Tag Archives: FN 509

LAPD Goes…FN?

Since FN’s 509 series debuted in the aftermath of the Army’s Modular Handgun System program, which FN did not win, I’ve kinda liked it.

To be fair, I also have reviewed (and run 5K rounds through) the Glock G19X and Sig Sauer P320-M17), the last two models standing for the MHS contract, and, while I liked them as well, the texture/ergos and sights of the 509 appealed to me more. Over the years, I’ve run (and now often carry) the FN 509 Compact, and the FN 509 Edge LS longslide (which I liked, but found overpriced for what it is and who it competes against), so I think I have done my time with the family.

Well, although FN couldn’t get the nod from Big Army, it looks like they did just catch the eye of big LE, as the LAPD is apparently moving away from generations of Glocks, Berettas, and S&Ws and is going with a variant of the FN 509 MRD as its new duty pistol.

The 509 MRD-LE model selected by LAPD, has a 4-inch target crowned hammer-forged barrel with a polished chamber and ramp. Other features include the company’s new flat-faced precision trigger and high-performance striker, adapted from the FN 509 LS Edge, as well as 3-dot tritium night sights co-witnessed to installed micro red dots that can be mounted via FN’s Low-Profile Optics-Mounting System, originally developed for the Army’s Modular Handgun System program.

More in my column at Guns.com. 

Cracking the Army’s Budget Book on SmallArms

The Army’s recently announced budget request for the fiscal year 2022 includes at least $114 million for new rifles, handguns, and the next generation of small arms. 

While the overall FY2022 Defense Department Budget is $112 billion, most of the non-operational dollars are for high-level R&D and big-ticket items like the F-35 fighter. The Army’s budget book for weapons and tracked combat vehicles meanwhile has a low nine-figure ask when it comes to individual small arms. 

The bulk ($97 million) is to go to the Next Generation Squad Weapons, with much of the balance to acquire new Barrett-made Precision Sniper Rifles, and a few crumbs for M4s, M17s, and the like.

More in my column at Guns.com.

Walking the Edge: Testing FN’s 509 Longslide

The FN 509 LS Edge– with the “LS” being for Long Slide– is a polymer-framed practical/tactical striker-fired 9mm that hit the market earlier this year. It’s the size of an M1911, packing a 5-inch barrel and a Hi-Power slide nose profile– but is considerably lighter than either.

I have taken a liking to 509s in recent months and recently just swapped out my EDC piece in favor of a Compact variant from the same family tree and I thought the Edge, after I ran 1,000~ rounds through it, had a lot of things to like about it and one big thing to kinda not like so much: the cost.

Double taps from 7 yards in rapid-fire on old casino castoffs were a snap, so the gun is on point, but costs a bit more than direct competitors, for instance, going about $500 higher than the HK VP9L OR.

More in my review at Guns.com.

My New Carry Gun is an FN

There, I said it.

If you have been following me for the past few years, my primary for a long (long) time staple EDC was a 3rd Gen Glock G19 or a newer G19X with a well-used S&W Model 642 J-frame or FN 503 as a BUG. This, I switched up in 2019 after testing the S&W M & M&P M2.0 Compact, which was the same size/capacity as the G19 but felt so much better and more accurate to boot. The Smith chewed through 2,000 rounds with no issues and, as I was able to buy it cheap, was my go-to, especially when flying around the country.

Now, after three months of kicking the tires, I am putting the M&P back into the safe in favor of an FN 509 Compact.

Just slightly smaller than the G19 (or M&P Compact) it offers a 12-round chopped mag in the chopped down grip and a 15 if you want to go more full-sized. Not a huge difference, but still noticeable, and if you are good with running the 12 rounder, the FN 509 Compact is even more concealable. (Photo: Chris Eger/Guns.com)

After going northward of 1K rounds without a hiccup, I bought the gun from FN rather than sending it back and will be carrying it for keeps moving forward.

My reasons why? Check out my column at Guns.com.

If Only FN Made a 509-series Longslide. Oh, Wait

Earlier this year, FN released the Model 509 LS Edge, with the “LS” referring to the extended 5-inch barrel and corresponding lengthened slide. Optics-ready for just about every micro red dot on the market, it has a lot going on.

Due to the lightening cuts in the slide and polymer frame, the FN 509 Edge LS is the same size as an M1911 but, loaded with 18 rounds of 147-grain 9mm and topped with a Leupold Delta Point Pro, it weighs just 36 ounces.

I’ve been kicking the tires on one for a minute. Check out my initial thoughts after the jump.

Like the Same Old 509 You’ve Come to Love, Only a lil bit Smaller

Announced earlier this year, the FN 509 Compact builds on the legacy – and growing popularity – of the platform that was originally designed in 2015 to compete in the Army’s Modular Handgun System program. While the Pentagon ultimately went with Sig, the extensive R&D led FN to release the 509 to the commercial market in standard, Tactical, MRD, Mid-Size, and LS Edge variants since then.

