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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Today I finally did something I haven't done in awhile... hit the indoor range and burn through several hundred rounds of precious, irreplaceable 9mm ammo. I wanted to try out three new (to me) guns I just bought recently, plus compare my newest Beretta 92X with a standard 92FS I've owned for awhile. Bear in mind that being an indoor range it was just an informal shoot-off using a two-hand hold, standing, shooting no faster than I could line up the sights and fire. After a little warming up I put 50 rounds through each at my usual 10 yards distance...

Sig-Sauer P226 (1995-vintage):

I last owned one of these 25 years ago, and this recent purchase reminded me that I should never have sold it. These guns are easy to shoot, and pretty accurate out of my hands. The grip is a bit large and the pistol liked to twist in my hand somewhat due to lack of traction, but it wasn't hard to keep all the shots where they belonged. I really like the original sight setup on this pistol as well.
Trigger Revolver Gun barrel Wood Gun accessory


Smith & Wesson Model 59 (1980-vintage):

This was an impulse purchase last month that I had to have simply because it looked so nice with its polished blue finish. I plan to keep it mostly as a safe queen, but decided I needed to see how well it shoots regardless. Unfortunately not too well, at least out of my hands. The ancient sights aren't too bad, but the grip is very slippery and the thing kept shifting around in my hand. Worse yet the trigger pull is absolutely horrendous, with the DA all but unusable and a heavy SA pull that doesn't even break until it nearly hits the back of the frame. To say the least I humbled myself with this embarrassing display of marksmanship, if it can even be called that. I think it's mechanically quite accurate, but I just can't manage the damn thing. I'm cleaning it tomorrow then it's going back in the safe and will likely stay there.
Revolver Trigger Gun barrel Wood Air gun
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Beretta 92X RDO (2021-vintage):

My latest toy, I wanted to see just how well this shoots against my older 92FS which I'm a lot more familiar with. The Vertec grip felt great and sticks to my hand, and I really prefer the decocker-only function. I'm a bit on the fence regarding the sights, which use a narrow front and a deep rear notch. Probably great for speed, but I found myself taking longer to line them up on the bullseye target. The trigger is great on this, and I fired the first round DA plus occasionally decocked and fired a DA/SA double-tap. Accuracy proved more than acceptable, but function-wise it kept hitting me with the spent brass. I also had a slight failure to feed with the very first round through it, which also qualifies as the very first malfunction I've ever had with a Beretta 92-series pistol in over 30 years of owning one and tens of thousands of rounds. A quick tug on the slide and it went home, but it was very surprising especially since the pistol was actually bought used.
Trigger Air gun Wood Revolver Gun barrel


Beretta 92FS (1999-vintage):

I've owned this one for awhile but wanted to shoot it for the sake of comparison. It's stock except for a "D" mainspring, and the trigger feels identical to the 92X. I actually preferred the sight picture on it to the 92X, but that might simply be due to familiarity. I shot it in the same fashion, with the first round DA and occasional DA/SA double-taps as well. While the grip definitely felt more slippery than the 92X it didn't affect my shooting at all, and it shot a similar group with that of the 92X. In fact I'd say I shot a slightly better group with the 92FS. While the smaller/grippier feel of the Vertec grip frame on the 92X was definitely more comfortable than the 92FS it didn't make me a better shot with it, and that was very surprising to me.
Trigger Wood Air gun Gun barrel Revolver


And so... pretty interesting results across the board. I think the 92X would be the best pistol of the four for quick "runnin' n' gunnin'" stuff, but I almost never get a chance to do that so it's not as important to me. The older guns shot just as well for me as the newer technology, with one obvious exception. Come Spring and with more ammo I'll continue to practice with them, but so far I'm still preferring the old-school favorites.
 

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Don't give up on the S&W 59. It just might need dry fired a few thousand times to smooth things up.
Boosting the hammer might also clean up the SA trigger pull. i have two very similar pistols and their triggers are not that bad. The Model 39 is actually pretty good relatively speaking.

- Ivan.
 

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The old 92FS/M9 is still my favorite 92-series Beretta. I have a lot fancier models but somehow I kept coming back to the basic 92. It works well.

The Vertec grip fits my small hands better BUT it also points low for me.
 

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Yeah I have my M9 I converted to a G. I should get it out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Don't give up on the S&W 59. It just might need dry fired a few thousand times to smooth things up.
Boosting the hammer might also clean up the SA trigger pull. i have two very similar pistols and their triggers are not that bad. The Model 39 is actually pretty good relatively speaking.

- Ivan.
If the M59 was my only pistol or I intended to use it for defense I'd definitely work on it, but I bought it just for collecting's sake. I have a lot of guns that are great lookers but not so great as shooters, and it doesn't bother me as I have plenty of actual shooters that run great.

