Got my S9 - first shots report today - IDPA match tomorrow!

Discussion in 'M, C, L and S Series' started by Guest, Apr 3, 2005.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Hi All,

    I lurked for a while on the GT version of this forum, then came over here and finally this week got my S9 to "officially" join the gang. I won a gunbroker.com auction for this gun last week, I was the only bidder at $215 opening bid! Shipping was $40, however, so I only saved about $15 over CDNN, but the gun did come with a Hogue slip on grip.

    I did a rudimentary cleaning on the gun last night before shooting it today, which included field stripping the gun to major components and using Hoppes No. 9 on everything. I scrubbed all surfaces down with cotton patches and then reassembled the gun after applying Tetra lube where the owner's manual said to. I didn't touch the inside barrel as I looked brand new and didn't disassemble the slide or trigger group as some have recommended.

    I went to the range this morning and shot 200 rounds of WWB through it and was immediately amazed at how little perceived recoil and muzzle flip there was. I have Sig 228 that feels like it has twice the muzzle flip and recoil with WWB as the S9. I think the S9 has only slightly more recoil but no more muzzle flip than the all-time best 9mm - the HK P7. Overall quality of the gun is fantastic for any price, it is MUCH tighter than a Glock and seems much better in the details. Slide to frame fit and barrel lockup appear excellent, seemingly almost too tight for a combat handgun IMHO.

    I was getting used to the gun today in preparation for an IDPA match tomorrow so I set up a few simple courses of fire with IDPA targets ranging from 5 to 20 yards away. After I fired a few magazines to know where the point of aim was I started doing speed drills and concentrating on my double-tap splits and shooting as fast as I could snap a sight picture.

    For frame of reference the best 9mm I have shot recently was my friend's CZ P-01 with a trigger job. I shot this at an IDPA match last month (after only shooting 100 rounds of practice with it) and came in 7th overall out of 58 shooters and first SSP-Sharpshooter (beating several Master shooters in the process). The CZ P-01 is on my list of all-time favorite guns and I will certainly be getting one of those in the future. The S9 is discontinued as far I know so I decided to get that first and move the other wants further down the list.

    So how was it? Simply amazing. I shot some of the fastest double tap splits I have done in 9mm and even when I thought I was shooting too fast and was going to have some misses, when I went to paste up the targets I still had decent hits. I did miss a few shots by shooting high (I am still getting used to the point of aim) and as others have said I think the Tri/Trap sights are perfect for combat-style shooting and come up very quickly, I think the quickest in my experience.

    I did notice that on the 20 yard target I had to really concentrate on a sight picture to ensure decent hits, I think this is due to the relatively short sight radius of the compact S9 having a greater impact on accuracy at longer ranges. However, anything within 15 yards was so easy to engage fast and accurately it was ridiculous.

    I had 3 other people shoot the gun and experienced no FTEs or FTFs. I did notice as some have said that the ejection pattern is not consistent. I personally didn't get hit in the head, but I watched a few rounds come close to the other shooters' heads. This part is the only disappointment so far, and frankly I don't get it as the rest of the gun is of such hight quality, it doesn't seem proper that the ejection is so inconsistent. The only other potential problem I experienced was that my 1911-trained high and thumbs-forward grip did contact the slide stop lever and prevented it from locking back on an empty mag a few times. This problem is seemingly incurable for me when shooting the Sig 228, so I really have to work on the grip to prevent this.

    2 of the other shooters today were Master-level IDPA competitors (one of them is the ex-British SAS guy who trains Delta Force at Ft. Bragg and FBI HRT at Quantico) who initally poo-pooed the gun because of the "stories" they heard about early Steyr M and S pistols, but changed their tune after shooting it. These guys are both sponsored by Smith and Wesson and are shooting $2500+ Custom Shop guns. They both said they were impressed by how little recoil there was and how accurate it seemed to be for such as little gun. Neither of them liked the Tri-Trap sights however, saying that it would take them some time to get used to them.

