CDNN Dan Wesson Panther range report


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Flashpoint
October 30, 2005, 02:00 AM
Let me start out by saying this...

DAAAAANG

Now I know why the 1911 design has not only survived, but thrived for nearly one-hundred years.

Last thursday I took my Steyr S40, S9, and the Dan Wesson with 100 rds of 9mm, 100 rds of .40cal, and 200 rds of .45cal WWB to the range. I started off with the .45cal and the first shot brought a smile to my face. Not only was the .45 a lot softer shooting than I thought it would be, but the first shot went right were I wanted it to go.

I preceded to run about another 80 rds through which was enough to get me somewhat acclimated to the big (dot the i) sites. I'll probably still change out the sights as I mentioned in my "first impressions" (http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=162565&highlight=dan+wesson) review, but I don't think the sights are unusable. In fact once a person gets used to not letting the dot dip too far into the bar or letting it float too high above it, the sights could sever very well as combat sights, but a persons not going to do much in the way of precision shooting.

After I ran the 80 rds of 45 through the DW I picked up my Steyr S40 (http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2003-4/148376/SteyrS40group.JPG) and ran a precession of about 35 rds through it and realized that I had already been spoiled by the 1911 SA trigger and heavier frame. Don't get me wrong, I still think the Steyr's trigger is the best in polymer DAO guns, but I would say the DW has a trigger pull weight of about 35% of the Steyr's.

After I emptied the box of 100 rds of 40cal and ran about another 50 rds through the 45 I started loading up the S9. Here is were the comparison comes in, the Panther 45 has the same recoil as the Steyr S9. It was at this point I started questioning whether I wanted the Keep the 40cal in that platform, maybe trade it for a Sig 229 or a CZ of some sort, or just get rid of the 40cal altogether and trade it for the STI Ranger 1 I have been looking at for so long.

Alright back to the DW. I couldn't judge how tight of a group I was able to make with it at 15 yards because of the sites, but when I moved into 7 yards and done some how-fast-can-I-unload-the-mag and keep it on target drills I was able to make one ragged 3 inch hole in under 5 seconds that was about 3 inches below the 10 circle I was trying to knock out. For me that was pretty impressive.

With all the slow firing, controlled quick firing I also done some pull-the-trigger-as-fast-as-you-can firing and out of 200 rds had not one FTFeed, FTFire, or FTE. I also did some strong hand shooting at some cans that were laying around range from about 10-12 yards out and was able to hit most of them on the first shot, and the ones I missed with the first shot I quickly picked up with the second. I was also surprised at how easy the DW shot with one hand, just like pointing my finger and say "bang".

I did notice 2 things by the end of the 200 rounds. One, the grip screws were coming a little loose. I wasn't too surprised at this because I didn't tighten them down real tight because I didn't want to risk breaking the thin grips or stripping out the screws. So I got out the allen wrench and tightened the grips up pretty tight, but when I did this, it was next to impossible to get the mags in and out. The amount that I had to back the screws off to make the mags go in will probable result in having to tighten them back up after another 200 rds. The other thing I noticed is that the trigger seemed to have gotten lighter. I would venture to say somewhere between 3-4lbs. I would like to have the trigger measured, but don't really have the means to do so.

So, needless to say I'm real happy with the DW Panther in everything from fit and craftsmanship to the way it shoots. And I'm sure there will be more 1911 added to the stable despite the resistance from my wife. After all, it's easier to ask forgiveness than it is permission, right.:D

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BluesBear
October 30, 2005, 03:20 AM
I just love a story with a happy ending.

As for the grip screws...
They're probably just a few thousandths too long.
Just remove them and file them a little shorter.

wally
October 30, 2005, 08:55 AM
As to the "dot-I" sights, if the front blade and rear notch are OK you can ignore the white, or paint them black. Unless DW used the same front and rear dovetails as Kimber, Para or Springfield sight replacement will probably not be a do it yourself project.

You might want to visit www.1911forum.com and and search their Dan Wesson board.

I've noticed that 200 pulls usually improves any trigger on any new gun :)

--wally.

Slimjim
October 30, 2005, 06:21 PM
WWB is dirty ammo. Switch to commercial (better grade) or wolf for a cleaner ammo. Glad the gun shot well.

Flashpoint
October 31, 2005, 12:13 PM
WWB is dirty ammo.

Your telling me. After 200 rounds it looked like I dropped the gun in a bucket of ashes. :eek:

Pietro Beretta
October 31, 2005, 12:33 PM
Switch to commercial (better grade) or wolf for a cleaner ammo.
Your saying wolf is clean ammo, ::cough:: BullCrap ::cough::

The only time I will fire wolf anymore, is through my SKS. I cant trust it in any of my autos, (dont know about yours)
Still wolf is underpowerd and VERY dirty, I can Brush/Patch/Brush/Patch/Brush/Patch all day long in my SKS and never come out with a clean patch.

