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View Full Version : 9mm +P vs. .40 S&W: Too Close To Call?


Single Six
November 20, 2011, 07:01 PM
Not a rhetorical question; I'm not sure about this, and am seeking opinions. Aside from the minor difference in overall diameter, is there a real difference [as far as ballistics] between the two? More to the point, in a SD gun, does either round offer a significant advantage over the other as far as stopping power goes? I would think that they're close enough in power that the size difference is academic, and that it comes down to magazine capacity being the deciding factor, with the 9mm +P usually edging the .40 on that score. All answers welcome as always; please set me straight if I'm missing something here. Thanks, all.:)

Sheikyourbootie
November 20, 2011, 07:22 PM
Where you put the rounds, and how fast you get them there will be more of an influence on the target than if they are hit by a 9mm, vs. a .40cal.

C0untZer0
November 20, 2011, 07:34 PM
You can look up ballistics tests on the Internet fairly easily now.

If you look just at Winchester's line of Ranger T you can see that the 40s penetrate more deeply and expand to a slightly larger diameter, all that adds up to a more effective round as far as wounding capacity.

http://www.winchester.com/SiteCollectionDocuments/flash-SWFs/law_bullit.swf

Sarge
November 20, 2011, 07:46 PM
Paper energy occurs on paper; my money's on the bigger hole & heavier bullet.

AK103K
November 20, 2011, 07:55 PM
Where you put the rounds, and how fast you get them there will be more of an influence on the target than if they are hit by a 9mm, vs. a .40cal.
I believe this is the answer. Paper ballistics are great for picking nits on the internet, but reality is, you shoot them to the ground, regardless of caliber. Which ever one lets you do that the easiest and quickest, is the winner.

Having shot most of the major SD calibers pretty extensively at this point, and getting over all the silly macho/ego crap, I came to realize that 9mm fills the bill in that respect pretty much perfectly.

BerettaBuckeye
November 20, 2011, 08:24 PM
While I prefer to rely on my .45 +P & .40 +P....

40 +p ?

RamItOne
November 20, 2011, 08:30 PM
BerrettaBuckeye- I guess that would be a .357 sig lol

MikeNice81
November 20, 2011, 08:37 PM
If you look just at Winchester's line of Ranger T you can see that the 40s penetrate more deeply and expand to a slightly larger diameter, all that adds up to a more effective round as far as wounding capacity.



If you look at the 9mm+p Bonded vs the 165gr .40S&W the difference is much smaller. It just goes to show that it is not just a matter of caliber, but the actual bullet and its design.

There is a difference, but it is so minute that it is not half as important as placement and timing. Get them there first and in the right spot.

BerettaBuckeye
November 20, 2011, 08:40 PM
BerrettaBuckeye- I guess that would be a .357 sig lol

Uh....10mm?

dsk
November 20, 2011, 08:52 PM
If you're seriously consider chooing between those two rounds try them out and compare the recoil and controllability. I find the 9mm more controllable in rapid fire, even when pushed to +P velocities. The .40 seems to have a really short pressure curve that may be responsible for the snappy recoil they're known to have. I have a steel-framed .40 that works well, but I found the round a bit too much in a polymer-framed pistol.

C0untZer0
November 20, 2011, 09:17 PM
You can find 40 S&W rounds that perform very similar to 9mm, just like the 45 ACP +P 160gr Barnes, TAC XP is similar ballistically to a 158gr 357 magnum JHP, as far as how deep it penetrate and what size it ends up (roughly).

As far as controlability - if it's for concealed carry - there is a limit to how small companies have been able to make a 40 cal pistol. The Rohrbaugh R9 and Kahr MK9, PM9/CM9 pistols are all very small. I haven't seen anyone match those form factors in .40 S&W semi-autos.

Most people say for the same pistol calibered in 9mm and 40 - the 9mm is easier to keep on target and do follow up shots. Having said that though, if size is not a restraint, you can always get a really big gun, like the HK Mark 23... that makes a round like the 45+P more controlable.

Firing the 9mm from a Glock 17L is almost recoil free, it so easy to keep the shots on target. But then again - that is a pretty long pistol.

