.40cal to 9mm conversion barrel. Question!

ZeeZee Senior MemberPosts: 20,564 Senior Member
edited September 2018 in Personal Defense #1
I have a G23 that is one of my most oft carried CCW sidearms.  Not to mention the one I did that draw testing on the practice distance thread. 

I used to have a G19 that I stupidly sold in the mid 90s and regretted ever since. 

With the resurgent popularity of 9mm and it’s certain transition on the horizon for many.........folks........I’ve been contemplating. 

First, I thought of getting a G19 again. That’s the cost of a new gun. Then, I thought of getting a Lone Wolf 40/9 Conversion barrel to turn my G23 into a 9mm (like a G19). This can be accomplished for a fraction of the cost as compared to a new gun. 

But then I thought, it ain’t like I suddenly won’t have .40cal ammo. So, why/when would I swap out barrels and carry a 9mm cartridge as opposed to a .40S&W cartridge with proven ammo?

So my questions to you are as follows:

-Would you buy a conversion barrel as opposed to a new gun for the sake of saving money?
-Would you carry a 9mm over a .40 S&W it nothing were different than the barrel in regards to platform if you had both?

In other words......if ammo was not an issue.....why should I carry a gun in 9mm as opposed to .40 S&W when it’s theoretically the same platform?

I could see getting the barrel for practice and what not. But, should I really swap the barrels with intent to carry a different cartridge?

What would you do and why?  If you don’t mind. 
"To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
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Replies

  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 8,528 Senior Member
    If ammo is not an issue, and you shoot the gun well as it is, why change?

    When my daughter was with the Bureau, some female agents used a Glock 23 converted to 9mm, she preferred the .40, I just smiled.  
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 3,252 Senior Member
    Ammo could become an issue, no?

    No one can predict the future. It might become handy to have a choice.

    Probly not, but its possible, maybe.

    On the other hand, switching barrels can be an avoided chore as opposed to the ease of switching guns.
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 6,944 Senior Member
    Not a fan of the switch barrel notion.

    Yes, guys do it, and yes, presumably, it works, but Glock builds the guns with different extractors, ejectors, breechface cuts, etc... for a reason.  Believe it - if they felt they could get away with a single set of parts, they would:  the Gen 3 .40 ran on a 9mm recoil spring and they broke stuff; the Gen 4 got some re-engineering for the .40 and they tried running the early Gen 4 9mm's on THAT recoil spring. . .and they didn't work.

    So yeah. . . not a fan just for the engineering of the gun, but also because of the inherent pitfalls of playing "musical parts".  I illustrate it a lot with the concept of the convertible house/hunting shotgun.  Murphy says that the day your wife of kids need your riot 870 is the same day you've got a 28" barrel bolted to it and are out with your buddies hunting quail.  Or you get home from that quail hunt at 10:00 pm, decide to clean it tomorrow, and leave it in the case, unloaded, with the long barrel and the 3-shot mag plug in.  Guess when the home invasion will happen?

    Now ponder pistol mag swaps, barrel swaps, ammo swaps.

    Now think about how silly you - a guy who builds a full-tilt, quality-optics bolt gun at the drop of a hat - may sound if you talk about saving money by not buying a relatively cheap pistol.  It's a Glock, not a Les Baer.

    You and I differ on this topic - Despite access to a Dillon and a lot of free brass, my .40's will likely be GONE as soon as I reach a point their fuel is no longer free, so yeah, I would unhesitatingly prefer to carry an otherwise identical 9mm.  Don't see any real edge on the terminal side and a lot of disadvantages on the recoil side.

    And the new Gen 5 seems to have some edges to the innards and the grip shape (dumbass fiinger grooves GONE!  YAY!), so there's that. . .

    Time to repent for your error and buy a new 19.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 18,662 Senior Member
    Bigslug said:
    Not a fan of the switch barrel notion.

    <snipped>

    Time to repent for your error and buy a new 19.
    Yeah, THAT
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    Eh, I guess I can wait. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • LMLarsenLMLarsen Senior Member Posts: 8,337 Senior Member
    “I already did it.”  Not to a glock, but I got a Storm Lake 9mm conversion barrel for my M&P40 full-size, and it’s been flawless thru about 500 rounds so far. Dropped in with no fitting, and it locks up tight. 

    Same rational you posed; could a conv barrel work as well and save ~2/3 the cost of another pistol?  

    In my case, yep. 
    “A gun is a tool, no better or no worse than any other tool: an axe, a shovel or anything. A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it. Remember that.”

