Army Says 9mm Not Enough, Pursuing Modular Handgun System

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Originally started back in 2011, the US Army has re-energized the Modular Handgun System program and has set an “Industry Day” for July 29th at the Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey.

The Army Times interviewed key members of the Modular Handgun System back in 2011 explaining the reasons looking for a replacement for the M9. In short, its all the reasons the shooting community has known about for decades but is primarily motivated by the pistols reaching the end of their service life.

“The M9 is at the end of its lifecycle,” said Maj. Art Thomas, small arms branch chief at the Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Benning, Ga. “It is an old weapon. We can do a lot better with what technology can provide us now.”

Lethality is among the M9’s several “limitations,” said Daryl Easlick, project officer for close effects. The requirement for a new pistol calls for “an increase in permanent wound channel,” which suggests something more powerful than a 9mm may be on the horizon.

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Hamstrung by ball ammunition, the Army is completing a  full caliber study at increasing wound potential. This study is currently being conducted by the Army. Considering high-pressure rounds like .40 and .357 SIG cause premature wear, this looks like an effort to move back to .45 ACP. Final cartridge selection will be discussed at the second industry day.

However, reading through the documents, it does not look like the military wants to move back to a 1911 platform. While an argument can be made for the platform like the USMC’s M45, the demand for modularity and advances in ergonomics. My guess is that the Army is looking for a polymer-framed, completely ambidextrous handgun with a external safety similar to the 1911. The striker-fired H&K’s, M&P’s, and Sig will certainly be considered.  Defense Media Network sums up the intent of the program best:

“Systems are encouraged to utilize ergonomic and design improvements to minimize the effects of greater recoil energies, reducing the degradation of shooter-in-the-loop dispersion thereby improving the probability of hit,” it adds.

The “modular” aspects of the MHS vision include, but are not limited to, compatibility with accessory items to include tactical lights, lasers and sound suppressors.

In terms of handgun reliability, the RFI identifies interest in designs with ratings of at least 2,000 rounds MRBS [mean rounds between stoppage], 10,000 rounds MRBF [mean rounds between failure] and 35,000-round service life.

Currently, the Army is on track for an RFP to hit the street in August, with 60-90 days for industry to respond. From down-selection, there will be two years of testing and trails before a final decision. The full funding profile of the program will not be revealed to the industry, but likely numbers are replacement of all M9s in inventory (over 400,000 units).

Interestingly, the USG is looking to go down a “best value” contract lane, allowing them to pick their favorite, not necessarily one that performs satisfactorily at the lowest price. The specifications are not yet finalized, but the Government plans on releasing a draft RFP for comments and evaluation prior to the final RFP draft.

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Vendors will be allowed to submit a maximum of two (2) designs each.

Details from FedBizOps on the second industry day Industry day are below. You can see the original RFI and Q&A from the first industry day at the Army’s web portal.

OVERVIEW
The Project Manager Soldier Weapons (PM SW) will be hosting a second Modular Handgun System (MHS) Industry Day on 29 July 2014 at The Cannon Gate Catering and Conference Center, Bldg #121, 121 Buffington Road, Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey. The purpose of this Industry Day is to: expand on information gained from Industry Day #1, to further exchange information with the industry regarding the handgun and ammunition draft purchase descriptions, and to better refine the acquisition strategy. This event is for U.S. Government planning purposes only and constitutes a request for exchange of information pursuant to FAR 15.201.

This announcement should not be construed as a Request for Proposal (RFP) or a commitment by the U.S. Government. The U.S. Government does not intend to award a contract on the basis of this Industry Day. THIS IS NOT A SOLICITATION AND DOES NOT OBLIGATE THE U.S. GOVERNMENT TO ISSUE A SOLICITATION. The U.S. Government will NOT ACCEPT proposals at this time. NOTE: The U.S. Government will not be responsible for any expenses incurred by a vendor’s decision to participate in this MHS Industry Day. All travel and other associated costs are to be assumed by the interested vendor.

INDUSTRY DAY FORMAT
The MHS Industry Day will start at 8:30 am EDT on 29 July 2014, with check-in beginning at 7:00 am EDT at visitor control as well as the Cannon Gate Catering and Conference Center. Industry Day will consist of a general session information briefing followed by an open forum question and answer session.

The Government intends to cover the following topics during the general session:

Program Overview
Handgun Requirements
Ammunition Requirements
Enablers /Accessories
Logistics
Programmatic Environment, Safety and Occupational Health Evaluation (PESHE)

The Government does not intend to discuss the following topics with Industry during this Industry Day include:

Test Procedures and Test Schedule
Internal Acquisition Process/Funding

Immediately following the general session, vendors will have the opportunity to submit written questions, which will be answered during the open forum question and answer session. The questions, and answers to all of the questions will be posted on Fedbizopps at a later date. Vendors will not be identified in the public announcement. All vendor information will be treated confidentially and discreetly. No vendor promotional items or giveaways will be allowed from industry. No cameras, tape recorders or other reproduction devices will be allowed.

REGISTRATION INSTRUCTIONS:
Due to limited space and time, ONLY FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION MANUFACTURERS WILL BE PERMITTED TO ATTEND. No more than four (4) representatives may attend from each vendor. This restriction will be strictly enforced. All registrants must provide a Government issued photo identification at check-in. INTERESTED PARTICIPANTS MUST REGISTER NO LATER THAN JULY 8, 2014. NOTE: FOREIGN VISITORS PLEASE BE COGNIZANT OF THE ADDITIONAL TIME REQUIREMENTS FOR REGISTRATION.

The draft purchase descriptions for the handgun and ammunition are marked Distribution Statement D. These purchase descriptions will be provided separately upon request and receipt of a completed Non-Disclosure Agreement, which is attached to this Industry Day announcement, and proof of compliance with any other required ITARS regulation. Please send your request and completed Non-Disclosure Agreement to the point of contact listed below.

All visitors must be registered in the Picatinny Arsenal Security System prior to Industry Day.

To register you MUST contact Mr. Vincent Turco, Contract Specialist, via email at, vincent.f.turco.civ@mail.mil and Dan Potempa at daniel.l.potempa2.civ@mail.mil. Interested vendors should include the following details in the registration email: company name; CAGE code; names of each (of the up to four (4)) representatives who will attend the Industry Day; and the nationality of each attendee. Each attendee must also provide a signed Non-Disclosure Agreement.

HARDWARE OF ANY KIND WILL NOT BE PERMITTED AT THIS EVENT.

NOTE: Foreign individuals will need to be approved and comply with all instructions determined by the Army Contracting Command Foreign Disclosure Officer. Information on foreign individuals will need to be received no later than 30 days prior to attending.

Any request for a substitution of personnel must be received no later than 48 hours in advance of the scheduled Industry Day and is subject to approval by the U.S. Government.

CONTACT INFORMATION:
For additional questions, registrants may contact Vincent Turco, Contract Specialist, via email at, vincent.f.turco.civ@mail.mil and Dan Potempa at daniel.l.potempa2.civ@mail.mil. No telephone inquiries will be accepted.

In the event of inclement weather, please check the Picatinny website: www.pica.army.mil for the status of delayed opening or closure.

Contracting Office Address:
ACC – New Jersey, Center for Contracting and Commerce
Building 9 Phipps Rd
Picatinny Arsenal, NJ 07806-5000

Point of Contact:
Vincent Turco
Contracting Office Address:
ACC – New Jersey, Center for Contracting and Commerce, Building 9 Phipps RD, Picatinny Arsenal, NJ 07806-5000

:
ACC – New Jersey, Center for Contracting and Commerce, Building 10 Phipps RD, Picatinny Arsenal, NJ 07806-5000
:
Vincent Turco, 973-724-2016


Nathan S.

One of TFB’s resident Jarheads, Nathan now works within the firearms industry. A consecutive Marine rifle and pistol expert, he enjoys local 3-gun, NFA, gunsmithing, MSR’s, & high-speed gear. Nathan has traveled to over 30 countries working with US DoD & foreign MoDs.

Nathan can be reached at Nathan.S@TheFirearmBlog.com

The above post is my opinion and does not reflect the views of any company or organization.


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  • Timothy G. Yan

    Not this again…

    • Nick Pacific

      Oh yes. This.
      Again.

    • Unfortunately——it’s pretty much a standing joke in a lot of training facilities.

  • Eric

    I know they won’t do this, but I really hope they choose to replace their M9’s with Glock 20’s. After all, I need cheap 10mm ammo.

    • Logic

      That would be awesome. I really wonder why no military adopted the 10mm, it looks like they can make some serious wounds.

      • Steve Truffer

        Pressure issues. The only way to get around pressure is to drop the 10mm to .40 performance. Full house loads were being put on .45 frames (like the Colt Delta) and it was a bad mix when you need the pistol to last 15000 rounds. Though, if they choose 10mm (I still hold hope), then there might not be any issues with steel cases. Enough pressure to obturate the steel like brass. Add to that the lower cost of steel, and its lighter weight (5-15%). They would actually have to teach soldiers how to care for a pistol, but the 10 has some ancillary benefits that might catch attention.
        Glock 20, Gen4 pattern, slide cutout for porting, offer threaded and ported barrels for clandestine and general issue respectively.

        • hod0r

          10 mm has only 7% higher pressure than .40, merely 2% more than standard 9mm NATO and less than high pressure 9 mm NATO variants. 10 mm gains its performance advantage from its relatively large case capacity at moderate pressure. Most other pistol cartridges either have small capacity or very low pressure.

