Handgun Radio 116 - Modifying Your Revolver For Competition

Hello and welcome to Handgun Radio! I’m your host Ryan Michad from the wild woods of Central Maine, and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world.This week, I’m joined by Matt Hoffman to discuss the internal and external modifications that you can do yourself or have done by a gunsmith to tailor your wheelgun for competition shooting!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

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Week in Review:

Ryan: - Got the chance to check out a Detonics Pocket 9 today. A Family friend said he had a 9mm but didn’t know what it was. Really neat pistol! Pictures and video up on the Handgun Radio Facebook.

Matt:  Its been busy few months. We have been getting our Icore matches going again and shot a few matches big matches. Picked up a couple of Smiths, a 617 full target and 21 Thunder Ranch Special new in box. The new in box part will not last long though.

Main Topic: Modifying your Revolver for Competition

The competition world is generally dominated by autoloading pistols these days. The ease of reloading the autoloader with a magazine filled with cartridges makes it a good stepping stone for those wanting to get into competition shooting. However, the revolver still has its place in competition. The use of moonclips, speedloaders and the 7 and 8 shot guns have brought the revolvers almost even with some people shooting autoloaders. The extra challenge and skill needed to run a wheelgun in competition can be fun and exciting for people who may have grown a bit bored with standard competition and want to diversify their activities, or with people like me and Matt who just love tricked out, cool looking revolvers. Matt has been shooting competition with wheelguns for quite some time now, and we have discussed what gear you would want for competition in previous episodes; but we never really discussed how you might modify your revolver for competition. I thought it would be a good discussion to talk about what modifications you would make both internally and externally to your revolver in order to get it competition ready.

I’ve been exploring this topic for about 3 years now. I’m getting closer to figuring it now

Truth be told, you can go to the safe and pull out that old model 10 or 686 of your grandpa owned and with a few accessories shoot an idpa match. Most people will probably get more enjoyment with a few mods though.

 It's probably better to break it up into some different categories depending on what you intend to do. Most all of them are applicable to later mods.

 We will start off with the basic smooth and tune. I recommend this for most any revolver competition or not. It consists of polishing the rebound block, double action sear and trigger. Most smiths will get the DA pull to about 9-9.5lbs and smooth as silk. With a smooth action the often feel lighter than that.

  You might also consider chamfering the cylinder. A tool is used to put a bevel on the cylinder where your cartridges enter. Makes it like a funnel to guide the rounds in.

  Bobbing the hammer is another mod that could be a plus here. Lightens the hammer and if it's still a self defense gun will smooth the draw and maybe keep a gungho lawyer from saying you went SA.

   On the newer Smiths with the frame mounted firing pins I always check the length of the firing pin. Older guns had .495 length pin but the newer guns have .485 or shorter. I guess the 14lb+ pulls and short pins make them lawyer proof. I replace every short pin with an Apex Tactical firing pin. Longer pins are available from Power Custom and Cylinder and Slide as well.

  These mods are all fairly affordable, possibly user installed, easier to shoot but most importantly reliable with any quality ammo. Perfect for competition like IDPA but still can be used for self defense.

  The next level things get a bit more labor intensive and expensive.

 You can have your forcing cone trued up. This will make it completely flat and polishes the throat so every round leaves the cylinder into the rifling perfect and repeatable. Once that is done you may choose to recrown the barrel so every bullet leaves the exact same way. Somewhat pricey but may squeeze out the last bit of accuracy to raise four x count.

  These next mods are competition only. Here you will see the smooth actions but also much lower DA/SA pull weight. These guns will most likely be purpose built for a particular sport. You may see different barrels,optics and odd calibers.

  The action job will build on the smooth and tune and go beyond by polishing the inside of the frame to remove tooling marks,etc. The trigger and hammer will be shimmed so the pull is straight back with no loading. The trigger face is often polished and contoured. The hammers are bobbed and skeletonised or replaced with an apex hammer. This speeds up the hammer to aid in ignition with the lower pull weights.

  Speaking of pull weights, here you will see 4.5-6 lbs of da pull. No more off the shelf ammo. Deep set Federal primers are a must at these reduced weights. Some people actually crush them a bit.

  Titanium cylinders show here alot. The lower weight reduces the rotational mass to lower the pull and make an easier stop.

   Swapped barrels are pretty common. Lightened for speed and heavy bull for staying on target and accuracy. Ports and comps are common.

  Sights are more specialised often here too. Red dots, fiber optic and the large Aristocate sights with the large range are used alot.

SHOPS: Mojo Custom Guns www.mojocustomguns.com

               Paul Francis at BossHoss Revolver Works on Facebook

               Apex Tactical www.apextactical.com

Wrap-Up:

  • Dont forget to shop Brownells using our affiliate link, www.handgunradio.com/brownells
  • Be sure to go like Handgun Radio on facebook and share it with your friends!
  • Leave us a review on iTunes!
  • Listen to all the great shows on the Firearms Radio Network! The Reloading Podcast!
  • Be sure to visit the Firearms Insider for review more awesome content! Also, if you are interested in writing reviews for the Firearms Insider, please email TJ at tj@firearmsradio.tv
  • Be sure to check out the Firearms Radio Network on YouTube!
  • Matt where can people find you? Matt Hoffman on facebook

HGR 094 - Revolvers, Autos & Reloading!

