This Fudd’s For You: When You Find You Love A Gun You Thought You’d Hate

The comment section regulars have accused me of being a “Fudd” in my taste for firearms because I didn’t say the nicest things about their black guns. Or something like that. Admittedly, I like classic things a bit more. Old Smith & Wesson autos, C3 Corvettes, Les Paul guitars and Marshall amplifiers.

But there are a number of poly-striker pistols that I’ve handled and/or shot that I ended up really liking for various reasons. Most of the time, plastic pistols leave me cold; they feel too artificial, too much like a “product” while the metal frame guns – Beretta 92s, CZ-75s and their clones, 1911s – feel like they have something approaching a soul.

I shot my first GLOCK more than a decade ago, and every time I try another one it’s basically the same result. It’s accurate, it eats whatever you feed it, but it just feels numb. If I were a police officer, I would carry one in a heartbeat because I wouldn’t care about holster wear and wouldn’t get sentimental if I was issued something else. But if I’m dropping $500 or more of my hard-earned cash? I’d better like whatever it is.

That said, there are some striker-fired guns that this Fudd loves.

Heckler & Koch VP9SK

The Heckler & Koch VP9SK is the most comfortable of the striker pistol that I’ve ever handled. The trigger was incredible, which is the thing that usually turns me off about factory striker guns. Their bangswitches just feels…kind of dead, compared to many DA/SA semi-autos and DA revolvers and certainly any halfway decent 1911 trigger. But the trigger on the VP9s and VP9SKs that I’ve handled were slick, just sort of “snicking” to the back like a short-throw manual.

If you gave me $600 and told me I had to come back with a striker-fired gun, I would have a hard time buying anything else.

Walther PPS M2

The Walther PPS M2 feels better than any of the subcompact single stacks. I get why people like the GLOCK 43, but this one just feels better. At least to me. YMMV.

As far as the fully full-size striker guns, the one I’d have is the M&P9. Great capacity, ergonomically excellent, and quite affordable. I couldn’t believe how easy it was to shoot.

Say what you want, the Taurus PT111 Millennium G2 – Taurus is apparently in the middle of rebranding it as the G2C – is cheap and cheerful. If I only had $250 to blow on a gun, that would be the one. It feels decent enough, the trigger is good and it really isn’t a bad gun, all things considered.

Lastly, the original M&P9C is/was one of the best compact guns I’ve ever fired. Comfortable, accurate and very carryable with decent capacity. No, the trigger wasn’t the best, but I liked it enough to not care about that so much…though not enough to buy one the last time I rented one at my LGS.

So I’m not a total Fudd in my taste for guns. I just happen to lean that way.

Have you ever tried a gun you thought you’d hate because you generally don’t like the kind of gun it is, only to fall in love?


  1. avatar Jeremy in AL says:

    Being a Fudd has nothing to do with your preferences for classic guns, but with being onboard with civilian disarmament for non-hunting weapons.

    1. avatar Marcus says:

      Ironically the federal and state governments have a better excuse to ban hunting and sporting weapons over military grade arms that are specifically protected in the 2nd.

      1. avatar Art out West says:

        Bolt action rifle are also weapons of war. They are certainly Constitutionally protected. Springfield 1903, Mosin, Mauser, Enfield, Arisaka, K31, are all weapons of war.

    2. avatar Defens says:

      ^This – an appreciation for classic style firearms is just a preference, and one to be respected. FUDD is a derisive term used for those who enjoy some of the benefits of RKBA, but don’t make any effort to secure those rights, and are willing to throw the rest of the gun community under the bus so they aren’t insulted by an AR while out hunting.

      1. avatar little horn says:

        yep. i had my dad tell me you can’t hunt with a semi auto because the recoil is too high and it takes to long to get back on target. i couldn’t believe he said that. maybe he meant something else. i was too afraid to ask what he meant, too afraid he would just repeat it. i’m not real sure he knows the difference between automatic and semi-auto. he’s only ever owned bolt actions and revolvers. he’s 70.

