The End to the 9mm vs. .45 ACP Debate? U.S. Army to Replace 9mm

Sig Sauer M11-A1 handgun

The U.S. Army has settled the age-old 9mm vs. .45 ACP debate with its latest request for a new service pistolwith more “knock down” power. Army officials were recently quoted declaring its stock of 200k-plus semi-auto Sig Sauer M11 and Beretta M9 pistols to be outdated. The Army therefore wants a new platform that offers increased reliability and durability. Given the record of both of these weapons, more reliability is going to be a high bar to get over.

THE Beretta M9 (92FS)
THE Beretta M9 (92FS)

“Advancements in firearms have taken place since the M9 was adopted nearly 30 years ago, and it is our intent to take advantage of these advancements,” a military spokesperson told on Friday. “The Army is seeking to replace the M9 and M11 pistols with a handgun that is more accurate, ergonomic, reliable and durable than the current pistol.”

New pistols also open the door to new ammunition too! Beretta immediately responded with an offer to update the current M9, but the Army is looking toward field trials to vet something new.

“We have submitted numerous changes or product improvements that really address a lot of the shortcomings that are either perceived or real,” Beretta development manager Gabe Bailey recently told

The Army isn’t wasting any time. Field trial are set to begin on July 29, 2014 when the Army hosts an “industry day.” This will not be a day of popping primers and inhaling the sweet aroma of gunpowder and Hoppes No. 9. July 29 will be the day when the Army layout the requirements for a winning proposal and how the competition to select the new winner will be conducted. The winner(s) can look forward to a contract for up to 400,000 new pistols—when and if a winner is selected.

A few of the requirements are easy to determine ahead of time based on common complaints among soldiers and market trends. The current 9mms are taking a beating and the Army has long complained of the cost of repairs. Newer ergonomic grip designs seem be a leading feature among new models over the past year and will likely make the list. The harsh condition of desert warfare are unlikely to go away anytime soon, requiring attention to redesigning the open slide bullet chamber. Lastly, soldiers in the field have complained of safety devices locking inadvertently so ergonomics and function will also be paramount—regardless of whether the current problem is mechanical or operator generated.


The debate whether the 9mm was a well-reasoned choice has raged for decades. Whether the Army’s appearant desire to abandon the round will put the matter to rest… only time will tell, but it is doubtful. The 9mm was adopted (at least in part) due to cost savings. Will budgets allow a larger caliber at a higher cost? What will happen to the ammo market if the military abandons the 9mm and adopts something bigger? Good question to which the answers are simply not available, but do not stick a fork in the 9mm just yet. The Army is not ruling out the 9mm as a caliber, but requirements will dictate something with performance that surpasses the current M882.

“We are not dictating a caliber during the competition,” the military spokesperson stated. “A vendor may submit multiple calibers of ammunition. However, the ammunition must exceed the performance of the current M882 9mm round.”

Sig Sauer M11-A1 handgun
Sig Sauer M11-A1

However, if the 9mm does not make the grade, the next two likely choices would be the .40 S&W and .45 ACP. If the Army is already worried about abuse, wear and the cost of replacement parts, the .40 S&W will have a strike against it. Most .40s are built on 9mm frames, but does that mean the Army will go full circle and return to the venerable .45 ACP?

The Process

More information will be available after industry day when the Army will release a draft Request for Proposal, which seeks input from manufacturers. The Army will then consider the manufacturers’ comments and modify the request as necessary so the details and requirements will remain fluid. However, the Army plans to have a final industry day to issue its final proposal before the end of the year. That should make for an interesting SHOT Show in January 2015. That would be too soon for the new models, but we may be able to pry some information from insiders or preview new features in the 2015 lineup.

After the determination of the final requirements, the Army will transition to field trials. During this period, the Army test and begin the elimination process. Technical performance and soldier feedback will be key factors.

“One of the primary requirements for this weapon system is to provide the soldier with increased terminal performance,” the military spokesperson said. “Feedback from soldiers in the field is that they want increased ‘knock-down power.’ And the MHS program will evaluate commercially available weapons that meet that requirement.” So, standby for a host of new models, upgrades, redesigns and enhancements to current models and a potential price drop to the M9 and M11. OK, prices are not really going to drop, but we can always dream.

What do you think will be the outcome of the Army trials? Will the Army abandon the 9mm? Which pistol or feature will be crowned in the end? Share you opinions in the comment section.

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (214)

  1. I just think that if someone enters in your house and you gotta shoot him, better using a caliber with high stopping power and low penetration, I dont think you wanna risk to shoot an intruder in the kitchen and with the same bullet hurt your wife/kids in bedroom.
    I dont think high penatration is a thing that civilians should look for.

  2. I have read tons of these posts regarding the age old debate regarding which caliber is better for self-defense 9mm or .45 acp. Every post I read completely misses the point when deciding what is best for you. Most of these posts reference what police or military prefer or use as a reference. And since law enforcement or military use them it must be the best caliber for you. This is not how you should be deciding caliber. Obviously most reader’s Googling this particular question are not law enforcement or military. If your law enforcement or military you find yourself running towards assailants or the enemy to engage in a gun fight back and forth. For the private citizen, who are only looking to defend themselves or family you most likely have different mindset. Many of these posts don’t talk about what is best for the everyday private citizen who only wishes defend themselves or family in a sticky situation. So let’s answer this question for the majority of the readers who would be Googling 9mm vs 45 acp to figure out which caliber is better for self-defense. First we need to establish which of the following two camps you fall into.

    Scenario: You’re at the mall with your family and an active shooter goes postal in a department store.

    Camp 1
    You’re in camp 1 if you’re the type of person who’s first reaction is to move away from the situation if you can safely and will only draw their firearm if it’s their last option to save themselves or family. Not saying these types of people are better or worse. Some people just place a higher value on not wanting to risk the possibility of their kids growing up without them around.

    Camp 2
    You’re in camp 2 if you’re the type of person who will not move away from the situation but rather move towards the assailant to take him/her out in order to save others’ lives and not just yourself. These are the types that are willing to die to save random strangers. Not saying these types of people are better or worse.

    Some individuals may be in either camp depending where they are at that point in life. It doesn’t mean you’re a better or worse person sitting in camp 1 or 2, but before you pick your caliber you need to be brutally honest about which camp you’re currently in. I used to be in camp 2 most of my life before I had kids. Now I’m in camp 1 since I have small children. Once their grown I will most likely be back in camp 2.

    Now that you know which camp you’re in let’s talk about caliber.

    If you’re in camp 1 you are better served choosing .45 acp. Let me explain. If you’re only drawing your gun at the last moment or right before the assailant discovers your position then you don’t need to be concerned about accuracy. You’re usually going to be within 15 feet, give or take. In fact you probably don’t have time to line up your sites taking aim. Usually you’re reverting to intuitive style shooting. Intuitive shooting is pointing your gun in the general direction of the assailant and pulling the trigger (intuitive shooting takes lots of practice to become accurate). Close quarter’s defense. Since you’re unloading a .45 acp round into the assailant you’re not going to need to shoot more than once or twice since the wound will be massive and the .45 has incredible knock down power. It thumps really hard since it’s a slow round at 850-900 fps and a much larger round. Center punch will most likely knock them clean off their feet. If you’re using a 9mm at 15 feet, give or take, the round most likely will pass through since it’s a much faster round traveling at 1,200-1,300 plus fps. With that said you don’t need a high capacity clip due to the devastation of the .45 round. If the assailant is on drugs and shot with a 9mm they can keep coming at you if not hit in a vital organ. Even though modern ballistics of the 9mm round have become much more advanced in recent years, so has the advancement of the .45 round. With that said the advanced 9mm round still will not match the damage and knock down of the advanced .45 round. If the assailant is hit with a .45 on drugs they most likely won’t be getting up for a second round.

    If you’re in camp 2 you are better served choosing a 9mm. Since you will most likely be shooting from more distance you will want the higher accuracy and higher capacity of the 9mm. It’s a combat style weapon. This is why military and law enforcement use the 9mm as side arm of choice. They are protecting citizens.

    Since I am a family man now, I personally conceal .45 acp. If you are still having a hard time deciding which camp you are in and which caliber to choose then settle for the best of both worlds at 40 caliber which may start a whole different debate.

  3. I was in the Army when the M-14 was phased out. The M-16 was adopted based on revised thinking about total down-range power and number of rounds a soldier could carry. Accuracy in any gunfight is vastly diminished by adrenaline. The M-16 gave our soldiers more chances of hitting the enemy (provided it did not malfuntion) with lethal force using .223 high powered fmj ammo. The new shorter long-arm M-4 cuts the need for pistols, even at short distances. That said, as long as fmj is Geneva Accord standard, and as fast as semi-automatic pistols can be fired (especially by ampped up soldiers) the number of rounds that might hit the enemy times the energy per round is a better standard than the impact of fewer rounds with higher energy. Of course reliability is more important than anything else. Ask the guys whose M-16s jammed in Vietnam.

  4. Stopping power begins to have meaning, like most metrics, when you hold other variables constant. For instance, if you hit someone in the center of the chest from a specific distance, it might be important to rank 5 different guns by “stopping power” – that is, which one did the most damage. Substituting ballistic jelly for a real person, is likely to give similar results. As a former ballistic tester, I can tell you that it is very useful to be able to quantify what a bullet will do as compared to another bullet – whether you call it delivered energy, ballistic damage, hydro-shock, or stopping power.

  5. “stopping power” has no real meaning, because the documented results of damage due to pistol calibre bullets (and maybe even rifle calibre) is so varied as to be useless as a concept. many one-shot stops with pistol bullets, many multi-shot stops with pistol calibre. too many examples of engagements of less than 20ft where the bad guy was still able to flee or continue attacking…and we are talking calibres that start with 4. so, without an agreed upon standard of what constitutes stopping power, (one shot anywhere on the body at zero to 600fty results in immediate inability of an attacker to make any further movement of attack?), using “stopping power” as a criterion is unhelpful (.22 accounts for more shooting deaths than any other calibre). a .177 round at 4000fps hitting the bad guy in the eye at a range of 1500ft would be considered having “stopping power”. meaning at least shot placement is a critical component of “stopping power”. perhaps the idea of one shot-one stop only existed in legend, but has warped our current perceptions.

  6. “Stopping power” is coming from down range and in the field. When it comes to actual duty, 9mm or 5.56 is not doing the job stopping their attackers especially when they are coked up.

  7. the US limits itself under a treaty it signed, but did not ratify. over 100yrs ago, the “civilized” world worked to get rid of bullets that can do horrible damage with actually killing. some think it was humanitarian. actually, it was a tactical move. armies don’t like wounded comrades. takes one or two other soldiers to carry/tend to a wounded soldier. the helpers also become easier targets.

    at to NATO rounds, the 7.62 is the NATO standard because the US demanded the allies unify around a single round, that would be easy to produce, and unsnarl some of the supply chain by having only one type round to support many armies. Coincidentally (not), 7.62 = US .30 calibre. NATO does not force US military to use 7.62, the US forced NATO.

