Walther Forums banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm a fairly new shooter and bought a (polymer frame) Q5 as my first non-22 pistol. It's just a range gun for fun and I'm happy with it.

I recently rented a PPS (M2) and I was surprised to find that it felt like it had less recoil, or maybe I should more properly say muzzle flip, than my Q5. I expected it to be worse, given how small it was, but it wasn't.

My theories as to why:
  1. I haven't done any measurements, but it seems like the bore axis on the PPS is maybe a little lower than the Q5. It looks like just barely though, and I wouldn't expect this to offset the weight advantage that much.
  2. Newton's law basically. If the bullets are slower coming out of a shorter barrel because some gas escapes, then lesser force must be exerted on the bullet and therefore lesser force must exerted the opposite direction on the gun. That said, I thought the drop in 9mm bullet velocity between 3" and 5" wasn't that much, like 10% on average. Could I really perceive that recoil reduction?
  3. I'm a shorter guy with smaller hands. While the Q5 doesn't feel too big in my hands, I can get a much tighter grip on the thin little PPS.
  4. It's entirely psychosomatic. I shot around 50 rounds through the PPS before picking up my Q5 and maybe it was just wrist fatigue already setting in. Although I'll usually go through 150 rounds of 9mm in a range session before I'll noticeably feel wrist fatigue and my aim suffers.
Has anyone else noticed the same or has enough knowledge to corroborate one of my theories?

Regardless of all that I really liked the PPS except that my trigger finger uncomfortably rubbed on the edge of the cut out section at the bottom of the trigger guard (a commonly reported problem I see) and I had to really concentrate to not ride the bottom of the trigger.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,155 Posts
I'd vote for #4. Perceived recoil is always very subjective, and some of the others you mentioned (ergonomics) factor in as well.

Moon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
I’m inclined to lean towards #4 as well. If the gun doesn’t fit in your just right, it will change how recoil is perceived by the user. I learned this when testing out different size back-straps on the same gun. The larger back-straps made the recoil worse for me, the smaller one made it more controllable. At least, it seemed that way to my brain.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,187 Posts
The PPS has a dual recoil spring, the PPQ has a single recoil spring? Maybe? Probably #4.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
I would think the greater mass of a Q5 slide might account for some of it. The worst 9mm I ever shot was a flea in the recoil dept so not worrying about it its the most effective approach.

Next time you rent a gun, ask them for a Charter Arms Bulldog in .44 Special, load up with 240gr ammo, then tell us how the Q5 recoil feels.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,334 Posts
While the PPS does have a lower bore axis, 1.27 vs 1.53, and the grip is 3/10ths narrower there are a number of variables affecting felt recoil. Instead of shooting 50 rounds before switching you might want to try 5 rounds in the PPS then immediately switch to the other and fire another 5 rounds. Grip is extremely important and perhaps that is affecting your felt recoil. Try using a rubber grip cover on the Q5 and see if that helps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
156 Posts
I've noticed the same. I think it's because the grip on the PPS fits my hand better and I'm guessing the PPS slide weighs less. Maybe something to do with the weight of the recoil spring as well, but I don't know much about physics.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
329 Posts
I think the PPS M2 is the softest shooting 9mm I have ever shot. I do think that the telescoping dual recoil spring assembly has a lot to do with it. And the grip is perfect for me and others who have smaller/thinner hands. I think design ms more to do with it than apsychosomatic response.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,287 Posts
Hello OP. It’s actually an interesting question.

There are THREE main factors that impact “felt “recoil”. The mounting energy, how fast the round accelerates (rate of burn) and the guns ability to absorb.

As to kinetic energy, velocity has a lot more impact than mass. Mass is linear and velocity is squared.

Lastly, there is what I call “perceived” recoil. This has nothing to do with physics but rather the shooter. Louder bullets for example can make a shooter perceive that the recoil is more. Or maybe a set of grips are less comfortable or that the balance of the gun is different than another.

Back to your Q5, if you were to install it borrow a DPM recoil system and shoot 147 grain ammo it will feel like a cream puff.

