View Full Version : Browning HP 35 with dural frame - need advice

05-13-2010, 04:23 PM
I would like to ask for advice.

Browning HP 35 is for long time on my wish list, now I was offered
Browning HP 35 with dural frame, it is used handgun, which was
issued gun of Belgian police.

Here is picture which I got:

http://img265.imageshack.us/img265/9709/pistolefnhp.jpg (http://img265.imageshack.us/img265/9709/pistolefnhp.jpg)

I am doing research now, especially as price is very good, "sort of too good
to be true" - about 357 USDs...

"Normal" price is usually twice more.

I know there is a lot of Browning experts, so I would like to ask you for
your point of view - what do you think?

Is HP 35 with dural frame worth it?

Thank you


05-13-2010, 05:17 PM

That weapon looks pretty good to me, and seeing how it's a police surplus weapon, that would at leaat partially explain the unusually low price.

My own Browning Hi-Power is a used (made in 1967, as determined by looking up the serial #) genuine FN that I paid approximately $600 for.

If it's your dream gun, go for it! :)

Prairie Fire
05-13-2010, 06:00 PM
Beg, borrow, or steal the money. Buy it.

05-14-2010, 12:36 AM
I don't understand what you mean by "dural" frame, but if it is an FN (Belgian) made Hi Power for US$ 357, go for it! The Hungarian and Argentinian clones sell for almost that much, sometimes more. Any Hi Power in the US now goes for $800 or more.

Best wishes.


05-14-2010, 02:35 AM
Thank you for your opinions.

English is not my native language, by dural I mean duralumin or
another word in vocabulary is hard aluminium.

So frame is not steel but hard aluminium, so frame is lightweight.

I am more interested in steel one, but price is very good, so I am
asking for expert opinion.

Thank you in advance


05-14-2010, 02:36 AM
I don't understand what you mean by "dural" frame, but if it is an FN (Belgian) made Hi Power for US$ 357, go for it! The Hungarian and Argentinian clones sell for almost that much, sometimes more. Any Hi Power in the US now goes for $800 or more.

Best wishes.


+1 on the price, seems excellent!

ELB, from what I can see, the "dural" frame is a lightweight aluminium alloy frame that seems to have been used in certain European handguns WWII through the '60s. Can't find any other HP w. dural frames, but there are a few rare Walther PPKs and P38s out there.

05-14-2010, 05:51 AM
Your price is pretty good. I would be suspect of the photo - it looks like a stock photo from the Internet. Even the clean knock-offs would be a good buy for $350.

05-14-2010, 05:50 PM
Stick with steel, it is more durable, too.

05-14-2010, 06:00 PM
An old "salty" said to me once:

"Carry a lot and shoot a little? - Go with an alloy frame." (We were talking Colt Commanders.)

"Shoot a lot and carry a little? - Go with a steel frame."

Shoot a lot and carry a lot? - Then get one of both. Practise with the steel frame gun, and carry the alloy frame gun."

I really don't know to be honest?

No doubt somebody will mention how their alloy frame Colt Commander digested thousands of rounds without a problem? :)

Personally, I sort of think that the old guy's advice above, seems very wise.


05-14-2010, 07:18 PM
I used to wear out steel frame Hi Powers, so I would not want an alloy framed Hi Power.


05-15-2010, 02:21 PM
Michal, Hamburgo, thanks for the definition. I had heard of aluminum-framed HPs, just not by that term. Learn sumpin' everyday.:D

I'd love to have a chance to wear out an aluminum alloy framed Hi Power, so I would still jump on that deal.;)


05-16-2010, 08:36 AM
In my limited ownership experience consisting of alloy Colt Agent vs Steel Detective Special, Smith and Wesson Chief Specials in alloy and steel and Springfield Armory 45 1911's in alloy and steel, the steel is more accurate. Is that because the extra heft is easier to shoot or does the alloy frame flex somewhat, I can't say. The practice in steel, shoot in alloy was always the advice I had been given as well, and it makes sense...

05-16-2010, 04:11 PM
Thank you all for your point of views.

My situation is that Browning HP35 is for long time on my wishlist as
I tried once steel framed version and it perfectly fitted my hand and
that pistol has special "spirit" for me. So I want to get one, but
without compromise.

In the Czech republic it is very unusual gun - with alloy frame, so
because of that I asked here as here are Browning HP 35 experts.

I am especially thankful for Anthony´s and Yoni´s comments.

I have good, I would even say great, EDC handgun - Glock 19,
so it is not question of getting new EDC.

