Browning Hi Power

I just impulse-bought one of these:

http://www.aimsurplus.com/product.aspx?item=F1FNHP

What do I have?
I don't know much at all about them other than I always wanted one and this looked like the cheapest entry-point.   It's just a toy, I'm not going to carry it.  If it's reliable I might eventually shoot some USPSA with it  once I get a holster and a few mags.  First few questions that come to mind without seeing it in person yet:
-Is it safe to carry cocked and locked like a 1911?
-What magazines are worth buying (it only comes with one).  So far I see Pro-Mag and Mec-Gar available.  Already ruled out Pro-mag on brand rep alone.

-How hard is it to remove the magazine safety?

-Is the MkII one of the iterations that apparently struggles with JHP?

-anything I should avoid, like +P?

Original Post

I'm a big Hi Power fan, as long as they get a decent trigger job- my Israeli Mk III came with a trigger heavier than a Ma Duce. Don Williams did all the work on mine and I couldn't be happier. But in answer to your questions:

1) Yes, you can carry it cocked and locked with no issues.

2) Mec-Gar magazines are all you should be buying. Literally. They're the OEM and much cheaper than "Factory" mags. 

3) Mag safety should be easy to remove, but Don did mine along with anything else. 

4) Mk II should be fine with JHP, but I'd avoid a steady diet of +P. 

 

PRAISE THE FALLEN

SSG Kevin Roberts KIA 7-May-08         SPC Peter Courcy KIA 10-Feb-09

1Lt Nick Dewhirst KIA 20-July-08          PFC Jason Watson KIA 10-Feb-09

CPL Charles Gaffney KIA 24-Dec-08

 

Joined: 2/21/04          Location: Seattle,  WA

Ages ago, in an era of revolver & single stack semi-auto primacy, the P-35/BHP/GP/Hi-Power was the "It" gun if you wanted higher magazine capacity combined with an incredibly proven and reliable pistol.  The gun got some 1970's publicity as it was depicted in the film Serpico and then later in 1980 as the weapon carried by UK SAS when they did the Princess Gate raid on the London Iranian Embassy.  But the pistol was carried by armies all over the world for decades before that.  UK  forces issued it from WWII until just a few years ago. Even the Germans used it enthusiastically during WWII.

I've owned several over the years. They were all great guns. Back in the day (70's, 80's), I regarded them as mechanically reliable and durable as peer competitor Colt or USGI 1911's, HK P-7s,  or Walther P-1s (P-38).  I owned a MKII (stolen back in the 90's).  During the 1980's, it fed most JHPs just fine and never had issues with +P (although that stuff wasn't as widely available back then).  Back then, I carried mine loaded with Silvertips, Remington 115 gr JHP, and a few other loads. It fed them all, but liked the Remington stuff best (that load closely matching the ogive profile of 9mm ball).

I went through a UK SAS CQB course where we were issued P-35s and MP-5s firing identical 9mm ball ammo from UK NATO stocks. Those all-steel Brownings ate that stuff up and there was no mention by instructors about wear and tear problems. They (SAS CT Troop members) exhibited absolute confidence in the pistols and their durability with hotter ammo. They were pretty honest about most discussion topics and had no problem with lifting up their skirts to talk about other very real problems. But they didn't have any complaints about the Browning (other than ruefully admitting that they were getting old).  NATO 9mm specs vary by country, but it's arguably always a bit on the higher pressure / velocity side... if not always into +P territory.

I CCW'ed that wayward MKII for several years (always cocked and locked) and regarded it as a reliable, durable, accurate, and tough gun.  The design is dated, has a tiny safety, and the original military style fixed sights (or tangent sights) are a reflection of a different age. But that's fixable by adding modern combat sights. I've also found the Hi-Power to be one of the most elegantly slim and hand fitting designs ever created. The damn things just fit most people's hands really well.  A common compliment given to CZ-75 variants is that they feel very similar in the hand to the Hi-Power.  That accolade meant in a very positive way.