    I practiced drawing and firing from concealment, and I was using the Comp-Tac CTAC Kydex IWB I also got from a previous gunbroker.com auction for $25 shippied (Yes, I won the holster before I ever got the pistol!). This is an EXCELLENT rig that both conceals fantastically and draws amazingly well, allowing a full-firing grip while still holstered tight against the body. It also re-holsters very easily, which is great for IDPA matches.

    I'm using FlaChef's recommendation of using M9 mags (bought from Brian at CDNN) in the S9, and they work perfectly. My XL glove-size hand fits well on the S9 and my pinky does not go under the magazine, but the M9 mags make it easier still to get a good grip and don't stick out too far at all IMHO.

    I'm shooting the S9 at tomorrow's IDPA match and I am very excited to see what I can do with it. Considering I haven't shot the gun that much (I think it takes at least 1,000 rounds to begin to know a gun well) I am hoping to win my class at least. We'll see, as NC has some of the best IDPA shooters in the country, but competing with this a high level of proficiency really makes you a better shooter IMHO.

    I really appreciate this forum and your opinions which influenced my decision to buy a Steyr pistol. I am TREMENDOUSLY SATISFIED with my purchase and am scheming now on how to get an M9 as well before the inexpensive ones are all gone. This must truly be the best value in all of handgunning right now. Special thanks to IDPA Steyr and FlaChef for the IDPA-specific recommendations.

    I'll report tomorrow on the impressions of using the S9 in an IDPA match, and hopefully have the results by Tuesday or Wednesday.

    Regards,

    Jeff
     
  2. Guest

    Guest Guest

    ejection

    My S9 also throws brass randomly, and some have hit me in the head. I keep it pretty clean and usually shoot WWB. However, it has been getting better after shooting several hundred rounds. People claim it really gets better after 500 rounds or so and a good extractor cleaning. My solution..I wear a hat at the range
     

  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I am interested to hear how you do compared to the CZ. Welcome to the Steyr Club!!
     
  4. WorldPax

    WorldPax New Member

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    Very nice post jng.
     
  5. srfl

    srfl New Member

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    Good luck at the match.

    Let us know how it goes.
     
  6. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Steyr S9 takes it FIRST VICTORY!

    Thanks for the replies. I am very pleased to report that the S9 did it's part (even if the shooter didn't) and we placed first in SSP-Sharpshooter at my local IDPA match this afternoon. Check the match results at this website, they should be published by Tuesday of this week if not sooner: http://www.the-range.com, my name is Jeff de Gracia.

    We shot about 100 rounds during the match and I stayed to shoot another 50 or so practicing the stage that caused me the most problem. I now have about 350 rounds through the S9 since yesterday. Ammo was all WWB 115 grain FMJ from Wally-World at $11.34 for 100 round value-pack.

    To follow up on my earlier report from my practice session:

    Erratic Brass Ejection: I still didn't get hit in the head with brass, so I hope that continues and like MadMax said it gets better, but frankly today I didn't notice it at all so that is a good thing.

    Still no FTEs and FTFs: No problems again today, so this is also great. I haven't yet done any weak-hand or strong-hand only shooting, and I was wondering if the FTF's may be caused by limp-wristing - the S9 does seem to have a strong spring.

    M9 mags in S9: I used only M9 hi-cap and 10-round mags in the gun during the match. They worked perfectly and I think they are an advantage like a bumper pad on the bottom of a 1911 competition mag - they allow you to positively seat the magazine during a mag change. However, I need to practice mag changes with this gun, as I didn't do so well in the match and fumbled a couple losing a few seconds overall.

    Longer range shooting: I had a few problems today with some 15-yard shots that I don't feel I would have missed with my 1911 or the CZ. This was totally due to me, but I dropped a few shots and had 1 miss on fast pairs on the longer range shots today. While I like the Tri/Trap sights, I'm still not that confident in where they shoot in relation the point of aim at various distances. I think I just need to practice a bit more and get confident where the rounds will go. Perhaps also it might be better with an M9 and its longer sight radius. I do plan on getting one of those so it will be interesting to compare down the road.

