Since it’s birth in 1983 it has been turning heads with speed and power.

This all from standard size auto-loading pistols and later various other firearms.

Sit back and let me tell you a quick tale of the 10mm cartridge.


Lehigh Defense

Jeff Cooper decided another better handgun cartridge was in order and came up with the 10mm. It was introduced in 1983 for the Bren Ten pistol. The FBI picked up this new powerful cartridge in 1989 after a disastrous shoot out  in 1986 that became the rallying cry for the need of a more potent duty handgun cartridge. Well the much more powerful original load was too much recoil for some agents. A light load was developed commonly referred to as the FBI load. Later from this light load the 10mm casing was cut down and became the .40 S&W cartridge.

Sig Sauer

So after that change was the 10mm cartridge relegated to the status of obsolete along with so many ill fated cartridges of the past? It was far to good of a cartridge for that to happen. With hot loads hunters found that the 10mm cartridge was dandy on wild boar, deer and even at times bear. This was all contained in a pistol that was a standard size of a service pistol and not a long hog legged revolver. With great handiness and extra load carrying capacity the cartridge became quite a favorite with backwoods wanderers where large toothy beasts could be ready for another meal. On the forefront of popularity was and still is the Glock 10mm caliber pistols. Other handguns such as model 1911 variants and even carbines and revolvers have been chambered for this great cartridge.

Underwood Ammo

The popularity of this cartridge has become almost a cult classic with well known hunters like Ted Nugent using it with great success.

Ted Nugent

The powerful cartridge might not be as powerful as even the .44 magnum but the lack of the more punishing recoil and higher capacity in some semi-automatic pistols (15+1 in the Glock 20) has it’s virtues. The true power is often spoke as .41 magnum levels but in truth mostly between the .357 magnum and the .41 magnum cartridges. Remember the cheaper full metal jacket range loads are not the hottest available. Go with the hard hitting heavily loaded cartridges such as Underwood Ammo among other manufacturers for addressing serious threats. Also handloading is a great opportunity to get the most out of this potent cartridge. Be sure to never go above the reloading manual’s hottest loads.

Is the 10mm cartridge heading to the curb anytime soon? At this rate every year this cartridge gets more popular and more weapons are being chambered for it. Expect it to be around for at least another century.

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