When it comes to close-range combat, it is hard to beat the modern tactical handgun. Offering impressive power in a package small enough to maneuver around obstacles and in tight spaces, the handgun brings a unique set of capabilities to any fight.
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From cutting-edge designs with ultra-modern chamberings to reimagined versions of classic military warhorses like the M1911 .45 ACP or the M9 9mm, there is a tactical handgun that is right for you out there. Whether it be a design from the technology of tomorrow or one from the era of our grandfathers, these weapons are hard to beat.
Take a look at some of the best available today that have been covered in the pages of SPECIAL WEAPONS FOR MILITARY & POLICE magazine.
FN FIVE-SEVEN 5.7x28mm
By Dave Spaulding
Between my time on SWAT and Narcotics, I have been on more than a few crisis entries. Whether they are a race against time to save hostages, stop further violence or secure evidence, this type of aggressive “direct action” is filled with pitfalls and peril due mostly to the extreme speed such action requires. The faster one moves, less time is available to process incoming information and make informed decisions. What makes dynamic action a success or failure is the time spent training and practicing beforehand so crisis decisions can be made “on autopilot.” The neural pathways required to perform at this level require time and experience to develop—there is no shortcut.
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The right gear will not replace required training, but it sure can enhance performance once your skills are developed. In regards to entry weapons, no particular firearm will work for all potential situations. While most everyone feels better armed with some type of long gun, close confines or intricate floorplans might make the handgun a better choice. While the handgun does not have the stopping potential or penetration power of a long gun, FN has worked hard to bridge the gap.
FN’s Five-seveN is a tactical-grade, semi-auto pistol originally designed for use by NATO forces. Years ago, NATO had plans for replacing the 9mm for something with greater penetration potential, and the 5.7x28mm round was FN’s answer. The company also introduced the P90, a revolutionary submachine gun, and the Five-seveN was intended to be the P90’s companion sidearm. Introduced in 1998, the Five-seveN features a lightweight, polymer-based frame and slide covering along with a large magazine capacity, ambidextrous controls, low recoil and the ability to penetrate body armor when using certain styles of ammunition.
The FN Five-seveN is a no-nonsense, well-thought-out weapon that is reliable, functional and easy to control. The 5.7x28mm round is effective at both close and long range, with exceptional penetration potential. While the pistol is a bit large, it weighs almost nothing, making it very easy to carry. While I doubt the 5.7x28mm will ever replace the 9mm or .45, it does have a place in tactical operations that other pistol cartridges simply can’t meet.
For more information, visit fnhusa.com or call 800-635-1321.
- Caliber: 5.7x28mm
- Barrel: 4.8 inches
- OA Length: 8.2 inches
- Weight: 20.8 ounces (empty)
- Grips: Polymer
- Sights: Adjustable three-dot
- Action: Striker-fired
- Finish: Matte black
- Capacity: 20+1
- MSRP: $1,180