By Brandon Council

            Concealed carrying can be an almost endless process. If you haven’t gone through the process, you’d think it’s as simple as buying a pistol, holster, and ammo, taking the course, and getting your permit. You would be wrong. At least it wasn’t for me or anyone I know who carries. Buy, try, and deny has been my process, repeated over and over. That was until I held my first CZ!

I started my journey with a Smith and Wesson M&P.40c, OWB in the winter months, and IWB in the summer months. A few weeks into the first summer I quickly realized that carrying that pistol wasn’t going to work for me. It was uncomfortable after trying different holsters, and it printed horribly. Another pistol. More holsters. Yet another pistol, this time a Glock 19. I found this to be the most comfortable for me IWB, year-round carrying at the 3-4 o’clock position, and it didn’t print at all. Perfect, right? It was until I lost 55lbs over the last year. I found as I lost weight, it became more and more obvious that I had was carrying, and it tore up my hips. Transitioning to appendix IWB carry fixed the printing and comfort problem, but there was one problem it created. Even though I trust the safeties on striker-fire pistols, it was a little disconcerting holstering my Glock, round chambered, pointing right at my… manhood.

My mission was to find a double/single action pistol with a manual safety that was comparable in size to a Glock 19. Researching different options on YouTube led me to a video on Military Arms Channel entitled “My Carry Gun – CZ P-01”. Tim had the same “issues” with carrying AIWB that I had. His solution was a DA/SA pistol with a de-cocker. His process, and what would become my process was to chamber a round and de-cock the pistol. When holstering, the heavier trigger pull would make it more difficult for a shirt tail to accidentally discharge the pistol if it got stuck in the trigger guard. In addition, when holstering, riding the pistol into the holster with your thumb on the hammer would give you a very evident indication that something is pulling the trigger. Brilliant! You may be thinking, duh, that’s obvious, but it wasn’t for me. Now I had to find a DA/SA pistol with what I’ve come to call an anti-de-cocker de-cocker.

When I begin searching for my next firearm, I don’t base any decisions on what other people recommend. I get my hands on them to see how they feel and shoot them if possible. Glock was my choice for carry not because I’m a “fanboy”, but because I shoot them well. Generally, I tend to steer clear of hyped up guns. CZ fell into that category, but I had a need, so why not look at one. I landed on the P-07 as it’s similar in size and has the same capacity as the Glock. It’s also lighter than the P-01in the video.

Holy crap, I’m glad that I did. CZ is known for their ergonomics, but most manufacturers brag on their “superior ergonomics” when there really isn’t anything special about it. CZ is the exception, not the rule. Never have I held a pistol that fits my hand as well as the CZ does. Thinking I just got lucky, I held a P-01, P-10c, and a 75 Shadow. The ergonomics of them all were the same; superior to anything I’ve held before. My P-07 is the first handgun I bought without shooting one first.

I left the gun shop and took it straight to the range. While the DA/SA trigger takes some time to get used to when coming from a striker-fire trigger, it’s easy to learn. After a couple hundred rounds, I was shooting tighter groups with my CZ than I ever did with my Glock. I attribute that to the great ergonomics and low bore axis, which comes from the internal slide rails. The more rounds you shoot, the smoother the trigger becomes. Since buying it, I’ve put around 600 rounds through it with no malfunctions. That’s with mixed brands of 115 grain range ammo, Sig V-Crown 147 grain, and Federal HST 147 grain. The sights are standard 3-dot and they’re made of a sturdy metal. My preference is night sights which I will be changing out soon.

Takedown and maintenance is easy, although there is slightly more involved than striker-fire pistols. Definitely nothing to scare you away. Any gunsmithing you would want to do on your own would be a different story. I wouldn’t recommend it unless you’re comfortable with the springs and small parts. I’ve installed triggers on my Glock pistols, but I would take my CZ to a gunsmith to have work done. It’s not impossible, I just don’t have the patience.

Fit and finish is perfect, as expected at the price point. I opted for the black finish, but there are others available. In the box, you get the pistol, two magazines, an extended baseplate for one of the magazines, and a safety that can easily replace the de-cocker if you choose to do so. Installation of the base plate extension is easy, and in doing so, it increases the capacity of the magazine from 15 rounds to 17. You’ll also get the usual stuff like a lock and users-manual.

With all of the positive attributes the P-07 has, there are a couple of negatives. The first and more troublesome for me is the internal slide rail. It’s great that it lowers the bore axis, but there’s not a whole lot of real estate to grip the slide. It can make it hard, especially when it’s wet, to get a good grip to rack the slide. The serrations are adequate, but they could be more aggressive to mitigate any issues with this. Support in the form of aftermarket parts is small. There are a few options, however they’re very limited in contrast to other pistols. That’s it.

Ultimately, this is a great value for the price. I’ve paid more for pistols that ended up being far less than their reputation made them out to be. Not only has it been 100% dependable, but my accuracy has improved. The only complaints that I have are small and don’t sway my opinion at all.  CZ has earned themselves a loyal customer as I will be buying a few more. If you’re in the market for a new pistol, consider jumping on the CZ bandwagon!