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Glock subcompact .40 vs. .357 Snub Revolver

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Greg8098, Jun 28, 2007.

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  1. Greg8098

    Greg8098 Member

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    I remember hearing somewhere that there is more MV and ME from a subcompact Glock .40 / .357 than a 2-inch barrel revolver in .357 mag. Is this true ? I've heard that out of such a short barrel, the ballistics are basically the same as a 9mm from a 4-inch barrel.
     
  2. scubie02

    scubie02 Member

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    well, obviously you're going to be losing some oomf in any of the super compact/snubbies. One thing to consider though is that something like a 357 snubbie is pretty unpleasant to shoot for most folks. Even 38 special +P's are pretty snappy out of a lightweight j frame, actually. I prefer 9mm's or standard 38's in the hideout guns. Lots of badguys met their maker to regular ol 38's...
     
  3. Deaf Smith

    Deaf Smith Member

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    The only question is if you can control it rapid fire.. one handed.

    Sticking more and more power in a small lightweight piece will have tradeoffs. Controlability is one. Accuracy will be another (and that's a function of it's controlability!)

    I've got some real light .357s and with full loads they do kick! And what a blast the guns give off.

    For such as the 340PD I suggest .38 +p+ at the most. Just way to much recoil. The M66 2 1/2 can take the full 357s but being able to practice alot will be quite a challenge.

    And thus the Glock 27, or even the Glock 26, are indicated. The .40 subcompact is a pretty good balance. 10 to 12 shots (I prefer the +2 mag loaded with 10 rounds, and one up the pipe.)
     
  4. DawgFvr

    DawgFvr Member

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    Well...there's always the heavy snub...like a 3 inch GP100 or the S&W 626. Those .357 mags will give you a run for your money...both are fighting/combat revolvers.
     
  5. 10-Ring

    10-Ring Member

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    I'm not a 40 fan & I like carrying my j-frame --soooo, I'd vote for the 357 wheelgun in this case ;)
     
  6. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    I carry a J frame loaded with Short Barrel .38 special +P ammo. It's more than enough to handle, both for me shooting it and I'm guessing anyone on the other end. (God forbid)
     
  7. rolltide

    rolltide Member

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    When considering a short barreled CCW gun, I looked carefully at M&S data and ballistics from long and short barrels with the same round. I found that short barrels in general call for lighter bullets than long barrels in the same caliber. The heavy for caliber bullets just lose too much velocity and effectiveness from a short barrel. I found the best performer for defense when barrels are shorter than 4" is the 40S&W and the 357SIG. These two rounds seem to "lose less" from short barrels than any others. I carry an AMT Backup in 40S&W with Corbon Power Point. I have short barreled 45's, 9MM's, and 357's both magnums and SIGS, but the best of the lot for ballistic performance out of a short barrel in the 40S&W or the 357SIG. I carry an all steel gun because I never warmed up to plastic guns and because once you have to pull the trigger, you will be glad for every ounce of extra weight in your hand. I would rather sacrifice carry comfort than shooting ability.

    just my 2 pesos

    Roll Tide
     
  8. ugaarguy

    ugaarguy Moderator Staff Member

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    First, the M&S data has been thoroughly debunked; a quick search here and on google will provide the details.

    The short bbls may lose some velocity, but mosts ballistic gel tests show that heavy rounds have the momentum to keep penetrating, unlike the lighter rounds so popular now, at least in the .38 +P offerings. THR member JE223's website, www.brassfetcher.com, will provide plenty of data for your research.

    I suppose the real question though is what method of carry are you considering? If you're thinking pocket carry the airweight J frames, and the little 32 and 380 Kel-Tecs and NAAs are the most economical options. Stepping up a bit in price are the Kahr PM9 and PM40, in 9mm and 40 S&W respectively. The next step up is a big one, to the $1K Rohrbaugh R9 9mm. In an airweight J frame .38+P is the hottest thing most folks can control, comfortably handle, and get follow up shots off in reasonable time with.

    If you're talking belt carry, the Glock 26 & 27 are great (the grip extension floorplates are a good idea too), as the Springfield XD compacts. The S&W M&P compacts are getting great reviews and look very promising. Metal frame single stack autos like the 3rd gen S&Ws, Sig 239, and Kahr K or T series are good options. Getting into revolvers the steel frame J magnums with three finger grips, and Ruger SP-101 are very nice small belt guns that won't beat you to death firing full house magnums. After that the 2, 2.5, and 3 inch S&W K frame and Ruger Speed/Service/Security Six revolvers are sweet carry revolvers.

