Hands-On: Naroh Arms N1 9mm Sub-Compact

Arriving Thursday morning before NRAAM 2019, Dan and I dropped off our bags, slapped on our carry guns, and headed to a local range to meet up with Naroh Arms. They’re scant days away from shipping the first production runs of their N1 pistol, a sub-compact 9mm carry gun.

The N1 is a polymer-framed, extra-slim pistol with a 416 stainless steel slide and a 7075 aluminum internal chassis. It’s chambered in 9×19 and holds 7+1 rounds.

That distinctive red trigger is, in fact, the factory offering and is also 7075 aluminum with mil-spec hardcoat anodizing. The N1 is certainly a handsome little pocket gun and it feels fantastic in the hand.

Inside the N1 we find that aluminum chassis — serialized and removable — with nice, long slide rails. This explains some of why the slide-to-frame fit felt so precise. You may also notice the hammer. That’s right, primarily in the interest of maintaining an easy-to-rack slide with a softer recoil spring, Naroh went with an internal hammer design for the N1.

Which, as opposed to the vast majority of striker-fired designs, has the added benefit of a trigger pull-free takedown. Simply lock the slide back, rotate the takedown lever 90 degrees, and slide the slide off the front of the frame. Easy peasy.

On the range, Dan and I found the N1 easy to shoot and to shoot well. For its size, weight, and slim stature it’s a very smooth and soft-shooting pistol. Compared to my P365, the N1 is noticeably less snappy on recoil. It was also more accurate than I expected and quite easy to shoot accurately.

The Naroh Arms N1 ships with polymer sights that are crisper and of better quality than what I’m used to seeing in the plastic sight market. Of course, should you want to upgrade your sights you’ll find that the N1 is compatible with GLOCK 43-footprint sights. Which is handy, indeed.

That double action trigger pull is long, but smooth and lightweight. The hammer is partially cocked by the cycling of the slide so there isn’t too much work for the shooter to complete. The break is clean and crisp. For those who want a little more travel in their self-defense pistol‘s trigger but don’t want the penalty of a heavy pull weight, this meets the bill.

Perhaps my only complaint about the Naroh N1 — and really it’s mostly a complaint of mine because I know it’s a perceived problem for some buyers — is that the trigger exhibits two “clicks” on the reset. There’s one about halfway out on the trigger release that is the internal firing pin safety resetting, not the trigger resetting, and if you pull the trigger rearward at this point nothing happens. Then there’s the actual trigger reset farther out.

When I first dry-fired the gun, I short-stroked it because I thought that first click was the reset. I think I did it one time on the range in the beginning when I was shooting slowly and carefully to get a feel for the gun. After that it simply isn’t something that would happen again. And if you’ve seen people shoot under stress, they almost always slap the living heck out of their triggers — finger pops off the trigger, slams into the front of the trigger guard, and gets back on.

I’d prefer a trigger that didn’t fake click on me, but this is a familiarity issue with a new gun that I don’t view as a self-defense scenario issue. Many DAO handguns exhibit this part-way-released first click, whether semi-auto or revolver. Opinions on whether this matters or not vary.

What doesn’t vary is that this was the only gripe Dan and I could come up with on the Naroh N1. By any measure it’s a high-quality, nicely-fitted, soft- and smooth-shooting, surprisingly accurate, reliable little gun. Skinny and lightweight, too.

That said, we only put 200-ish rounds through two guns, so this cannot be considered a full-on review. We’ll borrow one for further testing in a couple of weeks.

Oh, it should also be noted that the Naroh Arms N1 is made 100% in the U.S. of A. (even their plastic gun case is made in the U.S.) and carries an MSRP of just $399. Expected retail pricing will be more in the $360 range. That’s the pistol, two magazines, and the hard case. Not too shabby.

Keep an eye on these guys, and stay tuned for a full review next month.

comments

  1. avatar Connie says:

    Sounds nice, but I think I will wait on the double stack model. 🙂

    1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

      But Connie, then it will lose its svelte girlish figure… 😉

  2. avatar ai338 says:

    Looks like a c5ipy of a 365 with less going for it.

    1. avatar Jeremy D. says:

      I thought it was a modified p365 also

    2. avatar Jeremy S. says:

      Coincidence. There are a whole lot of similarities in the grip shape and styling and even the texture and locations of those textured areas, relief above and behind the mag release, etc etc. BUT…they showed us photos of their prototypes from like 5 or 6 months before SIG announced the P365 and they already had all this design stuff like 95% complete. It definitely wasn’t copied from SIG. Turns out they’re just similarly-sized guns both made to be gripped by the human hand. After all, most pistols have a lot of grip shape similarity because they’re all designing to be held by a hand. Except for GLOCK, obviously. #RobotSquareHands

      1. avatar Specialist38 says:

        Hmmm. Maybe Sig scooped them…….lol

  3. avatar D says:

    The fact that all triggers do not have the same reset is a great reason NOT to train to shoot the reset, but to let the trigger fully extend. Short stroking is likely under the extreme stress of a lethal encounter.

    1. avatar Dude says:

      Good point.

    2. avatar Specialist38 says:

      I agree. They all reset if you let go of them.