  8. one element that hasn’t been discussed in this string is why the military thinks they need something “with more stopping power”. no mention of how the current sidearm is used, were the expectations unreasonable (like, one-shot stop from 100yrds, or something). using a handgun beyond about 30 feet is very problematic. are the forces trying to breach hard barriers, like glass, doors, walls, whatever, rather than combat clothing (which presents its own problems)? while i do not see the viability of a gun with an open slide (dirt, grit, mud, fouling), the military must might be deluding themselves with notions from ww1 about “stopping power”, overlooking the fact that handgun proficiency and the difficulty of hitting critical organs with a pistol while under duress may be the leading reasons soldiers are unhappy with the 9mm. if you look at the original 1911 (and it’s contemporary, the german luger, they have tiny sights, making it obvious the guns were designed for cqbd, not distance shooting.

    1. The question should be choice of ammunition instead of caliber, like bonded hollow point or expanding FMJ something that will have better stopping power.
      What are the soldiers aloud to use in the current weapons system?
      Aside from that question, it is true the Beretta is an out dated design.
      The Sig Sauer is a good choice to replace the Beretta but still an old design weapon but some upgrades that make it good choice.
      Correct me if I am wrong, the soldiers are only aloud to use NATO ammo, meaning ball ammo or FMj, that being said you would pick the .45 ACP every time.
      Ask the soldiers what they have seen, they will tell you that the current ammo is not as effective as other ammunition could be.

  9. To: george from fort worth and similar Non Sequitur comments:

    I’ll set aside any snotty remarks and say only that The “caliber doesn’t matter” articles that you linked to is interesting – so is the fact that Chicago Cubs could win are the 2015 World Series – but it is not particularly relevant to this discussion. We are talking about a military sidearm that will be used in a military context against armed opponents that are more than likely going to have a more powerful weapon than a pistol. Using the logic and method of your linked article: 100% of the time that you pull your handgun in a military context, you are likely to be in a life or death shooting match with someone that is bent on killing you. In my experience in Nam, 2% of the time, when he is fired at, he will run. 5% of the time when he is hit, he will NOT stop shooting. That leaves 93% of the time that you will survive the fight IF you hit the bad guy AND your shot causes him to stop shooting at you. Under this scenario, the damage that your bullet can cause needs to be a serious consideration.

    For me personally, I’d rather than a 15 shot clip of hollow point 9mm than a 7 shot .45 FMJ. I am also very impressed with a gun like the Kel-Tec PMR-30 22 mag. A 22 mag hollow point can cause a lot of damage and having 90 shots in 3 clips gives you an incredible amount of firepower. But hey, that’s just me……….

    1. neither does .45.

      george from fort worth
      October 15, 2015 at 8:05 pm | #
      had a bunch of snotty remarks ready to go, then decided there are plenty of people better than i at that. instead, this like takes you to some interesting information. admittedly, there are a lot of facts presented and may not be suitable for your purposess.

  10. I have used the 9mm in combat, I prefer it over the .45, faster round, more penetration. And higher capacity. ANd much further range!

  11. The 5.7×28 is an incredible cartridge. Research the FN Five-Seven Mk2 and the P90 select fire personal defense weapon. Many are now in use worldwide in Military and Civilian Law Enforcement.

  12. Being a fan of the 1911, I am biased but I’ve not heard any suggestion about Army going with the Glock 21. Why?

    1. Lol. Actually I heard that there’s really no difference between 9 mm and .45 as far as stopping power and was wondering if that’s true

    2. I have been in law enforcement as an firearm inst. range master for over 50 years. CA. DOJ and Federal DOJ certified inst. rangemaster.. Shot 1911’s for about 40 years till it blew out my right wrist. I now carry and shoot mostly my Glock 19. with todays ammunition either caliber will serve you well if you do your part. I do know I can get more rounds on target in a set amount of time with the 9mm than the 45. Hope this helps you.

  13. STB has a series of articles that contradict the notion that .45 is the all-time, absolute fight-stopper

  14. Hydraulic shock has not ever been a factor in pistol rounds. High speed larger caliber rounds out of a rifle yes, 9mm and .45, no. Not my opinion, read up on data and studies over the past 10-15 years. The myths of hydro-static shock, “stopping Power”, and energy dump should have been buried years ago, but they persist for some unknown reason.

  15. The term with pistols is Mags. not Clips. We all know. I think the main reason the switch to .9mm was lighter to carry and it could hold more rounds. Things have changed, there are .45acp’s with 14+1 rounds out now. If you think along stopping power or not, the .45acp. is still tops. Red

  16. You do know that knock down power is a myth right? Been proven scientifically over and over again that it does not exist in pistol calibers. If you do believe in knock-down power, then opt for the 10mm

  17. The .45ACP is the winner every time. The 9mm has very little knock out power. (Stopping power) The .45 auto will stop anything it hits. The (KO) on .45 is rated@ ~13.. The 9mm is rated @ ~07.. The .40 S&W is in the middle @ ~10 (KO).. You do the math… Red.

  18. Nothing wrong with the good old M9 in 9MM. The Beretta 92A1 is one terrific machine. I’ll take being able to get off 3 shots in the time it takes a 45 to get off two anytime. As for the 40SM… c’mon now.. you got to be kidding… stay with the 9MM.. it has enough knock down power.

  19. I am an old man finally 72yrs. and I have a Colt 1911 .45 that has been in the family since 1914, it was passed down until it finally came to me about 55 yrs. ago, it has been used in WW1 ,WW2, KOREA,and VIETNAM,and it has never let any one of us down, so I can safely say .45 vs .9m/m is a no brainer for me. The old .45 will remain.

  20. I keep repeating myself Beretta PX4 Storm 40 cal with 17 round magazine… Designed for reduced recoil and built like a tank!

  21. Having served 28 yrs. in the Army (Active, Nat.’l Guard & Reserve) I began w/ the .45. The poor old replaced .45’s were beat up after all the yrs. of excellent service. At the time, the 9mm made sense (cost wise), w/ the M-9 beating out the M-11 by $1.00 a unit. M9 has too many working parts when compared to the 1911 or M11. Using NATO FMJ 9mm ammo, one cannot expect to get the results of a .45 for “knock down.” I feel the .40 is a good rd. if NOT used on a 9mm frame. Overall, having to use FMJ, one can’t go wrong w/ Mr. Brownings dream machine, w/ it’s dream ammo.

  22. Hands down the 45 ACP wins in stopping power. Thats why it was used in Korean war. Drug addicts and thugs will laugh at a 9mm unless a head shot is made.

  23. Although you all know I am a pretty solid 45cal guy and carry a 380 cal Walther a back up the other option to the dilemma is which I don’t see coming up basically because it is a diamond in the rough is the 357 Sig. The bullet is basically a 9mm while the case is sort of a modified 40 cal and it creates the ideal world The velocity to do enough damage with enough mass to penetrate and the ability to comfortably double stack. DR Dave

  24. Great back and forth info guys…However, Just a thought…but there are some fine 45 ‘ s Double Stack magazine weapons with 14 rounds plus 1…just saying capacity is NOT as big a difference that so many seem to assume.
    I combat shoot with my .45 and do quite well as an old man with the “Old Man” caliber. Lol today’s autos reduce some of the recoil concerns as well….there are also fine .40 ‘ s (Beretta’s PX4 Storm for example) with 17 round mags and nicely reduced recoil via Beretta ‘s design. As long as we are hand cuffed by the International rules of war (restrictions of bullet type) we need to look at a bigger round, .40 or .45. PS I love my 9mms, however I would never count on them for personal defense with full Metal jacket ammo.

  25. A lot of talk is about the slow vs. fast and size issue but there is another more important metric. Hydrolic Shock. Same basic concept as air buildup in front of a jet prior to MACH 1 – A .45 by accident or design has just the right size and speed to cause the max hydrolic shock inside the human body. The buildup of fluid in front of the bullet is like a solid wave front that effective multiplies the caliber many times making for enormous damage. In a 9mm, much like a jet that has passed MACH 1, the wave front is behind the bullet or doesn’t develop at all so you get a much smaller wound. If you slow the 9mm just right, it could cause more damage but still not as much as the 45 because it is smaller. If you made the 9mm a hollowpoint, that would be best but that is not legal for the militarty tpo use so there is no real way to get the 9mm to do the same damage as the 45 – except for one. the 1911 had a 7 shot clip and some 9mm have as high as 18. The newest 45’s can have up to 10 but having 18 is a lot of firepower and it may push the advantage to the 9mm for one reason – we have very few soldiers that can shoot well with a pistol. Being able to lay down 18 shots is more likely to hit once or twice than haing only 7 or 10. Having a belt with 2 or 3 additional clips of 18 each is a lot of firepower – even for a bad shot.

    The Russians have gotten around the prohibition of hollow points by making a rifle bullet that is FMJ but it is hollow inside. The walls of the bullet collapse and expand much as a hollow point does. If we did that with a 9mm in a high capacity clip, it would be a better choice. if not then a 45 ACP with a 10 or 12 shot clip would be better – IMO.

    1. Tell me more about these handguns that use “clips”, I don’t recollect ever seeing one.

  26. Now Bob, mate, a few notes:
    Big is not allways better, otherwise we would revert to 12mm Napoleónic era musket shot,or at least to the good old 8mm WWI round.
    Stopping-power is a well established scientific concept besides a bone or even muscles can stop certain calibers, And there is a thing called terminal balistics wich shows dramatic differences bettween calibers
    There is also a factor most big game hunters know about but not many people understand wich is the so called shock efect. Thats why good hunters wont shoot at an elefant with a 5,56mm.

  27. Surely they will nota go back in time and reverter to a western frontier time ammunition like the .45 acp. Concepts such as follow up precision and volume fire dont apply to the .45.
    And lets face it, the US wold be the only militar in NATO using .40, everybody uses the 9 mm, its NATO standard.
    It would be strange that the USA of all allyes would abandon the standard.
    But there are recent developments, in Germany, and Belgium like the PDW conceptual that allows us to think that the standards may evolve. But i dont think the 9mm is the main concearn. The 5.56mm is by far a more important issue. All special forces agree that it lacks stopping power.And the food old 7.62 is too big. Now we see new ‘intermideate’ calibers emerging. The 6.5mm for one, a much praised hunting and target ammo.
    This is the important question.

    1. 9mm is NATO standard because the USA insisted it be so, just as they did with the rifle calibers. If the US switches pistol rounds, the rest of NATO will follow.

  28. Ask me why I love my .45 Long Colt, sit down and be prepared to be there for a couple of hours. Its really hard to beat the best and loaded properly, it out performs the nearly invincible .44 mag but with advantages some of us truly understand.

  29. The 9mm ball is the problem. If the bullet was heavier or had a Cor-Bon type bullet, it would be ideal. 9mm has been around as long as the 45ACP has almost. I like the 45 and the 40, but they are much more expensive to shoot. The 9mm is still the standard in personal protection and military combat. They need to find a way to keep it.