    In the end it comes down to which gun you can both comfortably carry AND make solid hits with. Caliber is a distant third.
     
  9. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    That's pretty true of the lighter bullet loads, but I've found heavier bullet loads less affected by barrel length when loaded hot with slower powders. There are factory loads for 2" .357s that perform better, faster powders in 'em, but I am about as comfortable with my 3" 9mm shooting +P. Out of a standard 158 grain load in my SP101 with 2.3" barrel I recently shot 1162 fps/426 ft lbs. This is a standby load of 14.5 grains of 2400. I get 1260 fps/410 ft lbs out of my Kel Tec P11 with a hot +P 115 grain load. Out of the Ruger, my 125 grain load, HOT out of a 4" gun, shoots 1102 fps/337 ft lbs. I think with a faster powder like blue dot, I could improve that to over 400 ft lbs. Factory specs I've seen on 125 grain loads is around 380 ft lbs.

    However, in my Ruger, a load of 17 grains of 2400 with a 140 grain Speer wakes it up to 1332 fps/551 ft lbs. This is the load I'm carrying now. Go even heavier to a 180 grain bullet with a STOUT load of AA#9 under it and the little cannon produces 1306 fps/682 ft lbs, with, as Newton would say, and equal and opposite reaction. OUCH. LOL Anyway, with the slow powders, this leads me to think that the heavier bullets accelerating a little slower down the bore are utilizing the pressures better. That and the fact that the 125 grain load recoil was mild while the flash/bang had to be experienced to be believed. Obviously, most of the pressure was burning outside the barrel. That's why I think a faster powder is called for with the light bullet, but I'm so happy with that 140 grain load, I haven't pursued any other 125 grain loads tailored for the gun.

    So, anyway, I have awakened the short barrel with some load development and I really like .357 magnum caliber and revolvers. I've never owned a .40 and don't plan to. It just doesn't ring any bells for me. I have 2 9s and a .45 for autos and that covers most of what I'll ever care about in an automatic. I'm not a real tacticool type, like revolvers and that's mostly what I own and it's hard to fault the .357 magnum for either versatility or self defense from a revolver. There are some big and slow revolver guys that like the .44 special, but give me the .357 magnum any day. Besides, it's easier to carry and the SP101 is pretty easy to shoot. Now, I ain't talkin' 12 ounce guns made of unobtainium. The SP101 is enough, couldn't handle a lot more recoil than that. But, the SP101 is about the same weight and size as the G27, so we're talkin' apples and apples pretty much, eh?

    There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with the .40 and autoloaders in .40 for self defense if you like 'em. I'm just not interested. I'm pretty set now with what I've got and the loads I handload for. I think comparing the two is just a deal of whether you want an autoloader or a revolver, frankly. Pointless to compare ballistics. They're pretty similar anyway and either is MORE than enough to get the self defense job done IMHO. Heck, I often carry a little .38 Special and I even have a .380 when I need small and discreet.

    Here is a comparison of .357 magnum barrel length with my standard 158 grain SWC load and I think it's pretty representative of what you can do with factory loads since it's not a particularly hot handload, pretty standard. This load has been tested on two deer from the Blackhawk and it had no problems with quick incapacitation on a lung hit. :D

    2.3" SP101...........1162 fps/426 ft lbs
    3" Taurus M66......1198 fps/504 ft lbs
    4" Taurus M66.......1324 fps/614 ft lbs
    6.5" Blackhawk......1470 fps/760 ft lbs
     
  10. Golddog

    Golddog Member

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    I own a lot of .357 revolvers and no Glocks. But the Glocks are a lot easier to shoot fast and accurately at combat distances.
     
  11. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Actually, as Jerry Miculek has proven, a revolver's lock time is faster than an autoloader. It doesn't rely on recoil and cycling. It cycles as fast as the trigger is pulled. Of course, none of us are Jerry Miculek unless he's reading this, but I do pretty well with a revolver. Don't care much for Glocks as carry pieces. They shoot fine, accurate, reliable, just don't care for 'em for carry. I've fired quite a few. If I was going to buy one, it'd probably be a G20 in 10mm because I don't have a ten and it's a good caliber, more comparable to the .357 than the .40, especially with the heavies.
     
