Skip to comments.Heckler & Koch P7 M13 A Political Refugee In America
Posted on 04/17/2010 5:48:48 AM PDT by marktwain
Washington, DC -(AmmoLand.com)- When the private ownership of handguns was banned in the UK in the late 1990s, a friend of mine, who also just happens to be a lawyer, paid me a visit. He arrived with more than his holiday clothing; he also came with a couple of boxes of handguns.
Take these and hold on to them, he said to me. Theyre claiming political asylum. The boxes contained all of his handgun collection, and he left them with me with strict instructions not to sell them unless he gave permission.
If he had left the guns in England, he would have been forced to hand them in to the police, and he would eventually have been paid the full market price for them. He preferred, however, to bring them to the Land of the Free, where they would be guaranteed to have a good home, and could be kept well-fed with the best ammo.
As an aside to this, the police in the UK were also taking in holsters, magazine pouches, and every other type of shooting accessory, so he and most of the shooting fraternity there were handing in tattered old holsters, of a type that couldnt even be sold for ninety-nine cents in this country, and receiving the full retail value for them. Many shooters who were resentful of the governments decision to ban handguns made quite a bit of money out of this!
That was over ten years ago, and the handguns have languished in my safe ever since then, with only a rare outing. However, I recently saw in the USCCA forum a letter from someone who was asking if an ex-police 9mm HK P7 M8 PSP (Police Service Pistol, or, as its called by its owners, the pneumatic squeeze pistol) would be a worthwhile buy. That letter made me think, so I went to the safe and took out one of the pistols my lawyer friend (known to all his friends as Shyster) had left with me.
It was a Heckler & Koch P7 M13, the high-capacity version of the M8. It had been given a coating of electroless nickel, and had been fitted with a set of Tritium night sights. There were three 13-round magazines with it, so I decided to see just how well it would perform at my local range, the Scottsdale Gun Club.
Before taking it to the range, I stripped it and made sure that everything was clean and lightly oiled, and then did a few dry fire exercises. To prepare the M13 for firing, the grip has to be squeezed, which takes about ten pounds of pressure. However, once it is cocked, the firing pin indicator protrudes from the rear of the frame, and only about three pounds of pressure is needed to keep it cocked. In fact, the grip can be kept depressed by the pressure of just one finger. If you decide not to shoot, simply release your grip, and the gun is immediately on safe.
The trigger is a dream: light, yet positive in its action. This particular models trigger broke at around three pounds pressure. A trigger stop had been fitted to stop any over-travel, and this worked perfectly, allowing me to keep a quarter balanced on the front sight while I pressed the trigger.
At the range, I loaded the magazines with a mixture of rounds which included military hardball and a variety of hollow point rounds. I even loaded one magazine with alternating hardball and hollow point, throwing in a couple of old handloads just to see if the M13 would digest them. I neednt have worried. The slide strips rounds from the magazine at a perfect feeding angle, almost in a straight line from magazine to feed ramp, and the M13 fired everything without missing a beat.
Next, I rolled a combat target out to ten yards, and fired a few double taps. The necessity to keep the grip squeezed seemed to make my shooting better than it normally is, because the bullet holes were far closer together than when I shoot my P35 Browning.
The 4-inch barrel of the M13 is fixed to the frame, which gives it far greater inherent accuracy than could be had from a pistol with a Browning or SIG-style barrel linkage. At twenty five yards, I had no difficulty in keeping my shots in the ten ring of the target, with just under half of them blowing out the center X.
The first models of the P7 had a European-style magazine release, in the heel of the pistols butt. Later models, designed with the US market in mind, were fitted with an excellent ambidextrous release using a small paddle on each side of the rear of the trigger guard. This was simple to use, and magazines were ejected all the way, every time.
The M13 is certainly no handgun for anyone with small hands. Because of the heavy-duty recoil spring, people with not much in the way of upper body strength will find pulling back the slide a little difficult. There is no slide lock on the pistol, so if the slide is locked back, the grip must be squeezed to release it.
