Tag Archives: new pistols

19 Shot .45 ACP: More on the New FN 545

In what is a logical next step from the company that brought the world the FNX-45 and FN 509, the FN 545 Tactical is loaded with extras– and is chambered in “God’s caliber.”

Debuted just prior to this year’s SHOT Show alongside the new FN 510 in 10mm Auto, the 545 is essentially an enlarged FN 509 Tactical chambered in .45 ACP. While John Browning’s venerable 118-year-old chunky monkey of a caliber is best known in single-stack 1911s, the popular round keeps on ticking with a new generation of double-stack 2011s and guns like the Gen 5 Glock 21.

At first look, the FN 545 Tactical gets its name honestly, being optics ready, with an extended threaded barrel, and shipping complete with two magazines including a flush 15+1 rounder and an extended 18+1 round mag.

The overall length of the FN 545 Tactical is 8.3 inches, which is about as long as a Government profile 1911, while the weight is a lighter 31 ounces.

The 4.71-inch cold hammer-forged, target-crowned barrel on the FN 545 is threaded .578x28TPI to mount compensators and suppressors. Seen here with a SilencerCo Omega installed. A great thing about the .45 ACP round is that it is inherently subsonic in velocity, which makes it natural for use with suppressors.

More in my column at Guns.com.

An Unlikely All-steel Micro 9

EAA, long known for its Regard, Witness, and Windicator models, two years ago began to import the Girsan MCP35 from Turkey. That later pistol seems to be modeled after the later post-1980 Browning Mark II/III models made by FN during the last few decades of the model’s run with that company. The latter includes an external extractor, a serrated ring hammer, a slim trigger, a windage drift-adjustable rear sight, ships with a Mec-Gar produced 15-shot aftermarket double-stack magazine and includes both an ambidextrous safety and a magazine-disconnect safety (more on this abomination later).

I really dug the standard-sized MCP35, seen here in a factory FDE option, finding it an excellent value and lots of fun on the range. (All photos: Chris Eger/Guns.com)

While EAA introduced updated OPS and Match series MCP35s, which upgraded the legacy standard with accessory rails, optics cuts, and a better trigger, what I openly wished for was a shortened version optimized for carry. Hi-Power fans will immediately recall the old FM Detective.

Made by FM in Argentina, which had been set up under license by FN back in the 1960s to make BHPs for the Argentine military and police, the Latin American armory developed a shortened model that retained the same size grip and magazine capacity. It was only brought into the States for a few years in the 1990s, when it was marketed as the Detective by importers.

I was a huge fan of the Detective and bought and carried the gun on the right for several years. It was rough and basic, but it worked. For those interested, according to the online inflation calculators, $239 in 1992 is worth $514.18 today, which is around what the MCP35 PI runs. Also, do not try to go to SOG and get the above deal, as that importer closed its doors years ago.

Taking a cue from the old FM Detective, EAA teased the new MCP35 PI late last year and started shipping it a couple of months ago.

The basic concept trims an inch off the barrel length and almost an inch and a half in overall length, as well as a few ounces in weight, from the standard MCP35, leaving a more compact pistol, roughly akin to the concept of a Commander 1911.

The big kicker is that, in that size, it is the same size as guns like the SIG P365 XMacro and Springfield Armory Hellcat Pro, while being hammer-fired and all-steel. 

The EAA Girsan MCP35 PI is a factory-shortened Hi-Power clone that still accepts standard magazines and most parts, save for slide and barrel components. 

My full review on the PI after the jump.

On FN’s new 510 10mm…

I was on hand in 2017 when FN debuted the new FN 509 pistol, the product of more than 1 million rounds of testing and an offshoot of the gunmaker’s submission to the Army’s Modular Handgun System competition.

Based on its much-liked FNS Compact platform, that 9mm 17+1 capacity handgun was significantly beefed up to meet rigorous military requirements. Note the 24+1 round extendo

Then a year later came the announcement of the FN 509 Tactical, which was both suppressor and optics-ready with suppressor-height iron sights that co-witness with several MRDs on the market and was augmented with an extended 24-round magazine, as seen above.

