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.357 and 45 auto

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.357 and 45 auto

Old 04-24-2008, 11:45 PM
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Default .357 and 45 auto

I was wondering what the difference of power is between a .357 and a 45 auto. Which one will have more knock down power, which one would be better to pack in the field and which one would be best to carry as a conceal? I currently have a .357 and am considering a Kimber 45 auto. Thanks for giving me the low-down on these two calibers.
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Old 04-25-2008, 04:45 AM
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Default RE: .357 and 45 auto

Got barrel?

The reason I ask is because the 357 is a tried and true antipersonnel round if you have enough barrel to take it to the velocity that it needs to do its work. That would be especially true "in the field." I would argue that ball 45 is not as fast a killer out of a 4-5" barrel as the 357 is. But I would not lose sleep over it, either. With autos, you get more ammo capacity.

If you are LE worried about drug gangs, I would go auto.
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Old 04-25-2008, 11:27 AM
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Default RE: .357 and 45 auto

Anyone else?
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Old 04-25-2008, 12:13 PM
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Default RE: .357 and 45 auto

If you go to www.winchester.com, they've got a ballistics table that gives you velocity and energy for various pistol cartridges at ranges out to 100 yards.

A 158 gr. .357 Mag has about 535 ft lbs of ME and 428 ft lbs at 50 yards.

A 230 gr. .45 ACP has about 396 ft lbs of ME and 363 ft lbs at 50 yards.

Barrel length will affect this data. I'm not sure what length of test barrels they use.

I would think that a Kimber would have a slimmer profile and be more readily concealable than a revolver, particularly if the revolver has a sufficiently long barrel to take advantage of the magnum loads.
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Old 04-25-2008, 12:15 PM
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Default RE: .357 and 45 auto

I spend over 100 days a year in the woods, and I pack a 6inch S&W 686 .357 7shot revolver in the wilds here in Idaho. I have 45 autos also, but I seem to get better accuracy and range from my .357. I also like the ability in the field to be able to pull out the pistol and have it go bang without racking slides or messing with safeties. If a cougar lands on your back, you won't have much time to get your gun into play, and with a missfire on a revolver you just pull the trigger again to have a fresh round in battery. Some may argue, but I think the .357 is also a better round for sporting purposes on game, deer sized and smaller, than the 45 auto. You also have the versatility of shooting lighter 38 special loads, and various shot loads for snakes and such. I have come to settle on 158gr cast bullets from Oregon Trail bullet company for my hand loads, I like the penetration and accuracy of a hard cast solid, but if using in an urban area where overpenetration may be a concern I use various hollow points or Extreme Shock Air Freedom Rounds. If you are packing a pistol for back up in the hunting woods I would stick with a stainless revolver, I have seen many blued pistols rust in damp holsters. My stainless 686 has proved to be tough as nails, and has held up good being packed in the damp snow covered Mountains of Idaho. I like the increased performance and accuracy of a 6 inch barrel, unless you are worried about concealability or small in stature, you won't notice the extra weight vs a shorter barrel. Some may prefer a larger round than the .357, but unless you are in Alaska it should be more than enough to deter any 4 or 2 legged critters you may encounter.

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Old 04-25-2008, 07:59 PM
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Default RE: .357 and 45 auto

Both are proven defensive cartridges if man is on the other end. For a sidearm in the woods I would go with the 357 over the 45 any day of the week. Now for around town as a ccw the 45 would be my preference. And yes I do own both.
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Old 04-26-2008, 01:20 PM
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Default RE: .357 and 45 auto

I'll go along with the chiken on this one. I one mutiple examples of both as well.
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Old 04-27-2008, 09:33 AM
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Default RE: .357 and 45 auto

I own and have shot both all my life and the question is sort of an apples and oranges type thing. Both will dang sure take care of you in the field and for protection in the woods, I'd give the .45 the edge there as well. A good .45 in the hands of someone competent with this pistol is about as safe as any pistol. People in the know carry them cocked and locked. Even then you are still TWO safeties away from the thing firing. A 230 gr hard ball load out of a .45 is a terrible thing to face. Tests have found them as effective on hogs as .44 magnum.

For concealed carry, the .45 probably has the edge. Either is more than enough gun. A snub nosed .357 is plenty to take down a person. The real problem with both guns in concealed use can be weight. A fully loaded .45 is a heavy gun even if otherwise it's pretty concealable. A revolver with 4 or 6 inch barrel is not very concealable on the average person...and they get heavy as well.

The biggest advantage the .357 has in your scenarios is it's a better hunting round by virtue of it's flatter trajectory, better sights, and increased speed. The .357 has not proven very effective against large bears.

Bottom line is you are pretty safe with either in most situations. Let personal preference decide. Some people just can't shoot a .45 worth a flip and for them it's obviously a bad choice.
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