Kahr CW45 review

kahr-cw4543.jpg

Kahr have posted a review of their lightweight Kahr CW45 .45 ACP pistol. The review appears in the upcoming Jab/Feb issue of Handgun magazine. Veteran gun reviewer Paul Scarlata writes:

I believe the CW45 would be an excellent choice for those fans of large caliber handguns who need–or just want–a lightweight, easily concealable, fine shooting pistol chambered for the most popular big bore pistol cartridge of all time.

Whether you are a police detective, armed professional, licensed civilian or homeowner, the CW45 should be capable of doing whatever you want or need a pistol to doóat an economical price.

Kahr Cw4543
Kahr CW45

Read the full review here.


Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


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  • Aaron Conaway

    I have one of these guys. I really hate it.

    The grips are horrible, and it feels like you’re holding little spikes even after my doctoring them up. The size of the gun fits in my hand fairly well but not well enough to control a .45ACP round (its about the same size as my wife’s CW9 that I love). I put about 500 rounds through it before putting it up for consignment.

    Anyone want to buy it? :)

  • Daymon

    how much?

  • david

    I have a cw 45 had it 2 days then its been in the factory
    every time I shoot it the mag and the empty cartrige falls
    out of the bottom they still have not fixed it this the third
    time it goues back wood never buy another one

  • Matt

    I bought one of these about 4 months ago and have experienced problems with the mag dropping before a round the last round of the mag is chambered (happens no matter how many rounds I load and leaves the chamber closing with no round). I am a police officer and need a more reliable weapon. Purchase with caution……

  • Geoffrey

    I bought one because my father bought one. When I shot mine, the grips really do hurt your hand. The top of the mags can slice your fingers, especially when you are trying to load the last round. The really silly part is when I would shoot two round, the mag would drop completely out of the mag weld, which would completely put me out of a fight. I emailed Kahr, no response. I called and left a message, no response. I called again and listened to their waiting music for about half an hour then talked to a tech. He explained to me that they put out a batch of weapons with a bad mag release button and that they would send me another one. When I got the release, I tried to install it myself to no avail. I talked to a tech who made it sound like I was doing something wrong and that it was so simple. I simply cannot get the old release out to get the new one in. And I was the grunt who could break his weapon down and put in back together in about half a minute. This is a lot of trouble to go through for a brand new weapon. My H&K’s never gave me this kind of problem. Something told me I should not have bought this and instead got an H&K, but I wanted to go the cheaper route for once. You get what you pay for I guess.

  • http://www.thefirearmblog.com Self Defense

    I bought a CW45 when they first came out – no issues whatsoever…

    Regarding the comment about the “spikes on the grip hurt my wittle hands…”

    This weapon was specifically designed for conceal carry. If you actually have to shoot at someone it will most likely be within 7 yards. Also this is a double action weapon so the grip provides additional stability when you are standing there with sweat all over your hands and you are scared but ready to defend yourself.

    If you bought the CW45 as a range toy you obvioulsy made a mistake and need to think about the intended use of a given firearm before you buy one…

  • http://FirearmBlog M Sackman

    I purchased the CW 45 a few months ago and here are the results. Very accurate. I was surprised just how accurate it was. Grips to me felt fine. Concealability is also good. Realibility……I had it jam up a few times during the first 200 rounds but hasnt since. The complaint about the magazine falling out I also experienced. I’m not sure if it is a mechanical flaw or that the placement of the release button is such to where your hand accidently pushes down on the button during firing. Since there ae numerous unexplained issues with this weapon I’m not totally sure that I would use this for concealed protection due to it reliability issues. I’m going to shoot more rounds through it at the range and see if it works itself out or continues to become an issue.

  • Geoffrey

    I bought a CW45 when they first came out – no issues whatsoever…

    Regarding the comment about the “spikes on the grip hurt my wittle hands…”

    This weapon was specifically designed for conceal carry. If you actually have to shoot at someone it will most likely be within 7 yards. Also this is a double action weapon so the grip provides additional stability when you are standing there with sweat all over your hands and you are scared but ready to defend yourself.

    If you bought the CW45 as a range toy you obvioulsy made a mistake and need to think about the intended use of a given firearm before you buy one…

    Mr. Tough Guy,

    The fact is that many people are having trouble with the mag release on this weapon. Let’s say you are so tough that you do not not feel the grips biting into your hands after two magazines, awesome. In your scenario, you will be within 7 yards, sweating ect…. which is realistic and practical. You fire one round, then your magazine drops out….now what? Ask Mr. Bad Guy to wait while you replace your magazine since that never happened at the range, because you were so tough you didn’t notice it happened? That kind of malfunction from a brand new weapon is ridiculous and could cost someone their life. Yes, it is for carrying concealed, thank you Captain obvious. But if it drops mags out after one round in a CONTROLLED range environment, it will likely FAIL in a HIGH STRESS situation. You may as well carry around a staple gun. Or maybe then you would utilize your black belt in Bullshido. Just google “Kahr CW45 magazine drop.” I could not risk my family’s life on such a failure of a weapons. It is now gone. Never again.

    • Just The Facts

      He can always blow his rape whistle… the reason the grips don’t hurt his hands is because he is obese.

  • joe aycock

    I’m a little bit late for this discussion, but here’s my comment, anyhow. I’ve had my CW45 for about three months, and have shot it extensively using USA hardball ammunition. I have not tried any HP in it yet. I have had no problems whatsoever with feeding, no misfires, no magazines dropping out. The pistol is more accurate that I would have expected for something so small, and very controllable. The checkering on the grips does make it uncomfortable for extended shooting unless you wear a glove, but, as has been pointed out, this is not a target pistol. It is for self defense, where only a few rounds will be fired at a relatively close range.

    Something worth mentioning is that regular 1911 magazines can be modified to work quite well in in the CW45, and still work in the Colt, at least in my Lightweight Commander. The only requirement is to cut the forward part of the two magazine walls down about 1/16 inch and use the new style “captured” follower instead of the traditional sheet metal one. I’m not sure what how this would affect the warranty, but certainly no more than shooting handloads, which every serious shooter who I know already does.

  • T. English

    I got a Kahr CW45 this summer. I bought it for the small package and the firepower.
    I could not have bought it at an worst time (6/15/09) You can not find any ammo right now due to the political stress and the wars overseas. Ammo is high and scarce. People are stockpiling ammo and Wal-mart has a six case limit. Good luck with this fall’s hunting season, rifle and shotgun ammo are bountiful, but handgun ammo is being bought up and stored like it’s the end of the world.
    However I did make several trips to wal-mart and Bass Pro and found a couple of boxes. I ran 100 rounds of Winchester white box through it with only one issue: The magazine came out. The gun is small and powerfull and I ended up contacting Kahr and they sent me and RMA and put in a heavier spring. I got it back and ran another 100 rounds of WWB through it without any issues. Then I ran some Remington Hollow Point through it without any issue. Good gun, great gun.
    Please be warned: this gun (CW45) will not fire re-loads or forgien ammo. This gun is made on a CNC machine and is TIGHT. Only USA factory ammo will work.
    I love the small package, and it’s lightweight. Great for a CCW either with a belly band (that I wear as a shoulder holster) or a inside the waistband holster.
    As long as you can find (and afford) USA ammo, it’s a great gun.

  • Geoffrey

    If Kahr can’t get mags right, what else are they doing wrong that we have not discovered until we have to use it?

    “I ran 100 rounds of Winchester white box through it with only one issue: The magazine came out.”

    That’s not a big deal? I guess I would rather read that than “I drew it, fired one shot at a perp, the mag dropped out, the perp got me and my family.”
    I guess I just value myself and my family a bit much to trust it to something like that.

  • 2DOOR

    I am having the same problem with my CW 45. Mag falls lose a lot. I also agree that customer service is weak at best. I guess my only advise would be, sell it on line and buy a Glock. I have nearly 10,000 rounds through mine. Never had an issue.

  • matt

    wow, thats too bad… all the horror stories with the cw45! i just purchased one and was excited to run some rounds through it, but youve all got me wanting to run back to the gun store before i even fire it. maybe that hk would have been better…damn!.
    the whole magazine falling out issue is huge, and would never want to have an unreliable pistol in an emergency (obviously). also.. knowing now that kahr has lousy customer relations discourages me even further. bummer.

  • T. English

    Follow-up.
    There are to many guns out there that are better than Kahr. I think Kahr needs to come out and say there is an issue with the CW45. It’s just two tight. No gun should be THAT ammo sensitive. There are to many complaints that are simular in nature to make me believe they are random acts.

    Plus the expence of burning 200 rounds of ammo through it for “break in” is just expensive and somewhat dumb thinking this is the 21st century. I did a trade (even) and got a used Smith and Wesson 642. It does not need a break in, it fits in my pocket, it shoots any and all ammo, and it goes “bang” everytime I pull the trigger.
    Sorry Kahr, I gave you a try and it will go down as one of my mistakes. It will make someone a nice gun, I just got sick of it after all the trouble I went through. I did not want to look at it, carry it or shoot it. I made me want to puke. I fooled with it all summer long and I should have listened to my pop and went with a wheel gun.
    I don’t post blogs like this often. But it was a $449 for the gun, Plus $300 in finding the right ammo the gun liked and running 200 rounds through it. All in all, it was an $800 mistake. Plus the expence of air shipping in sending the gun back for a magazine that kept popping out.

