Which Manufacturer makes the most Durable semi-auto pistols?


Mark IV Series 80
January 7, 2003, 07:59 PM
Which manufacturer makes the most durable autoloading pistols?

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January 7, 2003, 08:16 PM
Glock! Hands down.

January 7, 2003, 08:24 PM
Ill say there alot of guns that are up to the task..but Ive seen thousands and thousands of rnds thru 1911's and CZ's..even alloy framed guns. I know of a CZ that went over 93K rnds before getting retired..it broke the slide stop at 50?K rnds..but thats not bad...
Shoot well

January 7, 2003, 08:57 PM
I don't think I could ever wear out a pistol from any of the makes listed. But I think Glock might have the edge. Or maybe a good 1911 type. Or even an H&K. Nope, definitely the Sig.... (er.. maybe not the Sig. Aluminum alloy frames have a shorter service life when fed HOT ammo.)

January 7, 2003, 09:45 PM
They all break, so there's another component of the durability question that would be included in asking the question like this:

"Which manufacturer makes a semi-auto pistol that's still likely to be functional after 10,000, 50,000, 100,000, 250,000, 500,000, or 1,000,000 rounds?"

Kahr, Taurus, and Kel-Tec have lifetime warranties on their products. They all fix broken guns, and KT completely refurbishes theirs when one goes in for a problem.

Durability with maintenance is a whole 'nother critter.

January 7, 2003, 09:53 PM

Their P-95' s are a tank. I been shooting mine for a while with out a problem, Glock has been traded off already. The SIg is new to the line you but I bet the Ruger will be there after the Sig is a decoration in the Safe.

If we were talking revolvers it would be a toss up between Ruger and S&W.

January 7, 2003, 10:04 PM
My Glock has been most reliable.

Al Thompson
January 7, 2003, 10:44 PM
IIRC, the last time the DoD purchased 1911s was 1945. Hard to beat that track record.

January 7, 2003, 10:47 PM
I voted for ruger cause i really like my P-95DC and i've never had a problem with any security six's if owned over the years.

January 8, 2003, 12:07 AM
There is a reason that Glocks are known as a revolver with a mag.


January 8, 2003, 12:14 AM
I would have to say Ruger . Their MK 2 22lr's , and P series seem to last the longest that i've seen . I dont particualy like the p series in terms of looks or feel , compared to guns like Beretta ,
and the Browning HP . But for a long lasting range gun i think they are tops.

January 8, 2003, 12:18 AM
I've seen broken Berettas, Glocks (broke one myself), HK's, SIGs and S&W's...everything breaks. Nowadays tho, guns of quality are made to such high standards they will reach relatively high round counts before they reach the end of their service lives. My answer to the question..."all of the above" :scrutiny:

January 8, 2003, 02:50 AM
My vote goes to Glock with Ruger being a close second.

January 8, 2003, 02:59 AM
Didn't we already have this debate earlier on TFL?

The most durable handgun is the one you can easily get spare parts for. They will all break if treated the "right" way.

January 8, 2003, 04:17 AM

Two thumbs up. :cool:

Kahr carrier
January 8, 2003, 06:40 AM
GLOCK :neener:

January 8, 2003, 07:57 AM
Uh, the one that everybody always leaves off lists like this. Say it with me now, WALTHER. IMNSHO, of course.

January 8, 2003, 08:57 AM
I am a 1911 fan, but I'm gonna have to go with Glock on this one.

January 8, 2003, 09:50 AM
All guns break and need parts replacement, but if by durability it is meant how long will the gun last before you throw it out, then I would say a steel framed 1911. Well documented cases of hundreds of thousands of rounds in properly set up guns with "normal" loads. Just look at what IPSC shooters put through their guns. I find it hard to believe Polymer based guns could last that long within the same caliber comparison. We know aluminum framed guns don't.
On the other hand, it might be cheaper to replace the polymer gun(or frame) than rebuild a 1911 in some cases- don't know!

Just an opinion of course.

January 8, 2003, 10:35 AM

I think that says it all, a company who dares to define themselves as perfection.

and they are still being modest :p

January 8, 2003, 11:37 AM
When I hear "durable", I think of "chuck it down a flight of stairs with no worries". The main reason I think Glocks do well at this is that there're pretty much no little bits sticking out of them to bend or break off.

January 8, 2003, 11:42 AM
Ruger in 2nd place...1/2 the price of Glocks...hmmm:D i'll take the Ruger! I don't own a Glock so in all fairness I can't really say that I like Ruger's better but I do love my P94 .40cal

January 8, 2003, 11:45 AM
I gotta say GLOCK.

