What I’m Carrying Now: a Beretta 92G Elite LTT and a Surefire Tactician

[This post is part of our series, What I’m Carrying Now. If you’d like to submit a photo and description of the gun, holster and gear you’re carrying in the new world in which we live, send it to us at [email protected] with WICN in the subject field.]

Alton Chiu writes . . .

I went through many pistols (all DA/SA) before settling on the Beretta 92 platform during an Ernest Langdon class. Grip angle, trigger reach, release point, recoil impulse, and all manner of un-quantifiable qualities made me realize I have found “The One” in this matrix.

This particular pistol started life as a “base model” 92G Elite LTT that was too good a deal to pass on. Cummings Custom Refinishing applied CPII Plating on the hammer, a well as extended magazine release, trigger, and decock levers. Langdon Tactical offers NP3 plating as well, and their service includes slide release, takedown lever, and trigger bar.

Internally, the hammer spring is a 13 lb. unit with a lightened recoil spring. Langdon recommended the recoil spring after observing some muzzle dip when the slide returned to battery during one of his classes.

I have found this combination eliminates muzzle dip with my 147gr ammunition, and have yet to experience light strikes attributable to the hammer spring with CCI500 or Remington 1 1/2 primers. The practice gun had built up enough residue in the firing pin channel to cause light strikes, but a detail strip and clean rectified that easily enough.

On the frame, I purchased and installed the short reset trigger bar from LTT in black, not because I shoot to reset, but to reduce possibility of short-stroking on a defense gun. I kept the standard trigger bar in the practice gun to further train myself.

Lastly, the trigger return spring is exchanged for a Wolff Trigger Conversion Unit that features a linear spring. I have experienced broken trigger return springs in various pistols to make it a preventive maintenance item, and I hope to eliminate that need altogether with the Wolff product.

Since linear springs give resistance linearly proportional to compression distance (F=kx), it theoretically causes trigger to stack. However, this goes unnoticed when “stroking” DA as part of the pistol presentation as taught by Langdon.

The grips are LTT designed panels that give a slimmer feel than the standard M9 panels. The diamonds give excellent traction in the direction of recoil without being abrasive to the hands. Since my grip places my palm very high (one of the main reasons I left the CZ-75), I had the top portion of the grips checkered as well.

During an LTT class earlier this year, I handled Langdon’s prototype standard width grips with checkering all the way to the top. When those hit the market, I expect to add them to this pistol. Lastly, some edges on the beavertail were smoothed and refinished in Cerakote.

M91A (top), 92G Elite LTT (bottom)

Training Companion: Beretta M9A1

To avoid adding round count to a carry gun, I use a surplus M9A1 to practice. It mostly mirrors my carry gun except for the sights. The Elite LTT features a Vertec slide (as does the M9A3) with dovetail front and rear sights. The M9A1 and M9 share a slide with fixed front and dovetail rear sights that are lower.

I outlined the M9A1 front sight tritium vial with pink nail polish to approximate the look of AmeriGlo Spartan sights on the Elite LTT. The M9A1 also received a steel guide rod and buffer from Wilson Combat, the latter to help extend a high-round-count life. Gemtech threaded barrel combines with Rugged Obsidian 9 suppressor to offer a more subtle experience at the range.

Despite best efforts, the pistols are not identical in every facet. M9A1 DA stacks a bit towards the end, but releases earlier, although SA is broadly similar. All dry fire exercises are conducted with the Elite LTT to ensure I am still training to the idiosyncrasies of the carry gun.

Light: Surefire Tactician

I daily carry a Surefire Tactician. The momentary-only tail switch (not clicky) eliminates the possibility of accidental constant on. Its MaxVision beam is flood-like in comparison to the EDCL2-T or Streamlight ProTac HL-X; it feels less claustrophobic and increases the possibility of spotting an off-axis attacker.

Since most citizen defense scenarios happen at bad-breath distances, I gladly trade some reach for vision. And since my locale and lifestyle lack significant artificial lights, the need to “punch through” ambient lighting is not a concern.

As an aside, tight beam patterns have their uses as I carry the HL-X with me on night photo trips to better perform light painting; more on this later.

As pictured, the Surefire X300 light extends slightly past the Elite LTT’s muzzle and would be flush with a standard Beretta barrel. The XVL2-IRC however, is shorter and fatter. I do not carry a weapon mounted light currently as I think it more likely I would use a handheld light to ID then shoot, with scant time to activate a WML.

comments

  1. avatar jwm says:

    That’s a sweet looking gun. But the 92 just does not feel right in the hand to me. If I was to go for a full size all metal service pistol it would be a Hi Power, CZ75 or maybe even a 1911.

