Tag Archives: Pistols

Fisking a Pro-Gun Article

I’m going to fisk a Pro-Gun article here.  Not to play Devil’s Advocate, but to make some corrections.   The article is found at BuzzPo.

1. TRIGGER:  Probably the most important feature for your EDC. 99% of all accuracy issues seem to always come back to trigger control. Now that doesn’t mean that with your skills and abilities you can’t master a goofy trigger. But why put yourself through that?

When selecting your EDC, pick a weapon that has a trigger that feels good. Think of it as putting on a pair of boxer shorts one size too small. You’d likely eventually adjust, but it never really feels natural and quite right.

You are correct, Sir.  Most all accuracy issues can be found in the trigger.  However it is not in the Mechanics of the Trigger, but in the Manipulation.  It’s how you use it.  Even a bad trigger used by a good shooter can result in outstanding accuracy.  Just like a great trigger used by a poor shooter will of course result in poor accuracy.   To quote Chuck Yeager, “It’s not the plane, it’s the pilot.”  You can not buy proficiency.  That takes practice, regardless of what pistol you buy.

2.  GRIP SIZE:  Look at your hands! If your a small petite woman with tiny hands, I’m going to go out on a limb and say that you’re not going to like the full size 10mm Glock 20. And by the same token, I’m a big guy with bear claws for hands. So I personally hate shooting the Sig P938. Again, this is a preference thing. Does your hand naturally wrap around the grip? Does the grip length extend to the base of your hand, or are your finger(s) dangling off the end? Does the grip angle fit and feel well in the webbing between your thumb and trigger finger? Find what feels natural for you.

Here’s where a lot of compromises come in to play.  The Litany of Questions that the author asked are rather useless to the purpose.  EDC, “Every Day Carry”, for the most part really means “Concealed Carry”.  And that means different things for different people.  Everything having to do with Concealed Carry means Compromise.  You are going to compromise Power, Practical Accuracy, Comfort, and Capacity all for the sake of having something that you the EDC Person can have on you all the time, every day.  How you dress, what you are going to be doing that day, the weather, where you are going… all these factors come into play.   And for all of this, the gun is the least important selection… more importantly is having the right Holster.

3:  Frame Size & Safety:  This one is simple. How are you planning to carry? If you want to concealed carry, a full size Glock with a 5 inch barrel will pose some significant challenges. Furthermore, frame size plays a part in felt recoil with larger calibers as well. So that tiny 9mm may actually thump a tad harder than a full size .45.

What about an external mechanical safety? I prefer not to have one. One less thing to fiddle with if you need your EDC in action. But that’s only my preference. If you prefer an external safety, PRACTICE WITH IT! And by practice, I mean find a range that lets you draw and fire from the holster. Get your draw stroke and safety disengagement down as you draw, and your trigger press smooth and consistent as you extend your arms. Fire 2 or 3 rounds at your threat (target), clear the area to the right and left, safety, re-holster, and repeat.

Wait, didn’t you already talk about size?  So… you need to talk about it again.  Huh, I guess size does matter.   You pull out a 5 inch Glock?  So a Glock 34, 35, or 41… essentially Glock’s competition pistols.  So you are saying not to EDC a Competition Pistol.  Okay.   I guess that means I’ll leave my Razorcat at home as well.  Wait, we’re talking Size again and all the sudden you just straight into a day long pistol course in the space of one paragraph.    Dude, everything you explain, you do by asking questions.  Don’t ask me questions, give me the answers.  This is why we’re reading your article!  And why I’m fisking it.

External Mechanical Safeties, good point about practicing with it.  But the difficulties involved with it are grossly overstated.  If you have the mental capacity to conclude that you have all the legal criteria met for the use of lethal force to remedy whatever situation you are in, you should also be smart enough to know how to flip a lever from SAFE to FIRE.  This is not rocket science.  And it’s not solving a Rubic’s Cube.  It’s a Safety Lever.   Yes, indeed… Practice with it.  A lot.  In my police academy, we were told 500 Presentations from your holster before you carry a new gun or use a new holster on duty.  That sounds like a lot… and it is.  But it’s more of a goal than a requirement.  The point of it is practice and get used to it.

