David vs. Goliath – The SCCY DVG-1 9mm Micro Compact

SCCY DVG-1 9mm striker fired pistol right profile

The hot thing in defensive pistols these days are handguns in the micro pistol class. Micro pistols are typically an inch or less wide, have a 3-inch barrel, and double-stack magazine hold 10–12 rounds. SIG is recognized by many as having started this trend with its P365. In reality, SCCY (pronounced “sky”) was building micro pistols long before the P365, and other guns in the class from Glock, Springfield Armory, Smith & Wesson, and Ruger.

Most of those guns are selling for $500–600, yet SCCY pistols are selling for a fraction of the price of the others. The CPX-1 or CPX-2 will comfortably fit in your pocket while carrying enough rounds to get you out of practically any defensive situation. However, they have a 10-pound trigger pull. That is not bad in and of itself.

SCCY CPX-1 pistol left profile
If you’re familiar at all with the SCCY CPX Series pistols, the DVG-1 has some interesting differences.

Many police departments issue guns with double-action trigger pulls of 10 pounds or more. The reason is safety. You don’t accidentally fire a gun that requires a trigger pressure of 10 pounds or more. Yet, if you need to fire it, overcoming 10 pounds can be done.

Although there are many people who understand SCCY’s double-action trigger philosophy, others might say, “That’s all well and good, but I want a trigger pull that closely matches the Glocks, M&Ps, and Springfields at around 5.5 pounds, but only pay in the neighborhood of $300.” SCCY’s answer is the DVG-1.

SCCY DVG-1 Features

If you’re familiar at all with the SCCY CPX Series pistols, the DVG-1 has some interesting differences. The DVG-1 is striker-fired. The CPX series pistols are hammer-fired. While the DVG-1 has an advertised 5.5-pound trigger pull, the CPX guns have a 10-pound trigger pull.

The trigger on the DVG-1 is straight and the CPX triggers are curved. The DVG-1 has front and rear slide serrations. The CPX slides only have rear serrations. The DVG-1 has a reduced grip circumference compared to the CPX grip. It measures 5.5 inches in circumference at its widest point, compared to 6 inches on the CPX. The barrels are completely different, as are the recoil springs.

Why the change in barrel design? It’s because the owner, Joe Roebuck, is a mechanical engineer who has the ability to improve his existing designs. The DVG-1 features the Roebuck Quad-Lock operating system first made available in the CPX-3 .380. This system provides a more stabilized barrel and therefore improved accuracy.

Muzzle view of the SCCY DVG-1 9mm semi auto pistol
The muzzle opening on the DVG-1 is oval shaped with the barrel forced into the bottom during lockup.

I found it interesting to compare the DVG-1 barrel design to that of my CPX-1. The difference is visibly evident, but it took a little study for me to understand how it works. The top of the barrel lug is flat and angles down approximately two-thirds of the way to the front. At the rear, there is a tang with a curved edge that marries up to the slide when the gun is fully locked.

The rear of the barrel is forced up when the slide is in battery, which produces two of the four lock-up points. Where the opening for the muzzle on most slides is perfectly round, the opening on the DVG-1 is oval-shaped. When the barrel is locked at the rear of the lug, the Quad-Lock recoil system forces the front of the barrel downward. This leaves a crescent-shaped gap just above the barrel while the bottom of the barrel is sitting almost flush against the muzzle opening. It looks off-center, but it’s not, because the muzzle opening in the DVG-1’s slide is not round.

The barrel won’t move from side to side if you push it. This arrangement defines the other two lock-up points. When the gun is fired, the barrel is forced further into the narrower part of the muzzle opening so that it is locked up tighter at the moment of discharge. Another difference with the DVG-1 is the recoil spring, which is a compound spring, one inside the other. The CPX-1 and CPX-2 utilize a single recoil spring.

front and rear cocking serrations on the SCCY DVG-1 9mm semi-auto pistol
Front and rear serrations, plus the straight trigger, set the DVG-1 apart from the previous CPX models.

The DVG-1’s machining is flawless. Its fit is tight and smooth. Everything about it says quality, yet it’s a gun that retails below $300. That’s with two magazines and a trigger lock. Also, with each of the magazines, you have the choice of a flat baseplate or one that is extended with a slight pinky-finger curve. You may be tempted to use the flat baseplate for carrying, but trust me, when you shoot the gun, you’re going to want the extended baseplate.

The sights on the DVG-1 are three-dot sights — easy to see. But if you want to change them, any aftermarket sights that fit a Glock will fit the DVG-1. More and more, manufacturers are adopting the Glock pattern sights, and it was a smart move on the part of SCCY to follow that trend.

Fieldstripped SCCY DVG-1
Disassembly for cleaning is straightforward and requires the removal of a takedown pin and pulling the trigger before the slide can be removed.

