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On some other forums I've seen recent talk about how shooters are 'coming back' to 9mm. Seems to be lots of chatter about it's penetration, JHP expansion and generally better choice of bullets and loads. To go along with that, the pistols can be smaller with more manageable recoil. Has anyone else noticed this trend, or is it just me? I like my .45s, but my carry/pocket gun has always been 9mm.
 

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I agree with your perception and I think it's due to three things. First is cost. The recent increases in ammo prices has made the .40 and .45 almost prohibitive to shoot for a lot of guys. I'm an avid .40 fan, but I've adopted the habit of doing most of my practice shooting with the less expensive 9mm and finishing up with a smaller quantity of .40. Second, the improvements in loads have been pretty impressive in the past few years. Law enforcement doesn't seem to be quite as hostile to the 9mm as it was a few years ago because if this. Third, the 9mm is a lot easier to handle in a polymer-frame pistol than the .40, and the plastic guns are clearly (and sadly to me) the wave of the future. So, yes, I think you're right.

JayPee
 

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My take on this?

First, there is a significant bias in the US in favor of things .45 ACP. That must be remembered because it sets the stage so to speak for everything else. How many times have you heard, 'I don't care what calibre it is as long as it begins with a four.'?

It is appropriate to mention here that SAAMI spec 9mm ammo is generally weaker than European 9mm ammo.

Second, the FBI Miami shootout and its subsequent 'stopping power' ammo testing also created an undeserved negative perception - at least within the law enforcement community, towards 9mm. (I won't bother going into the motives behind the exercise.) Remember too that the FBI originally purchased S&W 10mms, but the guns didn't hold up to the use and abuse, nor were they 'shooter friendly' or a good grip fit for most females and smaller statured males.

The .40 S&W was basically created to put a 10mm bullet into a 9mm length case which made the guns more 'gripable' while up-grading (marginally) the ballistics.

Coincidentally, the introduction of the .40 was shortly followed by the Brady Bill that limited magazines for civilian use to 10 rounds. The 10 rd capacity limit negatively affected sales of 9mm guns which offered an advantage of more rounds in the same size 'package' (grip).

Now for reality and logic, which in the end always seems to surface.

The 9mm performs. It has for decades. Otherwise, it would no longer be in use by countries that have put it to the test of armed conflict. Canada comes to mind. Canada has used 9mm Inglis pistols in WWII, Korea, numerous peacekeeping missions around the globe, and now in Afghanistan. They are rumoured to be considering changing platforms (& have done in the past), but not calibre. One might point out that Canada went to the 9mm Inglis because the .38-200 Enfield revolvers they were using in early WWII weren't up to the task.

Now for the law enforcement community. Yes, many agencies did drop the 9mm for .40s, .357 SIGs, and even the .45. Most of those agencies will keep them, no worries. However, there are as many if not more that stayed with 9mm for any of a number of reasons. They found that their guns with good ammo do just as good as the 'big boy' calibres with equally good ammo.

With the passage of time, more 'information from the field' is available, and people are noticing. With that too, the manufacturers are benefiting from a better understanding of how a bullet performs, why does and why it doesn't, and are cranking out better bullets.
 

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Hello,

I might also add that there have been tremedous jumps in bullet technology and propellant developement over the past decade or so that has largely leveled the field in terms of ammunition performance of today.

Chris
 

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I certainly like my 45s too but I notice that the most commonly carried gun is the Walther PPS in 9mm. I note with some interest that other than the 125 grain loadings of the 357 Mag, the 9mm in +P+ loadings in 115 and 127 have excellent statistics in the Marshall and Sanow studies. But, then again, I do not feel badly armed with a 38 SPL +P either. Placement, placement, placement. I do think the 9mm is significantly easier to shoot than the 45 ACP. If I were a chief, I would think the 9 to be a better general issue weapon than the 357 SIG or the 40 S&W. Still I would authorize 45s.
 

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I agree that ammo cost probably has a lot to do with it.

I had not been in the local gun shops much lately, but stopped in the regular shop recently.
I didn't notice until the owner said something, but he had more AR15s on the rack than I've seen there in years. They aren't moving...at least there.
That surprised me.
I would have thought that enough people would be panic buying in lieu of the coming elections to keep them flying off the shelves.

But he said that people weren't buying because of rising ammo costs. Since they can't buy a case of ammo for $200, they are hesitant.

If that's the case, I guess ammo costs are affecting more than I thought.
And you can buy a lot more 9mm than .45 with the same amount of money.
 

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Barry,

Not to digress, but hitting below the belt, namely in the wallet, is one of the latest tactics for anti-gun politicians. That is why left leaning, and in the case of one - left coast, states have proposed significant 'user' or 'healthcare' taxes on ammunition - literally something like $0.10 per bullet. Raise the cost of ammo enough and...
 

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Yes, if I had any doubts about how effective those taxes might be, I got an education on that gunshop visit...assuming that's the reason for slow sales (and I thnk it is).
Even "just a little tax" would make an impact.
 
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