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Old 05-30-2018, 05:16 PM
Mercs Mercs is online now
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

I wish I started this earlier, but I didn’t know I was going to go this far. Sometimes one or two mods turns into an ongoing project. I don’t have pictures of everything I did, but I can point out some mods that make the CS9 even better. First of all let me say that I have shot many of the best pistols on the market, and nothing beats the CS9 for me on a deep concealment level. This thing is 100% reliable, accurate, small (even smaller with some mods, but we’ll discuss that later), light while having steel slide w alloy frame, 7+1 9mm, and sporting DA/SA with a decocker! Mine also came with factory night sights (late production stainless model) Checked all my boxes in order to retire my S&W 638 from duty. Not that I can ever leave well enough alone...
Some things to gripe about:
1) Trigger pulls are rough. DA over 12lb, SA around 7-8lb.
2) Decocker sticks out pretty far off the slide, and mine came with ambi so that made it too much for me to live with
3) Tough to insert mags. Mags will not drop free.
4) Hogue factory grip is too girthy for concealed carry
5. Can’t reach the slide stop without adjusting grip (semi-stubby thumbs, but I’d wager it’s a stretch for most people), so that it makes much more sense not to use it, and just slingshot the slide

Here are pictures of the gun in the condition I purchased it in. I got it at a pawn shop with 2 mags for $425, case not included. Consider the cost and methods used to manufacture this gun. It’s an incredible value, just like most third gens





I’ll start with the frame. I polished it with some tender loving care. I use a combination of sandpaper from 400-1000 grit, small files of various sizes to wrap the sandpaper around to fit into tight spaces, 0000 steel wool, cutips, and dremel polishing tips with Flitz.

I lightly sanded the rails, careful not to remove too much metal. Just flip it upside down and make even strokes against sandpaper placed on a flat surface. I polished the pin holes, frame around the trigger, inside where the trigger bar rides, the entire inside surface wherever the magazine contacts (made my mags “drop-free, seriously the mags just glide), inside the hole where the trigger return spring is held captive, the notch that makes contact with the recoil spring guide and “nipple”, where the sear contacts the frame, where the hammer and levers contacts the frame, and where the disconnector lives. Some photos of this below





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Last edited by Mercs; 05-31-2018 at 09:40 AM.
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Old 05-30-2018, 05:48 PM
Maddog 521 Maddog 521 is offline
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You did a great job.
I have a NIB CS9 for about 2 years and I haven't even fired it. You are giving me reasons to get it out of the box.
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Old 05-30-2018, 05:49 PM
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bought a CS9 a few weeks ago. I didn't like the fatness of the grip but i liked the feel of the rubber it had. My gun came with 2 new sets of "Big Dog Grips" also. Much thinner but hard plastic and slippery. Put Talon rubber grips on one set. I had to cut them myself as Talon didn't have them to fit the cs9. Turned out really nice, grippy and much slimmer. On the other set i put one coating of Boot Guard. Saw that on the forum awhile back and i had used it on the toes of my work boots previously. That worked out really well. "grippiest" grips i've ever felt. They are the ones staying on my cs9. I pocket carry it so it made for a better purchase getting it out of my cargo pants. Love the gun! it exudes quality! I'd post pics but i'm a lot of things and unfortunately tech wizard is not one of them.
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Old 05-30-2018, 05:49 PM
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Default My CS9 Mods

On to the grips. The rubber Hogues are so beefy, they allow a firm grip and sure soak up recoil, but they’re too large for my purposes. I saw on this forum the Big Dog grips, modified by a forum member from the Delrin grips that come on other third gen smiths. I used a 3913TSW grip and pin that I had bought for $13. I won’t go into detail on this as there’s lots of good info on this forum already for that. I essentially ground out the inside with a rotary cutter and also had to take some off the main spring retainer. It’s ok, I have more oem retainers lol. Repeated fitment process a little at a time, removing and reinstalling the grip until it was gtg

I could’ve left the bottom part that is usually flush with the mag base, but I chose to chop the grips across flush with the bottom of the frame. The result yields a nice thin profile that won’t stick out when carrying concealed.



