You’ve heard it a million times and probably said it yourself when discussing your favorite handgun: “It just fits my hands.” It’s a statement about the fit and feel of a handgun. It’s how your hands wrap around its stocks, how your trigger finger falls to the side of the frame and then onto the trigger, how it just seems natural to move the gun in your hand and manipulate its controls, and how you can draw the gun and point it at a target. This is all very subjective and personal.
There’s a more objective evaluation of features going on too. I’ll bet your handgun is reliable, rugged, well-designed and well-manufactured. But even though those are more quantifiable characteristics, they don’t necessarily mean the gun is the right one for you. You can have a reliable handgun that simply feels awful in the hand and is not the right fit. You can train around that gun and get used to it, but there is something to be said for having just the right fit. These days, because plenty of excellent handguns exist in many different forms, it is not difficult to find a good fit.
I have been a long-time fan of CZ handguns and their clones, including the TriStar P100. Made by Canik in Turkey and matching the dimensions and functions of the legendary CZ 75, this steel-framed handgun weighs 2.3 pounds. It is a heavy gun by most standards, but it is a solid DA/SA shooter. With 11 rounds in each magazine, you can have up to 23 rounds of .40 on hand if you carry one in the chamber. The gun measures 7.2 inches overall. These kinds of specifications are important, but when it comes to fit, they certainly do not tell the full story.
When I hold the TriStar P100, it feels like it was made for me. In fact, I love the feel so much that I will excuse its weight and the old-school DA/SA action, which requires me to manually lower the hammer if I want the first shot to be double-action. The stock sights are horrible and demand an immediate upgrade, which is fine because the gun’s MSRP is only $489. But grasping, drawing and shooting the P100 is awesome. Everything is right there, and everything is natural. Training around the gun is easier than others. Firing to slide lock, changing magazines and getting back to a ready condition occurs with fluidity. A 1911-style safety clicks on and off positively and is within a natural range of movement for my strong-side thumb. The checkered grip panels are nothing noteworthy except that they are perfect in their simplicity.
For me, the CZ 75 and the similar TriStar variants score very high in the objective categories for being reliable, rugged and well-made. The excellent ergonomics certainly add to their desirability and functionality, even in the more subjective categories of how a gun feels. All things equal, “It just fits in my hands” is a legitimate point of evaluation.
What handguns fit you the best?
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