Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Inexpensive Browning High-Power clones?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by AirPower, Sep 24, 2005.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. AirPower

    AirPower Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Messages:
    543
    How about those inexpensive BHP clones, like Argentina FM, Hungary FEG, Bulgaria Arcus, India and also Israel made copies. Are they any good, and is oen better than another? I'm looking to pick one up for about 200 bucks.
     
  2. SouthpawShootr

    SouthpawShootr Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2002
    Messages:
    2,627
    Location:
    Chesapeake, VA
    I have the FEG, Arcus, and FM 95 Detective.

    Looks to me that my FEG is as close to the original as you can get. It's a nice gun, but there are flaws in the finish, but not glaring and they're excellent guns for the money.

    My Arcus was $50 more than my FEG and seems to be about the same quality as the FEG. It departs drastically from the looks of the Hi-Power, but, from what I've been able to gather, most parts interchange.

    My FM is has a slightly different slide contour than a real Hi-Power, but otherwise it's identical. Finish doesn't compare, though. Funny thing is that the mags drop free from this gun even though it has the dredded magazine disconnect. The trigger is better than any stock factory Hi-Powers I've tried, Browning or FN.

    Haven't had any trouble with any of the three. Just use factory Browning of FN magazines or maybe Mec-gar and they work fine. I would judge these to be about equivalent. None of the three really makes the cut when compared with a genuine Hi-Power. Keep in mind, holsters for the Arcus will likely be difficult to find (I have a local custom leather guy who simply held onto the gun for about 4 weeks to make mine).
     
  3. AirPower

    AirPower Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Messages:
    543
    Thanks Southpaw. When you said the clones dont' compare to the real BHP, is that in the finish department mostly, or does it also include reliablity and durability? I'm thinking of using it for an inexpensive truck gun, or something I can just toss around and not worry about finish scratches, but still durable enough and reliable.
     
  4. dolanp

    dolanp Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2005
    Messages:
    944
    Location:
    Texas
    You might look at the CZ 75, I don't think it's really a 'clone' but they are nice. They run more than $200 though so it might not be feasible.
     
  5. Hawkmoon

    Hawkmoon Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2004
    Messages:
    3,454
    Location:
    Terra
    I can't offer a comparison, because the only clone I have shot is one of the Argentiniam FM Hi-Powers. I bought it because it was what I could afford. It's a great shooter. I haven't had it very long and haven't pushed a lot of rounds through it, but so far it has functioned 100% -- which is more than I can say for some other brands of pistols I paid a lot more for.

    I would like ... some day ... to be able to afford a real Hi-Power just to say that I own one, but for a 9mm shooter I would not hesitate to buy another FM.
     
  6. wally

    wally Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2004
    Messages:
    12,737
    Location:
    Houston, Tx
    As long as CDNN still has new FN HiPowers for $400 why mess around with the clones FEG, FM, Arcus are all $260-$280 around here when you find a deal on a new one.

    --wally.
     
  7. SouthpawShootr

    SouthpawShootr Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2002
    Messages:
    2,627
    Location:
    Chesapeake, VA
    Pretty much finish. I'll give you an example. My FEG, on the outside, is pretty much the equal of a Browning with regard to finish. Strip it down and there are tool marks all over the place inside. The gun works, so I really don't give a damn, but you can tell that there was much more attention to detail with the Browning and FNs. I'll give you another example, the barrel on mine had a smal area at the very bottom of the feedramp that was scortched and uneven. Didn't affec the reliability or accuracy of the gun. I cleaned it up (took off the sharp edges) and went about my business. Neither Browning nor FN would have let such a defect into circulation. I've heard, but not experienced, that FEG uses softer steel in construction of their Hi-Power. Can't say they do, can't say they don't. I'm not one to stres my guns with high pressure loads, and I've only got a couple thousand rounds through my FEG, so my gun is still going strong.

    Reliability? All three seem to be the equal of Browning or FN Hi-Powers.
     
  8. Souris

    Souris Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Messages:
    236
    Location:
    South of Canada
    +1 Southpaw

    I really like my FEG. I have put at least 2,000 + rounds through it and it has been very reliable. The exterior finish is good and people at the range have mistaken it for a HP. The finish where it is not critical, and not seen, shows tool marks. My FEG does not have a magazine disconnect and is DA/SA which, to me, is an inprovement over the HP.
     
