So while at NRA this year, I happened to see two complete, factory HK VP9L pistols. The standard VP9L with the paddle mag release and the B version with the US button mag release.
Played with both. They seem nice. I didn’t perceive them as being top or front heavy. That was a concern / prejudice I brought with me as I worked them.
Given my druthers, I would still take the paddle over the button version. The interchange between the two takes zero adjustment for the shooter, but the paddle is much more versatile in how to activate. But doesn’t suffer from the one fatal-flaw push button mag releases have.
You see, button mag releases, especially ambidextrous-button mag releases are susceptible to being inadvertently activated when the gun is squeezed or compressed. Two conditions that can happen are: 1. When rolling around on the ground with your gun holstered. Or 2. When using certain flashlight / pistol techniques.
Don’t take my word for it. Look at the market and ask yourself this question. “Why don’t all push button mag designs come from the factory as ambidextrous, instead of reversible?” Even newly designed handguns?
The FNS series of pistols did just that and we carried them for a time. And almost immediately myself or my co-workers started to see negligent mag-drops. Sometimes while the weapon was holstered. Sometimes when using a flashlight. You’ll notice the FN 509, which is a product improved FNS, makes the push-buttons lower in profile and moulds a fence around the buttons.
Trigger: Is there a difference between my CCW VP9 and the VP9L’s trigger? Not that I recall being able to discern. But I am not likely talented enough of a trigger puller to be able to discern that difference.
Buy a complete gun or a upper kit? Dunno. I am of two minds. I like the upper-kit option since it appeals to my “system” oriented mind. I also like the fact someone can functionally use the same gun to compete with as use for CCW.
But the other side of my brain likes the idea of keeping gun “together” to better track wear and service schedules. So both are cool.
Will I get either? Right now, that is still a no. Could change in the future. But I am not a USPSA shooter. And between you and me, I am more interested in seeing how HK handles the “mag funnel” design for the competition folks. Because right now I haven’t any bolt-on magwells for the VP gun that isn’t a straight up scam.
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