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L. Neil Smith's
Number 467, May 11, 2008

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Czech It Out: My Favorite Handgun
by Chris Claypoole

Attribute to The Libertarian Enterprise


My favorite pistol is the CZ B SA in .40 S&W. (See here and here) The first time I fired it at the range it was like I had been shooting with it for years. It happens to fit my hand extraordinarily well, and the grip angle and three-dot sights make sighting fast and easy. The all-steel construction gives it considerable heft, reducing recoil quite a lot compared with polymer guns (I also have a Glock 22). These features let me bring it back on target quickly after each round.

The magazine holds 10 rounds (larger capacity, extended magazines are available, but I don't like the way they change the balance); less than the 15rounds of the Glock 22 for instance, but the narrower grip is easier for me to hold comfortably. Since I practice shooting one-handed as well as from a two-handed Weaver stance, that narrow grip is important for control.

I typically have my targets at seven yards; coincidentally, that is the longest unobstructed dimension in my house. At that distance, I can shoot out the center of the target using a two-handed grip, and can keep all my shots within the torso using left (weak) hand only. My practice is usually to shoot as soon as I bring the sight picture back on target rather than to take a lot of time trying to make a “perfect” shot each time. The picture of my CZ 75 is on a target from 2/23/2008; I was shooting two-handed at the usual seven yards, using Winchester 165 grain FMJ. This was three ten-round magazines.

The other features I like are the ambidextrous safety and Single-Action only configuration (I prefer 1911-style pistols to the Glocks), and the ease of disassembly (almost as easy as the Glock). What I don't like is that the magazines are designed to not drop out easily when the release is pressed. And, despite everything I've read about the extreme dependability of the CZ line, mine has recently developed an occasional failure-to-extract problem. (Any ideas? I've cleaned and lubed according to the instructions, use good, clean ammo, etc.)

This is too heavy a pistol (at 2.2 lbs) to be a comfortable concealed-carry weapon for most people and situations, but is an enormously fun weapon to shoot. Besides, I live in Maryland, which (for all intents and purposes) doesn't allow concealed carry. The CZ line has a good option for that, though: the RAMI 2075 (which I also have) is a great little sub-compact pistol that is nearly as accurate as its big brother, but is easily concealable ( It can be carried in a variety of ways that would escape all but the most careful observation.

BTW, my very close second-favorite pistol is the Kimber Classic Stainless Target, a traditional M1911 .45 caliber pistol. It's only a case of my personal ergonomics that edges the CZ ahead of the Kimber, as both are very accurate and substantial guns.


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