FMK 9C1 @ SHOT 2012

California and gunmaking: two words that go together like the oxymoronic simile of your choice. I’m thinking ‘Columbia University’ and ‘Football’ myself, but I concede that ‘Illinois’ and ‘Good Governors’ works too. Regardless of your literary aspirations, the Golden State makes it extremely inconvenient to even own firearms and damned-near impossible to manufacture them. FMK Firearms doesn’t care: they’ve jumped through the hoops to get the 9C1 certified for sale in both California and Massachusetts. . .

And FMK doesn’t care much for liberal politics, either. “Thank You: U.S. Soldiers” is molded into every frame, and most production models (not shown) will have the Bill Of Rights etched onto the slide, along with quotes from the Founding Fathers. Suck that, Noam Chomsky!

Farago and I manhandled their latest 9C1 9mm at Media Day At The Range, and it came away as one of our favorite guns of the day. The polymer-frame, striker-fired, slick-slide double-stack design is anything but revolutionary, but our short (50-round) shooting session left us impressed with the handling and refinement of this very new pistol. The trigger was among the best we tested all day, comparing favorably to much spendier offerings from FN, H&K, and Glock.

If it performs as well as the tester we fired at the SHOT Show, the 9C1 should make a Fukushima-sized splash when it hits the shelves of A Dealer New You in the coming months. It will ship with two 14-round magazines (or mincy little 10-rounders for our brothers in CA and MA) and a selection of interchangeable front and rear sights.

And all for a suggested list of $399.

We’re pushing hard to get a T&E gun, to see if it lives up to its promise. Click here to check out an earlier design for yourself; I think the ‘Gen-2’ we shot is much better looking.

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67 Responses to Made in California? FMK 9C1 9mm

  1. A glock clone with a good trigger out of the box? Sounds good. In a couple years maybe when lots of people have put thousamds of rounds downrange i might just buy one. Never been one much for beta testing

    • Bought one, sold it.. Junk.. The slide stop is plastic, it wears down so it doesn’t work. The trigger, well it does have one, but a cap gun is just as good. I’d say save your money and buy something else..

  2. So happy to see something like this. If it works and is reliable enough for carry, I’m in. No too hard on the eyes, either.

  3. They’re welcome to move production to Texas when things get untenable in California for them, which should happen in 5…4…3…2…

  4. I’m not a Glock man, I love my 1911s, but when you say:

    ““Thank You: U.S. Soldiers” is molded into every frame, and most production models (not shown) will have the Bill Of Rights etched onto the slide, along with quotes from the Founding Fathers.”

    I think I’ll pick one up and throw it in the safe. Maybe one day it will be worth money, maybe not, and I doubt I’ll shoot it much, but it will have a place in my collection.

  5. What a review! 5 paragraphs, and I learned the price, and that you guys put 50 rounds thru it at SHOT.

    So what exactly is the appeal of a gun with no aftermarket support, and no new or interesting features. And what is up with the inverse palm swell on the grips? Or the bright orange trigger safety? And the ‘bill of rights’ model is just plain fugly and a great example of why all laser engravers should be destroyed.

    • And why is the trigger pivot pin sticking out from the frame on the right hand side? The pics on their website show it being flush with the frame. Walking pins are never a good thing.

      • It’s not a review, FLAME DELETED, its a heads up. They even mention at the end that they are pushing to get a gun for T&E, after which they will no doubt do a review.

    • Reliabilty issues aside, the street price will be comparable to the Stoeger 9000, the relabeled version of the Beretta Cougar. The Cougar/9000 will take most Beretta 92 mags, which is a bonus. On the plus side FMK is made here, while the 9000 is an Italian pistol made by Turks.

      I’ll wait for the T&E.

