Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Durkin Tactical Franklin Armory
User Panel

Site Notices
Posted: 3/3/2001 6:45:42 AM EDT
What is the purpose of the .40. If you want knockdown potential, use the .45. If you want a lot of shots to keep you enemy's head down, use a 9mm.
I wonder if all these .40 people will be obsoleted. My dealer sells lot of .40 pistols, but hardly any ammo.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 7:01:41 AM EDT
I would imagine this question has been answered by lots of folk by now.
Here`s the reason I bought a few of them;
You can fit more 40`s in a tube than 45
It has more punch than a 9
The numbers are kind to the 40 concerning knockdown power.
I dont feel naked w/ a 40
cops are flocking to the 40
not as fat as the 45 (feeding)
Ballistics are comparable to a 357.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 7:17:18 AM EDT
I think they are selling lots of 40 ammo at the shows I see.

To me, I am a 45 auto guy.  I just can't see going smaller than the 40.  It seems to be lighter on recoil, but I only have one.  I have a Kimber and/or Para Ord 45 on the wish list, so I am not sold-out on the 40.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 7:47:20 AM EDT
If you think .40 doesn't have knock down power than you're looking at the wrong loads.  One of the reasons why .40 is so popular is that it has a wide variety of bullet weights to choose from.  The 135gr., 155gr. & 165gr. (except 165gr. Fed. Hydra-Shok) loads are all excellent performers with terrific penetration and expansion.  .45 ammo is certainly not cheaper than .40, gunstores are generally overpriced on ammo and most just buy at Wal-Mart, from catalogs or on the 'net.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:01:49 AM EDT
One argument for the .40 vs. 9mm is if you can't get (or afford) high-cap mags for the model you like in 9mm. Going up to a .40 version of the same pistol gives you a little more punch per hit without wasting all the space that the neutered 10 rounders would leave.

Ok, so this is a little more "mental" than some of the other reasons, but if it makes you feel better...... [:)]
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:06:58 AM EDT
Why not .40? While not as large, muzzle velocity and energy are both greater than the .45. And, some say the .40 is not accurate but in my experience they are as accurate as anything else.    
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:14:35 AM EDT
Instead of trying to compare the .40 to the .45 and/or 9mm let's compare it to the 10mm. The 10 holds as many rounds, fits in the same "package" and has far greater "punch" than the neutered .40 S&W. Smith and Wesson took a great cartridge the 10mm, cut it's power off and then marketed the Hell out of it to steal the market. We now have a "kinder and gentler" caliber that does not hurt the bad guys as bad as something with real power in the same size gun with the same capacity......and PD's and the public bought into it hook, line and sinker.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:19:27 AM EDT

That's what I say:  Why the .40 when you can have a 10mm?

I own three 10mm's and they do everything that I ask of them from the light loads to the higher power loads.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:29:43 AM EDT
I,ve shot a 40 once.It was Glock ser#3 at Olins range.Gaston Glock,s son had it there.A few weeks latter I bought the first one in town. A Smith&Wesson 4006.Before I even shot it I sold it to Bob xxxx A engineer at Olin.I felt sorry for him,it seem Bob had shot over a 1,000,000 rounds.Only problem for him they were all through test barrel.Haven't shot one since.I,m a 45 guy too.The only reason for the 9mm is a small gun.I have a Kahr MK9.But I would replace it with a MK40 if they would come out with a poly frame.Lighter,same size,more power.But I can wait I still have my Star PD,which I think is a very underated pistol
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:30:49 AM EDT
We now have a "kinder and gentler" caliber that does not hurt the bad guys as bad as something with real power in the same size gun with the same capacity.......
View Quote

