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9mm vs. .40s&w

Discussion in 'Firearms and Mac & Cheese' started by sstalder5, Nov 19, 2012.

  1. sstalder5

    sstalder5 Turbo Monkey

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    So I'll be pulling the trigger on my first pistol (figuratively and literally) in the next few weeks. I've decided on the Springfield XD 4" in either 9mm or .40s&w. I can't decide. A close friend of mine has the 9mm and I've shot it extensively and even field stripped it. I love the gun but I can't decide if I want to go for the slightly larger caliber. The only drawbacks I see to the .40 is that bulk ammo is slightly more expensive and it only holds 12 rounds as opposed to 16 in the 9mm. This gun will be heavily used for target shooting and I plan to keep it for a long time. I also plan on keeping it as a home defense gun but it'll probably be a backup to my shotgun.
     

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  2. IH8Rice

    IH8Rice I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!

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    There's already a thread on this but I'd go with another 9 before a 40. I personally didnt like the XD when I shot it. The ergonomics didn't feel as comfortable as my M&P but to each his own. Moar ammo is also never a bad thing too and with the slew of self defense ammo out there, caliber choice is almost becoming blurred.
     
  3. sstalder5

    sstalder5 Turbo Monkey

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    I feel like I may have seen that thread but IIRC there was a lot of misinformation and arguing going on so I decided to start a clean one. I really like the XD though. It feels really good in my hands and I've never seen it malfunction after my friends and I put over 1000 rounds of cheap bulk ammo through it. I'm leaning towards the 9mm though. The bulk ammo is ~$80 cheaper per 1000 rounds and I could keep it loaded with p+ ammo for defense which would pretty much make up the difference in stopping power.

    Which M&P do you have? I'm planning on buying a CCW a few months out and the Shield is on my short list.
     
  4. kgm

    kgm Chimp

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    Target pistol I'd go high capacity and cheap ammo. I don't think you'd find many humans who are 9mm proof.
     
  5. TKCastle

    TKCastle Monkey

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    If your going to shoot mostly target why not get the 5.25. Longer sight radius is always easier to shoot. 9 micky mouse for cost of feeding and performance/self-d ammo is good.
     
  6. IH8Rice

    IH8Rice I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!

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    most of the self defense rounds arent even +p iirc.
    ive got the 4" full size and a Shield both in 9mm
     
  7. DirtyMike

    DirtyMike Turbo Fluffer

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    I have the xd .40 in the service model.... fits my hands great, I can shoot this thing all day long, rounds are on par for cost, and knock down is def there. Breakdown and maintenance is easy, and after about 4k rounds...... still no problems....
     
  8. Mattcz

    Mattcz Chimp

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    I find the recoil impulse of. 40 to be unpleasant. I would much rather shoot 9 .45 or even. 357 mag over a .40.
    Most of time has been spent with 1911s and Browning HiPowers.
     
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  9. Jm_

    Jm_ Turbo Monkey

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    9mm, you can't beat the ammo price. That hands down does it. I had a USP in 9 and recently got rid of it, but that thing was a champ. You can get +p+ rounds for 9mm and match the ballistic performance of most, if not all .40 rounds. I've also had some 45s, and I've always found them to be generally more accurate than anything else with pistols, BUT that is a subsonic round and most all other rounds are supersonic. Subsonic tends to be a bit more accurate, but the HK was more accurate than any other 9 I'd shot.

    The military used .45 because they were prevented from using expanding type rounds. Due to the rules of war, we had to use "ball" ammo in the military, so at the end of the day .45 was bigger than .38. Penetration has been a problem with .45 though, because it goes so slow it's been known to dissipate all it's energy through heavy clothing. Even though it's a big and heavy round, it's been faulted for not going deep enough to cause severe blood loss and loss of consciousness (what disables an attacker). High power .45 rounds help a bit here of course. I have a .45 right now. I like it, but I don't shoot this gun as much. Something like this is better for home defense due to the more limited penetration. The HK was my plinking-handgun (apart from my .22).