4:  Caliber:  My favorite subject. “My .40’s faster than your .45. My .45 hits harder than your 9mm.”

Good God, when this subject comes up, it’s worse than a male genitalia measuring contest! What good is a large caliber if your rounds are 5 feet off target? And I’m not talking about the first round. I’m talking about the follow up shots. In a real life or death scenario, you’re going to fire until you stop the threat. Your EDC should be a caliber that you can consistently control well. If you can do that, SIZE DOESN’T MATTER!

Well, yes and no.  There are minimums and maximums.  I wouldn’t go below .380 Auto for a defensive caliber.  Too many people out there are using .22 Long Rifle, .32 Auto, .25 Auto… These are just not up to the task.  Even if shot placement is perfect, it may not stop the threat.  The threat is the whole reason you are shooting.  The Bad Guy or Wild Animal or whatever alien, monster, zombie is ruining your day… you are shooting it because it’s about to do something really bad and you have to stop it from doing that thing.   If I come at you with my wee little pocket knife, and you pull your .22 or .25 on me… I promise you, I will turn you into coleslaw and you will be dead before I get tired and expire.  You will beat me to the Pearly Gates because your gun isn’t enough to stop me.  At least, not with a reasonable enough expectancy.  There are occasional antidotes of immediate threats being halted.  But there are far more that are just otherwise.  Such as people not even knowing they had been hit until later.  Such a President Regan, who caught a small caliber bullet and didn’t realize it.
On the flip side, handguns designed for hunting make poor EDC choices.  Not just for size and weight considerations but for power.  A cartridge designed to drop an Alaskan Brown is probably not the best idea for self defense.  Not from the stand point of ruined meat, but the legal liability of over-penetration and having to articulate this in front of a jury.   This is a very real and legitimate concern these days.  The heyday of “carry as much gun as you can” is long over.  I suggest using similar calibers and similar loads as your local law enforcement uses.   Because in court, you can articulate you chose that same loads for the same reasons.  Your attorney will be able to defend you easier than if you chose something along the lines of something exotic.   There are no Magic Bullets.

5:  Magazine Capacity:  Finally, the magical trade off. Magazine capacity vs. concealability. This is a question that only you can answer. Just remember, there’s no rulebook that says you can only have one attacker at a time. Be prepared, and be ready.

In conclusion, your EDC is by your side constantly, like your spouse. So make sure it feels natural, fits well, isn’t uncomfortable, doesn’t kick you too hard, and you practice with it frequently.

A question only I can answer?  You haven’t answered any questions!  I’ve never been in a situation where I wished I had less ammo.  Ideally you want as much as you can get in your gun.  But we’re talking EDC and that means Concealment for most of us, and that means compromising.  Capacity is usually the first to go.  But if your caliber is adequate, capacity is generally mitigated and less of a concern.  Most small handguns are packing 6 or more rounds, snub nose revolvers generally get 5 shots.  This is just fine for most of us.  Most defensive shootings are only 1 or 2 rounds.  Mostly.  Realistically though, a five shot snub is going to be plenty.  And if you need more, this is why you carry more ammunition, either in a Speed Loader, Speed Strip, or Spare Magazine.  Not a bigger, heavier gun.  But hey, if you can pack a full sized Beretta 92FS with a 17 round capacity, or an XDM with a whole box worth of Hollow Points – then more power to you.  But you will still want to carry a spare mag.

Unlike your Spouse, you are not married to your EDC carry gun.  You can have more than one.  In fact, in most places, there are no limits on how many you can have or even carry on you if you want to go Yosemite Sam.  I’d suggest having several guns and carry the best one for what your day has planned.   Feel, your perception of recoil, comfort… that’s all BS.  Clint Smith said that a carry gun shouldn’t be Comfortable, it should be Comforting.  You are not picking out a Puppy or a fluffy pillow… you are picking a weapon for which you are going to use to defend your life, or the lives of your loved ones.  The only considerations after you have concluded that it is one that you will be able to actually EDC with… RELIABILITY is First and Foremost.   It has to go bang every single time.  Second – Practical Accuracy.  You have to be able to make hits with it.    If you can’t hit your target with it, it does no good outside of brandishing and taking selfies in the bathroom.    And that takes – and I agree with the author completely – Practice.  Dedicated, frequent practice.    Even after you have taken your courses and have confidence, you still have to practice.  Shooting skills are like Milk.  It goes bad quick if you are not cycling through it.

