View Full Version : So which 9mm automatic

StL Bill
September 12, 2005, 08:10 AM
I read the thread on SHTF preparation recommendations.
I decided for my situation I need a higher calibre handgun and the 9mm sounds ok for me. Beyond the longer range of my rifle and shotgun, I consider the handgun weapon of near last resort and one of mobility.

Anyway....what is the 'best' and 'inexpensive' 9mm going. When I say best, I mean reliable and durable. Reliable means it will not fail to operate properly. Durable means it can take a likin' and keep on tickin' and perhaps is easy to repair if need be (not obscure). When I say inexpensive, I mean as cheap as possible within the reliable and durable category.

Thanks for your input. I know nothing about automatic handguns beyond my .22lr Buck Mark (I love it).

September 12, 2005, 08:23 AM
You will probably get many replies to your thread, so here comes the first.
I have owned several semi auto nines over the years: Glock 17, Taurus 92, Taurus 24/7 and Glock 17. Glock twice, because in my younger days I sold my first one along with a number of other guns to get out of credit card debt :barf: Dumbest thing I ever did. The other two 9s I owned didn't even come close to the reliability, simplicity, or consistency of the Glock, so I bought another one :D There are cheaper nines, and there are many much more expensive, but save yourself the trial and error, and just buy the best to begin with. At right around 500 dollars, I do not consider them terribly expensive. Hope this helps :)

September 12, 2005, 09:09 AM
There a lot of good quality 9mm pistols out there that won't break the bank. It would almost be eaiser to tell you which ones to stay away from! Anyhow, if I had to choose I'd probably go with a used Sig, Beretta, or Glock. Used specimines of each are plentiful and there all good guns. For an idea of whats out there try these guys. :)

KY (http://www.kyimports.com/pistols.htm)

September 12, 2005, 09:32 AM
My recommendations:

Ruger P-89
Taurus PT-92
Springfield's XD
CPO Sig P-226

September 12, 2005, 11:35 AM
Springfield's XD

September 12, 2005, 12:12 PM
I vote for the Springfield XD too.

Glocks are great, but don't point naturally IN MY HAND. Try several and see what fits YOU.

September 12, 2005, 12:20 PM
The P89 if you prefer metal frame; the P95 if you want a bit more compact with a plastic frame. They go for about $100 less than the Glocks and they are, IMHO, better guns.

I've owned a Glock 19 and a Ruger P89. I still have the Ruger. I sold the Glock to get a rifle. Don't get me wrong, I think Glocks are excellent handguns, but I think the Rugers are better. My P89 has never failed, ever (thousands of rounds through it). It feeds everything, it is more than accurate enough for self-defense and it is strong as an ox. My Glock was almost as good, but I could always count on a FTF or a stovepipe every now and then. I also don't care that much for Glock's trigger and appreciate the DA/SA option on Ruger handguns.

Rugers are ugly, and they are not as refined as other semiautos on the market. But, when the SHTF, looks don't matter. Ruger has all you need for self defense and the price is unbeatable.

Te Anau
September 12, 2005, 01:20 PM
There are a lot of great guns out there,but for affordability,durability and reliability nothing is better than this one.Real world price is around $350.00 and 15 round mags are easily obtainable.

September 12, 2005, 01:22 PM
CZ 75's are great and fit your hand like a glove. Walther P99 (or SW99) is also very nice.

September 12, 2005, 02:22 PM
but I would point you to Ruger's redesigned P95 instead:


Ruger started using a different polymer material for their new P95 and they've added a rail. I recently got to handle a new P95 at a gun show and the grips felt much better than the older P95 (my biggest complaint with the older Ruger Polymers) and the rail is a nice option for home defense. Even better, Ruger hasn't raised the price for the new P95s.

IMHO the new design of the p95 frame has closed the gap even more with Glock.

September 12, 2005, 03:06 PM
I own 3 Springfield XD'x and i love them!! Very reasonable price. Great shooters and very reliable. I am soon to have 4 XD's and if they made them in .45 ACP instead of the goofy GAP i would buy two more making a total of 6 of them. I am in love with them.

