Story and photos by Russell Purcell
Pistol-calibre semi-automatic rifles are becoming far more popular with consumers as they offer the greater precision that comes with a rifle platform, while allowing the user to shoot more economical handgun ammunition.
I own a pair of these rifles chambered in 9mm, a decision made easy by the fact that this is the round I favour in my own collection of handguns. The reality is that 9mm ammunition is quite readily available, relatively accurate, fun to shoot, and easy on the wallet. As many of the big name manufacturers of these firearms also produce pistols, it is cost-effective and practical to design the long guns to utilize the same magazines as their handgun stablemates. As firearms tend to be rather pricey to purchase, consumers tend to become brand loyal in short order, so having magazines that work in all your hardware is a popular selling feature for these hybrid models.
Another advantage of this category of firearms is that by using pistol magazines they share the same capacity regulations as hand guns. This means that the limit jumps from 5 rounds to 10 when it comes to capacity, effectively cutting reload time by 50-percent which means a day at the range becomes a lot more enjoyable.
Operating a pistol-calibre carbine further simplifies my life when it comes to shopping for ammunition to feed it- whether I select to buy factory ammunition or the various components required to reload my own rounds- as it allows me to buy in bulk and garner significant discounts.
DVC recently purchased some new additions for its rental fleet, including the latest variant of one of the most innovative pistol-calibre carbines on the market- that being the ground breaking KRISS Vector. The KRISS Vector looks unlike any other rifle as its slab-sided design looks more akin to the type of weapon you might see in a video game than in the hands of a soldier or law enforcement personnel. In fact, it is so futuristic looking that the sub-machine gun variant has been featured in a host of movies, including the remakes of science fiction staples Robocop and Total Recall, as well as Resident Evil: Retribution and The Avengers.
I recently had the opportunity to spend some time at the range with the latest variant of this innovative firearm, the KRISS Vector GEN 2. The GEN 2 designation has been assigned to the Vector as there have been a number of improvements made to the rifle (which was originally introduced back in 2009) in an effort to enhance reliability, ergonomics and shooter accuracy. These include a revised trigger- which now offers a smoother pull, cleaner break, and a more positive reset; modified safety controls -a reduction in the travel path of the safety lever; improved pistol grip – which feels more comfortable as it is designed to fall more readily to the natural grip of a clenched fist; and a full-length barrel shroud.
There is much more to a KRISS Vector than its radical styling, as the rifle features an innovative operating system that has been designed to reduce recoil. Once fired, clever engineering allows the KRISS Super V System to redirect the recoil energy downward, away from the shooter’s shoulder, which results in a significant reduction in muzzle climb (allowing you to stay on target) and more comfort. And one thing is certain- a comfortable shooter is a confident one.
I imagine that the KRISS Vector will prove popular with patrons at DVC due to its many appearances in feature films and gaming titles, but the fact that it is also easy to shoot proficiently is a real bonus. All of the range officers at DVC have a thorough understanding of how the Vector works, so should you want to try one on they will be happy to educate you about how to operate the controls and handle this truly unique rifle. However, proceed with caution, as after cycling a few rounds through this novel weapon system I suspect that you will want one as badly as I do!