Beretta Vertec

1.jpg_thumbnail0I don’t have a Vertec… But I do have a Blue Gun of the Beretta Vertec.  The weight is completely wrong, but the shape is right on.  I like it.  In fact, I think I’d really like to get a Vertec.    Unfortunately Beretta has long discontinued it.

This was a big mistake.  Not as big as discontinuing the 90-Two instead of just re-naming it.  Maybe bigger than the killing off the Cheetahs.  Word is that Beretta is bringing back the Cheetah.  The least of these three sins.  Beretta, BRING BACK THE OTHER TWO!
Bring back the 90-TWO.  Bring Back The Vertec.  Just do it.

Pick The Brand

SIG-P220-1-Courtesy-Ryan-Finn

DA/SA Service Grade Automatics.   Who’s your favorite?  Okay, we’re talking the Brand on the whole, considering all the related models and variations they make.  Who’s your Top Brand and why?

SIG?
Beretta?
CZ?
Other?

The Traditional DA/SA auto seems to be in the gold years with more and more trainers and advocating striker fired guns with uniform trigger pulls from first to second shots.  Glocks, M&P’s, an XDM’s being the Striker Triad.   But I think that the DA/SA platform still has its place, and I still love them.  Especially for Open Carry, Duty Service… They are big, menacing, sexy, and very stable and accurate.   Outside of 1911’s I shoot them them best.  A lot better than Safe actions or DAO guns.

I’m thinking the Holy Trinity for DA/SA’s is SIG, Beretta, and CZ.  Across the board, I think the Beretta Brand takes the lead for consistent quality.   From what I’ve seen and dealt with with 8+ years behind a Gun Counter and… ahem… a few more years of shooting… I’ve seen problems with all of them.  I’ve seen far fewer though with Beretta.  But that’s not just the thing. It’s also how good they’ve been.  How smooth the triggers and slides were.  How tight they locked up.  I don’t think any brand for any type of auto is nearly as smooth as Berettas.  SIG’s are second and CZ is 3rd overall for smoothness.

However, for an out of the box trigger – the very best DA/SA trigger I have ever felt was on a CZ 97B.   Just incredible!  But other CZ triggers left me disappointed.  Same with SIG, overall very good, but not quiet as good overall as SIG’s I’ve fired.  One SIG though, a 229 SAS…. Oh man.   That was truly a great trigger.   Flip side, the SIG’s have shown some triggers that were less than stellar.
Beretta though wins in the same way a Race Team wins the Championship overall without having actually taken first place.

My 92FS had a very good trigger to start out with.  I swapped the main spring for the “D Spring” and it got a lot better.  It’s not a GREAT trigger.  This makes me wonder, why doesn’t Beretta just use the D Springs as standard?  Because the difference was dramatic!

I love the 92.  I love the SIG 220/226/228/229.  I love the CZ P-01/SP-01.  Overall though, I think that Beretta takes it.

What are your thoughts?

Armchair Quarterbacking: PARA USA

I’ve never really been all that fond of Para Ordinance for various reasons.  However Para Ordinance became PARA USA, moved from Canada to the US, and have been working hard to forge their spot in the American Gun Culture.  Some years ago at a Media Range Day at SHOT Show, I browsed the offerings at PARA’s booth and was impressed with what I saw.  The gun was a very basic 1911 for Wild Bunch competition.  Nothing fancy, just very “GI” style.  Simple.  And good.  It was very good.  I shot several other 1911’s from other makers, but the one that stuck in my mind, even the one I liked the best, was the Para.  During SHOT I went to the PARA booth and looked at the pistol again.  It wasn’t a fluke… I really did like the gun.  It was at that moment when I realized that PARA USA is a company to take seriously.

