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Thread: 40S&W or 45ACP in CCW?

  1. #1
    Member AKMarmot's Avatar
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    Default 40S&W or 45ACP in CCW?

    I've been looking for awhile for a nice little CCW/pocket pistol & am giving serious consideration to the Kahr CW series. I would really like to hear if someone has one or possibly see one at the range.
    Now my question is on the caliber. My theory is the 45ACP would recoil back more & the 40s&w would snap up more. Thus if a follow up shot was needed it would actually be easier out of the 45. I've had a few shops agree with this & a couple gun nut friends disagree saying there shouldn't be any difference. Of course there is a wide spread difference in opinions on the calibers themself & weather a 45 would provide any real advantage over the 40 "in the intended purpose" of the gun. Which like I say is just a little conceled carry pistol, where I wouldnt' want to lug around a full size.
    Anybody here care to offer thier knowlege?

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    Do some research on the web for the Kahr 40. The 40's seem to have a few more problems because the recoil is a little more harsh than the 9 or 45 for that matter. I enjoy shooting a 45 much more than a 40....the recoil is an easier push than a snap at least IMHO. The 40 might be a scoch lighter for carry, but in Kahr's your already fairly light anyway. I was looking at them a couple of months ago and went with a Kimber Ultracarry II because I just prefer a 1911 and single action trigger. The Kahr would have been about 6 ozs lighter than my Kimber and a little smaller dimensionally. If you get one, let us know how you like it. I have been thinking about the 9mm as an alternate to my Kimber.

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    I think another issue to consider besides recoil is shot capacity. A magazine full of .45 usually won't hold as many as one in .40. I'd rather carry fewer rounds that hit harder, myself.
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  4. #4

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    The plastic framed Kahrs seem to have more feeding problems than the steel framed ones. I have a K40 and it has never failed...also much more comfortable to shoot than the P models.

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    I mainly want to defend the Kahrs or maybe just put in a good word for them. I have had several of the steel guns and never had a feeding problem with any of the 9's or 40's. Haven't seen a 45. I have no experience with the plastic guns nor would I consider one to carry, the steel guns are so good and don't need to be lighter. I would say that in guns of the same weight, recoil, regardless of how you describe it, will be more in the 45 than the forty. Expecially if we use some of the hot stuff from the likes of Corbon, Triton, or the like. Generally the 40 is in a smaller package anyway. If you can shoot it you won't have a problem with either. If you consider the forty and forty five equal in recoil, why on earth would you consider a forty. Just buy the real show stopper, the 45 ACP, and get on with the mission. The real deal ammo is 230's at 920 fps from the 4 1/4" guns and if you think the forty feels the same, you ain't been hit with with a forty five.
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  6. #6

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    I cant speak to Kahrs, but I have a Baby Eagle in .40 S&W and it's a sweet shooting gun. Have had no problems with it. As far as .40 vs .45, never shot a .45. The .45 has a little more wallop....but, the .40 has a pretty good wallop if you're talking defense against two legged critters and more rounds. My two cents.

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    Member stevelyn's Avatar
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    With modern defensive ammunition, caliber is pretty much a moot issue.

    I carry a .40 S&W on and off duty everyday and I've never lost a wink of sleep over whether it's as good as a .45.

    Given you are carrying a compact pistol, I'd opt for the larger ammo capacity the .40 affords.
    Now what ?

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    I live in Miami, Florida my CCW is a XD45 I work sixty miles from home and commute using the rail system, I do not have to worry about bears just crack heads, junkies, armed robbers and home invasions the 13 plus one load gives me a nice warm feeling. I shoot IDPA every weekend and three gun matches on Tuesday night; 40 or 45 are good, but only as good as your proficiency with that weapon I burn up at least 1000 round a month some times more plus countless hours of dry fire exercise itís al about marksmanship and awareness of your surroundings. I canít wait for the day I can move to Alaska; this is Dodge City or the Bagdad of the south as the locals call it.

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    Moderator hunt_ak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    I would say that in guns of the same weight, recoil, regardless of how you describe it, will be more in the 45 than the forty....
    Mass x Velocity always equals Mass x Velocity!!

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by hunt_ak View Post
    Mass x Velocity always equals Mass x Velocity!!
    But the 45 makes a bigger wound channel.

    pi x r^2 x L

    (I wanted to type a formula too)

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    45 ACP with out a dought IMHO

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKMarmot View Post
    I've been looking for awhile for a nice little CCW/pocket pistol & am giving serious consideration to the Kahr CW series. I would really like to hear if someone has one or possibly see one at the range.
    Now my question is on the caliber. My theory is the 45ACP would recoil back more & the 40s&w would snap up more. Thus if a follow up shot was needed it would actually be easier out of the 45. I've had a few shops agree with this & a couple gun nut friends disagree saying there shouldn't be any difference. Of course there is a wide spread difference in opinions on the calibers themself & weather a 45 would provide any real advantage over the 40 "in the intended purpose" of the gun. Which like I say is just a little conceled carry pistol, where I wouldnt' want to lug around a full size.
    Anybody here care to offer thier knowlege?

    I bought my wife the Kahr CW in a 9mm. She was a gun hater but soon converted after a few sessions at the range. She handles that gun quite well.

    I carry a HK USP Compact 40S&W at work, I shoots well. My CCW gun is a Sig 239SAS in a 40S&W. The Sig is a real sweet shooting hand gun. Much less muzzle flip than the H&K and better groups with the same ammo.

    As far as the 40S&W versus 45ACP goes I would take a 40S&W any day. Just a quick run down on the retail ammo that's available in standard loads:

    45ACP 200gr 825fps, 325ft-lbs @ 50yrds
    45ACP 230gr 818fps, 342ft-lbs @ 50yrds

    40S&W 155gr 1061fps, 388ft-lbs @50yrds
    40S&W 165gr 1052fps, 402ft-lbs @50yrds
    40S&W 180gr 903fps, 326ft-lbs @ 50yrds

    Anyone that prefers the 45ACP will swear by them and thats fine, it's a great gun. But to say that it has more power, not necessarily so.

    The 40 has plenty of knock down and deep penetration. If you like the smaller frame and compact design of the 40 and need more bang consider the 10mm. In a 200gr bullet you can get 994fps, 440ft-lbs.

    Just my .02 worth...
    Last edited by marshall; 04-30-2008 at 00:20. Reason: typo

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