Made in California? FMK 9C1 9mm

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.