Gunner’s Journal

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Archive for May, 2008

Selecting a CCW Gun

Posted by Gunner on May 31, 2008

Selecting a concealed carry gun is a very challenging task especially during the summer months. I offer this insight from Syd at “The Sight 1911”.

Selecting a Pistol for Concealed Carry
By Syd

If you are reading this, perhaps you haven’t made up your mind or have questions about your selection of a personal defense handgun. There have been many articles written on this subject, most of which boil down to a discussion of calibers and actions. While the caliber and action discussion is important, I find it incomplete and lacking in some important considerations for a person who carries a concealed handgun for self defense. Hence, my point of departure is what it means to live with a pistol every day.

Conceptual Basis

The paradox of the concealed personal defense weapon is that it is something you hope you will never have to use for its intended purpose, but with which you must achieve a level of mastery and familiarity comparable to the other tools you use to survive and get through your day. You wouldn’t drive to work in a car that you didn’t know how to operate. You wouldn’t wear a coat that was three sizes too small or use a carpenter’s saw to slice up a pot roast. No, you use the tools appropriate to the job and you learn how to work with them competently. The same holds true with a self defense pistol. You should know how to operate it and have the level of skill necessary to use it safely and effectively. It should fit your hand and your lifestyle because you will be spending a lot of time with it. It should be comfortable to shoot and hopefully to carry, although when asked if a carry gun should be comfortable to wear, master trainer Clint Smith said, “Your carry gun should be comforting, not comfortable.” Your pistol should be powerful enough to do the job and accurate enough to hit the target. It should be completely reliable, and its operation should be as familiar to you as riding a bicycle or brushing your teeth. You must also have a clear understanding of the legal issues surrounding the use of deadly force — when you can and when you can’t — and the methods and techniques of using a gun in a self defense situation. Sounds like a lot? You’re right; it is, and if you are unwilling to master the skills and concepts of lethal force, do yourself a favor and just don’t carry a gun. (See also The Psychology of Self Defense and the Force Continuum)

Skill and Familiarity

Handguns are not easy to shoot well. The ability to consistently put bullets into a target quickly and in the places which will stop an attacker is a skill that requires a lot of practice. Too many people have the notion that a pistol is a kind of magical talisman and the user need only take it out and wave it around and the problem will magically disappear. Nothing could be further from the truth. A gun brandished at the wrong time and without the fighting skills necessary to employ it effectively will make a whole bunch of new problems, including getting you killed or arrested and charged with some very serious crimes. Hence, making the decision to carry a gun should be made only with the commitment to practice and learn. This may take the shape of attending classes or participating in a practical shooting sport like IDPA. At the very least, a regular practice schedule should be part of the package. This means that you will be spending a lot of time with your pistol. The gun should be comfortable in your hand, have manageable recoil, and be sturdy enough to stand up to heavy use in practice sessions, matches, and classes. The gun should also have reasonable accuracy. You should be able to consistently put all of your shots in an area the size of a saucer at ten yards quickly.

Types and Sizes: Pros and Cons

Pocket Guns

When many folks think of a concealed carry gun, they think of little-bitty pocket pistols that will easily disappear into a pocket or purse. While these may be light and convenient, that’s all they are. Aside from that, they’re pretty useless. They lack the power to put down a determined attacker and they lack the accuracy to hit anything at more than spitting distance. But even more importantly, most little guns are unpleasant to shoot. Being very light and having small handles, their muzzle flip is very bad. After a few rounds your hand may begin to hurt. Shoot a match or take a class at Gunsite with one of these pocket guns? Forget it. If you don’t learn to use it, how much good is it going to do you when the chips are down? In this group, I would include the small Berettas, Airweight snubnose revolvers, Seecamp .32’s, Kel-Tek .32’s and derringers. There may be a place for these pistols, but they all suffer from serious inadequacies. (I am particularly fond of the Airweight snubnose .38 Special revolver, but it can be an unpleasant gun to fire.)

Medium Frame Revolvers

Even though they have been around for 165 years, revolvers remain an excellent solution. These pistols are simple to use and accurate. They can handle hot loads and larger bullets making them effective personal defense weapons. Examples of this class of pistol are the Ruger GP Series and the S&W Model 66. The ideal revolver would have a 3″ to 4″ barrel, a six-round cylinder, and a grip that fills your hand. The biggest drawback of these pistols is the speed of reloading, but with practice, a revolver can be reloaded as quickly as an autoloader.

