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Surplus Beretta 92 "S"

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by D.B. Cooper, Mar 9, 2018.

  1. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    So I noticed a few online shops are selling older Beretta 92 "S" guns online somewhat cheap. ($300-ish) What do you guys know about these guns?

    They look like a blockier, chunkier version of a 92F. Are they as good as a 92FS, or are they the "Beta" version to be avoided? It appears they use the same magazine as the 92FS. Do they strip down the same?

    Looking for something to use and abuse like a "truck gun" so to speak. Plus, cant really afford a 92FS right now.
     
  2. Tallball

    Tallball Member

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    My FiL bought one a couple of years back when they were closer to $200. It seems pretty much like my "regular" Berettas, other than the magazine release being on the grip near the heel.
     
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  3. lsudave

    lsudave Member

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    Got one from R Guns on Gunbroker. Probably $240 or so, plus shipping/FFL. Came in under $300. Great shooter, really nice gun for the money.
    It seems a little bit sleeker than my 92FS; can't lay my finger on it, but maybe it's the blued slide instead of Bruniton finish.
    Absolutely
    Yes and no; the magazine release is in the heel of the magwell. Because of this, the "notch" is also in the base of the magazine.
    See attached picture
    92fs-magazin-stainless-steel-look-dx.jpg
    See the lower notch? If it's there, you're good to go.

    Of particular note, the 92S was from back in the days before Taurus split off with the PT92, so actually, Taurus mags will also fit, if they have the lower notch.
    Like this $15 mag for a Taurus, sold at Sarco
    IMG_4378.jpg
    http://www.e-sarcoinc.com/taurus-model929mmcalibermagazine15rd.aspx
    I bought a couple of these for another project (I don't own a Taurus), and when I got the Beretta 92S I tested them. They work perfectly.
     
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  4. Speedo66

    Speedo66 Member

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  5. .455_Hunter

    .455_Hunter Member

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    FYI- The 92S guns do not have the following safety features present on the FS and later guns: Positive firing pin block (SB) and positive slide retention in case of metallurgical failure (FS).
     
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  6. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    Well thanks for the input, guys. I think...next payday...I might roll the dice on one of these. I would have preferred a revolver for my intended use, but good luck finding a cheap revolver.

    I had been "kinda" wanting a 92FS (carried one in the military), but just out of my price range for the foreseeable future. Hope this makes a fair substitute.
     
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  7. Redcoat3340

    Redcoat3340 Member

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    It is a fine firearm and compares pretty well to my 92FS and any of my Smith 39s or 59s. The heel release is kinda fun, unless you are thinking of it as a primary self-defense weapon and have trained extensively with regular "US" mag relase button on the side.

    From my perspective it is one of the better bargains in the pistol world today.
     
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  8. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    I've watched a dozen or so reviews on the u-tubes. Seems like the only significant difference is the magazine release location (and, subsequently, the magazine). Shipped to a local FFL + transfer fee = $377. Used 92FS' start around $450 in my area. So the question becomes, do I want to pay $75 (or more) for the thumb release type magazine release?

    In fact...this is too funny...a local gun shop has one for sale. They're asking $350, so basically full price less the transfer fee.
     
  9. .455_Hunter

    .455_Hunter Member

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    My recommendation is save a bit more $$$ and get a good used 90's - very early 00's 92FS with proper metal parts and skip the 92S.
     
  10. Blkhrt13

    Blkhrt13 Member

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    I like my 92s. Not scared to carry or shoot it like any other well made gun.
     
  11. Panzerschwein

    Panzerschwein member

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    Great truck gun. They take any other Beretta 92 mag as long as it has the hole on the side near the bottom that the heel mounted mag release engages in. AFAIK all factory Beretta 92 mags, even those still currently made, retain this hole.

    I have one and it's a solid performer. Sights are extremely tiny (a GI 1911 has better sights if that tells you anything) and the heel mag release will be a learning curve for most Americans, but they are really well made pistols. Well worth the surplus asking price. They are not "beta" guns, they were used for years in great numbers by the Italian police and are just now becoming surplus. They are good to go. They'll have the older style locking blocks in them but they should still last for many thousands of rounds before needing replaced. I'd get one. Here is mine:

    20170731.jpg
     
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  12. Rick in Iowa

    Rick in Iowa Member

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    I have bought two in the last few months: one for myself and one for my father. We put 500 through them last weekend without one malfunction.
     
  13. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    Yup. I was just in a gun shop today. Factory Beretta mag, 15 round, NIB on the shelf, marked for 92FS, had the lower cut out, but it's on the right hand side, opposite side from the 92F cut out. (I expected it to be on the left.)
     
  14. lsudave

    lsudave Member

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    interesting to note. I have something, not sure offhand what brand, that doesn't have the lower slot. Might be a Mecgar. It has the aluminum baseplate, came when I bought the 92FS from J&G.
     