Hello and welcome to Handgun Radio! I’m your host Ryan Michad from the wilds of Central Maine, and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world. This week, Matt & I discuss his new handgun acquisitions, and what its like to reload for competition!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

We are going to skip the week in review because the episode is pretty much!

Main Topic: Revolvers, Autos & Reloading!

Matt! What did you think of the Steyr Handgun!?

Ryan’s Videos From This Past Weekend:

.44 Magnum One-Shot Ruger Redhawk

Sig-Sauer P226 Range Time

Rock Island Armory 1911 .45 ACP Range Trip

Matt’s Latest Firearms Acqusitions:

629-6 3” Trail Boss, unfluted cylinder, Hogue and Ahrends wood grips and lanyard

64-3 4” k frame

15-4 4” combat masterpiece. beautiful gun unfortunately wrong box but for $350 cant complain.

Reloading for Competition:

Reloading is almost a necessary evil when it comes to getting alot of practice in for competition shooting. Matt does more competition than me so he does reload as well, and I reload mainly for fun and practice ammunition.

Why reload for competition?

What factors do you need to consider when reloading for competition?

What are some of your favorite powders for competition loads? I prefer Trail Boss for my practice/fun loads.

What types of bullets should we consider for reloading? Interesting characteristics?

Wrap-Up:

Until next week, have fun & SAFE SHOOTING!!

HGR 077 - Exploring Big Bore Revolvers

Hello and welcome to Handgun Radio! I’m your host Ryan Michad from the wilds of Central Maine, and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world.

This week, I’m joined by Matt to discuss big-bore revolvers and why we like shooting them!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Week in Review:

Ryan: -The Glock UAT Trigger review should be out this week! Sorry about the delay, with the holidays I have been backed up with a bunch of stuff.

-It appears that Remington is introducing three “new” pistols at SHOT Show 2015 this year.

Matt:    not much, surgery pretty much took me out for a few weeks. Did get some bonded Ivory grips for the 29 for a sorta Keith clone. I also got some Hogue extreme g10 grips for n frame round butt revo’s. On my 625 pc now. Look and feel great but still need to see how they feel shooting.

Main Topic: Exploring Big-Bore Revolvers

Big-Bore revolvers have been around for years. From humble blackpowder beginnings in 1872 with the .45 Colt, big-bore revolvers have cemented their place in defensive handgun and handgun hunting history. The legendary lawman Frank Hamer was known to carry a .44 Special S&W Triple Lock, and the .45 Colt was long used by the United States military up until the early 1900’s and even a little bit past that on a more limited scale. For this week’s main topic, we will be focusing on the “lower” end of the big-bore revolver world, and will refrain from discussing the massive .50 caliber cartridges. We will focus on the .44 Special, .44 Magnum, .45 Colt, .454 Casull and the new .460 S&W Magnum.

.44 Special -

.44 Magnum -

.45 Colt -

.454 Casull -

.460 S&W Magnum -

Wrap-Up:

  • Be sure to support our sponsor Caliber Coffee by www.calibercoffee.net  or clicking the banner on the right hand side of the page for more information and to place an order!
  • Dont forget to shop Brownells using our affiliate link, www.handgunradio.com/brownells
  • Be sure to go like Handgun Radio on facebook and share it with your friends!
  • Leave us a review on iTunes!
  • Listen to all the great shows on the Firearms Radio Network! The Reloading Podcast!
  • Be sure to visit the Firearms Insider for review more awesome content! Also, if you are interested in writing reviews for the Firearms Insider, please email TJ at tj@firearmsradio.tv
  • Be sure to check out the Firearms Radio Network on YouTube!

Until next week, have fun and SAFE SHOOTING!

HGR 066 - Handgun Sights

HGR 066 - Handgun Sights Hello and welcome to Handgun Radio! I’m your host Ryan Michad from the wilds of Central Maine, and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world.

This week I am joined by Matt Hoffman to discuss sights for handguns!!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Week In Review:

Ryan:  -My wife’s car had a bad ignition coil, so I took it to our local mechanic. In talking about the car I mentioned that I had refinished some guns of my own and he asked if I could work on a Winchester 1894 .32 Win Special rifle. It had been a rifle passed down from his grandfather to his father and then to him. It had been loaned to someone and they neglected it, with rust forming on most of the exterior. The person tried to remove the rust with what looks like 150 grit sandpaper. I told him I would see what I could do and if I couldn’t do anything I would at least clean it up so it wouldn’t rust any further. I completely disassembled the whole gun. I then removed all the remaining rust, then started with progressively higher grits of sandpaper, finishing with 1000. I then buffed the whole gun with ultra fine steel wool. I used 4 applications of bluing solution over the whole rifle and it came out fanstastic! The owner was very pleased, and he noted the rifle looked better than it did when he got it as a kid. It was great to do a job for someone and have them very pleased with the result.

