Stories of the Death of 40S&W are Greatly Exaggerated

40 ounces – wait – what?

To be honest, when the 40S&W came out in in 1990 I was under-whelmed. I felt that the flexibility of the 10mm was close to ideal and that the 40S&W would never catch on. I actually was a fan of Evan Whildin’s of Action Arms Limited (think Uzi) 41 Action Express. Ironically, the 41AE was designed to replicate the 41 Magnum which itself was designed as the “ideal” law enforcement cartridge (according to Bill Jordan et al)

But I was sure wrong about the 40S&W! At the time it seemed to fill in the middle-ground and resolve the great caliber debate: 9mm vs 45ACP, fast vs slow, single-stack vs double-stack mags, light vs heavy. It caught on quickly and like a wild fire among law enforcement and quickly became the dominant round. I can’t help but think that the fact that we were under the 1994 high capacity magazine ban limiting capacity helped fuel its popularity – at least in the civilian market.

Despite this, it would take me about a decade of a proven track record to warm up to it. Let’s face it – the older I got, the heavier that full size 45 felt.

 

What was once old is new again!

Enter 2014 and the FBI has re-adopted the 9mm (more on that in a minute) and it seems that the internet is a buzz with stories of how the 40 is either dead or dying. More recently I have even seen a trend of where very well-known firearms experts seem to go out of their way to discredit the 40S&W. Not that I necessarily disagree with their reasons or evaluations (there is a pro and con to everything), but I find the sudden upswing of anti-endorsements odd.

Just yesterday I saw a thread where a prominent competition shooter said that he (still) preferred the 40 to the shock of many on the internet. There was a bit of criticism and I was surprised to see him defending his choice and even qualifying it. Gosh folks—he can shoot whatever he likes. I will never understand why anyone cares what someone else uses.

Speaking of what is old is new – consider the possibility of another assault weapons ban. It is a common mantra of anti-gunners’ “common sense” legislation. If we were limited to 10 rounds in new pistols again worse (all firearms) would your opinion change? Think that it couldn’t happen? Tell me how it couldn’t happen for the decade that it did. It is only because of the NRA that there was a 10 year sunset. If not for that clause we would STILL be under its limit (end political rant).

 

Internet declares the 40 S&W in its last days

But I digress, why do I think that the stories of the 40’s death are exaggerated?

The biggest reason is that it still holds about 60% of the U.S. Law enforcement market.

That is huge – it means that there are more 40 S&W pistols in service than ALL other calibers COMBINED!

Incidentally, the most popular law enforcement pistol is the Glock 22. Glock civilian sales are completely different and the best seller in the U.S. is the model 19.

 

But the FBI just switched to 9mm so the 40 will die out!

Will it? I was wrong about the switch-over to 40 S&W but this time I am not seeing the massive shift to follow the FBI like we have in the past. Yes, I know that there are some, but not like before.

Seems like the FBI switches standard issue very frequently. From memory I can think of four changes: revolver to 9mm, to 10mm, to 40S&W and now back to the 9mm. I think that most departments would have a hard time justifying the cost of changing calibers so frequently, let alone BACK to one previously used. Today’s political environment is also, unfortunately, much more hostile to law enforcement. I feel that there may be a public backlash to “buying the police new guns.” There would definitely be accusations of funding waste.

 

Abandoned FBI rounds just don’t die

I also question the belief that a round will die out because the FBI no longer uses it. Historically this simply is not true. None of the rounds that the FBI used formerly have died out! The 38, 357 Magnum, 9mm, 10mm, 40S&W are definitely still popular. For literally YEARS people have been saying that the 10mm was dead. At worst, it is a boutique round even though there were new pistols from Glock this year (who already has a pretty good line of 10’s), one from SIG (who has never made one previously) and an expanded line from RIA. Not too bad if you ask me. The 40S&W is even more established than the 10mm ever was.

 

Going down the same road as 41AE and 41Mag?

In fact, of all the rounds discussed I think that the only one that I would say is dead is the 41AE. It was never adopted by any agency and only available from a few providers – in a conversion kit, Tanfoglios and the IMI Jericho. I think ammo only came from UZI/Samson. If you think that the 40 S&W has a bit of kick or is hard on guns the 41AE was worse. I sold my Browning HiPower conversion kit long before it disappeared.

The 41 Magnum has fared a little better – It was adopted limitedly and revolvers are still made. Ammo is still available but far from common place. This is truthfully probably what a lot of people think of (hope?) for the future of the 40 S&W. But, the fact that a very powerful REVOLVER round (significantly more powerful than the 10mm) intended for law enforcement but only adopted by a few agencies (2 or 3?) still exists today is pretty remarkable. Besides Rick (Walking Dead) how many agencies even issue any revolver as a duty sidearm? Maybe some Corrections and Reserves? I think the 40 and 41 Mag comparison is not 1-to-1, but it is noteworthy.

