Hello, and a few comparison questions..

Discussion in 'Anything Else' started by Ubermensch, Feb 1, 2008.

  1. Ubermensch

    Ubermensch Guest

    If anyone here has some real-world experience with USPs and P99s, could you give me a Cliff's Notes impression of the three-strong and weak issues. I am leaning towards the Steyr, but price alone won't make my final decision.

    I know that this is a Steyr forum, but I think there's enough to recommend any of them. I see a proportionately larger amount of issues with Steyrs. I read how a good cleaning might've prevented some of that. I see the Steyr has some sort of steel skeletal lower, but I don't hear of any major problems with the others. Seems like the Steyr doesn't have the aftermarket support of the others. I don't know if it's relative novelty or disinterest.

    I want this pistol for CC. Probably choose .40 S&W, although I've not shot the caliber. I have a Makarov and CZ 52, and do a little work on them. I want something pretty user-friendly. Anything else you might need to know, please ask.

  2. Syntax360

    Syntax360 Premium Member

    Welcome! I don't have any experience with the P99, but I owned a USPc .45 for quite some time...

    The major weak points of the USP are concealability (the grip is just god-awful and prints like crazy on the full-size and compacts), atrocious trigger (LEM helps, but not a whole lot),and general feel with regard to perceived recoil. The reason I unloaded my H&K is because I just never could come to terms with investing close to a thousand dollars on a pistol with one of the worst triggers I have ever had the displeasure of squeezing - it's REALLY that bad. The weight of the pistol isn't too bad, and it's thin enough to not be a big problem for carry, but the stupid grip will give you away if you move around or twist/turn the wrong way (and it's not just the holster - it's a pretty well known/accepted thing). Regarding the last point, I may just be spoiled by my Steyr and my favorite .40 (Sig Mauser M2), but both the 9mm and .40 USP and USPc's I've handled pack a lot more umph than I like. The more pronounced recoil plus the USP's not-very-ergonomic grip tend to cause me to need to adjust my grip every couple shots (the sandpaper-like texture is cool, though). Also, you will need a rail adapter to get around the H&K proprietary setup if you plan to use the pistol for nightstand duty and want to use a tac-light.
    However, the USP's are (IMHO) dead sexy and absolute unstoppable. You can feed them just about anything and clean them as often (or as little) as you want and you will probably not have any problems. They are accurate as all get-out and feature downright artful aesthetics.

    The Steyr has just about the best trigger you are going to find in a stock polymer gun, EXCELLENT ergonomics with a marked decrease in perceived recoil for most shooters, definitely edges out any H&K on price-point, and are tack drivers. While the grip is very ergonomic, you may find it a bit slick and require a slip-on grip (or a stipple job like jetsiphon's :twisted:). If you are going the CDNN route, you may get a pistol with the old style extractor and plunger, which may (or may not) give you some grief with extraction issues during the break-in period. This is easily remedied with a trip to SAI, but you'll be out shipping costs. Also consider that you can get 2 Steyrs for the price of one H&K right now. The trapezoid sights may take a little getting used to (or you may elect to scrap them for some PT night sights), but they are very fast and (IMHO) ideal for a self-defense pistol. Regarding accessories... check out my pistol or some of the others on the club - it just depends on what you are looking for. I have managed to get everything I've ever wanted out of a pistol with this gun.

    All in all, I think the Steyr edges out the H&K by a wide margin, but I wouldn't fault you for going with the German option. The USPs are nice pistols, but not $700-800 nice (IMHO) - you will most likely just be paying for a name (and there isn't necessarily anything wrong with that - it's your money, spend it how you want).

    Of course, the obligatory/obvious answer to this question is to try all of the pistols you are considering and decide which works best for you. Where are you located? perhaps someone from the club is in your area and would let you take theirs for a test drive? (Also see our Frappr map on the homepage).

    Now that that's out of the way, can I perhaps show you something in a 9mm...? :twisted:

  3. babj615

    babj615 Premium Member

    :p :clap: :p :party: :p
  4. squirrelpotpie

    squirrelpotpie Premium Member

    first off, i like the HKs but my experience is limited to range trips and not day to day carry.

    used to have a tactical and an elite in 45 but financial realities forced me to sell them to a well equipped friend. have also shot the p7, mk23, p2000, USP .40, and a USP .40compact. liked 'em all but the .40 compact "the little hand stinger" which was not much fun to shoot more than a couple of mags out of at a time. as someone who was relatively new to polymer pistols at the time, i really liked the squeeze bang triggers of the HK and could pick them up and shoot more accurately than i could with the sigs or glocks. 1)there were no reliability issues. 2)SA more conducive to accuracy than DA but a loose grip can result in an unintentional follow up shot 3)solid feel with good recoil management in .45.

    i really like my Steyr and prefer its trigger and handling to all of the glocks and most of the sigs i've shot, but if money is not a big consideration - there are "better" handguns out there and the HKs are certainly worth shooting if you have the opportunity.

    as syntax's post suggests handling and trigger preferences are pretty subjective and anecdotal reports are no substitute for your own first hand experiences.

    so get out there and have fun.
  5. mugdava

    mugdava Premium Member

    Hey Ubermensch!