Now, FN 509 Tactical has essentially grown to a full centimeter, so to speak, and has hit the market in the form of the 10mm FN 510, with all the same features but in the more commanding caliber.

Besides being suppressor and optics-ready, when it comes to the mags themselves, the FN 510 Tactical ships to most states with a standard flush-fit 15+1 round magazine and an extended 22+1 round mag. Those living in restricted areas have to make do with 10+1 round compliant capacity mags until they can repeal local prohibitions.

I’ve been kicking one around for the past couple of months and have a report in my column at Guns.com.

So what’s the deal with the Glock 47? (A: Interoperability)

Glock came to SHOT Show in Las Vegas last month with the new commercial variant of the G47, and I snagged one for a better look.

A pistol that debuted a few years ago but wasn’t available to the public, the G47 came as part of an $85 million/10-year contract with U.S. Customs and Border Protection in 2019. With more than 45,000 sworn law enforcement agents and officers, CBP’s mission includes security through the U.S. Border Patrol as well as customs and counter-smuggling operations at over 330 ports of entry. It is the largest federal LE agency inside the Department of Homeland Security.

The contract included not only the previously unknown G47, which by all accounts was created especially for the contract but also compact Glock 19 Gen 5 models and subcompact Glock 26 Gen 5s, all in 9mm. Keep that in mind moving forward.

The G47 isn’t a “game changer” but it does have a few little things that are interesting about it.

Such as this:

The G47, right, is seen above compared to the crossover G19X, which is the same height and roughly the same frame but with a G19-length slide and barrel. (Photo: Chris Eger)

And, showing off that modularity, I give you the “you got chocolate in my peanut butter” that is the G19X and G47 MOS with swapped uppers. Both guns shoot and cycle fine. You could do the same between the G47 and the G17 Gen 4/5, G45, and G19 Gen 4/5. (Photo: Chris Eger)

More in my column at Guns.com.

Everything you want in a P365, without the loudener

SIG has an optimized variant of the 17+1 round 9mm P365 XMacro headed to the market– minus the integrated compensator that a lot of folks detest– but with a few extra goodies.

The new P365 Macro TACOPS will have the slightly taller grip module of the XMacro that comes standard with a frame-mounted M1913 accessory rail for lights and lasers. The upper half is that of a standard P365 XL. What is totally new on the micro 9 is an integrated magwell for faster reloads, an extended slide catch lever, and, as it is a TACOPS package, four flush-fit 17-round magazines.

I ran into the P365 Macro TACOPS at SIG’s media event in Nevada last week on the eve of SHOT Show and got a sneak peek at the new pistol.

The P365 Macro TACOPS can be looked at as a P365 XMacro in which someone swapped out a regular XL top half and added a magwell and extended slide lever. The pistol shown wears a SIG RomeoZero Elite 1×24 micro red dot– which fits the Shield RMSc/Holosun K footprint of the series– with its optional metal shield installed.

More in my column at Guns.com.

In one of the most surprising stories from SHOT…

Confession time: I have long owned and used an 8+1 shot Bersa Thunder CC .380, finding it both reliable and very easy to conceal. At the time I picked it up, I’d gone down a rabbit hole in which I owned several Argentinian-made pistols including a few HAFDASA Ballester–Molina .45ACPs and a couple of 9mm FM (not FN) Hi-Powers.

Not a bad little gun…

Founded by a trio of Italian immigrants to Argentina back in the 1950s, the company made a name for itself crafting small and dependable blowback-action pistols that evoked a sort of Walther PP/PPK flavor.

Long imported by Eagle Imports, Bersa switched gears in 2021 and elected to go with Talon moving forward while also looking to bring some production to the U.S. This led to a new state-of-the-art facility in Kennesaw, Georgia which has been slowly standing up for the past two years.

That’s what brought me to Bersa’s booth hidden over in the 70,000-block of Ceasar’s Forum during SHOT Show last week.