    1911? No, no, don’t want to start down that rabbit hole…..

    1. avatar Darkman says:

      I feel the same way about Glocks. They just never felt right in my hand. My full size choice is a Ruger P89. Been carrying it off and on since ’94.

      1. avatar jwm says:

        For me the g19 is a good middle ground. A useful compromise. My first 9mm was a p89. You could beat a truck to death with it. But it really is a service pistol. Too big for most of my uses. For that slot I have the gp100 7.

        1. avatar Porridgeweasel says:

          The P89 was also my first firearm purchase. It is wonderful tank of a gun.

    2. avatar Joel says:

      yesterday was an h&r 732, and now we have a tactical 92. Pretty wide range of options out there. I love America….

      1. avatar enuf says:

        Love my old Harrington & Richardson revolvers. Still own two, the 649 model I bought as my first handgun (.22LR/.22WMR) and the Sportsman 9 shot top break.

        Wish I still had the .38’s and .32’s, sold all that to a collector when I needed money for new guns! 🙂

    3. avatar Gadsden Flag says:

      jwm, 1911? When spoken the heavens part, the angels sing and the face of John Moses Browning shines down upon us. What rabbit hole?

      1. avatar jwm says:

        The gospel according to Saint John the Browning. I did include the Hi Power in my list. And I have used many of the Chosen One’s designs. And some day, who knows, I may yet again find a place for a 1911.

    4. avatar A says:

      OOOOOOOWEEEEEE. That 92G Elite LTT is a sight for sore eyes. not crazy exp either. Just the right size too since its 1″ shorter then my 92fs. I would consider it if i wasn’t already EDC a P229. That and the LTT is 2x what i paid for my P229.

    5. avatar BusyBeef says:

      Try the Vertec

    6. avatar CA ST says:

      I’m guessing you’ve never tried a Vertec Frame with slim grips. Because those are the only ones that feel right to me. Regular 92’s and M9s are too fat for me and most people I know.

  2. avatar Billb says:

    The LTT is very nice. I have a 92X Centurion and will probably tune it a little with Langdon and/or Wilson parts. If it ever came to SHTF where I’d have to pick one or two pistols to go it would be between the Berettas I have or the P226s. What makes a big difference in those two is cost of magazines. I’ve actually gotten 17rd factory Beretta mags from Beretta for $14. It has been easy to amass quite a few. Sig on the other hand…… I scanned/skipped through the article so I didn’t see what model that knife it. Looks like a Special Forces model. Nice.

    1. avatar Darkman says:

      Looks to be an older model CRKT M-16.

      1. avatar Billb says:

        Yeah, the Special Forces model is an M16. I went to look at the box to see what model it was.

  3. avatar cgray says:

    Starting, just now, to get the impression that sites like this are targeted exclusively at people who’ve never fired a shot in anger and never will.

    LOOK HOW BLINGED OUT MUH GUN IS!!!!!

    SHEEEEEITTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!

    1. avatar Joel says:

      I for one hope I NEVER fire a shot in anger….

      Usually I’m grinning from ear to ear when range day rolls around! 😎

    2. avatar Michael in AK says:

      Operator operating operationally came to mind when I saw this post…..do you really EDC your bump helmet and NODs?

      1. avatar MouseGun says:

        Seems that lately the key board warriors are starting to seep in from TFB’s comments sections.

        1. avatar SuspiciousFisherman says:

          HAHAHA keyboard warriors. Good one!

          not.

        2. avatar cgray says:

          You do realize the whole point of my comment was directed at actual keyboard warriors, right? And that blinging out your gun and spending countless hours showing off your prowess “at the range” isn’t even remotely comparable to actually shooting another human being in order to save your life? I’ve shot a grand total of one person in my life, and it was with a $262 Taurus 85. No bling necessary.

    3. avatar Nickel Plated says:

      I don’t know why you think a functional combat-ready firearm, and a beautiful firearm are mutually exclusive. You can have both.
      Some people make enough money that they don’t have to carry the most basic of blasters. If you can afford it, then why not carry something functional AND pretty.

      I carry a nickel Beretta 85 with wood grips. Sure I could have went for the plain black with plastic grips and saved a hundred bucks or so. But I like nice things.

      1. avatar Prndll says:

        The 84 Cheetah is one of very few .380’s that ever had my interest.