  • sm sports

    i am an ffl dealer & i have to tell you i must be the only person that has never had a problem. i hope i didn’t just jinx myself. the first time i picked up the gun the grips did feel strange. i use this as my carry piece and love it. the only ammo i have ever used at the range is cci blazers 230 gr fmj. after 500 rounds never a jam or miss fire & really like the grips. i only fired 100 rd’s each time so i don’t know if it would have jamed if i fired a few hundred rounds at one time. i didn’t clean or carry the gun. i wanted to wait for the first 500 rounds. as for customer service, i called once & was on terminal hold for 15 min. there is no reason for that. i did this post to give someone the good sides of the CW45.

  • Dan Cantrell

    I bought a Kahr CW45 on 8/29/09. On 9/1 I was sending it back after tryng to fire it. It jammed in all kind of ways and the mag fell out. they have since “repaired” it and sent it back. I’m anxious to see if it works. They replaced the mag catch and the slide lock springs since the side lock was working it’s way out during shooting. Customer service sucked. They won’t be in business long.

  • RICH

    I bought my Kahr CW45 a little over a week ago and something must be wrong with mine after reading some of the comments! The first day I owned it, I took it out of the box and shot 250rds through it with absolutely no problems. That 250rds included Winchester white box 230FMJ, 185FMJ reloads, 185JHP reloads and cast 230RN reloads. No FTL, FTF or FTE; no problems at all. I really like the grips as I have a large hand. I was amazed at the accuracy out of a 3.64″ barrel. I ripped the center out of targets from 10′ to 35′. If I would say something negative; the muzzle blast is tremendous. It must be the short barrel. I also love the way it fits my front left pocket.

  • David

    ATTENTION: Kahr states all of their guns need a 200 round break-in period. If you can’t afford 200 rounds to meet this goal, get a job. If you have complained about the functioning of the pistol during this break-in period, you are a complete tool. The Kahr line of guns is high quality and you will have a lifetime of enjoying these fine weapons.

    My piece is flawless, carries very well, and is a fine shooter.

  • Mark Tondee

    After having a similar mag drop problem repeatedly with my kahr, I tried one handed firing of 100 rounds and made sure I was nowhere near the mag release button, no problems. 500 rounds later it has never happened again. I have since changed my two-handed grip position and now love my Pistol.

  • Larry Amerson

    I just bought a Kahr CW today after comparing it to a sig p226. I like that the Karh was .45, lighter, and I like the way it looked better. I am a Army recruiter and don’t have any spare time to go to the range, until maybee 2 weeks from now. I didn’t realize that the magizine fell out but I am willing to give a couple hundred rounds to find out. I love the way the grips feel and how slim the handle is compared to other guns I’ve owned (to include a XDM .40). All in all I just hope that I don’t have the same problem with the magizine every on here seems to have had.

  • Peter

    Matt’s Post 5/21/09:
    “I bought one of these about 4 months ago and have experienced problems with the mag dropping before a round the last round of the mag is chambered (happens no matter how many rounds I load and leaves the chamber closing with no round). I am a police officer and need a more reliable weapon. Purchase with caution……”

    I.m having the same problem with my CW45. I have 3 mags and on each mag the mag would drop on before the last round was chambered. I tried it with 3, 4, 5, and 6 rounds and the same thing happened. It would drop with one round left in the mag. I thought at first it was my grip but taking care that I wasn’t hitting the mag release I’m sure it’s something wrong in the design. I think I’ll contact Kahr Arms and see what they will do about this.

  • Bill T

    I’ve been reading reviews now for the past several weeks and it seems that either you love the CW45 or you hate it. I happen to love mine. I’ve been a law enforcement officer for 31 years, local, state, and federal. I carried everything from 1911’s in the 70’s to the Sig 229 (357 Sig). I also own a S&W M&P in 357 Sig but it was a bit large to conceal comfortably. I bought the CW45 mainly for it’s compact size and caliber but the $449.00 price tag was a big plus as well. I’ve put about 200 rounds through it, using several different brands of ammo, but always staying with the 230gr ball round. I happen to like that round and it’s what I plan to shoot in it. I had absolutely no issues or malfunctions. It’s plenty accurate enough for me (and I’m picky about accuracy) and I didn’t have issue with the recoil or grips. I’ll certainly keep this one, and not hesitate to recommend it to anyone else for it’s intended purpose.

  • Peter

    I emailed Kahr Arms and receive notice that they suspect it’s the mag catch causing the problem. They responded within 24 hours and mailed a replacement part. Hasn’t gotten here yet and I hope it is the solution since I like the CW45. All in all, Kahr was very quick to respond and showed a willingness to solve the problem. I’ve owned several 9MM Kahrs over the past 25 years and was very satisfied with the pieces. Not all of them required the 200 round break-in period to function reliably.

  • Larry Amerson

    I just got back from the range today and I had no problems with my CW .45. I managed 2.5″ shot groups at 20 yards with Federal’s American Eagle 230 gr. ammo.I shot 250 rounds ( I have a JOB I’m a 19 D in the army and on recruiting duty so I can afford ammo) As far as the magazine release, there are magazines that the follower will drop the magazine as it travels upwards on the next to last round. I wish I had bookmarked the site where it shows which magazine has a proper follower and which has a bad one but I can’t seem to find it. Anyways this gun is a keeper, and you can criticize the CW .45 all you want about its ergonomics but you held it before you bought it…… right? Approximately $400-$450 for a 20 oz. .45 that’s pretty good if you ask me. Like I said I had no malfunctions and recoil was more than manageable. I only wish that it had a rail and that they would maybe make disassembly a little easier other than that this gun is great, on a scale of 1-10 I would give the CW a 9.

  • Larry Amerson

    So I went back to the range agian today with a CSM from another battlion and handed him my CW .45. While shooting it it almost came apart… I was pretty embarrassed to say the least. so back to the gun shop with it to trade for a xd sub compact.

  • http://[email protected] del,God

    This comment is for M.sackman, my perspective about your magazine poppen out and the grips being to rough for your,lotioned up hands, its called CHANGING A GRIP…SON Also if your droppen the magizine out when your shooting then there is an issue with you knowing how to use your firearm MY FRIEND,I WOULD BE MORE THAN HAPPY TO GIVE YOU A FEW FRIENDLY TIPS COMMENT ME BACK BUDDY! Also if your in a life and death situation i diffinetley am not gonna let my clip fall out! thats why you always hold your non trigger hand under the mag of the pistol while fireing…. but for future reference take a shooters coarse MAN IT REALLY HELPS, you might actually learn how to shoot the\PROFESSIONAL way! MAYBE TOO MUCH PISTOL FOR YA BUDDY TRY A LIL RIMFIRE .22 SO YOU CAN LEARN THE BASICS BEFORE YOU TRY TO MOVE UP TO A BIG BORE GUN! ALSO IF YOU NEED MORE TIPS LET ME KNOW IM ONLY ADVACED SHOOTER NOT A PRO! BUT I GREW UP SHOOTING ALL MY LIFE, AND KAHRS ARE SOME OF THE BEST BIG BORE CALIBERS FOR CONCEALMENT AND FOR MAKING NICE GROUPINGS, HOPE THIS HELPED YA PALL!

  • Memphis Kahr

    I bought a CW 45 after I was determined to buy a Taurus PT 145. I hadn’t done my homework on price, function, realiability, like i usually do. When I went to a buddies house to go shooting I couldn’ thit the braod side of a barn. And my comedian friend offered to paint a target on his barn. I handed the Kahr to him, he hit bullseye at 20ft. I tried again and got worse. I handed it to him with one round in it and told him to do it again. He did. When I sent to go reload with some Wolf, the gun stayed jammed on that round. i took it to Ed Mason in Memphis, he cleared it out for $10 bucks and gave me a lesson in safely getting live rounds out. I went home upset and read decided to read some articles by Mas Ayoob (sp?), and a few other online sources. I then went to a range for the first time with an former marine buddy. He gave me a few more pointers. I all the sudden became a crack shot. This pistol appreciates someone that can shoot well. When I got home I cleaned it and snagged the trigger bar spring on a swab square. I looked everywhere online to see if the spring is suppose to stick out a little or not. Its a $7 part from Kahr, but I hate to get one if I dont need it. I looked at another Kahr at a gun shop and it is exposed on that one as well. I have found that the Kahr is sensitive but will give you good results if you do your part. I’m having a buddy cycle 20 rounds through it to see if it is still working correctly. By the way at the range we used some 5 year old crappy reloads, and the sigs jammed but the kahr did not. I LOVE sigs by the way. But I am also starting to love the Kahr if I can keep from damaging it, through no fault of its own. It might be that I got a good one. I have been shooting about 300 rounds a month give or take for about two years. I just now can actually say I am a descent shooter. The Kahr unlocked the magic from within. Even if I tossed it in the garbage I would still not regret buying it. If it would not have demanded better shooting on my part I would still be just a punk that goes through some ammo. Even the Sig crazed marine said that he might look at one after shooting mine. I was going to buy a 220 compact, but decided to go for another gun since I now have a range/defense gun that I enjoy shooting. FWIW I have shot Kimbers, Glocks, Sigs, Para, SA, Taurus, and even a baby eagle in .45 prefer the Kahr. I also thought I was a SA/DA type of guy, the Kahr changed that as well. I would make sure that you get the same bad results from other shooters, especially good ones before you start thinking its the pistol. This gun is not a beginners gun. It is small and big bore, not a beginners combo. I just can’t believe that mine changed my shooting life and others are cussing it from the get go. Dry fire 90%, Live fire 10%. This will improve your skill beyond belief. And its a whole lot cheaper. I got this lesson from front site instructor. Happy shooting and sorry for the long post I hope it was worth the read.

