New Nighthawk Custom Heinie Tactical Carry Pistol - Pictures & Review [Archive] - Glock Talk

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awpk03s
07-14-2010, 22:02
My obsession and infatuation with 1911 pistols has been ever fueled in the past couple of years by my increasingly excellent shooting performance with them, and the ease of carry in a single stack 45ACP platform with the best trigger and action crafted thus far in a handgun. To that end, I've made the decisions to own and carry what I feel and expect to be some of the best practical 1911s being made today.

I already have a pistol being custom built right now at Nighthawk Custom - a 5" Enforcer Recon model with Diamond Black finish and ambi safety. In the meantime, I have been searching for another similar quality 1911 that I could dedicate to carry and use on the range, as the Enforcer Recon would be suited for primary home defense with a Surefire X300, as well as range use. I originally wanted a T3 from Nighthawk, but opted to not have one built at the same time as the Enforcer. After deciding I was going to buy another pistol, I began scouring the shops and online sites for a pistol already available that would suit my needs. I shopped Les Baers, Ed Browns, Wilsons, and Nighthawks. All are excellent guns, of that I am sure - but the Nighthawk pistols overall do it for me much more than the others for a variety of reasons. I am not a fan of any of the polymer coatings employed on firearms today, so I was looking for a Diamond Black, Hard Chrome, or stainless model. The next catch is it must have an already fitted/installed ambi safety since I am left-handed.

The end result is the pistol I am going to review here. I found it and mulled over it for some time before finally buying it, and wow I am glad I did.

http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t310/mba656/guns/DSC02717.jpg
http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t310/mba656/guns/DSC02718.jpg

The pistol is Nighthawk's Heinie Tactical Carry pistol. Details about the pistol can be found here on NHC's website: http://www.nighthawkcustom.com/Heinie_Tactical_Carry_Pistol.aspx however I will try to sum them up individually here as well.

For starters, here's what came in the bag. A nice Bulldog gun case, filled with the usual paperwork, SIX (6) stainless 8 round NHC magazines (like the one pictured here), a spare tuned extractor serrated to match the rear of the slide, a tube of lubricant, and the pistol.
http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t310/mba656/guns/DSC02711.jpg
I was under the impression that most NHC guns are built by several gunsmiths through out the process, but mine was done entirely by Jeff Phillips according to the certificate and test target.
http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t310/mba656/guns/DSC02710.jpg

On to the pistol itself, I don't know who is doing the hard chrome for Nighthawk, but it's an excellent finish on this pistol. It's just beautiful and in my opinion - perfectly done. The gun has 40lpi serrations on the top of the flattened slide, as well as on the rear of the slide. Heinie straight 8 night sights are mounted on top as well and are very fast to acquire and target with. This gun has Heinie's mag well which is very nicely done, and because it employs a shorter frame, doesn't add to the length of the pistol which is beneficial for a carry gun. The butt of the pistol and MSH is rounded slightly, and the MSH is checkered, I believe 25lpi, as well as the front strap. The checkering is very fine and sharply cut and allows for a very secure grip on the pistol.
The trigger is another Heinie part, and it's very light. Easily the lightest trigger I've shot, and I have to say I really prefer it this way, just well done.
The slide stop pin is flush cut and the hole is chamfered. The barrel is very nicely and tightly fit to the gun with a very nicely polished ramp and throat, and held in place by an extra thick Heinie bushing, where the barrel is flush cut and crowned. I was pleased to find the bushing tight, but able to be hand-turned for disassembly.
The slide to frame fit is very very tight - but yet the slide feels like it's riding on ball bearings. Again, very impressed with the action of this gun.
The grip safety is fit very nicely as well. I was surprised to see the ambi safety NOT be one of the Ed Brown/Wilson variety with the shoe extending under the grip, but rather I think it's a hammer pin variety either a King or Kimber type design. The thumb safety is fitted very tight, and has a definite positive snick on/off action, that requires just enough pressure.
The gun is finished off with black Alumagrips with the Heinie logo on them. The grips are checkered, but in all honesty, they're pretty smooth. The front strap/MSH makes for a very secure grip already though, so that's okay. I think they look good on the pistol and are a nice contrast to the hard chrome finish. I'm not sure if I'll keep them on there or go another route with grips (I like wood and the VZ G10 grips, plus don't care for another "H" logo on the gun, but whatever), but for now I like them and they'll stay.

awpk03s
07-14-2010, 22:03
Here's some more pictures:
http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t310/mba656/guns/DSC02716.jpg
http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t310/mba656/guns/DSC02715.jpg
http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t310/mba656/guns/DSC02714.jpg
http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t310/mba656/guns/DSC02713.jpg
http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t310/mba656/guns/DSC02712.jpg

Shooting Impressions:
After taking possession from my FFL, I took it immediately to the range and put a little bit of FP10 oil on the rails and went to work with 250 rounds of Federal 230gr FMJ, Winchester 230gr Ranger JHP, Speer 230gr Gold Dot JHP.

I shot at 10 yards at an indoor range, just to break in (start at least) and get familiar with the gun. My first magazine left a hole honestly not much bigger than that of the test target. It's really that accurate - I was amazed, I've never shot anything this accurate before. It's so effortless to rip out the center of the target again and again. I had no issues whatsoever in 250 rounds with all 6 NHC mags, plus I used 3 Wilson 47DC mags that were flawless as well. Interestingly enough, the manual states that NHC doesn't guarantee the gun's reliability with Speer ammunition (in addition to aluminum case ammo and wadcutters). I'm not sure why that is, but I shot 25 rounds of Gold Dots just fine in this first session.

