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Walther Q5 Match Steel Frame Black Tie Competition Pistol

The Walther Q5 Steel Frame Black Tie is hand-finished, hand-fitted and can be hand-engraved. It's a Cadillac of competition handguns with plenty of functional upgrades.

Walther Q5 Match Steel Frame Black Tie Competition Pistol

Walther has decided to capitalize on its well-regarded Q5 Match Steel Frame and combine it with a custom-shop touch to produce the Meister line of pistols. These are hand-finished, hand-fitted guns, and some also are hand-engraved.

The gun I received is called the Black Tie. This just could be the new Cadillac of competition handguns for the serious target shooter. But it’s not just about the looks, as the Black Tie has a lot of functional upgrades going for it.

The barrel, slide and frame—and even the solid steel magazine base plate—are given a Tenifer nitride finish and then polished. But Walther didn’t stop there. These metal parts get an additional Stinox coating, which produces a satin finish that also protects against corrosion and wear.

The grip is one piece, machined from a block of aerospace-grade aluminum alloy, with a satin black anodized finish. Checkering is 20 lpi, and the grip also sports the magazine well funnel found on the Q5 Match Steel Frame Pro model.

Walther’s triggers are legendary, and for the Black Tie the company has introduced a new one: the Dynamik Performance trigger. It has a reduced take-up, stop and reset, along with a flat-faced aluminum trigger shoe. Pull weight is spec’d at 5.5 pounds, but mine broke crisply at five pounds. The Black Tie also gets an extended magazine release for faster reloads.

Sights include a fully adjustable LPA rear and a black serrated target front. The latter is a departure from the standard Q5 Match Steel Frame, which has a fiber-optic front sight. There’s also no optics plate on the Black Tie, which makes sense since a regular rear-sight setup looks better because it lacks the cuts and screws necessary to facilitate mounting a red dot.

A ribbon of serration is atop the slide to cut down on glare, and the Black Tie retains the Q5 Match Steel Frame’s slide-lightening cuts along the front. The front of the roomy, squared-off trigger guard is serrated.

The pistol checks in at 48 ounces—a full three pounds—on my scale. Years ago, I bought an alloy-framed Smith & Wesson Model 39, and when I compared it to the newer metal-frame Model 52 the difference was like night and day.

I feel the same with the Walther with its all-steel construction. It strikes the right balance of weight with a great design and finish for the dedicated competitive shooter, and this Black Tie version is really sharp looking. At $2,699 you’re essentially getting a custom gun without the custom price tag.

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