Tuesday, July 09, 2024

Myths and Legends

Harrington & Richardson's little .25 Auto, based on a Webley design, is entirely devoid of sights. The smooth curve of the slide's upper surface is unmarred by any notch, groove, or bump.

Bring this up on a gun forum or at the neighborhood gun shop and you will undoubtedly hear the reply "Oh, it's a belly gun!" Longtime readers of this space will know that this is my bĂȘte noire because how do you know it's going to be a belly fight? A dude sticks you up from a dozen or more feet away and you're gonna what? Say "Oh whoopsie! Hey, dude, I only brought my belly gun today. Wait right here while I run home and get something with some sights"?

Carrying a gun with not even the most rudimentary sights is like showing up at the golf course with a whole bag full of putters. It displays a failure to grasp the potential requirements. It's not like it conveys any advantage, either. What, does it make this thing faster to draw or something? As if!

Then we have some classic Winchester .25ACP ammunition, the 45 grain "Expanding Point" round, catalogued as the X25AXP. Sometimes referred to as the "Pellet Nose" round, this is a .25 caliber jacketed hollow point with a #4 steel shot pellet seated in the cavity. The idea being that it made the projectile more feed-friendly in older or jankier pocket pistols, but the pellet would push back into the bullet to initiate expansion on impact.

On the downside, it didn't work that way. On the upside, that's a good thing, because the last thing you want your .25ACP bullet to do is expand. The .25 Auto is one of the few handgun rounds that's almost as miserable a performer as popular myth suggests. It's a marginal penetrator under the best of circumstances and doesn't have any oomph to waste on expansion. If you're stuck with a deuce-five, stick with ball.