Category - Handgun

FNP .45 Semi-auto Pistol

The FNP-45 features an external hammer, 4.5 hammers forged stainless steel barrel, stainless steel slide, full-length guide rod, C-More Systems fixed three dot combat sights and a checkered polymer frame with interchangeable backstraps and an integrated accessory rail. Every FNP-45 comes standard with three magazines, a locking device, and a lockable fitted hard case.
At The Range

So, today unexpectedly I looked over the rental guns offered at my local indoor range. When I saw it, the Fabrique Nationale .45. I thought, why the hell not. I spent over a year carrying the Fabrique Nationale Squad Automatic Weapon (SAW) in the Marine Corps. As I observed the pistol through the glass window, it was presented through the first thing I noticed was its bulk. It is a man-sized gun however upon lifting it found it was quite light and handy. Secondly, I noticed that it had a nice grip texture; it felt like it was going to take a lot to get this big beauty from my hand. Thirdly, I was elated to see that there was a 15 etched at the bottom back of the magazine. Could it be? 15 rounds of .45 ACP bliss? Fourthly, I felt the big butt plate of the 15 round magazine and slammed it as I loaded my first magazine. To my joy, the slide rocked forward and slammed with a noise that said: “Let’s rock!” I was all too happy to oblige this Amero-Belgian creation.

I started out with a single action shot. The only way I can describe the trigger is that it waits with encouraging anticipation and for a second I could swear it was telling me to pull it. The trigger pull melts in your finger much like Reese’s peanut butter cup resting on the tongue of a fat kid. Smooth, steady and precise. I wanted more, it felt as if I could throw all my marksmanship training to the wind and the gun was telling me “ Don’t worry just squeeze me, I will do the rest,” and so it was. At 20 ft. All the holes were one big hole, maybe 2 inches by 2 inches, it felt that no matter how fast I shot the accuracy of the gun was sig-like, (my new term to describe an accurate pistol since Sig Saur is known for accuracy.) A 20 minute short lived love affair with what I would have to say is the best composite framed .45 pistol I have ever shot.

Up until today, I was a Glock 21 aficionado, I have shot XD as well. But the FNP-.45 ACP Semi- automatic pistol took my breath away today. After shooting all my .45 ammo through it, I realized I forgot to try the double-action trigger. I racked an imaginary round into the chamber and decocked it and dry fired with the double-action a few times. It was as smooth as satin sheets. No complaints about the poundage or draw of the double-action trigger.

Then there is the ease of controls. The magazine release, although not noticeably extrusive is very easy to work. I cannot think of one thing I would have done differently with this gun. I am almost sorry I shot it because my favorite Glock 21 would be jealous if she knew the fun I was having with the southern belle from South Carolina.

One thing I did notice, is that my Glock 21 seems to absorb recoil better than any .45 I have shot. Also, my G21 has less muzzle flip. I also like the simplicity of the Glock. I felt that the FNP-45 was much more accurate at distance, I would have to shoot them side by side to compare. Maybe a future article is needed, Glock 21 vs. FNP-.45. Also, I did not field strip the FN; I am sure it’s simple.

25 yards? Hostage situation? No problemo!

Took it out to 25 yards, (75 ft.) and it performed wonderfully. Any spread in the group at the standing position was all me. Still hit all in the 6-inch black circle. This gun is a winner for sure!

Research

When I came home, I googled FNP .45. I came across the FN homepage where they advertise the FNX-.45 was modeled after the FNP-45 which was introduced in 2007. Both the slide and barrel are stainless steel. The FNP-.45 was designed to replace the current M9 pistol that is in use by the U.S. military. Personally, I would choose the FNP-.45 if I were still serving. However, I think that the 7.62x25mm Tokarev round would be better suited as it penetrates most infantry helmets. If I were to design my military issue pistol, it would be in the 7.62x25mm caliber and be designed like the FN-.45, now that would be a humdinger.

