Tanfoglio VRS Ruger?


March 26, 2004, 08:28 PM
I'm after my first pistol here so I'm eager for any input ya'll can offer me.

Tanfoglio Witness .45 vrs Ruger P90TH .45

I'm on a rather limited budget, I dont wanna pay much more than 300 something out the door. My main concern is reliability here which is why the Ruger gets my praise. I havent heard anything of the Tanfoglio but its cheap. Anyone have any other suggests I'm open. I've fired a Mark2 Ruger and done the .22 thing before so please dont give me that static.

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March 26, 2004, 08:38 PM

March 26, 2004, 09:41 PM

March 26, 2004, 09:52 PM
Could ya'll tell my -WHY- one way or the other?

March 26, 2004, 09:53 PM
People who own Tanfoglio guns generally like them. I have three and they are all great guns. The Ruger is also well known as a stout pistol, but it feels like holding a brick compared to a Tanfoglio, at least to me.

March 26, 2004, 10:02 PM
This is now a 10 year old experience but the Witness .45 I owned was an utter POS. Felt good in the hand but jammed perpetually and threw brass straight at my eyes. Melted little divots in my glasses. Sent it back to EAA and came back with the same problems plus a loose front sight.


Ruger would be my call in this matchup.


March 26, 2004, 10:28 PM
I don't favour either. The Ruger is a brick, a heavy brick. Mine was chunky, clunky and just plain uncomfortable to carry. It was a jamomatic also. The EAAs I have tried are good clones of CZs. Why not save a little while longer and buy the genuine CZ? CZ-75 is an awesome pistol.

March 26, 2004, 10:33 PM
Choice is a toss-up in some ways.

The Tanfoglio Witness(please, oh please, don't call it an 'EAA' Witness) has the cozy feel of the CZ design(which many, if not most, people like). Unfortunately, the importer/servicing agent for Tan's in the USA is EAA. Brrr, I get a cold chill just thinking about that(or a hot flash, not sure). The Tan also offers the ability to convert with top-end kits.

The Ruger P-series doesn't have the feel of the Witness in the hand, but I've never experienced the type of unprofessional, non-customer service from Ruger that I experienced with EAA. Additionally, none of my Ruger's failed to function straight from NIB. The only blemish was a several years old MKII Ruger target that had developed feed and extraction issues. Communicated with Ruger; send it back they said. Returned with new barrel installed and no cost, not even return shipping(ya listening EAA). No problems since and only that single trip back to Ruger. Both my KP94 & KP91 digested absolutlely everything(ammo wise) that they were fed. Later I managed to pick up a KP944 top end and used that on the KP94 lower; again, no problems with any ammo type. All examples exhibited fair to good accuracy 4 1/2" to 3" at 25 yards.

If the Tan Witness ever gets a new USA importer/servicing agent, I'll give it a better consideration for future purchases. As it stands now, from my experiences with EAA, I know the I'll be own my own for 'reliable and professional' service should it ever be required. the Ruger P-series may not have the 'feel/fit' of the Tan, but every one I've ever used has worked new, straight from the box, no problems. Through Hogue rubber grips on the Ruger, some tritium night sites and grab a few original capacity mags and you'll have a reliable combat ready handgun. The rest is finding ammo the P series likes, a handload that replicates it and then lots of practice.

Good luck!

March 26, 2004, 10:39 PM
Why not save up for a CZ? Because I'm moving into my own house I -really- dont want to trust my life to a lever action. I absolutely -adore- my marlin but its far from the right tool for the job. If Ya'll dont like either, then -please- tell me what ya suggest in the same price range.

Poul D'eau
March 26, 2004, 11:34 PM
My 45/22 witness is my most accurate handgun I own. Having shot a friends P-90 and my own CZ-97b. I would recomend the Witness over the other two. The CZ-97 has a long grip-could be very uncomfortable for some people, and the P-90 just doesn't feel right to me, not bad, just not for me

The capability of the Witness to switch to other calibers (10mm, 38 super, 357sig, 40 smith & wesson) with a new slide, barrel and magazine-not to mention a longslide versions. Give you the chance to have a new caliber for about $230 without having to get used to a new grip. This capability has given the Witness the nickname of the "Italian Combat Lego"

Here is a list of the options for the witness.
Options (http://www.savvysurvivor.com/handguns_and_handgun_magazines_f.htm)

Here is a good web site with background information on the Witness (http://www.savvysurvivor.com/gearrevewtangfoglio_witness_series_pistol.htm) .

