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  1. #1
    REDFISH is offline Junior Member
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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
    VAMarine's Avatar
    VAMarine is offline Administrator
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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's Avatar
    Leo
    Leo is offline Member
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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
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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
    T-55A5 is offline Junior Member
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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

  6. #6
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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
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
    Steve M1911A1 is offline Senior Member
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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
    tony pasley's Avatar
    tony pasley is offline Senior Member
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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
    denner's Avatar
    denner is offline Senior Member
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    It's all good, if new, i'd stick with VA's advice.

  10. #10
    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
    Russ is offline Banned
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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
    Jeremy55 is offline Junior Member
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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
    WI45 is offline Junior Member
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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
    Raymond's Avatar
    Raymond is offline Junior Member
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    .45 any day of the week and twice on Sunday

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

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

  17. #17
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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
    Highhawk1948's Avatar
    Highhawk1948 is offline Junior Member
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    America's not metric, go with the 45.

  19. #19
    paratrooper is offline Senior Member
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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
    sgms is offline Member
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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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