    So .40 kind of splits the difference, except that modern ballistics and charges really make 9mm just as good as anything else. It's got a much higher velocity and penetrates better. Add a good expanding round and +p or +p+ and it's going to do it's thing just fine. At the end of the day for plinking and just fun shooting, it's no match at all. 9mm till the cows come home because it's usually dirt cheap compared other cartridges in the same general use area.
     
    #9 -   Nov 25, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2012
  10. Andyman_1970

    Andyman_1970 Turbo Monkey

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    I've shot most of the Glock .40 models and did not like the recoil either. I'm shooting a P226, and really prefer the 9+alloy gun feel. I'd personally stick with either 9 or 45ACP, both are plentiful in the unlikely even the SHTF. If I weren't drooling about a Sig Mk25 I'd be leaning towards a P220 in 45.
     
  11. ultraNoob

    ultraNoob Yoshinoya Destroyer

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    My Sig has expelled 20k+ rounds and still awesome
     
  12. DirtyMike

    DirtyMike Turbo Fluffer

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    What is funny, is now here in Socal, it is the 9mm that is becoming hard to find, while the .40 is still readily available.... least as far as I can find
     
  13. ultraNoob

    ultraNoob Yoshinoya Destroyer

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    I think that's because of the $$ difference per box. I can still find 9mm for $18-$22 a box for 124gr rnfmj. .40 is going for $27-$32 at the local stores for fpfmj

    Side note. My gf was in Yuma AZ today to visit some family. I had her check out 5 stores in the area and all were sold out of .22lr or were asking $5/50rnds. Crazy shortage out here in the SW for .22
     
  14. DirtyMike

    DirtyMike Turbo Fluffer

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    I am still getting .40 for 16 bucks a box over at Bulls-eye, and warrior one
     
  15. ultraNoob

    ultraNoob Yoshinoya Destroyer

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    I've gone back to reloading 9mm and .40. I'll check them out for .22lr.
     
  16. sstalder5

    sstalder5 Turbo Monkey

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    If anybody's wondering I ended up buying a Ruger .270 bolt action rifle. I'll probably buy a pistol in the next couple months. I was just too indecisive and I was planning on picking up a solid deer rifle anyways so I went ahead and did that. Nobody buys .270 so it's never sold out and it's about $15 a box. The shortage isn't quite as bad over here in the South. It's noticeable but I can usually find the ammo I'm looking for without having to go to more than one store.
     
  17. DirtyMike

    DirtyMike Turbo Fluffer

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  18. aixelsyd

    aixelsyd Chimp

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    Being new to this my opinion is limited so take it FWIW. I bought a Sig 229 in 40 for my first hand gun. Mostly because 9mm is so hard to come by. I have no reservations about this after my first trip to the range. On the second trip I brought along my wife and rented the same gun in 9mm and let her decide what was better......
    She chose the 40. Less snap and no flash were her reasons. I felt the 9mm had more snap, maybe the term would be recoil but I always thought recoil would be more a push back not an arc up of the muzzle. Again I'm new to this so I could be misunderstanding this.
    I do think after all the research I did that the materials and design of the Sig lends itself well to handle the 40.
     
  19. Dirt Eater

    Dirt Eater Chimp

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    I use to own a Glock in .40S&W, a round I really like but traded it for a 9mm just because it was a more affordable round for target shooting.

    I had a Sig chambered in .357 Sig & REALLY like that round but, again, it wasn't cheap. It was the best of both worlds and man, was it loud!
     
  20. llkoolkeg

    llkoolkeg Ranger LL

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    I never liked the .40 and always thought of it as just a downloaded 10mm...a round I DO like(besides the cost).
     
  21. blindboxx2334

    blindboxx2334 Turbo Monkey

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    all my handguns (and my shooting buddies) are chambered in .40 for the ease of not needing to buy a bunch of different calibers. I do the same thing with my rifles; just pick what you like and stick with it.

    some guns chambered in 40 seem to have 'excessive' kick (when comparing to other 9mm guns), but the more you shoot it, the less you notice it. my M&P shield 40 (which is a subcompact), seems like it has less kick than my g23 (which is a compact); its weird..

    edit:
    one of these days i wouldnt mind a 1911 chambered in 45 acp though.
     