  30. Let me correct myself…the Morro firefights happened absolutely. What is folklore is the “one hit and they all went flying backwards,” dropped, with one shot etc.. Anecdotal stories at best. These types of stories are often repeated and given way too much credence. It is a fact that “stopping power/knockdown power” do not exist. This is a simple fact of physics (and much study by experts). If a bullet will penetrate the body and it hits a vital organ, spine/cns/brain, incapacitation and or death will occur, regardless of caliber. Now, bigger is always better but how much better in any given situation is not know. The belief seems to be it will have a better chance of nicking an artery or heart. And many people seem to believe that they will get hits every time they fire, which studies of actual shootings show that 70%-80% of all bullets fired miss. That is why I prefer 9mm and more rounds. Also, studied and has been shown that follow up shots (even with very experience shooters) favors the 9mm. Do not get me wrong, I love the .45! damn fun too shoot. But for practical purposes, 9mm works for me. By they way, my BS opening comment was not meant to be personal or insulting. Sorry if it sounded that way. Gotta get me some manners!

    1. regardless of caliber, although I prefer the old Colt 1911 .45ACP learning to hit what you shoot at makes all the difference.

  31. You’ve got a big hunk of lead travelling much slower than a smaller piece of lead that is travelling much faster, it’s going to have much less penetration and more “knockdown power”, much like being punched in the stomach, but obviously on a much more extreme level. Which is why it was so effective against the Moro tribesmen that were hopped up on cocaine, it put them down and didn’t just make holes.

    1. The Moro story isn’t “BS” at all, however something missing from its use in contemporary “9mm vs. .45” arguments is that the round the military had deployed originally to that conflict, the .38 Long Colt, is actually quite anemic, and in no way could be said to reflect the 9×19 Luger.
      Look it up- comparing the two is quite instructive.

      When the .38LC demanded immediate replacement in the feild, the Army sent over M1873 Colt SAA revolvers chambered in .45LC, which has ballistics that are still to this day impressive.

      The M1873 and .45LC was known for being a man stopper on the frontier, and when employed against the Moros, it performed even better then the .30 Krag rifles which were standard infantry issue at the time, usually able to stop a drugged, religiously crazed jurementado with a single well placed shot.

      This ancedotal history, coupled with the Thompson LeGarde tests, cemented the .45 as the bore of choice, and Brownings 1911 became the gun the army wanted to fire it in.

      I’ve read that William E. Fairbairn of the British SOE during WW2 favored the Browning Hi-Power, but instructed its users to always fire double taps, but that with the “American .45” this was not required (but still sound practice).

      As an avid student of combatives, this is all the endorsment for the .45 I need.

      That being said- I’d take a BHP in 9×19 Luger over a Colt’s Revolver chambered in .38LC against drugged up fanatics any say.

      But the .45 1911 still has the edge.

    2. You’re absolutely correct, the best way way to explain to people that don’t understand the concept of (ft lbs of energy) is to tell it like this. Horsepower is how fast you hit the wall, torque is how far you drag the wall with you. The .45 auto has both and dominates both the 9mm and the .40, it’s not even a contest. The 9mm is too fast, too light, too small and over penetrates, it’s useless as a self defense or combat round because it doesn’t have what it takes to STOP the fight..

  32. If we are thinking hanging on to the 9mm then the 19 plus 1 Springfield. Armory would at least provide more lead…i still think a high capacity 45apc with the ammo restrictions our military has to live by makes the most sense.

  33. the original 1911 was not a fine competiton weapon, it was rugged and loose, accommodating unforgiving environments like dire, mud, sand, jungle, poor field maintenance. it was also NOT designed for superb accruacy at 500yrds. neither was it intended to create a ‘one shot stop’. if the army chooses current generation firearms that do not have the reliability of the original 1911, some folks are gonna get hurt who expected the new ‘whizbang’ to overcome all impediments.

  34. 2years in the USMC as a MP and 35 years on the street as a Police Supervisor I saw Agencies go from a perfectly GOOD.45acp to.40 and back to 9m/m just because of failure to train recruits that yes there is recoil and no your hand won’t have a Custom fit ON EVERY SIDEARM!

  35. The S&W M&P45 is already proven reliable and capable with police departments nation wide. Plus, it comes standard with 3 different (tool-less) interchangeable back straps to accommodate a variety of hand sizes. The standard duty weapon is available in colors other than black, and with or without a thumb safety. .40 and 9mm calibers are available in the same line.
    Considering S&W’s history with the US Govt. I have to consider it a front-runner. Plus, it’s not a bad sidearm at all.

  36. The 1911 has already proved its ability to work in all conditions, however .40 or .45 in a high capacity weapon is where we need to go…Berreta P4 40 is already out there with durability and volume (17 plus 1) . this weapon with its which capacity 2ould be a great compromise between my favorite .45apc and a great contender .40

  37. The Berreta P4 storm with 17 plus 1 in .40 and extreme durability is out there now and the adds power capacity and dependability. Its already out there…and proven! Why does this heve to be so completed.

  38. LAPD used ball ammunition for a long time. They shot a suspect 33 times and he was still standing. The military needs to go to hollow point (screw the rest of the world). The combination of the .45 and hollow point is about the best they can do for knock down power. They also need to eliminate safety switches and stop indexing in their training.

    1. to many different treaties say that we can’t use hollow-points which is why the military doesn’t use them. side note to this is the sniper ammo which uses a hollow tip which works differently. want more info on this google.

    2. My 1911 saved my ass many times by being able to fire under “combat conditions” – that means caked in mud, underwater, in the rain. Step 1: Make the new weapon as reliable as the 1911. The Russians get around the hollow point limitation by making a bullet that has soft thin sidewalls and a hollow interior causing the sides to collapse on impact – effectively doubling the diameter. Using this design and selecting a velocity that will maximize hydraulic shock will produce the best possible pistol in any of the candidate calibers.

    3. I shot Expert Pistol with the 1911 but my 25+ yrs experience showed me that in combat and police work, 90% of the people can’t use ANY handgun effectively beyond 25 feet. It is rare in police work that you get to aim carefully. In combat, by the time you have to use a handgun, you are already in extremis and having more shots in the clip trumps caliber, velocity and “knock-down”. An enemy will not shoot back WHILE he is being hit with bullets. It really sucks to be in a close-quarter firefight and have to ask a timeout to change your clip.

      More often than not, shot placement determines knock-down or a fight-stopping shot. Talk of 500 foot handgun shots are laughable outside of a range. Even 100 foot shots in the real world almost never happen with a handgun. The Army needs to concentrate on training, controlability, reliability and “energy dissipated” in the target. and should include consideration for hydroshock and physical trauma to the human body.

    4. Springfield XDM .45 acp 13 plus 1 in the chamber. There are other high capacity .45 acp out there now also.

    5. I have to agree that requiring the military use ball ammo is not realistic. When we were fighting against “civilized” nations, the Geneva Accords made sense. Everybody played by the rules (more or less). But in today’s world, the war is against terrorists. Terrorists don’t follow rules.. Civilized adversaries don’t behead the enemy. The military could save a lot of money by going to modern ammo, even in 9mm and not spend on new guns

  39. I do not profess to be an expert. (Generally those who do have the least anyway) but I would put it to anyone who is not a Rambo wannabe, that there is no such thing as ‘knock down power’ in any caliber other than a chevrelet. All reactions are equal and opposite reactions. So if my 45, or 44, or even 454 Casull do not actually knock me down, than getting hit with one does not knock a person down either.
    In fact, up here int he New Hampshire woods, I and my hunting partners have shot Whitetail deer of no more weight than a full grown man, with everything from 30 30 to 300 Winmag, and had them take off for 1 to 300 yards in almost impossible to follow woods and swamplands. Just as the most famous Elephant hunter of all time killed them with nothing more than a 7×57 Mauser knows, shot placement is the only ‘knock down’ power that exists. And even then, it is still not a ‘knock down. but a clean kill.
    In fact, anyone counting on a caliber to ‘knock down’ an adversary, has been watching too many movies. Hollywood is not exactly the foremost expert in ballistics.

    1. The term “knock down power” does not refer to actually knocking a person down with the force of a bullet.

    2. it is obvious that you dont know the reasoning and history of then Browning M1911 A1. find a gun history book and read up on it. then comment on its abillities.

    3. My favorite semi is the 1911, and my favorite rimless cartridge is the 45 ACP. I have had several, and will always own at least 1. I was referring to the idea of being knocked down by a bullet. Shock effect is a different thing. If that is what everyone is referring to (and I know that some here are not, but think the bullet itself can knock a person over) then that is different. Personally I think the 357 Magnum has every bit as much shock effect as a 45, especially with the right load.
      I have read up on the history of the 1911 and the 45 plenty for a layman William. Not sure why you think i am ignorant. My comment was about the term ‘knock down power’. Not dissing what I consider the best operating and best looking semi ever.

    4. A better phrase would be stopping capacity or incapacitation. Ask anyone who has been shot if you were going to be shot what would be your worst nightmare. Absolutely you would never choose the 45 and very close behind that is the 40S&W which is awfully close. One of the reasons the 92F was designed with a double stack magazine was because it was anticipated it would take multiple shots to end the threat. With todays tech double stack 45’s and 40’s are abundant. The Springfield Armory (the oldest in the nation) has outstanding accurate and durable models in both.

    5. My grandfather was a 5th Marine during ww2. He would say while your walking into low visibility or swampy vegetation, unless you had a machine gun or carbine you had your had that 1911 up and ready. They where expensive but you got what you paid for. Not to mention the Japanese respected it as well.

  40. guys…the technical issues will be well down the list of priorities when DOD gets around to releasing a contract. the primary purpose of the federal acquisition regulation (FAR) is to solve a myriad of social concerns, above all else. you can be assured the contract award process will be fair, even if it means top-down direction to award to a non-capable but favored social group. either that, or you can expect a sole-source decision that just may result in an actual meeting of the warfighter’s need. my 30yrs of federal contracts and program management makes me skeptical of the whole process. but all this speculating is actually fun, and i have learned about a bunch of guns and ammo that i didn/t know before.

    cheers, ya;ll…

  41. I’m pretty surprised actually. Modern ammo ballistics show the 9mm and .45 are not that much different. As another poster noted, maybe the solution is not bigger but faster? The FN (who already makes machine guns for the military and various other weapons the spec ops guys use) five seven? What about a new cartridge in 9mm that would give better performance against body armor, etc.? My main argument is not that the 45 is awesome as it is, but that it’s heavy and for one with a decent magazine capacity, it’s also big! The FNX45 is an awesome pistol with a 15 capacity mag in the .45 and can be fitted with threaded barrel and even a reflex sight. So there are options to the old 9mm but remember, with all things there is a trade off. 9mm gives great capacity with a decent round in a lightweight package. The .45 is more powerful but bigger and heavier and less capacity for not really that much better performance. Where is the balance is the question and I guess we will find out!

  42. They should move to either sig 226 in 40 cal or glock 22 or if they want a larger round with some serious power they can go with the glock 20 15 plus 1 of 10mm whew. A lot of those officers are women and or little kids fresh out of college so maybe they should start with m9 and then move to the 40 or the 10. 45 is nice I love the 1911 but in this day and age there’s no way I would carry that thing on a battle field. Russians are carrying full auto strike one 9mm to war. All you gotta do is wave the thing no aiming required. So to all the old timers wishing they will go back to the 45 keep dreaming 1911 is my favorite gun I shoot it pin point, but I’d rather carry an rpb Mac 11 than a 1911. It’s 2014 I hope an American manufacturer really does some research and engineers something new, and worthy of the new age battlefield.

