Joe shot his Gun Blog .45 in a steel match recently, and apparently shot it better than he shot his double-stack STI .40. I actually experienced a similar phenomenon with my Gun Blog 9mm – despite the fact that it’s 1) lighter, 2) has less ammo, and 3) a shorter barrel than my Para 16-40, I consistenly shoot the lighter, whippier gun better. The alloy framed 9mm feels like it has more recoil than the steel framed double-stack .40, yet I’m always faster on follow up shots with the shorter, lighter gun than I am with the full-size .40.
The kicker is that I have no idea why. Logically speaking, the government sized gun should be easier to shoot well. In Joe’s case, the mystery is deepend by the fact that his commander sized gun is a .45 and has the Para LDA trigger system. I do have some theories though on why I shoot the light 9mm better than I shot the .40.
- Because it’s shorter and lighter, I can muscle it around easier. When shooting long matches, fatigue doesn’t set in as quickly with the 9mm as it does with the heavy .40.
- The sight radius, while an inch shorter is still plenty long enough to allow for speedy shooting.
- It’s a single stack, which fits and rides better in my hand than a double-stack gun.
Of course, it could be an entirely mental thing – because I spent so much time shooting the Gun Blog 9mm at Blackwater, I’m more familiar and comfortable with it than I am any of my other guns.
It’s also worth noting that Jerry Barnhart, now retired used to use a Commander-sized gun in many of his competitions while shooting for Colt (he later switched to an STI), using a highly tricked out Commander to win the Steel Challenge in the early 90s.