The front slide serrations are helpful, as the slide is small, and the recoil spring is stiff. You must exercise caution to keep your hand clear of the muzzle when using the front serrations to rack the slide. The slide lock mechanism is the same as on the CPX models and is plenty big to do the job.

Breaking It Down

Take-down on this gun is done by locking the slide back and removing the disassembly pin, which will require a little prying. You then ease the slide forward until it comes to rest. Next, after ensuring the muzzle is pointed in a safe direction, pull the slide back slightly, and pull the trigger. The slide will move forward off the rails. Depress and remove the recoil spring, and the gun is ready to clean and oil. Reassembly is done by putting the barrel and recoil spring back in the slide and sliding the slide back on its frame rails until it clicks into position.

Range Time

I shot three types of FMJ ammo and two types of JHP in the DVG-1. I didn’t find the DVG-1 to be a tack driver, but at 10 yards I could put 10 rounds into a 4-inch target consistently. The DVG-1 will benefit from a little break-in period, say 200–300 rounds. Although the trigger pull is advertised at 5.5 pounds, my Lyman trigger-pull gauge initially measured the one on my test gun at a consistent 7 pounds, plus an ounce or two.

I talked with a customer service rep at the plant about that, and he checked with the engineers. They tested four different guns on the production line and admitted they were getting trigger pulls “slightly over the target 6 pounds on three of them, but one was on the mark at 5.5 pounds. They suggested I dry fire it for a while and then run some live rounds through it. Then I was to check and see whether it improved.

I did, and it did. It was a little grungy at first, but with close to 500 rounds through it, the DVG-1’s trigger is smooth, and measures close to the advertised 5.5 pounds. I consider it a major improvement over the 10–pound triggers on my CPX-1 and CPX-2.

Final Observations

I would have no trouble trusting this pistol as my EDC gun. It will carry easy in a pocket using a Sticky Holster size MD-4, or an IWB holster such as one I have from ComfortTac for small guns.

SCCY DVG-1 on a paper target with bullet holes and a box of 9mm Luger ammunition
The DVG-1 put almost the entire magazine load into this 4-inch target at 10 yards.

Should you get one of these? Heck, yeah! The cost is insignificant compared to a lot of other things you can spend money on, and this one has the potential of saving your life. You can stash one in your console or glove compartment, put one in various (secured) cubby holes around the house, and carry one as a primary or backup pistol whenever you go out. The SCCY is the limit!

For additional reviews of SCCY pistols, check out:

Do you have experience with a SCCY pistol? Share it in the comment section.

  • SCCY DVG-1 9mm semiautomatic handgun in a Sticky holster
  • SCCY DVG-1 9mm striker fired pistol right profile with spare magazine, flat base plates and gun lock
  • SCCY DVG-1 9mm striker fired pistol left profile with car keys and remote
  • SCCY DVG-1 on a paper target with bullet holes and a box of 9mm Luger ammunition
  • SCCY CPX-1 barrel next to a SCCY DVG-1 barrel (bottom view)
  • Muzzle view of the SCCY DVG-1 9mm semi auto pistol
  • front and rear cocking serrations on the SCCY DVG-1 9mm semi-auto pistol
  • SCCY CPX-1 barrel next to a SCCY DVG-1 barrel (top view)
  • SCCY CPX-1 pistol left profile
  • Fieldstripped SCCY DVG-1
  • SCCY DVG-1 9mm striker fired pistol right profile

About the Author:

David Freeman

David is an NRA Instructor in pistol, rifle and shotgun, a Chief Range Safety Officer and is certified by the State of Texas to teach the Texas License to Carry Course and the Hunter Education Course. He has also owned and operated a gun store. David's passion is to pass along knowledge and information to help shooters of all ages and experience levels enjoy shooting sports and have the confidence to protect their homes and persons. He flew medevac helicopters in Vietnam and worked for many years as a corporate pilot before becoming actively involved in the firearm industry.
The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (14)

  1. I have the older hammer fired SCCY. I like it. I haven’t “put it through the paces,” though (only a couple boxes through it). But, no problems yet.

  2. VERY disappointing! I bought the DVG1 with great hopes and when I got it I thought I found the perfect CCW! It appeared very refined for its price and fit perfectly in my hand with the mag extension and IWB at the 4 O’clock position. Problem was first after firing about 100rds, the internal buffer spring broke. I contacted SCCY and they sent one out and I had it within 1 week. I then fired it two more times at the range and just shooting 400+rds total, the trigger mechanism broke! I had to send it into SCCY for work and it cost me $60/round trip postage that you get from SCCY. I paid $200 for the pistol, but I find it BS that just over 400rds and two major failures AND having to pay $$$ for postage to FIX it? I am SO disappointed as I REALLY wanted to like this gun. After getting it back I threw it in my gun safe where it will sit as I DO NOT feel confident using it as my CCW. I’ll keep carrying my SW Bodyguard .380 as I KNOW it works!!!! BUYER OF SCCY DVG1 BEWARE!!!

