think its all a matter of personal choice and preference. What ever we carry Be the best we can be with it. :us:


LOVE MY Springfield 1911A1. 5" Barrel, but to carry on body concealed, it has been hard to conceal. I have a Springfield XD 3.8" .45 ACP, 9 / 13 magazines, does that count? Fits like a glove. the 1911 has a 4-pound trigger and even though the trigger is adjustable, I leave it alone. There are extended magazines 8+1 and 10+1. Weight is nearly 3-pounds loaded.


Used to be that 45 was better than 9mm, but with the advances in tech, 9 is about even. With 45 you beat up your hands a bit more, and with the less recoil of 9, you can get faster and more accurate shots. Ken Hackathorn, that carried 45 for decades, now has switched to 9mm. Watch him and Bill Wilson on You Tube videos discussing this very thing. When you get older, you need to make concessions.


Both the .45 and 9mm are proven rounds for self defense. I have carried both and they performed well. Presently I have been carrying a Charter Arms Bulldog in .44 Special Caliber. No particular reason, I just felt like a change. On duty I carried a Sig P226 with a S&W 2" .38 as a backup. I’m too old and decrepit (?SP) to carry all that hardware now, so I suppose the .44 is as good as any.

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My take on 45 vs 9mm is I’m going with the 9mm for several reasons.
Number one load out. You have more capacity with a 9mm most of the time.
Second cost of ammunition when you go to the range to train with so you are proficient in a self defense situation.
Third less recoil to get back on target for follow up shots.
Forth 9mm defense ammunition is light years ahead of what it used to be back in the day.
9mm is my choice for everyday carry, it just has to many pluses compared to the 45 in my mind.
And trust me I own my fair share of 45’s.


I carry both, it depends upon how you are dressed. You do not want your last thought to be , if I only had my gun.

45, 40, 9, 38, etc - since none achieve velocity high enough to exceed the elastic threshold of tissue, they all are mostly just poking holes in someone and waiting for them to bleed out. Pick whatever allows you to poke holes most efficiently. (certain vital shots notwithstanding)

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The argument in carry caliber has long been discussed. Yet 10mm comes out on top. 45 weight at 9mm speeds.

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I’ve always carried a 9mm, even though the days of the 40 cal. Now everyone is turning in the 40’s for 9mm. Mind you…I don’t even want to get shot with a BB gun, but if 1 chest shot will do the trick, 45, but I would still take my .357mag into a single bullet contest any day over a 45. Just my opinion.

Glock 36 is light slim and a perfect CCW and is a definite competitor even though it has been out a long time I would choose it over a 9mm when you are in the country or out hunting in bear land.

9mm is pretty much loaded to it’s limit with +P+. 45 isn’t. Even the +P stuff from most ammo manufacturers fails to meet the specs they publish and in some cases not even on par with the standard pressure ammo they make. It’s not that the 45 can’t be loaded to produce that performance, it’s that they just don’t do it for the most part and with a lot of the high cost premium ammo, one is paying a lot of money for hardball performance or not much better. Given the same development, the 45 is better. Even below 9mm pressures, the 45 super exceeds it easily, which is where the 45 should be.

If you like weight, I saw a wildcat that would fit the bill. The 48 Auto. Shoots a 280g bullet at 1080. There was also the 475 Lehigh. Similar performance at 23k PSI.

If you shoot the bad guy through the heart, how much does it matter what caliber the bullet? I carry something thin and light, comfortable and concealable. I know I will carry if it’s comfortable. I know I will not carry something uncomfortable. To me that is the more important factor, rather than .45 vs 9mm or even vs .380 or .38 special.

I will agree that any shot to the heart with most any caliber from any weapon will stop the threat, eventually. A shot to the heart is pretty much a death blow, but the bad guy you just shot, like you, has been fueled with adrenalin and will likely be able to fight for another minute or ten.

A better option would be to shoot center mass where you have a better chance to do a greater amount of damage to more internal organs and maybe sever the spinal cord.

Continue your barrage for as long as is required to neutralize the threat.

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I am right in the middle of both of these rounds. The 40 S&W may not fit the bill for everyone, but I personally like the snappy recoil. A bit slower than the 9 but more muzzle energy, a bit faster and more muzzle energy than a 45. But again, just my own opinion. I don’t think one is better than the other, it’s what feels right to you, and what purpose you intent to use it for.

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So I’ve actually witnessed tests performed by an SF friend (don’t look on YouTube, they are not available) where a human sized hog is shot from 5 yards through the aortic branch with 9mm and .45. It does not get any better shot than that since the aorta is the feeding tube for blood to the entire body.

Time to total incapacitation after one shot? Just about exactly the same FOR BOTH at just over 8 seconds. During that time the hog was not just mobile but creating havoc around him before he collapsed and died.

Do you know what I’ll be doing during those 8 seconds (which will feel like a lifetime) making sure that follow up shots make holes on BG to speed up that process, and at that point I want to have as MUCH punches available to me as possible. So a few years ago I switched from my loved 1911 .45s to higher capacity 9mm and have never looked back.

Science beats theory all day long.


Would you believe me if I told you I found a 9mm JHP round that travels at over 1400 fps and also puts out 389 ft-lb, while flattening out to 1-1/16inch diameter? When it flattens it looks like a shuriken, AKA a Ninja throwing star. The round is absolutely amazing and is a light 95gr and packs a wickedly mean punch.

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