January 8, 2003, 01:01 PM
I'm surprised CZ isn't getting more votes. Apart from its tank-like externals, the trigger system is incredibly tough.

I don't think the slide can pop off if you throw it, either.

PS Those of you that voted for Beretta: That was very sweet and loyal.

January 8, 2003, 01:06 PM
All of you youngins get back to us in about 70 or so years and talk about how your first gen Glock is still ticking. There are firing examples of the 1911s going back to their inception as well as many other semi-auto pistols far older than your greenhorn specials.:neener:

Those polymer frame pistols will all probably become unusably brittle over decades unless you keep up on your Armor-All treatments.:D

January 8, 2003, 01:15 PM
Those that haven't rusted away, that is... ;) :p

January 8, 2003, 01:40 PM
Uh, the one that everybody always leaves off lists like this. Say it with me now, WALTHER. IMNSHO, of course.

I was going to say something like that too. Walther seems to be the forgotten brand. Oh well, more for me then. :p

January 8, 2003, 01:54 PM
Which aluminum framed Walther is the most durable pistol ever?;)

January 8, 2003, 07:40 PM
Never heard of a kb! on a Ruger!

January 8, 2003, 09:02 PM
Glad to see no one voted for a Taurus. :D
I went with Glock. Mine has be true to me for thousands of rounds.

January 8, 2003, 10:13 PM
Main Entry: du·ra·ble
Pronunciation: 'dur-&-b&l also 'dyur-
Function: adjective
Etymology: Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin durabilis, from durare to last -- more at DURING
Date: 14th century
: able to exist for a long time without significant deterioration; also : designed to be durable <durable goods>
Able to last a long time--let's see, I have a Colt pushing 50 years old and Walther well over 50 years old.

Anybody have a Glock over 20 years old? :evil:

Ala Dan
January 8, 2003, 10:57 PM
First choice, Glock.

Second choice, H&K.

Final choice, Oh Well! You Decide?

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member

January 9, 2003, 12:35 AM
Glock followed by Ruger & CZ.

January 9, 2003, 12:57 AM
Another vote for Ruger P-95DC.


January 9, 2003, 02:48 AM

I think that says it all, a company who dares to define themselves as perfection.

and they are still being modest:p

Just make sure it's not an E-prefix numbered Glock, or the 2 words you choose might change a little. ;)

January 9, 2003, 09:38 AM
Don't waste your time jc2. None of these Glock voters are going to waste their time actually understanding the thrust of the poll before voting for their ugly babies as usual.

Other polls Glocks win, written by other Glock owners:

Which pistol is easiest to rhyme with in a gangsta rap song?

If you found yourself at the bottom of the Marianas Trench and needed to shoot one of those aliens from The Abyss with the external water pressure at 3,000 psi which pistol would you choose?

If you saw a skydiver falling from 6,000 feet and his 'chute fails to open, when he splatters on the ground, what pistol do you hope he was packin' so you can take it before the ambulance arrives?

Which is the best plastic pistol available in 10mm?

If the Austrian army were actually a fighting force of some repute, do you think more military services would use the Glock?

Are the majority of elite military units around the world that don't use the Glock run by idiots who don't know any better?

There are others, but I can't seem to dumb myself down enough to come up with any more. Perhaps I should go to the dealer today and hear more blandishments about how the cops REALLY use Glocks because they are the best and not actually because they are lowest bid weapons designed to be used by people who cannot manage a manual safety without forgetting to take it off before firing. If Forrest Gump had become a cop, chances are he'd want a Glock.:evil:

January 9, 2003, 09:56 AM
Most designs made by most of the listed makers haven't been around long enough to be called really durable. 20 years does NOT a durable gun make, and as there aren't any Glocks older than this out there, they shouldn't even be listed.

Now why isn't FN/Browning listed?

Kentucky Rifle
January 9, 2003, 11:37 AM
I've owned my G27 since early 1998 and the only thing I've done to it is buy night sights. I don't think they're so ugly!:p


January 9, 2003, 11:40 AM
Glock! Hands down.Well, except for the 150,000 or so that they made in late 2001 and early 2002. :uhoh:

January 9, 2003, 02:43 PM
Is there really even a debate on this?


January 9, 2003, 03:56 PM
Boats, it doesn't look very close on your end... GLOCK is it!

Which do you think would last in a landfill; GLOCK or a 1911?