So when I will get HP35 I want HP35 which will survive long time
with me. And there is risk that alloy frame HP35 will not survive that
long - as some of you mentioned.

Once more thank you for advices and points of views.


05-16-2010, 04:16 PM
I have good, I would even say great, EDC handgun - Glock 19,
so it is not question of getting new EDC.So in this case Michal, wait and get a steel frame BHP.

Alloy frame guns are for carrying.
Not for shooting the shit out of. ;) (ie: - Tens of thousands of rounds.)

Best regards,

Lawrence Keeney
05-18-2010, 08:48 AM
Ive heard of aluminum frame HPs before..I think this one would be interesting to own, although I never found the BHP to be very "heavy"

Id get it if I were you.

05-18-2010, 09:23 AM
While it would carry a high price in the United States as a rare collector item, I do not have confidence in the aluminum frame as a self-defense gun or a high-use recreational gun. I agree that the Hi_Power has the best feel of any gun ever made, I don't believe the aluminum balances as well as the steel frame. For collecting and occasional recreational shooting, it sure sounds like a good deal, but as a practical self-defense gun, I'd look for a traditional steel-framed gun.

05-18-2010, 09:34 AM
I used to wear out steel frame Hi Powers, so I would not want an alloy framed Hi Power.


Dude, what did you do to wear out "steel frame Hi Powers" ??? :)
Not just one but plural. Shoot, dip in sand, shoot, dip in sand, etc.? :eek:


05-18-2010, 12:12 PM
I have one aluminum-frame BHP, and one (soon to be two) steel frames. I have owned several in the past, all steel models.

There is a definite weight difference, if it matters to you. Honestly, I bought mine because my friend Wayne Novak offered me a hand-selected gun from the first eleven that came into the US some years ago. Obviously, it has been worked on at his shop. Since I have more than one, I doubt I'll ever wear out the aluminum gun.

Of course, I also don't put +P or +P+ in either version, and replace recoil springs on a regular basis.

If I could keep only one, it would be a steel frame. But th eLW is sure neat...;)

05-19-2010, 05:31 PM
It is easy to forget just how good we have it here in the States. At the end of the day, it is not my Gub'ment that stops my buying, but my wallet. Think about this for a second. I currently have 6 1911 pattern pistols, and I am not even carrying them anymore. They are fun guns for me. To think one of my W/T brothers is agonizing over the purchase of a single pistol because of restrictions...thank the Lord and if you are already not a member join the NRA. End of sermon.

05-22-2010, 05:49 AM
Thank you all for your opinions and point of views.

I am not gun collector, I am more of gun user, so possible rarity
and rare collector item is not that important for me.

For me it will be "high-use recreational gun" and from time to my
EDC handgun. I don´t want to be limited by material of frame
as some of you mentioned, I want to have this gun for years.

I wasn´t sure about material of frame and because if that
asked here for your real life experience and I am thankful
you shared you experience with me.

I also understand point of views of these who say "buy it"!
If I would have extra 357 USDs, I would definitely buy it
and later buy steel framed HP. But I am not rich man.

I would like to hear how Yoni managed to wear out steel
frame HP35?


05-22-2010, 07:38 AM
I'm not Yoni, but I have knowh of BHP steel frames to break.

Due to thousands (tens of thousands probably,) of hot SMG ammo.

Both Brit service pistols and Brit civilian pistols (back when they could be owned,) that were fed an exclusive diet of '2z' SMG ammo, which was the cheapest available back in the 80s.

I even warned a Cop (but a civilian shooter,) about it, but he didn't listen.

Some time later he was shooting a friend's gun.
"Where's your BHP"? I asked.
"The frame cracked" he replied. "Should have listened to you."

But this diet of thousands of hot SMG ammo, probably will break other pistols too.


05-22-2010, 08:43 AM
I have read that the steel ones made in Argentina are hell for stout and can handle large volumes of full power loads. I have no practical experience with them, however, so cannot vouch for the accuracy of the claim.

05-22-2010, 08:51 AM
Having done extensive custom gunsmithing on the BHP (My favorite metal gun), my experience has been different. While the Argies aren't bad, I wouldn't spend much money customizing them. - trigger job (components replaced with FN), grips, and nightsights - that's all. I've had sears mushroom after 100 rounds, bushings blow out the front of slides, etc. Again, I'm not saying its a bad gun, just I'd pick a Belgium or FN if you're gonna dump $800+ custom work into it.