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Old June 30, 2006, 01:47 PM   #1
LH2
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Beretta's rotating-barrel - why?

Can somebody explain the point of this design, as well as any benefits or negatives associated with it?

I'm looking for a (relatively) soft-shooting .40 or .45ACP and the PX4 caught my attention. Just wondering about the rotating barrel design...
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Old June 30, 2006, 01:54 PM   #2
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One benefit is that it allows the bore axis of the barrel to be lower, which reduces muzzle flip. Easier and quicker to get back on target. The PX4 is a nice shooting pistol as a result.
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Old June 30, 2006, 02:29 PM   #3
Bullrock
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Easier and quicker to get back on target. The PX4 is a nice shooting pistol as a result.
Hawkman, my PX4 seems to just linger on the target without leaving it at all!!!
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Old June 30, 2006, 04:22 PM   #4
LH2
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Anybody know if the PX4 .40SW is a soft-shooter?

The only .40 I've tried was a G23 and I thought it was pretty snappy.
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Old June 30, 2006, 04:29 PM   #5
mete
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Low recoil ? try the HK usp or P2000. The rotating barrel idea has been around for about 100 years !! The one I had was a CZ 24 which was a well made pistol in 380.
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Old June 30, 2006, 05:14 PM   #6
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Mete, The rotating barrel idea has been around for about 100 years !! The one I had was a CZ 24 which was a well made pistol in 380.
I assume you are not the proud owner of the PX4, huuumm? Otherwise you wouldn't be recomending those over-priced HK's to all us poor folk!
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Old June 30, 2006, 06:01 PM   #7
silver-bullet
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I believe they went with that design because it is supposed to be stronger. If you take a look at the PX4 website, it says: (I highlighted the portion of the paragraph dealing with the rotating barrel)

The new Beretta Px4 Storm pistol is the most advanced expression of technological and aesthetic features in a semiautomatic sidearm.

Built around a modular concept that a pistol can be adapted to different needs and modes of operations, without compromising on ergonomics and the renowned Beretta reliability and performance, the Px4 Storm emphasizes power, ease of handling, performance and reliability.

Initially manufactured in three calibers, the Px4 Storm uses an exclusive Beretta designed innovative locked-breech with rotating barrel system, the strongest action to date.The light yet durable frame employs modern thermoplastic technology through the use of technopolymer reinforced fiberglass.

Modular structure, ergonomics and interchangeability of parts make the Px4 Storm the ideal firearm for law-enforcement use, as well as personal defense.
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Old June 30, 2006, 06:56 PM   #8
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As I have stated before, My PX4 in .40 shoots smoother with less felt recoil than my Beretta 92fs in 9mm. I don't know how much can be attributed to the rotating barrel design, but I'm sure the very stiff recoil spring, the polymer frame, and the overall weight help in recoil absortion. I havent had the pleasure of experimenting with H&K, but the PX4 is perhaps the most enjoyable handgun I have ever fired.
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Old June 30, 2006, 10:19 PM   #9
KurtC
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With the typical Browning tilt-barrel system, the breech lowers and the muzzle raises as the slide retracts. This is also the definition of muzzle flip.

With a rotating barrel, everything stays in line as the slide retracts. My 8045D is the slickest, softest shooting .45 that I have ever used, and I have tried them all.
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Old June 30, 2006, 10:28 PM   #10
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I don't know about innovative design, I own a french made MAB P-15 9mm that also has the same rotary barrel locked breech system. And I have two of the beretta 8045 cougars that use it as well (at least those are beretta's) and it does make for a lower alignment axis of barrel/wrist which results in lower felt recoil for me.

Edit: Right after I clicked send, I realized that it also means less movement from the original barrel position and probably a better return to "true" on lockup, which also makes the pistol inherently more accurate.
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Old June 30, 2006, 10:38 PM   #11
hot sauce
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Get one. I love mine. It is one of the most accurate guns that I've every owned. I think it looks better than my USP 45 also.
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Old June 30, 2006, 11:43 PM   #12
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I think the reduced recoil felt on the Px4 is a result of the low bore axis it has. I'm not sure if that's made possible by the rotating barrel, but the recoil kicks almost straight back into your hand rather than flipping the muzzle up.
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Old June 30, 2006, 11:49 PM   #13
Handy
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Rotating barrels do a couple of good things:

The barrel rotates opposite the rifling, so the bullet's spin actually fights the slide's recoil.

The action is as simple as a tilt barrel - no additional locking blocks.

