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 TZ or EAA Witness 75 Barrel
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dfletcher
Advanced Member

USA
6489 Posts

Posted - 02/16/2010 :  11:34:59 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Does anyone know of a source for used or "sort of" inexpensive 9mm barrels for the TZ or EAA 75, "small" full sized frame? I have an older Tanfoglio in 41 AE and want to do most of my casual shooting in a slightly more popular caliber.

Inexpensive for me would be about $70.00, probably used.

dsf

bigbossman
Junior Member

USA
186 Posts

Posted - 02/17/2010 :  01:30:19 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You may find that you need to change more than a barrel to go from a
.41 AE down to a 9mm. The magazines' size & shape, the way it fits the frame & grip, and the angle and size of the feed ramp are designed around the length and width of the .41 round. While I am no expert gunsmith I believe you might be better off just picking up a used 9mm rather than trying to just change a barrel, which may lead to further issues and expense - or damage and injury. Some of the big IMI Desert Eagles are interchangeable in caliber, but they are designed to be that way. Good luck...........

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beantownshootah
Advanced Member

USA
13093 Posts

Posted - 02/17/2010 :  11:07:16 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Umm. . .no.

The whole point of the .41AE is that its designed for easy caliber swap with 9mm with just a barrel and magazine change. You may also need to swap the recoil spring, but no other changes should be necessary.

EAA Witness "small frame" magazines in 9mm are readily available. Usually CZ-75 mags will work fine (though those won't necessarily be ambidextrous like Witness mags, and the Witness mags generally will NOT work in a CZ-75). Some of the other CZ-clone gun mags also may work (eg Jericho, Sphinx, Turkish/Armalite, etc).

In terms of where you are going to find a barrel. . .you can't have mine!

So far as I know EAA itself no longer stocks parts for the older (small frame) Witness guns.

Have you tried Numrich? They have one listed for $73:

http://www.e-gunparts.com/products_new.asp?CatID=8661

Also, I think there is a reasonable chance that a barrel for the Israeli "Jericho"/Baby Eagle pistol may work here, so that may open up a few other possibilities.
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BGHillbilly
Senior Member

USA
2217 Posts

Posted - 02/17/2010 :  12:58:04 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Some of the older 9mm TZ 75's had a smaller o.d. When they started offering the .41 AE they upsized the o.d of the 9mm barrels also making them uncompatible with older slides. If you have a 41 AE the oldest of the old TZ 9mm barrels will not work. And the Baby Eagle barrels are the larger dia. that should match you 41AE.

Edited by - BGHillbilly on 02/17/2010 1:02:26 PM
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dfletcher
Advanced Member

USA
6489 Posts

Posted - 02/17/2010 :  3:39:05 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by beantownshootah

Umm. . .no.

The whole point of the .41AE is that its designed for easy caliber swap with 9mm with just a barrel and magazine change. You may also need to swap the recoil spring, but no other changes should be necessary.

EAA Witness "small frame" magazines in 9mm are readily available. Usually CZ-75 mags will work fine (though those won't necessarily be ambidextrous like Witness mags, and the Witness mags generally will NOT work in a CZ-75). Some of the other CZ-clone gun mags also may work (eg Jericho, Sphinx, Turkish/Armalite, etc).

In terms of where you are going to find a barrel. . .you can't have mine!

So far as I know EAA itself no longer stocks parts for the older (small frame) Witness guns.

Have you tried Numrich? They have one listed for $73:

http://www.e-gunparts.com/products_new.asp?CatID=8661

Also, I think there is a reasonable chance that a barrel for the Israeli "Jericho"/Baby Eagle pistol may work here, so that may open up a few other possibilities.




Thanks for the Numrich lead, I checked them first and didn't see EAA. I suppose given the possible variations I'll have to just order and see if it fits. My TZ has a frame mounted safety, no decocker. I got it like "NIB" for $200.00 - it's been sitting in a local guns tore for at least 5 years. Such a deal, right?