But look, that pinky entension on the mag base sticks out a bit too much for my liking now. I’m talking deep concealment here. I also want to be able to throw this in my pocket just like my j frame. I needed a solution to this problem.




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Last edited by Mercs; 05-30-2018 at 06:32 PM.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:32 PM
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Mercs....nice job, makes a great gun even nicer!
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Old 05-30-2018, 08:07 PM
washerman washerman is online now
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ON my cs9 i ground the pinky extensions down just a little using my bench grinder but being very careful. A little hand filing and smoothing worked wonders. Can't even tell now
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Old 05-30-2018, 08:23 PM
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I agree that the CS9 is the finest deep concealment 9mm made. By anyone.

Mine has a great trigger, is very accurate with my carry round (RA9b) and 100% reliable. It is flat and light and a joy to carry.

The only modification I made to mine was the addition of TercGen grips. Which, IMO, should have been on this fine pistol to start with. My CS9 is my most carried hot weather, deep concealment, "gun for when I cant't have a gun" pistol. Regards 18DAI
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Old 05-30-2018, 09:07 PM
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Great job!
I’m just beginning my CS9 journey. I’m now on TercGen’s wait list for grips. Have done similar polishing and action clean up to my 3914, 908 and a couple of 2nd gens but this has given me a few new ideas.
It’s nice to see someone else’s work to learn some things I have missed.
Thanks for sharing.
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Old 05-31-2018, 08:41 AM
Mercs Mercs is online now
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Quote:
Originally Posted by MidWesternBoy View Post
Great job!
I’m just beginning my CS9 journey. I’m now on TercGen’s wait list for grips. Have done similar polishing and action clean up to my 3914, 908 and a couple of 2nd gens but this has given me a few new ideas.
It’s nice to see someone else’s work to learn some things I have missed.
Thanks for sharing.


Congrats! I have done a LOT more to the gun, that was just the beginning. I can’t believe how soft this little pistol shoots, it’s just AMAZING and they don’t make it anymore...very sad. My wife keeps eyeballing it. She calls it the Chefs Special
I’m still getting pictures organized, and will post some more later today. I also added some more “Before” photos


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Last edited by Mercs; 05-31-2018 at 09:55 AM.
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Old 05-31-2018, 09:46 AM
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The mag base plates for the 3913/908 will fit the CS9 mag and they have a flat bottom.
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Old 05-31-2018, 10:06 AM
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Here it is in the CS9.
I think that I had to sand the front down a little.
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Old 05-31-2018, 11:15 AM
washerman washerman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom 45 View Post
Here it is in the CS9.
I think that I had to sand the front down a little.
like the look of the grey grips....I wonder if there is a "grippy" paint a person could use to spray the black "Big Dog" grips and make them less slippery. Seems i need more grip as i get older to control whatever i am doing with my pistol
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Old 05-31-2018, 11:59 AM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Continued from the last post about the mag base... I found the photos I took after these mods.

So, after searching this fine forum for a solution, I came up with two options for the mag base pinky extension.
1.) I found a 3913 TSW 7rd mag on eBay for a great price. This came with the flat base plate I desired. Alternatively you can buy the 3913 baseplate. It does take a bit of sanding on the nose to get it to be flush with the front strap.



2.) the Kahr base plate mod. Can be found by searching this forum. It may allow for over-insertion of the mag, but I don’t think it’s an issue, especially if used as the primary and not the backup mag. I’ve tested it while squeezing up with my pinky to try to make it jam, but it worked flawlessly.