Dippers beat just about everything in a landfill & they ain't made of all steel now are they?:)

January 9, 2003, 05:46 PM
I cannot account for so many people misreading the poll. . . .however I know which pistol I'd be most inclined to throw into a landfill and it "ain't made of all steel.":D

January 12, 2003, 02:58 PM
Well, some hard facts:
Hirtenberger (the ammo manufacturer) says they shot 348,210 rounds through a Glock 17 before they needed to replace the barrel.
Anyone who can top that?
Not that I know. :D

January 12, 2003, 03:35 PM
Have to say Glock:neener:

January 12, 2003, 09:49 PM
Hmmm lets think about this
we have a pistol developed in 1908 and went into production in 1911 and fought in 4 Major wars and god knows how many minor ones and a pistol made in the 1980s and IT is more durable
the 1911 has BEEN there and Done that the glock hasen't even been there yet
I would think it is the one that has been around for 95 years
but that is just an opinion better keep those glock out of the sun light too.:evil:

January 13, 2003, 12:27 AM
Where do you live that the sun heats to over 350 degrees?

And I suppose that the B2 Stealth Bomber is inferior to the B-52 because the B-52 has more time in combat?


January 14, 2003, 07:50 AM
Just wondering, How come Browning HPs are not in the poll? Got the HP Mk III and it has been utterly reliable, no FTF or jams... For full size pistols, the HP gets my vote.

January 14, 2003, 12:28 PM
You can't beat plastic for durability.

January 14, 2003, 01:12 PM
Heck, even those "1911 makers" are going with "plastic" more & more.......

Politically Incorrect
January 14, 2003, 01:21 PM
There is a reason that Glocks are known as a revolver with a mag.

I don't know why anyone would say that. I've never seen a revolver with a plastic frame. :neener:

January 14, 2003, 02:59 PM
I guess in need to go get PIM parts put in all my guns (Plastic Injection Molding). That damn metal sucks! :neener:

January 14, 2003, 06:11 PM
The Valtro is made of 4340 Moly steel that is heat treated, THEN machined. Jardine also makes them oh so slightly beefier than a normal 1911 in a few places.

This is a gun that will see the 23 century.

January 14, 2003, 07:17 PM
Any all-steel 1911....take your pick. It's the only one that's been around long enough to prove its merits :cool:

January 14, 2003, 07:47 PM
I will not speculate much on todays pistols but here are my thoughts.

If you stick to a weapon like the original 1911's. original Browning High Power, Polish Radom, French MAB, Star Model B, or Current Colt 1911 that had forged frames or even one of the last of the quality high capacity 9mm's like the Star model 28/30. The frames can almost always be repaired and rebuilt many times over. Its been done and proven.

Try repairing a cracked plastic frame or aluminum frame handgun.
In most cases they are junk. They were sad to say designed as throw away weapons.

For those who doubt this Her Glock himself had this to say about his own handguns and I quote from last months magazine called "The Accurate Rifle" January 2003 Page 17.

And I quote:
Cooper also confirms the rumor I'd heard about his meeting with Gaston Glock in Heidelberg, Germany where Mr. Glock passed the remark that his guns are"plastic, throwaway pistols for plastic, throw away soldiers." a rather shocking comment that Mr. Glock will soon have to explain to the likes of me. End of quote.

The old forge frame handguns were not designed as throw away pistols. In the U.S. arms inventory over a period of almost 100 years some of the 1911's were rebuilt as many as 3 times after having shot upwards of 300,000 rounds apiece out of each pistol.

No handgund made today that is made of plastic or aluminum could ever equal such a record because as I have stated above they are basically non-repairable once the frames develop cracks or worn out mounting pin holes etc. etc.

Ok ,damage control Factory reps save your gun sales and flame away.

January 14, 2003, 08:49 PM
The sun Doesn't get over 350 f where I live,
I was not reffering to the frames Melting, I was reffering to ultra Violet Degredation.
UV rays break down plastic and Polymer, the plasticisers break down and leach out, and you lose the flexion in the frame when it quits bending it starts breaking.
and yes I do feel the BUFF is a superior plane to the B2 Spirit B-52s are to remain in the Air Forces inventory until after 2020 I seriosly doubt the Spirit will be.

January 14, 2003, 08:54 PM
Actually, the B-52 has been extended to 2050.

I too worry about the life of load bearing plastics. I have a cheap Glock, but couldn't get past the service life issues of more expensive poly guns. Mostly steel, some aluminum.

Steel (or titanium) are always going to be the best bet (all else considered). You can make a lightweight frame out of steel, but it's more difficult than casting plastic or machining aluminum.