Medium Frame Auto Pistols

The overwhelming majority of professional trainers, operators, law enforcement and military people prefer medium to large framed autoloading pistols. These pistols have the best combination of speed, firepower, accuracy, and power. These pistols will generally load 8-10 rounds in their magazines (or more if you can find the magazines), have full-length grips, and 3.5″ or longer barrels. These guns tend to have adequate accuracy and power, and large enough grips to be comfortable. Examples of this type of pistol would be the Glock 17, 19, 21 and 22, the S&W 39xx, 59xx, and 69xx series, the SIG 22x series, the H&K USP and P7, the Kimber ProCarry and Compact, the Springfield Champion, Para-Ordnance P12, and many others.

Large Frame Pistols and Revolvers

I like big pistols. They shoot more accurately, absorb more recoil, and develop greater muzzle velocity due to their longer barrels. I would include in this group the Beretta 92, the Colt Government Model M1911 (and clones), The N Frame S&W revolvers, Colt Python, Anaconda and their copies. Characteristically, these guns have 5″ barrels and weigh 36 oz. or more. The biggest drawback of these pistols is their weight. They get heavy and small framed people may have difficulty concealing them.

Autoloader Action Types

There are four types of actions around which semi-auto pistols are built. It’s important to understand the differences:

Single Action – M1911 Colt .45 ACP and Browning Hi-Power 9mm

This is the oldest autoloader design still in service, designed by John Browning (with the help of the Army Ordnance Board) during the period between 1905 and 1911. The hammer must be cocked, generally by racking the slide, for the gun to fire. This design in .45 ACP, .40 S&W and .38 Super is favored by competitive shooters, FBI SWAT, FBI Hostage Rescue Team, and many special forces units because it has the best trigger, outstanding accuracy and is very fast. For the gun to be carried in a state of readiness, the hammer must be cocked and the manual safety applied, “cocked and locked” (see “The Conditions of Readiness”). This looks scary and is not recommended for novices or those suffering from attention deficit disorder.

Double Action/Single Action – Beretta 92F (Armed Forces M9), most Smith & Wesson autos, SIG, Walther, and some Rugers.

This has been the standard design for most autos for the last 50 years. These pistols are cocked by the first trigger pull, but subsequent shots are cocked by the action of the slide cycling back. Consequently, the first trigger pull is long and harder (Double Action) since it is also cocking the hammer. Subsequent trigger pulls are easy (Single Action) since the hammer is already cocked. These guns have an external safety lever which puts the gun on safe and de-cocks the hammer. This is generally thought to be the safest design since the long, heavy first trigger pull and the external safety which blocks the firing pin tend to prevent the gun from going off by accident. The criticism of this design is that it forces the shooter to learn two different trigger pulls and accuracy often suffers on the first double action shot. Most accidental discharges with these sorts of pistols are the result of the shooter forgetting to de-cock the hammer.

Double Action/Single Action with De-Cocker Only – Ruger and SIG

This is a variant of the DA/SA which is used by Ruger and SIG. It functions just like a DA/SA except the “safety” lever is not a safety. It only de-cocks the hammer, but the gun will still fire when the de-cocker is applied and the trigger is pulled. I personally do not like this design since the de-cocker looks just like a safety lever but does not put the gun on safe.

Double Action Only – Glock, Smith & Wesson Sigma, some Berettas, some Rugers, Kahr, Kel-Tec, and others.

This is the newest action design made popular by Glock. With these pistols every trigger pull is the same and they have no external safety or decocking levers. The hammers are not cocked by the cycling of the slide (except for the Glocks which are pre-cocked by the slide cycle, and are not true double action). DAO pistols depend on the long double action trigger pull to prevent accidental discharges. In a sense these are autoloaders which fire like revolvers. Triggers vary from model to model. Some, like the Glocks, have very light triggers. Other DAO triggers can be quite heavy and long, and can be very unpleasant to shoot. The advantage of this action is its simplicity and the fact that every trigger pull is the same.