    1. The problem with the 1911 is going to be the sandy environment and its reliability. I shoot this same platform but a 2011 in competition and the tolerances are so tight that sand and dust is its enemy for malfunctions. I bet they’ll go with some polymer style gun. Doubtful they go to a larger bullet, because that equals more weight to carry and transport then multiply that by thousands of troops = lots of extra weight. This is similar to why I heard they chose the .223 over say 7.62×39. If you can transport twice as many rounds per pound for example, more rounds down range win battles. 5.7 maybe the one because that velocity is ridiculous from a pistol round.

    1. Exactly my conclusion too! Sig is accurate, easy to train a diverse recruit base and superior quality. Second choice after Sig 227 Springfield XDM.

  43. The problem with going to more knockdown power is it takes more skill/practice to control it. LEO’s all over the country are all going to 40 S&W and 45 Auto because they are not stopping aggressors with few enough rounds, but no one has looked at the accuracy issue. Most LEO’s only shoot 1-4 times a year for training unless they can participate in weekend competition shooting. Sometimes they only shoot 10-15 rounds in these rare sessions Most cannot do more, as they have to work or need that time with their families. What happened with the 5.7 mm debate. I saw 1 mention of this in prior posts, It seems with the proper bullet, you can have both accuracy and knockdown power. The rounds are expensive now, but with military volume that would come down. That’s the only reason I don’t have one now. Bigger is not always better. Sometimes faster and more in the right place is better. Does anyone remember the kid that came to that school in Ohio with a Ruger MkIII. With only 10 rounds of 22 LR he killed 3 and injured 4. I’m not glorifying what he did, as it was horrible, just trying to make a purely scientific observation in the caliber debate. On the other end, there was an FBI report published about a police encounter with a violent criminal. They fired 116 rounds of 5.56/40 S&W among 4 officers. They only hit him 16 times and they still had to wrestle him to cuff him. He eventually died of his wounds, but not after getting off 20 rounds of 45 auto (with a reload from a box of bullets). The best he did was to take just one officer out of the fight (not killed). Don’t flame me if I’m a little off on some of these numbers, I’m going from memory here.

  44. More important is the ammunition type and load, I believe.
    However…a larger round would allow for more variance in powder and bullet weights.
    Need rounds to cut through vests?Probably going straight through people.
    Stopping power/expansion? Probably flatten on vests.
    No pistol round will push back on a normal man. Number and accuracy of hits…and where they hit…that’s what counts. One head shot with a .22 can do it.

    1. I agree with you 100%. A trained shooter can do more damage with a well placed shot than a novice with larger calibers hitting arms and legs. In addition, it is not all about the size, but the bullet type (hollow points, full metal jacket, grams, powder, etc.).

    2. If they stick with ammo that complies with the antiquated Hague convention then the .45 is best. However, it would be more efficient to keep a good design like the SiG and select a hollowpoint or THV projectile. (The M9 is a good pistol, but it is oversized and the location of the safety is a deficiency) There is nothing wrong with the 9mm if a good bullet is chosen.

    3. Training is a valuable tool. However, in the heat of battle a semi well placed larger caliber will be more effective than a caliber of lesser size. The type of bullet is determined by the rules of war. In combat the only thing allowed is full metal jackets.

  45. The War Department got it right when they procured the John Browning designed, hard hitting, 1911 .45ACP. Untold numbers of G.I.s carried the weapon cocked and locked and owe their lives to the stopping power of this sidearm. It is simplistic in design and history shows it to be durable with accuracy improving over time (training included). Asked an expert about one of the most preferred calibers for home defense and usually the .45ACP is the answer. Colt arms almost got it right with the Double Eagle 1911 frame, Colt entered it into the market late and the model did not incorporate an accessory rail. It did pass drop safety tests and has a de-cocker. Some of the issues are capacity. It appears the computer game generations, with some exceptions, prefer the high capacity of the semi-autos with smaller diameter bullets. They like to throw a lot of lead down range. Whereas, older generations tend to prefer the stopping power of the .45 ACP but still wishing they had the extra capacity when in a firefight. Considering, logistics, operability, reliability, accuracy, stopping power and procurement, I would recommend improving upon the tried and true 1911 or similar semi-auto in .45 ACP in double and single action. Obviously, the U.S. Marine Corps’ recent procurement of the 1911 indicates a need for a sidearm with improved stopping power over the current 9mm.

    1. I have been the proud owner of a Colt 1911 45.acp. for about 54 yrs. now
      and can agree . For me it can’t be beat.

  46. The Glock 21 fits the hand quite well and it works with the .45 Auto 230 Gr. Cartridge! Alternately, the H&K 45 works well with the .45 Auto +P!

  47. I have carried a SIG P226 in .357 SIG as my duty weapon for the past 6 years. It has never failed or malfunctioned. I recently purchased a barrel in .40 SW as >357 SIG is geting hard to find. Off duty is a SIG P 250 in .40 SW.

  48. Anyone that has shot the FNX 45 Tactical will immediately recognize it as a strong contender. It is one sweet piece, especially when fitted with a Trijicon RMR and Osprey suppressor.

  49. Personally I would welcome the return of a 45 or even a switch to 40 but regardless of caliber I would assume it will be a striker fired polymer pistol. Such as glock, xd, m&p, sig, or fnh. Xd is unlikely in my opinion. Leaning most likely toward glock or m&p. Glock 21 being my favorite choice. Low cost, reliable, reputable, cheap and easy maintenance and repair. The clear choice if you ask me.

  50. Based on what I’ve read, I believe this is a real attempt by the army(& AF). They have stated that they feel it would cost more in the long run to maintain old M9s at the same time buying new replacements. There is merit to that point. From a PM standpoint, mixing new with old parts is rarely ideal. In fact its dangerous. Which may explain buying more M9s. Another convincing reason; They did a study of other pistols & found soldiers performed significantly better. Which to me sounds like grip ergonomics, more than the action of the pistol. The interesting thing is that the industry has had a few years to address the issues of the M9.
    Beretta has said they would make changes to future M9s, but the US army apparently didn’t want to be the guinea pig in case the modifications weren’t satisfactory. Beretta should have made a new M9 & allowed the consumer market to prove its viability. My guess is an FN pistol thats easily configured for different calibers, grip sizes, etc. To design brand new guns would be a waste of time. They would have to have already had the bugs worked out.

  51. Anyone who has shot .357 magnum at all will be able to testify that a 45 acp is quite mild, with hardly any muzzle blast. Muzzle blast being what really puts people off and effects trigger control, not recoil.
    The 45 acp has to be about the perfect short range last ditch defense load from a handgun. The real weapon (for the military) being the long gun anyway, not the sidearm.

    1. Honestly I would love to see them go back to the 1911, but that will probably not happen my second choice would be a Smith and Wesson m&p 40, which from what I hear is pretty much an american made glock

  52. Trained with the M14 and 45acp. Never should have gotten away from either for knockdown power. How many combatants we face today wear body armor? Pistols are close quarter,in your face, weapons and you need something with knockdown power and not worry about double taps. I’m sure it’s still the same scenario today, as it was many years ago, if your pistol is empty, scream at the top of your lungs and use it like a club or simply throw it and run like hell! No double taps with 185gr 45acp +p would offset the cost per round if that becomes an issue with the DoD making decision. We all know how the military makes decisions.

  53. As a former Marine, I would recommend either a .40 S&W or .45 caliber XD handguns from the own U.S. Springfield Armory. They have a tradition of making good firearms at a reasonable price. It also would help provide more jobs here in the U.S.

    1. Beretta’s were made in Italy before the M9 contract, which stipulated a US facility as part of the contract. I’m sure Springfield could make the same arrangement…

  54. If our troop are so poorly armed and out gunned by untrained civilian forces packing 60 year old designed weapons and ammo , then why do our small arms over power them in every engagement. Giving rise to our 10,000 of their dead to but 1 of ours in actual firefight and home invasions.
    Something must be effecient and while no mstter the war, never have American troop expended as many rounds per kill, but you cannot blame that on poor quality of weapons and ammo.
    The AR is the most effecient combat rifle in existence if one figures in cost to build, maintain, Ammo and time training its operator
    I know of no reports where one GI lost his life
    because his 9mm was underpowered, but do know of playtime with live
    targets whete poorly placed shots gave rise to reports of one not
    falling quick enough.
    Which while scary,does not mean weapon did not do what it was designed for.
    Talk of not stopping druggy bad guys is pure bs, if you hit vital head heart they stop, and if one wants to compare big bore to small bore on druggies lets go back to phillipines and Moros.
    The 45 and 38 pistols and even the 30/40 Krag
    round took more than 1 hit sometimes to stop.
    I used to hunt Elk and bear with 30/40 krag and
    at 200 yards you heard it smack.
    I have known pistol wizards who sucked with long guns and rifle men that sucked with pistols and to expect some flunky grunt to
    Do better than qualify with both is asking a lot.
    When kicking doors your trigger time is with your AR and that is as fn close up as yoi can get.
    So this bull shit of remf or even officers who most often totally suck as gunmen, needing more stopping power in a pistol is bull, let them learn to shoot.
    Officers and senior enlisted men packing pistols dates way back into almost every nations military past when officers were gentlmen and their pistols were more a symbol of command than as a practical weapon.
    in eurppe and US civil war up til WwI those pistols shot more of their own men than enemies.
    In nam men bought their own pistols Revolvers in 45 and 38 specials as mainly it was officer’s pets and senior NCOs that got 1911.
    CHOPPER PILOTS had variety of machine pistols ftom WW II mostly German Italian and french machine which were great weapons,
    Know where term on a dead run comes from? Google it.

  55. If our troop are so poorly armed and out gunned by untrained civilian forces packing 60 year old designed weapons and ammo , then why do our small arms over power them in every engagement. Giving rise to our 10,000 of their dead to but 1 of ours in actual firefight and home invasions.
    Something must be effecient and while no mstter the war, never have American troop expended as many rounds per kill, but you cannot blame that on poor quality of weapons
    and ammo.
    The AR is today the most effecient combat rifle in existence if one figures in cost to build, maintain, Ammo and time training its operator
    I know of no reports where one GI lost his life
    because his 9mm was underpowered, but fo know of playtime with live targets whete poorly placed shots gave rise to eports of one not
    falling quick enough.
    Which while scary,does not mean weapon did not do what it was designed for.
    Talk of not stopping druggy bad guys is pure bs, if you hit vital head heart they stop, and if one
    wants to compare big bore to small bore on druggies lets go back to phillipines and Moros.
    The 45 and 38 pistols and even the 30/40 Krag
    round took more than 1 hit sometimes to stop.
    I used to hunt Elk and bear with 30/40 krag and
    at 200 yards you heard it smack.
    I have known pistol wizards who sucked with long guns and rifle men that sucked with pistols and to expect some flunky rear echelon grunt to
    be better than qualify ,no matter the weapon is
    asking a lot.
    Plain truth when kicking doors your trigger time is with your AR and that is as fn close up as yoi can get.
    So this bull shit of remf or even officers who most often totally suck as gunmen, needing more stopping power in a pistol is bull let them learn to shoot..
    Officers and senior enlisted men packing pistols dates way nack into almost evrry nations military past but they were more a symbol of command thsn as a practical weapon.
    in eurppe and US civil war up til WwI those pistols shot more of their own men than enemies.
    In nam men bought their own pistols Revolvers in 46 and 38 specials as mainly it was officer’s pets and senior NCOs that got 1911.
    CHOPPER PILOTS had variety of machine pistols ftom WW II mostly German Italian and french machine which were great weapons. Andcapable of one hand fire.
    Know where term on a dead run comes from? Google it.