  12. rolltide

    rolltide Member

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    ugaarguy,
    The Fackler et al "arguments" against the M&S data are at least as specious as Fackler claims the M&S data to be. Now Fackler makes some good points about terminal ballistics in his own right, but to claim he or any others have "debunked" the results of hundreds of real life shootings is a little much. The value of the M&S data is NOT that they prove round X will stop a bad guy Y percent of the time. To the extent you say M&S data (or any other data for that matter) does not prove that, I would agree with you and Fackler. The GREAT value of the M&S data is how round X compares to round Y when evaluated under the same criteria. I basically believe Fackler et al, AND M&S have made some good points about comparing one round to another. I don't believe you have to throw out one set of data to consider the other and the only reason I can see for the Fackler et al endless attacks on M&S was strictly business competition, and competition at a pretty low level at that.

    I use Fackler data for what it is worth, M&S data for what it is worth, and comments here for what they are worth. I have no problem with others that choose to ignore Fackler, M&S, or other comments. I have debated that for years here and other places. You may follow you own search results to find more detail about my comments on the subject. I have long since stopped debating the issue. That is hours and hours of writing with no minds being changed and everyone thinking they proved their own point while the opposing side thinks they have proved their own point. I just choose to disagree without being disagreeable about it.

    Having said all of that, thanks for the brassfetcher.com link. That is a great site. More data is always welcome.

    Roll Tide
     
  13. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Talk about rehashing old arguments, but some folks can't leave old dogs alone. I won't re-hash my opinion, just to say the .357 magnum 125 grain JHP has a TREMENDOUS street reputation in the hands of police departments of the 70s and early 80s regardless of prognosticators of big and slow or small and fast. I have complete confidence in the .357 Magnum round to stop a fight as quickly or quicker than most other reasonable handgun calibers and I've killed deer with it (and one Javelina), so have some actually experience and confidence in it.

    I have no such experience with the .40, but I'm sure it's a capable round and I'm not knocking it at all, just stickin' up for the original fight stopping Magnum. However, the original question of the .357 out of short barrels is a valid argument against the .357. I've found a round that works for me out of the little SP, but yeah, a 2" barrel will normally neuter the round down to the point that many other more normal auto and revolver rounds can compare. The great rep the round has was in service revolvers of 4 to 6" barrel lengths, not snubs. I added my 2 cents on the ballistics of the round from some rudimentary testing I've done since I got the SP101. I think it shed some light on things for me. Yes, you can find a load that works in a shorter barrel, probably have to have a little heavier bullet and or a faster burning powder than normal. But, even a snubby can perform well over levels of 9mm or .38 special. Not every load does, however, and of course you have to be able to shoot and control those hot loads and there is a price to be paid in noise and flash. You have to weigh all these things, too, when choosing a caliber for carry, not just ballistics. Don't do any good to have all that power if you can't shoot and control it.
     
  14. Mr. Designer

    Mr. Designer Member

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    I would go with the 357.
     
  15. mavracer

    mavracer Member

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    I'd say either will work and have. I am not a 40 fan ( its an answer looking for a question) I have a taurus 605 was shootin GDSB 357s decided to switch to full power. cause I shot some and realized they were controlable.started with 125 fed classics but they shot low,swithed to 145 silvertips they are better POI=POA and have a good reputation.
     
  16. Haywood

    Haywood Member

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    I'll stick with my Snub Guns. If I come in contact with an Atacker I don,t have to worry about interfearing with the slide, fail to feed or eject, bad grip, etc. 38+P or 357s are for me. Most of the time I carry Two Five Shooters.
     
  17. Rustynuts

    Rustynuts Member

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    Ruger SP101 with Double Tap!
     
  18. Deaf Smith

    Deaf Smith Member

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    Tell you what guys. Get a Glock .40 with top .40S&W ammo, and your favorite snub .357 magnum, with top magnum loads (not .38s). Put up just two IPSC milpark targets at, say 4 and 7 yards. Get a timer. Do it from the leather, from concealment.

    I lay you odds you will hit more accurate, and faster, with that Glock, one handed or two, than your snub magnum.