    First off welcome aboard! :D

    I'm a HUGE fan of anything HK, that being said, I'm also BIG on Steyr M-A1 pistols.

    HK USP pros:
    accuracy - Polymer tack driver.
    reliability - Imagine a refined Glock.
    fit & finish - German workmanship.

    Steyr M-A1 pros:
    accuracy - very tight tolerences allow for very tight groupings.
    ergonomics - unequalled ergonomics.
    quality - No short cuts, plastic sights, or other short comings.

    HK USP cons:
    high price - Nothing for the USP is inexpensive.
    proprietory rail - Silly European design.
    customer service - For the money spent, HK service is kinda low grade.

    Steyr M-A1 cons:
    lack of aftermarket support - Slowly, but surely that is changing.
    extractor issue - fairly small chance extractor may need upgrading.

    Things like trigger(kinda subjective!) I didn't address, but SAI(Steyr Arms Inc.!) can teach HK a thing or two about customer service! :shock: As Syntax mentioned, if You plan to carry the weapon You would find the USP at a huge disadvantage! If the proof is in the pudding, I currently own 4 x HK pistols and 3 x Steyr pistols and none are for sale! :wink:
  6. Ubermensch

    Ubermensch Guest

    Thanks for the welcome, and the answers. I would've posted in the "newbie welcome" forum, but I guess how long I'm here depends upon what I end up with.

    I'm in Texas-probably closest to San Antonio. I've handled the USP and P99, but that's it. Nobody around me has anything like these three pistols. Glocks are the most prevalent polymer ones, with Rugers second. I've never seen a Steyr in real life. Yeah, price IS attractive, and I know the engineering is sound. But for those who've used any/all that could give me feedback is most helpful.

    I'll be going to CDNN in a couple of weeks and pick up something. That'll give me a chance to handle the Steyr and at least compare "feel"/actuation. They told me they still had several Steyrs. I do appreciate the parts retrofitting information. I likely will get one since I see that despite Steyr loyalty, y'all still find reason to laud the competition. And that's what I thought when I posted here-honest assessment. I have an HK 93, and (probably still) a forum member on a board. But there is a little snobbery due to the elite qualities and price premium. Something I hope I can duplicate for .50/dollar.

    So, thanks again in case I end up with one of the others. Meanwhile, I'll fade back and read the forums to help decide and so I won't annoy y'all with repetitve questions if I get one.
  7. Syntax360

    Syntax360 Premium Member

    Are you actually planning on going to CDNN? I was under the impression that they would not do sell from their warehouse in Abilene?
  8. Ubermensch

    Ubermensch Guest

    Probably so, but I was told they have a retail store. I'm going there, anyway, to meet someone halfway on a delivery.

    Edit: After taking a close look at the website, I think the man that told me they had a retail store is mistaken. I think CDNN is for parts/accessories and the Target Sports part is for firearms.

    Looking around, I found this site-http://www.handgunreview.com/make.asp?make=Steyr

    I note some interesting things. The Walther reviewers seem to overall give the P99 3 1/2 stars. FWIW, the poorest spelling and pronunciation, too! :think:

    The SIG reviewers seemed to have the greatest approval of their pistol/brand of choice. Somewhat good to point out idiosyncracies, but seem to have pride-in-ownership as much in price as performance. To me, it seemed the SIGs had the highest brand rating average.

    The Steyr and HK reviewers seemed to be the most savvy, with comparisons of others' products to make their case.

    Didn't look at Glock. They are well-known, good and bad.
  9. Shooter

    Shooter Premium Member

    I have a first generation HK USP in 45. Got it used and wanted it cause at the time it was the only pistol that could go left handed......I have to agree with Syntax 100% on his evaluation.......the first HK's had horrendous triggers, gritty and hard to pull. I went online and found a trigger job that (invalidated my warranty, which I probably didn't have anyway since I wasn't the original owner... :think: ) changed the pistol dramatically. I haven't done the lower receiver portion yet but it already groups as well as my 1911... :clap: the finish is absolutely the best I've seen. As old as it is, and the amount I throw it around, the finish on most guns would look a lot worse.....Machining is German all the way....!!!!!!! rubber inbedded on the hammer grooves..... :shock: no wonder it costs so much.....I'll never sell it either.....:lol: So don't buy one...... :naughty: unless you have money to burn......
    Steyr is still the best value out there....................