Non-tilting barreled actions are more feed reliable than the Browning system because they require no tension between a feed ramp and the breechface to insure the case rim ends up under the extractor. With in-line barrels, rounds are fed directly into the bore and ejected straight back without much chance of catching the next round's case rim. A superior feeding system.


So you get a gun that feeds like a Beretta 92, but is tougher than a locking block design and as simple as a Glock or Sig top end. The only real downside is that it is a little harder to get a really snug barrel fit than a Browning type (but accuracy is usually excellent all the same) and the slide tends to be wider due to the locking ears sticking out of the barrel.


Of interest, this is one of the oldest systems, going back to the 1910 Steyr 9mm. The MAB pistol also uses a rotating barrel, but is a different system. It is delayed blowback, with a non-recoiling barrel. The Beretta, like the old Steyr, is recoil operated.
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Old July 1, 2006, 07:52 AM   #14
silver-bullet
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So you get a gun that feeds like a Beretta 92, but is tougher than a locking block design and as simple as a Glock or Sig top end. The only real downside is that it is a little harder to get a really snug barrel fit than a Browning type (but accuracy is usually excellent all the same) and the slide tends to be wider due to the locking ears sticking out of the barrel.


Handy, do you think Beretta went with this design because it might prove more capable of handling high-pressure rounds like the .357 Sig? I notice the Beretta 92 was never offered in that caliber, and I have to wonder of the locking-block action was strong enough to withstand that kind of pressure.
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Old July 1, 2006, 10:13 AM   #15
givo08
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I believe Beretta is coming out with a .45acp version in the fall and then coming out with a compact version in 2007 sometime. I have not heard about .357 sig.
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Old July 1, 2006, 03:00 PM   #16
Handy
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Definitely. There is no good reason, if the 96 is strong enough for .40, that .357 wasn't also offered. The 92 action isn't up to .40, IMO.

Locking blocks CAN be very tough, but not in the case of Beretta's specific system. Switching away from it put .357 and .45 on the table, as well as getting much better performance from .40.
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Old July 1, 2006, 09:29 PM   #17
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Question for Handy . . .

I'm not trying to hijack the thread or anything, but since it is about the PX4 and I have been semi lusting after one I thought I might as well ask my question.

I've heard a rumor that the PX4 has a plastic hammer. Is that true, and, if so, what is your opinion?

Thanks
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Old July 2, 2006, 12:52 AM   #18
Handy
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There is no such thing as a "plastic hammer". Some guns, like the HK USPs, use steel hammers that are overmolded with plastic on the exposed part. This is kind of cheap, but so is a plastic frame, plastic mag release, etc, so who's complaining?

I don't know whether the PX4 also uses such a hammer or not, but in terms of the gun's function there is no difference. The only time it should matter is when you put your thumb on the hammer.


At least it will never rust.
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Old July 3, 2006, 04:15 PM   #19
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If it's a superior design, why was it all but lost for the better part of 100 years? Just wondering...
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Old July 3, 2006, 04:33 PM   #20
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I would venture that over the years it has been too expensive to machine the grooves inside the slide. Modern CNC methods are now making it possible at a reasonable price.

Milling the lug recesses in the slide of a Browning tilt design seems pretty straightforward, but the angled grooves for a rotating barrel are a bit complicated.
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Old July 3, 2006, 05:26 PM   #21
Bullrock
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Handy

Quote:
Some guns, like the HK USPs, use steel hammers that are overmolded with plastic on the exposed part.
Hammerbite, After looking, it does appear the above answer to your question is correct...
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Old July 3, 2006, 08:18 PM   #22
HammerBite
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Handy & Bullrock . . .

Thanks for your responses. My semi-lust will continue, and may escalate to full lust. Somehow I find the PX4 appealing.
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Old July 4, 2006, 12:40 AM   #23
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Not trying to hijack the sugject, but I have wondered how the accuracy will be for the Beretta. If most of you say it's accurate then Beretta must have solved the tolerance problems the Colt 2000 had. Most of the reviews on the Colt 2000 had the accuracy not in par with most tilt/block locking designed pistols. Desert Eagles have gas/rotating bolts in which are conducive to excellent accuracy. josh
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Old July 4, 2006, 11:13 AM   #24
pogo2
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Product Differentiation?

When a market is already crowded with many similar products, as the polymer handgun market is, perhaps it is smart marketing to differentiate your new product from the entrenched competition with a unique feature or two. This could give the consumer who already owns a polymer handgun a reason to consider your new product. It also gives the salesperson in the gun store something to pitch to the customer.
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Old July 5, 2006, 09:41 AM   #25
dixonba
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The hammer on the PX4 is indeed metal.
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