Youre killing me..
Are you making this up as you go?
"Hurt as bad",heheheheheheheheh
"Kinder, gentler bullet" Stop, stop, I`m dying over here.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:38:10 AM EDT
Well, lets see... the .40 has been a hot debated subject since its introduction.  I am sure we have all read the magazines, several additions of Combat Handgunnery, threads, etc. and most will agree the stop power is dependent on shot placement.  The 10mm is hard to control on follow up shots, usually is hard on pistol and shooter. Wilson combat and may others could not get it to feed reliably in the 1911 style pistols so they abandoned the project.  The 10mm had promise but the FBI found it hard to control as well.  The .45 is battle proven and has been around forever compared to the .40.  The .40 is great for smaller pistol frames as a alternative to the 9mm with greater stopping power.  You can fit a .40 in any 9mm design and is a good compromise in capacity between the 9mm and .45/10mm.  I would say the .45 for a full size weapon based on history/reliability/availability/magazine capacity limits and the .40 in compact, lighter weapons.  Just get an H&K in both calibers and your set, USP .40 and tactical USP .45.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:41:54 AM EDT
While the 10mm is a great round, only a few guns and types of ammunition are available. When or if they disappear, they will be no good to anyone. Whether we like it or not, the .40 has taken over and seems to be here to stay.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:43:41 AM EDT
someone set us the bomb
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:51:42 AM EDT
Instead of reading about the 10mm and then parroting what the so called gun writers say, you should actually shoot the weapons chambered for it.  Recoil isn't a factor and followup shots are no more difficult than with a .45 acp.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 9:02:14 AM EDT
Did the FBI drop the 10 because it`s a great round? Did S&W tell them what to do?
Does the 40 rule uspsa because of its power factor and lack of recoil. Are all the PD`s just stupid.
The 9 has a place. the 40 has a place, the 45 has a place, the 10 would have a place but it`s getting hard to find.
apples and nanners  
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 9:06:30 AM EDT
I bought a Colt stainless Delta Elite when they first came out, and man I wish I still had it. That gun shot great and never jammed once. I traded it off when 10's started drying up figuring it wouldn't be worth anything. They're worth more now used then I paid for it new!
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 9:09:24 AM EDT
Why yes Rich.....I am making it up as a I go along....and without a net even.:D
Admittedly I was being a bit facetious but my point remains. I realize a .40 can be and is an effective cartridge......Hell with proper shot placement a .22 is deadly. But, in my opinion, there never was a niche for the .40. If recoil were a problem, which I do not find it to be, then simply down load the 10mm. It could be liked to if the .357 had been introduced prior to the .38 and then a manufacture would have introduced the lighter caliber and the older, more powerful caliber would have slowly slipped into obscurity such as is the case with the 10.

But, alas, as ShootinShane pointed out, guns offered in that chambering and ammo availablity is becoming an issue.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 9:10:22 AM EDT
I would imagine this question has been answered by lots of folk by now.
Here`s the reason I bought a few of them;
You can fit more 40`s in a tube than 45
It has more punch than a 9
The numbers are kind to the 40 concerning knockdown power.
I dont feel naked w/ a 40
cops are flocking to the 40
not as fat as the 45 (feeding)
Ballistics are comparable to a 357.
View Quote

Ballistics comparable to a .357?  PAHLEESE!  Better than the 9, yes.  Maybe comparable to a 45, but not close to a three five seven.

I agree with the original poster.  I was going from 9 to 40, but after the hicap mag ban, I'll get all future guns in .45
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 9:15:31 AM EDT
"Knockdown Power" is a myth, just as "Stopping Power" and "Energy Transfer" are.  If a round is going to knock the target down, the shooter would be knocked down, too.  Equal and opposite reaction, and all that.  

Shot placement, penetration and permanent tissue damage, along with CNS hits or rapid blood loss are the real key to terminating a deadly assault.  

That said, .40 Auto outperforms 9mm P in those areas with the proper bullet and load, and you can stuff more of them in a smaller handgun (9mm P sized) than you can .45 ACP.  Recoil in the .40 Auto can also be lighter and more manageable for those of smaller stature and less substantial muscular development than can that of the .45 ACP.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 9:25:04 AM EDT
The question that i have is the 357sig a wildcat round that got out of hand?

