web analytics
Categories
9mm Beretta compact decocker Grand Power holster N82 Tactical P11 PX4 Storm

Beretta PX4 Storm Compact 9mm

It arrived yesterday.
I do have a tabletop video here:

I took it and the Grand Power P11 to the range this evening.  All I can say is, wow…

Pluses for the gun:

  1. It shoots almost as well as the P11.
  2. DA trigger is better.
  3. Shot 105 round of Magtech 115-gr FMJ and Browing BPT 147-grain ammo with only one round having an issue (light strike).  It loves 147-grain.
  4. It’s sights are easier to work with than the P11’s.

Minuses for the gun:

  1. Backstraps are extremely difficult to work with…well, not the backstraps themselves but the backstrap retention mechanism.  I struggled with it when swapping backstraps.
  2. Large backstrap is slightly warped (out of the box).
  3. The red paint that’s on the extractor (acting like a loaded chamber indicator) looks to have come off.
  4. Plastic guide rod.

How does the PX4 compare to the P11?

  1. The gun is only slightly larger than the P11.
  2. The P11’s mag holds 12 rounds.  The PX4’s mag holds 15.  This isn’t a huge deal, though…the P11 is sold as a sub-compact.
  3. The takedown of the PX4 is easy.  The takedown of the P11, while not exactly orthodox, is easy enough once you’ve done it a few times.
  4. The P11 is extremely finnicky about ammo.  The PX4 doesn’t appear to be as finnicky.
  5. The P11 needs to be run wet.  I’m assuming the PX4 needs to be run wet as well…they both have rotating barrels.
  6. The P11 won’t tolerate being dirty (lots of carbon will accumulate where the barrel rotates on the frame).  I believe it is more of a competition gun that just so happens to carry well.  The PX4 doesn’t appear to be as fussy when it comes to being dirty.
  7. The PX4’s controls are not conducive to carry duty, in my opinion…both the safety/decocker levers and the slide catch levers are too big and stick out well beyond the sides of the handgun.  Luckily, there are OEM “stealth” levers that make the gun feel a tad bit slimmer (and less “snaggy”).
  8. While the PX4’s sights are better than the P11’s the P11’s sights are purposely small.  This means that while they’re more difficult to use, they’re more accurate when used properly.  Still, I wouldn’t mind getting some night sights on the PX4.
Once I get “stealth” levers for the gun, I’ll begin to start carrying it around the house.  I plan to get the N82 Tactical Professional holster to use with the PX4.
The particular gun is the F-type.  I plan to convert it to the G-type.  I will never use the safety and I’m used to decock-only guns (my P11 didn’t come with a decocker and I manually decock it…it comes with a safety but I never use it because it’s always in DA mode).
So, 105 rounds were shot through the gun tonight.  Here’s the targets (shot from 7 yards with two types of ammo in two different weights and with two different noses).
These are the first 15 shots out of the gun.  The one in the red is the first shot (DA).  This is tighter than what I’m used to shooting from a new gun.  The shots are more vertically-aligned than that I’ve shot with my other new guns.
I started from left top to right top, left bottom to right bottom, then focused on the center target.  The first two targets’ DA shots were very close to the red.  The lower left, not so much.  The lower right group was extremely tight (there are 3 holes).  the center shot was a bit wide.
All of these shots were DA mode.  I’d shoot, then decock back to DA mode, then shoot, then decock, and so on.  This is 15 rounds.  All but 3 are in the red.  Two of those are close.  One is a flyer.
The first grouping of 15 is at the red.  The second grouping is at the head.  At first, I was slowly shooting the red.  At the head, I tried some double-taps (slow double-taps).  Again, I’m vertically aligned but spread out…IMO, not bad for double-taps.  Also, note that the second group would all be in the blue if I were aiming for the body.
Similar to the target above this one, I shot two different magazines, one at the body and one at the head.  I also did double-taps.  The first shots of the magazines were DA shots and each landed center mass.  The first grouping is vertically aligned.  The second group is spread out…not sure if this was due to the ammo (was using the 147-grain BPT target ammo).
This is the P11’s target.  These were rushed (45 rounds, combination of the BPT ammo and the Magtech).  I thought I’d be able to eat out the red from the target…nope.  But that’s probably 35 shots that are very much center mass.  I was shooting relatively fast and some are double-taps.  This gun rewards the wielder when basic fundamentals are applied but punishes the wielder if those fundamentals aren’t applied.  I’ve mixed results here…while the group is tight, I wanted them tighter.  Because I rushed, the gun punished me.  Remember what I said earlier about those small sights?  It applies to my aiming and shooting at this target.