  • Peter

    I got the mag release from Kahr and installed it. Took it to the range put 50 rounds through it without the mag dropping once. Marksmanship improved as I shot and probably is a mix of my getting used to the gun and the gun beginning to break in and function more smoothly. I like it. The folks at Kahr were very responsive and helpful. The person who I talked to called me to see if I had any trouble installing the part told me to contact him if anything souls come up in the future. All in all I’m quite happy with the CW45 and the service.

  • Lee

    I am considering one of these for CCW, and thank everyone for their input. I am concerned about the mag dropping, but I am as concerned about some of the posters here, who supposedly bought this for CCW. Note one thing friends, a CCW gun is to protect you and your family, it is not a range toy. When you shoot this, or any CCW gun, use the ammo you will carry in it, i.e. high quality hollow point ammo, not reloads (unless you know what you are doing), not fmj range rounds. And spend time with it! It is expensive to shoot HP’s at a range, but my lord think about this gun, your reason for owning it, and what it means to you. The guys who get CCW and buy a gun, then don’t ever practice with it should probably leave your weapon at home, or just stay home. If you cannot afford to put in the time with your CCW weapon, using expensive, high quality ammo, then you should not carry. You have to be able to neutralize the threat to you, allowing you to escape unharmed. Think about this folks, you need to know exactly how the gun will react in these instances, God forbid they ever happen. Don’t mean to be on a soapbox, just think about it.

    Happy shooting..

    Lee

  • Memphis Kahr

    Lee,

    I think that you aren’t taking in to account those of us that view this particular piece as both a great defensive weapon but also a good shooting pistol as well. If you aren’t suppose to use defensive weapons as range guns as well, you would propably shut down the firearms industry. LEO practice with reloads, gunsite, frontsite, and every other training facility I know of uses reloads, or FMJ. If you can afford nothing but Hollow points than I would imagine that you would want a Wilson combat or another high end piece. This gun is cheaper than a lot of other guns than it would replace…i.e. glocks, SA XD’s, even a Sig 220 Compact in my case. I doubt the average CW45 owner bought it because it was the absolute best that they could find. Its a bargain and it does what I want it to do. If I win the lottery it might get put in the safe, but until then its going to ride with me to the range with whatever ammo I have to shoot with it. I think shooting a round that might not group exactly the same as my carry loads will make little difference to the bad guy that I shot a 3″ group at center mass versus a 2″. I will listen to his gripe if he decides to make those his last words. I will even take head to the officer that might critique my one flier that hit 4″ to his lower intestine. But the point is my training will save my life with my reloads or my FMJ. I wouldn’t go as often if I was restricted to HP only. But to your other point. One must practice. Practicing with good cheap ammo is just as good as your carry load at the end of the day. I always buy a box of carry load to cycle through a new gun after that its reloads and WWB for me. As is the rest of the shooting world except Lee.

  • Mark Tondee

    Thanks, Lee for the most sensible and practical argument I’ve read. Couldn’t agree more.
    One thing I’ve noted about internet reviews, people by nature seldom post reports when things go well. We seldom take time to comment when things work like they should. I have read many horror stories about glocks, but we all know, like them or not, they are proven. The Kahr owners I have talked with in person have been extreemly positive. If the majority of people had these problem, Kahr would be out of business in 6 months.

  • Memphis Kahr

    Im sorry I still think the HP’s only at the range is one of the most ignorant things I have ever heard of. Know your gun, practice a lot. These are obvious statements. Mark Tondee needs to read more. HP on a range only would get people killed. Practice with whatever folks. Shame on Lee and Mark.

  • Mark Tondee

    Sorry my mistake, I meant to give props to Memphis Kahr’s post not Lee’s. Sorry for the error. Thanks, Mark

  • Larry Amerson

    ok well I did trade my Kahr in on a Sig P220 compact and I have to tell I love the difference. Don’t get me wrong the Kahr was nice-light, accurate, and I did like the ergnoimcs but once the slide lock came out while one of the CSM’s from another battalion was shooting- like I said I was pretty embarresed. So, anyways I do like the sig more but then I think you get what you pay for. If I do buy a Kahr in the future it will be a P series.

  • Marlon

    Love my KAHR CW45. Cant miss with it. Won a steak dinner from buddy. Hit a 2X2 foot target at 100yrd 3 out of 5 times. Split a SINGLE playing card at 21 feet with it. It has never jammed for me. This is a weapon of choice for me to carry.

  • Rick Clark

    Looked at two of the CW45 today, and they still had price tags from 2007 and they wanted $599 for them. I am wondering if I should by one? with a 50-50 arguments good and bad.
    I think maybe they have fixed the problems in the later years. I think I will buy a box of fifty rounds and see if the range master will let me shoot it.
    I have the CW9 KAHR and love it, never had a problem with it.
    I am an open carry type guy, I always want the bad guy to know what is coming his way.
    I pack My Colt AR15-9mm in my truck at all times, never know what will happen, since NAM.
    Hope I make the right choice? Rick

  • Aaron

    Went to buy a Xd .45 compact today for my carry weapon…was surprised when the gun dealer (a very respectable, experienced dude) at the gun store remarked about the Kahr CW45. I also was also looking at the Kel Tec PM9- but I had issues with the magazine releasing as I fired the weapon!!! Although a great weapon, the P3AT will do the job for a front-pocket, local carry.

    So, based on a lot of your comments I can summize that I need to pay attention to the date of manufacture of my soon-to-have Kahr as well as through a couple hundred rounds though it as well.

    I like .45s and feel comfortable buying this as a personal CHL weapon. The XD .45 (not compact) will be in the dresser drawer…and I can always buy some .45 ammo to practice on both.

    Thanks for all your words…I agree that most people only take the time to tell us what went wrong rather than what went right…so I will report right or wrong how my purchase went in a couple weeks.

    A

  • 2DOOR

    I thought I would revisit the site here to follow up with my CW45. I think I have had every issue mentioned happen to me including the slide/ take down pin coming out. ( this was not during live fire). After several hundred rounds and some help from an ATK Armorer, here are my findings.
    The mag falling out is a combination of both shooting grip and a weak spring. Lets face it, we all either shoot a Glock or a 1911 and this smaller gun’s location of the mag release is troublesome. Waiting on my replacemnt spring now and we’ll see how it works out. Next, the take down pin. I think my failure was just that, my habit of riding my trigger finger down the frame, even when racking a round aided in pushing this pin out. Last but not least, I wanted to address an issue that I haven’t read much about on this site. My gun, new in the box, aquired a “patina” before I could ever shoot the thing. I contacted Kahr about the rust issue and was told there was nothing they could do for me except charge me 165.00 to beadblast in back to orig. condition, and I had to pick up the shipping. They also said they would not coat it or even offer a coating for the CW.

    I close with my recommendations IF you want to keep your gun after all these issues. 1st. Shoot the darn thing a lot. I seem to do very well running Gold Dot 230’s through it. 2nd, Invest in having the slide, barrel and anything else your going to sweat on coated. I sent mine off to Gander Mountain and am pleased with the results of their Teflon Coating. It was only 5$ more than Kahr to have it returned to stainless. finally, if you have never shot a quality handgun like a Glock or a Sig. DO SO. feel whats it’s like to pick it up and fire 15 rnds through it as fast as you can and know the mag is not going to fall out. money invested I know, but I seem to have remedied most of the issues.

  • Scott

    I have a Glock 17 and 21 and couldn’t be happier with them. So when I planned on getting my concealed carry, I couldn’t wait to go looking for a Glock 27, 30 or 36. Before heading out to the gun shops, I decided to do some research into the major brands, read blogs and educate myself in buying a concealed carry weapon. The best piece of advice that I found said the best concealed carry weapon is the one you will carry with you. I wanted a gun that was comfortable and reliable and small enough to carry concealed. Unfortunately none of the smaller Glocks fit my hand well. I’m a big guy with big hands and just couldn’t make it work without making the gun bigger in size, which kind of defeats the purpose of concealed carry. I picked up 26 guns and really liked the way the Kahr CW45 fit my hand. It was the most comfortable size wise that I tried. I also noticed that the checking on the front and back of the grip was aggressive, but figured a Hogue Handall jr. grip would fix that. I wasn’t very familiar with Kahr, so I waited and went home to educate myself again. After reading several reviews, blogs, and talking with people, I still wasn’t sure. I found a smaller gun shop owned by a retired cop who said that Kahr was an excellent product and that he carried a Kahr and has for 15 years with no problems. I bought it and couldn’t wait to get to the range.
    Took my Kahr to the range with 200 rounds of Remington 230gr FMJ for the break in period. I bought a Hogue grip and shot the first 36 rounds without it. That was the limit without the grip due to the aggresive checking. The next 164 rounds was a treat. This is one of the most comfortable guns I’ve shot next to my Glock 21. I had zero problems with this gun. The mag did not fall out, although I could see how someone’s hands could hit the release. The muzzle blast is about the same as my G-21 and it’s acurate out of the box with groupings of 3″ at 25 feet. I did clean the gun and cycled the slide a hundred or so times prior to shooting. Now it’s time to find some good defensive ammo and a CC holster that I’m comfortable with. I can’t wait to get back to the range!!!