  56. .40 makes sense but I was once told 10mm HP is devestating however; that would mean exclusive ammo for it and cost? However would be very safe from being stolen or lost ?

  57. Professional military also know in addition to others that a pistol is never first choice in any caliber when a carbine or rifle is available. That’s why we issue long guns to military.
    If penetration of body armor and layered clothing wasn’t a consideration and the Geneva Conventions didn’t prevent it, modern high velocity, high energy hollow point ammunition could be use and make the caliber question less vexing. But, considering that penetration will always be important and it’s not likely that the GC are going to change anytime soon, the options have to revolve around a ball or flat point metal cased ammo that functions 100%, can penetrate heavy clothing, glass windshields, light metal such as vehicle doors and light body armor at close range. That means velocity and energy are always going to be part of the equation. The Army needs to either accept the wear that comes from that formula and the increased cost or take a chance on a new caliber not yet used by US Forces. Rifles and shotguns give knock down power but nothing they are willing to carry and that the average soldier or Marines is going to be able to master for fast close combat in a handgun is going to come without cost and compromise.
    There are no magic bullets and the average skill set, higher today than ever before, is still a limiting factor.

  58. Keep in mind and I believe it may have been mentioned earlier in this thread but JHP ammo is outlawed by the Geneva Convention.

    1. In reading these posts, I seem to see a lot of referrals to the Geneva Convention and the Hague convention. Why do these rules prevail when our enemy now uses IEDs, and in Viet Nam, a whole assortment of weapons specifically made to mame instead of kill. The aforementioned conventions should be relegated to the history books. I love the quote, “The object of war is not to die for your country but to get the other b_____d to die for his.” We, as a nation have not won a war since WWII. Rules are part of the problem. We need to use the most lethal ammunition available.

  59. the relatively soft recoil of a full frame 45 is attractive and always has been. I think that will be the benchmark that people will “shoot” at. Could beef up a full size 9mm to use +P+.

  60. I will make this short ! I carried a M60 machine Gun w/100 rounds attached to it plus a 1911 45acp Gov. Issue plus 7 magazines and extra ammo in my ruck sack , and was glad I had it ;;
    They should have never changed to a 9mm , one shot one kill !

  61. Leave it to the DoD to take the most expensive, time-consuming route.

    How about some common sense instead:
    1. Trade in the M9s for 92A1s
    2. Stop using the cheap-s**t CheckMate mags; issue Mec-Gar mags instead.
    3. Issue 124gr.+P ammo – either Speer Gold Dot or Federal HST

    These three simple steps will solve at least 90% of the ‘perceived’ problems, and eliminate the re-training needed for a new platform – which is exactly why DoD will never take them.

    1. Very sensible comment.
      As an old marine, I have an emotional attachment to the 1911A1.
      But I have to admit, I’d rather have a 13 rd Glock 21 that always goes bang even when filthy than a temperamental 1911, however modified, packing 7 or 8 rds, when it hits the fan.

      Getting back on point, a solid 9mm platform (e.g., Beretta, Sig, Glock, M&P, etc) packing 15 to 17 rds of decent ammo – not the garbage FMJs that DOD buys from the lowest bidder – will hold its own against .45 ACP FMJs.

    2. As an old Navy Corpsman, who could only carry a .45 when I was at FMSS in Camp P in 1968, I appreciate the best weapon ever made, one that I could assemble and disassemble in my sleep; one that I did not EVER have to worry about misfiring; one that would stop a gook at 40 yards, yes it did; one that I would trust my life too.

  62. the US military combatant forces in WW2 had the Hague Convention restricting the ammo in use.

    cheers, ya’ll

  63. 14 targets 8-10 rounds…that’s why a double stack magazine. As USMC if I’m down to my handgun…I NEED as many 45 rounds as possible as you know the SHTF if that’s the weapon I’m down too.

  64. Why play by the Geneva Convention rules when our opponents do not. If hollow points will bring down a drugged jihadist, who has the intention of dying in the first place, so be it. All this politically correct crap in our Military is one of the reasons the enemy is willing to keep on fighting. I’m sure Patton, Bradley or Eisenhower would never have followed our current “Rules of Engagement” policy.
    As for the 45ACP vs. the 9mm controversy, I see no reason why the tried and proven 1911 platform should have ever been abandoned. Perhaps an upgrade to the double stack magazine would be more then sufficient to bring it back.

  65. …physics says that enegry enough to actually knock someone down will also knock-down the shooter…
    actually the “knockdown” comes more from shocking the nervous system when the surrounding flesh hydro-expands during maximum energy transfer, as anyone who has had a “swat” (corporal punishment) can attest. Note how large live targets tend to drop straight down when effectively shot. Hence the argument for larger diameter bullets to help effect stopping in the target and not continuing on through, especially with required hardball. .50 cal lead ball anyone?

  66. I do not see any place for the 40 10mm rounds although I like the 10 immensely but the 40 is a waste except…..
    HAD to be mid 90’s w e purchased a lot of 5000 supposedly seconds of 150 grain hollow point 40 cal ammo, @ good price for plinking I thought.
    We loaded it up to our normal Loadings in used
    casings same primers and powders.
    We had a couple beer kegs that so far only magnum rounds had penetrated from 357 to 44 mag and not but hottest loads clear through.
    I remember son firing the 40 through the Beretta and damn the bullet cut clear through one side where as XTPs had barely or just splattered.
    He emptied his mag and then we used the taurus 100 and same results.
    We had a hundred rounds and we moved kegs until they did not penetrate at about 75 yards, and now remember these powder charges were for plinking not serious stuff.
    That night we worked up loads until we were most assuredly pushing the envelope and strength of the pistols.
    Next morning I had all the specks matched bullet wrs and new cased matching wt brass with hand charged abd scaledpowder.
    First hotter than day before rounds went clear through both sides even out to 100 yards which was all we had.
    No I never got in direct contact withsupplier but we ordered5000 through a straw .
    Nope not same bullets and were true seconds of some off brand
    Do know that our first came from some Legal Eagles , military and gov surplus buyer of ammo who is now out of buisness and thats all I got to say about them except for 1 more question; If they had them in Mid 90’s do they still have them.?
    They weighed almost very dead on 155 grain odd cookie cutter style open point with a recessed point of hard material inside the cup. Maybe some of you legal eagles may know of them and could they of come from failed FBI weapons of 10mm.
    Came back to old head out of nowhere.
    This was during outlawing of cop killer bullets..

    1. Sounds like Federal Hydro-Shocks. Federal now makes the HST. The small metal tip in the center has been removed. It was discovered that it causes the bullet to wad up with material upon impact with soft tissue and clothing and keeps the slug from expanding. It wasn’t doing as much damage as a JHP.

  67. I am responding as a marine who used the 45 and then was issued the 9 when over seas.the issue of cocked and locked as with the colt did bother me as many personel that would carry it were ill is one of my favorite pistols of all time,nothing can compare to a heavy slow easy recoil as in predictable recoil of a large caliber slug at close range ,espcialy since full metal is required by international law.the glock does have the required action to easily train and work for our services as much as I hate to say it,as I like a good lookn gun,but that is personal and does not meet any critieria,so with that said I would stick with a large caliber such as the 45acp,and keep the same logistics in place but change personal weapon is double action and single action so I may engage acuratly beyond 70 meters or so with a 45…cz 75b is mine with great adjustable night sights and 14 rounds per mag,,,just sayn,,,mine is made in turkey and is heavy and well made…

  68. I shoot a Beretta 9 and its fine for me but if I wanted more stopping power I would go with the 45 acp. Its been around for ever and is a perfect gun for shooting to kill with one shot.

  69. whoever figures out how to field an RPG in a pistol platform will be fabulously wealthy. physics says that enegry enough to actually knock someone down will also knock-down the shooter (unless explosive warheads are used; thus the holster size RPG). byw, the RPG will defeat any body armour in existence. the need is for an explosive round that will incapacitate, say three or more jibadguys, if the round arrives within 24in of the target.

    cheers, ya’ll

  70. “Stopping-power,” “knock-down power,” and “terminal performance,” are a joke when we’re talking about FMJ round-nose ammo that DoD utilizes per Hague and other international agreements. Ditto for the ridiculously-hot NATO-spec ammo for the M-9, which routinely breaks locking blocks in our aging fleet of M9’s.

    ‘Increasing’ the performance, such as was done with the newest ‘green’ 5.56 NATO ammo, is a recipe for reduced service life and increased breakage of whatever new system is adopted.

    And sorry .45 fans, it’s not coming back anymore than currently issued. And .40, .357SIG, etc- dream on, not going to happen, ever, unless you’re a coastie and already issued a .40 because they are DHS.

    They will tweak the design of the 9mm ball round and claim an incremental improvement in performance. Pencil-pushers will claim increased performance, but the guys in the field will still need a rifle to do rifle work- no free lunches.

    Anyone seeking “stopping power,” or “knock-down power,” from a service pistol hasn’t ever shot anyone with a handgun- it will never be a rifle or carbine- ever.

    1. 1911 .45 acp has proven itself for over 100 years & any Marine who needs more than 10 rd magazines of .45 acp needs to be in the air force. If you can’t hit your target shooting more will not help. What happen to one shot one kill? That was what we were taught in the old Corps.

  71. A bit extreme there, yank!

    This is just enjoyable speculation, not a congressional debate…breath deeply a few times and have fun!

    We all have favs and we all have opinions… That’s what our country stands for.

    You’re right about there are rules to follow.

    That’s what make this a discussion.

    If any ammo was allowed the 9’s would hold there own, however there are international rules to consider.

    In my opinion that brings us back to the 45…however, I believe it would need to carry more than 8-10 rounds.

    It sure is awesome to be able to express a public opinion and not worry about a knock on the door because I did!


    Thanks for listening.

  72. Hahahaha. Considering there are already 6 pages of comments, I’m not sure the title “The End to the 9mm vs. .45 ACP Debate?” is appropriate.
    If “stopping power” is the goal, then the M&P45 is going to be hard to beat, especially considering S&W’s history with the govt.
    On the other hand, if defeating body armor is the goal, then I’d look for a .357 SIG. Interestingly, the NC Highway Patrol chose the .357 Sig as their caliber of choice, specifically for its penetration ability. However, they ditched the S&W M&P version for the SIG P226 after mechanical problems surfaced on the S&W.
    Both are well established and proven in the law enforcement world, and either would be a good choice. I’m excited to see the results of the range trials.

