MAY 14, 2024

Shooting the Shadow Systems CR920 Foundation Pistol

The base line Shadow Systems “Covert Role” pistol, the CR920 Foundation, has been quite serviceable. Coverage of the piece was featured here, here, and here, for reference. The impressive new glass, the Holosun SCS Carry enclosed emitter reflex sight, was quickly and easily zeroed.

I wanted to check velocity out of the shorter 3.4” barrel as well as check deviation from the sixteen yard zero when shooting from a rest at 25 yards.

I selected Black Hills 115 grain EXP hollow-point and Federal Personal Defense 124gr. Punch JHP ammo for the ammo test. On the cool April morning, I found the pistol to be quite accurate from the seated position, my hands supported by a range bag. In the hands of someone younger with a consistent firm grip, this is easily a two-inch at 25 yards pistol – far tighter than I can hold.

The lighter bullet load averaged 1,155 fps over the Garmin Xero Pro C1 chronograph. This was faster than the same firm’s 115 grain FMJ load.

Both loads were quite accurate in the little Shadow Systems pistol.

The Black Hills EXP accordingly hit 2 ¼” above the sights. Five hits went into 2 ½” with the best three crowding into ¾”. This is target-gun accuracy.

The Federal Punch round averaged 1,078 feet-per-second. It likewise printed about 2 ½” high, but tended right about two inches. I believe that to be more a grip issue. The load averaged 1,078 fps, a typical velocity for a service round of that weight in a sub-4” barrel.

Five rounds of the Punch load went into 2 3/8”, with the best three hits in a tight 5/8” cluster.

While snappy, the gun was quite manageable. Below, the gun shot well enough with a slick slide; with the Holosun SCS Carry optic, it was easier to shoot consistently.


Thinking that the accuracy of the little gun was enough to make me a good shooter prompted me to put up a B-8 repair center for some 15-yard work. I fired the “timed fire” pace for five rounds of Federal Punch two-hands supported. I was rewarded with a 49/50, with (sadly) 2X.

I recalled that the Hornady Critical Defense Lite – a natural for a short-barrel micro-compact gun – hadn’t fed in the CR920 Foundation. It seems that bullet profile, with shorter overall length and light bullet contributed to make this a problem in the high-end striker-fired gun.

I loaded up the four rounds I had left into the longer magazine – the gun is furnished with a short, 10-round magazine and a more hand-filling 13 round magazine – and tried a four-inch steel paddle from fifteen yards.

I dropped the slide on the mag loaded with the short rounds – that was a stumbling block for the pistol pre-break-in – and it chambered and locked up. I’d like to say I nailed the swinging paddle with four rounds, but I went three for four.

And the slide locked open on the empty magazine.

After I scavenge more “Lite,” I’ll try again. In the meantime, this little pistol gets high marks for appearance, accuracy, and adaptability.

Without the Holosun optic, I doubt my results on target would have been this good. The short grip compromises my limited ability to hold. Not having to “line up the bumpy things” atop the slide – one only “floats the dot and shoots the shot” (George Harris) – left me to concentrate on grip and trigger.

That makes life easier.

— Rich Grassi