All in all, this was a fun outing.  I plan to take the gun out again tomorrow and maybe spend more than an hour with both of them this time.  I may even take the Sig Pro to muddy up the comparison (since it is also a DA/SA polymer gun that I think I may carry).

Stay tuned!

UPDATE:  I got impatient in waiting for Beretta to stock up.  I did some research and found that there’s a store in Italy that sells both the stealth slide catch and stealth safety.  The site is here.  The part is here.  I know I have the right part because I compared the part numbers between it and Beretta’s USA site…they are the same (part no. E00348).  It costs 54,92 EU and 18 EU for shipping, for a total of 72,92 EU.  It’s a few dollars less than if I ordered from Beretta USA, but as far as I know, this site has them in stock.

Categories
decocker EDC Grand Power Mk12 P11 wear

Grand Power P11 – One Thousand Rounds Shot Through The Barrel

I’ve now shot over one thousand rounds through the Grand Power P11.  It’s about time, too, as I’ve had the gun right at two years now.

How’s the wear/tear?  Here’s a video showing the internals.

Some other things relating to this firearm:

Someone thought that because my P11 didn’t have a decocker, it was a Mk7.  Mk12s were first produced without decockers.  They are now sold with decockers but a Mk12 can either have a decocker or not.

Secondly, I’ve asked Grand Power and Eagle Imports if decockers can be retrofitted to those Mk12s that were sold without decockers.  I didn’t get an answer but found it on their forums here.  Apparently, GP/EI doesn’t want to deal with possible legal issues if someone buys the parts from the manufacturer, doesn’t install them correctly, and later experiences an unintentional discharge.  If that’s the case, they shouldn’t want ANYONE messing with the internals…no one at all, yet they encourage people to do complete tear-downs of the firearm in every other case.  If they’re that afraid of legal trouble, make the process stupid-simple for some parts.  Beretta sells decockers on the side for their PX4 Storms knowing that everyday people will install them at home.  Beretta is a far bigger business than Grand Power and have much more to lose when it comes to lawsuits, yet Beretta empowers people to customize their handguns.  Glock does this as well, as does Ruger and Sig Sauer and Walther…and I can go on and on.

I do not believe in the black box mentality when it comes to such things.  That means you’ll always be totally dependent upon the maker when it comes to asking a bit more of your firearm.

This pains me greatly because I’ve trained myself around the GP P11.  That training was HARD work.  As well, I’d grown fond of Grand Power and had planned on getting a P1.  I still could (and a new P1 would have the decocker I’m asking for), but this is more about principles.  Not offering parts for fear of lawsuits…that’s a cop out if I’ve ever heard one.  I’ve heard such crap before in non-free states.

Because of this, I think I’m going to look at options to replace my P11.  Some of you may think that this is a trivial thing and that it’s being blown out of proportion.  IMO, there’s a bit of a Liberal scent to what GP stated (the “protect them from themselves and us” mentality).

So, I’m either going to start the process of making my P11 a safe queen and switching to a different EDC.  I could even get a PX4 Storm Compact like I initially planned (and even sell the P11 to finance the Beretta).

Categories
380 Bersa decocker disconnect Grand Power magazine Mk12 P1 P11 Plus Thunder

Another Range Visit – 12/18/2016

I went to the range after work on 12/12.  I decided to bring my Metro Arm 1911 and the Bersa Thunder 380 Plus.  I only ended up firing the Bersa and my carry gun, the Grand Power P11.  I thought that 3 guns in a one-hour visit was too much, and I felt the need to be shooting more ammo out of the Grand Power since I’ve neglected to frequent the range.

I shot a total of 100 rounds out of the P11 (for a total of 816 rounds out of the gun).  There were no feed issues.

I shot 125 rounds out of the Bersa (for a total of 159).  There were no feed issues.

As with all my range sessions, I shoot at 7 yards.