  73. Yes all good comments but it seems like all that flaps their jaws the most will probably never have to pack one in 120 degree heat. Yeah glock could be a choice seeing that it is light weight and reliable. The only thing is plastic parts. H&K to me seems to be an over kill. Too damn heavy. I have been deployed to Iraq and carried the M9. A lot of days I wanted to chuck that junk in a canal. How many times will the Army choke on their own plans. They switched to the 45 because the 38 didn’t do the job. And now look .Gee no one learns from history. A lot of vietnam vets hated the 1911 because they were worn out. If the Army would have just kept that platform we would have saved millions.( I am not claiming to be an expert)

  74. All the talk about unique calibers and their pros and cons are nice but as long as we belong to NATO we will be sticking to 9mm or 455ACP. Right now with the current Gov being Democratically controlled one can pretty much bet on an American built weapon as well even though a foreign piece might serve us better and cheaper especially since we are going to be losing 26% of the entire military by 2017 anyway atleast according to the current mandates. I am betting on a modified 1911 with a dedicated safety but we shall see. Dr Dave

  75. the glock 10 mm, in the glock 20 improves the offering in many respects. the 40 caliber and 10mm rounds can use lighter loads for practice, and muscle memory but higher speeds, and more knock down power can be obtained. not as well that you get a double stack and 15 rounds. the military would make a better candidate for handling the 10mm power and recoil. FBI wimps killed a great semi auto round cause it was ‘too much to handle’. perhaps the FBI are just a little wimpy.

  76. I honestly think this is a stupid move. Honestly, if you go to war, the stopping power of a 9 vs .45 is not much different. However, firepower of a 9 is much more superior in every way. On top of that, it’s easier to manage when fire a 9mm. The cartridge is readily available anywhere around the world. Army don’t usually fire a handgun anyway, but if they do, I would imagine they would choose something that’s reliable and easy to control. If a 9mm doesn’t do the job, you don’t play with it. Just spend money on a fiveseven once and for all then. This is lame.

  77. The new weapon should be American made, A Ruger say, SR45 with its 10 rd mag, and very egromonic grip and ease of firing. coupled with new self-defense ammo, .
    Actually Smith M&P in .40 or .45 would also probably be a good choice, But always paired wight good self-defense ammo, Regardless it should be American Made.

  78. I believe it will be the Glock or some version of it in 40 or possibly 357Sig. Glock can produce the number of guns they need almost as fast as they can distribute them to the forces in the field. I have the 40 cal Glock 22, 23, 27 and 35 all with conversion barrels to 357Sig and 9mm. All are reliable with either barrel in place, even the 9mm works with the 40 mags. I would think that the ability to convert to various calibers with just a barrel swap would be a big plus for the military. Also Glock is currently supplying guns with 3 mags to law enforcement for under $400 each, it will be hard for a newcomer to match that.

  79. What is wrong with you people ? “we got enough guns to last” that’s why we have any amourey . Just want to spend more money on wasted procurements. And get rid of fmj and do hollow points, an idiot who doesn’t know “the Hauge Convention” much less international protocals we are leaglly required to follow. Oh ; I forgot; we are the USA and can do whatever we want. What company does the person have stock in ? We don’t need no replacements. Why not just NUKE them.

  80. I like( hide behinds) comment, the FN is a great platform, accurate and soft on the recoil hence easy on the body.

  81. “The U.S. Army has settled the age-old 9mm vs. .45 ACP debate with its latest request for a new service pistol with more “knock down” power.”

    LOL. We’ll see if the Army adopts a 45. We have seen the search for a new pistol play out a few times over the past decade or two. The answer has been the same each time.

    “The Army therefore wants a new platform that offers increased reliability and durability.”

    Frankly, Berettas are not bad on these accounts. Anyone thinking that a M1911 is better should refer to Ken Hackathorn’s now famous quip. He is quoted as calling the M1911 “the best close quarters combat handgun in the world, and king of the feed way stoppage.”

  82. The DOD held a joint service side arm competition about 5 years ago and abruptly discontinued it without a reasonable explanation. Maybe its because when Obama got elected, suddenly peace broke out around the world, and the DOD needed to eviscerate its budget.

    Forgive me, I digress.

    Many of those sidearms developed or entered into this competition made it to the law enforcement and civilian market. In my opinion, the hands-down winner of the competition is the H&K 45.

    I have 1911s and a myriad of other sidearms. The H&K 45 has the most natural comfortable grip and adjustment options I’ve ever seen. It’s rated at 20,000 rounds before needing service. Has a lifetime warranty. Threaded barrels for suppressors, etc….

    With the exception of my Kimber, I’m now a H&K sidearm owner across my other caliber of choice, the 9mm. Sold my Springfield XDMs in .45 and 9mm, my Berrettas and Taurus.

    The Army needs to look no further than the H&K 45.

    1. Obama made peace break out? What? The world is on fire right now, have you read the news? If we had a stronger president much if this stuff wouldn’t be happening right now.

  83. I have to agree with Bill on the Glocks! You can’t tear it up! I did, recently, hear of a Marine who broke his…after more than 20+ thousand rounds. But I’ve never heard of another.
    As far as the 9mm…..If the military would get rid of the crappy FMJ ammo, and go with a good JHP I think they’d have far better success. Just my humble opinion.

    1. # Rob FN 5.7X28 is an excellent Weapon. I think if the Ammo was to be Tweaked in the addition of a little bit more power it would be the Weapon of choice. There is Armor Piercing Ammo for the 5.7 but only the Military, and Law Enforcement have access to this Ammo. The 20 Round Magazine is a major plus for the 5.7. I have seen several articles from FN that the weapon has never failed, or Jammed. O-50 Yards. A Head Shot? Piece of Cake. Mine is equipped with a Green Laser. Head shots, Shoulder ,Knee, any exposed body part that is not covered by Body Armor is fair game, at 100 Yards The Green Laser is on the money. I have been told that the 5.7 Armor Piercing will penetrate Body Armor at 100 Yards. That is only hear say.

  84. As a vet, shooter & part time gunsmith I see what works and what breaks. I never see M9s because nobody buys them. They are a big clunky complicated gun. If you are going to use a 9mm gun there are better choices. The 1911 is a proven weapon, seldom breaks and can be shot well by anyone with a little training. I have lost many matches to petite women that have no problem handling a 45. The problem is that a 1911 needs to be carried cocked & locked which scares higher ups in the command structure that don’t understand the design or the role of a sidearm that when needed, needs to be drawn and fired in less than a heart beat. The option I see is the Glock. It is a proven design that works. You point it, you pull the trigger and it goes bang. In 30 plus years I have never seen one break. They can be field stripped and cleaned in less than 10 minutes. If one should break a blind monkey can be trained to do the repair. You drop in the new part and you’re done. No fitting, no nothin. Lastly, people that depend on a sidearm don’t like safeties on handguns . They want to point, pull and hear a bang. They don’t like the possibility of anything going wrong, like missing or forgetting the safety, when it comes down to who gets the shot off first. Glocks would be a good option but who knows what will happen when generals and politicians get involved.

  85. I have limited trigger time on FNH 5.7×28 pistol and rifle 1500 maybe rifle and 1/4 that with pistol and any combo that fires same rounds is in soldiers favor.
    Let me say one thing, take any new troop with the FN pistol and in way less time he will be making Head shots at over 50 yards while cowboys and jarheads with 1911 are still trying to hit 55 gallon drums at 25 .
    The pistol field strips, cleans and reassembles then fires while most 4 5
    autos take longer..
    YARDS easily.
    Show me a 45 round that penetrates body armor let alone trauma plates.
    One reason 9 mm was chosen was that it would penetrate early ballistic
    nylon and steel helmets which a 45would not.
    Hence the reason for pointy 124 gr 9mm.
    The rifle is an urban, close quarter brushy or jungle terrain wonder , and its
    bullets go clear through 6″ or trees and on burst no recoil; and has a fifty (50) round magazine..
    The pistol fits hand well and to me it points natural, in a way a lot like the old Luger’s.
    The round in rifle up to 300 yards is deadly accurate on parr with m4, andits military bullet will indeed penetrate body armor as if it was butter;
    We may not always be fighting dumb as rock civilians whose ideals over
    power brains , but against real soldiers with good equipment
    The pistol is so fn accurate even army grunts might be able to master it or
    at least due to no recoil and lots of bullets get a ricochet on target.
    Training to hit center mass is almost usrless if our military is to fight future enemies with equivelent body aror to ours, and acvuracy must once more come to fore because less target areasto incapaitate ones enemy, spray and pray went to hell with the AK armed Arabs.

  86. 45 was a great round – still is. But, its problems penetrating newer body armor would seem to rule it out.

  87. When I was in the Navy in the 1960’s if we were on guard duty we had the old 1911 45 cal.
    I did not even know they went to the 9mm.
    The 45 cal has a lot more stopping power then a 9 mm

    1. # Ernie White, I agree with you no doubt about the power of the 45. From when the Testing first began between 9MM and the 45ACP There was a big push by NATO for Ammo to be inter changeable by all members of NATO. Even though the 45ACP did meet and exceeded all requirements, and surpassed Beretta in performance. The only reason the 9MM was accepted is NQATO uses the 9MM and America is the only one who produces the 45 Caliber Ammo. Personally I think the Colt 45 is the perfect combat Weapon. If you have an enemy coming at you on some sort of Wacky Weed? You better have a 45. 9MM is not going to stop him.

  88. I would rather see a pistol that fires the 5.56×45 round, from a pistol with the magazine forward of the trigger guard. Pistols are far enough down on one’s list of weapons that it makes sense for a military to not have a special round and supply chain for it, if the standard service round can be at all fired from a pistol. The 5.56×45 is perhaps too long for a magazine in the pistol grip, so moving it to in tront of the pistol grip like the Bergman Bayard, or the C96 Broomhandle Mauser makes an ergonomic pistol possible, and a integral can would reduce much of the muzzle blast.

    Some times you make the gun worse to make a better airplane.

  89. How about an American made weapon like the Ruger SR1911, great gun at a great price. I’m sure a military version would be awesome!

  90. I’m hoping the 10mm Auto would be their caliber of choice, but that’s wishful thinking. The 45acp is a great choice, but even 12 rounds is quite heavy. I don’t think 40s&w will make the cut, but I’d prefer it to the 9mm.

  91. I agree with above comments on the FN 5.7N. There are so many loads for that caliber that it can be used in both handgun and rifle. But, we have to remember that this is the US Government that is spending our tax money. And they will try to spend the most of it on the most senseless weapons possible. I am a certified FBI Firearms Instructor & worked in law enforcement for over 20 years, I have also worked for 2 different Government Sub-Contractors & saw the waste 1st hand. The FN 57N is one of my next purchases!

