Larry: Welcome to the Vickers Tactical YouTube channel and it’s time to take you through the new FN striker fired pistol known as the 509. I’m out here with my buddy Tom from FN, we’re at Take Aim Range in Pageland, South Carolina. I’ve been chompin’ at the bit to reveal this gun to you for a while, I was involved in the development early on; and now, Tom, take it away.
Tom: So, Larry, as you’re familiar, this is a derivative of our modular handgun system requirement, or solicitation. So the US Army, about a year ago was asking for a new pistol to replace their Beretta M9. So S FN is, you know, the world’s most battle proven firearms – we do a lot of military contracting – we saw that we needed to have a pistol for this. So what we did is we took our FNS series, kind of enhanced it in a lot of ways to meet all the US requirements.
Larry: Now, a couple things right off the bat that jump out at you: the slide profile was different, and the grip is obviously different in terms of the texturing where did all that come from?
Tom: So, the US Army was asking for a gun that would fit all size hands – anywhere from 5% to 95% – so in order to do that we had to kinda slim out the grip a little bit, and in the process we improved a lot of the texturing – so you’ll see the texture goes up a little bit higher – optimized the front strap for better recoil management, and then in the slide you see it’s changed profile a little bit. So we got some feedback from our customers that (it can) we could use some enhancements for racking this gun, enhance serrations; and then you combine that with the new durability requirements – we kinda had to beef everything up a little bit cause the new ammo was definitely some very hot stuff.
Larry: Now, MHS, the army’s handgun solicitation was about a year ago and then now we’re, down the road, what took so long to get this ready for the civilian and LE market?
Tom: So, with MHS you pretty much had to submit a gun and two different types of ammo. So what we did is, we did everything we could to optimize our MHS solicitation for the ammo we wanted to submit; but that obviously wasn’t gonna work for commercial and law enforcement customers, so our customers expect to be able to run kind of everything outside the box. So what we did is we took our MHS gun, took it out to a lot of agencies, a bunch of SMEs like yourself, got feedback, and rolled that all into some improvements, while making sure it worked with all that ammo out there.
Larry: Good deal, now; going through a few things here: you got back straps, different sizes, correct?
Tom: Yes sir. So, it ships commercially with the small and the medium back strap, so it’s a very flat – real small hands – and then a medium, which is a more curved; and then we’ll also offer – as an accessory with some of our LE SKUs – this larger one which kind of extends the trigger reach a little bit as well.
Larry: Cool! Ambi controls.
Tom: Same as the FNS. So you’re gonna have full ambi slide stop and mag catch, where you don’t have to reverse it, it runs full time all the time.
Larry: Magazine compatibility with your prior pistols, what do we got?
Tom: So what we did is we took the FNS mag and kind of evolved it a little bit: we did change the coating, and the floor plate and it’s retention. So, what you can do is you can run a 509 and an FNS, but some of our customers wanted a slightly different floor plate so what we did is end up changing that out; but if you have an FNS and you want to convert it, you can just buy the floor plate and the retainer – turn’em into training mags. It’s kinda nice cause then you’ll have a grey mag – it could be your training mag – and your carry mags could be black.
Larry: And theres 17 rounds, so 1 in the chamber, 18 in the gun.
Larry: Cool! Now, let’s talk about the sights – gotta save the best for last here. What enhancements did you do with the sights and how compatible are they with other stuff on the market?
Tom: So we talked to some of the customers – and you also a lot as well – about what people want in sights and what works well; so we actually ended up incorporating a squared out U notch for the rear. Gaining a little bit more popularity and kinda speed precision shooting, if that makes sense.
Tom: But then at the same time, a lot of people were complaining that there wasn’t enough aftermarket for the FNS so we changed the dovetail to something a lot more standard. So already on the market you’re gonna have fiber optics, night sights, everything you want.
Larry: It’s already ready to go.
Larry: Good deal. Now, the commercial gun ships with what style sights?
Tom: It’s gonna be glow in the dark style, very similar to some of our competitors, so it helps with some of the – if you’re outside and go inside a house you can still kinda see the sights. And then LE SKUs will offer the standard tritium night sights.
Larry: Cool. It’s time to light it up Vickers Tactical style – FN-509.