So besides the different loadings of 9 & 40, you also have to consider the pistol used.

Something like the CZ Tactical Sport in .40 S&W is going to be easier for most people to control than the Rohrbaugh R9 in 9mm.



.

Fishbed77
November 20, 2011, 09:37 PM
I don't want to be shot at with either one.

NYPD13
November 20, 2011, 09:47 PM
Yeah! What he said.

Mercenary
November 20, 2011, 09:47 PM
Paper energy occurs on paper; my money's on the bigger hole & heavier bullet.

True, but shot placement even trumps bullet diameter and weight.

Get what you can shoot the best with. Try both in a rapid fire scenario and see which is easier to control. Some 9mm +P loads can be quite snappy. If they are relatively the same then I would go 9mm due to cheaper ammo and more capacity.

Jim243
November 20, 2011, 10:11 PM
please set me straight if I'm missing something here.

Yes, 65 grains of lead (115 grains vs 180 grains). You must have fell asleep in Physics class in school.

Jim

Deaf Smith
November 20, 2011, 10:29 PM
Single Six,

If you look at the top +p 9mm and the top make .40 S&W, yes the .40 wins hands down as for power.

Now I like the .40 S&W and the .357 SIG (I have Glock 26, 27, AND 33, as well as 17, 32 and 23 so I know the rounds well.)

If you can handle the .40 or .357 Sig, they make excellent defensive weapons and it is always a good thing to have more power if you can handle it. But the 9mm isn't all that bad and if that is all you can handle, use it.

Only good hits count and that is far more important than the 9mm .vs. .40 .vs. 357 Sig .vs. etc.. arguments.

Deaf

Single Six
November 20, 2011, 11:03 PM
Jim243: Actually, I never took Physics, and I suppose that's evident. Your advice is appreciated. Your unprovoked sarcasm is not.

K_Mac
November 20, 2011, 11:19 PM
Quote:
please set me straight if I'm missing something here.

Yes, 65 grains of lead (115 grains vs 180 grains). You must have fell asleep in Physics class in school.

Jim

Jim with all due respect, comparing the lightest standard 9mm bullet weight with the heaviest standard .40 really is not a fair measure of the two. Any comparison of quality 147 or 124 gr +P 9mm ammo to 180 gr. 40 S&W will show the difference in energy delivered to the target is less than your above physics "lesson" appears to show.

Single Six if you like the .40 and shoot it well go for it. I shoot the 9mm better, and with quality ammo it is plenty of gun in my opinion.

insaneranger
November 20, 2011, 11:20 PM
40 +p ?


Buffalo Bore makes it. (What the heck happned to my previous post?)
http://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l=product_list&c=25

TunnelRat
November 20, 2011, 11:29 PM
Yes we needed this question again. I'm not even an older member of these forums and I am sick of this question. To you folks that have been around for a few years idk how you don't start pulling your hair out.

I predict a series of back and forth banter from people who will quote so called experts. The frustration will eventually lead to name calling and insults of intelligence and this thread will be locked.

I'm taking bets, anyone interested?

As a note, both will kill people, kill them dead. By all means though, please debate how dead it will make someone.

K_Mac
November 20, 2011, 11:35 PM
I predict a series of back and forth banter from people who will quote so called experts. The frustration will eventually lead to name calling and insults of intelligence and this thread will be locked.

I'm taking bets, anyone interested?

I think it is a coin toss at this point. I don't like the odds.;)

C0untZer0
November 20, 2011, 11:49 PM
40 S&W plus P cracks me up.... :D

I think it would be better to buy a 10mm and shoot minus P ammo through it.

(*_*)
November 20, 2011, 11:52 PM
I may be off but I always viewed it like this: I would have better chances of significantly incapacitating an attacker with a .45 or .40 but with the 9mm I usually (most guns of = size) get more chances to do so. I ended up in the 9mm camp as I want more chances if someone or something (wild pig or other animal) is attacking me. Its just like the old head vs center of mass argument. By far a head shot is far far more likely to incapacitate (I think its about 45% of the time ve 10- 15% for rest of body if I remember correctly based on ED intake studys on GSW on pubmed), but center of mass is a much bigger target. With 9mm I dont have to choose quite as much, plenty of rounds

EDIT: let me add that I believe it is much more important to be comfortable with and shoot whatever platform you have well then the caliber. I would gladly take an expert with a commander size .45 over a novice with a 9mm and a 30 round magazine.