January 15, 2003, 12:53 AM
I always love a post where the phase, "hands down" is used. "XXXXX brand gun is the best, hands down!". I need a good laugh once in a while. "Hands down" usually means "I have one gun and its this brand and I like it the best out of the other 500 brands of firearms I have not tried." Not always, of course, but usually.

There are lots of good firearms on that list. Some have been proven by rigorous testing while others gain a reputation by internet polls like this one.

The firearms that have been used by the military are generally accepted as being the most reliable and durable. They don't last long on the front line if they aren't reliable and durable.

Look to the armed forces for evidence. Military and police weapons usually are the best.

January 15, 2003, 05:42 AM
And Don't get me wrong I beleive that a Glock is a VERY good pistol, and it is obvious that millions love them. they just aren't likely to LAST as long as a steel framed pistol ESP a Stainless one.

January 15, 2003, 08:35 AM
How much does rebuilding a 1911-frame cost?

compared to:

How much does a new Glock frame cost?

Yes, Glocks are cheap, throwaway guns. But compared to their price it takes awfully long until their useful service life is exceeded.

January 15, 2003, 08:46 AM
Glock as passed batteries of harsh Government testing with flying colors. The only thing that has ever stopped it was requirments of a manual safety lever/switch. Glocks have been tossed in tubs of salt water for insane periods of time and gone right on firing, frozen in blocks of ice, buried in mud, etc and kept right on firing. All the guns mentioned are very durible and I'd have no problem carrying any of them. Glocks rock.

January 15, 2003, 08:54 AM
I’d park a vehicle on any of my GLOCKs, (Personally seen that “test” done…) but wouldn’t submit any of my steel framed guns to that test. “Plastic” flexes, steel bends……. I’d say the mag-well on most steel framed guns wouldn’t hold to that test.

To me, a durable gun has to put up with several, possible accidental tortures it may endure in its lifetime.

January 15, 2003, 09:41 AM
Glock as passed batteries of harsh Government testing with flying colors. The only thing that has ever stopped it was requirments of a manual safety lever/switch. Glocks have been tossed in tubs of salt water for insane periods of time and gone right on firing, frozen in blocks of ice, buried in mud, etc and kept right on firing. All the guns mentioned are very durible and I'd have no problem carrying any of them. Glocks rock.

Well there was the "frisbee test" wherein a Glock was thrown some distance and the slide flew off during trials for a certain federal agency. I'd count that as a failed test which stopped its consideration for that agency. Then there are those confidence inspiring "upgrades" to Perfection.

As for the carnival tests that Glock performs, they're ridiculous. If your personal weapon is frozen in a block of ice, trapped under a tire of a truck, lost for xxxx hours in a salt water bath, chances are you are dead or on a life flight chopper.

One place you won't see Glock testing: running into a burning building to rescue a child. Wouldn't want the frame to look like a waxwork gone bad.

Glocks are fine pistols, but they do not have all that much performance margin, if any at all, over other "combat duty" grade pistols out there, just better PR and hucksterism.:evil:

January 15, 2003, 09:45 AM
Boats... did you learn all that stuff working at McDonalds? :)

January 15, 2003, 09:55 AM
If anyone knows the trade secrets of the Glock cult it would be a mall security guard such as yourself. I just go by what I hear outside of that perverse circle. I don't speak enough foreign languages to work at my local McDonald's, so I will just have to make due doing well enough to afford more than a Glock.:neener:

January 15, 2003, 11:16 AM
Who says I don't own a 1911? I sure didn't!

Assumptions are unbecoming...


January 15, 2003, 11:23 AM
I'm with Boats. The Glock is a good issue pistol, but not a lifetime gun. Aside from frame rail, trigger spring and popping off slides (all are true), expecting a piece of plastic the receives load cycles and is bathed in oil to last indefinitely is pure fantasy.

A plastic pistol frame is in the same boat as composite bicycle frames and tennis rackets. As those items get used, they get brittle and begin to delaminate and crack. There are wood and metal bike frame that are 100 years old and rideable. There are 5 year old Trek composites that aren't.

And if Glock frames are going to be so cheap to replace someday, why do they cost the consumer the same money as machined metal ones do now?

January 15, 2003, 11:30 AM
Handy, to read through your "reply" one couldn't help but notice an obvious flaw in your thoughts...

Not all "plastic" materials are the same & to believe so is ignorance.......

Nathaniel Firethorn
January 15, 2003, 12:00 PM
Everything breaks.

A durable gun is one for which you can easily obtain and replace the parts.

HK parts availability and replacement: :cuss: :banghead: :cuss:

Glock parts availability and replacement: :cool: :D :cool:

My vote's for Glock. With a polymer 1911 as a strong runner up.