September 12, 2005, 03:24 PM
Just went through the same problem as you. I decided on a Glock 19 couldn't be happier. Now I'm saving for custom 1911.

September 12, 2005, 03:39 PM
For the money I believe a Ruger P89 is hard to beat.
Get some Hogue rubber grips for it though.

September 12, 2005, 03:48 PM
In a total SHTF condition, I'd want something plentiful and in a military caliber. Worse case, military ammo, one way or another, will always be available. So, 9mm would be a good choice I'd think as some police and military are still using 9mm. Not to mention you could easily stock up thousands of rounds affordably if you had to.

Gun choice. I do like the Springfield but I don't think there are alot of them out there, they're made in Croatia, there isn't a big aftermarket support for the gun yet so the answer to your question may not be what gun do you like the most or fits the best but will work, all the time, reliably, easy to get parts, easy to fix. My absolute first pick would be Glock. Second choice would be Ruger P89. Third would be Taurus 92 or Beretta 92. As good as Sigs and Springfields are, if you needed a part or repair, the others will be more easily done. In total chaos you may have to scavenge and find another used pistol to canibalize parts off of and I think you'd have a good chance of finding used Glocks.

September 12, 2005, 05:03 PM
I own an XD-9 and really enjoy it alot, it really fits the hand well and shoots great, take down and cleaning is a breeze. It will shoot anything that i feed it. I believe there was a 20,000 round torture test recently done with one. That said, I would go and rent an XD at your nearest range and see how it goes for you, I would also try out a CZ 75, I have heard really good things about that gun also.

September 12, 2005, 05:16 PM
One thing you didn't mention was what type of action you want----SA/DA, DAO only etc...this makes a big difference as to which 1 to offer as the cheapest, most reliable.

September 12, 2005, 07:40 PM
Ruger: KP89, or KP94 or KP95 in 9mm. Recommend the stainless for ease of maintenance and less wear and tear showing through the finish over time.

Do agree though that any popular name brand 9mm is fundamentally a good choice and it would actually be easier to tell the few to avoid than which is actually (your) or (my) or (someone else's) best option.

September 12, 2005, 07:51 PM
I agree. 9mm is the way to go. It's a standard military caliber, so ammo is plentiful. There are so many to choose from, there's something for everyone. For reliability and durability, Ruger is hard to beat. It is the Pistol for the masses comrade! :p

September 12, 2005, 08:23 PM
CZ 75B.

September 12, 2005, 08:27 PM
Glocks are great because they very simple and reliable. CZs are one of the best values out there today. CZ also point VERY well. Shoot them both and see which one feels better to you.

My CZ85B is ten years old and has over 30K rounds though it. Just put recoil, extractor, and mag springs in and it is 100% reliable.

I do not like Glocks sights, I have Meprolight sights on mine.

September 12, 2005, 09:06 PM
While there are a lot of decent 9mm handgun makers out there that I like, (Glock, Beretta, Sig, Taurus, Springfield, CZ, EAA, HK, Walther, S&W) I tend to think that Glock fits your criteria best. It's not that expensive yet it has an excellent reputation for reliability, ruggedness, simplicity, decent accuracy and parts are pretty easy to come by both Glock factory parts as well as scads of aftermarket parts. Personally, I'm an HK, Sig and CZ (though I'm a Glock owner as well) man myself but I still think the Glock, assuming it will work for you, is the best answer for all of your criteria.

September 12, 2005, 09:13 PM
Tanfoglio Witness series of pistols.
I own a 45acp and a 9mm. Both great guns.
Bought used...like new..$269.00 each.
I am very serious when I say you need to look at these pistols.
Best deal around.
In Europe they are as famous as Beretta.

September 12, 2005, 09:38 PM
I picked my XD9 from Gander Mountain for 447.00 not bad considering when I called Academy they told me 462. Went to Gander since they will match and beat the price and give you up to $50 of the difference.

Gander Mountain had to call Academy and verify the price because Ganders was 469.00. Academy told the Gander guy $458 dollars so they matched it and gave $22 off.
Gander will do this as long as the product is within a hour drive from their store. Really like the feel of the pistol also got 2 15rd magazine and a case new in the box. :cool:

September 12, 2005, 09:39 PM
A lot of good 9mm's out there. I'd choose the Beretta 92FS for reliability with the widest variety of ammo.