One trick I use for my students who are recoil sensitive is to use heavier bullets. The recoil is very different....real, absorbed and perceived 🙂
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts
One thing to consider is that the muzzle velocity out of both guns using the same ammo will be higher in the longer barreled Q5 (5") than the shorter barreled PPS (3") because the powder has more time to burn. This is a known fact. That's one reason why +P ammo does not benefit significantly for velocity in guns with 2" to 3" barrels.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the responses. Good to know I'm not alone in this perception, whatever the cause may be.

I'm not really displeased with the recoil from the Q5, but I may look into one of those fancier recoil springs now that I'm aware of them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,287 Posts
Thanks for the responses. Good to know I'm not alone in this perception, whatever the cause may be.

I'm not really displeased with the recoil from the Q5, but I may look into one of those fancier recoil springs now that I'm aware of them.
This topic comes up a lot. I have thousands of rounds through my Q5 and the recoil has never been a complaint of mine.

However, the gun has been mostly displaced by my Shadow 2 and my p210. The Q5 will make a showing this summer in 3 gun though.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,155 Posts
...As to kinetic energy, velocity has a lot more impact than mass. Mass is linear and velocity is squared...

There may well be some truth here. Shooting .38 Special and 9mm Smith Centennials back to back, the nine has a much sharper recoil. The bullets are 148 gr and 115gr respectively, but the nines are crowding 1100, while the .38s are less than 800. I haven't done the energy math, and there are other variables, but the quick jump to 1100'sec has to make a difference.
Moon
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,334 Posts
There may well be some truth here. Shooting .38 Special and 9mm Smith Centennials back to back, the nine has a much sharper recoil. The bullets are 148 gr and 115gr respectively, but the nines are crowding 1100, while the .38s are less than 800. I haven't done the energy math, and there are other variables, but the quick jump to 1100'sec has to make a difference.
Moon
The 148gr 38 special equates to 210ft/lb while the 115gr 9mm comes in at 309ft/lb. Of course the felt recoil will vary depending upon pistol weight, grip, stance, etc. but assuming all variables are otherwise equal the felt recoil would be greater with the 9mm.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
May just all be in my own mind, but I do recall shooting 148 gr .38 Special wadcutters in Smith and Wesson model 52's and Colt Gold Cups and thinking recoil was greater than in K or N frame revolver. On the other hand, shooting 125 gr. +P in light revolvers seem to recoil much more than a 124gr 9mm at similar velocity in a semi-auto.

It seemed that with a low recoil round, the inertia of the slide emphasized the effect where with a higher recoiling round, the slide and recoil spring offset the effect.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,128 Posts
One thing to consider is that the muzzle velocity out of both guns using the same ammo will be higher in the longer barreled Q5 (5") than the shorter barreled PPS (3") because the powder has more time to burn. This is a known fact. That's one reason why +P ammo does not benefit significantly for velocity in guns with 2" to 3" barrels.
Also, the bullet spends less time in the gun, and thus there is reduced time for the recoil to thrust the gun upward. Except for the reduced sight radii, some shorter barreled guns are actually easier to shoot than long barreled guns. Single action revolvers with slow bullets often show you the differences in bullet exit time and recoil a lot more easily, and often require more concentration and firm hold to shoot consistently than guns with faster and lighter bullets.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,155 Posts
The 148gr 38 special equates to 210ft/lb while the 115gr 9mm comes in at 309ft/lb. Of course the felt recoil will vary depending upon pistol weight, grip, stance, etc. but assuming all variables are otherwise equal the felt recoil would be greater with the 9mm.
The test actually was a wash on the other variables. Both revolvers were steel frame Centennials with identical Altamont combat grips. The 9mm's recoil,subjectively, felt more like magnums in a steel Centennial.

HHPN, due respect, but your memory is faulty. The 52 is as soft shooting as a pistol can be (you can watch the slide cycle very deliberately). It 'shuck-chucks' almost like a '97 Winchester pumpgun.
You are entirely correct about alloy J-frames snapping much more than 9mm autos; the action operating absorbs a deal of the energy. Comparing autos to revos introduces too many variables.


Matiqug, you are entirely correct about bore dwell time, and this is the downside to light-recoiling target ammunition. It makes follow-thru' really critical with these guns.
I could reopen the discussion of pistols describing an arc when they are discharged, but maybe not. :eek:

Moon
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top