And finally here is a fourm for CZ clones of which most discussions are on the Italian Combat Lego (http://pub105.ezboard.com/fczechpistols82792frm35)

Good luck and let us know on what you decide.

March 26, 2004, 11:40 PM
A lever action marlin what??? Many men have been killed by a leveraction...Dont believe me?? ask the RUSSIANSSSSSSS..no I cant remember the battle but it was when the Russians had the single shot mausers and the Turks had Winchesters...Unless your Marlin is a .22 I would feel adequetly armed with it...but thats just me..

for a bit more you can get a CZ-75<~~great gun...

I have never owned a Witness so I cant comment on them

Rugers are good guns...they just feel like your holding a brick in your hand(autos not revolvers) ...at least to me

March 26, 2004, 11:52 PM
The hallways in this place are -very- narrow and It would be -extremely- difficult to change directions with a gun in my hand with my Marlin. As for a CZ, ok well what exactly are they going for out the door? I dont wanna spend a whole lot, I'm of the firm belief that any sidearm with an experienced operator can be deadly. So I need buffer room for a good deal of ammunition and magazines and yadda yadda.

March 26, 2004, 11:55 PM
the question is, how long would it take you to save the money to cover the cost difference for a proper cz?

March 26, 2004, 11:55 PM
Take a look at the Ruger P97. It's lighter than the P90, has a more ergonomic polymer frame, is just as tough and accurate, and doesn't cost more - at least, not round here.

March 27, 2004, 12:02 AM
Considering I'm out've a job and now a full time photography student? Quite abit I'd venture. I have X amount of dollars and thats -all- I get. I should have enough of an allowance to cover a few range trips a month or so but nothing enough for me to want to save it up. It'd take years..I move into said house at the end of this semester. I get my paycheck next week.

March 27, 2004, 12:31 AM
Go with the Ruger. Not as pretty and slick looking as the Tanfoglio - but a much more consistent performer. I speak from experience here. Tan's are good guns - and are good, accurate performers at the range. But I've found them to be lacking in reliability as a defensive gun. So if you're looking for something to save your hide - at a reasonable price - the Ruger's are better for consistant reliability and durability. For a fun & accurate range/game gun - the Tanfoglio's are are good choice. Both are priced about the same around here.

March 27, 2004, 12:52 AM
Considering that this is going to be your only defensive handgun reliability is priority #1 IMO. That said the Ruger is the clear choice between the two. A *good* Witness is fine but there are a lot of not so good ones being sold and you won`t know which one you have until it`s too late. In other words they`re good to play with if you have other guns you can depend on already. Expanding on your choices a bit check out the P-97. It`s much more ergonomic than the P-90. Accurate,reliable and lighter than the P-90 and better looking too IMO. I traded mine away some time ago but sometimes wish I hadn`t. If you really like the feel of the Witness,do yourself a favor and check out the real CZs. You can pick up a CZ-75B Military still for around $350. It`s a truly world class gun that gives nothing away to ANY other service auto. Since $$$ is an issue the cheaper 9mm ammo will let you practice more with it and easily offset the slight increase in price. Marcus

March 27, 2004, 12:58 AM
I should be able to swing CZ-75 then, the local shop has them going for 425. I'll peek around. Out've curiosity how accurate, how ergonomic, any complaints, how're the sights, how big is the norm cap for the magazine?

March 27, 2004, 01:27 AM
Ruger all the way.:) The only thing good the Tanfoglio has over the Ruger is its feel. You can always overcome that through practice/familiarization. Reliability, good service, finish...Ruger wins hands down.

March 27, 2004, 02:14 AM
Check www.jgsales.com They have the CZ 75B from $389. These come with 10 round mags.

March 27, 2004, 04:20 AM
I recently purchased a Tanfoglio/EAA Witness .45 (full-sized, all steel). I was a little hesitant due to the poor customer service reports I've read, but I decided to take the risk and hope I don't need service. The handgun seems well made - I'm happy with it. I've only put about 20 rounds of Winchester 230 Gr FMJ through it, but no problems so far. It is heavy (I wish we could get the Witnesss polymer-framed versions here in CA, but they aren't approved). What really pushed me toward the Witness was my desire for a 10mm (which, in CA, I can only get as a conversion kit to go on the .45 - the 10mm Witness isn't approved).

If you want something lighter and more compact, I'd look at the Ruger P97. None of the Ruger centerfire semi-autos have much appeal to me (though I'm sure they are good guns), but if I were going to get any of them, it would be the P97.


March 27, 2004, 06:53 AM
Between the too you have suggested, for absolutely must shoot evertime dependability.....the Ruger is the way to go.

