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Which pistol? (A real dilemma!)

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by ceetee, Apr 22, 2011.

  1. ceetee

    ceetee Well-Known Member

    Sep 7, 2003
    Drove just over an hour this morning, to get to the only gun shop around with a really good selection of range rentals. Being in the market for a new CCW pistol, I wanted to shoot a whole bunch of ammo through a whole bunch of different guns, and see what I liked best. I brought with me 200 rounds of 9mm, a hundred rounds of .40S&W, and 50 rounds of .45 ACP.

    I really didn't expect to like any of the forties, since what I carry now is a forty (Taurus 25/7 Pro) and there's something about the recoil impulse that just makes it hard to control for me. I was really expecting to enjoy the heck out of shooting the nines, but I had promised a friend to shoot at least one Commander-sized .45, because that's his own personal favorite. I had no idea of what to expect from the .45, recoil-wise, but I did expect it to have more than the 9mm's, so I didn't expect to enjoy it very much.

    (A little back-story - I'm nearly 50, and I've had three surgeries through my right shoulder, making all the connective tissue up there feel like weak painful rubber bands. Not only that, but I've had nerve impingement issues in my neck, causing me to have some of my cervical vertebra fused, and also causing some slight paralysis in my left arm. Wheeee! I've become very recoil-sensitive, and shooting a pistol isn't nearly as easy for me as it used to be. Had to be said. Sigh.)

    I fired:
    Glock 19
    S/W M&P Compacts in 9mm and .40
    CZ 75B Compact
    CZ Rami in 9mm
    Beretta PX4 Storm
    PX4 Storm Compact
    Kimber TLE

    And I think I'm missing a couple more, but that's okay - they didn't stand out enough for me to remember them, I'm not gonna buy one.

    The Glock was okay - I shot it well enough. The Rami really beat the heck out of my hand in 9mm - I wasn't about to shoot the .40 version. The M&P's left me cold - they were just okay. I really liked the full-sized Storm, but it's just that... full sized. I wasn't too crazy about the compact.

    Here's the dilemma - I shot the CZ 75 like it was made for my hand. Double taps were easier than with any other pistol I've ever fired, and that includes shooting cream-puff wadcutters out of my 686. The other horn of the dilemma: firing the Kimber was simply awesome. Double-taps with it were nearly as easy as with the CZ. I've never felt a trigger pull I liked so much as the 1911-style single-action. The sights on both are amazingly easy to see. They both felt incredibly good in my hand. If I had to point out a negative on the CZ, it would be that I've never really liked their polycoat. If I had to point out a negative on the Kimber, it's that I'm so accustomed to wonder-nines that I have to ask... only seven rounds?

    Help me out here, High-Roaders. I really want both pistols, but "get both" is simply not an option. CZ fans - try to bring me over to your side. 1911 aficionados, convert me. Please! Help me decide!
  2. 2wheels

    2wheels Well-Known Member

    Mar 28, 2011
    I've converted almost totally to single action 1911 or 1911 style (My P238) pistols. The only holdout left is my Cougar, and I'm even considering selling that for a .22LR 1911 trainer. And I have a few more 1911 purchases planned.

    CZs are great pistols, I can't really say anything bad about them. I do want to own one someday, a CZ75 SA.

    But in my heart, I'm a 1911 guy. Great triggers, great grips, easy to customize. You can get one to suit your tastes. With a million different 1911 makers, you can find one that makes you fall in love.

    Oh, and a 9mm 1911 will allow you to hold a couple more rounds. But yeah, unless you go to a double stack 1911 you'll have to live with a "limited" amount of ammo on tap.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2011
  3. EAS2011

    EAS2011 Member

    Apr 8, 2011
    I've shot a SA M1911 Mil Spec and a CZ 75 SP01. I like the M1911 design, but 7-8 rounds in a compact/full-size semi-auto is outdated. I think the CZ 75 is a great choice if you want the aesthetic appeal of a metal framed gun like the M1911 with the mag capacity of a modern design. I say choose the CZ 75. You even said that you shot it well. The recoil should be less of a problem for your injuries also.
  4. Zerodefect

    Zerodefect Well-Known Member

    Mar 28, 2009
    Yakutsk, Sakha Republic
    I'm strictly 1911 or Glock.

    Those two pistols cover all my needs. And on days where I only want to carry a knife, I carry a Kahr p380.

