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Thread: 41 magnum vs 10 mm auto

  1. #1
    Boolit Man
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    41 magnum vs 10 mm auto

    From a practical point of view, what is the primary difference, if any, between the ballistic performance of a 41 Magnum and a 10mm revolver? Obviously the 10mm would have to use moon clips and would fire a slightly smaller diameter bullet but... Beyond that is there any significant difference between these two?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    the 10 uses a 155 grain bullet at around 1400fps . The 41 mag does the same velocity with a 210 grain slug. I'd guess the .41 beats the energy and trajectory levels of the 10 MM quite easily.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    Um.. the 10 mm original load was a 200 gr bullet at 1200 fps. This was the original Norma load which likely shook apart many a delta elite. In a revolver, you can buy and cast 10 mm up to 220 gr. I have both calibers.. the 41 magnum can use slightly heavier bullets.. I've been able to crank 235 gr (41 cal) truncated cone Bear creeks to 1315 fps. Either can be used to take deer sized game.. and in a Revolver you may be able to make that 200 or 220 gr pill a tad faster than Norma did 20 years ago since there are some slow burners that were unavailable back then.

    It was always thought that you could load the 10mm to light 41 magnum performance. Neither caliber are all that popular..

  4. #4
    Boolit Man
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    Quote Originally Posted by sargenv View Post
    Um.. the 10 mm original load was a 200 gr bullet at 1200 fps. This was the original Norma load which likely shook apart many a delta elite. In a revolver, you can buy and cast 10 mm up to 220 gr. I have both calibers.. the 41 magnum can use slightly heavier bullets.. I've been able to crank 235 gr (41 cal) truncated cone Bear creeks to 1315 fps. Either can be used to take deer sized game.. and in a Revolver you may be able to make that 200 or 220 gr pill a tad faster than Norma did 20 years ago since there are some slow burners that were unavailable back then.

    It was always thought that you could load the 10mm to light 41 magnum performance. Neither caliber are all that popular..
    Thanks! That was helpful.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master in Heaven's Range HammerMTB's Avatar
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    .41 Mag wheel gun= 6 rounds and reload
    10MM auto pistol, mags vary, but my Glock 20=15+1 up the pipe
    Lotta firepower
    The .41 has a slight ballistic advantage, as noted above. I doubt anything you'd shoot a slug into would be able to tell the difference....

  6. #6
    Boolit Master

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    A Glock full of 10mm ammo is pretty formidable medicine. I'd probably as soon have my G20 in bad bear country as my .454 Freedom. A hailstorm of 200 gr. FMJ at 1200 fps. will make most anything uncomfortable. And since I figure if a bear jumps me, some of my shots may be ill aimed.
    Cast Boolits, Where lead balloons go over....

  7. #7
    Boolit Master fredj338's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HammerMTB View Post
    .41 Mag wheel gun= 6 rounds and reload
    10MM auto pistol, mags vary, but my Glock 20=15+1 up the pipe
    Lotta firepower
    The .41 has a slight ballistic advantage, as noted above. I doubt anything you'd shoot a slug into would be able to tell the difference....
    I own a couple of 10mm, but it is NOT a 41mag, not even close. The best you are going to do is 1200fps w/ a 200gr bullet in a 4.5"-5"bbl. The 41mag, even in a 4" rev. will run 210gr @ 1300fps, 220gr @ 1250fps & cast heavy 240gr @ 1200fps. The 10mm actually compares closer to a heavy loaded 357mag.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master in Heaven's Range HammerMTB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredj338 View Post
    I own a couple of 10mm, but it is NOT a 41mag, not even close. The best you are going to do is 1200fps w/ a 200gr bullet in a 4.5"-5"bbl. The 41mag, even in a 4" rev. will run 210gr @ 1300fps, 220gr @ 1250fps & cast heavy 240gr @ 1200fps. The 10mm actually compares closer to a heavy loaded 357mag.
    Perhaps you can point out the warm-blooded critter that will be able to tell the difference in the 2?
    Then we could do the math on the difference in a cylinder full of .41 Mag vs. a mag full of 10MM?
    And you can get 200 grainers to go close to 1300 in a 6" bbl. There are 6" bbls available for the Glock 20.
    Cheers!