  22. DirtyMike

    DirtyMike Turbo Fluffer

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    So going back to the original question, the particular weapon we are looking at I would go 40 hands down now. The xd 40 service model, swaps into 9mm for about 200 dollars. Then you just fire the one you want when you are out and have the best of both worlds
     
  23. blindboxx2334

    blindboxx2334 Turbo Monkey

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    my buddy is an XD only guy when talking autoloaders. his are all .40 cal, they are nice, i like them. he is always trying to get me to buy one.

    assuming they are like glock, where you just find the same bbl length but chambered in 9mm and swap it out... there are also a lot of conversion bbls for glocks out there; i would say there have to be some for the XDs.
     
  24. blindboxx2334

    blindboxx2334 Turbo Monkey

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    so, we actually had this debate at the range on caturday.

    We compared 9mm vs 40S&W. But, they were on different firearms, so its not like it was a real side-to-side comparision.. The range owner noticed all of our handguns were chambered in 40; he's a big 9mm guy, so he picked out a tricked out comp gun and let my buddy and i shoot it. my buddy was sold on 9mm after, mostly from the lack of a kick compared to 40.

    im still on the fence. the reduced kick was nice, but im not going to run out and start buying all my handguns in 9mm. the range owner also went into other details why he likes 9 over 40, but i wasnt listening to all of it.

    i say try both and pick what you like.
     
  25. Jm_

    Jm_ Turbo Monkey

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    I've had a few 9mms and 45s, always felt the 45s were more accurate (subsonic round naturally) possibly due to more surface area to "grab" the barrel, except my high quality 9mm HK was every bit as good as my 45s, just that you didn't seem to have to spend $800+ to get a decent 45. Most 9mms have never really blown me away with reliability and accuracy.
     
  26. IH8Rice

    IH8Rice I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!

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    b/w my two Shields and full size M&P, ive easily shot 7k+ rounds through them with barely 5 malfunctions and they still have tight groups.
     
  27. Jm_

    Jm_ Turbo Monkey

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    I think I had zero with the HK, a few at first with the glock but then it sorted out and no more. I don't remember specifics for the others I owned, but I remember nothing exceptionally good (Rugers, berettas, few others). The HK really stood out.
     
  28. IH8Rice

    IH8Rice I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!

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    i attributed the malfunctions i had to bad primers from my reloads. id say 5 out of 7k+ is pretty damn good
     
  29. blindboxx2334

    blindboxx2334 Turbo Monkey

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    that is really good. we have 250ish (started w/ 500), 300blk reloads left with iffy primers (20-25 failure to fire in the first 250 rds). i thought initially that the hammer spring wasnt powerful enough, but we ran some 'match grade' ammo though the (ar) pistol and it ran without any hiccups.

    still on the fence about reloads. ive used good reloads and bad reloads.. its hard to tell just by looking at them though..

    btw, 300 blk is too damn pricey.
     
  30. MikeD

    MikeD Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists

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    There is ZERO medical evidence that any pistol service caliber produces any different terminal effect on a human. They are all capable of the exact same thing and a coroner cannot determine the caliber used in a service-caliber handgun round unless they find the projectile.

    Pistols wound through primary cavitation only. They are too slow to cause secondary. There IS NO "STOPPING POWER," aside from shot placement and psychology. Foot-pounds of energy do nothing...once you have adequate penetration into the human body, you have hit the max threshold for damage. More rounds on target in the right place will be the only thing to help.

    9mm is cheaper, kicks less, and you can fit more of them. Cheaper is the most important, as it lets you train more for the same money.

    I have been saying this for years, but the FBI finally published a big study on it. Think about fighting more, and about guns less. Your head matters more than what's in your hand.

    And all pistols are a sucky proposition in a fight regardless.

