we shooters have seen a sea change in the design of
Concealed-Carry (CCW) 9mm semi-auto pistols. The SIG P365, Springfield
Hellcat, and Ruger MAX-9 have
ushered in the next step in the evolution of compact 9mm
pistols. These new-generation 9mm CCW pistols are in many ways
similar to the 9mm pocket pistols previously on the market and
extremely popular with many shooters (myself included, as I have
carried the excellent
Kahr CM9 Tungsten pistol for several years). The new pistol
designs primarily distance themselves from the earlier pistols
in two ways: first (and, to me, most importantly), the magazine
capacity of the new designs has been increased to 10-12 rounds
rather than the earlier pistols' 6-7 round limit, with no
corresponding increase in the size of the pistol; and second,
the new designs cater to the growing preference among shooters
for optically-sighted pistols. Now Taurus
USA has entered this arena with their own offering: the
all-new G3c pistol, equipped with the T.O.R.O. option (Taurus
Optics Ready Option) - and it does not disappoint.
The compact G3c, along with its full-sized
sister, the G3, represents Taurus' latest generation of
striker-fired 9mm pistols. The larger G3 sports a 17-round
capacity, while the smaller G3c features a 12-round magazine
capacity (or 10-round, for those unfortunate enough to live in
various "People's Republics" across the USA) in a
pistol small enough for easy pocket carry. The G3/G3c pistols
are striker-fired, 100% reliable, very safe, designed to safely
use +P ammunition, and attractively priced.
The slide is alloy steel, finished in Tenifer
Matte Black, which is a tough and nice-looking finish. The slide
features serrations fore and aft, the muzzle end of the
slide is attractively tapered to allow ease of holstering, and
the breech end of the lowered ejection port is also tapered as
an aid to ejection and handling.
The frame, as on many modern semi-auto
pistols, is made from lightweight and durable polymer. The
front, rear, and sides of the grip are very nicely textured,
just enough to provide a positive hold on the pistol without
abrading the shooter's hand. An integral thumb rest is molded
into each side of the frame above the grip, as are integral
trigger finger indexing points above the front of the hooked
trigger guard on each side. A short section of accessory rail is
provided forward of the trigger guard for mounting
a laser or light. The magazine release is reversible for
left-handed shooters, if desired; my brother Jeff, who was a
Southpaw, actually preferred to operate a right-hand magazine
release using his left trigger finger.
The 3.2" barrel is stainless steel,
fully-supported with an integral feed ramp. The barrel hood
features a visual loaded-chamber indicator.
The safety features of the G3/G3c are
numerous. In addition to the aforementioned loaded-chamber
indicator, there is an internal striker block, an automatic
trigger safety, and a manual safety lever that blocks the
trigger and slide from movement. The manual safety operates in a
familiar manner - up for SAFE, down for FIRE - and is located
right where it should be, falling naturally under the thumb of a
right-handed shooter. There is no ambidextrous safety lever for
left-handed shooters, which is fine with me; the automatic
safeties are more than enough, thus I choose to ignore the
manual safety entirely. Thankfully, there is no Magazine
Disconnect, so the pistol can be fired with the magazine
The trigger on my G3c was exemplary, breaking
smoothly and cleanly at an average 3 pounds, 12.2 ounces on my Lyman
Electronic Digital Trigger Pull Gauge. Trigger reach is 2.65
inches, which should prove comfortable for nearly all shooters.
Trigger takeup is a mere 1/16", trigger travel is
1/2", and there is no discernible overtravel. The polymer
trigger itself is very comfortable, with an enhanced wider
trigger and safety lever.
The G3c's sights are simple but excellent,
and thankfully, made of steel. The rear sight is
dovetail-mounted, drift adjustable for windage, and tapered so
as to not gouge holster or flesh; it is plain black with
horizontal serrations to eliminate glare. The front sight is a
fixed post, with a white dot that stands out wonderfully against
the non-glare plain rear sight; this sight configuration
naturally draws the eye to the front sight, and the sight
picture is very easy to acquire. First-shot accuracy was
excellent, and follow-up shots were quick and effortless, thanks
to both the sight design and the superb ergonomics of the
Field-stripping the G3/G3c is a snap, and
will be second nature to anyone familiar with the Glock takedown
system. After removing the magazine, and making double-sure that
the chamber is empty, ease the slide back 1/8" or so until
the barrel hood drops from its recess in the ejection port, pull
down on the disassembly latch, ease the slide forward, pull the
trigger, and slip the slide off the frame. The recoil
spring/guide assembly and barrel can now be removed for cleaning
and maintenance. To reassemble, simply replace the barrel and
recoil spring/guide assembly in the slide, and slip the slide
back onto the frame. The whole process takes seconds, and is
accomplished without any tools. As always, take a few minutes to
read the provided instruction manual before using the pistol;
you might find answers to question you didn't know you had.
