Which 9mm shoots the hottest ammunition?


Southern Shooter
September 24, 2005, 08:24 PM
Excluding personal preferences/opinions... Which 9mm semi-auto pistol would you choose based on 2 factors only (1) reliability with a widest range of ammo and (2) the ability to shoot large numbers of the hottest known 9mm ammo without significant wear? I am not concerned with refinements, quality of trigger pull, brand etc.

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September 24, 2005, 08:29 PM
Well - I know many folks look down on Ruger but my P95 will digest any and all hot stuff with no hiccups! :)

My SIG 226 also will accept all I give it and that is stoked with +P GD's for carry.

Some older guns - instance BHP - were designed for mil/NATO ammo and so in fact, with the trend to downgrade ammo these days - are effectively OK for +P, as mil stuff is/was notoriously hot very often.

I daresay too a G19 or G17 will pretty much take any hot stuff too - with barely a whisper of complaint! I say that too as a non-Glocker!!! :D

September 24, 2005, 08:53 PM
Maybe a Ruger P-89. Those things are built like tanks.

Johnny Guest
September 24, 2005, 08:59 PM
I'd vote for the HK P9, the P7 (??), or the CZ52, converted to 9x19.

This might be a good time to state: I have NO experience loading any of thewse pistols up hot. It just stands to readon that the roller locked action should handle the pressures well. Stays locked until the pressure drops off.

Of course, I'm wiling to be proven wrong - - Just going by what seems logical.

It further stands to reason that the roller locked types will also handle the lightest loads - - Again, because the locking force is only applied so long as it is needed.

As it happens, my personal favorite 9mms are none of the above - - I prefer the Browning P35, the Glock 19, and the older S&W M39s.


September 24, 2005, 09:05 PM
Try the Star Model 30, steel throughout, weighs a ton, standard firearm of the Spanish Military, and is NATO spec. Anything full size, fully supported chamber, and steel throughout, will probally outlast and shoot than any tupperware or alumium frame....A friend's Glock 19, couldn't handle my hot reloads, and they were under maxium!!!!

September 24, 2005, 09:14 PM
Just a guess, but I would imagine that a 1911 chambered in 9mm could handle hot loads. The same gun can be chambered for 10mm, so it ought to be able to handle any reasonable 9mm load.

As for reliability, you may be asking for contradictions. If a gun was set up for hot loads, it might not cycle as reliably with light loads.

September 24, 2005, 09:52 PM
The HK USP, with its double spring recoil buffer, can run the hottest ammo without issue.

Since it has the buffer spring to reduce felt recoil and battering, the main recoil spring is lighter than it would have to be without the buffer, allowing it to cycle properly with very light loads as well.

Case in point - my USP9 has run thousands of rounds of 124gr +p without damage or problem, and will cycle cheap gunshow reloads (I know, I know...) that a Glock 17 will not eject due to them being underpowered.

model 649
September 24, 2005, 10:36 PM
Any 3rd gen. S&W. Tanks.

September 24, 2005, 10:56 PM
Ruger wrote in my KP89's manual that it can handle ANY factory 9mm!

Nough said :D

September 24, 2005, 11:04 PM
Ruger states emphatically in their manual (This is the P95. The P89 has similar wording.) that:

The Ruger P-Series pistols are compatible with all factory ammunition loaded
to U.S. Industry Standards, including high-velocity and hollow-point loads,
loaded in brass, aluminum, or steel cartridge cases. No 9mm x 19 ammunition
manufactured in accordance with NATO, U.S., SAAMI, or CIP standards is known
to be beyond the design limits or known not to function in these pistols.

Ruger is the only maker that makes this statement as far as I know!!

That's why I have a P95, P89, and a P97!!!! :neener:

September 24, 2005, 11:05 PM
The Ruger and the S&W are tough pistols to be sure, but my money would be on an H&K USP 9mm. They are very heavy duty .40's to start with and they come as close to full case head support as I've seen.
My 1911 9mm does not handle +P 9mm well.
Shooting Corbon 115 +P jhp's, I got four pierced primers and four completly flattened primers in my one and only mag of them.
They shot very well in my Glock 17L though, which would be my second choice for tough 9mm's.