C0untZer0
November 21, 2011, 12:09 AM
S&B makes a 150gr 9mm round and I think it clocks at around 970fps.

Nosler and some others make a 150gr 40 S&W round and they generally leave home to the tune of 1200fps.

After that you're talking bullet design and all that - do they zip through the target, how much do they expand etc..etc..

If you look at what the Ranger T in 9mm-147gr and Ranger T in 40 S&W - 165gr in the Heavy clothing test, they perform almost the same - slight edge in both penetration and expansion to the 40 - it expands an additional .02" and penetrates and additional .3" But the 40 cal is going 1140fps and the 9 is going 990fps.

You talk about the law of diminishing marginal returns.. that's a whole lot of extra energy to get just .3" additional penetration and .02 additional expansion...

Noreaster
November 21, 2011, 05:38 AM
Just went through all this for my own research. My findings were there is not a big difference between 357 sig, 40S&W and 9mm with good loads, (125gr, 180grn & 147grn.) The newer Winchester & Speer charts show this. The Winchester 124+P is right up there with the best loads of 40S&W and 357 Sig and the 124 +P is more like a Nato loading (1140fps standard vs 1180 fps for the +P.) That being said I went with the 165 grain 40S&W Winchester. Good performing load and it does hit a little harder if you have a marginal shot.

Hank15
November 21, 2011, 07:01 AM
Can one of the mods sticky a caliber analysis to end the debate once and for all?

Or at least have a "read before posting a ___vs___ thread"?

CDW4ME
November 21, 2011, 07:02 AM
Not taking into account what happens when bullet hits the target, here are chrono results for the two out of comparative pistols & ammunitioin:
Glock 26 Ranger T 124 gr. +P @ 1,162 fps / 372# KE / PF 144
Glock 26 Ranger T 127 gr. +P+ @ 1,182 fps / 394# KE / PF 150
Glock 27 Ranger T 165 gr. @ 1,071 fps / 420# KE / PF 177
The 40 S&W has a power advantage over the 9mm even when the 9mm is loaded with the hottest loads; the 40 produces more kick too.

However, the 40 doesn't have an undisputed advantage in subcompacts ;)
Glock 33 Ranger T 125 gr. @ 1,280 fps / 454# KE / PF 160
The .357 Sig matches or exceeds the KE produced by the 40 and does so with less recoil, blast is another issue.
Maybe it should be 40 or 357 Sig too close to call, 9mm clearly in 3rd place when KE is the basis for chosing.

Don P
November 21, 2011, 07:22 AM
Where you put the rounds, and how fast you get them there will be more of an influence on the target than if they are hit by a 9mm, vs. a .40cal.

+1

skoro
November 21, 2011, 09:03 AM
If one of those calibers works better for you in terms of how you shoot (accuracy, follow-up) then that's the one to use. I kinda doubt that a good shot with either would cause a BG to notice a difference.

JohnO
November 21, 2011, 11:50 AM
Geez...I can't wait until we all use ray guns. :rolleyes:

C0untZer0
November 21, 2011, 12:43 PM
There's nothing else to talk about until Shot Show 2012...

Anyone seen the Kel-Tec Shotgun /KSG? - not really out yet.

CZ hasn't come out with the CTS Long Slide...

The Bobergs aren't really generally available to the public yet (waiting list)

Heizer isn't selling the DoubleTap yet...

So, I talk about 9mm vs 40, and what's the best lubrication to use on your firearms...

Carry_24/7
November 21, 2011, 01:43 PM
Take .40 S&W, 9mm, and 230gr .45 ACP and shoot free hanging steel targets.......then decide.

Shooting bowling pins with the same group of guns is quite interesting as well.