With the growing popularity of
optically-sighted CCW pistols nowadays, what sets the G3/G3c
T.O.R.O. apart from the standard G3/G3c line of pistols is the T.O.R.O.
(Taurus Optics Ready Option), which is designed to
accommodate the growing number of shooters who wish to equip
their pistol with an optical dot sight. The T.O.R.O. system
features a removable cover plate just forward of the rear sight,
with four interchangeable mounting plates that accommodate a
wide variety of optical sights. It is a seamless system that
works extremely well.
Specifications - Taurus G3c T.O.R.O. Compact Optics-Ready 9mm Semi-Auto Pistol
||9mm Luger (9x19, 9mm Parabellum)
||Alloy Steel, Tenifer Matte Black Finish
||Striker, Single-Action with Restrike Capability
||3 pounds, 12.2 ounces
||Manual Thumb Safety, Trigger
Safety, Striker Block, Visual Loaded-Chamber Indicator
||Fixed White Dot Front, Drift-Adjustable Serrated Rear, Optics-Ready
|MSRP as of
As my preferred mode of carry is in the
pocket, I will not be carrying my G3c with an optic on a regular
basis, but the ability to quickly and easily mount an optic with
no cost (and corresponding wait time) of having the slide
custom-milled for an optical sight is a very nice option to
have. I did mount a Trijicon
RM08G Reflex sight on my G3c, and it worked wonderfully. The
RM08G is my favorite mini-reflex sight; it is extremely rugged,
dual-illuminated, always on, and never needs batteries.
Trijicon's Dual Illumination feature consists of Tritium reticle
illumination, coupled with a fiber optic bar for enhancement.
This dual illumination system results in a sight that
automatically adjusts for varying light conditions; in low-light
conditions, the Tritium reticle is the perfect intensity,
without being too bright, and in bright-light conditions, the
fiber optic bar augments the brightness automatically. I also
like the triangular-shaped reticle on the RM08G, as it can be
sighted in with the aiming point at the top of the triangle for
greater precision than a typical dot reticle. The RM08G
currently retails for $577.00 US - as my brother Jeff used to
say, "That ain't cheap, but the Best never is". I have
been a great fan of Trijicon's sighting systems for many years,
and I highly recommend them.
I recently had a holster sent to me from an
outfit I had not heard of before, SkinTight Holsters (www.ccwbreakaways.com).
The SkinTight Holster is a really neat design, consisting of a
thin shell of Kydex, folded like a clamshell and molded to fit
many small/medium frame pistols, and wrapped in a thin sheet of
Neoprene / Spandex. I have never been a fan of Kydex, but the
SkinTight Holster is an extremely simple and ingenious design.
The Neoprene / Spandex wrap allows the folded Kydex shell to
flex enough to securely hold the pistol, and it also allows the
holster to grab the inside of a vest, jacket, or pants pocket to
keep the holster in place. The Neoprene / Spandex wrap is closed
on the bottom, so it wraps the holster on three sides, and there
is a sight track molded into the Kydex along the long axis. The
holster's design is ambidextrous, and there is an index bump
molded into either side of the Kydex underneath the Neoprene /
Spandex wrap; this allows a full grip to be taken on the pistol
so that the trigger finger will be in the proper position
alongside the frame, and not touching the trigger, on the draw.
The holster adds almost no weight or bulk to the pistol, carries
the pistol securely, is very quick to use, does not move around
in the pocket, and stays in the pocket when the pistol is drawn.
The SkinTight Holster will fit a variety of pistols; I have used
it with this Taurus G3c and my Ruger
MAX-9, and it works wonderfully with either. The SkinTight
Holster is a very ingenious, patent-pending design, and retails
for only $24.99.
The Taurus G3c compact 9mm pistol is a worthy
addition to the latest generation of full-capacity, optics-ready
9mm carry pistols. It proved to be 100% reliable with a variety
of ammunition types I tried in it, which is the most important
aspect of a pistol made to preserve the lives of the shooter and
his/her loved ones. Add to this reliability practical accuracy,
ergonomics, compact size, magazine capacity, and the ability to
easily add optical sights, all at a very reasonable $408.77
MSRP, and what you end up with is a real winner from the folks
at Taurus USA.
View Taurus USA's entire product line at: www.taurususa.com.
To find a Taurus dealer near you, click on the DEALER FINDER at Lipsey's:
To order Taurus products Online, click on the GUN GENIE at Davidson's Galery of Guns:
Order Ammo Online at Lucky Gunner: www.luckygunner.com.
Lyman Products: www.lymanproducts.com.
Trijicon Optics: www.trijicon.com.
CCW Breakaways "SkinTight Holster": www.ccwbreakaways.com.
Double Tap Ammo: www.doubletapammo.com.
Buffalo Bore Ammo: www.buffalobore.com.
Federal Premium Ammo: www.federalpremium.com.
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