The Colt GM has been my choice of handguns for 50 years, until Glocks also became a second "favorite", I've never owned a Browning HP. My question is this , why isn't the Browning HP more popular as a "game" handgun or for carry? It fits most hands, is dependable, has a good repitation,good trigger, ---- but Glocks seem to be more popular, can you tell me why ?
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June 16, 2003, 09:35 PM
I have no idea.
I bought a new .40 S&W Glock about four yrras ago. I added an upper with a 6" barrel. I also added a Bar-Sto .357 Sig barrel. Everything worked, it was accurate, and dependable, but the thing never balanced right and it never "fit" my hand right, even with an adaptor.
After 2000 or so rounds I gave up on ever liking it, and I traded it for a Gold Cup, which I still have.
All strictly IMHO. A lot of folks love them, and more power to them.
June 16, 2003, 10:16 PM
The HiPower is a great gun on the whole. However, they can get expensive if you start changing parts. I had a hard enough time looking for good night sights that i finally gave up.
FOR ME, the slide is too narrow in an uncomfortable way. I like beefier slides like SIG, Glock or HK.
I have seen a few at local IDPA and steel matches, but only 2 or 3 collectively.
June 16, 2003, 11:15 PM
Well. they have the most time in the military than any other 9mm. :rolleyes:
Most need a trigger job and there aren't a whole lot of aftermarket parts to choose from but they don't need much. They don't have the Glock hype with the youngons, they have gone up in price.
I like them because they are sleek/slim, not as clubby as a Sig. Glocks, and "modern" style hand guns. they point VERY well and the grip feels great with Spegel grips (about as good as it gets). The BHP was the origanal high cap "wonder nine" back in 1935 no less. :rolleyes: It also has designs built in that most all hanguns use today. Infact the JB prototype in 1926 was 15 rounds and hammerless.
Night sights? easy, Trijicon for drop on's but most like to mill for Novack or Heinie. Bren
June 16, 2003, 11:24 PM
why isn't the Browning HP more popular as a "game" handgun or for carry?
Depends on the game.
In IPSC, the BHP is at a disadvantage since it is a minor caliber pistol. Back in the '80's Cylinder & Slide had a conversion called 'The Eliminator' that was a major 9 pistol. IPSC rules in the late 80's disallowed 9mm to make major. By that time there was a big shift to .38 Super away from .45 just to be competitive. The BHP did become available later in .40 S&W, but that wasn't until the 90's and with its' relatively short grip even with a pre-ban bag it only held 11 rounds, while the 9x23 or .38 Super guns held more in the same size pistol.
In IDPA the BHP in 9mm (no advantage to shooting it in .40) is limited to 10 rounds. It shoots in a class against 1911's in 9mm. A 1911 weighs more than the BHP in 9mm and that helps dampen the recoil of the gun for faster follow up shots. Many people like the longer grip of the 1911 better as well. In this class there is also the option of shooting the CZ-75/85 in SA mode which feels even better in my hand than the Browning.
As far as carry goes, for those who like a 9mm the BHP is hard to beat. Back in the 80's it was a popular choice for use in an IWB holster. The barrel length is a little hard to conceal. hence the IWB mode. Today you can just buy a Kahr MK9, but those weren't around 20 years ago, the BHP was. The BHP's short grip was an advantage to concealed carry as well. Today there is a whole new bunch of guys carrying concealed pistols and frankly many of them are not comfortable with cocked and locked carry. Many are uncomfortable with open carry, feeling that being armed has to be a secret. 25 years ago if you wanted and auto that was small AND powerful you had to go to someone like ASP or Devel, Colt didn't even make an Officers Model O-frame back then. So for those of us who did carry in the 70's and 80's the BHP was an option as was the S&W J-frame.
June 17, 2003, 02:18 AM
I think the main reason why the BHP is not as popular as it should be is the lack of marketing and the publics current infatuation with plastic fantastics. And the fact that the HP is kind of a "tweaker" pistol. People who buy HP's usually like the mess around with them. It's sort of a niche market. My second fav is a Beretta 92. My father's Italian 1994 Inox is a very nice gun. The trigger is nice, but it has more takeup and is SLIGHTLY mushy compared to my HP. The break is about the same 5lbs where as my HP is probably about 6-7lbs. The Beretta is also noticably larger and thicker although it holds about the same amount of ammo. It is also not quiet as accurate as the HP, but pretty darn close from a bench rest. In the standing position the HP definately has the accuracy advantage with it's crisper trigger and better grip. Reliability is a toss-up between the two. I've had a couple Beretta's that I've put 1,000 rounds through each with no failures and my HP which I've put about 2,000 rounds through with no failures.
