Mossberg MC1SC 9mm

Legendary shotgun/rifle specialist zeroEs in on the CCW market

The second test MC1sc functioned 100 percent out of the box with
over 200+ rounds from four manufacturers.

Slim, subcompact 9mm concealed carry pistols are one of the hottest things on the firearms market today and Mossberg, most famous for its functional, reliable, affordable pump shotguns, is the latest company to jump into the market. One hundred years after their odd little four-chambered Brownie .22 of 1919, they have introduced the MC1sc.

MC1sc with 6-round mag in place, a GLOCK 43 mag for comparison (left), and 7-round extended Mossberg mag.

For Starters, Transparency

The MC1sc comes with a six-round flush magazine and an extended seven-rounder. Both magazines have transparent bodies, allowing easy count of the semi-staggered rounds in the stack, and the pistol is designed to accept magazines for the popular GLOCK 43. We found it would also fit our G43 holsters.

I found the MC1sc free of sharp edges, both in the holster and in the hand. Recoil was mild and the pistol came quickly back on target. Trigger reach is about the same as the G43 series — ideal for an average size adult male hand while those with shorter fingers have the pad (the whorl of the fingerprint) centered on the flat-faced trigger. Notable is a unique fieldstripping system we found quick and easy, licensed by Mossberg from Strike Industries.

Best of the best: 147-gr. Speer Gold Dot Bonded JHP at 25 yards from a bench rest. Magazine is for a G43.

Noteworthy Accuracy

Using my usual 5-shot testing protocol, the Mossberg delivered eye-opening results.

In the MC1sc, Federal 9BP standard-pressure 115-gr. JHP shot way low and left from point of aim, but punched a quintet of holes 3.15″ apart, with four of them in 1.95″ and the best three in 1.30″. Nosler’s pricey 124-gr. Match Grade JHP shot somewhat left and about 3.5″ low at 25 yards in the small Mossberg, but the group measured 2.45″ for all 5 and 1.30″ for the best three.

Speer Gold Dot 147-gr. bonded JHP is one of the most popular police rounds out there, and is famously accurate. It delivered the most impressive group of the test — 1.80″ for all five shots and seven-tenths of 1″ for the Best Three.

Accuracy has two practical perspectives. One is Point of Aim/Point of Impact (POA/POI), or where the bullets strike in relation to where they are aimed. If I had kept this specimen, I would have drifted the rear sight to the right, and ordered a lower front sight to raise point of impact. That being said, though, I was using a post-in-notch sight picture for the accuracy testing, though this pistol comes with 3 white dots embedded in the sights. At 25 yards, using the less-precise 3-dot sight picture, the mini-Mossberg was “on,” nailing 8″ Bianchi plates six for six. Because the dots sit below the top edges of the sights, any time you’re hitting low with post in notch, using the dots raises point of impact. Conversely, if you’re shooting high with a three-dot index, switching to post-in-notch will lower the point of impact.

The other element of accuracy is group size and here the Mossberg was simply outstanding. The “common custom and practice” says that 4″ for all five shots at 25 yards is “adequate service pistol accuracy” for a full-size 9mm. This pocketsize pistol easily made the grade, and going sub-2″ for 5 shots with 147-grain duty loads frankly impressed the hell out of me.

The unique takedown procedure, licensed from Strike Industries, is quick and easy.

Unusual transparent mags show round count and the semi-staggered cartridge column.

General Shootability

I ran the little MC1 subcompact on the “GLOCK the Plates” course from the GLOCK Sport Shooting Foundation matches. The Mossberg pistol competes in the market directly against the G43 slim-line subcompact, which fits in the GSSF Pocket GLOCK competition.

In this event, you face a Bianchi Cup table of six 8″ diameter steel plates and are timed as you shoot them from 11 yards. Only seven rounds are allowed in the gun, so with no fudge factor to make up for more than one miss, you have to shoot it conservatively while the timer is running. Each plate left un-hit costs you a 10-second penalty. You get four runs.

With the Mossberg, using the three dots, all four of my runs went six shots/six takedowns while times ranged from 5.21- 5.84 seconds. (I told you I shot it conservatively.) Compared to the last three GSSF matches I shot this year, two runs were distinctly faster with my familiar Pocket GLOCKs while the Mossberg would have beaten my worst score even though I was new to the MC1sc. I thought this spoke well of the Mossberg’s shootability.

Continuing my rundown of the MC1sc’s shooting characteristics, I ran it through a familiar 60-shot qualification course that includes reloads (one hand only with each hand), two-handed stances, and cover positions at distances, from 4 to 15 yards. Drawn from a Galco Yaqui slide type holster, the pistol handled best with the extended magazine in place and reloads were smooth — the mags fit snugly in a single-stack leather 1911 magazine pouch, but Kydex was just a skosh too tight. The slide lock lever was easy to use as a slide release for speed reloads. Final score was 300/300 — not the best group I’ve shot on the course, but all I could ask from a subcompact pistol.

Trigger pull is critical to the shootability element. The Mossberg’s pull characteristics — while similar to the other striker-fired pistols on the market — are not quite the same. There’s a distinct two-stage pull as on a GLOCK, but still different.

Pull weight was measured on a Lyman digital trigger pull gauge. Measured from the toe of the pivoting trigger, where there is more leverage and hence less resistance, pull weight averaged 5.59 lbs. Measured from the center of the trigger, where the index finger naturally falls when shooting, it wasn’t much more — 6.84 lbs. average. Mossberg specs the MC1’s trigger pull at 5 to 6 lbs. across a 1/2″ length of pull: Meh, close enough.

One solid tactical advantage of the MC1sc is, unlike most semi-auto pistols, it will fire with the muzzle pressed against a firm object, like the ribcage of an assailant. I’m surprised this feature, known as standoff capability, is not heavily advertised.

Standoff capability: Paper flies as Mas kills a dull hardcover book at muzzle-contact distance.

If this were a bad guy at contact distance, the MC1sc would really ruin his day — and keep running!

The Reliability Factor

We had a minor issue with our first test gun. At the end of each full magazine, the trigger pin was protruding from the left side of the frame but it could be pushed back by hand. The pin never came all the way out or tied up the gun, but was pushed back into place after every stage of the qualification and every string of fire on steel.

While the pistol had no feeding or ejection issues, I contacted Mossberg and found there had been some prior reports of the trigger pin protrusion. Those reports resulted in a change in trigger pin configuration, which solved the problem. They offered to send a second pistol as a replacement.

To Mossberg’s credit, the replacement gun arrived quickly. I took it to the range the next day, and soon four ammo boxes lay empty. The second specimen perked 100 percent straight out of its box and there were no problems with the trigger pin. I’m satisfied Mossberg had indeed fixed the early problem with the trigger pin.

Bottom Line

Our test team was pleased with the shootability of the MC1sc and particularly with the accuracy for its size. We appreciated the way Mossberg owned the problems with the first test gun and quickly made it right. The 100 percent performance of the second test gun was confirmatory to Mossberg’s word they had corrected the trigger pin problem in current production. At $425 MSRP, certainly less “on the street” in today’s competitive market, this little 9mm carry gun shows promise to live up to Mossberg’s long-earned reputation for reliability and value.

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