          • Steve Truffer

            Yes, if you compare to 9×19. The problem is when 10mm showed up, manufacturers kept trying to put it in guns designed for .45. In those cases, guns were being hammered with over 50% more pressure than they were built for. The Colt Delta had a terrible issue with damage to frame rails. Feeding guns proof load equvalents is a concern. Hopefully any 10mm contenders keep that in mind

          • If you could get an early Delta Elite to last 5000 rounds you were doing good.

      • Burst

        If “compatibility with sound suppressors” is an issue, 10mm probably isn’t in the cards.

        • hod0r

          Nothing prevents 10 mm from being loaded subsonic. It can propel a 230 grain projectile 200 fps faster than standard .45 ACP and still stay subsonic (or even faster when sonic boom isn’t a factor).

          • If you load to subsonic levels it kinda defeats the purpose.

          • hod0r

            Depends on how you define the exact purpose. If you want a standard subsonic load, 10 mm can do that too better than .45 ACP.

          • Sulaco

            If you need a subsonic to be used in a pistol with a can to say take out sentries even the 9mm will have to be down loaded to subsonic. The same procedure is needed with the 10mm to get it to work low sound out of a pistol can and you get a slightly bigger punch at the receiving end.

          • valorius

            147gr 9mm is typically subsonic.

          • hod0r

            No, the projectile mass is increased which reduces velocity without the need for loading down. 9 mm subsonic is 147 or 158 grain with a full pressure load, not the standard 124 grain bullet with a weaker charge.

          • Sulaco

            Well the increased mass slows the bullet and it becomes subsonic same same…

          • Burst

            Whereupon you have to procure specialized ammo to use your suppressor.

          • hod0r

            Not if you make a subsonic load the standard. Since there is no military standard for 10 mm ammo all doors are open.

          • Rusty Shackleford

            That is true with every major pistol caliber other than standard 230gr ball 45acp. All subsonic loads including 147gr 9mm is specialty since the standard is the 124gr +p NATO round.

    • It won’t happen though. They and most companies now consider the 10mm a niche round.

      • hod0r

        5.7 never was anything other than a niche round and that didn’t stop it from almost being standardized (an even more niche round prevented standardization). 10 mm has objective benefits, i.e. it has the same capacity as .40 or .357 SIG but is much more versatile and all it costs you is about 3 mm in length.

        • n0truscotsman

          and it produces more muzzle flash, more recoil, has a larger grip, causes more wear and tear (which shortens service life), its ammunition is more expensive, therefore, it is more difficult to shoot accurate and effectively. and the inconvenient fact still exists that pistols aren’t primary arms.

          I will also add that 10mm isn’t adequate for suppressed guns. In order for that caliber to work, you need subsonic ammunition, which would require the army to acquire subsonic ammunition separately. More needless complexity.

          If 40 and 45 aren’t solutions for a certain set of reasons, those reasons pretty much shoot down 10mm before it can even take off from the airfield.

          I hope 10mm stays the hell away from any future military or police acquisition for good.

          • hod0r

            I already addressed the supposed unsuitability for suppression in a different post. In short: wrong. Nothing comes without cost. If the Army actually wants more from its sidearms it better get a cartridge that actually brings more to the table. In the form of a Glock 20 it would even save weight compared to its current sidearm.

          • valorius

            No glock will ever be adopted as standard issue for the us military. Way, way too many ND’s.

          • n0truscotsman

            I never said “unsuitable”, i said it would be less than optimistic to have to buy separate subsonic ammunition, which is a fact.

            Jesus you people need to read what I say instead of shoving your tongues in my mouth.

            yeah, more to the table. a 1mm larger hole and a bit more kinetic energy (but not substantially more, since the army is not going to buy hot 10mm like the aficionados’ handloads).

            and like i said before, more recoil, more muzzle flash, more expensive ammunition, faster slide cycle rate (which means less controllability and less service life), a larger grip (have you handled a Glock 20!?), and the inconvenient fact that handguns aren’t primary weapons.

          • Rusty Shackleford

            Inadequate/Unsuitable, yeah, major difference there. You really feel combative, don’t you? I had a feeling you were either having a problem with your blood-sugar or you were a kid, but after using the term butt-hurt, I have my answer. FYI: on that video you posted to prove your point, the surgeon said that the bigger caliber pistol bullets were more dangerous because they made a bigger wound channel.

          • n0truscotsman

            yeah when comparing magnum and rifle cartridges. Context is everything.

            Who is combative and butthurt? these are just electrons over the screen.

          • Sulaco

            Does the Army obtain subsonic 9mm for suppressed weapons now? And an’t that acquiring “separate” ammo?

          • Rusty Shackleford

            Yes it does, but to n0truscotsman, you and I don’t have the “real world experience when it comes to handguns” like he does. If anyone honestly thinks .40 or .357sig or even 10MM can’t be suppressed, either go buy one and a suppressor or at least rent one.

          • n0truscotsman

            Who said anything about anybody not having real world experience?

            lets not get butthurt over separate opinions this early in the game.

            I also never said that it couldn’t be suppressed, so don’t put words in my mouth.

            Funny how nobody is addressing the glaring concerns i mentioned before subsonic ammunition.

          • n0truscotsman

            Yes it does and is. Alongside JHP ammunition. Having to purchase subsonic ammunition isn’t a big deal since that is limited to SOCOM anyways. It is still needless complexity and most units never find themselves in situations where it is a requirement to use subsonic 9mm. Hell, or suppressed sidearms for that matter.

            Conversely, the army is also purchasing separate 5.56 ammunition types in addition to the recently adopted M855A1.

            The need for subsonic ammunition is dwarfed by the obvious shortcomings I have mentioned in my other post.

        • valorius

          5.7mm was not niche, it was designed specifically for use by NATO.

          • Sulaco

            Sounds like a “niche” to me Val…

    • valorius

      No way a glock will be adopted- too many ND’s.

      • abprosper

        Also the DoD has a lot of women and smaller men in its ranks that could not shoot the weapon accurately.

        This might be an argument for burlier soldiers but thats a political argument no one can win.

        Frankly This effort is a waste anyway, the DoD isn’t liable to actually buy anything and while civilian gun sales are hot its most CCW stuff and AR’s not Mil-Spec sidearms AFAICT.

  • Drew

    Hilarious.
    The US probably is just gambling to make Beretta drop their price or whatnot. 9mm isn’t going to change either.

    Despite that, the only adoptees with a chance any way would likely be FN and S&W, considering one has their pocket in the military and the other a notable american manufacter, both making polymer pistols with thump safeties, lightweight, and inexpensive

    • Tim U

      If they are serious about being “modular”, the only one with any real progress on that is Sig.

      • Drew

        “Modular” is a relative sense, I don’t think the Miltary really cares about buying a bunch of subcompact frames for a service handgun.

        Yet they do want about a thumb safety, so who knows what they want.

        • John

          Wait, when did they require a thumb safety? The P226 competed in the XM9 trials and we have the M11 today

          • Ben M

            The justification for this is that when decocked, the Sigs produce a DA trigger pull similar to that of a DA revolver, which historically the military considers to be an acceptable level of safety. The reality though, is that the M11 is generally carried by military personnel requiring concealment, and the Mk25 (226) is carried by spec ops. The thumb safety is an original requirement of the JCP (which the MHS evolved from). The original JCP called for 2 variants, one with and one without external thumb safeties (with the preponderance being the “with” variety).

        • john huscio

          HK vp9. I imagine a version with a manual safety would be easy to produce and at a competitive price….

      • Yep the 320 which I’ve found to be a good weapon. It’s not everyday you can walk in and pick a frame off the wall like any other product. Mix and match.

      • Lance

        No HK S&W and Glock beat SIG any day.

        • No way—I’ll take a 226 or 229 over anything the mentioned companies make.

        • Tim U

          That depends. None of the above are “modular”. Only the P250/P320 systems are truly modular handguns. If that is what they are really looking at doing, then it seems Sig is the only solid choice.

          If they are OK with any sidearm, then it’s anyone’s game.

  • vereceleritas

    Pistols reaching end of life cycle? Didn’t they buy 100,000 new M9’s recently?

    And with the Army’s recent track record on small arms programs, I wouldn’t blame industry for telling the Army to go f**k themselves. Putting money into R&D only to have it turn out to be a show and tell.

    • Vhyrus

      The nice thing about pistols is if the military drops the project you can always sell to the private sector and law enforcement. Besides, the gun companies aren’t going to thumb their nose at uncle sugar.

    • Ben

      The money spent on most of these competitions would have been spent on product development anyway. The competition gives it’s competitors about 2 years of free advertising and internet discussion which they wouldn’t have had otherwise.

      And if they do win they’re on the gravy train for the next 15+ years.

      Sounds like a net win to me.

      On the other hand, if we were talking about an Indian RFI. . .

    • Gallan

      M9 pistols were probably donated to Iraq/Afghan military. Third world officers there love pistols, since they are traditionally used for executions.

  • supergrover

    i hope the they adopt .357 sig, or a similar bottle-necked round. 10mm auto has too much recoil, and FN’s 5.7x28mm or the like is too overbore and weak. being the same caliber and overall length as 9mm NATO means more of the same equipment can be used to make it than any other round. it’s bottle-necked so it will be far less vulnerable too feeding malfunctions. also, velocity is the name of the game now, because of the increased effective range and penetration (for body armor).

    do not say 40 sw is better, because it’s not. it’s exactly the same as 9mm nato, only bigger, heavier and a bit slower. (yes slower, 9mm **NATO** is loaded hotter than the sammi standard 9mm para [that’s u.s. civie spec] or 40 sw)

    • bbmg

      I hope they convert their M9s to 6.5mm CBJ: http://www.gotavapen.se/gota/cbj/cbj_crtg.htm

      • n0truscotsman

        i am rather skeptical of the whole thing about the CBJ, although, if what they cite is even remotely true, that would warrant a replacement in my opinion.

