My first experience shooting a Kahr pistol wasn’t a good one. One of my officers brought up his new .40 cal. Kahr to qualify with it for use as a back-up and off-duty weapon. I don’t remember the exact model number, but it was the smallest one made at the time.
After firing a magazine I observed his group was rather large for the five yard line. He told me it was hard to shoot due to the small size and asked me to give it a try. I fired two shots and looked up to check my grouping — not bad. The officer tapped me on the shoulder and said “you’re bleeding all over my new gun.” My left thumb was cut open from the slide stop. Like a kid who burned his hand on the stove. I was in no hurry to shoot more Kahr pistols. The thumb healed and life went on.
Fast forward a few years and I found myself doing inventory in the PDC Armory where I found a box containing a Kahr P45. When I picked up the gun, it felt really good in my hand. My mind flashed back to my cut up thumb as my hands felt for any sharp edges and found none. I wondered how this gun would shoot.
When I queried the other editors as to who the gun was for, I got a call from Roy, who told me he wasn’t sure, but I should go shoot it. He has one and it “shoots like a dream.”
With just a tad bit of skepticism, I brought the P45 to my next range session. I also brought an old pair of nomex flight gloves just to be on the safe side. My buddy JD (we all have a buddy named JD) who was helping me test guns, picked up the P45 and commented on how good it felt in his hand. While he was dry firing the gun he asked why I was putting on the gloves. After I told him my story about the thumb, he stood back and watched me shoot the first magazine.
The look on my face and the group on the target said it all. “Dude, you gotta shoot this gun” was all I could say. JD shot it and the smile on his face spoke volumes. “I gotta get me one of these.” he bellowed, as the next magazine full went down range. Between the two of us we shot 100 plus rounds of various ammo: Black Hills 230 gr. Ball and 230 gr. JHP, some and 185 gr. Remington Golden Saber. There were none, zero. nada malfunctions of any kind. We shot slow, fast, single dotninate and non-dominate hand. This little blaster ate up everything we loaded and asked for more. The only reason we stopped shooting it was we ran out of ammo.
No one likes to be wrong, but in this case boy was I ever. Unlike the hot stove, my assumption about the P45 was all wrong, proving once again what happens when I ASS-U-ME.
The P45 was accurate and ran like it was on rails — what more could you ask for? Did I mention at max capacity it holds seven round of .45 ACP in a package close to the size of a small revolver.
I like the gun so much. I called Robbie Barrkman (chief cook and bottle washer at Robar). I told him about the jewel of a pistol I had discovered and I wanted to send him the gun for him to look at and see if he could NP3 it and see about the possibility of adding a small beavertail to the frame. Robbie sensed my excitement and said send it.
Robbie liked the gun so much he bought one for himself and came up with a plan to upgrade both pistols Robar style. When I asked him what he had in mind he told me it would be a surprise and I needed to get some leather for it, for the photographs.
A call to John Ralston of Five Shot leather got the ball rolling on the holster. John, like Robbie, told me it would be a surprise. Not being a guy who really likes to be surprised, I have to admit I couldn’t wait to see what these two craftsmen came up with.
While at the recent NRA show in Phoenix, I stopped by Robbie’s shop for a visit. I wasn’t in the shop for more than five minutes when Robbie asked if I wanted to see the twins. The puzzled look on my face caused him to add, “the twin Kahrs.”
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then putting your hands on a masterpiece is worth a million. The photos are amazing and do capture how beautifully crafted the gun and holster are, but I have to say being able to lay my hands and eyes all over them at the same time was a totally different sensation. I was speechless, and for those who know me, I’m rarely at a loss for words. Sadly, I couldn’t shoot it because the photos weren’t completed yet. I would have to wait.
I could describe the gun in detail, but I will let the photos speak for themselves and the chart attached will describe everything that was done to the pistol in Robbie’s shop.
About three weeks after returning from the NRA Show I was told I had a package from Robar. My heart rate and pulse were approaching dangerous levels as I opened the box and started to unwrap the pistol and holster. It was Christmas morning, birthday and Mardi Gras all at once. I was so excited I was showing it to anyone in the office I could find. The gun guys were excited for me. Some of the staff who aren’t into guns thought I had been drinking. “It’s just a gun.” I was so happy the comment didn’t cause me skip a beat.
I cancelled some plans I had the next day so I could go to the range and take her for a spin. I made sure I had plenty of ammo for this trip.
As luck would have it the next day was in the 100 degree zone on the range deck a pretty big spike from the 80s we had been enjoying. I was not to be deterred. I just packed extra water and got to shooting.
The P45 before the modifications ran like a diesel locomotive. After the modifications, it ran like five diesel locomotives pulling a freight train. Steady, smooth and never slowed for a second.
I fed the Kahr a diet of Black Hills 230 gr JHPs and Ball as well, Winchester 230 gr SXTs and Hornady 185 gr HP/XTP to the tune of 200 rounds. The gun fed every round without so much as a hiccup.
My hands were sore and my trigger finger was swollen. Remember, this is a gun meant to be carried lots and shot not as much. I didn’t care. I couldn’t stop shooting. I only took a break to reload magazines, let the gun cool some and drink some water. The ambient heat added to the temp from shooting and heated the P45 up so much it only took about 10 minutes to fully break in the holster.
The P45 came out of the holster smooth as glass. The XS Big Dot sight made for quick sight acquisition and super fast follow-up shots. I didn’t do any bench rest shooting, but was able to keep all my rounds in the center circle of the head at 15 yards — more than accurate for what some might call a belly gun.
As I write this, I have been carrying the P45 daily and shooting it every chance I get. So far everyone who has shot it wants to steal it. A few have even bought their own. My dad use to say don’t criticize the cuisine until you’ve tasted it. I hate the fact he was always right. I’ve learned my lesson — I think anyway, about making assumptions. Shoot the Kahr P45; you’ll want one too.
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