Calibers and Power

Here we get into mysticism and voodoo, and I will just give you my personal opinion and you can take it for what it’s worth. I like the .45 ACP and the .357 Magnum the best. Just under them in effectiveness are the .40 S&W, the .44 Special and the 9mm. Below them are the .38 Special and the .380 ACP. There are other cartridges, but these are the most common for personal defense weapons and the ammunition is readily available.

I wouldn’t be comfortable with anything smaller than a .380 (actually, I wouldn�t be comfortable with anything smaller than a .45 ACP, but that�s a different argument. See also Jim Higginbotham’s “Case for the .45 ACP”). My personal favorite handgun cartridge is the .45 ACP because of its power and accuracy, but smaller cartridges will do the job if you do your part. Like the selection of the gun, the selection of a cartridge should be based on your ability to shoot it well. A good hit with a .380 is better than a miss with a .45. So, as a general rule, your self defense cartridge should be the largest and most powerful load that you shoot well.

The Selection Process

Don’t be in a rush to buy the first gun you see. Give it a lot of thought. Ideally, shoot as many pistols as you can before you make a decision. Most gun ranges have pistols you can rent to see how they feel. If you have friends who own pistols, go shooting with them. Most will be happy to let you shoot their guns and share with you their experiences with them.

Be careful about the advice of clerks at gun stores. Some are very knowledgeable but many others are total idiots. Just because someone works at a gun store doesn’t necessarily mean that he or she is an expert on personal defense pistols. They will all offer an opinion, whether they actually know anything about the matter or not.

I would also maintain a healthy degree of skepticism toward articles in popular gun magazines. They don�t make money by trashing the offerings of their advertisers.

Consider how you dress and your lifestyle. How will you carry the pistol? Can you adjust your wardrobe to accommodate your pistol? Particular body shapes may present special problems. Your physical strength and conditioning may also be a factor, i.e., powerful auto pistols tend to function better for people with strong arms and hands. How much time do you have to devote to practice? As a rule of thumb, autos require more training than revolvers, so don’t pick a single-action .45 auto if you’re not willing to learn to use it.

As important as any other single factor is the size and geometry of your hand. Hand size varies greatly between people and it is very important to handle a gun and note carefully the comfort of the grip and the position of the controls on the pistol. If you can’t easily manipulate every control on the gun with either hand, then find a different gun. People with short thumbs may have trouble with the safety of an M1911. People with short palms may have difficulty with the thick handles of the double-stack 9mm and .40 pistols. People with meaty hands may be “bitten” by the slide of a small auto when it cycles.

Does the gun feel good in your hand? Is the trigger smooth or is it rough and heavy? Is the frame fairly narrow so that it will conceal well? Does the gun have the right balance of power, weight and size? (Remember, bigger is better for shooting and power, but can you carry it for 8 hours if you have to?)

You will notice that I have said nothing about price. I really hate to hear people making a decision on a handgun based on price. No one wants to pay more than we have to or what is fair, but price should be the last consideration. You won�t remember a hundred or so dollars extra you paid for the right pistol, but you will remember the ill-fitting bargain pistol that doesn�t shoot right or feel good.

To summarize, hold it, feel it, fire it if you can, and recognize that you’re going to spend a lot of time with the pistol. Remember also, that it may be called upon someday to defend your life. No, it isn’t easy, and you may end up buying two or three pistols before you find the one with just the right balance of weight, power and comfort.


The selection of a holster which fits the gun you intend to carry is critically important. For a detailed discussion on this matter, click here.


Most of the tactical gurus recommend the carry of at least one reload. If you observe police officers, they often carry 2-4 extra magazines or speed-loaders. If your gun is an autoloader, the second magazine is a good idea for two reasons: (1) you may need the extra rounds (and it’s better to have them and not need them than to need them and not have them), and (2) magazines sometimes fail and having a backup will ensure that you won’t get caught with a non-functioning gun. Hopefully, very few of us will ever need twenty one or more rounds, but the carry of a spare magazine or speed-loader is just a wise practice. One of the reasons I prefer an autoloader to a wheel gun in this role is that the flat shape of a magazine is easier to carry on your belt than the rounded and somewhat bulky shape of the speed-loader used for revolvers.

