What Caliber Ammo should I have if SHTF?

May 19, 2017

There are a myriad of articles and opinions on this topic. What caliber gun should I have if the world descended into chaos right now at this moment?

It’s all a matter of personal preference to be honest. I have seen, heard and read just about every argument there is for every caliber available on the market. People chanting and singing the praises of .40 caliber S&W, 9mm Parabellum, .45 ACP, 5.56 mm/.223 Cal, .22 LR etc…

When it comes down to it, I personally take a more practical approach. The question I asked myself when I began Prepping was simple, “What calibers are going to be in abundance should I have to scrounge?”

It is a simple question that I feel gets largely over looked. You can have ammunition stores stacked to the ceiling if you so choose, but eventually ammunition runs out. What if you’re on the move? You can’t carry 50,000 rounds of .45 ACP. The weight would bog you down so much that you wouldn’t have any energy after 20 minutes of walking. Not to mention making you slow and an easy target.

I am sure there will be much debate on this article, and rightly so. Everyone has their preferences when it comes to firearms, and I am not exempt from this truth to be honest; but we need to look at cold hard facts.

The most popular and widely carried caliber sidearm is 9mm parabellum. It’s the most common caliber for concealed carry in the United States. It’s easy to shoot, you get more rounds per magazine and it’s not overly expensive. Not everyone and their mother has exotic caliber guns like some of my more snobbish Tactical friends. 10 mm, .357 SIG, .380; all these are fine caliber firearms and have their uses to be sure. However, not every potential resource to scrounge ammo is going to have those calibers. The likelihood of being able to scrounge an obscure caliber such as 10mm doesn’t seem likely.

There are those die-hard despots that are going to stick by and swear to their loyalties of their odd ball caliber guns and curse the article I have just written. Trust me, I have a former friend who refuses to carry anything but his 10mm Glock. He is almost zealot like when it comes to his 10 mm.

9mm Parabellum is everywhere. A vast majority of Police carry 9mm or .40 S&W. By scrounging, I’m talking about finding ammunition on corpses, in cars, buildings, abandoned homes. Real “Walking Dead” scenarios. I am not ignoring the fact of long rifles and shotguns here, I am just stating that the most likely and realistic possibility is; that when searching for ammo you are probably going to find 9mm more often than not. You should prepare for such inevitability.

As for long rifles and shotguns, I try to stay with NATO rounds. 12 gauge shotgun, 5.56 mm/.223 and .22 LR. You can opt for 7.62×39 for you AK fans if you so choose, but again it’s all a matter of personal preference. An argument can be made for 308 Winchester (7.62 NATO) here as well. Personally, I don’t plan on carrying all of these caliber weapons on my person when and if I should go out and scavenge for resources should SHTF. That would be a really stupid mistake. I do however plan that I would have a common caliber firearm for every member of my family should the end of the world come to pass. The most common calibers are what I have already mentioned. 12 gauge shotgun, 5.56/.223, 22 LR, 9mm parabellum and 308 Winchester.

Having a realistic view on what resources are going to be readily available should SHTF, will only ensure and aid in your survival.

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