        1. avatar Rad Man says:

          The FS 13 round model in particular.

      2. avatar possum says:

        You gonna look pretty on your knees with my ding dong in front of your face.

        1. avatar jwm says:

          Not the real possum.

        2. avatar possum says:

          I Did not post that. Someone is fckn with me.

        3. avatar arc says:

          Network addresses aren’t invisible to staff and freebie proxies and VPNs on the five eyes soil will cough up details when mis-used.

      3. avatar Dave G. says:

        “I carry a nickel Beretta 85 with wood grips.”

        I bet it would look really great on an evidence table.

        1. avatar ropingdown says:

          I tend to agree with the “keep it basic” crowd. I once spent a year in a place where many of us had to actually shoot people who were shooting at us. Every soldier was using standard plain issue items, some old rifles, mostly AKs, M16s, mortars, refurbished 1911’s for the “security blanket,” large artillery guns, various plain Jane RPG’s. It the places where killing actually happens, the weapons are usually just industrial products, not magical totems.

          As for the “an expensive custom pistol reveals your prosperity,” well, no, not like hopping into a Ferrari 250 GT California dressed in very casual clothes made of very rare fabrics. But that’s just me. Fancy guns aren’t a compensation for a little penis. They’re a compensation for “you can’t afford a Lambo or a nice 9,000 sq.ft. home with skillfully designed landscaping.”

    4. avatar MouseGun says:

      Let me guess? You exclusively operate operationally during all operational operations, right? Your custom G19 has as many high-end operator aftermarket parts as you do chins?

    5. avatar Ron says:

      Not everyone carries a plastic striker 9. And that’s ok.

      1. avatar jwm says:

        And it’s ok to have more than one type. And even revolvers. I refuse to just have one type.

    6. avatar possum says:

      I’ve fired shots in anger, the more I miss the angrier I get. Eventually I just walk up and beat the piss out of the target with a meat cleaver.

      1. avatar Jeff the Griz says:

        Thanks for the laugh possum.

        Haven’t had to shoot, don’t want to shoot(@ humans). The last time I was ready too shoot, but the deadbolt held, the tweaker tired himself out and the police found him 45 min later on the front lawn, passed out.

        The time before that I was going to my job unarmed. I bluffed the potential car jackers that were headed my way. 3 Guys, I realized 1st guy was walking fast behind me trying to distract me, I backed up behind my truck and acted as if I were reaching 3 o’clock under my baggy polo, I put my left hand up and shouted stop and reached for my pretend gun… Leader put his hands out & away from his sheathed fixed blade knife while backing away, while his 2 buddies bolted for the get away car.

        These 2 events happened less than 2 weeks apart in 2018. Thankfully my life is usually pretty mellow and nothing has happened since. During that time my carry piece was a 6 shot .380, I’m glad I have gone up a size/almost doubled the rounds.

      2. avatar Dave G. says:

        possum:

        Too bad I have to use a public range, or I could try a meat cleaver too. However, I might get shot trying to do that. Hilarious!

    7. avatar BusyBeef says:

      The whole point is to never have to fire a shot in anger, and when you do, be sure you can hit.

      Instead of being jealous of people with slightly more expensive guns than you, why don’t we talk about the type of training the OP does, and what type of training you do.

      Because, if people aren’t training under pressure (with a clock – either on their own or in competition) they’re not prepared for what they might face – no matter how fancy their weapon is.

      1. avatar Michael in AK says:

        I agree with the training part (funny, no one lists medical which is far more likely to be used than firearms….). I don’t care whether someone carries an expensive or inexpensive gun. But when the title is “What I’m Carrying Now” and we start seeing bump helmets, NODS and silencers, it seems like they are more interested in showing off their gear. And if you really need to carry that additional gear, please tell me where you live so I can avoid it!

  4. avatar Doc Samson says:

    Those are really nice looking!

    Love my 92FS! I bought it back when Slick Willie was in office. I have pistols that are as accurate but none as easy to shoot accurately. I recently installed a lighter Wolff spring for the DA pull and a “G” kit to deal with the inadvertent “safety on” issue and am thoroughly enjoying both!

    1. avatar Prndll says:

      I’ve changed the hammer spring in several. It makes such a difference. My EDC hasn’t been modified at all and I’ve been debating it for a while. The 92 is a fantastic way to go. I’m just amazed I’m finally seeing it here. Although I’d hoped it would be an FS full or compact. Possibly a 92A1. The M9A3 is on the list as are others. 124gr. is the one that works best in most of mine. The slightly longer barrel will allow for putting a little more distance between you and your attacker. It gives you plenty of sight radius as well.