  • Geoffrey

    I think something should be clarified.

    From the manufacturer help line, they told me that the magazine drop was from a BAD MAGAZINE RELEASE…NOT limp wristing or anything else. They send you a replacement…..if you keep it after that and it works well great.

    If you buy a weapon and out-of-the-box it has problems like that….GO AHEAD AND RISK YOUR OR YOUR FAMILY’SLIFE WITH IT………if they cannot get that right, what else have they screwed up that you will not find out until you really need it.

    How many of you guys bought HK’s, Glocks, or Sig’s and had these things happen?

    What makes me scratch my head is people reading that these things malfunction, and still buying them. Why not go out and buy a brand of tires known to have blowouts too? I wish I had read any review stating that there was a problem at the time.

    My advice is to take the things back and demand your money back, not get on blogs and post somewhat positive things about the weapon hoping that your karma will somehow make the thing not malfunction when you need it most. It is documented by many, many people AND the manufacturer that this thing screws up…..for God’s sake just Google “Kahr CW45 magazine drop.” If the results do not sway you then let me borrow a million dollars…….because I will surely pay it back. Meanwhile the rest of us with common sense should buy something more reliable…. hell, a Keltec even.

  • Gary

    I bought a cw45 about 2 weeks ago. I have had no function problems, but the accuracy is horrible. From 15 yards shooting at a target 18″ off the ground, the bullet is in the dirt 1 yard from the bottom of the target. Shot my officer model 1911 from the same distance, same ammo, same day and it shot 2″ groups. The barrel on the Kahr appears to have the riflings pulled. I ordered a new barrel from Kahr and if that fixes the problem the original will go back, if it doesn’t, both will go back.

  • http://MSN.com Jeff Steinbock

    I like the way my Kahr CW45 feels in my hand so much that I bought it after the used one I originally purchased had the magazine catch issues. I too had no problem with getting it replaced quickly, solving the problem. I also had the slide lock fall out of my first one as mentioned by another writer. Not noticing it, I fired a round through it which pretty much destroyed the inside of the slide. I shipped it back and they replaced everything but the polymer frame. Believing I had a “lemon”, I sold it on consignment (haven’t heard anything bad reported back since) and bought a new one. I find it quite accurate and not unpleasant to shoot at all for 100s of rounds. Then again, I’m used to an Airweight S&W .357.

    I’m having trouble with ejection and it’s plenty broke in. But, I shoot so much (yes, it handles re-loads fine) that I may just be letting it get too dirty between cleanings. I cleaned the snot out of it tonight. If it still jams later this week, I’ll post another comment while I wait to get enough cash together to buy a Kimber Ultra Carry II. It feels pretty good in my hand, too. BTW – I had a Glock37 that functioned flawlessly while I had it. It just felt awkward. That’s why I went back to the Kahr.

  • Joe the Plumber

    Sorry but just because it’s a SD gun doesn’t mean it has to be uncomfortable or unreliable. There are too many better choices out there.

  • Gary

    I went back and ran another 50 rounds through mine and it performed flawlessly again. I figured out the accuracy problem and it was me! I really like the little gun now.

  • Jeff Steinbock

    I cleaned it and have fired over 200 rounds with no jams at all. It was simply due and I let it go too long. I’m confident in it’s reliability, as the postings of others validate.

  • Jeff Steinbock

    Joe – What’s an “SD” gun?

  • Gary

    Jeff, I would assume he meant SD= Self Defense. I now have 250 rounds down range with a new barrel and still not one malfunction. There was nothing wrong with the original barrel, it was the shooter. Monday afternoon two of us shot for fun and put 100 rounds in a 12×12 square from 10 yards and another 30 at bottles. We went through that 130 in about 30 minutes, no cleaning, no stopping, just shooting. This little gun conceals nicely, shoots very well and I will be carrying it all the time now.

  • Jeff Steinbock

    Thanks, Gary. Duh – figured the answer would make me look stupid. Anyway, the Kahr is not uncomfortable to shoot or wear, and not unreliable – despite earlier experiences. That being said, I’ll always be looking to add and upgrade.

  • Anthony

    TO THE BEST OF MY knowledge, Kahr was the first pistol manufacturer to take the bold step of saying—flat-out—that their guns needed a 200-round break-in. Most auto pistols do, but I appreciate Kahr’s corporate honesty in frankly telling the consumer up front. In about that many assorted rounds, the closest to a cycling failure was when one shooter unfamiliar with the CW45 “rode” the slide with the support hand while chambering a round. This can cause any autoloader to fail to go into battery, as it did with this one. It was human error and I can’t hold it against the gun. The one problem we did have surfaced three times. Twice on the bench and once in offhand shooting, the magazine spontaneously ejected with one live round remaining. A call to Kahr confirmed that some CW45s had gotten out with a magazine release that was off a couple of degrees, allowing this to happen. A quick trip back to the factory got this squared away with a corporate apology. This is yet another reason to listen to Kahr and actually do the 200-round break-in.

  • Gary

    Anthony, I agree totally. I would not depend on any weapon, polymer or not, without shooting it enough to know it was going to work. 200 rounds for me is not near enough! I have had no failures mechanically with my CW45 450 rounds downrange.

  • Greg

    I bought a CW45, shot about 120 rounds with constant problems that I thought was jamming. I took it back to where I bought it and they advised the trigger was not resetting. They advised me to send it back to the factory myself because it would get repaired and returned more quickly. I sent the gun back and had it back within a week. I also had them put on night sights while it was there. The gun works perfect now. It is very accurate, fits my hand well. I don’t notice any problem with sharp grips. I carry the gun in an ankle holster and it is great. I really like the size and weight. To me it is an extremely good value.

  • Kevin

    Good info by all, will decide on the cw45 this week…

  • Jim

    I just got the Kahr cw 45 this saturday and shot 50rd with no problem. I do have to say the I wish the gun was easyer to take apart for cleaningbut not a big deal I have not had the clip fall out but I do have to pop the bottom of the clip a little hard to for it to catch the spring to stay in it is tight fit. but iI realy Like my kahr cw45.

  • Shawn

    I just bought my Kahr CW-45 yesterday and then got home and read this blog and was really thinking about taking it back. Woke up this morning and decided to shoot it and make my own judgement. I put put 300 rounds through it today without any problems at all. It feel great in my hand, the recoil isn’t as bad as my XD-40. It was extremely accurate to my supprise. No clip’s falling out, no jam’s. A+ on my report card. Can’t wait to shoot it again!

  • Anthony

    I was just wondering if any one has had a problem with the cw45 jamming with the blazer brass 230 grain cci rounds there the ones giveing me trouble out of the winchesters and federal all 230 grain, the blazers gives me trouble, maybe there just bad bullets??

  • Anthony

    Is it possible that my spring in my magazines to tight makeing my cw45 to jam occasionaly and cut the shell? Has anyone had a simular problem or have any advice?

  • Anthony

    Has anyone had experences where there cw45 can’t shoot +p loads out of there guns? When the bullet chambers the recoil rod sticks out about 4th of an inch and have to pull back really really hard to eject the bullet when chambered? Anyone have any ideas y? Iv checked for burrs but there’s none, iv tried magtech 185 grain +p and hornadys 185 grain +p neither will chamber!! But the service instructor at kahr says that the cw45 is +p ready to shoot but the kahr service instructor says I can’t shoot the +p+ types of bullets!

  • George

    I’ve got a CW40, not a ’45, but I have a question regarding the general operation of the Kahr gun. Although I have never had the magazine drop out when shooting, and the feeding of the first round out of the magazine has gotten better with more rounds going thru it (300 so far), my problem is that about half the time the gun will not eject a live round from the chamber after being carried locked-and-loaded for a period of time. I carry my CW40 as a CCW in my car and weekly I like to remove the mag and chambered round from the gun. The chambered shell doesn’t like to be ejected, with or without the mag removed, even by a tech at my shooting range. The only solution is to got to the range and shoot it out and the spent casing is ejected just fine. Is this normal or do I have an issue with Kahr? BTW, the Hogue Jr. really helps!

  • Anthony

    No George thats not common, what shells are u useing? I was told by kahr
    tech support not to chamber magtechs or horndays +P, the only +p rounds
    kahr shoots in the factory are Speer gold dot, Winchester, Remington, and federals.

  • George

    Anthony, the only shell I chamber for concealed carry is Winchester Ranger 165 GR. RA40TA. Every shell that I have fired thru the gun works fine and I never had an operational error ever! The problem occurs when I want to extract a live shell that has been chambered for a period of time. I’ll go to the range this weekend and “shoot” it out like one other time!

  • Anthony

    So ur saying that when u leave a bullet in the chamber for a week the live round in the chamber will not ejcect? I had my cw45 do that and I had to pull back the slide real hard, I was chambering Winchester hollow points, I think all my problem is when I have a bullet in the chamber and when I eject the live shell by hand I pull the slid back fast or slow it doesent matter how fast, the chambered bullet rubs so close to the next round in my magazine hitting lip around the bullet and the brim of the brass and stops it from ejecting smoothly, I don’t know why unless I have a bad mag.

  • George

    Bingo, Anthony! Only this time the slide wouldn’t move 1/8″ … it would just “jiggle” when I tried to pull back on the slide. I did get a solution when I went up to my shooting range earlier this afternoon.

