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Nighthawk 10mm Heinie Long Slide

By Oleg Volk

A Formidable Tool for Hunt and Defense

The Nighthawk Heinie Long Slide 10mm pistol is the logical conclusion for the long development of the semi-automatic hunting pistol. A high-performing, non-mainstream cartridge makes the most sense in a weapon that makes the most of its potential accuracy and terminal performance. With most 10mm auto loads, performance gains beyond 6-inch barrels are minimal, while handling longer pistols becomes less convenient. The 40-ounce weight in a self-loading action is sufficient to tame the kick of full-power hunting ammunition, and the long radius of tritium sights permits careful alignment for deliberate shots.

A typical hunting revolver suffers either from burdensome weight or from excessive recoil. Self-loading pistols along the lines of the original, slimmer .357Mag and .41AE Desert Eagle solved the weight and the recoil problems at the expense of bulky grip and fat slide. At 1.4-inch maximum width and only 0.9 inch in the slide, Heinie Long Slide is comfortable to carry and hold in hand. It can be reliably fired one-handed without concern over stove-piping from a loose grip—the extra inch of slide and three pounces over the standard M1911A1 producing a rather better-behaved gun. The choice of chambering makes good sense because of the sheer variety of specialized loads available, from very fast expanding and frangible bullets for medium game, to controlled expansion projectiles for large game up close, to highly penetrative hardcast or jacketed solids for punching through thick skulls or gristle plates of dangerous species. The relatively mild muzzle flip permits the entire 9+1 ammunition reserve to be expended rapidly and accurately. While 10mm Auto is “just a pistol cartridge,” it performs as well as or better than the classic 44-40 loaded full strength and fired from a carbine.

On the light side, the 10mm is loaded with 135gr to 155gr frangible or highly expanding bullets loaded up to 1600 fps from the 6-inch barrel. While producing moderate muzzle flip, these loads are fairly bright and flashy. On the heavy side, 230gr flat point, hardcast bullets approaching 1200fps punch deep straight-line holes; just the recipe for...

This article first appeared in Small Arms Review V21N8 (October 2017)
and was posted online on August 18, 2017

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