    NRA Endowment Member
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 18,662 Senior Member
    edited September 2018 #8
    In the spirit of full disclosure...
    I do have a 357 Sig barrel for my G22, guy wanted $25 for it, iirc, and I decided "why not?"
    I think I stuck it in the top of the safe after I played with it a few times
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • CHIRO1989CHIRO1989 Senior Member Posts: 10,725 Senior Member
    Buy more guns!
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    Probably just wait and see what the new platform is going to be. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    With the availability of .40cal, and the fact I had a G23, it just never seemed practical. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    cpj said:
    Zee said:
    With the availability of .40cal, and the fact I had a G23, it just never seemed practical. 
    Practical  and any decisions firearms related..... those words don’t mix with you. 
    You know, like, “I’ve got a 4x pistol scope so I need to buy a barrel.” 
    In that case, I have G19 and G17 mags. So, I must need a G19 to go with the mags. Right?
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    Zee said:
    With the availability of .40cal, and the fact I had a G23, it just never seemed practical. 
    Exactly!  And if I thought for a minute that switching to a 9mm would give you (and I'm specifically talking about YOU) ANY advantage at all whatsoever I'd be the first to vote YES!  But in your hands I just don't see it.  You have a throughly vetted platform and no positive to a switch barrel at all except as a curiosity.  Go buy another trigger  B)
    I get it. 

    I have several 9mms and the only one I carry on any regular basis is my G43 and that’s due to size. Otherwise, it’s likely some flavor of .40cal. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • TugarTugar Senior Member Posts: 1,824 Senior Member
    edited September 2018 #14
    There are a few 9mm that operate the same way, ie striker fired.. Since you need mags anyway, why not just get a 9mm? A G19 is going to be pricey but you can get a few 9's for just over 2 bills. That's about the price you'd pay for the conversion anyway and you have a spare gun.
    A S&W Sigma is going to run about $270 and is so close to a Glock, that S&W had to pay Glock millions. 
    Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.
    Winston Churchill
  • zorbazorba Senior Member Posts: 19,092 Senior Member
    edited September 2018 #15
    cpj said:
    Zee said:
    With the availability of .40cal, and the fact I had a G23, it just never seemed practical. 
    Practical  and any decisions firearms related..... those words don’t mix with you. 
    You know, like, “I’ve got a 4x pistol scope so I need to buy a barrel.” 
    You guys sound like a bunch of Belly Dancers: "I have a new bright red veil that cost me $40, so I GOTTA get a $800 bright red Madame Abla costume!"
    Same-same. CPJ's right - get the damn Glock. You want it, you presumably can afford it, scratch the itch and unload it later if you must!
    -Zorba, "The Veiled Male"

    "If you get it and didn't work for it, someone else worked for it and didn't get it..."
  • TugarTugar Senior Member Posts: 1,824 Senior Member
    cpj said:
    Tugar said:
    There are a few 9mm that operate the same way, ie striker fired.. Since you need mags anyway, why not just get a 9mm? A G19 is going to be pricey but you can get a few 9's for just over 2 bills. That's about the price you'd pay for the conversion anyway and you have a spare gun.
    A S&W Sigma is going to run about $270 and is so close to a Glock, that S&W had to pay Glock millions. 
    There’s less than a zero percent chance of that happening. 
    Functionally it's  ABSOLUTELY IDENTICAL down to the takedown. Just 200- 300 hundred cheaper than the Glock. That's pretty fickle, but...not my money. 
    Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.
    Winston Churchill
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    Yeah. No. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 6,944 Senior Member
    Zee said:

    ......if ammo was not an issue.....why should I carry a gun in 9mm as opposed to .40 S&W when it’s theoretically the same platform?. . .
    On further reflection, there IS an opportunity for some useful science here.

    If you're comparing Jell-O shoot data for the heavy-for-caliber duty round options (147gr 9mm, 180gr .40, 230gr .45), you'll see a tendency for the 9mm to penetrate deeper except where it falls slightly behind in the auto glass test.

    You kill a lot of pigs.  Let me rephrase that, you kill pigs by the metric buttload, and have no problems waiting to set up a specific shot and meticulously probing through the resulting gut pile to confirm the results.  The latest chapter of the "Duty Caliber A versus Duty Caliber B" debate is, "if you can't tell the difference with a smaller round (in incapacitating effect), and you get more and better-placed hits across your workforce overall, then why pay for the difference (in ammo cost, weapon wear, and shooter-related recoil issues)?"   The operative in all of that is of course "Can we REALLY see a difference?"

