Two questions for people that know a lot about guns?

First of all, would it be unwise to buy Italian police surplus beretta from a gun show? They are really cheap to buy and are only $250 a piece. The barrels and inner components are certified to fire and they are incredibly smooth on the surface. Some cosmetic wear and tear, though. I ask because a brand new Beretta isnt cheap and tgese older 92F models are cheap.

Second question

Is the.45 a one hit kill bullet? Meaning one well-placed shot to the torso will instantly drop a guy? A guy w as trying to get me to buy his 1911 instead of a Gen 5 Glock 19 because he told me his 1911 was made to a higher standard of quality. Like buying a Ford Mustang V8 vs buying a Honda Civic. He told me .45 is more powerful and efficient than 9mm and that there have been more Medal of Honors awarded to people with 1911s than 9mm handguns in combat. But a former police officer told me 9mm is the way to go since you can carry more bullets. So which is it? The main reason I didn't want the 1911 was because he wanted 2 grand.

11 Answers

  • Quinn
    Lv 6
    2 years ago
    Best Answer

    Police pistols get much more wear and tear than most guns owned by civilians because a police gun has to be carried when the officer is on duty, and he may be out in the rain, snow, and what have you. When you are warm and cozy in your home, he may be out in a storm. That police officer also as to re-qualify periodically, so he HAS to practice. If you know what to look for and what to be aware off, then you can get a good decent used pistol. But if you don't, you can end up with a clunker. And "certify to fire" does not mean the rifling in the barrel is NOT worn or close to be worn and this means you won't be able to hit the side of a barn from the inside.

    As for .45 acp vs 9mm, all you have to know is that caliber does not mean a thing if you cannot hit what you aim at. A .22 in the head or the heart will kill you as easily as a .44 magnum. Dead is dead. There is no such thing as a manstopper if you cannot hit the man. The same applies to more bullets. In a real deadly force situation, you cannot spray and pray - that only works in the movies. You have to make EVERY shot count. And not only that, the law says you are responsible for every round you fire and in the densely packed paper thin homes in urban neighborhoods, you have to keep in mind shoot-thru's.

    The guy trying to sell you the 1911 is BS'ing you to make a sale. Are you going to stake YOUR life on the word of someone giving you a sales pitch? Because it's no skin off his nose if you don't survive a gunfight.

    • Ivan
      Lv 5
      2 years agoReport

      Gun fight? This os not the o.k. coral. Jesus will direct your bullets to hit the targets in lucky shots of you pray.
      You are just not a believer.
      Gun salesman give facts if they are knowledgable.

  • 2 years ago

    Used versus new Berreta: You get what you pay for! Try dropping a loaded (in battery) one on the hard ground at a range while you hide behind ballistic glass or a solid wall. See what happens!

    9mm versus .45 ACP: Everybody knows 9mms bounce off windshields and .45s put a full-sized man down the first hit!

  • 2 years ago

    The Beretta would be a decent choice for the price. As for the "one-shot stop" question, no controllable handgun cartridge is 100% guaranteed to meet that standard, except MAYBE the .500 S&W Magnum.

  • 2 years ago

    The is little difference between 9mm and 45 ACP in fact purely in terms of kinetic energy some 9mm +P loads surpass standard 45 loads (230gr non plus P) and you are likely to have double the magazine capacity and still slightly less recoil, weight and smaller profile gun for concealed carry. That being said 45 is a great defensive round, it is wide and normally slow (for a bullet) which is good for stopping a threat without over penetration and hitting something else. Over penetration is bad and a waste of energy.

    Pistol caliber rounds are never guaranteed one shot stoppers, not by a long shot (no pun intended) and the military used the 45 ACP from 1911 until 1985 when they switched to 9mm with the Beretta M9, so naturally more Medal of Honor recipients would have used a 1911 as a side arm. From a practical perspective a compact 9mm is what you'd want for carry and home defense if you could only have one gun. If you can hit your target either will do just fine.

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  • C T M
    Lv 7
    2 years ago

    Make double sure that those Beretta's are in fact Model 92F's and not the 92S. Typically the cheap Italian police trade in Beretta's are Model 92S's, not the F model. There's nothing wrong with either except the S model takes a different magazine. You can modify surplus F and FS magazines to work if you're good with a Dremel tool. I own several Beretta's, one of which is an Italian Police Model 92S. There are many internal differences, some external differences, different sights (very low profile) different magazine as mentioned earlier, and different grip panel than on modern F and FS models. If the Beretta 92S should ever break down and/or need parts you might have a problem locating them.

