#13- Pistol "D" and Life Considerations
Contextual Valuation, Diminishing Returns - Part 6
Let’s cover Pistol D on the curve and what considerations we might have. Please check out Pistol C, Pistol B , Pistol A, Post 9 and Post 8 for the origins and the first parts of this series.
Pistol D is positioned at a very unique place, but for different reasons than Pistol C. It holds the highest performance levels, the most allure, and requires the most money to purchase. The capability it brings to the table from an ergonomics perspective is quite unique. Pistol D also requires the most mechanical understanding, upkeep, and dedication to manual of arms than other pistols previously discussed. Enter the Staccato C2.
In a past life, I found the most people could draw more from analogies about cars than talk about details of guns, simply due to the relative universal familiarity Americans have with cars. These analogies made it simple to communicate the differences between build quality, reliability, price, and performance. The Staccato C2 is the C6 Corvette. It is expensive, but within reach after dedicated effort, while being capable of performance far exceeding most who window shop. Both are capable of letting you do things you haven’t done before, with less effort, but need more maintenance than a Honda Civic. The double edge sword both carry is the potential to inflate your ego, and get wrapped around a telephone pole. That’s the Staccato C2. It isn’t the fastest sports car, but it’s the most practical one for most people. The Staccato P would be like a Z06, and the XC like a ZR1.
Modern 2011 design is an orientation shift from competition to duty
Double stack competition designs dating to 1992
Double stack evolution of a single stack military design dating to 1911
Sliding trigger and short trigger travel minimize movement during trigger press
Second generation magazines are more reliable than first
Optic ready models available
Corporate direction has shifted towards duty reliability of entire product line
Some police contracts
Discounted pricing for first responders, military, veterans
One of the easiest-to-shoot duty pistols on the market
MSRP $2,000 base, $2300 optic ready
The Staccato C2 is pretty much the same size as a Glock 19 - a dimensional metric used for every pistol in this series, and the grip circumference is pretty much the same as a 1911. Ammunition capacity is 1 more round than a Glock 19 with flush fit magazines, and weighs 2 oz more when completely empty.
From a shooting perspective, the trigger travel of a 2011 pattern pistol is fractional compared to pretty much any striker fired gun, meaning less effort is required and the trigger can be worked much quicker. Recoil management tends to be very easy, as the hammer spring contributes to reducing slide velocity and allows the recoil spring to focus mostly on feeding ammo. This is dramatically different from a striker fired gun where the recoil spring must be strong enough to do both actions. The grip safety should deactivate when depressed about 30-50% of it’s travel, and should not be disabled with a rubber band or other means. 2011 pistols are likely the easiest 9mm to shoot that most people will encounter.
So, what are the downsides that put this pistol at the far end of diminishing returns? Mechanically, the trigger of these guns are basically an on-off operation with little room for error, which is probably NOT a good idea for a new shooter. On the price side of the house you can buy a Walther PDP and have lots of money left over and not be very far behind on the capability spectrum. Disassembly and maintenance isn’t difficult on this pistol, but it isn’t as easy as a Glock. Swinging barrel links, spring weight variations, and much tighter tolerances and clearances require more frequent routine inspection and cleaning/lubrication. The bearing surfaces where the frame and slide meet are larger than a modern striker pistol, which again, means lubrication is more important. Magazine maintenance can also be a thing, and it can be common place for even second generation Staccato mags to let the top round pop out of the magazine during a press check. The easy fix for this is to remove the magazine for the press check, or try the very expensive MBX magazines. That’s really about it, you have to pay more attention, and your cost to play the game is a lot higher.
On the warranty side of things, I really hope you don’t need to use it. The best warranty program is the one you don’t have to use, full stop. Because of the nature of the 2011, and the number of shooters who frankly aren’t mechanically inclined, Staccato has put into place procedures to keep their warranty department flooded from folks who won’t do routine maintenance. While Staccato will help you over the phone to work through the most common problems (which are user induced), and will pay for shipping, you better be sure it’s a problem with the gun and not you.
Like any premium product, the manufacturer is going to inspect and test the firearm with 50 rounds of various types of ammunition in an attempt to replicate and isolate the problem to correctly fix the product for their client. You will absolutely be charged $150 if the claim can’t be validated or repeated. If you don’t believe them, they will repeat the test, video tape it, and repeat as often as you want them to - for a charge of $50 each additional time. If they replicate the problem they will take responsibility of the charges, and you won’t pay for the testing. This is just like a Chevy dealer denying warranty transmission work on a Corvette that has melted rubber on the back bumper and a glove box stuffed with 1/4 mile time slips.
There are more expensive pistols in existence that offer other benefits, and those are further down the spectrum of diminishing returns (we won’t be covering them). For a majority of the population, the Staccato series of pistols represent the right most point on our diminishing return chart; costing the most amount of money, and offering more performance than others can. You just need to know if the juice is worth the squeeze.
A big point about 1911 and 2011 pistols - you will have to engrain the manipulation of a thumb safety subconsciously, just like someone driving a stick shift car rowing the gears. The pistol must absolutely be carried with the thumb safety engaged, grip safety not defeated, hammer cocked, and a loaded chamber. These are not downsides, simply the realities of a single action only pistol. I’m saying this directly towards newer gun owners, or those who aren’t used to safeties. To me, this is akin to saying a stick shift car has to have 3 pedals, compared to the 2 pedals of an automatic, and you need to know how to use all 3 pedals.
P&S 2 world wars Podcast (Joe Chambers, AJ Zito, Dave Laubert, Tim Herron, Steve Fisher, Chuck Pressburg, Matt Landfair)
1st Hand Experience
Reddit -Magazine Discussions (sample of one, forgot to record URL for previous conversations from other sites about this)