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Old January 17, 2013, 02:08 AM   #1
Northrider
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Tang folio .45/.22

I saw a new Tangfolio semi auto in .45acp with an additional slide and mag so you can shoot .22lr today. The lgs wanted between 500 and 600 (I can't remember exact amt).
My question: is the price reasonable and how reliable are Tangfolio's?

Please keep replies to this topic as I am mostly interested in people's experience with this brand.

Thanks in advance for your input.
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Old January 17, 2013, 03:09 AM   #2
hAkron
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The Tanfoglio guns are imported by EAA. They are good guns. Based on the CZ 75 design. Do a search for EAA customer service. They have a spotty reputation. Odds are you will never need to contact them though.

Around $500 is a good price for that gun. $600 is a wee bit too high.
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Old January 17, 2013, 08:47 AM   #3
Japle
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Sounds like a Witness pistol. The guns themselves are usually VG to excellent. There have been many instances of cracked frames and slides on 10mm and .45 Witnesses. As hAkron said, EAA's customer service is a problem. They won't honor a warranty except for the original owner. Dealing with them can be a nightmare. I wouldn't buy the gun unless I'd checked and tested it out and was satisfied with its functioning.
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Old January 17, 2013, 09:00 AM   #4
Skans
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I have a Witness "Stock" 10mm. I have put plenty of rounds through it and have not had any malfunctions or problems whatsoever. I have followed this particular line of guns for about 10 years now; and while I have read 2 or 3 accounts of a cracked frames over the years, this is from what I can tell rare. Now, if I was the one with a cracked frame, I'd understandably be negative on this gun (as I am with a Taurus PT-99 that broke on me).

All I can say is that with the Stock 10mm I have, I got a heck of a lot of gun for $650 (price when I purchased it several years ago - now going for about $850). I have seen the Wittness Match guns in 9mm, and for $600, you are getting a lot of gun, given today's market, at that price. If I didn't already have an abundance of 9mm's, I would have bought one.
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Old January 17, 2013, 09:26 AM   #5
Walt Sherrill
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They won't honor a warranty except for the original owner.
A number of major gunmakers won't honor a warranty unless it's the original owner, although some will offer various levels of support.

Most of the problems I've read about had to do with original owners being denied warranty coverage, and EAA wouldn't even discuss the matter. In those cases, an EAA manager automatically claimed that any cracked frame or slide was due to hot handloads, and did so without even looking at the gun. In all of the cases I've heard about, the shooters said they were using factory ammo. Most of those shooters also claimed they didn't roll their own. Tanfoglio later changed the slides on the Witness .45s and 10mm models; I don't whether there were any Tanfoglio frame design changes.

I've had several .45 Witnesses, and they've all been 100%. One was an older Sport Long Slide. That one had a barrel fail, and it wasn't bought new -- so I replaced it. Nice gun; I later traded it away, but probably should have kept it.

.

Last edited by Walt Sherrill; January 17, 2013 at 08:38 PM.
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Old January 17, 2013, 10:02 AM   #6
aarondhgraham
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That's a bit high in price,,,

Just a few months back both the 9mm/.22 version and the .45/.22 version were going for $409.00 at Buds.

Aarond

.
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Old January 17, 2013, 06:27 PM   #7
Zhillsauditor
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Someone had a deal on them two years ago with both going for something like $375 delivered. I was too broke to take advantage of it. Bud's price is good, but they are not always available.
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Old January 18, 2013, 06:58 PM   #8
Big Steve
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I have two 9mm Witness pistols. A Poly and just bought a Match model. No one that shoots them can believe what they cost. Most underated handguns for the price. I did some checking and some of there new Poly models are being made in Turkey now. Both of mine are made in Italy. Might want to check the one you are looking at.
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Old January 18, 2013, 10:26 PM   #9
chris in va
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I had a Witness 45. It was absurdly heavy for it's size and caliber. Lots of sharp edges too. I couldn't deal with it more than a month and sold it.
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Old January 18, 2013, 11:03 PM   #10
mmb713
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The Witness cracking issues were with wonder finished pistols. The combo gun is blued and shouldn't have any cracking issues. That price would probably be on the high side here in SLC. Up in Alaska is likely another story. I've had good luck so far with my Witness pistols. If you want a 45 Witness the combo is they way to go. The non-combo Witnesses only come with the wonder finish and I'd rather have blue plus you get the 22lr slide and barrel.
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Old January 19, 2013, 09:18 AM   #11
Walt Sherrill
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he Witness cracking issues were with wonder finished pistols.
That's the first time I've heard that point made -- but that makes sense.

