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CZ 97B vs EAA Witness 45

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by distra, Feb 1, 2009.

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  1. distra

    distra Member

    Dec 3, 2005
    I just picked up a 75B and would like to add a 45 version to my CZ family. I came across several EAA witness pistols on GB and wondered how they compare to the CZ 97B? Any information would be appreciated. The EAA witness pistols are ~ $100-$200 cheaper than the CZ are the CZ's worth the extra $$.
  2. Deer Hunter

    Deer Hunter Member

    Dec 26, 2005
    EAA Witnesses are great pistols. I would skip the regular version and go straight to the Elite Match Witness in .45.

    I have a CZ 97, but I'm looking at turning it SAO and putting a competition hammer in it, just so it will have a really nice trigger. The EM witness will have a great trigger from the box. It's also slightly smaller than the 97B.

    Of course, the 97B is built like a tank. I have read of people upgrading the recoil spring and running .45 Supers through the gun. It's also insanely accurate.
  3. schmeky

    schmeky Member

    Mar 17, 2006
    West Monroe, Louisiana

    I have both, a Witness 45 and the CZ-97B. Even thought they are based on the same design, they are distinctly different. The Witness is a 45 with essentially the same external physical ergonomics as the CZ-75, a great feature, and it still holds 10 rounds in the mag.

    The Witness will typically have a better SA trigger out of the box, but I don't like the DA; the short hammer mainspring makes if difficult to have a light DA, although it can be achieved, but who shoots in DA much anyway?

    The CZ is significantly larger externally compared to the Witness. The Witness is a better "feeder" with most bullet types including JHP's. My Witness would not feed 200 LSWC reloads. There is a sharp ridge on the mouth of the chamber I had to smooth out, after that, it fed the 200 LSWC's without a hitch.

    Accuracy is toss up, both are excellent out of the box. The sights on the CZ are much easier to upgrade, the Witness front sight cannot be replaced without having the slide machined, and I'm not a fan of the standard Witness front sight, although the LPA rear sight is great. The Wonder finish on my Witness is uneven and blotchy, but it's not a high dollar gun. The CZ finish can be uneven from time to time as well.

    The standard Witness mag on mine was not very good, had to replace it with a Mec-Gar for reliable function. EAA customer service has the worst reputation in the industry and deservedly so; CZ's is much better.

    As you mentioned, the Witness is cheaper and represents a fanstatic bargain for what you get. I prefer the CZ, but I have tricked mine out and I have medium+ hands, so the 97 fits me better.
  4. wally

    wally Member

    Jan 2, 2004
    Houston, Tx
    Get the Witness Elite Match 45, its what the CZ97 should have been. Takes the same magazines as the 97, but the grips is so much closer to the CZ75 its unreal.

    Only get the standard Witness if cost is your main concern, the CZ97 is generally a bit more expensive than the Elite Match, the standard Witness is about $75-100 less, the ELite MAtch is way more than $100 better!

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