 

Which is better: 9, 40, 45, 50AE? Google!

The 9mm vs 40S&W vs 45ACP vs whatever debates have been hashed to death on the internet. Way too much time and bandwidth is wasted on justifying what the “best” round is. I am not going to engage in each caliber’s pros/cons – and every cartridge has BOTH. Google’g will result in a ridiculous amount of material.

 

Some arguments are just not worth participating/Google first!

I do feel that I have to point out a weird caliber argument that I saw yesterday. Someone called the 40S&W “Short & Weak” when compared to the 9mm. Now, when the 40S&W was introduced there were people who called it “Short & Weak” in comparison to its big brother 10mm but using the phrase in a justification of the 9mm over 40S&W is just wacky – check your cartridge dimensions first! I wish I had kept the link to that particular thread. On second thought, I am glad I didn’t.

 

My conclusion? Somebody buy me a Wilson (in any caliber)

Carry what you want. They all work…mostly (well, they are all still just pistol rounds). As for the experts – they are not wrong and I respect their opinions (heck, I just bought a Glock 43 as a backup/deep conceal!). I am unsure of the seeming animosity towards the 40 S&W and why there feels like an anti-40 campaign. They are people too and are entitled to their opinion and to buy what they like.

But, like most police departments, I am heavily invested in 40 equipment and ammo. So, my main carry will continue to be 40S&W. Not that I don’t think that there are plenty of other reasons to stick with the 40 (it works and I like the boom), but economics alone are a big reason that the 40 S&W won’t be going away any time soon.


Some reading material if your bored/interested:

History of FBI hand guns – http://www.americanrifleman.org/articles/2011/8/22/a-history-of-fbi-handguns/

The Forgotten M&P (41Magnum) – http://modernserviceweapons.com/?p=3176

Wikipedia entry for 41AE – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.41_Action_Express
(I wish I had kept some of the AAL promo material on it)

FBI Handgun Wounding Factor Effectiveness – http://gundata.org/images/fbi-handgun-ballistics.pdf
(I know it is a bit dated now, but it is worth reading)

Army opens up possibility of adopting non-9mm – http://kitup.military.com/2014/07/army-40-caliber-fbi-returns-9mm.html
(Not likely, but wouldn’t that be funny?)

 

Added Weatherby

Forms online and confirmed with them that Instructors are eligible.

 

CZ 2015 instructor forms now online

And available in the discounts section!

Beretta Instructor Discount Available and much expanded!

This is straight from the NRA Instructors’ Site, but it is worth duplicating here. For those that may have looked previously and only seen the Nano and Pico, they have added several variations of the 92FS and PX4 as well. Also added are ARX100 and A400 Xcel.

I have been on the edge of getting a 92FS myself, so this is a nice addition to their program.

LMT Wins Another Mil Contract

The New Zealand Ministry of Defense has selected LMT to supply their new rifles. Strangely, the article didn’t say with what. 

http://www.upi.com/Business_News/Security-Industry/2015/08/17/New-Zealand-military-chooses-US-firm-for-new-rifle/4741439836463/

In 2011 they had adopted the LMT AR10 as their DMR. The British Army had adopted their AR10 as their DMR also the year prior. 

Happy 4th of July! 

Updated: 07/14/2015

resized pic to fit. that is what happens when you post via smartphone.

Please remember those that have, and  are serving!

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

What’s all this about Australia as a role model?

Wow, lots of people are taking about the great gun control they have in Australia in the wake of the Charleston shooting. Most noteably even the President mentioned it. Zero shootings since 1996 they claim. I know very little about AUS so I looked into the country briefly. I like to start with demographics. After all, to make such bold statements like we should adopt their gun control model we must be very similar, right?

Land mass:
Australia 2.97 million miles
U.S. 3.8 million miles

Population
Australia 23.13 million
U.S. 318.9 million (population of CA alone is 38 million)

Largest city
Sydney 4.3 million
NYC 8.4 million

Almost 50% of its ENTIRE population is within the largest 3 cities!
It jumps to 60% if you count the largest 5 cities.

The largest 5 cities in the U.S. combined make about 19 million people about 6% of the total population.

Keep in mind that the U.S. and Australia are very similar in physical size. Maybe not a 1-on-1 good comparison?

See something about the demographics that might make AUS a little different than the U.S.? By the way, all these numbers come from internet Google and Wikipedia.

And speaking of Wikipedia…so there is the assertion that gun crime/mass shootings stopped in 1996 after the Port Author Massacre.
According to Wikipedia that is not true. There are at least two: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_massacres_in_Australia

That’s as far as I have got so far. I stopped reading at the point that their constitution had “implied rights” and that voting was one.