Now it’s about 4 years later and PARA USA has continued to improve their guns.   They’ve made huge strides to the point that PARA USA is now one of my TOP 1911 Makers.     They are making some 1911’s I want to buy.  Not their whole product line… but close.  They can do a few simple things to really hit it out of the Ballpark.   Let’s take a look at PARA USA’s line up.

Let’s start at the top of their own roster and work down.  The Executive Carry.    The gun looks good, with a nice finish, nice grips, and that awesome bobtail.  But it has a 3″ barrel.   This is basically a full length grip, bobtailed, and an ultra compact barrel.  If this was a revolver, this would be the equivalent of S&W Magnum Grips on a Snub-Nose.  It makes no sense to me.  The grip frame is the hard part to conceal, not the barrel.  Bobtailing it is a nice touch, but if you are going to have an ultra compact barrel, give it an ultra compact grip frame as well.  At least an Officer’s length grip frame.  Bobtail that.  This gun is just a bit off because of the short snout.   Because of that, I wouldn’t buy this one.  However, if it was sporting a Commander length slide and barrel – I would.  A nice clean Lightweight Commander on a Bobtail frame is missing from PARA’s line up and it should fit right here in the EXECUTIVE category.   That’s 1 missing gun.

The other missing gun from the EXECUTIVE Category is the CCO configuration.  A Commander Length barrel and slide on an Officer’s frame.  Basically just the opposite of the PARA Executive they have right now.  Colt’s CCO was a breakthrough for concealed carry 1911’s.  SIG followed that pattern and hit a home run with it in the C3 and RCS models.  Smaller frame for easier concealment, and a nice length barrel that doesn’t give up much on ballistics and sight radius.  It NAILS it.  PARA doesn’t have a CCO type 1911, and they should.

Here’s one more gun to add to the Executive roster.  The LDA Officer… But with a standard 1911 trigger mechanism.  Not everyone likes an LDA Trigger in their 1911, but the Officer platform is a good one, and should be reflected in the Executive, Elite and Expert lines. One thing that the LDA has that I’d like in the Executive line is that front strap checkering.  That Lightweight Commander Bobtail – I’d like some fine checkering on the front strap.

I’m not going to comment on the Competition guns, because I think PARA nailed those as offerings and every competitive shooter I know would change things anyway to their own liking and everyone has a difference of opinion so you’ll never make everyone happy there.   But it’s a solid line as it is.

Now, for the Tactical side of things.  The Black Ops line.   Sharp.  I could buy one of these.   Wait a second here… How come the Black Ops 1911 Single Stack doesn’t have the Checkering like the Double Stack?  If this is to be a full featured combat oriented line, let’s not skimp on it.    Also, the Recon, your Commander length tactical gun.  Where’s the Single Stack version of the Recon?

While we’re talking Tactical, not all Tactical ops are Black Ops.  I’d like to see Tactical versions in OD Green and FDE (Flat Dark Earth).  Same guns, just not blacked out.  I know you’ve had them before, I sold them.  FDE the slide and frame, and use the regular black parts and grips for a nice contrast.  Would look very sharp.

Now on to the Elite Series.  The PARA Elite is a wide range of 1911’s that we can probably say is PARA’s main line.  Or at least it should be. My only hang up with the Elite Series is that they are using Fiber Optic Front Sight Posts on all but the Elite Pro.    The Elite Pro is one of my very favorite guns from PARA’s line up.  It hits all the right buttons.  Now, where is the Elite Pro Commander?  There’s another gun that’s missing from PARA’s line.   Another one is an Elite Bobtail Commander.   Again with Bobtail Commanders?  I know.  But still, my point is valid.  Ask Dan Wesson.

The ELITE LS HUNTER.  This gun is one that I’ve been waiting for… a 10mm Long Slide – I must have this.  Thank you for making this one!   Now, if you could just add 10mm options to a couple other Elite or Tactical guns, thank you.  And to keep up with STI – mayhaps a double stack version as well?

