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what justifies it?

I don't really understand the question, it's one of a long list of common calibers. It's got a near perfect blend of 9mm and .45, two of about 5 most common pistol calibers.

.40 had more one stop shots than any other caliber, at least for a while, within LE statistics. And 15 rounds fits just fine in a full size pistol.

10mm is even better
 

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You're need for justification sounds like a personal issue. The reason it is made is because it could be. The reason people buy it is they want it. The reason we can make the firearm we want or buy the one we want is this is America..
 

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Originally there was the 10mm cartridge for a semi-automatic pistol developed by Jeff Cooper and introduced in 1983 as the Bren Ten pistol. That gun was never successfully mass produced and the company went under. Colt brought out a 1911 variant, the Colt Delta Elite, for the 10mm cartridge. The FBI bought into the 10mm cartridge after the incident where their 38 Special revolvers cost several agents their lives in one incident in Florida (??). But the smaller framed men and women FBI agents could not handle the recoil of the 10mm which is pretty stout and the weight of the 1911. The gun, even in the heavy 1911 based gun, would twist in the hand during recoil. The ammo manufacturer offered the FBI a down loaded version in the 10mm case. S&W offered a 10 mm case shortened and loaded to a down loaded 10mm spec and called it the 40 S&W. They also offered a gun for it using a 9 mm frame (much lighter and smaller than a 1911). The FBI went for the S&W offer. Police forces followed suit and today it is one of the most popular calibers for self defense. It has a larger bullet than 38 or 9mm and offers plenty of knock down power.

So with the 40S&W you can have guns the size of the 9mm guns with much more knock down power, and still hold nearly the number of rounds as a 9 mm gun.

The question should be...What took so long for the 40 S&W to appear in the market place?

LDBennett
 

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Originally there was the 10mm cartridge for a semi-automatic pistol developed by Jeff Cooper and introduced in 1983 as the Bren Ten pistol. That gun was never successfully mass produced and the company went under. Colt brought out a 1911 variant, the Colt Delta Elite, for the 10mm cartridge. The FBI bought into the 10mm cartridge after the incident where their 38 Special revolvers cost several agents their lives in one incident in Florida (??). But the smaller framed men and women FBI agents could not handle the recoil of the 10mm which is pretty stout and the weight of the 1911. The gun, even in the heavy 1911 based gun, would twist in the hand during recoil. The ammo manufacturer offered the FBI a down loaded version in the 10mm case. S&W offered a 10 mm case shortened and loaded to a down loaded 10mm spec and called it the 40 S&W. They also offered a gun for it using a 9 mm frame (much lighter and smaller than a 1911). The FBI went for the S&W offer. Police forces followed suit and today it is one of the most popular calibers for self defense. It has a larger bullet than 38 or 9mm and offers plenty of knock down power.

So with the 40S&W you can have guns the size of the 9mm guns with much more knock down power, and still hold nearly the number of rounds as a 9 mm gun.

The question should be...What took so long for the 40 S&W to appear in the market place?

LDBennett
BAM! LDB hit the nail on the head. I gave up the 9mm when the .40 came out.
I carried a .45 for years, and still do now and again, but at 5'8" and 160, packin' a full frame or even a Commander was a hassle in the hot, humid summers, the compact .40 was a good compromise.
I still have one of the original Sigma's (low production number, I was an S&W dealer then) in .40, thousands of rounds and going strong.
 

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Originally there was the 10mm cartridge for a semi-automatic pistol developed by Jeff Cooper and introduced in 1983 as the Bren Ten pistol. That gun was never successfully mass produced and the company went under. Colt brought out a 1911 variant, the Colt Delta Elite, for the 10mm cartridge. The FBI bought into the 10mm cartridge after the incident where their 38 Special revolvers cost several agents their lives in one incident in Florida (??). But the smaller framed men and women FBI agents could not handle the recoil of the 10mm which is pretty stout and the weight of the 1911. The gun, even in the heavy 1911 based gun, would twist in the hand during recoil. The ammo manufacturer offered the FBI a down loaded version in the 10mm case. S&W offered a 10 mm case shortened and loaded to a down loaded 10mm spec and called it the 40 S&W. They also offered a gun for it using a 9 mm frame (much lighter and smaller than a 1911). The FBI went for the S&W offer. Police forces followed suit and today it is one of the most popular calibers for self defense. It has a larger bullet than 38 or 9mm and offers plenty of knock down power.

So with the 40S&W you can have guns the size of the 9mm guns with much more knock down power, and still hold nearly the number of rounds as a 9 mm gun.

The question should be...What took so long for the 40 S&W to appear in the market place?

LDBennett
Very nice !! I own a 40 S&W but never took the time to find out about its origins. Very informative, thanks.
 
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Because it hits like a 45ACP and has the mag capacity of a 9mm. What more can one ask for in life? My next SD pistol is going to be a Smith and Wesson M&P 40 with the thumb safety.
 

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The original 10mm cartridge was a 200 grain bullet at 1200FPS.

The 40S&W is a 200 gr bullet at just under 1000FPS and a 180 gr bullet at about 1100FPS.

45ACP is a 200 gr bullet at 1000FPS or a 230 gr bullet at 900FPS.

So the 40S&W hits almost like a 45ACP, energy wise, in a smaller lighter gun that holds more rounds with a 0.401 inch bullet compared to 0.355 inch or 0.357 inch 9mm or 38Spl bullet, respectively.

