A while back, my partner in crime wrote a post on modifications he has made to his beloved Beretta 92FS. I myself am also a grand fan of Beretta’s handguns, in case you couldn’t tell by now, and have recently acquired a model 96FS Inox (Stainless Steel) for myself. I carried an M9 during my 8 years in the military and was among the apparent minority that loved it. I feel as though the M9’s reputation among service members is entirely undeserved (but that’s for another time).
After purchasing the used 96, I discovered that there were a couple issues that need to be fixed so I proceeded to get the Italian masterpiece back up to duty condition. Included in this was performing my signature trigger upgrades for Beretta handguns. This includes a lighter weight hammer spring courtesy of Wolff Springs and the INS trigger spring upgrade, also from Wolff. With these two new springs installed, the double action trigger pull on the 96 was tamed to an incredibly manageable level (Granted my Cougar still has a much nicer double action pull) and based upon my incredibly accurate trigger finger scale, is in the comfortable range of around 9lbs. The very crisp and short single action trigger pull is in the 3-4lb range with a very short and positive trigger reset.
There has however, always been a glaring issue with the 92/96 that many people just can’t get over. You need to have huge hands and an unnaturally long trigger finger in order to overcome the very long reach to be able to manipulate the trigger when in double action. I just so happen to have such oddly shaped hands so that was never a big issue for me. That’s not to say however, that it couldn’t be improved.
I saw recently online that Wilson Combat had gotten into the Beretta game and was very impressed at their catalog of parts. The spring sets appear to be re-packaged Wolff items but I have no way of verifying that with certainty. The item that really caught my eye was the Short Reach Trigger. Thanks to clever marketing by Wilson Combat, I didn’t have to work hard to figure out what that particular item does. The price was indeed very nice at $28.95 so I decided to make the purchase.
Around a week later the very underwhelming package arrived at my mailbox and I immediately opened the package, removed the old trigger to compare and installed the Wilson Combat trigger. I’m well versed in working on these guns so it took me all of 15 minutes from start to finish. As soon as I had everything all put back together and made that first dry fire trigger pull, my whole world changed. Angels sang, flowers bloomed, church bells rang … and I’m pretty sure my wife should have been jealous at that moment too. For the first time ever, I experienced what can only be described as true perfection in a double action trigger pull on a semi-auto. While the overall weight of the trigger pull felt the same, the change in the geometry of the trigger seems to allow more leverage on the trigger which makes the pull feel so much more smooth and controllable.
Later that week I was able to make it to the range to run a few rounds through the 96 for function testing and to really get a good feel for the new trigger. I must say that I think this trigger is a true winner. Follow up shots were so much faster, the reset so incredibly short into single action and it’s nice and positive thanks to the altered geometry and upgraded plunger style trigger spring. I just can’t say enough, the trigger changes the dynamics of how the gun handles for the better. It retains all of the reliability and durability necessary in a defensive or duty gun while having a trigger that feels like it might belong on a competition gun. This is easily one of the best $30 upgrades I’ve seen for a handgun.