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  1. #1

    Default Best .40 cal Pistol

    I'm looking to buy a new semi auto pistol in the .40 cal range. Preferably nothing over 5", reliable, easy to clean/maintain and relatively accurate @ 25 yards. My hands are pretty wide too. Looking for a starting point. Any suggestions?

  2. #2
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    Glock 23 gets my vote. I can pop an 8" steel plate at 50 yards all day long with mine.

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    The one that feels best in your hand, and shoots the best for YOU. Nothing else comes close, whatever that may be. If two perform equally, then the one with the best value and reputation.

    I say go try every one you can find, and make your own mind up, rather than listen to a $$ssing contest where everyone gives their own favorite and you are as confused as when you started.

  4. #4

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    I know what feels right to me is ultimately going to be the best. I don't mind the so called urinating contest, but if someone posts a suggestion I'd like to know why. I don't shoot handguns all too often, so I'm just looking for a jumping off point with a couple solid suggestions. Let the p!$$ing commence.

  5. #5
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    In that case I will say that the 1911 and CZ based designs tend to feel best and shoot best for me in both steel and polymer frames. this includes both CZs and EAA Witnesses. I have had a .45 polymer compact witness for 10 years and it has performed flawlessly. In a compact concealed carry I might strongly look into a Rami or a SP01 CZ.

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    Do not worry about grip comfort, that's secondary. If you like a heavier gun, go with a Sig P239. If you like a lighter weight gun then go with the Glock 23.

    The most important thing is accuracy, and both the Sig and the Glock are very accurate shooters. You can't go wrong either way. And as a bonus these two are also excellent CCW guns.
    Was a soldier, very young, and they turned me into an old man. Sometimes in the early morning, before the sun is up, I think of fallen brothers, first with smiles...then with tears.

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    When you say 5" I assume you mean barrel length. I have a kahr CW 40, a Beretta model 96 40 cal and a Sig PRO 40 cal. All fine pistols. the Sig is ugly but reliable, the Kahr is nice looking and reliable but short on range and capacity (it's a carry gun) the Beretta is really accurate and reliable so far. the swept back grip design of the Glock and the new S&Ws do not agree with my hands but they both have quite a following. There you go, the answer you are going to get is no answer .
    Oldgoat46
    " In Biblical times Samson slew 40,000 Philistines with the jawbone of an ass. Everyday an equal number of sales are killed by the use of the same weapon."

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sailor View Post
    Do not worry about grip comfort, that's secondary. If you like a heavier gun, go with a Sig P239. If you like a lighter weight gun then go with the Glock 23.

    The most important thing is accuracy, and both the Sig and the Glock are very accurate shooters. You can't go wrong either way. And as a bonus these two are also excellent CCW guns.
    I have found few people are going to shoot any firearm enough to become proficient with it unless it is comfortable for them to shoot. If they do not shoot enough, the gun can shoot like a laser and it does not matter they will not hit anything with it. Therefore, grip comfort is not a non-issue, it is a very important issue, at least to people I have met.

    Almost any quality handgun from a reputable (Sig, Colt, Ruger, S&W, CZ, and too many to mention), quality manufacturer will shoot, and shoot well if you practice enough with it to shoot ot its level. Most will outshoot the majority of people who buy them. Occasionally a specific example might need tweeking, any product can fail QC. But for the most part most quality handguns have little to choose between them. Other than action style, striker, SA, DA, DA only etc etc, the greatest difference is normally ergonomics. Shoot what fits best in your hand, and what you will practice with, and then do so. Nothing else matters, except of course that it IS a quality firearm from a reputable manufacturer.
    Last edited by S.L.Dickinson; 11-29-2010 at 06:56 PM.

