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  1. #1
    bangbang is offline Member
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    Help me pick a handgun...

    I have narrowed down my criteria to the following:

    DA/SA
    External Safety (of some sort)
    4" barrel
    9mm (most likely)
    non-floating barrel (preferred)
    not the Beretta PX4

    I was sold on the PX4 until I played with the slide. It seems that Beretta puts their safeties on the back of the slide, and that placement makes it hard for me to cock the gun and release it quickly...

    I made a thread about it here if you want elaboration:

    http://www.handgunforum.net/showthre...3424#post53424

    The PX4 meets each requirement, but the safety placement makes it harder for me to cock the gun in a hurry...

    Is there anything out there that meets these requirements?

  2. #2
    Shipwreck's Avatar
    Shipwreck is online now HGF Forum Moderator
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    The new Browning or FNP polymer handguns are sweet (they are petty much the same gun but can be had w/ either company's name on the slide).

    HK USP or USP compact

    Any CZ would work too..

    All these guns have frame mounted safeties

  3. #3
    bangbang is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shipwreck View Post
    The new Browning or FNP polymer handguns are sweet (they are petty much the same gun but can be had w/ either company's name on the slide).

    HK USP or USP compact

    Any CZ would work too..

    All these guns have frame mounted safeties
    Is that Browning the PRO model? I did not see a 9mm version available if you are referring to the PRO (maybe I missed something)

    How old is the USP design?
    Is it a tried and true pistol?

    Also, do all of these options have a non-floating barrel?

  4. #4
    Shipwreck's Avatar
    Shipwreck is online now HGF Forum Moderator
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    I'm not quite sure what U mean by a floating barrel in a handgun. U mean the rotating barrel like the PX4?

    But, all of the ones I mentioned use a tilt barrel - A browning design that's been used for decades.

    The USP has been around for a long time - the early 1990s, if I remember correctly. It is VER Y tried and true. I think it is built better than a Glock. Its also more expensive than a Glock. I have a USP compact - I like the frame mounted safety because it allows U to keep the gun cocked and locked (like a 1911) if you wish. You don't have to do this, however. U can use it w/ the first shot in DA if U want (like a traditional DA/SA)

    Yes, the Browning version is the Pro9. The FN version is the FNP9. Bother ARE available in 9mm... Here is a page U can look at if U wish...

    http://world.guns.ru/handguns/hg129-e.htm

  5. #5
    bangbang is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shipwreck View Post
    I'm not quite sure what U mean by a floating barrel in a handgun. U mean the rotating barrel like the PX4?
    By floating barrel, I mean...look at a Glock when you reload it...the loading end of the barrel dips down as the bullet is loaded, and then back up as the slide is returned.

    If you press down on the bullet side of the barrel of a Glock while the slide is closed, you will feel a certain amount of "give" and freeplay within the assembly. I am speaking in very small fraction of a mm terms here...

    But if you then grab a PX4 and press down on the bulletside of the barrel, it does not move at all. There is no freeplay at all. The barrel has a tab on it which locks it to the firing pin area (whatever the technical term is). This tab makes the barrel fit more solidly with respect to the rest of the gun and in turn, stiffens things up a bit.

    By eliminating this tiny amount of freeplay, the PX4 will inherently be more accurate than the Glock.

    So I guess I am asking if anyone else makes a locking system that prevents unwanted freeplay on the inside end of the barrel aside from Beretta.

  6. #6
    Shipwreck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bangbang View Post
    By floating barrel, I mean...look at a Glock when you reload it...the loading end of the barrel dips down as the bullet is loaded, and then back up as the slide is returned.

    If you press down on the bullet side of the barrel of a Glock while the slide is closed, you will feel a certain amount of "give" and freeplay within the assembly. I am speaking in very small fraction of a mm terms here...

    But if you then grab a PX4 and press down on the bulletside of the barrel, it does not move at all. There is no freeplay at all. The barrel has a tab on it which locks it to the firing pin area (whatever the technical term is). This tab makes the barrel fit more solidly with respect to the rest of the gun and in turn, stiffens things up a bit.

    By eliminating this tiny amount of freeplay, the PX4 will inherently be more accurate than the Glock.

    So I guess I am asking if anyone else makes a locking system that prevents unwanted freeplay on the inside end of the barrel aside from Beretta.


    I would invite you to look at more Glocks samples than the one(s) U looked at so far. Mine has zero play in the barrel to slide fit when the slide is closed. All of my guns have this "tilt" barrel design (its a tilt barrel, not a floating barrel). They are all rock solid. This is the typical design of semi-auto handguns. Even 1911s tilt when U pull the slide back. They just have a bushing at the end of the barrel. Are U saying that the PX4 is more accurate than a 1911.

    I honestly think you have come to the wrong conclusion, or someone fed U some bad info. Or, both.

    When the slide is open, there is some play in the barrel - there has to be, in order for the barrel to change angles and fit thru the end of the slide when the slide is all the way back. But when the slide is closed, there should be no play in the slide to barrel fit.

