Sunday, October 14, 2012

Guns: FMK 9C1 Gen 2 review - Rightwing Rough

Introduction - Red State Ready
Aside from supporting the right to keep and bear arms, most gun manufacturers try not to get involved in politics. Not so with FMK ("For My Kountry") Firearms, a gunmaker in Placentia, California that doesn't hide who it backs politically. Heck, there's a speech from Ronald Reagan right on the home page.

FMK's only product is the 9C1, a compact 9mm pistol that's very similar, design and size-wise, to a GLOCK 19 or S&W Sigma. The 9C1 comes in a better-than-average plastic case with the Bill of Rights helpfully printed on the front:

Inside, you'll find two magazines, a manual, a set of interchangeable sights (which allow you to adjust for windage and elevation), and a political booklet called "Red State Coalition."

The booklet is wild stuff, something you'd never see bundled with a mainstream firearm manufacturer's product. It's a bunch of conservative political essays, levelling the usual criticisms of the state of our country. I prefer PJ Media for this sort of thing, but I suppose it's nice that founder James Pontillo II has the stones to vice his opinions, even something sure to be negatively received by many potential buyers.
Overview and Impressions
Back to the gun. The 9C1's MSRP is $400, with street prices hovering around the $300 to $350 range. That makes the 9C1 a full C-note less than say, an M&P9. Of course, you receive much rougher fit and finish than a mainstream polymer pistol - my 9C1 had a molding seam running down the back of the grip, which really should have been sanded down at the factory. Aside from that, the gun felt surprisingly good in hand (there's a subtle depression or channel running down both sides of the grip, which allows your fingers to comfortably curl into the frame).
The major difference between the 9C1 Gen 2 and the previous version is the addition of an accessory rail for mounting a light, which is almost an essential feature for a polymer framed gun of this size. There are also some other minor revisions, like a better trigger. Speaking of triggers, the 9C1 is disassembled like a GLOCK - hit the takedown levers, pull the trigger, and off the slide goes:

At the Range

Shooting the 9C1 was a mixed bag. The gun constantly kicked back empty brass back into my face when shooting - distracting on the range, potentially deadly in a self-defense scenario. The 9C1 was also not reliable at first. Here's a failure to eject I got early in my testing:

After awhile, things settled in and I hammered about three hundred rounds downrange without any malfunctions, which is fairly decent performance for a ~$350 off-brand 9mm. Accuracy was on par or slightly worse than something like, say, an SR9.

Let's face it - there's really no reason to buy a 9C1 if you can afford a regular pistol. Your garden-variety handguns (GLOCKs, XDs, yada yada yada) will all outperform the 9C1 in terms of reliability, accuracy, and availability of parts/accessories/holsters. But, if you have a full armory and you want the pistol equivalent of a conversation piece, I suppose there are worse choices than the 9C1.


At 7:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I got 2 along with 2 x three 4 day courses at Frontsight. For my money they have just knocked $600 off the price of the courses. I'd never recommend it. What really annoys me is that Frontsight defends the guns and called them a $500 value when the MSRP is $395. I don't want any Frontsight blowback so I'm posting anonymous.

At 7:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This gun needs a bit more work by FMK. The CA model is a real pain due to the mag out safety and trigger safety design. Luckily, they sell a fast action trigger kit that is perfectly legal to put in after you buy the gun. The mags have a bad designed follower (at least the CA mags) as they are too short and bind up really easy. When the mag was fully loaded, the binding cause some rounds to be loose - if you shake the can hear the loose round(s). The followers do appear to "break in" a tad and work smoother...but you can see that the follower tilts easily and could cause feed load issues on the last round or two.

It is a good looking gun and a good feeling gun. The CA double action trigger is pretty smooth (assuming you engage the trigger safety properly...otherwise it feels clunky).

At 8:41 PM, Blogger Matt Carmack said...

You get what you pay for. I don't see, anytime in the near future, anybody sending you a $600 pistol for the bargain rate of free.

At 12:41 AM, Anonymous Aramis7 said...

My C1 Gen2 shots all 300 rounds I fed through it with NO FLAW at all. I guess I'm fortunate to have a good one. Trigger is about 7.5 lbs but smooth. I always clean and froglube my firearms before and after use. Maybe that's the reason why it did not fail. This is my first, maybe the only polymer handgun that I will have. I like it. Good looking compare to other expensive polymer. Love the writings. Other people might not like them, but I respect those who stand for what this nation stands for and it is not about politics at all although others like to make it as that. Thank You US Armed Forces. God Bless America!

At 12:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had recently purchased a FMK for the wife as she cannot handle a shotgun verry well. My first initial thought was a "knock off" off a Glock, but after 300 rounds of target 110 grain rounds, i decided to give it a full intro to "personal protection" and high grain ammo. No failures. i did have a small issue with a magazine not connecting with a soft insertion into the gun, but some frog juice helped put that baby to bed. My wife loves the christmas present i got for her (pink handle of course) and she feels better sleeping with it at night when i work a double shift.

At 3:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

id like to know about the difference between a gen.1 and gen.2 and how do you tell.Do you go by serial number?

At 4:12 PM, Anonymous c.m.wilson said...

I think I have a gen.1 F.M.K..The trigger, has a kind of a chunky snap to it, but isn't that heavy.If gen.2's have a better trigger,id like to see if it can be installed in the gen.1.Does anyone know?


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