Link Posted: 3/3/2001 9:49:35 AM EDT
OK, the reason the .40S&W was developed:
The FBI blamed the 9mm silvertip for failing to adequately penetrate Platt during the Miami shootout. (actually bad tactics were to blame) So a search for a Holy Grail of a bullet commenced, with $hitloads of taxpayer money spent. The FBI selected the 10mm based on results from a test barrel. (I have a copy of the original test criteria and results from Quantico) Test barrels because the Bren 10 was dead in the water, and the Delta Elite was breaking on the full power Norma ammo of the time. I had a Delta and shot the Norma Bren 10 ammo, and wow it was screaming. The Delta packed it up on me, it was a very early one and rough to say the least-sights were not graduated to the round either. The FBI adopted a down loaded 10mm 180 gr Sierra bullet at 980fps. This left a lot of empty case with no powder. The S&W 1076 weighed a ton. The 3 pc. suiters of the FBI were unable to carry the weight on a narrow dress belt. Most I know carried it in a brief case or under the seat. As to a 10mm frame and a .40 frame being the same, not hardly. A 10mm is a beefed up .45 frame. Beefed up because the 10mm recoils 25% faster than a .45. It also has much higher chamber pressure than a .45. All you have to do is look at a 10mm. (except the Delta Elite or Glock 20) The slide is beefier to dampen the recoil speed with additional mass. The 4576 and 1076 are the same size frame. The Glock 20 and 21 are the same.
So S&W along with Olin developed the .40. It is not just a cut down 10mm. The case is much thicker, and it has a small pistol primer. The idea was to match the FBI's 180gr at 950fps in a package that would fit a 9mm frame size. The .40 is the exact overall length of a 9mm. The .40 uses a 9mm frame, with slight strength additions or even more massive slides. Since the .40 was introduced law enforcement has flocked to the .40. About 75% of the Glocks sold to law enforcement are .40's. Glock has about 70% of the law enforcement market. My county and the next county both issue .40's. There have been quite a few shootings, only 1 failure to stop. Most were dead at the scene. This is not just hearsay-I am on my departments firearms training team, and we just reviewed our .40 ammo (we use the Ranger 180gr. SXT now) The sole failure to stop was ours with Ranger 165gr-and it went thru a windshield first. The .45 acp offers lower capacity, less penetration of intermediate obstacles (this is why Texas DPS canned the .45 sig and went to the .357 sig) All of the results that have come in from around the country prove the .40, is not a magic bullet. It does however work much better than the 9mm. It also matches or even exceeds the .45 in actual shooting results. (generally due to a much more aggressive bullet design effort) Most of the gun writers have lost all credability with me. Anyone who belives a bunch of Frenchmen shot a bunch of goats with american ammo, probably belive in the tooth fairey!
You can keep your 9mm's, and your .45's. Both are excellent weapons. Both offer different things to different people. One point to ponder is, LEO weapons need to be able to perform a different mission than a civilian home defense/personal defense weapon. Our rounds need to be more jack of all trades in that they penetrate intermediate obstacles and then still expand reliably. Once the .357 sig gets a bit more shooting by DPS and others, I would be willing to trade up to it, but till then, I will carry my Glock 22 in my Safarila
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 10:25:30 AM EDT
Thank you for that post Sgt44. That answered a lot of questions and I learned something.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 11:13:39 AM EDT
Jesus H. Christ STG44-

Good post.

Anyway a fellow brother in arms can score a copy of your Quantico 10mm test criteria and results?

I am like the biggest 10 fan on the planet, and that is something I have yet to see.


