How Much Does that Handgun Kick?

This is a common question and there are many misconceptions floating around. Following is a short list of recoil energies from common handguns, all taken from 40 oz guns. Lighter guns will kick more, heavier guns will kick less.  Cut the weight of the gun in half and the recoil energies felt would be doubled. Recoil energies also differ within caliber when different bullet weights are used but the following examples will give a represenative comparison.
 

·         22 LR                      .36 ft pds

·         380ACP                 1.39 ft pds

·         38 Special            2.94 ft pds

·         9MM                      3.85 ft pds

·         357 mag               8.40 ft pds

·         40 S&W                 5.85 ft pds

·         45 ACP                  6.90 ft pds

·         44 mag                  21.95 ft pds

·         500 S&W              96.60 ft pds


If you have shot any one caliber listed, you can estimate the comparative recoil from the other guns based on the figures given. For example, a 38 Special has roughly twice the recoil of a 380 ACP i.e. 1.39 X 2 = 2.78. Again this assumes guns of equal weight at 40 ounces.  Obviously more math is needed when comparing an 11 oz 380ACP with a 32 oz 38 Special. 

Posted in: Industry and Product News, Reports From the Range and Field