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Posted By FFL Dealer Network on 01/18/2021 in Reviews

Hi-Point 10mm Carbine

Hi-Point 10mm Carbine

Ever since I heard there was as a 10mm carbine, I've wanted one. 

Enter the Hi-Point 10mm carbine.

On the way home one day, I decided to swing into a local hock shop. I saw two rifles in the rack behind the counter that looked tactical and interesting. I ask the proprietor what they were.

"Hi-Point 10 –" and I was pulling out my wallet – "millimeter." Before he knew what was happening, I had my ID, carry permit and the money on the counter.

I like Hi Points. Why? They are inexpensive. They have a lifetime fully transferrable warranty. They are dependable. Firearms experts have done torture to destruction tests and they hold up just as well as any other polymer-frame handgun. The Hi-Point .45 ACPs I've had never jammed, never misfired. Can't say that about others I fired. These guns are also accurate.

Hi-Point also produces a .380, 9mm, .40 S&W and a .45 ACP carbine. All come in black or camo finishes.

The same caliber magazine fits the handguns and carbines. The standard 10mm and the .45 ACP mags are the same except the 10mm lips are bent in more.


Hi-Point 10mm Carbine

 Why a 10mm Carbine?

If you wonder why you should get a 10mm carbine, here are some reasons.

1) It's a carbine. It is short and easy to handle. 

2) 10mm because it shoots .40 S&W and 10mm. A .40 S&W will not accept 10mm rounds. Think .357 to .38. Both rounds work in a .357. However, the .38 will not accept .357s.

3) The 10mm is almost identical ballistically to the .41 Magnum. It packs more punch than the .357 mag, the .45 ACP, the 9mm and not quite as much as a .44. 

4) 10mm ammo prices held steady during the past two ammo shortages.

5) Recoil is light.

Hi-Point 10mm Carbine: First Glance

A first glance at the Hi-Point Carbine is not a pretty sight. The carbine is heavy, 7 pounds empty. It is bulky and thick, like its handgun cousins. Ugly and heavy also describes me, so the carbine and I are a good match.

The muzzle is threaded. This carbine simply calls for a can.

The Sights

The front sight is TALL, as in AR-15 Triangle Sight tall. It also has an elevation adjustment built in; just use an Allen wrench. The sight is removable.

The top rail is about a foot long. The rear has a set screw. The included iron sight is about six inches and held on with set screws. The ring on the back actually wobbles back and forth in the housing. It adjusts for windage and elevation. Given the front sight's elevation, you have a LOT of maneuvering room on elevation. The housing for the sight is metal and the sight itself is polymer.

I added a Holoson red dot with a cowitness mount. The iron sights are still too high to use the optic. No one offers a lower set of iron sights dedicated for the Hi-Point Carbine. The rear peep sight rises nearly an inch off the pic rail. The front post sight, set in the middle of the adjustment range, is a full 2 inches above the barrel. I got a lower profile red dot sight instead. The Holosun will go on a .45-70 now.

HOLOSUN HS403R

 A set of low-rise iron sights might work. Just getting a shorter front post sight won't work because the rear peep sight on the pic rail is two inches above the plane of the barrel.

The Rails

A pic rail is attached to the front sight on the underside of the barrel, running back to the forearm. The one on mine is bowed a little bit. This is disastrous if it was meant to hold some kind of sight. For a light, no problem. The rail is removable.

Under the forearm is another removable plastic/polymer pic rail. It fits in a groove and is held on with two set screws.

The forearm is ribbed. Easy to hang on to, but will be annoying after a while. A vertical grip makes handling and shooting easier. The grip I have is hollow with a cap on the bottom. I store the Hi-Point tool in there.

The Sling

Screws in the stock are removed to install the Hi-Point-supplied sling. The sling will install on either side. Just reverse the position of the screw and retaining nut.

Screw the bolt in from the wrong side about an 18th of an inch. Gently tug it out. Tap the nut into the other side of the polymer furniture. When you have it seated enough for the bolt to grasp it, tighten until secure.

The sling is as basic as they come. It is a length of plain nylon strap. It is also short. I put a padded and longer sling on mine.

The Receiver

The sheet metal receiver is painted. My paint was already showing wear after racking it just a few times. 

The bolt handle is on the left side. The bolt handle screws into the bolt. The included tool lets you mount the handle as it is not in place when you open the box. In my case, the hock shop put it on hand-tight. I recommend a drop of LocTite on the threads when you mount the handle permanently.



Some aftermarket companies sell a replacement bolt handle to go on the right side. CAUTION! To do this, you must ream the right side of the receiver to let the bolt go all the way back. This may void your warranty.

The ejection port is extremely large.

The safely is an up & down lever on the left side. Righties will find this awkward. Lefties will love it.

The Stock

The stock is in two pieces. A series of bolts, nuts, C-clips on the stock and pivoting pins on the receiver hold it together.

The trigger guard is a bit on the small side. The underside of the trigger guard has a C-clip. The C-clip holds the trigger guard together. 

The stock is fixed. Some aftermarket mods allow an AR 15 collapsing stock. This is the biggest single issue I have with the Hi-Point carbine. This rifle screams out for a folder. Even a folding wire stock would awesome.

My stock came with a really soft cheek pad already installed. Does this make a real difference shooting? Placement-wise no. For a cheek rest, yes. I wish more of my guns had something this comfortable.

