I don't ever expect to get into a gun battle. Most defensive shots are fewer than six. If I haven't done it by then......hope I make it back to my vehicle to my G-30 and two spares. If not my carry and deep conceal, NAA mini mag with 5 rounds + 5 extra, will have to do.
I don't expect to go into combat, just to WalMart.
For regular on duty patrol I went with 15+1 in the gun, and two mags with 15 each, totaling 46 rounds. Stats up until now indicate that's sufficient, however if you work alone in rural areas without back up, or if you're a drug dealer, or if people really don't like you, then I guess it makes some sense to carry more magazines. All kidding aside It's probably not a bad idea to have 3 or 4 magazines for duty work. Statistics are not always a great thing to go by because stats indicate that you'll probably never get in a gun fight, and we ceratainly don't want to make that assumption. I'd have to say it makes sense to carry as many mags as you can without it being an inconvenience while in an on duty situation. As far as off duty or concealed carry for personal defense, generally less because I think it's fair to say that you want to dress comfortably, and you're usually just looking to get out of a situation (hopefully if you're smart!) rather than responding into a situation that's escalating, and is more typical of an on duty situation.
If you live in a State that only lets you have 10 round mags this might increase the number of mags you consider carrying. Me... I like to have just a 5 shot .38 on my ankle when shopping. Maybe an extra moon clip. With Lasergrips it serves its purpose. I just want to make it out of the mall not save it. It would have to be a multiple shooter situation to make me lug all that weight around and what are the chances of that? When I am traveling with a lot of expensive rifles I do add a glock and two more mags. Interesting thread.
coach. you advocate 4 reloads. That makes 76 rds by your accounting. What are you doing with all that ammo? How many adversaries do you anticipate opposing? After you shoot the first couple don't you think the others will figure they have better things to do?
Right now I carry a full size Taurus PT 1911SS with 1 Chip McCormick 8 rounder in it that one is loaded with Hornandy TAP and I usually have 2 USGI mags those are loaded with 185gr FMJ with me.
The way I see it is most defense shootings have apprx 6 rounds fired so the one in the gun should have that taken care of if not I have 2 more and if that does take care of it I would still want to be prepared to defend myself until the police come so I would want a fully loaded magazine to do that with.