History of Fabrique Nationale

Talk about an interesting Firearms Manufacturer. FN has been through two world wars and was the center of research and development for the most innovative firearms inventor of the 20th century, John Browning. In 1897 John Moses Browning made 61 round-trips between the U.S. and Europe before his death in 1926. Post-WWII, once Belgium is liberated from German occupation, FN rebuilds 2 million U.S small arms. From 1953 to 1976 FN produces the GP-35 an updated version of the Browning Hi-Power. In 2007-2008 FN introduces the FNP-45 and the SCAR 16 to the U.S. law enforcement market.

Taurus 66 Silhouette Review

Taurus 66 Silhouette Revie

The Taurus Model 66 Silhouette is tailor made for long-distance revolver work.The Taurus Model 66 Silhouette is tailor made for long-distance revolver work.
I like short-barreled revolvers. When you’re going to pack a wheelgun around all day, every day, there’s nothing like a snubbie with two inches or so of tube out front. And for nearly all of my working life as a deputy sheriff, I carried and used the “cop’s compromise,” an easy-to-holster 4-inch number. But when it came to bulls’ eye or PPC shooting, where you needed a little more precision, I was no different than most of my fellow competitors.
I gave up on practical portability and opted for a full six inches of barrel length. Later on–when facing the challenge of a steel ram 200 meters downrange–I took up a big magnum revolver with 8 3/8 inches of barrel. When your target is way off, you just plain need more barrel.
Clearly, Taurus understands this equation. Determined to fill every possible shooting niche, these energetic Brazilians now offer a high-quality revolver with a barrel that measures one foot from forcing cone to muzzle crown. That’s right–12 full inches of tube. Where modern revolvers are concerned, that has to be some kind of record.
The gun itself is a variation of the company’s bread-and-butter Model 66–a seven-shot .357 built on a medium frame. It’s called the Model 66 Silhouette.
The Benefits of More BarrelLonger barrels at longer ranges are better for two reasons. First, when the barrel is longer, the sight radius (the distance between the front and rear sights) is longer. And the greater this distance is, the more precisely the sights may be aligned.
While a longer sight radius does not–in and of itself–make a gun more accurate, it does allow a competent marksman to get a little closer to the gun’s full accuracy potential. But there is a downside to that long sight radius. A front sight that’s farther away from the shooter is harder to handle.
That distance magnifies tremors on the part of the shooter. But to be honest, when you’re shooting from a rest or any other stable position, this is less of a factor than it would be when shooting offhand. As far as the new Taurus goes, I suspect many of them will be equipped with a scope or projected dot sight, and thus the sight radius problem will become moot.
The second advantage of the long barrel is that it gets the most from the ammunition. In most handguns, varying amounts of powder are left unburned when the bullet exits the muzzle. A longer barrel simply gives the system a longer combustion chamber. A great deal of current .357 ammunition comes loaded with fast-burning powder and light bullets.
This is done in the interest of lowering the recoil impulse and making short-barreled defensive revolvers more efficient. But remember that the first .357 loads–made in the mid-1930s–came with 158-grain bullets and were loaded to some really hot (up to 1,500 fps) velocities.
At present, you can buy .357 revolvers with barrels less than two inches to as long as a foot. You can also buy .357 ammunition with bullets as light as 110 grains and as heavy as 180. To get the most out of the long-barreled revolvers at their intended long range, use 180-grain bullets.
The laws of external ballistics tell us that longer bullets of a given diameter tend to retain their energy and trajectory better than the shorter ones. And that is exactly why Taurus took the radical step of putting a 12-inch barrel on the Model 66. This is a revolver intended for serious long-range work.
Considering ErgonomicsThe visual impact of this new revolver is pretty abrupt–the barrel just seems to go on forever. The Taurus logo–lasered into the barrel–seems isolated at the mid-point of the tube. My particular test gun was blued, but it can also be had in matte stainless. But I am pleased to report that an unscoped Model 66 Silhouette doesn’t really feel awkward when you pick it up.
That’s because the designers bucked the current trend toward heavy, full-length underlugs. Instead, this gun has a short underlug that’s just long enough to shroud the ejector rod. The remainder of the barrel is round with an integral sighting rib on top.
As part of my shooting evaluation, I tried several one-handed shots at a bulls’-eye target and it was easier than I thought; the long barrel isn’t all that heavy.
The gun comes drilled and tapped for scope mount bases on the barrel, but since I didn’t have time to install a scope for my range test, I removed the base in order to use the excellent plain black sights. The rear is adjustable for windage and elevation, while the front is an integral ramp. This sighting arrangement is just what it needs to be–large and easy to see, plain black, offering a clear and distinct sight picture.
The Model 66 Silhouette’s rubber grips, in the author’s opinion, are excellent and do as much as anything to add ergonomics and “pointability” to an outsized revolver.
I also like the grips very much. They’re rubber and of a shape that Taurus has developed over several years of experimentation. Completely surrounding the square butt frame, the grips are shaped with shallow finger grooves. They are also just a little smaller at the bottom (where the little finger sits) and taper upwards to where the long middle finger comes around. The shape is excellent and contributes to the general pointability of a really outsized gun.
It’s a relatively easy revolver to manage. This subjective impression was reinforced when I tried the trigger.
Taurus uses a DA/SA revolver action that is usually quite good, but the single-action trigger on my specimen was excellent to outstanding–clean and crisp at about three pounds, with no creep and very little overtravel. That’s exactly what a handgunner needs in a tool intended to shoot long-range targets.
It’s a fact that long-range shooting is now well established with American handgunners. With this model, Taurus has introduced a gun well suited for shooting varmints and at least medium-sized and (possibly) deer-sized game.
In competition, the new Taurus qualifies for the Unlimited Class in IHMSA shooting. But aside from these specific uses, I suspect the revolver will become a “just plain fun” gun. Taurus also offers the Model 66 Silhouette in .22 Long Rifle and .22 Winchester Magnum Rimfire.SHOOTING RESULTSTAURUS MODEL 66 SILHOUETTEAMMO USED AVERAGEVELOCITY(fps) STANDARDDEVIATION(fps) GROUPSIZE(in.)HORNADY 140-GR. HP/XTP 1,411 21 1.60PRO LOAD 158-GR. JHP 1,298 36 1.55REMINGTON 165-GR. JSP 1,456 13 1.63HORNADY 158-GR. HP/XTP 1,419 21 1.74REMINGTON 165-GR. CORE LOKT JHP 1,349 14 1.33WINCHESTER 180-GR. PARTITION GOLD JHP 1,146 45 1.61FEDERAL 180-GR. JHP 1,231 54 1.07REMINGTON 180-GR. SJHP 1,248 24 1.27PRO LOAD GAME STOPPER 180-GR. FPJ 1,161 13 1.49NOTES: Accuracy results based on a 7-shot group fired at 25-yards from a RansomRest. Velocities were measured with an Oehler Model 35P chronograph with skyscreens placed approximately 12 feet from the muzzle.

