Handgun Reviews

This category covers all handgun reviews.

  • Smith & Wesson's M&P .40: A Modern Contender

    As we all know, Smith & Wesson has been a staple in the American firearm industry since the late 1850s, producing weapons for civilians, LEO, and Military alike. Their reputation for making innovated and excellent wheel-guns proceeds them in a prestigious manner. There's a reason they've been around for so long, they make good stuff! Smith & Wessons earlier attempts at the civilian and Mil/LEO semi-automatic pistol markets have been "hit-and-miss", if you will. Some models, such as the...
  • A Tan LCP

    With new and gee-whiz firearms coatings popping up left and right, I came to a crossroads in which I needed to make a choice. Here is the story of how I ended up with a rather sandy looking .380. My Ruger LCP dilemma So I carry a back-up gun from time to time in my line of work. Occasionally in street clothes as a normal CCW practitioner, I also sometimescannot carry a full-sized handgun comfortably without printing, especially in summer. This leaves me with one of the best compact .380s...
  • The Smith and Wesson Shield

    Smith and Wesson has long been a supplier of their handy J-frame Chief's Special type revolvers. Going back to the 1940s, these revolvers have been a classic personal defense gun. Now Smith has upped the ante with the same concept, a small, concealable, handgun that will deliver a half dozen or so full-sized rounds when needed. The only thing is, it’s now a semi-automatic pistol and not a revolver. Intro the Smith and Wesson Shield. The Smith Shield. The full size S&W M&P is a great combat...
  • How Many Weapons Do YOU Carry

    When you leave the house and go about your daily travels, are you armed? If so, with what? Do you vary multiple weapons, and if so, do you carry more than one firearm? Let us look at that. The philosophy of a backup weapon Putting your eggs all in one basket-- or for the subject of this article, trusting your life and those around you to one imperfect gadget, is borderline foolhardy. Yes, you may have a super tactical top-of-the-line CCW handgun that you have practiced with for a decade...
  • Review of Rock Island Armory Tactical Compact

    I purchased my RIA Tactical Compact mainly because I carry a full size 1911 daily and wanted something more compact and comfortable for concealed carry but yet I wanted all the controls to be the same as my day to day carry piece. So I began my search of local gun shops and ran across the RIA since I've read a decent amount of good reviews I figured I would save a hit to my wallet and purchase it instead of an EMP or something similar which can be twice the price. As soon as I bought the...
  1. Tale of a Salty Old Smith

    In my lifetime of a firearms owner and collector, many different guns have passed through my hands. Ever since I was a teenager, I've bought, sold, and traded these tools of wood, steel, and (occasionally) polymer. Over the years, I've had the good, the bad, and the ugly. Some of them have stories behind them. This is one of them. It Started in a talk with Dan Dan, my coatings guy at Custom Coatings, was doing a Duracoat (link) job on my LCP and when I dropped by to see him, had an old...
  2. The Story Of A Glock

    I have been a fan of the Glock handgun since I was far too young to even know what I was really looking at besides the fact that I saw the M17 used in movies. I had my heart set on an M17 when I first got my license to carry, unfortunately for me, I live in Massachusetts and wanting a factory new firearm for my first gun disqualified any Glock. So, I settled on something else. Once the glamour of being licensed to carry in one of the most anti-gun states had subsided I began my search for a...
  3. Do not Rule out the Derringer

    The humble derringer-style pocket gun has served western civilization for a large part of the past three centuries. History of the Derringer The original Derringer was the Philadelphia Deringer (note, just 1 R) invented by one Mr. Henry Deringer, around 1825. His pistol, usually a large caliber single shot fired by the then-novel percussion cap, made him much more money or fame than the Model 1814 or 1817 rifles he designed for the Army or the dueling pistols he lavished attention on. His...
  4. Flare Gun Sub Caliber Inserts

    We all have them or at least have seen them. Those cute little International orange or yellow plastic flare guns with their abbreviated 12-gauge rocket flares. They run about $50 for a new one. There has long been a desire to turn them into...something more. 26.5mm European Projectors These flare guns are popular with foreign militaria collectors. They are lore bore (slightly over one-inch wide) projectors used by many Western European military units and merchant shipping/SOLAS purposes....
  5. The Smith and Wesson Shield

    Smith and Wesson has long been a supplier of their handy J-frame Chief's Special type revolvers. Going back to the 1940s, these revolvers have been a classic personal defense gun. Now Smith has upped the ante with the same concept, a small, concealable, handgun that will deliver a half dozen or so full-sized rounds when needed. The only thing is, it’s now a semi-automatic pistol and not a revolver. Intro the Smith and Wesson Shield. The Smith Shield. The full size S&W M&P is a great combat...
  6. New Russian Army Pistol