  9. AirPower

    AirPower Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Messages:
    543
    Souris, does the FEG have SA/DA for all their HiPower clones, or just particular ones made to be SA/DA?
     
  10. Sunray

    Sunray Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2003
    Messages:
    11,274
    Location:
    London, Ont.
    "...it's really a 'clone'..." Yep, the CZ-75 is a BHP clone. Slightly bigger though. My Inglis fits my hand, but the CZ-75 does not. Otherwise, I'd have snapped one up when I was working in the gun shop, long ago, when they first came here. Every one came with a factory test target. Outstanding accuracy, fit and finish.
    Mind you, I don't think a pistol is the best choice for a truck gun. I'd be thinking SKS. Or a 20" barreled, pump, shotgun. If I even thought handgun, it'd be a used .38 or .357 revolver.
     
  11. atblis

    atblis Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    Messages:
    4,531
    Location:
    Neither here nor there
    Feg and the CZ75

    The older FEGs are really nice (the finish is awesome) and are one of the best BHP clones.

    The model you would want is PJK-9HP.
    THe newer ones don't compare.

    The CZ75 is not a BHP clone by any means. Inpsired by the BHP would be a better way to put it.
     
  12. mbott

    mbott Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2002
    Messages:
    351
    Location:
    Central, OH
    +1

    --
    Mike
     
  13. Shear_stress

    Shear_stress Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Messages:
    2,728
    My Arcus was $180. New ones are just over two hundred. Spend the balance on ammo.
     
  14. Texas Gunman

    Texas Gunman Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Messages:
    242
    Location:
    Texas Hill Country
    +1 for Arcus,shot one for years now,reliable and very accurate, also seem to be well made.

    TG
     
  15. briang2ad

    briang2ad Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2005
    Messages:
    671
    Arcus and parts/mags...

    Does the Arcus take a regular HP mag? What about parts, etc?
     
  16. SouthpawShootr

    SouthpawShootr Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2002
    Messages:
    2,627
    Location:
    Chesapeake, VA
    Browning Hi-Power mags? Absolutely.

    Parts are a crapshoot. Only read of one failure - a broken extractor. The thread is somewhere on this board. IIRC, a stock Browning part was used and worked just fine. Keep in mind that even though most Browning Hi-Power parts will work in the Arcus (I'm sure there are exceptions), practically everything will have to be fitted. Even Browning and FN guns parts have to be fitted. This design has been in continuous production since about '35 or so and there have been variances in dimensions and tolerances. Parts suppliers have to cover the whole range, so many parts are likely to be oversized to some degree.
     
  17. xv920j

    xv920j Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2004
    Messages:
    41
    Location:
    Missouri
    hi power

    I have the Argentine FM Hi Power.

    The finish is not pretty, The trigger is a little gritty,and the sights seem small for my old eyes. That being said: it is accurate and utterly reliable. I would not hesitate to trust it for self defense.

    My wife had a Browning Hi Power. Nice finish, decent trigger....jam-a-matic. We got rid of it.

    I'm sure our experience with the Browning was not typical of the brand else they wouldn't be so popular.

    In my limited experience the FM delivers more value for the money as a defensive weapon. The Browning is ,of course , more desirable as a collector.
     
  18. 1911 guy

    1911 guy Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2005
    Messages:
    6,468
    Location:
    Garrettsville, Oh.
    Another HP clone

    You may or may not want to look at the Charles Daly HP. Never even held one, so I can't tell you any more.
     
  19. Shear_stress

    Shear_stress Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Messages:
    2,728
    I currently have a full-size Arcus that I am very pleased with. I use it as a range gun and a vehicle for consequence-free High Power tinkering. While the Arcus lacks the graceful styling of the Browning, it is a well-finished gun made from high-quality materials. After its magazine safety found its way from the gun to a drawer, it has a nice and crisp trigger pull as well. I did have some extraction issues with S&B, but a Wolffe extra-power extractor spring solved that.