The BHP is my favorite carry gun as it's the perfect package and size for power, concealability (IWB), reliability and accuracy. True, many could use a trigger job, but on a defensive pistol you don't want a race gun trigger. The trigger as it came with my 1994 HP is very good. It would be nice to lighten it about a pound or a pound and a half, but it's very good as is. Much more crisp than 90% of other guns out there. As far as sites I prefer the factory white dot fixed sites over the Novaks although they are pretty nice too. I think that the 9mm is the perfect cartridge for autopistols. The only other one that comes close is the .357 SIG, but it is much louder and holds less rounds for only a marginal increase in power. The BHP will do 15+1 or 13+1 with flush fitting preban magazines and that's plenty for me. I usually carry with the 15 rounders. Excellent carry ammo for it is either Winchester or Federal 9mm NATO 124gr. (I prefer Winchester) or 9mm Winchester Ranger +P+ 127gr.
There is no other gun out there that slim with all the features it has plus the high capacity and quality. Grip safety? Who needs a grip safety??? I'll take 15+1 of 9mm minus the grip safety over 8+1 of .45 in the same sized package any day of the week. The 1911 does have the slightly better trigger going for it, I'll say that.
I still like 1911's, but I consider them inferior to the HP in most ways including reliability.
June 17, 2003, 02:49 AM
Let me start out by saying I love the 1911 its my all time favorite pistol. I do however also love my hi power 9mm for all the above stated reasons. I also own glocks and a beretta 92 but the hi poer is what I carry daily. I carry the winchester 115gr. jhp's from wally world and I use factory 10 round mags for spares and the south african 15 rounders for primary.
These mags work great and overall have a good rep for reliability,they also don't cost alot to buy or test hence the price of 9mm ammo. I put 100 rounds through mine before using them for carry they worked flawlessly. I feel the hi power to be a classic design that more people my age (I'am 24) should learn to appriciate.
June 17, 2003, 02:56 AM
Yes, as megatron mentioned, there are plenty of cheap prebans available for the Hi-Power. CDNN sells new Argentine flush fitting 15 rounders for $18.99 that work about as good as factory mags. Try picking up a new Glock preban for $18.99. I have a pile of 17 rounder Argentine mags that were new which I got in trade for $12 each. I use them primarily for the range and sometimes for carry when I'm too lazy to clean the gun right away after a trip to the range. Never had a problem with any of them. Even the factory Hi-Power mags are less than Glock prebans. Beretta also has options for quality non-factory prebans such as the Asian military mags which you can find new for under $20.
June 17, 2003, 07:00 AM
The Browning is a great gun, very good "feel", good grip and reliable. And no grip safety!!!
I believe the main reason you don't see many HPs in the gun games is the trigger, compared to the 1911, is not as crisp.
For carry, the Glock will always be more popular than any single action only gun, HP, 1911, etc. Most people want a pull and shoot gun and a longer trigger throw.
Now, take the HP and put a 1911 trigger on it... perhaps the best of both worlds for a 9mm.
June 17, 2003, 08:02 AM
I think the people that answered, marketing are right. The masses bascially buy what they are told to buy, or put another way, they buy what they see on a regular basis. They buy what is new because, new stuff is what catches the headlines. I see the occasional ad for the Hi-Power but, if you don't already know what the Hi-Power is all about, it doesn't grab your eye.
June 17, 2003, 08:25 AM
I shoot my BHP a lot, and it's my favorite and "most often carry" gun.
It has the following disadvantages vs. a 1911 for competition:
1. The "up over and around" trigger linkage. The "disconnector" setup in the BHP means a relatively longer and less tactile ("able to feel") trigger reset.
2. It's a smaller gun with less mass vs. the 1911.
3. Minor PF. No 20+ round mag tubes for IPSC.
The BHP is not a bad choice in IDPA's ESP class - it's what I'm shooting - but someone with a 1911 in 9mm, .38Super, or 9x23 (the latter two loaded down to minor) would have a slight advantage.
June 17, 2003, 08:30 AM
Having shot a P-35 for the last 30 years I would have to say that the BHP is one of the finest, most reliable, most accurate auto pistols made. And beautiful too!
I've shot 1911's, which is a great gun, but like the BHP it usually needs to be worked over.
I've also shot Glocks but think that except for the shoot and forget aspect (no safety to release, easier to keep clean on a daily basis) they are a bit over-hyped.
That said, I tend to be a bit retro; don't want any plastic or uber-cartridge in my guns. Give me something tried and true. JMHO.