    The 29-ounce 9x18mm Makarov pistol (Soviet designation Pistolet Makarova, M-442), adopted in 1951, is still in service around many former Warsaw block countries and is still found in wide military and police use in Russia. With its 8-shot magazine, stout recoil and heavy trigger pull, the 'Soviet Walther' is something of a last ditch weapon. Since 2003 it had been supplemented for combat operations by the more modern MP443 Grach (Russian designation 6P35 Pistolet Yarygina PYa) double action...
  7. The Mars Syndicate Pistol

    Wool jackets, bowler hats, waxed mustaches and the pall of London's thick coal-dust fog. All you, the discerning gentleman are missing, is a pistol to practice the manly art of self-protection. You can choose any of the superb Webley products like the Bulldog or Ulster Constabulary style weapons; however, you are looking for something bigger, better. You ask yourself as you read the Times, what would define you as a man in modern steam-powered 1902 London? Then you see it, the MARS pistol. A...
  8. Snubbies but Goodies

    Snubbies have long been the go-to firearm choice for those pistoleros who desired a small and concealable handgun that could still deliver 5-6 hard-hitting full sized rounds at close range. History In the late 19th century, shortened revolvers like the Bulldog and others were popular with gentlemen, investigators, and travelers for personal protection. By 1927 the Colt Detective, a small framed six-shot double action revolver that fired the then very modern and powerful .38 special round...
  9. Your TEOTWAWKI Handgun Choice

    TEOTWAWKI is the acronym for "The End of the World as we Know It"(Spoken as "Tee-ought-walk-ee" and 'Tee-oh-tee-whacky"). This scenario can be brought about by any number of apocalypses including massive urban riots, global warming, revolution/civil war, extended droughts, invasion, nuclear exchange, global pandemic, aliens (up to the reader to decide which kind), comets, EMP, zombies, hippies, bigfoot uprisings, giant radioactive ants, Nazis from secret moon bases...the list goes on and on....
  10. 9x18mm Blowback Pistols

    After 1946, the 9-18mm round was designed by B.V. Semin to be the most powerful round that could function safely in a direct blowback pistol (such as the Walther PP type.) Slightly more powerful than a .380 auto and just a hair less powerful than a 9x19mm parabellum, the 9x18mm was designed as a self-defense round. By 1951, it was ready for the field. It became a Warsaw Pact iconic round. Let's look at some of the pistols encountered in the US that fire it. The Makarov To replace the 19th...
  11. The Sig Sauer P6 P225 9mm

    In 1996, the various German province police forces began to upgrade their handguns. With this, they were left with over 40,000 gently used Sig-Sauer P6's on their hands that thankfully have arrived on our shores in good numbers. With the huge following these sleek mid-size pistols have gotten in the land of the red white and blue, I thought I would go over them for our readers. Basic design The Sig Sauer P6 is the then-West German Federal Police derivative of the Swiss SIG P225 handgun....
  12. The Double Barrel 1911?

    The new company of Arsenal Firearms in Italy has something on its mind. Yes that is right, a double-barreled 1911 .45ACP. - Here's looking at you kid, (photo by Arsenal Arms) Formed by gun writer and designer Nicola Bandini and gun miniature master Dimitry Streshinskiy in 2011, Arsenal is the parent company for Zanotti 1625 shotguns and Miniature Arsenal scale firearms. This month they have decided to opt for something completely different and debuted a double-barrel semi-automatic...
  13. The FM Argentine Hi Power

    The great engineer and inventor of masterpieces of mechanical design, John Moses Browning, took steel, wood, and magic and blended them together to create some of the most treasured firearms in modern history. Best remembered for his 1911 design, the Hi-Power was one of his last gifts to us. The truth is that Browning contributed to the design by engineers at FN in Belgium finished it after his death, but let us not let that detract from the legend. Imminent gun writer and shootist Colonel...
  14. The Hi-Point C9 Pistol

    Ding ding! The bell has rung and let's come out of the corners swinging. A few weeks ago, I wrote an article on Pistol Caliber Carbines. In that article I mentioned favorably the Hi-Point 995 carbine --while sidestepping over a comment that it was better than the same company's pistols. This brought a firestorm from readers who supported the C9 pistol as a valid and effective handgun, especially for the money. - Elegantly clad in its plain white box, the Hi-Point C9 is not pretentious, but...
  15. SIG Arms ACP Kit to turn any Railed Pistol into a Carbine

    Introduced this month at the SHOT Show industry event, SIG ARMS/SIG Sauer of Exeter New Hampshire has debuted their revolutionary new Adaptive Carbine Platform or ACP. Now pistol-to-carbine conversion kits are not new on the market. Companies like Hera Arms, Stellar Rigs and Mech Tech have sold carbine conversion units for years that take popular handgun platforms such as the 1911 and Glock 17 and create a more stable PDW type of weapon. Most of these designs however take a basic pistol and...
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