    I wouldn't worry about mag capacity much. 8 rounds is plenty. Just use 10 round mags as your reloads. I carry one 15 round mag to reload my Glock 23 (total 29), and 2 10round mags to reload my 1911 (total28). Sometimes just 1 mag (total 18). That's plenty of ammo. If you feel the need for more, move to a safer location. LOLz.

    If you go 1911, save up and at least get a good one.


    +best trigger of all pistols
    +only fullsize gun that conceals well
    +fullsize is easy to shoot
    +heavy, light, big, small are all available
    +good sight selection
    +excellent aftermarket parts selection
    +interchangeable grips
    +very safe, even cocked and locked
    -often heavy
    -allways expensive
    -comes with junk magazines
    -needs customization to the shooter to get max performance
    -rarely comes in a durable rust free finish, needs melonite, hardhat, or ION bond which are all quite expensive.
    -sometimes picky with ammo
    Obi Wan Kenobi

    +only modern gun that can keep up with a 1911 in competition
    +good rust free finish
    +easy to shoot, easy to adapt modern grips
    +allways comes with good mags
    +good aftermarket parts support
    -gritty, cheap trigger
    -more recoil
    -fat double stack
    -stippling grips is a one time deal
    -needs care when reholstering
    Darth Vader
  5. JoeMal

    JoeMal Well-Known Member

    Jun 30, 2009
    Starts with a G and rhymes with LOCK. For a CCW, they go bang every time, they are affordable, they are plentiful, they are reliable, they shoot any ammo. If anything ever happened to it, you could easily replace it for a few hundred bucks.
  6. PcolaDawg

    PcolaDawg Well-Known Member

    Nov 21, 2008
    Pensacola, Florida
    All I can tell you is that I bought a Kimber and I've been in love with it ever since. Just a great weapon and, like you said - an amazing trigger. And it's gorgeous. Like I said - I'm in love with it. :cool:

    It was my first handgun and, like you, I went out and tried everything. The first time I held the Kimber, though, and I knew she was 'the one'. Since then I've bought a lot of different handguns, but the Kimber is still my favorite.
  7. SoulLessGinger

    SoulLessGinger Well-Known Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    Much as I like how the CZ's feel in hand, that's where the love fest stops for me. How you achieved rapid double taps with the long, vague reset on a CZ75 is beyond me.

    1911s and Glocks are the speed kings. And those are what I've settled on after owning many others. Good luck.
  8. LeonCarr

    LeonCarr Well-Known Member

    Mar 20, 2003
    At The Range
  9. StrikeFire83

    StrikeFire83 Well-Known Member

    Apr 1, 2005
    I have two of the designs on your list. Glock and CZ. (Well, close enough.)

    Glock 17
    (Close enough to the G19) Amazing reliability. Mine has 13,000 rounds through it, 2 malfunctions, ammo related to a single batch of Remington UMC with improperly seated primers. Trigger is kind of spongey, but once you learn the re-set, you'll be fine. I've shot this gun the most and I'm still less accurate with it than I am with my CZ (more on that in a minute) but that's prob just me. I went 1,000 rounds in between cleanings once, and the thing didn't miss a beat. I've done NOTHING to this gun except clean it. I should prob replace the recoil spring, but its not malfunctioning yet.

    CZ-75B You said the gun just felt right, and I totally agree. Points naturally, excellent single action trigger, incredible inherent accuracy for a production gun. Mine has been 100% flawless (zero malfunctions) in the 5,000+ rounds I've shot. MecGar mags are top notch. The gun is HEAVY, but that makes the recoil virtually non-existent to me. Great for fast follow up shot and double taps. My only complaint is that the trigger has a semi-contoured edge that can get a bit sharp/unpleasant after hundreds of rounds in a single sitting.

    Hope this helps some.
  10. yhtomit

    yhtomit Well-Known Member

    May 27, 2006
    E. Tennessee
    I plan to get a 1911 eventually (have shot some before, and had a good time), but I have and enjoy shooting a Cz-75.

    I also found the same about the feel of the cz-75 -- fits my hand right, and just feels good.

    Between the two, if I could only have one, well, you can see where I came down ;) The Cz-75 is nice and easy to break down for cleaning, too, and I see fewer threads on THR about finicky Cz-75s that only take certain ammo, say.

