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Thread: Nighthawk Talon II LW Bobtail mini-review

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  1. #1
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    Nighthawk Talon II LW Bobtail mini-review

    I picked up a Talon II lightweight bobtail a few days ago to feed my Nighthawk obsession until my PDP Commander arrives. I took the gun out and put 350 rounds through it. I shot it side by side with my Wilson CQB and I was amazed at how little difference there was in recoil. My Executive Carry had more felt recoil than the lightweight Talon II and I'll get to that in a bit.

    The gun functioned flawlessly with all of my mags. Mostly 47Ds, but a couple ETM's, the blued Nighthawk and the stainless Nighthawk with the slim pad. No problems at all, as expected. I induce them myself every range trip and the guns as easy to clear as any other.

    There are some differences between my Executive Carry and my Talon II. Even though the Brown has a nice radius to the bobtail, it punched my hand and made it uncomfortable to shoot after 100 rounds. The bulge around the mag release where the trigger guard meets the front strap doesn't curve inward like the Nighthawk. This bothered my middle finger on my shooting hand quite badly. The checkering, though both 25 lpi, is perfectly tacky on the Talon, where it was too sharp on the Brown, for my liking.

    And now the major difference to me is the felt recoil. There was nearly no difference between my full size, all steel CQB and the alloy framed Talon II. Just a hair more rise, but I've learned that whether it's a push or a jump, recoil is recoil (within reason, comparing 45's, not a 9mm vs 500) and I get back on target in about the same amount of time. As long as they don't hurt my hand, I can survive with a touch more jump. The lighter weight of the gun and shorter length allowed me to get on target very quickly from the holster and from a compressed ready. Again, not much difference, but it felt very good and my times were basically the same.

    Anyway, I think a big part of the difference was the squared firing pin stop and the slightly heavier main spring. These things together seem to give me the recoil feel that I prefer and I was shooting the Talon as fast as my CQB and a touch more accurately. Very cool and very enjoyable to shoot where my Executive Carry wasn't.

    At 25 yards I was hitting center mass faster than I could with the CQB. this was a big shock to me and not at all expected. I figured 100 rounds would go through it and I'd be begging someone to make a deal with me for trade by today. Not the case and I'm pleased about that. I've found my new carry gun until my PDP comes in which is at least 3 months away due to the change to Diamond Black.

    I don't know what it is about the bobtails. I prefer the feel of the standard frame, but I seem to shoot more accurately with the bobtails. Another shock, but it is what it is. I can draw and also reload just as quickly with the bobtail, though during fry fire it doesn't feel as comfortable. This will change with time, I'd imagine. Overall, I love the gun and though I expected to be less that satisfied, I've now found my favorite 1911 so far. Now, I just need my PDP Commander and my PDP/Enforcer/Tactical Carry (waiting to hear back on what I can do with the tactical Carry - If I can get it without them cutting the frame and adding the magwell, that would be perfect. if not, maybe a Tactical Carry slide on the PDP or Enforcer frame) to complete my needed replacement 1911's. Then i can start buying for the fun of it!

    Thanks for those that read this far. Here's some pics which are also in the Nighthawk Picture Thread.















    The daily carry stuff (forgot the extra mag in the photo)





    The Brown for comparison. Notice the difference in the bobtail, the slight fitting difference in the beavertail (which really bothered the webbing between my thumb and trigger finger) and the area where the trigger guard meets the front strap. The Nighthawk's, and most others, curve nicely inward where the Brown's slightly bulges out. I use a very high, thumbs-forward grip which causes my middle finger on my shooting hand to rub there.





  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonconsiglio
    Overall, I love the gun and though I expected to be less that satisfied, I've now found my favorite 1911 so far.
    So, you're not looking to trade this anymore? http://forum.m1911.org/showthread.php?t=83100
    GDubya

    NRA Life Member
    "If you make yourselves sheep, the wolves will eat you." -- Benjamin Franklin

  3. #3
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    I'm not sure. If something comes along that is worth it, I may still do it. If a PDP came along, I may. I don't know, i guess I'll have to wait and see what the offer is. So far, it's been a couple Talons.

