Saturday, January 16, 2010

40 S&W vs. 9mm vs. 357 SIG

Chuck said...

FerFal, glad to be able to contribute.

I didn't add in my original e-mail that I was in charge of our firearms program for several years, and we have 325 gun carriers here between full-time sworn officers, reserves, etc.

I often hear folks say that their gun X works great in their experience, which may be a few hundred rounds.

Over the past three years I have seen 325ish folks fire almost a million rounds of 9mm ammo out of their duty and off duty Glocks, we have 17s, 19s and 26s being carried by our troops.

This is where my experience base comes from, not just a few rounds here and there.

I stay away from the Glock .40s after we had numerous reliability issues with the G22.



Thanks Chuck, always nice to hear about your experience.
That's one of the reasons I like 357 SIG so much. it gives you a bit more power than hot 9mm +P and even better, the bottle shaped case feeds more reliably than any other pistol cartridge.



BulgarWheat said...

I love my .40 S&W Glock G23. I don't get into the arguments over which ammo is worst/best and don't really care. Ammo for my G23 is plentiful, and what a friend of mine has used for 20 years in the U.S. Border Patrol. Also what my younger brother has been carrying with over 20 years law enforcement.

Estonian said...

its not only Glock .40's that have issues, its 40S&W ammo in general. Weak casing: http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y42/insectguy/DSC_2802crop.jpg This one came from a Taurus Millenium.

Anonymous said...


I have a Browning 9 mm (excellent) , and HK7 PSP 9 mm (great pistol) but would like large capacity but concealable .45 acp for carry. I am used to Colt 1911 recoil but wonder about the Glock 30, which I am considering. Perhaps you or your readers has a comment on the G30 recoil..no way to try before buy.

I need to use Pachmayr grips on the Colt, to give you idea of my ability to control recoil. I also carry .380 Walther PPK/S with Pachmayr grips..pretty stout recoil IMHO; how would G30 compare?



parabarbarian said...

Not surprising when you consider that the Glock was designed around the 9x19mm cartridge.

Anonymous said...

Availability can be a real issue as it already has been. In this area, .38 is the hardest to find when aummunition is in demand, then .45, while 9mm is the easiest and the first to return to the shelves. 9mm +P+ should only be run in certain guns, but it is right on the heals of .357 SIG.
There is no real substitute for the .45, including speed, it's larger in diameter and nearly twice the wieght. That said, 9mm has a better chance of being affordable and available in the future. Owning both would be best.

Anonymous said...

Okay folks, as always lots of misconceptions...

The .40SW round does not have any inherent issues--a lot of guns that fire this round do. The .40SW round has more pressure than a 9MM NATO round, this was the reason it was developed for the FBI in the 90s as an alternative to 9MM NATO. .357SIG has even more pressure!

That higher pressure requires a FULLY supported chamber. Glock doesn't have one. A partially supported chamber can lead to head case separation otherwise known as "KABOOM." Improper reloads and out-of-spec ammo increases the risk of kaboom.

Kaboom in a SHTF situation is deadly. Not only is your strong hand/arm going to be injured but your weapon is no longer serviceable. Hopefully you listened to FerFal (I have!) and follow the "3 is 2, 2 is 1" rule.

This is why I stick exclusively to Sig Sauer. They know how to build a gun for the round it will fire. With barrel swaps I can go to .357SIG in seconds, just like in a G22, but I have a gun that is engineered for that round. They are expensive but worth it.

Search .40SW kaboom on google and look at the results. Then research the advantages (penetration, velocity) of the .40SW and .357SIG rounds compared to 9MM PARA and 9MM NATO.

A little research goes a long way...

Anonymous said...

"Given desirable and reliable penetration, the only way to increase bullet effectiveness is to increase the severity of the wound by increasing the size of the hole made by the bullet," Handgun Wounding Factors and Effectiveness, FBI Academy Firearms Training Unit,pg.16, 1989.

In other words. Get a .45.

BC said...

Reliability on Glock pistols in 40 S&W while using a underbarrel mounted weapon light is a know issue. Frame flex from the stronger recoil vs the 9mm is thought to be the cause of this issue.

The 9mm Glocks do not have this issue when using a light.

Anonymous said...

My agency has video of a Smith & Wesson 4006 .40 S&W that suddenly started shooting 4 inches left and 8 inches low one day. Nobody could figure out why. Subsequently, it was discovered that the trainee firing it had heard a "pop" rather than a "BANG," but kept on firing. He had had a misfire, that caused a bullet to stop halfway down the barrel. The next round drove the jammed bullet out of the barrel. The range staff found this out when they disassembled the gun to clean it. The barrel had split, but the gun kept on firing.

** Don't try this at home **

The range staff was curious about the weapon's reliability. They put the pistol in a rest, tied a long string to the trigger, got behind cover, and fired a full magazine through it. No failures to feed, no failures to extract, no failures going into battery.