Like the military 1911A1, it's a dated design, but one which has withstood the test of time and proven itself in hard use.  You've got a classic pistol which is still the equal of many more modern designs. Enjoy it.

Still makes my top 10 list for handguns to take to a fight.

Here's a How-To Pictorial for magazine disconnect removal:

http://www.1911forum.com/forum...wthread.php?t=133740

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The moral high ground is sometimes just a head on a long pike... - Astronomy

 

A new Plt Ldr is like a first time new mother. The Plt Sgt is a lifelong midwife and nanny. It's your baby but he knows a lot about changing diapers and other ugly things. - Astronomy

Well said Sir, very well said.  I am in total agreement.  I've owned and carried Brownings off and on since the early 80's.  The drawbacks for most, not all, are the magazine disconnect, the small safety and small sights.  Those issues were addressed to a degree by the later versions except for the magazine disconnect.  I've replaced the safeties with aftermarket or factory ambi ones.  Sights have been replaced with fixed, adjustable, and milled into the slide adjustable.  I removed the mag safety on all of them and replaced the springs.  Sometimes I've gotten really great trigger pulls, sometimes only good.  But springs and no mag disconnect are essential.  They have a long reset, but you can get used to it.  They feel great, conceal pretty well and I've never felt undergunned with one.  Quite the opposite.  I shot them in competition for a long time and I broke one barrel.  The camming lug on the bottom sheared.

I've never stippled the frame but I've felt guns with the stippling and they are great.  Unfortunately, the front and backstraps are not thick enough for anything deeper than very fine checkering.  I prefer grips that are as thin as you can get, especially at the back as otherwise the grip can feel a bit fat.

I can still reach into a can of ammo, grab a handful that feels right and it will be 13 rds.

-------------------------

Mark

Swear allegiance to the flag Whatever flag they offer

Never hint at what you really feel

Teach the children quietly For some day sons and daughters

Will rise up and fight while we stood still

 

Joined:  2/24/2003                          Location:  Nevada, USA

I have one in .40, and can't add much to what has already been said except that I did not remove the mag disconnect, instead I polished it, and the area it contacts the magazine. Trigger is butter.

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It's not that life is so short, it's that you're dead for so long.

The .45-70 is the only government I trust

 

Joined: 1/30/06 3:34 PM - Location:MA

I currently own three, and carried one at work off and on for probably ten years.  Great guns and cocked and locked is the proper way of carry, just like the 1911.  I love the gun, but have always struggled with hammer bite, sadly.  I have one floating around that runs in 9mm and .41AE from a conversion my father did a long time ago, caliber change takes a barrel and mag swap.

Was the .41AE ever commercially loaded or was it always a wildcat make your own kind of thing?  Apologies,  thread hijack done. 

Mojo/Mark
__________________________
Yo homey, is that my briefcase...?
Vincent from "Collateral"
__________________________
You want the good life, you break your back, you snap your fingers, you snap your neck... Prong/Demon Hunter

Joined: 9/30/09
Location: Northern Nevada (Reno/Sparks)

.41AE was factory loaded, I loved it in my Jericho but even in the late 80s/early 90s it was hens teeth to find. Now  , it's unobtanium. I wonder if you could take some of the 41ae guns and barrel them for 10mm.....

Location Texas.

 

"So what are you gonna do if we get hit on this trip?" "Me?, I'm going to shoot some good pics of you nuking their ass. You do your job, I'll do mine. If I have to do yours,(unless you're the medic) we're probably all screwed!" - Standard reply , from Desert Storm through Iraqi Freedom

I bought a  sweet  Belgian  HP in the late 70s, deep blue  finish, totally  well machined and completely reliable.  In a fit of insanity , I sold it in the mid-80s.  

Late last year, Wayne Novak, helped correct my mistake .  He tuned up a current  production model, action job, better sights and safety.  It's totally reliable,  shoots like a  a laser  and is a joy to shoot .  

Friends and people at the gun club, whose whole shooting experience are poly striker semi's ,  can't believe the trigger break and accuracy.   I've got enough reliable magazines and Milt Sparks leather for it, but so far , haven't carried it for social  purposes. 