  6. Not to be a wet blanket here, but something’s really bothering me. First off, Mr Dumm incorrectly transcribed the engraving on the side of the weapon. If you look closely, it doesn’t say “Thank You: U.S. Soldiers”, it actually reads,”Thank You; U.S. Soldiers”. The difference is the colon versus the semi-colon. In either example, the use of the colon or the semi-colon is incorrect, but since the manufacturers used the semi-colon, I’ll focus on that. The semi-colon is most often used to link two independent clauses, and in a few other situations, none of which apply with the phrase “Thank you U.S. Soldiers”. I know it seems petty, but since conservatives and 2A supporters are routinely labeled as illiterate morons, it doesn’t help the image to etch gross grammatical malfeasance into hard plastic to been seen and picked at for all time. It gives ammunition to those who say gun owners are ignorant rednecks. If they managed to screw up a four word sentence, I’m sure they must’ve wrecked the Bill of Rights too. If they want to write all over their guns, they might do well to hire an editor.

    • Don, I just have to ask-do you use .22LR pistols for CCW? Otherwise what would bother you about a safety? Both my Sig and my Beretta have safeties but since I only use them as range toys I don’t see the problem.

      • Not sure about CCW but it is a good bear defense round.
        All you have to do is knee cap the other guy so you can out run him and no more worries about the bear.

  7. If I can get one without the engraved jingoism, I’m all game.
    It’s not that I don’t like the Bill of Rights; I LOVE the Bill of Rights. On parchment in an argon-filled vault in Washington DC.

    It’s a gun, not a bumper sticker. Having stuff engraved all over it—regardless of what the words are—looks tacky, and it smacks of insecurity and adversarialism. I don’t need to remind myself what I believe, and I don’t need other people’s approval of my beliefs.

    • Yep. And the thank you, US soldiers is the same way. I am a former soldier myself. Doesn’t make me a “hero,” and doesn’t mean I need to constantly advertise it or have people constantly “thanking” me every second for making a sensible decision to get my tuition paid for…

  8. “Mag-out safety.”

    Sorry, no. You don’t get any points for respecting the Bill of Rights if you don’t respect my ability to check the chamber. I won’t buy guns that insult my intelligence.

    • Blame Ca. and Ma. for that one. Easily disabled on most firearms anyway but lack of it is what keeps Gen 4 Glocks out of Ca. (no big loss there but still). I appreciate the effort FMK is going to, but I won’t be replacing my Gen 3 G19 until it wears out, and I’m already 46 so…

      • Don’t forget to blame the many idiot gun owners who think that magazine out==unloaded, which allowed the legislature to add that requirement.

        Given that there have even been cops, shot with their own gun, because they thought “magazine out == unloaded” with their Glock, its understandable how the CA and MA legislatures passed that requirement.

    • So, Jason, you want a California based company to make a gun that couldn’t be sold in California? Sounds kinda stupid.

      • It’s occurring everyday in Massachusetts. These states love a buck, and neither trusts its peasants. Waves of immigration encouraged them to double-down on that opinion. Affluent people in both states just take a short flight to enjoy some rights for a day or two. CA prefers that only the elite have a gun AND an education. “They don’t need good public schooling to scrub my floors!”

        • It’s a way of sticking it to the state. I think it should be encouraged. The state wants to kick out gun manufacturers. Why let them win?

  9. The engraving on the frame could be removed without much trouble, and assuming the slide is just embossed, it’s nothing a coat of dura kote couldn’t fix. But for $100 bucks more you could save yourself all the work, so I agree it’s a deal killer.

  10. Don’t see the point.

    Saw one of these in person. Better looking and more ergonomic than a hipoint at twice the price, but unfortunately in the same class.

  11. As a Marine (there are no ex-Marines) it seems as though the inscription should read ” Thank you U.S. military” unless they are only thanking Army and not Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and Marines. “Soldiers” are Army.

    • OH MY GOD! You all are a bunch of complaining women. A Marine offended that the gun says “Soldier” and another who has a problem with “In God We Trust”? I only wish that other manufacturers were doing something so cool. If I do end up buying a Glock I should have it engraved just like this one so you can all blow a gasket over that too.

      • Good word, Donald. I am beginning to think people buy guns for reasons other than practice, protection, and practicality. Or, maybe they just have the money to “dress” it up to be “pretty.”

