Does anyone have experience with a rotary action semi-auto (like the Beretta Px4 Storm)

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by C0untZer0, Oct 10, 2021.

  1. C0untZer0

    C0untZer0 Member

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    It seems like there is a market for full-sized softer-shooting pistols, like the 380 ACP, and the rotary barrel supposedly dissipates recoil away from the shooter’s hand and greatly reduces muzzle jump. The design also allows a lower bore-axis.

    I don't know why they're not more popular and I think a full-sized 380 ACP utilizing a rotary action, with a low-bore axis would be well recieved,

    I think Savage had a rotary action 380 ACP at one time, but I could be wrong...
     
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  2. Ohen Cepel
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    Ohen Cepel Contributing Member

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    I have a Beretta/Stoeger Cougar and do think that the recoil is much milder compared to others in that class.

    I think it may be more $$ to make and a bit more bulky which doesn't go well with cheap, small, light which is the trend now. Not sure it makes sense once you get too small as the recoil impulse really isn't there unless you're shooting competition and $$ matters less.

    All that said, I think the Cougar is a great gun and if it hadn't come out during the AWB (thanks bill) with its own magazine it could have done a lot better than it did.
     
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  3. JDGray

    JDGray Member

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    Do we need a softer shooting 380? There is always the 22lr I suppose. Even my super light LCP is not bad to shoot. I might change that opinion if I develop arthritis!
     
  4. Hasaf

    Hasaf Member

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    My main objection to the cougar was the width. I do not know if that is charteristic of that style of lock, or just that one gun, but it seemed quite thick.
     
  5. Bazoo

    Bazoo Member

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    My buddy had a beretta px4 in 45 and it was maybe a bit softer shooting but not really. It was real nice, and reliable the short time he had it.
     
  6. Ohen Cepel
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    Ohen Cepel Contributing Member

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    I think you get that with the lugs that have to turn to the side unlike a block dropping to the bottom. Which adds mass.

    I like the design, but it has it's issues.
     
  7. Blkhrt13

    Blkhrt13 Member

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    I think you kinda poked a hole in it yourself. You said full size. Most full size guns wouldn’t need that extreme mitigation. I don’t think the system works well in a reduced scale either.
     
  8. MikeInOr

    MikeInOr Member

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    Pretty much everyone I know is perfectly capable of shooting a blow back .380 with plenty of proficiency to use one for self defence. Even my trigger shy dainty 15 yo daughter and girlfriend with hand and wrist issues shoot my blowback Bersa 380 quite well. I am not saying that there aren't some people for which a blow back 380 is too much gun, they just aren't in the group of people that I go out shooting with.

    Pretty much everyone that has shot my 1911-380 with its locked breach action copied from a full sized 1911 absolutely loves shooting it. Why, because it is a smooth recoil without the sharp slap of a blow back design.

    Why aren't guns like my 1911-380 more popular? Everyone loves my 1911-380 and says "I need to get one of those"... until they see the price.

    I often carry a LCP and I shoot it very well. When I get to the range and want to have fun the 1911-380 comes out. I also enjoy shooting my several 9mm, 45, 44 mag and 50ae handguns (especially my DE in 44 and 50ae). It isn't about the amount of recoil it is about the profile of the recoil and how it feels in your hand when you squeeze off a shot.

    I would love to find an affordable Cougar some day (stainless!) and maybe a PX4 some day to add to the collection of firearms that are just really fun to shoot!
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2021
  9. Tallball

    Tallball Member

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    I have a full-sized Beretta PX4 Storm in 40 caliber. It was a LE trade-in, IIRC.

    It shoots just fine. The recoil isn't dramatically lessened. It shoots about like any other full-sized 40 caliber service pistol.

     
  10. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    I did some R&D on the PX4. At that time, beretta was trying to enter it into a possible trial for a replacement fort the last pistol the US mil bought from them, which used a cam lock system that frequently failed. I didn't care for the pistol or the locking design, and wondered why they were so opposed to using a (proven) JMB type tilting barrel design.
     
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  11. MikeInOr

    MikeInOr Member

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    Are we comparing locked breach 380's to blow back 380's or are we comparing rotary locked pistols to other locked breach action pistols? I think the OP might have been a little vague about the question he was asking.
     
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  12. C0untZer0

    C0untZer0 Member

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    I'm just wondering if the recoil is easier to deal with than tilting barrel. I think any locked breech action has to feel less snappy than a blowback design, unless the gun has a very heavy slide.

    I don't expect a rotary design to defy the laws of physics, but it may change how recoil is perceived and I do think that there is a market for a duty-sized gun chambered for 380. If the rotary action does mitigate recoil such a pistol would be the softest shooting 380 on the market.
     
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  13. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

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    If a soft-shooting .380 auto is the goal, rather than waiting on someone to property (properly) bring back the Remington Model 51, one would do well to look into current offerings.

    Walther has recently released their gas-delayed CCP M2 in .380 ACP. My CCP M2 in 9mm seems to have shaved off some recoil using this method. I'd imagine the same pistol in .380 ACP would be a dream to shoot.

    There's also not-so-compact pistols that seriously tame the .380ACP such as S&W's EZ380. I purchased this pistol for my wife who has expressed how racking the slide on some autos is hard on the fingers, even using the correct technique.
    Somehow, this fairly light pistol with it's insanely easy-to-rack slide seems to exhibit milder recoil than most other .380's, likely due to it's slightly larger size.

    If someone were to bring back the Model 51 and not fudge it up, it may indeed be successful... unfortunately, one such brand may already have burned that bridge.
     
