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  1. #1
    abngriz95's Avatar
    abngriz95 is offline Junior Member
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    New to Recreational Handgunning

    I am new to this forum and new to recreational hand gunning (actually haven't started yet as I am shopping for the right gun). I am in the military and shoot handguns every now and then but have really become interested in purchasing my own and shooting recreationally and may be some day competitively (who knows). I have been researching the XDm series and really like the looks, the functionality and the design. I am not sure which caliber I want but looking at either 9mm or .40. Can you guys help me out with the possible pros and cons of the two calibers as a beginning gun?

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  3. #2
    TedDeBearFrmHell's Avatar
    TedDeBearFrmHell is offline Senior Member
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    welcome to the forum from southern oregon

  4. #3
    VAMarine's Avatar
    VAMarine is offline Administrator
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    From a similar thread: First pistol purchase .40?

    Quote Originally Posted by VAMarine View Post
    Many will disagree, but I would suggest getting a 9mm over the .40. I've seen many a new shooter get a .40 (and no instruction) end up developing horrible flinching issues. Get the 9mm, get some training, doesn't have to be ninja academy stuff, but a local class at the range etc. is a good start. All your major service calibers (9mm, .40, .45 etc.) perform pretty darn close to one another when using modern jacked hollow points of reputable manufacture.

  5. #4
    ponzer04's Avatar
    ponzer04 is offline Member
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    Hi there,

    As a beginning pistol 9vs40. In my opinion as long as you practice good fundamentals you should be fine with either caliber. This could be a deciding factor 19+1 for the 9mm and 16+1 for the 40cal.

    If possible find a range that rents pistols and try both out and go off that feeling

  6. #5
    prof_fate is offline Member
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    I know this is an older thread, but having just gone through this task this is what I found.

    First, decide what you want to use the pistol for - carry, competition (if so which one), home defense, etc.
    My primary use is competition...local and fun. Get me out of the house and around like minded folks, it's something the family can do (i have an 11 year old son that shoots BB guns, I have several 22s also).

    Locally there is IDPA and combat (perhaps peculiar to this area) and if I drive in a 30 mile radius other options exist as well. I would love a 1911 in 45acp, but they're not cheap - IMO they're overpriced by about $300 - the difference between any 1911 and a similar 45 acp by the same company, any company.
    Since I want adjustable sights and a long barrel that ups the price but it does limit the choice a good bit. But it still leave the caliber debate wide open.
    I did a good bit of reading and have found that 45 is the most popular caliber for top shooters, and perhaps the most accurate, but that might be skewed by whose shooting it or that there are alot more 45's out there that are 'accurized', so to speak.
    40 seemed to be the lease accurate and 9 in the middle. But I'm sure those results are debatable and probably vary more by gun than by caliber. Heck, most tests in magazines will show various ammos and you'll see some do 1.2" groups and another ammo do double that, or worse. So you could buy the most accurate handgun made and screw it up with the ammo you use.

    If you dont' shoot much ammo price isn't probably that important, but if i shoot a season of local combat and never practice that's 1200 rounds. Now price per round makes a difference and 9 is the cheapest. It also will likely have the least recoil so that should aid accuracy, or at least reduce my fatigue a bit, and make it easier for wife and son to shoot (if I can talk them into competing).

    Just read a blog on stopping power, where the guy collected data over 10 years about shootings and collated it all by caliber, where the guy got shot, how many shots till he stopped, how many perps didn't stop at all, etc. There wasn't all that much difference - a 357 came out better than a 22, but not by a whole lot - based on accuracy, total shots till the perp stopped, fatal shots, etc. The mouse calibers lost on one thing-while most still stopped after one shot if you kept shooting and shooting the 22 was the least effective on those that jsut wouldn't take a bullet as a definite NO! About 50% of all perps stopped with the first shot, regardless of caliber - he called is a psychological stop - the perp didn't want to get shot again. If someone pulled a gun on you would you stop or not, or would you decide based on what kind of gun he was holding? I bet the gun size, caliber, age - it won't matter, you'll stop cause you don't want to be shot.

    I read a report that in NYC the average police shooting involved 4 rounds, total. So a magazine of 16 or 19 probably won't matter a whole lot, and almost all competitions limit you to loading 6 rounds then force you to reload as part of the challenge.

    So 9 is plenty powerful enough to deter an enemy and cheapest to shoot a lot. My manhood is destroyed by not going with a 40 or 45, but I'll survive I suppose.

  7. #6
    VAMarine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prof_fate View Post

    Just read a blog on stopping power, where the guy collected data over 10 years about shootings and collated it all by caliber, where the guy got shot, how many shots till he stopped, how many perps didn't stop at all, etc. There wasn't all that much difference - a 357 came out better than a 22, but not by a whole lot - based on accuracy, total shots till the perp stopped, fatal shots, etc. The mouse calibers lost on one thing- most perps didn't quit no matter how many times they were shot. And most stopped with 1 shot, regardless of caliber - he called is a psychological stop - the perp didn't want to get shot again. If someone pulled a gun on you would you stop or not, or would you decide based on what kind of gun he was holding? I bet the gun size, caliber, age - it won't matter, you'll stop cause you don't want to be shot.
    .
    If you look at that article again, look at the FAILURE rate of the .22, it portrays it in a whole different light than a causal glance at the success rate of the .22

  8. #7
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    chessail77 is offline Senior Member
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    Hi and welcome
    Some of your striker fired polymer pistols don't handle the .40 recoil well and when beginning shooters are learning they do develop flinching issues when anticipating the recoil...if you decide on a .40 take some extra time and see if your choice has an available conversion barrel in 9mm and you will have that caliber as well as the .40. The 9mm is softer recoil and cheaper to shoot than the .40.....before you make a final decision you might try to find a range that rents them and see it in action, might try some others as well like the S&W M&P..........JJ

  9. #8
    prof_fate is offline Member
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    I did see that - all the mouse rounds were poor at making an absolute stop, that's their weakness. Otherwise I was very surprised by the results. I, and I"m sure many others, see the 45 (or 44 mag) as the 'manstopper' and a 9 or 38 as weak by comparison, but apparently not.

    I don't feel so bad about getting an XDm in 9 rather than 45 now.

    I was kind of surprised by how much more lethal rifles were - like 60-70% vs 25-30% for pistols.

    For better or worse there is no data on what bullets were used and their effect or what effect any barriers may have (walls, glass, cars, heavy coats) in reducing effectiveness or stopping an errant round from killing your neighbors.

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