    I briefly had an FM High Power, but traded it away before I knew I was making a mistake. For the time I had it, it was a good, sturdy gun. The Arcus seems to be more accurate, but there are many reasons why that may be, and they don't all involve the gun.
     
  20. wileyj

    wileyj Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2004
    Messages:
    56
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Charles Daly

    I bought a Charles Daly Hi Power to go with my FM.
    I have never tried a real FN model.
    Both of mine have the mag safety removed and I had the FM to a gunsmith to smooth things out a bit. It has about a 5 lb trigger pull.
    The Daly is very nice; well made and except for the writing on ths slide smooth and effective. When i removed the mag safety, the trigger pull dropped significantly. I do not have a measure but after the trigger takeup, the break is less than the FM measured at 5 lbs.
    I am shooting my CHL renewal next week with it. It comes with the XS Express sights - a ball and a V and they shoot very well for me
    I do not remember my purchase price but it was significantly lower than the list.

    ..wiley
     
  21. cgv69

    cgv69 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2004
    Messages:
    219
    Location:
    N. KY
    I'm sorry but I couldn't disagree more. $400 is an incredibly low price for a real FN Hi-Power. The same exact gun (with Browning's name on the side) sell for $700+. With a price that low, it makes absolutely no sense to me to buy a cheap knock off, even at half the price.

    In fairness, I'm am a quality over quantity kind of guy so I'm not generally a fan of lower quality knock offs to start with. Still, when you can get the real deal for only $400, I don't see any way to justify a lower quality knock off.

    It's such a good deal I'm seriously considering buying another one before they are all gone as a backup.

    Just my $.02
     
  22. BryanP

    BryanP Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2003
    Messages:
    2,420
    Location:
    Lavergne, TN
    Charles Daly HP's are rebadged Hungarian FEG's.

    I own an older FEG PJK-9HP. It was very inexpensive ($150) used. Turns out this particular one had an awful trigger pull but a quick once-over by the gunsmith at the shop I bought it from fixed that. The finish isn't the greatest but it's a good little shooter. I'd put it right next to my older beater Taurus 66 .357. Both were bought used and cheap for less than $150. Both aren't the prettiest things in the world but they work just fine.
     
  23. Tom Servo

    Tom Servo Member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2004
    Messages:
    1,314
    Location:
    The hilly SE
    How are the Daly Hi-Powers? I've seen them from time to time going pretty cheap, but I've only ever handled one of their 1911s. Worth checking out?
     
  24. Shear_stress

    Shear_stress Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Messages:
    2,728
    Of course. Except when it comes to equating price with quality. The recent influx of Eastern Bloc guns has made a hash out of that piece of conventional wisdom. After detail stripping my Arcus, I fail to see how it is in any way a lower quality gun.

    I would agree that it is not as pretty as the Browning.
     
  25. cgv69

    cgv69 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2004
    Messages:
    219
    Location:
    N. KY
    I do agree that price does not always equal quality. If it did that would mean that somehow the "FN" marked HP was somehow lower quality than the "Browning" marked HP because you can buy them for ~$300 less when in fact they are the same gun with different rollmarks.

    I am new to HP's myself so I will admit I do not know a lot about the Arcus version but a quick search led me to the following info...

    Fit and finish is much lower than the typical FN\Browning
    The sights are not as good as the FN\Browning MKIII
    The slide is not milled to the same spec as a FN\Browning making it larger and heavier.

    And most of that info came from a guy who owns and likes his Arcus. What I wonder then is, if they took all these shortcuts that you can readily see, what about short cuts that you can't see? Cheap springs, improperly heat treated parts such as the sear, hammer or safety? Who knows but I wouldn't want to find out when my life depended on it. If you do have breakage, does anybody know for sure if standard HP parts will fit in a Arcus without modification? These are the things that concern me.

    Either way, if it's just going to be a plinking\range toy then for $180-$200 you probably couldn't go too wrong but my point was really this...

    $400 for a real, NIB FN HP is a steal and not likely something you will see again. Look at Gunbroker and other auction sites, you'll have a hard time finding a used genuine HP that cheap. Anybody who has any interest in getting an HP should jump on this deal before its too late but that's just my opinion. YMMV
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page