Wonder Finish isn't really a "finish" (i'e. some sort of applied coating) but, rather, a surface hardening treatment (or so Witness claims).

Maybe they just hardened the metal a bit too much, making it less resilient on those models.
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Old January 19, 2013, 02:11 PM   #12
Skans
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The Witness cracking issues were with wonder finished pistols.
A couple of things. There aren't exactly that many examples of cracked frames on Witness pistols. This is a pretty rare event. Of the couple that I have read about, one was where the owner had his gun hard chromed due to rust issues he was experiencing in Florida. EAA denied responsibility because the frame had been altered (not saying I agree with EAA on this, this is just what the Owner reported).

Slides cracking was a little more prevalent on some models. Years ago, these pistols had a squared-off "blocky" slide, then they moved to a slimmed-down, rounded-off slide. Apparently the rounded slide had more of a tendency to crack. Then, Tanfoglio went back to the squared-off style slides. The slides Tanfoglio has been using over the past several years are more squared off and have more metal in them. So, if you are buying a Tanfoglio pistol, it helps to know which model and style you are purchasing. My understanding is that the slide and frame issues were resolved more than several years ago, and this should only be a concern if you are buying an older Tanfoglio.

FWIW, I've never read that the wonder finish contributed to slide or frame cracking. Frame cracking was speculated to be from a rough breech face, over-charged cartridge, alteration by owner (if you buy EAA's explanation) or possibly a defect in the metal.

Last edited by Skans; January 19, 2013 at 02:18 PM.
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Old January 19, 2013, 07:57 PM   #13
Walt Sherrill
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...Frame cracking was speculated to be from a rough breech face...
I don't understand how a rough breech face would contribute to frame cracking. Any suggestions? Anyone?

On the other hand, I can see how, in theory at least, FRAME HARDENING (if done improperly) *might* contribute to cracking...

I have not read of many cracked frames, either -- Most (if not all) of what I read about was slide problems.

Last edited by Walt Sherrill; January 19, 2013 at 08:04 PM.
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Old January 21, 2013, 08:36 AM   #14
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Supposedly, it had something to do with the end of the cartridge getting stuck at an odd position as the recoil spring was trying to slam the slide forward. This is just what I've read, not what I've experienced. The breach face on my EAA Stock is silky smooth.
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Old January 21, 2013, 02:54 PM   #15
Walt Sherrill
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Supposedly, it had something to do with the end of the cartridge getting stuck at an odd position as the recoil spring was trying to slam the slide forward.
With regard to "frame" problems:

Thanks for that info. I know it's not YOUR argument or theory, and you're just passing what you've read. I have to say, however, THAT explanation just doesn't seem to make a lot of sense to me.

My understanding of the physics and force transfer is certainly incomplete, and I may be missing something or oversimplifying, but... When a round is fired in a locked-breech gun, the bulk of the round's force is experienced as the the bullet moves forward and the barrel and slide move back. In the case of hammer-fired guns like Tanfoglios, this "reaction" part of the energy is 1) stored in the hammer spring and recoil springs, 2) and another part (not stored in the recoil or hammer springs) is passed on to the shooter's hand and arm through the frame. That includes some of the force that is also passed to the frame during recoil as frame is lifted by the slide and barrel during recoil.)

When the slide goes to the rear, ejects the spent case, and loads the next round, much of the force stored in the recoil spring is expended stripping and chambering the next round and driving the slide forward. If the breech face doesn't allow the new round to align properly it will cause the gun to jam or some extra amount of the stored energy will be dissipated as the next round is chambered less efficiently. The slide stop itself is affected only at the very end of the cycle when it stops the slide's forward movement as the round is finally chambered.

It seems as though feeding at an odd angle (and hitting the slide rather than going into the chamber) could occur with just about any jam (whether due to a rough breech face or bad mag lips) -- and if that sort of problem could cause frame cracks, I think have heard about a lot more cracked frames than is the case. I rethought this, and don't know where the force of the slide's movement would be transferred to the frame, if the slide wasn't able to close completely...but probably the slide stop.

