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Nice-Price Nine: SCCY CPX-2 Review

by Patrick Sweeney   |  February 14th, 2013 38
SCCY-CPX-2_001

Despite the SCCY’s small size, you still get 10+1 rounds of 9mm in a 15-ounce package.

OK, it’s easy to get jaded in this business. Everyone has something “new,” everything has something that “hasn’t been done before,” and if I hear one more time the current en vogue business phrases of “next level” or “in our DNA” I’m going to hurl. Breakfast, objects, invectives, something, anything.

Well, I had a recent chance to actually see a case of someone being different. In this case, SCCY—pronounced “sky”—and their new handguns. What we have here, in the CPX-2, is a compact carry 9 with a 10-shot magazine. Both versions of the slide are machined from stainless steel bar stock. The black version carries a black nitride finish; the two-tone version is a stainless steel that’s been ceramic bead-blast finished by hand. The barrel is also stainless and machined from bar stock. The receiver, internal to the polymer frame, is 7075-T6 aluminum (the same heat-treatment that mil-spec ARs get) and is also machined from billet.

The receiver gets assembled into a Zytel frame, with finger grooves and a recoil cushion that is integral on the backstrap. Recoil spring? A captured assembly, so you won’t be launching parts across the room when you take it apart to brush out the dust bunnies. Three-dot sights, double-action trigger (with a thumb safety, too, if you want that, on the CPX-1 model) and an inertial firing pin so it is drop-safe.

So far, it sounds like a lot of other pistols. Then we get to the interesting stuff. First of all, SCCY makes their own magazines for the CPX-1 and CPX-2. The magazine is a crucial element of a reliable pistol, and SCCY designed, tested, tuned and then decided to make them in their own plant. It takes a big investment in stamping and folding machinery, welding fixtures and hand-assembly in order to make magazines, plus the cost of shipping them out to a heat-treat and black nitride facility. I was pleased to hear the last part. While it is a good thing to desire keeping your production all under one roof, it’s smart business to hand off the heat-treatment to someone else, someone who has the plant, furnaces and experience to do it right.

Given the capital investment and the operating costs, I can’t see how SCCY folks make money on magazines. They have to be losing a couple of bucks on each one, and they still pack each box with a pair of them.

Which leads me to the next big thing: Each box has the pistol, two magazines, a trigger lock, spare baseplates for the magazines in case you don’t want finger-groove plates—and this all has a suggested retail price of $319. You did not read that incorrectly, an MSRP that is a tray of lattes over three hundred bucks. And we all know what MSRP translates to on street prices, which means you’ll probably (almost certainly) be able to leave your local gun shop after spending less than three Franklins for the pistol.

An inexpensive carry pistol, in a real caliber and with enough ammo on board to be useful for three hundred dollars? It’s almost like winning the lottery. That is, if it works. So, I went to the range—with the usual ton of ammo in the range bus—to see.

First off, a 9mm handgun that tips the scales at 15 ounces is going to have some recoil. There’s no way around it, you can’t escape Newton’s laws no matter how good your attorney is. So the size of the grip and the recoil-absorbing gaps in the rear are a good thing, even if they make the SCCY a bit more bulky than it could be.

How bulky? I have large hands, and the SCCY was not a big deal for me. However, my wife is only 5’3”, and in her hands the SCCY was a bit too bulky. She found it hard to reach the DAO trigger, so for her it is just a bit too big. But we all know that one of the important aspects these days of handgun selection is size. It doesn’t matter how good a pistol is, if it’s too big, it’s too big. For me, it’s a compact; for my wife, it’s not.

Also, low-profile fixed sights are going to point where they are going to point. If you have a favorite load or bullet weight, or you find your particular SCCY shoots most accurately with one load, you’ll have to do the work to adjust the sights to that load. The front sight is held in the slide by means of a pair of posts on the sight, protruding through the top of the slide, while the rear blade is dovetailed and locked in place with a set screw. If you need to adjust it, loosen the screw and drift the sight. If you need a height change, then a different-height rear is your next step.

Again, there is no way around it without weight or bulk. But we all know what purpose this and other pistols like it are made for. And in that application, 25 yards is almost far enough away to call for a forward observer. Still, that’s the distance I test at, and that’s the distance I tried the gun at. I used the usual suspects in 9mm defensive ammo and found that it delivered more than acceptable accuracy. While I was able to post three- to four-inch groups with most everything, the more robust loads suffered, more from the recoil (remember: 15 ounces) than from accuracy differences between loads. I also had a reminder of the advice I was given decades ago by one of my old gun shop bosses, Mike Karbon: “Try everything; you never know what’ll shoot best.”