    And I won't even go into reloading that wheelgun.
     
  19. Charles S

    Charles S Member

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    No deal...I know I am faster with the Glock, but I still am not too shabby with the SP101 with a good defensive load.

    Greg you are really comparing two very different guns, that have different strengths and weaknesses.

    From a pure fighting standpoint I believe the Glock to be superior, but I think that a good short barreled stainless steel revolver is an incredibly versatile gun.

    To answer your original question with standard factory loading the Glock will generally provide more velocity and muzzle energy.

    The 40 Caliber loadings will suffer a little in the shorter barrel but still should provide adequate energy:

    Bullet weight: Velocity/Energy (figure you will give up 50 to 100 FPS from factory figures).

    135 1200/432
    155 1140/447
    165 980/362

    The 357 can however be loaded with specialty loadings that are formulated for short barrels than can approach and in some cases even exceed this level of performance, the cost will be: cost and an increase in recoil and blast making the gun less pleasant to shoot and downright difficult for the inexperienced.

    Think Buffalo Bore 2 1/2 inch barrel ballistics

    125 1225/416
    140 1150/411
    158 1100/424

    Or BB hunting.

    180 1302/677
    158 1398/685

    This is not representative of all 357 loadings, but is available, as is the higher energy loadings for the 40 from BB and Double Tap.

    With the 357 one also has the option of snake shot and various 38 loadings.

    So again, they really are very different guns.
     
  20. ugaarguy

    ugaarguy Moderator Staff Member

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    Can't miss fast enough to win. I'll take your odds. 4 yards is point shooting range, and I can't shoot Glocks that well, particularly point shooting, because of the grip angle. I'll take my 2.5" or 3" KT & K magnum anyday. Change that Glock to a Commander length 1911 and it's a different story.

    Again, it just reenforces what many have said here; there is no one solution that applies to everyone. You must get out and shoot the guns. See what make, model, grip, caliber, and load combinations work best for you. We've each our preferences.
     
  21. Alphazulu6

    Alphazulu6 member

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    Greg8098,

    Aside from the alure of saying .357 mag (which you will most certainly use a .38+p) but will acheive 420-430 LBS at muzzle, the .40 from a Glock (450 LBS at muzzle of the glock), coupled with the larger surface area of impact, the .40 is the superior choice within those configurations.

    Unburned powder flying from the end of a 2" barrel does nothing to help trajectory of the .357 mag ballistics.

    Good luck!
    :)
     
  22. Deaf Smith

    Deaf Smith Member

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    ugaarguy,

    It ain't nothing about missing fast. In fact it's hitting fast. That is one of the big reasons cops went to autos over revolvers. Keep in mind the Indianna state police went to single stack 9mm Smiths long time ago cuase they found it so much easier to hit with an auto.

    And I say this being a IDPA expert in all classification (and that includes revolvers, where I made expert with a Speed Six, 2 3/4 revolver.) I grew up on Colt "O" and Smith "K" frames.

    I have snub .357s in Smith 340PD, 640, 66, and 686 as well as Ruger Speed Six and Security Six (yep a 2 3/4 inch Security Six, adjustable sights to.) I know well what it's like to shoot snubs with full magnums. And I also have Glocks in 27, as well as 26, 32, 19, and 17 flavors. Used to have a Glock 22 also (but it became kind of redundant.)

    One can see an any IDPA match, or just any match were you have to shoot fast that a snub .357, with shooters of the same skill level, just won't do as well as a simi-auto shooter.

    Not that does not mean a .357 snub is a bad choice. In fact if you don't shoot much, and prefer a simpler manual of arms, then the wheelgun is a very good choice. But the snub magnum in the hands of equaly skilled shooters, does not match a auto like a Glock 27.
     
  23. ugaarguy

    ugaarguy Moderator Staff Member

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    DeafSmith, my disagreement was meant to be illustrative. I agree with what you're saying. Yes, an auto (providing it fits the shooter's hand) will generally be faster than a revolver for someone who'll devote even a bit of regular range time (again, not dragging out the JM exceptions). I also agree with you on the simplicity of revolver operation for those unwilling/unable to practice regularly.

    However, there are always unique circumstances - which I think is why we've both advocated getting out and shooting the guns; you wont know what you can do with it until you shoot it and find out.
     
