I was finally able to get to shoot the new Canik TP9SFx (9mm) from Century Arms (CA). This is a competition pistol, which is something I had never played around with much in my shooting career. When Canik first started to be imported into the US by CA a few years back, the “Made In Turkey” was a turnoff to me. Also, the first Canik models I put my hands on were a little rough and the branding on the weapons was not very defined. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a “Made In USA or nothing” snob. It’s a fact that there are foreign companies (including gun companies) that market their product very well to the US and are viewed as manufacturing quality. Then there are companies that have historically not marketed their products well in the US and have a bad quality track record. As it relates to guns, I typically viewed certain known foreign gun brands as quality (Sig Saurer, H&K, Beretta, Benelli, FN, etc.) and other foreign gun manufacturers as “beater” guns. I can still remember the Chinese $79.95 SKS rifles of the early 1990s. The receivers looked like they were hand chiseled vs CNC cut. The parts were not properly coated, or serialized, since they were pieced together from various communist countries to make a complete product to sell. I still prefer to support American workers, making American guns. That being said, it’s a big world and foreign competition can only make American products better. Look no further than cars as a recent example of this. Also, CA is an American company, run by some great people.
At under $550, the Canik TP9SFx is designed to be an affordable competition pistol. It’s manufactured with very tight tolerances. The trigger reset is also very quick, which allows for fast follow-up shots. It goes without saying that this gun also has the “cool-factor” for that special someone who has seen the Underworld movies too many times and owns a skintight leather shooting/combat suit. I’ll save the sci-fi review for someone else, but as a competition pistol, this gun really delivers. Each TP9SFx includes a hard case that contains: two 20 rd mags, a holster, four reflex mounting bases (for multiple manufacturer’s sights), replacement backstraps, and a few other goodies. This is truly a right-out-of-the-box competition gun at half the cost you’d expect to pay for one. Shooting it was a lot of fun. I put around about 300 rounds of various ammo through it with zero malfunctions/failures to feed. Once I got used to the rhythm of the gun, it was fairly easy to do close groupings in the target I was shooting. It’s a little long for a self-defense gun, but its rail would allow you to mount ,flashlights/lasers if you chose to make this your nightstand gun.
What would I changed about this gun? Not much. This gun shot very smooth and felt great in the hand. I’d like to see a few more magazines offered with the gun at purchase (say 4). Especially since it’s a newer brand and magazines might be hard to find, or if you damage one doing a 3-gun you’re not left with only one mag. If it takes off, there will be after-market upgrades (triggers, etc.) you’ll be able to purchase for it. A model with the Vortex Viper Red Dot is also now available at a MSRP of $729.99. Of the guns I review, some I keep and some I send back. This one is a keeper.
Mr. Ags writes for Joe for America and welcomes your feedback: [email protected] and on Twitter: @blackswampradio