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Thread: 9mm vs. .40 S&W in FMJ

  1. #1
    Regular Member derhammer's Avatar
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    9mm vs. .40 S&W in FMJ

    So, for SHTF (whatever form that may or may not take), I like the idea of stockpiling FMJs - they are cheap, feed reliably, and in a SHTF scenario, you're probably not going to be too worried about over-penetration - indeed, you'll probably want more. So, in FMJ, what do you all think of 9mm vs. .40? One bullet is 1mm wider - does that really make much difference? I like the low recoil, cheapness, and hi-capacity of 9mm, but I'm wondering if .40 is better in FMJ.

    -derhammer

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    well obviously if going FMJ a .40 is going to be superior to 9mm, bigger hole, heavier bullet, and more muzzle energy. though if you are "stockpiling" that ~$5 extra a box stepping up to 40 racks up fast. IMHO, if the price doesn't matter go with 40. Although if you decide to go with 40, most 45 is only $1-2 more per box and if shooting FMJs I would feel alot more comfortable shooting 45.
    Last edited by twpetry; 07-24-2012 at 11:38 PM. Reason: didn't mean to quote op

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    If the 40 cal was better, wouldn't the Army be using it? But they don't ... they chose the 9mm .. why? Mission effectiveness. Look at online reports from the Army and the GAO regarding the 45 cal ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    If the 40 cal was better, wouldn't the Army be using it? But they don't ... they chose the 9mm .. why? Mission effectiveness. Look at online reports from the Army and the GAO regarding the 45 cal ...
    because it's cheaper, and greater magazine capacity, and it could be used with the modern sub-machine guns.

    there's no question that the .40 is superior to 9mm, question is, is it worth it to the individual.

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    Regular Member DangerClose's Avatar
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    .40 costs, what, about 40% more than 9? If so, that means for the same price you can have 40% more stockpiled.

    I like my 9mm piled high and deep.

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    Regular Member derhammer's Avatar
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    You can always say ".40 because it's a bigger hole," yeah, but I'm saying, is one millimeter all that much? That seems like a pretty small difference. Is it really worth the extra money to add a millimeter of diameter? Even going 9mm to .45, it's about 2mm difference. How much difference is that really going to make?

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    Quote Originally Posted by derhammer View Post
    You can always say ".40 because it's a bigger hole," yeah, but I'm saying, is one millimeter all that much? That seems like a pretty small difference. Is it really worth the extra money to add a millimeter of diameter? Even going 9mm to .45, it's about 2mm difference. How much difference is that really going to make?

    -derhammer
    Its not just "a bigger hole" its also about energy. Take for instance Speer Lawman TMJ ammo (it was just easier to get specs for):

    9mm
    115gr + 1200fps = 368ft/lbs

    .40
    155gr + 1175fps = 475ft/lbs

    Some people would feel undergunned with a 9mm +P JHP, if your requirement for this scenario is SHTF and FMJs, bigger and more powerful than 9mm makes sense.

    That having been said, I'm not trying to tell you which caliber you should pick, thats up to each person to decide for them selves. I'm just providing you with some information to help you make your own choice. you are the one who asked for help. The .40 is obviously a superior cartridge to the 9mm, but is it worth it to you? I think it comes down to this: would you rather spend a little more to have a better performing round? or spend a little less and have more of a lower performing round?

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    Regular Member AngryBodhi's Avatar
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    Pick the one you shoot better. Some people who are comfortable with 9mm don't like the "snappier" recoil of the .40.

    If by SHTF you mean possible end of the world scenario, 9mm is much more available on a global level. If you mean self-defense vs badguy(s) .40 is generally going to be the better performing round, all else being equal.

    In the mean time, I find when 9mm, .45, and 12ga are all out of stock due the the latest "they're coming for my guns" scare, there's always plenty of .40 on the shelves.

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    Regular Member AngryBodhi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    If the 40 cal was better, wouldn't the Army be using it? But they don't ... they chose the 9mm .. why? Mission effectiveness. Look at online reports from the Army and the GAO regarding the 45 cal ...
    Aside from the politics behind adopting the 9mm, the .40 S&W didn't come into production until well after that decision was made.

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    Heres my .02 cents on the matter because I stockpile fmj as well, if your getting fmj for shtf then stockpile 9mm. It is slightly better at penetrating barriers than 40 and everybody shoots it so if you had too barter it would be like gold. 40 usually only comes in flat point so as a man stopper 40 definitely has an edge in that department with its sectional density and velocity. I personally stock both but I stock 9mm more often than 40 because I have 2 handguns that shoot 9mm and only 1 that shoots 40. If you decide to stockpile 40 then look online at ammo sites and you can find a 50 box of 40 fmj or tmj for around 14 dollars a box which aint too bad.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AngryBodhi View Post
    In the mean time, I find when 9mm, .45, and 12ga are all out of stock due the the latest "they're coming for my guns" scare, there's always plenty of .40 on the shelves.
    Depends completely on your locale, I think. Immediately after Aurora I couldn't find .40 anywhere. Wal-mart and my local armories were all sold out, with the exception of a couple rag tag boxes. Looked like .45 was completely non existent as well, while 9mm still had a dominating presence. This isn't a caliber thing, I've strongly considered getting the MK25... this is just pointing out that the popularity can vary.

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