Overall length is just 6.8 inches with a 3.7-inch barrel. Shipping complete with low-profile iron sights, the FN 509 Compact tips the scales at 25.5 ounces. The size puts it a skosh smaller than the Glock 19 and, with the included 12-round flush fit and 15-round pinky extension mags, able to carry the same capacity of 9mm.

I’ve been checking one out for the past few weeks, and it is my current T&E carry gun.

If you think that grip texture is super aggressive and “sticks” to your hand, you are absolutely correct, my friend!

More on the FN 509 Compact in my column at Guns.com.

Sig: Next-Gen Weapons Delivered to the Army

Sig Sauer this week announced it has completed the delivery of the company’s Next Generation Squad Weapons system to the U.S. Army.

The company is one of three contractors who in 2019 got the nod from the Pentagon to continue with the NGSW program. The sweeping initiative aims to replace the Army’s 5.56mm NATO small arms – the M4 Carbine and M249 Squad Automatic Weapon. Sig’s program consists of an in-house-designed lightweight high-performance 6.8x51mm (.277-caliber) hybrid ammunition, NGSW-AR lightweight machine guns, NGSW-R rifles (based on the MCX carbine), and next-gen suppressors.

They certainly look the part and, if selected, would give Sig the small arms hattrick as their P320s have been adopted as the DOD’s standard handgun to replace everything from the USAF’s lingering K-frame 38s to the Marine’s M45 CQB railguns and everything in between. At that point, the only man-portable system used by the Army not made by Sig would be the M240 and M2, which FN still has a lock on.

More in my column at Guns.com.

And the March Towards Optics-Ready Pistols Goes Forth

Stretching out their popular FN 509 platform, FN on Monday announced its new factory-tuned LS Edge pistol, designed to have many of the same features as a fully customized handgun direct from the factory.

Billed as the “ultimate tactical pistol” the 9mm FN 509 LS Edge has an optics-ready slide over a 5-inch hammer-forged target-crowned barrel. By comparison, the standard FN 509 Tactical series uses a 4.5-inch threaded barrel on a shorter slide with a shorter sight radius. Going past the added length, the 509 Edge LS also brings with it enhanced ergonomics and adaptability along with a flat-face, facet-edge trigger, and other features.

FN’s continuing on the optics cut as-standard trend that the rest of the firearms industry has been moving towards for years, and seems to be doing it nicely.

More in my column at Guns.com.

NGSW? Don’t Hold Your Breath

The current NGSW field 

The U.S. Army is full-speed ahead on an initiative to select a new series of innovative 6.8mm-caliber Next Generation Squad Weapons to phase out its 5.56mm platforms for combat troops. However, it would seem the Department of the Army is hedging their bets with traditional systems just in case things don’t work out like planned such as in past ambitious programs for futuristic small arms.

In April, FN won a 5-year $119 million contract for new M4/M4A1 Carbines from the company’s South Carolina factory– where 500 of the shorty 5.56s roll out every, single, day.

And this week, Big Army likewise issued a $78 million award to FN for more M249s, the squad-level U.S-made variant of the FN Minimi light machine gun that has been standard since 1982.

Just google the Individual Carbine (IC), Objective Individual Combat Weapon (OICW), or the Advanced Combat Rifle (ACR) programs to see why keeping the legacy infantry arms in production until things work out is a good idea.

The army advanced combat rifle ACR prototypes.

Le Glock Mle 2020

French trench raiders during the First World War, winter 1917 Bezange Forest, Lorraine, note the Ruby pistol.

The French military has flirted with modern semi-auto pistols for longer than most. During the Great War, thousands of Spanish-made Ruby and Star pistols augmented the country’s rather lackluster Modèle 1892 revolvers.

This cleared the way for the later FN 1922-inspired MAB Model D pistol and Charles Petter’s famous Mle. 1935, the latter design one that went on to morph into the Swiss SIG P210, arguably one of the best handguns of the 20th Century.

After WWII, the MAC Mle 1950, itself very P210-ish, was adopted and, coupled with the PAMAS G1, a domestically-made clone of the Beretta 92F, is still in service today.

The French MAC 50 PA modèle 1950 pistol

Now, 115 years after the Ruby was first ordered, the French defense ministry has placed an order for 75,000~ new Glocks.

The Glocks, reportedly a two-tone Gen 5 G17 MOS with a threaded barrel, suppressor-height night sight, and optics plate, will be delivered through 2022.

Besides the Austrian polymer pistols, the French are also going FN when it comes to a rifle to replace their venerable FR F2 (itself a souped-up MAS1936).

Sniper overwatch by a 3e RPIMa marksman with a French FR-F2, Rwanda, 1993. These rifles will be upgraded to SCAR H PRs in the coming years. 

More in my column at Guns.com.

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