If you can swing the CZ.......thats the way to go......:D

Shoot well.

March 27, 2004, 07:55 AM
Gee, a real toss up.

As for warranty service, should you need it, Ruger wins, hands down!

Comfort, Witness wins.

Reliability, the Ruger is more likely to be reliable out of the box, most Witness pistols need the feed ramps to be polished and slightly modified to be reliable.

Accuracy, toss up.

The large frame Witness does give you the option of multi caliber use with top ends and magazines in 38 Super, 40 S&W-10mm, 22 long rifle, 45 ACP.

The Witness is not without its problems, but I think there are more good ones than bad ones, same with the Ruger.

The Witness also gives you the option of carrying the gun cocked and the safety on, the Ruger is a double action first shot, single action for follow up shots. The Witness does not have a hammer dropping safety. This is a factor for some people.

March 27, 2004, 08:15 AM
For a good gun on the cheap, get a CZ75b 9mm.
They are about $400.
The real cost of the gun isn't the gun itself, but the ammo.
Is there a wal-mart near you?
The most I would spend on 9mm is $6.00 a box of 50.
.45 acp will be more money, like $11.00 a box, and that raises the cost of ownership quite a bit.
But you'll be a better shooter if you get the extra practice that a 9mm allows you to get, because you can buy more ammo, and maybe a little more food, too.
Anyway, if you are looking for a good .45, I'd go with the ruger, better warranty service-should you need it.

March 27, 2004, 08:32 AM
I've shot the Ruger P-90 before so I got a Witness instead. The Ruger feels like you're holding onto a brick and I just didn't find it all that comfortable not to mention the DA trigger wasn't all that great. Now the .45 Witness I have on the other hand has the same great feel and balance of my CZ-75. I also like the option of all my shots being SA as well. Aniother advantage to the CZ design is that being carried cocked adn locked in combination with the large DA trigger guard is that you can get a heavily gloved finger into the trigger without any problems. Try that with a Ruger or any other typical SA/DA handgun!:neener: As far as accuracy, mine has been very good and to date has been 100% reliable no matter what I've fed through it. If there was anything I would like to see changed on the Witness it would be having the ambidextrious safety lever a standard feature (I installed mine with the factory part later on) and rather than having the front sight milled into the frame, would like to see it as a seperate piece with a dovetail in the slide for easier sight changes. Other than that, it's an excellent piece. :)

March 27, 2004, 11:29 AM
Why not save up for a CZ? Because I'm moving into my own house I -really- dont want to trust my life to a lever action. I absolutely -adore- my marlin but its far from the right tool for the job. If Ya'll dont like either, then -please- tell me what ya suggest in the same price range.

For a house gun, I always recommend a revolver. I personally own an S&W mod 10. I can keep it loaded almost indefinitely and its ready for action quickly (no racking of slide) if needed. Its simple, reliable, effective. Plus its cheap! :) I paid $160 OTD at the gunshow (I had >$400 budget then). The money I saved went to an AK clone with 2 mags and 1/2 a case of ammo. Just in case the revolver doesn't take care of the problem, ya know. ;) :D

March 27, 2004, 11:34 AM
If you want the best reliablity, the Ruger would get my highest recommendation.

I find the EAAs and CZs much more comfortable in the hand and generally have better triggers. And with a little cash, you can have an outstanding trigger.

If you were wanting a 9mm, I'd have more hesitation as I've had about 99.9% success rate with a few EAAs, but in 45ACP, I've had a bit less good luck and would recommend the Ruger for maximum out of the box reliability.

Zeke Menuar
March 27, 2004, 01:35 PM
I never recommend any Ruger for anything. Go with the Witness.


March 27, 2004, 01:54 PM
Shop around a little and get yourself a good used Ruger Security Six .357 Magnum revolver. Extremely accurate, powerful caliber,well built, totally reliable, good trigger, one of the all time best revolvers available, can be found for around $200 to $250.

March 27, 2004, 10:25 PM
Sorry tyo have been short in response before. Now since you ask, I'll be happy to expand.

Tanfoglio is an old established company and has turned out some fine weapons to be sure, but the reputation doesn't hold a candle to Ruger.

Ruger has the best customer service in the industry bar none. Ruger has a great reputation for dependability and strengh, on par with the much higher priced companies. Ruger is made in America by Americans.

I've owned over a dozen Rugers and have been unhappy with exactly none. I've owned one Tanfoglio and been unhappy with exactly one.

My opinion from my experience, I'm sure others may differ.

March 27, 2004, 10:51 PM
I'm surprised nobody has suggested a Makarov or Charles Daly thingamajig.

