Star BM 9


August 8, 2004, 01:07 PM
Looking through Aim surplus website I run across this pistol:

Is the Star model BM 9 any good? I like the 1911 design and getting one 9mm appeals to me since I can shoot cheap ammo. Plus the price listed sounds good($129.95). Granted a gun shop will charge me more then this but it has to be better then a High Point, right?

I also want a Makarov, but for shooting I think I perfer a 1911 style gun.


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August 8, 2004, 01:51 PM
I just bought one YESTERDAY. I much prefer it over the Mac since it is locked breech, all steel and 9mm. Nice looking little gun-appears to be well over-strong for a 9mm. It is about exactly the same size as my Colt Officers Model but thinner.

I took mine IMMEDIATELY to the range and ran a full box through her. Nary a bobble or hisitation of any kind. Easy recoiling gun due to the heft. Shot well but mine shot high. I'm tickeled pink with the lil sucker

I think I'll be carrying mine some, especially if I am in situations where I may be forced to leave it in the vehicle some of the time. Better to get a <$200 gun stolen than a high-dollar dedicated carry piece.

Dealer got 2 in with one sold before the order. I bought the other and another customer ordered one. Looks to be popular. I'd recommend them.

August 8, 2004, 02:38 PM
J&G has some left, I think. I liked the one I hefted, but havn't had the scratch for one yet.

August 8, 2004, 04:20 PM
critter how much did you pay for yours? Does it take standerd 9mm 1911 mags?


August 8, 2004, 04:38 PM
It was just under $200 with all taxes, fees, etc. Sorry, don't know if it will take 1911-9mm mags or not. Extra mags are available from some suppliers my dealer tells me for around $16 retail.

August 8, 2004, 05:08 PM
It was just under $200 with all taxes, fees, etc. Sorry, don't know if it will take 1911-9mm mags or not. Extra mags are available from some suppliers my dealer tells me for around $16 retail.

That's not bad for a major caliber handgun. $16 isn't too bad for mags but I did a search on the Star BM 9 and one place is selling mags for $35... While this pistol is good value, I wonder about getting spare mags or replacement parts. Makarov mags are only ~$8 apiece and parts are commen. Still for a 1911 style pistol for $200 I would be temped to get one.


Lone Star
August 8, 2004, 05:22 PM
Better also buy a spare firing pin. The way the pin is secured makes it hard to strip the gun to replace it, too. BE SURE THE FIRING PIN IS INERTIAL: SOME WEREN'T!

1911 mags will NOT work. Nor, I suspect will magazines for other Star models.

This gun was probably surplus, as many were used by the Cuerpo General de Policia, the Guardia Civil, and the Spanish Navy.

The BM is a super gun within its limitations. Some had softer steel than is ideal, so I wouldn't run too many hot loads through it.

Lone Star

August 8, 2004, 06:59 PM
I have two of them and will buy any others that come my way. Great guns for the money, the BM is a best buy in handguns today. Much more of a gun for the money than a Makarov. I had a Mak and there is no comparison. The Mak is ugly and had a God forsaken grip, trigger and sights. Ammo is hard to get and more expensive than 9mm while at the same time being much less powerful and having fewer loads available. The Mak is smaller and a little lighter. The Stars I had were FAR more accurate than the Mak. Mak may have a slight edge in reliabilty but that is only because some Star BMs are rather worn out by the time we get them. I think a new Star and a new Mak should be about the same reliabilty. I got my Stars cheaper than my Mak so that made me feel even better about the Star and worse about the Mak.

August 8, 2004, 07:07 PM
Thanks. If I go to a gun shop that has both then I'll try out the trigger pull and handling.
When I look online the prices for 9x18 Makarov and 9x19 NATO are the same or the Makarov ammo is a little cheaper. Of course in gun shops...

I'm a little worryed about getting spare parts and mags if I need them.


August 8, 2004, 07:44 PM
I own a Mak and have ordered one of the Star's, both are great pistols for the price. I am getting one because locally 9x18 is hard to find at a reasonable price. I really like my Mak, have had no problems at all, aftermarket parts are readily accessible. The only worry I have about the Star is replacement parts, but i am sure they are out htere and can be found with a little work. I owned a Star PD .45 years ago and it is one of the few I regret parting with. Point is I no reservations of the quality of the Star line, even used.

