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FN 509 Midsize

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The FN 509 family of guns has been out since 2017 and as with all new products from major manufacturers there was a lot of media coverage on it then before it was quickly forgotten as the media moved onto the next big thing. Somehow GBGuns missed that initial exposure to the FN 509 series, but it made for the perfect candidate when our Patrons asked for us to take a look at a mid-priced pistol.


With an MSRP of $649 (lower pricing at end of article) the FN 509 Midsize is neither cheap nor expensive, priced right in that sweet spot that makes you consider if you want to spend that much or not. The 509 Midsize is also built and sized in the sweet spot, 15+1 rounds of 9mm with a 4" barrel. Compact enough for carry, but with enough barrel length for proper ballistics, and enough gun to hold on to for extended range sessions. Unlike so many competitors the FN 509 Midsize is also truly ambidextrous, an uncommon feature that serves both left-handers and serious shooters that want to practice with their other hand.


Serious shooters are who the 509 seems to have been built for. Everything about the build quality and feel says, "duty gun" in both the positive and negative ways. For a closer look at the FN 509 Midsize see the tabletop video below.

The trigger feels a bit, "meh" in dry fire. Once again in that sweet spot that isn't a rough trigger, and isn't a race trigger. Right in the middle where it should be for responsible carry or duty use.


Despite the FN 509 Midsize's compact size there's plenty of rail space.

From the FN 509 Midsize Product Page

SPECS

  • CALIBER: 9mm

  • OPERATION: Double-action

  • MAG CAPACITY: 10 or 15 Rd.

  • WEIGHT: 26.5 oz.

  • BARREL LENGTH: 4.0"

  • OVERALL LENGTH: 7.4"

  • TWIST RATE: 1:10" RH

  • HEIGHT: 5.2"

  • WIDTH: 1.35"

  • TRIGGER PULL: 5.5 - 7.7 lb.

  • SIGHT RADIUS: 5.79"


PRIMARY FEATURES

  • Full-sized performance in a concealed carry package

  • Striker-fired autoloader

  • Double-action operation

  • Fully ambidextrous controls

  • Offered as a non-manual safety model

  • Fixed 3-dot luminescent sights (standard)

  • Fixed 3-dot green tritium night sight available (LE ONLY)

SLIDE

  • Easily racked, combat-style sights

  • External extractor; loaded chamber indicator

  • Improved front and rear cocking serrations

BARREL

  • Cold hammer-forged stainless steel

  • Recessed target crown

  • Polished chamber and feed ramp

FRAME

  • Polymer construction with replaceable steel frame rails

  • Enhanced grip textures which enables faster follow-up shots in all conditions

  • Interchangeable backstraps

  • MIL-STD-1913 accessory mounting rail

  • Improved flatter face trigger

OPERATING CONTROLS

  • Fully ambidextrous slide stop lever and magazine release

MAGAZINE

  • High visibility, low-friction follower; polymer base with black finish

  • Compatible with FN 509 17-round and 24-round magazines with appropriate magazine sleeves

SHIPS WITH

Among other things the FN 509 Midsize includes two 15-round magazines and a soft wallet.
  • Two interchangeable backstraps

  • Two 15-round magazines or Two 10-round

  • Owner’s manual

  • Locking device

  • FN logo soft pistol case

Everything feels very well-built. It's a pistol that includes pride of ownership not because it's flashy, but because it looks and feels like the kind of gun a company like FN is approached to make for one of the many government/military contracts their known to fulfill. I could just as easy imagine the 509 as a duty gun in the US (where it competed against the Sig P320 in the US Army trials) or any allied nation as I can it serving citizens as a do-all kind of pistol.

To see if that feel would continue after a range session we of course put the 509 through our standard battery. The results can be seen in the Shooting Impressions video.

Ammunition seen in our Shooting Impressions video was made possible by our Patrons and supporters of our ammunition savings account through Ammo Squared. Additional, on-demand ammunition through True Shot Gun Club.

The biggest surprise for me was the trigger. In dry fire I was unimpressed. "Sleepy" was the term that came to mind. On the range however it proved to be very learnable and much more predictable than I had expected. Not all guns shoot "live" the way they do "dry", it appears the 509 Midsize is one of those. Excellent performance on the range.

Another big takeaway from the range session was the grip texture. Despite having three different patterns of texture on the gun, it didn't plant as firmly in the hand as one would expect. The good news is adding texture is a lot easier than removing it, so I suppose we can't fault FN for being conservative with grip texture.


Overall the FN 509 Midsize is a gun that warrants the price it commands. Styling may not be the hippest with what 2022 asks for, but that's ok. This is a duty-grade gun that worries not about looking cool. This is a pistol that I feel confident in recommending.


Price check as of 9MAY22 (509 Day!)

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4 Comments


Graham, I believe you shot this pistol better than any other I've watched. I'm an FN fan - have many of their models. The prices are mid-range. But if you look at all the "add-ons" that most people do to their Sigs and Glocks, you basically wind up at the same pricing. Thanks for this video.

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Sean Moore
Sean Moore
May 16, 2022

Too glocky

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Comments about the trigger that FN puts in their guns abound - and they're mostly negative. I tend to agree. But everyone wants a race gun trigger these days, don't they? Can't have it both ways. So long as the trigger is manageable and not gritty (historically common with FN striker fired guns), then I can adapt. If the reset is long, so will the interval between shots. I've had my hands on a 509 with an Apex trigger, and it really transforms the gun without making it prone to unintentional discharges. Duty triggers need to give the shooter enough control when the adrenaline is coursing through their veins, so they don't get any life-altering ND's. Also, and I've said this…

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Replying to

Seen a few reviews on the 509 and the trigger and firing pin came under some scrutiny, sometimes severe. Replacement trigger and heavy duty firing pin from Apex apparently transforms the pistol from good to excellent. Personally, I like the feel and look of the 509 and the red dot capability of the tactical version makes it a great option for self defense…..but it’s price may frighten some people away.

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