front firing vs side firing woofers

My speakers have side firing woofers. My room is 14ft X 18ft. The bass is full bodied, musical and defined - but not chest thumping when playing R&R. Can side firing woofers ever give the slam of front firing? Thanks in advance.
I believe the answer is yes, side firing woofers can slam as well as front firing woofers. It's just a matter of speaker design. Since I've heard good/bad subwoofers with front firing, side firing, rear firing, down firing woofers, I'd have to think the design, specifically in the crossover and driver selection, has more to do with the sound than the direction the woofer is firing.

It's the speaker and room acustics. Side fireing given the same woofer and quality tend to feel a bit slower and sharp than front fireing but if you are loosing sound in a frequency range it probably has more to do with position and the room. If your speaker has a crossover try adjusting that.
Well, the direction the woofer is firing has significance only in relation to room boundaries and their proximity. A side-firing woofer within a foot or two of a side wall (or a large cabinet) will be affected by that boundary. Otherwise, no.

I think slam is more of an mid-upper bass thing (80hz-120hz) or maybe even higher sometimes. Below 80hz is mostly shudder and room lock type of bass.

The 1/4 wavelength for these freq's (80-120hz) are shorter than the lower bass wavelengths so are fairly close to the walls. 1/4...3/4...5/4..ect are null points so cancel bass.

Try moving your speaker (or your chair) farther away from the or both may be placed at a null point.

For instance, the 1/4 wavelength point (null) for 100hz is at 2'10" from the wall.

Pick up a SPL meter

Placement, Placement, biggest real way to gain or lose low freq. Try them 3 ft out from the backwall and then 1 ft, etc... and everything inbetween will be more bass punch but more smooth soundstage etc... So go as far into the room as possible and increment back toward the wall in small movement until it snaps in where you like it, but this may also need to move in and out from the side walls as well to re-focus soundstage.. Also, Try the side fireing in toward each other and fireing out toward the walls, I would guess they are a mirror pair. Welcome to the tedious and rewarding world of speaker placement, its tuff and I have been thru weeks without settling on new speaker placement but it will find a spot at some point.
A lot of the time I would listen to something not bass driven and thought it is great but then put in something I know needs more and they gotta be moved back an inch or so to gain bass from the backwall, find the best medium.
In my opinion, the type of bass to strive for will have the feel of a hammer (perhaps a rubber mallet) knocking you right in the sternum. As apposed to say a 500 lbs. bowl of jell-o knocking you in the sternum.

Not every recording has this type of bass, but many more than you may think do.

To achieve this level of punch and definition proper speaker cables and interconnects, and proper amplification are required to provide this type of deep, absolutely controlling, well-defined bass. Especially the amp.

That's assuming of course the speakers are up to the task.

To be safe, I would certainly prefer forward facing woofers as I think (contrary to what many say) the sound of lower frequencies (30Hz - 80Hz) can be quite directional. But again, this depends on many factors.

If you want slam (this is counterintuitive, but bear with me)... you need to get rid of resonances--by their nature, resonant frequencies take "some time" to resonate and also to decay.

Thus the koan: to get more bass, you need less bass.
That three dimensional bass wave that you can almost see rolling towards you across the floor can be musically distracting. My front firing floorstanding KEF's had it and they went way loud without distorting. Tight well shaped bass waves do have heaps of geewhiz factor but because they draw so much physical attention to themselves coming at you, they're ultimately annoying. Overall, I'd say hearing good bass is preferable to being forced into watching it. You're better off than you realize.
i'm thinking driver size has a bunch to do with it. My current dunlavy speakers have downward firing 10's that have deep, tight solid bass. They get lower than my brothers EV dual 18 subs (good to about 40 hz flat vrs below 30 hz for the dunlavy) but but no chest pounding on the horizon for the 10s. An old Klipsh cornwall system with 15s i had would thump roack and roll like there's no tomorrow. there was bass you could feel in your guts but barely hear on some recordings (all records in those days). For that system i used 12 ga wire, rat shack interconnects and crown amps, nothing special there just moving air.