I can understand how improper hardening might cause a frame problem, as could an improperly cast or forged frame. A "rough" breech face that causes a jam that, in turn, causes a frame crack seems like a far-fetched solution (diagnosis) for the problem.

I'm not saying this explanation is wrong, as I'm no expert -- I'm still learning this stuff. But, the "rough breech face" story is far from intuitively obvious to me... Maybe a good gunsmith or someone who understands these things better than I do can explain?

.

Last edited by Walt Sherrill; January 21, 2013 at 04:14 PM.
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Old January 21, 2013, 06:07 PM   #16
Skans
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Walt, it seems a bit far-fetched to me as well. Cracked frames on Tanfoglios are rare - I've never seen one. I also haven't read any accounts of crack slides on the squared off slides - just the rounded ones which have less metal.

I follow the cracked-frame/slide stories because I have a Tanfoglio Stock 10mm, so I'm just passing along what I've read. I don't normally shoot hot 10mm through my Stock - just factory 10mm and reloads loaded to ordinary factory specs. However, I have fired a couple of 10mm defensive loads through it with no problem. I don't reload and defensive rounds are just too darn expensive to shoot.

In any event, I am quite impressed with my Stock 10mm - I'm sure the newer .45's and 9mm's are just fine.
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Old January 22, 2013, 11:35 AM   #17
Walt Sherrill
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I was rereading part of this message chain.

I'd bet that if EAA/Witness altered their return policy on the few guns that have had cracked frames or slides, they'd sell MANY, MANY more guns -- and more than compensate for the added costs to them.

The only complaints you hear about EAA has to do with cracked slides (and maybe a cracked frame or two), and Internet Hype has probably scared off THOUSANDS of potential buyers. (I've had a number of Witnesses, myself that gave good service, but would NOT buy a NEW one, for fear of EAA being unwilling to deal with a major problem.) A slide can't cost them THAT much!!

Somebody at EAA is being "penny wise and pound foolish." That miserliness on their part has cost them much more than their advertising budget can recoup.
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Old January 22, 2013, 01:57 PM   #18
Skans
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Somebody at EAA is being "penny wise and pound foolish." That miserliness on their part has cost them much more than their advertising budget can recoup.
It does sound that way. Of course, I haven't heard EAA's response to any of this. Still, you would think that a company like EAA/Tanfoglio would pick up on some of this chatter and pour cold water on it real quick! My thoughts are that the Tanfoglio pistols are truly excellent quality, and you really can't get near the quality of most of these pistols at the prices they sell for. I like the fit and finish of Wittness Stock and even the Match pistols better than CZ or most other CZ clones out there. I would love to see someone do a detail compare of the Tanfoglio Stock or Stock II 9mm to a Sphinx (Swiss cz clone) 9mm.
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Old January 22, 2013, 02:32 PM   #19
Walt Sherrill
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I would love to see someone do a detail compare of the Tanfoglio Stock or Stock II 9mm to a Sphinx (Swiss cz clone) 9mm.
The newer Sphinx guns are much more expensive than the Sphinx 2000 series guns I had, and I think they're also much more expensive than the most refined Tanfoglio/Witness guns, too, so that comparison is probably not a fair one. The extra $1000-$1500 (or more) you'd pay for a CURRENT top-end Sphinx buys you a lot of refinement and attention to detail during manufacture if you want to refine the Tanfoglio guns.

I had a Witness Sport Long Slide, which was one of Witness's Top guns when I had it, and I've had several Sphinx pistols. While the upper-end Witness/Tanfoglio guns are very nice, I think the edge goes to the Sphinx. The Sphinx guns, were, in my experience, comparable to the SIG P-210 line -- sort of the "gold standard" for production guns. I had a P-210-6, and in terms of fit, finish, and performance, the older (2000 series) Sphinxes were right there with it.)

I do think the Witnesses/Tanfoglio-made guns are at least as well-made as the CZs they originally copied, and as well-made as most of the other guns made in Europe that sell for much more. (I fired but have not owned H&Ks, so I don't include them in THAT statement, but I have had SIGs, Glocks, Berettas, Steyrs, BHPs, etc.) The Tanfoglio guns seem to be a very good value.

