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After SHOT: Trinity Nevada’s flagship Grand Zero Pistol

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Trinity Nevada's Grand Zero pistol made its official debut at the 2020 Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show and we were lucky enough to shoot one in advance of the show.

When we first heard about Trinity Nevada and its custom Glocks, our first thought was of Carrie Ann Moss' character in The Matrix. After seeing and shooting a few of the firearms from Trinity Nevada, we realized “Trinity” referred to something else.

Trinity Nevada's Grand Zero

Trinity Nevada's Grand Zero

Trinity was the code name of the first detonation of a nuclear device conducted by the United States Army at 5:29 a.m. on July 16, 1945, as part of the Manhattan Project. The way the original Trinity event changed science, warfare and shaped the modern world relates to this small, Nevada-based company's approach to handguns, specifically compensated pistols.

Trinity Nevada went back to kinematics-first principles and approached porting of a barrel and slide from a whole new angle. They probably make one of the flattest-tracking, non-compensated, striker-fired handgun slides on the market. By placing the front sight on the barrel instead of the reciprocating slide, the sights remain exactly where you put them throughout the firing sequence.

Mounting the sight on the fixed barrel allows for sight tracking while firing.

Mounting the sight on the fixed barrel allows for sight tracking while firing.

If you think that's not your thing because you run a red dot, you have a valid point. However, the lightweight slide and kinematic compensator give you the feeling of firing, say, a Glock 44 as opposed to the Glock 17 or 19 you might have in your hand.

The barrel and compensator from Trinity Nevada.

The barrel and compensator from Trinity Nevada.

It appears to be about a 60 percent reduction in recoil with no muzzle rise. You have much less slide mass moving back and forth, but their unique kinematic compensator plays a role here, too.

Another view of the slide.

According to Trinity Nevada's Jason Fan, who has a degree in advanced fluid mechanics from the University of Nevada:

As a fluid travels fast, natural compression happens as the molecules squish into each other. This results in varying fluid density depending on velocity.
When a supersonic fluid travels around a corner, it expands and accelerates, dropping static pressure and temperature. This behavior creates expansion waves around the corner, which forms the expansion fan.
An expansion fan allows the fluid to gain more momentum as it travels across the corner, increasing inertial forces. Correctly shaping the fans allow fine manipulations of the force vectors involved in the workings of a compensator. Similarly, fine-tuning the expansion waves around the corner can redirect the muzzle blast away from the shooter.

Although Trinity Nevada made its debut at SHOT Show 2020, we have been shooting its Grand Zero pistols for a few months and have put over 1000 rounds downrange without incident. The sight tracking feature works fine, but we did graduate to a red dot with the Grand Zero pistol and have been impressed with the accuracy and the lack of felt recoil.

If you like your red dot, you can keep your red dot.

If you like your red dot, you can keep your red dot.

Trinity Nevada looks like it's taking on a few new projects in the meantime, like applying the Grand Zero treatment to the SIG Sauer P320.

SIG P320 with a Trinity slide.

SIG P320 with a Trinity slide.

Trinity Nevada's slides start at around $1200. Additionally, the company offers everything from parts to full-on builds.

Check them out at

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