Did I mention they are making a half dozen different AR models now?

More in my column at Guns.com.

So Beretta *finally* made another SAO 92

“Did you see the Single Action?” he asked in lieu of a greeting. The man posing the question was a friend of mine, long involved in the behind-the-scenes R&D and market research at Beretta and now with another similarly large and distinguished European gun maker in whose booth we were standing at SHOT Show in Las Vegas.

In fact, I had not seen the new Beretta 92 XI, or “9211” first-hand but I had heard of its existence from a fellow gun writer who had gone to the media day for the gun the day prior. It was a small community and news always traveled fast, especially in the digital age.

“So I take it you had a hand in that?” I asked.

“Oh yeah.”

“Why did it take so long to do that? Folks loved the Billennium,” I said, speaking of the limited run of SAO Beretta 92s released in 2001. These guns are often described as the best 92 ever made.

Heading over to Beretta shortly after speaking to my friend about everything his new company was working on, I encountered the 92XI and was impressed.

Using all the “X” series features that the company had previously introduced in the 92X Performance model– optics ready slide, slim Vertec frame, DLC coated trigger internals– the new 92XI runs a crisp single-action-only trigger with a flat bow and a manual frame-mounted safety lever, ideal for carrying “cocked and locked.”

More in my column at Guns.com.

Oh, that Cheetah roar

Probably one of the most underrated of .380ACPs, the old-school Beretta 84/85 Cheetah, with its subcompact alloy frame and its 13+1 capacity, was a rock-solid classic back in the 1990s and early 2000s.

I have a couple of different .32 and .380 Beretta Cheetahs, all recently imported former Italian police guns, and I really like them.

Well, Beretta has brought it back in a very modern second generation, the 80X.

As its name would imply, borrows the Vertec grip, X-treme S Double/Single trigger, and skeletonized hammer as seen on the 92X line, but shrinks everything down a bit while keeping a 13+1 round capacity.

Direct blowback action, it runs a 3.9-inch barrel giving it an overall length of a very handy 4.9 inches. Weight is 25 ounces unloaded. Either way, nice to see folks are still making hammer-fired metal-framed guns for mainstream carry use. 

More in my column at Guns.com.

That 5.7, tho

So, the FN 5.7x28mm PDW round, which is pushing 30 years young, almost died out by about 2018, with only one small maker (California’s Excel) making pistols outside of FN.

Then the Ruger 57 pistol (and companion carbine), Diamondback DBX, CMMG Banshee MK57, PSA Rock, and Masterpiece MPA57 hit the market just in the past three years, joined by the third generation of FN’s own pistol. Added to this, AAC (PSA’s brand) along with Federal and Speer have started loading ammo for it, while Fiocchi is expanded its own offerings, adding to the availability and likely dropping the price in the coming days.

Well, now, Smith & Wesson has entered the fray with a $699 pistol gas-operated hammer-fired pistol that feels better than just about any of the above.

The 22+1 capacity (not a misprint) M&P 5.7.

I handled it at SHOT Show, and the handgun has a light and crisp feel to it with the felt recoil akin to a .22 Magnum.

More in my column at Guns.com.

FN Breaks Ground on new 10mm, 45ACP Striker Fired Pistols

Stretching the FN 509 Tactical series from its standard 9mm format to something bigger bore, FN is now offering red-dot and suppressor-ready 10mm Auto and .45 ACP models.

With a commanding 22+1 magazine capacity, the FN 510 in 10mm and its companion 18+1 shot FN 545 in .45 ACP still have all the standard features of the FN 509 Tactical. These include the company’s bomb-proof Low-Profile Optics Mounting System that fits just about any micro red-dot footprint on the market, fully ambidextrous controls, suppressor-height three-dot night sights with tritium inserts, and a 4.71-inch extended threaded barrel that accepts most comps and suppressors.

Looks like I am going to have to be spending some time on the range in the next few months!

More in my column at Guns.com.