Like German cars, the HK P7 M13 does perhaps suffer from a little Teutonic over-engineering, but at the same time, the M13 does stand as a monument to Vorsprung Durch Technik Progress through technology. Its well made, its a jewel of engineering, and if you are lucky enough to own one hang on to it, as prices are rapidly rising.
how can I persuade the Shyster to sell me his M13?
—I’m curious as to how the guns were transported here-
>> Im curious as to how the guns were transported here-
Not sure it was a big deal, prior to 9/11.
Remember when you could check locked baggage and if anyone wanted to look in it they’d have to ask you for the key?
Let's not talk about such terrible experiences. The important thing is that they are safe now.
Is this the confession of a crime that could be used against him in court?
I know there are rules for importation of firearms in commerce, but I don’t know about personnel, non-commercial transfers.
If that's the case, wouldn't it be safer simply to lay your index finger alongside the trigger guard instead of wrapping it around the front?
If you comply with the FAA's rules, you can transport firearms in checked baggage, at least within the US.
My memory of the rules:
I shoot Cowboy Action Shooting with a local club. 3 guys here who are like the 3 amigos are from Europe 1 Scott, 1 Englishman and 1 Pole. they set up matches and shoot together under what they laughingly call themselves ‘Eurotrash’.
These guys really appreciate what it means to be free in America. Something 52% of the voting public did not know back in the 08 election.
Wonder how they perform after 10 years...
What's the half life of tritium anyway? (he wondered, wonderingly, which prompted him to do a google search that turned up a figure of 12.32 years)...
The P7 confuses me.
Do you have to release and squeeze between each shot or just continue squeezing?
I’ve been under the impression that you have to release/squeeze each shot.
When you pick the gun up, hold and sqeeze. This is what cocks the gun. Squeezing the it also serves as the slide release. Once you release the sqeeze cock, the firing mechanism is disengaged. So, you have to keep tension on the sqeeze cock as long as you want to keep firing.
I have one and love it.
>> There are TSA-approved locks, which have an override that only TSA is supposed to have. So, you can put that lock on the outside of the bag.
HA HA HA!
Yes, there are. Have you ever seen or used them? They are the cheesiest pieces o’ s___ you’ll ever see.
And, anyway, in a situation where you have lazy TSA who don’t feel like hunting around for the key, they just CUT THEM OFF anyway.
“TSA APproved” locks are WORTHLESS. Yet another abuse perpetrated on law abiding citizens by our arrogant Homeland Security agency.
The man brought the guns here for a hunting trip and then simple forgot to pack them for his return trip! ;-)
No, you just squeeze the front strap once then it just takes a half pound of pressure to keep it down and it is just a single action semi auto at that point. I sold my M8
Cool gun! I wonder what its auction value is?
Remember watching on TV during Katrina. A little old lady was forced to hand over her gun to the police officers.
They were rough with her.
At least a large part of America has smartened up and respects the second amendment.
We need that amendment now more than ever, to protect us from our government.
I hope they pass a Firearms Freedom Act here; similar to the one NH proposed where any fed agent or fed contractor that tries to enforce fed gun laws concerning weapons manufactured in state.... is guilty of a Class B Felony! And, I would like it if they would include in state manufactured full-autos as weapons not applicable to fed law.
A Castle Doctrine law would be nice too.
One step at a time though.
However, it is possible that they're out there and this could be a practice among many. Hence the squared trigger guard.
That reminds me of traveling with a weapon years ago.
I was at a major airport in Southern California. I walked up with my carry on and a rifle case to check in. The young lady at the desk looked quite frightened when I told her I was checking in a weapon. She thought that it was illegal, although I reassured her that it was not, she returned with a manager.
