The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > Hogan's Alley > Handguns: General Handgun Forum

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old June 4, 2011, 05:52 PM   #1
metweezer
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 26, 2010
Location: Port St Lucie, FL
Posts: 7
More Powerful, 9mm or 40 caliber?

Which has a stronger recoil or more stopping power a 9mm or a 40 caliber handgun?
metweezer is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 05:59 PM   #2
dpetreikis
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 1, 2005
Location: Northwest Indiana
Posts: 262
40 on both counts. stronger cartridge... more recoil.
__________________
"If something seems to good to be true, it's best to shoot it just in case." - Fiona, "Burn Notice"
dpetreikis is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 06:00 PM   #3
Skadoosh
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 13, 2010
Location: Virginia
Posts: 1,772
Not so fast. Recoil depends on the gun: a 9mm Ruger SR9C or Kahr PM9 will have more recoil than a 40S&W Glock 22.

In regards to which round is more powerful, the 40S&W is more powerful than the 9x19mm...but not enough to make me abandon my 9mm Sigs, which I love.
__________________
NRA Life Member (2003)
USN Retired
I think that one of the notions common to the anti-gunner is the idea that being a victim is 'noble'; as if it is better to be noble in your suffering than disruptive in your own defense.
Skadoosh is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 06:08 PM   #4
lasvegastransplant
Member
 
Join Date: May 15, 2011
Location: Vegas
Posts: 74
My beginner opinion

The 40...

Like Doosh said, it depends sometimes.

9mm's with good rounds can be pretty powerful.
__________________
Thinking 4:24/7 is a way of life.
lasvegastransplant is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 06:19 PM   #5
Stangcharger
Member
 
Join Date: May 13, 2011
Posts: 17
Both will get the job done IMO. I carry a 9mm in full confidence.
__________________
If you put your rounds where they belong caliber is irrelevant. If you don't put your rounds where they belong caliber is irrelevant.
Stangcharger is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 07:07 PM   #6
HK Jake
Junior member
 
Join Date: May 23, 2011
Posts: 51
Honestly, it doesn't make much of a difference. The 180gr .40 S&W does better through barriers than 9mm, but I'd say shoot what you feel most comfortable with. I swap between a 9mm P30 and my .40 P2000 SK.
HK Jake is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 07:19 PM   #7
sheepman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 26, 2007
Location: Las Vegas NV
Posts: 378
Both are good,the 40 with 180gr bullets is a better woods gun but the 9mm may be faster on target for self defense. In the end it is the shooter not the gun that makes the difference.
__________________
The best gun is the one you have when you really need one
sheepman is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 07:28 PM   #8
SwampYankee
Registration in progress
 
Join Date: November 1, 2008
Location: I can be found on a number of other forums.
Posts: 1,333
I own strictly .40 S&W autos. If I had to do it again, I'd go with .45 ACP instead.
SwampYankee is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 07:32 PM   #9
machurtado
Member
 
Join Date: February 12, 2009
Posts: 29
I think the recoil is different you get more of a snap with a 40 and more a push like a 45 with the 9 for that reason I find it easier to get a good follow up shot with a 9. Just my opinion.
machurtado is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 08:45 PM   #10
SRH78
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 18, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 444
All else being equal, the 40 on both counts but not by all that much. Depending on the gun and the particular load, there is some overlap between the two.
SRH78 is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 09:05 PM   #11
jad0110
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 30, 2007
Posts: 610
With good JHPs, both are so close that it really won't matter. First, pick a platform that feels and points the most naturally for you. Then, look at the available calibers and make a selection based on your own priorities. For me, given the choice, I'd stick with 9mm. Lower ammo costs, quicker follow up shots (given the same platform) and often the bonus of an extra round or three.

In the end though, my only semi automatic is a .45 ACP. Go figure. (I shoot 1911s better than any other auto I've tried).
jad0110 is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 09:12 PM   #12
JC57
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 2, 2010
Posts: 247
Out of the same type/size of gun, the 40 will have more felt recoil than the 9mm.

