A generation ago, if you walked into a gun shop and asked for a Model 19 you got a Smith and Wesson Combat Magnum. Today, the Model 19 is a 9mm Glock and it is probably more popular than the revolver was. The Glock 19 9mm is easily the best-balanced Glock in my opinion. While the original Glock 17 is a good shooter, reliable, and easy to carry on a uniform belt, the G19 is an ideal concealed carry pistol. [Read more…] about Glock 19: A Marvel of Balance in Glock Perfection
Among the first police procedural dramas was Dragnet. Dragnet and Joe Friday were down to earth and presented the facts well. As a child, I enjoyed the series very much. Dragnet still has much to recommend. Professionalism and results are valued. Later, many of the prima donnas and flawed characters in TV shows were less interesting. Few would have lasted a minute in any agency I worked for. [Read more…] about Revolvers: The Joe Friday Gun
Some makers sing the words, but they don’t know the music. A maker that got the steel somatic right is Fabrique Nationale. The Browning Hi Power is a unique design, held in awe by serious handgunners. The Hi Power comes from an era when blue steel and walnut were the norm, and plastic was material for cheap pistol grips. The story of the Hi Power Hi Power has been told many times. However, as a classic, it is always worth one more look. [Read more…] about Gun Test: Browning Hi Power
The focus of this report is more the cartridge than the handgun, but the revolvers that chamber the cartridge are linked to the .45 ACP’s popularity. The Smith and Wesson 1917 .45 ACP revolver was a legendary handgun to a young man reading everything he could about handguns, but an ordinary handgun in the shops during the 1970s. The 1917 isn’t rare today, but it is no longer as cheap as it once was either. My first .45 ACP revolver was purchased for less than $100. [Read more…] about My Favorite .45 ACP Big Bore Revolver
The .30-06 Springfield has been my favorite rifle cartridge for 40 years. The power accuracy and ease of use are unrivaled. I have enjoyed handloading the cartridge for over 30 years. But loading the .30-06 for a bolt action rifle, and loading for a semi-automatic rifle such as the M1 Garand, are two different skills requiring different approaches. [Read more…] about Handloading for the M1 Garand
The Glock 44 rimfire was met with some derision by those wishing to own a single-column magazine 10mm or perhaps the long-awaited Glock carbine. I don’t know if Glock is seriously considering these firearms, but it listens. [Read more…] about Glock 44: Glock Imperfection in a Rimfire?
There has been considerable interest in the new Colt Python 2020. Likewise, there have been quite a few comments coming from those who have not handled the Python— the new or old version. It just would not do for Colt to deliver a cheapened version, and the new pistol has no such allusion. As a Colt fan, I will say the Colt Python 2020 is a better piece than the original. [Read more…] about Colt Python: Reintroduced, but Is It Worthy of the Name?
The Springfield XD-S 4.0 is a variation on the Springfield XD—a popular and proven firearm. The XD-S is a good concealed carry handgun with the same action and features as the popular XD but enough differences to give the XD-S a distinctive character. The grip treatment is much different and offers plenty of abrasion. The XD-S .45 ACP version may sting the hand a bit, but it offers real power in a compact package. The XD-S 9mm version is more controllable and offers more rounds in the same compact package. [Read more…] about Gun Test: Springfield XD-S 4.0
The majority of new introductions in the handgun world—and on the shelf in gun shops—are polymer frame 9mms. When it comes to service and personal defense, the polymer frame is by far the most popular. All are not inexpensive, but most are affordable. The polymer frame is not only inexpensive to manufacture the material is tough, long lasting, and easy to shape into a useable firearm. Among the newest introductions that has enthusiasts’ attention is the Taurus G3. [Read more…] about Review: Taurus G3 9mm Pistol
When we reflect, ruminates, reminisce, and muse on the past, we generally use images from the past in our thoughts. Few of us think completely in the abstract. When I think of my younger years and getting into shooting, I recall my fascination for the 1911 .45 at an early age. That was a long 50 years ago, and my interest has never waned.
