My Browning Hi Power...A Newbie Perspective...

Discussion in 'The Browning Hi Power Club' started by silversport, Mar 21, 2010.

  1. silversport

    silversport

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    ...so please take whatever I say with a BIG grain of salt... ;D

    The Pistol-
    ...a Browning Hi Power Practical, made in Belgium by Fabrique Nationale and assembled lovingly in Portugal...changes to include, removal of the stock epoxy finish and being professionally Blue'd...Heinie all black serrated SlantPro's...Cylinder and Slide Drop in Trigger Pull Set with the Type II Hammer...removal of the magazine disconnect safety...Herrett's cocobolo aggressively checkered stocks...2 original mousetrap phosphate finished Law Enforcement/Government marked 13 round magazines and 3 more shiny blue MecGar made 10 round magazines...

    The Bullets-
    ...Speer brand 124GR Total Metal Jacket Lawman and Gold Dot Hollowpoint standard velocity bullets...150 rounds total...

    The Place-
    ...After today, never again will I complain about high prices at the nice public range I am used to shooting at...I live about a mile from the range I shot at today...little to no ventilation, hot, (at it is in the 30 degree range in ChicagoLand right now)...narrow lanes with manual runners, lots of people...

    The Set Up-
    ...New to me pistol and I needed to function fire and try out the venerable P-35 type pistol...a pistol I have loved since reading the book Serpico in 1975 but which has eluded my ownership for one reason or the other... until this week...

    3 weeks ago, while shooting at a public range I frequent I saw a new addition to their range guns...a Browning Hi Power Practical...this version has been my favorite Hi Power for some time and I am still kicking myself for missing out on an unadvertised special at Gander Mountain some years back that had them for $499.00...well...I tell the man I brought my own guns to shoot but maybe I'll be back..."You'll be back." he says..."You'll be back."...well I went back...tried it out and other than a couple of minor things...I was in love...

    My brother and my nephew were with me on this shooting day and my brother says to the owner, everything's for sale if you pay the price in response to me asking the guy if they sell the range guns (this one looked like it had little use)...the guy agrees with my brother but when I say "How much?" (What was I thinking??? ::) )...he replies "I have two Hi Powers over in the new cabinet."...My reply is "But I like this one, it's the Practical, right?" (sez I thinking I will act like I don't know much about it in hopes I won't get completely taken ;) )..."Those are owned by the manufacturers and I can't sell it."...I am deflated for now but it will spark my urgency (like I needed any help there) to finally get a Hi Power...

    ...the rest you all know from all my questions and responses here and elsewhere for the last two weeks or so...and for your help, I thank you... :cool:

    As a gun guy, I am not stuck on any one design or philosophy and I mainly buy whatever I like either for looks, function or if it's design or style means something to me personally...I have single action revolvers, double action revolvers from Colt and Smith & Wesson, single action semiautomatics as well as the double/single action semiautomatics from Colt, Kimber, Springfield, SiG, GLOCK and different types like an HK squeezcocking P7 and a DAO Seecamp...an eclectic array for sure...but this Browning is a bit different too...

    Let's Get Down To It-
    ...place up the target on the modified carrier holder (spring loaded clip) and turn the crank sending it down range to the lighted area (minimum distance this range will allow, 21 feet or so...

    I have already cleaned and lubed the pistol as well as familiarized myself a bit with it...I load up one of the mousetrap mags with duty style Speer Gold Dots in 124GR hollopoints and touch the first one off...it goes bang...good...but I seem to have pulled the shot a bit to my right...(I'm a Southpaw)...still the sights are pretty much right on but I 'aint holding up my end of the bargain...

    I try a few more and I'm doing okay but my nearly 49 year old eyes, while really liking these Heinie SlantPro's could use a bit of contrast on the front sights...I have similar sights on a Kimber Custom II that Teddy Jacobson did up for me in 2003 and he painted the front sight with blaze orange paint...the front sight still appears like the day he did it and the contrast has helped me qualify every time I use the Kimber...so...note to self...get to the eye doctor for some prescription lenses and perhaps, paint the front sight...

    These mousetrap mags really come out of the pistol with authority...I like it...such a contrast to the 10 rounders...something else I find out...I can't feel the trigger reset...it is different than my SiGs, Glocks, 1911s and P7s...hmmm...trigger is nice, I bet about 4.5-5lbs but different than other pistols I own or have shot...nice but different...

    ...Hammer bite...nope...I am surprised but once I settle in, there is no hammer bite for me...I do see some redness where the hammer is just giving me a kiss but nothing now after shooting...as for these aggressive Herrett's stock's, well, I get more redness from them...again...nothing now after shooting...

    ...Muzzle flip...what muzzle flip???...maybe it's because I'm more used to .45ACP...perhaps it's the all steel construction...perhaps it is the fantastic ergonomics of John Browning and Dieudonné Saive but nothing negative to speak of here...

    ...Ambi-Safety goes on easy and sniks off with little drama...I don't know if this will go on or off when I don't want it to (while inside the holster from clothing or the like) but it relieves a concern I had about being able to operate it without a paddle...should I find myself needing that later, I can always pick one of Jim Hoag's superb designed ambi paddles from Cylinder and Slide whom I believe are the current owner's of that design...

    The Recap-
    ...150 rounds of both Lawman TMJ and Gold Dot HP and if I would do my part, this pistol will do it's...