First 15 rounds of the session, using the P11 (using GP P1 mags…bought 3 of them), 7 yards.
50 rounds, same target as above, same range, same gun.  Ammo is American Eagle ball FMJ, 115-grain.
Here’s the 2nd box of American Eagle, same gun, same distance.
Here’s the Bersa Thunder 380 Plus.  I’m not used to shooting this gun.  It feels too small for my hands (having issues with finger placement on the trigger since my hands are so big).  Taking my time, I can be accurate with it, though.  This is 15 rounds at 7 yards.
Here’s the whole 125 (100 rounds of  WWB flat-nosed FMJ and 25 rounds of Federal ball FMJ).  I couldn’t tear a ragged hole in the red like I can with the P11.  The P11 is built a lot better, though (better trigger and sights, less recoil reaching my hands).

Comparing the two guns, both are roughly the same size.  Roughly.  The P11 has the shorter barrel (3.3″, compared to the Bersa’s 3.5″ barrel).  The P11 is heavier (22.6 oz vs the Bersa’s 20.5).  Both are DA/SA guns, but the P11 has a very precise trigger in either mode.  The P11 fills my strong hand in a way that lets me put my trigger finger pad on the trigger.  The Bersa’s grip fits oddly in my hand, which hinders my finger placement.  I’ve to fumble around with the gun to get my finger pad on the trigger.  After awhile, I quit fumbling and accepted my fate that my hands may be too damned big for this gun’s grip.

Both guns have manual safeties.  The P11 has a frame safety that flicks up and down, similar to a 1911.  The Bersa has a slide safety that is counter-intuitive.  It works the opposite as what would be on a 1911.  As well, it is oddly placed, so that even if you train, you’re going to have to move your hand to get to it (unless you’ve super-small hands).  As well, the safety is very stiff.  Both of these issues mean that you’re probably going to have to train to engage or disengage the safety with the off-hand.  Also, the Bersa’s safety is also functioning as a decocker.  You can’t carry cocked and locked with the Bersa, since the decocker is also a safety and when you actuate the safety, you’re also decocking the gun.  Well…let me rephrase.  You can carry cocked but you’ll be doing it without the safety engaged with this gun, and that is unsafe unless you’ve trained for that; plus, you’d better have a good holster that protects the trigger.  Better to get a different gun if you’re looking to carry in a cocked and locked fashion…it won’t work well with this gun.

The Bersa also has a magazine disconnect.  This makes it very difficult to practice dry-firing, unless you keep the mag in the gun.  I’m thinking on removing the mag disconnect.  IMO, there are no cons in doing this (closet lawyers, please go back to your closet), especially if you’re already using sound safety practices…I mean, what’s keeping me from blowing a hole in the drywall with my guns that don’t have mag disconnects?  Good safety practices…

I thought that the Bersa would choke on the flat-nosed Winchester ammo.  I bought that ammo by mistake.  I’d heard from other Thunder 380 owners that these guns do not like flat-nosed ammo.  I saw a box of 100 at Walmart and it was labeled (on the box) as FMJ.  When I got home and opened the box, it was flat-nosed.  IMO, it should’ve been labeled as such on the box, especially since most sellers don’t accept returns on ammo.  But it didn’t choke on that ammo at all.  It ate it all without complaint.

Overall, the Bersa is a good enough gun.  I won’t be carrying it, though.  Because of what I’ve stated above, I’m unwilling to carry it.  This gun is not something I want to adjust to.  I’d have to find a way to thicken the grips so that I’d have less of an issue with trigger finger placement.  I’d also have to get used to the odd decocker (it’s in an odd position and training will not help that…then again, I can always carry decocked but with the safety disengaged…DA/SA guns can get away with this).

I’m still in love with the P11, although I’m thinking I might need more grip area with this gun as well.  The option would be to move to the P1 (maybe the P1 Ultra).  Grand Power markets that as a compact-sized gun with a 3.5″ barrel.  It also has swappable back straps (the P11 doesn’t have this…it should).  The P11’s grips are a bit slick, too.  Grip tape may be in the future of mine’s.  Oh, and Grand Power has also upgraded the P11 to have a decocker.  It is not a dedicated decocker…it’s a decocker/safety, similar to how Bersa implements it.  A dedicated decocker would’ve been better, IMO.  For now, I’ll stick to manually decocking (training is key — closet lawyers, go home).

I’m close to 1000 rounds out of the P11.  One range visit should put me over the 1000 round mark.  I know I’ve reported that it was experiencing FTFs/FTEs and failures to return to battery, but I’ve not seen that occurring since I’ve stopped using Remington ammo.  The issues of the past year were exclusively due to Remington ammo (and another gun choked on the same ammo in the same fashion).  I’ve also learned how/where to lube the gun.  There’s no wear on the gun’s internals, either.

