Author Topic: Factors in Winning Gunfights  (Read 599 times)


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Factors in Winning Gunfights
« on: August 25, 2016, 10:56:09 AM »
Here is a C&P of a post I did a long long time ago in a galaxy far, far away

It has been my observation that when those of us who are into guns start talking about the defensive uses of guns, the only thing usually discussed is the caliber of the gun. I have read statements to the effect that caliber is crucial. Some folks seem to feel like this is the main factor in who will win or lose the fight if, God forbid, one occurs.
Hopefully, we can use this post to shed a little light on the subject. So, I am going to give you the most important rule of gun fighting right now. It is

Avoid them!!!

In spite of the ?castle doctrine law? that was passed the same year as Kansas? CCW law, saying in effect that we do not have a duty to retreat from anyplace that we have a lawful right to be, it is still a very good idea to retreat from the scene if you can do so without endangering either yourself or those that you have a duty to protect. The gun, which after a long and arduous process, you have finally won the legal right to carry, is there to protect your life or the life of your family in the event that the use of deadly force becomes necessary. It is not cowardly to retreat if you can; in fact, it shows prudence and good judgement on your part.
So, we now come to the question of what determines who wins a gunfight and who loses.
There are four main factors in surviving gunfights (always assuming that they cannot be avoided altogether). They are:

1. The willingness to shoot, sometimes called mental preparation. The most powerful wondergun in the world won't do you a bit of good if you are not willing to use it if you have to.
2. Sound tactics; i.e. the use of effective cover and/or concealment if there is any available. Don?t be like Dirty Harry in Sudden Impact, standing dramatically out in the open with your 44 Auto-Mag. If your foe shoots while you are doing something as stupid as this, that Auto-Mag might as well be a Jennings 22.
3. Bullet placement. A hit with 38 special beats the hell out of a miss with a 500S&W. Likewise, a 32 bullet hitting your spine is going to do more damage than a 45 in the muscle of your leg.
4. Caliber. This is the least important variable. About all a heavier caliber will do as opposed to a smaller one is give you little more margin for error.

So, don?t depend on caliber as the most vital factor. It is important, yes; but other things are far more important.
I only hope to God you never have to use this knowledge.
Hopefully, some of you will find the preceding useful.


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Re: Factors in Winning Gunfights
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2016, 02:28:02 PM »
Was it Wyatt Earp who, when asked by a reporter, said that the best way to win a gunfight is not to get into a gunfight in the first place? Misquoted, I'm sure, but I like the principle. To me, if bullets are flying in both directions then I seriously screwed up somewhere along the line by not anticipating trouble and taking measures to avoid it. That being said, sometimes trouble can find you no matter what you do.

My CHL instructor was a cop moonlighting as a firearms instructor. He warned us that even if we do everything right, stay well within the law, and it's undeniably a "good shoot," in self defense you will still spend many thousands of dollars in legal fees..and that's if you do everything right. Anything the least bit squirrelly and you'll be bankrupt. How's that for pressure under fire?

 Death or lawyers?  I'll have to think on that one.