    (The above is not applicable to hunting, where penetration concerns are likely different. A boar's skull is not a human being's.)
     
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  31. MikeD

    MikeD Leader and Demogogue of the Ridemonkey Satinists

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    Holy christ. I am a spoiled mofo. I had no idea ammo was that expensive. I don't think I've ever bought ammo aside from once or twice on a range while renting a gun to show a friend/family the basics.

    Suddenly training with 7-shot/4-second strings at 3 yards seems extravagant. Those full-auto subguns and rifles in the closet now seem like a money hose instead of a weapon.
     
  32. maxyedor

    maxyedor <b>TOOL PRO</b>

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    I'd expand that statement to mention that 9mm, in the same frame, will put more rounds in your hand. When it comes to capacity, more is better.

    As for the recoil issue, many in this thread don't like .40, likely because it cases lots of muzzle flip, whereas 9mm is more pushy. That flip makes it less comfortable to shoot, as well as harder to keep on target for a follow-up shot.
     
  33. ultraNoob

    ultraNoob Yoshinoya Destroyer

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    I remember the day when 9mm went for $9-$11 a box.... hey wait. That was yesterday. Scored some Perfecta 9mm in brass for $11/box at wallyworld. Out of my Sig P226, the accuracy is decent. I'd put them a step better than wolf/tulammo/whitebox winchester. Out of my Marlin Camp 9, they're great. Knocking cans down at will, at 100yds is great.

    Back to the original topic... I really don't see myself carrying .40cal. .45ACP is my carry caliber of choice, but my pocket gun is a .380. I used to feel underpowered when I only had my .380, but then I bought these.

    Lehigh Defense Extreme Penetrator.

    See test results here https://www.full30.com/video/913d49f717a54171edcbd115c27efe5d

    Imagine this type of projectile chambered in 9mm, .40, .45, .357mag, etc....
     
  34. atrokz

    atrokz Turbo Monkey

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    9mm all day, every day. I'm a big fan of .45 for it's ease to shoot (subsonic, nice feel to it), but for protection 9mm fits more, and is cheaper to train with.

    The FBI is switching back to 9mm. There's a report online as to why, can't search here so just look it up on google. The end effect is that the additional 'stopping power' (lulz) of .40 isn't worth it with todays modern defense rounds which show not much of a size difference when expanded. As more is better than larger, as their research showed people did one of two things when shot. They either gave up right away (would be the same with a .22) because of the psychological impact it has, or kept moving forward, for which follow ups were critical and 9mm proved to be better in that area.

    So, 9mm all day, every day. Fit one more and you have that follow up which is more valuable than a .05" in size, in addition to an easier round to put on target.
     
  35. DirtyMike

    DirtyMike Turbo Fluffer

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    Many le agency's are going with 9mm these days due to availability of +p+ ammunitions.

    Truth of all studies, .380, .40, 9mm, .45 have no discernable difference in lethality due to different types of ammunition available. There is still only one hand gun caliber that is a normal carry option that is testing ad a one shot stop round and that is still a .357 in a jacketed soft nose.

    I have at least one of each of these calibers that I carry. Let me first say that they all work and do the job, capacity is not a huge issue between them, more so for me it depends on what I am doing and wearing over anything else.

    The capacity of the .40 has come a long way in the last few years. Now that I have an xd in 40 caliber and 9mm I can tell you two things, one they are both accurate without a discernable difference, and two recoil between the two is also not a discernable difference. Neither is weight or size when fully loaded,
     
  36. DirtyMike

    DirtyMike Turbo Fluffer

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    Bottom line, one stop shots do not happen. Pick what you are comfortable with and train with it.


    On the note of cost, 40 here is average of 15 a box of fifty, 9mm average 13, .45 average 18. Cost for most all ammo is coming back down

    Oh, and just cause I can stir it up my personal stuff
    .40 xdm. 16 round mag
    9mm xd 17 round mag
    .357 6 rounds
    .45 1911 8 round mag
    .380 versa 7 round mag
    .40 xd service 13 round mag
     
    #36 -   Jun 9, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2015