  12. That gun’s nice trigger will have to go if the pistol is to be sold in MA. Bray State dealers are not allowed to sell guns with nice triggers. The state requires a “child safe” ten-pound trigger pull for DA pistols, or the pistol cannot be sold by a dealer. It’s perfectly legal for the owner to take the pistol to a gunsmith to have the trigger restored to its original condition, but that adds significant cost to the purchase.

  13. I agree with you Dennis, mentioning only “Soldiers” (and I am a former soldier, unlike you, who will always be a Marine) was a poor choice and fails to thank the other fine servicemembers of the U.S. Armed Forces.

    • This isn’t a problem that has an easy solution.

      Engraving ” Thank you U.S. Soldiers, Marines, Airmen, Sailors,and Coast Guard” would require a Desert Eagle .50 AE sized slide to accommodate.

      As a former Airman, I am not insulted by the use of Soldiers and appreciate the message being sent.

  14. Unless dramatic cuts are made to social programs, education, and bloated bureaucracy, this state is clearly headed toward bankruptcy. Also corporate welfare has to end and the tax breaks should instead be focused at small growing businesses.

    • To Califarcia politics 2011: Don’t forget gov jerry moonbeam’s $10Billion spent in 2013 for “Essential services for “undocumented immigrants” and their anchor babies”……Please SEE: “FBI sting nets california senator leeland yee” for a Real laugh,as well as at kamala harris’ firing pin monopoly scheme being a violation of The Sherman Act destroying interstate trade…A Federal Felony.. blocked by the jungleBunny in the WhoodHouse.

    • Corporate welfare has to end, yes. But there should be no “tax breaks” for anybody. Universally low taxes for every business, large or small, is the way to go.

  15. A gun that has “In God We Trust” etched in large letters on the top of the slide? No thanks. A simple American flag would be enough to get the point across.

  16. As a former Army combat officer married to a former Marine, I bleed red, white and blue. However, putting a bunch of patriotic sayings on a gun that is supposedly for EDC stinks with the smell of crass commercialism…nothing less.

    Comparing the trigger pull (their ads say nine pounds), to other weapons (Glock, for example), I find that a bit too much for my liking.

    Lastly…building a firearm in California??? What’s up with that?

    • They can move when moonbeams is all over them and the time comes. Why do you think that state is NOW called caliFARCIA.

    • How do so many people not get the point of manufacturing in California? It’s to piss off anti-gunners. How does that go over your head so easily?

  17. I would be interested in knowing if they plan on a plain non scribed version. Sure the writing is cool if it is on display, but I think they have a winner if folks have options.
    Also I heard they went to a full metal slide assembly on the Gen II version.

  18. yeah it is kinda cheesy a bunch of right wing type stuff all over my gun. But its a damn good firearm (trigger takes some getting used)” and Its a representation of real Californians not abunch of hot tubbers and legislators from L.A. and
    San francisco who want everything to be red. My only hand gun (traded my sig)

  19. The comments about “Thank you Soldiers” are not accurate. I am former Army and Air Force. I thought all military personnel realized that when it all comes down to it that we are ALL foot soldiers regardless to the branch of service. The term “Soldier” refers to ALL military personnel.
    I thank ALL that have served.

    • I believe the “US Soldiers” is meant to thank the individuals who serve rather than the organizations under which they serve. Thanking the “US Military” could be seen as thanking the government and the nation’s policies – rather than the men and women who choose to put their lives on the line for all of us.

      My dad has a Gen 2 with the fast action trigger and it is a very nice gun to shoot – might pick one up for myself when I am ready for a 9mm, then again it is not small, my first 9mm might be for CCW. Don’t recall exactly but the price with shipping and FFL was somewhere in the sub $400 range – might have been around $300 purchase price without the other fees.

  20. OH MY GOD! You all are a bunch of complaining women. A Marine offended that the gun says “Soldier” and another who has a problem with “In God We Trust”? I only wish that other manufacturers were doing something so cool. If I do end up buying a Glock I should have it engraved just like this one so you can all blow a gasket over that too.

