Gun of the Week

Charter Arms Bulldog No. 14420 44 Special

Many of us like to carry a 38 or 357 snubbie in the pocket as a backup to a larger gun. They’re not a bad selection either, with good loads, some of which (specifically, Buffalo Bore) put out 158-grain bullets at 1000 fps. However, some of us prefer bigger, heavier bullets for self-protection, and for that purpose, enter the Charter Arms Bulldog. For years that model was the only viable small 44 Special, but since the advent of the Bulldog around 1973, S&W came out with a similar five-shot revolver called the Model 296, now dropped from production. The Charter Arms website (CharterArms.com) today lists 11 varieties of the 44 Special Bulldog, as well as many other revolvers in 22 LR and 22 Mag., 32 H&R, 38 Spl., 357 Mag, a delightful rimless revolver in 40 S&W that doesn’t need moon clips, and the 44 Specials. For this test we chose the model 14420 standard Bulldog with 2.5-inch barrel and matte-blue finish (MSRP $414)   More...

Ruger P345 KP345PR .45 ACP

This was one sharp-looking pistol, and fit and finish were well done, we thought. The frame was black polymer and the slide was stainless steel. Both components had sculptured panels and functional cutouts, giving the gun a modern look. Ruger has several versions of the P345. One has a blued slide; another has a spring-loaded decocker instead of our version’s non-rebounding, hammer-dropping, ambidextrous safety; yet another is DAO.   More...

Glock G22 Gen4 40 S&W, $649

(GunReports.com) -- One of the most popular handguns for law-enforcement personnel is the Glock Model G22. The G22 is a full-size handgun that fires from a 4.49-inch barrel. Since the introduction of the Glock pistol, there have been only subtle changes, and most people still think of the Glock as being available without options or variation. But we’ve been able to purchase different models with upgrades to the trigger, sights, slide release, magazine release, and other operational components. Also, at www.teamglock.com, we found another lineup of RTF pistols that offer streamlined grips with a radical surface texture—but the Gen 4 Glock pistols go even further. They offer an aggressive grip texture and a choice of three different backstrap profiles. The Gen 4 pistols include the 9mm G17 and G19, the .357 SIG G31, and the 45 GAP G37. When we began putting these guns through their paces, we first wondered how bullet weight might affect accuracy. The most popular and readily available 40 S&W rounds are topped with 155-, 165-, and 180-grain bullets. The 155-grain JHP bullet is rapidly gaining popularity with law enforcement. This round was represented by Black Hills Ammunition. Next, we chose two Winchester USA rounds, one topped with 165-grain FMJ bullets and the other driving 180-grain JHP slugs.   More...

Guncrafter Industries Conversion Glock Model 21 50 GI

Alex Zimmerman has a great idea. Gun Tests magazine first experienced it in a review of one of his Guncrafter Industries’ 50-caliber 1911s, which they found to be a well-made handgun, if a bit on the costly side. Zimmerman’s idea is to give the shooter something more without the cost of broken hands. Rather than a bang-up, hot and heavy blaster, the 50 GI is a throwback to older times when big bullets traveled at low velocities and got the job done at least as well as any small-caliber, high-velocity round.   More...

Kel-Tec P32PK 32 ACP

A good choice for deep concealment; anyone trained on a double-action-only handgun will find the P32PK to be a most suitable backup.   More...

Sig Sauer P220 .45 ACP

The P220 is available with options that can put the MSRP upwards of $958, but our P220 was the blued base model. Available options include night sights and a nickel-coated slide. The special K-Kote finish is no longer available. The combination of the white dot on the front sight and the white vertical line inside the rear notch offers fast sight acquisition. If you feel more comfortable with tritium sights, a set of Siglite night sights will cost an extra $100 if sold as original equipment. Send your slide to Sigarms and the factory will install a set of Siglites for $195.   More...

Springfield Armory XD45 Compact Tactical .45 ACP

In this test we looked at four different polymer handguns that offer higher round capacity but take up less space than full-size models. Our first pistol, the $503 Taurus PT24/7 Pro 45-BP-12 could be considered a true compact, especially when compared to Taurus’s new OSS pistol. The Springfield Armory XD45 4-inch Compact XD9645HCSP06, $589; and the Springfield Armory XD45 5-inch Compact Tactical XD9655HCSP06, $619, have undergone the Colt Officers treatment, receiving a shortened grip frame attached to a full-length slide. The $637 Glock SF21 is a remodeling of the Glock 21, but the SF21 does not seem to be much smaller. We wanted to find out if any of its subtle streamlining added up to a better pistol than the original.   More...