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    short_........... you have some good advice from the above. i now carry a Glock 22, used to hate plastic. i'm old school. the thing just shoots. i also have a CZ40P that feels and shoots great, but it's just too purdy and rare, it's a safe queen. but like the above advice, the EAA's are basically the same and would probably be a great choice. i had a beretta 40, but in a dumb moment, traded it. i love beretta's, but they are large. i have big hands, would wear a 12+ ring on my little finger, the glock feels great to me. when you load them up with 15 to 18 rounds, they get heavy, so i'd recommend something plastic.
    " Dude with a pencil is worse than a cat with a machinegun"... Bo Diddley

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    I have owned both a H&K P2000 v3 and a FNP40. The H&K had a weird (for me) magazine release, the FNP40 was the most comfortable and had all my required features 1. hammer not striker fired 2. double action, 3. stainless steel, 4. button magazine release. I personally do not like striker fired weapons because "I" do not trust something cocked and not see it cocked. Let's not start a war on this I know people like Glocks. My first handgun every; 35 years ago was and still is a High Power p35 mark 1 .I got the FNP40 for obvious reasons. JMHO
    "Si Vis Pacem Parabellum"

    NRA Life Member since 1978

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    The advice to try a lot and find what fits your hand is spot on. Test fit, and, even better, test fire as many types as you can. The best results will be gained by starting with a weapon that fits properly. Check for both feel and instinctive point. For point, try this: at the gun shop or show, take a normal grip with the pistol lowered in front of you, pick a spot on the wall, close your eyes, bring the pistol up to normal shooting position and open your eyes. You should find that the pistol is in or slightly below your sight line, and the sights are pretty well lined up with the target spot on the wall. If you have to adjust the position of the pistol much to bring the sights on target, it does not fit. Try something else.

    Having found a shape you like, check into technical issues. Does the design and maker have a good reputation for quality, reliability, accuracy and product support? Are magazines, spare parts, optional grips and sights readily available?

    For designs you might want to try: I'm a big fan of 1911 and CZ-75 pattern designs. Most name brand 1911 makers do .40 versions. Para Ordnance is notable for making a double row version of larger capacity. EAA Witness .40s are widely available at a good price. They are CZ frames finished by Tanfoglio in Italy. I carry a 10mm Witness Steel service pistol. It's reliable and comfortable to fire in 10mm, should stand up to the .40 with no problems. There are several other companies that make CZ derivatives.

    For striker fired pistols, the Ruger SR40 is worth a look. I've fired the SR9 fairly extensively, good accuracy, reliability and ergonomics.

    Robert

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    "...test fire as many types as you can..." [Pope 130]

    The best advice. This is key. If you have a gun shop nearby like the Firing Line in Westland, you can shoot them all in the indoor range. I've bought guns that felt great in the hand, but were a chore to shoot accurately. Its the natural shooter you want. The one that shoots well for you...one day it may save your life.
    Was a soldier, very young, and they turned me into an old man. Sometimes in the early morning, before the sun is up, I think of fallen brothers, first with smiles...then with tears.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sailor View Post
    Do not worry about grip comfort, that's secondary. If you like a heavier gun, go with a Sig P239. If you like a lighter weight gun then go with the Glock 23.

    The most important thing is accuracy, and both the Sig and the Glock are very accurate shooters. You can't go wrong either way. And as a bonus these two are also excellent CCW guns.
    Grip comfort is most definitely NOT secondary! If you are not comfortable when handling the weapon you will never shoot well with it.

    I prefer revolvers and consider myself a S&W guy, but when I decided to invest in a semi-auto I went with the .40 cal Glock model 22 over the S&W M&P. The reason was because the European style of the Glock grips felt much more comfortable in my hand.

    I'm not going to argue which gun is better, but for me the Glock is more comfortable to hold and shoot. For someone else the M&P might be more comfortable. Both guns are probably equal in quality.

    Mike

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    S&W M&P is my favorite but the new Ruger SR-40 is a close runner up. Both leave the various Glock .40s in the dust when it come to ergonomics.
    "For no one - no one in this world can you trust. Not men, not women, not beasts.
    [Points to sword] But this....this you can trust!"

    Conan the Barbarian, 1982

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    I think the advice to find what is best for you is good advice. That said the Glock 23 just never worked for me despite the fact that I tried oh so hard to make a go of it. In the end I like the SIG-Sauer P229 the best in this caliber BUT I have to say that I really do not prefer the .40S&W round. I much prefer shooting 9x19mm or .45acp and do better with both of these rounds over the .40 S&W round....just me!

