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Honest Review: Rost Martin RM1C, the Coolest New Kid in Class

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The Rost Martin RM1C is a compact polymer pistol that is about the size of a Glock 19 for comparison. Big enough to serve as a duty-sized pistol, but small enough to also be easily concealed. What differentiates the RM1c from other “budget” pistols in the same class is that this is from a brand-new startup firearms company based in Dallas, Texas. Their goal? A quality pistol at a competitive price point. Usually that means a base model pistol with more expensive versions to follow. Instead, the RM1C comes standard with features found in the more advanced models of competitors. Oh yeah—they also offer a lifetime warranty on top of that!

Specs

MSRP: $459

Color:  Black Tenifer Slide, Black/FDE/Stone Grey Frame options

Width: 1.1 inch

Length: 7.1 inch

Barrel: 4-inch, 9mm hammer-forged barrel

Sights: white dot front, blacked out rear

Magazines: Ships with one 15- and one 17-round magazine (10-round versions for boring states will be available soon)

Weight: 21.1 oz. with flush magazine

Optics: All pistols are optics ready, ships with Trijicon RMR adapter plate (other plates available)

Not Just a Glock Clone

The RM1C is a similar size and outward design to the Glock 19, but that’s pretty much where the similarities end. About the closest similarity with the two is the takedown button, and it stops there. You pull the slide back like you do on a Glock and pull the takedown release down like a Glock, but then up lift the slide straight up off the frame! Hell, you don’t even have to eject the magazine! To reassemble, you line the slide up on the frame and push it down and back, relocating it onto the frame.

Internal mechanisms draw inspiration from many different pistols. The sear release is really similar to a S&W M&P; the mag release is straight from a Springfield XD; the extractor is an internal long arm spring found in early Sig Sauer P series pistols. In theory the RM1C can use Springfield XD sights, which means Sig Sights will also work. Although Rost Martin has you covered with magazines already shipping in bulk to distributors, the RM1C can use CZ P10 magazines that are also readily available.

Why should you buy?

I tend to buy every firearm that remotely piques my interest. For normal people, the use case is going to be simple. You can buy the Rost Martin RM1C for damn near $400—in 2024 that’s cheaper than the Glock Blue Label pricing. Plus the RM1c comes with all of the bells and whistles that other “budget” guns don’t. Out of the box every Rost Martin is set up to accept optics. You are getting a pistol that out-Glocks the Glock for way less money. The only thing that a G19 does better than the RM1C is have a widely recognized name. Anyone who needs a compact weapon would be well served by the RM1C.

Complaints

I would have loved to see this pistol be natively cut for an optic instead of using adaptor plates. I understand that by using adapter plates your customers can utilize whatever optics they want to use. Unfortunately there is no set standard so adapter plates are a must. If the slide were natively cut for one optics pattern then the optic would sit lower in the slide. Right now, out of the box, if you mount an optic the factory sights are nowhere near co-witnessing. Is this a make or break complaint? Not at all.

My second complaint regards the smooth rounded frame of the RM1C versus more angular pistols. The RM1C loses the texture zones in the upper frame where your thumb and trigger finger ride. It sounds stupid but I guess I did not realize how much those extra texture zones aid in giving you a rock-solid grip. Again, this is not dealbreaker for me, just an idea for future improvement.

A cut above

I’ll start with a personal pet peeve of mine: The “read manual before use” or safety warnings embossed on the frame of my firearm. I hate when lawyers force companies to make ugly decisions. Rost Martin removed the warnings, and I can’t thank them enough.

Next, the RM1C utilizes a loaded chamber hole, instead of the loaded chamber indicator lever you’ll see on other guns. In the Springfield XDs it is common for these levers to get gunked up with carbon that builds underneath the lever. If you don’t clean your pistol, the crud can jam the lever in the loaded position, giving you a false reading. With a hole, you have less parts to break, and nothing to gunk up. Also, the RM1C’s red dot sits enough back that it takes some comprehensive shooting to completely obscure the window.

On the Range

The RM1C is so new that I’ve only had mine for a hot minute. In a week, I am up to 400 rounds through the pistol. Rost Martin advertises that they put pistols though a 50,000-round shooting regimen while testing. So my 400 rounds are making me feel inadequate in all kinds of ways, but I can tell you this: All 400 rounds were shot with the pistol in the condition it was shipped in, and I did not clean or oil the pistol. The pistol is more accurate than most shooters, and at normal self-defense distances the RM1C is more than adequate. I personally put more credence on the usability of the weapon over accuracy (unless you are shooting specifically for long distance accuracy).

Does the pistol get in the way of me taking my first shot? No, the RM1C does not have out-of-the-way manual safeties, or a complex manual of arms. The ergonomics are good, and you have the option to change the grip size by changing the back strap. This means you can concentrate on the threat or target, work through your draw, get on target and take your shots without interruption. (For example I can not do that with a Beretta 92 style pistol with the safety engaged. The slide safety is just too high and award for my thumb to disengage naturally.)

My final UnpewFessional thoughts

If you are looking at buying a pistol for self defense, take a look at the Rost Martin RM1C. It is not every day when a new firearms manufacturer pops up out of nowhere and gets this much buzz. Ever since they teased the pistol with some of the top 2A influencers the intrigue has been high.

I can hear some of the readers now: “I never buy a first generation product.” That’s good news, because this isn’t one. It’s the 3rd improved version of the Arex Delta, originally manufactured in Slovenia and imported by Global Ordnance. Yes, the Rost Martin RM1C is technically a Gen 3 Arex Delta that has been rebranded. What’s cool is that Rost Martin manufactures this pistol in the U.S. Instead of just importing a pistol and having their name stamped on it, Rost Martin managed to get the rights to the design.

Trust me when I tell you having shot both the predecessor Arex pistols and the Rost Martin pistol, Rost Martin is not going to be a “here today, gone tomorrow” company. Just because Rost Martin as a company is the new kid on the block does not mean they are new to the game. Co-Owner Stefany Reese Toomert is a third-generation major firearms manufacturer owner. She brings tons of experience to the table, and I can already see this with the great customer service and planning that means the announcement of the gun means the gun is available for sale. These are ready to go in substantial numbers that are not allocated, meaning that even the smallest mom and pop dealer can order right now. Your dealer has no excuse, so go ask them to order you one. www.rostmartin.com

—James the “XDMAN” Nicholas Mr. UnPewFessio

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