        1. avatar Jonathan-Houston says:

          There are some people who are important to me to whom I purposely never broach the subject of firearms. There’s too much risk that they could in one fell swoop demolish my esteem for them by making painfully inane remarks on the subject.

          Now, maybe a 70 year old man with no semi-auto experience can be forgiven. There are many others, though, particularly on the historical, political, and ethical aspects of firearms, who really should just stop and ask themselves “What do I actually know for a fact about this topic?” before opening their mouths.

        2. avatar Toni says:

          Johnathon-Houston i understand where you are coming from however i dont share the same stance. one of my aunts has been staunchly anti gun and i did not realize it till fairly recently. she is the ONLY family member i am close to due to the rest being so heavily into religion they cant see much of anything else. so when she started freaking out me just talking about safely using guns at the range and out hunting and doing the whole eye rolling thing i let loose on her and told her the cold hard facts including framing it in a way that she may want to rethink it because otherwise she was showing grave disrespect for the sacrifices made by uncles and other relatives going back generations for the freedoms we now enjoy (though far less than they intended because of hand wringing eye rollers such as herself). seems to have gotten through to her a little especially since after parkland trump suggested a better way might be to allow teachers to be armed and made some funding available for training for such teachers.

  2. avatar Texheim says:

    I prefer hammer guns so the HK P30 is the way I went. Everyone that handled it during our NRAAM meet up thought it felt great in their hand.

  3. avatar Mister Furious says:

    Mini 14 and 30. I was the anti-fudd; I thought they were too antiquated kinda goofy looking. Then I bought one on a whim and it’s become one my favorites…bought the 30 soon after.

    1. avatar fit2Btyed says:

      I was all excited to buy a mini 30 until I discovered that it would not work well with the imported 7.62×39 steel cased ammo. Aleady owning in an Mak 90 and a Russian SKS, I was very disappointed to learn of this problem.

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        Ruger’s *new* Mini-30 is chambered in .300 BLK and comes from the factory with a threaded muzzle.

        Check it out, at the very bottom of the page :

      2. avatar Tim says:

        Funny you say that… A Mini-30 (which I enjoyed shooting!) was the *only* gun I’ve ever sold. I peened and broke the firing pin on the hard-primered Russian ammo. Which, for an AR, is a $7 user-replaceable part. But, for the Mini-30, it was a trip back to the factory for the whole rifle. I didn’t want to deal with that, and sold it to my brother and let him send it back. Kept the 1952 Tula SKS, though!

  4. avatar YaDaddy says:

    Everything about the PPS M2 is better than the PPS classic except for the trigger. A couple of notches above dog crap on the M2 and the PPS classic trigger is good to go out of the box.

    Maybe the lack of a rail on the M2, also.

    My pre Springfield betrayal purchased XDS 9 with the Galloway trigger kit smokes both of them in the slim CCW EDC role.

    1. avatar Ed says:

      I have a Walther PPS classic and love everything about it. My full-size go to is a VP40 and I like the euro style mag release being left-handed…and you’re right..the trigger is WAY nicer than the M2.

    2. avatar MagnumSteele says:

      +1. Even after sending it back to Walther it came back with a moderately tollerable trigger. Replaced it with a VP9SK defn favorite edc hands down

  5. avatar Hasty Burford says:

    I did get a pistol that I thought I would love but ended up hating and that was the FN 509. I read nothing but glowing reviews about the pistol so when my LGS had a sale I picked one up. 8000 rounds later, and I still can’t get a feel for it. I’ll keep shooting it but that doesn’t mean I like it. Damn stupid gun.

  6. avatar Don Nelson says:

    Yeah, an HK P30SK with the LEM action. Bought it to test, though I’m not a fan of plastic or 9mm. Compared it to three similar pistols, kept it and traded off the rest.

  7. avatar rc says:

    Interesting…I’ve been headed in the other direction. I still love my plastic fantastics, but I’ve developed a very high regard for some of the all-metal guns. I just love the way they feel in my hand and actually appreciate the added heft they bring, even when carrying. I know it’s probably weird, they feel and shoot wonderful to me.