Reverse Two Tone.  I want to see more Two Toned guns, specifically in the “Reverse” scheme.  Light on bottom, dark on top.  Make a lightweight bobtail commander in 10mm, in reverse two tone – and you’ll have my order by the end of Oct.   Seriously.   I’ll order it through Blackstone Shooting Sports in Charlotte.  I’m not kidding.  I will.

The Expert line.  I’m giving you some Golf Claps over here.  Bravo… You have it nailed here.   Simple lines, no frills, and “No Gills”.  None of those forward slide serrations that ruin the lines of a handsome Government model.   THIS is the 1911 that I want the OTHER companies to make!   And PARA USA made it.    This makes me quite happy that I am moving to the town that makes it!   Can I get a black slide on that Stainless frame?  In a Commander?

The Warthog is listed under the Expert category… and that’s fine.  But remember what I said about the CCO?  A CCO Warthog…. Call it the “A-10″ model, as in “A-10 Warthog“, the Infantryman’s favorite jet plane.  It would be the Goldilocks for concealed carry double stacked 1911’s.  The regular Warthog is just a bit too short in the snout for me.   I know it’s been popular, but trust me… a 4″ version would be even more so.  I could have sold twice as many, because that is what the most common remark about it was.   Springfield found this out when they made 4″ versions of the XDS, as did SIG with the C3 and RCS.  That’s the configuration that is IDEAL for concealed carry.

That’s about it for PARA USA.   They are doing a really great job and I’m happy to see it.  They’ve come a long way and are now a great 1911 company!   Well done, PARA USA!!!   *Standing Ovation Here*

Current Top 1911 Picks

My current picks for the best production 1911’s you can buy.   I’m going to roll with some specific guns and give some more details.  But following the recent AR-15 article pattern, I’m going to stick with regular production 1911’s and not touch on Custom and Semi-Custom.  Otherwise this list would be all about Nighthawk, Ed Brown, Les Baer, and Wilson Combat.

1.  Springfield Armory:  I’m putting Springfield as a top choice because their guns are consistently well above par, and their customer service just might be The Best in the entire gun industry.  Their policy is that they want you to be happy with your gun.  So you can buy a Springfield without hesitation.   Any complaints I have heard about Springfield usually involved the person having some extreme form of Unrealistic Expectations.  “I had a problem with my GI Model so I think Springfield should give me a TRP!  With a 3 day turn around!”  That kind of thing.
Picking 3 guns out of their line up, the TRP, the MC Operator, and the Champion LW Operator.  (Champion being Springfield lingo for “Commander”)   I would really like to see Springfield do a “CCO” type pistol, and Loaded LW Commander, er… Champion.
As some do not know,  MARSOC was buying and using the Springfield MC Operators for years and years before Colt snagged the contract.  Considering Colt’s new CEO is a former Marine General… Hmmm… I’m sure that contract award was completely legit.

2.  SIG.  SIG really hit the ground running making just what could be best overall 1911’s you can buy.  Problem with them though, is that they departed from tradition with a sharp turn.  Non traditional external dimensions/profiles, with external extractors.   Then they came out with their “Tradition” series – which does look like a regular 1911, but still has that exterior extractor.    However, these guns are so good… I just love them.  Very much so.  Their C3 and RCS are amazing CCW guns.  And this gun here…. It hits all the right buttons.  Make this a Commander sized, SIG.  Please.   You can’t go wrong with a SIG 1911.

3.  PARA USA.  It’s not a secret that I’ve just never really cared for Para’s guns.  But ever since Para Ordinance became Para USA, they have been making huge strides.  Their LDA trigger system, I still don’t care for.  If you like it, that’s fine.  I just don’t.  However their regular 1911’s… They have evolved into guns that are just excellent.  Their new Black Ops 1911 is unquestionably a fine 1911 handguns by any measure.  But it’s their Elite series that I really dig.  Simple, no front slide serrations… and this one is almost perfect.   Just please, get rid of that fiber optic FSP.  I’ll take a regular tritium FSP, thank you.  I’ve talked with some of the guys from PARA USA, and they are taking their guns very seriously.  They want to be the best.  And you know what?  They keep on this road, they sure will be.  I’m liking where they are going.