        • bbmg

          There must be a catch, the physics seems to check out so I’m guessing it’s a cost/logistical issue.

          • Ben M

            Well… tungsten isn’t a cheap date. Like about 20x the cost of lead… granted it looks to use significantly less tungsten than a standard bullet would use lead (31 gr compared to 124 gr, about 1/4). Still, that would be 5x the material cost before you account for the polymer sabot, and the inevitably more expensive manufacturing process.

          • bbmg

            That was my first thought, especially as the tungsten subprojectile is the ball round. Pretty sure there must be a way to compromise though, say a slightly larger diameter and longer subprojectile with a thick steel jacket and lead core.

          • Ben M

            Yeah, I had thought about other materials to generate the same effect. Problem is the density of tungsten is something like 170% that of lead… and I am sure there are other differences between the physical properties of the materials as well. I think it would be really hard (impossible?) to recreate these ballistics with a lead based projectile, steel jacketed or not. A brief scan over the periodic table, and I don’t think you will get close to lead’s density to cost ratio with another material.

          • Sulaco

            Then getting something like it past the PC crowd that wants our troops to carry flowers not guns anyway, not to mention the NATO countries that would cry fowl and poop their pants if they saw this in service anywhere.

          • n0truscotsman

            There is scant information about that cartridge too besides from the manufacturer. No other independent testing.

            I wonder what happened to it? it seems like it descended into the vaporware portal, which usually happens because there is a obvious and glaring drawback.

            I am impressed with the spoon tip round. It seems like a obvious solution to any perceived deficiencies in 9mm lethality (or anything else for that manner).

      • Dracon1201

        God, that would be amazing.

    • Steve Truffer

      They said they wanted to avoid the pressure associated with .357 sig. 10mm can be moderated, and there’s always the option of porting.

    • Dukke1ine

      To me, the FN FiveSeven seems like the only gun who would justify swapping to a new handgun. 20 rnd mag, much better ballistic properties, low recoil and can utilize armor piercing rounds.

      • Dracon1201

        On paper.

        • bbmg

          And in practice unfortunately: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2009_Fort_Hood_shooting

          The list of injured survivors are people mostly shot in arms or legs – do you think that if the gunman had been using a 1911 instead of a Five-seveN, they would have been killed?

          Shot placement is critical – a hit to the head with a 22 rimfire is likely to be lethal, a hit to the leg with a 45 ACP likely will not. In this context, a pistol with lower recoil and more rounds is a better idea.

          Any argument to the contrary is more likely to be emotional than factual.

    • hod0r

      10 mm with a THV-type steel penetrator with polymer driving bands wouldn’t recoil much but be an actual step up in effectiveness.

  • bbmg

    Is there a record of all the incidents where US combat personnel were forced to use their pistols and the 9mm round was ineffective?

    • I’m very sure there is. Where that article would be is anybody’s guess.

      • bbmg

        Here’s a pretty thorough analysis: http://www.sightm1911.com/lib/history/true_story_m9.htm

        I see a lot of criticism of the design of the pistol itself and the quality of manufacture, but not a shred of real evidence is presented that calls into question the lethality of the 9mm round.

        • Gallan

          .45 acp having greater stopping power than 9mm comes from WWII. Considering the germans used 9mm pistols and submachineguns ,it’s probably all propaganda, but this belief remains in the U.S gun community. And it would be especially strong among the old military brass.

          • bbmg

            That’s all it is though – a belief! It’s technically true that someone shot with a 45 ACP has a bigger hole inside them and they will bleed out quicker, but shot placement is still critical. This cannot be repeated enough, shoot a man in the leg with a 45 ACP in the leg and he’ll live, shoot him in the head with a 22 short and he will die.

            This means that once you have a bullet that can make a decent sized hole through a foot of living tissue, the most important things for your pistol are reliability, magazine capacity and low recoil.

            If the argument is simply “A bigger bullet makes soldiers more confident” then no amount of science can be thrown at it.

          • Avery

            About to mention that myself. 9mm Luger and the early pre-Hi-Power pistols were weaker rounds compared to .45ACP. I recall seeing terminal effects profiles of .45ACP and modern 9mm ball ammunition and 9mm ball will come apart inside the target under a foot of ballistic gelatin, but .45ACP ball will drill straight through with no expansion. .45 and the larger calibers might have an edge over 9mm with frangibles and hollow points, but when you’re legal obligated to not use those rounds, 9mm is probably the best solution for a handgun caliber.

          • Geodkyt

            Not true. 9x19mm ball (FMJ) ammo penetrates DEEPER than .45ACP ball — both rounds will go right through even a morbidly obese human, unless they hit enough bones to stop inside the body. Bullet profile and construction being similar, penetration is basically “How much force can I apply per square inch?”, and the smaller frontal area of the 9mm bullet means that significantly more force is concentrated.

            Now, there isn’t MUCH difference with FMJ ammo in terms of “stopping” — but there is a SLIGHT BUT SIGNIFICANT difference, because the volume of tissue destroyed by the .45ACP is signifcantly larger. Yes, the DIAMETER of the .45 is “only 2.5mm” larger (roughly), but the frontal area (and volume of tissue damage) is MORE THAN 50% larger.

            It’s with modern JHP ammo that the difference truly disappears (well, becomes at MOST a 2% – 3% difference in effectiveness), and frankly, most people can land three good 9mm hits in teh same time they can land 2 .45ACP hits (from similar guns), giving the 9mm a SIGNIFICANT edge over the .45 — WHEN USING MODERN JHP AMMO. (Note, while I do carry a 9mm a lot, it’s when I don’t feel I can adequately conceal a 1911. I’m a 1911/.45 fanboy, and I’ll admit the 9mm is a better choice for defensive use in the United States.)

          • the ammo addict

            Let’s take it a step further and use a 155gr FMJ SWC in our .45acp and re-examine.
            1) You get more tissue damage as the bullet will “cut” a larger, cleaner hole vs. roundnose which “tears” a smaller hole (paper targets illustrate the concept perfectly). It doesn’t expand so FMJ SWC should be kosher with the JAG.
            2) Lighter bullet weight means faster follow-up recovery (similar to the basic argument for 9mm hardball over .45acp 230gr hardball).
            3) Higher velocity of 155gr vs. 230gr means a flatter trajectory and thus increased hit probability.
            For military use, the .45acp 155gr FMJ SWC is the answer

          • n0truscotsman

            “For military use, the .45acp 155gr FMJ SWC is the answer”

            No, it really isn’t. That would be a step backwards into last century.

            The reason for this is that there isn’t any improvement to overall lethality because 45 APC performs similarly objectively against humans as 9mm.

            There is no reason to justify the expense and pain in the ass it is to adopt a new pistol caliber.

          • Geodkyt

            9x19mm performs similarly to .45ACP with JHP ammo. That’s because modern JHP ammo in “service” calibers is designed to all meet the same basic standards. I’ll go even farther — with JHP ammo, 9x19mm is BETTER for widescale issue, because of increased ammo and reduced recoil vice the .45.

            But teh Army won;t be issuing JHP ammo, so that’s irrelevant.

            With FMJ pistol rounds, it’s all about the size of the permanent crush path — which is WHOLLY based on frontal area. with FMJ, .45 destroys 50% more tissue than 9mm. That’s a significantly increased chance of nicking something important, which translates to “stopping”

          • n0truscotsman

            “with FMJ, .45 destroys 50% more tissue than 9mm.”

            How so? 50% sounds like a very specific calculation. How did you arrive at that conclusion?

            The difference between the two cartridges is 2mm, or the width of two fingernails.

            Given that their kinetic energies are similar, FMJ vs FMJ, that does not equate into “50% more tissue destruction”.

            That is also round per round. 15-17 rounds of 9mm causes potentially more tissue destruction (and, more importantly, blood loss) than 7-10 rounds of 45 ACP, hands down. Since 45 and 9mm are roughly equivalent in terms of lethality, that means that a M9 beretta with a 15 round magazine is capable of inflicting twice the tissue damage than a 1911 with a 7 round magazine.

          • RiverRat

            FN has already developed the FNX Tactical in 45acp with 15 round mags. If they can make our machine guns they would be delighted to make the Army’s pistols with American workers!

          • n0truscotsman

            and they also already make the FNX9, which has a 17 round magazine. and it comes in 9mm, which means the army wont have to adopt a new caliber.

          • Robert Kalani Foxworthy

            but I read it takes a little over 2 shots from a 9mm to end an altercation 45 acp is slightly better it take a little over 1.5 shots to end a altercation 44 mag is the closest one hitter as far as pistols . Ironically 32 beat both the 9mm and the 45 in shot to end conflict. this was based off police reports from the last 60 years. that said +p+ loaded 9mm with 145 gr bounded hp are very effective 185 gr 45 Acp +p hp are great too. they are testing the 357 sig but it is basically the 9mm +p+.

          • michael

            true and don’t forget, countless stories or our boys taking the German 9s so they could carry more ammo and have more down the pipe when needed. 9 is plenty effective

          • Robert Kalani Foxworthy

            it they wanted more bullets then they needed to swipe the brown hi power off dead Canadian allies… Dont forget Germans love to capture 1911 in fact Hitler body guards cried them………

          • Robert Kalani Foxworthy

            the German 9mm only carried two more rounds…..

    • Michael

      I wonder how many times US combat personnel were forced to use their pistols.!!
      I have heard in the past that more Soldiers shoot themselves, either accidently or on purpose than shoot an enemy soldier

  • n0truscotsman

    If you want a larger permanent wound channel that will measurably improve lethality, army, then you need to do better than 45 ACP.

