Mossberg Pistol Review – Mc1sc [+ Video]

by Ryan Cleckner

February 3, 2022



Mossberg makes handguns? Yes indeed. And we’re going to break it down in a Gun University Mc1sc review.

Oh, but to me more accurate – Mossberg is making handguns again (more on that below).

The MC1sc is a semi-automatic polymer striker-fired pistol. Mossberg seems to have released the MC1sc correctly…it was quickly available in 5 different models, and it a number of accessories were quickly ready.

We had a great time shooting this gun. It would’ve been easy for us to scoff at it, but this was the biggest surprise we saw back at SHOT Show 2019. Now a few years later, this little gun continues to punch way above its class.

MC1SC Specs

  • Caliber 9mm
  • Capactiy  6+1, 7+1
  • Weight 1.18 lbs
  • Length 6.25″
  • Width 1.03″
  • Height 4.30″

Mossberg Pistol Background

Until this new MC1SC pistol from Mossberg, their latest pistol offering was in 1932! This prior handgun, a pepperbox derringer-style handgun with 4 barrels and chambered in 22 lr, was called the Mossberg Brownie.

The $100 year old Mossberg Brownie goes for about 5 times more than the new MC1sc – we found an auction listing for this nickel-plated Brownie valued at around $2,000.

The old pepperbox isn’t really practical today. This newest Mossberg handgun, the MC1sc, almost a hundred years after the last, is a much more practical handgun and it is an exciting (and completely unexpected) move in our industry.

Israeli Weapons Industries released the Tavor X95 as a newer bullpup rifle to rival their older SAR design in the same range. As you’d expect from an IWI bullpup, it is reliable and accurate, but we do suggest you make some upgrades.

So what did we love about the X95? Perhaps the standout positive feature is its reliability. When you consider its background as an Israeli weapon, this is no surprise. The X95 was designed to perform in the harshest climate and the toughest on the ground conditions.

Although a polymer striker fired handgun isn’t exactly novel, it’s pretty cool that Mossberg went after it. Let’s see if their shift from long guns to a hand gun goes better than Remington’s attempt (hint: it was about as good as Taco Bell coming out with Hamburgers).

Mossberg MC1SC Features

1 Flat Trigger w/ Blade Safety

The MC1sc has an aggressive trigger design – we didn’t expect this from Mossberg. It is debatable whether a flat or curved trigger shoe is “better.” Honestly, it is a personal preference. However such a “cool” trigger design is usually available only as an aftermarket upgrade part.

2 “Safe Takedown System”

Mossberg is very proud of the MC1sc’s “safe” method of takedown. They explain that, although it has a similar striker design to a Glock, unlike a Glock, the trigger doesn’t need to be pulled prior to disassembly.

3 Unique Magazine Design

Mossberg thought outside the box with their magazine (good on them!). First, they made a clear magazine so that it is easy to see the magazine’s capacity/condition. Second, they made the magazine compatible with Glock 43 magazines! More manufacturers should consider these things.

Mossberg MC1SC Review – Our Take

A. Safe Takedown System ensures no trigger pull required during disassembly.

B. Mossberg signature multi-angle slide serrations for positive slide manipulation.

C. Standard snag-free dovetail white three-dot sights for easier target acquisition, windage adjustment, and after-market customization.

D. Stainless steel slide with upgraded Diamond-Like Carbon Coating.

E. 3.4″ barrel with upgraded Diamond-Like Carbon Coating.

F. Extended trigger guard for easy access.

G. Mossberg flat-profile trigger with integrated blade safety.

H. Reversible magazine release.

I. Aggressive signature Mossberg grip texturing.

J. Palm swell and grip angle provide superior ergonomics.

K. Glass-reinforced polymer frame for enhanced durability.

L. Mossberg Clear-Count™ polymer 6-round flush-fit and 7-round extended magazines offer low friction and high wear-resistance.

We’ll say this again…this little gun really surprised us!Here are some of our first thoughts…

First, Mossberg is late to the game in the polymer, striker fired, compact/concealed carry pistol market.

There are well-established brands the dominate this space: Glock, Smith and Wesson, Springfield, FN, Beretta, H&K, Ruger, SCCY, Kahr, etc. This means a couple things:

The market is FLOODED with product and marketing, and
These other established companies have a lot more experience with these products.

Of course, this isn’t to say that Mossberg can’t be successful here. In fact we hope they do. However, if Glock came out with a pump-action shotgun, they’d have an uphill battle to compete with Mossberg regardless of how well Glock can make pistols.

Second, the design doesn’t appear to be revolutionary nor innovative. However, that’s not exactly fair. Let me explain.

The MC1sc from Mossberg doesn’t offer anything fundamentally different from other similar handguns and, in fact, is a bit behind on size for capacity (see Sig’s P365).

This MC1sc is on par with and good competition as an alternative to the Glock 43. However, with Glock’s newest G43x and Sig’s P365 from last year, this configuration (size and weight for 6 rounds) leaves something to be desired.

Here’s what’s great about the Mossberg MC1sc: Mossberg takes its reputation for quality and reliable, although budget and sometimes “no-frills,” firearms and applies it to this pistol.

In our book, Mossberg firearms have never been the nicest available nor the prettiest, however they usually represent a good value and they have their eye on quality control (which is very rare these days).

The magazines are really pretty neat! We’re really proud of Mossberg here. So many companies have a proprietary size to their parts simple because they want to be different. Mossberg designed the MC1sc to accept Glock 43 magazines! (a clear nod to this pistol’s intended competition).

Also, the magazines are clear. In this day and age, I don’t know why more manufacturers don’t do this. I’m very excited to try them out and see how they work and hold-up.