They verified that it was legal and asked me to demonstrate that the weapon was not loaded. I pulled the M1A out of the case and both of them looked absolutely panicked. I demonstrated that there was no magazine in the weapon and they told me good, put it back in the case. I advised them that if they were inspecting weapons, they should make sure there was no round inside the weapon. I drew back the bolt and showed them where the round was stripped from the magazine and showed them where the round would be if the weapon were ready to be fired.
I them turned loose of the bolt letting it slam home. To me that it a very happy sound, apparently they were not familiar with the sound because they both almost hit the deck. I put the weapon back in the case and locked it. I swear, they guy with her picked up the case like it was a snake and ran to the back.
The squared off trigger guard was a bit of gun “fashion” at one point, allowing the offhand index finger to add some “grip” out front. I believe it was pioneered by Charles Kelsey of the Devel Corp. a 80’s custom pistol maker, or possibly the folks that made the ASP.(Both ahead of their time in many ways) It went the way of many leisure suits.
A judge in Colorado just threw out a ban on firearms on college campus.
Colorado is very pro second amendment. THey even have a MAKE MY DAY law that allows a citizen to shoot an intruder coming in OR going out.
I had the .40 cal. version. It was a brick! Huge!.. m13 not much smaller. Despite the low capacity, the M8 is a fine firearm.
Yes, reloading is FAST.
Slide locks back on an empty mag.
Drop the mag, (release grip)
Insert fresh mag,
Squeeze grip, and the slide releases.
Note, be sure it’s pointed in a safe direction when releasing the slide, as with any pistol.
—(you can believe this or not, I do as the guy wasn’t a habitual liar)—had an acquaintance thirty-odd years ago who sold drill bits, etc., internationally who claimed to carry a .45 auto with him in his luggage—everywhere—got through customs okay with it since it went along with sales literature, etc.,-—
I had the .40 cal. version. It was a brick! Huge!.. m13 not much smaller. Despite the low capacity, the M8 is a fine firearm.
I agree about being a brick. The M13 is the only gun I ever sold. The grip is wide, flat, and almost square. Those corner edges along the back strap are brutal. I found myself losing the grip on the cocking lever, then instinctively re-squeezing in recoil, which led to instinctive squeezing of the trigger, which led to embarrassing unintended doubt taps that made me glad I wasn’t at an indoor range.
Love the M8.
Agreed on M8 versus M13. Another thing about this gun that promotes accuracy is that the thing sits so low in the hand compared to many other autos and especially revolvers. The axis of the bore is almost like pointing your trigger finger.
Wasn’t for me, don’t care for em. well built , etc , just did not like the pistol......have an investment purchase in the safe that has maybe a few hundred rounds through it yet couldn’t get past the rub yer tummy, pat yer nogging at the same time sequence of quickly firing that german stapler ....... IMO it is fitting it was a lawyers gun as it was one of , if not the first, handguns designed by lawyers.
BTW seen em go for 1700 to 2000 for the P7/M13.
I am a big fan of the P9S in 45 auto. Love that rig. Have a 5x28 threaded barrel I picked up from one of your old armorers loooong ago. Mates up with an Ops Inc can very nice........
Stay safe !!
I had you figgered for more of a VP70Z kinda guy...
I knew you’d have the low-down!
Ha! Good story.
I used a “TSA lock” once and only once. On it’s first trip, the TSA cut it off and ruined my bag in the process - typical worthless government goon.
Nothing in the bag but clothes - it was just government sanctioned vandalism to attempt to prove to me, the traveler, that I am nothing but a serf to them.
The Browning Hi-power trigger system designed by Browning and Saive has a complicated linkage that goes up into the slide. The magazine disconnector is on the inside of the frame behind the trigger and it contacts the front of the magazine so the mag doesn’t fall by gravity. Having to remove the mag by hand slows down reloading. Removing the linkage makes the trigger pull smoother and lighter and allows the mag to fall free.
The downside to removing the disconnector is having a frisky prosecutor point out that you removed a safety device, and the jury won’t be FR gun afficianados.
See Combat Handguns, June issue, by Massad Ayoob.