    That is precisely the problem. Anything larger will make the caliber impractical for use by big army as a sidearm. Unless the army wants to eyeball 460 rowland or 45 Super.

    • valorius

      5.7x28mm is the only caliber change that would make any sense at all.

      • Chefjon

        5.7 is only good for defeating armor. Other than that, it has the same “ice pick” issue as ss109 5.56 does. Without the tumble, both rounds pass through with minimal damage caused. From what I’ve seen, SF & SWAT have been abandoning it in droves.

        • valorius

          Five seven does tumble, there are numerous gel,tests,online showing the phenomenon.

          I am aware of no agencies “abandoning it”

    • Wetcoaster

      I like to point out that when restricted of ball ammo, it’s an expensive change just to make 2.5mm wider holes.

      The limitations of handgun rounds are pretty fundamental to having to fit into handguns.

      • Geodkyt

        The volume of tissue destroyed by the .45ACP is signifcantly larger.
        Yes, the DIAMETER of the .45 is “only 2.5mm” larger (roughly), but the frontal area (and, thus, the total volume of tissue damage, since both 9x19mm FMJ and .45ACP FMJ both penetrate right through a person) is MORE THAN 50% larger.

        Pi(r^2) is a Hell of a multiplier to a “minor” increase in diameter. (And even more so in volume and mass: the “only 2.5mm larger” bullet weighs TWICE AS MUCH, not because it is so long compared to the 9mm – they are roughly teh same proportions.)

        • Geodkyt

          I should say — “When using FMJ ammunition.”

          If you can use non-Hague compliant, modern JHP ammo, the 9x19mm is superior because the lower recoil means almost ALL shooters will be able to land MORE hits with at least EQUAL accuracy in the same time, and they will have the extra ammo capacity to make use of that fact. (3 hits with 9mm JHP in the time it takes to get 2 hits with the .45 JHP is a winning plan, under those circumstances. And if you have twice as much ammo on tap in teh 9mm. . . )

          • Wetcoaster

            When you get right down to it, I have a hard time arguing that the funds spent on any dramatic change to issue handguns wouldn’t be better spent on more ammo for training instead. (And hey, why not more shorty carbines while they’re at it).

            There’s a non-trivial number of Browning Hi-Powers that soldier on in fairly modern armies (I hear wear is a major complaint, but that’s to be expected) because, well… handguns are kind of a tertiary weapon and while you can certainly do better, on most days good enough is good enough – there are more important things to focus on.

          • Geodkyt

            If the M9s are worn out as a “fleet” (and they ARE past the RFP’d service life), then we have to replace them en masse, soon-ish.

            Might as well get a better pistol if we can, since TESTING pistols won’t cost that much compared to BUYING them. We aren;t DESIGNING the pistols anymore, and would likely be getting something off the shelf for the most part (from the PREVIOUS pistol RFPs over the last ten years.)

          • Wetcoaster

            That’s only true if you’re testing once and buying. If you keep testing, cancelling, and restarting the process over and over (and over and over) again. See: any recent Canadian helicopter procurement program, especially the search for a Sea King replacement.

        • the ammo addict

          Geodkyt has it exactly right on the geometry and associated math, .45acp destroys significantly more tissue. Now let’s take it a step further and use a 155gr FMJ SWC in our .45acp and re-examine.
          1) You get more tissue damage as the bullet will “cut” a larger, cleaner hole vs. roundnose which “tears” a smaller hole (paper targets illustrate the concept perfectly). It doesn’t expand so FMJ SWC should be kosher with the JAG.
          2) Lighter bullet weight means faster follow-up recovery (similar to the basic argument for 9mm hardball over .45acp 230gr hardball).
          3) Higher velocity of 155gr vs. 230gr means a flatter trajectory and thus increased hit probability.

        • valorius

          .45 fmj only creates a hole in tissue .22″ in diameter

  • derfelcadarn

    Go back to the 1911, you had it all you threw it away for whiz-bang gizmos, that do not get it done.

    • Guest

      I regret trying to read that.

    • Dukke1ine

      Great gun for custom sporting-pistols, no longer that great in a combat scenario with its 8 round mag.

      • derfelcadarn

        Why killing people got harder ? If you cannot shoot well shooting a lot is not the answer. If you cannot get the business done in eight , stay home, you do more harm than good.

        • Hywelbane

          Yes. It did. When the rest of the world started equipping themselves with weapons like the AK. If your logic was correct, we’d still be using the Garand.

  • Dukke1ine

    So, a Glock 21? What exactly does “modular” entail? A picatinny rail? HK45 then..?

    • SafeArmsReview

      Ability to add on a grenade launcher, suppressor and light?

      😉

    • Yojimbo556

      Gaston Glock refuses to turn over technical specs to the DoD, therefore glock will never be chosen.

  • bcelliott

    They need to go with 9×23 Win. 18 round double stack capacity or 10 rounds in a 1911 platform. Similar case head to 5.56 and similar max pressures. 124 grain at 1450-1500 fps (357 mag equivalent) with controllable recoil and enough velocity for a flat trajectory during longer-range shots with a red dot if using as a primary weapon.

    • Dukke1ine

      FN FiveSeven chiming in…

      • Dracon1201

        5.7 is not anywhere close to 9×23. And diameter? I’d rather use .22TCM.

        • Sulaco

          I don’t think a new caliber is in the offing, the 9mm will stay for legal and political reason for years. I think in the end IF the army is serious about improved wounding then sub engineering of the projectile like a full metal jacket expanding bullet will be the answer…

        • valorius

          5.7mm is already nato approved and in fairly widespread use.

    • n0truscotsman

      4-500 ft/lbs of energy and 1300-1400 ft/s on average for that caliber. In other words, the same performance as 9mm and the other big 5.

      For something to me measurably more effective, there needs to be more than a paltry 1-200 ft/lbs energy difference.

      • bcelliott

        I load closer to 1600 fps in my 1911 easily with correspondingly higher energy. Energy equal to 9mm at 100 yards. Terminal performance is very devastating. Col. Cooper was very fond of his version of this made from cut down 223 brass. This is a very different cartridge from 9mm, perhaps one of the best in an auto pistol. When loaded with slower powders, in my AR carbine at 60 psi, the same bullet/caliber will go over 2200fps with approx same energy as 5.56 or 7.62×39 at close range. Very versatile caliber for pistol/carbine room entry weapon.

        • n0truscotsman

          That is moving the goalposts though. I can load my 9mm damn hot too, there is plenty of case room to do so. The Russians have the 7N31.

          I doubt the energies are that dissimilar from, say, 9mm NATO.

          If you want to impress me with different measurable improvements to sheer kinetic energy, then mention 357 or 44 magnum (or 460 rowland LOL).

          There is also the inherent problems with high pressure cartridges and the 9×23 is a little under twice the energy of a standard 9mm. That means more wear on internal components and shorter service life. So color me unimpressed with the 9×23.

          • bcelliott

            Fair enough. But you’ve got to try the 9×23 sometime. You’ll be left with a smile on your face. A 95 grain Barnes Tac-XP at 1900 fps out of a standard pistol does insane things to a soft target!

          • n0truscotsman

            I have and it was enjoyable. Im not saying i dont appreciate the cartridge, because i do. 😀 Any necked pistol cartridge holds a special place in my heart (especially the FIRST PDW cartridge, the 7.62×25 and 7.63 mauser)

            The gun was a 1911 and it could be converted to 38 super if i remember correctly. Fun as hell to shoot.

  • Seburo

    The Army should just move away from pistol ammunition completely. They should have invested in a PDW calibur years ago. 45apc won’t be enough to down a terrorist with body armor bought with Saudi Arabian money. Despite 1911 fanboy fantasies.

    • john huscio

      How proven is the 5.7 or 4.6 as a personnel stopper?

      • Seburo

        Their both downsized 5.56 rounds. I have no data on 4.6 but 5.7×28 has stopping power comparable to .40 pistol rounds. Of course that doesn’t much matter when a soldier has more than 15 per magazine to shoot back with.

      • valorius

        According to brassfetcher, 5.7mm ammo is analagous to 230gr .45 jhp in stopping power.

        Fn ss190 ap will shoot through three stacked IIIA vests.

  • SafeArmsReview

    I feel I can address this confidently as I was among a group of instructors that was contracted to teach weapon manipulation (shoot, reload, malfunctions, etc) and train up the Fort Carson MPs on a new/proposed sidearm qual that incorporates shooting, moving, etc on the M9 (basically bringing them into the 21st century). It was one of the most rewarding times I have had as an instructor outside the military.

    One problem we found is that many people with small hands prevented them from holding the firearm and manipulating it effectively. Another common problem was the lack of standards in regards to holsters (& placement), mag placement, LBE layout, etc. Some had Serpa holsters of various levels and many other holsters within the same platoon. Magazine holders were placed wherever that person wanted and even had a handful of tacticool guys who put their dropleg holsters so far down the barrel touched their knees. Funny but sad at the same time. One guy with a dropleg had to bend at the side just to draw his firearm (he looked like someone doing the “I’m a little teapot song and dance). He would not accept the fact that additional movements take up precious time till we were almost done for the day. The biggest problem with him was that he was on their ERT (Emergency Response Team – kinda like swat) and that was what he was taught. Lots of bad training advice we had to overcome.