I have never had a problem with WWB, yes it is dirty, but it will run flawlessly through all of my autos.

farscott
October 31, 2005, 12:41 PM
One, the grip screws were coming a little loose. I wasn't too surprised at this because I didn't tighten them down real tight because I didn't want to risk breaking the thin grips or stripping out the screws. So I got out the allen wrench and tightened the grips up pretty tight, but when I did this, it was next to impossible to get the mags in and out. The amount that I had to back the screws off to make the mags go in will probable result in having to tighten them back up after another 200 rds.For the grip screw issue, pick up some #60 O-rings from your friendly home improvement store. Remove the grips from the pistol. Place the O-rings over the screws, install grips and screws, and tighten. No more loose grip screws and no worries about magazine inteference issues.

Flashpoint
October 31, 2005, 12:47 PM
For the grip screw issue, pick up some #60 O-rings from your friendly home improvement store. Remove the grips from the pistol. Place the O-rings over the screws, install grips and screws, and tighten. No more loose grip screws and no worries about magazine inteference issues.

I'll have to try that before I start to file the screws down, but I'm a little confused. Are you saying place the rings under the screw bushings or the screws?

farscott
October 31, 2005, 12:52 PM
I place the O-rings on the screws, so that the O-ring rests on the inner side of the screw head. This effectively raises the height of the screw head as well as providing a bit of shock resistance.

roo_ster
October 31, 2005, 02:16 PM
I gotta agree with SlimJim WRT Wolf & WWB, Wolf being cleaner in .45ACP. That's not saying it is clean, just less dirty.

You want really dirty, nasty ammo, go buy yourself some UMC .45ACP. Wolf does seem clean compared to that stuff. :barf:

wally
October 31, 2005, 03:54 PM
The O-ring trick is great as long as it doesn't make the screw heads stick out beyond the countersink in the grips.

--wally.

Flashpoint
October 31, 2005, 04:43 PM
The O-ring trick is great as long as it doesn't make the screw heads stick out beyond the countersink in the grips.

I was wondering about that. If they do stick up I guess I could try putting then between the grips and the bushings, provided that they don't get pushed around the bushing or cause the grips to rock back and forth.

wally
October 31, 2005, 04:54 PM
Its really not hard to shorten the screws with a few strokes of a file, if the O-ring trick doesn't work for your grips. Since the grips help retain the plunger tube and the right side ambi safety lever (with some designs) raising the grips off the frame is probably not a good idea even if the "rocking" doesn't bother you.

--wally.

BluesBear
November 1, 2005, 07:11 AM
I have never had a problem with WWB, yes it is dirty, but it will run flawlessly through all of my autos.Wolf will also run flawlessly through my pistols, and those of my shooting buddies, and it's 25% cheaper than WWB. I get Wolf by the case (500).

ALL bargain brand ammo is dirty. Cleaner buring, flash supressed powders are more costly.
NO ammo is completely clean burning.
Cleaning your guns is just a part of the experience.

Grayrider
November 1, 2005, 09:50 AM
Just an FYI that if your Panther is the external extractor model, keep an eye on the extractor pin. DWs have a problem with the pin working its way loose. If you don't notice, you will have the extractor and spring depart the gun along with the pin. This is an easy fix by any gunsmith.

GR

civilian
November 1, 2005, 11:16 AM
I gotta agree with SlimJim WRT Wolf & WWB, Wolf being cleaner in .45ACP. That's not saying it is clean, just less dirty.

You want really dirty, nasty ammo, go buy yourself some UMC .45ACP. Wolf does seem clean compared to that stuff. :barf:


just bought a 250 round pack of the umc stuff for my g35. guess i'll be cleaning that weapon a lot. i have a slightly different experience with wwb than you guys though. burns cleaner in my weapons than wolf (my experience being only with wolf .45).

Flashpoint
November 2, 2005, 09:58 PM
Farscott wrote:
place the O-rings on the screws, so that the O-ring rests on the inner side of the screw head. This effectively raises the height of the screw head as well as providing a bit of shock resistance.

The O-ring tricked work like a charm. The two top screws are just a hair above the surface of the grips, but you have to be looking for it to notice. On the other hand I got the screws down good-n-tight and both mags come flying our when ejected.

I plan on going to the range agian on friday and taking my BIL, he's never really fired a gun before to it should be fun. I'll find out then if the grips are going to come loose or not.

Thanks for your help.

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