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Old April 29, 2012, 12:33 PM   #1
treefarmernc
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DB9 review

After about a year of sitting on the fence between the DB9 and the 380 pastures I decided to saddle up the pocket 9mm. I kept looking at the DB9 and the small 380’s (mainly the LCP) and in the end I decided that I would rather stick with my harder hitting 9mm rather than having to add 380 to the ammo receipt.

Made the purchase at my LGS a little over 3 weeks ago and finally was able to make it to the range last Saturday. It is a DB9 EX with nickel boron coated slide and came in a plain, slick, black plastic case with the gun well secured in its foam rubber cutout. Also included was a simple trigger block and small master lock.

First up was my primary carry piece a Ruger SR9c. Handling the Ruger gave me time to practice and also a basis to judge the Diamondback. For the DB9 I brought 100 rounds of Remington UMC 115gr FMG for the primary break-in followed by 15 rounds of Hornady 115 JHP/XTP and 12 rounds Remington 124gr Golden Sabers. The DB9 came with only one 6 round magazine giving me plenty of thumb exercise.

The first 100 rounds of Rem. FMJ went fairly well. I did have 3 Failures to load and 1 fail to fire. Knowing what I was doing at the time and after some handling experiments I concluded the load failures were due to my own error. In all three cases I was too hasty in trying to load the first round resulting in me short stroking the slide. When I was paying attention I had no problems. Practicing good slide handling is a must to overcome the stiff spring in the DB9. There were no load failures with the JHPs.

Of the 127 rounds I had only 1 FTF on one Horhady JHP. It fired on the second try after resetting the firing pin.
My DB9 was firing about 2 inches low at 7 yards. Grouping was surprisingly good with most shots within 3 inches and several 1 inch groupings all from a standing, freehand, two handed position. To acquire this accuracy did take a great deal more concentration and trigger control than usual. The little 9 is snappy but recoil was not as bad as I had suspected.

So far I am impressed with my DB9 and if it will digest another 200 rounds like the first, it will get my final approval.

Pros.:
Use of the 9mm cartridge.
Small enough for pocket carry.
Light weight.
Good sights with windage adjustment.
Grip fills hand better than most pocket 380s.
Easier to find grip while in pocket.
Decent trigger.
Manageable recoil for the size and caliber.

Cons.:
Close to but not as small as many pocket 380s
Not as light as 380’s
Sights are not adjustable for elevation.
Long trigger pull
No safety (if you like safeties)
Stiff spring making slide operation stout.
A little snappy.
Should include a second magazine.

Edit: As stated further down in a post the DB9 is restricted to ammo that is not rated +p, +P+ or any thing above 124gr. Use standard pressure rounds only.




Above remington Golden Saber

Above HornadyJHP/XTP
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Last edited by treefarmernc; April 30, 2012 at 06:00 AM.
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Old April 29, 2012, 12:39 PM   #2
treefarmernc
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DB9, SR9c Comparison photos

Her are a few photos of the Diamondback with my Ruger


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Old April 29, 2012, 01:36 PM   #3
Bird3897
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Thank you for the review, let us know how it goes. I just was in my local gun dealer and looked at the db9 and db380. All I can say is wow, the db9 is just a tiny bit bigger, I can't see not just getting the 9mm, the difference is so slight. My dealer had one used one for 300 or new for 365, I am thinking about trying the used one as they have a 30day warranty to return, I know DB warranties for life but I hate returning to the factory. Not sure yet but I am thinking I need one of these. I also fondled the sig238, man are they nice pieces, I especially liked the HD model. Well, I'll post my experience with the db9 soon as I try it out.
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Old April 29, 2012, 10:51 PM   #4
C0untZer0
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1 fail to fire is disconcerting to me.

Did you pull the slide back to reset the trigger?
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Old April 29, 2012, 11:25 PM   #5
Mosin44az
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Looks like there were actually 2 failures to fire. Even worse.

I would want at least 100 rounds through with NO failures of chosen defense load before carrying. And occasional malfs are enough to spook me on a defense gun.

