From its 1,517,000 range serial number and from its Z 1 date code, this Star model BM Pistol was manufactured in 1980. Star, Bonifacio Echeverria S.A. of Eibar, Spain quickly caught the attention of Europe, the Middle East, and even the United States with their excellent quality pistols that went into production in 1934. Israeli Defense Forces had this one’s ancestor, the Star Model B, as one of their sidearms during the War for Independence in 1948. This Compact variant served with distinction in the Mishteret Y’Israel, the Israeli Civilian Police in Jerusalem District, a 20,000 officer strong agency that has seen considerable latitude in its issue weapons. This particular specimen’s slide is marked CSP, Spanish Guardia marking. Its only alien marking is required by US Law, the importer stamp PW Arms Redmond WA on the left forward side of the frame. The Star BM Compact Variant went online in 1972, some time before Detonics invented their compact; while Smith & Wesson Compacts were only to be had through the Devel Company. And Colt, who followed suit only some 15 years later with their Officer’s ACP, was nowhere in the league at the time. Specs are all steel construction single action semi-auto pistol chambered in 9mm Parabellum, 9mm Luger, 9x19, call it what you will, THE 9mm. John Moses Browning’s influence is evident from the photos, a descendant of his Model of 1911. The Echeverria Brothers left off Browning’s somewhat complicated Grip Safety, so the grip frame backstrap is smooth finished blue steel. The main safety engages in a well defined slot on the left side of the slide, and the main safety functions in two positions, both with the hammer back on cocked-and-locked carry, and with the hammer down in resting position. The safety lever also engages into a disassembly position midways of the slide. This pistol is not equipped with a firing pin safety, hence its stiff but crisp 6 pound vicinity trigger pull with negligible felt creep. Barrel bushing is distinctive, Tokarev style, and it anchors both the barrel securely into place and also anchors the one piece hardened steel guide rod. The rod is constructed both to ensure exceptional accuracy, and for easy disassembly and reassembly due to it housing its spring integrally, another ancestral feature that Detonics picked up on a few years later. Magazine is blue steel Star Factory, and capacity is 8 + 1 rounds of 9mm Luger. Sights are blue steel low profile combat, notched dovetailed rear and stake on steel ramp front. Weight empty is 34.2 ounces, balanced at the magazine release area of the trigger guard. Slide is serrated rear sight external extractor and grooved top. Barrel is 3 5/8 inches. Trigger is .312 white sides with blued serrated face, and hammer is matching traditional serrated medium spur .312. Measurements are 6 7/8 inches from the muzzle to the rear of the frame strut; 5 inches from the top of the rear sight to the butt edge of the grip frame; .704 inch frame thickness and .838 inch slide thickness. Grip panels are factory issue black checkered composite, and custom grips are widely available and reasonably priced. This specimen of the Star BM 9 is well maintained, and its surface detractions are only moderate, with edge whitening, one whitened place above the CSP marking on right side of slide; a small amount of scouring on its grip frame front- and back-straps; and light toning at places on the un-blued surfaces. We classify it as Very Good, since no more than 20 percent of its surfaces are affected in our estimation; photos, however, ought to suffice for our distinguished shoppers to judge finish grade for themselves. It is Excellent mechanically; bore, chamber, and mechanism are all bright, clean, and excellent. Replacement pricing for anything similar, none of it Spanish, is in the $500 - $1000 range on this type pistol. We’re offering the Spanish – Israeli Star BM 9 in the photos, however, for only $ 289.00.
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