    However THE worst problem was the majority did not know how to operate and manipulate the firearm. Under minor stress during our evaluation showed the severe lack of training on the M9. Reloads were horrible as were malfunction drills. When we got to the range we had to train about 84% on marksmanship fundamentals (numbers we got after training about 200 soldiers). Being retired Army who spent time in infantry and MP I found this appalling. Had to teach everything from safety, to the draw process and marksmanship. There was no standardization and it showed.

    The good thing was the majority learned and performed tasks to standard. However there were a number of MPs (all were females) who could not rack the slide of their M9 = not good on the battlefield or in garrison duty.

    With that said, we are talking about a sidearm. Countless FBI and police reports, stats, etc show its about shot placement, not caliber. What we found with the MPs we taught showed if they went to a higher caliber like the .45 (we did some testing with a 1911) the scores would drop due to soldiers not being able to control the firearm. It was not a big jump but it was considerable. Mind you it was not a conclusive/extensive test but we were glad they had the 9mm.

    One thing people who are/were not in the military is that you have to get the majority of the troops to meet an acceptable standard. You will always have those that excel, and those who fail but the ‘band of excellence’ are the majority and that is what the military gears towards. Reason? So the majority can be combat effective as a UNIT (not an individual) on the battlefield.

    Of course I was in when the MPs still had the .45s and you might think great stuff. However there was so much micromanaging that the MPs on garrison and front gate duty had all their magazines tapped up with 100mph tape, then the taped mag would put in a magazine pouch and that was taped up too. If something happened on duty the MP would have to call the shift sgt who would in turn contact the CO (commanding officer) to get approval to untape everything and load the firearm. Wait it gets worse – after all that you still had to get permission to return fire if you encountered a lethal force engagement. Yea its crazy but it just shows that even if you have a .45 (which I like) doesn’t mean someone stupid will let you use it properly.

    BTW the following article shows that Beretta did a contract to supply a lot of M9 up to 2015… “In 2009, Beretta announced that it had secured a contract worth $200 million to supply the U.S. military with 450,000 of the handguns through the year 2015.”…

    http://usmilitary.about.com/od/armyweapons/a/M9.htm

    So whatever comes down the pipe just know that the sidearm training was severely lacking and if the go to another pistol/caliber I don’t expect that to change, especially with the drawdown we are currently seeing in personnel and funds.

    Peace

    • n0truscotsman

      Thank you for sharing that. Its nice having someone with real world experience when it comes to handguns.

      You highlighted something absolutely critical that the army doesn’t seem to be too concerned with: lack of/poor training. The army still hasn’t come to the realization that mindset and training affects the outcome of “being effective”, not being gear-centric. Unfortunately, it has the priorities switched around.

      Like I said in the previous thread about this subject manner. It is a giant pile of fucking bullshit that live fire rifle training is being cut, but the army is thinking about adopting a new handgun (with a new fucking caliber too). Somebody needs to be retired and discharged straight into the unemployment line. Im sick of our armed forces being imperiled by idiots that make decisions like this.

      • RawDawg

        Being in the army, and being a soldier are totally different. The army in general might cut LF. The soldiers will still get their LF training. The rest need to cut LF funds to maintain the steak and lobster night at the MWR.

    • valorius

      The whole exercise will end up being an enormous waste of money.

    • Gallan

      Well I just figured out why they are ordering so many pistols. They’re gonna dual wield them. Why have one pistol when you can have two?

    • RawDawg

      They couldn’t rack the slides? Those must have been the stay in the rear with the POGS pistols. Every M9 I ever touched had such a loose slide you could damn near charge it by flicking your wrist really hard. The military taught me one thing about the ar15/m9. They are really reliable in really shitty conditions when passed off among a bunch of idiots who don’t know that the blue is supposed to stay on the weapon.

  • Jeff S

    Isn’t the most realistic answer to this “problem” going to revolve around making the M9 more reliable and dropping the antiquated international law forbidding hollow point ammo? Why can DEA FAST, FBI, NCIS/OSI/CID, and other Fed agencies carry expanding ammo in a warzone, but the military can’t? Let’s get with the times. We are going to stick with a NATO approved round, so don’t get all excited about 10mm, 5.7, .357, .40 and so on. IF the pistol is changed, it’s going to have to be a compact weapon – not a boat anchor. As others have said, the M9 is unwieldy for many troops – especially those of a smaller stature. On that note, I think the Bundeswehr’s P8 (USP basically) would be perfect. I’m far from an H&K fanboy, but my time with zee Germanz’ P8 was excellent. It even has an external safety to make the pants wetters happy. 🙂 Rambling aside, I don’t expect anything to come from this and if I was in the industry I would tell the Army to get screwed and stop wasting my time.

    • valorius

      5.7mm is actually nato approved. Numerous nato countries do use the five seven or p90.

      • Jeff S

        It’s not approved. The Germans nixed it despite the testing. Yes, multiple countries use the round – but it’s no approved in the same sense that 9mm, 7.62×51, etc. are.

        • valorius

          Germany threw a hissy fit cause the hk 4.6mm was not selected.

          • the ammo addict

            True, but the fact remains that 5.7×28 is NOT a NATO standard caliber. Furthermore, .22 TCM would be significantly superior in terms of body armor penetration with bullets of a similar AP design…is easily convertable to 9mm, thus allowing existing stocks of 9mm ammo to be utilized…and with a threaded barrel in 9mm would be suppressor ready! How about that for modular!

          • valorius

            Several nato nations use 5.7mm (including numerous us le agencies), its in the supply chain already.

            .22 tcm is vaporware in a bullet configuration for defeating armor, or as a 9mm sized pistol. 5.7mm has much more bullet design flexibility, and already has several rounds proven to defeat IIIA armor from a five seven pistol. (Ss190, ss198, elite s4, and elite t6)

            .22 tcm could be made to work, but 5.7mm already does.

  • Lance

    @ Nathen

    I wouldn’t go fully into Lance Bacon’s (at Military times) dream book he predicted the M-9 to be replaced two years ago and last year he said the competition started it didn’t. I do not see the US leaving 9mm NATO because it NATO. You like with ICC was drawn in by hype and it may not happen how many SCAR lovers said in 08-12 the M-4 was finished it wasnt. The Army is still receiving new Beretta’s from Beretta USA and buying new holsters. Out of all the new pistol designs your love of SIG is sick that a piece of crap. HK would be the only real winner if the army did go all plastic for a pistol it won the last 3 pistol competitions. face it 3 times before we been right here.

  • Raven

    The problem isn’t the round itself, it’s the type of bullet. If you ditch the stupid FMJ requirement, I suspect the “performance issues” with 9mm would evaporate in short order. But no, it’s fine for FBI, DHS and whoever else to carry JHP in law enforcement, but a 100-year-old treaty (that’s invalid in every war recently anyways) means the military are stuck with FMJ.

    • Sulaco

      And we never signed the treaties anyway, we just “conform” to the wording under out internal laws of war for some strange reason…

  • nova3930

    So if they switch calibers how are they gonna get around the STANAGs with NATO? I’ve never been clear on whether those agreements are binding or not…

    • hod0r

      They’re mutual agreements without any enforcement. Many are ignored even by signatory parties when opportune. It isn’t quite clear if they’re binding or not on paper, but de facto they are beyond doubt not binding.

      • nova3930

        Thanks. That was the vibe I was getting researching on my own. Some requirements for NATO membership are “Thou Shalts” and others seem more like “you might want to do this, if you’ve got nothing better to do.”
        Although I can’t personally see why the something that facilitates ammunition interoperability isn’t a “thou shalt.”

    • DaveP.

      Not trying to troll you, but when was the last time that the United States needed to resupply pistol ammo from one of its NATO “partners” in the field?
      And as far as it goes, I’d rahter ditch the whole “trials” BS and do what the Brits before WW1: the military standardizes a caliber, publishes a list of ‘acceptable’ handguns, and lets the personnel authorized to carry one buy the pistol of his choice with his own money. Accuracy, reliability, and other data can be sourced from police departments.

      • nova3930

        Well, to be honest, I was thinking more of the reverse situation of us supplying them in a pinch. Much easier to accomplish if we’ve got existing stockpiles rather than having to ramp up production of a caliber we don’t use…

      • n0truscotsman

        During the height of the Iraq and Afghan wars (2007 Iraq troop surge), there was a 5.56 ammunition shortage and i recall 9mm being difficult to acquire.

        Since we had a difficult time supplying troops with adequate amounts of ammunition for two counter insurgencies, it is only obvious that this would be compounded in the event of a larger, hypothetical conflict.

        So NATO standardization is important. In fact, I cannot overstate the importance of allies being able to supplement US supplies, or at least, us being able to buy ammunition from friendly nations not necessarily involved in the war.

  • Val

    No requirement to penetrate body armor? Are they just choosing to ignore that it is standard even in third world countries now. Seems like a waste of money unless it does so.

    • Dracon1201

      Pistol calibers are shot for body armor anyways. That requirement would only leave PDW and exorbitantly expensive exotic rounds on the table. They’re keeping a pretty open mind, actually!

      • bbmg

        The Russians seem to be doing pretty well with their overpressure steel core 9mm rounds in terms of body armor penetration, albeit with lightweight bullets which lose velocity rather quickly.

        • Dracon1201

          Exactly. You can’t have everything with pistol rounds.

          • Wetcoaster

            You’re pretty much guaranteed to trade off terminal effectiveness in return for armour penetration. Speaking of which, I wonder if 4.6mm/5.7mm or the Russian 9mm AP is actually effective against Level III vests and plates designed to stop .308 rifle rounds or if they’re just designed for use against Level II and IIIA?

          • Thiago Kurovski

            AFAIK plates will laugh all these cartridges off.