-Don’t forget the Werkz Holster Giveaway going on right now!  You have until Monday, October 27th at 5:00 PM to enter the giveaway! You MUST do two things. First, Go leave a review on the iTunes page for Handgun Radio. Second, Email me at ryan@handgunradio.com with your iTunes reviewer name, and your email and real name, so I can enter you in the contest and contact you if you win. The winner will receive a coupon code that will allow them to choose one holster from the many selections available over at Werkz Holsters. The holster will come in black kydex, and the coupon will cover shipping costs. Any additional options desired will be the responsibility of the winner. Good Luck!

Matt:

Main Topic: Handgun Sights

This topic is going to cover the many different sight options available for handguns out on the market. We will discuss mainly iron sights, with a little bit of optical sights thrown in as they are out there, but are used in a limited fashion.

I STRONGLY advocate for those who can, to learn how to shoot with both eyes open. Way back when I started shooting I did the old “squint my non-dominant eye” thing, but then after awhile I learned to shoot with both eyes open. Once I did that, I noticed my shooting improved dramatically. Definitely try it out if you can.

Types of Sights:

Traditional Black on Black Front Blade & Rear Notch

3 Dot (Either with white dots or Night Sights

Ghost Ring Rear with Standard Front

Sight Systems by Manufacturer

Ameriglo:Good night sights with many different varieties and setups.

Hi-Viz Fiber Optic: Great fiber optic sights for competition and some defense applications (limited)

Tru-Glo: Stouter Fiber Optic sights with deeper encapsulation and coupled with Tritium as well. Matt has experienced some coming uncoupled from the gun however.

XS Sight Systems:Big Front Dot with Shallow V rear sight offers an “Express” style sight that was popular for snap shooting on dangerous game when on Safari. Basically a Dot the I proposition.

Obscure Gun Of The Week:

Ryan: Ruger Blackhawk in 10mm with .40 S&W cylinder

Matt: Model 617 Performance Center in .22 LR with Titanium Cylinder

Wrap-Up:

  • Be sure to support our sponsor Caliber Coffee by www.calibercoffee.net  or clicking the banner on the right hand side of the page for more information and to place an order!
  • Dont forget to shop Brownells using our affiliate link, www.handgunradio.com/brownells
  • Be sure to go like Handgun Radio on facebook and share it with your friends!
  • Leave us a review on iTunes!
  • Listen to all the great shows on the Firearms Radio Network! Power Factor Show!
  • Be sure to visit the Firearms Insider for review more awesome content! Also, if you are interested in writing reviews for the Firearms Insider, please email TJ at tj@firearmsradio.tv
  • Be sure to check out the Firearms Radio Network on YouTube!
  • HOLSTER GIVEAWAY! Write a Review of the show on iTunes and then email me at ryan@handgunradio.com with your reviewer name and I will enter you in the giveaway contest. Winner will be announced on Episode 068. Enter by Monday October 27th 2014.

Until Next Week, Have Fun and SAFE SHOOTING!


HGR 053 - Auto-Caliber Revolvers & Moon Clips

Hello and welcome to Handgun Radio! I’m your host Ryan Michad from the wilds of Central Maine, and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world. This week, Matt and I discuss the world of moon-clips and auto caliber revolvers, used both for self-defense, plinking & competition. There’s a whole world of revolvers out there chambered for automatic pistol cartridges!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Brownells helps make Handgun Radio possible. Selection, service, satisfaction. Find it all at Brownells! If you are doing any shopping with Brownells please use our affiliate link www.handgunradio.com/brownells to help support the show!

Week in Review:

Ryan-

  • Did some reloading. Components seem to be showing up much more frequently around here, which is great!
  • Looking to do some more interviews coming up. I’d love to get in touch with the folks from North American Arms and discuss their fine Mini-Revolvers, as well as Bill Wilson to discuss his 1911 work and his new venture into custom Beretta 92 components. Stay tuned!

Matt-

*shot a few idpa matches, finally got back to shooting my wheel guns. way more

            fun. Signed up for Ky Kolonel IDPA match in oct.

       *    went back to the 18th century, shot flintlock Ky rifles for a few days. Great to get

             away from electronics for a bit.

 

Main Topic - Auto-Caliber Revolvers & Moon-Clips

We all know the typical revolver cartridges; .38 Special, .357 Magnum, .44 Special & Magnum, .45 Colt and the rest, but revolvers can be chambered in auto-pistol cartridges too! Back in World War I, the United States entered the conflict, but realized they did not have enough 1911 .45 Automatic pistols to supply the troops. An employee at S&W devised a way to chamber their large 1917 revolver in .45 ACP by using two, stamped sheet steel 3-round moon clips to function as the rims of the rounds. This facilitated proper headspacing and proper ejection of the rounds. Another advantage was the quick loading procedure facilitated by dropping in two moon clips of three rounds each; much faster than loading rounds individually. Colt manufactured a similar gun as the S&W to supply the military with, and the rest is history. Since that time, there have been a plethora of revolvers chambered in automatic pistol cartridges, some more successful than others. We will be discussing some of the advantages & disadvantages, from both a competition & defensive use standpoint. We will also talk about some of the cartridges and guns that were introduced that used the moon-clip system.