Having said that, everyone should own one .

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“Speak softly and carry a big stick;  you will go far. “

 Theodore Roosevelt

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Joined: 29 May 2008          Location: AZ

com cam guy posted:

.41AE was factory loaded, I loved it in my Jericho but even in the late 80s/early 90s it was hens teeth to find. Now  , it's unobtanium. I wonder if you could take some of the 41ae guns and barrel them for 10mm.....

Who needs some .41AE? 

Had an all Belgian HP in .30 Luger.  Beautiful pistol. Still my favorite grip of all time.  JMB always thought of it as his greatest pistol, an improvement over the 1911.  I think he snorted a lot of meth but the BHP is still a great gun.

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IT'S A COLT.  THEY'RE LIKE THE HK OF GUNS.

 

I find it ironic that the colors RED, WHITE and BLUE stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.

 

The Most Reverend Consig

 

"F**K YOU, I'M MILLWALL!!!"  Roy " The Lion of London Bridge"  Larner

 

 

 

 

Joined: 28 Nov 2004: 0037hrs        Location: The worst run state in the U.S

Consigliere posted:
com cam guy posted:

.41AE was factory loaded, I loved it in my Jericho but even in the late 80s/early 90s it was hens teeth to find. Now  , it's unobtanium. I wonder if you could take some of the 41ae guns and barrel them for 10mm.....

Who needs some .41AE? 

Had an all Belgian HP in .30 Luger.  Beautiful pistol. Still my favorite grip of all time.  JMB always thought of it as his greatest pistol, an improvement over the 1911.  I think he snorted a lot of meth but the BHP is still a great gun.

And you sold it.  Only a HK fanb...oh, right.

Linz posted:
Consigliere posted:
com cam guy posted:

.41AE was factory loaded, I loved it in my Jericho but even in the late 80s/early 90s it was hens teeth to find. Now  , it's unobtanium. I wonder if you could take some of the 41ae guns and barrel them for 10mm.....

Who needs some .41AE? 

Had an all Belgian HP in .30 Luger.  Beautiful pistol. Still my favorite grip of all time.  JMB always thought of it as his greatest pistol, an improvement over the 1911.  I think he snorted a lot of meth but the BHP is still a great gun.

And you sold it.  Only a HK fanb...oh, right.

Safe full of HKs but a Colt 1911 on me every day.  But you knew that....

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IT'S A COLT.  THEY'RE LIKE THE HK OF GUNS.

 

I find it ironic that the colors RED, WHITE and BLUE stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.

 

The Most Reverend Consig

 

"F**K YOU, I'M MILLWALL!!!"  Roy " The Lion of London Bridge"  Larner

 

 

 

 

Joined: 28 Nov 2004: 0037hrs        Location: The worst run state in the U.S

First handgun I bought was a Dan Wesson .357 Mag, Second was a Browning Hi-Power. Still have the Hi-Power, cost me all of $419? back in 1993. Though it did have a hiatus with a good friend who was required to have a gun in the household by city ordinance (Kennesaw, Ga). One day we were at the range and I was shooting my Beretta Elite I had sunk about $600+ in custom work on. After shooting one of my better groups with it I asked him for my old Hi-Power to shoot a bit. First group was about the same as the customized Beretta Elite, second group was better. Then and there I determined to get it back. Ended up selling him the custom Beretta Elite for the Hi-Power and some cash.

One day, if I ever get the cash, I plan on getting a few improvements. Better sights, safety, and a trigger job.

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I've been falling so long it's like gravity's gone & I'm just floating...

I bought a Canadian Inglis (patriotic loyalty) parkerized one in the 90s.  It was always my belief that we should own (as close as possible) what you are issued and what your most likely enemy uses.  I had a friend remove the mag safety and never got round to changing the sights or the safety.  If I still had it, I would definitely get that done.  Bought Mecgar mags and they worked very nicely.  I always preferred the ergonomic feel of 1911 and CZ (girlie hands).

