Hey guys, welcome back. Today we’re out at the range testing a handgun that I am considering carrying. As you guys probably know if you follow the channel, I have adopted the VP9 as my daily carry handgun. I’ve put a lot of ammunition through the VP9, and this fall, I promise you guys I’ll give you all my thoughts, or what we’d normally call a full review, here very shortly. Probably about the time the snow flies. I’ve been carrying the gun for a very long time, and before I give you those thoughts, I want to make sure I’ve completely wrung the gun out, so I can tell you what I like and I don’t like about it. I do have things I don’t like about it, but I’m still carrying it.
As a backup, I like to carry another handgun. Sometimes I want a smaller handgun that I can carry around that’s comfortable on hot summer days like today. Where if I’m just wearing shorts and a light t-shirt, I don’t want a big old VP9, which I carry appendix style, poking out, showing the whole world that I have a gun on. Sometimes I want to be a little bit more discrete, or perhaps I want a little more comfort if I want to be out and be active all day long, running around, bending over, and stuff like that. In those instances, I’ve been using the Glock 43. The Glock 43 is the little, mini, 9 millimeter that Glock recently announced, and I’ve been trying to fall in love with the gun.
Reliability? Spot-on. The gun works just fine. However, I can’t shoot the gun accurately, or not nearly as accurately as I can my VP9 or even my Glock 19. As a matter of fact, my Glock 42 (the smaller .380 version of that, which I carried as a little backup gun before the 43 came onto the market), I can shoot tiny little groups right in the “X” ring with that pistol as well. For whatever reason, the 43 does not work for me as well as I would like it to. I’ve changed the sights, I’ve put a ghost trigger in it, I’ve put TALON Grips on it, and I still just can’t get the gun under control. It’s not giving me that comfort level that I like to have in a carry gun, so I’ve been looking for other options.
Also, because I carry appendix, I’m kind of going against what I normally say I prefer. In that case, I’m talking about manual safeties on striker-fired handguns. I am carrying the Walther CCP right now — and this is the handgun that I’m talking about — appendix style. I’m carrying it in a custom Contact! Concealment Kydex holster. Bruce over at Contact! Concealment was kind enough to make this for me when I told him I was looking at going to the CCP. There’s no rake on it; it’s intended to be carried perfectly vertical. It works great for inside the waistband carry. You’ll notice that the gun fits very nicely in there — it doesn’t poke me in the nether regions. It’s a very comfortable place to carry the gun. Because it has a manual safety, I don’t have to worry about shooting myself in the burrito when I’m quickly re-holstering.
Now, you should go slowly into the holster, right? That’s what we were always taught, but one thing that you have to be very careful of when you’re re-holstering a striker-fired pistol is that, when you draw the gun and present it, and when you go back, you want to make sure that your finger’s off the trigger — you pull your garment up, you look, and you make sure there’s nothing there and carefully reinsert the gun into your holster. One screw-up there will put a round right where you’re not going to survive the hit. There’s a big old artery that runs down both sides of your legs, and if you hit that artery, 911 isn’t going to save you. The manual safety allows me to go ahead and put the gun on safe and then carefully re-holster it, giving me that extra tier of security.
I was also considering perhaps going to a double-action auto again. As you guys know if you follow the channel, I recently had a long conversation with a gentleman by the name of Byron who owns a training company, and he was talking to me as to why he likes a double action auto — because he, like me, carries appendix style. This manual safety gives me the striker-fired pistol that I want, the trigger that I want, but it also gives me the ability to make the gun safe when I’m re-holstering, which is typically when you’re going to shoot yourself in the jimmy unintentionally.
What we’re out here doing today is testing the gun. Now, I’ve put about three hundred rounds through the gun so far, and I have tested it with my carry ammunition, but I want to make sure that I’m 100% comfortable with reliability. Here I have some 115 grain ball ammunition from Freedom Munitions. It’s good stuff — this is the first time you guys have seen me shooting this stuff. I’ve seen other people shooting it, and I wanted to give it a try. I also have some S&B ammo, here. This stuff I use quite frequently on the channel. I picked this stuff up from LuckyGunner; this stuff I get directly from Freedom Munitions. My goal is to put 1,000 rounds through this gun in the next couple of days. I’m about 300 rounds in, and today, I’m going to come out here and just wring this handgun out. I’m going to continue to shoot it and shoot it and shoot it to make sure that it has 100% function before I’m comfortable saying I’m going to carry the thing as my backup handgun or my primary handgun when I don’t want to carry a bigger handgun. Let’s do some shooting. I also want to show you some things about the CCP and another handgun that it’s very similar to. Let’s start doing some shooting.
Alright, you see that little spinning wheel/pinwheel target out there? Once you shoot one of those targets off, it sets the whole thing into motion, causes it to spin in a circle and making it ever more challenging to hit the target. Let’s see if I can knock them all off, there.