    Theoritically, the PX4 design should be more accurate, because of what U are saying. But it is no more accurate than any of the other service type of semi-autos (guns a police or military would use). I had a Courgar in the 1990s - the first Beretta to use this rotary design. It was no more accurate than any other 9mm of similiar size. And, if U read reviews of the gun w/ bullet group testing, it is no more accurate than other semi-autos that use the "tilt" barrel system.

    Beretta didn't actually come up with the rotating design. I read somewhere a long time ago that it was used years ago by another company originally. But admittedly, they are the only ones using it now.

    Is the PX4 a good gon? Yes. Not my fav, but yes. Is it more accurate than any other semi-auto? No.

    Now, U will find some brands of semi-autos with the tilt barrel to be more accurate than others. HKs supposedly are more accurate than Glocks. It also costs more. I find my P99 to be as accurate as an expensive 1911. All of these have tilt barrels.

    If U are looking for an alternative to the PX4 but still keeping with the rotating barrel - U will only find 1 other gun 1 that. The Beretta Cougar. Its an all metal version of the PX4, but with a shorter barrel. And now, U can but them made by Stoeger, because Beretta transferred the equipment to Stoeger. Stoeger is owned by Beretta, however. SO, it is essentially the same gun, but w/o the fit and finish of the higher costing Beretta version that has now been discontinued. But, even the Cougar has the safety on the slide. That's how Beretta likes to make their guns. THESE 2 guns are the ONLY rotating barrel system like that.

  7. #7
    Silly's Avatar
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    I'm ConFused

    Quote Originally Posted by bangbang View Post
    I was sold on the PX4 until I played with the slide. It seems that Beretta puts their safeties on the back of the slide, and that placement makes it hard for me to cock the gun and release it quickly...

    I made a thread about it here if you want elaboration:

    http://www.handgunforum.net/showthre...3424#post53424

    The PX4 meets each requirement, but the safety placement makes it harder for me to cock the gun in a hurry...

    Is there anything out there that meets these requirements?



    I was just playing with the slide on my PX4 and can't understand why you may have problems. The safey lever actually gives you some grip on retracting the slide. I also ride the slide when I retract and have never had a problem. The PX4 has never given me a lick of problems with about 1500 rounds. I carry my PX4 with one in the chamber so I have never had a need to retract the slide quickly while disengaging the safety, so I guess this is where I'm confused.

    Your other thread that you posted got a response saying that you will never get tight grouping with the PX4. This is absolute B.S. Most PX4 owners will state that it is one of the most accurate handguns that they have fired. I agree with that statement but I'm still getting used to my P99 trigger. That was for you Ship.

    If you want a ton of info and feedback about the PX4, go to berettaforum.net The people on that forum are very knowledgable about this gun. I love to shoot mine and it is a very reliable gun.

  8. #8
    bangbang is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shipwreck View Post
    I would invite you to look at more Glocks samples than the one(s) U looked at so far.
    Agreed...I will have to handle more guns.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shipwreck View Post

    But when the slide is closed, there should be no play in the slide to barrel fit.
    I felt the freeplay myself...when the slide was closed. I will definately have to handle more guns to see if this is common with all guns. BTW, the freeplay I am referring to is on the magnitude of .1mm or so.


    Quote Originally Posted by Silly View Post
    I was just playing with the slide on my PX4 and can't understand why you may have problems. The safey lever actually gives you some grip on retracting the slide.
    It is that same grip which makes it more difficult to release. Thanks for the beretta forum link.

  9. #9
    Silly's Avatar
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    I've seen the light

    After playing with the PX4 a little more I see what you are talking about. I was retracting the slide from the side not from the rear. I still did have a problem with my fingers getting snagged but it does put some tention/pain on the thumb and finger. I usually don't retract the slide in this way as I'm not usually in a hurry or the slide is locked back after emptying a mag. My Walther P99 doesn't give me any issues doing the same movement. The way I look at it is that I hopefully will never have to retract the slide that way in an emergency and with the PX4 being totally reliable, I shouldn't have to.

  10. #10
    Spenser is offline Member
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    You might think about the 3rd Gen. Smith and Wessons as well. My favorite is the 3913 tactical. I like the older ones without the rails.

    I like the DA/SA with an external safety as well.

    The Chief's Special in 9mm would be a good candidate as well.

    You might also think about a Baby Eagle in 9mm.

    A Ruger might meet your requirements as well, and if you shot one I think you'd be pleasantly surprised at how well they hold up.

    Dare I mention the 92 and its ilk? You say you don't like where Beretta puts its safety, but it's something that you get used to after awhile, in my experience.

  11. #11
    bangbang is offline Member
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    Sig or HK now...

    I have gone back to the drawing board...

    And so far, I have determined that one of the zillion configurations of the HK USP will fit my description as well as the Sig P226.

    With all the USP variants, I am confused, but I am right handed, and I think Variant 1 is the one I need.

    As for the Sig, it too comes in many flavors. I like the spur-less hammer of the SAS version, but not the wood handle and it only comes in .40 cal...

    I am seriously eye-ing the crimson tracer version, but I find it difficult to spend $1000+ on my first handgun...

    I guess with the HK or Sig option, I am in a price bracket higher than the Beretta.

