View Poll Results: Which Caliber is more Reliable using Hollow Points

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  • 9MM Models are more Reliable w/ Holllow Points

    6 35.29%
  • 40 S&W Models are more Reliable w/ Hollow Points

    6 35.29%
  • I Don't Trust Either One.

    5 29.41%
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  1. #1
    Navybob is offline Junior Member
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    The .40 S&W ~vs~ 9mm Models

    The .40 S&W models more reliably feed self defense rounds than the 9mm. I have read this several times. I only have experience with the .40's, (K40 & MK40).
    Is this generally true? Do you trust one caliber over the other for self defense?

  2. #2
    SouthernBoy's Avatar
    SouthernBoy is online now Senior Member
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    One of the reasons that the .40S&W JHP may have a higher reliability in feeding is that the feed ramp on the barrel is larger. But I think it may be more along the lines of the design a specific manufacturer employs in his guns.

    As for the Kahr's, take a careful look at their design. The trigger drawbar is inside of the gun. In order to make the gun as slim as they do, this means that the cartridge and the feed ramp are a little off center. This makes the Kahr more sensitive to ammunition and particularly bullet design.

  3. #3
    denner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Navybob View Post
    The .40 S&W models more reliably feed self defense rounds than the 9mm. I have read this several times. I only have experience with the .40's, (K40 & MK40).
    Is this generally true? Do you trust one caliber over the other for self defense?
    Different models and platforms tend to be more reliable than others. That being said to say the .40 is generally more reliable than 9mm in the same brand/ platform of pistol is nonsense. The 9mm's shape of bullet is more conducive to being more reliable than either .40 or .45 in my opinion and experience. The case is smaller and the projectile more pointed than either .40 or .45. I don't know where you read this(perhaps Kahr's?), but I call BS on this one. What platform in .40 do you propose is more reliable than lets say a Beretta 92FS/M9, Glock 17, Sig 226 in 9mm, or H&K USP in 9mm and is there any official data/or tests to back it up?

  4. #4
    Navybob is offline Junior Member
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    I was interested in everyone's opinion because I have read more posts on forums about reliablity issues with the Kahr 9mm's. I am planning to purchase a K9 very soon and possibly an MK9 as well. I just wanted your input. Thanks

  5. #5
    SouthernBoy's Avatar
    SouthernBoy is online now Senior Member
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    I have both of those Kahrs you mentioned and both have been flawless. Kahrs are a little more sensitive to ammo than are some other guns. And they are harder on the nose of the bullet as well. For example, if you load the Federal 9BP or 9BPLE, when you chamber a round remove that round and inspect the tip of the bullet. You'll notice that the opening to the hollow point is now slightly oval as opposed to round. This won't happen with the Winchester Ranger 115gr JHP +P+. However, Kahr does NOT recommend use of +P+ 9mm ammo in their guns.

    As for the .40S&W in the Kahr, one round I have found to be difficult to unload and remove when unloading my K40 Elite 98 is either the Federal HST 165gr. It shoots and chambers fine under fire. It's just when you remove the magazine and unchamber the round that you have a problem. The round seems to hang up in the slide.

    As for 9mm ammo, my 'K' series Kahr's have fed everything I have given them.

  6. #6
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    Took my dad shooting recently and he was experiencing feed issues with hi .40 Sig P250. I shot it and it was fine. After watching him, I saw that he was "limp wristing". At 75, his wrists aren't what they used to be. I had him shoot my P250 in 9mm, he had no feed issues at all. I've also seen a small female do the same thing with a Glock 23. My conclusion is the .40 cal round is less reliable due to the increased recoil over the 9mm.

  7. #7
    denner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Navybob View Post
    I was interested in everyone's opinion because I have read more posts on forums about reliablity issues with the Kahr 9mm's. I am planning to purchase a K9 very soon and possibly an MK9 as well. I just wanted your input. Thanks

    I understand, as you were referring to the Kahr's in 9mm in which I have no experience and can offer no input. This just may be the case with Kahr, but in other models and platforms 9mm is generally as reliable as the .40 or more so in my experience.

  8. #8
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    recoilguy is offline Senior Member
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    I own and shoot and carry a Kahr 9mm daily and almost exclusively. If it was not reliable I would not do that. I would get a different gun to carry.
    Kahr makes fine weapons and 9mm is their wheel house. Get good bullets and you will not have a reliablity problem. I can't say if bullet brand cause different results in a Kahr because I shoot 2 brands only or I shoot bullets I make. I make piles and piles of JHP bullets for practice and for competition. All feed flawlwssly and the SD bullet I choose do as well. Buying a Kahr is a great idea in my opinion, doing so in the 9mm is also a great idea as it is like I said where they have experiance and proven track record.