    Just sayin', you're probably one of the best guys on this sphere to put the various bits of lab data and beer-drinking hyperbole to a practical field test.  You've already done a fair job of testing 5.56 on swine. . .If that helps you buy a new pistol, my work here is done.  ;)


    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • zorbazorba Senior Member Posts: 19,092 Senior Member
    Polymer 80 FTW! Customize it as you like.
    -Zorba, "The Veiled Male"

    "If you get it and didn't work for it, someone else worked for it and didn't get it..."
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    It has it has been my intent to get a pig with a 9mm. But, have been unable to convince one to come close enough whenever I had a 9 on hand. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    edited September 2018 #21
    Think I’m just gonna get a 19 eventually. 

    Doll it up with a threaded barrel and a brake.  May even splurge for the MOS model and put a red dot on it?
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 6,944 Senior Member
    Zee said:
    Think I’m just gonna get a 19 eventually. 

    Doll it up with a threaded barrel and a brake.  May even splurge for the MOS model and put a red dot on it?
    Well. . .again, you'd be the guy to test it.  I am trying REALLY HARD not to be the technology-avoiding Luddite on battery-powered pistol sights, and if you can't kill one, I might consider giving them a fairer shake.  All the same, I've dabbled briefly with a couple, and as someone who has been burning "FRONT SIGHT!" into his brain housing group for 30+ years, I don't see the appeal - - even considering that my eyes are turning steadily into crap.  I find myself locking onto the sight and wishing that damned red UFO wasn't distracting me.

    Threaded barrel and a ________?  ;)
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • LMLarsenLMLarsen Senior Member Posts: 8,337 Senior Member
    Zee said:
    Think I’m just gonna get a 19 eventually. 

    Doll it up with a threaded barrel and a brake.  May even splurge for the MOS model and put a red dot on it?
    Look up “Roland Special.”  You’re welcome. 
    “A gun is a tool, no better or no worse than any other tool: an axe, a shovel or anything. A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it. Remember that.”

    NRA Endowment Member
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    Bigslug said:

    All the same, I've dabbled briefly with a couple, and as someone who has been burning "FRONT SIGHT!" into his brain housing group for 30+ years......
    I’ve been a front sight person as well. But, after my last course..........that’s changing. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    LMLarsen said:
    Zee said:
    Think I’m just gonna get a 19 eventually. 

    Doll it up with a threaded barrel and a brake.  May even splurge for the MOS model and put a red dot on it?
    Look up “Roland Special.”  You’re welcome. 
    Yep. That’s kinda the idea. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 6,944 Senior Member
    Yeah. . .there's advantages - I just keep wondering how big they are.  My Inner Luddite keeps thinking of the Peacemakers used to literally drive nails, or the WWI iron that had who knows how many officers shot or shelled out from under them, dropped who knows how many times, and a hundred plus years later, their sights still have yet to crack or fog a lens, short out, or use up their first set of batteries.  Are the Game Boy sights buying you SO MUCH of an edge that what they give you is worth the fragility?

    Got nothing against "Cool and Bitchin'", it's just that I've got this decided nagging preference for "WORKS" and comparative "Safety From Stupid".

    Maybe I'm overly clingy to my axes made of stone. . .I'm just not sure they're showing us bronze or iron yet.


    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    I wasn’t talking about red dots. I was talking about my shift from focusing on the front sight to focusing on the target. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    Wow. Just priced Leupold and trijicon red dots. 

    Screw that thought!  😳
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 6,944 Senior Member
    Then there's THAT. . .
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • EliEli Senior Member Posts: 3,074 Senior Member
    Zee said:

    -Would you carry a 9mm over a .40 S&W it nothing were different than the barrel in regards to platform if you had both?


    Yes.
    9mm holds more ammo and has softer recoil. I truly believe that all of the popular defensive rounds nowadays are equally effective when it comes to terminal performance...I see no reason to handicap oneself with a round that affords you less capacity and and more recoil, which makes for slower follow up shots.
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,564 Senior Member
    edited September 2018 #31
    I want to believe that.  But, it is difficult to give up a known for an unknown. 

    I’ve seen the effectiveness of the .40cal terminal performance and I’ve been impressed. To walk away from that on theoretical evidence is difficult. 

    Not saying the new 9mm ammo doesn’t work. I’m saying I know the .40cal does. 

    I’m more of a “show me” than a “tell me” kind of guy. 

    And controlled gel test ain’t it. 

    When I walk out with a .40cal, I know what it can do. When I walk out with a 9.......I hope it will. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
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