.32-40 Ballard

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.32-40 Ballard
223remmington 32-40ballard 270winchester.jpg
.32-40 cartridge between .223 Remington (left) and .270 Winchester (right)
Place of originUSA
Case typeRimmed straight
Bullet diameter.320 in (8.1 mm)
Neck diameter.338 in (8.6 mm)
Base diameter.424 in (10.8 mm)
Rim diameter.506 in (12.9 mm)
Rim thickness.063 in (1.6 mm)
Case length2.13 in (54 mm)
Overall length2.59 in (66 mm)
Rifling twist1 in 16
Primer typeLarge rifle
Ballistic performance
Bullet mass/type Velocity Energy
165 gr (11 g) 1,440 ft/s (440 m/s) 760 ft⋅lbf (1,030 J)
165 gr (11 g) 1,430 ft/s (440 m/s) 755 ft⋅lbf (1,024 J)
155 gr (10 g) lead 1,460 ft/s (450 m/s) 786 ft⋅lbf (1,066 J)
165 gr (11 g) 1,740 ft/s (530 m/s) 1,115 ft⋅lbf (1,512 J)
Test barrel length: 20 inches (510 mm)

The .32-40 Ballard (also called .32-40 Winchester)[1] is an American rifle cartridge.


Introduced in 1884, the .32-40 was developed as a black powder match-grade round for the Ballard single-shot Union Hill No. 8 and 9 target rifles. Using a 165-grain (10.7 g) bullet over 40 grains (2.6 g) of black powder (muzzle velocity 1,440 ft/s (440 m/s), muzzle energy 755 ft⋅lbf (1,024 J)), the factory load gained a reputation for fine accuracy, with a midrange trajectory of 11 inches (28 cm) at 200 yd (180 m).[2] It was available in Winchester and Marlin lever rifles beginning in 1886.[2] It stopped being a factory chambering around 1940.[2]

It provides performance sufficient for deer at up to 300 yards (270 m) in a modern rifle, for which it can be loaded to about equal the .30-30.[2] It is more than enough for varmints, including coyotes and wolves, or medium-sized game.

The .32-40 also served as the basis for Harry Pope's wildcat .33-40.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Barnes, Frank C., ed. by John T. Amber. Cartridges of the World (Northfield, IL: DBI Books, 1972), p.67.
  2. ^ a b c d Barnes, p.47.


  • Barnes, Frank C., ed. by John T. Amber. Cartridges of the World (Northfield, IL: DBI Books, 1972),