If you could have any caliber handgun, what would it be? If I had an unlimited budget for buying guns, I would select the .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol). This would absolutely be my first choice. It is big and slow (so is a big boulder), but it can do the job.
Because of the weakness of the .38 in use at the time, John Browning designed a new auto handgun. This was around 1905. It took a few years and some modifications, but the US Army adopted this gun as the ďU.S.Pistol, Automatic, Caliber .45, Model 1911 in that year. Around 1926 there were a few modifications made to the gun and it became the M1911A1 which remained in service until the mid 1980s. Even though the Army adopted the 9MM as their handgun caliber at that time, a lot of special units continued to use the .45. Why? Because it WORKS! It remains one of the longest-lived handguns of all time.
Nowadays it seems like everybody and his brother are building a copy of the old 1911--Colt, Ruger, Remington and other domestic and foreign gun makers. Youíll never go wrong copying the best!
Ruger also makes a single action revolver that is chambered for the old cowboy .45 (.45 Long Colt) and the .45 ACP, one gun--two calibers. That would be a wonderful working gun.
I donít currently own a .45 (I have in the past, but, being the dummy that I am, I either sold or traded it). A couple of years ago I went out looking for a .45 or possibly a .40 S&W, but a Ruger 9MM kind of dropped into my lap. I was able to make a trade and thus the 9MM became my main handgun. If I didnít have so much ammo in that caliber I might try to trade it on a good .45 auto. But, short of winning the lottery, I donít think Iíll be able to buy a 45. I think that the 9MM will work (especially with Hornadyís Critical Defense rounds) but, I do believe that the .45 is better.