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40 Caliber S&W: What's Your Opinion?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Tallball, Sep 9, 2018.

  1. Tallball

    Tallball Member

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    I'm the opposite of Danny. I enjoy having handguns in every caliber that's fairly common. I have so far avoided 9x18 and 7.62x25. 10mm is the last one on my "to get" list. I figure if I have one or more handguns in every caliber that's somewhat common in the US, I will be more likely to find ammo I can use if there's another shortage. Plus, I'm just the kind of person who collects things. (I'm still lacking a Walther and a top-break revolver.)
     
  2. Spats McGee

    Spats McGee Moderator

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    .40 isn't going anywhere. Too popular, too many police agencies carry it. Personally, I've always considered it a solution in search of a problem. That said, I'm also thinking about buying one, .....
     
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  3. kcofohio
    • Contributing Member

    kcofohio Contributing Member

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    I agree, until the market swings the other way for the 40, I see no reason to sell any.
    Funny thing, I have neither love or hate for the cartridge. But I seem to keep getting deeper into it. Just today a guy I work with handed me a package, saying he had no use for it. It is a brand new 40 S&W magazine for my M&P40. Asked him what he wanted for it, nothing. Well, I surely can't go selling something a guy gave to me for free. :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2018
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  4. Striker

    Striker Member

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    I like it. I train with a Glock 19, but carry a 23, with a Khar CM40 in my front pocket BUG. YMMV
     
  5. MADDOG

    MADDOG Member

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    I like the .40 caliber. When I travel I have a S&W M&P 40 FS with a 15rd mag full of 180gr FMJ in my travel bag. I shoot it well with accuracy and never fails to fire. Just sayin
     
  6. MTMilitiaman

    MTMilitiaman Member

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    Handguns are handguns and rifles are rifles. When you study defensive shootings and police use of force accounts, you quickly discover that terminal ballistics is as much art as science. There can be no rhyme or reason to it. There is no accounting for the mental state your attacker is in. All handguns are inconsistent and unreliable stoppers. There is no real evidence to suggest that the .40 or the .45 are more effective than the 9mm at all to any statistically significant degree and handguns in general fail to stop an attacker at all regardless of how many bullets of whatever caliber are placed in the torso something like 30% of the time. That is why the FBI went with the 9mm--because it works as well as anything else while offering higher capacity in a pistol that is easier for most people to shoot well. That being said, I carry a 10mm Auto so carry what you're comfortable with.

    As for the .40 S&W, that is one of the few cartridges I have a genuine heart-felt loathing for. I treat all .40s like lepers. As a fan of the 10mm Auto, I feel like the .40 stole thunder and enjoys success that should rightfully belong to the 10mm, so I hate the .40 with a red hot burning passion. You'll never find one in my collection regardless of how good of a deal it is.
     
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  7. The Evangelist Cowboy

    The Evangelist Cowboy Member

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    That makes no sense. They both operate at the same pressures at 35k per SAAMI specs that would mean there is no discernible difference in "battering energy" upon the internals morever many people will up the ante and shoot plus p in 9mm pushing the pressure up to 38.5k pounds of pressure that is more than the .40.
     
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  8. Sovblocgunfan

    Sovblocgunfan Member

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    Me personally? Nah. It doesn’t float my boat, but I’m glad others can choose it for themselves.
     
  9. bluecollar

    bluecollar Member

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    So I quess we can put you down as a "no"?:D
     
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  10. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    That's not really correct. Pressure only effects the barrel and the breech face. And peak pressure only effects the chamber and the first inch or so of barrel. Unless the yield strength of steel is exceeded (i.e., the barrel bursts), then pressure itself is not what eventually tears up or wears out handguns.*

    When people talk about "battering internals," they are referring to the parts such as the barrel lugs, slide lugs, links, disconnectors, etc. Those things don't feel or care about pressure unless something is dramatically wrong (i.e, the gun is out of battery when it fires or you are in the process of blowing up the gun with some vastly over-pressure round). Those things do get battered by recoil energy and, in particular, how vigorously the slide is thrown backwards. The total area under the pressure curve contributes to this**, but not peak pressure in particular. What matters is what the total recoil energy put into the system and its components is.

    Think about it this way. Let's imagine two guns. One has a .32 caliber bore and a 21k PSI peak pressure max, with a case just over an inch in length. Let's call this a "32 H&R magnum" because that exists. Now, the second gun will have a 3.2 inch bore. It will have a case just under a foot in length. We will also give that a 21k PSI peak pressure max. Instead of throwing 100 grain rounds like the little gun, this one will toss projectiles weighing a couple of pounds. Do you think that these two guns will put similar stresses on their components? No, of course not. Even running at precisely the same peak pressure, the vastly greater momentum of the projectile (and powder ejecta) of the larger gun will, of course, produce vastly greater recoil energy to be dealt with by the gun's systems.

    The .40 generally has significantly more recoil energy, precisely because it is throwing a heavier projectile at similar speeds. That's always going to be more demanding to the components on the gun. Always.

    Fortunately, modern gun design makes accommodating these loads no problem in service size guns. Some of the earlier .40 guns that were shoehorned into guns designed around 9mm had durability problems (such as the Hi-Power). But guns designed with the 40 or other similarly powerful rounds in mind (which, from a recoil perspective, would include full power 45 ACP... despite its lower pressure, that round is also more demanding to the working components of guns than the 9mm) are certainly well able to handle it.

