Review: Apex Tactical Action Enhancement Trigger for Springfield Hellcat
June 19th, 2023
6 minute read
As a proud owner of the Springfield Hellcat, I’ve found it to be an excellent choice for concealed carry. However, like many of you, I’m always on the lookout for ways to improve my firearm’s performance and make my shooting experience even better. That’s when I stumbled upon the Apex Tactical Specialties Action Enhancement Trigger — an accessory that promises not only to enhance the overall feel and function of your Hellcat, but also maintain the pistol’s safety features.
Naturally, I was intrigued and wanted to give this optional part a try. In this review, I’ll cover why you might want to check out the Apex Trigger for the Springfield Armory Hellcat. I’ll also give you the high points on installing the trigger system for yourself.
Up front, let me state that I like the Hellcat. Prior to the introduction of the Pro models, I carried the Hellcat almost exclusively since its introduction. I now carry the Hellcat Pro most of the time and continue to carry the original Hellcat when I need something even more compact.
While my original Hellcat had a great trigger on it, I was intrigued by the Apex Tactical Action Enhancement Trigger. I’ll admit it, I love to tinker with my guns. Also, it offered a number of intriguing features, including:
- All parts you need (trigger, sear spring, striker spring)
- A reduced trigger pull weight that remained in the 5- to 5.5-lb. range, good for self-defense
- Notable smoothness in pull and a quick reset
- A clean break
- Conformity to Springfield Armory-designed safety parameters
According to the company, the trigger system passed a rigorous drop-testing protocol to ensure that there were no safety issues introduced. High-speed cameras were used by Apex to analyze the data, and all showed the same thing: the new trigger system was drop safe.
One of the keys for me is that the Apex trigger maintains the safe operation of the pistol and keeps it within accepted defensive pull weight measurements. Assuming it did that, the smoothness and fast reset were appealing enough to me to install the Apex upgrade.
Before getting started, I urge caution in the installation process. Although the installation is relatively easy, it does require close attention to detail. If you have any doubts about your abilities — or patience — I recommend seeking the help of a professional gunsmith to handle the installation. The cost of their expertise is far less than the consequences of a damaged gun.
To begin, gather all necessary tools including pin punches, gunsmithing hammers and masking tape. I typically use blue painter’s tape as it leaves no residue on the gun and the blue color is clearly identifiable.
Apex Tactical Specialties provides an excellent video tutorial shown below to help you through the installation process step by step.
I will not recreate the individual steps in Apex’s installation video. Instead, I offer a few tips I discovered that might make the Apex trigger installation a little easier:
- I found working in a well-lit area to be very helpful. I have a large self-healing cutting mat I use for handgun projects. This allows me to sit at my desk with plenty of room for my tools and to spread out the Apex kit parts.
- When removing pins or disassembling components of your Hellcat pistol, be cautious not to lose any small pieces (like the sear spring) that may come loose during this process. My mat has a grid pattern which allows me to keep parts organized. Some gunsmithing-specific mats have built-in organizational trays to help you from losing a spring or pin.
- A light application of grease on the trigger bar worked very well for me, while keeping the gun within factory safety parameters.
Testing on the Range
After successfully installing the Action Enhancement Trigger from Apex Tactical Specialties in my Springfield Hellcat OSP 9mm, I was immediately impressed with the results. I practiced dry-firing the handgun to get a feel for the new trigger pull and was eager to see how my firearm performed on the range.
After any gun modification, you should hit the range and test the firearm to ensure everything works properly. This is especially true for anything that modifies the firing system. So, I loaded up with a bunch of factory 9mm ammo and headed to the local indoor range where I do quite a bit of shooting.
I started with slow-fire drills at close range. My goal here was simply to ensure the reliability of the new system. I used U.S.-manufactured commercial ammunition and military/foreign ammo with harder primers. Everything functioned just as it should, with the striker spring delivering enough force to ignite even the military primers.
I ran through some rapid-fire timed drills followed by longer-range slow fire. The Apex trigger worked well and felt great, and my groups were tight on the target. It was a real treat to get such a good-feeling trigger on a micro-compact pistol like the Hellcat.
After my initial range trip, I measured the trigger pull at 5 lbs., 6 oz., putting it in the promised range of 5–5.5 lbs. Since then, I’ve run about 500 more rounds through the gun (both duty and practice loads). The trigger pull lightened by an additional ounce to 5 lbs., 5 oz. For me, this is right in the sweet range for defensive use.
The Apex Tactical Action Enhancement Trigger transformed my Springfield Armory Hellcat OSP pistol from a great pistol to one that is even better. For me, the upgraded trigger significantly improves the overall shooting experience while keeping everything drop-safe and with a pull weight reasonable for defensive use. From its smooth take-up and crisp break to its clean reset, the trigger feel is very good and helps me to shoot with greater accuracy.
As aftermarket parts go, it may not be the quickest install, but it’s a straightforward process that is as close to “drop-in” as one might hope for on a polymer-framed pistol. Any competent local gunsmith can perform the installation for you, and I suspect many of you reading this can handle the upgrade with little difficulty. Again, consult a gunsmith if you are not up to the task.
I highly recommend giving the Apex Tactical Action Enhancement Trigger a try. It’s easy to install, maintains all safety features of your firearm and enhances your shooting experience — all without any compromise I could find. In my opinion, it’s an investment that pays off in both appealing performance and increased confidence as a shooter.
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