McLear Dumarlier
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 11:34:17 AM EDT
stg44, nice report, well put.
Gunslinger; I agree with you about the 357/38, good point. I think their was a niche for the 40, it was a downsized frame/ammo in a semi auto. The 10mm is a great round, I just wish it woulda taken off like the 40.
Ticonderoga: I have to run, but I`ll post some ballstics and point you to some arty`s that show that the 40 can BALLISTICALLY match the 357.
I know I`ve read about this for quite a while in various rags. I cant tell you I`d rather get shot with a 357 over a 40, just whats been printed. I had trouble believing it when I read it but if you look at the #`s they do similar things.  
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 11:47:42 AM EDT
A hot .40 is equivelant to standard pressure .357 magnum loads but can not touch 1,450 fps and 580 ft. lbs of the .357 125gr JHP offered by Federal or Remington. On the other hand, the .40 does penetrate as deeply in gelatin which is great because it is performing as well as the .357 yet using a larger bullet.    
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 12:22:58 PM EDT
The 10mm is hard to control on follow up shots, usually is hard on pistol and shooter. Wilson combat and may others could not get it to feed reliably in the 1911 style pistols so they abandoned the project.  The 10mm had promise but the FBI found it hard to control as well.  The .45 is battle proven and has been around forever compared to the .40.  The .40 is great for smaller pistol frames as a alternative to the 9mm with greater stopping power.  You can fit a .40 in any 9mm design and is a good compromise in capacity between the 9mm and .45/10mm.  I would say the .45 for a full size weapon based on history/reliability/availability/magazine capacity limits and the .40 in compact, lighter weapons.
View Quote

This is what i've read as well regarding the FBI shoot-out in Florida around 1985 or 1986. True, I am partial to the 45 but I thought the 40 to be ideal for a smaller, more compact handgun that is why I bought a Glock-27. I think the 40 is a good solution if you need/want a compact firearm with a good amount of energy, a reasonable size and weight projectile.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 1:24:43 PM EDT
McUzi, wish I could send you the test criteria, it is a very large, thick tome to say the least. I contacted the FBI's firearms training unit and requested the annual ammo test results. You can go to www.firearmstactical.com and follow the string and get the same info. Also the IWBA has it's criteria from Dr. Fackler. If you are a strong supporter of Marshall/Sanow, you will probably be offended.
BTW-you can also follow the string and get the full FBI report on the Miami shootout. Lengthy, but interesting reading.
To address the initial string about "knockdown" power, in handguns there is no such thing. Think about it, Mr. Newton says, for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. So if my handgun could launch a bullet that would knock down a 300lb. man, just think what it would do to my 2501b.? Stopping power is a more accurate description. The 3 most important factors in stopping power are, shot placement, shot placement, shot placement, in that order. The psychological factor is probably next, with caliber and bullet design weight on down the list. (now I am refering to handguns, not rifles or howitzers folks) The psy factor is very important. I have seen photo's of a trooper who died from a .25 wound to the hand. He had been told that if he was ever shot he would die. So he did. (Caliber Press Street Survival) Then you have the Mattix/Platts of the world. They were not going out without a fight, and Platt took what should have been a fatal hit to the heart, and still killed 2 FBI agents and wounded several more.
To prove this, less lethal rounds-bean bags. We just shot a guy with a Sage round. He was hit by 1 shot that skimmed across his lower back. The next one hit him square in the ass. He dropped the gun he had to his head and fell. He said he thought he had been shot. It took a moment for him to realize he hadn't. During this time he was swarmed and is alive. The guy in Seattle with the Samuari sword, they shot him in the nards with a 37mm wooden dowel which had cs powder on it..he didn't even flinch. So after numerous hits by bean bags and 37mm less lethal rounds, they hit him with a couple of high pressure fire hoses. Knocked him on his ass! Then a ladder with a beefy cop on each end over him and it was over. He was in the psychological zone, partially due to chemicals and partially due to just being crazy. Kinda like the PCP days when I came on.