    To address the guy trying to sell you his 1911, he's feeding you a load of bull, because he's trying to get you to buy his gun. Period. With the advent of modern controlled expansion ammunition that is readily available from several different manufacturers, the playing field is damn near level when you compare the "The Big 3" in defense handgun calibers. That would be 9mm, 40SW and 45ACP. There are very slight differences in their performance if you read the FBI ballistics gel comparisons when they tested controlled expansion hollow points in all 3 calibers. The 9mm due to its capacity alone is the best choice. There's die hard fans of each of the 3 calibers who will still tell you that theirs is the best. I am a huge fan of 45ACP, that's one that I carried for years. With this new ammunition, I carry for capacity now, and carry a 9mm.

    Source(s): By the way, shooting someone in the finger with a 45ACP will not ever break their arm in several places, at least not here on earth....
  • 2 years ago

    Buying surplus police and military firearms can be a very good deal, yours included. However, like most used items, it is likely "as-is" and there is no warranty to back up the actual condition of the gun. Samples can vary and either you need to trust the seller or make an informed inspection of the gun before purchase.

    That guy is just feeding you a steaming hot pile of BS. There is no such thing as a "one hit kill bullet" handgun caliber or a one it will guarantee to "drop" a guy with one shot to the torso. Guns stop threats immediately one (or more) of three ways: fear, pain, or destroying a primary system of the body (nervous, cardiopulmonary, skeletal). The later will guarantee death, but likely be a mortal would if not treated. A shot destroying the heart, spinal cord, brain, pelvis, or major artery will likely stop an attack instantly, whether it is a .380ACP or 44 Magnum. The problem is that in a real life or death situation adrenaline is flowing and everybody's are moving, making it VERY difficult to make a "well placed" shot to one of those places, even those that are well trained (and people don't train/practice enough as it is). Police, who train more than most, only hit their suspect about 35% of the time.

    When it comes to 9mm vs .45 Auto, modern 9mm +P pressures and expanding bullets do a lot more to equalize the performance. The most important criteria of a handgun round is penetration of at least 12" to increase its chances of reaching a vital area and both 9mm and .45 Auto have that capability. When it comes down to it, the fact that the Glock 19 has twice the capacity and manageable recoil in a lighter gun, the answer is pretty clear when choosing a defensive handgun.

    And for an even more informed opinion check out the FBI report:

    The 1911 was the standard issue sidearm for more than 70 years through major conflicts, including WWII, so statistically more medal of honor winner would have been carrying that, and chance are few were actually carrying it in the action they received the medal for, let alone used it as their primary weapon.

    A 2 grand 1911 is not what you want to use for self defense, especially if it is used. 1911s were designed with loose tolerances. Custom high-end 1911s are designed with tighter tolerances to improve accuracy, but that could make them unreliable, depending on who actually manufactures it. You can get a decent 1911 for the range or even defense if you want for under $1K.

  • BBean
    Lv 7
    2 years ago

    I would feel safe buying a surplus Beretta from an Italian police force at $250. #1 is because cops don`t use their guns in real life like tv shows. A lot would depend on their program to keep familiarized with their weapon but I would venture to say more people outside the police force that are enthusiast fire 100 (or many more) to 1 more shots than the average cop. Some cops have been known to have never fired their gun on duty at retirement.

    The hit from a .45 or any other caliber all depends where hit. All are unique.

  • 2 years ago

    Ok...let s dissect this. (1) does the barrel still have good rifling ? (2) does it function smoothly ? (3) One shot from almost anything, in the torso ( center of mass) will affect anyone, depending on what type of round it is. ( a 9mm hollow point vs a 45acp fmj, for example ) (4) I would say that a modern Honda engine is much more advanced than a 1968 Mustang comparison for the decades difference in technology. Apples & oranges, at best. Btw, why does he want to sell his 1911 ? (5) There are more CMH winners who had 45 s because that was their only sidearm. ( since 1911 ) (6) A $2000 dollar 45 has got to be pimped to the hilt. If you want the larger caliber, get a Glock 20 or 21 and save yourself a LOT of money for one of the best & most dependable guns on the planet...but that s just my ( biased) opinion and I ve had / shot both types. Bottom line ?....if you can, go out and shoot both...see what you and your budget like. It s your money.

  • 2 years ago

    I don't know if they still sell magazines for the 1911 which hold up to 10 or more rounds, but they used to, and I have some, (but not for sale) and I have always favored the ole Colt 1911. New ones are for sale by Colt for much less than the old ones, which are now antiques. Mine went through the Normandy invasion back in WW2, for instance.

    • Jeff
      Lv 7
      2 years agoReport

      And had at least one armory Mixmaster overhaul since

  • 2 years ago

    My husband says the Beretta is fine, and so is the Glock.

    Any bullet can be a one hit kill or drop shot.

    The 1911 can be anywhere from $450 for a basic to $2,500 for a custom.

    If you are only going to buy one gun, the Beretta is fine, and so is the Glock.

    • C2 years agoReport

      Your Husband is a very wise man. You should listen to him when he says "Honey, we need another firearm." :)

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