September 12, 2005, 09:44 PM
CZ75 either full size or compact. Can't go wrong with either of em....

September 12, 2005, 09:56 PM
Baby Eagle

September 12, 2005, 10:41 PM
OK.. not very economical (unless you find a special on the FN version) but worth the bucks: Browning Hi-Power. The fit and feel in the hand is magnificent (and legendary!). With a trigger job, they are very sweet and allow for awesome accuracy. You get all-steel heft, quality, and reliability. The Hi-Power is arguably the most commonly used 9mm military and police pistol world-wide, and they have been for a very, very long time. Beyond that, I'm a huge "single-action kind of guy"... 1911's and Hi-Powers are my top picks for semi-autos. The trigger pulls can be amazing. I recently bagged a new FN Hi-Power in 9mm from CDNN for $399. Nice, very nice. And a bargain at that price.

That said, if I had to pick another brand of nine mm pistol... it would probably be the 19: the capacity is better than the HP and they're reliable guns, even though as with SIGs, HK's, and others, they have a sort of chunky feeling in the hand. None of these have as sweet a trigger as a HP can have with a trigger job.

For me, going with Glock, SIG, HK, even though they are reliable, that would be giving up a lot of quality feel in the hand, trigger feel, and accuracy. Nothing else has the legendary feel in the hand of a Hi-Power. And as far as reliability goes, Hi-Powers are as reliable as any pistol can be. John Browning's Hi-Power set the standard and wrote the book on 9mm semi-auto design.

Greg Bell
September 12, 2005, 11:56 PM
P2000 if you can spare the coins.

Otherwise get a certified Sig or a Glock. The Walther is also nice, the rest are also-rans.


The Stook
September 13, 2005, 12:29 AM
I highly recomend a SW9VE or SW9GVE. I have had a SW40VE for about 3000 rds now. It hasn't so much as hiccuped with LOTS of different kinds of ammo. The trigger is heavy stock, but can be easily fixed to be much lighter. Just go hold one in your hand. Great feeling grip and points very naturally. 9mm comes with 16 rd mags and 17 rd mags can be found. If there is a Sportsman's Warehouse near you, they sell them for $289 brand new. I am planning on picking up a sister for my .40 cal in 9mm pretty soon here.

Second pick would be the cz 75b, great gun. The thing is a tank. A tank that can shoot straight as an arrow.

September 13, 2005, 06:45 AM
1. Beretta 92 Elite
2. Glock 17
3. Springfield XD

StL Bill
September 13, 2005, 09:43 AM
MoW asked a real good question....what action?

My limited exposure offers NO answer.

So, what's you thoughts. Not being in a line of work where SHTF is likely, I expect my weapon will be more of a toy....but, the purpose of the 9mm as opposed to my Buck Mark .22 is defense.....

Please offer you explanation of the different actions and how they (should) apply to my thinking on the purchase of 9mm.

Thanks again for everyone's contributions......

September 13, 2005, 11:56 AM
First, have you had any prior experience with pistols or revolvers? If so what was the action of the pistol. You will be training a lot with your new gun and in a defense scenario you have to react and not think. It comes down to preference for many but if you have some practice with 1 vs the other you might want to start there. DAO simply means each pull of the trigger will be double action--- a DA/SA means double action on the first pull and single from then on. There are other variants but in order to give you the best advise as to which pistol to buy you might want to pick which action(if any) you prefer.

StL Bill
September 13, 2005, 02:24 PM
My handgun experience is limited across both revolvers with single and double action and also a high standard semiautomatic. I shot 1911 .45s in the service.

I want a semiautomatic pistol. I think if I were to get a SA I would want a hammer rather than have to rack cock it, though I can see an advantage for the DA/SA as being ready to shoot. I can't image that the differing trigger pulls would make any more difference to me than one brand of golf clubs vs. another. I'll never be experienced enough to tell the difference. I also don't think that I would like a DAO as the revolver I have used has a significant trigger pull vs. the semi. I'm sure 'good' guns have better and adjustable pulls, but I have not experience and I'm not that interested in dorking around with the gun. Out of the box ready to perform is what I'll be after.

