Why Not More Interest in the 9x23? - Arms Locker
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Old 04-17-2017, 12:42 AM   #1
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Why Not More Interest in the 9x23?

Talk about all the new calibers to have come along over the last half century and one must ask, why aren't more people excited about the Winchester 9x23? Why haven't gun makers jumped all over it?

Okay, they thunk up the 357 SIG and the 9x25 Dillion, but why? The 9x23 Winchester is basically a .38 Super on steroids and will run with the best of the Janie-come-lately bottlenecks!

The 9x23 uses a massively thick-walled case and is rated to 55K psi! Winchester still loads ammo for it - 125 grain at 1,450 and that's just starting to get warmed up!

Sure the 9x23, like the 9x25 must be chambered in a .45 ACP length action, but consider a Glock 20 that normally carried 15 rounds in the magazine, now chambered in 9x23 carrying 17-18. Plus, the smaller bore means the cartridge centerline sits close to the bore axis, which translate into high feed reliability - something .38 Super owners know very well.

Also, being a straight-walled case, loading is much simpler, with bullet setback being far less of an issue than with pistol-profile bottleneck rounds.
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Old 04-17-2017, 01:43 PM   #2
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I've always been interested in the 9x23 Winchester...and,as an added bonus;some of the guns chambered in it are readily convertible between.38 Super,9mm Largo;and a few others.
Great ballistic performance;not ridiculous to reload or form cases for... always wondered why it never seemed more widespread....
 
Old 04-17-2017, 02:47 PM   #3
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Slightly longer oal than .45acp would create a 'fit' issue in a lot of guns, and especially a lot of double-stack guns.

Main reason imo is probably just that it's not mainstream. (Kind of a circular logic I realize - it's not mainstream because so few people use it, and so few people use it because it's not mainstream - but it's a reality sometimes.) Much like other completely fine cartridges like the .356 tsw, the .41AE, the 9x21, etc. Any of them can serve just fine, but the lack of market penetration means there's not a lot of affordable ammo options. And a lack of affordable ammo options means there's not going to be a lot of market penetration.

Also, there's always the "how much better is it" question. It's very capable, pushing a 124-grain bullet at 1450 or so. But a high-end 9mm load can push a 115-grainer at close to 1400 or so, and at the same time allow for cheap shooting with generic stuff. In 9mm, I get 1463 fps from a glock 19 and 1375 even from the little G26, with 100-grain corbon stuff. Is the extra 150 or so fps (or the extra 15-25 grains of bullet weight) that the 9x23 offers, worth missing out on the lower-cost bulk ammo of the 9mm or other common calibers? To some it might be; but evidently, to most people it's not.
 
 
Old 04-17-2017, 03:04 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John in AR View Post
Slightly longer oal than .45acp would create a 'fit' issue in a lot of guns, and especially a lot of double-stack guns.

Main reason imo is probably just that it's not mainstream. (Kind of a circular logic I realize - it's not mainstream because so few people use it, and so few people use it because it's not mainstream - but it's a reality sometimes.) Much like other completely fine cartridges like the .356 tsw, the .41AE, the 9x21, etc. Any of them can serve just fine, but the lack of market penetration means there's not a lot of affordable ammo options. And a lack of affordable ammo options means there's not going to be a lot of market penetration.

Also, there's always the "how much better is it" question. It's very capable, pushing a 124-grain bullet at 1450 or so. But a high-end 9mm load can push a 115-grainer at close to 1400 or so, and at the same time allow for cheap shooting with generic stuff. In 9mm, I get 1463 fps from a glock 19 and 1375 even from the little G26, with 100-grain corbon stuff. Is the extra 150 or so fps (or the extra 15-25 grains of bullet weight) that the 9x23 offers, worth missing out on the lower-cost bulk ammo of the 9mm or other common calibers? To some it might be; but evidently, to most people it's not.
By the same token I like this cartridge for the same reasons I like the 10 mm: Yes,the shorter OAL " mainstream accepted calibers" can approach the lower end performance threshold of the longer calibers. But they do so at higher operating pressures due to lesser case volume... whereas the " Longer ones not welcome at Cool Kid's Table of Mass Market Penetration" start out at the limits of the smaller ones and can step down via reduced loadings or conversion barrels with few(if any) issues.
 
Old 04-17-2017, 06:00 PM   #5
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that don't make the ammo 20c a shot. many are dummies about large bores and bullet weight. Many more are dummies about revolvers and double stack mags. They already HAVE the 9mm or the 40, so why bother with a 9x23? People who really want top performance will make really lw bullets and drive them really fast in their own handloads. . Everyone else is just in the "ammo dump" category, and they wont spend the extra money for a new gun/load.
 
Old 04-17-2017, 06:05 PM   #6
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Options. I like having them-whether it's a swap barrel option or something more mundane like running.38's in a .357 or .44 Special in a .44 Magnum..and ,as others stated; getting them out in the wild gets the other folks to consider them...and therein lies your market penetration.
 