Chuck Perry
September 24, 2005, 11:08 PM
Glock 17. Avoid hot rounds in the BHP; for an all steel gun it is somewhat fragile, +P are ok for very limited use, +P+ are to be avoided all together. I learned this the hard way after first purchasing a new BHP and then doing my research :cuss: Berettas and SIGS both run aluminum frames, so they would not be my first picks for extended heavy load use. Some of the CZ's come in steel frames, perhaps they might be ok?

September 24, 2005, 11:33 PM
Most of the usual suspects have been mentioned, but my vote in the modern categoy goes to the all-steel Sig P226ST.

In the historic category, the "widest range of ammo" and "hottest 9mm" nod would probably go to the Astra 400 in 9mm Largo (125 gr. @ 1,450 fps).

September 25, 2005, 12:12 AM
Another nod here for the P226ST and Ruger P89. I would imagine they can handle the hottest rounds.

September 25, 2005, 01:20 AM
The Hi-Point Carbine is rated for +P+. :D

September 25, 2005, 01:45 AM
hah. nm you specified auto. but a revolver is the answer to the problem of reliability and hot loads as your only two criteria.

September 25, 2005, 02:03 AM
How hot the ammo is doesn't matter if said ammo isn't accurate in a given pistol. Accuracy is far more important. However, any pistol will handle the hottest ammo by just changing the recoil spring. My Inglis High Power handles the .41AE with no fuss. Heavier recoil spring.

September 25, 2005, 02:23 AM
Didn't Clark have some interesting results with the CZ52? People are always making the statement that the CZ52s are extremely strong with no explanation/science/proof given. My experience with them has been that they are an utter piece of crap (but at 99 bucks they are amusing).

My vote goes to the G17 (I Wouldn't feel bad about blowing one up).

September 25, 2005, 02:31 AM
As per the HK USP manual, the pistol is rated to shoot +P+ ammo

September 25, 2005, 02:45 AM
Actually anything with a correctly made polymer frame should hold up nicely.

September 25, 2005, 04:51 PM
I learned this the hard way after first purchasing a new BHP and then doing my research


I'm curious - did you find out by shooting a lot of +P ammo in your BHP or by reading reports about it?

Just curious.


September 25, 2005, 04:56 PM


Chuck Perry
September 25, 2005, 05:52 PM
By reading, thankfully. The BHP was nice, but I purchased it thinking that it was a steel frame 9 that could handle anything I could stuff into it. The general consensus is that although made of steel, the frame is too thin to take much abuse. The use of shock buffers will help, and possibly negate this. However at $8-10 per buffer, which should be changed every thousand rounds, I just moved on. I like my 1911's better anyways. :neener:

September 25, 2005, 06:00 PM
STI Trojan 5.0 in 9mm shoots like a 22lr. I actually like shooting +P better out of it since it gives a little more recoil (the regular 9mm cycles the slide somewhat slowly).

September 25, 2005, 06:24 PM
The HK USP was first designed for the 40 ,then converted to the 9mm. Just the opposite of most guns. The USP will take it !!

Charles S
September 25, 2005, 06:34 PM
Kahr Arms K9. Compact and rated for +P+.

From Kahr's website.

The use of carbon steel in the production of the K9 permits the use of +p 9mm ammunition. As a matter of fact, each K9 is tested with both +P and +P+ ammo at the factory.


September 25, 2005, 09:28 PM
My vote would be for either a P95 or P89. THose are some tough as nails guns.

September 26, 2005, 03:05 PM
Lots of good choices and I have Rugers and Star 30M partly for durabilty reasons. Also I'd say the CZ series guns like the CZ75 with an all steel frame should stand up fairly well but I have not personally tried it, all my CZ and CZ clones are in 40S&W,not 9x19, and I have not fied them a whole lot.

September 26, 2005, 04:15 PM
I own most of the top service 9mm's and the USP9 gets my vote.

