Thursday, April 24, 2008

Beretta's new death machines

Today I got to handle some of Beretta's new firearms at an exhibition. The lineup included some of their rifles, a Cx4 Storm carbine, some shotguns, and a vast array of their new Px4 Storm line of handguns.

Unfortunately I left my camera in the car as I was informed that picture taking was prohibited; we were not at a firearm exhibition, but it just so happened that Beretta had a booth there - like a diamond in the rough - so I took some semi-crappy photo's with my camera phone because the guy running the booth said go for it.

Here is a look at their table:
Beretta's table

I was most interested in the Px4 Storm handguns because they are so unique. They use a rotating barrel that is different than the 92F/M9 series of pistols, but in a way, kinda similar (this did not include the sub-compact).

The first one I picked up was the sub-compact in 9mm. The little gun holds 13+1 rounds of ammunition and sports a 3" barrel. This is the only Px4 pistol that used the Browning type, tilt barrel system. The Beretta guy claims that it is smaller in size than the Glock 26, and it very well may be, but the gun looked and felt a little wider.
Px4 Storm sub-compact R

It was definitely shorter, and I could definitely see picking up one of these babies one day in the future. If you look just above ans forward of the trigger guard you can see the dimple where the operator can rest their finger. The best feature I saw was the finger rest that is part of the magazine. Only the smallest hands will get a three finger grasp on the gun unless this clever little rest is snapped down.
Px4 Storm sub-compact

Px4 Storm subcompact finger rest

Pretty neat. Moving on, we have the full sized handguns with options such as Trijicon night sights, Illuminova sights, and different action types to fit each users need. The pistol pictured is the Px4 Storm type F, which is a traditional DA/SA with safety/decocker mounted on the slide.
Px4 Storm type F

The trigger feels like the trigger on a 92F to me, with a long 9# stroke on DA, and a 4# SA trigger once you take up all of the slack. The rotating barrel is really cool if you can make anything out from my pictures:
Rotating Barrel
Rotating Barrel 2

Looking at this picture you can see the triangular lug of the barrel which rotates counter-clockwise a few degrees to unlock through a gap in the slide. You can also see the Illuminova sights which light for about 30 minutes when exposed to an outside light source. These are probably the most ergonomic pistols that I have ever handled. They feel great in the hand.

Check out the Px4 Storm website to get some better details. Other models include the type G, which I handled, that is a DA/SA with a decocker only - no safety. This would be similar to other types of handguns with no manual safety, but only a decocker, like the SigSauer P226.

Another handgun there is the 90 - Two. This is an updated version of the popular 92F, but with a 1913 rail mounted on the dust cover. This is a large handgun that will probably find its way into law enforcement holsters as a service weapon. I didn't get any details on this gun, but it felt great in the hand and pointed well.

Beretta is also building the M9A1 for the US Marine Corps which also has a 1913 rail.

I was able to handle the Sako TRG 42 chambered in .338 Lapua Magnum:
Sako TRG 42

The action was all snickitty-snick and smooth as glass. The trigger was excellent, as would be expected on a rifle like this, and the rifle felt way lighter than I anticipated. You can't see it in the picture, but the muzzle is threaded for a suppressor.

Too bad I didn't get to handle this one:
Tikka T3 Tactical

That is the Tikka T3 Tactical chambered in .308 Winchester, also sporting a threaded barrel. Notice the adjustable cheek piece and 1913 rail. The barrel was 20" which is pretty handy. I want one!

At that point the guys running the booth had had about enough of me, so I didn't get to play with the shotguns. I briefly held the Cx4 Storm long enough to hate the sights. My main gripe is that I didn't get to shoot any of these.

That's all the damage for one night. Enjoy the pictures!
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