  8. avatar Ralph says:

    I’m no fan of plastic guns even though I own, carry and shoot them. I just prefer steel to Tupperware. I especially like revolvers and hammer-fired semiautos. They just inspire confidence.

  9. avatar little horn says:

    hmm i would say the fact that you own handguns makes you NOT a fudd since you don’t hunt with handguns. a TRUE fudd would say handguns are only for criminals.

    as you have seen, on this website you have a lot of people who don’t really like to think for themselves. that’s why they just point to paper and say “shall not be infringed” over and over. kinda like that south park episode. and if you don’t agree 100% with everything they say, well then you are just wrong in everyway…and stupid. sounds a lot like the antifa’s huh.

    they are not worth engaging. they are just here for the echo chamber.

  10. avatar former water walker says:

    I can’t speak for the “new” Taurus G2c as far as I can tell it merely lost it’s security system lock and “may” have a better trigger and sights. I have a 111g2 that runs very well and was a great buy for $230. Who accused you of being a fudd?!? Metal is cool but polymer is light and cheap-er…

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      There’s no doubt about it, polymer is practical.

    2. avatar Aven says:

      I paid $199.99 for my Taurus PT111g2 and it frequently on sale for about that. It is accurate and it has not malfunctioned in the first 800-900 rounds I have put through it. I have more expensive and “brand name” guns but none beat the Taurus.

    3. avatar Hgc says:

      I’m a hammer guy, CZ, PA-63’s, do have Ruger Mk1, but bought two Taurus PT111 G2’s, a 9mm, and a .40 Smith n Wesson. Daughter ran 50 thru both, grabbed the 9mm, said t.y. very much.
      I read up on these, imo, they are best “bang”for the buck, both under 199 @ Sportsmans.

  11. avatar RayS says:

    Altho I have several glocks, and carry one of them regularly because they’re light, my preferences are my Colt 1911 and Sig 226. Both FEEL sustantial. I do like my ARs over my wood stock Rem semi auto 30:06 tho. Then again, I bird hunt with an old side-by. So, for me, I guess plastic is best just on rifles.

  12. avatar TheUnspoken says:

    Good choices, I like the VP series, though they need to get the long slide/optics ready models over here. In general I shoot the older HK guns more often, p2000 v2 lem in .40 is my carry, it is just the right size, capacity, feels good in the hand. If they had ever made a p30 compact it would have been perfect, bigger than P30SK, smaller than p30 in grip length. But their classic, crazier designs are fun too, p7, p9s, etc.

    I bought the PPS M2 just because I didn’t have a little single stack, and it works fine, but I dunno, it isn’t didn’t strike be as anything special. It works, but I haven’t really carried it yet. Still p2000 EDC, or if I don’t want something in my waistband the s&w 640 in a pocket holster in my front jeans pocket is easy and comfortable. It isn’t a feather weight but I am surprised when I pick it up, I expect it to weigh more.

  13. avatar RA-15 says:

    I’ll keep my AR-15 , my 59 les Paul standard , and my 2nd amendment right to all my semi auto weapons. Why , because I want them. And that is my constitutional right. That’s not to say I don’t like my 69 Ithaca featherlight & my win 30/30 I love them Too.

  14. avatar Jon in CO says:

    I appreciate all guns. I appreciate people’s love for different things. However, when an old guy just tells me that a metal gun in 45 is the only way to go, that “if you can get them in 7 shots, you don’t need to have a gun”, I’d really like them to not be able to have any guns until they start thinking clearly. The absolute ignorance and bias of gun owners is why we’re losing some places.

    I would love to have a 6” Nickel Python. Would it be my first choice to go to war with? Hell no. Does a Glock give me warm and fuzzies like that same Python would? Hell no.

