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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a number of options in .40 and .45 calibers for my basic personal defense handgun. I took several to the range yesterday to evaluate my comfort and proficiency levels and the pistols' basic accuracy levels. Too, I wanted to get a better idea of which would be the most inconspicuous concealed carry gun, should I choose to carry. The candidates for this trip were:

1. SAI XD40sc
2. SAI XDm 45 3.8
3. SAI XD45 Tactical Compact
4. SAI TRP 1911 in .45ACP

with Remington UMC FMC factory ammo in 180gr (.40 S&W) and 230gr (.45ACP), respectively

No 4. has been my fall and winter PD handgun for the last several years since I retired a customized Colt Mk IV, ser. '70 that had had the role since the late '70s.

Each has been totally reliable for >500 rounds.

I chose to shoot two magazines, one with 5 rounds, and a reload with 8 (I reversed that order with the TRP). My first mag was at 13 yards, reload and move up to 7 yards

The attached target was my result with no. 1, above.



I've decided to go with the XD40sc and will be finalizing between TAP, Rem Golden Saber and Winchester Personal Defense ammo next trip.

While I recommend each of the above pistols without reservation, for size, concealment, ease of use and my effectiveness, my choice became clear. At the moment, I'll be using a Galco OWB single magazine carrier and a Concealment Holster, though I'll be continuing to research. Suggestions welcomed.

FH
 

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Sounds like a very thoughtful analysis, Harry. Well done. Can you say a few words on why you picked the firearm and caliber you did?
 

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I too carry an XD40SC...I have found the Remington Golden Sabre and Speer Gold Dot
(Short Barrel Load) to be the best options for limited muzzle flash, easier follow-ups and reliable feeding--Hornady ammo has been somewhat "flashy" and inconsistent out of my particular gun--YMMV...

I love my Galco KingTuk IWB for the sub-comp...its been a very good reliable design for my needs and all 3 of my XDs fit in it! Bang for the buck I have also been told Aliengear's offering is excellent and is on my radar for a future pick...

Excellent write-up!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Sounds like a very thoughtful analysis, Harry. Well done. Can you say a few words on why you picked the firearm and caliber you did?
I have been a believer in defensive calibers starting with a .4x for many years, having had my S&W Combat Masterpiece .38 Spl USAF issue laughed at by a bunch of US Marines back in the late '60s with an accompanying explanation by a grizzled Gunny who had served with the 1st Marine Division on Guadalcanal. I got a Colt 1911 in .45ACP as soon as I could and had a very nice Mk. IV, ser. '70 rebuilt by Jim Hoag of Hoag Gunworks in Canoga Park, CA in 1978. That was my PD gun from 1978 through 2010. That year I retired it, switching to the above mentioned TRP.

I found the full-size grip of the 1911 a bit difficult for concealment where I like to carry a gun, especially with lightweight shirts in summer. This led me to try the SAI XD45 Compact that a friend had bought and I liked it very much. I had trouble finding one for a while and happened upon the XD40sc which I liked quite a bit for size, concealability, controllability, and grip angle and, when compared the the Glock of comparable size, had better sights and better trigger. As you'll note, I had acquired the two Compact XD45s and also liked them but found I was a bit more consistent as well as a bit quicker with the XD40. BTW, I did the two magazine test to use both the compact and extended magazine for each to see if that made a difference to me. It didn't but it turns out that, with the short magazines, I did a little better with the .40 S&W.

That was my thought process through yesterday...but I'm leaving the door open as I continue to gain experience with the XD family. I get to the range 3-4x/month for handgun practice and 4-6x/month for rifle so I'll have plenty of opportunity for new data. The only trouble with full-time retirement is that you don't really get a day off (LOL).

FH
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I too carry an XD40SC...I have found the Remington Golden Sabre and Speer Gold Dot
(Short Barrel Load) to be the best options for limited muzzle flash, easier follow-ups and reliable feeding--Hornady ammo has been somewhat "flashy" and inconsistent out of my particular gun--YMMV...

I love my Galco KingTuk IWB for the sub-comp...its been a very good reliable design for my needs and all 3 of my XDs fit in it! Bang for the buck I have also been told Aliengear's offering is excellent and is on my radar for a future pick...

Excellent write-up!
Thanks for the recommendation on ammo and holsters. I have used both Rem GS and Rem Ultimate Home Defense ammo in .45ACP and was pleased with them both. I've used both Unique and HS-6 for reloading in .45, but decided after talking with a LEO friend of mine that I would rather use stock factory loads if I ever have to talk to a DA. I'm going to call my local PD and ask what ammo they use and, if not LE purpose-made only, will go to that. Seems like I can't get too badly jacked if I'm following local PD guidelines and following state law on self defense. I'm kind of a conservative guy.