I made it, with no rounds to spare. It took me eight rounds to do it, but I finally shot them all off. Again, this is at about 15 yards, or something like that — not too bad. Those were little 6 inch plates. It’s a very shootable little handgun. I’ll tell you what, let’s see if we can knock down — I’ve got eight more rounds here — step over here. Let’s see how I do on the plate rack.
Let’s go out to the big target there.
Yes, this thing shoots really, really well in my hands, and that’s why I’m falling in love with the thing. So far, we’ve had no malfunctions with the handgun using the S&B ammunition.
I’m shooting at a plate rack that’s about 15 yards away. The plates themselves are about 8 inches. It’s a little bit further than what I normally train for self-defense type stuff, but I’m trying to get used to the gun and force myself to shoot more accurately. When I draw the pistol, I’ll bring it up, and you’ll notice when I bring it up my thumb will come up, and I will sweep the safety off. The gun comes up, the safety comes off, and then the gun goes out. Now, here’s where I’m having a problem with this gun, just like with my VP9. It seems like everybody these days wants to put the slide stop in the wrong place. In my case, I’m always touching that slide stop. I’m getting — not false locks, but the gun rarely locks open for me. I normally shoot a handgun with my thumbs forward like this, but in doing that, my thumb is touching this under recoil and keeping the slide from locking open. I’ve gotten around it with my VP9, but I have yet to learn how to do it with this in a comfortable way. The only way I can shoot the gun without having it happen is to tuck my thumb down, which then screws up my grip, and I don’t like how I’m holding the gun. I’m going to have to work on that. Anyway, let’s see how the little gun shoots.
Now, another thing I like about this handgun is that it has eight-round magazines. My Glock 43 only holds six rounds. That’s nine rounds with one in the chamber. The ergonomics on this thing are spectacular. It’s what really drew me to the handgun.
Yes, it’s extremely accurate. I mean, I can hit pretty much anything I aim at with this little guy. It holds eight rounds, a good deal. The sights are pretty minimalistic. You’ve got a three dot sight arrangement. They are not night sights. I do plan on putting night sights on it when I can find some. Other than that, the operation of the gun is very unique — I shouldn’t say it’s “very” unique, but it’s unique. There have been other designs in the past that have used this particular method of operation. The most notable of which was built by H&K. Let’s take a look at that little pistol.
Wow. That is one shootable handgun. This, guys, is the H&K P7 — this is not the M8, this is the earlier version. It has a heel release here on the magazine. Push the button on the bottom, and it drops the magazine out. It does not have the polymer heat shield up here, and we’ll talk about why that’s important here in a second. This is the H&K squeeze cocker. To cock the weapon, you simply squeeze this lever right here, and it will draw the striker to the rear. It performs another function. By squeezing it — if I put a fresh magazine into the gun — I squeeze this lever, and it drops the slide chambers around and makes the gun ready. You’ll notice that the striker is to the rear in the firing position. If I release my grip on the gun, it de-cocks the gun, making it safe. It’s very fast into action. There are no slide stops for your finger to get snagged up on or to cause false locks or no locks at all. The gun’s very fast and easy to use. It holds eight rounds.
What makes this gun unique is the fact that it’s not your typical blowback operation. As a matter of fact, you simply push a button, take the gun apart (all you have to do is push this button), and you’ll see how the gun works. See that gas piston? That’s a piston that’s used to delay the slide from opening. It’s holding the slide closed at the moment of firing. There’s a hole right in front of the chamber. When the bullet passes that hole, it taps gas off, and it pushes the slide closed when the bullet leaves the barrel. Then, the gas pressures drop off and the recoil allows the slide to move rearward. It’s a gas-delayed blowback system. The exact same system that Walther is now using on the new CCP. It makes for a very easy gun to use in terms of recoil management, and also the springs tend to be a little bit easier to operate for those that have weak hands. Let’s take another look at that CCP.
I think I’ve got one left.
How many rounds have I got left? I’ve got three rounds left. This little guy shoots really, really well if I do my part.
The one thing I don’t like about the CCP is its disassembly method. It can be a nightmare. First of all, let’s take a look at the P7, which it shares some lineage with. The P7 is a very simple handgun to fieldstrip. Simply make sure that the gun’s empty — of course, there’s no magazine in the gun, push the take down button on the side of the P7, draw the slide slightly to the rear, lift up, and the whole gun just comes apart like that. You have a fixed barrel, a spring, and a slide, with its gas piston. Let’s set the P7 aside.