Old 04-17-2017, 07:33 PM   #7
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Gripper - I didn't mean the above as a knock on the caliber. It's very capable; basically duplicating a full-power .357 magnum load in an almost same-size and same-capacity gun as a 9mm. And I love the .357 magnum, it's one of my most-loaded calibers.

Great capability with the 9x23. I was just speculating on the 'why' of its market status, not on its inherent pro's or con's.
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Old 04-17-2017, 09:14 PM   #8
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Oh, I understand.No hassle-the reason I stated what I did was because I would think a.v versatile caliber and platform SHOULD be able to sell itself...
 
Old 04-18-2017, 01:01 PM   #9
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I have way too many 9X19 MM's and 9X18MM's to even think about starting an other 9MM. The Horror, the Horror!
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Old 04-18-2017, 02:31 PM   #10
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The convertibility as well as the ballistic potential interest me.
 
Old 06-06-2017, 03:43 PM   #11
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1) The .38 Super already exists
2) It won't fit in a 9x19 size gun any more than the .38 Super will
3) If the guns aren't on the shelves to be purchased, no body will purchase
4) Have you looked at the 9x25 Dillon?
 
Old 06-06-2017, 03:55 PM   #12
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You are looking at it from the opposite direction that I am: I see it as a larger,high strength platform with reliable convertibility from LONGER higher pressure calibers down to shorter OAL medium pressure calibers with reasonable parts swaps. Effectively,an ability to have several viable choices available for the same frame. Think of it like a .45 Colt Redhawk with the cylinder cut to run .45ACP in moon clips and .45 Auto Rim without clips. Or a .357 revolver,that can run .38 Special(and in some cases others).
 
Old 06-06-2017, 07:29 PM   #13
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There's no point to it.
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Old 06-09-2017, 02:00 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jammer Six View Post
There's no point to it.
^This.

Repeat after me, "Shot Placement and System Shutdown."
 
Old 11-20-2018, 05:33 PM   #15
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Easy--it won't fit in a std 9mm pistol. It works for 1911s and other .45 designed pistols. Without pistol, the cartridge is dead in the water.
It certainly trumps the .38 Super.
 
Old 11-21-2018, 09:55 PM   #16
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For those of us that live in towns or smaller cities, replacement components such as brass are going to be exceptionally different to find unless you buy it from a major manufacturer and have it mailed to you, as for finding factory ammo its a whole new ball game. Years ago I lived on the west coast in a city of 163,000 at the time and I purchased an old Mauser Bolt Action rifle in 7.63 Argentine. Great rifle, I didn't reload at the time and it took me 8 months to find a single box of 20 rds which I paid through the nose for. It didn't last long in my rifle locker. I still buy firearms in obsolete calibers, but before I buy the gun, I know where the brass, bullets and reloading dies come from.
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Old 11-10-2020, 03:58 AM   #17
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oh there's definitely a point to it, when you know the facts about "shot placement" (it doesnt HAPPEN when people are shooting at you ) and the facts about flesh and blood bullet impacts (ie, jhps in 9mm dont expand reliably under 1200 fps, or 1300 fps if they first encounter heavy clothing. If somebody dared to load it all the way up, as in 45 grs at 2400+ fps in a 4" barrel, there'd be interest, but it would probably get added to the AP 'no-no" list, so no ammo maker wants to get involved.
 
Old 11-10-2020, 08:33 AM   #18
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Melvin, it is a proven fact in the 20th century, during 2 world wars and 50+ other conflicts, when bullets hit the human body, that they are either incapacitated or they die, even the drugged up moros when hit with a large enough bullet. There is nothing wrong with either a wildcat cartridge or an obsolete one as long as you are willing to think in the long term and always ensure you have stock available. Personally I want a firearm that is going to last 10,000+ rds and not wear out after firing a couple of thousand.
 
Old 11-10-2020, 09:00 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boati View Post
...jhps in 9mm dont expand reliably under 1200 fps, or 1300 fps if they first encounter heavy clothing...
That was largely (but not completely) true when we were younger back in the 70's and 80's, but modern ones have expansion thresholds all over the velocity spectrum. Manufacturers make thin jackets, thick jackets, soft cores, harder cores, etc.

Some modern loads expand so early that they penetrate less than ideal for defensive purposes, and some expand so little that they act nearly like FMJ. There are more types (design, metallurgy recipe, construction type, jacket kerfs, etc) of JHP ammo now than ever before, especially in the enormously popular 9mm caliber. If you want a JHP load that penetrates a bunch with little expansion, you can have it in the XTP and some others. If you want one that expands almost instantly with very limited penetration, you can have it with the LeHigh Maximum Expansion and some others. If you want somewhere in the middle of both, you can get it with the HST and some others. If you want one that will completely thru-&-thru a fairly large animal, you can have it with the Buffalo Bore hardcast and some others.

The issue nowadays is picking which load to carry based on what you want it to do, not worrying about whether a load exists that fit your preferences; because it does. From 50 grains to 158 grains, from 800fps to 1500fps, there is a load that can do anything that the 9mm is capable of.
 
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