Concealed Carry

Review: Bul Armory Cherokee Compact

Bul Armory Cherokee Pistol

There are quite a few handguns based on the CZ 75 pistol.

Some are made cheaply, made to sell, others are designed as an improvement over the original.

One of the latter types is the Bul Armory Cherokee 9mm.

The pistol features the proven CZ-type double-action first-shot trigger with a few modifications to the action.

The original CZ could not be carried hammer down and safety on.

The Bul design, made in Israel, allows the pistol to be carried hammer down and safety on if preferred.

The safety allows the pistol to be carried hammer to the rear and safety on, or “cocked and locked” as it is called.

I believe the original intent of the CZ 75 action was for the pistol to be carried fully loaded and ready to fire with a long double-action shot.

As with all double-action first-shot pistols, once the first shot is fired, the slide cocks the hammer and the pistol is in the single-action mode and may be fired with a short press of the trigger.

The safety allows safe tactical movement without lowering the hammer once the first shot has been fired.

Simply place the safety on and the pistol cannot fire. After movement or taking cover, flip the safety to the fire position.

The frame-mounted safety is positive in operation and easily manipulated.

To lower the hammer, the hammer is stabilized by the thumb as the trigger is pressed.

Needless to say, be certain you know what you are doing when lowering the hammer.

I don’t really consider the hammer-to-the-rear and safety-on function of the CZ as ‘cocked and locked,’ as the slide is not locked by the safety.

The slide may be racked and the pistol loaded with the safety on.

Bul Armory Cherokee Controls
The manual safety is large, positive in operation, and easily manipulated.

Bul Cherokee Features

The CZ double-action first-shot action is considered an advantage by many shooters.

The pistol is instantly ready for action, but a 14–pound trigger action separates your nervous trigger finger from an inadvertent shot.

The trigger is smooth enough for good control and X-ring hits to seven yards or so for those that practice.

Once the pistol is in the single-action mode, the trigger is short and controllable in rapid-fire.

It is a popular idiom that makes sense for some shooting styles.

The Bul Armory Cherokee is a compact pistol with a shorter slide and frame than a full-size CZ-type variant, but has a full-size firing grip.

The magazines hold 17 rounds of 9mm Luger ammunition. The biggest departure from the standard CZ format is the frame.

The frame is modern polymer that is nicely molded and offers a good balance of abrasion and adhesion.

Slight finger grooves allow a good firing grip. The dust cover features a rail for mounting combat lights.

On a practical and technical basis, the double-action first-shot Bul Cherokee makes a lot of sense.

The pistol isn’t going to win a competition — single-action and striker-fired pistols dominate — but as a house gun or a pistol for concealed carry, the Bul Cherokee is a viable choice.

Pistol Grip Frame
An advantage of the Bul Cherokee is a well designed grip. Note finger grooves and positive grip treatment.

Firing the Bul Cherokee

Firing the pistol demonstrated good results. At seven yards, I drew and fired in the double-action mode.

With a smooth, straight-to-the-rear trigger stroke as the pistol came on target I managed to keep the first shot trigger stroke smooth and delivered X-ring hits.

The pistol is comfortable to fire with modest recoil. In the single-action firing mode, firing rapidly at man-sized targets, control is excellent.

The grip is shaped well and practical accuracy is good to excellent.

A pistol this weight and size in 9mm is a joy to fire, with modest recoil and high hit probability.

The single-action trigger displays the modest backlash common to CZ 75-type pistols. It isn’t that difficult to control with practice.

A CZ fan will not notice. I think that those who favor the CZ 75B-type pistol and are looking for a carry gun just may find the Bul Armory Cherokee at the top of their shortlist.

Pistol on Orange Target with Bullet Holes
The pistol proved accurate and fast handling in combat drills.

Overall Accuracy

As for absolute accuracy, I fired the Hornady American Gunner 115-grain XTP, the Hornady American Gunner 124-grain XTP, and a handload using the Hornady 147-grain XTP and Titegroup powder at 890 fps.

