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Ideal weight in .40?

Discussion in 'Caliber Corner' started by brokenprism, Aug 25, 2012.

  1. brokenprism


    Feb 27, 2011
    I like heavy for caliber ammo. I have heretofore shot only 180 gr stuff in my G22. I like not only the penetration, but the stability that the length of this bullet gives.

    Recently I started thinking about the 165 gr. I have no experience with it but I believe it goes about 100 fps faster than its older brother. At a loss of only 15 grs of weight (doesn't sound like much), and a gain of 100 fps, isn't the 165 gr the ideal compromise between 155 and 180? (Related question: how does the 200 gr .40 perform?)

    A G23 is next on my pre-election checklist, and I was thinking of making that a 165 gr gun.
  2. Beretta92guy


    Nov 15, 2011
    to get the true maximum stopping potential out of the .40:

    155 grain gold-dot or silvertip...

    my ccw load..

  3. avenues165


    Jun 15, 2012
    SLC, Utah
    My Gen 4 G23 is currently loaded with 165gr Federal HST.

    I like the idea of a 165gr bullet for the .40. It's moving a little faster and that seems to help bullets open up more consistently. However, it is probably no longer an issue, 180gr HPs seem to open up just fine in the tests I have seen.

    I have read the fast/light and slow/heavy arguments. There are things that make sense to me on both sides, but neither side has convinced me. I pick middle of the road, and 165gr in .40 seems middle of the road in both weight and velocity.

    In the winter the 180gr makes more sense to me.
  4. NDCent

    NDCent Socially Inept

    Mar 19, 2010
    Exactly what I use, FWIW.
  5. jbglock


    Aug 18, 2012
    Personally I believe in the heavier (180 grain) bullet weight. As a bonus it is more controllable for me than the lighter weight bullets. If you really want the most velocity and muzzle energy then look up some 135 grain bullet loadings in this caliber.
  6. plouffedaddy


    Apr 1, 2011

    If you skip ahead to 8:20 (ish) you'll see some real world chrono testing. Here's the result:

    Winchester Ranger 135gr JHPs: 1208fps, 437 ft/lbs energy
    Federal HST 165gr Bonded JHPs: 1114fps, 455 ft/lbs energy
    Federal HST 180gr JHPs: 1095fps, 479 ft/lbs energy

    I keep my 40s loaded with the 165gt ammo FWIW.
  7. for me I think the 165 is best all around in the .40 but in my 27 I carry 180s for a little more control. my 23 is loaded with 165s HSTs my 27 180 HSTs. so to the OP I think you are right in saying the 165 is a good compromise of speed and weight.
  8. brokenprism


    Feb 27, 2011
    I tried a box of double tap 135s once, and I was very pleasantly surprised with the accuracy. It was a smoking round, too. But I have the same issue with light and fast .40 as I did with .357 in the 70s, and that's penetration. Back then I wasn't confident in the 158's ability to expand, so I was always on a quest for the middle weight -- CCI 145s back then, or Silvertip. I've read more bad about Silvertip lately than good, but even if I hadn't, with HST and RA40T available, why would anyone go 'backwards' to older technology?

    I once fired a box of Remington Express 155s and they felt plenty powerful. They were also dirty little boogers.

    I'll try both weights in my 23 when she comes home and go with accuracy first.
  9. Shooter64


    Apr 8, 2002
    I've noticed I have the best accuracy with 165gr with factory and handloads in my .40 Glocks.
    Remington's golden saber data is showing the 165gr load to have more energy than the 180gr load.
    just my 2¢.

    Sent from TapTalk 2
  10. JW1178


    Jul 17, 2009
    Well, most LE who use the G22 use 180gr loads. 165 is moving a little faster, but the newer bullets such as the HST opens wide and fast even at lower velocities. The extra weight gives it the momentum to push deep.

    165 is great with Gold Dot's because they like a little extra velocity. They will use the velocity to get wide but open a little more slowly so they get real deep.
  11. M 7

    M 7

    May 22, 2012
    I just look to the local PDs. Like you and me, they like the heavy stuff and issue the Winchester .40S&W 180 gr. Ranger T JHPs. When I go with a .40, that's what I load it with.
  12. CDW4ME


    Jun 5, 2009
    The lighter bullets may produce more recoil than the 180 gr.

    Chrono average for 5 shots out of Glock 27:

    Federal 180 JHP @ 925 fps = PF 167
    Federal 180 gr. HS @ 930 fps = PF 167
    Remington 165 gr. Golden Saber @ 1,018 fps = PF 168
    Those ^ three loads are softer shooting out of my 27

    Speer Gold Dot 155 gr. @ 1,134 fps = PF 175
    Winchester Ranger T 165 @ 1,116 fps = PF 184

    PF = power factor a calculation that can be used to compare recoil.
    bullet weight x bullet speed / 1,000 = PF
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2012
  13. packinaglock

    packinaglock John 3:16

    May 1, 2007
    Loxahatchee Fl
    I like the 155g gold Dots out of my .40's
  14. Ranger45


    Jan 17, 2010
    North Carolina
    I've been carrying 180gr Speer Gold Dots in my USPc. Based on some of the tests I've seen, conversations with local sheriff's deputies, and Mas Ayoob's preference I'm going to pick up some 165gr. Winchester Ranger Ts.

    Pretty sure I'll stick with the two heavier loadings in either Federal, Winchester or Speer.
  15. SDGlock23

    SDGlock23 Glockoholic

    I like them all, so I'm not biased. The 180, 165, and 155 are all great. Wish there were more 135's and 200's. The 165 is a little faster than most 180's and is certainly a top performer.

    Chronographed these today out of Gen4 G23 (4" and listed velocity is the average)

    Hornady 165gr Critical Defense: 1100 fps
    Federal 165gr HST: 1077 fps
    Winchester 165gr Ranger: 1097 fps
    Remington 165gr Golden Saber: 1085 fps
    Double Tap 165gr Gold Dot: 1123 fps (To add the DT 155gr Gold Dot did 1235 fps avg)

    I don't have any Underwoods 165gr or I would have ran those. I forgot to test the 165gr Winchester Ranger...but stay tuned I may go outside and run some to add to the list. (Updated!)
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2012
  16. Snowman92D


    Oct 6, 2001
    For what it's worth, it sure seems like the 180-grain loads print noticeably above the point of aim in most guns. With the 165-grain loads, it's pretty much dead-on POI-to-POA for me.
  17. cowboy1964


    Sep 4, 2009
    Interesting that the 180 gains more velocity than the lighter ones in that G35 and ends up having more energy. Typically it would have less energy. 1114 fps from the 165 HST Bonded seems rather low. It should be doing more than that from a G22, let alone a G35.
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2012
  18. cowboy1964


    Sep 4, 2009
    I think 165gr is a good compromise for the .40. That said I think all of them are sufficient. I really like 180s though. After all, isn't the point of a bullet starting with ".4" is that it's big and heavy?

    [ame=""].40 Federal HST 180 gr Ammo Gel Test - YouTube[/ame]

    [ame=""]Speer Gold Dot .40 S&W 180 gr JHP SIM-TEST w/denim - YouTube[/ame]
  19. I personally go for the heavier bullet, 180 grains. It produces less felt recoil to me and is accurate. Also, it is plentiful where I am.
  20. I like 165... But admittedly I always get a kick out of the fact that so many people prefer 180....

    Reason being that the 10mm is the "magnum version" and people go ape #%^* over 135 grain.

    Why do 10mm fans seem to favor (from my perception ) lighter weights when 40 fans favor heavier, when in reality 10mm has the extra case space to make the heavier projectile perform better????