The question of "stopping power" is such a huge debate and questionable term that it's not worth me getting into.

I feel either caliber will do if I need to use one in self-defense. Tests with modern quality defensive ammo show that 9mm, 40, and 45 all provide sufficient penetration and expansion to stop a threat if you hit a vital area.

Winchester has some interactive comparison charts comparing their law-enforcement branded "Ranger T" ammo, here: http://www.winchester.com/SiteCollec...law_bullit.swf

If you play around with that and look at different bullet weights, calibers, and pressures (+P or not) you can see that they all seem to do the job. It may not be the definitive guide but it can give you some ideas.
JC57 is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 09:21 PM   #13
armoredman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 22, 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 3,737
Quote:
More Powerful, 9mm or 40 caliber?
Yes.
__________________
http://czfirearms.us/ same original CZForum, new location.
armoredman is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 09:28 PM   #14
Sarge
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 12, 2002
Location: MO
Posts: 4,890
Forty. Bigger piston, same compression.
__________________
Visit us at The Sixgun Journal or the archive, at http://sargesrollcall.blogspot.com/
Sarge is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 11:27 PM   #15
8shot357
Junior member
 
Join Date: September 7, 2010
Posts: 1,740
I was told by a LEO the 9mm has more potential for over penetration. Not sure were he got is information in San Diego.
8shot357 is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 11:28 PM   #16
C0untZer0
Junior member
 
Join Date: April 21, 2011
Location: Illinois
Posts: 4,555
what exactly is "stopping power" ?
C0untZer0 is offline  
Old June 4, 2011, 11:37 PM   #17
LockedBreech
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 6, 2009
Location: Wyoming
Posts: 2,941
.40 is a more powerful round, as much as 9 advocates tiptoe around that fact. It also recoils more. The debate rages over details.
__________________
Beretta PX4 .40 S&W | Beretta 92FS 9x19 Para | Rock Island Armory GI 1911 .45 ACP | Colt Python 4" .357 Magnum | Colt 1968 Det. Spec. .38 Spc. | Ruger LCP .380 ACP | Daniel Defense M4V1 5.56x45 | Alpine M1 Carbine .30 | Steyr M1895 8x56 | Ruger 10/22 .22LR |1943 Izhevsk Mosin-Nagant M91/30 7.62x54R | Remington 870 12GA

Last edited by LockedBreech; June 5, 2011 at 02:34 AM.
LockedBreech is online now  
Old June 4, 2011, 11:45 PM   #18
SRH78
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 18, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 444
Quote:
what exactly is "stopping power" ?
I once chased a rat out of a buddy's blind and then stopped it with a 300 grain hp from my 454. That was stopping power.
SRH78 is offline  
Old June 5, 2011, 01:35 AM   #19
HK Jake
Junior member
 
Join Date: May 23, 2011
Posts: 51
Sure, the average .40 S&W is technically "more powerful" than the average 9mm.

A "top" 9mm load in terms of energy and velocity is the Winchester Ranger-T 127gr +P+ which travels at 1,250 fps (4" barrel) @ 440 ft-lbs KE. A top .40 S&W in terms of energy and velocity is the Speer Gold Dot 155gr which travels at 1,200 fps (4" barrel) @ 496 ft-lbs KE.

My preferred loads?
9mm
- Federal HST 147gr +P / 1,050 fps (4" barrel) @ 360 ft-lbs KE
- Federal HST 124gr +P / 1,200 fps (4" barrel) @ 396 ft-lbs KE
.40 S&W
- Federal HST 180gr / 1,010 fps (4" barrel) @ 406 ft-lbs KE
- Federal HST 165gr / 1,130 fps (4" barrel) @ 468 ft-lbs KE

[Note: I only prefer the 147gr +P because I actually like the added recoil! The standard pressure "soft" recoiling 9mm negatively effects my accuracy due to so much practice with .40!]