June 17, 2003, 12:22 PM
I've found that my BHP is just as reliable as my Glock-26 with no tinkering needed. It shoots anything, all day, every day. But the magazine safety interferes with having a "nice" trigger - I'd guess 90% of HP owners take out the mag safety.
...... and the trigger still won't be as crisp as a good 1911 unless some added pistol-smithing is done.
June 17, 2003, 02:21 PM
Thanks for the informative coments about the Browning HP, everyone!
June 17, 2003, 08:42 PM
It is the magazine safety that makes the BHP trigger somewhat different. It can be removed by a smith and smoothed.
The main points of advantage of a BHP are:
It is slim for a 13 round 9X19 pistol. Heck, it is slim for an 8 round 9X19 pistol.
It is very pointable, and most people adore the grip and feel of the gun.
It is SA, simple, combat accurate, and reliable.
And it is so very very pretty.
That said, I do not have one, because they are way to expensive. No way should they cost more than $500.
A lot of folks seek out a BHP clone, like the Hungarian FEG - much cheaper, about half the price - and just as reliable, and almost as pretty.
June 17, 2003, 08:48 PM
Part of the answer to your question is that there isn't anything really wrong with Glocks for gaming. They are as quick to fire, having a similarly light trigger. They have little muzzle flip, due to a lower than average bore height. And they have a really fast reset trigger. Also, they used to cost less.
June 17, 2003, 09:49 PM
When I had my browning I did lots of work on it , S&W J frame sights, checkered front and back strap, satin finish, peach wood grips, accurized including replacing the barrel bushing ( yes it has one) and a trigger job. Great for carry and small game hunting. It's been around for almost 70 years so of course it's a fine gun. Double action guns are for amateurs.
June 17, 2003, 11:40 PM
Double action guns are for amateurs.
Oh, good stuff. And what are manual safeties for? Paranoids?
June 18, 2003, 12:47 AM
Yeah. Or so say the Glock owners....:rolleyes:
June 18, 2003, 01:15 AM
The BHP is probably the most popular military service pistol in active duty in the world. The fact that Glocks are more in fashion than BHPs has a direct correlation that video games are more in fashion than billiards. The P35 also has a single action trigger that most police departments regard as not as safe as a DA/SA. Not to mention that Brownings are pricey.
June 18, 2003, 02:14 AM
My best guess is that it was never offered in calibers other than 9mm until recently.
In the years when it was very popular the world over, the 9mm cartridge simply wasn't all that popular in the United States.
When the 9mm cartridge finally did start a surge in popularity, in the 1980s, people didn't want single action handguns, they wanted double action Wonder9s.
June 18, 2003, 05:08 AM
My main issue with BHP is price. At most of the shows or stores I see one at its over 700 dollars for a basic model with no frills. I picked up my xd for almost half the price and am getting a 9mm 1911 with a lot of custom features for the same price. If a company would start manufacturing some BHP at a lower price I for one would be definitly interested.
June 18, 2003, 06:04 AM
If a company would start manufacturing some BHP at a lower price I for one would be definitly interested.
FEG makes a HP clone which sells for under (well under in some areas) $400.00. It isn't a real Browning made Browning, but it's the same design and feel.
June 18, 2003, 08:50 AM
I recently paid $500 for a nib BHP lll. Well worth the money and good hi-cap mags are affordable.
June 18, 2003, 11:17 AM
You can buy a BHP varient from FEG or Arcus for a little more than $200. You can buy an exact duplicate by FM for $270 (CDNN), and Daly is going to have another cheap HP coming out. The first three have been available for 10 years.
June 18, 2003, 11:51 AM
I paid $300 for my like-new BHP, in box, with 2 standard capacity magazines.
I guess I got a good deal. :D
June 18, 2003, 01:15 PM
I've got a '91 silver chrome.
I kinda just sigh when people in other parts of the country talk about BHP prices. You want to see expensive! Used Hi-Powers here start around $699 and go up, to $1200 & higher.
We cannot buy any new Hi-Power here in MA since 10/98 Law.
June 18, 2003, 03:32 PM
Since this thread seems to be a collection of humble opinions, I might as well add mine.
I like the Browning and have two at home. Similar pistols that quickly come to mind in this market are the SIG P226, the CZ75, the Beretta 92. As a target shooting pistol, I like the HPs long sight radius (as all of the others have) and crisp (best of the bunch) but heavy (worst of the bunch) trigger. (I'm going to have that trigger lightened on at least on of these HPs.)
