Century’s CANIK55 TP-9 Pistol Review

Designed with reliability and ergonomics, the CANIK55 TP-9 pistol is a 19-shot self-defense powerhouse!

In the double-action mode, the trigger is fully forward (shown); in single-action mode, the trigger pull is much shorter. The takedown latch is located just above the trigger.

If you can’t make up your mind between a self-defense single-action and double-action pistol, a solution at a competitive price may be at hand. It’s manufactured in Turkey, a country that is producing well-made firearms, but gets little recognition in the U.S. for its gun production.

Century International Arms, which has been importing surplus firearms and producing some very interesting guns for many years, also imports newly manufactured guns from certain talented manufacturers. One of those companies is Canik55, which is owned by Samsun Yurt Savunma (SYS) and is located in north central Turkey. SYS has been around for about 14 years and manufactures sniper rifles, rocket and missile launchers, as well as aviation components for heavyweight customers like Lockheed Martin, Airbus and Boeing—so it must adhere to some pretty high manufacturing standards. Accordingly, Canik55 has earned the ISO 9001 certification and sells pistols to several law enforcement agencies and military organizations around the world—including the Turkish armed forces and police.

The full-size TP-9 is comfortable to shoot and easily controlled. With 19 rounds, it offers a substantial payload for use in self-defense. Photo Courtesy Doug Larson

Gun Details

The 9mm Canik55 TP-9 may remind some of the Walther P99. There is no doubt that the two guns are similar so it is pointless to avoid the comparison, and besides, it shows that the TP-9 is based on a proven design. It’s actually quite a versatile gun and has several features not often found on one pistol. The most interesting is the trigger.

Trigger specifications vary among different organizations. Some units want a double-action and others want a single-action, but the TP-9 has a solution that is designed to satisfy both camps. When the first round is chambered, the wide polymer trigger comes to rest in the full forward position, the same position needed for the trigger to fully retract the striker before releasing it. However, the striker is actually pre-cocked and when the trigger is pulled through the first half of its arc, a fairly light force of only about 2 pounds is required. Once pulled half way, the trigger resistance increases a bit to about 4 pounds for the next quarter of the stroke. This slack portion is easy to deal with. Then greater resistance of about 8 to 9 pounds is encountered for the last portion of the stroke when the trigger releases the striker to drive forward and ignite the primer. So, the trigger is a sort of hybrid double-action that is designed to satisfy the requirements of those who feel more comfortable with a long first round trigger pull.

However, if a true heavier double-action trigger pull for the first round is desired, after loading a round in the chamber the shooter merely presses the ambidextrous serrated decocking plunger located on the top of the slide. Although this lets the striker move fully forward, it is blocked from striking the primer by the internal automatic striker block that permits a primer strike only when the trigger is pulled. Confirmation that the gun is decocked is evidenced by the fact that the rear of the striker, which is painted red, is no longer visible at the back of the slide. That’s a nice feature. Once the decocker has been pressed, the first round trigger stroke is about 11.5 pounds. It’s heavier because the trigger has to retract the striker before it is released.

With three different trigger modes and an adjustable grip, the TP-9 made by Turkey’s Canik55 and imported by Century Arms is one of the more versatile pistols available for self-defense.

Load Comments
  • don ellsworth

    i have not took trigger houseing out but have polished ever thing you cam get to an it helps a lot shots anything an is accurate. its now 4lbs. or a litte less on sa—da–9lbs i’m sure if i carried it to gunsmith an he polished rest it would be even better—–love it

  • VP70Z

    Edit to 1st post – apologies- did not see 2nd page – author DOES nicely describe all trigger modes.

  • VP70Z

    The Tp-9 is a near-clone of the Walther P99AS (anti-stress). When first racked, the trigger is fully forward in pre-cocked single action AS mode, requiring a long, but light pull to fire the gun. Until broken in, this trigger mode may (as the author reports) be a bit heavy towards the end of the pull, but it does lighten up considerably after a couple hundred rounds.
    What the author does not mention is that when the gun is in that first AS trigger mode, there is a stopping point halfway through the trigger pull (listen for the “click”) that puts the gun in single action mode. You can leave the trigger at that setting and the TP-9 will operate like a fully single action gun, staying in single action after each shot.
    Then, you can hit the decocker and the gun goes into long, heavy pull Double action for safe carry or easy takedown. But, from DA, all you have to do is nudge the slide back a few milimeters and it resets to that first AS mode. So, the triggers modes can be cycled sequentially – AS to SA to DA back to AS – so you can set the trigger for whatever mode is appropriate at that moment.

  • Rashid

    A great weapon for SD. very reliable and accurate…

  • davie boy

    Love mine great pistol choice,great recoil,shoots whatever you put in it.