    Problem with Hogue slip-on grip: I think this was really my main problem with some of the bad shots today. My IDPA club requires drawing from concealment and reflecting on it I don't think I was getting a consistent grip on the gun. The Comp-Tac CTAC IWB holster is great, but it still doesn't give same ease-of-access as a Safariland competition OWB holster would give. Combine that with a sticky-rubber Hogue grip, and I ended up drawing with a less-than-optimal grip that I couldn't shift easily because how grippy the rubber is. Inconsitent grip = inconsistent shooting. I'm going to remove the grip tonight and get to that template for skate tape that Hihosilva so graciously provided, and hope that makes a difference. Probably more practice will solve this too - so I should stop making excuses.

    Steyr compared to CZ P-01: Well, I didn't shoot as well today as I did the first time I shot the CZ P-01 in a match. Even though I won my division, I didn't place as high overall as the day with the CZ with even more shooters. There are several reasons for this, including different course designs, relatively "conventional" characteristics of the CZ compared to a 1911 that I'm coming from, and probably most importantly - how much I drank the night before :)

    I think the reset of the Steyr trigger could be more distinct, as in a back-to-back rapid fire 3-shot string at 5 yards, I shot 3 then 2 and had to go back to get the last required shot on one target because the trigger didn't reset - so when I pulled the trigger nothing happened. Like everyone else reports, the stock Steyr trigger is miles ahead of a stock Glock. Truthfully, everyone shoud shoot a CZ P-01 with a $75 trigger job. With a smooth DA first shot and crisp SA follow-up in an ergonomically perfect frame is something to really enjoy. Again, more practice (and break-in) with the Steyr should improve this as well.

    If any of you that carry guns regularly have never shot defensive-shooting competitions, you really should think about it. While you could arguably never simulate a real-life defensive shooting situation, the stress of practicing and actual competition in IDPA matches can make you more proficient in the skills that would be necessary, IMHO. A well-designed, well run IDPA match is light years ahead of the boring indoor range with the 3-seconds-inbetween shots rule BS.

    Thanks again for reading this long report, but I usually type stream-of-consciousness style. Bottom line - I LOVE THE STEYR S9. I am confident that with this gun in the Comp-Tac CTAC holster, I am as well equipped as I could be in a real-world self defense situation.

    Regards,

    Jeff
     
  7. Ripped

    Ripped New Member

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    thanx for the awesome review. and glad you enjoy your new found Steyr.
    im going to give idpa a try over in Orlando,Fl at orange county shooting sports.
     
  8. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I grew up in Florida, my wife and I are actually both from Daytona Beach. About 10 years ago I used to shoot IPSC Limited (the precursor to IDPA) at the Central Florida Rifle and Pistol Club - they have wonderful facilities. You should check them out, they used to hold the best IPSC matches in Central Florida back then and they were where the Glock Invitational was held just recently. Their website says their IDPA matches are the 1st Sunday of each month http://www.cfrpc.com/

    Enjoy!

    Jeff
     
  9. FlaChef

    FlaChef Guest

    Yesterday i shot my 3rd idpa match at Central florida pistol and rifle club.

    Good folks, great setup. The cowboy gun people have about a dozen action ranges we use setup w/ fake storefronts, windows, doors that you can kick down, etc.

    It's a blast and so much better than the pensacola match i shot w/ just a clay pit and open space and movable plywood "wall" props.

    matches are the first Sun (5/1 is the next) w/ a classifier course set up for any 5th sunday (5/29 is the next).

    http://www.cfrpc.com/IDPA/cfdpa.html

    Tonight me and the wife took our second trip to East Orange Shooting Range for their Mon night "run 'n gun" which is like a practice session for IDPA/IPSC/Bianchi/Bowling Pin practice.
    One of the RSO's (big guy, i think is the owner or manager) has been extremely encouraging/ helpful to my wife. We're going to make it a regular mon night thing as it the only night we can usually be sure to have off together and we both enjoy it.

    http://www.eastorangess.com/index.htm

    Yesterday was also the Florida IDPA championships and 10 of the twelve guys from the "East Orange" shooting team placed w/in the top 4 of their class w/ two winning. There's definitely some good shooters there to practice w/.
     