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by sargenv View Post
    Um.. the 10 mm original load was a 200 gr bullet at 1200 fps. This was the original Norma load which likely shook apart many a delta elite. In a revolver, you can buy and cast 10 mm up to 220 gr. I have both calibers.. the 41 magnum can use slightly heavier bullets.. I've been able to crank 235 gr (41 cal) truncated cone Bear creeks to 1315 fps. Either can be used to take deer sized game.. and in a Revolver you may be able to make that 200 or 220 gr pill a tad faster than Norma did 20 years ago since there are some slow burners that were unavailable back then.

    It was always thought that you could load the 10mm to light 41 magnum performance. Neither caliber are all that popular..

    seems to me the orginal norma load for the 10 is a 175/180 at 1350......not a 200...

    and yes the originator handicapped the question by asking about a 10mm REVOLVER. one easy way to tilt the results to the 41.....and i missed a NIB 41 mag lever gun this last weekend...
    only accurate rifles are interesting

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

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    A 220gr. TC boolit can easily be pushed past 1,400fps in my Super BH Hunter. My "light" load pushes this boolit over 1,300 fps with just 17.8grs. of LiL'Gun.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master yondering's Avatar
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    Kind of an obvious comparison really. The 10mm has less case capacity, so obviously it can't match the .41 in a revolver.

    The 41 is a revolver cartridge. It can do everything the 10mm can do, and then some, in a revolver. There's really no point to putting a 10mm in a revolver, except to satisfy the die-hard 10mm fans.

    The 10mm is a semi-auto cartridge. Good luck getting the 41 into a reasonable sized semi-auto. This is where the 10mm shines, and it really does shine, in a semi-auto. It doesn't offer 41 mag ballistics, but it does beat a similar sized .357 pretty well. I get 1500+ fps with 155gr HP's from my Para's 5" barrel, with 21+1 round capacity. And that's just a long throated .40 loaded to 10mm specs, not even a full 10mm case.

    It really comes down to whether you want a revolver or semi-auto. If you want a revolver, there's almost no reason whatsoever to choose a 10mm.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    I,m shooting the lyman 410610 cast at 220+gr out of my 6" Blackhawk 41 at a measured 1480fps. When spring gets here I will be testing a 240 gr. Hoping to get 1400. Heavier bullets means more penetration past the heavy frontal parts of a bear. One heavy getting through is much better than 20 lighter ones that don't. Quantity does not always make up for quality. The 10mm is a nice round but it's not a 41.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master dougader's Avatar
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    Clearly, the power level award goes to the 41 mag. The 10mm takes the prize for capacity, obviously.

    If I was in bear country - especially brown/grizzly bear territory - I'd take the 41 mag revolver. I NEED that first bullet to be powerful, deep penetrating and on target. I most likely will not get a 2nd, or especially, a 3rd shot off if we're talking about a charging bear. The 41 mag with a WLN or WFN profile will crush better and drive deeper than a lighter, softer shouldered 10 mm.

    For light skinned game like cougar or wolf, or for personal defense against those bent on criminal harm, I'd chose the 10mm.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    Well...(Cracks knuckles, prepares to type feverishly)

    Sorry I am late to the party. I have been a student of the 10mm since the Bren Ten was on the cover of every gun rag in the early 80's.

    As has been stated, the 10mm is almost a ballistic twin of the heaviest 357 mag loads. This leaves it far short of the capabilities of the 41 Magnum. If you want 41 magnum performance out of a .401 projectile, look to the 10mm magnum, brass available from Starline. Your Smith 610 can be rechambered to 10mm magnum.

    Also, as has been stated, you can put out a bunch more lead without reloading using a hi-capacity 10mm. And, I doubt most critters, two legged or four, are going to want to hang out and debate the difference in terminal ballistics between a 200 gr JHP 10mm at 1250 fps, or a 200 gr WFNGC 10mm at 1300 fps, or a 230 gr WFNGC 10mm at 1120 fps versus any 41 magnum load in similar weights.

    "Originally, NORMA loaded their 200gr.(grain) bullet at 1200fps (feet per second) and the 170gr. bullet at 1400fps."