  15. .455_Hunter

    .455_Hunter Member

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    I believe that only when the 92S guns began to hit the US market in large numbers (5 - 8 years ago?) did Beretta "reintroduce" the heel notch on the OEM mags. Early 2000's factory mags do not have the extra notch.
     
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  16. nebraska_farmer

    nebraska_farmer Member

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    I bought one recently as I'd never fired a Beretta 92 and wanted to give it a try. Great shooting pistol, accurate and easy to control. Mine was stamped on the side by a gun shop in IL which upset me, grips were a bit scratched and it had some wear marks but mechanically everything was good to go. The only thing I didn't like about it was the sights. Put a few hundred rounds through it without issue and gave it to my sister as she didn't have a home defense gun. I'll probably replace it with another more modern 92 series of pistol with the option to replace the sights.
     
  17. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    This keeps coming up over and over in other people's youtube videos. They do look pretty small. (short rear sight height, narrow notch, etc.) For the life of me, I don't recall what the 92FS (M9 in my case) sights were like, but I don't recall them being "bad" sights. Anyone with a better memory than me that can explain the difference? (Is there any difference?)
     
  18. .455_Hunter

    .455_Hunter Member

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    M9s have big square sights where you put the "head on the snowman" with the dot front and post rear. Civilian 92s have normal three dot sights.
     
  19. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    Right, I'm aware of that difference. Is there any difference in the size of the sights between the 92S and FS?
     
  20. AlexanderA
    • Contributing Member

    AlexanderA Member

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    I just checked my Beretta 92FS / M9 mags. The Beretta factory 15-round mags do not have the hole at the bottom. Neither do the Check-Mate military mags. However, the Beretta factory 10-round mags do have the hole at the bottom. Noted, this is my personal experience. You may not be able to extrapolate a general rule from it. Maybe the rule is that there is no rule regarding magazine interchangeability.
    No, the lower cutout is supposed to be on the right side, as pictured earlier in this thread. The upper cutouts (for the 92FS / M9) are on both sides, because the magazine release can be set up for either right-handed or left-handed shooters. (It's sort of "semi-ambidextrous.")
    Actually, the sights on the M9 and the civilian 92FS are the same. The difference is in which of the indentations are filled in with white paint. The military M9 has the center indentation filled in, which results in the "snowman" sight picture. The civilian 92FS has the side indentations filled in, resulting in the "three dot" sight picture.

    (I'm a collector, so I notice these nitpicking details.)
     
  21. Panzerschwein

    Panzerschwein member

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    True for current M9s, not true for older ones. The older M9s do not have the "dots" of which you speak, and I know what you're talking about as I own a recent production M9 and the older ones in the armory at my old squadron (USAF) don't have the dots in the metal.
     
  22. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    Going back to magazines...

    I normally (not always but almost always) play the long game when it comes to guns. My son is 16 years old, and I always ask the question: "How will my grandson(s) or granddaughter(s) (or even great grands) use this gun?

    In my view, the single biggest problem with autoloaders is the magazine. How will my next generation obtain magazines for this gun? Will they be able to obtain magazines? Will this gun become a wall-hanger due lack of magazine availability? Will it come down to buying springs and followers for 92FS magazines and repairing the existing magazines that I can buy today?
     
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  23. vkeith

    vkeith Member

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    I bought a 92S several years ago. I thought getting used to the magazine release location would be a pain as a lefty, but I got used to it fairly quickly. What I haven't got used to is the tiny sights. The front sight blade is short, thin, and integral to the slide. The rear is dovetailed in but the sight groove is narrow to match the front.

    The rear sight can be replaced, but there isn't enough metal in the front of the slide to make replacing the front sight cost effective. Aftermarket and the US milsurp magazines that I've seen don't have the correct notch, but it can be added. Every factory 15 round mag I've seen has had both notches, and they are readily available for ~$30.

    If you can get a FS for $75 more, I'd recommend it over the S; the sights are worth the difference. I bought mine because it was half the price of a new a FS at the time, and I prefer the blued finish compared to the brunition ones.
     
  24. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    Interesting. I momentarily thought "wonder if you can replace the S slide with an FS slide" to get the bigger sights, and then quickly realized this violates the law of diminishing returns. I just saw a new FS in a store this morning for around $650; I see used FS guns starting at $450. And I think that's a fair comparison. Comparing the price of a new, current production gun to that of a milsurp gun is really apples and oranges.
     
  25. AlexanderA
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    AlexanderA Member

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    During the 1994-2004 AWB, pre-ban 15-round Beretta magazines were available, but they cost up to $60 each. (I actually paid that much for some.) I would not preclude a similar ban being enacted again. The wise move would be to stock up on such magazines now, to hedge your bets.
     
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