In this particular SCCY, Rock Island Armory 9mm ball shoots like nobody’s business. Once I had punched out a pair of two-inch groups, I turned to the 100-yard backstop. Someone had left three falling plates, bowling-pin-size, standing on the rack. Three shots later, I turned around to see if anyone had watched me knock them down. (Why is there nobody watching at times like that?)

While full-metal-jacket ammo is not the best for defense, it is economical for practice. None of the loads—FMJ or JHP—exhibited any reliability problems, but these days we take that for granted (perhaps we shouldn’t, but we do). In short, the SCCY CPX-2 did not disappoint.

Disassembly? Piece of cake. Unload. Lock the slide back. Use a screwdriver to pull out the retaining pin. Ease the slide forward and off. Scrub, blow out the dust bunnies, reverse the process to assemble. Easy enough that there is no excuse for not keeping your gun clean.

So, if you want a reliable, accurate, low-cost, but rugged 9mm carry pistol, all made in the USA, there’s a new name you should know: SCCY.

SCCY-CPX-2_002

Find out about the price and availability of the firearm covered in this article at GalleryofGuns.com, where you will gain instant access to the inventory of Davidson’s Inc., one of the nation’s largest factory-authorized firearm wholesalers. GalleryofGuns.com customers know instantly if the firearm is available and can select from offers presented by GalleryofGuns.com dealers in their area. The selected dealer then immediately ships the firearm via Federal Express. Perhaps best of all, guns purchased at GalleryofGuns.com are covered by Davidson’s Guaranteed Lifetime Replacement Program. Fast. Easy. Hassle-free.

  • scott donaldson

    where is it made ? if i`ve missed it , i`ve had a few ………so sorry .

    • scott donaldson

      yes , i know now .

      • John

        Daytona Beach, Fla. I bought one and I love it. 300+ rounds so far and not one issue

        • Brian

          I bought one recently as well, what a great little gun! I was able to get a decent OWB holster for it through Blackhawk too.

    • John Cipolletti

      This gun comes out of Florida. However, some of the parts like the slide looks like parts I found in other more expensive guns. In the article, the comment was that the grip is a bit large. This may be true but the grip is only a bit smaller then one on a Gock. After testing other defence guns, the grip on the SCCY allows for a firmer hold even the Sig 9mm at $700.

  • Mathew

    Just bought one

  • khiJOL

    I have the CPX1. Had a problem with the safety switch. A little modification and all is good. The heavy trigger pull was a little hard to get use to but helps get a better grip on it. I like it. Shoots good and I can hold a good tight grouping.

  • Indiana Oak

    You can't say anything bad about SCCY to me. They are a top notch firm in my book. I had acquired an early model
    CPX-1 and found it wouldn't digest 9mm ammo of any brand or flavor without jamming on the first try! I contacted
    SCCY and low & behold, their customer service department told me they would replace it!!!!! I now have a new
    CPX-1 that shoots like a charm. Hats off to SCCY.

  • Thomas D

    I've had the CPX1 far over 18 mounths and I love it FMJ or HP it doesn't care it eats them all. It's a great little every day carry gun the only thing that has ever happend was the dot on front sight fell out replaced it with a glow dot and after well over 1000 rounds no complaints

  • turbojay

    I came across this lil 9mm almost a year ago and have had my CPX-2 for almost that long, found it on GunBroker.com for $240 shipped. Great pistol to carry and shoot, 100's of rounds thru it with no issues. Plus being made in the USA down in Florida is even better. If it fits yer grip you'll love it!

  • david buenger

    Just bought a sccy cpx-2 love it.

  • Woody

    SCCY something new? Really people? This is just a JOHNNY COME LATELY cheap knock off of KEL-TEC. KT was the first original subcompact nine ever made way back in the nineties. I still have my 1996 KT P-11 with over 3000 rounds and not a HITCH. P-11 is still the best even though everybody tried to copy it and NOBODY got it right yet. Made in Cocco, FL. KEL-TEC's owner/designer is genius. Just check them out. He has more new and innovative designs than anybody out there. He has been compared to John Browning. SCCY new? Really? NOT A CHANCE!!! Do your homework people before you have a kneejerkoff reaction.

    • treborggerg

      this is a free country where competition and variety is encouraged. yes the Kel-Tec is a very nice gun but this is a viable alternative. I would like to see any new guns like this one made in the U.S.A. kudos to SCCY for building them and marketing them here!

  • Jack

    Great little pistol. I hope the manufacturer continues to succeed this go-around.

  • Guest

    Kel tec is fine, if you can find one. Kind of like a unicorn or a liger… Sounds cool, but I'm not sure they really exist. SCCY is available now. A true sleeper hit… I've tried for months on a KT… No more waiting with SCCY.

