PSA Dagger Review: Great Budget Home Defense Handgun

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PSA DAGGER COMPACT 9MM PISTOL
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PSA DAGGER COMPACT 9MM PISTOL PSA DaggerCheck Price

Today, we’re breaking down everything you need to know about the Palmetto State Armory (PSA) Dagger 9mm pistol.

To get the best sense of this product, I dived deep into several forum posts, customer reviews, and comments to get a sense of what people feel and used that information to create a review centered on this pistol’s performance with the practical features people actually use the PSA Dagger for.

I found the PSA Dagger a slick budget home defender with excellent value for its low price. With the options for upgrade and the ease of slotting in aftermarket parts, you will have no shortage of ways to improve its reliability and performance.

The fact that it is easy to customize makes it very versatile for its price range and performs well in various situations.

In this article, I’ve got real-life features and practical applications of the PSA dagger and look objectively at its strengths and weaknesses to determine how good a pistol it is in different situations.

Keep reading to discover the features and specifications of the PSA Dagger and figure out if it is the right pistol for you.

PSA Dagger Overview

PSA DAGGER COMPACT 9MM PISTOL

The PSA Dagger is a small, compact-sized 9mm pistol with a polymer frame. Its design is inspired by the Glock 19 series pistols and is marketing as a budget version of this handgun. 

It falls into a class of pistols that gun enthusiasts consider “Glock Clones,” which try to offer the design benefits of the premium Glock but at a lower price.

It is quite ergonomic and comfortable in hand, and easy to draw and fire. The PSA is made from stainless steel.

The manufacturer boasts a “carry cuts” innovation on the slide that smooth edges on the rear and front of the slide so your pistol will snag less on your holster when drawn. 

In practice, I found this to be more or less accurate though some users have reported that their favorite holsters are not compatible with the PSA dagger. 

This design innovation can work against you if you have the wrong holster.

Overall, it has a great gun feel and comes with an excellent presentation package, and I was impressed with the amount of polish this pistol had for the price I paid.

Specifications

  • Caliber: 9mm
  • Default Magazine Capacity: 15+1
  • Fire: Semi-Automatic
  • Weight: 22.4oz without ammo
  • Frame: Polymer
  • Action: Striker Block Fired
  • Length: 7.15 inches
  • Width: 1.28 inches
  • Height: 4.78 inches without magazine
  • Length of Barrel: 3.9 inches
  • Barrel Material: Stainless Steel
  • Safety: Striker Block and Trigger Safety
  • Front Sight: White Dot Steel
  • Rear Sight: Two Dot White Steel
  • Slide Material: Stainless Steel
  • Slide Finish: DLC Coating

Pros/Cons

Next, we will analyze how these specifications benefit or act as drawbacks for the PSA Dagger.

Pros
  • Great Value for Price
  • Easy to draw and fire
  • Customizable
  • Compatible with after-market parts
  • Feels Great
  • Low Recoil
  • Reliable
Cons
  • Some users report triggers falling out
  • Not compatible with every holster

PSA Dagger Features

The PSA Dagger has many prominent features that make it applicable for real-life use for its owners.

Budget Home Defense

The budget price of the PSA Dagger makes it an excellent option for someone looking for a reasonably priced home defender. 

Its ergonomic grip design also makes it a great entry-level home defender for beginners as they won’t have too much trouble adapting its simple design.

Comparing it to the Glock, it will lose out on several features besides price, but one notable feature is that it has a stainless steel guide rod compared to the Glock 19s plastic one.

This feature gives PSA Dagger owners greater control over the muzzle flip of their weapon, which is vital in home defense situations where every shot counts.

The PSA Dagger also has low recoil, making acquiring and snapping onto targets after firing quicker and easier.

Reliability is one of the major factors to consider when you buy a home defense weapon, and the PSA Dagger does a good job holding its own in this category. It holds its own well in high-round testing with minimal distress.

Aftermarket Compatibility

One of the PSA dagger’s most significant selling points is its compatibility with many aftermarket parts for Glock pistols, including magazines, so upgrading and replacing parts is simple.