AK103K
November 21, 2011, 02:17 PM
Which one is deadlier, the steel or the pins? :)

NJgunowner
November 21, 2011, 10:14 PM
Real men use 10mm, just sayin :D

Jim243
November 21, 2011, 10:45 PM
Real men use 10mm, just sayin

That might be true, but a 10mm frame on my belt has my pants down around my ankles (makes it hard to draw)(LOL). At least my supenders holds up a poly 9 (LOL).

Guess I will have to wear a skirt. (my hairy legs and all).
Jim

RC20
November 21, 2011, 10:48 PM
I realized some time back that for HD there is no difference in calibers from all the evidence (and I bought a 9mm based on that)

A member of a large LEO department did his PHD on that subject with his departments support as they wanted that answered as well.

Over shootings by LEO across the country, caliber made NO difference. That does not mean any given caliber did not do well in some situation, in others it did not do well. the only difference was shot placement. If you shoot accurately, then it makes no difference on caliber.

My intuitive thinking was if it was going to showed up, it would be LEO with barriers being a factor for 357 Sig or 40 S&S due to their better penetration. It does not mean that it was not in some, but overall, no.

I used to think 9mm was a useless round, and it was when I first got into guns. Now, its a net zero sum comparison (or some such!). 9mm is less expensive, cheaper to reload, less muzzle flip as well as greater capacity, which I think are all pluses for those who cannot practice to the point you really need but cannot do and have a life.

checkmyswag
November 21, 2011, 11:21 PM
Heard a 9mm fan explain how the power gain of 40 isn't worth the capacity lost.

So that ends the debate! Unless you value power over capacity.

Here we go again!

cougar gt-e
November 21, 2011, 11:33 PM
Geez...I can't wait until we all use ray guns.


9 megawatt or 40 megawatt?


I mean sure the 9megawatt laser will recharge faster and get more flashes per battery, but the 40 megawatt really bores a hole!

:D

Silent Bob
November 22, 2011, 09:12 AM
Take away the caliber debate and you will take away at least a third of gun forum traffic. As galactically-hashed out a subject it is, some people live their lives for this topic. Take away caliber wars, Glock Kabooms, and 1911 vs. Glock and this forum and THR would both have to close up shop.

AK103K
November 22, 2011, 10:11 AM
So that ends the debate! Unless you value power over capacity.
Power "may" count if you have good hits, and assuming you have hits at all. What you do at the range on a static piece of paper, at youre leisure, isnt likely to be what happens when everything has gone to hell, and you and youre target are moving. While I agree, any hit is a good it, it doesnt mean its going to immediately shut things down, no matter the caliber.

Reality is, regardless of caliber, you shoot, and continue to shoot, until you have shot them to the ground. The question is, do you have enough on board ammo to deal with the problem(s) at hand?

Personally, Ill take all the on board ammo I can get in the gun. Counting on one or two rounds of "power" to put someone down seems a little shaky to me, especially if things arent perfect, like at the range, and Im not having that perfect day shooting wise.

NJgunowner
November 22, 2011, 10:40 AM
That might be true, but a 10mm frame on my belt has my pants down around my ankles (makes it hard to draw)(LOL). At least my supenders holds up a poly 9 (LOL).

Guess I will have to wear a skirt. (my hairy legs and all).
Jim

I'm not a Glock fan, but the G29 would do the trick :)

JohnO
November 22, 2011, 11:05 AM
Hey Couger,

Your right. We are just destined to debate. Thanks for taking away my hope.:D

Hank15
November 22, 2011, 12:46 PM
9 megawatt or 40 megawatt?


I mean sure the 9megawatt laser will recharge faster and get more flashes per battery, but the 40 megawatt really bores a hole!



^
Winning.

This one is a little old, but it's a good starting point:

http://www.firearmstactical.com/pdf/fbi-hwfe.pdf

TL;DR = It doesn't really matter as long as the bullet penetrates. Of the bullets that penetrate, the bigger the better.

How much better and how much it matters is up to you to decide. When I am in my CC, I see people in Civics as suicidal. Yet data and testings show that it's not that much a difference.

K_Mac
November 22, 2011, 05:49 PM
9 megawatt or 40 megawatt?


I mean sure the 9megawatt laser will recharge faster and get more flashes per battery, but the 40 megawatt really bores a hole!