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    first modle steyr designed as a 40 then reduced to 9 mm- great sights, accurate low prices, recoiled on a lower axes in your hand than a glock, three excellent safety fetchers.
    i have the 9 mm it is unexpectedly more accurate than 8 out of 10- 9 mm's i have ever shot or owned. and they the others cost twice to three times the steyr.
    r but the grip may be different to your liking - i have bigger hands so hog slip over made the change i needed.
    i have recently read they are making this gun again with a few changes dropped the inter guard safety- that my friend was the best feature to let off the safety by raising the trigger up in trigger guard no thought or shifting the grip.
    A 1 models are not expensive on used or new gun markets- make two sizes in the gun i have the larger.

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    Try them. Find what you can shoot best. Then before buying do some internet searches with the pistol name and test review to get chatter on reliability.
    I swear by Jupiter Optimus Maximus .... in the army of the consul Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus and for 10 miles around it I will not steal anything worth more than a sestertius in any one day.

  18. #18
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    LOTS of good advice here. I strongly agree with the 'shoot what fits you the best' crowd. I had a SIG P226 that was good, but hated that first trigger pull...I have put alot of rounds through Glock 22s, 23s and 27s, also. They're very good, but we've had an alarming rate of malfunctions with guns using the attached tactical lights on the 3rd generation Glock 22s. This problem does not exist with the Glock 21s for us.

    A question for you, but I'm just being curious here: what made you decide on .40S&W as your caliber?
    Pat
    Chaos, disorder and destruction...My work here is done.

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    If you can find one, I will suggest a Browning Hi Power in .40. Unless the single action only design is a problem for you. If it fits, I think it will fill your other criteria very well indeed.
    Absent comrades (sound of breaking glass)

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    Good suggestion of an excellent pistol.

    Short, I should have asked this before: what do you intend to use the pistol for? Define the mission/intended use, and the gear decision becomes easy.
    Pat
    Chaos, disorder and destruction...My work here is done.

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    S&W 610. Shoot's 10mm and 40 S&W... very accurate!

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    "Grip comfort is most definitely NOT secondary! If you are not comfortable when handling the weapon you will never shoot well with it." [3A PKKA]

    Yes I used to believe that too, but have changed. The Sig P239 is blocky and awkward to hold, the Tokarev TT-33 has too short a grip, feels like a bar of soap about to pop out of my hand, very awkward, yet they both shoot very accurately in my hand. The S&W J frames are very comfortable, yet few people shoot them accurately. However the most comfortable pistol I've held is the Walther P99, an ergonomic triumph. Cost me big bucks, yet it shot erratically for me, despite the hand in glove feel. To shoot it accurately I had to A) hold it high and tight with my trigger hand, B) cup my weak hand under the trigger hand and pull back, C) lock my wrist, D) lock my bicep, E) position my feet in a boxer's stance F) lean forward a touch, and G) open my mouth and push my tongue just so.

    Well in a CCW emergency that is way too much to sort out...all I want to do is point and shoot with one hand. The Tokarev was purchased as a miltary collectible and the Sig P239 was bought with birthday money, neither a necessary purchase but pleasant surprises because despite their awkward uncomfortable grips they shoot accurately with very little effort, just point and shoot (one-handed).

    As for the Wather P99, the planet's most ergonomic pistol...got frustrated and sold it.

    Addendum: Still miss my Walther P99, such a comfortable carry and super comfy grip. So today I took a chance and picked up an SW99 which is the same grip & frame as the Walther P99 but the slide is S&W. Took it to the range and it shoots accurately - a tack-driver. The difference ? --- well the P99s and the SW99s come with 3 interchangeable backstraps which dramatically change the feel and comfort level. This SW99 came with only one backstrap --- the largest one which I had tried previously on the Walther and found quite uncomfortable, hated it and used the skinniest backstrap, but was forced to use the large one this time on the S&W because thats all there is.

    Had I simply shot the Walther P99 with the uncomfortable large backstrap affixed it would likely have cured the accuracy problem easily. But stupid me, I had to go with the 'comfortable' solution and wound up selling a perfectly excellent gun (at a loss).

