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First handgun. BHP

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by pxgq55a, Oct 26, 2011.

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  1. pxgq55a

    pxgq55a Member

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    So, I decided to make the step from rifles to handgns with this '85 vintage hi-power. after reading up a lot on them, i found this at my local shop. I was wondering if anyone on here can shed any light on it for me. I have learned a lot since deciding on a hi-pwer, from Stephen Camp's website on the sbject. But learned yesterday of his untimely passing. May he R.I.P. From his info, I thought at first glance, that it was a MKIII, since it has no hole under the barrel and no rib atop the slide. It does lack the ambidextrous safety of the MKIII and also desn't have the the firing pin safety either. But the slide is maybe a MKIII slide? Maybe its a transitional piece or a early MKIII. Either way, its lovely and I can't wait to get out and shoot it. If anyone has any input, I'd love to learn more. Thanks for looking.

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  2. cactus02

    cactus02 Member

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    standard grade browning hifh power from around 1983 to 1985 ,Not as pretty a the t series but fully functional, will work best with fmj but test it with jhp . Buff up the ramp with a dremel but don't grind any metal away.Have fun.
     
  3. CPO15

    CPO15 Member

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    This gun is gonna spoil you, nothing else that I've owned has shot as well or felt as good in my hand. Enjoy!
     
  4. Silent Bob

    Silent Bob Member

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    Please don't take a dremel to that gun's feed ramp. More guns have been ruined by dremels and kitchen table gunsmithing then all other reasons combined (with the exception of pure neglect). If it has the old "humped" feed ramp, you are limited to ball ammunition and possibly some JHPs with a more rounded ogive such as Federal 9BP, Remington Express 115gr JHP, et al. You will just have to test them. If you must feed all manner of JHPs, a pistolsmith can reshape the feed ramp for you.

    I would limit or even exclude the use of +P ammunition. If you must shoot a lot of +P ammuntion, consider replacing the spring with an 18lb Wolff spring and possibly a buffer.

    Stick to Browning or MecGar mags (Brownings are in fact made by MecGar but also come with a "mousetrap" spring assembly to assist in enabling the magazines to drop free. They also cost more then MecGar-branded mags)

    BHPs are my favoritest pistols.
     
  5. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

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    Gorgeous! The link below is to the Celtic Armory video "Introducing the Hi Power". It will walk you through breaking down the Hi Power to its component parts and re-assembling it. You may not need this now, but later on you will most likely want to do a magdisconnectotomy or other light customization and if you bookmark this link it will save you much tearing out of hair.

    It's also worth watching just to understand how the pistol works.

    http://www.celticarmory.com/media.html
     
  6. Pilot

    Pilot Member

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    The BHP is the perfect first centerfire handgun. It can do it all. Range, home defense, and carry.
     
  7. Dnaltrop

    Dnaltrop Member

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    Well, no-one can accuse you of taking half measures.

    When you go for it, you certainly go for the gusto! Beautiful piece.
     
  8. ku4hx

    ku4hx Member

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    You're going to love it! I've got a "T" series BHP I bought in 1969 NIB at Bucky's in Idaho Falls, ID. I often wonder are they still around as I did a lot of business there.

    Hands down, my BHP is the best feeling, best shooting gun I own and I have a few to compare it against.

    I had Novak's do their reliability package on it and add a set of their sights. It likes OEM and Mec-Gar 13 round magazines best and with them it will now gobble everything I can load for it: RNL, TCL, as well as JHP. Fact is I haven't found a bullet profile it won't run with.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2011
  9. mokin

    mokin Member

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    Quick! If you haven't shot it go buy something else! Anything but a BHP.

    You should have bought something else as a first, or second , or third pistol. Whatever pistol you buy next will not measure up.
     
  10. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

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    I bought my first BHP just a couple of years ago, after 40 years of shooting various handguns. It was a revelation. Nothing else points as naturally and is as easy to shoot well as the Hi Power.

    The trigger is less-than-perfect, but you can improve it by replacing the hammer spring with a lighter one from Wolff and throwing the mag disconnect away - cost: less than $10. The new 15 round Mec-Gar mags work perfectly, so it now has a 15 +1 capacity. They feed all the new HP designs, so what's not to love?

    They are (in my opinion) the best fighting pistol ever made.
     
  11. Wags

    Wags Member

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    A very nice and interesting Hi-Power indeed! I'd be proud of it. You are correct serial # 245PV idenify's this as a 1985 year of manufacture which falls into the MKII years of 1982-1988 i.e. dark green or black parkerized finish, ambi-safety, rib top of slide, drain hole front of slide, rear sight cut out plus wider, solid front sight, plastic grips, and barrel hump removed from feed ramp. Odd that this pistol obviously does not seem to fit into this category? And it could be a transitional caught up before the MKII with left over classic parts? Lots of mysteries when trying to figure out FN at times.