Last edited by Walt Sherrill; January 22, 2013 at 06:53 PM.
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Old January 22, 2013, 10:30 PM   #20
Northrider
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Thanks for all the input, it will help me to decide. The price up here is $569 out the door, which sounds about right from what you guys have said. I might be able to beat that price at Bud's, but then I have shipping as well as "handling" fee for a local gun shop for the gun to be sent to. Now, do I really need another .45? Well, that is the question of the day. The logical part says no, but then another voice says, yes get it before the magazine size ban takes effect.
Yes, I do hear voices.
Thanks again.

Shoot Safe and Often
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Old January 23, 2013, 08:26 AM   #21
Skans
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The only Sphinx pistol I was ever able to handle was the Sphinx 2000. It's a nice gun, but I honestly couldn't say (by looking at it) that the quality is better than the upper end Tanfoglios. I couldn't take the Sphinx apart, so I'm at a loss to comment on the internals, other than what I've seen on the internet (and pictures just aren't the same as examining one in person) The Sphinx guns do have an incredible reputation. I was not aware that the newer Sphinx guns were any higher quality than the 2000 series.
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Old January 23, 2013, 10:25 AM   #22
Walt Sherrill
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I was not aware that the newer Sphinx guns were any higher quality than the 2000 series.
I may have mistakenly misrepresented the Sphinx line...

I found the following in an internet search.

http://www.sphinxarms.com/

In their news release (on the site) they've announced a new US Importer (starting this quarter), and the list price of their "compact" model is $1295. (Woof!) It looks a bit like (but arguably better than) a CZ P-07 on steroids.

The only Sphinx guns I've seen in the past couple of years -- the 3000 series guns -- were their IPSC guns. No info was available about their service pistols. It looks as though the new Sphinxarms management (new owners) is focusing on a different market... and some of their guns now have aluminum or aluminum/polymer frames. One of the new guns, the "Kryptonight" model, has a machined aluminum upper and a polymer lower frame is probably VERY pricey. The Standard (full-size) gun has an aluminum frame (no mention of polymer).

It could be that the newer Sphinx service pistols are not built to the same standards as their IPSC or older 2000-serues guns, but if they're built as well as the ones I've owned, they're going to be exceptionally nice. We'll have to wait until someone gets one and tells us about it. Things may have changed.

(As I said, I had a SIG P-210-6, which is about as good as you can get without going "custom", and the Sphinxes seemed to be it's match in almost every respect. New, the prices were about the same, but used, the Sphinxes were more reasonably priced.)

If you can find a used Sphinx, they're generally worth the money. Mine all had the shiny stainless frame -- which I didn't like all that much. But they were a real pleasure to shoot. Because they were so pretty -- and shiny stainless does show scratches -- mine ended up as Gun Safe Queens, and I eventually sold them. Had they been matte stainless (more easily touched up when blemished) I'd probably still have them.

(Funny, isn't it, the things that people like and don't like?)


.

Last edited by Walt Sherrill; January 23, 2013 at 04:00 PM. Reason: incomplete...
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Old January 23, 2013, 04:13 PM   #23
Japle
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Somebody at EAA is being "penny wise and pound foolish." That miserliness on their part has cost them much more than their advertising budget can recoup.

Reply:
It does sound that way. Of course, I haven't heard EAA's response to any of this. Still, you would think that a company like EAA/Tanfoglio would pick up on some of this chatter and pour cold water on it real quick!
Good point.

EAA or Tanfoglio has never, to my knowledge, responded to any of the complaints about broken guns or horrible customer service. They have to be aware of the problem. You know there are people at the facility that read firearms forums.

As a comparison, when I posted pics of S&W’s major screw-up (a 686 with six chambers and seven cylinder flutes) last year, they responded quickly and did a great job fixing the gun and making me happy. Many other gun companies also have excellent CS. EAA has the worst reputation for CS in the country and they don’t seem to care. Even on their Facebook page, they get complaints like, “I'm so ****** at you guys I sent my gun in to be fixed and it took 6 weeks to get it back when I did the Initial problem was fixed but you guys broke something else. How do u test fire a gun then not tear it back down. Now if I have the mag out and rack the gun the take down pin falls right out.” and they don’t respond.

This attitude must cost them business, but that's a side issue. What about integrity?
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