It also has a great grip (much better for me than the Beretta or SIG), is a good looking pistol (not as good as the Beretta), and typically cheaper than the SIG, but more expensive than both the Beretta and the CZ.
Unfortunately when being constrained to 10 round mags as a result of the AWB, all of these packages are too large (in my opinion) to carry concealed. For CCW when I'm wearing lots of clothes, I like the SIG P229 or the Walther P99 in 40 cal. If I'm carrying a 9mm, it's because I'm dressing lighter and I want something much smaller.
For shooting games, the 9mm cartridge doesn't cut it. It won't knock down heavy steel sometimes, and of course, it doen't meet IPSC major standards.
There you have it, a great niche pistol if 9mm is your thing and you can get real mags (or 9mm is constraint as with the miltary and some police depts.) Otherwise, there are other niche pistols that fill more "marketable" needs.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
June 18, 2003, 10:44 PM
I don't know where you guys are buying your HP's, but AJC in Clute, Tx has the silver chrome model for $550 NIB and I just picked up a MkIII for $425 at a Houston gun show a couple of months ago.
June 19, 2003, 07:05 AM
You gotta be kidding me. I checked with them two months ago and they said they had sold the last one and won't be getting anymore in. They have more now?
June 19, 2003, 12:57 PM
My favorite pistol bar none.....just add sights, a better safety and a 4 pound trigger...shake well and serve with ranger sxts
June 19, 2003, 01:05 PM
For shooting games, IDPA is a rather popular one where 9mm is acceptable in two divisions - and is the best choice.
Mag capacity wise, Beretta and BHP mags are some of the cheapest hicaps - cheaper than many factory 10 rounders. The "ban" is on new manufacture, after all.
June 19, 2003, 11:57 PM
Wondernine, they had an ad in the Browning section of the June 20 issue of Gun List. I saw the ad and assumed that they had them since the issue came out a week ago. Might want to check.
June 20, 2003, 01:33 PM
Hi Powers are great pistols, the grip, reliability, accuracy, and so forth have all been well proven world wide for many years.
I really think Browning has dropped the ball by not advertising like they could have all this time. Now that the actual manufacturer, FN, is selling these fine pistols here in the USA, maybe we'll see better advertising.
One thing, I'm glad some of you guys are still getting "good" prices, because we don't seem to any more :(
June 22, 2003, 04:48 PM
I just picked up another BHP at the Austin gun show today. This is a MkIII all black in .40 S&W. LNIB with the papers and 2 mags, included a kydex paddle holster for $375. They are out there.
June 22, 2003, 06:25 PM
I paid $275 for an FN High Power that was an Israeli surplus pistol, I believe from AIM Surplus a couple years ago. It was a little rough on the outside but was mechanically perfect. I bought an older Hi-Power with really neat adjustable rear sight for about $350 that was possibly unfired and absolutely beautiful around the same time. The most expensive one that I own is a High Power Practical in like new condition for something in the $400s. I don't see a lot of High Powers out there for sale, but they are out there if you keep your eyes open for one.
There was a time, about five years ago, when I didn't own a single 9mm handgun. I didn't really desire one, but I had a whole lot of 9mm brass sitting around here. One day I was bored and I loaded up 500 rounds or so with the thought that I might someday bring it along and use one of my friends guns. So with all that brass sitting there, and plenty more reloading components sitting there, and me being a certified gun junkie, I eventually decided that I needed a 9mm of my own. Well, I have always been a 1911 shooter. I had been shooting handguns for years before the plastic guns came on scene. I tried the plastic guns and they didn't really pull my chain. So, it was logical that when I bought a 9mm, it would be a single action, John Browning design. Since then, I have purchased a number of other 9mm handguns. I have a Glock 17, a Ruger P89, a Kel-Tec P11 and I am sure a couple others that don't come to mind. I have also previously owned a few other 9mms and have fired quite a few others. For me, the Browning High Power is head and shoulders above all the rest. Again, IMO this isn't even a contest; there is the Browning High Power and then everything else somewhere in the distance.
I would love to take that Israeli surplus gun I have and use it as the foundation of a totally custom gun. To me, there is nothing more beautiful than a fully customized High Power. It is very expensive, but that is something I have never owned.
I have never used one of my High Powers in IDPA or IPSC. When I decided to try a 9mm in competition, I looked at what I had and decided on the Ruger P89. I had shot IPSC years ago and knew that my gun was going to take a beating. I was shooting thousands of rounds a month in practice, of course you drop your mags in the sand etc. I didn't want to put my beautiful High Powers to this kind of heavy use. That being said, I think it would make a fine competition gun for me.
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