    • LA yankee

      I ran into some trouble with 85g lead free bullets when it was brand new. No ftf but had 3 fte on my first outing and one on my second. Only with this ammo everything else ran great

  • any one like canik55 …….for seal

    • don ellsworth

      answer—hell yes

  • My new century arms T9 9 mm shoots a foot low and has no elevation adjustment how can that be fixed anybody know? jokerexmarine@yahoo.com

    • rambo3164

      they gave you three different sites use the smallest one I had the same problem

  • My new century arms T9 9 mm shoots a foot low and has no elevation adjustment how can that be fixed anybody know? jokerexmarine@yahoo.com

    • Steve w

      Shoots a foot low from what distance?

      • rambo2164

        shooting this gun out of the box of foot low is a very common problem I don’t know why they give you 3 sites 2 of them are too tall in the smallest 1 works perfect

        • Custom 1911 or GLOCK

          Is the front sight post shorter than the rear? At close range that would put you low at 10yards etc. a foot low seems like strong hand pulling down more than a “SIGHT” (not SITE) issue. Not that i think a WALTHER knock off is worth it at any price when you can buy a blue program GLOCK for roughly same price and give/keep some money in NEW SYRMNA georgia USA,instead of TURKEY..also for $299 a SCCY made in DAYTONA FL,isnt a bad option which also keeps the money in the USA..IMO, i rather keep the money in the USA,i didnt buy a GLOCK until they came to NEW SYMRNA,GEORGIA.

          • Yo Mama

            Lol… This gun is ON PAR with Glock, Sig, HK, Beretta.. If you choose a SCCY over this then you’re an idiot. =)

    • Steve w

      I have one ordered, it should be here no latter than tomorrow, ill shoot it then and let you know what I think. I just bought it as a car gun after hearing good reviews on it. I have not laid my hands on one yet, but for $365 out the door with tax included I figured why not. The only thing I can think of that would make it shoot a foot low is if you were shooting at long range distances, or you anticipate the recoil and as your pulling the trigger your pushing the nose of the gun down. I have been searching all over for xtra mags for it , but can’t find any anywhere. Do you know if Century is importing magazines to? Good luck with your gun, I hope I’m not buying a lemon. I first saw this on this months SWAT magazine cover, they did a review.

    • Dark sniper

      Yeah mine did the same thing change the front sight to the lower one and its dead on.

  • CrusaderKnight

    Even if they are more expensive,for strategic reasons,it is always better to buy from a friendly western nation.It would not help lonterm to have American and west european gun makers go out of buisness while african and Asian ( excluding taiwan and South korea )countries arms makers flourish.Would king richard the Lionheart buy blades from Saladin? was saladin a Turk and a muslim?

  • Burak ÇAVDAR

    I think somebodies still involving the RELIGIONS to RELATIONSHIPS. Also TURKEY DOES NOT HAVE AN OFFICIALLY RELIGION. So as a TURK and MUSLIM I’am loving all humanbeings and this site is not the place for this kind of discussion. At the and of my word this gun maybe alike any other kind of pistols but none of them indistinctive of others because there is no other way to do pistol barrel, handle, trigger etc. This manifacturer produced a unique pistol and this deserves to be taken. I respect ALL ANY OTHER RELIGIOUS AND PEOPLES AND MANIFACTURERS.

  • CrusaderKnight

    Be careful.We are already making our muslim enemies rich by buying their oil. Now we will buy the Islamists’ firearms,instead of American or European arms.Buy a Walther PPQ. Buy the SIG or Glock or Ruger or Colt.The Walther PPQ can be bought thru Davidson’s Gallery of guns for some 500 bucks.Insead of the muslim Caracal,buy a Steyr pistol.You could even buy a new Remington 1911,through Davidsons for some 600-900 bucks.Buy American,why make our enemies rich.But the Turks aren’t our enemies? They have only been friendly towards the US since after WW2.Remember,to them,we are still INFIDELS.

  • aaron

    its amazing how some will disregard “copies” of overpriced firearms. take a sig 226-a copy from china called an NP 22(nc22x is also sometimes used)this is 1/3rd the cost. it functions flawlessly. also available is a turkish copy of a berretta 92(fs & a1)at 2/3rd the cost. of course some complain about the copies arent perfect. yes, il admit, my np 22(226 copy) has internal machining marks which cannot be seen unless dismantled. this in no way affects function. but i still have hundreds of dollars to buy mags, ammo, another gun, etc. of course I would prefer to have the original if finances allowed(maybe not?) but the copies work just as good.

  • Mike Pries

    This is just a copy of a P99 AS….i prefer the original….

  • ınspector

    Very well made gun. But it seems that the approach
    to clear the trigger bar from sear contact during
    field stripping is based upon cocking and releasing
    the striker against passive striker safety automatically when taking the slide forward off the
    receiver. Solely depending upon the durability of
    an upwardly moving little bolt for dry firing impact
    on every take down process is really questionable.