          • Robert Kalani Foxworthy

            They were designed to beat last generation vest and last / current gen helmets. so know it wont beat interceptor plats, but with punch through the area not covered like a hot knife through butter. with the right round of course.

  • Nimrod

    On thing mentioned in one of the articles I read was the use of the .40 S&W in guns designed for the 9mm. According to some, that causes premature wear on service weapons. Obviously the solution therefore is to design a full sized pistol around the .40…or not. While I like the .40 and .45 over the 9mm I’m not sure the difference in ballistics justifies switching calibers. Yeah, go ahead and change pistols if you want but in the end with finances and military budgets being what it is, they will probably end up with a 9mm.

  • OptimusDerf

    The problem isn’t being 9mm, the problem is being restricted to FMJ projectiles.

    • Seburo

      Wonder if something like a 9mm version of the SOST is possible.

      • n0truscotsman

        Ive argued for that a while ago, back on the JCP trials. Or a “open tip match” handgun cartridge. Or a 9mm engineered variant of the M855A1.

        Perhaps the inherent improvements to the M855A1 cartridge can be carried over into 9mm like they are hypothetically for the 7.62 NATO. I know handgun cartridges aren’t remotely similar in terms of energy and velocity, although, fuck, what is wrong with trying?

        • Seburo

          It would need to be slightly heavier and/or larger pistol to make it more durable. Shouldn’t be much of a problem for soldiers whose primary weapon isn’t an M4.

          I’m starting to think that what the Army really wants is something like the Magpul PDR or their own version of the Modern Sub Machine Carbine. But doesn’t want to admit that they screwed up and passed on developing their own PDW.

        • Metal to Meat

          How about something like a shortened (so it can fit into a frame that most people can grasp) .300 Blackout? Or, going from the other direction, a stretched 7.62mmx25?

          JD Jones created the “.300 MicroWhisper” by loading heavy .30 cal bullets in 7.62mmx25 or .30 Luger cases. If loaded with an intentionally unstable spitzer bullet — think the old .303 MkVII with its lightweight filler in front of the lead core of the FMJ bullet, or the bullet used in the 5.45mmx39.5 — velocities high enough to penetrate soft body armor while still performing well in tissue could be possible.

          • Cymond

            Stretch the 7.62×25? It’s already longer than the 45ACP, how big are these frames going to be?

  • Vitor

    “It’s an old weapon”, choses a 1911 clone.

    • Yellow Devil

      It will be updated with the latest MIL-STD-1913 rails.

  • Dr. Daniel Jackson

    Switch to 10mm,there stopping power problem solved,and if they port the barrels it won’t have much recoil.

  • davethegreat

    The reason we keep coming back to the 9mm is that it works for everyone.

    The Army is chock-full of people who will never, ever, be able to use a 10mm gun. Some of the best officers and NCOs I served with were Philippine, with hands that simply can’t wrap around the handle of many larger pistols. That’s also going to be an issue with doublestack .45ACPs and a few other options, and it’s not like you can make soldiers do push-ups until their fingers get longer.

    Any pistol the Army adopts is going to have to work just as well for the largest soldier as it does for the smallest.

    Maybe someone will figure out a way to put the magazine somewhere other than the handgrip without screwing up the balance. Or maybe they will figure out a way to improve the pistol’s shot placement with optics or fold-out grips or some such thing. Or maybe they will revisit the PDW concept (which they have dusted off every few years. The M1 Garand was basically the PDW of its era, meant as a replacement for the pistol for non-enlisted-infantry troops). But if they insist on a pistol as we know them today, then they are just once again going to wind up with pretty much the same thing as the last several rounds of this game.

    I say, go with the PDW. Solders aren’t cops; things like fast draw and weapon retention while wrestling with drunks aren’t as important for soldiers as they are for cops. A PDW is an absolutely acceptable sidearm for military commanders, crewed weapon soldiers, vehicle operators and so on.

    Pistols aren’t primary weapons in the military. Much of the time, they are symbolic of rank more than anything else. Generals don’t actually get into firefights very often, and when they do, their job isn’t to shoot people. There is actually very little real use for a pistol in the military, and even fewer examples of pistol use where a PDW wouldn’t actually be better.

    /4 years Army, 6 years police.

    • Guest

      “There is actually very little real use for a pistol in the military, and
      even fewer examples of pistol use where a PDW wouldn’t actually be
      better.”

      What about driving a helicopter, or a fighter jet, or an M1 tank? Those don’t have a lot of room for the driver. An M4 and ammo would be hard to fit.

      • valorius

        A p90 in 5.7mm would be fine for every one of those roles, and far superior to,any pistol.

      • davethegreat

        Tankers have a tiny bit more room than some pilots, if only because they don’t have to wear a parachute and stuff. But yeah, good points. Sometimes, you just absolutely need the most compact option above all else.

        I wouldn’t go with an M4 though; they are basically just a cut-down M16 and the size of the magazines are enough to make them too bulky.

        But there are way smaller PDWs. The Magpul FMG9 (gimmicky, but cool and way, way deadlier than an M9) is an option. The FN P90 would work great for anyone other than parachute-and-pressure-suit-wearing pilots, depending on how it’s set up. Or something like an mini-Uzi or MAC 10 would probably help. Really though, the best thing here would be to design something new from the ground-up. A pistol-caliber item that can strap to a leg or belly or otherwise be out of the way in tight spaces, has a foregrip, an optic and preferably select-fire.

        Pistols only have one good trait, which is their tiny size. It allows a person to be sorta-armed with minimal effort, but that’s pretty much it.

        • Thiago Kurovski

          Isn’t that too much expense for a weapon that is probably never going to be used?

          Maybe you should just buy some AKS-74Us :).

    • Seburo

      The Army has missed several opportunities to adopt a PDW. The Bushmaster Arm’s Pistol, KAC PDW and Magpul PDR to name a few. DEVGRU has the MP7 which I assume they use for close quarters battle.

      If the Army brass was smart they would add a PDW requirement to the LSAT program.

    • abprosper

      Good post . I think you meant M1 Carbine not Garand though.

      Now no way I am going to be in charge of this but if I were drafted and a PDW weren’t in the offing I’d go with a single stack 9mm pistol like say a Sig P220 or the like. It would have slim grips,work for most everyone, meet round requirements and be safe enough.

      Instead of worrying about handgun stopping power which could charitably be described as all handguns suck, I’d find a way to upgrade the ammo within standard pressure gradients and at a reasonable cost.

      • davethegreat

        Yep, carbine. Thanks for the catch! 🙂

    • Gee,..my 115 lb better half can shoot both our G-20 and G-29 with full power double tap, and Underwood ammo with NO trouble at all out to what would be considered ridiculous range for a weak caliber like the 9mm or the .45 acp and .40 slow and weak. The 10mm auto can be shot by ANYONE with practice which I am sure the military still does, and it will out perform ANY cartridge that can fit in a standard size pistol. .

      • davethegreat

        No, not ANYONE. Finger length makes a real difference in grip, and some people just don’t have it. It’s not always about body mass. And as for practice, people who don’t shoot as a primary MOS don’t get much range time. A couple times a year at best.

  • Deathbymilk

    Who can say surplus M9s! yyyaaaaaa!

  • Guest

    I dunno. There are modular pistols in service; the country of Jordan is using a JAWS pistol where if I swap out the barrel, magazine and some other components I can fire 9mm Para, .40 SW and .45 ACP. So that’s one option.

    I also suspect this comes on the heels of Britain adopting the Glock 17 as their official sidearm. It’s a significant step up for British armories. That gun is like a Toyota pickup; it can be smashed, dropped from an airplane, sit in a bucket of salt water, buried in a mud pit and it will still fire perfectly. So as a combat weapon goes, if anything happens to the issued SA-80, British troops can still draw a weapon and shoot somebody.

    I dunno. It’ll be interesting to see what designs come of this contest.

  • valorius

    A total waste of money on a weapon that is irrelevant on the modern battlefield. …especially considering that in the end they’ll just stick with the m9 anyway.

    The military loves to piss our money away.

  • valorius

    Short of adopting something transformational like the fn five seven/5.7mm, this is a totally pointless exercise.

  • Patrick

    Woman in Army there days if issue rounds handgun kicks harder than 9mm there well be issues. Which means they well not be able qualify special if more power full gun lighter than 92f kicks harder. What Army gone do M11 retire them to??? Reason M11 came long was becuase 92f was to big for some people that issue them. Remind me when FBI went 9mm to 10mm in early 1990. They had all kinds issue 10mm like qualify score went down light short guns they issued kicked hard enough most FBI refuse use them instead there 9mm. In end FBi drop 10mm when 40sw came long in 9mm size handguns yet there alot FBI still use 9mm Glock. The thing is 40sw has sharp kick than the 9mm does in same size gun it all shoot higher perssure which doubles wear and tear any handgun be fire out of. Go any police department issue 9mm handguns and 40sw handguns you well find there replace there 40sw handguns faster than 9mm handguns because 40 sw hanguns worn out faster.

  • Brad Ferguson

    At some point the American Army is going to face a near peer or at least some opposition that will have body armor. If the sidearm won’t penetrate even soft body armor………Why even have a sidearm ? I think they should at least look at the 5.7 or the equivalent . Or just buy the MP 7 for soldiers that don’t shoot for a living.