Anyway, just some thoughts…

Why a Federal Gun Owner License is NOT a compromise

So, at first glance being background checked and approved to purchase a firearm may seem ok to some. However, the proposal is being fingerprinted and background checked administered by local law enforcement who will then provide the information to a unspecified Federal agency and database.

hmm…Since all 50 States issue CCW licenses (in some format) wouldn’t you think that some sort of system ALREADY exists and that we should utilize that? Every CCW license holder that I know of has already had both fingerprints and background check done. This information/mechanism is redundant. Not to mention the wait and fees involved.

Additionally, what happens when you purchase a firearm at a dealer? A background check is done. The exact SAME background check that would be for the “gun owner license” and waiting period depending on your state.

Seem redundant? Yet, no one has talked about replacing or retiring the current system for this new one.

So, let me get this straight…
– Want to have a firearm? Get gun owners license: apply, fingerprints, background check, pay, wait
– Want to buy a firearm? Get gun owners license, background check, pay, wait if applicable to your state
– Want to carry a firearm? Get gun owners license, apply, fingerprints, background check, pay, wait

You see what they have done here? There is not even the premise of reducing crime, it is simply to discourage people from having firearms by increasing the wait times and increasing the process and government bureaucracy required to process it. Oh, and in addition to your home state having your information, now so does local law enforcement and the Federal Government in their own separate databases. That’s efficient.

Does that sound like a compromise???

How about this for a compromise:

I will support a “gun owner license” by going through a background, fingerprint, photo, paying, waiting, etc. *IF* that license is SHALL issue (meaning it will be approved there is a clear objective criteria) and it entitles to own, purchase, and carry a firearm without going through the whole process again in ALL 50 States.

That should be a reasonable compromise right? After all, wasn’t the real goal to make sure that people were qualified and legal to own firearms?

 

 

NV New Reciprocity List Now! And it’s disappointing

Updated: 06/18/2015

Well as of today the new list available (2nd link below). Arizona has been added but disappointingly neither Florida or Utah have.

Some folks had some questions about my last post and the passage of Nevada SB175. Mainly folks wondered about what states would be added especially those that had been removed recently: Florida, Utah and Arizona.

Unfortunately, I have no idea. What makes us hopeful is that a number of those states were removed since they were not as restrictive as Nevada:


Two states will be removed from the list of recognized states. They are Utah and Florida. It was determined that these states no longer met the two step test required by Nevada law. Utah’s permit process does not require live fire training that Nevada law requires and Florida changed its permit renewal time from five years to seven years before renewal. These issues were substantially different from Nevada’s law.

http://www.nvsca.com/documents/CCWRecognition2009.pdf

 

But the “at least as restrictive” requirement has been stricken:

Sec. 4.5. NRS 202.3689 is hereby amended to read as follows: 202.3689 1. On or before July 1 of each year, the Department shall: (a) [Examine the requirements for the] Determine whether each state requires a person to complete any training, class or program before the issuance of a permit to carry a concealed firearm in [each] that state . [and determine whether the requirements of each state are substantially similar to or more stringent than the requirements set forth in NRS 202.3653 to 202.369, inclusive.]

How that it is going to be determined and approved by the NV police associations remains to be seen. There is no residency requirement that I saw either, so I am hopeful.

The list may be done July 1, and hopefully be approved quickly if it has not been done already.

I am expecting that it will be published here: http://gsd.nv.gov/FeesForms/Brady/CCW-Permit-Recognition/
Notice that it was last published July 24 so it did take a few weeks to get the final list.

Knocking on wood!

Huge Bloomberg/Everytown DEFEAT: Nevada to add to CCW reciprocity and scraps Las Vegas ridiculous “notification/registration” law

SB 175 signed into law but you probably won’t hear about in mainstream media. We won’t have the new list until it is published July 1. 

I haven’t gone through the whole bill but it looks very hopeful:

Sec. 4. NRS 202.3688 is hereby amended to read as follows:
202.3688 1. Except as otherwise provided in subsection 2, a person who is at least 21 years of age and possesses a permit to carry a concealed firearm that was issued by [a] another state [included in the list prepared pursuant to NRS 202.3689] may carry a concealed firearm in this State in accordance with the requirements set forth in NRS 202.3653 to 202.369, inclusive.
2. A person who [possesses a permit to carry a concealed firearm that was issued by a state included in the list prepared pursuant to NRS 202.3689] meets the requirements of subsection 1 may not carry a concealed firearm in this State if the person:
(a) Becomes a resident of this State; and
(b) Has not been issued a permit from the sheriff of the county in which he or she resides within 60 days after becoming a resident of this State.

It is also the end of Las Vegas’ antiquated notification and city  registration law. 

You can read it here: https://www.leg.state.nv.us/Session/78th2015/Bills/SB/SB175.pdf