What’s the difference between my Hi-Point Model C and my Hi-Point Model C9?
Disclaimer: This article was written to shown the differences between two firearms in the author’s possession. Over time, Hi-Point has made a number of incremental tweaks to their pistols, so it is quite likely owners of Hi-Point Model C and Model C9 pistols may find their particular pistols do not exactly match the pistols shown in this article.
Introduction: Shortly after I acquired my Hi-Point Model C9, I happened upon a Gunbroker parts kit auction that featured a slightly different slide. The slide I saw in the auction pictures did not have an adjustable plastic rear sight like my Model C9, instead, they were integral to the slide itself. The parts kit included everything except the serialized frame, and had a “Buy it Now” option of $19.95 shipped. Cheap enough… I hit the “Buy” button, figuring I would get myself parts to an early Model C9.
I figured right... and I figured wrong, as not all of the parts were interchangeable; my “early Model C9” parts kit were for a Hi-Point Model C, which could be called “an unrefined, older sibling” to the Model C9.
The differences between the Hi-Point Model C and Hi-Point Model C9
Looking at the left side of the slide, it’s fairly easy for a casual observer to dismiss the difference in the model names. After all, Hi-Point’s logo is in the same location, and “Model C” and “Model C9” are fairly similar. Hi-Point owners –for the most part- generally just refer to any compact Hi-Point 9mm pistol as a “C9” which can add further confusion.
The slides do look the same, but close examination the differences in the slide become more marked because of the rear sights; the Model C has fixed sights built into the slide while the Model C9 has adjustable plastic sights.
At this point, one might think “okay- it’s got a different designation, and the sights are different, but it’s still the same gun” despite other subtle external differences, including the trigger (the Model C has a solid trigger) and the pattern on the safety lever (the Model C has a cross-hatch pattern).
However, if you try to install a Model C slide onto a Model C9, you will discover it will not fit. The reason for this is the left side of the Model C slide lacks the recess cut (circled below) for the Model C9’s LRHO (last round hold open) mechanism. (There are other minor differences in the slide casting as well, but the missing recess cut is the most significant.)
Here’s a view of the rear of the slides, as well as close-ups of the dolls heads from both pistols.
Shooting the two pistols in a side-by-side comparison, one will discover the slide on the Model C will not lock back after the last round has been fired, unlike the Model C9. Similarly, the Model C can be fired without a magazine in the pistol. Upon disassembly, it becomes evident the Model C is missing some of the refinements of the Model C9.
I haven’t been able to find a Model C parts diagram, so in order to illustrate some of the differences, I’ve modified a Model C9 diagram. The Model C has seven fewer parts, some of which are significant. I already touched on the missing adjustable sight; also missing in the Model C is a magazine disconnect safety and LRHO.
(The same numbers are retained in both diagrams to aid in cross-referencing parts between the two models.)
Below is a view of the left side of a Model C and Model C9. The Model C shares the same trigger and safety lever as my Stallard JS 9 pistol; while the Model C9’s safety lever has a pin in the center of it, helping to keep it in position. You can see how the Model C9’s LRHO mechanism would require a relief cut into the slide for it to fit; Hi-Point also incorporated a hole in the mag well to allow a finger from the LRHO to come in contact with the magazine follower.
Below is a view of the right side of the two pistols. The Model C has a plastic magazine retainer and is lacking the magazine safety.
In contrast, the Model C9 shows a number of enhancements: a tab to hold the mag release spring in position, a metal magazine retainer (a far better idea than the plastic one found on the Model C), a magazine safety, (with a hole in the frame to allow it to contact the magazine), plus the Hi-Point name is molded into the frame.
There are also differences in the right side grips. The Model C9 grip has molded in pin, and an added spring to help retain the magazine safety, and a rib section that is present on the Model C grip has been removed as well.
The last difference are the grip screws: The Model C grip screws have a smaller head than the Model C9.
In conclusion, I’ve never been a big fan of magazine safeties; and I can take or leave the LRHO feature on my guns. I actually enjoy the simplicity of the Model C over its "more refined, younger sibling".