08 June 2012

M9 9MM Beretta- my new old friend

Pile of Army M-9's and M-11's

From the Soldier side: I just picked up a new old friend the other day.  This will be the third M9 I’ve owned…for some reason I parted with the other two over the years... thinking: “I’ll get another one”.  Then there was the one I was issued in 2003 for Bosnia, then re-issued the same weapon in 2004 for Iraq. 
My work clothes for Bosnia - SFOR 14
In Fallujah, Iraq Dec 04

For you gun folks, I don’t want to hear: “a 9mm is crap” because there are several reasons it is not crap.  #1 reason- it works every time I press the go button.  #2 in the civilian world, I’m not limited to the Full Metal Jacket NATO ammo- in my case, I have 19 147grain Winchester SXTs round in the first magazine and 15 round spares.  Find me a .40 or .45 that can easily carry that many rounds from the start.  #3, the M9 empty makes a hell of an impact weapon.

In Bosnia I carried my M9 every day of the week- all day long whenever we left our hootch.  In Iraq, it was my back up weapon, but when I was on a camp or FOB, I’d stick my M4 in my locker and walk about with my M9- it was less cumbersome and easier to eat and stuff like that. 

Since I've retired, one of my part time jobs has me training citizens and others how to shoot.  I usually go to work about an hour early and practice shooting.  You can’t practice too much. 

Yesterday’s drill was the “failure drill” or what we used to call the Mozambique drill.  For this drill you assume your target has body armor or is just a tough bastard.  So you fire 2 rounds center mass, then one to the brain housing group.  This will stop anybody.  I do this starting at 5 yards, then send the target out to 15 yards.  I do this until a box of ammo is gone. 

When I started in police work, we were forced to carry 6 shot revolvers.  We usually carried an extra 12 rounds- for a total of 18 rounds.  Now I can carry more than that in my first magazine…and put the all the rounds where they need to go. 
When the zombies come, 6 shots may not be enough!

Yes, I still have my .45’s, and with the same amount of rounds, the .45 is better…but if you miss with a .45 it’s not as effective as hits with a 9mm.      

And here's a good manual on the M9 Beretta:  M-9 manual on Kindle


Old NFO said...

I'll concede the point on the number of rounds, but I just don't like the M9... I shot it early in the intro for the Navy, and we saw cracked slides. That scared me away, plus it's a HARD gun for me to shoot well (that whole grip angle thingie)...

CI-Roller Dude said...

Old NFO,
Did you actually SEE the cracked slides or hear the stories? In testing, the Army guys tried to destroy them...so they fired "PROOF LOADS" in them...hundreds of rounds of proof loads- until they cracked the slides and came back and hit the dumbass in the face.
Beretta fixed it so the slides would never come off the back after that.
Part of liking the M9 is being trained how to hold it and shoot it. the first shot has a 15 pound pull, then it goes to a 5 pound pull. I had to fire hundreds of rounds to get used to it- and I still wish the trigger pull was shorter.
On the firing line we had a dozen we shot for 4 days- and never had any malfuncitons (cause we cleaned them each night).
the 1911 does have the perfect grip though...

Anonymous said...

1. Definitely goofing off -and agree on 1911 grip.
2. We were briefed (1980-ish) that the issue was conformity within NATO.
3. Everybody else was OK with 5.56 but no one wanted any part of .45.
4. Seems like less of an issue with Cold War over and NATO concerns fading.
5. As I recall, Beretta beat out Colt and S&W. The US mfrs complained and the Army ordnance people retested with similar results.
6. USMC Weapons Training Battalion got a few of the new weapons for evaluation. Most of the people that mattered (not necessarily who you might think) were already familiar with the weapon.
7. The rest of us got to fool with them a bit. The consensus was that the weapon was OK, but most were concerned with the long opening in the slide -collecting grit, etc.
8. The issue gets a little confusing, these days, with discretionary selections of .45 Caliber weapons by spec ops (MK 23's and Kimbers and whatnot)
9. We geezers fondly remember the 1911. To the young bucks, the M9 is what they know and they wonder what the fuss is about.
V/R JWest

lotta joy said...

My .357 Colt started gaining weight as I got older so I bought a 9mm Sig Sauer. What surprised me is the kick of the 9mm is as hard as the .357. I use nylon tipped hollow points for protection but not for practice.

The stores are PUSHING pink guns on women. I believe pink detracts from the reality that gun ownership requires: Guns are for killing, NOT for a fashion statement.

I followed you here after reading comments by you and my buddy, coffeypot.

CI-Roller Dude said...

Mr West,
I "assisted" a few special folks in Iraq, and all of them had M9's. My first issued Army pistol was a 1911 in 19-- when I was an 11Charlie. It was built in the 1940's and the rear sight fell out after 5 shots...it was worn out.

Lotta, I wish I had kept my Colt trooper and Python. They were the BEST revolvers I ever shot.
A 9mm is .356 inches, a .38 is .357 inches. The bullets are the same size. but a HOT .357 will still beat most 9mms.

CI-Roller Dude said...

Guns I've carried as a cop (just the in uniform ones)
S&W mod 13, 19, 66, 10, 39, 59,
Colt trooper, 1911
Beretta Mod 92FS,
Para LDA 1911 .45,
coming soon: Sig .40 cal

Old NFO said...

CI- yes I personally saw the cracks in the slide at the ejection ports. And the 15lb to 5 lb trigger pull was not a good thing for accuracy.

CI-Roller Dude said...

Old NFO, Yep, I've seen a few cracked slides people have had...but when I asked them how or why or where they came from, they just shrugged their shoulders.
I've owned 3 of them, the first one I put 5,000 rounds of Plus P through, the guy I sold it to has added another 10,000 rounds and it's still in good shape.
the 15 lbs is hard to get used to, but after awhile I don't even notice it....since most double action autos have a trigger like it.
But the 1911 is still my favorite.

Lil Chantilly said...

I like the “failure drill” - I will give that a go one of these days! I only have a 45 because i was told that if I am using it for defense I would need it - but, more and more I am thinking about getting something smaller - just to see if I am actually more accurate with it. I am pretty darn good with the 45, but that is at a range, relaxed, having fun.

CI-Roller Dude said...

It's important to not only have a differnt gun for the occasion, but you must have matching holsters and mag pouches. For example, if you have black shoes and a black purse, a brown holster wouldn't go with it at all.
I have the advantage of being able to carry whatever I'm in the mood for... I have 7 guns listed on my "can carry list" but if I'm doing a class, I usually carry what the student(s) are thinking of using or have to carry in the case of cops.

Anonymous said...

I like the old friend Baretta. I miss having one myself... glad my son has it though. It's a good weapon.
I hear you know of a good book on the M-9.

CI-Roller Dude said...

Anonymous, I hope your son takes good care of his.