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Why has .40 cal fallen out of favor? Login/Join 
Wait, what?
Picture of gearhounds
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Advances in defensive rounds in general have improved, and almost everyone would likely be hard pressed to tell you which of the big 3 caused a particular wound channel.

Factor in cost, controllability, capacity, and smaller defensive pistols and you at least know why the 9mm is pulling ahead again.

I agree that the .40 isn’t going the way of the dinosaurs yet, not by a long shot. In large framed duty pistols, it is still a pussycat. My 226 .40is a dream to shoot.




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Posts: 10605 | Location: Martinsburg WV | Registered: April 02, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Lost
Picture of kkina
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quote:
Originally posted by Expert308:
quote:
Originally posted by Brianm14:
The only shame right now is that our military did not decide to go for .40 or .45; when mandatory use of FMJ is concerned, a heaver, larger diameter bullet has the decided advantage. There, .40 might just have been a nice compromise. We have had ample opportunity to try this out in field operations -but there I go, opening another can of worms.)

A nice compromise between what and what? Between bullet diameter and recoil? Every .40 I've ever shot has had nastier recoil than any .45 I've ever shot. 1911 in .45 FTW! Cool

I think of .40 as a clumsy compromise between 9mm and .45ACP. 9mm is snappy; .45 is shovey. .40S&W is a snappy shove. The sharpness makes it harder to control, while the push makes it, well, harder to control. The cartridge completely does what it was designed to do, so in the engineering sense is a success. But rather than combine the advantages of the other rounds, I'd say it more combines the disadvantages.

I have no trouble controlling .40 from a Glock 19, but I don't enjoy it much. I'd rather shoot 9mm, or go the complete other end of the spectrum and shoot .45. Snap or shove yes, but snappy shove, not for me.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: kkina,



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Posts: 12026 | Location: SF Bay Area | Registered: December 11, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The .40 round was basically a face saver for the FBI. They wanted a 10MM but their personnel could not handle the recoil of the 1076 nor the size of it. They tried to remedy the recoil by requesting a down loaded 10MM round, the FBI load. It was quickly realized that the down loaded 10MM could be done in a shorter case. This allowed a 10MM, though downloaded, in a shorter case which could be fired from a 9MM sized gun. While changing the name from 10MM to .40 the FBI could still keep a similar round to their anemic 10MM loading AND put it into a smaller sized gun.

The main problem with the .40, for me, is that it has a "twist" to its recoil that does not allow me to keep on target with follow up shots like a 9MM or .45.

Basically it was the answer to a question that was never asked.

Simply my opinion.
 
Posts: 123 | Registered: January 20, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by kkina:
quote:
Originally posted by Expert308:
quote:
Originally posted by Brianm14:
The only shame right now is that our military did not decide to go for .40 or .45; when mandatory use of FMJ is concerned, a heaver, larger diameter bullet has the decided advantage. There, .40 might just have been a nice compromise. We have had ample opportunity to try this out in field operations -but there I go, opening another can of worms.)

A nice compromise between what and what? Between bullet diameter and recoil? Every .40 I've ever shot has had nastier recoil than any .45 I've ever shot. 1911 in .45 FTW! Cool

I think of .40 as a clumsy compromise between 9mm and .45ACP. 9mm is snappy; .45 is shovey. .40S&W is a snappy shove. The sharpness makes it harder to control, while the push makes it, well, harder to control. The cartridge completely does what it was designed to do, so in the engineering sense is a success. But rather than combine the advantages of the other rounds, I'd say it more combines the disadvantages.

I have no trouble controlling .40 from a Glock 19, but I don't enjoy it much. I'd rather shoot 9mm, or go the complete other end of the spectrum and shoot .45. Snap or shove yes, but snappy shove, not for me.


You mean a Glock 23, right?
 
Posts: 2767 | Registered: January 17, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Lost
Picture of kkina
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quote:
Originally posted by 357fuzz:
You mean a Glock 23, right?

Now I don't remember. It may have been. Was a rental. I'm not a Glock guy.



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Posts: 12026 | Location: SF Bay Area | Registered: December 11, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I think the 40 is a top notch round , the good 180 stuff will take the wind out of a 280 pd gang banger better than the 9.
 
Posts: 859 | Registered: July 10, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I've spent too much money trying to like the 40 S&W. The only pistol that really works for me in this caliber is the 229. If I come across one for around $400 I'll get it just to have if it's in nice shape. And also because I have a bunch of ammo for it.
 