    One of the instructors (a 6′ red-headed female packing a .45 Wilson on her hip) showed me a method to clear the chamber of a ‘stuck’ cartridge. With the gun in your right hand, muzzle pointing to the left (I’m right-handed) you grab the slide at the rear on the top with your left hand, thumb pointing to the right. Then release your right hand and place the edge of the webbing of your open hand between your right thumb and right fore-finger against the top back of the grip keeping your open hand parallel to the floor. Then, keeping your hand flat, continuously and rapidly, strike the back of the gun with your right hand being sure to keep holding the slide very firm. Gradually increase the force of the right hand striking the gun until the chambered shell comes flying out! It worked after only 5 or 6 hits with my gun. (Damn, I was enjoying the ‘personal’ attention!)

    I don’t know what causes this ‘hanging-up’, but I am going to try a solid FMJ for my next chambered carry load instead of the JHP and see what happens.

  • GL

    Try taking the clip out before extracting unspent shell. That works for me.

  • Stephen

    I purchased my CW45 new last summer. The first time at the range, I experienced the same mag drop failure issue many others have experienced.

    On the last round, the mag partially dropped out. I’d have to tap the mag back in, rack the slide and shoot the last round. Extremely frustrating.

    I purchased this weapon specifically for a warm-weather carry weapon. Here in Oklahoma, we have about eight months of summer and four months where swimwear is optional.

    I contacted Kahr and they eventually sent me a new mag release button. No instructions, just the button in a small bag. Wow. Thanks, Mr. Kahr. I had no idea how to replace this piece.

    I took it to the gun shop I purchased it from and luckily their gunsmith was in and made the switch within minutes.

    I’m going to the range with tempered expectations that this “fix” will work. We’ll see. If not, it’s gone. I can’t bet my life on a weapon that does not function properly.

    Concerning the grips (yes, they suck), I acquired a Hogue Handall Jr. yesterday and it feels MUCH better. Best $8 investment I ever made.

  • Peter

    Stephen,
    I had the same problem and solution as did you. Since then I’ve had no problems with the mag coming loose before the last round is fired and no jams. I’ve put about 200 rounds through it since the mag release fix.

  • George

    GL – It wouldn’t move with the mag in or out of the weapon!

    Stephen – I put a Hogue Handall Jr. on my CW40 and it made a world of difference. Only problem is that it keeps creeping up the grip and exposes the bottom row of ‘nubs'; otherwise it was a great improvement and it also worked on my NAA Guardian 380!

  • Anthony

    I sent my pistol back to the kahr factory I told them problem and they had my pistol back in 6 days, they repalced the extractor with a more heavy duty one, replaced my recoil spring, polished all needed parts oiled and lubbed all needed parts, now my pistol has shot perfect every time since no jams or failure to feed.

  • Druid

    Does anyone have any knowlege of other mags (extended, higher capacity, etc.) available for the CW-45? Yes, I know that would defeat the concealability, but that’s not why I’m looking. Thanks.

  • Joe Aycock

    Just to follow up on my comments last August, I have put probably another 500 rounds through my CW45 with still not the first failure when using the factory magazine. As I said before, the regular 1911 magazines can be modified slightly to work in the Kahr as well, which is, to me, a real convenience when shooting both it and my Colt LW Commander, and I have found that the various 1911 magazines do occasionally fail to lock the slide back after the last round, but that is something that I can live with when shooting tin cans and paper targets. They don’t shoot back very often. Certainly, if I planned to use this piece as my primary weapon in a prolonged gun fight, I would invest in the proper magazines for it, but in the meantime, 6 rounds is enough for me when I carry it concealed.

    I don’t why, if all of the people writing in here have seemed to have so many problems, but apparently I got one of the good ones, and that’s just fine with me. Up until now, I have only shot hardball through it, mainly because I got a bargain on a couple of thousand rounds of Winchester USA from an instructor a few years ago, so when I DO begin to fire hollowpoints, there may be some problems. Until then, I have no doubts that my money was well spent when I bought the Kahr, and based on my experience, I would recommend the gun to anyone.

  • Rich

    Follow up to previous post on Sept 23, 2009

    By my count, I have put over 2,500 rounds through my CW45. These rounds include anything with .45ACP in the name. I cast my own bullets and do my own reloading. I have had nothing fail to load, fire, or eject. I have never had a magazine fall out or ANY other problem. All I do is load and shoot which is why I bought this pistol.
    As I said in my earlier comment, the muzzle blast is awesome.
    I am waiting to get my hands on the new Hornady Critical Defense .45ACP ammo and see how my CW45 handles it.

  • Joe Aycock

    I’ve tried several holsters, from an Uncle Mike horizontal shoulder holster to a nylon holster that I was given at the SHOT show the year that it was in Atlanta. The one that I like the most for concealed carry is a simple leather strong side knock off of, bought on Ebay, actually designed for a 1911 Compact,

  • Rich

    I have also tried numerous holster and found that the “Universal Cell Pal;” http://WWW.universalholsters.com works the best for me. I use the Cell Pal to carry both the CW45 and the XD45 Tactical, not at the same time, using this holster. Both firearms are easy to carry with this holster.

  • Gary

    Snorpht, I use a Striker from UBG holsters and a Dual Carry from David Bullard. The original reason for purchasing the Striker was Nate had one in stock, no wait. I like the Striker very well, but it does tend to rub on my side if the jeans are to low cut. The Dual Carry, I purchased because it looked really comfortable and could be worn IWB or OWB. The Dual Carry is by far the most comfortable leather IWB I personally own. When I am not carrying the Kahr CW45, I am carrying a Glock 27 or 33 in a RM holster Lowrider. The Kydex is my absolute favorite for comfort. I can’t believe that kydex is more comfortable than leather, but I seem to forget I am carrying when wearing the Lowrider.

  • Ben P

    Great gun love the way it shoots and feels. Very tight out of the box even racking the slide was very tight. After cleaning it and shooting the first hundred rounds out of it started to loosen up. Extremely accurate from the first shot. have currently shot about 400 rounds through it since purchasing it last august with out any jams or mags falling out. Excellent gun would highly recommend it over any similar guns including the glock 36 and im am a big glock fan!

  • http://none Jbowes

    I purchased a CW45 about two months ago and it is a great single stack .45, really worth the money. I have put about 250 rounds through it so far and not a hiccup out of it, no mag drops, FTF, FTE or light strikes. Ive used PMC bronze, Remington UMC and Blazer ammuntion out it and I carry Speer 230 grain Gold Dots which all of functioned flawlessly in it.
    I installed a Dawson Precision fiber optic front sight on this puppy and it sure is sweet now.
    As for a holster I would recommend using a Tagua Leather IWB, the one I use is actually made for the PM45 but it fits it like a glove and VERY comfortable. I would also recommend using a Don Hume clip-on IWB, Mitch Rosen Clipper IWB or a Gould & Goulrich Small of the back holster they are all very nice rigs.

  • russell bradley

    just purchased kahrcw45 and afterwards started to read comments. feeling that i had made a bad choice i took my cw45 to the range.put through 300 rounds of different 230gr 45.the gun performed like MAGIC.no jams no magazine falling out. and dead accurate. its a small gun. keep your thumb the hell away from the magazine release. i am DELIGHTED.

  • Geoff

    If you really read the comments…..you would realize it was a manufacturer’s defect for the mag release button…not anyone’s thumbs hitting the release. Consider running for Attorney General.

  • Gabriel

    Just picked up the CW45 and put about 130 rounds through it yesterday, using 4 types of ammo. Worked like a charm. With a total of 4 different shooters putting at least on mag through it, it was very accurate and worked flawlessly. I’m impressed thus far, and plan to continue to shoot all types of ammo through it until I get it past the break in period – at which point I will continue to shoot all other types of ammo through it. At this time, this pistol is now tied with my All Time Favorite Glock G35. Totally different shooting purposes and calibers, but the Kahr is “that comfortable” in my opinion.

  • Stephen

    I received my replacement mag release button and had it installed by the gunsmith at the gun store I purchased the Kahr from. I took the CW to the range and the mag didn’t fall out like it used to. YEA!!! No problems at all. Very pleased. Now, to get a couple more hundred rounds through it. And put some night sights on it. I’m thinking Heinie or XS.

    Has anybody put Crimson Trace on their CW45? I like the looks of that unit. I’m hoping they come out with a green laser option soon.

  • Tyler

    i purchased my cw45 a couple of months ago and so far love it. Iv’e taken it to the range twice and put 100 rounds through it each time with absolutely no problems. I thought that the size may effect the accuracy but even at 20 ft out it was dead on. For concealment this gun is perfect. The size and weight makes it easy to conceal for a great self defense weapon. The grips may hurt your hands after shooting off a hundred rounds at the range but for self defense, which this gun is made for, the grips are perfect and give u a nice firm grip. I recommend this gun for anybody who is looking for a nice concealable weapon. Hope this helps.

  • http://beginnerhandguntraining.com Bill

    Oh yeah. Shoots very accurately with Hornady Critical Defense ammo; not so accurately with Winchester white box loads. Just my experience.