Summary of Selection Criteria

1. Your personal defense weapon should be as large and as powerful as you can shoot accurately and carry with a reasonable degree of comfort and concealment.
2. Your personal defense weapon should fit your hand perfectly.
3. You should be able to manipulate the controls of your weapon with either hand alone.
4. Your personal defense weapon should be of sturdy construction and be able to withstand heavy use and rough handling.
5. Your personal defense weapon should be accurate enough to consistently hit a target the size of a saucer at 10 yards quickly.
6. Select the largest caliber you can shoot well, and a caliber for which ammunition is readily available.
7. A good quality holster must be available for the model of pistol you intend to carry.

Posted in 1911 45's, Contributed Gun Reviews, Hi Powers | Tagged: , , | 12 Comments »

Videos and Photos of Army Special Ops, Navy SEALs, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard in Action – Shock and Awe –

Posted by Gunner on May 12, 2008

Now this is an interesting new submachine gun from MagPul!The Magpul® Folding Machine Gun (FMG9™) is a rapidly-deployable, ultra-concealable personal defense
weapon currently in development for military, law-enforcement and private security operators. It is
designed to offer maximum firepower and control in a compact and discreet package.

The non-firing prototype was unveiled during the 2008 SHOT Show in Las Vegas, NV and features a
streamlined polymer casing, ready-to-fire push-button deployment, Glock® 17 slide assembly, capability
to accept up to 31-round Glock® 18 magazines (in the folded position), top Picatinny (MIL-STD-1913A)
rail and a detachable carrying handle with light shield. An Insight Technologies tactical light was
mounted on the prototype. Additional space allows for an auto-sear to be installed for qualified users.

The FMG9™ is currently a conceptual prototype. No determination of production of the system has
been finalized. If the weapon were to be produced it would be regulated by the National Firearms Act
of 1934. The semi-automatic version would most likely be classified as a Short-Barreled Rifle (SBR) or
Any-Other Weapon (AOW) depending on an evaluation from the ATF Firearms Technology Branch. This
would require a registered transfer only to qualified individuals. Fully-automatic versions would be
classified as a post ’86 Machine-Gun (MG) and would not be available to individuals other than Class 3
dealers, military and law enforcement personnel.

Vodpod videos no longer available. from posted with vodpod

Posted in MagPul Guns | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

My Springfield Mil-Spec M1911A1

Posted by Gunner on May 11, 2008

Click here for The Sight’s main menu Visit The Sight’s Gear and Supply Shop

by Syd

I took the SA Mil-Spec to the range today for the first time. I stepped into a lane next to two guys who were trying to train on a .40 S&W Glock. They were all over the paper. I put on my shooting gloves slowly, and with a certain degree of ceremony, loaded a magazine, ran the target out to about 10 yards, and proceeded to shoot a ragged hole in the x-ring, and then, to ice the cake, loaded a second magazine and shot a second ragged hole into the ocular cavity zone. The boys with the .40 packed their gear and went home.

This particular gun is Springfield Armory’s rendering of the Mil-Spec M1911A1. It’s as close as they want to get to the original configuration that was issued to the troops. It varies from the true mil-spec M1911A1 on some small details: the ejection port is larger and lowered; the magazine well is slightly beveled; the manual safety is a bit larger; the front sight leaf is larger and thicker; the barrel is throated for modern hollow-point ammo, and it has a black parkerized finish rather than the greenish gray of the WWII guns. It is milled from better steel with the benefit of contemporary tool technology, so, in a way, you could say it is “better” than the original Colt Government Model, while maintaining the look and feel of the original. It lacks, of course, the cache of those wonderful old pieces that fought their way across Europe and the Pacific, but those guns are museum pieces now, and I wouldn’t take one out to play with it.