The CZ 75 magazines do work, but I lose one round of capacity going from 40 to 41. Being in CA I shall have to better search my gun room for some prebans, I know I had a CZ in 40 (and 9) many years ago ....

I scored two boxes of loaded ammo free and two sets of dies - One set was cobbled together by using Lee 41 Mag carbide resizer/primer decap, a Lyman 41 Mag case expander and a Redding 41 Mag taper crimp with the bottom ground down to allow the shorter 41 AE case to hit the taper.

So I think I'm about there with making the gun functional in 41 AE and with some luck the barrel will materialize.

dsf
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dfletcher
Advanced Member

USA
6489 Posts

Posted - 02/24/2010 :  10:38:31 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Update to my 41 AE - I bought an EAA replacement barrel from Numrich in 9mm and it's a drop in fit, put a hundred or so rounds through it & works fine. CZ 75 mags work fine. The 41 AE setup with 40 S & W mag works fine, I put 3 mags through it and fortunately found all my brass.

Regarding a 9X21 conversion - is it better to use plain old 9mm Luger mags or 38 Super mags?

I can't find a 9X21 barrel, is reaming the Luger barrel a simple matter for a gunsmith?

dsf

Edited by - dfletcher on 02/24/2010 10:49:48 PM
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beantownshootah
Advanced Member

USA
13093 Posts

Posted - 02/25/2010 :  12:59:17 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I didn't think you'd have a problem with it, but I am glad to hear that you got this to run fine with 9mm luger. Are you using the stock .41AE recoil spring for 9mm? (Just curious).

quote:
Originally posted by dfletcher
Regarding a 9X21 conversion - is it better to use plain old 9mm Luger mags or 38 Super mags?

I can't find a 9X21 barrel, is reaming the Luger barrel a simple matter for a gunsmith?


You mean 9x21 IMI?

I don't think 9x21mm barrels were ever produced standard for the SMALL (ie older) frame Witness gun, which probably explains why you can't fine one! They do exist for the large frame guns, though.

Assuming you wanted to go this route, just converting a 9x19 BARREL ought to be easy. (Did you buy an extra one ?).

I don't think anything else is necessary to get the conversion to work. The whole point of the 9x21 is that like the .41AE, its a simple barrel exchange for 9x19mm luger. If you want to overload the 9x21mm cases to make IPSC major you might want to go with a stiffer spring than the ordinary 9mm one.

On magazines, again, if you're talking 9x21mm IMI, the round should run fine from ordinary 9x19mm luger mags. If you have any doubt about this, you could simply try cramming a few 9x21mm rounds into your 9mm luger rounds and see what happens.

On .38 Super mags, .38 super was actually never offered as a conversion for the older small frame EAA Witness guns, and I'm pretty sure that the Witness .38 super mags won't even fit into the small frame guns. So I don't think you could run 9x21 out of a .38 super mag, even if you wanted to!

EDIT:
You didn't ask, but I have heard that supposedly you can run 9x23 Winchester (ie, not 9x21) straight out of the large frame .38 Super witnesses, because they're that strong.

If I were interested in a "magnum" 9mm, that's the route I'd go.

9x21 mm "can" be overloaded to get 9mm luger +P+ like ballistics, but its really not meant for that, and I'd be concerned with overstressing the gun with unnecessarily high loads.

Out of curiosity, what is your interest in 9x21mm?

Edited by - beantownshootah on 02/25/2010 1:03:56 PM
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dfletcher
Advanced Member

USA
6489 Posts

Posted - 02/25/2010 :  1:53:46 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by beantownshootah

I didn't think you'd have a problem with it, but I am glad to hear that you got this to run fine with 9mm luger. Are you using the stock .41AE recoil spring for 9mm? (Just curious).

quote:
Originally posted by dfletcher
Regarding a 9X21 conversion - is it better to use plain old 9mm Luger mags or 38 Super mags?

