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XD 357SIG to 40 Conversion?

This is a discussion on XD 357SIG to 40 Conversion? within the General SA-XD/XD(M) Talk forums, part of the XD Talk category; After a 4 month wait in Indiana's licensing process I am happy to say I am now allowed to carry my XD. Years ago when ...


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Old 09-06-2010, 08:18 AM   #1
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XD 357SIG to 40 Conversion?

After a 4 month wait in Indiana's licensing process I am happy to say I am now allowed to carry my XD. Years ago when I bought my XD I purchased a 357SIG model because it was a round that my Uncle had enjoyed in a conversion on his Sig 229. Mine was purchased in 2003. After a hiatus from doing much with handguns I have come back to find that 357SIG ammo is fairly hard to find and pricey compared to the other rounds in my area (Indianapolis).

I like the current caliber, but was wondering about getting a FireDragon 40 cal conversion barrel. From my limited understanding I believe that I would be about the same in terms of stopping power, the ammo is readily available and fairly cheap, and that if I wanted to get into reloading it would be a much easier route. I would love some input from the community as I am pretty ignorant about this aspect of firearms. I like to think I am knowledgeable about most things, but am not afraid to admit when I am not.

Would it make sense to get a conversion barrel to make this a 40? If the funding was available I would just get an XDm 40 3.8 as I really like the capacity and new features. I love my current XD. I just want to be able to find ammo and be able to practice without selling the farm.

Any and all help is greatly appreciated!
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Old 09-06-2010, 09:02 AM   #2
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I don't know much about the conversion so take what I say with a grain of salt but as long as the gun is built to the correct pressures you shouldn't have a problem. Especially since the 357sig has higher pressures than the 40 all you should need is the 40 barrel. The mags you have for the 357 should work fine with the 40.

A friend of mine has a 357sig glock and he bought a factory replacement 40 barrel for it and he loves switching back and forth with the different calibers.
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Old 09-06-2010, 09:20 AM   #3
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Do not have an original 357Sig, so a bit of deductive reasoning - since their 9mm conversion barrel is listed as working in either the 40SW or 357Sig models, that tells me the original 40SW and 357Sig barrels are the same outside diameter. So a 40SW barrel should fit and function in the 357Sig slide. The breech size of the 357 and 40 are identical so there should be no change in reliability of feeding or extracting, making this an OK SD switch as well as for range use. The recoil springs are the same and they both use the same magazines without any alterations necessary. As a light weight 135gr 40SW round can be found in factory ammo that is higher velocity than the normal factory 357 125gr round there is actually an increase in muzzle energy (heavier, larger diameter, and faster) so forget the legendary 357 power factor. Additionally, where the 357Sig stops at 147gr bullets on the heavy side in most factory loads, the 40SW can be found loaded up to 180gr. Getting into the area of the lighter 45acp loads. The 357 (due to bullet characteristics) does have an inherent accuracy at pistol distances that may exceed the average 40SW bullet, but I highly doubt that you could tell the difference when fired from a combat pistol. Call and verify the barrel switch as far as outer diameter and if OK there, go for it. I reload for both so cost and availability are not major factors, but in factory ammo the 40SW is generally cheaper and more available. For 40SW practice ammo you can tune the recoil from a snappy 135gr light bullet to a bit more 45 type slower push in 180gr. In an ammo crunch you will have the capability of shooting either caliber that you can find. In the same price range, also check StormLake Barrels, personally I favor those over the EFK. Not sure on a warranty issue but the StormLake 45acp barrel has been used for 460Rowland conversions so I know the strength and quality are there. Either are available direct from the mfg or thru dealers (often cheaper). Check the forum sponsors where you are sure of quality customer support or do a google search.
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Old 09-07-2010, 05:50 PM   #4
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Thank you both for the information. I looked at StormLake's site and the price seems very reasonable. I think I will go with that manufacturer and make the switch.
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Old 09-13-2010, 02:25 PM   #5
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Just get a .40 cal barrel and you have it done. .40 cal is a common LEO round and is a great stopper..357SIG rounds are great for penetrating truck bodies and the like and the velocity is comprable to a .357 Magnum. I like having an option of calibres
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Old 09-15-2010, 05:12 AM   #6
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Pistol Gear, one of the sponsors here, has .40 barrels also. Like others have said, the 40 and 357Sig have the same cartridge base. The conversion is a no brainer. Just put in the new barrel... done! Mostly, aftermarket barrels will shoot to the sights, but in case that does not happen for you, there are ways to "tune" the point of impact should you require it. There are instructions online for it if you search, or the barrel manufacturer could most likely be of help as well. Most likely, you will not have to do that. As an aside, since you will probably be experimenting with a plethora of 40cal ammo as well as the 357SIG stuff, you may consider at some point sending the gun out to have some adjustable sights installed so you can fine tune your point of impact. Dawson adjustable sights come to mind as very suitable for this purpose.

As to ballistics... the .40 will accept bullets from 135 through 220grns in weight in the common lead/copper configurations. Other bullets of solid copper will be of lesser weight but certainly usable. With the proper powder and bullet selection, you can get exemplary accuracy from the 40S&W round, rivaling any known pistol cartridge. The rifling twist rate lends itself to bullets of 165grn and up for the best accuracy, with 180grn being the most popular from both an accuracy and power viewpoint, though the 40 is so versatile that the differences in accuracy would be mostly minuscule. From a power viewpoint alone, the 40 has a lot to offer. I have tested this round with a lot of bullet and powder combinations and can say no one would be happy to be hit by one and they are just as, or probably more lethal than most other carry pistol rounds. On that, opinions vary, but you will certainly not be under gunned with a 40 compared to other carry rounds!

The .40S&W round is popular for several reasons. Ammunition is varied and readily available, as you have found. It is easily reloaded from common components, and dies with the carbide liner in the resizing die will provide many years, if not a lifetime of use without the need to lubricate the cases, This is NOT true of the bottle necked 357SIG cases. Many law enforcement agencies as well as Federal agencies use the .40 as their primary cartridge, since it is both powerful and accurate, and once fired cases are plentiful and inexpensive should you decide to reload this round. Cases for this caliber can be reloaded many times if you follow careful procedures and do not always try for the "maximum" possible power factor with fast burning powders. With mid-range to slower pistol powders, case life of the .40 is equal to or better than most. It's a great round and I'm glad to see you have looked into it!
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Old 09-15-2010, 04:15 PM   #7
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The .357 SIG is actually a economical round. It'll go through the bad guy, and his partner behind him. Georgia Arms seems to have a good supply of FMJ. It's hard to find JHP ammo, though.

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