I have read so much about people “tricking out” these guns, essentially rebuilding them into custom pieces, that I expected to immediately launch into a series of mods. But now I find myself debating if I should do anything with this one. I don’t get slide and hammer bite, so I really don’t need to change the beaver tail and hammer. I don’t like super-light triggers, and the trigger on the Springfield is fine it “breaks like a glass rod.” Being a true M1911A1, it doesn’t have the magazine safety like the Hi-Power, the firing pin block of the Series 80 Colts, or the firing pin block and mag safety of the S&W DA/SA’s, so the trigger is already light and smooth to my touch. I really like the Parkerized finished. I’m the kind who grieves a lifetime over rust spots in blued steel. I added a full length guide rod from Wilson Combat and a set of Pachmyar grips. I will probably change out the hammer and sear because I want to put an extended beavertail on it, and I’ll probably have Novak combat sights installed on it. I’ll do stuff to it because that’s part of the reason I wanted it the 1911 is the hot rod frame of pistols like the Model A Ford and the `57 Chevy are with cars. But it’s nice to feel like I don’t need to do a damned thing to it for it to be a very enjoyable shoot.

My first real shakedown cruise with the big .45 was an IDPA match, and I was delighted with it. There were no stoppages or malfunctions and the accuracy was impressive. The shots went where I wanted them to go. I can definitely see why a lot of people view the M1911A1 as the greatest fighting hand gun ever built.

It’s not easy to find things to criticize about the gun. With 2500 rounds downrange, it has proven itself to be highly reliable. Although not “match grade,” the accuracy is excellent and more than adequate for tactical action shooting like IDPA. It is capable of 3″ groups at 25 yards. It did experience a half dozen failures to feed within the first 300 rounds. However, after adding the Wilson full-length guide rod and completing the 500-round break-in period, it has experienced no further malfunctions. It has never experienced other types of failures such as double feeds or extraction failures. The front sight blade is square on the back and can snag on a holster if the holster isn’t perfectly fitted for a Government Model 1911. The gun is also large and heavy, a little too big for comfortable extended concealed carry. I know people who do it, but at 39 ounces empty, the Government Model is a load.

There are some things about the 1911 that you have to experience to appreciate, particularly the way it feels in your hand, the accuracy, and the surprisingly mild recoil it creates in launching that big old bullet. Some of it is emotional and aesthetic. It is, after all, the handgun carried and fought with by American forces through four terrible wars. It was affirmed and proven in those trials by fire by those who had to use it. That counts for something.

To me, the thing that sets the 1911 apart is the way that it shoots. In my hand, a Government Model 1911 is just more accurate and faster than any other autoloader I have used. Some of this is the trigger; some of it is the inherent accuracy of the .45 ACP cartridge, and some of it is in the design of the gun. In terms of accuracy and power, I find myself comparing the 1911 not to other autoloaders but to long-barreled wheel guns. There are other good combat guns, but if I knew I had to take one pistol to a fight it would be a 1911.

As to what empirical data might be drawn upon to substantiate the superiority of the 1911, perhaps it is that so many old gunfighters seem to like them. This follows the logic of Hagar the Horrible when asked if you had to be smart to be a Viking. He answered, “No, you just have to be smart to be an old Viking.” For more on this issue, see “Why the 1911?”

The main thing is that they’re just so much fun. They shoot great, look great, and feel great.

Five Years Later

This gun has served well. I shot it in a lot of matches, and then, when in my fickle way, I moved on to other models, my son adopted it for his match gun and he has come to love it more than I do. In five years of heavy service the only problem I have had with the gun was that the front sight post worked loose and I had to have it re-staked. I replaced the factory 17 lb. recoil spring with an 18.5 lb. spring from Wolff. I did a bit of polishing on the feed ramp, throat and chamber, but nothing extensive. I never did add a beavertail, Commander hammer, or custom sights. I decided that I just liked the gun the way that it was, and if I wanted to do extensive modifications on a gun, I would do it to another and let this pistol maintain the classic form it has.

While these guns have gone up in price a little, they remain an excellent value. I paid $400 for mine NIB in late 1997. I’m still seeing them in the $475-$550 range. Whether you want a pistol that is a close, if slightly enhanced, reproduction of the G.I. gun, or if you want a solid platform upon which do build up a custom gun, it’s hard to do better than the Springfield Armory Mil-Spec.

Nine Years Later

This is the pistol I bought in 1997 to start shooting IDPA. It’s the pistol that inspired The Sight M1911. It’s the one that, when I fired the first magazine, I said, “Wow!” It’s the one that my son, Alex, prefers over his $1K Kimber for matches, and he never ceases to try to get me to give it to him, and calls it “my pistol,” but I won’t give it to him, at least not yet, not until I’m too old and feeble to shoot it. I haven’t shot it in several years, in part because Alex is always shooting it, and in part because I have come to prefer the Combat Commander for matches. The Government Models are a little slow for me in terms of getting onto the target. Yet, I love this gun like few others. It’s in that rarified rank with the Winchester Model 94 with which I took my first deer. I have other pistols, but none of them have the psychic power that this one does.

