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Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 5:32 am
by JeeperCreeper
My buddy and I had a discussion: What is the worst "mainstream" handgun for someone to buy with SHTF purposes in mind. I'm talking generally here, no specific event, so a good well rounded gun. And I mean mainstream: as not in a cap n ball revolver or a caracal or a venezuelan saturday night special.

My buddy said a revolver. Low capacity, slower to shoot for non professionals, slower to load without speedloaders, etc.

I say a 1911. Low mag capacity, mine was super picky with ammo (as well as a few buddy's), not very concealable for a low capacity gun, not easy to field strip, parts need fitting sometimes if replacements ever happen. Good for range or collecting, bad for using.

For me, I'd rather have a six shot (def 8 shot) 357 over a GI 1911 any day. My HiPoint 45 has a better track record than most 1911s I've shot.

But that's just me, what about you??

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 5:45 am
by procyon
You mean, other than the Judge...

:crazy:

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 5:47 am
by JeeperCreeper
procyon wrote:You mean, other than the Judge...

:crazy:

I figured that would be first hahahaha I kinda like the Smith Guv'nuh though. 45 ACP in moon clips can't be too bad

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:31 am
by Stercutus
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/Thread

I know you said no Carcal but that is the answer....

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 8:21 am
by Mikeyboy
JeeperCreeper wrote:
procyon wrote:You mean, other than the Judge...

:crazy:

I figured that would be first hahahaha I kinda like the Smith Guv'nuh though. 45 ACP in moon clips can't be too bad
Funny that you mention that, I was thinking along those lines but something even worse than a Judge.

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But, but, but you can swap out barrels and you can get a .22lr barrel, a 9mm barrel, .45acp barrel and a you can use .410 shotshell AND .45LC in the same barrel. Some people think this is the ultimate SHTF gun, however once the SHTF and they are defending their lives and hunting small animals for food with a 2 shot derringer they will quickly realize how wrong they were.




Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 9:07 am
by arentol
Actually many people consider double-action revolvers to be one of the absolute best SHTF firearms.

The reasons they are a good choice is:

Mechanically they are much simpler than a semi-auto, therefore lasting longer, requiring less maintenance, and just generally being less likely to break or malfunction when desperately needed most.
If you have a bad round in the chamber you just keep pulling the trigger and the next one will fire, this makes them a great choice for a .22lr handgun.
They can be fired accurately just as fast as a semi-auto.

Low capacity and slower loading could be an issue I suppose, but this should be a backup firearm to a carbine/rifle, so that really shouldn't be a major factor. Also if you have moon clips and you know what you are doing it is not all that much slower.

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 10:16 am
by Boondock
Too vague a question. "SHTF" may need a few parameters. Different weapons for different situations/environments.

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:36 pm
by Hollis
The worse is the one left behind or not close to me.

I am with Boondock on his response.

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 2:16 pm
by AS556
arentol wrote:Actually many people consider double-action revolvers to be one of the absolute best SHTF firearms.

The reasons they are a good choice is:

Mechanically they are much simpler than a semi-auto, therefore lasting longer, requiring less maintenance, and just generally being less likely to break or malfunction when desperately needed most.
If you have a bad round in the chamber you just keep pulling the trigger and the next one will fire, this makes them a great choice for a .22lr handgun.
They can be fired accurately just as fast as a semi-auto.

Low capacity and slower loading could be an issue I suppose, but this should be a backup firearm to a carbine/rifle, so that really shouldn't be a major factor. Also if you have moon clips and you know what you are doing it is not all that much slower.
I love my revolver, and use it pretty regularly for CC and HD despite having high cap semi autos, an AR and a 12ga pump. I think a good quality revolver is an excellent handgun for self defense. Combat? No, but personal defense yes. That said, this idea they're simple and have less parts to break is a fallacy. I can easily keep my Glock running with some spare parts and a single tool, if your revolver goes down good luck fixing it.

Here's my S&W M64. Not quite so simple..

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Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 2:49 pm
by JeeperCreeper
Boondock wrote:Too vague a question. "SHTF" may need a few parameters. Different weapons for different situations/environments.
Very true, but how many people only have one handgun or only think they need one gun for emergencies??? I'm talking about "average Joe" who watches the news and thinks, "woe, this world is crazy, I better go get something just in case". Of course people on here will have tons of options, but some people don't.

Besides, no one knows what kind of Shit will Hit The Fan until it does. Maybe a crystal ball is the best shtf tool.

"no one expects the Spanish Inquisition!! "

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 3:06 pm
by B9ev
Kind of funny I feel exactly the opposite about hipoint and 1911s.
JeeperCreeper wrote:My buddy and I had a discussion: What is the worst "mainstream" handgun for someone to buy with SHTF purposes in mind. I'm talking generally here, no specific event, so a good well rounded gun. And I mean mainstream: as not in a cap n ball revolver or a caracal or a venezuelan saturday night special.

My buddy said a revolver. Low capacity, slower to shoot for non professionals, slower to load without speedloaders, etc.

I say a 1911. Low mag capacity, mine was super picky with ammo (as well as a few buddy's), not very concealable for a low capacity gun, not easy to field strip, parts need fitting sometimes if replacements ever happen. Good for range or collecting, bad for using.

For me, I'd rather have a six shot (def 8 shot) 357 over a GI 1911 any day. My HiPoint 45 has a better track record than most 1911s I've shot.