Use:

Advantages:

  • Fast reload time
  • Short stubby cartridges load quicker & easier in a revolver.
  • Moonclips keep all rounds together and go in the gun as one unit.
  • No manipulation of knobs or buttons like with a speedloader.

Disadvantages:

  • Moonclips are not the most durable; a bent moonclip can tie up your gun.
  • The guns will sometimes not function well without a moonclip. Headspace issues can arise.

Calibers & Guns:

S&W 625 (.45 ACP): Produced from 1988 to present. A stainless steel revolver

chambered in .45 ACP and .45 Auto-Rim. Used frequently for competition.

S&W 610 (N Frame 10MM): Produced in the heyday of the 10 MM auto round, the S&W

Model 610 was only produced from 1990 to 1992. Had the added advantage of being able

to fire .40 S&W much like .38 Spl shoots in a .357 Magnum.

S&W 646 (L Frame .40 S&W): Originally produced as a Performance Center Model, the

646 was made into a limited run production model in 2000. Only about 300 of the PC

Models were made. Production ceased in 2003.

S&W 547 ( K Frame 9mm w/out use of clips): A fairly rare K-Frame 9mm revolver. It

did not use traditional moon clips, but used small extractor claws that engaged the

ejector groove on the rimless 9mm case. Problems arose with stuck cases since the

claw would not always reliably grab the round.

 S&W 940 (j frame 9mm): Produced from 1993 to 1996, the 940 was your

standard J-Frame chambered in 9mm Para. The Michigan State Police issued them as

backup guns but found the officers were using the moon clips as screwdrivers, bending

the clips which could lock the gun up. The 940 quietly faded from production in 1996.

Ruger SP101 & Security Six (9mm): Ruger’s fantastic small and medium framed

were chambered in 9mm as well for quite some time. Ruger made their own proprietary

moon clips for their guns. The SP-101 is no longer listed in 9mm.

Oddball Chamberings:

9mm Federal (Rimmed 9mm Case): Simply a duplicate of the Federal 9BP round, a

standard pressure 115 grain 9mm JHP at 1100 fps. It is simply a rimmed 9mm round.

.45 Auto-Rim: In an attempt to negate the moon clips, Peters cartridge originally came

up with the .45 Auto-Rim, which is essentially a .45 ACP with a rim. It is produced in

limited numbers today.

New Segment: Obscure Gun We Want

This is a new segment where we pick and link to an obscure gun that we want. This is purely a “if money were no object” exercise, and maybe you (the listeners) will hear about a gun you didn’t know existed and want to buy one too!!!

Ryan: I want a .44 Special Snub Nose revolver with an unfluted cylinder on the L-Frame. Thank you Smith & Wesson!

Matt: Singer 1911. Id like my dads he used in  Korea. He thought it was funny as hell his gun was made by a sewing machine company. Priceless to me but worth thousands to others! 

Wrap-Up:

  • Dont forget to shop Brownells using our affiliate link, www.handgunradio.com/brownells
  • Be sure to go like Handgun Radio on facebook and share it with your friends!
  • Leave us a review on iTunes!
  • Listen to all the great shows on the Firearms Radio Network! Fat2FitHQ!
  • Be sure to visit the Firearms Insider for review and SHOT Show 2014 coverage! Also, if you are interested in writing reviews for the Firearms Insider, please email TJ at tj@firearmsradio.tv
  • Be sure to check out the Firearms Radio Network on YouTube!

Until Next week, Have fun and SAFE SHOOTING!!!!

HGR 043 - Grips & Grip Technique

This week, Matt Hoffman and I discuss grip technique (how you hold a handgun) & grips (what grip options you have on your handgun). I will also talk about my recent experience with the Glock 42 and XDs 4.0 9mm!!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Brownells helps make Handgun Radio possible. Selection, service, satisfaction. Find it all at Brownells! If you are doing any shopping with Brownells please use our affiliate link www.handgunradio.com/brownells to help support the show!

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19

Week in Review:

Ryan:

  • Shot a Mossberg 500 with ATI furniture and a Magpul AFG on the pump. At first, I wasn’t sure how that would affect my shooting as I was so used to having a particular grip on the shotgun, but that AFG really allowed me more control over the pump without radically altering my hold.
  • Really interested in the stuff I’m seeing come out about the Walther CCP. If it can utilize some of the advantages that the H&K P7 had, it is sure to be a hit!

Matt:

      *   Shot my first match of the season. It was an IDPA match and I shot it with an M&P. Shot                      fair but really missed my revo’s. Hope to hit 2 more matches and a practice day before NRA                 World shoot.