  10. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Central Florida had a good shooting scene a long time ago, so I can only imagine now it must be better. That must be a little funny shooting an IDPA course in an "Old-West" theme. Kind of like the SHTF on a movie set of a modern-day Clint Eastwood spaghetti western.

    That is cool that your wife is getting into it. I really wish I could get my wife into action shooting. She is actually a great shot on the static range, but does like the idea of drawing a gun in an action match. Tonight is "Ladies Night" at our local indoor range with free range time and other incentives, and we are planning to go. It will be her first time shooting in about 10 years (when i quit so did she) so maybe she'll get back into it with a vengence.

    Do you know if Rieg's Indoor Gun Range is still open on OBT in Orlando? I used to know those guys well (this was 10-12 years ago) and they used to hold IPSC matches in their 2 indoor ranges. Most of them were OPD and were a great bunch of guys.
     
  11. FlaChef

    FlaChef Guest

    yes reig's is open and is about 2 miles from my house.

    It's a good facility to shoot at, but they're prices aren't great, they're the only place that i know of that charges by the hour for range time instead of "all you want".

    Oak Ridge Gun Range is only about another mile past that and is not as nice (cramped and could be better lit) but as they always beat everyone on price (I shop around for best price than call them to beat it) I shoot there a lot when i go alone.

    The nicest is shoot straight in apopka (largest indoor range in FL) and ladies shoot free on Mon., but it's more than 30 min drive.

    The shooting gallery is also less than two miles from my house (across from the county jail on 33rd st. and JYP) and has beatuiflully lit/ ventilated/ spacious range, but their hours suck and rentals/ ammo are up there, it's still my choice when going w/ a group of people though.
     
  12. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Excellent insighta nd good to see the S9 can satisfy a better shooter. Being a relative beginner myself it is often difficult for me to determine whether any one gun is better than another. I shoot my S9 second best to my 1911 but we're talking less than half the price.

    I agree with you on the sights - I always do some speed drills when I practice and I find the Steyr faster than the Glock or the 1911 for me in that area. Nice to be vindicated by a competitive shooter in my choice.

    May I ask what kind of holster you used? I am having no luck finding one I like for the S9 to this point although obviously haven't tried very many.

    And of course congrats on the win!
     
  13. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I'm not sure if IDPA Steyr has any more insight to share on his competition experience with the Steyr. I think he is a Master-level IDPA shooter and has many more thousands of rounds through his Steyr than me.

    I was using the Comp-Tac CTAC Kydex IWB holster. Here is the post I wrote in the Holsters forum:

    http://www.comp-tac.com/

    I just got my S9 and shot an IDPA match with this rig. The Kydex molded holster body keeps the gun secure and constant pressure on the gun - no sticking points even if you have your belt cinched tight or are sitting down. It holds the S9 close to the body but the draw (and reholster) is super easy and smooth, with a "click" as the gun seats in place. There is no lock, but the friction fit is perfect, I think it may be adjustable but I didn't need to adjust it. The belt clips are modular depending upon how you want to carry and they are mounted to the holster on leather tabs that flex as you walk or sit. We had a stage where you had to draw while sitting in a chair and it was no problem at all. Easy on/off too, just loosen you belt and lift the belt tabs and the holster out of your pants. I tuck it underneath my shirt but not in my underwear.

    Extremely comfortable, extremely concealable, extremely fast draw and unimpeded reholstering - what more could you want in a holster?

    Jeff
     
  14. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Many thanks - will check that out and probably try one. I'm a Fobus fan (I know - many people hate them) for my other guns but their compromise for the S9 using a Sig P series holster is not to my taste. I generally steer away from belt loop holsters but this one sounds nice. Good write up and thanks again!
     
  15. Guest

    Guest Guest

    You had mentioned the HK p-7 as an all time great 9mm. I agree, but only to a point. I had a PSP model, the bhole between the barrel and the piston chamber would fill with build up and cause fte, and the slide to not lock after the last shot. After spending that kind of dough a gun I feel the P-9s was by far a better 9mm,Mine would digest anything!
    But for todays 9's I don't think you can beat the S-9 for over all performance.IMHO :D