  3. I love my SCCYs. The problem comes when you try to find night sights or a fitted holster. It would behoove SCCY to offer those products. Stay safe.

  4. I tried 147 grain ammo in my older SCCY and found it was much easier to control than the smaller grain ammo.

  5. I love my SCCYs because they are inexpensive, compact and hold 10 rounds of 9mm. I have expensive pistols, but I used a SCCY to qualify for concealed carry, just to show it off. I prefer the model without the safety. Sorry, but I hate ambidextrous safeties. Why make a pistol 1.1 inches wide, then add over 1/4 inch for a safety you don’t need? The true double action trigger on the SCCY is safety enough. My only complaints are it’s hard to find a dedicated retention holster and finding night sights just hasn’t happened yet.

  6. I bought my first SCCY, a CPX-2, from a pawn shop for less than $200, got it to the range and found out the slide lock spring was … missing. I contacted SCCY customer service to buy a new spring for it, however they instead offered to fix and *upgrade* it for me for free, all I had to pay was the shipping to get it there. Got the gun back in less than 2 weeks and it works fantastic. I’ve since bought another CPX-2 for my wife and the DVG-1, they’re all fantastic products and perfect for EDC. The Customer Service from SCCY is some of the best I’ve seen.

  7. When Obama was Pres and guns where impossible to get skky sold our friends of NRA 10 guns. So I owe them. Never had a 9, always carried a 5 inch 1911 but I am getting older so I needed less weight so I bought a skky, a Ruger and a smith. (I own stock in Ruger and smith)
    I not only had never owned a 9 I had never shot a micro. I put up a 48×96 backer and 11x 18 targets with 6” bulls at 20 feet
    First mag with the skky I didn’t hit paper and I think I had one hit with the Ruger and two with the smith.
    I had people watching me after I set up that huge backer and it didn’t get better quickly.
    By the time I shot 1000 rds (200 per session) I was keeping almost everything on paper, the smith is a performance center gun so it is the easiest to shoot, the Ruger is more accurate and then the skky.
    I know I am not a great shot but I have hit a kenworth brake drum at 400 yds with a super red hawk in 44 mag and I use to move a beer can at 25 yds with a military issue 1911 7 out of 7
    Now I have told you those little guns are hard to shoot, with the skky if you break the shot with sights on the bull it is a very accurate gun, but if you expect to buy it, shoot 50 rds through it and then carry it, good luck.
    Customer service told me to dry fire with an empty sitting on the barrel and keep doing that until it doesn’t fall off. That drill will make you humble

  8. I like my SCCY and have total confidence in it. But: The trigger is a little long and heavy. This is not all bad because it gives me a feeling of safety when carrying with a round in the pipe. But: It’s a little hard to find accessories like night sights (I gotta have ’em), holsters and it won’t accommodate a light. It is practical in that the 10 round magazine is legal almost everywhere in the US. It’s made in the US and the price is right. If you’re on a tight budget, I wouldn’t hesitate. Buy a SCCY.

  9. The cpx recoil springs are the same as the dvg. It’s a captive double spring set up. Plus the trigger pull is around 8lbs.

  10. I have the CPX 2. My accuracy was fair which the 10 lb trigger. Then I installed the M-CARBO trigger kit for about $25.00. What a difference, completely transformed the gun. I now have a double action 5.5 lb trigger with greatly improved accuracy.

  11. I bought my CPX and have come to like it more and more. My favorite line of handguns are S&W but always shoot this gun at the range. I’ve fired nearly 1000 rounds of FMJ and hollow points and have never had a failure related to the gun itself. I find it a pleasure to carry and shoot. I have no problem with the 10lb trigger. It is my most often CCW firearm.

  12. Mine never stuttered and fed well.

    Not my kind of gun but you know it is very useful for 90 per cent of what really happens!

    At home defense range and stick up range it is light handy and useful.

    I shoot so many guns– stick to a few for carry.

    Take care sir.

  13. Thank you for this thought out evaluation of these two platforms. Although they are not what I might find as useful I do however see the implications that they represent for either a backup, last resort backup or, more importantly perhaps as a “first” EDC for someone with smaller grip ergonomics.
    I can think of several applications where one of these platforms might be quite useful.
    Price point is also well within the range of most disposable income or Backup requirements.
    Thank you! This has reminded me to maintain a broader open mind where such as theses are concerned.
    Pete sends…

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