I can't find a 9X21 barrel, is reaming the Luger barrel a simple matter for a gunsmith?


You mean 9x21 IMI?

I don't think 9x21mm barrels were ever produced standard for the SMALL (ie older) frame Witness gun, which probably explains why you can't fine one! They do exist for the large frame guns, though.

Assuming you wanted to go this route, just converting a 9x19 BARREL ought to be easy. (Did you buy an extra one ?).

I don't think anything else is necessary to get the conversion to work. The whole point of the 9x21 is that like the .41AE, its a simple barrel exchange for 9x19mm luger. If you want to overload the 9x21mm cases to make IPSC major you might want to go with a stiffer spring than the ordinary 9mm one.

On magazines, again, if you're talking 9x21mm IMI, the round should run fine from ordinary 9x19mm luger mags. If you have any doubt about this, you could simply try cramming a few 9x21mm rounds into your 9mm luger rounds and see what happens.

On .38 Super mags, .38 super was actually never offered as a conversion for the older small frame EAA Witness guns, and I'm pretty sure that the Witness .38 super mags won't even fit into the small frame guns. So I don't think you could run 9x21 out of a .38 super mag, even if you wanted to!

EDIT:
You didn't ask, but I have heard that supposedly you can run 9x23 Winchester (ie, not 9x21) straight out of the large frame .38 Super witnesses, because they're that strong.

If I were interested in a "magnum" 9mm, that's the route I'd go.

9x21 mm "can" be overloaded to get 9mm luger +P+ like ballistics, but its really not meant for that, and I'd be concerned with overstressing the gun with unnecessarily high loads.

Out of curiosity, what is your interest in 9x21mm?



Re the 9x21, I guess I'm a bit of a "that's different" junkie. 357 Magnum semi autos (Coonan) a 10mm revolver (Smith 610) and more 45 ACP revolvers than 1911s and more 41 Magnums than 44s, all the odd T/C Encore/Contender chamberings - 6/222X47, 375 H&H pistol, some 375 JDJs. So with the 9X21 I just figured "what the hell".

I used the same recoil spring for the 9 as with the 41.

My understanding of the 9X23 is that it has the same dimensions as the 38 Super but is truly rimless - supposedly feeds better.

From reading about the 9X21 it doesn't seem like much more than the Luger, since it runs out of the same sized guns the OAL has to stay the same. I guess the goal was to make major in a 9 without having to go over pressure in the Luger case.

Learning about the TZ/EAA has been a gradual process. From the info I have to include calling EAA direct, I'm told the 38 Super, 10mm and the 45 ACP all operate off the "larger" frame - I have the full sized but smaller frame. EAA said they have some old (small) slide/barrels in 40 S & W, but that the slide/barrels shown on their website all fit the full sized larger frame. Numrich Arms makes no distinction on their web page as to large or small frame. Other than the 9 & 40 barrel being a safe bet I've no idea if any of the slides would fit.

The other info I got from here was that the small framed TZ/EAA was set up for 9 Luger, 41AE & 9X21 - so I'm wondering if there is a 9X21 (small frame) factory barrel out there. But as you mentioned, reaming a Luger to X21 seems pretty easy. I didn't buy a 2nd because I wasn't sure of the fit, I'll probably buy another one and have both.

Funny thing about this little adventure. My boss has a TZ, I took it home earlier in the week to check parts interchangeability. He bought his new when the 41AE first came out, bought all the extras. I just bought mine two weeks ago - our serial numbers are with 50 of each other. He has two 45 ACP full sized EAAs, I'll probably end up buying one from him. Since they're not on the roster in CA they're a pain to get - I just have a great like for the 38 Super and the 10mm also, would like to build.

To tell the truth, my only similar gun is a CZ 97B, it's my "always loaded" gun. I kind of thought of the EAA as lesser quality but am finding they're well made "all steel", nicely finished & versatile.


dsf

Edited by - dfletcher on 02/25/2010 1:56:49 PM
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beantownshootah
Advanced Member

USA
13093 Posts

Posted - 02/25/2010 :  3:00:07 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This thread is about to be exhausted.