  92. Very simple solution start using 9mm expanding ammo instead of fmj something like speer gold dot maybe even a +p or just a plain jhp anything is better for stopping a person than fmj but I know there was something signed saying that the army would not use any expanding ammo total is imop

  93. Frankly, given the limited pistol training provided to troops, it’s not going to matter what caliber the military moves to. Shooting under stress is so much different than shooting on a range, the average soldier is not capable of hitting much of anything. Plus the battle rifle is their primary firearm therefore the pistol is not emphasized.

    Single stack .45acp pistols were able to be gripped by soldiers with smaller hands, but they couldn’t control the firearm. Heavier hitting calibers also could not be controlled.

    Good luck to the military on their search.

  94. The FN Five Seven. Light weight, high Cap, 20 or 30 rounds rifle cart. Has long range accuracy, and excellent stopping power and penetration.

  95. First, the Army never should have abandoned the 1911 .45 ACP. The Marines are already going back to it. Smart dudes. But the real problem is the sleek, slender profile of the 124 gr. FMJ 9mm bullet. It just pushes tissue around it, and damage is minimal. Then it exits the body with plenty of energy that should have been expended in the target. That’s why there’s all the complaints about no “knockdown power”. The Air Force, who were the first to want a 9mm, were using a flat point 120 gr. truncated FMJ, which was better at transferring energy into the target, and was still within the Geneva Convention. But the Army just had to take over claiming it was their job, not the USAF, to select firearms and ammo for the U.S. military. The Army went with the 124 gr. FMJ, all sleek and pointy, because it fed reliably. As far as the 9mm goes, the USAF had it right the first time. The rest is history.

  96. How about some input here from vets who served in Nam and the Middle East? Seems they would be in the best position to give some practical in-the-trenches information on what they would like to see in a sidearm.

    1. I served in the early 70’s and from my experience, a high capacity. 45apc would be a dream…loved the M1911 however a 1/2dozen more rounds would have been a nice feature. ..its not by accident that many special services went back to carry .45’s. Now it will come down a firearm that is reliable, durable and adds the extra rounds in a 45. JMHO.

  97. I hope they go back to the 45ACP. It has the knock down power that is needed and the m1911 style guns are very reliable and don’t cost an arm and a leg to repair. I hope Rock Island Armory the worlds who make the majority of M1911’s in the world gets selected. I have shot many m1911’s and I have to say that the Rock Island I have is one of the best I have ever shot. Also there cost are very reasonable to boot.

    1. Yup, I got a good laugh too. ROFL …. I guess not too many people know what they’re talking about.

  98. I wanted a large handgun, but some what smaller than my S&W 460 magnum. I purchased a Remington RI stainless 1911 and I love this weapon. I used an old Army 45 back in 1968-69 and liked it then but this new one is a pleasure to shoot. My twenty six year old daughter doesn’t weight but 115# and she loves to fire the 45 and does not flinch at the recoil, and is a dead shot with it .

  99. Sounds like the H&K USP is the answer. 13 rounds in a double stack mag, durabilty and reputation.

    1. The HK USP45 has already been used by some units. It’s a boat anchor though. People with smaller hands may have issues gripping it.

    2. I agree EdH, it is bigger. But I certainly don’t believe it to be an “Anchor”. I know some SPEC OPS use it, but they have their choice and are not committed to one pistol. I believe it to be the right choice.

  100. @ Brandon G.
    Something new isn’t cost effective. The preliminary guidelines are durability, that is based on the firearm company, and knockdown capability, that is the round.
    The 40 S&W was a LEO compromise between the 9mm and 45 acp. Some folks didn’t like the 9mm, they thought it wasn’t enough. Some didn’t like the 45 ACP because you mainly needed a large + hand to grip the pistol. The 40 is basically a cut down 10mm. Bigger than the 9mm but not quite as hefty as the 45 acp. There are plenty of hi cap weapons in 40 so an increase in ammo production would make it a decent choice.
    I prefer the 45 acp but I’m not making the choice.

  101. I personally think the .45acp is to large, if they want capacity they will have to have a double stack. Which in turn means a gun that will not fit the hands of a lot of service men and women, not everyone can fully grasp a double stack 45. The 40 is an OK caliber, but demand would hinder the process.maybe a .38 caliber round would be a good compromise, in a .40 case necked down. Wait wouldn’t that be a .357 SIG necked up, lol jk. We just need to give them something new IMO. We have learned a lot in past years that should give us the capability to rule out the old .45 or 9mm, or even the not so old .40.

  102. 9,40 or 45. Hi cap, accuracy, reliability and durability out of the box, Glock, S&W M&P, Springfield XD, FNH, Beretta. Name a top manufacturer and you will have an example. If the military wants a safety, as usual, then Glock is out.
    The 1911 was still in use and the M9 was being phased in when I was the Army. I don’t believe the 1911 is considered for anything but special operations anymore. The capacity of the basic 1911s cripple it compared to the others.
    I suppose we wait to see what the Army’s guidelines are. I’m sure we all recall the M-4 replacement testing and where the SCAR ended up!

  103. The biggest problem I see with the Geneva Convention is that it ‘regulates’ the use of certain weapons BUT it does not regulate the research into and the production of these weapons. Boy is that dumb!
    Take bio warfare for example. There are firms right here in America on contract with the government to keep the supply and research of these bioengineered death virus and bacteria strains moving right along. Do you see the irony here?

    1. The problem with the Geneva Convention is that it is outdated. If we don’t want to deal with pain and suffering then lets not go to war all the time. If we do then stop playing nursemaid flower child and use want puts the most hurt and deal with not fighting each other over gods or resources that are still plenty full.

  104. It would be nice if they let the military use hollow point with +p+ ammo then maybe we would not be having this conversation. Homeland security and our police can use them so why not the military? Oh yea the Geneva convention which no one obeys except us.

  105. While 45 cal of both rounds and weaponry are a great choice for use against civilians , it will not be worth diddly squat against body armored troop such as the upcoming Russian and Chinese or as a warm up Iranian troop.
    There are several hot loaded. 9mm that extend range of lethality and can defeat every armor type except a few expensive ceramic trauma plates,now for sale in Europe and Russia , and that leaves only metalurgy of theweapon to worry about.
    A change to FN Herstel pistol and rifle rounds and interchangeable mags, they make an AR upper, is what a lot of Nato states like.
    While the military bullet penetrates any body armor its wound ballistics leave a lot to be desired.
    The 308 is also strongly desired in Europe Nato and that goes for new design rifles absorbing recoil.
    IMSO the only decent package for pistol is a SIG in 357 a round that carries well and hits hard as …. It still needs more bullet research to be great military rnd.
    Heard of a hot 25 that might do the trick but it will take new platform as it is a lot like old 762×25 bottle necked but slightly fatter, and far faster than 9.
    I watched so many struggle to qualify with old 1911 45’s and Range Instructors eould get so frustrated that they called hits for officers and senior NCO’Svbecause they were running out of ammo..
    IF WE We want to f around with Russian and Chinese soon, then we had oughta practice on N.Korean Spec in their Armor or wait abit until Iran fields theirs.
    I am thinking hotter nines and new weapon; And am saddened to think US owned firms suck so bad that even S&W sucking on gov cannot compete.
    Look for a Hornady 9 mm In +P+ , as they are sucking up to DHS bigtime.

  106. Steve, you may be right… except for the fact that there will always be a need for a secondary arm that is not bulky and can be wielded very quickly.. I believe the HK M25 is used by some special forces as a secondary weapon that can also be accurate and has excellent stopping power. Downside: It is large. From research I have seen the 9MM + P is an excellent round. The Beretta 92A1 is reinforced for that cartridge. Yeah, I know the cutaway slide and slide mounted safety will stop it from being accepted but I would not be surprised to see the 9MM + P end up being the round of choice. Yes, I love shooting the 92 variations… 😉

  107. the 1899 convention was driven by the state of combat medicine. the greater damage caused by expanding rounds the british army (or maybe east india company army) manufactured expanding gounds at the dum dum arsenal in india. the wounds were horrific (as they should be), leaving many what would be survivable injuries today to die on the field or operating table. oddly, no one complained about the 60 and 70 calibre musket balls used in the american civil war. hardball ammo will drill holes and smash little. expanding rounds take the fight out faster and reduce the collateral damage potential of over-penetration. the world is guided by long-dead circumstances. have seen someone shoot themselves at contact range with a .45, and simply limp away to reach safety and medical attention. the “stopping power” idea is just as unreasonable with combat vets as it is with civilians. EVERYONE wants a bullet that will eliminate a threat with a single hit anywhere. what we don’t know about the .45 effectiveness (oh, and there was a fairly recent event where a cop had to shoot a perp 13 times with a .45 to stop him) is how many rounds are needed, how many hits per attempt, location of impact, bullet travel, vital organ destroyed, and that sort of thing. maybe the real issue is to give-up on side arms altogether. the ‘pistol’ versions of AR type guns might be the better pursuit.

    cheers, ya’ll

    1. How did the cop shoot 13 rounds at a perp? Reload on the run?

      How many times you hit someone is completely irrelevant. It’s how much damage each round does. A person who is fatally wounded will still advance for about 60-90 seconds. I can dump an entire seven round 1911 magazine in that time. I think, for me, this is what justifies the ‘shoot until they don’t get up’ philosophy.

      Now that I think about, I guess a revolver chambered in cal. .454 Casull is too much?

    2. i should go find the actual news article. if i remember right, it was a running fight, with the cop shooting 40+ rounds. the perp finally wen down after one to the foot, and two to the head after. when the perp was down, he continued to shoot (and miss) at the cop. finally the perp just quit. he lived to arrive at the hospital. think we agree that there is no “one shot/one kill” pistol round short of about .50cal (maybe). for this thread, we do not know: the army specs/requirements; the circumstances which demonstrate the need for more “knock-down power”. culturally,we are conditioned to believe that a big bullet should launch a bad guy about 10ft from point of impact, with 100% fatal results…with no regard to actual weaponary.


  108. @ Wagonmaster: A couple of corrections for you. It is not the Geneva Conventions treaties that prohibit militaries from using expanding bullets, but rather it stems from the Hague Convention of 1899. Specifically NATO membership is guided by Hague and the United Nations.

    Another correction for you is the U.S. Military can and does use jacketed hollow-point bullets on duty. Though it is banned from use in international conflicts, it is authorized for use during patrol on military installations and other designated facilities.

    That being stated, these types of expanding rounds will most definitely be an integral inclusion in the upcoming military weapons trials.

  109. That would be my choice. Without the use of hollow point ammo, 45acp excells above other rounds. M&P has some of the best ergonomics in any gun I have shot. Along with interchangeable backstraps for female shooters with small hands.
    Will the army grow up and except a gun that isn’t all metal?

    1. A mass majority of military will NEVER fire their handgun in combat. They need a side arm that is lightweight, not to big, and most importantly it has to go bang when they need it most. Sounds like a polymer striker fire would fit the bill.

    2. With Glock now Made in the USA, I’ve got to figure they stand a very good chance of getting this contract. Especially with the new slide mounted safety I keep reading about. I’m not a Glock fan-boy, but it’s hard to fight the specs, performance and reliability.

    3. The Glock made with the safety isn’t sold in the US, (17S). It is made for sale in Australia. The size of the slide and magazine releases are easy to upgrade, except on the 21.