RANGE RESULTSPreparing for a trip to the range, I loaded the ammo box up with an assortment of nine different loads. For the reasons already stated, I chose ammunition with the heavier bullets. There were four 180-grain loads, one 165-grain, three of the traditional 158-grain weight and a single 140-grain load.
I like to try every .357 revolver that comes along with that Hornady 140-grain XTP, as it is probably the single most accurate .357 Magnum round I’ve found.SPECIFICATIONSTAURUS MODEL 66 SILHOUETTEImporter: www.taurususa.comAction: Double-Action RevolverCaliber: .357 Magnum (also .22LR and .22 WMR)Capacity: Seven roundsBarrel Length: 12-inchesOverall Length: 17 1/4-inchesWeight: 50 ouncesSights: Fully adjustable rear,integral ramp frontGrips: RubberFinish: Blued or matte stainlessPrice: $414 blued($461 matte stainless)
At the range I set up a Ransom Rest and C-clamped it to a solid concrete bench. Then I placed the revolver in the machine rest inserts and clamped it down tight. A barrel this long develops a great deal of leverage against the recoiling rocker arm of the Ransom Rest and I anticipated that it would take quite a few rounds in order to settle the gun into the rubber inserts before I began to get good results. As anticipated, the first few groups were elongated vertically, but several dozen shots downrange produced nice, round groups. Then I started shooting a seven-shot group with each load. I also had the Oehler 35P chronograph working and clocked the velocities. Once the gun was settled in and working, the session proceeded uneventfully. The target, by the way, was 25 yards from the firing point.
I was very pleased with the results. This particular revolver was happy with just about everything in my ammo assortment. After firing all nine loads and measuring the groups, I averaged the group sizes and found the Model 66 Silhouette would reliably produce 7-shot groups (once around the cylinder, one shot from each chamber) which averaged 1.48 inches.