    ...the trigger...I had a couple failures to fire but they were traced to me not allowing the trigger to reset...I was allowing the motion I do for 1911's and GLOCK's and this was not enough to allow the reset on the Hi Power...this is my learning curve and I had this same problem with the range Hi Power some weeks back...I'm sure the blame is mine now...hurray for me... :p

    ...accuracy...well, I didn't do my part today as I was just ringing it out but truth be told...I will need some contrast to the front sight and some more range time with mine but I believe the pistol's accuracy is right on...

    ...extraction and ejection of brass...other than many shells finding themselves going down the back of my neck with their red hot touch, primers show a strong central strike and no damaged brass...the Browning is functioning properly...

    ...the trigger's pull...feels less than the range gun I tried and the Cylinder and Slide sear, springs and hammer all did what they were designed to...I need more range time to get used to what this trigger can do but it's nice for what I want it for...carry and perhaps some duty...

    ...Herrett's stocks with their aggressive checkering, I didn't feel the Hi Power move about in my hand at all...i might like to find some Spegal's in the future or a pair of Uncle Mike's if they ever appear either on the 'bay or at some of the smaller gun shops...but I have no complaints from these and in fact think I would prefer them to the stock Walnut's and I know I prefer them to Pachmayr's that would have come standard on a Practical (like the range gun had)...

    ...Magazines...I prefer the mousetrap's both for their ability to spring from the magazine well upon hitting the magazine release and for their full 13 round capacity...as for the standard type 10 rounders...well...they'll make fine range mags...they are quality but I don't need to use 10 rounders so I see no reason to buy any more like these...

    ...Clean up was rather easy...only 150 rounds down range...take down is super simple (I know 'cuz I can do it :D) and reassembly was also a snap...the reinsertion of the recoil spring and guide plug being the only thing to slow the process down and only by a few extra moments...

    ...Visually I find the P-35 Hi Power design to be beautiful and the Practical with cocobolo's stunningly so...many others look nice too as I find I like any of the Mk IIIs even with the epoxy finish preferring their high combat sights to the smaller ones or adjustables on other Hi Power's but some of the older one's with their deep Blueing look stunning as well...and don't think I've forgotten any of the engraved models or the Parkerized one's...I guess I'm just one of those that likes the design...

    ...This one is mine (cheating a bit with an Alessi/Heinie DOJ holster for a 1911) and I think it's a keeper...

    [​IMG]

    Thanks everyone...

    Bill
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2010
    lawandorder likes this.
  2. magpie maniac

    magpie maniac

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    Excellent writeup and beautiful pistol. I own two that will never be sold. One is in my daily carry rotation. Thanks for sharing.
     

  3. DustyJacket

    DustyJacket Directiv 10-289

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    Very pretty.

    I've never owned a HP. Someday......
     
  4. silversport

    silversport

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    thanks for the feedback...
    Bill
     
  5. gclefton

    gclefton Gold Member

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    Thanks for the write-up.

    Careful, you may not be able to stop at just one BHP. . . . . . .

    I am very proud of both mine.
     
  6. big_gun_man

    big_gun_man

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    Thats a beautiful gun with nice upgrades, I had a nice HP but I sold it to gclefton and I do miss it.
     
  7. stopatrain

    stopatrain Lifetime Member

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    The Hi-Power was my first pistol still have it still love it.
     
  8. tshadow6

    tshadow6

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    Serpico was the inspiration for my purchase of a BHP in 1984. I have the military model. Parkerized with tiny sights.
     
  9. bac1023

    bac1023

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    Beautiful gun and nice review.
     
  10. silversport

    silversport

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    thank you I can only take credit for buying it...Serpico was also my inspiration for wanting a Hi Power...
    Bill
     
  11. den888

    den888

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    Great review.
     
  12. silversport

    silversport

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    thanks...do you have one or are you getting one???...:D
    Bill
     
  13. F224

    F224

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    Watching my brother knock over 8" plates at 100 yards 20 years ago was mine. I have two C&S customs now...life is good!
     
  14. DAT85

    DAT85

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    Great post!
    I can especially relate to your comments about trigger reset.When I switch back to my 1911s or G19,I always have to concentrate on the take up before reset.
    I guess I am going to have to get more trigger time in with my HP's(if I can get my wife to let go of my Yost-Bonitz SRP :crying:)

    Regards,
    DAT85
     
  15. silversport

    silversport

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    I too need more trigger time on the Hi Power...I really like it and it is a comfortable carry but I gotta learn that reset...
    Bill
     
  16. JohnJak

    JohnJak sadly spent

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  17. vmr357

    vmr357

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    I've been thinking about getting something black for grips on my Practical. VZ or something thicking than Navidrex. But seeing this picture again I think I like the Hogues. I've got a pair and maybe I'll put the on the Practical instead of my blue HP.

    Since the magazine disconnect has been removed and the trigger has been reworked, I'd be interested to hear if you ever find the reset point. There is a place were it resests, but I find it takes a lot of care to find it. I've pretty much given up on the range. I don't thing it makes a lot of difference.

    Vern
     
  18. silversport

    silversport

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    I think the answer for me is to get a proper trigger return spring...(Wolff or otherwise)...
    Bill
     
  19. Ahmid

    Ahmid CLM

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    Great review, beautiful gun.
     
  20. rvrctyrngr

    rvrctyrngr Senior Moment

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    Just the nature of the rotating trigger design. Even the HP I have that has all Novak parts and one of his trigger jobs resets that way. Like you, I just don't worry about reset with the HP.