Posts: 4409 | Location: Middletown, PA | Registered: January 09, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
The Quiet Man
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.40 is a perfectly servicable round. It's problem is that "small, fast, high capacity" folks like 9mm. "Big, slow, and heavy" folks like .45. .40 is somewhere in between. My personal handguns are all 9mm or .45, but my duty weapon is .40 and I'm perfectly fine with that. I'd also be perfectly fine switching to 9mm...or .45...or .357 Sig...

They really do all work pretty much the same these days. Modern projectiles are designed to function within the velocity window the cartridge operates at.
 
Posts: 1763 | Registered: November 13, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Big Stack
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Not really. Push comes to shove, 9mm is cheaper. I think that's 85% of the reason, especially for LE.

quote:
Originally posted by copaup:
.40 is a perfectly servicable round. It's problem is that "small, fast, high capacity" folks like 9mm. "Big, slow, and heavy" folks like .45. .40 is somewhere in between. My personal handguns are all 9mm or .45, but my duty weapon is .40 and I'm perfectly fine with that. I'd also be perfectly fine switching to 9mm...or .45...or .357 Sig...

They really do all work pretty much the same these days. Modern projectiles are designed to function within the velocity window the cartridge operates at.
 
Posts: 19036 | Registered: November 05, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Age Quod Agis
Picture of ArtieS
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I like the .40, and carry one daily. I tend to use the 180 grain. I think that the best argument for the .40 is in magazine restricted states. My daughter is in Massachusetts, and therefore limited to 10 round magazines. She has been looking for a reasonably priced 229 in .40 so she can have heavier, larger bullets. She's shot a lot of .40 and knows what she is getting into. She also likes my .40 SigPro, so she may take that off my hands one of these days.



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Posts: 10072 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: November 02, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of arcwelder76
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I'm highly amused that people who have invested in .40 now have to be defensive about their bad decisions.

Meanwhile the 10mm they insisted would die, is doing just fine.

.40 S&W will probably never go away, but the people who like it will have to accept that they'll have to get in the booth with those who use 10mm. Only with less power and shittier recoil.


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Posts: 25938 | Location: Love that dirty water, oh | Registered: June 09, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I shoot .40, and have quite a few firearms in .40. I suppose that could be called "investing."

I'm not in the least defensive about it, without any need to defend or explain it.

I have 10mm in various handguns, and don't really care if others shoot or don't shoot it.

I've never thought of .40 as having "shitty" recoil, but some may see it that way. It's just recoil.

When I go to the range, most of the time I couldn't tell you what someone is shooting until I see the brass on the ground.

Presently .40 brass is dirt cheap and while projectiles cost a bit more, there's not much powder difference, and it's not much more expensive to reload. It's a lower cost alternative to shooting .357 Sig on the range, even if .357 Sig is carried. The two feel about the same in the hand.

There are a lot of .40 handguns available, especially police trade-ins, that make for very good deals. Many of them have the option of swapping barrels and shooting other cartridges, which makes them versatile, too. I don't see drawbacks. There are too many .40 firearms out there for the cartridge to die; it will get sold and shot and reloaded for a long time to come.
 
Posts: 3743 | Registered: September 13, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of ShoreGuy
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quote:
Originally posted by triaxle:
I love the 9 but I think a good 40 cal HST 165 or 180 gr or maybe Gold Dot will take the wind out of the 285 pound gang banger ,no neck guy faster . But I know placement is what counts .


While the 9 has really benefitted from new ammo, I think the same advances just make the .40 even more appealing. Like you, I just can’t discount the fact that a good 165/180 is very effective. My former PD had a few OIS’s back in the 90’s when they carried 124 gr. Hydra Shoks, and all bad guys survived (including one PCP head who took multiple hits). Within a couple years of switching to the .40 (180 gr. Gold Dot) there were two OIS’s and in each case the officer fires one shot, scored a hit, and the suspect was immediately stopped and killed. While far from a scientific analysis, I may be out of fashion but do buy into the “.40 is a good compromise” school of thought.