I guess it all depends on your definition of power... What is the difference between 496 ft-lbs KE and 360 ft-lbs KE? Hardly anything at all!

Want some real energy? A 2,000 lb car (which is a really, really light car) traveling at 65 mph has above 283,000 ft-lbs KE. That's real power!

Last edited by HK Jake; June 5, 2011 at 01:51 AM.
HK Jake is offline  
Old June 5, 2011, 02:41 AM   #20
Bartholomew Roberts
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 12, 2000
Location: Texas and Oklahoma area
Posts: 5,640
Give this website a read: http://ammo.ar15.com/project/Self_De..._FAQ/index.htm
Bartholomew Roberts is offline  
Old June 5, 2011, 03:24 AM   #21
MashieNiblick
Junior member
 
Join Date: March 2, 2011
Posts: 159
i think instead of power, what you are asking is which round delivers the most kinetic energy to the shooter and to the bullet's target

the best idea is to pull up ammo spec sheets for each round from the same manufacturer. take a look at the following links, for instance

9mm:
http://www.hornady.com/store/9mm-Lug...tical-Defense/
kinetic energy = 332 ft lbs

.40:
http://www.hornady.com/store/40-S-an...tical-Defense/
kinetic energy = 506 ft lbs

Chevy Corvette Z06:
http://www.chevrolet.com/corvette-z06/features-specs/
potential energy to drivetrain = 470 ft lbs

therefore:
energy to target and energy from recoil for .40 = 1.52 energy to target and energy from recoil for 9mm
energy delivered from .40 = 1.08 energy delivered to Chevy Corvette Z06 drivetrain

Best Regards,
- MN
MashieNiblick is offline  
Old June 5, 2011, 03:48 AM   #22
HK Jake
Junior member
 
Join Date: May 23, 2011
Posts: 51
Quote:
Chevy Corvette Z06:
http://www.chevrolet.com/corvette-z06/features-specs/
potential energy to drivetrain = 470 ft lbs
I see what you did there!

However, you are comparing torque (moment) to kinetic energy, and they aren't all that similar, at all!

Torque (moment) is defined as the tendency of an object to rotate about an axis, whereas kinetic energy is defined as the energy an object possesses due to its motion.

It's an apples to oranges comparison! (Twisting motion, torque, compared to pushing or pulling).
HK Jake is offline  
Old June 5, 2011, 03:58 AM   #23
BFR 475
Member
 
Join Date: April 13, 2011
Location: central Illinois
Posts: 88
Recoil depends on the gun. Given the exact same gun, 40 has more recoil. It isn't a lot worse though. Just a little. As far as power, I prefer my 40 to my 9s. I like to leave a bigger hole. Nothing wrong with 9mm though and you do get a few extra rounds. Take your pick.
__________________
BFR 475 in honor of my 475 Linebaugh BFR---Fun gun!
BFR 475 is offline  
Old June 5, 2011, 05:32 AM   #24
Kreyzhorse
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 12, 2006
Location: NKY
Posts: 11,452
Fired from the same gun, the .40 will have more recoil. It also has more energy than a 9mm.

Keep in mind I said energy because stopping doesn't really exist. Shot placement matters more than just energy as a measurement.
__________________
"He who laughs last, laughs dead." Homer Simpson

Last edited by Kreyzhorse; June 5, 2011 at 05:38 AM.
Kreyzhorse is offline  
Old June 5, 2011, 05:57 AM   #25
Missionary
Member
 
Join Date: June 2, 2011
Posts: 78
Good morning
Us e the same frame and yes the 40 is going to recoil more with a heavier bullet at the same velocity. But it is not that much... and impact on target is propertional. If I had a choice and I do I would shoot a 40. If many a police department thought the 9mm was so great they would never have switched to the 40. Practice and familiarization with overcome any recoil problem.
Missionary is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:18 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.12678 seconds with 8 queries