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Last edited by Mercs; 05-31-2018 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 05-31-2018, 01:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercs View Post
Congrats! I have done a LOT more to the gun, that was just the beginning. I can’t believe how soft this little pistol shoots, it’s just AMAZING and they don’t make it anymore...very sad. My wife keeps eyeballing it. She calls it the Chefs Special
I’m still getting pictures organized, and will post some more later today. I also added some more “Before” photos
Chefs Special! Lol. I’m using that.
Hope I can document some of my Chefs evolution to share here too.
Thanks!
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Old 05-31-2018, 01:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom 45 View Post
Here it is in the CS9.
I think that I had to sand the front down a little.
The blued parts and the grey grips look fantastic on yours!
Mine is an early blue/black with non ambi safety (bonus!).
I would have preffered stainless but I can’t complain about the price I paid locally.
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Old 05-31-2018, 02:23 PM
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A CS9 is high on my list. This thread makes me want to jump in the car and drive the 2.5 hours to look at one that just popped up for sale.
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Old 05-31-2018, 04:03 PM
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Quote:
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A CS9 is high on my list. This thread makes me want to jump in the car and drive the 2.5 hours to look at one that just popped up for sale.
Better go get it before you know who shows up
I have two already so count me out.
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Old 05-31-2018, 04:33 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Next up is the slide assembly. Again, I wish I had thought of documenting all of this initially, because I would have taken even more photos.

I stripped it completely. Had new springs for firing pin block, magazine safety, and ejector. Should have got a new ejector also perhaps. Anyways I cleaned everything inside the recesses and such, and found MUCH gunk in the cutout for the ejector, as well as the FPB plunger and magazine safety channels. Keep in mind that you have to remove the rear sight to access the FPB plunger/spring and magazine safety plunger/spring, and neither one of these has any effect on trigger pull, as far as I can tell. I did the work so I could know the springs are new and everything is clean internally while I’m carrying, since I bought the gun used and it’s an old gun. Anyways I then proceeded to polish the firing pin (Flitz only, no sanding) and also its channel in the frame,

the breech face,

the ejector (and don’t forget the pin hole in the ejector so there’s less friction),


the FPB plunger, the groove for the decocker safety,
and the notch where the safety detent rides when you flip it down and up

And the barrel bushing and recoil spring channel.

I then did the recoil spring guide rod. I also twist up some 0000 steel wool and smooth the inside and outside of the spring coils, since I’m already going overboard. I NEVER polish springs at high speed, I only use steel wool by hand, so I don’t heat the springs up!

I touched on the underside of the barrel hood a bit with some fine sandpaper to aid feeding of rounds into the chamber (I always soften this a bit to reduce the odd chance that a bullet hits the hood at the wrong angle and then doesn’t feed properly, but this is personal choice based on my experience), I then polished the chamber and feedramp as well as the lugs. I polished the outside a little bit, but taking material off the outside of the barrel is also touchy work, so I didn’t go crazy on it.

I then hit the Safety. I like to soften the edge of the safety that pushes back to cock the hammer as the slide cycles (with some sandpaper) before polishing. This is one of those commonly overlooked details that can contribute to smoothing the action of the pistol. Do not remove any metal from the slots, no sandpaper or stoning those or you can destroy its functionality. I use Flitz only on the slots





That concludes the slide portion. Next up is the mods I have done to my controls, and then I will go into internal components.

Here is a sneak peek at one of my mods:



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Last edited by Mercs; 05-31-2018 at 10:23 PM.
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
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A CS9 is high on my list. This thread makes me want to jump in the car and drive the 2.5 hours to look at one that just popped up for sale.
Yeah, tell me about this one that's 2.5 hrs from you....that's about how far away I am from Davidson, NC. Seriously, if you don't go get it I may be interested in it.
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Old 05-31-2018, 08:34 PM
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I use a rubber grip sleeve over the TercGen grip and a 3913TSW mag with flat baseplate to facilitate deep concealment and pocket carry.

A DeSantis Nemesis holster for IWB and pocket carry and a Don Hume JIT slide for belt carry. Regards 18DAI
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Old 05-31-2018, 08:35 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Next up, it was time to deal with the ambi decocker that sticks out way too far on BOTH sides for my purposes. I don’t use it as a safety; I like to carry in DA. I found a single sided decocker at Numrich and although it set me back about $50, I felt it was worth it. I may also decide to sell the ambi one to recoup some of the cost. Here is my ambi next to the new single sided decocker.

