.40 or .45? Which one to choose

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    1. #1
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      .40 or .45? Which one to choose

      I an researching .40 and .45 cal guns to buy for defensive(ccw) and range shooting. I have had lots of advice but it all conflicts. heard the .45s have better recoil than the .40 cals. looking at
      kahr sig ruger hk colt bersa glock and on and on. some one gimme a suggestion! thanks from the most dangerous city in the USA, St Louis

    2. #2
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      As you're posting this in the "New to handguns" area, I would assume that you are in fact, new to handguns. If such is true, I would strongly recommend the 9mm over either the .45 or .40S&W as far as "fist" handguns go in terms of center-fire pistols.

      The 9mm typically has less felt recoil than either and costs less.

      A lot of people that start with .40s and either A: Don't shoot enough. B: Don't seek out competent instruction. Or C: A&B end up developing very bad flinching issues with the .40 and when they move to something else, that flinch stays.

      This is something I've been saying for years and I was quite happy to see a genuine professional state the same. As well as several other instructors I know of from various shooting backgrounds. Most of the professional instructors I know recommend the 9mm.

      Now, as far as your two choices are concerned, I would opt for the .45.

      But it really depends on what exact guns you're talking about. There are some guns I would prefer in .40, and others I would prefer in .45ACP.


      Kahr - .40, preferably a K40
      Sig - .45 in the P220 variants
      Ruger - .45ACP in the SR1911
      HK - .45 in the HK45 or 45C
      Bersa - would have to go with a 9mm
      Glock - .45 via the Glock 30SF
      Colt - .45 (good luck trying to find a .40, they're out there but not easy to find)



      I'd take a look at any "mid-size" 9mm.

      Smith & Wesson M&P
      Springfield XD/XDM
      Glock 19
      Sig 228/229
      HKP30, P2000, USPC
      CZ

      Try and find a range that has rentals, shoot a couple of models, find out what you like and don't like, then start looking at holster selection. Beware comments that include "Choose what feels best in your hand" or "I carry _____"


      Just be an informed consumer, do your research including hands on, live fire testing of makes/models and stick the the major brands and you should be OK.

    3. #3
      Leo
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      Recoil is subjective, some people are more sensitive to recoil than the others. I suggest you rent some guns in each caliber at the local range to see which caliber you like best. I agree the 9mm is a good choice for beginners. I'm a .45 guy, btw.

    4. #4
      Member Hurryin' Hoosier's Avatar
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      I agree. Try out a 9MM (actually 9MM Luger/9MM Parabellum). Don't limit yourself to .45 or .40.

    5. #5
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      When it comes to recoil my Glock 30 .45 is just above a 9mm and it's accurate, plus it holds 10+1 rds

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      Member Hurryin' Hoosier's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by T-55A5 View Post
      When it comes to recoil my Glock 30 .45 is just above a 9mm and it's accurate, plus it holds 10+1 rds
      Well, my commercial M9 holds 15+1 rounds. Plus it's a Beretta, so it's purdier. So, nah-nah-nah-nah-boo-boo!

    7. #7
      Senior Member Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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      The .45 recoils with less "jab," but only when fired from a full-size, full-weight pistol.
      The .40 is usually found in the ranks of plastic "Combat Tupperware," which are somewhat lighter and therefore less moderate of recoil.

      However, I have been told that Glocks seem to have an amount of built-in flexibility, and that, too, moderates recoil.

    8. #8
      Senior Member tony pasley's Avatar
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      Find a range that rents pistols. Shoot as many different types and calibers as possible. That way you get to KNOW which one you can shoot the best and are more likely to practice with. There are many on here with vast experence and not a single one can say which you will be most comfortable with. Spend the money to try out and learn what will work for you. Also if you are new to handguns you can get a basic pistol course while learning what pistol you like.

    9. #9
      Senior Member denner's Avatar
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      It's all good, if new, i'd stick with VA's advice.

    10. #10
      Member usmcj's Avatar
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      Get some training. Proper stance, grip, sight alignment, and trigger squeeze will enable you to shoot virtually any caliber. Shorter barrels, and lighter weights will result in more perceived recoil. Quite often, many shooters feel that the 9mm, and the .40 cal, generate more recoil than a 1911, simply due to the respective design, and physical attributes of a given gun.

    11. #11
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      Quote Originally Posted by REDFISH View Post
      I an researching .40 and .45 cal guns to buy for defensive(ccw) and range shooting. I have had lots of advice but it all conflicts. heard the .45s have better recoil than the .40 cals. looking at
      kahr sig ruger hk colt bersa glock and on and on. some one gimme a suggestion! thanks from the most dangerous city in the USA, St Louis
      Redfish:

      It is important to practice and that is why I decided on a Beretta Nano 9mm for ccw. The ammo is less than 380, 40 or 45 by a long shot and the Speer 124 grain Gold Dot +P JHP Short barrel for packing will more than do the job against any size human threat wearing multiple layers of clothing.

      Check out youtube for 9mm Gold Dot 124 grain +P if you still have reservations going 9mm for ccw. The ammo I am carrying is used by several law enforcement agencies for good reason. Speer Gold Dot 124 Grain JHP +P Short Barrel based on what I have researched is tops for 9mm personal protection ammo.

      I don't want to sound morbid but last week there was a home invasion in my state and the intruder was dropped in his tracks dead with one shot to the chest by the male owner of the home with a 9mm. Shot placement is everything and practice is key for good placement and 9mm is the cheapest round making range trips not so painful to the wallet.

      Russ

      P.S. A 9mm will have less recoil than a 40 or 45 from a pocket size gun making followup shots more manageable.

    12. #12
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      I suggest you rent some guns in each caliber at the local range to see which caliber you like best. I agree the 9mm is a good choice for beginners.

    13. #13
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      something no one else asked, do you have any experience with handguns, like hunting or target shooting, and how is your grip, large, medium or small. if you've carried a 44 magnum in the field or go target shooting with a 22 maybe you have more experience than you have let on. also, if you have larger hands, a springfield xd or glock will be comfortable, if you have small hands, kahr has some easy to grip single stack

    14. #14
      Junior Member Raymond's Avatar
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      .45 any day of the week and twice on Sunday

    15. #15
      Supporting Member - Legally Armed Scooter Trash scooter's Avatar
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      Just to his original question .45 is my first choice.

    16. #16
      Senior Member Charlie's Avatar
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      .45 and Welcome to the forum!

    17. #17
      Member Gunners_Mate's Avatar
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      why make a decision? go shoot each at a range or two, and go from what you feel, or, if you can swing it, buy both. it what I did, :P

    18. #18
      Junior Member Highhawk1948's Avatar
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      America's not metric, go with the 45.

    19. #19
      Senior Member paratrooper's Avatar
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      I have a .40 and three or four .45's.

      Tough call!

      Do as some have suggested. Go to a gunshop with a range and shoot both.

    20. #20
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      Whole lot of good advice already been given so I will limit my say to, I prefer to carry the 45.

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