Until next time…

Categories
DA/SA decocker GP Grand Power kydex manual P1 P11 Red Hill Tactical safety

GP P11 – Ready To Conceal Carry!

I finally found an inside waistband holster for my P11.  I cheated.  How?  I couldn’t find any for the P11 anywhere and didn’t feel like begging for any holster makers to make one for me.  I didn’t feel like trying to make one myself, either.  I searched and found that many holsters for the P1 are available for sale.  The P1 is the next size up from the P11…it’s the compact version of the Grand Power K-100, which is a full-sized handgun.  The P11 is the sub-compact version of the K-100.  They are identical, feature-wise.  The only differences are the length of the grips and the length of the slides.  So, I bought a P1 holster thinking that the P11 would fit inside without issue.  The holster was kydex, so it was important that the slides and features be pretty much identical, placement-wise.  I wasn’t disappointed, as it was almost as if this holster was made for the P11.  The slide length of the P1 is 3.6″ while the P11’s slide is 3.3″, so I had .3″ extra between the tip of the handgun and the tip of the holster.

Some issues that I describe in the video is that the holster was molded with a P1 with it’s slide safety disabled.  I’d thought the GP DA/SA handguns were designed to be carried cocked & locked (one in the chamber with the hammer cocked and safetied).  The guns are DA/SA without a decocker, so if an owner wants to carry his GP in DA mode, he/she will have to lower the hammer on a chambered round (ie, decocking manually).  This is not a trivial procedure and if done hastily or wrong, a round could be negligently discharged.  I’ve been practicing several different manual decocking techniques and will eventually be ready to carry with one in the chamber in DA mode, but for now, I’m enabling the safety and carrying cocked and locked.  While this causes a slight fitment issue with the kydex while the gun is holstered, it doesn’t cause any safety issues…it just looks a tad bit odd, is all.

I’ll eventually have to buy some extra 12-round magazines for the P11.  I’ve two right now, but I want several more so that I can practice at the range without having to stop and reload the two mags after they’re empty.  They are not cheap but I will not buy cheap CZ mags to alter…I’d rather do this right and just buy the expensive mags.

This gun carries good in the kydex holster.  It feels lighter than my other holsters (Alien Gear IWB Cloak Tuck 3.0s) and it is certainly less complicated/busy.  It is easy to clip to my belt.  I can quickly get dressed, grab my gun, and install it on my belt while walking around the house.  I can’t do that with my Alien Gear holsters.  The con is that I’ve to wear t-shirts under my shirts now, because the Kydex doesn’t shield my body from the gun’s rough edges (part of the slide, grip, and hammer sometimes dig into my side.  This might also be a good reason to start carrying in DA mode…the manual safety is protected, but that part of the gun is what is rubbing against my body, so I’m thinking that it would be safer to just have the gun in DA mode.

I bought the holster from Red Hill Tactical.  I’ve visited their site in the past but this is the first time I’ve actually bought something from them.  This holster vendor was recommended by the Grand Power forums.

Categories
decocker FX Hummel Hickok45 MAC rant Sootch00 TheYankeeMarshall TP9SA

TP9SA Decocker Rant

I forgot that I published this video.  This is me ranting about the people complaining about the Canik TP9SA’s decocker.  There are also several other people that have similar videos, in response to TheYankeeMarshall’s complaining about this gun not being a good defensive weapon due to it having a decocker (he complains about it but has never handled the gun).  Others (MAC is one) have also complained about it…I’m not sure if they’re getting on TYM’s bandwagon and I assume they are since they complained within days of each other.  This gun has pretty much gotten rave reviews from well-known internet gun guys, such as Sootch00, Nutnfancy, Hickok45, Hank Strange, Iraqveteran8888, James Yeager, and MrGunsngear.  TYM said the other reviewers were “sucking the manufacturer’s dick”.  Really?  It comes down to name-calling when he hasn’t even touched the gun?  In fact, TYM never has anything good to say about anything.  All he ever does is whine or complain…he does this in EVERY ONE OF HIS VIDEOS.  I’ve never taken him seriously but his TP9SA “review” just bugs the hell out of me.  In this day and age, it’s difficult to take anyone serious about guns, since everyone offers subjective opinions…nothing is ever objective.

FX Hummel mentioned that it might be difficult to rack the TP9SA’s slide using a belt or other non-hand method without actuating the decocker, but that’s actually a pretty valid concern, so I didn’t rant about that.