  4. avatar Mike Boucher says:

    Between my M&P Sheild performance center, and my Ruger LCP II I don’t see any need for this. They seems a little late to the game on this one.

  5. avatar Mmmtacos says:

    Between Ruger, Sig, Glock and S&W it’s hard to imagine anyone making any noise at the super compact level and this seems quiet as a mouse. It took Sig a very ergonomic design, good trigger, night sights, and an unprecedented capacity to steal market share from the other guys in the first place. What does this offer than any of those don’t? Capacity? Not there. Style? Literally a P365 copy. Hammer fired? That’s Ruger’s thing. An anodized trigger? So what? Save for the P365 I’m fairly certain the other big three have that covered in aftermarket for all that gimmick is worth.

    It’s a hammer fired P365 knock off without the capacity and a low, low price. Maybe that’s all it needs to do to be worth anything. Who knows.

    1. avatar Pelvicpunch says:

      Smitty99 is that you??

      1. avatar Md308 says:

        My thoughts exactly! 😉

    2. avatar Daniel Lewis says:

      For that price I am going to give it a shot, why not its not like any of us are going to just have one firearm

  6. avatar WI Patriot says:

    Looks like a SCCY clone…

  7. avatar TheUnspoken says:

    New gun companies are a good thing, even though the verdict will remain out until people get real off the shelf production models… All the big guys had to start out somewhere. Hopefully they will navigate well and be a Wilson and not a Hudson, or have Honor Defense issues. The name is kinda weird but Glock probably sounded weird at one time. And what is a Sig?

  8. avatar enuf says:

    https://naroharms.com/
    “About Naroh

    Naroh Arms was formed in 2013 as a wholesale OEM supplier specializing in machined components for the firearm industry. Our team has decades of combined experience in firearms-specific manufacturing and design. With a passion for exceptional customer service, we have supplied components and engineering support to many high-volume manufacturers within the industry. Utilizing only the highest-quality materials, manufacturing equipment, and processes, Naroh Arms develops and delivers American-made products of the highest quality. Our focus on superb function and premium aesthetics means that your satisfaction is guaranteed.”

    Okay, an all MADE IN THE USA new gun maker out there? Sounds good to me. Certainly they are claiming lots of experience making gun parts for other brand names.

    So, we’ll see how they do.

    1. avatar Neil says:

      I missed all USA.
      I wish them luck against Ruger, S&W, Sig, Glock, Walther, Berretta, and CZ (love the RAMI, but haven’t bought one).

      Dang this is the golden age of firearms.

      1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

        “Dang this is the golden age of firearms.”

        Yeah, you almost wouldn’t know it by the constant bitching in the TTAG comment section…

        *snicker* 😉

        1. avatar Specialist38 says:

          Not bitching …..whining cause I cant afford them all.

  9. avatar Neil says:

    Not pulling trigger? None of my SIGs, S&W, H&Ks, or 1911s require that. It is not a hard feature to find. Then again, no comments on grey hair and hammers…

  10. avatar Mark N. says:

    Sounds a lot like my Kahr CW9 except for being hammer fired and having an internal aluminum chassis. What is missing–yes I know it is not a full review–is the specs, specifically weight and dimensions.

  11. avatar bryan1980 says:

    I was about to say “copycat”, but being hammer-fired does set it apart in a way.

  12. avatar Specialist38 says:

    Looks like a lovechild of a Security 9 and a Sig 365.

    Kind of a runt with a 7 round mag.

    Was hoping for hybrid vigor and a 12 round mag.

  13. avatar strych9 says:

    If it works and works well at that price point it has a bunch of selling points for people who can’t afford to spend more on a Sig but don’t want a HiPoint or a Bersa in .380.

    1. avatar Specialist38 says:

      Yeah. Someone will buy it.

      Look at Sccy. An inexpensive knock off of an inexpensive pistol.

      They sell ass-loads of them.

      Of course, the do have lots of colors available. That counts for something with the buying public.

  14. avatar Fully Involved says:

    Ugh, red triggers. They are the red-painted brake calipers of guns. Tacky as f*ck.

  15. avatar Ton E says:

    Is its a single stack P250 that has a resemblance to a P365?

  16. avatar Leighton Cavendish says:

    Can you guys go ask Rob Pincus where the PD10 is?

  17. avatar raptor jesus says:

    I like hammers.

  18. avatar Dave says:

    So obviously this is yet another Kel-Tec ripoff of the P3AT and PF-9. Even has the double click reset. Sigh, when will they give up?

  19. avatar GregFL says:

    When I first saw it I thought it was a Sig P365 someone had modified. The grip, slide, etc all bear a resemblance to the P365. The design sounds like bits and pieces of several different manufacturers as others have stated. I wouldn’t mind taking a look at it and since they are located in Rockledge, FL, I might just swing by and check it out.

    There seems to be quite a few firearm manufacturers located on the East Coast of Florida. I recently moved back to Central Florida but for 3 years I lived in Cocoa about 10 minutes from KelTec and Diamondback. SCCY is just up the road in Daytona. Never cared for KelTec but I did take a chance on a Diamondback DB15EB (AR-15). It turned out be an excellent rifle and I use it as my truck gun rather than one of my BCMs.

Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

button to share on facebook
button to tweet
button to share via email