Smith & Wesson 40 cal Sigma Pistol


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The Popular S&W Sigma .40 cal Handgun

When the Smith and Wesson Sigma pistols first came out, they had a bit of a bumpy start to life.  Some early models were plagued with jamming problems.  Thankfully, Smith & Wesson fixed these issues, and they are no longer a concern like they once were.  The Smith Wesson 40 cal Sigma pistol is now a reliable, economical, reasonably accurate, and powerful semi-automatic pistol.  Street price typically ranges in the mid $300's, although it can sometimes be found on sale for a hair under $300!  The SW40VE is chambered in the effective .40 round with it's well proven stopping power.  For those unaware of some of the history behind .40 S&W ammunition, it was developed after law enforcement agencies discovered that the 10mm round they were using was too powerful for some people.  In other words, the buck and the roar of the 10mm was more than some people could handle effectively.  They wanted something more powerful than the standard 9mm, but something that was easier to control than the 10mm.  Out of this came the potent but manageable .40 which offers a great combination of effective stopping power along with reasonable recoil.   

Smith Wesson Sigma .40

Smith Wesson 40 Cal Sigma Specifications

Caliber: .40 S&W

Capacity: 10+1 or 14+1 Rounds

Barrel Length: 4 inches

Front Sight: Dot Front Sight

Rear Sight: Fixed

Grip: Plastic

Frame: Zytel Plastic Polymer

Finish:  Two Tone

Overall Length: 7-1/4" inches

Weight: 24.4 oz (empty)

Some would say that the .40 S&W round is comparable to the legendary .357 Magnum.  Both rounds can have bullet energies in the 400-500 ft-lbs range depending on the exact type of ammunition that you choose.  This is more than adequate stopping power especially if you choose a good hollow point bullet design that will effectively transfer all that energy.  Full metal jacket ammunition is good for target shooting, plinking, and general shooting; however, Jacketed Hollow Point (JHP) bullets are required for effective self defense purposes.  There's a reason why law enforcement officers carry their sidearm loaded with JHP ammo.  Speaking of law enforcement and ammunition, Speer Gold Dot ammunition has a solid reputation as being one of the very best JHP self defense rounds available, and it is used by law enforcement in many areas.  Offered in 40 S&W with 155gr, 165gr, and 180gr bullets, the Speer Gold Dot ammo is a good choice for a Smith Wesson 40 cal Sigma handgun. 

Back to the comparison of the .40 and .357 Magnum rounds.  The .357 Magnum has been around longer than the .40 S&W round, and the .357 Mag has been a long track record of use in law enforcement in the past.  Using law enforcement data of actual shootings, it has been found that the .357 Magnum is one of the best man stoppers around with one shot stop ratings of 96% by data compiled by Marshall & Sanow.  In other words, in situations where law enforcement officers needed to shoot a criminal, the .357 Magnum would stop them in one shot 96% of the time.  Since the 40 S&W is very similar in terms of ballistics, then it should also be very effective as long as (this next part is VERY important) you load it with high powered JHP ammunition.  Again, forget the full metal jacket "ball" ammo for self defense, and stick with JHP.  With the right ammo, the Smith & Wesson 40 cal Sigma can be a very effective self defense gun and it's priced very affordably.  If you'd prefer a step up and are willing to pay more money, then Smith and Wesson also offers their Military & Police (M&P) line of pistols.