Xesse vs 208 ?

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Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by Bullseye_Stan on 2/16/2018, 6:41 am

Greetings,

I'm interested in the Walther (Hammerli) Xesse, which appears to be similar to the 208 based on diagrams.  I haven't held one, but am considering getting one.  Is it a steel pistol, like the 41 - or does it have an aluminum slide and plastic parts?  The main question I have: what is an Xesse made of?

I've read some about them, and it seems some parts -like the trigger guard- can break and there may be a safety latch which is plastic.  Are the magazines plastic?  That's really my main concern/question is how much of the gun is plastic (and/or aluminum).  I know the Walther GSP has a substantial amount of plastic, but it seems the Xesse is a copy of the 208 which was designed as a steel gun.  Anyway, any insights or information on the parts is appreciated. 


Stan

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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by cdrt on 2/16/2018, 7:08 am

One of the guys that shoots our league has one.  On his, the rear sight fell apart, other than that, I have not really checked it out.
This article may help: http://www.frontierarms.com.au/downloads/reviews/Hammerli-X-esse-Sport-ANZHandgun.pdf
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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by willnewton on 2/16/2018, 7:18 am

My buddy sold me his Hammerli 215 and bought an Xesse.  I am still not quite sure of his reasoning behind it, since many folks would say the 215 is the superior pistol.

That being said, he shoots the heck out of that pistol.  It is very well put together and is similar to the 208/215 with some subtle differences.   The gun is all metal except the grip.  The stock red ergo grip is about a Med. size and is nicely sculpted.  If you need a large or XL grip, don’t buy the Xesse with that grip, just get the normal grip and a Rink ergo grip sized for you. He has a Matchdot II mounted and the combo works well, as the stock Xesse is a bit light.

After shooting next to him for a year or so, he has only had trouble if he forgets to run a brush through the chamber every few sessions, as it is quite snug.  A quick wipe with a chamber brush or bore snake gets him right back in the game.

He shot a 100-9x in timed fire a few weeks ago and is consistently one of the top scorers in our little group.

I also priced an Xesse package before purchasing his pistol and was pretty surprised at how quickly it all added up.  A nicely priced used 208/215 with scope mounts and mags is very close in price to a new Xesse with mount, mags, and Rink grip.

I am happy with my purchase and he is happy with his.  Neither one of us question that our pistols only shoot where they are pointed at and are both accurate beyond our abilities to shoot them.

If I knew then what I know now, then an Xesse would be given very serious consideration.  I would watch out for the old SIG Trailside version of the Xesse, but the new ones seem awfully nice.
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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by jglenn21 on 2/16/2018, 8:02 am

Xesse and the trailside are basically the same gun. The walther Xesse has a few upgrades. Internals are the same..  I'm running a trailside this year and so far it's been great.. I did modify the trigger to be more a single stage style.. stock trigger is a 2 stage design. if you try and make it a single stage it will have a loooong smooth as glass pull.

It's a fairly simple pistol with a great trigger( think Smith 41).  Many folks have Larry Carter's trigger kit installed. This helps but does leave it as a two stage trigger. I talked with Jon about the gun and modified it myself. Not something I'd recommend for the average person as it involves modifying the sear and can be made unsafe in a hurry.. 

Pistols shoot great and are very light in stock form. At Jon's suggestion I added a aimpoint 9000sc to add weight then added a weight from Larry's to get the gun up to something close to my Marvel conversion. I also added a 1911 grip to mine from Larrys.

My wife liked my 6" version so much I had to go get her a 4.5 version.. 

You can find the Sig trailside on gunbroker for under $500...if you want a great trigger I'd highly recommend Jon Eullete.
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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by jglenn21 on 2/16/2018, 8:12 am

The mags are plastic but work just fine and seem quite durable. The mag catch is all metal but can wear quickly if you release the slide with it. Slingshot the slide and no issues. Larry's guns has a repair kit for around $25 If memory serves.

 He is the source for parts along with Numerich Arm's. The original Trailside did have a issue with breaking the trigger guard but that issue is easily set right.
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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by Doug Tiedt on 2/16/2018, 10:51 pm

I too am confused my willienewtons's "watch out" comment regarding the SIG Trailside.  With a grip and trigger replacement
from Larry's Guns, this makes a fine 22 target pistol until you are ready to move up to the big leagues.  I've never shot
the 215 or Xesse, so I really can't comment.  But I know a shot off target is not the gun's fault.

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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by Bullseye_Stan on 2/17/2018, 6:07 am

Thanks for the info, folks.  Part of my concern is that Larry's (of Maine, i.e. Larry Carter) sells several triggers for the Trailside/Xesse, but also stocks used 'plastic' triggers that appear to have been removed during trigger work.  That leads me to think that some of these Sig/Walther/Hammerli pistols had some plastic parts, as evidence by the trigger. The trigger guard may have been plastic at one time.  Those aren't show stoppers, but good to know.

