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Is 40 S&W dead or not?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by StationOps, Aug 8, 2019.

  1. slide

    slide Member

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    The title of this thread is one I interpreted to be a challenge for we who use and like the 40 S&W into defending our choice. Sure, nobody is going to come here, take my 40 and gift me a 9, but this is a discussion board so I discussed.

    I am curious about your last comment. I see no place in today's world for the 38 Super. The 40 under discussion here, will match it in every regard and exceed it in many. The 10 is significantly more powerful. Both the 40 and the 10 work in pistols of the size which would work for the 38 Super although the recoil from the 10 seems to have confined it to slightly larger forms such as the Glock 29.

    So I'm curious being unfamiliar with the 38 Super as I am, what would such an arm do for you that the current production arms won't?
     
  2. Robbins290

    Robbins290 Member

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    I thought the 357 sig is a modern 38 super that fits in standard 9mm/40 S&W frames?
     
  3. slide

    slide Member

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    ^^ I too and that's one of the reasons I asked. The Super is a straight walled case, IIRC.
     
  4. 460Shooter

    460Shooter Member

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    Gents, I'll PM you both later on this topic. I think we'd be drifting further off track than desirable from the topic at hand.
     
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  5. readyeddy

    readyeddy Member

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    I didn't even know it was sick.

    Seriously, I feel like Rip Van Winkle. Before I fell asleep, the 9mm was widely believed to be borderline adequate for self defense. A 9mm silvertip failed to penetrate adequately in one of the most famous FBI shoot outs that took place in Miami. The 10mm was developed but felt to be too powerful for duty use, then the 40 S&W was selected to provide the right amount of punch in the right sized guns. Some people called it the 40 "Short and Weak" in comparison to the 10mm, but it launched a 180 grain 40 cal bullet at 1000 fps, which seemed perfect for the job. The last thing anybody wanted to use back then were 147 grain 9mm bullets.

    Then I woke up and everything had changed. Everybody was in love with the 9mm. The 40, all of a sudden, had to much recoil or was too snappy. Bullet technology had made amazing progress, even though ballistic gel penetration is still in the 10" - 14" range. So now there is no difference between 9, 40 or 45, except for recoil.

    But one day the pendulum will swing the other way. It always does. Go back further and you can read about the Moro warriors in the Philippines, and go back further when cavemen debated small rocks vs big rocks vs. medium rocks.

    The 40 is a good cartridge, just like the 38-40 was/is a good cartridge, and it doesn't look dead to me.
     
  6. motorcopm4

    motorcopm4 Member

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    Myself , other instructors and training staff we have told the chief exactly that. Cheaper ammo , easier to shoot 9mm for the ones that barely qualify with snappy .40 and more carry rounds. Guess he hasn’t seen or care the ballistics are getting closer between 9,40 and 45

    Doesn’t matter to me, I shoot it all the same but more rounds is always better in my book
     
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  7. HPCadm17

    HPCadm17 Member

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    I know nothing, but I don't think .40 is going anywhere.

    It's not super-expensive as to break the bank, and the ballistics are just about perfect for defensive use. It seems that folks who favor larger calibers are basing it on the performance of the round itself, vs those who favor the 9mm basing it on recoil and fast follow-ups. I personally don't notice a huge difference in felt recoil between .40 and 9mm, my follow-ups are maybe less than a tenth-second slower with .40. I'm also not sure when mag dumps became the thing that everyone must aspire to, and whether 16 misses are better than 14 misses, but that seems to be the theme today, such as it is.

    There seems to be a lot of focus on training civilians the way law enforcement or the military do, and I think that's silly. I'm sure to get flamed, but I don't care. If I ever draw my weapon on someone it's going to be because it's certain that I or a family member will die if I don't, and at that point it will probably be such close range that aiming won't matter. All I want is a gun, and round, that will do their job, period.
     
  8. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    7 pages debating the mortality of one of the most popular handgun cartridges in the country...

    Fellas...

    I can get 38-40 ammunition and 25-20 ammo drop shipped to my house by tomorrow... the 40S&W is the picture of health compared to either of these rounds, yet THEY remain readily available...

    No, the .40S&W ain’t dead. It might not be the standard issue choice for the FBI any longer, but there’s a wide line between number 1 and dead.
     
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  9. rdnktrkr

    rdnktrkr Member

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    My truck guns are Glock 37s in 45gap so if I can still find ammo for that I think the 40 will be around for a while, if you reload even longer
     
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  10. mrmike7189

    mrmike7189 Member

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    I just bought 500 rounds of Winchester Super X 180 grain ammo from Target sports USA . Combined with the over 1k rounds I already have stored in ammo boxes, I will be shooting 40 cal for years!NOT DEAD YET!!!!! Screenshot 2019-09-13 at 3.51.48 PM.png
     
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  11. SDGlock23

    SDGlock23 Member

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    The .40 is my favorite, recently picked up a G27 Gen4 and G35 Gen4
     
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  12. glc24
    • Contributing Member

    glc24 Contributing Member

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    Of my handguns, I shoot my Gen4 G23 the best! It's all with my reloads too! It's never had factory ammo through it! I really enjoy the 40!:)
     
  13. Trey Veston

    Trey Veston Member

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    Stopped by the LGS today and was doing some ammo research. The 9mm section had 15 or so different loads to choose from. The .40 S&W section was woefully neglected...

    epDjE54qSziwcINyc8gEzA.jpg
     
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  14. JN01

    JN01 Member

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    The .357 Sig would probably be a better woods cartridge, but you can get that by dropping a new barrel in your G22.
     