We still use them in the Canadian Army.  We in the infantry will be the last to see new pistols.  Understandable as it is not our primary weapon.  I carried one every day for 2 tours in Afg.  Sure they're very old and a little "rattley".  It's funny to listen to all the cracks made every time we shoot them made by people who know zip about pistol shooting: "it's more dangerous to throw it at the enemy or attach a lanyard and swing it around...."  I honestly think this is an effort to cover up their lousy shooting skills.  It's even funnier when they find out I just shot the qual with a perfect score (not hard) using the pistol they are lamenting about.  I'm not a great shooter - I just realized we (army) suck at teaching pistol and paid for a Gunsite course.  To me, it's more important that the army finally woke up and realized it was a good idea to issue a pistol as a secondary weapon on ops (despite the age etc) as opposed to the past where you would only get a rifle and nothing else as a backup.  Rule 1....

Joined sometime in 2008.                  Live in Canada.        

I've got an Israeli police one. Update sights,  trigger and safety and I'd carry it without any issue.

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So low speed, i'm in Park.

"I could stand to hear a little more.." Jayne

Training is brief. Death is forever. PAY ATTENTION.

Joined: 6/14/03 1:02 PM

I bought one 9 years ago in a pawn shop for $100 dollars. The guy at the pawn shop told me it would only fire 1 round them jam (stove pipe). He used the term jam. Anyway I knew I could get it running or at least pay someone to get it running. I gave it to a gunsmith who said it needed a new extractor but it was an older type not in current production. Anyway he fixed the old one and it works I just don't shoot it much. 

Its been a few years but I called Browning to check on the serial number and they told me its older than there records go back. I have thought about sending it to one of the Hi Power smiths, but have always found other priority's.

 

 

LPD "People ask the difference between a leader and a boss. . . The leader works in the open, and the boss in covert. The leader leads, and the boss drives." - Theodore Roosevelt

lpd5408 posted:

....... I gave it to a gunsmith who said it needed a new extractor but it was an older type not in current production. 

 

Kind of the same boat for me. 20+ years ago at a Dallas gun show I bought what I thought was a 'Chinese Inglis' since it had tangent sights, a stock, and what looked like to me 'kanji' on the slide. It turns out I was looking at the Browning proofmarks sideways . The deal of the decade for me as it was/is a very low 4 digit SN (pre-war) Browning made. Same thing, a bad extractor but that long ago the early style extractor was a stocked item with Brownell.  I sure like the grip feel a lot, sights suck (ya, 500 meters...I'm sure) and very reliable for the low round count I shoot it. It only goes out with my other stock pistols (a C96 & an Artillery Luger) when we are reminiscing how it was in the very old days.

________________________

"It's paranoia until something happens, then it is preparedness"

"It is not whether you're paranoid, it whether you're paranoid enough"

"When did you get so paranoid?" …When they started plotting against me.

The first handgun I bought after school was a Hi-Power that had I'd been looking at on a gun store shelf for a couple years, $350 in 1985.  Mine wouldn't feed Silvertips (THE 9mm ammo of the day).  Remington JHPs and Federal Hydra-Shoks worked well.  I kept it as my travel pistol and it was on my first carry permit card.  

I traded it because I grew tired of hammer bite.  I have a small scar on my right hand from repeated gouging from the hammer spur.  I also found that occasionally I would sometime hit the magazine release.  The magazine would not drop free (due to the magazine safety?), but dropped enough that rounds wouldn't feed.

In the late 1990s, I was shooting IPSC with a 1911 and decided that I needed a lighter, but similar pistol, for carrying.  I bought a .40 Hi Power that I still have.  Very accurate, but still have the hammer bite issue.  That problem is solved by carrying a Glock.