    I'm not getting a ton of emails about it. I like this gun so much more than I thought. I can't believe the recoil on this thing. My Kimber SIS Pro and my Executive Carry both jumped and hit a good bit harder. Noticeably so. The CQB was just a hair softer, thought the push and jump weren't that much different, it just did it a little more softly. After 350 rounds, I had no fatigue like I would have with any of my Kimbers or my Executive Carry..

    If nothing comes along, I'll be very happy to keep this. It makes a nice carry gun for the 100 weather here in South Texas. That few ounces makes a little difference in the balance. Not in the overall feel, but since there's less weight in the frame, it feels just a little more stable than a steel Commander. I carry in a Milt Sparks VMII and a Wilson IWB that has wide spread loops and rides high, I forget the model. I'll have to take a look later and let you know.

    * If I wouldn't have shot it with that many rounds, I wouldn't really have any doubts!

    I need to go post some pics in that thread though.
    Last edited by jonconsiglio; 8th June 2010 at 13:46.


  4. #4
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    Excellent write up and pictures, Jonathan, beautiful pistol too!
    "The pistol, learn it well, carry it always ..." - Jeff Cooper

  5. #5
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    Hey buddy,

    Thanks again!

  6. #6
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    I was reading somewhere about the weight being only a couple ounces difference and for $250 or $350 extra (I'm not sure, I think it was $250 more) it wasn't much of a difference. So today I threw it on a scale.

    The empty gun weighs 27 ounces compared to 36 ounces of the Talon II with a bobtailed steel frame. With a full mag +1, it weighs 36.4 ounces, basically the same as a Talon II with a bobtailed steel frame with no magazine. That's more reduction than I expected and the fact that it has virtually no extra recoil IN MY HANDS makes it a good option, especially in the 100, 95% humidity of Corpus Christi summers. Not that I mind carrying a full size, steel 1911, but the reduction in wright is not a bad thing.

    What's nice is it puts most of the weight in the slide and it balances a little better. My 1911 have always balanced nice in a VMII, but now it's even a little better. It basically carries like a standard 1911 without a loaded magazine in place.

    The balance and the weight are an added benefit. It doesn't make that much difference and in no way would that 8 ounces ever be a deal breaker on any gun for me, but like I said, since it adds no recoil and actually feels a little faster in the hand and balances better in the holster, it was a nice extra that I'd never choose to order on a new gun. So, I imagine I'll be hanging on to this one and after my PDP comes in, it'll go out for Diamond Black. not sure if they can Diamond black an Alloy frame, but at least I'll get the slide and small parts done in DB.

  7. #7
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    "What's nice is it puts most of the weight in the slide and it balances a little better. My 1911 have always balanced nice in a VMII, but now it's even a little better. It basically carries like a standard 1911 without a loaded magazine in place."

    My last gun is a SIG P-226 Equinox. It has an alloy frame. I was expecting more felt recoil and slower handling because of that compared to my X-Five which is all steel and very fast. To my surprise the shorter lighter P-226 handles beautifully. This one came with SIG's wood grips that are round and thick. One of the benefits is that the grips spread the impact well. I also have SIG aluminum grips that are much thinner and have a more aggressive feel. What I now call "my little SIG" is still a great shooter even though it has the lighter frame and the very light grips. Good design is the key. That and grabbing and holding the thing properly.

  8. #8
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    A very nice write up.

    I haven't found much difference in felt recoil between a steel and alloy frame 1911. But I also haven't found the steel gun too much a burden to carry.

    DVC
    adapt, improvise, overcome
    "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.", Carl Sagan
    "One should shoot as quickly as one can -- but no quicker.", Jeff Cooper

  9. #9
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    Same here. I have no problem carrying a full size, all steel 1911 and I have for a number of years now. I just happened on this one. I would never have ordered another alloy frame after my CDP II.

    Having said that, I'm much happier than I thought I would be. I was just buying it because it was available and now I couldn't be happier. It'll be a great addition to the PDP Commander and what ever 5" Nighthawk I order after the PDP comes in.
    Last edited by jonconsiglio; 10th June 2010 at 13:26.


  10. #10
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    I love this gun. It's a real beauty. Nice pictures also. Do you have any close up shots of the ejection area? I'd like to see some shots of the relief/flared area. Thanks, Jerry.

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