A customer traded in an old and battered Glock 22 Gen 2. All the finish is worn off the slide, the frame is hammered, the trigger wouldn’t reset. This pistol had certainly seen better days.
As a pistol to take in for trade… we probably shouldn’t have, because we can’t resell it. So I’m taking it so I can rebuild it.
I had stock trigger group components from my Glock 23 that dropped right in and fixed this old Gen2’s main problems. It’s a working gun again. Not the best of guns, but at least it’s functioning. Dirtpile ugly, but it’s going to be reliable. The slide is going to have to be refinished completely and the frame, I’m going to have to retexture to hide the wear and dings. I’m thinking about cutting the frame down to a G23 length, so I can use 23 and 22 magazines, making a Hybrid gun that a lot of custom Glocksmiths have done… allowing one to conceal well, yet still shoot well. Like what SIG did with the 1911 C3.
This is already a fun project.
I’ve had some discussions at the Gun Counter where I work, about the .40. Most of my Co-Workers are Die Hard .45 fans. And that’s fine. I’m a .45 fan myself. But the .40 is no slouch when comes to the Defensive Power Factor. The Defensive Power Factor gives some more insight into why I like the .40. Looking at the Winchester PDX1 loads to give a more even playing field… going heavy for caliber.
.40 PDX1 180 Grains at 968 FPS = DPF: 69.69.
.45 PDX1 230 Grains at 882 FPS = DPF: 91.2.
9mm PDX1 147 Grains at 954 FPS = DPF: 49.78.
Looking at the Defensive Power Factor, it shows the .45 is indeed the potent one. As we all knew. And the .40 falls in line where we thought. Now here’s the deal… the .45 advocates insist that the average defensive shooting is 2 rounds. 1.5 to be precise. So to them, the shorter round count is not a problem. Well, that’s not me. The US Army taught me to prepare for the worst, but hope for the best. So I’m going to pack more rounds when I have that option. I’m not planning on getting into a shooting. But I’m also not planning on firing twice and then stopping and then waiting to see what happens. I’m going to shoot to stop the threat. And that might mean giving them a whole magazine.
A typical .45 Mag with 8+1 rounds gives a .45 pistol a total DPF load of 820.8.
A typical .40 mag… Glock 22, 15+1, gives your .40 a total of 1115.04.
Typical 9mm Glock 17 magazine, 17+1 gives that 9mm a total of 896.04. That’s actually even better than the .45! I can see why the 9mm is popular with shooters… But even the vaunted “more shots in the magazine” argument kinda feels stale now.
These numbers paint a different picture in my mind. I am looking at these figures and I see that .40 is no longer just the Middle Man… but a jack of all trades, Multi-Role Fighter. This is one of the reasons the .40 enjoys so much popularity with Johnny Law. And with Ogres. You can keep your .45 Autos… and your 9mm’s. I’ll stick with my .40 calibers… thanks.
The Gun Community is starting to drift away from the .40. A lot of Trainers that I respect are moving away from the .40 to the 9mm. They can shoot faster with it. They have their reasons… Cost of ammo is higher than 9mm, it has more recoil than 9mm, and you can get more rounds in the same size magazine in 9mm. That’s all true. Sure. But I think some of them just like to wow students with Buzz Gun firing rates. Sure, you can shoot a 9mm really fast and look like Chris Costa doing it… but you are doing it with a smaller and weaker cartridge. The .40 has more recoil because you are putting out more punch.
In .40 I have a bullet that has a 27% increase in Diameter, heavier bullet weights. It performs more like a .45 than it does a 9mm, yet I get roughly double the capacity of a .45 in a pistol with the size and comfort in the hand of a 9mm grip frame. A .40 caliber will typically give up only 1 or 2 rounds from a 9mm. Yet we have about double the capacity from your typical .45 pistol. Considering that you are not really giving up any actual power from a .45, that’s a good trade.
The .40 is the cartridge of choice for a majority of Law Enforcement for a reason. Police, both Federal and Local tend to be picky about what they choose to carry and usually do a lot of testing. This is why they usually end up picking a .40. They don’t just adopt a cartridge because it’s popular. Let’s not forget that reason we have the .40 is from the unfortunate event with the 86 Miami Massacre. During that event, the 9mm failed to do it’s job. So did the .38 Special. The result was the FBI’s search for a better cartridge. This gave us the 10mm, which was fantastic, but too much for the Lawyers and Accountants of the FBI to handle. S&W then developed the .40… which is where we are now.
So I do like the .40 S&W cartridge, and will continue to use it. I don’t need to follow the typical path of going backwards. .45 to 9, back to .45, then back to 9mm… See this goes back to the Old West days… we all had .45’s. Then the Army went to the .38’s. After we fought the Moros, we had the Trials of 1905 where we decided we needed a .45 again… this the 1907 trials that lead to the 1911 adaptation which served just fine until the 80’s when we went with a 9mm again. I’m done with all that, and so is Law Enforcement… I’ll stick with .40 caliber.
Packing the S&W M&P 9mm today. I’ve been thinking about getting one in a .40, so to get a feel for it, I am packing my boy Kilo’s Swampy.
Everything good about the Glock is there in the M&P, but with a 1911 grip angle. It feels good in the hand and handles more intuitively than either a Glock or 1911 for me.
I would absolutely have to change the trigger. The stock Swampy trigger flat out sucks. It feels sloppy and rotten. But with a little work, it does just fine.
Still wish they did a mid sized gun, but I can live a full sized pistol.
You guys are of course well aware that I’ve been packing a 1911 a lot lately. Let’s clarify just what a lot lately is. About 3 days a week I’ve been packing my ATI 1911 Commander. I’m pleased with it. But the rest of the time, I’m packing my Glock 23. Still.
Reason being, there is no doubt or question about the Glock. It’s going to be there if I need it, and it’s going to do just what I need it to do. Simple as that. Also, it’s packing as much ammo in one mag as the 1911 packs in 2. That’s a bonus. Pretty much, the Glock 23 remains the perfect carry gun.