My dad was a tremendous repository of bullshit about the Government Model .45. Most of those tales like, “If you hit a man in the thumb with one it will spin him around,” and, “A normal person couldn’t hit a door at 20 feet with one,” I heard first from him. The irony was that he had carried one during his brief stint in law enforcement before I was born. He was Navy and I don’t know if he actually got any training on the gun during the war. But, nevertheless, one of the first tasks I had with the gun was to work through the lore and stories, and separate fact from fiction.

The SA Mil-Spec was a game gun for me from the start. I wanted to check out the sport of IDPA which was new at that time. That’s why I bought a big, heavy gun. I think I only actually carried it for personal defense once. It’s just a bit too heavy to be comfortable for me for carry. Big guns like this are more pleasant to shoot for matches and such. The follow-up is excellent; accuracy is inspiring, and abuse to hands is kept at a minimum. It never was about the calibers. It was about “shoot-ability.” I just noticed immediately that I got better hits faster with the SA/45 ACP combo than with the other handguns I had tried. The inherent accuracy of the pistol, its excellent trigger, and the .45 ACP cartridge make it a rewarding handgun to fire. However, I didn’t get rid of my lightweight snubs and compact 9mm’s that served for personal defense. The rest, as they say, is getting to be history at an alarming rate. The Sight M1911 will celebrate its first decade in January of 07.

The main frame home page of The Sight M1911 has had 1,112,731 hits. That’s over a million hits on one page of that web site, and the site has well over 300 pages at this point. That’s an honest number. I started the counter at 0 in ‘97 and I have never messed with it. I won’t say that The Sight is the “best” thing I have ever done, but it has definitely had the most impact of any piece of writing I have done, and this pistol was the impetus for it.

Unconsciously, this particular pistol has influenced a million people. I find that statistic staggering – the miracle of the internet, I guess. It has never “fired a shot in anger.” It didn’t have to. It’s an icon. I started my e-mail newsletter in 1999 just to alert people on what was going on in gun rights, and on my mind at the time was defending my right to keep and bear this pistol. This pistol is “mythical” in the sense that it is a symbol that points to a reality that is beyond it, and for the most part, inexpressible. How do you describe freedom and heroism? This gun points to that level of meaning. It demands that you search out the stories of heroes and villains who have fought with the M1911, like York, Basilone, Dillinger and Barrow. That’s where this gun takes you – to some of the darkest moments of the 20th Century. There is perhaps one other handgun that has this kind of effect, and that would be the Colt Single Action Army revolver. The old six-gun is an antique, obsolete for anything except cowboy action shooting. The 1911, old as it is, is not at all obsolete, and is probably more popular and more in use today than at any time in its illustrious history.

I do consider the M1911A1 to be the greatest fighting handgun, but that’s just my opinion and you know what they say about opinions. There are other fine pistols that will do the job, but none to my knowledge have seen the moments of greatness that Old Slabsides has. There are none that feel quite as “right” in my hand, or burn up the stages quite as well for me. Most of all, no other firearm has fired my imagination and sustained a decade-long effort to understand and describe it that this one has.

The Mil-Spec is really nothing special when viewed objectively, just a 95% true reproduction of the G.I. M1911A1 of World War II. But to me, it’s something more like a magic carpet.

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Posted in 1911 45's, Contributed Gun Reviews | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

Daly Hi Power Completed Upgrades

Posted by Gunner on May 9, 2008

Charles Daly HP with Novak Sights and Craig Spegal Grips

This is my Daly Hi Power after the upgrades.

  I added several upgrades to my Daly Hi Power. These are actually fewer additions than if it had been a Browning since the Daly has the proper slide cuts for easy addition of Novak sights.

Craig Spegal Custom Grips From Novak. These are the grips on the Daly.
Beautiful Work!