      Beretta has earned my trust. As Americans, Italian guns have been with us from the beginning.

  5. avatar Wood says:

    That pistol looks like Velcro. Snag city!

    1. avatar I Haz A Question says:

      Most of Dan’s “What I’m Carrying Now” posts show photos of the actual items carried by the actual person who submitted the write-up. These pics look like marketing materials shot with professional lighting, then cut-and-photoshopped together onto a white background to look pretty. I don’t believe a word of this post.

      1. avatar Lou says:

        Not unlikely but irrelevant. Im just saying I like the watch. I also like the Gucci’d up Langdon Beretta on the article.

        Can anyone confirm the make of the watch?

        1. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

          swiss.

        2. avatar bryan1980 says:

          It’s an Orient, specifically a Mako. They’re a subsidiary of Seiko. Decent watches for the money.

        3. avatar I Haz A Question says:

          @Lou,

          Very relevant. All similar posts show the person’s actual items, and this one shows marketing pics that likely only represent the items. How are we supposed to visually review them for scrutiny and discussion?

          That’s like me saying “I drive a customized Ford F-150 with a special paint job, modified suspension, and light bar, and it has the scrapes and scratches to prove I have off-road experience”, and then I submit a stock marketing pic from the Ford website.

        4. avatar Fun Gunner says:

          Orient Mako II on aftermarket NATO strap

  6. avatar David B. says:

    My LTT Elite with the carry bevel package and spartan sights is hands down my most favorite 9mm handgun that I own. It’s gorgeous, a tack driver and the trigger reset is literally 1mm of travel. One word…exceptional.

  7. avatar Specialist38 says:

    Like me some 92!.

    I do like Langdons stuff and ideas about Berettas.

    I’m usually a little more plebian in my equipment, but I would like a better front sight.

    Unfortunately, I also like the PX4 Carry that Langdon outfits.

    1st world problems. …….

  8. avatar Gadsden Flag says:

    I have a Beretta 92. Have for decades. My opinion is the author spent a lot of money customizing a mediocre pistol. Just me.

    1. avatar possum says:

      It needs a grip sleeve. That reminds me, I’ve gotta find a bicycle inner tube. They make swell grip sleeves. And ‘hah’ on you Gadsden Flag, I’m super glueing it on

      1. avatar Daisy says:

        I have a wizard sleeve if ya want

      2. avatar CentralVirginian says:

        I reckon that glue will work. You cant ave that there grip sleeve turning to a bump fire grip sleeve and go fully semi automatic on you. That inner tube on a gunm make a right nice one.

      3. avatar Gadsden Flag says:

        Have at it possum. Wouldn’t want your feeble old hands losing purchase under the punishing recoil of 9mm.

        1. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

          “do i contradict myself?”

        2. avatar possum says:

          9 mil , I shoot a 44 mag one handed,. nevermind where the gunm went. Joking aside my favorite is a 1811a1 in .45acp.. Everyone on is different however for me that platform all comes together, the weight, recoil, slide speed, target acquisition. And I can point shoot it as good as a1851 Navy. Colt( Uberti). Im not much of a fan of the 9×19, I call them a two shot killer

        3. avatar Gadsden Flag says:

          possom, don’t get all thin skinned. That remark about the grip sleeve was tounge in cheek.

        4. avatar RidgeRunner says:

          Not the “original” Possum. Neither of them. He picked up the “gunms” tactic after he was called on it, but these are just not the type of comments the original Possum would make. Do wonder what happened to that guy, he was an outlaw.

  9. avatar Manse Jolly says:

    Pictures sure are professional..look like they came out of a magazine….and not what someone is carrying.

    1. avatar former water walker says:

      BREAKING: Fakebook has eliminated Mrgunsngear’s page last hour. He can be seen on Mrsgunsngear1 on FB. AND his sin is publicizing the protests in South Carolina! Oh nice gun…

      1. avatar Manse Jolly says:

        Have seen his videos from time to time….

  10. avatar CentralVirginian says:

    Nice gear, where’s the holster? The night vision goggle and helmet pic was a little over the top, unless the guy is in current military service.

