SHOT Show 2019: Kel-Tec CP33 Pistol

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posted on January 25, 2019
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Offering unprecedented capacity for a semi-automatic rimfire pistol, Kel-Tec’s new CP33 feeds from innovative quad-stack detachable box magazines that hold a total of 33 rounds of .22 Long Rifle. That’s a lot of trigger pulls before the user is forced to reload—making the CP33 an intriguing option for competitive shooters. Further enhancing the pistol’s potential as a competition gun is the 19-slot Picatinny rail that runs nearly the entire length of the gun’s receiver—for the installation of an optic.  


Using a standard blowback operating system, the CP33’s action is opened by pulling back on an ambidextrous, non-reciprocating charging handle found at the rear of the receiver. A lever on the left side of the gun allows the bolt to be locked in the open position. A pair of fully adjustable fiber-optic sights (green up front and red in the rear) ride the top of the gun, while a single M-Lok-compatible slot is molded into the dustcover.

The CP33 measures 10.6” long, with a 5.5” barrel that is threaded 1/2x28 TPI from the factory and comes with a thread protector. Bilateral thumb safeties are positioned on the polymer frame so that up is safe and down is fire. The pistol’s high-capacity magazines are released from the frame via a European-style magazine release button located in the heel of the gun.
During our initial testing Monday morning at the SHOT Show 2019 Industry Day at the Range, Kel-Tec’s new CP33 functioned well, although the company does warn that there is a “correct” way to load the magazines in order to avoid rim lock. And for those who don’t think a 33-round-capacity magazine is enough, Kel-Tec already has a 50-round prototype in the works. With an MSRP of only $475, the CP33 deserves consideration from anyone looking for high-volume rimfire fun. For more information, visit keltecweapons.com.

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