You might be tougher than me, I bet recoil is VERY snappy as well. Thanks for the report.
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Old April 29, 2012, 11:28 PM   #6
Mark54g
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Be careful with any of the hotter stuff through it. It is not +P safe, as a video I saw on youtube had a sad guy looking at a broken gun after a friend loaded up corbon pow'rball 9mm 100gr +P in it by accident and blew it apart.
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Old April 30, 2012, 01:29 AM   #7
C0untZer0
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Disclaimer / Warning from Diamondback's website:

Notice: Diamondback Firearms does not recommend using 9mm Bullets above 124 gr or any Ammunition that is rated NATO, +P, +P+ or anything else that is higher than SAAMI Standard pressure 9mm. The DB9 is the smallest and lightest 9mm available on the market and was not designed for the abuse and damage these rounds cause. Use of non-recommended ammunition in a Diamondback Firearms will void the warranty.
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Old April 30, 2012, 05:52 AM   #8
treefarmernc
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Hey Bird3897 one thing you may want to look at between the new and used DB9 at your dealer is rather or not the new one has a third axis pin located above the trigger. If it does then it is the newest version with a few upgrades and may warrant the extra $65. Here is a link to the DB forum where it is discussed.http://www.diamondbacktalk.com/forum...pic.php?t=1559

COuntZerO I ejected the shell examined the primer and reloaded it. The indentation looked to be well defined and plenty deep so I am not sure what happened but it fired fine the second time.

Mosin44az where is the second failure to fire? And as I stated in my post I intend on putting 200 more through before passing final jugement.

Mark54g and COuntZerO you bring up a good point about the ammo restrictions I should have included in my cons. I had some Gold Dot 124+p at the range that I use with my Ruger SR9c but I have decided not to tempt to use it in the DB9 as well as not using any over 124gr. I will now edit my original post to include this.
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Old April 30, 2012, 07:56 AM   #9
jimkimmons
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Diamondback DB9 vs Kahr CM9

I purchased a Diamonback DB9, had issues, returned to factory twice, still not sure about it. Also ended up with a different serial number when frame was replaced second time back. I have a video comparing the Kahr CM9 purchased later and preferred for carry here.

I think Diamondback has been making modifications, so maybe the kinks are out now.
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Old April 30, 2012, 06:34 PM   #10
Bird3897
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thanks treefarmernc, I decided against buying the db9 today. I looked at the used one and a new one and neither had a 3rd pin. I talked to the guys at my shop and they said they have only sold a few and a couple have already come back, they did not recommend them yet. To bad, I love the size for 9mm but I have to question them for the long haul. I don't think it has to have a slide release but would like to shoot +p, to bad as they are a pretty neat little pistol. None of the other 9mms are small enough for what I wanted as I already have a M&P9C, so I started looking at the 380s. I ended up giving a kahr p380 a try. I have always wanted one but thought they were too expensive to try with reports of them being unreliable. Seems ya either get a good one or a bad one. I hope I got a good one Has slide lock, removeable sights, very nicely put together, tiny, and can handle +p. I am very excited about this one. I just put 3 mags through it without cleaning it right out of the box gunked in oil and it ate through them, felt very nice and fun to shoot. It was some nasty eagle 380 95gr hardball too. I will give a good report on this as I get some rounds through it. Good luck with your DB9's, I hope they can make them good reliable guns, I think they are way cool.
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Old October 31, 2012, 02:57 PM   #11
treefarmernc
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Time for an update

Sadly the months have snuck by without me putting much thru the DB9. I was able to put 50 thru in May then finally was able to put another 150 thru this past weekend. During the 50 round session back in may I had a couple of fail to feeds due to limp wristing. I was purposely playing around with different positions and hand holds and both feed failures happened when I was shooting one handed relaxed. With a tighter grip I had no other problems. The ammo used during this was cheep 115gr TulAmmo steel case from Walmart.

This past weekend I took a 50rnd box each of 115gr TulAmmo, 115gr Remington UMC, and 124gr Remington Golden Sabers. All 150 went thru without any problems. Inspection of the gun inside and out is showing no evidence of any unusual wear. I have heeded the manufacturer’s warning about not using +p or hotter loads.

Over all I am feeling better about the little 9 and have started to carry it manly while walking/jogging which is the main reason I wanted this little gun in the first place. I am using a leather pocket holster and a belly band to carry it. I find the DB9 comfortable to carry with there being no notable rubbing or pinching and little to no printing although that can be contributed more to having a good carry rig.

At this point I am grading the DB9 as pretty good getting better over all. Accuracy is still holding as better than what I expected as well as felt recoil.
Dependability is till a little up in the air but looking promising with plans to put a couple hundred more rounds before labeling it as good. Its size is perfect for what I wanted it for and carries comfortably.

The biggest concern I have at this point with the DB9 in relation to its dependability is its sensitivity to how firmly it is held (limp wristing).
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