If 9mm = 9 megawatts then .40" = 10.16 megawatts.:rolleyes: 40 megawatts would then be 1.57", which would be a very big bore pistol. I'm just saying...:p

Erik
November 23, 2011, 12:18 AM
The 9mm provides a small edge in the ability to fire rounds rapidly while the .40s&w provides a small edge in the ability to defeat barriers. Both will do if you do.

Single Six
November 23, 2011, 12:38 PM
Thanks for all replies. To those of you who had to mention that this thread has been done before, I'd say that many others have come up before as well, and will again. I personally haven't seen this thread before, and didn't find it when I searched for it on TFL either [yes, I know, some smarty can and probably will search for it, find it, and then post a link to it, but my point is, I didn't see it]. So, I posted this thread. I don't understand people who take the time to post on a thread when their purpose is not to contribute an answer to the OP, but rather to just post an unprovoked, ill-mannered cheap shot. I guess I need to learn to just ignore such people and focus on the more civil folks.

Chilli9880
November 23, 2011, 01:04 PM
You know what's funny Six? I had the same exact problem as you. I searched up and down for the whole 9mm vs .40 cal discussion. And I got 999 topics returned. Then in my thread I received the same feedback as you and even received a couple of very smart @$$ Personal Messages as well. I guess that's how they treat people here. The problem isn't someone wanting to talk about or join the discussion of 9mm vs .40 or AK vs AR. Its the search function if you ask me. Now, there are some nice genuine people on here, willing to impart some knowledge, experience and wisdom. Most others are internet tough guys/gun snobs. Just got to roll with the good and the bad. Happy Forum Discussion Hunting!

K_Mac
November 23, 2011, 01:10 PM
Single six if it were not for threads discussing topics that have already been discussed we would quickly run out of things to talk about. The old proverb 'there is nothing new under the sun' applies. It is also true that taking issue with threads that come up often is a very popular pass-time for some. Maybe the most relevant truth is some folks are only happy when they have something to be critical of. Welcome to the interwebz...;) I enjoy the discussion most of the time. Life is too short to let internet banter, and the occasional knot-head get you down.:cool:

nate45
November 23, 2011, 01:57 PM
I guess I'm a sucker for taking the bait. However, here goes.

You haven't ever seen the 40 vs 9mm debate before? :p

I guess I'm a bad 'ol internet curmudgeon/tough guy for typing 40 vs 9mm +P into Google.

http://thefiringline.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=75673&d=1322072867


75673

Okay I'll play, its not like I haven't before. Here is some fuel for the controversy.


Being Wrong is Important… and, admitting it is too! – (Or: Why Rob Pincus prefers the 9mm over the .40 for personal defense) (http://www.downrange.tv/blog/being-wrong-is-important-and-admitting-it-is-too-or-why-rob-pincus-prefers-the-9mm-over-the-40-for-defense/11563/)

I remembered that article from this thread in September.. 9mm or .40 for personal defense (http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=463536)

Here is a Glenn E. Meyer quote from that thread I like...

How many horses have been made dead by 9mm vs 40?

...and this one too

And no reason to go on another forum to find the dead horses. Plenty of them right here. http://i181.photobucket.com/albums/x223/KyJim_photos/Emoticons%20and%20Such/deadhorse.gif

Single Six
November 23, 2011, 01:59 PM
Chilli & K Mac: Thanks guys, I needed that.:)

BGutzman
November 23, 2011, 02:02 PM
More grains at the same speed under the same conditions is the winner or at least physics seems to say so...

40 is the winner..

K_Mac
November 23, 2011, 02:23 PM
More grains at the same speed under the same conditions is the winner or at least physics seems to say so...

40 is the winner..

