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Old 03-13-2004, 09:33 AM
XavierBreath's Avatar
XavierBreath XavierBreath is offline
Join Date: May 2003
Location: North Louisiana
Posts: 1,537
Star BM Report

Initial Inspection:
I ordered a Star BM from SOG on January 13,2004 as a deal sweetener on another order. The pistol was listed in the advertisement as good to very good condition. The advertisement stated they were going fast, and the internet word was they were sweet. My pistol arrived on January 16, three days later, in an olive drab cardboard box with the original manual in Spanish.

What I received was a pistol with a good amount of holster wear, I'd rate it at about 80% on the left side, 70% on the right, mainly due to thin blueing near the muzzle of the left side of the slide. Blueing on the backstrap was past history. There was some minor pitting on the right side of the grip spur. The pistol came with worn black plastic grips and one magazine. There was a compartment in the box for a spare but missing magazine. The CAI importer's mark was buzzpenned on the left of the dustcover, about 1mm tall. All numbers matched. The rifling looked pretty bad. It wasn't a sewer pipe, but it was disappointing. The barrel and slide lugs were sharp, with little blueing wear. The hammer was worn round on the right side of it's forward edge. I found that to be rather strange, as there was no damage to the slide in that area. I later came to realize that this was likely a person's pistol who loved to shoot it. If it were carried cocked and locked with a retention strap over the hammer, that would account for the wear on the hammer as well as the grip spur. I figured that the pistol was acceptable for $139, and I took it home.

The Star BM is not a 1911A1 despite it's superficial resemblence to one. The trigger pivots at the top, and has a trigger bar that actuates the sear. The thumb safety works on the hammer, not the sear, and can be engaged with the hammer cocked or down. There is no grip safety, although it has a magazine safety. The action of the pistol is closer to a Beretta 1934 than a 1911. If a magazine safety is contrary to a person's preference, this one is easily defeated. When the hammer is lowered, the firing pin rests on the primer of the cartridge. Forget any thoughts of Condition 2 carry.

The pistol cleaned up nicely, but the barrel still appeared to have very little rifling left. After much scrubbing of the bore rifling began to appear. It was then that I began to see the previous owner as being one who loved to shoot more than clean his weapon. This little pistol had been riden hard and put away wet. I think I must have been the first person to really clean it. The magazine was full of lint. A small open area on it's base allowed that to occur.

Range Report:
I took the Star BM to the range with three 9mm Value Packs of Winchester White Box. After my usual checks for hammer follow, I began to run full magazines. The trigger on this pistol was crisp, with no creep whatsoever after initial take-up. There was no hammerbite. One thing that I had heard, and was readily apparent was this pistol felt extraordinarily good in one's hand. It came to sights quickly and easily. It was small, and concealable. I later weighed the pistol, and it came in at two pounds 3 ounces with an empty magazine. The pistol was much more accurate than I initially thought it would be. At 25 feet, my groups were one and a half inches consistently. I had one failure to feed around round 100. I shot a total of 300 rounds.

January 23 Update:
I received some checkered wood grips I had ordered for the Star BM from Numrich, and I have to say I was shocked! Don't waste your money on these. They were unfinished, and one panel was warped. The screws holes did not line up. I managed to fit the grips, and I finished them with some furniture polish, but I certainly expected more for my money. I almost sent them back. I could not find any replacements at the gunshow this weekend, so I hung onto them. I did find BM magazines priced at $30 though, so buy your spare from SOG along with the pistol for $12. At the range I shot another 200 rounds of MagTech. The pistol performed flawlessly.

I have begun to see potential for this pistol as a carry gun, as has been suggested by others in the past. It's compact, has the potential to be very reliable, and it carries a legitimate defense round in an eight round magazine. It would be a simple matter to do a dehorning and a slide melt to it, and then get it refinished, perhaps in hard chrome. The sight dovetails appear to be similar to a 1911, but I cannot make guarantees to that effect. Milling the slide to accept Novaks is a distinct possibility. It is also an inexpensive pistol, and a heck of a lot of bang for the buck.

Treat me with benign neglect." Ashton R. O'Dwyer, Jr. NOLA 2005
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Old 03-13-2004, 10:03 AM
Stephen A. Camp Stephen A. Camp is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Texas
Posts: 4,885
Hello. These little Star pistols have proven reliable in my experience and reasonably accurate. I'm hesitant to use much if any +P in them, but suspect they'd be fine for limited shooting with the hotter stuff. Good report.

Please feel free to visit Hi Powers and Handguns and
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Old 03-14-2004, 08:33 AM
GRPfan GRPfan is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Northeast US
Age: 60
Posts: 2,818
I carried a Star PD in .45 ACP for years

Kinda sorry I traded it away. It was an officer's sized .45 with an alloy frame and great little carry gun. It is reported Col. Cooper himself liked the PD as a compact carry piece (naturally, he'd prefer one carry a full-size, but if you already decided you were not going to do that, he reportedly thought highly of the PD), since it was a true single action and was safely carried cocked and locked. I would agree with not using +P rounds in it. Col. Cooper reportedly considered the PD a "pistol to be carried a lot and shot little" or something to that effect.

I agree they have a great feel in the hand. Give us an update with some new pix if you modify it, please!
"Life is tough, and it's really tough when you're stupid." Damon Runyon
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Old 03-14-2004, 08:46 AM
Richard Richard is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Southeastern Michigan
Posts: 1,956
XavierBreath, order a set of these grips from Hakan and don't look back. They are great grips and he is a great person to know. Regards, Richard

Hakan Grips
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