The wife and I have a few  HPs around the house. I got one  cheap at auction that someone had already "jacked up" with  slide mods for a barrel comp.  The two port comp was  a screw on one that was  over tightened  and had the ports at 9-10 o clock. This must have thrown people off so I got it for $200, Belgian manufacture. The comp just took a little tweet and was in the right place again. I already had  a few and since it was already chopped up, I ordered a Garthwaite steel light rail for it.  This pistol with a 300u and a twenty round mag is dead flat when I shoot it. It shoots like a  22target pistol. The wife keeps trying to steel it from me. I had to give her  my detective hp to placate her. 

Location Texas.

 

"So what are you gonna do if we get hit on this trip?" "Me?, I'm going to shoot some good pics of you nuking their ass. You do your job, I'll do mine. If I have to do yours,(unless you're the medic) we're probably all screwed!" - Standard reply , from Desert Storm through Iraqi Freedom

I've never had a problem with hammer bite, hand shape probably.  A known possible issue, solved by bobbing the hammer.  All in all, after a very little bit of work, I think the HP holds its ground against most.  I'll take a Browning over a Sig, Beretta, HK, Springfield Armory and all the lesser breeds like Taurus.

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Mark

Swear allegiance to the flag Whatever flag they offer

Never hint at what you really feel

Teach the children quietly For some day sons and daughters

Will rise up and fight while we stood still

 

Joined:  2/24/2003                          Location:  Nevada, USA

Short thread drift please.....

Con Cam Guy...........pics?????

Always loved the Hi-Power, just always had other priorities...but this combo you describe may change that..

The wife and I have a few  HPs around the house. I got one  cheap at auction that someone had already "jacked up" with  slide mods for a barrel comp.  The two port comp was  a screw on one that was  over tightened  and had the ports at 9-10 o clock. This must have thrown people off so I got it for $200, Belgian manufacture. The comp just took a little tweet and was in the right place again. I already had  a few and since it was already chopped up, I ordered a Garthwaite steel light rail for it.  This pistol with a 300u and a twenty round mag is dead flat when I shoot it. It shoots like a  22target pistol.

If I can get my pad to play,image

Location Texas.

 

"So what are you gonna do if we get hit on this trip?" "Me?, I'm going to shoot some good pics of you nuking their ass. You do your job, I'll do mine. If I have to do yours,(unless you're the medic) we're probably all screwed!" - Standard reply , from Desert Storm through Iraqi Freedom

Attachments

Photos (2)
libertarian45 posted:
com cam guy posted:

If I can get my pad to play,

Interesting.  Comp and light added but crappy sights and safety retained?

Only added the light rail. The updated sights will be done eventually, along with an upgraded safety and a refinish. Too many other higher priority projects at the time , and it shoots pretty good for me as it sits now, so its in the q but not soon.

Location Texas.

 

"So what are you gonna do if we get hit on this trip?" "Me?, I'm going to shoot some good pics of you nuking their ass. You do your job, I'll do mine. If I have to do yours,(unless you're the medic) we're probably all screwed!" - Standard reply , from Desert Storm through Iraqi Freedom

com cam guy posted:
libertarian45 posted:
com cam guy posted:

If I can get my pad to play,

Interesting.  Comp and light added but crappy sights and safety retained?

Only added the light rail. The updated sights will be done eventually, along with an upgraded safety and a refinish. Too many other higher priority projects at the time , and it shoots pretty good for me as it sits now, so its in the q but not soon.

I hear you on priorities.  That's why I never got my sights done or replaced the safety.  I just assume that everyone has more money than me.....

Joined sometime in 2008.                  Live in Canada.        

lpd5408 posted:

Here is my $100 Browning Hi Powerimage

I'll double your money right now....cuz I like you.

-------------------------

IT'S A COLT.  THEY'RE LIKE THE HK OF GUNS.

 

I find it ironic that the colors RED, WHITE and BLUE stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.

 

The Most Reverend Consig

 

"F**K YOU, I'M MILLWALL!!!"  Roy " The Lion of London Bridge"  Larner

 

 

 

 

Joined: 28 Nov 2004: 0037hrs        Location: The worst run state in the U.S

libertarian45 posted:
com cam guy posted:

If I can get my pad to play,

Interesting.  Comp and light added but crappy sights and safety retained?