Having owned a 208, and probably destined to own another 208/215, I understand Hammerli was not crystal clear on their models and going by serial numbers was needed.  Not that Hammerli is unique, S&W and Colt do the same.  Still, it seems Sig/Walther/Hammerli did make changes to these pistols - which appear to be improvements.  I'm thinking the Xesse can be made into a 208 'clone', either out of the box or with some custom parts - or an older model can be upgraded with a few parts.  Maybe this is folly.

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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by KB2MBC on 2/17/2018, 6:29 am

One noticeable difference is the rear sight on a 208 is on a bridge affixed to the frame and on the Xesse it is on the slide, if memory serves me correctly.
I have an Xesse and it's a sweet shooter. I did have the trigger guard break once, had it fixed at Perry by Larry's gunsmith. Next time I'll do it myself, that is if there is a next time.
One other issue I had was around the first 1000 rounds fired I started to experience hammer follow through. It usually didn't double but mostly it would leave a faint impression on the rim of the chambered cartridge. I sent it back to Larry's and they told me it needed cleaning. I keep my guns pretty clean so I questioned their analysis. I sent them the ammo I was using, still no problems found. $200 dollars later ($100 cleaning fee and shipping charges) I got my gun back, functioned fine for around 500 rounds and then it started in again. Rather than spending another $150 bucks screwing around sending it back, I took the slide and grips off, grabbed a can of G96 and sprayed the sh*t out of the hammer/sear mechanism.
Three years and 15K rounds later, not a peep.

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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by Chris Miceli on 2/17/2018, 6:32 am

Bullseye_Stan wrote:Thanks for the info, folks.  Part of my concern is that Larry's (of Maine, i.e. Larry Carter) sells several triggers for the Trailside/Xesse, but also stocks used 'plastic' triggers that appear to have been removed during trigger work.  That leads me to think that some of these Sig/Walther/Hammerli pistols had some plastic parts, as evidence by the trigger. The trigger guard may have been plastic at one time.  Those aren't show stoppers, but good to know.

Having owned a 208, and probably destined to own another 208/215, I understand Hammerli was not crystal clear on their models and going by serial numbers was needed.  Not that Hammerli is unique, S&W and Colt do the same.  Still, it seems Sig/Walther/Hammerli did make changes to these pistols - which appear to be improvements.  I'm thinking the Xesse can be made into a 208 'clone', either out of the box or with some custom parts - or an older model can be upgraded with a few parts.  Maybe this is folly.

the 208s has roughly double the parts Trailside/Xesse, its more an attempt of a want to be 208s/215s than a clone. Get the Larry trigger upgrade if you do get a Trailside/Xesse.
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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by KB2MBC on 2/17/2018, 6:39 am

As far as plastic parts go, the only 3 things that are plastic that I know of are the grips, trigger and the faux barrel weight. The grips are fine, even with my large hands. I had Larry replace the stock trigger with the one he has fabricated and I purchased the heaviest barrel weight they offer.
The magazines are plastic but are 1/3 the price of the 208 mags.

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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by Bullseye_Stan on 2/17/2018, 8:03 am

Chris Miceli wrote:
the 208s has roughly double the parts Trailside/Xesse, its more an attempt of a want to be 208s/215s than a clone. Get the Larry trigger upgrade if you do get a Trailside/Xesse.

Yes, you are correct.  I'm comparing the Xesse to the 208/215 with the less sophisticated trigger that has less adjustments (and parts) than the 'S' models.  Compared to a 208/215 parts diagram the Xesse is very similar. 

However, the pistol uses different grips as evidenced by Rink and Nill selling specific grips for the Xesse/Trailside.  I wonder how different the frame is from a 208, specifically to see if a Xesse plastic magazine will work in a 208?


Edit: found out more information about the Xesse- the hard way.  Here it is:

Frame and disassembly similar to 208.  Trigger upgrade from Larry's is aluminum.  Plastic parts: trigger and front weight. 

Frame material: steel
Slide material: steel
Trigger guard: steel
Grips: plastic (polymer)
Magazines: plastic (polymer)
Sights: steel
Internal Parts: steel (other than trigger)
Trigger: plastic (polymer)
Front weight (spacer): plastic (polymer)


Last edited by Bullseye_Stan on 3/29/2018, 7:58 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by jglenn21 on 2/17/2018, 8:10 am

The  trailside trigger is plastic but no big deal. It just sits on a pin and pulls a trigger bar similar to a Smith 41.. Larry's trigger is aluminum and has an adjustment screw for the first stage pull and a trigger stop. I found no reason to change the stock trigger.  

The  trailside/X esse were designed as entry-level pistol off the 208 design so there are some compromises.  Still a heck of a pistol with a glass smooth trigger.

I also found that the sear hammer surfaces should be clean with no oil or moly(in my case).

Never heard that the grips or mags were interchangeable between the 208 and xesse.
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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

Post by jglenn21 on 2/17/2018, 4:53 pm

1st one is a 6" trailside with a Larrys mount , Aimpoint 9000sc, Laryys 1911 grips

2nd is my wife's 4.5 " with a 1"UD. Xesse grips.

the barrels are cut for a 22 Tip Off mount. Leupold and Warne make good ones.


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Re: Xesse vs 208 ?

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