September 26, 2005, 07:12 PM
Per rec.guns (http://www.recguns.com/Sources/IVC1.html):

"They are tremendously durable: Glock Inc has a Model-17 which, as of March 1994, had fired 347,000 rounds of 9mm +P+ ammo."

Edited for readability.

Jeff Timm
September 26, 2005, 08:31 PM
Ruger Blackhawk single action with 9mm cylinder.


I wouldn't worry much about 180 gr hunting loads in .357 either.

Who has a need for a flexible single action again. :D

September 26, 2005, 11:04 PM
My Tanfoglio TZ75 absolutely loves my +P handloads. Darned accurate with them. Rem.115jhp over 5.5gr. W231 before you ask.

September 27, 2005, 08:36 AM
Which 9mm semi-auto pistol would you choose based on 2 factors only (1) reliability with a widest range of ammo and (2) the ability to shoot large numbers of the hottest known 9mm ammo without significant wear?

Great question. About 15 years ago I asked myself the same. Did a lot of research, the best I knew how to do. Read everything I could find on this, and talked to anyone who I thought would know anything about it. Wrote letters to the 'top' gun writers, too.

Read reports from ranges who rent guns and have seen just about everything.

The clear 'best' given the criteria was the Star Model 31P. So I got one. It's heavy, all steel, and very decently made. It's a beast of a gun. Been 100% reliable with all the ammo I've used. (except for some Egyptian stuff with MIGHTY hard primers... every other 9 I have has the same problem with it... it's really SMG ammo. Sometimes takes a second whack to get a round to fire. Fine with me; it was way cheap ammo.)

So there's the answer I found for myself. I'm fully persuaded that this gun will keep on ticking long after my other 9mm's have hung up their spikes.

http://www.gunsamerica.com/guns/976609992.htm <---- there goes one now!


September 28, 2005, 02:31 PM
Without a doubt, a P7. Problem is it will heat up after several boxes but it's all steel slide and frame was designed for it.

Any 9mm Glock would also do well.

September 28, 2005, 02:34 PM
StrikeEagle, Star has made some serious tanks.

Ruger move over.

If that gun is anything like my old Star Megastar, it will last for a long long time.

To bad Star went away.

September 28, 2005, 08:59 PM
I looked up the MegaStar... here's what I found:

Star Mega-Star:
A large Double Action handgun, the Spanish Mega-Star is quite a handful. Its beefiness makes it very suitable for the calibers in wich it is chambered, the .45 ACP, and the powerful 10 mm cartridges.
The gun is of good quality, and is more than accurate enough for a combat handgun, which it primarily is. A interesting feature is that the entire trigger assembly can be lifted out of the gun, to be replaced with a Single Action trigger assembly for those who prefer this. It should be noted that, although the gun can be had in two calibers, it is not possible to convert it from one caliber to the other.
The Mega-Star uses a twelve round magazine in its .45 ACP version, and a fourteen round magazine in its 10 mm version.

Not sure I've ever seen one, but this sounds really good to me. Yeah, a tank. If these guys were still around, making a .40 S&W, that's the one I'd be buying, I'm pretty sure. Bet those suckers would never KB!


September 28, 2005, 10:50 PM
You are right! The gun without the bullets weighs more than four pounds.

I had one in 45 acp and stupdily sold it :banghead:


Designed for 10mm and then modified for 45 ACP so it's really overengineered and it's built for the hotter European 45 loads.

September 29, 2005, 01:35 AM
A Megastar weighs more than 4 lbs(64oz) when unloaded? Wow! Anyways, there actually was a Star 30M made in 40S&W too, the M31 I think.

Mags for the 30m 9x19 and especially the Megastar seem very hard to come by though.

September 30, 2005, 01:53 AM
I was told the P7. Not just because it is all steel but because the gas system uses the extra pressure to buffer the slide.

Down at FLETC they used to shoot submachine gun ammo in them all the time. Sreiously hot stuff. This was 1994. I'm not sure we were using the term +P+ back then.


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