  12. #12
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    did you look into the sigpro options? i think that the 9mm has an optional manual saftey on the slide, don't know if they still do though. the sigpro series are quite a bit cheaper than the 229 or 226 also.

  13. #13
    bangbang is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by big dutchman View Post
    did you look into the sigpro options? i think that the 9mm has an optional manual saftey on the slide, don't know if they still do though. the sigpro series are quite a bit cheaper than the 229 or 226 also.
    I am almost settled...for tonight at least...

    As of this evening...the choise is clear...

    Sig P226R w/ Crimson Tracer grip...found them online for $760each (need to verify they are NIB with a phone call)...

    One Question...on the Sigs, the night sight is tritium right?

  14. #14
    Shipwreck's Avatar
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    1 thing to suggest - U can read all U want about reliable guns. U apparently zeroed in on some today buy doing some reading - but you haven't held any yet. U need to try some - go rent some.

    I thought I wanted a Sig a year ago - but, I don't care for the grip - the 226 is too big for me...

  15. #15
    bangbang is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shipwreck View Post
    U need to try some - go rent some.
    ...
    I wish I could. I will call around, but so far, the place I plan on shooting only rents Glocks and a few Taurus guns.

    I will at least be able to determine (more or less) which caliber to go with. Up until now, I have been pretty much nailed down the caliber I wanted. I am almost certain that I want a 9mm, but I planned on shotting with both a 40 cal and a 9mm at the range to see which one I like better.

    I can only assume that the recoil from teh Sig will be better than that of a rented Glock...but I am not sure. If I can handle .40Cal with little trouble...then I may consider getting it in the 40cal instead of the 9mm.

    I want to go tomorrow, but I have so much to do...

  16. #16
    Shipwreck's Avatar
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    Also remember how expensive it is to shoot 40 if U shoot 200 or so rounds a couple of times a month...

  17. #17
    bangbang is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shipwreck View Post
    Also remember how expensive it is to shoot 40 if U shoot 200 or so rounds a couple of times a month...
    I went to www.the-armory.com...

    40 S&W 180gr FMJ Remington UMC Case (500 rds) = $100.99

    9mm Luger (9x19mm) 115gr FMJ Remington UMC Case (500 rds) = $76.95


    At the FMJ level, the price difference is 30%. They do not sell the Hollow Points in bulk at that site it appears, so I did not do a price difference on those as of yet. I will likely buy 500 FMJ for most of my shooting and about 100 of the hollow points for the defense side of it to get started.

    I know that I should practice with the rounds I plan on using...but that is not cost effective. Once I have gotten those 500 FMJ rounds through my barrell...I will have a better understanding of my gun, and I can start using the hollowpoints...

    Is 30% the average difference in price between the two calibers across the board?

  18. #18
    Wandering Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bangbang View Post
    I am almost settled...for tonight at least...

    As of this evening...the choise is clear...

    Sig P226R w/ Crimson Tracer grip...found them online for $760each (need to verify they are NIB with a phone call)...

    One Question...on the Sigs, the night sight is tritium right?
    Breathe deeply, chill out.

    By the time you read this post you may find yourself trying to second-guess yourself, and wondering if you should be thinking of something different.

    The best thing you can do for yourself at this point is to remind yourself this will only be your "FIRST" gun. NOT your "ONLY" gun.

    That will help to take a lot of pressure off of your decision.

    WM
    Never argue with drunks or crazy people.

  19. #19
    bangbang is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wandering Man View Post
    The best thing you can do for yourself at this point is to remind yourself this will only be your "FIRST" gun. NOT your "ONLY" gun.
    Yes, but it will be my ONLY gun until I get my second gun

    I still have to wait for the permit paperwork to get processed...and in that time, I could completely change my mind...

    As of now, I am set on the P226R (but the P229R is still not ruled out).

    I just want to know if "night sites" on the Sig means tritium, or does it just mean glow paint?

  20. #20
    Shipwreck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bangbang View Post
    I went to www.the-armory.com...

    40 S&W 180gr FMJ Remington UMC Case (500 rds) = $100.99

    9mm Luger (9x19mm) 115gr FMJ Remington UMC Case (500 rds) = $76.95


    At the FMJ level, the price difference is 30%. They do not sell the Hollow Points in bulk at that site it appears, so I did not do a price difference on those as of yet. I will likely buy 500 FMJ for most of my shooting and about 100 of the hollow points for the defense side of it to get started.

    I know that I should practice with the rounds I plan on using...but that is not cost effective. Once I have gotten those 500 FMJ rounds through my barrell...I will have a better understanding of my gun, and I can start using the hollowpoints...

    Is 30% the average difference in price between the two calibers across the board?
    That's fine - remember to include shipping in the costs. With cheap ammo locally, I've never bothered to order ammo online. My local academy store sells 9mm cheaper than I could get it from the net anyway. But, that's fine.

    Have you actually shot a 40 and a 9mm. Some 40 cal owners regrey buying a 40 and end up selling the gun and buying a 9mm later...

    I have switched to all 9mms, and I am happy w/ my choice. I can afford to shoot more often and w/ more round sthan when I had a 45 ACP. And, I am satisfied w/ 9mm performance.

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