Discussion: Glock 42 & XDs 4.0:

This weekend, I got a chance to shoot the Glock 42 and the XDs 4.0. I was really impressed with both guns. Below are some links to the videos from this week’s range session.

Glock 42 .380 ACP:

  • I know I bashed this gun, but I am now a convert. The first time I picked it up, it’s lack of weight was astounding. Firing the first magazine and grouping all of my shots almost all in a 1 inch circle and the gun barely recoiling confirmed my suspicion that this would be a very good shooting .380 ACP pistol. The sights are also wonderful. Best sights I’ve seen on a .380 pistol yet (now if they were only metal). If you can reliably run heavy for caliber .380 rounds through this gun, it will be a great choice.

Springfield XDs 4.0 9mm:

  • The Springfield XDs 4.0 takes from the playbook of a small grip frame with a long slide. It is executed well, with good craftsmanship and wonderful sights. The trigger is great too. It comes with two magazines, one fitting flush with the grip and the other offering a pinky rest/grip extension. While I do not care for grip safeties, this one is done rather well, being higher up, right under the grip tang where it belongs. On the larger XD’s I would often have trouble with the grip safety being fully depressed; not so on this gun. Very highly recommended for IWB carry.

Main Topic: Grips & Grip Technique

When shooting a handgun, the fit of the gun is EXTREMELY important. This CANNOT be overstated. Making sure that the firearm fits properly in your hand will allow you to have the proper control of the gun, both during trigger manipulation and recoil. Improper fit can cause you to use improper trigger technique, leading to a loss of accuracy and maybe making the handgun painful to fire. Changing the grips on the handgun (if possible) can oftentimes make the gun fit better for you and allow you the proper control. Sometimes though, we must accept the fact that no matter what grip we put on the gun, it is just too big (or too small) to fit our hand and we must find one that does. Thankfully, many modern striker-fired handguns are coming with multiple grips (or grip adapters) that allow for a wider range of hand sizes to utilize the firearm. We are just going to go over some of the different types of grips that are out there that may assist you, along with some technique pointers in handling the handgun.

Grips:

  • “Splinter” or Factory wood Grips (Especially S&W J-Frames): The so-called “splinter” grips were the typical factor grips put on the S&W J-frames up until S&W switched to synthetics in the early 90’s. The splinter grips leave a large space between the frontstrap and the back of the trigger guard. This puts your hand up high in the back of the trigger guard and can cause some discomfort under recoil. Those folks with smaller hands may find the splinter grips comfortable to grip, but not so comfortable under recoil. There are methods of changing this. Some people install a Tyler T-Grip (or the more available and modern BK Grip Adaptor) to fill in the space between the frontstrap and trigger guard. This setup is great for pocket carry, because it allows for a smooth, stick-free grip, with the space filled in.
  • “Boot” Grips: These can be had in synthetic plastic, rubber, or smooth wood. The boot grip functions much the same way as the Tyler T Grip adaptor. The boot grip DOES NOT cover the backstrap (which can make a difference in finger placement on the trigger) and it fills in the frontstrap area to allow for better control and comfort. The boot grip also does not extend below the bottom of the metal grip frame AT ALL, allowing for maximum concealability. I personally have some Altamont Silver-Black wood boot grips on my Model 60 S&W and they are wonderful. They allow for great pocket carry (being smooth wood) and they position my finger perfectly on the trigger for fast & accurate double-action work.
  • Factory Wood “Target” Stocks or “Coke Bottle” Grips: Both the factory “Target” grips and the “Coke Bottle” grips are similar in construction and function. They have a large flare at the very bottom of the grips, and they narrow toward the top. The “Coke Bottle” grips have a slight swell in the center of the grips if you are looking at them directly from behind, almost taking on an old Coke bottle shape. These stocks are rarely comfortable except for those people with larger hands. I have fairly large hands and the wood target grips on my Model 19 are not the greatest for quick double-action firing.
  • Hogue/Pachmayr Rubber Grips: On many handguns today, rubber grips much in the style of Hogue or Pachmayr are installed on new guns leaving the factory. Hogue and Pachmayr have offered rubber grips for many semi-autos and revolvers. Some grips utilize finger grooves (which I DETEST!) and some do not. Pachmayr grips for the 1911 typically cover the frontstrap of the gun, allowing for better purchase on the firearm. The Hogue & Pachmayr grips can offer much more comfort in terms of recoil, with the soft rubber grips absorbing some of that initial shockwave.
  • Wooden Specialty Grips: A number of different custom grip makers are out there for you to utilize! I used Altamont for my J-Frame, but they are a somewhat larger company that produces a few different product lines. There are custom grip makers such as Ahrends grips that can make a grip fit to your personal specifications. There are hundreds of different grip shapes, each of which has their distinct advantages and disadvantages. These custom grip makers will work with you to pick the particular wood you want on your handgun, and will match those wood pieces so the grain matches on both sides of the grip. They can take a measurement of your hand and manufacture the grip just right so your finger falls in the proper place on the trigger each and every time. Some of my favorites are Badger Grips, Eagle Grips & Esmeralda Grips along with Ahrend's Grips that were mentioned above.