Kimber Compact Stainless II 45 ACP, $1009

Some of us who know that there’s no substitution for bullet mass when it comes to stopping power prefer the 45 Auto for self defense. But no one likes to pack a heavy handgun, so most makers offer some solutions to that problem in the form of lighter-weight 1911s. These generally utilize aluminum frames, with shorter grips and slides. Any 45 Auto requires good management by the shooter, so these lighter and shorter-grip guns are not for everyone. One of the better 45 compromises is the use of a full-size aluminum grip frame combined with a short slide. Colt calls this setup the Lightweight Commander. We found a handgun by Kimber that is mighty close to that concept, the Compact Stainless II, $1009. The finish on the Kimber was all matte stainless except for the fixed sights, which were matte blued, and the grips, which were black checkered rubber.   More...

Glock Model 26 9mm Parabellum, $599

(GunReports.com) -- The 9mm pistol was the breakthrough sidearm that ushered in today's massive popularity of the self-loading pistols. One of the ways in which the semi-auto has evolved is its variation in size, making it possible to conceal a smaller version of a full-size carry gun. One pistol with these assets is Glock's $599 Model 26.   More...

Springfield Armory Custom Shop Professional .45 ACP

The Professional is a complete rebuild, including the installation of a match-grade barrel and complete refinishing. Other parts listed for installation include match hammer and sear, speed trigger, titanium firing pin with extra heavy firing pin spring, beavertail grip safety, ambidextrous thumb safety, low mount Novak rear sight with matching dovetail front sight, 3-dot tritium inserts, magwell, 20-lpi checkering on the front strap, checkered cocobolo grips, beveling of all external parts, deburr complete pistol internally, apply a “Black T” finish to the complete pistol and ship with six Metalform seven-round magazines tuned to the pistol.   More...

Glock GL23 .40 S&W

While older designs, such as the double-action revolver and the 1911 semi-automatic pistol, continue to prosper through new materials and manufacturing techniques, the polymer-framed pistol may be at the forefront of pistol development. The .40 S&W is the leading round chosen by today’s local and federal law-enforcement professionals. Compact .40s (3.5- to 4.25-inch barrels) bridge the gap between plainclothes duty and civilian concealed carry, and of these, the lightweight “plastic” pistols lead the way. And the Glock line of pistols is perhaps synonymous with the word “polymer.”   More...

Glock 33 357 Sig

The Glock 33, or G33, was chambered for 357 SIG and operated just like its medium- and large-size brothers, (models G32 and G31 respectively). The most notable difference was the short grip, which limited the shooter to holding the pistol with only two fingers. The rear of the stubby grip showed a generous palm swell and the trigger guard was generously undercut, or generously under-molded.   More...

Springfield Armory XD40 .40 S&W

While older designs, such as the double-action revolver and the 1911 semi-automatic pistol, continue to prosper through new materials and manufacturing techniques, the polymer-framed pistol may be at the forefront of pistol development. The .40 S&W is the leading round chosen by today’s local and federal law-enforcement professionals. Compact .40s (3.5- to 4.25-inch barrels) bridge the gap between plainclothes duty and civilian concealed carry, and of these, the lightweight “plastic” pistols lead the way.   More...

CZ USA 75D PCR Compact No. 91194 9mm, $651

(GunReports.com) -- Recently, we received a letter urging us to test more deep-concealment guns, claiming that they are the most popular gun of the day. Checking with one of the larger distributors (www.camfour.com), confirmed that it is the subcompact and micro guns that are currently driving the market. In this test we’re not going to evaluate pocket guns, but we are going to shoot four compact pistols that in are just one step larger than the smallest model available from each manufacturer. In this test we shot the little brother of the CZ 75B, the $651 CZ USA 75D PCR Compact. Throughout our tests, the gun ran reliably without a single malfunction. The CZ is a hammer-driven pistol with two modes of fire. Once the slide has been moved rearward, the hammer stays back and trigger is used for the single action of releasing the hammer. But after using the decocker to lower the hammer to a locked position about 0.36 inches from the firing pin, pressing the trigger will perform two actions. First to move the hammer rearward, and, second, to release it toward the firing pin. To collect accuracy data, our test team fired the CZ 75D PCR Compact from the bench in single action only.   More...