Now take a look at the CCP. The CCP ships with this handy little polymer tool. Without this tool, you will probably find yourself using four letter words you’ve never used before in your life, and you may wind up losing small parts, like a spring. Ask me how I know. I spent 15 minutes looking for a spring because I dared to try to take this apart with a flathead screwdriver. Make sure the CCP is empty, that there’s no magazine in the gun. There’s a little tiny metal tab. I’m going to use the tip of the take down tool to push up on that tab and push in on the rear assembly. That will allow me to draw the slide off the gun. Now, be very careful because these parts can come out and go sailing. Once you do that, there’s your recoil spring and your gas piston system.
Now, this gun has, collectively, about 500 rounds through it today and about 300 rounds yesterday, so we’re about 800 rounds into the gun. I haven’t cleaned it. I have sprayed a little bit of lubricant in there. You can see the gun’s pretty dirty, but we’re having no issues with ammunition that’s above — should I say — light factory loads for target use. The light 115 grain ball rounds, like Winchester White Box, are not quite enough to cycle the action. The slightly hotter stuff — the S&B, the ZQI, the Freedom Munitions, 124 grains – 100% function. There are no problems with the gun.
To put it back together, slide your spring over the barrel. Now, this becomes a little bit challenging. You have to line your gas piston up with the gas piston hole that’s in the end just underneath the barrel itself. If the piston doesn’t line up — you can see the piston moves around quite a bit — you’re going to wind up, again, cussing and making funny noises. I’m going to try to line it up as best I can here. There you go. Now, once you get it to that point — you get the gas piston in — just slide it to about this position, get your tool, and push in the take down section. Again, they say it gets easier with practice. Okay, it’s back together.
What is the moral of that story? Don’t lose this tool. If you think you’re inclined to lose this tool, contact Walther and order a whole bunch of them and put them away. You can get it apart with a screwdriver, but you may find yourself running around with a flashlight on the floor looking for tiny parts that go sailing, which is what happened to me. Aside from that, that’s really the only negative about the handgun I’ve found so far.
What I’m going to do is, I have a thermal camera over here to my left. It’s going to be recording the gun as the gun is firing. You’re going to be able to see the heat buildup on this side of the gun. It may take a few magazines for it to really start to register.
Let’s grab one more set of magazines here really quickly. Here we go with the third magazine.
Here’s the fourth magazine.
It’s getting a little bit warm, but not too bad. Let’s try a couple more mags.
I can tell you right now, that’s very warm — on the underside, right there. It’s uncomfortable holding my finger there for more than 3 seconds. That’s how quickly that little guy heats up.
That sucker’s getting warm. There’s 160 degrees right there where your finger touches. That’s uncomfortably hot, and that’s all because of the gas system. If you come back here to the rear of the gun, it’s just ambient temperature — it’s about 80 degrees out here today. The grip is fine — 99 degrees, 97 degrees. However, right there, where that gas piston system is — holy cow! It gets warm. It’s at 163 degrees, or right in the 160 degree range, man.
Alright, guys, we’ve put a little over 500 rounds through it this afternoon. I put 300 rounds through it yesterday at the indoor range. If you follow me on Instagram, I was talking to you guys about putting about 1,000 rounds through it in two days. Tomorrow I’m going to put some more ammunition through it, but right now I’m very comfortable with the reliability and the function of the handgun. It’s an extremely shootable handgun, and I will be carrying it, and I think at this point, the Glock 43 has been officially retired. I just simply can’t shoot the gun like I can this one. I also like the fact that this handgun has two more rounds, but is still roughly about the same size as the Glock 43. It’s more ergonomic, it’s more shootable, I like the sights that are on it — although I would like to have night sights — and it holds two more rounds. I simply can’t beat it. Plus, the trigger is really good.
Now, I know a lot of you guys have asked me already, “How’s the trigger on the gun?” Some people have said it’s squeaky, or gritty or whatever. I’m just not feeling it. The trigger on this gun is long, and it’s creepy, but it breaks really clean. It’s one of those few guns that, when I look over the sights as I’m aiming the pistol, I can actually see it break cleanly, and the front sight doesn’t move. The reset on the handgun, the trigger — this is what the reset looks like. It’s a very long reset, so you’re not going to shoot super-fast. This isn’t going to be a very good handgun for competition shooting, but the trigger is nice for a defensive handgun trigger, and you can’t argue with the accuracy.
I can shoot this little gun — I was hitting steel plates at 100 yards with it, and this is a compact pistol. It’s a very nice little gun to shoot. The magazine release is right where I like it, although it is different than my VP9, so the manual of arms will be slightly different. It also has this manual safety, which, again, I’m giving a try. I typically don’t like them, but I’m giving them a try because I do carry the gun appendix style, and it gives me just a little bit of extra buffer. I make sure that safety’s on when I holster it, and as long as I practice taking that safety off when I bring it out, I should be just fine. It gives me that little extra security measure to prevent myself from accidentally shooting myself in places I don’t want to be shot.