Sphinx SDP Compact
  • Year of manufacture: 2011
  • Construction: Sphinx/ Kriss Arms
Photo credit: Triple Bravo, Zero7one



In 1876 in Solothurn in northwestern Switzerland, the Sphinx company was established, which products soon became synonym of quality and precise craftsmanship. In the following years the company has developed and expanded its production, so that it introduced its first models of weapon throughout the mid – eighties. High standards and usage of the most quality materials available through the production process classified models of the Swiss designers to the world`s top.

In 2011, the Kriss Arms company became the majority owner of the Sphinx and in the same year a famous prototype of a semiautomatic pistol Sphinx SDP was presented, where acronym SPD comes from Special Duty Pistol, which indicates that this model is primarily intended for law enforcement and military personal. The design of the SDP series is largely taken from the famous Sphinx 3000, along with few characteristics from Czech model CZ 75. A few months after the promotion, a model with shortened barrel was presented, the great Sphinx SDP Compact. The main advantage of the compact models is that by shortening of the barrel[1] for a couple of millimeters no characteristics of the weapon are being diminished, and moreover, a weapon is becoming more compact.

The semiautomatic pistol Sphinx SDP Compact operates on the principle of short recoil of the barrel with an improved Browning system for bolt locking (known as SIG`s lock) and is offered on market in 9x19 mm Para/Luger caliber. This locking system enables flat upper slide which allows better target acquiring.

System Sphinx SDP Compact is a DA/SA hammer operated weapon, with outer striker which is optimally shortened and greatly reduce the possibility of clothes or holster hanging while pulling. The striker`s head is grooved horizontally for easier pulling.

Specifically for guns of this manufacturer is the process of frame making, which is largely responsible for the reasonably high price of these models. The frame is made of two parts which can be manufactured from different materials such as steel, polymers, aluminum alloys and similar, depending on model. In SDP series upper part of the frame is made of aluminum alloys that are used in aerospace industry, while lower part of the frame is made of high quality polymers. All external parts of the pistol are protected by titanium-aluminum-nitride (TiAIN) finish, which ensures durability and resistance to the extreme weather conditions. Also, all the external parts of the pistol are matted and do not reflect glare.

Pistol handgrip has excellent ergonomics with pads that come in three sizes (S, M, L), as a part of the standard package. On the front side of the handgrip there are grooved indentations intended for better fingers positioning, allowing more comfortable grip. The rear and upper side of the the frame is bent out and curved (known as the Beaver Tail), which protects the shooter`s hand from injuries by the lower edge of the slide during firing. Within the gap of the handgrip a minor shock absorber is set and is made of polymer, whose role is to weaken impact of the barrel and slide to the frame during shooting, which in the end, results in a weaker recoil.

Magazine release button is placed on the left side of the handgrip and is easily reachable by shooter`s finger. With a circular shape and embossed surface it can be moved to the right side in a few seconds.

Technical Specifications:
Overall Length: Overall Height: Overall Width: Weight:
188 mm 136 mm 35 mm 824 g
Trigger guard is rectangular, optimally sized and does not interfere with access to the trigger even when shooter wears thick gloves. Lower side of the guard is flatted, but the point where it connects with the handgrip is slightly recessed, so that shooter`s grip can be more secure and comfortable. The front side of the guard is convexly rounded and grooved, which is a great solution for those shooters with a habit of placing a finger on the front side of the guard while shooting. The trigger itself is optimally curved at its bottom, with longitudinal grooves and with a short and precise stroke. Trigger pull in SA is about 1300 g, while in DA is about 3500 g, and a fine and accurate finish on all moving parts of the trigger group makes shooting even more pleasant.

In front of the trigger guard, on the frame of the Sphinx SDP Compact a Picatinny rail with four grooves is integrated, which allows mounting of additional tactical gear such as laser pointers, tactical lights and similar.

The pistol`s slide is made of high-quality steel and has guides through the entire length and it bears excellently on the frame. It is square-shaped and laterally incised. Heavy inclined ambidextrous cuts are located on the front and back of the slide and serve for a more secure gripe while pulling.

Slide lock is placed on the left side of the weapon and a rectangular hole for cartridge ejecting is placed on the right and does not interfere with the cartridge trajectory. Mechanic iron sights are square-shaped with front equipped with white dot and blacked out rear sight. The rear sight is designed on the famous Novak sights, with clear, good rectangular notch. Within the standard set rear sight with horizontally grooved rear-side surface is being delivered, which prevents reflection and distraction when aiming. At the customer`s request, the Sphinx SDP Compact can be equipped with excellent mechanic sights that come from Defiance. The front is equipped with optical fiber, while the rear has two tritium dots.

As for the pistol`s safety mechanisms, there are pin-firing brake, striker brake, and on the outer, an ambidextrous decocker is placed which is also a manual brake. It is easily reachable, with deep notches for easier handling. A bullet indicator is placed sideways, circular shaped and it can be seen or felt[2] by fingers in conditions of reduced visibility.

Detachable magazines can take 15 bullets placed in two rows.

[1] So as slide and return spring.
[2] When a bullet is chambered, a head of the pin is peaking out of the frame.

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