  • Martin B

    I saw a video where a guy put over 6,000 rounds thru a Sccy WITHOUT cleaning! It finally stopped when a $5 part broke, due to all the continuous abuse. Others have said they have a heavy, but consistent trigger. Apparently the first design could have problems, but the current model is a remake without the occasional glitches of the first model. Most small, light 9mms are hard to control due to being so narrow they squirm in the hand, but these fill the hand better, while still being concealable. This is the best bargain available (and American made!). In this economic climate, this makes a lot of sense.

  • Doc, 1st Team -1966

    Just ordered a CPX-2 from "Cheaper than Dirt". Can't wait to pick it up at the FFL. Heard nothing but positive things about it. $299.00 including shipping. Thanks to all for the input on this gun, will use it strictly for concealed carry and home security. Gun Blast has a good video on the gun.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kd4usf Jim Dean

    Got one, shoot it regularly, never had a FTF or FTE, and love the thing. That, and a good Hi-Point Carbine, and you’ve got short range defense covered pretty nicely for less than 500 bucks. Oh, wait, I forgot the shotgun, sorry Joe.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Lawrence.A.DiLucchio Lawrence Anthony DiLucchio

    I have the original SCCY 9mm and its one liability is a plastic safety lever- which cracked on me once rendering the pistol unusable. Waiting to buy this new model as soon as I can find one!

    • Steve P

      Check out their owners forum. Lots of info there about getting your gun updated to the newer version at no charge. SCCY’s armorer will take care of you.

      • Willy Chee

        SCCY Came through. I now have a new 9mm without the safety, so nothing to break! Double Action only so I can safely keep a round in the chamber.

  • rb2149@aol.com

    i finally attained one.sccy cpx2 9mm hard item to purchase in pgh pa. area. dealers dont seem to want to carry these for some reason…mine shoots any brand of ammo,no problems what so ever.. dependable CCW and priced that almost any one can afford… good quality, great warranty.. hats off to sccy industries for putting out a good reliable priced hand gun..it would be in our local dealer best interest to start stocking a few of these.made in america, florida… im very happy with mine.put through about 450 rounds in the last three weeks. even the winchster white box performs with out a hitch.. i prefer mag tec blue box or ppu from serbia 115 gr fmj like i said works flawess and very dependable. well worth it. get one before the price goes up$$$$

  • gkuch25@gmail.com

    With 5 kids it doesn’t leave me a ton of money left over to protect them. So when I came axross this it was a no brainer. Thanks

  • John Nobert

    SCCY will send you a replacement safety for your CPX-01 at no cost. If you want to “eliminate” the thumb safety they will send yo that p0arts package as well. Once again at 0 cost to you.

  • Rob

    Just sent mine back for the second time. FTE both times. I’ve had three issues with after my first range visit recoil spring assembly broke. They had a new one in my hand within 3 days. Service is excellent. I just wish I hadn’t got to know them so well. If they can’t get there lens solved I will be getting rid of this gun

  • Steve P

    I purchased my CPX-2 a few months ago at a gun show for $249. The quality and fit and finish is outstanding, comparable to any gun on the market at twice the price and its operation after about 200 rounds is flawless. It’s my daily concealed carry pistol in an OWB belt holster and though it is slightly larger than some others on the market, its no more conspicuous than a cell phone under a T-shirt. SCCY has a reputation for outstanding customer service and the lifetime warranty is a plus.

  • AM

    I just purchased one of these this week. I tested it today and for a smaller 9mm I was able to hit 1″ sticker targets at 15′ with a little practice very confidently. The gun kicks quite a bit as expected and definitely more than my glock 17 but for what I traded for it I. Don’t mind. It’s a great bang for the buck handgun

  • Gary Klein

    Bought yesterday (gen 2) and went to Range immediately. No cleanup or prep. Wanted a cheaper ammo range gun and/or carry gun. Shot over 100 rounds-115 and 124 grain bullets. HAD NO PROBLEMS!!! Repeat, NO PROBLEMS!!! Good quality-I can compare to my Glocks, Colt, Rugers and Smith and Wessons. Has a VERY even and smooth trigger pull and an expected break. DA feels exactly like my S & W Bodyguard .308 trigger pull. Both great. I like the pull amount for safety reasons. LESS recoil snap than my Glock 27 (.40)!!! Same snap as my .380. Shot all 3 guns at same session so could compare. Shot all at 7 yrds and then went to 10 yrds–every shot put in chest-head areas!! From ALL guns. No difference in accuracy. No hand discomfort after 1 1/2 hr at range. Got home and field stripped and was very clean and was lubed good from factory and looks nearly like my glock in quality. Mags were stiff to load but went home and used UpLULA and put all 10 in without any drama. Will leave in few days to see how spring loosens up.
    Was worried about buying because of other reviews. Glad I bought it!!!! Thus, this gun exceeded by expectations. In my opinion, I will use as a range gun and as a carry gun. How can you go wrong for $250. Also don’t forget lifetime guarantee.
    This is my first ever comment to any you tube video, wanted to give my experience in detail, so sorry for the length.