  • paul

    I just picked up a new cw45 yesterday and I’m taking it to the range this weekend for it’s break-in session.I’m hoping I’ve found a new EDC:)

  • Rick Clark

    Never had a problem with any of my Kahr auto’s 45’s and my 9mills. Shot them to kill, in my house or yard.
    I pack the 9 for a CW and practice with it at least once a month 50 rounds.
    If you a having a problem with the auto’s buy yourself a 38 special wheel gun. They all are belly gun’s under 5 yards at the most.
    Good luck, I’ve been shooting for now on 60 years and close to a million rounds of amo down the tube.
    Have fun and find what you need for the job.
    Rick

  • Richard

    Well bought my cw45 yesterday… I’m very familiar with shooting .45’s as I have 2 1911’s, full size and Officers model… 1st approx 100 rds was flawless to include excellent accuracy. 2nd 100 rds all went to heck. Failure to go into battery completely. Slide stop pin kept working its way out. The spring clip is way too weak and or pin detent is too shallow which holds the slide stop pin in place. I do believe the pin backing out into the underside of slide did cause most of the issues. Also magazine catch was intermittently not holding properly as eluded to by others. Heard nothing but rave reviews about Kahr’s for years. Can’t ever believe what you hear. It’s a shame as the trigger action for DA only is awesome as well again mentioned accuracy. Taking back to shop and if I can return / trade-up, I probably will…

  • GB

    Richard,
    If the spring that holds the slide stop in is not damaged, you probably need to tighten the screw that holds it in place. There are no specific instructions in the manual for this, but you need to tighten it enough that the portion of the spring that holds the stop in place does not move,but loose enough that the end that holds the lever down moves freely. (see post #5 from the link below)

    In regards to magazine drops: although the replacement latch from Kahr will stop the magazine drops, I don’t believe that the mag latch is the problem.
    The replacement latch is machined at a slight angle to prevent the latch from disengaging, but this is a band aide fix. I believe the real culprits are manufacturing tolerances in the mag well and, more importantly, the magazine follower design. My reasoning for this is a little detailed
    and as I’ve already documented it elsewhere (along with some other issues and fixes for the Kahr 45s) I’ll just provide a link to the info:
    http://kahrtalk.com/kahr-tech/1612-cw45-other-poly-45-issues-fixes.html
    Regards,
    Greg

  • paul

    Range update on my new Kahr CW45.300 rounds of various brands,including Golden Saber +P ammo with only 1 FTF.Accuracy is on the money. I am very impressed with this gun and I am starting to carry it as my EDC.

  • GL

    I’ve carried mine for over a year. Sent back for failure to cycle when new. I had it back in a week and it has been excellent and accurate since. Love it. Fired several hundred rounds. Zero problems. Manly grips are not for girls.

  • paul

    I put a Hogue Handell Jr grip sleeve on mine,made all the difference in the world.And at under $10? :)

  • Phil

    I guess I was one of the apparently very few lucky people who got an exceptional firearm in the cw45. I absolutely love this piece. I am an avid pistol shooter, enjoying a wide array of manufacturers and models, but the cw45 (as well as our kahr pm40) ranks among the top of the list for us. To date, never a magazine drop or single misfire. Grips admittingly have a bit to be desired, but if used for its intended personal defense purpose, hopefully it will not take the 75 to 100 rounds it takes to annoy your hand. I feel sorry for those who have received the apparent ‘duds’ but man am I sure happy to have these two guns among our stock. Thanks..

  • paul

    I haven’t heard many complaints about any of the CW line of Kahrs. I absolutely love my CW45 and have had no problems with it and have over 600 rounds down the pipe. In fact, I just put a PM9 in layaway today for my wife or to use as a BUG but I carry the .45 everyday. Try a Hogue Handell Jr grip sleeve and you will have no more problems with the grip,easy fix for about $10.

  • Stephen

    I got my CCL last October and have been carrying my CW45 every day since. Recently purchased a new OWB holster, a Looper leather holster designed for the Kahr 9/40. It fits the CW45 great too.

    Up until the Looper, I had been using a Blackhawk holster designed for a Sig. It was a pretty tight, but was about an inch too long, which hurt its concealment with some shirts.

    Went to the range over the holiday and shot all my defensive rounds through it, Pow’RBall +P 165gr., Federal Personal Defense Low Recoil FMJ and JHP 165 gr. and Remington 185 gr. +P Golden Sabres. Shot 50 rounds of PMC Bronze 230 gr. FMJs as well. All fired perfectly with no FTF/FTE.

    Happy to report the Kahr is breaking in nicely. Looking to acquire a Ruger LCR 357 as a BUG. That should be pretty snappy.

  • Denny

    I am a police officer and purchased the CW 45 as a back-up weapon. Accuracy was great right out of the box. I do agree that the grips are somewhat uncomfortable in a bare palm, but worked well with my shooting gloves’ grip. There is also a problem with certain ACP rounds not chambering. I was using Remington .45 ACP ball ammunition and the rounds appeared to be too large for the chamber. My duty rounds which are Winchester Ranger .45 ACP cycled just fine though.

    The weapon has pros and cons, like most weapons. Overall I like the gun and it is extremely affordable, but I wouldn’t carry it as a primary firearm.

  • http://thisone MIke

    I just bought one of these brand new, I oiled well and cycled the slide at least 100 times in the past few days. Today I bought 3 boxes of ammo and went to the range. First impression, BOO BOO, it would not make it through one magazine without a failure. The trigger just didn’t catch, a little wiggle or tap on the side and it sometimes worked….. I made it through about 150 rounds before I decided to unload the P.O.S. and quit disrespecting the ammo. I bought this because I have a Taurus24/7 with a Mag Drop out issue, low and behold this one does too.

    I then followed up with my Bersa .380 and put 200 rounds downrange NO problem, infact no problem for the last 800 or so rounds through the little sucker. No its not a Man Stopper, but I’ll unload at least 3, ON target, before anyone with a kahr45 ….

    I was considering selling it but I’m not in the habbit of selling trash, why start now.

  • PColton

    I bought one of these to replace my Glock 36, which occasionally jams (usually only after the 3rd magazine through), but this thing jammed on every magazine, sometimes twice. Failure to go into battery, failure to eject, failure to feed (Remington and Winchester factory ammo). Not to mention the 200 round break-in period brutalized my hand, blisters on both palms and skin gouged away ast the thumb joint. I expected some hiccups during the first 200 rounds, but figured they would begin to clear up the more I fired. They actually got worse. Once I closed in on the 200 round mark, that’s when the stovepipes began. I am consigning it today, and gonna try to get my G36 back from consignment before it sells. Much more comfortable to shoot, and at least I can get through my first mag without a malfunction.

  • Greg

    The sun finally came out here in Indiana last weekend and I went out on the back deck and fired off another 56 rounds. First time I have shot for several weeks. Gun again worked flawlessly. It is very accurate. I’ve almost destroyed an old rectangular tube for a basketball goal about 15 yards away.

    Carry it on my ankle all the time, hardly know it’s there. It is a great gun for me.

  • Jordan

    Just thought id through my 2 cents out there… I bought the CW45 yesterday. I loved the price, size and caliber. The grip is not to rough unless you’re a little girl; I put 200 rounds through it in 30 mins without a problem. The first 150 were $15 Russian made bullets and the last 50 were Remington … and for a gun with a barrel no longer then my little finger it is as accurate as the shooter. So for me this is the weapon I’m going to carry…. and just fyi, I personally thought the recoil felt less then my full size 1911.

  • highplainsman

    Bought one of these used (looks like new) at a gunshow last Saturday kind of as a replacement for the Ultra Carry I got rid of in a moment of weakness. Federal hardball seems to work 100% as does WW 230 gr hollowpoints. Compared it side beside with my G 27 Glock. I have shot Glock pistols a lot during the past ten years and it is my favorite carry so far. The Kahr is just a hair thinner about the same same heigth with a G23 mag with spacer in place. 7 rounds of 45 against 14 rounds of 40 with the G23 mag or10 with the regular 27 mag. Not sure this is a good trade off since size and weight are comparable. Street results seem to indicate te 40 with good 155 to 165 gr bullets is just as effective as 45ACP of any weight. That being said yes I like the 45, just not sure I like it well enough to take half the rounds plus the tacticle advantage of using G 22 (15 rounders) as backup mags. I found the CW 45 reliable (so far) Accurate when I take the time to master the long but smooth trigger. The only down side for me is the shape of the grip, I have long fingers. May try the Houge Handel as some others have indicated here and see if that helps. All and all I like the GW 45. It is a good looking pistol with a smooth action in a fighting caliber. It may be a keeper if I get some extra mags.

  • Kendall

    I bought a new CW45 yesterday. I read all the old-timey (2009) comments about falling mags, jams with different ammo, my hands hurt, etc.
    I fired 50 rounds Remington 230 grain without a stoppage or the mag falling out. I dusted out the carbon with Q-tips and fired another 50 rounds with the same excellent results.
    (As a CW I only expect to have to fire two rounds or at most one mag)
    Several suggestions:
    Quite whining.
    Shooting 200-300 rounds at the range? You are using the wrong gun.
    Mag falls out? Keep your thumb up and off the mag release button.
    Kicks too much? – What did you expect? Get a .22
    Grip hurts your hand? An economical solution is to send me a money order for $29.95 plus $6.95 S&H and I will send you a $7.00 golf glove.
    This is a fine gun for its intended purpose.
    Thanks Kahr!

  • PColton

    I am glad you are happy with your purchase. For me it was an expensive mistake. I had mine about 3 weeks and could not jettison it quickly enough. Fortune smiled upon my, as I was able to fian a Glock 30 to replace it at the same gun show I sold this POS off. Maybe those of you with tiny hands don’t have a problem with a CW45, for me it torqued in my hand and was hard to hold on to. And as for the 200 rounds, Kendall…have you read the manual? It is a required break-in…I realize what this gun is for (and yes, extended range sessions aren’t it) but since I don’t have a range in my back yard, I decided to follow the manufacturer’s break-in session all at once. What a mistake. So don’t consider it whining, Kendall, consider it absolute insistence that the firearm I trust my life to be 100% reliable, be it 50 rounds at a time, or all 200, or just 1. Malfunctioning weapons are not tolerated by me, and the reason why is immaterial. If it doesn’t work, I make it someone else’s problam.