    1. avatar Toni says:

      agreed. i like all guns and want ALL available including the ones i dont personally like (like the plastic fantastics). i want them available for those that do like them, it is just my preference for a heavier all steel gun. my Howa 1500 has a synthetic stock on it and once i can get lathe and milling machine and a bit of practice in i will be machining an alloy chassis for it probably something like the GRS bolthorn but with a few extra features more like some of the MDS chassis. did i say i dont like plastic much 🙂

  15. avatar michael in ak says:

    I don’t need warm and fuzzy from my guns. I like all guns, a few more than others, and the ones I like the best all have good triggers (not all are factory triggers mind you).

  16. avatar FlamencoD says:

    I like my polymer pistols (Springfield XD mod 2 service and tactical in stainless steel slide, and XDs-9), but I agree, polymer guns are cool but they have no soul. That’s one of the several reasons why I bought a Kimber 9mm Pro Carry II 1911 last year (Aluminum alloy frame is still metal and ok by me).

  17. avatar DrewR says:

    For me it was the Glock 19X.

    Quite a few years ago I had owned a Gen 3 17, not too long after the Gen 3s first came out, and I didn’t like it at all. The grip was massive for my hands, the finger grooves are terrible, the trigger was hot garbage and it didn’t shoot as well as I was expecting. Very disappointed, I sold it after only about six months.

    Fast forward to a month and a half ago and I had tax return money burning a hole in my pocket and I knew I wanted to buy a gun. I went around to all my LGSs and nothing really spoke to me. The last place I went to had a 19x for just under $600, as opposed to the $640-$650 everybody else wanted,so I asked to look at it. The grip without the spacers installed and no finger grooves felt way better and the Gen 5 upgraded trigger is a lot better, still not great, but noticeably improved. I figured I’d take a chance and buy it.

    I have been quite happy with it, the new Marksman barrel is definitely better than the old barrels and the gun shoots well. The factory night sights are much better than the plastic crap all the rest of them come with. the long grip and shorter barrel actually work well together, and you can get back on target very quickly. The two plus 2 base plates would cost you the difference between this and a regular Gen 5, so it’s kinda like getting night sights for free, which is nice. also it doesn’t have that dumb cut out in the magazine well that the Gen 5s don’t need (seriously, you can tilt the grip up at a ten to fifteen degree angle with any Glock and the mag will jump out, this was just a stupid idea.)

    It is not difficult to conceal under just a t-shirt, people are blowing that way out of proportion. Remember that the G19 is only about half an inch shorter than a 17 in both length and height, which is barely noticeable in practice. A half inch longer sight radius is almost unnoticeable in guns this size, so just relax about that.

    I’m still not a Glock fan, you pay more for the name than the guns should cost, even the new triggers aren’t very good, Gaston is a jerk, and they still haven’t really done anything new in the last 30 years; but they finally have something I don’t mind owning, so good on them. Now, if they’d make a 42 sized 9mm they’d really be on to something.

    1. avatar AlbertOnestone says:

      Was that sarcasm in your last line?

      1. avatar DrewR says:

        No, the G43 is too big for pocket carry for most pants and all jeans that I’ve seen, whereas the 42 is just small enough to facilitate a consistent draw. There should be no pressure issues, since the Diamondback DB9 isn’t any bigger than a 42 and has been around for some time. the problem with the DB9 is it’s terrible grip design that makes it a bear to shoot. With the well designed grip of the 42 plus the more consistent hollow point expansion and penetration of a 9mm over a 380 it would be the perfect pocket pistol. That or an LCP 3 that would be an LCP 2 scaled up just enough to safely handle 9mm.

        The 43 was a disappointment because they scaled up to a Shield size instead of sticking with a true pocket gun size. It isn’t bad for what it is, but I can’t help seeing the lost potential of slightly increasing the front to back dimension of the grip and leaving it at that.

  18. avatar tdiinva says:

    Tim, I agree with you about black rifles. Most people would be better off with a Garand patterned rifle. The only reason to own one is if you really into customization and/or 3-gun. The Garand is more reliable and requires less care. Don’t get me wrong, mid and high end ARs are fine weapons but their cult like status is unjustified.

    I own and carry striker fired pistols strictly for practicality. They are the McDonald’s of firearms. They get the job done at an affordable price.