If you want knock down power, get a 20mm Orleikon. If you know you are going up against an armed adversary, and you only take a pistol, then you are a fool. If he has a knife, take a pistol. If he has a pistol bring a rifle...My Glock is there to take care of business till I can get my M4 into action!
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 1:37:45 PM EDT
Thanks for your time Stg44, that's a lengthy report but very accurate.  One more sad FBI tidbit thought, the FBI has adopted the very dismal Federal 165gr. Hydra-Shok which is a reduced load that offers no better performance than the 9mm!!!  There are quite a few test out there that show that this load fails to open because of its low velocity.  Why in the world the FBI ask for more and feed it less is beyond me.  There is a rumor that this was done because of complaints from female agents.  My favorite load is the Rem. 165gr. Golden Sabre, many law enforcement agencies are switching to it (1150fps / 485ft.lbs. of energy).  CCI GoldDot 155gr. & 165gr. are popular too.  Winchester's 155gr. Silvertip is rated at 1200fps / 500ft.lbs. of energy and that bullet will fragment doing severe damage.  When barriers aren't an obstacle the 135gr. is a stellar performer.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 1:54:09 PM EDT
Well, your favorite is the current issue bullet of the Feebs. They issue the Glock 23 and Rem 165gr Golden Saber. The FBI came up with the 165gr because it is supposed to be better at defeating windshield glass. Well, our failure to stop was 07-02-00. I was day shift sgt. Narc came by, asked for a marked unit for a buy bust. (for transport) I sent them 2. They didn't mention they were buying stolen guns as well as a couple of pounds of marijuana. Well it went to crap, the badguy attempted to run down a narc. The narc ended up on the hood of the 88 Camaro. 12 shots fired, the one that struck the badguy was a 90 degree hood distance. Struck badguy in left shoulder. He sped away. My marked units gave chase. He bailed in a neighberhood. I arrived-from another shots fired call-and shortly there after a citizen told me of the perps location. Myself and a narc cuffed him. He had a superficial wound to his left shoulder. He was in and out of the ER in 20 minutes with a bandaid on it. As he was running, he noticed a black thing sticking out of his shoulder and plucked it out. This was the bullet, a Ranger SXT 165gr subsonic POS! We have gone to the 180gr SXT. In our immediate area we have had about a dozen shootings with this same round the past 5 years, 10 are dead, the other two gave up right away. What amazes me is a round designed specfically to hold together thru car glass, then penetrate 12-14" of soft tissue didn't. Well, I guess it really shouldn't amaze me, everythime the Feebs get into a gunfight, they get whipped.
FYI-they are now looking at an expanding FMJ .40 round. Must be nice to be able to waste tons of taxpayer money! They still have about a million rounds of the 10mm FedLite. They ordered 3 million rounds from Federal, without putting it on bid! The S&W 10mm pistol was a dismal failure also. Several other agencies jumped on it, couldn't make them work. By the time the Feebs got the bugs worked out, they couldn't hardly make anyone take one! Virginia State Police got disgusted and traded thiers in for Sigs.
Also, for 10mm fans. Shooting results show that the .40 actually does better than the hot 10's. Kind of like .44spl does better than .44mag-too much horsepower. They seem to go through and through, zipping along so fast they don't expand much. (this is from Ayoob who tracked the 10mm and .40 when they were new)
Beware the gunner, not so much the gun!      
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 2:05:37 PM EDT
I have a PORD 16 for 3 gun. Our local ammo
mfg. loads what he calls PARAORD 40. He says
that PARAORD converts their 45 hicaps into 40
hicaps. Using standard 40 in these guns can
cause some feeding problems. Using his PARAORD
40 load I have had no problems.