August 8, 2004, 07:58 PM
One question on the star, how does it handle reloads? What about Wolf or CCI Blazer?
One reason I'm looking at the Star and Makarov pistols is cheap ammo.


Das Pferd
August 8, 2004, 08:39 PM
I swear I must have been the only person to get a bad one. It jams at least twice on every magazine. FTE. I checked everything, even took it so a gunsmith where he "fixed" it. Still doesnt always extract correctly. Anyways, I love the gun when it works. Hammer bite is a problem with my big hands though.

August 8, 2004, 10:07 PM
Trying only loading 5 rounds in each mag and then see if you still get FTE. The range I go to only allow 5 rounds at a time anyway.


Doc Johnson
August 9, 2004, 07:41 PM
For my first post, this is a little embarrassing. About a month ago, I bought a Star BM at a gun show. I was as close to an impulse purchase as I ever hope to get with a firearm.
The guy had a box full of these surplus Spanish pistolas. Each had some legitimate holster wear, but I picked one with a great bore, slide/frame and barrel fit. Nicely machined, forged...a real solid, forged-steel piece of goods. But, it was the trigger that sold me. I confess to being a proud, old-time S&W wheel-gun guy. And, the trigger on this Star made me feel right at home.
Have bought two extra mags from J&G. These are the OEM, real-deal mags with the chrome follower and slot in the side.
This thing is so sweet and reliable, it's now my primary carry piece in an El Paso pancake.
I may get another because -- I think -- once the word gets out, these little gems will be snapped up and the price will follow demand.
For once, I stand a chance of making a buck on a pistol. What an experience!!! :D

August 9, 2004, 08:05 PM
Let's not forget that these WERE going for 2-3 times the price they are selling for before there was a large shipment imported. The average price on them was $250-350 just a year ago. Once these dry up, they will go up in price because who doesn't want a Comander sized 1911 that shoots 9mm? All steel and accurate with a great trigger just makes them a sweeter deal. If you can pick them up for $150, buy all you can. If you can get them for $200, they are a good deal. Just try buying a Colt comander in 9mm and see what the going rate is. There is nothing the Colt can do that the Star can't do just as well or better.

August 9, 2004, 08:22 PM
One question on the star, how does it handle reloads? What about Wolf or CCI Blazer?

My Star BM is 100% with Wolf 9mm and my cheap hard cast lead TC-FP reloads.

147gr Silver Bear would nosedive the last round most of the time until I got a stronger mag spring -- I bought a Wolff extra power Colt 9mm spring and ground out the inside of the follower to accept it. Problem seems cured. I'd found a great deal on Silver Bear 147 gr JHP $80/1000 at a local gun show and bought all they had.

Haven't tried CCI Blazer, but I can't image it being a problem since it had no trouble with the old lacquer coated Wolf ammo.


August 9, 2004, 09:25 PM
Thanks wally, next time I go to a gun shop I'll pick one up if they got one.


August 10, 2004, 07:46 AM
Stephen Camp has written some nice reviews of these great little guns. Almost a year ago, after reading about them, I purchased one at a gun show for $158 OTD. Mine was in great shape except for some holster wear. The trigger is excellent and both mags function fine. I have put about 600 rounds thru mine with few problems and the gun shoots to POA. I did recently open up the smallish rear sight for a better sight picture.

Numrich Arms has (or at least did have) firing pins and extractors. The firing pin is somewhat fragile and the gun should never be dry fired with an empty chamber. Also, as mentioned, the guns are not hardened to the spec's of most modern firearms and +p or +p+ should not be used extensively. I have had no problem with hollow points feeding.

I find mine to function very well and it's very accurate. The trigger is one of the better ones I have. All in all, a great gun buy.

August 10, 2004, 02:47 PM
That's it I'm getting one, even if I have to go to three or four gun shops...


August 10, 2004, 08:55 PM
My Star BM is big and heavy.
Not a carry gun.

August 10, 2004, 09:15 PM
Gun Tests loved them,and that's good enough for me.I was already looking at them,now they'll have to go on my"gotta have"list.(it just keeps getting longer...)

August 10, 2004, 09:43 PM
My Star BM is big and heavy

Are you sure you are not confusing the Star Model B (Full Size) with the BM?