Cheers,

FH
 

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Thanks for the recommendation on ammo. I have used both Rem GS and Rem Ultimate Home Defense ammo in .45ACP and was pleased with them both. I've used both Unique and HS-6 for reloading in .45, but decided after talking with a LEO friend of mine that I would rather use stock factory loads if I ever have to talk to a DA. I'm going to call my local PD and ask what ammo they use and, if not LE purpose-made only, will go to that. Seems like I can't get too badly jacked if I'm following local PD guidelines and following state law on self defense. I'm kind of a conservative guy.

Cheers,

FH
this is exactly how I came across the Speer Gold Dots, in fact...my local Sheriff Dept. uses the same round in the same weight...my local dealer comp'd me a box of the mentioned Short-Barrel Load when he first began stocking them for me to give him an unbiased comparison...they have significantly less flash coming out of the 3" barrel...

Remington Golden Sabre are my preferred option for one of my 'house guns'...an XD 4" BiTone in .40...the first rounds were a very thoughtful Christmas Gift from a nephew and have been a staple since :grin: I have the utmost confidence in Remington or Speer...Corbon/Doubletap comes a very close 3rd runner-up-- the 200gr Doubletap +P JHps are my preferred load to carry when hunting in the Fall....Hornady just hasn't been consistent enough to trust and thats a big big part of the equation
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
this is exactly how I came across the Speer Gold Dots, in fact...my local Sheriff Dept. uses the same round in the same weight...my local dealer comp'd me a box of the mentioned Short-Barrel Load when he first began stocking them for me to give him an unbiased comparison...they have significantly less flash coming out of the 3" barrel...

Remington Golden Sabre are my preferred option for one of my 'house guns'...an XD 4" BiTone in .40...the first rounds were a very thoughtful Christmas Gift from a nephew and have been a staple since :grin: I have the utmost confidence in Remington or Speer...Corbon/Doubletap comes a very close 3rd runner-up-- the 200gr Doubletap +P JHps are my preferred load to carry when hunting in the Fall....Hornady just hasn't been consistent enough to trust and thats a big big part of the equation
I just used, about three weeks ago, the last 2 boxes of Speer Lawman .45ACP 200gr JHP that I bought in '78 to test the Hoag rebuild. The price sticker was stii on the box...$6.50. The ammo showed its age with discoloration, but it fired completely reliably. I didn't even know I had it until I stumbled across it in an old box of reloading equipment last year.

Cheers,

FH
 

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If you haven't already picked out your new "friend"..... I would also like to suggest you look at the XDMc in .40.

It is pretty close to the XDsc, and in my opinion, the shapes make it a little easier to conceal. Even more importantly, with the extended mag, you get 16+1 for round capacity.

I have the XDM 4.5" in .40 and love it..... but too big to carry every day.
Picked up the XDM compact in 9.. (common caliber with the M&P9c we have) .... and THAT is great to carry. Gives a great round count of 19+1 in 9mm. (I know you want .40 or .45..... I wasn't selling you on the 9mm).

So.... if you had a thought of the XDsc, you really owe it to yourself take a look at the XDM compact aslo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If you haven't already picked out your new "friend"..... I would also like to suggest you look at the XDMc in .40.

It is pretty close to the XDsc, and in my opinion, the shapes make it a little easier to conceal. Even more importantly, with the extended mag, you get 16+1 for round capacity.

I have the XDM 4.5" in .40 and love it..... but too big to carry every day.
Picked up the XDM compact in 9.. (common caliber with the M&P9c we have) .... and THAT is great to carry. Gives a great round count of 19+1 in 9mm. (I know you want .40 or .45..... I wasn't selling you on the 9mm).

So.... if you had a thought of the XDsc, you really owe it to yourself take a look at the XDM compact aslo.
Thanks for this thought. Unfortunately, I live in the emerging police state of CO, which forbids magazines of >15 round capacity. Fortunately, I'm reasonably skilled with a pistol so 13- or 14-rounds without reloading is not too much of a problem. Also, I have not seen a Xdm 40 Compact 3.8 in any LGS or sporting goods store.

Cheers,

FH
 

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Good choice. I find I can shoot my XDSC 9 as well as any other gun I own. I also find it easy to conceal with minimal effort. Different caliber than your choice, but I think you will be happy with it.
 
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