Having the lever on one side reduced the slide profile significantly, so much so that I realized I could really slick this up if I melted the lever a bit. So I took a grinder to it, and then filed the last bit, then sanded and polished. I tried to reblue it at first, but the bluing wouldn’t take as well as it did when I shaved down top of the front sight to raise the POI. The polish should hold over time with maintenance.

I then did the same thing to my slide stop next; I can’t reach it anyways, and I got jealous when I saw GaryS rocking the low profile slide stop from Numrich. I made my own shadetree version, as seen here




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Old 05-31-2018, 08:56 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Something I discovered about the third gens, after having the CS9 for awhile, is that the triggers/hammers and many of the other parts are interchangeable between models. Also second gen parts can sometimes be used! Some parts may need minor fitting, but for the most part as long as you know what you’re looking at, you can get some deals and drop the parts right in

So the next mod I did was when I saw this sweet looking spurless serrated stainless hammer for sale. It’s off of a 69 series. I just had to remove the strut since it was longer (one pin, easy) and replace it with my shorter one. It has more mass, it’s stainless, and it’s mean looking to boot. Here is the gun after I installed the new hammer.



At the same time I found a stainless disconnector from a 3900 model (winged version) to replace the plastic one that comes in the CS9. I polished it up nice and tossed it in as well. More on that later.


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Old 05-31-2018, 09:11 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Next I entertained the idea of a stainless trigger to match my new hammer. I saw some for $50 and higher, but then I found one seller on eBay that had these wider stainless triggers from the model 3906. He was asking around $25 for these. At first I wondered about the implications of installing a wider trigger and eyeballed the trigger guard for awhile. I do like the wide trigger on one of my other pistols, so I went for it. Here are pictures of both triggers side by side.


Let me tell you, this trigger is SWEET! I LOVE it! It’s wider flatter face hugs the pad of my trigger finger in such a perfect way, I could never go back to the thinner trigger now. It’s a huuuuge upgrade on trigger feel for under $30. I’ll post more pics and go into the polishing I did to the individual parts tomorrow



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Last edited by Mercs; 05-31-2018 at 09:52 PM.
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Old 05-31-2018, 10:17 PM
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Fascinating job, well executed. Thanks for sharing it. I'm looking forward to the next installment.
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Old 06-01-2018, 07:05 AM
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Wow Mercs, you really have surpassed my tiny efforts! Amazing work.

That saftey melt.... oh boy! I’ve got a spare single sided. It’s tempting.
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Old 06-01-2018, 08:01 AM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

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Wow Mercs, you really have surpassed my tiny efforts! Amazing work.

That saftey melt.... oh boy! I’ve got a spare single sided. It’s tempting.


Thanks it was easy! Look at the tiers on the safety lever. You just have to grind/file it completely flat so it looks right. You can go as little or as much as you want. I only left one tier on. You can see it along the edge if you look close. You may want to leave 2 and see how you like it at first. You can also try to reblue the part that you file. I couldn’t get it to work but I’m not really experienced with bluing, so I just polished it. Makes it a slick draw! That lever hung up on me once or twice in its factory state. I Can pocket it no problem now


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Old 06-01-2018, 09:37 AM
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This reads like a New York Bestseller. Its got me hooked waiting for more. Gives me new ideas for my 5906/469 frankengun.
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Old 06-01-2018, 12:31 PM
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In case you are interested, Caswell Plating sells a chemical that they claim will blue stainless steel (like your safety).

I have some but have not tried it yet.

John
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Old 06-03-2018, 05:04 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

So I’ve find that one of the greatest sources of grit in the trigger is the trigger bar. This part interfaces with the frame, the disconnector, the hammer, and the sear. There’s a lot to clean up. Be careful not to damage the trigger play spring, it is annoying to replace. Here is a picture of a newish trigger bar I had from an older series smith. Lovely that it worked perfectly in my CS9.

I first hit the sides, and also inside (where it runs against the magazine), top and bottom, with sandpaper. Then I stoned the outside. I don’t remove too much material, especially from the inside portion.