Some Pointers about grip technique on the handgun:

  • Like I stated before, your grip technique on the handgun is NUMBER ONE to proper control. It is also important that the gun you choose has all the controls placed in such a way that they can be manipulated without you shifting your grip, or with you shifting your grip in the tiniest way possible! Guns with slide-mounted safeties are notorious for forcing the shooter to shift his/her grip in order to manipulate it. Even people who have larger hands like myself have trouble with the safety on guns such as the S&W Autos like the 59 and the Beretta autos with the slide mounted safeties. These are great guns, don’t misunderstand me, but they require that you shift your grasp pretty substantially to manipulate the gun. Efficiency is key to running a handgun smoothly and quickly.
  • Keep in mind where your trigger finger falls in relation to the trigger. You typically want the trigger to fall somewhere on the first pad of your finger. Any further than that, and you risk pulling the barrel off to the side when you press the trigger. Altering the grip on your handgun can put the trigger further down your finger or more toward the tip. On revolvers, altering where your finger falls can be achieved by changing to a grip that covers the backstrap (or doesn’t, depending upon your needs) or incorporates a slight palmswell.
  • Recoil is also an important factor when it comes to gripping the handgun. I have seen many uninstructed first time shooters holding the handgun WAYYYY down on the grip, with almost an inch between the web of their hand and the beavertail or tang. This will cause the gun to pivot, as the bore is much higher above the hand than intended. Instructing people in the proper grip with the web of the hand tucked tightly under the tang will prevent any injuries to the shooter and will allow them to be far more accurate with their handgun.
  • Grip shape tends to alter the recoil characteristics of the handgun. I have heard many times that “That S&W Model 29 in .44 Magnum hurts the hell out of my hand!” yet then I see that same person shoot a Ruger Blackhawk in .44 with the single-action “plowhandle” style grip without any problems. The difference is in the grip shape. The S&W grip is optimized for double-action shooting because it is a double-action revolver. the Ruger uses the classic single-action plowhandle shape, and this causes the gun to roll in the hand. Oftentimes,this rolling action is far more comfortable as the recoil energy takes a different path than it does with the grip optimized for double-action work.

Wrap-Up:

HGR 042 - NRA Show 2014 Wrap-Up

This week, I hear from Handgun Radio’s NRA Show 2014 Floor Correspondent Matt Hoffman regarding his experiences at NRA Show 2014 and some of the really cool items he saw that are being introduced & improved!

Brought to you by the Firearms Radio Network

Brownells helps make Handgun Radio possible. Selection, service, satisfaction. Find it all at Brownells! If you are doing any shopping with Brownells please use our affiliate link www.handgunradio.com/brownells to help support the show!

Week in Review:

Ryan:

NRA
NRA
  • Loaded some .38 Special cartridges with CB Bullet 158 grain LSWC. Awesome shooting target round with Trail Boss Powder.
  • The Glock 42 and XDs 4.0 videos have been postponed due to bad weather, but they will be upcoming shortly.
  • Go check out my video quick look at the Rossi Model 13 “Princess”. It is unlike any other revolver I’ve ever handled. It looks almost like a ⅝ scale model of a Smith and Wesson Hand Ejector (maybe that size is wrong) but it is a small framed, double action, swing out .22 LR revolver made by Rossi. It isn’t high quality, but it is VERY interesting.

Matt:

      *  Still working loads for the NRA world shoot. Looks like I’ll be shooting a bottom   feeder, an M&P9 pro. Got it slicked up a bit and shoot it pretty well

Main Topic: NRA Show 2014

Frequent contributor Matt Hoffman made the trip out to NRA Show 2014 and kept an eye out as Handgun Radio’s NRA Show floor correspondent. He is here to share his impressions of the show, as well as some of the products he was able to check out!

  • What was your feel of the “mood” of the show? Good vibes?
  • Attendance?

      > ERGO grip for S&W J frames

              Rubber with a pebbled finish. They look like a potato or a wedge. They were too big for my hands and actually felt like they were going to wedge themselves out of my hands. My natural poa was way off with these. I’d like to try them anyway.

      >Magpul 1911 grips

               These were pretty nice and affordable. They had a smooth finish and a rougher set. I prefered the rougher set. They were nice and thin with a generous relief in the grip for the reaching the mag release. was told they come with hardware and both tapered and flat bottom in standard magpul colors

      >R51: a threaded barrel is now offered, but why if it doesn’t run? The sights were standard 3 dot, with a fairly easy racking slide. Gun rattles like a box of ball bearings and seems alot heavier than others in this size group. The trigger felt heavy and gritty but had a short reset. Not impressed at all.

      >SCCY CPX2: Not a bad gun, just too big for my hands and no way to reduce size. Available with or without thumb safety and various colors. A great value for $250 area.

