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Can the “World’s Fastest” Production Pistol Defeat Armor? FK Brno 7.5mm vs. IIIA Armor

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The FK Brno 7.5mm Field Pistol is a high end boutique pistol based on the CZ75 and chambered in a rather intriguing proprietary cartridge. At first glance, it seems almost like 9x25mm Dillon, except necked down to .30 caliber, rather than .35 caliber. But it is longer than 9x25mm Dillon and 10mm Auto. Instead, it seems that it might be derived from their common parent case, the .30 Remington.

It produces seriously impressive velocities at over 2,000 fps:

Average: 2,024.60
StdDev: 12.26
Min: 2,009
Max: 2,041
Spread: 32

So with these velocities, it ought to perform well against pistol rated armor, but I have been surprised before. Velocity is the primary factor in defeating pistol rated armor made of aramids, polyethylene, or steel. But bullet shape and integrity does play a role. This bullet has a somewhat rounded ogive and fragmented readily in ballistic gel. Will that have any impact on armor performance?

As it turns out, no. The 7.5mm honey badgered right through a level IIIA hard aramid plate like it wasn’t there. This is not indictment on the armor, of course. That same panel from that same manufacturer was able to stop .44 magnum and some pretty warm 10mm. But at 2,000fps, you’ll likely need legit, rifle rated armor to stop this cartridge.

So where does that put the pistol and the cartridge? The cartridge is seriously intriguing. I’m a sucker for innovation. A legit 2,000 fps in a “real” pistol is pretty neat. The ammo isn’t even ridiculously priced, all things considered. Sure, a buck per round is not cheap, but it’s also a brand new cartridge loaded with solid copper bullets. To keep it in perspective, compare it to .357 Sig defense loads with the Barnes TAC-XP.

But that’s where things start to fall apart, if you’ll pardon the pun. FK chose to introduce this pistol and this cartridge with a load they dub “high terminal effect”. When we tested this ammo in ballistic gel it fragmented early and left a rather small, caliber sized track that continued on almost a yard.

But after the first 9″ or so, we are left with a .30 caliber sized wound track. That sounds worse than it is. Bear in mind that the closest comparison, solid copper hollow points in .300 AAC, also leave a big TSC, followed by a relatively small track. The difference is that a 110-120 grain .300 AAC solid copper HP tends to have an even larger and longer TSC and the lower velocity track is larger than caliber because those bullets expand and retain their petals, cutting a wider track.

I would have liked to see the debut of this cartridge with an expanding projectile with good weight retention and less than 20″ of penetration. That isn’t an insurmountable task, either. There are plenty of bonded lead core and solid copper hollow point projectiles that can hold together and expand well in this velocity range. Bottom line on the cartridge is that it has incredible potential for defensive use that wasn’t fully realized in this projectile design. Despite that shortcoming, this load is still rather impressive.

The pistol itself is expensive at $8,000 MSRP and I’m not convinced it earns that price tag. I don’t think I’ve ever seen an $8,000 pistol that wasn’t a Title II device, but I’ve handled plenty of $3,000 custom 1911s and the like. The fit and finish on the FK Brno is close. It is indeed quite finely made in some respects.

All edges are attractively radiused. The fit between parts is tight, and there isn’t any rattle when you shake it. It feels like one, homogeneous unit when the slide is in battery. The FK Brno feels good in the hand. It fits well, despite the long cartridge overall length and my stubby carny fingers. The extended slide stop and safety are easier to manipulate than the standard versions on other CZ clones and the CZ75 itself. The butterfly style sight is unusual but you can quickly adapt to it. With practice, it could give a great balance between speed and accuracy. You can focus on the front sight and roughly align with the rear for speed, or allow greater attention to rear sight alignment as time permits. If you are not fond of the sight, you can replace it with a more traditional notched rear or even a mount for a mini red dot.

Guns in this video:
FK Brno 7.5mm Field Pistol

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