As I have mentioned a few times before, I really like FN’s 509 and 503 series pistols and have spent some extensive periods running them on T&Es over the past couple of years as part of my “day job.” I even got to go behind the scenes at FN’s factory in Columbia, SC back in 2019 to see how they are born.
I knew about the FN 502 back in December, when I saw the PTO trademark for the name filed. However, what I did not fully know this week, is that it is a hammer-fired .22LR!
A “tactical” gun built on the lessons learned and profile of the 509 (it uses the same holsters), the 502 includes an optics-ready slide and a threaded barrel, as well as a 15-round magazine option.
Yes, I have one inbound for testing! You know this…
More on the FN 502 in my column at Guns.com.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
For the past several months, I have spent a lot of time testing and evaluating a number of small pistols intended for concealed carry and have done the worst thing possible– fallen in love with one.
My typical go-to EDC for the past 15 years has either been a Glock G19 (3rd Gen, or G19X) or an S&W M&P M2.0 Compact, augmented by or substituted with a J-frame or G43. However, after going 1K rounds with the new FN 503, I am increasingly substituting the snubby/tiny Glock for this thin little 9mm.
The FN 503, left, is just a hair smaller than the Glock 43, right, while having the same magazine capacity, steel sights, and a better trigger.
More on my journey with the FN 503 in my column at Guns.com.
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.
The original pocket Browning (FN) was a slim, six-shot .25ACP blowback-operated handgun that weighed about 13-ounces and used a rear grip safety much like the one later seen on his M1911. This early Browning grew into the Colt 1908 Vest Pocket and a slightly modified variant was sold by FN in Belgium as the Model 1905 for decades.
That’s where Belgian small arms guru Dieudonné Saive (who later finished the Browning Hi-Power and designed the FN-49 and FAL) came in.
Working with the original Model 1905 as a baseline, Saive dropped the grip safety in favor of a manual thumb-operated safety lock that doubled as a hold-open. Lighter, weighing just over 9-ounces while still being an all-steel pistol, the gun was sold from 1931 onward as the Baby Browning.
The Browning Baby was a half-inch shorter than the FN M1905 or Colt Vest Pocket and 4-ounces lighter, while still being a 6+1 shot .25ACP. (Photo: Richard Taylor/Guns.com)
Out of production since 1983, FN has since moved on to polymer-framed double-stack 9mm pistols that were a good bit larger. However, their new FN 503, the company’s smallest and slimmest gun since the Baby line ended, came out in March and I have been burning one up as of late.
The new FN 503 pistol is a 6+1 9mm that has a 3.1-inch barrel with recessed target crown which contributes to a 5.9-inch overall length. Some 4.6-inches high, the gun is slim– with a width of 1.1-inches overall.
A big baby, but a more mighty one for sure.
More in my column at Guns.com.
Once upon a time, Fabrique Nationale was known for making the smallest, most compact handguns on the market. These included John Browning’s Mle 1900, Mle 1906 Vest Pocket (which predated his Vest Pocket for Colt by two years), Mle 1910, and the Browning Baby.
Fast forward to the 1980s and all of those classic designs were put to bed.
To fill this hole in their catalog in recent years, full-size polymer-framed double-stacks like the FNS and FN 509 have been chopped down to more compact designs, but they were still pretty chonky compared to Mr. Browning’s early guns.
Well, earlier this year FN launched the FN 503, a slim, 6+1 shot single-stack 9mm that is the company’s smallest handgun in generations.
Well hello there…
Separated by 110 years, today’s FN 503 compares well in size to Mr. Browning’s FN 1910 but comes in 9mm rather than .380 and has much better ergonomics and sights.
I’ve been playing around with it for the past couple of months, and have the details in my column at Guns.com.