      >Beretta Pico 380: Very small and concealable with no sharp edges and real sights. To me it was too smooth and small. It would carry great but would probably be very hard to control shooting even with mild loads. Better choices out there for probably cheaper. No msrp listed.

       >Sig 938 9mm: Liked this gun alot. I carried/competed with a 1911 for 2 years and this seemed very familiar. All the controls are the same just shrunk down. Very attractive, smooth slide, nice single action trigger and good sights. Felt a little awkward with the mag extensions, a little worried it might pinch under recoil. I would like to try one out for sure.

          >Sig 320: Sigs new striker fired entry. Comes in a full and compact model, all components can be swapped into smaller/larger frame. No interchangeable back straps so a new grip frame would have to be ordered to change size. The trigger was fairly heavy but had a short crisp reset. It just seemed cheap to be a Sig. The standard size frame didn't fit my small hands. Not one I would look at again.

          >Oriskany Arms 1911: One of the biggest surprises of the show for me. Never heard of them before but was very impressed. All American made 1911 that was very high quality. The slide was silky smooth, Novak style sights, nice thumb safety, raised grip safety and a great 3.5-4lb trigger. The finish on the base model I looked at was sort of a parkerized look with a set of black g10 grips. The fit and smoothness is equal to a much higher price gun. The president said this gun would retail for $750-800, an outstanding value if the production models are as nice as this one.

          >Walther CCP 9: Great ergonomics, great feel in the hand, nice trigger and a good size. About the size of the lc9,shield and xds. Gas piston design, worries if frame will get hot like the old H&K. Really liked this gun, would like to test drive one for awhile.

          >Walther ppq 9: Another great feeling pistol. Even with my short thumbs I could reach all controls. Trigger seemed better than the other poly service pistols in this category. The bore axis seems a bit higher than some and the round count is a little lower than others in this category. Would love to shoot a few matches with this one.

          >Ruger match champion: A lot of mixed feelings on this one. They had 2 on display 1 had a great smooth trigger, the other had a gritty trigger than had a lot of stacking. The grips were comfortable, had a slight chamfer on the cylinder,fiber optic sights and a tapered barrel to keep it quick handling. I’m not a fan of the push button cyl release or non adjustable rear sight. I think the adjustable rear sight is very important on a match revo. If I could get one with the good trigger I would give it a try, but I’m still a Smith guy.

         >S&W 66: A fine pistol that would serve anyone well. It just doesn't have the look or soul of the original. I’m  undecided about the 2 piece barrel and would prefer the polished finish. I wasn’t very excited about this one

         >S&W 69: I don’t need it but I want it. A 44 mag on the medium L frame. A great pack gun or hiking gun where big bore is needed without the weight. To fit the 44 in the L frame the round count had to be dropped to 5. I would love to see a a 2.5 version.

         >S&W 929pc 9mm: I definitely want this one. Its a 8 shot 9mm n frame revolver. This one is set for Competition and was designed by Jerry Miculek. I like the pinned front sight rather than the dovetailed version usually on pc guns. It takes moonclips so reloads are very quick. It has a short titanium cyl with a long throat barrel so accuracy should be awesome. The 6.5 barrel with removable comp was a lot quicker transitioning than I thought it would be. I still want a 4-5” version but am real tempted as is.

>PAR-1 .223 Pistol: I don’t see how any velocity or accuracy could come from this gun. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. Just seems like a gimmick to me

Wrap-Up:

HGR 039 - Concealed Carry Handguns

HGR 039 - Concealed Carry Handguns

Hello and welcome to episode 039 of Handgun Radio! Im your host Ryan Michad and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world! This week, I have with me Matt and Weerd Beard to discuss some popular options in concealed carry handguns.

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We are also now an affiliate of Paladin Press! Paladin Press publishes many great books pertaining to firearms, firearms training and much more! Be sure to visit www.handgunradio.com/books for all your firearms related reading materials!

Week in Review:

Ryan:

  • Got my Altamont Boot Grips in for my S&W Model 60. I am exceedingly happy with them! The fit it awesome and the figuring on the wood is very cool too. I am really pleased. The slick texture also helps with pocket carry. There is a video over at the youtube channel featuring them so go check it out!
  • Got to do some great video & shooting this weekend with the Arcus 98 DA, the Sig-Sauer P225, the Helwan which we have talked about before and the new suppressor ready Ruger 10/22 Takedown. Really awesome guns!
  • Been working on reloading so I can get a lot of shooting in this summer and also get some video for the listeners and viewers!!

     Matt:

*    Finally got some rounds down range through the competitor. Using it for NRA  action pistol Wolrd shoot, maybe Bianchi in the metallic sight division.

       *   trying to find some American Eagle 158gr .357 as a back up.

Weerd: weerdworld.com, The Squirrel Report Podcast

Unfortunetly I’m tied up with a new baby and haven’t had a chance to hit the range.  Also having a baby will make you sick as a dog!

Main Topic: Concealed Carry Handguns

This episode we are going to discuss some of the concealed carry handguns that are available, both new and old, and what things to look out for with those guns.