For some time, I have regarded the Commander-size 1911 handgun as the perfect carry gun for my needs. A Commander is simply a Government Model 1911 with a slide that is ¾-inch shorter and an aluminum frame in place of the larger handguns steel frame. This makes for a packable handgun with plenty of power. Among the handguns leading this category is the Dan Wesson Guardian. [Read more…] about Gun Test: Dan Wesson Guardian 1911 Commander
Some handguns give you a 1,200-psi adrenaline flow just handling them. Others are as exciting as a dance on broken ground. The Colt Single Action Army is among the former. The Colt is an icon in the truest sense, and iconic handguns, and the use they have been put to in times of war and trouble, are immensely interesting. [Read more…] about Colt Single Action Army
There is a lot of discussion concerning training. A lot of it revolves around choosing a trainer. There is much truth in this, as the trainer gets you started on the road to proficiency, but it is all your own responsibility in the end. You have graduated from the public school system—good or bad—and you can read, so you survived and perhaps have learned a great deal on your own. We all remember fantastic teachers who inspired us, and then there were the inept—so it is with firearms trainers. [Read more…] about Handguns and CCW: Training and Re-Training
I do not wish to damn this little gun with faint praise. The North American Arms Pug is a tiny revolver that is well made of good material and reliable. I have never seen anyone have trouble with the revolver as regards reliability, and it has been in service for decades. The problem is the same as its appeal—its size. [Read more…] about Gun Test: North American Arms Pug
It seems like it was only a few years ago that the Glock pistol was introduced to America. There were changes coming, and the Glock was a big step up from .38 caliber revolvers. However, police agencies transitioning to the Glock didn’t always go well, through no fault of the pistol. While lead bullets were not a concern at that time, reloaders quickly realized the potential downfall due to leading issues. [Read more…] about Lead Bullets In the Glock? You Bet!
One thing I have learned is that as things get older, they get meaner—and sometimes age brings respect. The Colt Python and I were each born in the 1950s. I am too young to remember the 1950s, but I find it interesting that such an advanced revolver was introduced over 60 years ago in 1955. [Read more…] about Colt Python — The World’s Finest Revolver
The newest Taurus revolver is among the most interesting and innovative the company has manufactured. The Taurus 692 is a double action revolver with a swing out cylinder. There is a single-action option, useful in a field and trail revolver. This handgun features a seven-shot cylinder, giving the relatively compact Taurus .357 Magnum an advantage over traditional six-shot revolvers. [Read more…] about Gun Test: Taurus 692 Multi-Caliber Revolver
For years, most of us have counseled concealed carry handgun carriers to choose a proper holster. A holster keeps the handgun stable and angled for the proper draw. Just the same, who am I to go against 200 years or more of holsterless tradition? After all, Wild Bill Hickock packed his revolvers in a tightly-woven sash. [Read more…] about Tactics: Holsterless Handgun Carry
When choosing a handgun, the analogy to a vehicle—something most of us use every day—is useful. We all understand the term “dead weight.” That is the weight of the bed or truck (or the support structure in architecture), but that’s not what we are looking at today—when unloaded. Live weight is the truck loaded. The handgun, ammo, holster, and spare gun load add up quickly in live weight. Sticks of copy and reams of paper have been slugged during this discussion and we now offer bytes by the millions. The thing is, while there must be room for personal choice, there is a bottom line for performance and quality. If you like a small car you can easily drive in the city that’s fine. But you cannot pick up a dining room set with it. [Read more…] about Handguns: Size Matters — More can be More
At the 2018 SHOT show, among the more interesting revolvers was the Taurus 856 revolver. The 856 is based upon the proven and immensely popular Taurus 85, a small-frame revolver that holds five .38 Special cartridges. The 856 is a version of the Model 85 with a six-shot cylinder. It is quite an engineering feat to design such a revolver. [Read more…] about Taurus 856 and 857 Versus S&W J Frame Revolvers