      The military will never adopt a polymer framed pistol. I’ve seen Glocks blow out their polymer frames from over pressures firing factory loaded ammunition. Now that I said that, watch them adopt a Glock POS…

  110. One factor overlooked in this thread is that 9 mm is still the NATO common cartridge and can be found almost anywhere in the world. As we rely more and more on asymmetrical warfare, battlefield pickups and resupply from local sources may become more than a convenience. And progress in cartridge and bullet design has certainly kept up with handgun improvements. Since the cartridge does the work, we might see 9 mm +P hardball (no expanding bullets per Geneva) with high % antimony as the new standard service load with normal pressure FMJ used for training. This would still allow new testing for an upgraded M9 (retrofit kits as well as new guns?) and eval of other competitors without wholesale re-investment to upsize to .40 S&W or return to .45 ACP on a large scale, with all the logistics expenses that would involve. Just a thought.

  111. Given my career spans both military and law enforcement, I’ve had my pulse on both sides of these houses and knew this was forthcoming.

    That being said, I find it interesting the military wants more “knock down” power (which indicates a heavier round), at a time when federal agencies are looking at going back to the 9mm again; primarily because the .40 caliber is destroying their current handgun platforms.

    Some of this change can also be attributed to the fact that federal agencies also rely extensively on FBI /DOJ field and lab testing and are quite aware of the vast amount of technological advancements in the 9mm cartridge over the past 2 decades.

    From a federal perspective, there is little debate anymore that caliber size does not translate into “knock down” power, and has more to do with overall ballistics design and load characteristic with a given weapons platform. In addition, federal law enforcement tests also focus on the effectiveness of barrier penetration (windshields and doors) prior to soft target impact.

    Though they often operate under a completely different mission requirement, it remains to be seen if the military will adopt some of these federal test results. Given they have not completely ruled out the 9mm, this could indicate they may have taking the characteristics of newer 9mm technology into account.

    The author quotes Beretta as having, “submitted numerous changes or product improvements that really address a lot of the shortcomings.” I must say that is an understatement. Beretta has desperately attempted to bend over backwards in an attempt to keep their military contracts. But the military insists on a new platform and my gut says it won’t remain with Beretta.

    Many are unaware there was a controversy 30 years ago back when Beretta was awarded their contracts. There was even a Congressional investigation into information that wheeling and dealing occurred in exchange for allowing our military presence to remain in Italy.

    Such controversy begs the question – that while Beretta does make a fine firearm, was it really the best platform for our military or were hundreds of thousands of us forced to carry Berettas over some backroom political deal?

    Regardless of where the truth lies, I’ve never cared for the M9 and will be happy to see it go. I always qualify expert marksman, but honestly it is not comfortable in my hand and so I am looking forward to seeing what the military deems appropriate to replace it with.

    Nevertheless, I will always prefer the Glock I carry on the law enforcement side of my career.

    1. Awesome. Nice to see someone really know what he/she is talking about. I’ve heard too many knockdown kitty crap around here. But yeah, I’d checkout Beretta PX4. My favorite for sure. It fits into my hand so perfect like a glove.

    2. Maybe they can revive the Beretta Cougar in 40. All metal, reliable, accurate, external safety. A true and tried handgun. And a precursor to the PX4 series.

    3. “Knock down power” is a myth. Skip down to the part about Newton’s Law.

      In 30 years as a paramedic I have seen people shot with everything imaginable. Other than a head shot, (and sometimes, even if you are head shot), no matter what you are shot with, you will keep going until you stop. I have seen people shot with 9mm, .40S&W; 10mm; a lot of .45ACP and even more .357 mag. I’ve seen someone shot with a .45ACP 5x at point blank range that kept going.

      If you had a round that knocked down the person shot with it, Newton’s law says the recoil would have to knock you on your ass. I can’t even believe this is an ‘issue’ with the US military. Perhaps they should hire someone with a rudimentary knowledge of physics.

      Primary cavity is what kills. The bigger the cavity, the greater the lethality.

    4. @ king Ferdinand II or Argon: I will assume since you replied under my comment that you were addressing me.

      I am curious as to why you would post a comment with a link in regards to the myths behind “Knock down power”, when my comment as well as the underlying replies clearly show we all already concur with the same school of thought.

      You either did not read everything I wrote and assumed we needed a tutorial, or you were simply agreeing with us and chose to contribute additional information in support of our existing position on the matter.

      I will assume the latter; otherwise I see no purpose in your comment.

      In the same spirit of your contribution, allow me to refer you and other readers to an impressive educator who is both a surgeon and a leading tactical medicine trainer for law enforcement; enter Dr. Sidney Vail.

      Given his specialty as a trauma surgeon combined with his years of experience as an embedded law enforcement tactical team medic, trainer, and volunteer, he has become one of the foremost authorities in gunshot ballistics trauma and has written several published works on the topic.

      One of Dr. Vail’s strongest points of contention is that caliber size does not have a correlation with “Knock down power”. Instead, his expertise establishes it has more to do with shot placement into vital organs, muscle, and bones combined with other applied characteristics of a given projectile regardless of size.

      I subscribe to Dr. Vail’s line of thinking as do many of my colleagues in an official stance taken by the federal side of law enforcement. However, it would appear that the military still feels a larger round equals better “Knock down power”.

      My original comment simply made mention of my interest in why there existed such a vast difference between these two organizations regarding this topic. But in the end, it would appear you and I agree.

  112. Perhaps we should issue tazzers to ensure we don’t enflict too much harm on those who would do harm to us? We also don’t want any service men or women to get a sprained wrist from firing a 45. We wouldn’t want their lawyers having a reason to sue the US Military…Oh wait, then we would get sued for undue cruel and unusual treatment for the tazzing!?

    1. Active duty military cannot sue the Army for negligence or products liability. It’s called the Feres Doctrine.

  113. A .40 SW +P ???? Let’s see …. That would be a…. 10mm! The .40 is a shortened 10mm with ballistics only slightly less then the 10mm itself. The military version of such a platform whould have to be a some what new design that was purpose derived for the .40. Not the current design path of a 9mm platform upgraded to a .40. The .357 Sig is a possibility but I don’t think in the long run has a chance. I thing that there might be an ammo sully issue there. The .45ACP is also a likely runner in this race. Even 9mm+P might be considered an option. 9mm isn’t bad if you don’t have to rely on just FMJ ammo. How about 100gr Power Points? They were very effective in Vietnam for those that used them.
    My Crystal ball leads me to think that if a can manufacture come up with a .40 SW platform thats purpose built for the cartage and its power, can also incorporate the as yet unknown requirments of the Services that it will get the nod. Time will tell.

    1. Hi Carl,

      I have some Hirtenberger 9mm +P ammo that is 100 grain with a flat nose soft point that is VERY effective. It has 500 ft/# out of a 4″ barrel. This was the ammo that the Germans come up with after the terrorists murdered all of those people at the Olympics some time ago. This stuff seems as effective as any hollow points that I have.

    2. Steyr M40. Originally a fully supported chamber for the .40, later downsized for the 9mm. Lose the trapezoid sights, and it’s ready to go. Multiple safeties for the government lawyers. Already has military contracts and history behind it.

    3. It would be SOOOO nice if the military choose 10mm. I am sure Glock would march out something new for the 20. Homeland Security will adopt whatever the military does and they will have to sell off a couple billion surplus rounds of cal. .40S&W…

      I would prefer Walther custom design a cal. .40 based on the P99…

  114. What about .40 S&W + P loads on a beefed up frame. I personally prefer the .45 auto as that was what I was taught with in the military but I can see how fast follow up shots might be tough on a womens wrist with the.45 auto. This wasnt a factor that had to be brought up as women werent allowed in combat back then. Now they are the .40 has a trajectory similar to the 9mm for coefficientcy. But lacks the one shot knock down power of the .45 auto. The only other viable options are to bring back the 10mm, or the .357 Sig.

  115. The Cracker does make an excellent point. Weak wrists result in failures that there is no cure for. Not the fault of the firearm but the fault of the selection of the firearm for the shooter.load. Necked down cartridges seldom ever fail to load. I love my little .32 NAA, a necked down .38 to .32. My personal choice and I do believe completion shooting such as they propose for July, would show this demonstration yields the most promising prospect.

    1. .357 Magnum failed to eject in this video. .357 Sig would be my choice in a comparison test, unless a good old wheel gun is in play.
      I would also hesitate to draw any conclusion about stopping power or penetration based on the ‘test’ in this video. Shooting through an epoxy sheet is not exactly illuminating evidence of anything.
      Nice to see the slo-mo though, and the 1911 is still the prettiest looking Semi made, no matter how ‘outdated’. imo

  116. I am a huge fan on my M9/92F platforms and have several. I do believe that it has possibly seen its day…
    As much of a fan as I am with my Beretta firearms, I’m equally if not more so a HUGE fan of my H&K plstforms in USP45/USP45C and the newer HK45. I feel they are equally as smooth and a pleasure to shoot as the Beretta. I was under the impression that the HK45 was under consideration for the US Military as a replacement for the M9 not that long ago. Perhaps H&K can renew most aggressively this pursuit.

  117. DoD dumped the venerable and effective 1911-M1A for the worst of all possible reasons: Politically correct ergonomics to suit growing numbers of female enlisted personnel, and lowest common-denominator interoperability with NATO. The truth is, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Keep the 9mm in service for more delicate sensibilities and reintroduce the .45 ACP with a double-stack high-capacity magazine for capable operators.

    1. You are “right on” Cracker. I was a training NCO when my unit received some of the first females soldiers. Had to order .38 revolvers for them, as they could not handle the .45. A few of them could not even handle the .38. The military went to the .45ACP because the .38 could not stop a Moro , during the Spanish American War. Then we went to a 9mm ( which is smaller in caliber and ballistics). Now again we are discovering the .38 and smaller calibers don’t work during a combat situation. Don’t you just love politics?

    2. I do love politics, Nighthawk. It’d be better than fiction for entertainment value, if the consequences weren’t so d@mned serious. The one place politics should never be allowed to affect, of course, is the federal government’s first priority of national defense and military readiness, but apparently some folks just can’t keep from it. And now, as if making a hash of small arms wasn’t enough, they’re meddling with the regular order of “short arms.” It’s a wonder liberals ever get elected.

    3. The federal government’s top, over-riding priority is supposed to be upholding the constitution. Sadly, that’s not even a consideration anymore, much less a priority.

    4. For women? Yeah, right.

      “…and to establish a common NATO pistol round to simplify logistics in case of war with the Soviet Union in Europe. In 1979 the Joint Service Small Arms Program began searching for a replacement for the venerable M1911, and the 9x19mm Parabellum round was selected for compliance with the NATO Standardization Agreement (STANAG).”

  118. The article says 9mm, 40 cal an 45 cal. I don’t know why they would not consider 357 sig and 10 mm. Perhaps it is because of the limited number of manufactures of 357 sig and 10MM. I do think they would be impressed with the performance of both of the other cartridges. In fact I think the 40, 357 and 10 would be the top contenders.

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