But that's just me, what about you??

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 5:18 pm
by LJ126
arentol wrote:...Mechanically they are much simpler than a semi-auto, therefore lasting longer, requiring less maintenance, and just generally being less likely to break or malfunction when desperately needed most.
This isn't true. A double action revolver is not simpler than a semi-auto, the action is reliant on small moving parts and springs, and is pretty intricate. And they can definitely break and malfunction. Revolvers aren't particularly forgiving to foreign debris being introduced to the cylinder well. Additionally, dropping it with an open cylinder onto a hard surface, or spinning and whipping the cylinder shut, can break the gun.

And that's ignoring the comparatively slow reload, and heavier than preferred trigger pull. (BTW, a fighting revolver is meant to be run in DA, not cocking the hammer before each shot.)

That said, I think a short barrel DAO .22LR revolver might be the worst general purpose SHTF handgun. Think Ruger LCR-22. Ugh, horrible. Cruddy for hunting, cruddy for self-defense, cruddy for recreational shooting (unless you like reloading .22 revolvers).... but great for assassinations?

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:31 pm
by LastBoyScout
Davis Derringer in .25 ACP.

Two shots of low power expensive and not common ammo. Yes .25 auto can be found in any shop but who has a case of it sitting around like many other calibers.

Saying 1911's are no good is like saying cars that take gas are no good. Some good and some bad.

I Carry a glock for a living but a 1911 would not be my LAST choice.

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 7:15 pm
by zero11010
I think this would be based on the ammo the gun uses. I think any gun using an uncommon round would be pretty high on my personal list of worst choices for SHTF.


The FN guns come to mind, I'm just not sure if these meet your definition of mainstream.

Maybe a glock 29? The 10mm round is great, but this would leave you with a gun that isn't as accurate at distance, and a gun that is difficult to attain ammo for.

A Desert Eagle in .50 seems like a pretty terrible choice. I hear about a lot of these going back (substantial percentage of new units sold) after 1-5 rounds have been fired. The ammo is difficult to find and a lot of people can't handle it.


From what I can tell most of the guns that are mainstream are all reasonably reliable and accurate. Everyone's got a story where X gun was unreliable or defectively inaccurate from the factory. But, for everyone with a story where X is garbage there's a story where X is great.

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 8:47 pm
by Boondock
JeeperCreeper wrote:Besides, no one knows what kind of Shit will Hit The Fan until it does. Maybe a crystal ball is the best shtf tool.
I agree. I guess what I'm saying is that it's important to conduct an individual risk assessment and base self defense options off the most likely and most dangerous scenarios.

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 9:02 pm
by Stercutus
Boondock wrote:
JeeperCreeper wrote:Besides, no one knows what kind of Shit will Hit The Fan until it does. Maybe a crystal ball is the best shtf tool.
I agree. I guess what I'm saying is that it's important to conduct an individual risk assessment and base self defense options off the most likely and most dangerous scenarios.
That's true. If your SHTF scenario involves a bad guy getting your gun and using it on you than the Carcal is actually the best one to have, improves your odds to 50/50. :rofl:

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 9:54 pm
by Boondock
Touché! :lol:

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Sat Apr 25, 2015 3:56 pm
by charlie505
Does Hi-Point make a revolver??

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Sat Apr 25, 2015 5:07 pm
by Stercutus
charlie505 wrote:Does Hi-Point make a revolver??
Isn't it one of these?

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Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 1:58 am
by Halfapint
Hey, you guys are talkin about all these fancy guns.... I'd say a Jennings or whatever they go by now, is the worst. Though I have one (hey why not it was $50) and that thing can take a beating, though its pretty inaccurate (It's very accurate however if you hold it sideways with a bandana covering your face).

I will say it's not picky on ammo, and if you drop a mag and warp the lip, beating it against a rock to straighten it out is totally acceptable and legit fix.

So maybe a Jennings ISN'T the worst SHTF gun. :lol:

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 6:59 am
by LowKey
The worst SHTF handgun?
Simple. It's the one for which you have no ammo.
Or the one which you left at home because, "you wouldn't need it" that day.

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 7:54 am
by Das Sheep
RG-14. Those things are overpriced at free.

I think 1911's are fine. I mean, I would not take one over my Glock, and have seen and fired some really bad ones, but my Sig TacOps eats everything I feed it and makes .45 caliber holes all day.

Its also the most accurate pistol I own, in my hands, outside of my single action cowboy revolvers. For my friends too, for the most part. That trigger, so dreamy.

Now, not saying I would take it over my Glock 19. I wouldn't. But if I had my Sig and a few magazines I would not feel unarmed.

:awesome:

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 12:30 pm
by Neptune Glory
JeeperCreeper wrote: how many people only have one handgun or only think they need one gun for emergencies??? I'm talking about "average Joe" who watches the news and thinks, "woe, this world is crazy, I better go get something just in case".
I borrowed this from a different website:
.500 S&W Magnum. Has anyone ever given a good reason for owning one of these? “I use it for hunting.” Hunting what? Something dumb enough to let you get close enough to kill it with a pistol, but big enough to require a big ass round? Are you shooting dairy cows?
Imagine somebody getting one of those for a SHTF handgun... and then never practicing with it. And then the S hitting the F.

Re: Worst SHTF Handgun

Posted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 1:07 pm
by RickOShea
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