The 92X on the other hand WILL be a shooter and a defense gun, and I'll probably be changing stuff out on it as needed.
 

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Hello DSK,
I figured you really liked the S&W 59. If I liked a gun that much, I would spend some time to get it to run right.
I also have plenty of shooters and had a few guns (mostly 1911s) that had a few nagging problems that kept them off the range. One of them was a Kimber which is what got me to this site to see what kinds of problems other Kimber owners had encountered.
I believe I finally got that gun the way I want (maybe not cosmetically, but functionally). In the company of everyone else around here, I finally decided to fix some issues in other 1911s that had kept those guns off the range as well as rebuilding the internals of a revolver that had been unserviceable for over 30 years.
All this messing around isn't because I don't have a couple good running 1911s or revolvers.

- Ivan.
 

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No worries about not shooting the S&W M59 particularly well. I don't know of anyone who ever has. I've heard and seen horror stories involving those things that'd make you cringe. It seemed to have retained none of the positive attributes of its predecessor the M39, while featuring several negatives not seen in the older one. The perfunctory magazine disconnect on the M59s, added to its unfortunate tendency to self-eject its magazine during rapid fire created a "perfect storm" sidearm for making casualties of its users.
 

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Glad to see you were able to get out and shoot the new acquisitions. Thanks for sharing the results with us. It's fun to acquire and shoot guns just for the enjoyment of shooting. Every handgun does not have to enter a CC rotation to have value.
 

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My Wilson Beretta's do not get used as carry guns (Brigadier Tactical and Centurion Tactical), but they are sweet shooting guns and are a lot of fun. They get some "range love" several times a year.

dsk - thanks for sharing the range trip review, always nice to see others just enjoying the heck out of whatever guns they have.
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
No worries about not shooting the S&W M59. I don't know of anyone who ever has. I've heard and seen horror stories involving those things that'd make you cringe. It seemed to have retained none of the positive attributes of its predecessor the M39, while featuring several negatives not seen in the older one. The perfunctory magazine disconnect on the M59s, added to its unfortunate tendency to self-eject its magazine during rapid fire created a "perfect storm" sidearm for making casualties of its users.
The magazine release on my M59 is actually very difficult to engage, and I have to mash it into the frame just to get the magazine out. Someone might have tightened it to eliminate the problem you allude to.

While I respect the suggestions to tune it up, this is a gun I wanted just to have and I'm content to fondle it rather than shoot it. I already have all the guns I need to fight WWIII with.
 

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Great years for both the Sig and 92FS...looks like you did best with those...doesn't surprise me.

I have a 1998 92FS that I love and is probably materially identical to your 1999...all metal parts, frame shape, etc. And I really liked when they came out with the new rear grip cutout/contour on those...makes it noticeably easier for me to operate the safety.

It would be difficult for me to choose between those...easily 2 of my favorite 9mms of all time (y)
 

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Ah, the days of blasting a few hundred rounds a couple times per month, where did they go. I’ve only been to the range once in the past year, and that was only to fire a box of 50 rounds. But that was enough to make me want to kick it up a notch and start going more often.

Glad you were able to seize the opportunity dsk and get some lead out. Most folks can always slowly but surely rebuild their ammo reserves, but in the interim, there’s little that can substitute for enjoying your new shooters while you’re still able.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Great years for both the Sig and 92FS...looks like you did best with those...doesn't surprise me.

I have a 1998 92FS that I love and is probably materially identical to your 1999...all metal parts, frame shape, etc. And I really liked when they came out with the new rear grip cutout/contour on those...makes it noticeably easier for me to operate the safety.

It would be difficult for me to choose between those...easily 2 of my favorite 9mms of all time (y)
Actually my favorite years for the Beretta 92 were 1990-1992 when the 92FS just rolled out and they were importing Italian-made guns, as the USA plant was too busy filling the military M9 contract. I had one of those once, and the quality was second to none. Unfortunately I pulled a Homer Simpson and sold it. The late 1990s US-made Berettas were nice, but I didn't care for the Ruger-esque warning label on the frame reminding me not to shoot myself. I also used to have a 1994 pistol that was US-made but didn't have that.

BTW while 92X has the Vertec grip and is technically smaller in the grip, the actual trigger reach is still the same as with the standard 92/M9. I was a little surprised by that. It might feel better in the hand, but if you have short fingers (like me) it doesn't help at all.
 

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I was surprised to find on my 92X compact that I actually shot worse with the vertec style grip and went to the standard style grip.

As it is, after breaking it in and adding a langdon tactical trigger job in a bag, the 92X compact is a very capable gun. I've shot 5 shot groups that were sub 2 inch at 20 yards, which is probably about as good as I can ever do.
 
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