  I added these Spegal grips as well as a set of  Novak plain black sights to replace the XS sights. The other Daly will keep the XS sights. I wanted the Novaks on this one to be more precise in my shooting when on the range. The later model Daly HP’s use a standard 1911 Novak slide cut which certainly makes it easy to change these sights out. The folks at XS told me they didn’t want a proprietary slide cut so owners wouldn’t be limited to the XS sights. They decided that the Novak cut for the 1911 was the best possible solution sense these are the most prolific sights on the market. My hats off to them for this decision! Novak only charges $59 plus shipping for these sights. The grips were $75 and graded Std+.
 Installing these sights was a very simple task and took about 30 minutes with only very minor fitting on the front sight with none on the rear. The rear Novak sight was an appropriately snug fit that only needed a tightening of the set screw on top of the sight. The front sight needed a few light passes with 1200 grit wet dry sandpaper to fit properly. After that it was just a simple matter to sight the pistol in. Using the plain black sights allows a very good sight picture with ample space on either side of the front sight.
  The Spegal grips fit like a glove as expected but did come with detailed instructions for fitting should yours need it.

Novak Sight Selections

 Along with these last additions there was also the addition of the Cylinder and Slide trigger, reduced tactical spring kit which included the extra power trigger return spring, mainspring, extra power firing pin spring and the addition of a C&S sear spring. With the exception of an extractor spring and new extractor most all the internals are now from C&S. This makes for a wonderful trigger, reliability and no MIM parts. The only other addition will be a Bar-Sto match barrel in a couple of months. It’s very accurate as is and this will make it a tac driver for certain.
 The sight used is pictured above as the top left and also pictured on the bottom right. The product codes are as follows. LMC01 Colt plain black, DFS02-3.225 black front. These are the standard Novak slide cuts for the 1911. Now this is for the later model Daly HP’s finished by Magnum Research. The earlier guns finished by Dan Wesson used a standard Novak cut for the series II Hi Power. Check my original review for the serial number reference to make sure you order the correct sights for your gun.
 Even though the high quality parts added a good amount to the Daly project it came out very nice. Of course if you choose to do the same with your Browning you will need to send your slide in to Novak to have the slide cut for the sights. Turnaround time is one week or less depending on your location and mailing time. One other thing I have to commend Novak on besides the usual great customer service is the shipping time and cost. Many companies add to the profit for parts etc. by charging high shipping cost. Novak will not do that. Two Day Air shipping from UPS was only an $8.00 charge from Novak. Now that’s very reasonable!
I hope you enjoyed the review on my mods to this pistol and will find it useful.

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Posted in Charles Daly Hi Power, Hi Powers | Tagged: , , | 10 Comments »

Ruger SR-9 Recall

Posted by Gunner on May 8, 2008


We have determined that some Ruger SR9 pistols manufactured between October 2007 and April 2008 can, under certain conditions, fire if dropped with their manual safeties in the “off” or “fire” position. The pistols will not fire if the manual safety is in the “on” or “safe” position.

We will retrofit all Ruger SR9 pistols starting with serial number prefix “330” (330-xxxxx) with these new parts at no charge to our customers.

In order to ensure correct fitting, the new parts must be installed at our Ruger factory in Prescott, Arizona. We will remove the old parts and install the new trigger group promptly, at no charge, and will return the pistol to you. The old parts will not be returned.

Step 1 – Contact us and provide your name, address, telephone number and SR9 serial number.

Provide your information by any of the following:
Website: SR9 Recall On-line Form
Fax: (928) 541-8873
Phone: SR9 Recall Hotline
(available Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. EDT)

Step 2 – When we are ready to retrofit your SR9, we will send you a shipping label and shipping box with instructions so you can return your pistol to us FREE of charge.

Step 3 – We will install the new trigger group in your SR9 and return it to you FREE of charge. When we do, we also will send you a FREE extra magazine as a “thank you” for your patience and cooperation. We will make every effort to return your pistol within one week, so we will not ask you to send it to us until we are ready to receive it. We expect to begin sending shipping labels and boxes in mid-May.

Do not load or fire your pistol until it has been factory retrofitted with these new parts! If you must fire your pistol, be sure to keep the manual safety in the “on” or “safe” position except when you are actually firing.

<!–SR9 Recall FAQs–>Thank you,
Sturm, Ruger & Co., Inc.

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