I have read with great interest the thread on 'Cocked and Locked' and the polarized viewpoints, so I now have a headsup on this issue.

September 13, 2005, 02:52 PM
another vote for a glock 17. not too big, not too small. accepts recoil exeptionally well and it will be one gun you will never trade off.

September 13, 2005, 04:34 PM
Walther P99.

September 13, 2005, 05:37 PM
Nother vote for Glock. The Ruger is a nice pistol and may even be cheaper than the Glock, but it isn't as simple to find parts or accessories for the Ruger autos, nor are the Ruger autos as easy to fix in the field. Plus, Tennifer is more corrosion resistant than even stainless steel, from what I hear.

Loving my Glock 10mm as much as I do, I hope I would have been smart enough to get a Glock if I had wanted a 9mm instead.

September 13, 2005, 05:46 PM
i think my next buy will be a glock 19 9mm with some corbon DPX.

September 13, 2005, 05:53 PM
My choices would be either the Browning High Power or the S&W M659, both for their high capacity magazines, legal again. If your hands are on the small
side I would go with the S&W M-639. I personally do not care for polymer or
aluminum frames. I am also partial to the P-38, mine is a 1943 Walther, shoots well for a 62 year old ex POW, feels good in my hand. The Browning is the easiest to field strip and clean.

September 13, 2005, 06:20 PM
what is the 'best' and 'inexpensive' 9mm going. When I say best, I mean reliable and durable. Reliable means it will not fail to operate properly. Durable means it can take a likin' and keep on tickin'
My vote for inexpensive and reliable in 9mm would be the Ruger P95. But kick a buck and get a CZ-P01 :D :D

September 13, 2005, 07:22 PM
If it's truly a last ditch effort gun, consider switching to a .357 revolver which will handle the .38 (comparable to the 9mm) and the .357 magnum for most versatility, with the magnum having incredible stopping power.

If you're set on the 9mm (a very good caliber, and the most sold in the nation, and inexpensive too for stockpiling) I would chose:

1. New or used Glock for around $400 (used) and $500 (new)
2. New or used Springfield XD (about $50-100 less than Glock)

Good luck

September 13, 2005, 07:27 PM
I would buy another Browning High Power in a heartbeat. reliable, durable, used by 60 countries from the 1930s-1980s. the Browning High Power is the best 9mm in the world. (game on)

September 13, 2005, 08:03 PM
I vote for the Hi-Power. I just got my third one and regret selling the last one. The other was stolen. It feels like an old friend in my hand and I have very large hands. I am sure I would be happy with a Glock but I am so familiar with the Browning I had to get another. Good luck with your choice, whatever you choose. =) amaverick

September 13, 2005, 08:11 PM
I would go for Sig P226.
That would be my choice for 9mm.

September 13, 2005, 08:24 PM
I must also vote for the Hi-Power. No disrespect to any other 9mm intended...I just personally think the BHP is the best. ;)

September 13, 2005, 08:31 PM
Taurus PT92 or CZ 75

if you don't mind used than Beretta 92 or Sig p226

September 13, 2005, 10:02 PM
I would go for the XD9 went in looking for a Glock and came out with the XD9.
Check out Gander Mtn call some Academy's or other gun shops and check price then let Gander Mtn match it and then beat it. Got my XD9 for 447 after Gander matched Academys $458 and then the took off $22 off that price.

Only problem I see with Gander is that sometimes their gun staff that is supposed to sell the pistols know very little about the weapons they have there. Other than that I have no beef with them.

Theres only one catch in Texas Gander will only do the above if the store they call to verify the price you tell them is within a hour driving from Gander.
Otherwise they don't really care if its cheaper somewhere else and you have to drive 2hrs to get it.

September 13, 2005, 11:36 PM
Get a Kahr K9 or MK9 it more accurate than most of the other guns and will take a damn good beating for years. and as a bonus you could drop in your pocket and no one will ever know... but stay away from the polymer versions...