  • highplainsman

    As stated I like mine and if were the only pistol I had I would not hesitate to make it my primary carry. Still don’t have that Houge grip or spare mags yet so it sets home with my other non carrys. These are, in my opinion, good pistols.

  • http://None Joe

    I just bought a CW45 this past Thursday and then read all of the whiney reviews of some of the guys on here. I must say – this was a great purchase. I put 150 rounds through the pipe yesterday (without cleaning the gun). Not a single problem. No mag drop, no misfeed, no problems whatsoever. I’m looking forward to shooting it again soon.

  • GB

    Calling someone’s review “whiney” (I think you meant whiny) makes it no less pertinent than a fanboy’s review. The CW45 is a good handgun, but some have had real issues with them on an individual gun basis.

  • highplainsman

    Yeah! I would probably whine myself if the one I bought had caused me problems. My whine is the skinney grip but realize it would probably work fine for someone with smaller hands. As it is the Hogue grip will likely fix my problem. Failure to feeds and dropped mags would be unacceptable.

  • The Tough Guy

    Geoffrey…

    you’re an obvious pussy and the sole purpose of you carry a gun is so that you can act like a hot head. but sure enough, if you act like a hot head with the wrong person, you’ll find out what a pistol is really worth when you can’t deploy it or you can’t hit your target because he’s moving to fast. before you know it, you’re on the ground and your gun is used against you; and there’s nothing bullshido about that, it happens all the time. there are plenty of people who bring a gun to hand fight and the gunfighter loses.

    therefore Mr. Pistol Pussy, calm down. and learn some real hand skills before you start carrying a gun; it’ll make a real man out of you. no one was trying to be tough. someone was just making a comment on the mag and the gun. but leave it to a gun toting worm like yourself to take it the wrong way.

    lastly, if you are the type of person that starts sweating bullets in a confrontational situation YOU SHOULD NOT BE CARRYING A GUN!! a well trained person will see and use it; it’s called butterflies in your stomach and you ain’t going to hit shit. trust me ;)

  • Geoffrey to the Toughguy

    Dude what are you talking about? Nobody I know that carries a weapon wants to get in a situation where they have to use it. It is a legal nightmare even if it is justified. As far as my experience I am four years USMC 0311 and five year LEO. I am also an experienced grappler who helps train Pro MMA fighters. You comments calling me a pussy are not justified and make me giggle. I don’t do much well except shoot and fight. But I can tell you that I am not anything close to a hothead looking for trouble. Fighting and shooting people also gets you into legal trouble whether justified or not. I believe in the old motto “The best fight is the one that was never fought.”

    Now back to the subject. The Kahr CW45 I had was a piece o’ crap that the manufacturer admits to having a defect out of the box. That is a fact no “tough guy” or “pussy” can dispute.

    • Jackhammer The real

      I have a wonderful CW45. Never had a malfunction from box to the the 800th round. I love it over the Glock because I A: Can rely on it fully, B: Does not require a change in hold from my Kimber Ultra, does not shoot high like the glock with a natural hold.I have replaced the recoil spring, but that was out of maintaining the weapon at 500 rounds. I would take my Kahr over a glock any day the sun comes up.

  • Frank

    Love my new CW45 over 300 rounds through it without one manfuntion. In fact I shoot it better than my CW9. No trouble with the grip and great to carry. Can’t go wrong for $439.00 out the door. Gave up my brick like Glock’s for this great carry and shooting pistols. I now have three CW45, CW9 and PM9 all great shooters with 0 malfuntions.

  • Erik

    Just bought a new CW45 and after 1st mag clean every shot after would jam, mag would drop & slide stop was coming apart from the gun , I even had an instructor look it over and said it’s not safe to keep shooting. Wow I’m so pissed, went str8 to dealer after range and they advised a month turnaround back from kahr! Wow all that for nothing… So sad

  • GB

    Erik,
    Slide stop -Try tightening the slide stop spring screw a slight amount.
    Kahr will send you a new magazine catch to fix the magazine drops.
    …or contact Kahr (make sure to ask that they pick up the shipping costs).
    On kahrtalk.com, members are reporting turnaround time considerably less than what you say your dealer advised.

  • Erik

    GB,
    Gun was picked up today , hope the factory can make it right.

  • chilipepper

    I just love internet forum fights.

    They make me giggle.

  • Aaron

    I just purchased a Kahr CW45 last week and I love it. I was torn between the Kahr and a Glock 36. I shot 150 rounds without any malfunctions. This is a great self defense weapon and has become my gun of choice. The gun is accurate right of the case and well balanced. The sights make it easy to acquire your target quickly and I love the grip. I would definately recmomend this weapon.

    • damian

      I bought the cw45 a few months ago as an “i told you so” gift from my old man. I traded a glock 36 which was my everyday carry for it. I was skeptical at first because i am a glock fanatic but the kahr changed my mind. It felt much better in the hand and was very easy to conceal. Took it to the range with federal white box 230 grains and it was not only reliable but very accurate. Shot a 2×4 with tight groups at 30 yards. It then became my new carry and never left my holster since.

  • Erik

    Well After the first trip back from Kahr, The pistol had a trigger bar issue and still had stove pipes. So I had to send it back for a second trip to Kahr. Now after 250 rounds of Flawless range FMJ Shooting. I can now call this a reliable pistol. I was just very disappointed that I had to send the pistol back 2 times for service right from purchase for a pistol that was born on March 2011.

    • gatorfan

      I had a problem with feeding. It was sent back to Kahr and after 2,000 rounds not a single problem. I carry it every day

  • http://verizonwireless Larry

    I bought my cw Kahr last week for $359.00 new in the box. I felt like it was too good of a deal to pass up. I allways read ahead about a gun I’m thinking about buying except for the Kahr. So when I came to this review I started thinking I would have to sell it. I went to the range waiting for the magazine to fall out or the slide stop to come out or just blow up in my hands but I was going to find out. I took 200 rounds of Remington 230 gr ball ammo. The first shot I fired at fifteen yards was in the ten ring of a twelve by twelve target. I kept reloading and firing untill the bullets were all gone with no problems at all. If I fire two hundred more rounds with no problems I will be satisified. I’m no macho man but the grips didn’t bother me but I was a brickmason for thirty years so that may have something to do with that. The triger was as sweet as could be. The size of the gun is allmost the same size as the Walther p22 except it’s just a little taller in the grips. Everybody these days are buying 380’s but untill I start having problems with the Kahr, I like the 45 better. I’ll bet Kahr has learned to work out the bugs before they ever sell another gun. I believe the camery is a good car but they got laxed in there quality controll and they had to do a lot of work to get back to where they were before the gas pedel problem. Kahr is going to have to do the same thing. I don’t doubt all the problems mentioned here but I think Kahr will fix them all. I love the way mine shoots and I really like the price. If I had any of the problems mentioned here I would be angry and sell the gun as soon as I could.

  • Jacob

    I just finished cleaning my pistol and was doing a search for Hogue Grips for my cw45 and came across this forum. I am surprised at the people who have had problems. I have had my cw45 for over a year and never had a problem. I’ve put several hundred rounds through it and it’s been flawless. I wasn’t expecting H&K quality when I bought it but I did expect it to rival Glock and Springfield and feel that it absolutely does that. I would recommend it any day.

  • Carl Mumpower

    As an owner, I would discourage others from buying this pistol. Though the weight, trigger feel, accuracy, and handling are great – the most important thing for most of us in a weapon is reliability. I fired about two clips before the CW45 jammed with a round in the chamber. The gun shop I purchased it from was able to clear it with some heavy duty hand action. Ater that I fired about three mags and noticed the receiver pin coming out. I would push it back in and it would gradually work itself back out. Took it back to the dealer who’s exam seemed to indicate a broken or defective spring of some sort. The gun had to be sent back to Kahr for repair. Sorry guys, but a gun of this cost and reputation should not be sitting in your repair shop after 50 rounds or less. I read stories of this nature on line before I made the purchase, but chose to assume this were early versions. Mine wasn’t. I have a Kahr CM9 that I liked well enough to prompt me toward the CW45. My experience and the hassle factor make me wish I had stuck with the Glock brand that has performed flawlessly for me over so many years. Sorry Kahr, I understand that nobody’s perfect, but I’m hard pressed to imagine myself as a customer going forward. Reliability and perfect should come a lot closer than this.

    • Rusty Gooch

      You didn’t fire any CLIPS. You fired magazines.

  • Rip Aycock

    I’ve posted in this thread before, but I have to report that after another hundred rounds, I have still had no, repeat NO, problems with my CW45. It handles every round that I put through it, from some very old, and not particularly clean, reloads to Winchester hardball, with a variety of leftover Black Talons, Golden Sabers, Supervels, and even some reload semiwadcutters that I have no clue as to where I got them.

    One thing that I might include here is that I discovered very quickly after purchasing my CW45 that regular 1911 magazines can be modified quite easily in it, and even that the 6 shot Officer’s model fit without hanging out past the bottom of the grip frame, and with the added advantage of costing only about half what the Kahr magazines cost. Maybe a of the problems that people have been experiencing with the magazines dropping out could be solved by using the modified 1911’s. It’s a cheap fix if it does work, and well worth trying.