    1. avatar AlbertOnestone says:

      After having used a mini-14 and an ar-15 side by side for many years I came to the conclusion that the AR was more accurate, more reliable and far easier to load, unload and do magazine changes than the mini. That and the modularity and ease of modification finally sold me on the AR as a design. The main reliability Achilles’ heel of the garand /m-14/mini 14 is the exposed op rod and bolt lugs. Both of which are absent on the AR.

      1. avatar tdiinva says:

        Ruger fixed the accuracy problem which was caused by worn tooling. Mini-14s produced after the mid 90s are 2 MOA guns just like ARs in the same price range. You have to spend far more money to get a more accurate, more reliable AR. Besides either rifle is probably more accurate than you are.

        Reliabilly you say. You can put a lot more rounds through a Garand design than you can an AR before you have to clean it. I have put 1500 rounds through mine before I field stripped it for cleaning. Never stopped running.

        News flash. Moat AR owners buy the gun and put a scope on it. That’s the end of the modularity for them.

        1. avatar AlbertOnestone says:

          I have a soft spot in my heart for the Mini so I am glad that Ruger finally retooled and the newer ones do seem to be better made overall. BUT $800 is a lot to pay for a 2 MOA rifle that has 1920s ergonomics. Also, some of us don’t have rock steady aim while shooting free-standing and so every little bit of accuracy helps to hit a small target rapidly in 2 and 3 gun events.

          Add a well made but inexpensive scope, a MIAD grip, a free float hand guard and an inexpensive match trigger (all aspects of the AR modularity) to a basic self built AR and you will spend ~800. With that configuration you get better than 2 MOA, and in my experience better ergonomics and easier rifle operation. James Reeves built this configuration for $800 and it did very well:

          If you want to get any improvement in accuracy with the Mini you would have to spend 800 for the basic rifle then add a scope and a gunsmith installed Shillen match barrel ($260+ fees )

          Lastly the advantage still goes to the AR for magazine availability: During the 1994-2004 AWB ban you could still find quality preban mil spec AR mags anywhere, (For a price of course) but during that same time the only 30 round mini 14 mags to be found were some iffy polymer Eagles and some very marginally better steel (Triple K brand, I think) Neither of which fit or functioned well.

          Although there are now a few more magazine choices for the Ruger, the variety, quality, reliability and range of cost effective choices for AR magazines has only increased. (30 round Pmags are currently $12-15.)

          Cleaning? I do like that the Mini keeps the crud out of the bolt area but on the other hand I have never had any stoppages from an AR becoming carbon fouled.

          However, if you like the garand type rifle for your purposes, go for it. In my estimation, it has one or two advantage: the ability to use a folding stock and sometimes a lighter weight. I would only have a beef with you if you told me that you think the govt should restrict my right and ability to buy an AR. (Referring back to the Fudd label of this post.) Otherwise enjoy the wood and steel!

      2. avatar DrewN says:

        The real Achille’s heel is the magazines. Redesign the firing pin, change to AR mags, and improve the gas block and you’ve fixed 90% of issues with the Mini.

    2. avatar Elliot says:

      Except that M1s( not including the carbine) are heavier, more parts intensive, higher-recoiling and mire expensive upfront and more expensive to shoot given that they’re either 30-06 or .308. “Black rifles” depending on what you’re talking about, are far more practical than M1s in every sense of the word. And AR-15s are plenty reliable when they’re built by someone with a brain.

      1. avatar tdiinva says:

        The AR-15 is 7oz lighter than a Mini-14. That isn’t a significant difference. If it is for you I suggest you hit the gym

        1. avatar Elliot says:

          Mini-14s are not as parts prevalent, nor accurate. Ar mags are cheaper, and most decent ARs are better built than Mini-14s. Given that, I originally thought the OP was talking about the M1/ M1A.

          But still, AR-15s are more practical.

  19. avatar 4808 N says:

    If you find yourself asking: “what do you need an AR for?”. You might be a fudd

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