    The original Norma loads were very hot for the guns of the day. In modern 10mm auto's with properly supported chambers, and appropriate mainsprings and recoil springs, you can expect a long service life, even with full power loads. Today's full power loads slightly exceed the loads Norma created in the '80's, without exceeding SAAMI spec.

    The 10mm Auto brings a true magnum cartridge to the auto-loading handgun mainstream. It falls short of the 41 magnum, but leaves the 357 mag struggling to keep up.

    I agree with dougader - I need that first shot to count. But, I think I am most likely to make that first shot if I take it with the gun I routinely carry and shoot. Therefore, for my needs, the 10mm is the perfect 'jack of all trades'.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
    lwknight's Avatar
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    The downside of the 10mm and a lot of other cartriges is that run of the mill ammo has been downgraged in the last years. The regular sporting goods off the shelf 10mm is barely more than the 40 SW. You have to check the ballistics on the individual ammo to get full power ammo.
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  16. #16
    Banned Bucks Owin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by softpoint View Post
    A Glock full of 10mm ammo is pretty formidable medicine. I'd probably as soon have my G20 in bad bear country as my .454 Freedom. A hailstorm of 200 gr. FMJ at 1200 fps. will make most anything uncomfortable. And since I figure if a bear jumps me, some of my shots may be ill aimed.
    I'd rather get in one good hit with the .454 (or .41 mag) than a "hailstorm" of 10mm, (likely to only PO said bad bruin ) any time!...JMO, Dennis (Always wanted to use that smiley! )
    Last edited by Bucks Owin; 12-17-2009 at 12:26 PM.

  17. #17
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    I would hope my first shot at an angry bruin would not come from a handgun of any caliber. An ounce or so of lead at 1200fps or more is what I'd want to send on its merry way. 12ga slug, 45/70 etc. would be my choice of a self defense against angry smokeys in ranger hats.
    Marty-hiding out in the hills.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master fredj338's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HammerMTB View Post
    Perhaps you can point out the warm-blooded critter that will be able to tell the difference in the 2?
    Then we could do the math on the difference in a cylinder full of .41 Mag vs. a mag full of 10MM?
    And you can get 200 grainers to go close to 1300 in a 6" bbl. There are 6" bbls available for the Glock 20.
    Cheers!
    Since you do not empty a mag or cyl into an animal, total ft#s or what ever matter little. Yes, you can get a 6"bbl for the G20 then again, a 6" 41mag pushes them faster still. Go ahead, believe your 10mm is a death ray, but those of us that shoot both no the diff.
    FWIW, no, you can not get to 1300fps w/ a 200gr in a 6"bbl w/o bendng something. Yet a 220gr @ 1300fps is quite easily done in the 41mag. Don't get me wrong, I like the 10mm, probably one of the first to reload for it, but it's NOT a 41mag, not even close when both are loaded to safe max pressures.

  19. #19
    Boolit Master
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    Let me start by saying that I agree with fredj338, and others who have stated the fact...The 10mm auto is no 41 magnum.

    However, to this statement:

    FWIW, no, you can not get to 1300fps w/ a 200gr in a 6"bbl w/o bendng something
    I politely resubmit the previous link to the Double Tap 200 gr WFNGC. I have neither chrono'd or shot this load, but I would bet Mr McNett of Double Tap didn't post those numbers without some testing, both to stand behind the advertised speed, and to validate they are within SAAMI spec.

    Now, you may be right...I probably can't duplicate that on my bench at home safely. Not sure. Not gonna try.

    No gun is a death ray. Efficacy is dependent on the skill of the user. I choose one gun, 10mm, and then practice exclusively with that gun to ensure I have the needed skill.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
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    "It really comes down to whether you want a revolver or semi-auto. If you want a revolver, there's almost no reason whatsoever to choose a 10mm."

    I think you're right Yondering, but I'll modify your statement just a smidge. I'll let it read "...almost no practical reason...." I poke holes in paper for entertainment- just about as pragmatic a passtime as my golf game. When I considered buying the 610 I did compare it to a .41. But I guess my decision to go with the 610 was nothing more than personal preference. There's no sustainable arguement I could make in favor of a 10mm over a .41. There's no sustainable arguement I could make in favor of playing golf either...........

    Tom

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