Wednesday, 29 January 2014

The Judge - Zombie defense handgun

I've long been interested in the hypothetical discussion of zombie survival techniques and defensive weaponry and I have in the past even listed my favoured carry weapons in the event of the rise of the living dead (presuming I could get my hands on this as this is Britain)!

But say I lived in the good ol' US of A and could legally arm myself with firearms in anticipation of a zombie apocalypse, top of my list for firearms was the Taurus Judge - a handheld shotgun come revolver that is a devastating defensive weapon at close range. This .410 shotgun firing gun - which also has the ability to chamber .45 Colt ammunition - is, in theory, a practical 'panic gun' which can make up for hurried marksmanship by blasting a package of buckshot at your oncoming attacker.

However, as I say, that's in theory and while the publicity material looks good - with mellon sized targets disintegrating and paper targets being shredded - there has been criticism of the effectiveness and lethality of the .410 shotgun ammunition when used for their real purpose - firing at a being.

Well, I have just found a video that I think illustrates the potential lethality and penetration at close range of The Judge. There are specialist defence loads in the .410 format, specially designed to increase lethality, like the Hornaday 'Critical Defence' or the Winchester PDX 410 loads if you still doubt the effectiveness of mere birdshot. In this video, we see an impressive demonstration of the Lehigh Defence 'Maximum Load' versus an 18 pound slab of ballistic gell...

Now, I hinted at the way I would use the gun - I see it as a back-up, last line of defence 'panic gun'. There are other guns I would use as my primary and secondary weapons before it would come down to my relying on the Taurus Judge. I do like the idea that I can destroy a head-sized target with ease with a hurried snap shot, particularly in the event of a few oncoming zombies!

In particular I like the idea of small scale canister, or 'grapeshot', anti-personnel loads - like the Winchester PDX - designed to give a certain point-target accuracy while including an area shower to enhance 'chance effectiveness'. The moral is, if you snap-shot is slightly off-target there is still a chance you can clip your unlucky victim with a cloud of lead shot. Wait and watch 'the meat test' (LOL)...

Finally, it is worth considering just what we mean by 'lethality' when we are talking about encounters with the 'undead'. The idea of 'lethality' is, surely, an oxymoron in this case as your intended victim is, after all, already dead! But if we consider the accepted means of disabling a zombie - completely - as documented in the overwhelming canon of material about these creatures then we are talking about the destruction of their brain matter.

How effective a series of lead pellets might be at destroying the crucial brain activity of these creatures must be a matter of conjecture. I mean how much of their brain must be destroyed? And which part?

If we take the examples depicted in the 'Walking Dead' series then it suggests that a sharp point through the eye cavity into the brain is enough to stop the undead dead! This would seem to suggest that any disruption of even a small area of the frontal lobe is enough to switch off whatever 'life'-giving spark that has reanimated these beings. Therefore several lead pellets should, you would think, have the same effect at a push...

In the end the moral is don't rely on a near miss! A full load dead centre of the head is a far better guarantee of putting the 'walker' down. But, certainly, something like a Judge firing Winchester PDX at anything under 15 feet range will ensure that your nether regions remain un-gnawed! :)

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