Greater control and follow-up shot capability...9mm
Greater ammo capacity...9mm
Platform choices available...9mm
Smaller platforms available...9mm
Cheaper to shoot...9mm
World-wide acceptance...9mm

Real-world effectiveness (the only one that matters IMO)... depends on who you ask

In a one diminensional discussion BGutzman you win. In any discussion that considers any of the other factors involved in the decision it is less clear. I think the 2,370,000 Google hits in nate45's post support my claim.:p

Isn't this fun?:D

BGutzman
November 23, 2011, 04:14 PM
Greater control and follow-up shot capability...9mm
Greater ammo capacity...9mm
Platform choices available...9mm
Smaller platforms available...9mm
Cheaper to shoot...9mm
World-wide acceptance...9mm


Greater control and follow-up shot capability - 40 slightly larger hole and more potential energy to dump = good chance you dont need the follow up shot with a 40. Not everyone finds much difference in firing either one...
Greater ammo capacity... - again if the BG goes down in one or two shots it doesnt matter at all if I have 30 shots. More shots equals more chances of missing and hitting something unintended.
Platform choices available...9mm - how many platforms do you really need? So long as you can find a single 40 cal that works for you then how many more models do you actually need?
Smaller platforms available... - certainly probably true but not by much and not that the difference matters if your over 80 lbs.
Cheaper to shoot...9mm - cheaper to shoot 22 so whats the point and if you reload its not that much a difference im sure.
World-wide acceptance...9mm - doesnt really matter... after all how many of us are traveling out of the country with the intent to CCW in a foreign nation?

On the other hand all else being the same physics says the heaver round with the same speed takes more to stop it... Wait let me guess you re-invented physics... :eek:

Im not saying that 9mm is not a deadly round... what I am saying is mass and speed matter as well as overall bullet design. More mass and equal or greater speed has a pay off.

AndyWest
November 23, 2011, 04:18 PM
Guys... Please.... Let's step back a second.

Has nobody addressed which round is more effective against a zombie apocalypse?

Carry_24/7
November 23, 2011, 04:23 PM
Andy; I thought the consensus on that was 10mm?:D

9mm, 40, 357 mag..... for SD where you may never fire in anger, what's it matter? Carry one or the other, whichever you're most likely to not leave under the seat or in the glove box.

The checkpoint is to have a reliable gun that you're trained on with you at all times.

Mike Irwin
November 23, 2011, 04:34 PM
"Has nobody addressed which round is more effective against a zombie apocalypse?"

No, and they're not going to, either.

Don P
November 23, 2011, 04:35 PM
Guys... Please.... Let's step back a second.

Has nobody addressed which round is more effective against a zombie apocalypse?

The answering of this question is only allowed in the month of October when Zombie related threads are permissible, so unfortunately you will have to wait until October, 2012 for an answer.:eek::eek::mad:

K_Mac
November 23, 2011, 05:14 PM
On the other hand all else being the same physics says the heaver round with the same speed takes more to stop it... Wait let me guess you re-invented physics...

A classic straw man argument. You continue to beat your one dimensional drum.:rolleyes:

Let's look at your arguments.

Whether or not everyone finds the .40 more difficult to shoot and effectively place follow-up shots is valid. What the physics that you are so enamored by will tell us is that the heavier round will produce more recoil, and the higher case pressure will cause a recoil profile that makes for a more difficult follow-up shot by by most.

The notion that less .40 hits on target are required to incapacitate ones target does not seem to be supported by the evidence. It makes for good rhetoric though.

You are perfectly willing to argue that differences in caliber, recoil, weapon selection, and the importance of cost are subjective, yet unwilling to concede that for the same reasons 9mm is a perfectly acceptable choice when compared to the .40 S&W.

Im not saying that 9mm is not a deadly round... what I am saying is mass and speed matter as well as overall bullet design. More mass and equal or greater speed has a pay off.

What I'm saying is based on the evidence at hand, the difference in "pay off" when comparing these two calibers is not enough to dogmatically state the .40 is a better SD round.

BDM 9MM
November 23, 2011, 06:42 PM
I currently own five 9MM’s, five .45 ACP’s and own no .40 Cal. semi-auto pistols. I have extensively shot all three calibers. I prefer the 9MM as my “Go to” EDC pistol for the following reasons.

Milder recoil 9MM
Quicker follow up shots 9MM
Most accurate rapid fire shot placement 9MM
Larger capacity magazines 9MM
Total weight of loaded pistol 9MM
Benefit of modern cartridge design 9MM
Smallest overall package 9MM
Compact design small, light, slim and concealable 9MM
Less muzzle flash at night 9MM
Cheaper ammo, both to buy or reload 9MM
Lower pistol prices both new & used 9MM
More product selection 9MM
NATO round 9MM
Most widely used US service round 9MM

This list is only how I rate the three calibers and what best works for me – your mileage may & can vary. Any of the three calibers will do the job for civilian SD.

