Firestar M-43?


February 12, 2009, 10:25 AM
I believe I saw a Firestar M-43 at the gun show a week or two ago. It looked relatively small for a 9mm. Does anyone have one that they can stick next to a Colt Mustang or Ruger LCP?

I also read that the M-40 (40 S&W) was the same size as the M-43 (9mm)

Here are some photos:

Anyone have one?

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February 12, 2009, 10:54 AM
The Firestar M43 and M40 are the same size and use the same frame. They are 6 1/2" long, 4 1/2" tall, and 1 1/4" wide. A Kel-Tec P3AT is 5 1/4" long,3 1/2" tall , and 7/8" wide. The Ruger LCP is pretty much the same as the Kel-Tec. The Firestar is about 1/2" shorter than a compact 1911 and about the same height and width. The Firestar is a good pistol, I have both the M43 and M40 and they are very accurate.

February 12, 2009, 11:53 AM
They are well made and high quality pistols. However, they are no longer made so finding parts is often cited as a potential problem. They are also rather heavy being all steel. This is good for soaking up recoil but is a slight downside for daily carry.

I don't own one but if I found one at a good price I wouldn't hesitate to get it.

Trevor M43
February 12, 2009, 08:58 PM
I have a M43 and am attaching a picture that i just took. I don't have either of the guns you mentioned for comparison but i did try to give you something to compare it to that is easily replicated. It was placed on a standard size dvd box that should give you a basis for comparison. Hope this helps.


February 13, 2009, 10:24 AM
I had to find my camera. Here is a picture of my Kel-Tec and my Firestar.

February 13, 2009, 10:46 AM
I love my 9mm Firestar!!
Solid steel and never a FTF or FTE. Eats all hollow points too. Bought it used decades ago so not sure if any work was done on it but I doubt it.

I need a detailed manual to tear it down though.
It needs a complete detailed cleaning and I can't find a web page or step by step guide for complete disassembly.

Trevor M43
February 13, 2009, 10:59 AM

Have you tried the link on this site about halfway down the page?


February 13, 2009, 11:10 AM
I need to get to the sear as I think there is lint in there somewhere as on occasion the hammer will ride forward. I'm sure it lint or dirt in there as I never went past field stripping and cleaning.

I may take it to a good gun smith and get him to detail it and check all parts as at least 6K rounds have been through it.

Might be time for springs so I better get a few extra sets.

February 13, 2009, 11:56 AM
I've owned and carried my Starvel-finished M-43 for about 16 years. It's cycled with 100% reliability using every type of factory 9x19 ammo that I've put in its magazine. Can't ask for much more, function-wise.

Lacking a Ransom rest and the proper insert, I don't really have any definitive data on its accuracy. From a bench and sandbags the best I've been able to do is 5-shot groups averaging around 2" at 20 yds. I've been quite satisfied with that. FWIW, the fixed sights that came on mine were regulated for 124 gr. loads, as are the Meprolite tritiums I replaced them with. 115 gr. loads group about 2-3" low at 20 yds for me.

At a little over 30 oz. empty, it is a good deal heavier than many of the newer subcompact 9mm pistol designs we now have. At the time I bought it though it was about the smallest standard production 9x19 available. It also was the only one which offered an ambidextrous thumb safety as standard equipment and, being a southpaw, that was a large selling point to me.

Perhaps it's just that I've become so accustomed to it, but carried in its Milt Sparks 'Summer Special' IWB rig the weight isn't an issue for me. It's quite comfortable and very discrete even under light summer clothing. Truthfully, I never really considered carrying it my pants pocket, although I have done so in coats and jackets on occasion. The loaded weight is very closely comparable to an all-steel, .38 Spl. J-frame revolver, it carries 60% more comparably powerful ammo aboard and is at least as easily concealed - pocket holster or no.

For me that heftiness is actually rather comforting. It's helped make the little pistol very easy to learn to shoot well and quickly with, which does inspire confidence. At least it does for me. Having a control layout duplicating the 1911 also was/is also a plus IMO.

I've never needed a part, other than springs for routine replacement and extra magazines. Both are readily available and moderately priced.

It might not be the current state-of-the-art, but it's still a fine CCW/SD weapon IMO.

February 13, 2009, 01:58 PM
Anyone know the going price on a used firestar in .45?

I like mine so much I want one in .45

February 13, 2009, 03:08 PM
When I had my M-43 (Star Firestar), I shot better with it than my full sized Glock 17, Sig Sauer 228, and my CZ 75 (pre-B). I sold it because I needed the money. One of the worst mistakes of my gun experience. The M-43 has the cone shaped barrel at the end and locks into the slide for very accurate shooting. It is built like a tank. Unfortunately, they (Star Echeverio (sp?))went out of business because I would, if I still could, buy their pistol in 10mm which was built like a King Tiger tank - slight exaggeration but they were well built.

February 13, 2009, 04:14 PM
I picked up my M45 last year at Gander Mountain for $349. They also had 2 M43's for the same price. It is a very heavy gun for concealed carry, IMHO.

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