  9. #9
    Kennydale's Avatar
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    I am not into ammo wars. I just started shooting a year ago and i am 63 now. I shot a friends 9mm & his .40 (Both Ruger SR9 & his SR40C) I happened to just love shooting the .40S&W. If i get problems that come with age, i might then have to consider 9mm or work my way down to .38. right now i am happy with the .40

  10. #10
    SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Kahr's do have a few quirks about them. For one thing, they have very tight tolerances. This is why their owner's manuals suggest that you fire at least 200 rounds through their guns before considering them to be reliable. They are slim and somewhat small. This is both a benefit and a drawback. The benefit being better for concealment. The drawback being the lower round count. Kahr recommends that the preferred method of chambering a round is to release the slide on a loaded magazine. This means that you are not going to be in a position of re-chambering that round very much. Just the opposite of what you can do with a Glock. With Glocks, it is perfectly okay to "ride the slide" forward... not so with the Kahr.

    There are a few more quirks but all guns have their unique personalities. I have owned eleven Kahr's and currently own five. The ones I have are solid, well build pistols and make excellent carry guns, though one of them I will not carry. It's my T9 and it is just too pretty to carry and take the chance of getting it scarred up.

  11. #11
    AdamSmith is offline Banned
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    I suspect that anytime you are using hollow points there is a chance for a jam, more likely than if you are using FMJ's. But because hollow points transfer energy to your intended target much better, rather than continue to fly and do harm to an unintended target, hollow points are the ammo of choice, compared with FMJ.

    Just practice your tap and rack moves -- quickly and strongly tap the bottom of the magazine then rack the slide to clear the jam.

    As for whether a 40 is better suited for anything in particular than a 9mm -- this is only true if you are working in the highway patrol. The 40's are zippier pistols, and therefore shoot through cars better. If you're not in the business of shooting through cars, you should think about a 9mm or a 45 ACP instead. The collateral damage is less with a 9mm or a 45 ACP.

  12. #12
    SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdamSmith View Post
    I suspect that anytime you are using hollow points there is a chance for a jam, more likely than if you are using FMJ's. But because hollow points transfer energy to your intended target much better, rather than continue to fly and do harm to an unintended target, hollow points are the ammo of choice, compared with FMJ.

    Just practice your tap and rap moves -- quickly and strongly tap the bottom of the magazine then rap the slide to clear the jam.

    As for whether a 40 is better suited for anything in particular than a 9mm -- this is only true if you are working in the highway patrol. The 40's are zippier pistols, and therefore shoot through cars better. If you're not in the business of shooting through cars, you should think about a 9mm or a 45 ACP instead. The collateral damage is less with a 9mm or a 45 ACP.
    I think you mean "tap and rack".

    As for,

    "As for whether a 40 is better suited for anything in particular than a 9mm -- this is only true if you are working in the highway patrol. The 40's are zippier pistols, and therefore shoot through cars better."

    I have to disagree with this. Whether or not a given .40S&W bullet is going to shoot through a car is largely going to be a factor of the ammunition being used. Granted, the .40S&W generally produces more muzzle energy than the 9mm and is a fine caliber in the right configurations for self defense work. Is it better than a 9mm? That also depends upon the ammunition selected and that huge variable; the user. What is boils down to is preference and perception. Some people do better with a 9mm, some seem to make their .45ACP their chosen caliber, and some like what the .40 offers. Preference and perception.

  13. #13
    AdamSmith is offline Banned
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    Tap and rack, yes. It's still early in the morning here, and my typing is still cold.

    I believe however that the 40's, the 10mm's, the 38 specials, and the 357's show an undue risk of collateral damage.

    The 9mm's and the 45 ACP's are very close, and perfection is probably somewhere between them.

    In a revolver, the 44-lite works well also. And this is what Eastwood as an actor claimed to have loaded in his 44 S&W stage gun.

  14. #14
    SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdamSmith View Post
    Tap and rack, yes. It's still early in the morning here, and my typing is still cold.

    I believe however that the 40's, the 10mm's, the 38 specials, and the 357's show an undue risk of collateral damage.

    The 9mm's and the 45 ACP's are very close, and perfection is probably somewhere between them.

    In a revolver, the 44-lite works well also. And this is what Eastwood as an actor claimed to have loaded in his 44 S&W stage gun.
    I understand about the early morning thing. My biggest problem is typos. Can't seem to get them out of my posts at times.

    "I believe however that the 40's, the 10mm's, the 38 specials, and the 357's show an undue risk of collateral damage."
    That's an interesting array of calibers there. The .38 Special doesn't even belong in that list since it is, comparatively speaking, underpowered in light of the others. The .357 Magnum is one of the best fight stoppers devised. It's just not that popular anymore what with the huge popularity of semi-autos. The .40S&W and the 10mm are fine offerings though the 10mm has its drawbacks with some folks. Still, you can't fault that round for what it is.

    "In a revolver, the 44-lite works well also. And this is what Eastwood as an actor claimed to have loaded in his 44 S&W stage gun."
    Never heard of a "44-lite" though I would bet you're thinking of the .44 Special, which is a decent round. The load you're referring to from Clint Eastwood was mentioned in "Magnum Force" and he said a "light special", the inference being a light .44 Magnum load. However, script writers are not known for their firearms acuity. In other words, they usually don't know what they're talking about. And Eastwood is not exactly well versed in firearms use and proficiency either. Notice his grip in his early "Dirty Harry" movies. Pure Hollywood.

