Small arms manufacturer and importer Century Arms just announced a safety warning regarding select Canik pistols. These pistols may discharge when loaded if subject to extended stress-testing.
The safety notice only affects select polymer-frame Canik pistols, the TP9SA, TP9SF, TP9SFx, TP9SF Elite and the TP9SF Elite-S. Other Canik-made pistols including their popular CZ-inspired designs are unaffected.
“All Canik pistols comply with and exceed current industry and military abusive handling standards,” said Century in a statement. “There are no safety concerns with the pistols when used under ordinary conditions.”
Century is working on an upgrade program to handle the issue. The company expects to have their website updated and the program in place by Friday, Sept. 8. All owners are encouraged to contact Century customer service, particularly if they have been severely dropped or beaten.
“Evaluations and tests have shown that repeated abusive dropping of pistols may result in damage to safety features and unintentional discharge,” states the warning.
Century says that hard and repeated drops can lead to damaged fire control group parts. If these components deform badly enough the pistols may become unsafe and fire unintentionally.
The company also discourages the use of third-party components, stating that aftermarket parts can “decrease or disable” the gun’s safety features.
The TP family of Canik pistols has seen a great deal of success with American shooters. These low-cost pistols offer very modern feature sets and range from all-purpose self-defense and concealed-carry models to entry-level competition pistols.
The voluntary program includes a complete inspection and upgraded trigger safety spring and firing pin block spring. Upgraded pistols use the same design and won’t alter any of the guns’ features. Because these guns stand out for their quality triggers and other controls this is very good news.
Century will provide the upgrade at no cost to Canik users. While the fix is voluntary, the serious nature of the flaw should have all Canik users’ attention.
Century and Canik aren’t the only companies affected by these sorts of issues. Recently SIG announced a similar voluntary upgrade program for their P320 series of pistols.
Like with the TP series, users found that the P320 could discharge when dropped at a specific angle. Because the problem is fundamental to the P320 design, it affects virtually all of the P320 pistols produced prior to the discovery of the flaw.
The discovery of SIG’s flaw led directly to a wave of independent drop testing by professionals and enthusiasts alike. Guns of every make and manufacturer are being torture-tested to all-new levels. It wouldn’t be surprising if this interest in unconventional drop testing is what revealed the problem with these TP pistols.
Both the TP and P320 series pistols passed rigorous drop safety tests conforming to a wide range of industry and military standards.
This independent testing reveals that these industry standards may no longer be adequate for modern handgun design. These tests were largely developed to prove steel-framed, hammer-fired handguns. Today the polymer-framed, striker-fired pistol is standard for the majority of shooters public and private.