    I also noticed that the slide does not have the ASSEMBLED IN PORTUGAL either, and front of slide has a longer "barrel bushing" more associated with the classic Sport models of the 70's or pre MKII. What ever you have it looks new, and well taken care of. Curious, is the hump taken out of the feed ramp? And your slide is not a MKIII. A MKIII slide would have front & rear dovetail sights and the assembled in portugal roll mark. You enjoy you new pistol and let us know how it shoots!

    http://www.hipowersandhandguns.com/classic_hi_power%20sport%20model.htm

    http://www.hipowersandhandguns.com/Lightly%20Personalized%20Mk%20II.htm

    MKII 1988 (245PP). Original hammer was spur, I added the rowel:
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    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011
  12. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    He is right, you have set the bar very high indeed! Beautiful gun.
     
  13. ByAnyMeans

    ByAnyMeans Member

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    I love my Hi Power and I'm sure you are going to love yours.

    I did eventually do the Mag disconnect and lighter Wolf spring modifications. It has a much nicer trigger now.
     
  14. pxgq55a

    pxgq55a Member

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    Thanks for all the positive comments. And thank you, Kodiakbeer for the video link. I think that's the most comprehensive one I've seen so far. After disassembling last night to do some more preliminary cleaning, It was revealed to me that this gun desn't have the humped feed ramp, and so should be able to feed any ammo efficiently, correct? I'm going to try it out this weekend and i'm sure to be like a kid in a candy store. i'm planning no upgrades, at the moment until after i get some time behind it. Then i can get more of an idea of what areas i think could use improvement. I'm always instantly tinkering with things. but i think i'm going to feel this one out properly first. after that, maybe the recommended novak sights. maybe a slightly heavier recoil spring. maybe a hammer spring swap. maybe a little trigger work. the trigger honestly doesn't feel too lousy as it sits now though. any highly recommended standard velocity ammo to break 'er in with?
     
  15. Lucky Derby

    Lucky Derby Member

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    About the only handgun you can buy now that won't be a disappointment is either another HP, or a 1911.


    Congrats, you started at the top. :D

    Oh,as far as a trigger job, just remove the Magazine Disconnect Safety. It's amazing how big a difference it makes.
     
  16. huntershooter

    huntershooter Member

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    You started with a good one.
    Congrats.
     
  17. Wishoot

    Wishoot Member

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    Every other gun you pick up may now be a huge disappointment.
     
  18. dwhite

    dwhite Member

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    I hate threads like this....

    The more I look at Hi-Powers, the more I want one. They're just beautiful in shape and profile. Lot nicer and more elegant than any 1911 (flame suit on). Kind of an evolution of the 1911 design.

    All the Best,
    D. White
     
  19. rellascout

    rellascout member

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    Great first choice. You have already gotten a lot of solid advice, except for the dremel comment.

    Enjoy we expect a range report ASAP!
     
  20. johnnydollar

    johnnydollar Member

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    Great looking pistol, but curious as well. I wonder if the serial number on the front of the grip strap corresponds with the number on the barrel? By the look of both slide and frame, it would appear to be an older, classic series H-P, but one with the later, straight feed ramp on the barrel. Perhaps someone added the later-model barrel to an earlier frame/slide to enhance feeding with hollowpoints? Because, as Wags pointed out, a H-P made in 1985 should have been parkerized, with ambi safety, the rib atop the slide, and the drain hole in the front of the slide. (I have an 1985 BHP MK II so appointed.) Anyway, as others have said, congratulations on starting at the top--you really can do no better than the Browning Hi-Power as a first gun, or a last gun!
    JD
     
  21. Blue68f100

    Blue68f100 Member

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    You picked a great 1st gun. I have one in my collection that has had 1000's of rounds through it. It's the only gun that I have that I do not have to practice with. These just naturally point. Every one who has mine looks at me and ask does this gun shoot that well. Of course the answer in YES.

    Shoot it and enjoy it for many years to come.....
     
  22. Doubting Thomas

    Doubting Thomas Member

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    If you can get Stephen Camp's book on the BHP it will be money well spent. I think his books are still available on the website.
     
  23. rellascout

    rellascout member

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    Check the magwell on the pistol. Are there ribs there. The MKIII started in 1988 IIRC. I wonder if the frame is cast or forged?
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011
  24. Stringfellow

    Stringfellow Member

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    Damn Pxg, that is the epitome of vintage. Very nice!
     
  25. chris93555

    chris93555 Member

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    That is a great looking gun
     
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