How Effective is the 40 caliber handgun in stopping a lethal threat? - Page 5

How Effective is the 40 caliber handgun in stopping a lethal threat?

This is a discussion on How Effective is the 40 caliber handgun in stopping a lethal threat? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; My CZ Rami is better behaved with 165's as the recoil of the heavier 180's are not as controllable in rapid fire as I would ...

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Thread: How Effective is the 40 caliber handgun in stopping a lethal threat?

  1. #61
    Member Array Rightwing's Avatar
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    My CZ Rami is better behaved with 165's as the recoil of the heavier 180's are not as controllable in rapid fire as I would like. I am also comforted by the FBI and most LEO's choices, the 165.
    "You don't have a soul, you are a soul. You have a body." CS Lewis

    S&W .41 Mag - Colt DS - Ruger Single Six - Ruger Security Six - Buckmark-Beretta 21A - S&W 351PD 22 Mag- Spfld XD 9mm -- Plenty Of Long Guns--- Dry Powder and RCBS.


  2. #62
    Distinguished Member Array coffeecup's Avatar
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    IMHO it is more effective than the 9mm and less effective than a .45. But then again I prefer my BGs with BIG holes in them.

  3. #63
    Senior Member Array boscobeans's Avatar
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    I remember an old formula for pistol bullet effectiveness from many years ago.

    I have no idea on how the numbers actually equate to real life situations.

    For handgun bullets that expend all their energy into the target,
    take the muzzle enegy and multiply it by the caliber.
    eg; for a 45acp round that has 360 foot/pounds of energy
    .45 X 360 = 162
    The ideal end figure should be in the area of 200 for 100% stoppage.
    Just an odd bit of trivia from the recesses of my mind.

    bosco

  4. #64
    Distinguished Member Array Pro2A's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-O-Matic View Post
    Shooters,

    I am a former Marine and ask both shooters & LEO'S:

    With the proper shot placement how effective is 40 cal. handgun in stopping a lethal threat? While active in the Marines I have personally seen the damage a .45 caliber handgun can do.

    I have shot various .40 caliber guns but lack information on how successful the .40 caliber gun is in incapacitating someone threatening you with lethal force! I have taught my wife to shoot our 9mm -Sig 239, which is used for protecting our home against lethal threats inside our home. We have shot 9mm, 40 caliber and 45 pistols at our range and from shooting all these caliber handguns the 40 caliber handgun is what we shoot best.

    Plus I feel that 9mm handgun is not enough for our needs --when in most encounters I had in the Marines --were so surprisingly fast that only one or two shots were fired. How effective is the 40 caliber handgun with 1 -2 shots in stopping a lethal threat?
    Thank-you shooters for your thoughts & data!

    There's No Life Before Coffee!


    I always say, if you wouldn't stand down range from it, its effective enough

  5. #65
    Member Array Captain38's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fast Cloud View Post
    LEOs carry 40s and of all the gun forums I paroose I've certainly never heard any complaints about there effectiveness. Cool avatar, by the way.
    When, and IF, it's EVER determined that the .40 S&W ISN'T an adequate stopper, it's REALLY going to be NEWS to a whole lot of law enforcement agencies!

  6. #66
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    For handgun bullets that expend all their energy into the target,
    take the muzzle enegy and multiply it by the caliber.
    eg; for a 45acp round that has 360 foot/pounds of energy
    .45 X 360 = 162
    The ideal end figure should be in the area of 200 for 100% stoppage.
    Just an odd bit of trivia from the recesses of my mind.
    162 from a .45?

    It just goes to show that if you have to shoot, shoot several times.
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  7. #67
    Member Array Natty Bumppo's Avatar
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    You will hear that shot placement trumps all, and in theory that's correct, but surgical placement during a life and death encounter, with everyone moving about, is perhaps a bit much to ask.

    If surgical placement was the answer, the City, State, and National authorities would simply issue to their armed personal the budget friendly .22 short. Because there are seldom more than three assailants and nobody ever misses the eye socket, there is no reasonable necessity to issue more than three rounds to any officer.

    If you are one of those who dismisses "placement" shibboleth, we can proceed to discuss the .40 S&W. Only a few sentences are necessary. If you acknowledge that the FBI issues that calibre to their agents as do innumerable police departments, then you must accept that the .40 is where the lines of power and controllability cross. It is enough, without being too much.

  8. #68
    Ex Member Array Sneaky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yemenmocha View Post
    I agree with the others about whichever round you can be proficient with - shot placement matters a lot.

    I don't mean to be personal, but are you the only one who might need to use this firearm for self-defense? If you have a spouse or significant other who might need to use this firearm, and it is the only one available in your home, can this person use it effectively as well? I doubt I'll ever own something beyond a .40 because this is what my wife can shoot reasonably well.
    Being a former Marine -I have taught my wife to shoot--.45 caliber,40 caliber,.357 mag, 9mm., 38 special and she shoots guns better then a lot of men

  9. #69
    Senior Member Array Devone6's Avatar
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    Saying proper shot placement is most important is not simple jargon that outsiders throw around, a.k.a "shibboleth" Shot placement does trump all. A .40 trumps a .22 when our shot placement is off.