4.  Remington’s 1911 R1.  This comes as a surprise to me… but Remington’s R1 family of 1911’s are just flat out excellent.  All of Remington’s problems do not exist in or effect their 1911’s.  And they are offering these well built and solid 1911’s at extremely reasonable prices.   They make one that I would be very tempted to add to my own collection.  Tell me that isn’t just gorgeous.  Remington is using a very good steel alloy, and are sporting very nice finishes.
Now if they could just put this attention to detail into the Marlin Lever Actions – I’d be a happy happy Ogre.

5.  STI.  Specifically, STI’s Lawman 4.0, and the Nitro 10.   I favor the Single Stacks, and I favor the guns that use the bushings… but that Nitro 10 is just too cool, so I can forgo the bushing requirement.

6.  Dan Wesson.  Because Dan Wesson.   Their Bobtail Commanders are probable the most FLAWLESS 1911’s I’ve ever seen that didn’t cost more than a good used car.   Their 10mm Razorback is just too damn good.   But the ones to really look hard at, are the Valor Black and the CCO.   Perfection.   Where is the Valor Black Commander though?  Oh, and hey, CZ USA – Make these in 10mm as well.  I don’t really dig the Titan 10, because I don’t hunt Vampires, professionally, so I don’t need all the race-gun hints.  I want a clean and simple 1911, in 10mm… that’s not stainless.

Here’s what I look for in a 1911:  Simplicity and understated elegance.  I don’t like bushingless bull barrels.  I don’t like full length guide rods.  I really don’t even particularly care for ambi-safeties.  And the one thing I really don’t like – but they are almost universal… The Novak style ramped rear sights.  But I can live with it.   I will also stay away from anything that even resembles a “Series 80″.  I prefer Commander length barrels.  The 4″ to 4.25″ barrel lengths.  They balance just right to me.  I do prefer if I can get it, the light weight frames, but will take solid steel happily.  I also do not like extended slide releases and safety levers.  The “Tear Drop” style safety lever is my favorite.    I do prefer a bobbed hammer or commander style hammer, followed up with a nice wide high ride beaver-tail.  Those work for me.

One to keep an eye on:  Rock Island Armory is getting better and better, not every year, but every day.  They are like the Kia Motors of 1911’s… they used to be cheap and laughable, but now they will make you turn your head, “What is that?  THAT’s a Kia?!?”  RIA is having that same effect.  While not one of my top choices now, they could be at some point in the future sooner than anyone could expect.

My favorite 1911 Configuration.

To me, saying “1911” is like saying “Pickup Truck”.  There are many Makes and Models out there, all different, all with different purposes. But they are all 1911’s so they are pretty good and should all pretty much run the same way.   But one configuration of 1911 that always makes me drool…
A Lightweight Commander.  Specifically a two tone LW Commander.  As far as pistols go – these are my Redheads.  My Kryponite.  My weakness.

SONY DSC

 

This one is very nice… Subdued colors.  A big visible dot on the front sight… Very nice indeed.  I’m not a huge fan of the ramped rear sight, but I can deal with that.  On this gun the higher end red wood grips are a little dressy on the flat finished gun.

colt_04860txt_commander_eliteThis one is nice too… Subdued colors again, but with a set of black grip panels.  I like that a bit better due to the fact that it’s more in keeping with the motif.  The first one is like having White Wall tires on a Mustang GT.   I guess that would be fine if that’s your thing… it’s just not my thing.   And if it is your thing… and you like that… Well, “America”.   Bully for you!

kobra4Here’s one that’s very good.  Micarta grips, brushed stainless and a moderate polish on the slide… Not Subdued, but more natural.  I really like that.  I also like the Bobtail… a lot.  But it’s not necessary…  Just really really nice.  Like Navigation or a Back Up Camera, or XM Radio.