Its internal parts are interchangeable with G19 parts, so users who like to tink and upgrade their pistols will find no shortage of replacement parts to mess around with.

This feature will be a nice bonus for pistol users familiar with the Glock 19, as they can switch around parts they like onto the PSA Dagger to maximize its potential.

Customization Ready

The designers of the PSA Dagger were looking ahead with its design by allowing not just an ease of compatibility with after-market parts but thinking about making the PSA Dagger customization ready.

They offer an optics-ready version of the pistol that makes installing your favorite sight easy. 

It also has an excellent accessory rail that allows easy slotting of compatible accessories.

PSA has already released suppressors that slot ideally in the PSA Daggers base with the RMR cut slide and has created a perfect base to continue adding more expansions to give your PSA Dagger a customized experience.

Fast Drawing

Thanks to the DLC nitrate coating on the slide and the carry cuts innovation; you will have a smooth drawing process that beginners will find user-friendly.

Whether defending your home or smooth firing out on the range, consistent draws are a must to master. 

A smooth draw makes it easier to get into a comfortable firing position. A fast draw gives those few extra crucial moments that can mean the difference between walking away from a home invasion unscathed.

Gun firing and timing tend to get a lot of safety attention, but the drawing component is one of the most dangerous parts of operating a firearm.

Trigger Problems

The PSA Dagger is equipped with a flat-front hinge trigger.

A significant but not majority of users of the PSA Dagger report various trigger stickiness, and some report that their triggers have fallen out after upgrading or putting them back together.

Some reviewers report that the cause of this is that some of the PSA daggers are missing a trigger pin which can cause the trigger to lose stability.

Apart from manufacturing problems, the trigger doesn’t feel that clean or smooth when you pull it.

Some positives for the trigger would be that the break of the trigger is okay, and it has a shallow reset which cuts down on excessive trigger movement.

Ergonomic Grip

By copying the grip setup of the Glock 19, it can achieve a similar feel that can be important to people used to a Glock feel.

The grip texture is more porous than the default Glock grip, which allows you to get a solid grip on the gun, and the added friction helps protect against your hand sliding when positioning and firing your weapon.

In a home defense scenario, it will fire naturally thanks to the firm non-slip grip on the weapon you will be able to maintain. The palm swell of the grip will give you better control over where your weapon goes after each shot.

Alternatives

Next, we will look at a few alternative options similar to the PSA Dagger pistol.

Rock Island Armory STK-100

Rock Island Armory STK100

The Rock Island Army Pistol is more premium-priced than the PSA Dagger but is a generally higher quality pistol and less expensive than the Glock 19.

Zev OZ9

Zev Technologies OZ9

This pistol is designed for professional shooting in mind and will perform better in that environment than the PSA Dagger. Its price is higher than the PSA Dagger and the Glock 19, but it makes up for it with professional precision and ultimate balance and control of your target firing.

Glock 19

GLOCK G19 GEN 3

Though this pistol didn’t invent polymer pistols, this pistol is the standard that sets the definition for the genre. It earned its pedigree and the price to go with it. 

Compared to the PSA Defender, it is more than twice as expensive, but the performance you get is unmatched, only falling short with its plastic sights, plastic guiding rod, and a few other default features.

Final Thoughts

The PSA Dagger is a compact and affordable Glock-inspired pistol with an astonishingly low price compared to its competitors.

It is a solid pick for both beginners and pistol experts. Beginners will enjoy the ease of firing and accessibility, and pistol experts will love its compatibility with after-market parts, making it a cheap base to tinker with to create a great customized experience.

At this price point, there will be some disadvantages and imperfections. It seems to have a manufacturing problem with trigger pins, and users report uncomfortable trigger responses.

Still, I find this product difficult not to recommend for the value you get, the ease of use, and extended customizability to those who find its features lacking.

If you want to try one yourself, you can find it on the PSA website.

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Author

Brady

Hi there, I'm Brady and I'm the owner of GunMade.com. I have been an avid gun enthusiast and hunter since I moved to the Midwest over 15 years ago. It's my passion to share my knowledge and expertise to help you find the best guns in your price range.

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