We humans come in different heights, body strength, hand size, muscle tone, noise/recoil sensitivity and many other strengths and weaknesses. SD caliber selection is not a “One Size Fits All” situation. It is a very personal choice. I can’t and won’t select for you and you can’t and won’t select for me.

Shoot until it stops! Dan

BGutzman
November 23, 2011, 09:25 PM
What I'm saying is based on the evidence at hand, the difference in "pay off" when comparing these two calibers is not enough to dogmatically state the .40 is a better SD round.

My one dimensional drum says a pellet gun can be just as dangerous as either with accurate shot placement.

More recoil in a 40, why yes quite possibly..... Equal and opposite force, more recoil = greater forward momentum (or whatever ultra scientific term you would like)

No where did I say 40 beats 9mm hands down what I did say is the numbers say 40 can and does win for potential. Accuracy as always is king along with CNS but for sheer damage 9mm is not the equal of 40 nor can it be..

The diameter difference is miniscule, and I get it but it does exist, the end effect may not be vastly different... CNs is cns.... but I wont split more hairs with you.... enjoy the 9mm and take a breath its not all that serious... :)

K_Mac
November 23, 2011, 09:45 PM
The diameter difference is miniscule and I get it but it does exist, the end effect may not be vastly different... CNs is cns.... but I wont split more hairs with you.... enjoy the 9mm and take a breath its not all that serious...

It's all good. I enjoy a spirited debate. I concede that .40 has greater potential all other things being equal. As one of the members here says in their signature (my paraphrase), all things are rarely equal though. Peace.:)

BGutzman
November 23, 2011, 09:58 PM
Thank you K Mac I appreciate the debate and the goodwill. :)

hogwiley
November 25, 2011, 01:17 PM
.40 makes a bigger entrance wound and generally will expand a little more than a 9mm +P. The 40 will also usually penetrate more than a 9mm +P, although the 147 Gr 9mm will penetrate as well or better than the lighter weight 40s. Also, if the bullet doesnt expand, which is a real possibility in colder climates with heavier clothing, the .40 will obviously create a larger wound channel than a 9mm.

So no, its not too close to call in my opinion, the .40 is clearly superior. A 9mm +P does recoil less than a 40 though, so its got that going for it.

Hank15
November 25, 2011, 02:03 PM
There has been instances where "big" guys were stopped with well placed .22s, which is why one often hears the arguments: "it depends on who get shots" and "it depends on shot placement".

Not a rhetorical question; I'm not sure about this, and am seeking opinions. Aside from the minor difference in overall diameter, is there a real difference [as far as ballistics] between the two? More to the point, in a SD gun, does either round offer a significant advantage over the other as far as stopping power goes? I would think that they're close enough in power that the size difference is academic, and that it comes down to magazine capacity being the deciding factor, with the 9mm +P usually edging the .40 on that score. All answers welcome as always; please set me straight if I'm missing something here. Thanks, all.

You will almost always carry more in a 9mm handgun than you can in a .40 handgun.

Stopping power is a highly debated topic, but let's use hunting as an example to discuss that topic. If I remember correctly, hunting regulations often request minimum 1000 ft/lb for deer. But if you ask hunters, many of them have taken deer with .357 from a 6" revolver (cleanly), which is what....800 ft/lb at best (feel free to correct me)?

So how significant is that ~200 f/t lb difference? If you look below, the difference might be even less than 200.

http://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l=product_detail&p=118 <== 9mm

http://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l=product_detail&p=115 <== .40 S&W


That's for you to decide. Most people will be on the polar ends of the debate, i.e. "makes no difference" or "makes all the difference in the world". This bias is further amplified by modern JHP.

I am in CA, so I walk around with a 3" blade pocket knife. I'd be content with a bb gun.

manta49
November 25, 2011, 02:35 PM
Forget about the .40 if you dont like 9mm get a .45. Both have proved to be effective over many years. The .40 was a bit like reinventing the wheel no point.

