Hammerli X-esse
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Old 03-27-2014, 12:34 PM   #1
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Default Hammerli X-esse

Hi,
Has anyone had any experience with the Hammerli X-esse at the Range?
It seems to be very accurate from most reports.

Any info would be appreciated.

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Old 03-27-2014, 01:18 PM   #2
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I had it under its former name Trailside, and enjoyed shooting it. Itmade accurate shooting easy. You will not be disappointed.

Mine had a 4.5" barrel and was unusually lightweight for a target pistol. The adjustable trigger was flawless. The sights were plain, but they worked fine. The pistol cycled normal to high pressure rounds reliably. It had frequent stoppages with the hollowpoints (which isn't a big deal, considering the type of gun this is.) D isassembly and cleaning was easy.

I still miss it. (Traded for a suppressible pistol.) A new Xesse (sold by Walther now) is about $700. There seems to be only one factory dealer in the US.

Last edited by Mercator; 03-27-2014 at 01:27 PM.
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Old 03-31-2014, 11:36 AM   #3
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I've owned several Trailsides and X-esse pistols over the years and currently have a Trailside. These are perhaps my favorite .22 pistol and I've either owned or shot a variety to compare it to.

In my experience they are wonderfully accurate and reliable, though they can be a bit finicky when it comes to ammunition and I recommend shooting only standard velocity and the one I have now seems to appreciate CCI Standard Velocity most.

To my knowledge Larry's Guns is presently the only importer of the Hammerli and stocks an excellent selection of accessories. They have a wealth of knowledge to draw upon. http://www.larrysguns.com

My first Trailside (circa 1999):



Another (circa 2008):




My current:


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Old 03-31-2014, 12:08 PM   #4
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How does it compare to the 41?
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Old 03-31-2014, 01:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercator View Post
How does it compare to the 41?
It is physically lighter than the 41. I have had several Model 41s and prefer the 7" over the 5.5". The best 41s in my experience are the Bangor Punta guns and I probably wouldn't be interested in any made after 1980 or so, as the ones I've shot and owned made in the late 80's to present are best described as 'crude' compared to earlier 41s.

In it's standard guise, the Hammerli is light at the muzzle, does not have an adjustable trigger and the standard grips are wanting for traction.

However, with the addition of a trigger kit, grips and muzzle weight (all available through Larry's Guns), my experience leads me to believe it excels in every respect over the Model 41, albeit by a very small margin.

That being said, a nice quality 41 will set you back $700-$1000 and is pretty much competition ready out of the box.

A nice quality 6" Trailside will run $600-800 (new or used), and another $250-$300 to bring it up to competition ready with grips, weight and trigger (I'm left handed, so the X-esse Sport Model that comes from the factory ready to compete is not an option with it's RH only grips). In my opinion, the investment in upgrades is a wise one.
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Old 03-31-2014, 02:10 PM   #6
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I've been looking at a new 41 for $1300. I know its reputation, but also realize it will not necessarily translate into hard numbers for this particular shooter. It has a built in picatinny rail running full length of the slide (to me, a distraction). I am not sure the exchangeable front sight blades are a serious upgrade over the traditional height adjustment. I have a rare blued tapered heavy barrel Mark III with factory fiber optics and rosewood - it looks at least as good. I also have a suppressed Tac Sol on VQ custom assembly. Would you invest another $1300 in a 41, or $1000 in a Xesse, if your only concern was a higher score?
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Old 03-31-2014, 02:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Would you invest another $1300 in a 41, or $1000 in a Xesse, if your only concern was a higher score?
I'd pick the Hammerli without hesitation. If I was only plinking tin cans, I'd still take the Hammerli over the S&W. In my mind, based on my experience, the Hammerli is the better gun.
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Old 03-31-2014, 02:40 PM   #8
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My wife took over my Trailside. It is the 6" base model. I added an adjustable rear sight from Larry's. He has the parts and knowledge you will need for the Hammerli pistols. He makes some of the springs and they are better than originals.
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Old 03-31-2014, 03:22 PM   #9
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I'd pick the Hammerli without hesitation. If I was only plinking tin cans, I'd still take the Hammerli over the S&W. In my mind, based on my experience, the Hammerli is the better gun.
if you don't mind, how is it better than the SW? I know the Hammerli well, used some Larry's parts, but never shot a 41.
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Old 03-31-2014, 10:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
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if you don't mind, how is it better than the SW? I know the Hammerli well, used some Larry's parts, but never shot a 41.
The new S&W 41s I've shot (late 80's and up), just don't measure up to the quality of the older 41s. The Trailsides and X-esses lack only a few bits and pieces to be every bit as good as the older 41s, if not just a hair's breadth better than the older ones in terms of balance and accuracy.

The fit and finish and accuracy of the new 41s isn't there, at least in the guns I've shot and handled.

When you start getting up over $700 for a .22 the margin of differences between makes diminishes. Sure, it's pretty obvious where the money goes when you compare a $350 pistol to a $700 pistol, but beyond that each additional $ provides a diminishing return on performance.

I've shot some truly fine $2,000 and $3,000 .22 pistols (Hammerlis, Walthers, Pardinis, Benellis, etc), but I'm not a good enough shot to kid myself that my limited skills could benefit from the investment. -- in my hands they perform no better than a 41 or Trailside.

When I see someone with their brand new $1,300 41, I can only think, "damn, you could have had a better one for less, a Hammerli or Bangor Punta 41 or maybe even one of each if you shop around and don't mind used..."

Finally, at the end of the day, it's personal preference. Everyone has a different shaped hand, different set of eyes, different reflexes. In my hand the Hammerli out performs the 41. But man, I still love my 41 Bangor Punta guns.
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