Yost_left_rearOh man… Here we go.  This is the higher end.  We have a high polish on that blued slide and burled walnut grips.  This one is so nice that it’s almost too nice.  We call guns like this “BBQ Guns”, but it’s what you wear to a BBQ at your friends place… your nicest gun in a nice leather holster.  Not something I’d EDC, but wear to special occasions.  It would be like having a date with a Super Model… You are not going to take her out on the rounds of your usual haunts, but to some place special.  (Unless she asked to go to the regular haunts mind you)   So for me, that last one there, the more natural one, that’s the one I’d pick.

What do all these Commanders have in common?  Two Tone Finishes, with Dark on top of Light.  The current Vogue due to the advent of stainless slides on polymer frames is to have a light colored slide on a dark frame.  This I don’t care for.  It makes all manner of sense though, sure.  It’s PRACTICAL.  A stainless slide will show less wear than a blued slide.  And frames will typically show less wear than slides… So putting a stainless slide on that black frame makes Reason and Logic smile.  But it doesn’t make me necessarily smile, no, just the opposite is true.  And let me tell you why.

Growing up reading every gun magazine I could get my hands on as a kid, I stared with wide eyes and great wonder at the custom 1911’s made by true master level gunsmiths… and all of them were two tones with stainless frames and high polished blued slides.   That LOOK defined “Custom” for me then and it does so now.  So the stainless slides on black frames just look “off” to me.   So my ultimate has to have a black slide on light frame.   That just visually tastes right to me.

Ruger’s new LC9s.

Ruger is rolling out a new version of the LC9, the “LC9s”.

Screen-Shot-2014-07-29-at-5.54.42-PM-390x277

The “S” of course, means “Striker”.  It is said that this has a very good trigger pull.   If that’s the case, and it really does have a good trigger pull… well then.  That changes things in regards to my opinion of the LC9.  The S model would then be a pistol well worth considering.    Let me tell you why.

Continue reading Ruger’s new LC9s.

Armchair Quarterbacking: BERETTA.

I’ve not always been a fan of Beretta.  I’ll admit that.  When I was first told to turn in my 1911 to be issued an M9, I was not a happy camper, and that caused a burning hatred of the 92 series pistol that lasted for a good many years.  Two decades later and I find myself to be a rabid 92 series fanatic.  It took a long time to come around… but the gun garnered my favor the hard way.  It earned it.  Working at the gun counter for almost a 9 years, I had sold a great many Beretta products.  And I do not remember a single one that ever came back with an issue.  Say what you will about Beretta, I know they have their share of detractors out there… But I love Beretta.  But I also know they are far from perfect.  Let’s hit the high notes:

The 92FS:
92fs
I hate to admit it, but this gun is a dinosaur.  I love mine, and I think these are the best looking automatics ever built… But the design is dated and need revision.  Oh, wait… You did revise it.  And you called it the 92A1:
92a1_zoom001
You added a rail.. which is a good… but better yet you gave it a dovetailed front sight post which was desperately needed, and you improved the internals… All of this is good, fine and well… Making this gun the best 92 you can buy.  But then you changed the trigger guard to differentiate it from the M9A1.  What I don’t understand though is why do you have these two very different pistols?  Because a holster for an M9A1 wont work with a 92A1, not even close.  I do not see the roles that these two different pistols fill.   This pistol just leaves me scratching my head.  So here’s what you need to do.   Kill the 92A1.
Wait, what?  I just said it improved everything an was the best 92 you can buy!   Yes, I did.  But it still needs to die.   Namely because it doesn’t stand out in the 92 series line.  Same with the 96A1.   I would build the 96A1 within the same frame as the M9A1, same trigger guard.  Giving the 96A1 the Civilian frame with the rounded trigger guards makes no sense.  It’s a tactical gun and needs to be better compatible with the lights.  I think this will fill that 96 nitch much better.    Now, back to the 92A1… Yes, kill it.   And fill the hole in the line up with with a reintroduction of the 90-TWO, renaming it simply as the 2092:
90two
This gun looks amazing, feels amazing, and shoots as good as it looks.  The reshaped safety levers are an improvement.  This gun moves the Beretta family forward.    It only failed because someone gave it a stupid name and your Marketing effort was completely lacking.
This was the stupidest name ever in the firearms industry.  It was a failure from the start.  But the pistol was awesome.  It needs  second chance.  So rename the bloody thing and bring it back.  Also, make a 2092 INOX.  And just for fun, maybe INOX slides on the blackened frames and barrels… and vice versa… because two tone guns are sexy.  There should also be a COMPACT version of the 2092 as well.

