Re: Non magnum calibers vs bear?
With critters that bite back, the only things that you really need consider are; penetration, making the biggest hole you can, penetration and penetration.
A 9mm or 45acp will probably penetrate a skull of a blackbear. But to be realistic, headshots on wild critters that are on the attack only happen on TV shows. They are fast, agile, and pumped up on adrenalin - you are shaking in your hiking boots, filling your shorts full of poo, contemplating your life, and trying to decide whether to run or fight. We have a 7yd rule for humans, that if you're within that distance its a good chance that it will go arm-to-arm before you can draw. Well with a bear, that distance is much greater, and more than likely the bear will know about you long before you know about him.
If you're gonna use a 9mm or 45acp, as weak as they are, I'd use FMJ for bear. Bear are tough skinned, have lots of muscle and are heavy boned. You want penetration, not expansion. Just look at the Buffalo Bore ammo for grizzly defense and hunting even with magnum guns, the hardcore ammo used are Keith style LFN/SWC type slugs. Why? For penetration and energy dump due to the wide and flat ogive meplat.
For shot placement, the biggest target - the front chest cavity. Heart and lungs. As I said before, headshots are for TV and you can ask even those that instruction self-defense classes. Heads are small, chest is big, they are moving and so are you. I'm not saying not to shoot for it, because there are times that a headshot can be made - like from the side when your buddy is being chased down instead of you, or when shooting down at the bear from the tree limb above, or as the bear is trying to shove that gun up your ass as he straddles you and rips you apart. A hit to the bear's pinky toe is worth more than a miss to the head.
Last edited by knight0334; January 14th, 2009 at 09:27 AM.
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