  11. Nacho Libre

    Nacho Libre Active Member

    Jun 19, 2006
    If you want something that's reliable go with Glock. If you want something that's pretty and reliable go with 1911.:D
  12. Lonestar49

    Lonestar49 Well-Known Member

    Feb 17, 2007
    So. Calif.
    Px4 Compact 9mm w/rotating barrel


    FYI, Beretta makes a smaller Px4 w/rotating barrel called a Compact Px4 9mm

    It's slightly smaller in both length and height of a Sig P228 / P229..

    From what I've heard - those that own full size Px4 9mm's and now own the smaller Compact version (not to be confused with the smallest Px4Sc, sub compact, 9mm w/tilt up barrel action).. are saying that the Compact has even less recoil of the, already, very soft/balanced recoil of the bigger full size Px4 9mm, otherwise, they like it even more than their full size Px4 9mm's.

    Here's a pic of them all

    My full size Px4 40 and Sig P228 9mm for size comparisons


    And P228 9mm next to Px4 "Compact" 9mm and Beretta Centurion or Brigadier - as these are not my guns but you can see the size difference of full size vs Compact Px4.


    Full size Px4 frame/slide vs Px4 Compact frame/slide


    Worth another look if you can find one at any local gun dealer.. Px4 Compact 9mm w/rotating barrel


    Last edited: Apr 23, 2011
  13. Remo223

    Remo223 member

    Feb 19, 2011
    betwix the muddy mo and moon river
    forget about the round count. it's not important.

    You've pretty much already narrowed it down to a 1911 or a CZ. Those are what you shoot well with so those are what you should choose.

    You havn't even considered the second part of the decision process...that is what is easiest to carry concealed. of the two that you shoot the best, you should pick the one that you feel most comfortable carrying. Before you buy, I might try a few more examples. CZ makes polymer versions of their 9mm guns. There are different sizes of 1911 guns. Some even have aluminum frames.

    i think you should test out a few more variations of the CZ and a few more variations of the 1911. Then pick the one you think would be easiest to carry.
  14. Effigy

    Effigy Well-Known Member

    Apr 15, 2011
    If you want a 1911 for CCW, I'd suggest going for the aluminum frame rather than steel. Kimber has shorter models that would be suitable: Pro Carry (4" barrel) and Ultra (3" barrel). The big question mark is reliability, which seems to be a little hit-or-miss with 1911s.

    TYFOOON Well-Known Member

    Feb 1, 2011
    I've had Glocks, I've had Sigs, I've had just about everything over the years. And for the $370 OTD I paid for my FNP9 it's the best value, best shooting gun I've owned.

  16. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Well-Known Member

    Aug 11, 2005
    Elbert County, CO
    You've quite the Dilemma. In point of fact, you've found the one "wonder-nine" that the 1911 guru Col. Jeff Copper actually priased.

    In truth, I can't sway you either way, because I have the same affliction. My solution was to get both. That said, My Colt Mk IV Stainless was my first handgun ever. I've had a love affair with the 1911 since I found out what they were at about 12 years old.
  17. ceetee

    ceetee Well-Known Member

    Sep 7, 2003
    I really wanted to try out a FNP or FNX, but the shop didn't have any. They had a few H&K's, but those are way out of my price range.
  18. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Well-Known Member

    Aug 11, 2005
    Elbert County, CO
    H&K builds one heck of a nice $500 handgun and sells it for $1,000
  19. Thompsoncustom

    Thompsoncustom Well-Known Member

    Dec 21, 2010
    that's a really hard one as the 1911 and cz 75b and both amazing guns.

    I own a cz 75b and am a really big fan of 1911 but have little experience with them, I can say with a trigger job and a comp hammer you can have a cz 75b with a trigger pull just as good as a 1911 but there is something about the 1911 that has always made me want to get one and they fell great in the hand(I think). I would say go back to the range a few more times and just shoot those two till you pick one.
  20. phrogpilot

    phrogpilot Well-Known Member

    Dec 3, 2009
    Great post and an interesting dilemma.

    I am a John Moses Browning fan; the more I shoot the 1911, the more I appreciate how great a platform it is. Trigger, grip angle........

    There is one pistol you didn't try (I have never seen one as a range rental) that I would seriously consider if I were you, the Browning Hi Power, perhaps the finest expression of JMBs talent. It has all of the goodness of the 1911, but a bit slimmer, and, to my eyes, more beautiful. It is a great carry weapon, carries 13+1 of 9mm+P, points better than any firearm I have ever shot, and has very modest recoil. I have owned over 50 pistols and revolvers in my life, it remains my favorite.

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