Here’s another gun that needs to make a comeback:
Shiny92

The Billennium.  But instead of it being blinged out… Just make it Black and Inox.  Here’s why.  It answers the #1 Complaint that people hate on the 92 for – the Slide Mounted Safety.  The Billennium’s Frame Mounted Safety – Especially if you matched that up with the old Vertec Frame – would be a WINNER.
98-96-Vertec-Steel
You guys actually had it… and like the 90-Two… you failed to market it correctly.  In fact, I didn’t even know this thing existed.  All steel though – so it was a heavy pig.  Nice idea, bad execution.  Make THAT but with an alloy frame and your current rear sight… Beretta… I’m telling ya… WIN.    How come this hasn’t been done already?

The NEOS.  I like the pistol.  But it’s skinny grip and extreme angle is ridiculous.  Have you looked at a Ruger MKIII or Browning Buckmark?  Well look again.   Because I don’t have hands like an adolescent E.T.
Cylon
This is why I’ve never bought one.  I can’t even hold on to the thing.   However I’ve sold it to people with smaller paws than mine, and they have loved it.   Never have I sold one to a guy with bigger hands though.   Look at Ruger… They have the option of a .45 like grip frame.  Do that, but with maybe your Storm.  A Storm like grip frame.  Seriously Beretta, as much as you guys may like this thing as it is – at American Gun Counters, it turns off far more people than it impresses.

The Storm Series:
PX4_SD-1
I love the Storm Pistols.  Two things though… the Sub Compact with the tilting barrel…  Get rid of it.  It does nothing the Compact can’t do and it’s using a different action so it’s not really a sub compact version.  The SD as shown.  Where are the 9mm and .40 cal versions and where is the Compact version?  Remember when the Navy bought a lot of HK pistols recently?  They bought the compact version of the HK45, and not the full sized.  Huge handguns are good… but sometimes those Operators who operate operationally need something a bit smaller so they can conceal them.   And US Citizens like do something called EDC with guns with many of these features.   That Midsized handgun is the sweet spot, and you need to maximize that.

This Thing:
cx4-1
I could write a 2,000 word report on everything wrong with this thing alone… But I don’t have time.  So I’m going to quickly outline what it needs to fix it.  It needs a major work-over.  The pyramid iron sights… Kill it.  Run a full rail across the top end to end.  Let customers use AR style irons of their choice.  No one likes these sights that doesn’t work for Beretta and have to say they do.   Extend the the body out till only an inch from the muzzle.  Thread the barrel.  Give it a thread cap.  Threads should be a common type.  Supply a flashhider/muzzle brake with it.  I like the lack of rails on the side and bottom, but put mounting hardware in there so rails can be added where needed.  The bottom of the pistol grip makes fast reloads a challenge.  Shape it like a normal pistol grip.  The Bolt Release needs to be a Safety.  On both sides, make it ambi.  Push the bolt handle out front and give it an HK style bolt catch and release.  That stock.  Get rid of it.  Put on a SCAR style Folding/Adjustable stock.  Done.  Now just rename it.  Your other rifles are the ARX series… call this one the ARX9 or ARX40 or ARX45 per caliber and you have a WINNER.   You’ll sell more than you ever had before.

I’m only going to touch on 1 shotgun.
1301tactical
I want a pistol grip version and I want the feed tube to run out to the end of the barrel.   Make these options.  I also want mounting points at the front end so I can attach a short rail section to add a tactical light.  That’s it.  Simple.