I'm not sure what else to say at this point, but I truly believe this is a fantastic pistol, and I'm very impressed with the craftsmanship exhibited in this model and proved through the performance.

bac1023
07-14-2010, 22:08
Yeah, they look great and very close in appearance the Heinie's custom builds.

Congrats on an outstanding Nighthawk. :thumbsup:

steve1911
07-15-2010, 00:07
Outstanding pistol, Congrats!


1911club#410

dakrat
07-15-2010, 00:26
looks pretty :) congrats!

Rinspeed
07-15-2010, 04:22
That thing is stunning. :faint:

drc767
07-15-2010, 04:55
Nice pistol!! To the best of my knowledge, Metaloy is doing Nighthawk's Hardchrome. Chris does a fantastic job and is right up the road from NH.

bac1023
07-15-2010, 05:31
Nice pistol!! To the best of my knowledge, Metaloy is doing Nighthawk's Hardchrome. Chris does a fantastic job and is right up the road from NH.

I believe he does.

Nighthawk's hard chrome has always been some of the best, in my opinion.

drc767
07-15-2010, 06:29
I believe he does.

Nighthawk's hard chrome has always been some of the best, in my opinion.

Chris has one of my "prized" 1911's right now....I cannot wait to see what it looks like when I get it back. His work is definately top shelf!

bac1023
07-15-2010, 06:33
His work is definately top shelf!

No doubt Dave :)

BlayGlock
07-15-2010, 06:54
NIghthawk is my favorite builder. My Predator was built by Travis.

bac1023
07-15-2010, 07:00
NIghthawk is my favorite builder.

Some say their quality control is lacking or has lacked in the past.

I've had no problems with either or mine and love both of them.

MADBMW
07-15-2010, 09:37
The Heinie TCP is by far my favorite NHC gun. I would love to pick one up one of thes days, in either two tone or full HC. Congrats on a beautiful gun.

glock2740
07-15-2010, 09:43
That gun is absolutely stunning. Very nice.

glock2740
07-15-2010, 09:45
Chris has one of my "prized" 1911's right now....I cannot wait to see what it looks like when I get it back. His work is definately top shelf!
He's gonna have one of my "prized" 1911's pretty soon. Actually two, because I'm gonna have the Legacy hardchromed as well. :supergrin: Can't wait.

bac1023
07-15-2010, 11:11
The Heinie TCP is by far my favorite NHC gun. I would love to pick one up one of thes days, in either two tone or full HC. Congrats on a beautiful gun.

The Enforcer is my favorite, but I like the Heinie models also. :)

Russ424
07-15-2010, 14:05
I like the magwell! That magwell is just awesome. I love the fact that they shorten the frame up a bit then insatll the magwell for the same overall length. BTW the hardcrome looks perfect.

bac1023
07-15-2010, 14:13
He's gonna have one of my "prized" 1911's pretty soon. Actually two, because I'm gonna have the Legacy hardchromed as well. :supergrin: Can't wait.

I'm looking forward to seeing your No Name and Legacy.

You have two awesome 1911s on the way. :)

okie
07-15-2010, 14:17
Very nice my friend:thumbsup:

Tactical black
07-15-2010, 15:00
That gun looks great congrats :thumbsup:

MADBMW
07-15-2010, 15:28
The Enforcer is my favorite, but I like the Heinie models also. :)


Good point, I like the Enforcer as well. Intergrated plunger tube and mag well, very nice hard use features. So many choices so little $$$$$$$

Oaklands
07-15-2010, 17:12
Great looking 1911. Thanks for sharing.

bac1023
07-15-2010, 17:53
Good point, I like the Enforcer as well. Intergrated plunger tube and mag well, very nice hard use features. So many choices so little $$$$$$$

Yeah, its a great Caspian frame.

The EGW custom in my avatar was built on the same frame Nighthawk uses for the Enforcer. I love it.

awpk03s
07-15-2010, 19:19
Thanks for all the comments. I carried the pistol today, and it conceals and carries very easily and comfortably with my Comp-Tac leather (internally kydex reinforced) belt, and Tucker Gunleather "Answer" IWB holster.

watarski
07-15-2010, 20:28
Congrats on the pistol. One of my favorites that I've seen on the site. Big "ups" to carrying it as well. I really like the chrome job. I'm planning on sending my SRP to Harrison to do some upgrades...this makes me want to request Metaloy-

bac1023
07-15-2010, 20:55
Thanks for all the comments. I carried the pistol today, and it conceals and carries very easily and comfortably with my Comp-Tac leather (internally kydex reinforced) belt, and Tucker Gunleather "Answer" IWB holster.

:thumbsup:

That's a hell of a classy carry gun. :)

Glockster17
07-15-2010, 21:42
Funny, I was window shopping at Buds Gun Shop.com and saw that pistol and fell in love. I noticed it was gone one day and thought, "hmm someone bought it. They just got a nice guy..." Guess that was you?

Congrats on a great looking gun!

--Rob

awpk03s
07-16-2010, 07:40
:thumbsup:

That's a hell of a classy carry gun. :)

Yeah, it makes me just a little nervous carrying a pistol of this value, but... I bought it to be used, so that's what I plan to do. Carry time for me will be split between this and my Kahr PM9 depending on occasion, dress, etc.

awpk03s
07-16-2010, 07:41
Funny, I was window shopping at Buds Gun Shop.com and saw that pistol and fell in love. I noticed it was gone one day and thought, "hmm someone bought it. They just got a nice guy..." Guess that was you?

Congrats on a great looking gun!

--Rob

That was me :)