40S&W sounds like a real winner to me.

LDBennett
 

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Because it's awesome. :cool:

Nah, but it is a good cartridge. The .40S&w (10x22) is derived from the 10mm auto which was, ballisticlly speaking, a better cartridge. The 10 mm auto had the problem of breaking its chambered platform,(Except Glock 20) and was considered too powerful for the men-in-suites(FBI) for everyday carry. The .40 S&W was created by shortening the 10 mm Auto's case. A standard load of 180 grains goes about 1000fps with 350 ft-lbs of energy at the muzzle. It's large enough and fast enough to cause hydro-static shock. (If you believe in that kind of thing.) Yet, small enough to to be able to hold large quantities. The Glock 22, as an example, has 18 round magazine capacity, other platforms will vary.

People might say its a bit snappy, but with enough practice you won't notice;if you even noticed from the start.

The only negative I can think of is its kind-of pricey, a box of cheap FMJs will run about 18.00$. Of course, premium ammo will be higher, in the mid twenty range, prices can vary with location.

It really is a compromise between the 9x19 and .45 ACP IMHO.
 

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The original 10mm cartridge was a 200 grain bullet at 1200FPS.

The 40S&W is a 200 gr bullet at just under 1000FPS and a 180 gr bullet at about 1100FPS.

45ACP is a 200 gr bullet at 1000FPS or a 230 gr bullet at 900FPS.

So the 40S&W hits almost like a 45ACP, energy wise, in a smaller lighter gun that holds more rounds with a 0.401 inch bullet compared to 0.355 inch or 0.357 inch 9mm or 38Spl bullet, respectively.

40S&W sounds like a real winner to me.

LDBennett
http://le.atk.com/ammunition/speer/handgun/details.aspx?id=53883

http://le.atk.com/ammunition/speer/handgun/details.aspx?id=53962

Compared to

http://le.atk.com/ammunition/speer/handgun/details.aspx?id=53969

http://le.atk.com/ammunition/speer/handgun/details.aspx?id=53964

And no the +P is not unfair. The ACP +P load is loaded 13000 psi lower than the 40 load.

The 4006 weighs 37oz compared to 1911s 39oz. Not much lighter. Add 13 180 grain projectile and its going to be heavier than eight 185s in a 1911. Don't know too many folk that carry unloaded pistols. S&W also had too many problems with their guns. Gaston got his G22 in lots of police holsters long before S&W did.
 

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I personally dont care for the .40. It tends to blow up the guns its chambered for.

Yall dont know how many extractors I have to order because of that round..
 

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that's my big and only reservation with the .40, it's pressure compared to .45 and others. I had one glockaboom, in .40 no less, and extractor is sitting somewhere in Lewis county; it launched from the gun never to be seen again!

overall, a great round though. 10mm even better! (except for the price and availability of course)
 

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that's my big and only reservation with the .40, it's pressure compared to .45 and others. I had one glockaboom, in .40 no less, and extractor is sitting somewhere in Lewis county; it launched from the gun never to be seen again!

overall, a great round though. 10mm even better! (except for the price and availability of course)
I'm not trying to start anything here, but Glocks are a bad platform for the .40 S&W, mild factory loads are okay for the most part, but hot hand-loads are askin' for problems. Hell, sometimes even premium factory loads can mess it up.
 

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The glocks are bad in .40 because they took a gun that was already marginally sized for the 9mm (the G17) and bored it out essentially. There isnt enough steel to support the 35K psi cartridge. The .40 and the 10mm are both great in a platform designed for the .45, like the 1911 coincidentally. The 10mm Colt Delta Elites are the best of the best IMO for a .40 cal performance handgun, and it doesnt blow up, even at the 40K+ pressure range of the 10mm auto cartridge.

The reason so many other .40 cal guns tend to blow up is because they are all built in 9mm sized handguns. The Walther PPS .40 for example.. Way to small, that piece a crap blows extractors worse than glocks.

I personally cant see a need for the .40. the 9mm hasnt been around 100 years beacause it doesnt work, and theres less recoil and more ammo in the mag. And if you need more power than the 9mm, theres the .45ACP, thats also been around over 100 years. and both rounds are combat proven.

I personally like to carry a .45, but often times weather here in TX requires shorts and flipflops, and concealing a .45 just isnt in the cards.. Then Ill carry my Thunder .22.
 

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JLA:

What is your experience with the CZ 75B in 40S&W? They are a 9mm framed all steel gun. Do you see many problems in them with 40S&W?

I address the following to the others who responed to the thread:

There is another aspect of why the FBI went to 40S&W. It was the physical size of the guns. 1911's are big guns. People with small hands may have a problem just holding on to them. The story as I remember it was that it was the small statured men and the women who complained about the big framed 10mm FBI guns, not just for the weight but also for the physical size of the grip needed.

I can compare the smaller 9mm framed CZ 75B to the CZ 97, which is a 45ACP frame size double stack gun. I am tall at 6 ft 2 in and well over 200 lbs but have small hands. The CZ 97 is hard for me to hold on to without positioning a lager part of the bulk of my hand to the side of the grip rather than behind the grip where it belongs. On a 1911 I have to get the thinned grip panels to help me hang on. The CZ 75B fits my hand perfectly. So gun size matters.

LDBennett
 
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