  • seth

    if you have had one for over a year now call up sccy service and see if it qualifies for the trigger upgrade. i highly recommend it

  • Creekboy

    Didn’t want to carry my p938 every day as the nitron finish was showing signs of wear. I picked up the cpx-2 and put 50 rounds through it immediately after purchasing. PMC brass fed through there like a dream. I’ve had more issues with my Sig than this piece and I like the trigger, weight and magazine capacity. I was putting 10 rounds in a 3″ group at 30′. HIGHLY RECOMMEND!

  • travis

    ordering mine tomorrow!

  • rdaw54

    Glad to hear that Sccy managed to do it right. The CPX-1 was a disaster.

  • jmac

    Just picked one of these up yesterday and its great. I got it for use as a ccw. My only pet peeve with it is the dovetailed rear sight isnt adjustable for elevation. I noticed at 15 yards i was about 6 inches low and while i can just readjust my grip, id rather be able to bump the sights for my style of shooting. Other than that it is excellent the quality of this gun is amazing. The price? I am in north nevada and with the brady, taxes, and 50 rounds i was out the door for $312. I would reccomend this to anyone looking for a home defense or ccw weapon on a tight budget.

  • Mom of 2

    I bought this gun for home protection. I am a single mom of 2 kids and learned to shoot when I was 14 yrs old. I have to say out of all the guns I’ve shot, this is by far my favorite! It fits my hands perfect, the recoil is not bad at all and I am dead on with target shooting, even the 1st time I shot it! I picked this up brand new at a gun show for $220 and wouldn’t trade it for anything. I carry it with me everywhere I go. I think this is the perfect gun for a woman. I am 5’7″and it’s a perfect fit. I have the gen 2. If any women or me ate thinking about purchasing, this is the gun to get!

    • Mom of 2

      The only thing it doesn’t come with is a hard case and I got one on ebay for $10.99. Still a great deal!

  • Warren Kirchoff

    I TOOK MY WIFE TO SANFORD, FL. GUN SHOW. SHE CAME RELUCTANTLY, BUT ONCE THERE SHE SEEMED TO TAKE AN INTEREST IN SOME OF THE SPECIALTY WEAPONS. WE CAME UPON A STAND THAT HAD OUT 4 SCCY CP2′S ON THE TABLE, I ASKED HER TO HOLD ONE AND SEE IF SHE COULD OPERATE THE SLIDE AND MUCH TO MY SURPRIZE SHE DID SO WITH NO EFFORT, THIS IMPRESSED ME SINCE THE SLIDE ON THE RUGER 380 WAS HARD FOR HER. THIS GUN WAS NOT EASIER BUT BECAUSE OF A GOOD GRIP AND DESIGN SHE HAD NO PROBLEM. SO I BOUGHT HER ONE WITH NO ARGUMENT, SINCE SHE BELEVES I WILL ALWAYS BE WITH HER IN AN EMERGENCY. THE NEXT DAY WE WENT TO SHOOT STRAIGHT RANGE IN LONGWOOD,WERE SHE BECAME BOTH KNOWLEGABLE AND PROFICENT WITH THE WEAPON. THE NEXT DAY I OVERHEARD HER TELLING OUR DAUGHTER HOW HAPPY SHE WAS WITH HER NEW GUN AND HOW MUCH FUN LEARNING SAFETY AND OPERATION AND SHOOTING IT WAS. I AM A RETIRED U.S.M.C.SNIPER AND RANGE OFFICER IN THE PAST, SO SHE LEARNED FROM THE BEST AND ALSO HAD A WONDERFUL WEAPON TO DO IT . SHE GOT MANY BULLS AND A GOOD PATTERN RIGHT FROM THE START. THANK YOU SCCY FOR A VERY NICE 9 MM. SNIPER!

  • Chuck Le Vack

    I bought SCCY CPX- 2 around a year ago, and it has became my full time choice for concealed carry. Several factors went into my decision making, such as reviews, price, company lineage, manufacturing location etc. and I can honestly say that hands down, this is the most practical handgun within this price out there…..

  • Mr_Yuck

    Just got one of these yesterday after much research and reading online. Really a pretty nice little pistol. The biggest complaint everyone has is the long and heavy trigger pull. But since this is a double action only design and has no manual safety, it’s what is necessary. I have yet to shoot the gun, but so far I am impressed and have recommended SCCY to friends looking for a budget-minded concealable handgun.

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