First off, let’s get the boring part out of the way.
This is my first handgun purchase. I have shot handgun sporadically over the years, but have mainly been a long gun shooter. My pistol experience has come from shooting family members’ revolvers in various calibers and .22 autos. I decided it was time to learn how to shoot pistol, so I went to the net to soak up free information. I joined this forum a while ago, but stayed in the shadows until I had something worthwhile to say.
Now, time for the Purchasing Decisions
I decided that I wanted a 9mm pistol because ammo is cheap and easy to find (or at least it used to be!!). The 9mm can be a decent self defense round if necessary, but that is secondary to wanting a pistol to shoot targets with. I also wanted it to be all steel for the extra heft and durability. I narrowed it down to three pistols:
1. Berretta 92 (The military issues it, there must be something behind that)
2. CZ-75 (Great reviews, seems to have an almost cult following. Popular in IPSC)
3. Browning Hi Power (Classic pistol, partially designed by J.M.B.)
I held all three, but didn’t really like the Beretta. So, now I am down to two.
While researching both I found different arguments for each. The most common comments I read were something along the lines of the following:
“If I couldn’t have a BHP, I would choose a CZ”
“Both CZ and BHP are fine pistols, but I would choose (Insert Either Brand)”
Ok, I cannot go wrong with either. It’s time to get serious.
I won’t go in to too much detail, but I had difficulties finding a good BHP either new or used. Moving on to CZ, and the hunt continues. During the process of locating a 75B and still trying to find a BHP, I found a CZ SP-01. I picked it up and smiled, my search ended there.
I forgot to take a picture of it fresh from the store, I was too excited to open it up. In the box: Pistol, 2 high capacity(19) magazines, wire cleaning brush and plastic cleaning rod (Handy Addition), manual.
I cleaned the pistol and went to the range about 1 hour after my purchase. I will freely admit, I was geeked.
Here is the pistol as it came from the factory.
I went to the range with a friend of mine who is a much better shot with a pistol than I am. He has had military training, and I am a novice. I went to learn.
I will not post my first targets as I am unsure anything on there could be considered a grouping. My friend was able to dump 5 rounds in a tight grouping right around the bull (Show Off
). He was surprised at the accuracy of the pistol and suggested some drills for me to work on.
My impression after the first range trip...
. I am very pleased with my purchase. For me, the pistol handles and shoots very well. My skills have been improving now that I know what to pay attention to. I look forward to more range time and improvements in my form and groupings.
I may be new to handguns, but not to firearms. Right now this is a gun
and I want to make it mine
I ordered some half checkered cocobolo grips and some Mecgar magazines from the CZ accessories store. I like the look of the flush fit mags, and they were on sale. CZ shipping was accurate and fast. Worked out well for me.
Now, on to the barrel. I do not know why, but CZ puts a really bad parkerized factory finish on their barrels. After 300 rounds it was looking very scratched and unattractive. I had read about Robar’s refinishing in the .460 Rowland Build-Off
and decided to contact them. I sent my barrel off for their NP3 finish. I cannot recommend them enough, they did a great job.
My only other concern is the plastic guide rod for the mainspring. I have decided to leave this alone for now and see what happens.
Here is the pistol after my minor alterations.
Wow, I did not expect this to be so long. If you made it this far, thanks for reading and you're almost done!
As of this posting, the SP-01 has digested 300 rounds of ammo consisting of a mix of Rem UMC and Blazer Brass. I have had no FTF or FTE and zero malfunctions so far. I read on several different forums and posts that one should expect a break in period of around 300-500 rounds, so I am pretty pleased so far!
I have gotten lucky recently and currently have a good stock of Winchester White Box, so I will see how they run in the pistol. I suspect they will perform just fine.
As a follow-up, I will post pictures of the targets from my next trip to the range. I will try to make them respectable!