    • Thiago Kurovski

      Minutemen missiles penetrate body armor fairly well. Pistols are there for self-defense, not combat…

  • Lance

    Got one BIG work ICC this is the same crap they pulled off in 2008 or the M-4 replacement and all the hype they stuck onto that. Well we ended up with the M-4 doesn’t make sense to replace a 9mm with another 9mm. Face it we are NATO and so we are stuck with 9mm NATO I doubt Europe will go with .45 AUTO. going with .40 or .357 SIG is counter to what this author wants the rounds are too hot and they wear pistols out too fast you only get 10-14 years service life for the fleet. Ask Many PDs who ditched .40 cal Glocks for 9mm Glocks because there .40s wore out. Overall we went threw this 10 years ago remember CP? We were going back to 45 all the mil blogs bragged about then and it flopped with nly the HK .45 showing any real promise. Don’t buy into hype even Steve doubts the M-9 will go away any time soon. Remember according to Army Times we should all be issued SCAR right now.

  • Cornelius Carroll

    So… maybe they’ll dump a bunch of lightly used M9s on the consumer/LEO market?

    • Bruised Anus Lips

      Never. They will either shred them or give them to foreign militaries.

  • Betcha fifty bucks they stick with 9mm.

  • steveday72

    They’ll probably go for the FNX. It has the highest capacity of any flush-fitting .45 magazine and was developed for the previous handgun trials (MEUSOC?). The grip circumference is probably no bigger than the portly M9 either.

  • big daddy

    OK it seems to me the problem is the ammo, period. The M9 is not a good gun ergonomically for smaller and/or weaker people. The 10mm or any other round will not perform that much better than 9mm, not enough to warrant changing over especially if nobody can shoot well enough to begin with. 9mm is fine, train, train, train and get a better handgun like the M&P. Better holsters, mag pouches and training. Some type of ammo that has better terminal ballistics than FMJ. Why they cannot use some type of JHP I’ll never understand, my guess is that it opens the door to an enemy using that as an excuse to go out of their way to maim and kill our people in horrible ways, oh wait they already do that it’s called war.

  • Avery

    Comedy option: someone submit an AR pistol or the Bushmaster Arm Pistol for the MHS trials.

  • St. Bernardnot

    Heck, I bang away with my .45 Rock Island for less than $400. Never had a failure yet!

  • Sid Collins

    Don’t replace the M9. Hear me out.

    Pistols have a real role in the modern military. For those of you
    who have not deployed in recent times, our service members stay armed 24
    hours a day. In those circumstances, having a sidearm makes life just a
    little bit easier. Carry a M249 to chow, the latrine, and the shower
    point for a few days and tell me you would not have preferred a sidearm.

    Every deployed service member should have a sidearm. E-4 and below
    should be issued the M9. E5 and above should purchase and carry a
    sidearm of their choice. I simply will not listen to the cries of those
    who argue that “everyone must carry a common handgun so ammo and
    magazines are shared.” A service member down to their last magazine in a
    handgun…. seriously?…. If that even sounds realistic you are too far
    into COD for me to discuss this issue. A service member needs a handgun
    for self-defense. If they shoot through the first magazine they have
    to be moving and headed to their buddies with rifles. A second magazine
    is a must but only because magazines fail and a reload may be in order.

    Officers should purchase their own sidearm. Senior NCOs as well. I
    really don’t care about the caliber. If CPT Smith wants to carry a
    peculiar caliber, that is fine by me as long CPT Smith budgets for the
    ammo. 9mm, .40, and .45ACP will be supplied at the semi-annual
    qualification. If a service member wants to carry .22WMR, then they
    supply their own ammo for carry and qual.

    It is not about weapon design or caliber science or contracting or
    any other hot button issue. Service members deserve the right to self
    defense and the deserve to carry the handgun of their choice. I would
    much rather service members become more proficient with ANY handgun than
    to continue to have the WHICH handgun argument.

  • El Duderino

    All this hullabaloo about the least important weapon in the inventory. I loved shooting the M9 (and qualifying Expert a few times in a row) but let’s face it, outside of the real deal SpecOps guys that carry one as a secondary, it’s a pretty useless piece of gear in a war zone. Unless, of course, you’re into executing POWs and the like.

  • Kyle Senko

    The M9 is a crap combat pistol. Good riddence

  • the ammo addict

    I don’t know why so many people on here keep talking about 5.7×28 and 4.6×30. The .22 TCM offers superior performance and the handguns are easily convertable to 9mm Luger, thus allowing existing stocks of 9mm ammunition to be utilized as the opportunity arises. Furthermore, simply offer a threaded 9mm barrel and it is suppressor ready and can use the subsonic 9mm ammo already standardized by NATO (how’s that for modular!). Heck, maybe some of the 100,000 M-9s that the gov’t just bought could be rebarrelled to .22 TCM. Saves money and with proper AP bullets the .22 TCM has penetration far superior than the 5.7×28. The .22 TCM is also more cost efective from a manufacturing standpoint since it will use some of the same drawing dies and automated machinery that the 5.56mm does (same head and body daimeter).

    • Seburo

      You mean a new proprietary unproven round that nobody has. Rebarreling thousands of weapons to a new round is almost just as expensive as buying a whole set of new guns. May as well build functional versions of the Magpul PDR for all the expense it’s going to be.
      Wikipedia makes it look like a knock off of the 5.7mm and MINSAS. Both 5.7 and 4.6 can also be made with 5.56 machinery. As that’s how HK and FN made them. It looks like a half attempt to keep an already obsolete and expensive pistol(the 1911) competitive with weapons that outclass it in every way. Fire 8 shots and you’re going to need to reload. While your potential enemy has an AKM with 30 7.62×39 rifle rounds. .
      Also last I checked 534j > 423J. So there is doubt that it even equivalent. It also has no corresponding PDW type weapon. So you’re advertising a solution for something that already has already been solved.

  • Lujan

    Make it a REAL testing & evaluation, and you might find something. But because what the army did for the carbine competition, this is a joke! Any company stupid enough to take this serious may only come away with showing how desperate they are.

  • Anon. E Maus

    So they complain about the 9x19mm ball not being strong enough, but people think they hint at .45ACP ball, a cartridge that practically performs the same for all intents and purposes?
    How about 10x25mm ball, or .45 Super ball? Or perhaps even .22TCM ball, if they want to get on that 5.7 boat but with good ballistics.

    • Chris

      Stop trying to make the 1911 revival happen. It’s never going to happen.

  • 10mm Glock 20,…PROBLEM SOLVED.

  • Nathanael S.

    Impossible! Absolutely impossible and inconceivable! 9mm bullet is only bullet anyone ever needs, this is scientific fact verified by internet warriors and operators nationwide! Lol, sarcasm is sarcasm. Coming from a “40 caliber guy”, though, I have to say this brought an ironic smile to my face. After all, we’re told, the US military uses it, it must be the best round you can carry.

    Like you constantly say to us, guys, all in good fun, right?

  • Blake

    The Russians seem to have plenty of confidence in 9mm Parabellum. The GSh-18 and PP-2000 take hot 9mm loads specifically designed for them while still being fully capable of firing standard 9mm NATO ammo.

    Of course the Army would likely doubt the ability of the average G.I. to keep overpressure 9mm out of his M9…

  • Chefjon

    What bothers me about this is the thought that a. 06-.07“ increase (. 40 or.45) in permanent wound channel will make a magical difference. That’s all a caliber change would do with ball ammo. They need only to look at the FBI for why this is stupid. 10mm, 10mm “light”, .40, only to go back to 9mm. Granted, that’s with JHP, but the results don’t scale with ball. I’m all for going to Glock or M&P for ergos, weight and reliability but training should be #1 on everyone’s list. If the troops aren’t trained and held to a standard, we could give them all .500 S&W’s and it wouldn’t help. Don’t even get me started on “base-carry”. If you can’t be trusted to be safe with a sidearm, you shouldn’t be wearing a uniform. Period. The failures are all at “Brass” – level. Shame they can’t see it.

  • idahoguy101

    Big Army replace the M9 with a new 45ACP pistol? I’ll believe it when it happens! The army bought 100,000 M9’s two years back. The Marines are buying M9A1’s now. The Air Force shoots so little that their pistols are most unfired and in war reserve storage.
    I wouldn’t hold my breath over this one.

  • usmcmailman

    Quit looking !………….Colt 1911 .45 Commander. Enough said !

    • Seburo

      You 1911 fanboys are so silly. Like .45 acp is going to put that ISIS soldier wielding an AKM.

  • r3dbull4dd1kt

    So, what exactly is preventing a current-gen design from being used instead of some fancy-dancy ARMY-only BS? I believe that almost every major manufacturer in the game already has minimum one, most probably several, designs ready to be handed to a firing line and evaluated…so why the dog n pony act? Also the ARMY assessment of the .40 and .357Sig rounds is hysterically inaccurate and obviously bias…I reload .40 and have 4 pistols in the caliber, all 4 have ingested well over 7,000 rounds without a single stoppage or malfunction that was not ammo-related; There is ZERO “premature wear” because of the .40 cartridge and its related SAAMI pressure, since the handguns were designed primarily for the round! Example: HK designed the USP around the .40 s&w cartridge and scaled the design up for the .45 and down for the 9mm…this makes all the ARMY rhetoric a buncha smoke-blowing BS, as usual…

    Also, the article contains a pretty significant mistake–Heckler & Koch doesn’t currently produce a striker-fire handgun…they are all external hammer designs based upon the evolution of the USP design…HK is developing a 9mm Striker Fire for the civilian market but it is not yet available and really doesn’t apply to this article since its a 9mm…just sayin

  • Regular guy

    I had the opportunity to ask “Art” Thomas how many Infantry soldiers or Marine’s in combat have actually drawn a pistol to save the day in combat? Or how many Operational Needs Statements were written in combat for this? Because this is what should be driving development right? He couldn’t think of one.
    This is happening because of the maintenance contract with Berretta. It costs more to fix one (92FS ) than to buy one. Secondly the rounds we use for our 92FS pistols are not designed or certified for use. The hotter and heavier NATO military rounds were designed to cycle the operating system of heavy blowback submachine guns. I believe the 92FS was tested and fielded to shoot the 115 gn and not the 125+P standard issue NATO. So openly dismissing the operator spec of the gun and the locking blocks were the point of failure of this weapon and program.
    Ask any infantry Squad leader deployed or preparing to; if having a tool to kill personnel armed with RPG’s and PKM’s 50m-800m that his squad or platoon can “legitimately” carry on every patrol, ranks higher than the comfort of knowing their 0-50m capability will have improved stopping power if overran. If this fantasy program were real; on the shelf solutions would automatically be excluded as they weigh 49 pounds each along with the “smart” guns that shoot smart munitions to small to “actually” kill the enemy within 5m as advertise.
    Creating press releases that tout this as an important issue in the infantry is just plain wrong. The hype given to this issue is as ridiculous as running for president believing that “same sex marriage” is the most important issue in the minds of Americans today!