- pdmoderator

January 15, 2003, 12:38 PM
That's only true in part. The part of all composite materials that detiorates is the bonding material, not the fibers. That's true if it is a polyester resin, epoxy or polymer. They are all complex carbon chains that break down with time, heat, light and friction.

Nathaniel Firethorn
January 15, 2003, 01:07 PM
One place you won't see Glock testing: running into a burning building to rescue a child. Wouldn't want the frame to look like a waxwork gone bad.If it got that bad, then whoever's carrying it will either be wearing Nomex and SCBA, or will look like an overdone pork rind.

I've tried to smooth out a rough spot on my G19 with a Dremel. It was tough going. Whatever the plastic is, it don't give up easy.

- pdmoderator

Politically Incorrect
January 15, 2003, 03:33 PM
Sure, plastics today are better than they were thirty years ago, but I'm not so sure that plastic is still more durable than metal.

On my '73 Eldorado, the plastic extenders in and around the bumpers became brittle and rotted away while the metal is all there. I wish they had made the whole body out of metal. But I guess it saves a couple of pounds off of a 2 1/2 ton car.

I'll think about plastic frames while I'm shooting a 1911 that was produced in 1918.

I'm still waiting for a plastic frame pistol. :scrutiny:

January 19, 2003, 11:19 PM
All 3 of my pistols are metal and they still work so I guess all Glocks suck hard....hehe....j/k.

Who cares. If it goes bang now and still continues to go bang reliably, shoot it and have safe fun with it.

As far as metal vs. plastics....didn't the army switch from steel helmets to kevlar? Don't banks still use steel beams in their vaults? Aren't most of the strongest locks made of some sort of metal alloy? Isn't superman called the man of steel, not plastic? How come cars today made of much more plastic then there predecessors are safer and go many more miles (than most but not all) of the earlier mostly steel cars 30+ years ago?

As you can see, it all depends on the application. One isn't neccessarily better than the others. Time will tell if the polymer pistols can endure...or just end up as a fad. Most likely, I think they will endure just fine.

Now stop arguing about frivilous internet babble and start packing your range bag!!

January 19, 2003, 11:28 PM
Hey !!! Where is my BROWNING HI POWER at???

The P-35 has been around a lot longer than most of these johnnie come latelys, and used by more people too !!


PS: stretcharmstrong has it right, quit wasting time and go shoot ;)

Mark IV Series 80
January 20, 2003, 12:23 AM
Hey !!! Where is my BROWNING HI POWER at???Sorry about that Poohgyrr...... It's an obvious ommision.

A good thing is, the write-in option works. :)

Are the Browning Hi-Powers still being imported?

I haven't seen one for some time at the gun shop.

January 20, 2003, 12:30 AM

What a can of worms this poll opens!

Gotta love it! Very much like TFL!

Keep up the good work!

David S
January 20, 2003, 12:59 AM
i think a gun that is proving itself within a certain fan base is the Walther P99. If smith and wesson doesnt ruin the Walther name, the P99 may just yet overrun the Glocks. To be, and Yes i have fired and field striped both guns side by side.......the Walther is a far better constructed gun.. it is a bit more complicated, but simple is not always better in the case of the Glock. I have nothing against the Glock, in fact i think they shoot really good, the boreline is low which some people perfer..........but the glock lacks options in trigger pull and safety. Thats where the P99 excels to me..........The HK USP would be a good runner up. sure it has been in production for longer than the p99, but i have also heard failures with the USP and USPcs that are not confidence inspiring......whereas , from everyone ihave talked to and everything i have read , i have heard of maybe 3 instances where something on a P99 broke. I have shot some sigs and i have to give them the accuracy, but i have not handled them enough to judge them. If it were to come down to a all time more reliable gun, itd have be a 1911. the design is just d*mn good. I have heard some amazing stories about them. One i read about involved a 1911 that had been fully loaded since WW2, and the aurthor of the article fired the gun flawlessly...........thats awesome to me........that says something about the ammunition and the magazine springs.......the whole design of the gun is good, thats why it has been copied, altered and copied more..

January 23, 2003, 12:07 AM
:::QUOTE:Are the Browning Hi-Powers still being imported?
I haven't seen one for some time at the gun shop.::

No problems MKIV.

And sorta on being imported. Browning slowed or stopped & restarted some of the line, or something: supposedly bowing down to the anti politics here in the US. :confused:

FN, who actually makes the Hi Power, is now importing them under their name. The Brownings are still available, and have a nicer finish.

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