I stoned the tabs that contact the hammer very lightly, and hit every contact surface with Flitz to reduce as much friction as possible



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Old 06-03-2018, 05:08 PM
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Then there’s the steel disconnector I got to replace my plastic one. I stoned the rounded tail that contacts the trigger bar, the sides where it slides along the hammer, and at top where it is angled. Again not removing metal, just knocking down high spots mostly. I then polished it up.



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Old 06-03-2018, 05:17 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

On to the hammer. This hammer is very tough! I had to very carefully stone it for a long time to get the roughness out. I also smoothed the parts that contact the safety and slide to smooth the action, just like I did on the safety.
just for consistency with the polished controls, I decided to polish the sides of the hammer. I also polished inside the pin hole. I left the back original finish. I didn’t neglect to polish the strut where the main spring compresses also, this helps smooth DA pull a bit


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Old 06-03-2018, 05:23 PM
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Next the new trigger I picked up. I am super excited about this trigger. It feels so much better as I mentioned earlier. I polished the sides of this to match the hammer and controls, but left the face in original finish. I also polished the trigger pin plunger, and the inside where it contacts the trigger bar. Then lightly stoned and polished the hooks to match the polishing that was done on the trigger bar as well. All to reduce friction and provide a smooth consistent trigger pull.
of course I didn’t forget the trigger pin hole, and the trigger pin itself



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Old 06-03-2018, 05:28 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Next I began on the sear. I stoned lightly rough spots and the sides where it contacts the frame. This is where I got a little experimental. I stoned down the face of the sear where it contacts the hammer hooks to lighten SA pull. Many people frown upon this, but I have done this to many firearms and always test it to try to make it fail afterwards to be sure. I also make sure to have spare oem parts before I modify one. I reduced the angle SLIGHTLY to reduce the amount of work the trigger bar has to do to pull the sear off the hammer hooks. I don’t think this design allows for much modification to the sear without negatively impacting the timing, but I could be wrong. Either way, I was just looking for SA pull below 6 lbs, as is typical for my carry guns

I then polished it all up and including the pin hole and the round where it contacts the sear spring






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Old 06-03-2018, 05:39 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

To finish up with the polishing of the internals, I polished up the main spring cup where the spring compresses, hit the spring itself with steel wool
And lastly I did the levers and the hammer and sear pins, and trigger bar rebound spring and guide



To complete the package I took the spring and follower out and polished the magazines




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Old 06-03-2018, 05:43 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Next post will be range report, trigger pull results, more photos of the entire gun, and final thoughts.

If anyone has anything to add, please do! I love learning about these Smiths. Also feel free to ask any questions you may have


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Old 06-04-2018, 12:38 AM
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That's awesome! Excited to see your next post
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Old 06-04-2018, 06:41 AM
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Thanks again for sharing all this great work Mercs!
I have to up my polishing game.
I “accidently” came home with a mildly used 3913 from a gun show this weekend so all that stainless is calling me.
It will be good practice before I hit the CS9.
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Old 06-04-2018, 09:01 AM
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Nice work Mercs.
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Old 06-05-2018, 11:06 AM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

I added some grip to the front and back straps. Highly recommended (can buy this from Home Depot). I use some rubbing alcohol to prep the area, and cut this product to fit whatever shape I want. I don’t ever add grip/friction to the sides of my carry guns out of personal preference. I don’t want anything to snag or drag on clothing while drawing



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Old 06-05-2018, 11:50 AM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Here’s a before and after photo comparison

Before:





After:




I left the face of the trigger, as well as the back of the hammer, in original finish. Detail pics of two-tone hammer and trigger below. This trigger feels so perfect to me


Next time I’ve got the polishing tools out, I might hit the controls and hammer one more time to get all the fine scratches out.