Coltman 77
November 25, 2011, 04:56 PM
Thought provoking pic for your consideration. :)

http://i377.photobucket.com/albums/oo220/cashbailey_photos/9mmvs40vs45ri8.gif




Plus a definitive link re: Best Self Defense Ammo:
(featuring the work of Dr. Gary Roberts, renowned ballistics expert).

http://ammo.ar15.com/project/Self_Defense_Ammo_FAQ/index.htm

AK103K
November 25, 2011, 05:13 PM
Looks like the quarter wins. :)

baccusboy
November 28, 2011, 06:51 AM
Then there are photos like these, and we have to remember the thump of the weight behind the size, and what kind of effect that can have on something like a backbone or a hip after traveling through much of a body, for example. Also, I find this photo in itself a bit misleading, as the .45 HST has been known to open up an inch in diameter on many occasions, and the 9mm HST to max out at about .80 average, when fired into water.

http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e51/mugenef8/FIREARMS/AMMO/HD/HST.jpg

How often do we hunt hogs and larger animals with a 9mm? Ask yourself why not (and exclude the rare reports of the guy who got off a lucky shot with one)? I like the 9mm too, and believe it's the way to go in a compact gun, but I don't consider it equal in overall performance.

Both will get the job done when placed correctly, sure. But so will a .22. So why don't we just carry .22's? I think we all know the answer to that one.


If you're into .40, well there is this video, which is pretty cool:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vn-vMFaOAwE

hogwiley
November 28, 2011, 08:42 PM
The FBI and most police departments went with the 40 over the 9mm for one reason, better and more consistent ballistics performance. You can make the case that the 9mm should be considered because its lower recoil is worth the slightly smaller hole and lower penetration, but strictly in terms of which bullet does more damage, the .40 is almost always going to be the winner.

Also, If you are shooting through a door, wall, a windshield or through heavy clothing, the .40 has an even bigger advantage over a 9mm +P.

R1145
November 28, 2011, 09:00 PM
In practical terms, it comes down to personal preference. My conclusions:

- If you go with 9mm, be careful to choose a modern +P load;

- Here in Kalifornia, the land of the 10-round mag, I would go .45 if I could not legally have high-cap mags;

- All other things being equal, .40 is a good compromise, and state-of-the-art.

justjim75
November 28, 2011, 09:56 PM
you can get more trigger time for less money with a 9mm. i carry a .45 and i hate the recoil of a .40. i am a 9mm or .45 guy. nothing against the .40, it just seems like a compromise between big and alot.

tension
November 28, 2011, 10:47 PM
Wild Bill Hickok used .36 caliber guns, which is about the size of a 9mm. Seemed to work for him.

iMagUdspEllr
November 28, 2011, 10:51 PM
I will go one further and even say the whole range of 9mm to .45 ACP is all in the same category. The perceivable difference in recoil impulse seems to inspire people to believe that there is a significant difference down range on the bad guy's end. There isn't. They are all within 100 ft/lbs of energy of one another. None of them are matching the energy of rifle rounds. Therefore, shot placement is what matters. Since shot placement is what matters... it really doesn't matter how much your gun recoils but how many rounds it holds per magazine.

So far I haven't seen anyone fault this logic.

Deaf Smith
November 29, 2011, 07:58 PM
David Spauling, the LEO'gun writer, wrote that videos of shootings do show the larger rounds have a more pronounced effect on impact on felons.

He also wrote the difference in effect was not great but there was a noticeable on the films.

Deaf

TunnelRat
November 29, 2011, 10:39 PM
For me it's the cost of 40 ammo that is mind boggling to me. Around me I can get Fed Champ in 9mm for $20 for 100 rounds. I can get Fed Champ in 40 for $17 for 50 rounds. I can get Fed Champ in 45 for $17.50 for 50 rounds. This is why I personally don't see a lot of point in the 40. At that point I'd rather have the 45, I like the recoil from it better and for $.50 big deal.

As for shooting through car doors, well I'm not LEO. If I get to that point I'll let you know. Of course if I get to that point I'll also likely be arrested.:D