    The .40 is a great caliber.

  10. #70
    VIP Member Array Sticks's Avatar
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    The .40 is the middle ground on multiple fronts.

    More power than the 9mm, less than the 45

    More capacity than the .45, less than the 9mm

    Cheaper ammo than the 45, more than the 9mm

    Felt Recoil.....lots of apples, oranges, and apricots here.

    I have shot my friends Kel Tec 9mm, and his HiPoint 9mm, and both had a harsher recoil than my Baby Eagle full size, and I shoot 180gr. It was about equal with a fellow members XD 9mm, and less than a CZ40 also shooting 180gr.

    Why? My BE is a full size (4.72") 13+1 all steel, full dust cover on the frame. It is a heavy gun, well balanced, extremely comfortable for both my wife and I (she has her own - in fact mine was hers, she got a new one, one of those "Oh...I gotta get me one of these!"). I carry tucked IWB, and don't even know it's there anymore.

    If you are going to compare felt recoil, you have to use the same make and model, in each caliber to make an accurate comparison.

    I have done impromptu ballistics with the .40 using hydra Shoks and HST (both 180 gr.). The HST is my new carry round because of that, and the expansion was enough to cover a quarter, that and it just looks wicked painful. If I was given a choice to be shot with...Hydra Shok, smooth wound tract. HSTs are more of a meat grinder. Do a search in this forum area on HST in the title, and spend the evening reading.

    The best advice here is carry what you are comfortable with, can conceal, and shoot.

    I am comfortable with my Desert Eagle .44, I can shoot it, but it is not practical for a CC, and really overkill for SD (over penetration and then some) . So it has been retired to the fall back gun at home in the bedroom.

    On shot placement...My Father In Law is retired Chicago motorcycle cop and FBI. He carries either a Sig 9mm or his old service S&W revolver - 38spl. He can still out shoot most people with his wheel gun. He was trained that you only have 12 shots, you damn well better make sure they all count. He will finish the FBI qualifier faster with the wheel gun than someone with an auto and a better score - no speed loaders either. 20 years of 500+ rounds a month in practice, reach in your pocket, pull 6, and all nose forward.
    Sticks

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  11. #71
    Distinguished Member Array Rexster's Avatar
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    I work for a big-city PD; there are several thousand of us, and we shoot quite a few bad guys over time. Until 1997, we could use just about any DA revolver or autoloading pistol from 9mm and .38 on the low end, to .45 on the high end. Since 1997, .40 S&W has been the standard duty cartridge. The bad guys have been falling at about the same rate as before; if we hit 'em in the important bits, they go down. If we miss, they don't.

    I used "grandfathered" .45 1911 pistols until 2002. I have used .40 since then, and don't feel I took a step down. I haven't shot a bad guy since my .357 Magnum days, and it worked VERY well.

  12. #72
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    shot placement is what makes any round effective but the .40 is by far one of my favorites! 9mm and a .45 crammed all into one= perfection! thats just me though

  13. #73
    Member Array Captain38's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rexster View Post
    I haven't shot a bad guy since my .357 Magnum days, and it worked VERY well.
    WE considered the 125 gr. JHP .357 Magnum round THE "Magic Bullet", rating IT right up there with the 12 gauge slug!

  14. #74
    Distinguished Member Array Rexster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain38 View Post
    WE considered the 125 gr. JHP .357 Magnum round THE "Magic Bullet", rating IT right up there with the 12 gauge slug!
    Yessir, I used the Federal interpretation of that load, and still do, in my backup and "off-duty" sixguns, with Gold Dot 125 an alternate, as Federal is harder to find locally these days. We must buy our duty ammo, an expensive "blessing," but worth it to me.

    Due to fluctuating local availability, the .40 ammo I use is Golden Saber 165, Federal 155, or Gold Dot 180. I try to get my ammo from a local LE distributor, which is far cheaper than retail, but they seem to only be able to keep Hornady TAP in stock, in .40, lately. I may have to run a bunch of that through my P229s to verify their appetite for it.

    I just bought a factory .357 SIG barrel, to give that a try. If I like its recoil dynamics better, I may convert my SIGs after I retire. The old wrist ain't what it used to be.

  15. #75
    New Member Array thomp830's Avatar
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    Carry the 40S&W

    As a LEO I have carried a 38+p, 9mm and 40S&W. I can tell you that I and many other Cops trust the 40 to get things done. We have many die-hard 45 fans in my department an none of them are disappointed with the abilities of the 40S&W. As has been said before, the 40 combines the 9 and 45 an comes out winning!

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