I've had a Witness for a while (an MA compliant one. . .I feel your pain in CA) so I know about the compatibility issues.

Small frame Witness is a CZ75 clone. Large frame is a CZ97 clone.

The nicest thing about the Witness is caliber conversion. Lots of European guns try to have this feature as getting ANY firearm in Europe can be a giant PITA in terms of costs and paperwork. Caliber conversions are a practical way for serious European shooters to multiply their options. In American States that have gun control laws like European States. . .same applies.

FWIW, so far as I know, the small frame Witnesses were (and no longer are) available in 9mm luger, 41AE, 40SW, and .22LR, and that's it. The small frame guns have been discontinued for a few years now, though there are many of them floating around. Upper conversions for these guns are no longer being manufactured and as you've probably learned by now are fairly scarce.

The large frame guns (which ARE still available) also have .38 Super (which supposedly runs 9x23), 45 ACP, 9x21, and 10mm available as options, and these things still ARE in production. I don't think .41AE is being made anymore.

In general, parts and mags will NOT interchange between the large and small frame guns.

Quality of the Tanfoglio guns is pretty good. I'd say they're not quite up to the specs of the CZ guns, but they're extremely tough and they arguably even have a superior design with a "deadfall" type trigger safety that doesn't degrade the trigger pull like the one on the CZ-75B series does. Prices on them have been going up for the last few years, but for quite a while, they were probably one of those secret "best buys" that nobody knew about.

On the cartridge, from what I understand the point of 9x21 IMI was only to create a cartridge as a legal substitute for 9mm luger that could be used in Italy and in other places that prohibit civilian possession of "military" cartridges (France, Mexico, etc). In other words, its a "legal loophole" cartridge.

The 9x21mm takes ordinary 9mm luger bullets, seated 2mm deeper in cases that are 2mm longer, and its supposed to be loaded with exact 9mm luger ballistics. Since overall length of the cartridge is the same, it runs in ordinary 9mm luger-type guns, and uses ordinary 9mm luger magazines. The only thing you need to do is swap the barrel for 9x21.

In short, its an ordinary 9mm luger round with a slightly longer case, requiring a slightly longer chamber. The round really has little application in the USA where 9x19 mm luger is readily available and legal.

BUT. . .

Some wily IPSC types discovered that the longer cases mean you can cram in just a bit more powder to get 9mm +P+ like ballistics more safely than ordinary 9mm. This lets you just make "major" for IPSC competition in a gun that holds 18 rounds. Again, sort of a legal loophole. . .only this time playing with the rules of IPSC.

As far as I know, that's really the only practical application of this round in the USA. As you know putting a steady diet of +P+ rounds through what amounts to an ordinary 9mm luger gun is probably eventually going to cause slide or frame failure, and I think that's what happened to a lot of the IPSC guys with their overloaded 9x21 guns.

Again, my personal take on this is that its not 1990 anymore. Unless you are competing in IPSC, there is really no point to 9x21 IMI at all, and even then there are probably better options nowadays.

If you want 9mm magnum ballistics with high capacity, you can run 9x23. If absolute max capacity isn't a huge issue, you can run 357 SIG.

EDIT: 9x23 has the same case dimensions as .38 super, but as you say its truly rimless and its loaded MUCH hotter, up to 55,000PSI case pressure (compare to 35,000 for 9mm luger). That's rifle like pressures, and for a while, the 9x23 Winchester was actually the highest-pressure pistol round in manufacture.

Unlike 38 super, or even the ambitiously named 357 SIG, 9x23 will actually meet or exceed true .357 magnum ballistics from an ordinary sized semi-auto pistol, yielding an honest 1500fps with a 124 grain bullet in single-stack gun holding 10 rounds, or a double-stack holding 18.



Edited by - beantownshootah on 02/25/2010 3:06:11 PM
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