New (or newer) handguns:

Sig-Sauer P938:

  • Small 9mm handgun based upon the 1911/Colt Mustang design.
  • Single action trigger pull 7.5 lbs
  • 5.9” length
  • 3.9” height
  • 1.1” width
  • Barrel length 3.0” with sight radius of 4.2”
  • Weight without magazine 16.0 oz.
  • Holds six rounds
  • Comes with SIGLITE night sights.
  • MSRP $819.00
  • NOT CA COMPLIANT

Walther PPS:

  • Available in 9mm or .40 S&W
  • 6.1 lbs trigger pull
  • 3.2” barrel length
  • OAL: 6.3”
  • Magazine Capacity 7 Rounds
  • 0.9” width
  • Sight Radius 5.4”
  • Weight with empty mag 1.3 lbs
  • $533.00

S&W Shield:

  • Available in 9mm or .40 S&W
  • Trigger pull 6.5 lbs
  • 3.1” barrel
  • 6.1” length
  • 0.95” wide
  • 4.6” height
  • 7 round capacity
  • 19.0 oz. weight
  • 5.3” sight radius
  • $449.00 MSRP

Springfield XDs (4.0):

  • Available in 9mm
  • 5.5 to 7.7 lbs Trigger Pull
  • 7+1 round capacity (9+1 with mag extension)
  • 7” length
  • 4.4” height
  • 0.9” width
  • Comes with 1 flush sitting magazine and 1 magazine with grip extension.
  • $599 black finish $669 two-tone finish MSRP

Kahr PM9:

  • Available in 9mm (+p rated)
  • 6+1 capacity (7+1 with mag extension)
  • 3.1” barrel (polygonal rifling)
  • OAL 5.42”
  • 4.0” Height
  • 0.90” Width
  • Pistol weighs 14 oz. Magazine 1.9 oz.

Kahr PM45

  • .45 ACP (+P Rated)
  • 5+1 Standard magazine 6&7-round extended magazines available
  • 3.14” Barrel (pi!)
  • OAL 5.79”
  • 1.01” Wide
  • 17.3 Oz Unloaded 2oz Magazine
  • $855 MSRP, $1,000 Black with Night Sights

S&W J-Frames (36,60,442,642,637,638, etc.):

  • Chambered in .38 Special, .357 Magnum, .32 H&R Magnum (and if you’re lucky, 9mm in the 940)
  • Prices run from $430 to $800 MSRP & retail.
  • 5 shot capacity.
  • Can be had with hammer, hammerless or with a shrouded but accessible hammer (S&W 638)
  • Can be had in stainless steel, carbon steel or any of the lightweight “Airweight” materials S&W uses.
  • Grip options available to fit almost any hand.

Glock 42:

  • Chambered in .380 Automatic
  • 5.94” length
  • 4.13” height
  • 0.94” width
  • 4.92” sight radius
  • 3.25” barrel length
  • 14.36 oz. loaded
  • 5.5 lbs trigger pull
  • 6 round capacity
  • $409.00 retail

Older Designs:

Walther PPK/s:

  • Chambered in .380 Auto and .22 LR currently, and .32 in older models
  • Barrel 3.3 in
  • Capacity 6 Rounds .380 and .32 8 Rounds .22LR
  • OAL 6.1”
  • Width 1”
  • Height  3.8”
  • 22.4 oz unloaded

Colt Commander:

  • Chambered in .45 ACP, .38 Super, 9x19mm as well as other calibers like 10mm auto and .40 S&W for other brand copies
  • Barrel 4.25”
  • Capacity 7+1 Flush fit, 8+1 with mag bumper, and all sorts of odd magazines available from long sticks to drums
  • OAL 7.75”
  • Width 0.91 inches with slim grips or across the slide
  • Height 5.25”
  • Weight 28 oz unloaded
  • Price $500 for cast imports, the sky is the limit for custom guns!

Beretta 21A:

  • Available in .22 LR and .25 ACP
  • 7+1 in .22 LR, 8+1 in .25ACP
  • Barrel 2.4 IN
  • Height 3.7 in
  • Width 1.1in
  • OAL 4.92 in
  • 11.8 oz unloaded

Wrap-Up:

  • Dont forget to shop Brownells using our affiliate link, www.handgunradio.com/brownells
  • Make sure you shop Paladin Press using our affiliate link www.handgunradio.com/books for all your firearms-related reading needs!
  • Leave us a review on iTunes!
  • Listen to all the great shows on the Firearms Radio Network!
  • Be sure to visit the Firearms Insider for review and SHOT Show 2014 coverage!
  • Last week’s winner of the Handgun Radio giveaway has not contacted me yet. It was iTunes reviewer BarrisSmurf. Please contact me at ryan@handgunradio.com so I can ship you your EDC tape. If you do not contact me by next week’s show I will redraw a winner.
  • Thanks guys for coming on!

Until next week, have fun and SAFE SHOOTING!!!!!!