It is a bit heavy for CCW, being all steel, but its basically Commander sized.


August 11, 2004, 05:25 AM
The average price on them was $250-350 just a year ago.
They were $175 NIB surplus 15 years ago. I helped a young lady pick one out in the late 1980's. A pretty good pistol for what it is, a service belt pistol.

Dave Sample
August 11, 2004, 03:24 PM
I love them and have two of them. They are 100% reliable and the best handgun buy going on today. I tweaked mine a little as they needed some help.

Detachment Charlie
August 11, 2004, 04:51 PM
I must have been at the same show as Doc Johnson -- could have been since we are both in FLA. I'm crazy about this little Star. Great piece. Solid. Super trigger. Eats all kinds of ammo without a burp.
This is a serious tool, and a terrific buy right now.

August 11, 2004, 05:42 PM
So what about the model B? If I can't find a BM is the B just as good?


Dave Sample
August 11, 2004, 06:18 PM
A Model "B" is 7/8th the size of a 1911 and comes three ways. 45 ACP (Rare) 38 Super (38 Largo) or 380 Magnum (9mm). I just converted a Modelo Super B to 38 Super from 9mm. They are very nice pistoles!

August 11, 2004, 06:28 PM
A Model "B" is 7/8th the size of a 1911 and comes three ways. 45 ACP (Rare) 38 Super (38 Largo) or 380 Magnum (9mm). I just converted a Modelo Super B to 38 Super from 9mm. They are very nice pistoles!

I don't know where you get the 7/8th size figure as they come with a standard 5" bbl. They are a little slimmer than a 1911 though. I have never seen one in .38 Super or .38 Largo. I guess it was a joke that they come in .380 Magnum but I didn't get it. I have seen them in 9mm Largo and 9mm Luger only. I have heard about one in .45acp but I thought it was a different model.

I have one in 9mm Luger. It was made for the German police in 1945. It is really just a 9mm Largo version with a factory 9mm Luger bbl. The mag and grip frame are still the same as the Largo and that can casue some feeding problems. I tweaked the mag and it cleared up those problems.

August 11, 2004, 08:30 PM
A little info on Star pistols here (

August 12, 2004, 10:48 AM
FWIW the Star PD (.45ACP) was one of the few non-1911A1 .45s' that Jeff Cooper said he would carry. This was back in the days before everyone was building .45ACP pistols.

Disclamer - I own two PDs and two BMs.

August 12, 2004, 02:48 PM
Do those Star PD's take 1911 mags? 7- or 6-shot? Just wondering...I've heard a lot of great things about the PDs, but wonder whether they take standard-sized magazines.

Dave Sample
August 12, 2004, 07:58 PM
They use a six round mag. I used to carry one off-duty. Jeff said that "they were to be carried a lot and shot a little" as I remember. I have had a dozen of the Star B's and I think I know how big they are. Barrel length has nothing to do with the size. I stand with 7/8ths as a good description of their size compared to a Colt style 1911.

August 14, 2004, 01:16 PM
The BM is a good gun for the money on the surplus market but to say it's as good as or better than a 1911 action is a bit of a stretch. Take a lok at the locking lugs for example.

All things being equal as far as QC in I'd pick a true comander actioin to hold up under better under long term firing and/or use of +P ammo.

Don't get me wrong though for a compact surplus handgun that's in 9mm it's a great deal. And it sure beats anything new in that price range.

Lone Star
August 14, 2004, 05:52 PM
The 9mm Largo (Long) is NOT the .38 Super. It is the cartridge that the Danes called the 9mm Bergmann-Bayard. "Largo" was its Spanish name.
It is longer than the 9x19mm Luger, but not usually loaded any hotter.

Some Spanish pistols will fire .38 Super, but aren't designed for that level of pressure.

CCI has made 9mm Largo ammo, and may still do so.

Lone Star

August 15, 2004, 07:34 AM
CCI has made 9mm Largo ammo, and may still do so.

If they still do, it will be expensive.


AZ Heat
August 16, 2004, 02:35 AM
CCI no longer makes the Largo ammo. You have to buy surplus (should be readily available in non-corrosive) or reload yourself. I believe Winchester makes the cartridge but it is too hot for the Star pistols. This was as of 6 months ago...

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