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Last edited by Mercs; 06-05-2018 at 01:12 PM.
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Old 06-05-2018, 12:06 PM
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I agree that the CS9 is the finest deep concealment 9mm made. By anyone.
Ummm the Kahr 9 is less than 1" thick, as is a my Kahr .40
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Old 06-05-2018, 01:57 PM
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I agree that the CS9 is the finest deep concealment 9mm made. By anyone.
Now that I've shot one, how could I disagree?
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Old 06-05-2018, 02:36 PM
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That gun liked you Jeppo! Nice shooting! Best regards, 18DAI
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Old 06-05-2018, 03:30 PM
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...
Next time I’ve got the polishing tools out, I might hit the controls and hammer one more time to get all the fine scratches out.



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FWIW, the hammers and triggers that looked like they were "stainless" were actually the older machined carbon steel parts that were flash-chromed. At some point you're going to "polish" through the chrome and reveal the "plain" carbon steel, so keep an eye out for oxidation.

The newer slide stop levers and manual safety assemblies were stainless MIM (according to what someone at the factory told me). He said they'd changed those from cast stainless to MIM stainless production at some point.

Don't be surprised if the "polished" appearance of those disparate parts and assemblies may not be exactly the same.
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Old 06-05-2018, 03:43 PM
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Out of curiosity, are the blackened controls (safety/decocker) stainless MIM that was blackened or cast stainless?

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FWIW, the hammers and triggers that looked like they were "stainless" were actually the older machined carbon steel parts that were flash-chromed. At some point you're going to "polish" through the chrome and reveal the "plain" carbon steel, so keep an eye out for oxidation.

The newer slide stop levers and manual safety assemblies were stainless MIM (according to what someone at the factory told me). He said they'd changed those from cast stainless to MIM stainless production at some point.

Don't be surprised if the "polished" appearance of those disparate parts and assemblies may not be exactly the same.
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Old 06-05-2018, 04:45 PM
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Ummm the Kahr 9 is less than 1" thick, as is a my Kahr .40
It's really a matter of personal opinion. I have owned a few all-metal Kahrs (K9/K40/MK9) and have found them to be great guns for CCW, with a similar thickness to a CS9 slide. However, these days they never get carried, as I feel they are a bit blocky in profile compared to my CS9 and 3914. I also prefer the safeties and controls of the S&W 3rd Gens.
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Old 06-05-2018, 04:54 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastbolt View Post
FWIW, the hammers and triggers that looked like they were "stainless" were actually the older machined carbon steel parts that were flash-chromed. At some point you're going to "polish" through the chrome and reveal the "plain" carbon steel, so keep an eye out for oxidation.



The newer slide stop levers and manual safety assemblies were stainless MIM (according to what someone at the factory told me). He said they'd changed those from cast stainless to MIM stainless production at some point.



Don't be surprised if the "polished" appearance of those disparate parts and assemblies may not be exactly the same.


The slide stop looks like it has tiny pores in it. The rest is all mirror finish. I will try to lay off polishing again though unless it’s necessary. I’ll keep an eye on the polished external parts over time, but I would bet the unpolished flash chromed surfaces will oxidize first. I’ll find out in time lol

I just got done shooting it. Has a perfect DA, feels sort of like my j-frame that I did the trigger work on, only better. Definitely under 10 lbs. and SMOOTH as silk. SA has also been reduced significantly. I will borrow my neighbors trigger gauge later and check the pulls


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Old 06-05-2018, 08:26 PM
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Default My CS9 “Chiefs Special” Mods

So I brought the CS9 to the range today to check on the results. I had also shaved my front sight down because the POI on this gun is extremely low, so the purpose of this range trip was twofold. I brought along the CZ 75 SP01 Shadow that I have also customized (race hammer, fitted sear, fitted disconnector, trigger, sights, barrel bushing, and also lighter springs) since I have recently replaced the grips with new ones and wanted to see how they performed.

The RO asked me (laughing) if I inherited the CS9... I gave a chuckle and we talked about Smiths and Sigs for a few mins. This guy was old school, and still he couldn’t believe I was carrying around a CS9 because I wanted to. He was rocking a very well worn P229 which he unloaded and allowed me to dry fire, and boy that trigger sure was nice. Then it was down to business with the CS9.