    Having owned three, and still own one, .44 Magnum revolvers and having handloaded thousands of rounds for it and for the .357 Magnum, I do know something about the cartridge. And I also loaded light loads and .44 Special loads for those .44's. Lot of difference between a .44 Special and a maximum load .44 Magnum. Hollywood has done more to make the general public firearms ignorant than just about anything else of which I can imagine. Gotta wonder how they come up with some of the stuff they portray.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdamSmith View Post
    Tap and rack, yes. It's still early in the morning here, and my typing is still cold.

    I believe however that the 40's, the 10mm's, the 38 specials, and the 357's show an undue risk of collateral damage.

    The 9mm's and the 45 ACP's are very close, and perfection is probably somewhere between them.

    In a revolver, the 44-lite works well also. And this is what Eastwood as an actor claimed to have loaded in his 44 S&W stage gun.
    If you think you can predict what a bullet will do, that's amazing .

  16. #16
    shaolin's Avatar
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    In my experience I have found that the 9mm to be a better round in the not jamming factor. My Glock 19 works better than my G23. I like the milder recoil and with today's bullets there is little advantage of a .40 over a 9mm. Some will swear that a self defense weapon needs to begin with a 4 but I find that not true. 38spl and 9mm have been working for the masses for a long time with a proven track record. Look up the history of the Gold dot 124 gr +p and 127 +p+ ranger and you'll see that a 91% manstopper with faster follow up will trump a single bigger bullet with heavy recoil. If bigger meant better then we should all carry a 454 for protection. Not to knock the .4 calibers they do have their place for people who can shoot them effectively. I personally like the 45acp but that's me but I carry a 9mm most of the time because having a gun is the most important rule. I leave the Glock 21sf at home because of it's size and carry a S&W 3913 because that's what works for me. Find what works for you and you'll be well protected. I am interested in upgrading but since my S&W has been flawless for me that is what I like and it only cost me $299 from CDNN. I have long been interested in a Kahr so when you get yours then please post how it functions for you.

  17. #17
    SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    To shaolin;

    If you're really interested in a Kahr, I suggest that you take a look at their K9 Elite '03. I have one and it is a great little all steel 9mm pistol. Superb DAO trigger (no second strike capability), great feel, and quite accurate. A strong and well made compact 9mm steel pistol. The only down side is that it is not a great choice for people with larger hands. If that is an issue, consider their T9. Only thing, like I said, the T9 is one pretty pistol and you almost hate to carry it for fear of getting it scratched up.

    http://www.kahr.com/Pistols/Kahr-K9-Elite.asp
    Kahr T9 - Style # KT9093, Kahr Arms Pistols

  18. #18
    desertman is offline Member
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    shoalin:
    "I have long been interested in a Kahr so when you get yours then please post how it functions for you."
    I've posted many times that the Kahr is my all time favorite. I have the MK 40 all stainless steel, the MK 9 is it's 9mm counterpart. I have yet to see any of them at gun shows or on dealers shelves, I had to order mine and it was well worth it. This is the one gun that I never leave home without, and have carried it every day since I bought it. It's small, slim and extremely well made although to some may be a little heavy for it's size. The recoil is not that bad for a .40 so I imagine a "nine" would be next to nothing. The "MK" series are the compact versions of the K9 and K40. The "M" designation is for "micro". The "Elite" models supposedly have a better finish than the standard models and cost more. I have the standard model MK 40 and the finish on it is the best I've ever seen on any stainless steel pistol so I can only imagine what the "Elite" models are like. I would have bought that version but none were available at the time, I sure was surprised when I picked it up and the finish far exceeded my expectations, no tool marks anywhere, just a nice smooth velvety satin finish. The MK and K series have a msrp of $855 and $932 for the "Elite" I paid around $800 for mine. The MK's and K's are single stack 5+1 for the .40 and 6+1 on the "nines" for the MK's and 6+1 and 7+1 respectively for the K's. I have had no issues with it so far, it is just one helluva nice pistol and if I could only have one this would be it. I would however stay away from their polymer counterparts I've heard that there have been issues with them.

  19. #19
    SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    To desertman et al;

    I have owned eleven Kahr's and still own five. The five I have are fine pieces and I wouldn't let them go. I bought two at one of my local gun shops and three at gun shows. I did have problems with four of the six I let go and I'm sure all were fixable, though one was shipped to Kahr under warranty and they failed to take care of that gun's problem.

    Kahr does not not recommend the use of +P+ ammo in their guns so be aware of this. They will handle +P just fine. Also, they do tend to be sensitive to some ammo. Best to stick with the proven loads with this brand. They make excellent concealed carry guns.

    The 'Elite' designation first appeared in the later 90's under the "Elite '98" monicker. The main differences were improved finishing, markings, and a shortened trigger pull length (from 1/2 inch to 3/8's inch). They also smoothed up the trigger as well. Before long, they incorporated this reduced pull length in all of their guns. My MK9 is an older version with the 1/2" trigger.

  20. #20
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