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  14. NIGHTLORD40K

    NIGHTLORD40K Member

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    Never shot a Cougar, but put a few .50s through Desert Eagles, and find the recoil impulse quite manageable- though granted a direct apples-to-apples comparison is impossible since nothing else uses that cartridge.

    You could make the argument that the Savage Automatics used a rotary-delayed blowback with the barrel itself as the rotational mass. Ive only shot them in .32 but found it somewhat less snappy than a 1903 Colt in the same caliber.
     
  15. berettaprofessor

    berettaprofessor Member

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    I had PX4's in 9 mm and 45. Neither were particularly softer shooting than, say, a Beretta 92 or a 1911. And the guns were butt-ugly. And the 9mm trigger has a bit of trigger "sting". I sold both of them eventually.
     
  16. gc70

    gc70 Member

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    My opinion is based on a full-size PX4 chambered in 9mm, so recoil wouldn't be a big factor regardless of the gun's locking system.

    The rotating barrel system does not reduce recoil per se but the shooter experiences recoil a bit differently than with a tiling barrel system. The barrel is not being tossed upward to accentuate the barrel flip of a tilting barrel. Some small amount of recoil energy is directed into a slight twisting sensation in the frame as the barrel turns. The biggest difference is that recoil seems more straight back into the hand than with most guns with tiling barrels.

    IMO Beretta was greedy and hurt PX4 sales by creating new magazines rather than building the gun around 92-series magazines.

    PX4.jpg

    Lighter guns are typically not softer shooting than heavier guns in the same caliber (exception for blowback versus locked breech noted).
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2021
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  17. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    I couldn't tell the difference with my PX4. My wife says she thinks it recoils less than other similar pistols, but that could be due to a lot of things other than the rotating barrel action.

    I also have a Grand Power K100 (STI branded GP6, but it's the same gun) which is also a rotating barrel lockup and I can't really tell that it shoots much differently from any other 9mm about the same size/weight.

    They are both comfortable guns to shoot, but then again, so is just about any full-sized 9mm pistol.
     
  18. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    The PX4 is indeed a soft shooter.

     
  19. jar
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    jar Contributing Member

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    Does this count?

    Savage-02c-small.jpg
     
  20. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    Not much. The Savage barrel has very little rotation, about 5 degrees.
    The Searle system is supposed to retard blowback by the torque of the bullet in the rifling against that 5 degree rotation. I don't know about the commercial .32 and .380, but period reporters said the Savage .45s had noticeably heavier felt recoil than the Colt. Those guns were refurbished and sold commercially to recoup some of the expenses of setting up for 200 pistols in their unsuccessful run for the Army contract against Colt.

    The Beretta, Grand Power, and Glock 46 are the only current rotating barrel pistols I can think of offhand.
    There were a number of designs that came and went; Steyr Hahn, Obregon, and MAB P15 that I recall. They weren't bad, they just couldn't compete against the vast numbers of toggles, tilting barrels and prop ups.
    Oh, yeah, the Colt All American 2000, the gun everybody loves to hate.

    I don't have any personal experience with a rotating barrel except for a brief check of the Grand Power. As far as I could tell, just another 9mm; although it was fun to slowly pull back the slide and watch the barrel twirl.
     
  21. WestKentucky

    WestKentucky Member

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    I almost agree. Modern designs are pretty good but some of the earlier poly pocket pistols were very unpleasant. I’m especially thinking of the Grendel p10 and it’s not so distant cousin the Keltec P3AT. They are snappy and unpleasant, but not impossible to master. Somehow the Ruger being lighter and smaller isn’t quite as bad. I’m not sure if that’s bore axis, grip angle, or something else going on but the earlier 380s sucked.
     
  22. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    I had a MAB PA-15 and while I thought the felt recoil was less than shooting a comparable Browning Hi-Power or a Colt 1911, you have to consider that it was a full size, all steel gun which weighed close to 40 ounces unloaded.

    The one thing I liked about the rotating barrel system is that you could load it up, be it anything from mild to wild, in the same magazine and not miss a beat. The gun functioned perfectly with any and all FMJ ammo and never had any problems with it.
     
  23. drobs

    drobs Member

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    +1

    Beretta PX4 - the answer to the question no one asked.
    I always saw them as unnecessarily complex. Complexity is not something I'm looking for in a defensive firearm.
     
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  24. 5-SHOTS

    5-SHOTS Member

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    I have a rotating barrel lockup Grand Power Q100 (the striker fired version of the K100).
    I simply love it. It's neck neck with my Pardini GT9-1 as a fun range gun.
    In my experience the rotating barrel lockup really works in recoil mitigation. The breech faces of barrel and slide are in contact for a very long lenght. The system certainly absorbs more energy than the usual Browning system, so it is always a good idea to keep the parts in contact well lubricated; what you get is less recoil energy. The accuracy of the Grand Power is superior. The materials and the machining are excellent.
    The chamber is stepped to keep the insides cleaner.

    I made a review of the Grand Power here: https://www.thehighroad.org/index.php?threads/my-grand-power-q100-a-lot-of-pics.868513/

    Unfortunately, Grand Power's .380ACP models are exclusively straight blowback.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2021
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  25. JTQ

    JTQ Member

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    I don't consider this a big deal.

    The SIG P320 uses a different mag than the P226 (heck, isn't there variety even among the P228 and P229, and even within the P229 family), the HK P30 uses a different mag than the USP. I don't know how many polymer pistols FN has marketed in the last 20 years, but do any of them use the same mags?

    The M9/92 mags are certainly available, but the PX4 mags are arguably a better mag.
     
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