Florida LEO's are dumping their 9mms in favor
of 40s. To many "cops shoot at suspect 58 times
hitting suspect 7 times and suspect was still
shooting" stories.

I had a Colt Delta Elite 10mm. and it is an
awesome weapon, however the recoil was a dis-
advantage when using it in competition.

Link Posted: 3/3/2001 2:19:42 PM EDT
"Shot in the nards with a 37mm dooden dowel"

Holy crap, I'm surprised the guy lived.

Speaking about "intermediate obstacles", has anyone tried the Federal Premium EFMJ rounds? These are susposed to be able to pass through objects and still retain the proper expansion characteristics. Plus, being that they're flat nosed, they should feed well in just about anything.

Anyone try them?
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 7:49:46 PM EDT
Penetration is a very good point. I was shooting my .45 FMJ H&K Tactical at some half inch metal car parts this morning. We recovered the bullets intact in front of the parts.
Not being an LEO, I don't usually have the need to penetrate car bodies.
It sill seems like a .357 Magnum for semi autos would be a better choice, or maybe a .223 pistol for LEO. [smoke]
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 8:39:40 PM EDT
Even 5.56 has a hard time penetrating car parts. Or at least it seems that way till you are getting shot at. .357 Sig does apparently do better than .40 or .45. That is why Texas DPS adopted it and retired Sig P220' and 226's. The .357 Sig shows a lot of promise, but I will stick to what I know for sure works till I see plenty of actual results. I don't carry a shotgun, it's optional. My M4 is there with me, 8 30 rd mags and a SAfrican 300rd battle pack in reserve. Wish I could include the Fal with AP ammo, but no such luck, AR's and Mini14's only.
The .40 actually was a round that met a need at the time it was needed. 9mm was just to spotty, 45 just too big a package. So stuff a kinda big caliber in a small caliber package with high capacity, and you have a market winner. I like .45. I have carried a M1911, Sig P220, Smith 4506 and 4566 and finally a Glock 21. Didn't like the low capacity. The Glock grip is too big, and I wear 2 and 3x gloves. 9mm didn't inspire confidence. Wheel guns were too slow to reload. In my first 2 years 3 officers were killed reloading wheel guns that I was aware of. I don't feel you have brought too much ammo to a gunfight unless you can't walk. So I'm pretty happy with 46 rounds of .40 on my person. I still like the 105mm beehive round though...
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 9:15:36 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 9:25:40 PM EDT
a .40 is for people who cant handle a .45
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 10:01:07 PM EDT
The .40 is:  WHAT IT IS.

Like a middle linebacker...

Link Posted: 3/3/2001 10:11:19 PM EDT
a .40 is for people who cant handle a .45
View Quote

Really? The .40's higher velocity + more energy = more felt recoil. Where as a .45's recoil is more of a "push", the .40 is more snappy. In my experience, and I own both, the .40 kicks the same if not more than the .45.
Link Posted: 3/3/2001 11:24:05 PM EDT
Gunslinger, the 10mm will not fit in the same package as the .40- it's too long, and requires a .45-size frame.  That's why the .40 is so popular-  more oomph than a 9, but fits in a 9 frame.   Give me my 1076 with full-power Silvertips any day, though.
Link Posted: 3/4/2001 7:34:52 AM EDT
You have no chance to survive...
Make your time...[:D]
Link Posted: 3/28/2001 11:59:10 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/29/2001 5:15:00 AM EDT
Currently I have a 23 Glock and 27 Glock..both .40 cal.  I also have a Smith 9 mm.  I'm just not happy with them.  The 9 is crap for self defense.  I do like the ammo availablity for the 40 but am considering a compact 45 or compact 10.  Actually I want the 10.  Will this round be available in 10 years?  I think I'm coming to the conclusion...there is no "one" perfect gun.
Link Posted: 3/29/2001 5:42:57 AM EDT
I love the .357 SIG, and have converted to carrying that round almost exclusively.  Never a Feeding Problem, always accurate in my SIG P229 and P226.  I carry .45 ACP regularly too, but never have been sold on the .40 Smith and Woosie round.  I just like how my .357 SIG's shoot, what I hear about the round, and I have confidence in it.  The bonus is having three caliber guns with just a barrel change. (Spring too for 9mm)

I really like the .400 Cor-Bon, but since I hear nothing about this round, I choose not to carry it for defense.  It seems like a big .357 SIG round to me, though, and very accurate in my P220 though a higher POI than my .45 ACP rounds.

Some really good information in this thread!  Thanks for sharing it!
Link Posted: 3/29/2001 5:57:24 AM EDT
I like my 9x23. From there, the 10mm (I'm building one on a Caspian Comp frame and CA slide, best of everything, including a couple of my parts), and the 45 ACP (just because it's great!). My 9x23 was so good C/P Bullets and Winchester beat me out of it.

Close Join Our Mail List to Stay Up To Date! Win a FREE Membership!

Sign up for the ARFCOM weekly newsletter and be entered to win a free ARFCOM membership. One new winner* is announced every week!

You will receive an email every Friday morning featuring the latest chatter from the hottest topics, breaking news surrounding legislation, as well as exclusive deals only available to ARFCOM email subscribers.

By signing up you agree to our User Agreement. *Must have a registered ARFCOM account to win.
Top Top