    1. avatar Hannibal says:

      NVG, helmet, M9-ish pistol… if he’s not military or contractor he sure wants to pretend like he is haha

    2. avatar SoCalJack says:

      I’m thinking not prior military. Most veterans would include some form of national pride if their going to show something like a helmet. But it would have been nice to see the holsters for each gun. Very nice custom guns, thanks for the background info. Folks, please include your holsters, thanks!

  11. avatar possum says:

    I could never hit with a 92 very well. . That’s a nice looking gunm tho

    1. avatar Dave G. says:

      possum:
      I once had the civilian M9 version of the Beretta, but I didn’t like the damn thing and got rid of it. Replaced it with a SIG. Can’t remember the model number of the SIG, but got rid of it too. Finally decided I just don’t like DA/SA pistols. Now it’s Springfield XD9 subcompact and Springfield XDs 9 for me for EDC. However, I do have a better attitude towards DA/SA revolvers.

      1. avatar Dave G. says:

        Now I remember: The SIG was an M11A1.

  12. avatar Darkman says:

    Noticed all the photos were copyrighted. Looked more like copy/paste or photo shop. After some research I found a Guy name Alton P. Chiu. Who occasionally writes articles and reviews for a Site called Small Arms Review. Might be the same guy.

  13. avatar tdiinva says:

    I like my pistols to he more or less stock but these custom 92s are much more affordable than ridiculously priced 1911s. How much better is a $3k Wilson Combat than a $1.5k 1911. Can anybody really tell the the difference?

    1. avatar Darkman says:

      I guess it’s like the difference between a $65,000 Corvette Z51and a $275,000 Lamborghini Aventador. If you have to ask. Does it really matter. It’s about having the Juice and being willing to part with it. Just the way the world turns for some people. Be safe out there. This is some Real Shit.

      1. avatar tdiinva says:

        For most of us the Lambo is out of reach but if you have a credit card you can get the WC.

      2. avatar Hannibal says:

        There are objective performance differences between the cars, though.

  14. avatar Shitshow says:

    “Elite” and “Tactician” lmfao, what a ninja. Oh yeah, those photos look real too, doesn’t look at all like something you can copy/paste from google images or the likes. This “what I am carrying now” thing is getting better everyday. It’s not like there is a copyright on the images or anything to give you a hint, not weird at all, nope.

  15. The dude’s posts are all over the place in gun related blogs. All similar. All with photo-shop, clip-art type photos. Duchebag…

  16. avatar Lou says:

    I dig the watch. Looks like an Orient?

  17. avatar SuspiciousFisherman says:

    The ghey is strong with this poser.

    Seriously TTAG, give it a rest with this shit. Go back to posting FUDD shit. I don’t even know what this qualifies as, but it’s disgraceful.

  18. avatar The Truth About Truth About Guns Commenters says:

    Geezus you guys are a bunch of whiny, bitchy little nitpicking shits.

    “As an aside, tight beam patterns have their uses as I carry the HL-X with me on night photo trips to better perform light painting; more on this later.”

    Apparently the guy is a photographer, so of course he posts great looking staged and touched up photos.

    1. avatar Ferg in Tahoe says:

      Apparently you’re a dumbass. Enjoy your new, first gun.

  19. avatar BUFFALOBIZKITZ says:

    What is the reasoning behind not adding round count to your carry gun? Is it just sort of one of those things people say as an excuse when they buy two similar guns (Met a guy with a few G19s that said the same thing)?

  20. avatar Dirk Ri says:

    Sure thats actually carried? Theres like no wear on that Elite LTT at all. . . As someone who owns 2 92’s as well, I’d rather carry the M9A1. . .Hate to lose the Langdon of something did happen.

  21. avatar jwtaylor says:

    “The practice gun had built up enough residue in the firing pin channel to cause light strikes,”

    How many rounds is this? I have a WC92 from the early Langdon days there with over 30k rounds through it. Its never been detail stripped.

    Hell, I’ve been shooting heck out of the 92 series for a couple decades now and I’ve never detail stripped one.

    If this gun needs a detail strip every 20k, that’s grudgingly acceptable. But 5k? 10k? That’s a no-go.

  22. avatar Gunguy63 says:

    As a Friend of the author, Alton Chiu, the name at the top of the article. I can confirm that HE took these photos in a light box at his home. And Yes they do look good.
    Most authors aren’t trying to prove or impress but to share. A lot of good questions and discussions are all part of the experience.

  23. avatar jimmy james says:

    Could never carry a 92 with that trigger after carrying and competing with a 1911 after 20yrs but to each his own. And for a little bit more $, I carry the Surefire Defender which will tail stand where the Tactician won’t.

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