September 13, 2005, 11:42 PM
A Kahr K9, MK9, or an older E9. Glock-style trigger action, but made of real metal. Very quick into action, and surprisingly smooth, accurate, and low-recoil for a compact defensive 9mm, too.

Mine's been through hell and back as a FDLE trade-in, and needs a reblue, but it's a constant companion:


September 17, 2005, 10:10 PM
depends on your def. of "inexpensive" is. As far as out of the box the following should work very well for you

A ruger P85 /P89 / 95 new or used are great guns for the price...between $250.00 used to $350 new

next would be a S&W m909 or a 5946 between $250 used and $350 new

I've shot these regularly and would have no problem trusting my life to either of these.

September 17, 2005, 10:22 PM
Glock - no questions if this isnt the perfect gun for your requirements its damn close.

For the record Im not a Glocker, I dont like them but I have to admit they are stone cold reliable and more durable than a tank.......you have to give them that.

September 17, 2005, 10:32 PM
Ruger P89
Ruger P95
Beretta 92
Glock 17
Glock 19
IMI Baby Eagle

Not an exhaustive list by any means. If I were really trying for max bang-for-the-buck, I'd probably try to find a used Ruger.

September 17, 2005, 10:42 PM
I trust my Beretta 92FC with a crimson trace laser grip and of course the 15+1 hydra-shok. I figure that since I got my Expert quals with the M-9 whle in the Navy and since our armed forces use the Beretta as the primary side arm then why shouldn't I!


September 18, 2005, 12:10 AM
I would have to say why not try out the XD Springfield series.
Prices are right and 9mm comes with 2-15rd high cap magazines also a LifeTime warranty. Fun to shoot and gets lots of compliments at the range.

September 18, 2005, 05:22 AM
I bought a Ruger P89 stainless for under $400.00 in PA. I have no complaints the gun is still new only had about 700 rounds through it but not one jam.

r.w. schrack
September 18, 2005, 05:50 AM
Star B, Star Super, Browning HP. All single action which means you have to cock the hammer on first shot. Also you can get a nice used Sig 226, 228, or 229 reasonable for under $400. The Stars are rely nice and function fine and you can get one under $250. The Browning HP or FEG clones are another good choice I would recommend the Argentina FM for a little over $300. Mag cap on the Stars are 8, Browning HP 13, owened both and had good luck. Then got bit by the Sig bug when I was issued one and since thats all I own except for a p-22 which is a fun little weapon. hope this helps. Schrack

September 18, 2005, 10:07 AM
Hyper accurate, reliable and very ergonomic. Great 9mm weapon.

September 18, 2005, 10:21 AM
Having been a Glock owner for several years now, I truly believe this would be a good choice. Recently I tried a Steyr M series, and was I blown away! Better ergonomics, lower bore axis, good looks, well, total package. And the trigger reset is AMAZING! Shorter than Glock by a mile and a half. So I'll be buying one soon since they are back on the market. :cool:

September 18, 2005, 11:03 AM
Sig 226 CPO. Solid as a rock and (relatively) inexpensive. Costs more than some but stone-cold reliable.

September 18, 2005, 01:41 PM
Browning Hi-Power, Springfield XD or Glock. Right now the biggest gun store in town is selling the XDs 11 to 1 over Glocks and another store told me 10 to 1 over Glocks. They are less money which would make much of the difference but I cannot find many negatives about the XD.

September 18, 2005, 07:41 PM
I am a big big fan of the Browning High Power. I own two and always have my eye open for the right deal on another one.
But considering that cost is a factor in your decision, I would suggest that you seriously consider a Ruger. The P95 is my preference. The price is right and the gun is absolutely reliable. As much as I love my Brownings, I would opt for the Ruger in a survival situation.
Someone said repair parts are hard to find for Rugers- maybe there is just very little demand (read NEED) for them.
By the way- never let go of your Buckmark. Every range visit should include a box or two of .22s.
Good Luck-

September 19, 2005, 09:04 PM
With all of the consideration to pick the most ubiquitous caliber (i.e. 9mm), doesn't it make sense to also opt for one of the most ubiquitous platforms as well? You can find a Glock-17 or Glock-19 in just about any gun shop.