West German P228 (first duty weapon)
GOTM Nickel P229
 
Posts: 60 | Location: NC | Registered: March 09, 2018Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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For those who think the 40 S+W recoil is so much more vicious than the 9 mm, I challenge you to the following: Take two identical guns, one in 9mm, the other in 40 S+W(I tried it twice with the G-19/G-23 combination, and once with the P229 and M-11A1. Will try the 226 combo in the near future). Load both guns with your carry ammo( no fair comparing WWB 115 gr to Corbon factory). Now, with the aid of a friend, close your eyes, have the friend hand you one gun, and keeping your eyes closed so you can concentrate on recoil, shoot both guns, and then decide which has more recoil. In my personal testing, the G-19 and M-11A1, with WW Ranger 127 gr +P+, recoils more than the G-23 and P 229 using Speer 165 gr Gold Dot. One can obviously get different results using different ammo, but until you try it yourself, you will never know.
If you don’t like the 40S+W, or the 9mm/45ACP/357Sig/whatever, that’s OK- but make up your own mind based on facts, not internet opinions. It’s your like- is it worth the the effort to see what really works for you?


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Posts: 275 | Location: St. Louis, MO | Registered: June 15, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I never get this arguement that 40 sucks, or is short and weak. I have yet to find anyone willing to be shot with it.
I have used it for years. I have a pcc in 40 and 5 pistols in 40. It is a solid performer at 135, 155, 165, or the standard 180 grain. No it is not 10mm, very little factory 10mm ammo is 10mm hotness so vaunted by the internet.
It is another option for anyone looking at guns. Right now 40's are damn near the cheapest guns out there. So much so they are almost like the initial wave of c&r imports as they come in, stupid cheap now, stupid expensive later.
 
Posts: 5434 | Location: Virginia | Registered: December 23, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of 1lowlife
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The 40 has all that massive knock down POWER Roll Eyes, plus the muzzle flip...

The only good thing about a 40 is that some pistols and be converted to 357sig with a simple barrel swap.

I've bought and sold 40s; P229, G22, G23, G33 (plus a 27 barrel), all with the matching 357sig barrels.
Loved the 357sig, never cared for the 40.

The main reason I ever bought 40S&W pistols is that when Barry was elected, it was about the only ammo one could find.
Sold them off after the ammo famine was over.

Anyone with minimal pistol shooting experience and tell the difference in shooting a 40 with muzzle flip compared to a 9 (even +P or NATO) ammo.
The 40 has a distinctive flip-up recoil that a 9mm, 357sig, or even a 45ACP doesn't have.
Been there, done that. Eek

If you're a fan of the 40, more power to ya. Big Grin


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Posts: 3957 | Location: Great State of TEXAS | Registered: July 05, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Yokel
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Living in a restricted state of only ten rounds. I have several 40S&W SIG Pistols. Could not find them in 357SIG which is what I prefer.

So now it is just a barrel swap.

I did buy the complete P320 Compact 357SIG conversion kit.

Practice with the 40 and carry the 357SIG.



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Posts: 3602 | Location: Vallejo, CA | Registered: August 18, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of Expert308
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I've shot a few different .40's and found all of them to be noticeably more unpleasant (snappy) than either a 9 or a .45. Even so, I was seriously contemplating getting a .40 for a while. Ultimately I elected not to, but in the meantime I bought a couple boxes of .40 range ammo. I think I still have that sitting in my stash, maybe I'll karma it off one of these days.
 
Posts: 5691 | Location: Portland, OR | Registered: February 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by arcwelder76:
I'm highly amused that people who have invested in .40 now have to be defensive about their bad decisions.

Meanwhile the 10mm they insisted would die, is doing just fine.

.40 S&W will probably never go away, but the people who like it will have to accept that they'll have to get in the booth with those who use 10mm. Only with less power and shittier recoil.
I am highly amused that every discussion into justifying the new found merits of 9mm is always a precursor to bashing 40 S&W. 9mm threads by their merits alone are rare. Talk about defensive....it seems 9mm advocates have 40 S&W living rent free in their heads. Even more cantankerous is the 10mm camp, no matter which will always be very narrow niche round totally un suitable for every day carry or serious defensive work.

TR


Always a Good Target
 
Posts: 596 | Registered: February 21, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
I'm Fine
Picture of SBrooks
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I've got .380, 9mm, .40, and .357mag. And I carry each of them in any given year. Just depends on what I'm wearing, what mood I'm in, which is closest to me when I'm getting ready to walk out the door, etc.

They are all double action only guns with no safety - so manual of arms/operation is the same with each gun.

I also have a 9mm conversion barrel for my .40 239DAK SAS.

I consider them all to be decent defensive guns with the .380 being a summer tshirt gun only (wouldn't trust it going through heavy winter coats). I like having at least one of each, so I can take advantage of cheaper ammo as needed and still have a carry gun if all the other ammo stops being available for some reason...


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Posts: 3286 | Location: East Tennessee | Registered: August 21, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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