Understand about money and priorities, but that would bug the snot out of me.

 

Cylinder & Slide used to have a drop in hammer and sear...but they are out of stock at Brownells, maybe a pinging C&S might turn up a solution.

 

I've had a few HP's over the years, and they all seem to go for some unknown reason. My first had  S&W K frame adjustable sights milled into the slide. Ron tried t do some smithing on the trigger and what not, but he just wasn't much of a fan of them. He did do a nice stipple on the front and back straps though...cats tongue I think he called it. The bead blast blued..."velvet like" is what he called it....jeez..another gun I sorta miss now..

Vickers noted they suffer much of the issues 1911's do.

The last I had was an FN-SA MKIII type. Nice gun...

The thing about the HP, for me is the grip is sized so almost any grip feels OK. I've used wrap around Pachmyers, Gunners, Navridex & the factory plastic thumb rest...and they all felt good. I was planning on sending the FN, or maybe another one, to The Action Works for some work..but in the end...I decided to go another route...not sure what they offer over a modern polymer gun, practically speaking....but who said we need to be practical, right?

 

Mubles,

 Good to see you posting..

 As noted MecGar are the OEM mags, and the only real way to go.

 Don Williams(not the guy living on Tulsa time)

Cylinder & Slide

 And Novaks 

 Were pretty much the shops for HP work. I am sure members will chime in with others.

I'll snoop around the disaster that is the gear room, and see if I have any mags or grips left over. Maybe a holster...

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"Good landing, good fight, and good luck" James M. Gavin 09Jul43

 "they say if it works, it's a good tactic...I say anything can work once" 

My way over $100 Hi Power done over by Don Williams:

PRAISE THE FALLEN

SSG Kevin Roberts KIA 7-May-08         SPC Peter Courcy KIA 10-Feb-09

1Lt Nick Dewhirst KIA 20-July-08          PFC Jason Watson KIA 10-Feb-09

CPL Charles Gaffney KIA 24-Dec-08

 

Joined: 2/21/04          Location: Seattle,  WA

Attachments

Photos (1)
kaltesherz posted:

My way over $100 Hi Power done over by Don Williams:

Ya see, why did you have to go and do that........now I want a HP again....

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"Good landing, good fight, and good luck" James M. Gavin 09Jul43

 "they say if it works, it's a good tactic...I say anything can work once" 

R.Moran posted:
kaltesherz posted:

My way over $100 Hi Power done over by Don Williams:

Ya see, why did you have to go and do that........now I want a HP again....

Your welcome

Don does amazing work, my only regret is sending him a beat up Israeli and not a nicer base gun- that and while I had him put on Novak's and C&S hammer / sear, I kept the extractor- which just gave up the ghost. It shoots better than my G19, G34, and VP9... I briefly considered getting one of the new Colt LW Commanders in 9mm till I realized this HP does all that can do with a higher mag capacity. And that trigger... glass.

PRAISE THE FALLEN

SSG Kevin Roberts KIA 7-May-08         SPC Peter Courcy KIA 10-Feb-09

1Lt Nick Dewhirst KIA 20-July-08          PFC Jason Watson KIA 10-Feb-09

CPL Charles Gaffney KIA 24-Dec-08

 

Joined: 2/21/04          Location: Seattle,  WA

This thread will do for Hi Powers what the revolver and .22 rifle and pistol threads did......cost everyone a boatload of money.  That's why I love this place.

And check out Nighthawk's BHP.  

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IT'S A COLT.  THEY'RE LIKE THE HK OF GUNS.

 

I find it ironic that the colors RED, WHITE and BLUE stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.

 

The Most Reverend Consig

 

"F**K YOU, I'M MILLWALL!!!"  Roy " The Lion of London Bridge"  Larner

 

 

 

 

Joined: 28 Nov 2004: 0037hrs        Location: The worst run state in the U.S

Another gunsmith to consider for Hi-Power work is Karl Sokol at Chestnut Mountain Sports.

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I've been falling so long it's like gravity's gone & I'm just floating...

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