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Old 04-29-2012, 14:57   #1
Amplified
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9mm vs .40 S&W vs .45 ACP

Is the .40 S&W really all that much more effective than the 9mm? .45 ACP penetration is awfully pathetic, but it's still a good anti-personal caliber. Out of these three calibers, which would be the best one overall?

Last edited by Amplified; 04-29-2012 at 14:58..
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Old 04-29-2012, 15:12   #2
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Is the .40 S&W really all that much more effective than the 9mm? .45 ACP penetration is awfully pathetic, but it's still a good anti-personal caliber. Out of these three calibers, which would be the best one overall?
As measured in what??? Sure, hard barriers, everyone knows smaller dia penetrate better. In tissue, the 45acp offers mor ethan enough penetration w/ any bullet wt. Which caliber would depend on what bullets I am required to use. With good JHP, they are all too close to call. With FMJ, I would be taking the largest possible diameter since I get no expansion. Bigger holes are better. Bigger holes going deeper are better still. After all, one of the reasons to use a good JHP in the 9mm is to get the frontal diameter larger to increase terminal peroformance & to limit penetration.
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Old 04-29-2012, 15:28   #3
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I have all three calibers and carry all three at different times,my 9mm ammo is Corbon 115gr +P, 40 is 180gr Speer Gold Dot and my 45acp is 230gr Federal HST,it really isn't an issue with me,I'm ok with any of them.
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Old 04-29-2012, 15:46   #4
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With proper JHP ammo, all service calibers perform equally the same.
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Old 04-29-2012, 15:48   #5
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a .40,,,, in a little bit bigger case of course
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Old 04-29-2012, 15:55   #6
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Which ever one you can effectively and repeatedly put on target. In real world shootings the difference is minuscule.
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Old 04-29-2012, 16:39   #7
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Which ever one you can effectively and repeatedly put on target. In real world shootings the difference is minuscule.
That's my opinion also. I'm not a big fan of .40S&W because of the harsh recoil and although .45ACP seems more manageable to me I don't need another caliber to feed. I have a lot of confidence in 9mm for personal self-defense scenarios and I do believe statistics bear that out, just like they bear out the other two named calibers.
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Old 04-30-2012, 00:17   #8
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Originally Posted by Merkavaboy View Post
With proper JHP ammo, all service calibers perform equally the same.
+1
Using the best modern high tech SD ammo
any service caliber will serve you well.

Find out what you are most proficient with and use that.

Last edited by barth; 04-30-2012 at 00:17..
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Old 04-30-2012, 14:01   #9
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Really????

If one can find a professional gun writer that will echo this notion - then I will welcome it as the gospel truth! Cheers.
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+1
Using the best modern high tech SD ammo
any service caliber will serve you well.

Find out what you are most proficient with and use that.
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Old 04-30-2012, 14:17   #10
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Placement. Not a big difference between them truth be told. Some .45 guys hate this, since they're spending almost 2x the amount of money on ammo compared to the 9mm guys. (no, not counting reloading)

Fact of the matter is, and like others have mentioned, handgun is a mediocre stopper. It should be used as a last resort, and even then should be used to either

1.get yourself out of the situation
2. get yourself to a bigger gun IE shotgun or rifle.


But since you asked my opinion on caliber, and what's a good anti-personell round, I'd opt for 12 gauge 00 buckshot with 2 and 3 quarter inch shells. That's 9x 9mm balls traveling at 1325 fps.

My 2nd load of choice would be a 1 oz slug (.74ish) caliber in diameter, clocked in at 1600 fps, you know, if i really need penetration.
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Old 04-30-2012, 16:07   #11
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Quote:
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Placement. Not a big difference between them truth be told. Some .45 guys hate this, since they're spending almost 2x the amount of money on ammo compared to the 9mm guys. (no, not counting reloading)
:
And most 9mm shooters keep telling themselves their 9mm are just as good. Confidence in ones gear is important so keep up telling yourself it's all good.
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Old 04-30-2012, 21:06   #12
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With proper JHP ammo, all service calibers perform equally the same.
Yep. I have a preference for 357SIG, though.
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Old 04-30-2012, 21:15   #13
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Yep. I have a preference for 357SIG, though.
Good.
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Old 04-30-2012, 21:28   #14
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Yep. I have a preference for 357SIG, though.
That's my preference of the two duty calibers I own (9mm and .357sig). However, due to the smaller platform the 9mm gets 75% of the carry time.

I've recently become very intrigued with the 147-grain .357sig JHP self-defense rounds. If this bullet weight is the bomb in 9mm as a lot of people attest what's not to like about the same bullet going 200 fps faster?

And if I ever do find a sub-compact .357sig pistol that fits my hand the 147-grain JHP ought to be a formidable self-defense round in that short-barrel pistol.
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Old 04-30-2012, 23:03   #15
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That's my preference of the two duty calibers I own (9mm and .357sig). However, due to the smaller platform the 9mm gets 75% of the carry time.

I've recently become very intrigued with the 147-grain .357sig JHP self-defense rounds. If this bullet weight is the bomb in 9mm as a lot of people attest what's not to like about the same bullet going 200 fps faster?

And if I ever do find a sub-compact .357sig pistol that fits my hand the 147-grain JHP ought to be a formidable self-defense round in that short-barrel pistol.
I'd advocate Double Tap's 115 grain .357 Sig load, rated at 1,550 fps from a 4" barrel! If I wanted a slow 1,200 fps round, I'd throw it at the bad guy haha. I suppose if 147 grain is a must than the .357 Sig would be preferred over the 9mm Luger in that grain weight.
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Old 04-30-2012, 23:10   #16
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Are you sure you subsonic round fans are actually firearm enthusiasts? Seriously, maybe you guys should take up slingshot-arms lol!

I'll keep my high-mach, precision rounds, and you can have your Fred Flintstone slingshots!
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Old 04-29-2012, 16:47   #17
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.45 ACP penetration is awfully pathetic
It is?

And if you are worried about too little penetration: .357 Sig

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Old 04-29-2012, 18:56   #18
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I shot them all in a variety of pistols. They are all fine. Load them with FMJ's and they all about equally ineffective. If they hit a nerve, bone, organ, the result will be better. With quality high-performance ammunition, they will all be very effective ... if hits are made on nerves, bone, organs,... you know.
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Old 04-29-2012, 20:06   #19
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Amplified,

“Which would be best”? Are you asking for concealed carry purposes? I carry a 9mm G26 with 2 round extension on the magazine that gives me 12 rounds of Speer Gold Dot 124g JHP;

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/888798/speer-gold-dot-ammunition-9mm-luger-p-124-grain-jacketed-hollow-point-box-of-20

This type of bullet is a devastating round and is more than most people will ever need. Beyond this… well in my opinion you’re just into over-kill (no pun intended).

Last edited by Kentguy; 04-29-2012 at 20:07..
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Old 04-29-2012, 21:26   #20
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I would use any of them in JHP for self defense.
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