I began with the CS9 and 115 gr Federal RN FMJ rounds. I quickly discovered that even with the moderate amount I shave off the front sight, the POI was still too low. I tried some 124 gr Federal HST, and 124 gr Hornady Custom, and the Federal seemed more manageable and better groupings for me. I then went to 147 gr Federal HST and 147 gr Federal FN FMJ. The 147 gr definitely was best, and produced a “combat” POI out to 15 yards, which was as far as I went today with CS9. I did a bunch of decocking and DA shooting from low ready, and it performed flawlessly. This gun is a joy to shoot. It has lighter recoil compared to other guns its size. The SA is now light and accurate, just in case I need it. I put about 150 rounds through the CS9 today, and have shot close to 1000 total without one single malfunction of ANY kind. I really am going to have to buy more of these Smiths, to collect! The RO told me about a guy who comes in on Wednesday’s with a CS45, now I want to meet that guy and shoot it.

I brought home some groupings to post. These are pretty much what I’m capable of with a gun this size, so if it’s not up to your standards you may just be a better shot than I; but I promise you, I will still take you in hand to hand combat. Just kidding! I would HIGHLY recommend shooting one yourself. Below are groupings with the Federal 147 gr FN FMJ rounds, since I shot it the best with them today. There is also one with the 124 gr and it’s noticeably lower. So it looks like the 147 gr Federal HST is going to be my defensive round of choice for this gun as of now.

I also borrowed my neighbors trigger gauge to get some measurements, since my digital gauge broke awhile ago I still haven’t replaced it. This gauge seemed accurate, I tested on my Shadow which I know was just under 2.5# last I checked. With the shadow the borrowed gauge showed expected results, so I am confident enough in the accuracy. Below is a pic of the Shadow with a grouping from 20 yds


So the good news is the CS9 SA pull came in at 4.5-5#! It never went over 5# on the gauge after several pulls. For me, this is all I had hoped for. I can be accurate enough with this little gun now.

The DA came in at 9.5 to just over 10#! I was hoping it wouldn’t just be over the max on this gauge, or I would’ve been sad haha. This is without changing springs or cutting coils or anything like that. I am using the original mainspring and trigger bar rebound spring that came on the gun when I bought it.


Final thoughts on this gun... I LOVE LOVE LOVE it. All the stuff I did to it, well, I really enjoy doing this work. Perhaps too much. I can’t recommend anyone else tearing into a rare collectable gun. Especially certain things like basically polishing the entire inside of the frame. I mean sure, it’s cool that it will launch an empty magazine over a foot from the gun, while the grip is at an upwards 45 degree angle, but is it really necessary? I did this out of love for my gun, the gun that I carry with me to protect my life. It’s very personal for me. I shared because there isn’t much out there on modifying these guns, that I could find. I hope you enjoyed the posts, and maybe even learned something, or at least maybe I gave you an idea for your own gun.

I started out with carrying plastic guns, striker fired guns, etc. I went to a j frame because it was easier AND safer in my mind. Here’s my two Smiths pictured together.


I now have no interest in carrying a gun anymore unless it’s DA/SA. It’s the best of both worlds. Nothing to think about in a quick draw situation except pull the trigger. No safety to switch off when I carry in DA. I can ride the hammer while holstering. I can shoot SA follow up shots, which sure makes a lot of sense to me. I’m not going to say it’s the best for anyone else, but it is for me 100%.

In closing, I now know why collectors have been quietly hoarding these third gens. They are way under the radar, mostly undervalued, and will probably outshoot and outlast all of us. Sure, there are things I would change (and did), but I can’t see a gun like this being mass produced ever again.




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Last edited by Mercs; 06-06-2018 at 09:48 AM.
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Old 06-05-2018, 09:33 PM
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I've enjoyed following thus journey with you. You write well and are easy to read along with...without sounding like a gun magazine. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 06-05-2018, 09:41 PM
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That gun liked you Jeppo! Nice shooting! Best regards, 18DAI
Thanks for that opportunity. I hope I'll be a proud CS9 owner sometime next week.
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