BTW: Qouted prices from Galleryofguns.com

KBI Charles Daly hp(9mm): $285.04

Ruger P90TH SE(.45):$308.70

Steyr M9(9mm):$192.75

Springfield Armory XD-9(9mm):$325.25

Tanfoglio Witness(10mm):$248.98

H&K Mark.23(.45):$1459.52

March 27, 2004, 11:19 PM
If you're leaning toward the cz75b there's *ahem* a really nice used one on the Handguns For Sale board.....

Lobotomy Boy
March 28, 2004, 12:52 AM
I agree with Preacherman--if you're on a budget and need a reliable gun, Ruger is your best choice. If you want a .45, the P97 is a heck of a good deal. Sportsman's Warehouse sells them new for $319. The P97 is less brick-like than the P90 and has a smoother trigger.

If you are considering the CZ75, you are comparing 9mm apples to .45 oranges. With careful shopping you should be able to pick up a Ruger P95, the 9mm counterpart to the P97, for $309.

If for some reason you decide you need something a bit more stylish, right now Galyans is selling Beretta 9000 DAOs for $299 and DA/SAs for $329.

These are all screaming good deals, but I don't think you can beat a $319 P97 for value per dollar spent.

March 28, 2004, 10:19 AM
Steyr M9(9mm):$192.75 :scrutiny:

Really, that's awfull cheap, can I have a link?

March 28, 2004, 03:12 PM


have fun. :)

March 29, 2004, 11:27 AM
I'm not a fan of that steyr pistol, but for that price...

March 29, 2004, 11:56 AM

This is your first handgun. The Steyr is an excellent choice ... Owned one and regret selling, I am now going to buy another. Lots of $$$$ left for ammo. They are better then Glocks, Springfield XDs and HK USPC 9mm .. especially for the price. No hicaps, but I have been told that you can load more then 10rds of 9mm in a Steyr M .40 magazine. Whatever you read about no Customer Service is totally changed as Steyr has a reliable importer in the US and is planning to put a Steyr US HQ somewhere in a gun friendly state.

Otherwise, I was going to say ... Ruger or save a little more for the CZ it wont be much more. Rugers run about $330 to $400 depending on model. I highly recomend the 90th .. a .45 with Hogue finger grooved grip installed. But CZs can be found for $380 to $450 also ... Plus hicaps are $35 if you want to go that route. For a little more then that you can have the PCR or PO1 ...yummy smaller versions of the cz75, about $440

Maybe you should shop the classifieds here, look for 9mm in Missou ... make a FTF deal and save lots of money for AMMO!!!!

Blueduck has a nice Beretta 92fs for sale with hicaps for $400 ... I would take a 92 over the Ruger or Witness anyday!!!

(No I am not a friend of his ... just looked up Missou in search engine)


Sean Smith
March 29, 2004, 12:02 PM
I'd take the Ruger over the Witness, and a CZ-75B over either.

March 29, 2004, 12:32 PM
The Ruger is as reliable as they come, the EAAs and CZs are great for the money and have outstanding ergonomics in my opinion, but for less than $200, I'd start to heavily consider that Steyr.

March 29, 2004, 01:43 PM
I cant find any at the rent-a-shoots in my Area. You guys know of anyone with a Steyr M-9/40/357? Even if I dont go to the range with it I'd -really- like to atleast hold it first. I can snag them Rugers for about 300 even and with Ruger customer service. Right now a CZ-75 would be a total waste on me. You can give a Monkey a Korth but it wont make him a good shot. So I'd rather buy a 'tank' of a gun firstly. Then i can start saving up for a -nice- CCW peice.

So..who has a Steyr I can fiddle with near St.Louis?

March 29, 2004, 03:12 PM
Well, I've never fired one of the Styer pistols but after handling one, I wasn't that impressed with them. They just don't fit my hand at all. Every time I picked one up, I'd raise it up with my eyes closed. When I'd open my eyes, I found that I was aiming it high enough to bring down low flying aircraft with the thing. :( If you make a consious effort to remember to point it downwards then it might work alright but personally, I'm passing on the Styers.

March 29, 2004, 03:35 PM

It must be how you naturally hold your wrist. I'd be willing to bet that Ruger P series point pretty good for you, the one I had pointed low but the Steyr points like my index finger, even better than my Sig.

March 29, 2004, 09:23 PM
I have no experience with the Witness, but I have a Ruger P97 and love it. It has much better ergonomics than the P90, is very accurate and built like a brick house. Costs 319.00 and seems worth twice as much. Check it out.

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