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  15. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    So there are 15 loads for 9mm, the world’s most popular cartridge, and looks like 10 for the 40... “woefully neglected...” I wonder, how much ammo for 44-40 was on the shelf? 480 Ruger? 45 GAP? 357 Maximum? 460 S&W? 475 Linebaugh? 9x18? 25acp? 17 HM2?

    We also established the quality of your local gun shop in another thread today - considering the staff there had never heard of an incredibly common AR cartridge...
     
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  16. Trey Veston

    Trey Veston Member

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    There are actually 7 different .40 S&W choices compared to twice as many for the 9mm. I would call that quite a difference between selection and an indicator of the popularity of the two cartridges. Maybe you are using a new math in which 100% more choices is not a significant difference.

    And the .450 Bushmaster isn't "incredibly common" in this part of the country. Not saying that the gun clerk wasn't a noob or shouldn't have been aware, just that it's not popular around here since we aren't restricted to hunting big game with straight-wall cartridges, and there are no pigs. It's great for my needs in a big-bore AR for a camp carbine, but only one shop within 50 miles carries ammo for it since it really only makes sense for a very limited niche role here.
     
  17. slide

    slide Member

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    I think his point was that at 10 choices the 40 is viewed as popular by the store. No sane person would say that the 40 sells as many cartridges as the 9 does today especially given the latest FBI move to accept, again, the 9.

    As an aside, I think this another FBI error. The FL shootout failure of the 9 will not be corrected by new bullet designs. The 9 is a minor caliber with minor penetration compared to the majors but I suspect the FBI, like other government employers is frantic to hire women who seem to be recoil sensitive. And you gotta hand it to the 9, it doesn’t recoil much due to it being a minor caliber.

    And please, no gelatin cites. Bite into a piece of raw steak. Now add some bones. Now bite into a bit of Jello. I see no similarities.
     
  18. mrmike7189

    mrmike7189 Member

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    Quote"And the .450 Bushmaster isn't "incredibly common" in this part of the country. Not saying that the gun clerk wasn't a noob or shouldn't have been aware, just that it's not popular around here since we aren't restricted to hunting big game with straight-wall cartridges, and there are no pigs. It's great for my needs in a big-bore AR for a camp carbine, but only one shop within 50 miles carries ammo for it since it really only makes sense for a very limited niche role here."


    I gotta agree...I 've never heard of 450 Bushmaster either! You can only hunt with shotgun in my state, there are no pigs here either, never seen a box of that ammo at my gun shops , and I browse the ammo shelves all the time. I learned something today.
     
  19. 1-12 INF (M)

    1-12 INF (M) Member

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    Hey Sparkyfender, how do you like your Cougar? I just got one at a bargain price, but haven't shot it yet. It's a Beretta, and sure seems well made.
     
  20. silvermane_1

    silvermane_1 Member

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    Interesting that someone mentioned the 38-40, it's about ballistic wise, on par with the 40 S&W.
     
  21. Trunk Monkey

    Trunk Monkey Member

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    The Miami shootout has been referenced a couple times in this thread. Here is an assessment of that shootout by Paul Harrell. One of the things that he mentions was that the nine mm Silver Tip that hit Platt would have killed him no matter what. Harrell puts a lot more of the blame on poor Marksmanship by the FBI than what kind of ammunition they were carrying

     
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  22. 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.
     
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  23. 1-12 INF (M)

    1-12 INF (M) Member

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    I like the 10mm. I can download it a bit for .40 S&W performance, yet smoke it up when .357 mag performance is needed.

    Also, I like the .38-40 a lot. Use it in both 1873 Peacemaker and 1892 Win. Great cartridge - esp with black powder 'cause the bottleneck prevents sooting.
     
  24. StationOps

    StationOps Member

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    Holy cow, OP here. This thread has just kept going.

    Last summer, I was buying my first handgun, and opted for a 9mm, because of the plethora of 9 mm. LEOs were turning in their 40 S&W. My background is somewhat in PCs, where companies actually stop making stuff. If your mother board is too old, after awhile you don't have many (or any) options to upgrade*. I subconsciously just thought that companies would stop making 40S&W. Hand loaders could still get it, but new ammo would not get made.

    In the firearms world, this does not seem to be the case. Ammo doesn't seem to die, it just get more expensive. (I've heard Ian McCollum mention only a few times he can't get ammo for a certain gun.) And in the case of 40S&W at least, still cheaper in bulk than 45 ACP.

    Still haven't expanded my caliber selection yet. Various pistols (FNC 40 S&W, CZ 82 surplus, 7.62x25) look like a great deal, but I just don't need one.

    *I suppose you can go used to upgrade an old motherboard, but that seems awfully dodgy. Sometimes you might find an old CPU, but it's pretty pricey. I'd rather just go new, get the extra performance too.
     
  25. Mike J

    Mike J Member

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    Regarding the price of .40. 40 caliber fmj practice ammunition is selling for close to the same price it was 8 or 10 years ago. Back then it was usually a dollar or two more for a box of 50 than 9mm. It isn't so much that 40 got more expensive. 9mm has become less expensive. The why's I do not know but that is pretty much my observation.
     
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