I’ve left my Browning `as is.’ If I absolutely have to use it to fire one round, my middle finger is long enough reach through the mag well and depress the disconnector.
I have a P7M8 which I use for target shooting and carry and you do not have to depress the grip safety for each shot.
It is a very elegant system. The gun can go from “de-cocked, safety on” to “cocked, safety off” in one motion. Full ambidextrous controls. If I remember correctly, it requires 13 lbs of force to depress the lever, but once depressed, only 1 lb of force to maintain it.
Trigger pull is light and crisp, and the same for every shot.
When you set the pistol in your holster, or on the table at the range, it is immediately de-cocked and the safety applied as soon as the grip safety is released. It happens so fast that if the pistol was knocked from your hand it would probably be rendered safe before it hit the ground.
Of course, I’d shed tears since I have a certain attachment to my first handgun and spend a bit of time babying it. :)
The P-7 is a beautiful piece. Ive fired one several times and wish I owned one. A friend of mine recently completed a Pat Rogers shooting class with one of them. He did just fine and had zero stoppages or malfunctions of any sort.
There have been numerous documented occurrences where a goblin got his hands on a good guy’s P-7 and couldn’t figure out how to shoot it. There was just enough time for the victim to regain control of his piece or to end the encounter with a back-up gun.
Believe it or not, somewhere on this earth there are two 45 auto prototype P-7 M-13s.
I can’t imagine how big of a grip such a pistol would have to have.
take your safety out. It isn’t difficult to do.
Ohhhh hell noooooooo.......:o)
Tried one that uncle sugar loaned me once, yet that and beretta 93R were not that good of a tool IMO. Now a Glock 18.....that is a sweet rig for EDC !
You get flooded out like we did last few days ?
I've been saying that every state that passes a law pertaining to firearms should include that in the bill. If full autos and suppressors, including all other accessories like AP, tracer and incendiary ammo, AND M203 launchers aren't included in the bill, then it's basically useless. If they want to use the "old laws" argument about the Second Amendment, then we'll use the old laws argument about rapid-fire printing presses, telephones, satellite communication and the internet, and they'll all have to go away.
I have been a basic/combat instructor since '91, and I can tell you that is NOT for a finger rest. A solid grip with the offhand index finger wrapped around the grip below the trigger guard is much more effective. The most commonly told story that I have heard is that it is to brace the gun against a forward block, like the chain-links in a fence.
Rained last night, but nothing big.
The bills I read all seem to specifically deem machineguns illegal.
Personally, I don't see anything wrong with people owning grenades, mortars, claymores, machineguns..... etc.
these HK semi auto finger pointers were popular in my crowd back in their day 30 years ago
the P70Z may have been the most user unfriendly semi-autopistol ever made in Germany
nowadays most semi-autopistols are blockier like Glocks...sadly just from a arms fashion point of view
after 99 years there is still only one in my view that stands at the top...in whatever form...it all goes back to Moses Browning...no one has beat that feel yet
for my taste anyhow
except in smaller ankle holster calibers where I do like Bond type pistols like older Steyrs, Sigs and Walthers
Big rain here......headed east down I 40 now....on to Wardaddy’s arena !
I like the KISS principal regarding every day carry firearms.....carried a SW Model 13, round butt 3 inch barrel for a few decades due it’s simplicity and reliability. Now I just stuff a Glock with a empty chamber and full magazine into my waistband, cavalry-meskin mode with a spare mag or 3 in a IWB pouch.
Combat Tupperware is reliable, dehorned / melted pretty good from the factory so I stick with that now....
A Elishewitz Phantom folder and a E2DL Surefire round out my self defense goodies these days.....may add more for road trips but I figure the ballistic coefficient of a 4x4 truck doing 70 is better that a pistol pill any day....let the insurance company clean up the oooops !
I like skinny guns too, like 1911s or my CZ-52.
But I like high cap double-stack mag “blocky” guns even better.
For me, more bullets beats slimness.