Issue 36 PCC Sushi Nick Saiti Join the Conversation Photos by Kenda Lenseigne There was time in my life when I didn’t even want to try sushi. Dude, could you at least throw it on the grill for a minute? There are plenty of things to eat in this world without resorting to uncooked seafood. But lots of people love it and trumpet how healthy and delicious it is. Eventually, I couldn’t bear the looks of shock and disgust from people who found out I was a sushi virgin. Succumbing to peer pressure, I took the plunge. It was good — not life changing — but I enjoyed it. Now, when I’m in the mood for sushi I have my favorite spot, but honestly I wouldn’t mind going the rest of my life without eating another piece of raw fish. Bait is for fishing anyway.(Editor’s note: If Nick knew as much about cuisine as he does about guns and shooting, he would know that sushi refers to dishes made from vinegar and rice that may or may not actually include raw seafood. But we get his point, while we enjoy our sashimi and PCCs.) Initially, I treated pistol caliber carbines (PCCs) the same way. A rifle in an inferior pistol caliber just doesn’t sound appetizing, and the real estate in the safe is far too precious to waste on an AR-15 with training wheels. I eventually shot one, and just like a raw fish dinner, it didn’t initially float my boat. The idea of a PCC fell on the back burner, until they started popping up at the local pistol matches, where using a PCC is a definite advantage. Unlike many designs, on this one the last round hold open feature works reliably — note the long lever running along the left side of magwell. Chamfered lugs mean the bolt doesn’t really lock, but sucks up recoil force to operate. PCCs always get compared to rifles — that’s where they fall short, but when pitted against pistols they pull ahead. Way ahead. Shooting a pistol at 25 yards requires focus, while hitting at fifty yards with a PCC is no problem. One of the reasons a pistol is harder to shoot than a rifle is the number of points of contact it offers. With a pistol you only get one, with both hands mashed up on the grip, but with a long gun you get four. Your shoulder, cheek, firing hand, and support hand all contact the gun at different points to create a stable platform. It feels like cheating, and pistol shooters often treat it as such. I don’t care about the dirty looks; I’m now a self-proclaimed PCC guy. It’s been years since my last foray into the PCC world, but for the most part, technology hasn’t progressed much, with the AR-15 still being a popular platform choice due to its familiar ergonomics and the seemingly infinite number of accessories. As with almost every major handgun sport in the world, the cartridge of choice for PCC seems to be 9mm. The point of contention is how the gun operates. Heated arguments about spring weights, buffer setups, optics, and the effectiveness of compensators echo across the range parking lot, and things start getting out of hand when shooters use the number of sexual partners your mother had as a rebuttal for a compensator fluid dynamics argument. In the end, as with most equipment discussions, it becomes a matter of personal preference versus analytics. There have been a few choices when it comes to PCC operating systems. Some of them are harder to understand than Japanese game shows, but the most prevalent option is direct blowback. This is the cheapest and simplest method of cycling the little 9mm round. Adding weight to the bolt, buffer, and buffer spring works to keep the chamber closed. The downside to this system is the additional felt recoil with all that weight added to the reciprocating parts. The other option is to delay the blowback by adding another link somewhere in the chain, essentially cushioning the blow of recoil and adding to the complexity of the moving parts. Roller-delayed blowback, pistons, and rotating and toggling parts add to the confusion. Another downside is added machining increases the cost, which trickles down to the end user as a higher price tag. There has to be a better way. For the rest of this article, subscribe here: RECOIL Issue 36 Explore RECOILweb:Curated Offers: Wireless Earbuds Offer Listening FreedomFN Launches SCAR 20S in 6.5Next generation hearing protection: TEA's RAC headsetSalient Arms International "Jailbreak" Muzzle Device NEXT STEP: Download Your Free Target Pack from RECOILFor years, RECOIL magazine has treated its readers to a full-size (sometimes full color!) shooting target tucked into each big issue. Now we've compiled over 50 of our most popular targets into this one digital PDF download. 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