The butt plate is hard plastic. It is also spring-loaded. More gun makers should really look into this. I still recommend a recoil pad. You won't need it for the kick; this is a heavy 10mm carbine and the weight absorbs most of the punch. You want the pad for comfort.

Magazines

The pistol grip is 100 percent Hi-Point, big and bulky. The grip houses the mag. 

Right now, no one offers an extended mag for the 10mm. You can get extended mags for the 9mm and .45 ACP carbine, including a drum for the .45. However, the .45 and 10mm Hi-Point mags are almost identical. The difference is the feed lips on the 10mm are bent in more. With judicious use of needlenose pliers, you can adapt a .45 ACP extended or drum mag for the 10mm. Once the mag's lips are bent to hold the smaller round, it will not accept 45s.

If you get aftermarket mags, be careful. Some third-party mags will void your Hi-Point warranty, something spelled out in the owner's manual.

Extras

Hi-Point offers plenty of OEM extras. Other companies are also offering after-market accessories. Just be aware some non Hi-Point mags can void the gun's warranty.

The stock-mount magazine holders are a good idea. One mag in the grip one 1 on each side of the stock gives you a fast 30 rounds. The mag holder has a screw that replaces one of the stock screws. When loaded this does add weight to the gun. It does not affect shouldering the stock.

My order came with a set of side pic rails. It is also an opportunity to hang more stuff on the gun to make it weigh even more. The pic rails come with a new sling attachment. This one mounts on the rear of the rail. It does not move. The sling attachment that came with the rifle mounts to the front or rear forearm screw hole and swivels backward and forward.

I have some issues here. The add-on pieces have Allen-head screws. The rest of the screws in the gun are hex wrenches. They should all be the same. The replacement screws are also not the same size as the original.

The additional rails are all polymer. The threaded holes for the screw are cut through the polymer. It is easy to over-tighten the screws and strip the threading. In other parts of the gun, a metal nut is driven into a hole. 



Hi-Point 10mm Carbine: On the Range

What is the gun like on the range?

To start with, it is a 10mm. In a handgun, this is a monster. The FBI put the 10mm away because of the recoil. In a carbine, this round is tame. Sycamore Police Chief Bill Ryder, part of the Review Crew and an NRA-certified law enforcement firearm instructor, said the recoil is like a .243. I agree.

I took a handful of .40 S&W ammo to see if it would work. I cautioned Bill that it would manually chamber a round and shoot it with no problem. Whether it cycled to load the second and subsequent rounds was a question.

It worked! The 10mm carbine cycled those .40s just like it was the 10mm ammo. Our 40s were 165 grain FMJs. I had one 180 grain LE JHP and it handled that just fine too. The recoil is what you'd get from a .22 or .223. I did notice a difference between the FMJ and the JHP. Regardless, this carbine has so little recoil no matter what you shoot that anyone can handle it.

Because it runs .40s flawlessly, you can spend range time with the less expensive .40 S&W. Get it sighted in with that. If you want to hunt, then switch to your 10mm hunting load and adjust the sights to match that bullet. For home defense, the 10mm and the .40 S&W should group so closely together as makes no difference.

The bolt locks open on an empty mag. You can only pull the bolt handle if the safety is off. Put one in the pipe and flip the safety on. The safety and bolt handle are on the left. The safety can be worked with the right thumb, if you have a long thumb.

The trigger is terrible. It's not the worst I've ever used. If you plan to make one of these carbines a regular shooter, get an aftermarket trigger assembly.

Accuracy was acceptable, putting 2-inch groups at 30 yards with iron sights. This was right out of the box and the first time shooting. It can be better, but this was the first time on the range with this rifle. With practice, these groups will get much tighter. A better trigger absolutely will improve performance.

Ballistics

Ballistics by the Inch takes a look at the 10 in various barrel lengths and ammo offerings. Another chart on the same website looks at the foot-pounds of energy.

A 13-16" barrel is the sweet spot for the 10mm. I say sweet spot because that extra two inches for an 18" barrel may not seem like much. When you are toting this monster into heavy brush, that two inches will make a definite difference. 16" means you do not have to apply for an SBR stamp.

The mag is snug. Takes a bit to slam it home, which I like. The mag has an oversize butt, a Hi Point feature, that makes it a grip extension.

The bolt, at least initially, is stiff. It's not as stiff as the spring in some of my other firearms. I have one or two that do not have a recoil spring. They have a coil spring from a compact car instead.

Drum Magazines

If you get a drum mag, chances are excellent it will not stay in the mag well when you first push it home. One of the rounds sits over the mag retention slot. This is because the follower has dropped into the drum and does not position ammo in the stick properly.

Twist the mag spring handle, a bit. When the ammo in the stick part of the mag is loose, push the magazine home. It should stay in place now.

Hi-Point 10mm Carbine: Final Thoughts

Hi-Point has an undeserved reputation for being junk. They are accurate and dependable.

The guns are inexpensive. The receiver is heavy and made from pot metal to save money.

One Hi-Point feature trumps everything else, a lifetime warranty. If you buy a Glock and it breaks after a year, you are on your own. If the Hi-Point breaks, the factory stands behind the gun.


Ben Baker

Ben Baker | Author

Ben Baker is a journalist living in the South. He is a life member of the Second Amendment Foundation, a member of Gun Owners of America and the Fifty Caliber Shooters Association. He is a member of the Georgia Outdoor Writers Association and served as president three times.  Find him on social media as Ben R. Baker and Redneckgenius. He writes about anything and everything. 

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