    This program based on the number of personnel authorized to carry a pistol in the infantry and based on commonsense; this should be managed by the MP’s as the largest effected user base. This would free up our Infantry combat developers to get in front of real issues affecting our junior infantry leaders in combat. Like weapons that are to heavy to carry or lack the lethality to over match fighters wearing no protective gear and caring 1961 technology after 13 years of conflict.

  • Ken

    Why aren’t we using hollow points? No rules in love and war…

  • Brad Ferguson

    When you have drug dealers wearing soft body armor…………..It’s not going to be long, before all conflicts we fight in. That our troops are going to face a large % of foes that will have body armor. 9mm. thru 44 mag. will not penetrate even soft body armor.
    For soldiers who do not shoot for a living, they should be issued the MP 7. For soldiers who just HAVE to have a sidearm, issue a FN Five Seven. I’d rather have to double tap somebody who doesn’t have armor on as opposed to………………..Tickling some terrorist with a .40 cal. in the ribs, who has soft body armor on.

  • wganz

    Heads will explode if the .mil goes to the .40 S&W.

  • Jamie Clemons

    The M16 don’t create enough wound channel either. But on the bright side maybe they will surplus all the old 9mm and 9mm handguns.

  • dupkaman

    A Ruger 357 GP 100 revolver would last forever and never jam. More powerful than the 45 round. Not that’s really stepping back in time…..soldiers with wheelguns.

  • Edward Peterson

    LaGarde and Thompson settled the discussion between 9mm Parabellum and .45 ACP over 100 years ago. The 9mm Parabellum is not a powerful cartridge. It just can’t compete against the .45 ACP.

    • And NONE of the cartridges talked about here can compete with the 10mm auto. It can outperform any of them and still fit in the same size handgun. Its a no brainer IMO.

  • OPee

    To all of you geometry quoters who are having a fit over “twice the amount of tissue damage” argument… Get over it. I guarantee you haven’t compared the effects in real life. If you had, you would have observed that you couldn’t tell the difference. The would effects of FMJ for the two rounds is too close to identical.

  • JimL

    The objective issue is to look at the system performance in terms of measurable outcomes (gun design, recoil effects, sights, bullet design, accessories, training, etc.).

    The problem is a very small bullet has to seriously damage a much larger target which is full of voids and ‘not lethal’ areas. Too many movies have shown men knocked down or thrown across the room from pistol fire. One shot; one kill. In the real world, the laws of physics have not been repealed.

    Humans are hard to kill because there are very few ‘drop dead’ zones. FMJ bullets often ice-pick the target. The target may bleed to death later, but the shooter expecting the target to be knocked over is frustrated and blames the gun/caliber.

    The tests of ‘expert’ riflemen show few can hit a moving target. Very few places train shooting a moving target in a dynamic scenario. Or train multiple shots until the target is down.

    If you give folks a muzzle heavy gun with sized grips, a good grip angle, optical or laser sights, a low recoil round, a well-designed bullet, and high-fidelity training, then you might have the hard data to have a meaningful, objective dialogue.

    http://www.slideshare.net/James8981/future-weapon-v8b2-feb

    http://www.slideshare.net/James8981/targets-v3a

    • Regular guy

      Creating press releases that tout this as an important issue in the infantry is just plain wrong. The hype given to this issue is as ridiculous as running for president believing that “same sex marriage” is the most important issue in the minds of Americans today!

      Ask any infantry Squad leader deployed or preparing to; if having a tool to kill personnel armed with RPG’s and PKM’s 50m-800m that his squad or platoon can “legitimately” carry on every patrol, ranks higher than the comfort of knowing their 0-50m capability will have improved stopping power if overran. If this fantasy program were real; on the shelf solutions would automatically be excluded as they weigh 49 pounds each along with the “smart” guns that shoot smart munitions to small to “actually” kill the enemy within 5m as advertise.
      This program based on the number of personnel authorized to carry a pistol in the infantry and based on commonsense; this should be managed by the MP’s as the largest effected user base. This would free up our Infantry combat developers to get in front of real issues affecting our junior infantry leaders in combat. Like weapons that are to heavy to carry or lack the lethality to over match fighters wearing no protective gear and caring 1961 technology after 13 years of conflict.

      I had the opportunity to ask “Art” Thomas how many Infantry soldiers or Marine’s in combat have actually drawn a pistol to save the day in combat? Or how many Operational Needs Statements were written in combat for this? Because this is what should be driving development right? He couldn’t think of one.

      This is happening because of the maintenance contract with Berretta. It costs more to fix one (92FS ) than to buy one. Secondly the rounds we use for our 92FS pistols are not designed or certified for use. The hotter and heavier NATO military rounds were designed to cycle the operating system of heavy blowback submachine guns. I believe the 92FS was tested and fielded to shoot the 115 gn and not the 125+P standard issue NATO. So openly dismissing the operator spec of the gun and the locking blocks were the point of failure of this weapon and program.

      • JimL

        Lots of emotion over pistols. I agree that the pistol BOIP is an issue. Who needs one?

        At one time they issued infantry Lts pistols because they wanted them to focus on commanding, not shooting.

        Basically a pistol is a very short-range defensive weapon for folks in certain areas. Carried a lot; shot a little. It is not a big casualty producer. The SF folks use it for special missions, but they have their own procurement system.

        Many of the comments here are focused on P/k. Clearly P/h is important as well. Reported data is the SDM, for example, account for a much higher number of kills than others.

        There are so many variables that focusing on one can be misleading. Sure, a 50AE creates a bigger wound channel, but who can hit a moving target with it at 0300 under fire?

        Therefore, a high fidelity field test that looks at all the design variables is going to give you the best solution. Grip size, grip angle, trigger, sights, lasers, bullet design, training, etc.

        Whether the Infantry School or the MP School write the base document really isn’t a big workload issue. I agree the MP School might be a ‘better’ proponent for a variety of reasons.

        Folks love to argue. The Army has the responsibility to give folks a weapon that the 5th-95th percentile can shoot within certain limits. The ‘perfect’ pistol would be one that anybody could shoot accurately while tired with little training. I liked the Gwinn 5.56 arm pistol when I shot it; it might be a good PDW design.

        If you look at all the attempts to quantify bullet performance, it gets very difficult. Results are all over the place. Look at the Miami FBI shootout. The bad guys were basically dead when they shot the agents.

        JimL

  • TJO

    What is this!? When was the last time the outcome of a war was determined by the sidearm of the two nations? Doesn’t the Army have anything freaking better to do than waste more money on pointless “upgrades” that do nothing to make us a more effective fighting force?

    Yes the M9 sucks, but functionally it is a high capacity 9MM handgun like all the rest and no other handgun pistol would provide better combat performance beyond ergonomics. And going to 45ACP ball is not going to make our handgun a wonder weapon. A 2.5mm bigger hole isn’t worth the inordinate amount of money spent on all the research in the program and past failed ones . Just say screw the Geneva convention and use a 9MM JHP or something and stop wasting our time and money!

    There is no way to justify a switch when we have bigger priorities to worry about. Maybe if you cut the abomination that is the F35 program then we could switch handguns. Right now? NO.

    • Regular guy

      Thank you sir for hitting this center mass.
      All of the scientist and engineer BS here is laughable. As if this is a “Huge” issue down range with our junior leaders on patrols. If only these articles could reach all of the soldiers they say they are protecting!
      I’ll bet they would get shouted shamed off this sight and never come back. Its a sham and a “Dog and pony show.” Our developers should be focused on far bigger issues instead of shamelessly using this meaningless issue to get some press and upper brass visibility.

      This is only happening because of the maintenance contract with Berretta. It costs more to fix one (92FS ) than to buy one. Secondly the rounds we use for our 92FS pistols are not designed or certified for use in the 92FS. The hotter and heavier NATO military rounds were designed to cycle the operating system of heavy blowback submachine guns.

  • Secundius

    A “Modular Handgun”, isn’t that the same as a “Smart Gun”. Which the NRA, doesn’t want anywhere in the US!

  • Jim

    Of course the 9mm is not enough. No handgun round is enough, at least what you can reasonably carry on the battlefield. For seventy five years the .45acp was enough, and was replaced in the mid eighties, so we could stage cruise missiles in Italy. Beretta is in Italy. Go figure. During the trials the Sig Sauer pistol out performed the Beretta, but the cost of spare and replacement parts was the reason the Beretta was chosen, even though it was not the overall better pistol. Politics and money is what played the part. The Marines have already dumped the M9 and are manufacturing their own 1911. I don’t know what pistol they chose, but a .45acp or a .357sig sounds the best to me. I hope money, politics don’t play a part. Our warriors deserve the very best.