Not everyone wants, or can afford, an expensive carry pistol. Just as many of us drive to work each day (back when work was some place other than a home office) in a plain old sedan or pickup truck, many of us carry an inexpensive everyday-carry pistol. The SCCY CPX-2 is such an option.
The SCCY CPX-2 is a 9 mm pistol with a steel slide and aluminum chassis in a polymer shell. The slide is CNC-machined in the SCCY factory in Daytona Beach, Fla., along with the chassis and other major components. The slide is stainless steel, and you have the option of leaving it bare or adding a black nitride finish for extra durability and concealment. This is not complete protection against rust, as even stainless with the black oxide treatment will corrode if exposed to a harsh-enough environment. (The answer to this is simple: Inspect, clean and oil your CPX-2 on a regular basis, to ensure it is ready when you need it.) The slide holds the extractor on the right side at the bottom of the ejection port. The sights are a fixed front and a drift-adjustable rear, with a three-dot white array.
The SCCY CPX-2 offers interchangeable polymer shells in many colors. It has fixed-front, drift-adjustable rear, white-dot sights and a semi-internal hammer. Two magazines and two extra baseplates ship with it.
The barrel, with its integral feed ramp, is your basic tilting Browning design, locking into the machined cutout of the ejection port. The chassis, in black anodized aluminum, is held inside of its polymer frame. The chassis, not the polymer shell, is the firearm of record and thus has the serial number applied to it. The chassis contains the firing mechanism as well as the takedown pin, which is also the barrel cam lug.
The polymer frame, or shell, of the Cpx-2 has a waffle pattern on the backstrap, and the voids in the pattern are meant to provide a cushioning effect in recoil. Not having a non-waffle frame to compare it to, I can’t say that the design works as-intended, but then, a 15-ounce 9 mm pistol is going to have a relatively sharp felt recoil regardless of the grip design. You can mitigate felt recoil by selecting 9 mm ammunition that is not as robust. The shell, made of Zytel, can be had in one of ten colors, or in five different Kryptec-pattern camo colors. The shells are gunsmith-serviceable, so you can have yours changed to the one you want, and, since the chassis is the part with the serial number, each shell, at $39 each, is just an accessory, not a new firearm. (Many shooters will find themselves capable of the shell swap, though SCCY says to use a gunsmith.)
The magazines hold 10 rounds each, and are, like the slide and other components, made in-house by SCCY. You can assemble your magazines either with the base-flush or finger-tab baseplate that provides a slightly larger surface area for your hand. This is a useful option for those of us with large hands who are trying to use a compact pistol.
Takedown is simple and straightforward. Unload the CPX-2. Lock the slide to the rear. The takedown pin comes out from the right side to the left. You will not be able to do this with your bare hand, and will need a lever of some kind (the case rim of a 9 mm empty may work here) to begin levering it out of the chassis. Once the takedown pin is out, restrain the slide and push the slide-stop lever down. The slide, barrel and recoil-spring assembly will come off the frame. Pull the recoil-spring assembly out of the slide, followed by the barrel. This is as far as you need to go to thoroughly clean and lubricate the Cpx-2.
Operation is like any other self-loading pistol. Insert a loaded magazine, pull back the slide and let it fly forward. You are now loaded. The Cpx-2 does not have a thumb safety. Those who wish to have a one on their carry pistol can opt for the Cpx-1 model, which differs from the Cpx-2 model solely in the ambidextrous thumb safety.
The Cpx-2 is unlike many other polymer-framed pistols in that it is hammer-fired—it does not use a striker system. The hammer is visible in movement, but not accessible. This means the trigger is a double-action only (DOA), and the pull weight of 6 pounds, 11 ounces may seem high compared to striker-fired pistols; however, as a DAO pistol, its trigger and hammer operate like those on a revolver, and back in the day we would have given anything for a DA pull as light as 6 pounds, 11 ounces. One big advantage of the design is the double-strike capability. If a given primer does not go off, you can simply stroke through the trigger again to give it another try. This can be useful if the ammo you can find to practice with has harder-than-usual primers.
Each Cpx-2 comes in a box with a lock, two magazines and four floor-plates, two of them flush and two of them with finger-extensions.
One often-overlooked aspect of gun ownership is the warranty. The best summary of SCCY’s warranty is this: No questions asked. Something goes wrong, you call SCCY and you’ll get taken care of. Oh, and the warranty follows the pistol for as long as it exists. So, even if you buy a used SCCY, should something be wrong, the factory will make it right. (This holds for all models, not just the Cpx-2.)
As an affordable, everyday-carry pistol, the SCCY has much to offer and should be on your short list of options.