  24. Golddog

    Golddog Member

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    I think Deaf Smith summarizes the matter quite well. Unless you're another Jerry Miculek or Ed McGivern, you'll shoot the right semi faster and more accurately than the right revolver at combat distances. I exclude DAO and TDA autos for myself, however, since I find them impossible to shoot well under any conditions. SA semis and striker fired types top even the best revolvers, at least in my hands and the hands of everyone with whom I shoot.

    Reliability is a different matter; at the range I have seen a hundred times more malfunctions with semis than revolvers, and I still don't trust semis through which I've shot thousands of rounds without a bobble.

    I claim no special expertise and offer these observations only as someone who loves revolvers, has owned ten times as many of those as semis and has shot tens of thousands more rounds through wheel guns than semis. While I regularly carry Smith K revolvers because they're more comfortable in close concealment and more reliable, the speed and accuracy of my CZ 9mm's are tempting me to change my ways.
     
  25. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    I don't like Glocks for carry. I don't like "safe action" triggers.

    My 140 grain Speer load in front of 17 grains of Alliant 2400 produces 1332 fps/551 ft lbs and is quite controllable in the SP101 2.3" gun. I don't like Glocks, I do like revolvers, therefore I ain't buyin' no Glocks. I believe, as with ugaarguy, that I could draw and double tap a target at 7 yards with the revolver just as fast as I could the Glock and probably faster because I can point shoot the revolver better than any autoloader, much less a Glock. All I really need do is bring it up high enough to reference the front sight and start shooting, practice doing that all the time and keeping 'em in the boiler room. I even hit pretty well dim light with the revolver when I can't see the sight and tend to hit low with autoloaders.

    Would I want to take on the MS13 gang with a revolver? No, but then, I don't wanna take on the MS13 gang with a glock, either. Presented with multiple targets like in a GAME like IPSC, you'd be dead anyway after a couple of rounds. You'd take out one, maybe two, even if you're an IPSC master class shooter, but if you don't find some cover ASAP and have some distance, there is no way you're going to shoot fast enough to take on five armed attackers in the open at 7 to 15 yards. You're going to get shot trying. Self defense is about tactics. You just don't stand there shooting and reloading. You have to use tactics. If I run out of rounds in my revolver and I'm still alive, I know I'll be behind cover by then. I can hopefully pull my little NAA mini in a pinch and keep their heads down long enough to toss in a speedloader full. I say "hopefully" because there are no guarantees in a gun fight.

    Yeah, you could have multiple attackers, but most of what I worry about is a common mugger, car jacker, what ever. One or two guys and I have a chance of coming out on top with my revolver. I shoot it well enough. When I'm in high risk areas, the big city, I normally have a 9mm high cap back up in a pocket anyway to back up the magnum.

    Yeah, I like the word magnum. It means power. And, 551 ft lbs out of a 2.3" barrel STILL trumps your .40 a LITTLE bit. It ain't the hammer of Thor, but it beats the 9 for the first five shots. If I need more when that MS13 gang is after me and I'm behind cover, I can draw the 9 for 11 more shots. Normally around here, heck, I just carry a .38 revolver or the 9 in a pocket and don't worry a lot about IPSC shooting scenarios. I live in a rural town of 12K, the county seat and largest "city". When we run to Corpus or Houston, I'll carry the revolver with the 9 as a back up. That way, I've got a speedloader and speed strip in the pocket for the revolver and my double mag pouch with two more 10 round mags for the 9. I think I'm armed enough, frankly. ROFLMAO! Then, there's ALWAYS the little NAA regardless if I'm in the big city or not.

    Anyway, I don't get all wrapped up in game scenarios. I have shot a lot of competition, IDPA, not IPSC, but I don't take it that seriously. To me, it's good marksmanship practice, but would such things happen that way in real life? I mean, I'm facing three armed men "el presidente" style and I'm not going to get shot as I put TWO into each one, one at a time? Yeah, right. I'll put ONE in each one and come back and finish off the rest IF I don't get killed first and assuming I can't FIRST dive for some kind of cover before I start shooting. I ain't gonna stand there like an idiot full profile while shooting and reloading. I'm at LEAST going to fall to the ground shooting and try to present a smaller, moving target. I'll make every effort to get to cover before shooting, though.
     
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