Manufacturer: Walther Arms, Smith & Wesson joint venture
Final assembly in: US by Smith & Wesson
Production: 1999 to 2006
Weight: 700g unloaded
Length: 7.1 inches
Height: 5.25 inches
Design: semi auto by Walther Arms
Barrel length: 4.25 inches
Grip: Cesar Morini design
Magazine: 10 + 1 in chamber
Ammo: .40 also avail in 9mm & .45
Trigger: Double action, then single action
Hammer: Striker fire (hammer-less)
First of all, let's acknowledge a group given little respect in the gun world, the Lefties, pity the South Paws that have to reach over the barrel of a semi auto pistol to drop the mag, switch off the safety or release the slide. If you're a leftie this month's feature firearm is sure to be a hit!
OK. I know that many of you righties are starting to tune out, but wait, let me drop a few names and features here to keep you reading. Walther and Smith and Wesson joint venture, .40 caliber and avail in 9mm and .45 cal, a non proprietary accessory rail, swappable butt plates, polymer frame with steel slide and the ability to change mags without adjusting your grip.
We are talking about a sweet favorite of mine, the S&W99. The frame of this black beauty is made in Germany by Walther and the barrel and trigger group are made by S&W here and married together to become the SW99 This firearm is actually a well kept secret, as S&W did a lousy job of marketing on this pistol. Don't let familiarity put you off, this is an affordable, (currently avail used in the $300 to $400 range), accurate and fine semi-auto pistol for concealed carry. Did I mention it carries a lifetime factory warranty?
When released in 1999 it went head to head with the Glock, and due to the Glock's popularity and lower price tag, the S&W99 higher price tag caused it to take a back seat and eventually was discontinued. Before it finished its run in 2006, the SW99 was made in .40, 9mm and .45 cal. It was perhaps a bit before its time since the ambidextrous mag release on the trigger guard sets many a purist on edge because it's so different from the norm. Still the lever on the trigger guard is an awesome way to drop the mag one handed and never lose the sight picture. Our review gun is chambered in .40 and packs a wallop. This is a very accurate carry piece and groups quite nicely at personal defense ranges. The polymer frame gives the normal light frame flip, but with the small butt plate attached, the Italian designer grip fit my hand like latex on a lingerie model. The tight grip made recoil easy to control.
The trigger is a long smooth double action first pull, then single action after reset. This is a safety feature that provides piece of mind. (I often carry in a bra holster so the girls are appreciative). The hammer-less striker makes it streamlined and also keeps you from having to dry fire the pistol to take it apart and clean. I will tell you the S&W 99 is a fine pistol. If you're a leftie, I actually think it's a must have for a carry piece. - Anna
Hair Color: Brown
Hair Length: Long
Eye Color: Hazel
Lives in: Washington
Favorite Handgun: .22 cal 1911
Favorite Book: La Palabra del Mudo by Julio Ramon Ribeyro
Favorite Movie: V for Vendetta
Favorite TV Show: CSI (Grissom episodes)
Favorite Actor: Liam Neesom
Favorite Band: Metallica
Favorite Drink: Tequila
Fave Quote "What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger!"
Claudia brings the exotic mystery of Peru, with its famous lost city of Machu Pichu and ancient ruins, mythical beauty and taboos to this month's Guns and Lace feature. She is quick to smile, and a joy to be around. Her beauty speaks for itself, yet there is a depth to Claudia that you can feel, it comes from her travels around the world, and her exposure to both hard times and good times. She is fun loving but there is no question that she is all business when there is a firearm in her hands. To know her is to love her. She makes her home in Seattle, is active in the modeling and music scene and personifies a woman of quiet confidence. There is no question that she knows how to love and how to protect those that she loves.