    • I would never form such a strong opinion and be so verbal about it based on one review written by someone who was dealing with a gun which belonged to a student. I just bought one. I love the engravings and the whole patriotic attitude of the company. As for the one crappy review, first off shit happens.but I seriously doubt that any manufacturer wwould ship a gun in the state that guy mentioned in the review Fred was talking about. That’s why Google gives you so many reviews to pick from. My only issue it took me an hr to get one mag loaded and my thumbs gave up. I’m no weenie. I’ve been working with my hands for 25 yrs. This is my first new pistol but I can’t imagine it’s supposed to be that hard.

  21. “And FMK doesn’t care much for liberal politics, either. “Thank You: U.S. Soldiers” is molded into every frame, and most production models (not shown) will have the Bill Of Rights etched onto the slide, along with quotes from the Founding Fathers. Suck that, Noam Chomsky!”

    So, Liberals aren’t patriotic? Ridiculous comment.

    • No, liberals arent patriotic. They support Obama, Hillary, and the Democrat commie regime that wants to take our guns away.. Choke yourself!

  22. i receintly bought a fmk 9mm, mine has the 2od ammendt on it but not the case. i would really,really like a case with the writing on it to go with my gun. will you please send me one for free, christmas time, nim out of money, please thanks sylvia

    sylvia somers thanks again
    3325 146th st w
    rosemount,mn 55068

  23. I checked out the FMK 9C1 at Turners and came away Interested. Also like the Century Arms Arcus 98DAC, can’t get it here in califarcia YET. But thanks to state “senator” leleand yee illegal M16 sting buy with FBI AND their violation of The Sherman Anti Trust Act, these Federal Violation “laws” will soon be at an end; as well as waiting 42 days for an additional pistol Per Pistol.

  24. These are junk. Google “FMK 9c1 junk” and read how horrible these are. Looks like Glock might be going after them for patent infringement too.

  25. Since practically all of the bad reviews I’ve seen for this gun are at least a couple of yrs old,I’m guessing that as I had suspected, their issues were mostly of the new manufacturer variety. That and I imagine that the story mentioned most recently by Fred friendly was more about new owner issues than anything the manufacturer did. In the article he’s talking about,the defective gun belonged to a student in his class. The fact that he said the gun looked like it had been dipped in oil sounds more like an inexperienced owner gave it its first lube job . then she was embarrassed and didn’t want to admit it. I recently bought one and so far I like it a lot.I’ve put about 200 rds thru it and so far the only problem I’ve had is that it failed to lock open on the final rd one time.

  26. I am the owner of a FMK 9C1G2, which I received from Front Sight Firearms Training Institute in October, 2015. The firearm in question has never worked properly. The firearm would not go back into battery frequently and displayed feed failures constantly. I contacted FMK and they initially told me that I was probably using the wrong ammo or hadn’t put enough rounds through the gun. After more than 300 rounds I told them that they needed to live up to their warranty. They took the gun back and supposedly repaired it. The message from the technician merely stated that he checked the ejector and fired 10 rounds through it and that it was fine.
    It was not fine and the problems persisted. I returned it again, got it back and it still didn’t work properly.

    I have returned it to FMK two times for repair and both times it was returned to me un-repaired. I most recently asked that the firearm be replaced, since the technicians at the company are unable to repair the firearm.
    Specifically, the gun continues to not go back into battery, fails to eject properly causing jams and stove pipes and other similar failures.

    I have communicated to Mr. David Wolfe, the president of the company, several times and those exchanges have been unsatisfactory. He even asked me to video myself firing the weapon. He has accused others of “limp writing” while shooting. I did the video and he didn’t raise that canard for obvious reasons.
    Most recently, after returning my firearm to me for the second time, because it still did not work properly, I asked for a replacement. Mr. Wolfe wrote to me saying that they would have to “check out” the firearm themselves.

    He indicts himself and his company by saying that I should return the weapon for a third time. That request indicates that the first two times they knowingly did nothing.

    Your review indicates complete satisfaction with the weapon and mine is complete dissatisfaction. FMK is batting 50%. That is not a weapon I would keep at home for defense when reliability is absolutely necessary. Neither is it a weapon I would carry.

  27. This gun is total crap, I just bought one yesterday and couldn’t put 50 roundsrounds through it without it jamming. This was my first gun buy, its completely unreliable, i should’ve done my research…BAD BUY.

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