    So comfort is secondary to me, actually nowadays its nothing, accuracy is everything.

    If a perp is holding my daughter at knifepoint, I do not care how comfortable my gun is, but I do care very much how accurate it is so I can take the rescue shot, stop the perp, and end the threat.

    Accuracy is everything.
    Was a soldier, very young, and they turned me into an old man. Sometimes in the early morning, before the sun is up, I think of fallen brothers, first with smiles...then with tears.

  23. #23
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    Hello Short_Phughes. If you're looking for a .40 you should look at the HK USP. The Glock or Sigs are also a good choice. There are also 1911's in .40 cal. Para Ordnance made the P16 (I think), a 1911 40 cal with a 16 shot mag! You have to go out and "fondle" as many pistols as you can. Gunshows are a good place. Just make sure that you ask the dealer first! Hope this helps.

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    Several years ago I fired a couple of Smiths. A shooting buddy of my Dad's had them and absolutely loved 40 cal. I tried them both & found the excess snap & muzzle flip to be uncomfortable & annoying. Based on that, I'd never own a .40 - a couple of years ago, one of the guys at work bought his first brand new pistol, which happened to be a Glock .40 compact. Based on my previous 40 cal experience, it just HAD to be crap to fire. Of course, he was proud of his brand new baby & asked me to try it out. Rather than badmouth it to him, I just picked it up and fired off a couple of rounds. Wasn't trying hard, but both went into the black of a 50' target. Several more rounds later, it was still all in the black & also actually comfortable & really easy to shoot. It changed my idea of .40 cal - to the point where if I found myself without either .45 or 9mm, I'd consider one.

  25. #25
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    It's not a matter of grip comfort but control and natural pointing. Does it shoot where you want it to? That's all that counts.
    I swear by Jupiter Optimus Maximus .... in the army of the consul Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus and for 10 miles around it I will not steal anything worth more than a sestertius in any one day.

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    Before you make up your mind, and yes there are many nice 40s out there. Hold an EAA Witness Match, if a single action auto-loader is you preference, and Witness Steel if you need the double action. For me, and I imagine I have average hands, the Tanfolglio (that's the manufacture of EAA Witness) pistols fit like they where made for me.
    Mine happens to be a 10MM, but they are available in 9MM, 38,40,45. And there is a .22 conversion out there. They have conversion kit to change caliber not more complex than stripping to clean, and your ready to fire another size.
    Last edited by R.L.Klaus; 12-07-2010 at 09:13 PM. Reason: add photo

  27. #27
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    I am partial to Glock 23 but recently picked up a S&W 4013TSW which shoots like a dream.

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    I consider my self a "noob" when it comes to new pistols but here is my .02 worth. Does price matter? It did for me on my first "new" pistol so I went for the S&W Sigma SW40VE. At $299 and a $50 rebate I just couldn't pass it up. Over all I'm happy with it,with at least 500 rounds through it with no malfunctions with different ammo.My Sigma is quite accurate also. It does have a heavy trigger pull but I wanted that in a ccw. I've heard Glock sued S&W for copying there design. Btw, I bought mine from Academy Sports.
    Did someone say bore snake?

  29. #29

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    The .40 was decided on based on knock down power and magazine capacity. It would be used primarily for recreational shooting but also for protection against large pack animals if need be (Northern WI). I'm looking for a gun that both my wife and I can shoot comfortably while hiking or just at a range. She can handle a fair amout of kick, so I'm not too worried about that.

  30. #30
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    Glock 23.

    видеодон

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    Glock 22 is my 10c worth.

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    so far, i've owned (or currently own) .40 cal in glock, h&k, s&w, beretta, and taurus. the s&w (4053) was junk. the taurus was just, well...vanilla. however, every other one was trustworthy with my life. the h&k is ultra-smooth. i've owned sigs in 9. nice and smooth, but not 40, so i can't say for sure.

  33. #33
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    just boufgt my second xd 40 last week. it was a sub -compact and i am really starting to like it better than my tactical
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