We hope you like our Century Arms C93 review: The roller lock system by Heckler & Koch (H&K) has its share of fans and detractors. Many feel the mechanism is as relevant today a it was when it was designed over 50 years ago, but some feel that the technology represents a system that should have left the firearms world when the Cold War ended. Recently we had a chance to field test a new variant of the H&K 93 in Century Arms’ newest offering: The C93 pistol.
Century’s C93 is built from Malaysian parts on a US made receiver with a US made 8.5” barrel. The pistol weighs in at 6.3 pounds and is 20” in overall length.
First of all, the build quality on Century’s C93 pistol is outstanding with regard to fit and finish. This $700 pistol is on par with many other H&K clones costing 2 to 3 times the price. The only negative point that this author took here was the positioning of the charging handle when the bolt was locked rearward; it blocks the sights at a near 12 O’ Clock position and should be closer to 10 or 11. However, it can be modified by a gunsmith or even by a true H&K aficionado with the proper parts and tools.
The C-93 uses the same size hand guard as an H&K MP5. If a shooter so desires, there are a good number of Picatinny rails available to replace the factory forend. In our case we went with a Sure Fire MP5 forend with a dedicated flashlight. The only drawback to this might be attempting to mount a suppressor on the same weapon as the powers that be at Sure Fire made the flashlight excessively close to the barrel. In the old days the company offered an adapter to drop the position of the light several inches in order for users to mount a suppressor on an MP5, but the company seems to have abandoned this design to make the shooter choose between a suppressor or a flashlight.
At the range we used a variety of ammunition in 55 grain and 62 grain configurations. Out of 400 rounds we had one failure with a single round of federal SS109. The round chambered and extracted, but never fired. We tried it numerous times to no avail and chalked it up to being a dud round. The rest of the ammunition from this lot performed as advertised.
The accuracy of the SS109 proved to be the best of the ammunition we had on hand and rewarded us with a nice group slightly less than two inches while using a tight sling as a brace. The C93’s potential could definitely be increased by going the SBR (Short Barreled Rifle) route and adding a butt stock or perhaps mounting a SIG SB15 stabilizing brace on the receiver endcap. Although a bit heavy at 6.3 pounds, an SBR made from this pistol would make for an acceptable PDW (Personal Defense Weapon).
The only other real flaw that I could find with the C93 had to do with the mounting of optics, This can only be done by using a pricey H&K claw type of mount. Original factory H&K magazines are not inexpensive and hover between $65 and $100 each. There is an aftermarket version made by Pro-Mag that is much more cost effective (we found them as low as $10.49 for 30-rounders) and unlike that firm’s typical products, they seem well made and very reliable.
With a sub $1000 retail price the C93 pistol from Century Arms makes a fine base for an SBR project for a semiautomatic 5.56 mm PDW. According to Century Arms sales staff, there are less than a dozen of these in stock and when they are gone, there will be no more made.
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