Review: The New Diamondback DB FS NINE

The new full-sized pistol from Diamondback is a great option for first time buyers who want a lot of punch at a great price.
Review: The New Diamondback DB FS NINE

Diamondback Firearms of Cocoa, Florida, was established in 2009 and soon thereafter released its popular micro compact DB 380 pistol to the public. With the country’s insatiable appetite for the next “must have” firearm, Diamondback recently introduced its latest and greatest DB FS NINE pistol to the huddled masses.

According to Diamondback the DB FS NINE chambered in 9mm Luger is intended for use by new shooters, or experienced shooters looking for an affordable pistol to compete with other similar platforms that carry a higher price. Priced around $483 the DB FS NINE promises to be an attractive alternative to shooters looking for lots of bang for the buck.

The Diamondback DB FS NINE is a double-action, striker-fired platform that incorporates a polymer double stack frame with a stainless steel slide. Diamondback conducted extensive research while designing this tactile enhanced grip and frame and is convinced shooters will find the design increases control while offering consistent hand placement. The flared magwell aids in fast and reliable reloads while the extended magazine base pad provides a secure grip during loading, handling and firing the pistol.

Diamondback has incorporated a trigger safety and firing pin block safety with a short positive reset minimizing trigger travel for faster cycle times. A cocking indicator is located at the rear of the slide, providing both visual and tactile recognition of rounds in battery.

For quick target acquisition the DB FS NINE uses a three-dot sight. Deep forward and aft serrations are cut into the DB FS NINE’s slide for a positive purchase on the firearm during manipulations. The dust cover has an integrated MIL-STD1913 Picatinny rail for mounting your favorite lights, lasers and accessories. The 4.75-inch chrome moly barrel on the DB FS NINE provides a long 6.25-inch sight radius.

Nuts & Bolts

Caliber: 9x19
Length: 7.8 inches
Height: 5.6 inches
Width: 1 inch
Barrel: 4.75 inches
Sight Radius: 6.25 inches
Weight Unloaded: 21.5 ounces
Trigger Pull: 5.5 pounds
Magazine Capacity: 15 +1

Looking at the pistol up close, the DB FS NINE has great lines. It has those deep serrations on the slide giving the pistol an aggressive stance — but there is some refinement that compliments the “built for speed” slide. The pistol kind of looks like a Glock and Smith & Wesson M&P 9 had a baby.

In the hand it becomes evident that Diamondback spent some time on R&D. The grip of the pistol feels good, really good, like gripping some of your favorite guns all wrapped up in one. The stippling on the grip is a little soft by my standards and could become slippery when wet, but that is just a personal preference.

The flared magwell and slight protrusion on the rear of the grip nestles the pistol into a comfortable position that is both easy to repeat and promotes a natural point of reference. Fit and finish on the DB FS NINE is quite good considering its sub-$500 sales price.

On The Range

I spent some time at the range getting to know the Diamondback DB FS NINE. Winchester was generous enough to supply me with a few hundred rounds of their 115-grain white box ball ammo. I only added a few drops of oil to the pistol before shooting, and off we went to see how she handled.

I did load a dummy round into the chamber to get a feel for the trigger break. I began by loading the one supplied magazine with the Winchester ball ammo and did a function test. Everything performed as expected, and there were no surprises. The next magazine was surprise free as well so it looks like things are in order with the DB FS NINE’s function. However on the third magazine, the last round failed to eject cleanly — though upon closer examination this could have been from a poor grip.

After the first box of 50 rounds down the tube I began to concentrate on the accuracy of the DB FS NINE where I initially shot at 30 feet off a pistol rest.

The DB FS NINE has nice three-dot sights that come up cleanly and present a good sight picture, so acquiring the target was not a problem. I began a five shot string of slow deliberate fire. The DB FS NINE is not a bullseye gun and I didn’t expect that type of accuracy out of it. The first five-shot group measured 3.85 inches and was low and left approximately 4 inches from my point of aim. Another grouping produced similar results.

After comparing with my Glock 19 — which shoots 1.5-inch groups — the best I could muster out of the Diamondback DB FS NINE was a 3-inch group that was low and left. But with all that, there were no more failures to feed, failures to eject or other malfunctions. I contacted Diamondback to question them about the accuracy inconsistency. They were very helpful and determined that my sample gun had been fitted with a front sight that was too tall. Hopefully they have corrected the sights on the production guns by the time of this article.

Overall I like the Diamondback DB FS NINE. The lines of the gun are attractive and seem to have an air of refinement. The pistol seems positioned to be a good option for customers looking for a carry gun or range toy. Priced to please, the Diamondback DB FS NINE should be right in the sweet spot for customers looking for their first handgun or those who are interested in an affordably priced backup or truck gun.


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