My esteemed colleague, Claude Werner, penned an excellent analysis: Revolvers will get you killed – Or will they?
You see, Claude likes data. He likes to collect it, analyze it, interpret results, and in presenting his data he often rocks the boat. It’s one thing I love about Claude.
In this particular article, Claude discusses a recent article that posited armed citizen encounters rarely need more ammunition than what’s in a concealed-carry revolver (5-6 rounds).
Of course, in today’s world where increased magazine capacity is a huge marketing/selling point, only carrying 5-6 rounds tends to be scoffed at. So of course, Claude presents data.
Claude’s data shows the number of shots fired ranging from 0 to 2.
We can also look at Tom Givens’ student incident data, where the average was 3-4 rounds.
Thus, it’s reasonable to conclude that “seldom” does one need more than 5.
In my own incident, I fired 5 rounds.
But here’s where perhaps Claude and I differ.
Because you see, statistics are of little comfort when you are the anomaly.
Looking at the Givens data set, the range of shots fired ranges from 1 to 12 (last I saw the data summary it was 11, but I think recently it went up to 12). That 5-shot snub ran empty long ago. I think about my own incident, and while it was unfolding I was expecting there to be “friends”; if I had only a 5-shot revolver and if my situation was different, I’m not sure how things might have gone.
So this isn’t to say that there isn’t a place and a role for smaller, lower-capacity guns. I have them, and sometimes I carry them because they are what’s contextually appropriate. But for me, if I’m in a situation where I can carry something bigger with greater capacity, I will. Because why not? If all other things are equal, why choose 5 when I can choose 15? Because one thing I can NOT choose is how my self-defense incident is going to be and what I’m going to face.
But I didn’t come here to beat the dead horse of “capacity”.
Because if you read Claude’s article (and I can tell by my website analytics that you haven’t clicked through to read it… which is a shame, and your loss), you’ll come to see what matters MUCH MUCH more in terms of a self-defense incident.
For you see, while the hard-skills of shooting are certainly important, there are skills involved in private citizen self-defense incidents that matter so much more.