  • Jarvis

    I bought a cw45 on december 19 the first time I went to shoot it ,it would not fire I have several guns and that never happen I had it sent off and took over a month to get it back I should have bought something else get it right I will never buy another product from kahr ever again Pissed off Texan

  • Rick Clark

    I have the 9mm and it will not let you drop the Mag. and eject the one in the chamber, so it is always hot. I will never buy another Kahr!!!!

  • ericL

    So purchased my cw45 this past Friday. I did not even get to shoot it before its first malfunction. It feeds the first round fine but then jams. If you try to rack it to feed another round it is extreemly difficult. I noticed the extractor is not protruding out when there is a round in the chamber. When the chamber is empty the extractor is tipped in and not flush. Ah well back to Kahr another one goes. Also noted take down lever does not seem to fit flush when seemingly all the way in. Too bad because I really like my cm9. 150 ROUNDS through it so far and not even a hickup.

  • Stephen

    I liked my Kahr CW45 so much, I sold it today.

  • Doug

    I got my Kahr CW45 about 2 weeks ago at a show. Was impressed with the trigger pull and the balance of the gun, and the Kahr name at the price point. With the Kahr name I was confident in my purchase without research. Now I’m kicking myself and it’s on its way back to Kahr after the first 100 rounds. Right from the start I had feed issues, every other round would stovepipe. I know all guns need some break in, but this is ridiculous! After the first 2 clips, when it did feed, it didn’t re-cock. Had to keep pulling the slide back a bit to cock it, then fire, then usually clear a stovepipe, then repeat. Very frustrated with this gun. With the Kahr name I had expected reliability right out of the box, but boy was I mistaken. Spoke with my dealer, and he recommended I try Remington ammo over the first box of Federal I started with, tried it, no difference.

    We’ll see how it goes when this comes back from Kahr. I’m carrying my Springfield XDm 45 (Which by the way ate everything right out of the box and hasn’t given me a hiccup after 1,000 rounds) I don’t know if I’ll ever trust this Kahr enough to carry, I’m afraid it will let me down when I need it most.

    • R2Dhart

      Read the manual. It specifically states that the gun needs to be broken in with 200 rounds before it is considered fully reliable. This is not uncommon among compact semi-autos with tight tolerances like the Kahr. Unfortunately the reports of a frustrating break-in experience seem to be more common with the CW45 than it’s 9mm brethren but most people who weather the storm seem to be pleased with them afterward.

    • Butch

      I bought 1 in mid April and from 1st round trigger would not reset and had to pull slide back part way before it would fire again this happened every shot thru 300 rounds and 5 different brands of ammo, also slide stop pin would work out after 2 shots every time. I sent it back to Kahr and it’s still being worked, so don’t know if it will work right ubtil I get it back. I have a Spingfield 1911, 3 Ruger SR9,SR40,MKII, Keltec PF9, Sigma 40 VE, HP22 and a cheapie HiPoint c9 and not one of these has ever failed to fire or eject. This is my first Kahr and may be my last.

      • Dan

        I recently purchased a used Kahr CW 45 and the ONLY thing I have a problem with is it wont chamber and fire Hornady’s 230 hollow point. I was told this when I got it , but of course had to see for myself. Has anyone else had a problem with Hornady ammo ? Feeds and fires Winchester without any problems at all. Thanks.

    • Butch

      I bought 1 in mid April and from 1st round trigger would not reset and had to pull slide back part way before it would fire again this happened every shot thru 300 rounds and 5 different brands of ammo, also slide stop pin would work out after 2 shots every time. I sent it back to Kahr and it’s still being worked, so don’t know if it will work right until I get it back. I have a Spingfield 1911, 3 Ruger SR9,SR40,MKII, Keltec PF9, Sigma 40 VE, HP22 and a cheapie HiPoint c9 and not one of these has ever failed to fire or eject. This is my first Kahr and may be my last.

      • a guy

        You got a whole sack of junk guns don’t ya?

  • http://yahoo.com P N

    Read a lot of bad reports on the Kahr CW45 on this forum and was very nervous about my recent purchased of the CW45. Finally took it out for a shoot.
    First impression, grouped very nice and tight, except that it was grouped at seven o’clock. Changed to 3 different ammo. Same thing. Decided to sighted it in for Winchester white box 45acp fmj. Shifted the rear sight to the right a bit. Now the CW45 is dead on. At 15 yards, one ragged hole. It knocked out the center ring just like my 1911s. Trigger pulled was better than Springloose XDM and Glock but still a little too long. Not as good as a 1911 but manageable. Kinda weird for it not to have a safety. But I don’t carry so I don’t care about that. For the money, what not to like about a gun that shoot to point of aim and never jammed?

    • hitech2redneck

      never once had a single jam misfire or issue out of my Kahr CW45 just have problem with getting accessories for it

    • PAUL A.

      The CW45 kicks like a mule and I cannot seem to shoot it accurately every time that I shoot it.

      I had the sights changed to the standard three dot and that helped but it still shoots about 8-12″ too low. I suspect that I am dropping the muzzle in anticipation of the kick.

      Has anyone else had this issue? I have no problems with the 9’s that I own.

      • http://yahoo.com pn

        Most 9mm shooters have the same problem when switching to long trigger pull of a non-1911 45 acp. I have the same problem when I shoot XD or Glock due to it very long trigger pull. It will not go off when I expected it to and by the time it does go off, I was already off target. Single action pull like the Browning or the 1911 still rule supreme. The Kahr is the only DAO trigger pull that I can managed. XD or Glock, I have to re-learn how to shoot so they are not for me.

    • http://yahoo.com pn

      Surprisingly, my 1911 mags fit in this CW45. A little tight but will function fine. The only thing is it will not lock back after the last round fired. Need to modify the 1911 mag a bit for it to lock back. One more reason to like this CW45. I got a lot of 1911 mags (from 6 1911s, and a Marlin 45 Camps).

  • http://www.thefirearmblog.com marty

    Sorry guys. The stop pin does work out. Not all the time but some times.

    I have shot at least 1500 rounds over the last year or two.

    I can say that until you fire the gun say 6 times you don’t know if this is one of the times that the pin is backing out of the gun. SCARY and no matter what anybody tells you you can’t predict performance reliability with this gun until you are part way through the first clip.

    Love the gun – when it works.

    I have intermittent problems …they have a production problem noticable when tolerances are in a certain range that makes it sensitive to cleaning and reassembly methods, special screw settings….just crap. You have to be able to pull it out and shoot it….until you wear out the barrel. No exceptions.

    • ron77581

      DId you ever talk with Kahr or send it back for service? If it’s broke get it fixed and sell it if it continues to have issues. Nothing worse than having a gun you can’t trust.

    • sckarekrow

      Your comment is ignorant, and it is a magazine not a clip.

  • Bryce

    I guess I got a good one. Not a single malfunction with 4 or 5 different brands of ammo and after 600 rds. Cam anyone recommend a deep concealment shoulder holster?

    • Foxy

      Galco Miami Classic.

  • Ron77581

    Great smaller lightweight .45 ACP pistol. Once I had completed the mandatory 200 round initial break in firing the little .45 functions flawlessly and is extremely accurate up to 25 yards. The aggressive stippling on the grip is designed to ensure a positive grip and reduce the amount of barrel flip when firing, but when shooting 50+ rounds at the range it began to become uncomfortable. This is not a range gun, but a home defense and a concealed carry weapon, so the aggressive stippling is not really an issue. I would recommend the Kahr CW45 to anyone and it has become one of my two concealed carry choices.

    • Foxy

      Use shooting gloves to cut down the hurt caused by the rough stippling on the Kahr CW 45. Works for me.

      • ron77581

        I added the Talon rubberized grip. It’s a good inexpensive fix and gives a good positive grip surface to the whole pistol grip. Thanks for the reply.

  • Hammer

    bought my CW45 two days ago. I’ve only put half of the required 200 break in rounds through it. The gun operates perfectly and has never failed to cycle rounds when the round fires. I’ve had several misfires but I’m suspecting the ammo to be the culprit. I’m using PMC Bronze 230 gr. fmj and about one of every five do not fire. When the misfire is ejected, the primer is dimpled indicating that the weapon did it’s job. Has anyone had any experience with PMC ammo? I’ve not tried any other ammo yet.

    • Foxy

      I have had many problems with PMC ammo in all calibers. I reccomend against its use to trust my life with it. Too many failures to fire scares me off of PMC ammo. PMC is also noticeably dirtier than other ammo. As a plinking round it would be ok, as paper targets don’t shoot back.

  • elliott

    I am a ret leo. and a usmc o331 and I love the cw45. also I was a mp

  • Bill Gardner

    I got one 2 weeks ago shot it once, love it. I have carried for 33 years. For 13 years a 1911 Colt, for the last 20 a Glock 23 and a 22c. This CW45 is great and shoots well.

  • Just The Facts

    The mag drop issue is well known… Kahr will send you out a new mag release free (design flaw)… that said, I had a CW40 and it was a POS… it was not able to eject a live round thru the port… it had to come out the bottom (another design flaw). Kahrs have their good points… but overall way too much trouble.

  • av8rkirk

    My CW45 is perfect. Tight groups at 15 yards, never failed to chamber or fire a round. They have my vote.