Taurus PT709 Slim Review and Photos
When I first saw the Taurus PT709 Slim, the small, angular and indeed very thin weapon with the oddly shaped trigger guard at a Miami gun show last weekend, I was immediately intrigued. I had been looking for a small 9mm pistol for IWB (In the Waist Band) concealed carry for some time, but nothing had fit the bill. I’m a pretty slim guy and found most small 9mm offerings to be too boxy or bulky (Glock or S&W, to name a few) or, when I found one I liked, namely, a Kahr PM9, the price was prohibitive.
So I asked the salesman if I could the PT709, heft its weight, check out the sights and see how it fit in my hand, after all, why not give this little beauty a try as the feedback I’ve heard about this gun had been extremely positive. Long story short, I loved it and plopped down a decidedly un-Kahr-like $369 and took my new potential CCW (concealed carry weapon) home. I say ‘potential’ because I will only decide to carry it as a defensive weapon if it proves to be absolutely reliable. More on that later.
Facts and Specs
The PT709 is a single stack, 7+1 round 9mm semi-automatic pistol. It is just over six inches long (6.24″), four and a half inches high (4.52″), and an amazing one inch (1.04″) wide. It has a steel slide with a polymer frame which add up to a diminutive nineteen ounces. My 709 has a blued slide, but they can be had in stainless steel and titanium. The grip is thin but with a good texture and offers a good, positive hold. A small, but appreciated design feature is the way the trigger guard angles up just as it meets the grip. That small amount of extra space offers a bit more room for the three fingers of your shooting hand to grasp the weapon. The frame has matching dimples on either side. One perfectly fits the knuckle of the thumb of your shooting hand, and the other, further down the frame towards the front of the gun, offers an index position for your trigger finger when it is not on the trigger. Also a nice design feature.
The PT709 is a striker-fired weapon with an interesting single-action/double action capability. When a round is chambered, the trigger pull is always about 5-6 lbs in single action mode. However, if a round fails to fire, the PT709 allows a second pull of the trigger in double-action mode (about 6-7lbs) without racking the slide. It offers a true double-strike capability on a dud round without cycling the slide. The PT709 has a nicely positioned thumb safety and a trigger safety like that of a Glock which allows for it to be safely carried with a round in the chamber. It also has a firing pin block to prevent the weapon from firing unless the trigger safety has been pressed. I like that safety redundancy in a CCW.
Besides the trigger safety there are other Glock-like features of the PT709 Slim, namely the way it’s disassembled. Rather than removing a pin to free the slide, the 709 has a set of take-down latches on either side which free the slide. A slide-lock release is just ahead of the thumb safety on the frame and the magazine release is nicely placed on the grip and easy to access. A very usable set of fully adjustable 3-dot sights rounds out my description of the PT709.
“OK, fine. It looks and feels great. But how does it shoot?”
At The Range
After dis assembly and a thorough cleaning to remove all the grease on the slide, I packed 2 100 round boxes of Winchester ‘White Box’ 115gr FMJ 9mm and about 75 rounds of Winchester 147gr JHP ammo and headed to the closest target range to put the Taurus to the test. I purchased an orange silhouette target, donned my hearing and eye protection and headed excitedly to my assigned lane. A quick function check and two loaded magazines later I began to take the measure of my diminutive new weapon. My first impression was that the recoil was a lot less than I had anticipated it would be. Very controllable for so small a gun and very easy to get back on target. Second, I absolutely love the trigger reset on this pistol. After the weapon fires, a tiny release of the trigger recycles the action and the 709 is ready to fire a second shot, and a third, in very rapid yet controllable succession. The Taurus shot low out of the box – a common complaint for owners of this model – but a few rounds of adjustment of the rear sight had the 709 Slim hitting point of aim at seven and fifteen yards. It’s a darned accurate little gun. Before I knew it, I had gone through the first box of 115gr FMJs without a single FTE, misfeed or any other issue at all. And, unlike after shooting 100 rounds through other small 9mm pistols, my hand didn’t hurt. Not one bit. The PT709 was a joy to shoot.
The second box of 115s went just as smoothly and uneventfully, so I loaded the magazines with the 147gr JHPs. The 709 Slim ate all 75 of them without a single problem. Not bad at all for any gun during its ‘break-in’ period. Not one problem in 275 rounds through a brand new gun. Smiling, I left the range and headed home to give my new pistol a good cleaning and a find it a place in my safe.
“Well, were you impressed?
Absolutely! It fired with minimum recoil and maximum accuracy and did not fail to fire, cycle, or eject a spent casing.Not once. And, it felt very comfortable in my hands; like it was made for them.
“Is it your concealed carry weapon yet?”
Well, it’s going to take one more trip to the range this weekend and a few hundred more rounds of trouble free shooting before I trust my life to it, BUT, I did take the liberty of ordering a Super Tuck Deluxe, CrossBreed Holster for it, so what does that tell you?