    One final note: People talk about +P ammo wearing out guns faster. It can, but not because of peak pressure (again, unless you're exceeding the yield strength of steel... bulging barrels and/or blowing up guns). It's because the extra pressure (total under the curve) is being used to throw the bullet faster, resulting in greater recoil energy. As explained above, that is harder on the operating components of semi-auto pistol.

    * Things are a little different in bottlnecked rifle rounds, where pressures may have a stronger relationship to throat erosion and barrel life.
    ** In the way that horsepower output of an engine contributes to vehicle speed.
     
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  11. Trunk Monkey

    Trunk Monkey Member

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    What data do you have to support this claim?
     
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  12. Drail

    Drail Member

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    The main reason the .40 came about was because manufacturers could chamber pistols designed for 9mm in something bigger than 9mm instead of completely designing a new pistol (which is really not a bad idea if you think about it). This also happened about the same time that everyone decided that they "needed" a double stack pistol.
     
  13. The Evangelist Cowboy

    The Evangelist Cowboy Member

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    History, common sense, physics knowledge. I provided several historical accounts and people whose experience you can read up on. It's not hard to actually come this conclusion. But people want to feel in their chosen caliber to validate themselves in some way.
     
  14. Trunk Monkey

    Trunk Monkey Member

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  15. Elkins45

    Elkins45 Member

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    I can see whi it might be preferred over 9mm for winter carry. If you have to shoot through a heavy winter coat then the extra momentum of a heavier bullet could be helpful in assuring sufficient penetration.
     
  16. Trunk Monkey

    Trunk Monkey Member

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    When you say that other rounds "do the job better" than 9mm how do you quantify that? Do you have data that indicates that a person shot a .40 S&W is incapacitated faster than a person shot with a 9mm? I mean if there was actual hard data indicating that every police department in the country would be carrying .40 S&W right?
     
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  17. The Evangelist Cowboy

    The Evangelist Cowboy Member

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    They were. And they will again once they have another major history. If I sent you data you'd mostly discard it. Marshal and Sanow means nothing to you neither does the Thompson lagarde tests.
     
  18. Theohazard

    Theohazard Member

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    Both Marshal and Sanow’s work and the Thompson-Lagarde tests are widely regarded as unscientific and extremely flawed.
     
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  19. The Evangelist Cowboy

    The Evangelist Cowboy Member

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    Yeah we keep hearing that. But no one does there own tests or studies history, if the 9mm is so effective then we wouldn't have needed to do years of research into it. This is not a sentent said alone by me this is something many people with far better credentials than I have also said. By all means stick with your 9mm but don't go into a false sense ofsecurity thinking it's "just as good" cause it ain't.
     
  20. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

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    Hilariously entertaining thread. Kinda reminds me of the old 9mm vs. .45 ACP debates.

    So what I know is that all research into handgun stopping power generally evaluates results in ballistic gel or rounds fired into various other media. Data compiled of actual shootings is generally reflecting shootings in which a person is shot dead. Not a lot of data out there on shootings in which humans are merely wounded and survive.

    So what's the issue?

    Are you more dead if you get shot with a bullet of one caliber that had you been killed with the other caliber?

    Again, another member waiting to see this backed up ...
     
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  21. The Evangelist Cowboy

    The Evangelist Cowboy Member

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    Guess no one went into my first post about the developments of the .35 caliber from the phillipine war and police shootings to event present day mid east failures with the caliber . It doesn't work as well as others that's my statement if you don't agree with it then fine but I gave you historical proof and still you don't agree saying it ain't good enough. It's not hard to see if you don't agree them fine go on with your lives.
     
  22. Theohazard

    Theohazard Member

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    Deleted: I really don’t want to participate in a caliber war. There are enough of those online already.

    Basically, pick what you shoot best and can practice with the most, since all defensive handgun calibers are relative pea-shooters and can be unreliable at stopping human threats.
     
  23. Trunk Monkey

    Trunk Monkey Member

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    If any one of the three main service calibers was demonstrably stopping more bad guys than the other two then every Police Department in America would be carrying it.

    If .40 Smith & Wesson is what appeals to you carry it. I choose 9 over .40 because from a purely logistical standpoint I can buy more 9 than .40 for the same price.

    I also choose it because my wife can't shoot 40 and it just doesn't make any sense to me to support two calibers. I still have a Smith & Wesson 4006 and probably two or three thousand rounds on hand for it. I might take it to the range twice a year but it's pretty much a Safe Queen.

    Having said that let me say again if .40 what appeals do you buy it. I just think these "9mm is for guys with little penises" or " or real men only carry calibers that start in 4" (Well then why aren't you carrying a .460 Rowland?) Are ridiculous and are probably being made by people who are worried about their endowment.
     
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  24. Trunk Monkey

    Trunk Monkey Member

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  25. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

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    Actually, I'd read your post. Always get a chuckle when someone uses the failure of the old service revolvers against the Filipino Moros (who were generally small-statured, 5' - 5'4" or so and lean) in the jungles of the Philippines ... the failures were blamed on the weapon and the cartridges, when typically it was a failure of marksmanship, notwithstanding the fact that the troops were armed with a primary weapon - rifles with bayonets -- that did not stop suicide attacks anyway.

    You are not proving your case with "historical proof." Sorry.
     
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