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RUGER P345 PISTOLS

We are going to go ahead and pass on this announcement now. You should know that all attempts to obtain a p345 for Review have gone unheard. Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc., (NYSE: RGR) the nations largest firearms manufacturer, is proud to announce the introduction of the Ruger P345, a trim new .45ACP pistol with many advanced features.

The Ruger P345 pistol features a slimmer-profile and stainless steel slide with a completely recontoured polymer grip. This new pistol has a 4.2-inch barrel, eight round magazine and fixed white-dot front and rear sights. The Ruger P345 pistol also features an unobtrusive internal lock, magazine disconnect, loaded chamber indicator, and all-new camblock design, which helps absorb recoil.

Ruger pistols are known for their reliability, performance and value, and the Ruger P345 continues this proud tradition, said Sturm, Ruger President, Stephen L. Sanetti. The P345 offers new engineering refinements and new ergonomic styling that pistol shooters of all skill levels will appreciate. When you pick one up, you instantly grasp its superb new handling qualities.

The smooth, short trigger pull of the Ruger P345 helps improve accuracy, while the ergonomically shaped polymer frame provides a comfortable grip. The slimmer contoured frame and slide of the P345 reduce overall weight, and the well-defined grip checkering improves handling and control.

Two Ruger P345 models are being introduced: the KP345PR and the KP345. The KP345PR features a Picatinny-style rail under the forward portion of the frame to mount popular pistol accessories. Both models will be available beginning in May 2004.

Ruger KP345 Pistol

Model Number 6644
Catalog Number KP345
Frame Black Polymer with Checkered Grip Area
Slide Stainless Steel
Finish Polish/Satin Stainless
Caliber .45 Auto
Barrel Material Stainless Steel
Barrel Length 4.2″
Rifling/Twist 6 Grove, 1:16″ RH
Magazine Capacity 8 Rounds
Front Sights Dovetailed Fixed – White Dot
Rear Sights Fixed – Two White Dots
Overall Length 7.5
Weight Unloaded 29 oz. (approximately)
Features Magazine disconnect, Loaded chamber indicator, Internal lock
Standard Accessories Plastic storage case, Instruction manual, Gun lock, Two magazines
Suggested Retail Price $540.00

 

Ruger KP345PR Pistol

Model Number 6645
Catalog Number KP345PR
Frame Black Polymer with Checkered Grip Area, Accessory Rail
Slide Stainless Steel
Finish Polish/Satin Stainless
Caliber .45 Auto
Barrel Material Stainless Steel
Barrel Length 4.2″
Rifling/Twist 6 Grove, 1:16″ RH
Magazine Capacity 8 Rounds
Front Sights Dovetailed Fixed – White Dot
Rear Sights Fixed – Two White Dots
Overall Length 7.5
Weight Unloaded 29 oz. (approximately)
Features Magazine disconnect, Loaded chamber indicator, Internal lock, Picatinny-Style Accessory Rail
Standard Accessories Plastic storage case, Instruction manual, Gun lock, Two magazines
Suggested Retail Price $548.00