The pistol performed well in firing a single five-shot group with each load.

The average for five shots was 2.1 inches at 15 yards, although the 124-grain XTP went into a tight  1.5-inch group.

With a good reserve of ammunition, the pistol makes an excellent house gun.

Add a TRUGLO combat light and you have a formidable home defense handgun.


  • Caliber: 9mm Luger
  • Capacity: 17 Rounds
  • Barrel Length: 3.7 Inches
  • Overall Length: 7.7 Inches
  • Width: 1.27 Inches
  • Height: 5.5 Inches
  • Weight: 25.7 Ounces

What do you think of the Bul Armory Cherokee Compact? Let us know in the comments section below!

About the Author:

Bob Campbell

Bob Campbell’s primary qualification is a lifelong love of firearms, writing, and scholarship. He holds a degree in Criminal Justice but is an autodidact in matters important to his readers. Campbell considers unarmed skills the first line of defense and the handgun the last resort. (He gets it honest- his uncle Jerry Campbell is in the Boxer’s Hall of Fame.)

Campbell has authored well over 6,000 articles columns and reviews and fourteen books for major publishers including Gun Digest, Skyhorse and Paladin Press. Campbell served as a peace officer and security professional and has made hundreds of arrests and been injured on the job more than once.

He has written curriculum on the university level, served as a lead missionary, and is desperately in love with Joyce. He is training his grandchildren not to be snowflakes. At an age when many are thinking of retirement, Bob is working a 60-hour week and awaits being taken up in a whirlwind many years in the future.

Published in
Black Belt Magazine
Combat Handguns
Rifle Magazine
Gun Digest
Gun World
Tactical World
SWAT Magazine
American Gunsmith
Gun Tests Magazine
Women and Guns
The Journal Voice of American Law Enforcement
Police Magazine
Law Enforcement Technology
The Firearms Instructor
Tactical World
Concealed Carry Magazine
Concealed Carry Handguns

Books published

Holsters for Combat and Concealed Carry
The 1911 Automatic Pistol
The Handgun in Personal Defense
The Illustrated Guide to Handgun Skills
The Hunter and the Hunted
The Gun Digest Book of Personal Defense
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911 second edition
Dealing with the Great Ammunition Shortage
Commando Gunsmithing
The Ultimate Book of Gunfighting
Preppers Guide to Rifles
Preppers Guide to Shotguns
The Accurate Handgun
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 (10)

  1. Cherokee failure to feed on my gun caused by tiny punch marks on each side of mag at top rear of feed ramp held ramp down smoothed them with dremel tool problem went away.Red dot mount from advanced optics for 1911 standard /novak fit my Cherokee perfect in place of rear sight

  2. I picked up my Cherokee today $305 shipped. The SA trigger is nice while the DA is a long stout pull. The gun is accurate and it feels good in my hand. I am having fail-to-feed issues. I think the problem is the mags, and I have them both loaded to maybe lighten the springs a bit. The feed ramp is narrow which lends itself to round-nose bullets. I’ll be happy when I get the feeding issue resolved. I haven’t read anyone else complaining about this.

  3. It’s OK but very good for the price point. It’s solidly made. Has very aggressive grip points. Maybe too aggressive for some. I give it a 4 out of 5 stars. I get trigger bite when using the trigger as I do on all of my other guns (except 1, my CZ 97BD) I have to use the top pad of my trigger finger.

  4. Gideon answered my questions.
    I wanted to know if the Cherokee is a good IWB concealable firearm; because from the looks of it, the beaver tail would dig into my side, the bottom of the grip flares out, and at 26 ounces not including the weight of 17+ rounds of 9MM ammo in the mag; and we’re talking a significant paper weigh in your pants.

  5. I own two CZ 75 pistols and would not trade them for any pistol you could name! I carry them in two shoulder holsters with extra clips attached!

  6. I have this handgun. It shoots comfortably and accurately. Sadly, it is too large and the hammer tears my shirts when covered.

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