The magazines do, however, feel cheap. We’re not saying that they are, but there’s something a bit weird about the clear plastic magazines by any company. We’re looking forward to seeing how well they hold up – the magazines at SHOT Show were seeing a lot of rounds and the mags were holding up great.

The striker looks very Glock-like but it takes down (disassembles) without needing to pull the trigger. This is advertised as a safety feature, and I’m sure it is, but we’re not sure it’s necessary. If you’re going to be unsafe with a gun, then you’re going to be unsafe…regardless of how the pistol was designed.

We have to applaud Mossberg on their ingenuity here – the back plate of the slide has a button that, once depressed, allows the plate to easily be removed followed by the striker. Then, the slide can be released and it comes straight off the frame – it is not held in place with a takedown lever/block. The slide is held on the frame by the rear plate.
The MC1sc doesn’t appear to have an external safety (other than the safety on the trigger). However, they have also released a model with a cross-bolt safety (something VERY unique for a handgun). This proved fairly practical because it was easy to ignore if not wanted. However, a grip or thumb safety is much easier and faster to disengage when needed.

Other advertised features include the textured grip and “snag-free” sights. Also, from their marketing photos, it appears that they’ll be offering a holster for the MC1sc very soon.

The Mossberg MC1sc exceeded expectations! Check out the 5 models below.

One thing we’d like to see changed…the texturing. It’s not “bad,” however, the good stippling is on the sides (where it’s not as useful) and the front and rear (which receive the most pressure when we shoot) has horizontal lines instead of the stippling/checkering on the sides.

Also, we’re guessing that the “sc” in the MC1sc pistol’s name stands for “sub-compact” – this may mean that we can expect larger versions of the MC1 pistol from Mossberg.

Overall, this gun is a GREAT value and you can’t go wrong with it for the price.

Mossberg MC1 Pros and Cons

  • Clear magazines
  • “Safe” Takedown
  • Straight Trigger?
  • Low capacity for size
  • Not the prettiest
  • Little experience by manufacturer in this space

Report Card


This little workhouse ran without a hitch!


The gun was accurate enough for us, but we didn’t shoot groups to measure.


This gun is very Glock-like in it’s operation. It has a unique takedown and a functional, although not intuitive, safety option.


This gun felt great in our hands and was easy to use and takedown. Some different stippling would’ve bumped up the score


GREAT value.


Our Grade


Reviewed by Ryan Cleckner

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Based on 16 Reviews

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If you own the Mossberg MC1 Pistol or are looking to get one, here would be some suggestions I recommend that you get with your gun. A lot of this you might already own, but if you don’t then you should possibly look at grabbing them.

Also, I am giving you some possible options to upgrade your Mossberg MC1 SC. These suggestions are specific to the Hellcat:

Best Holsters for the Mossberg MC1 SC Pistol

At some point, you will need a holster if you’re getting a CCW or any type of handgun. Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing a holster. The first is, keep it basic. You don’t need really anything fancy. Get something really comfortable so it won’t cause you issues when drawing your firearm. Lastly, be sure to get one that will fully conceal your firearm. There are too many holsters out there that look great, but fail on the practical side as a holster.

This is a great holster for your Mossberg MC1 SC! I like it for two reasons. One, it evenly distributes the weight of the gun using the belt and pants. Two, it is super easy to adjust and that is one of my biggest issues when it comes to holsters. I don’t want a holster that “almost” fits my firearm…I want it to just fit! CHECK AMAZON PRICE

The great thing about this leather holster for me, is fact that it is just that…its leather! I am a fan of leather and if you have a good leather holster, it will break in and begin to feel like a glove for your firearm. The Desantis Mini has an easy connection on the belt, and my Glock fits great.

Check Amazon Price

So, we have our Best Budget Award holster here for the Mossberg Pistol. This thing is nothing fancy by any means, but it gets the job done and that’s good enough for me.

 Check Amazon Price

Other CCW Handguns in its Class

We know that some of you are still needing more info and options, which we totally understand. The MC1 SC is a fantastic gun, but there are others in its class that are just as good a firearm, if not better. So we want to help eliminate any doubt for you and give you at least one more review to see what else might compare.

#1 Glock 43x

Glock 43x

A single-stack “slimlined” Glock pistol specifically designed for CCW.

Check Latest Price

  • Shootability A+
  • Reliability A+
  • Ergonomics A
  • Accuracy A+
  • Value A+

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Based on 143 Reviews

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The Glock 43X is a combination of the Glock 48 and Glock 43. Glock was super smart by creating its own version of the P365. Can’t beat them, you join them right? We didn’t like the fact that it has a smaller capacity compared to the P365 but, we did love its accuracy! READ MORE

#2 Sig P365

Sig P365 Featured Image

Sig P365

The Sig P365 set a new definition for what a great concealed carry handgun can be – it quickly became the go-to 9mm for many shooters.

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  • Shootability A
  • Reliability A+
  • Ergonomics A+
  • Accuracy A+
  • Value A+

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Based on 191 Reviews

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This is the King CCW in my book and is so capable and versatile! It is not a tiny version of the gun I’d rather have…. it IS the gun I’d rather have. See what I really think. READ MORE

How to Care for Your Mossberg MC1SC Pistol

The most important thing we can do for our firearm is to keep it clean and maintain it. The Mossberg MC1 SC is a stellar firearm, so it’s important to take care of it and keep it operational. Keeping up with the maintenance will make it last a lifetime! To help you do this, here is a video on field stripping and cleaning the Mossberg MC1 SC.

If you want to start cleaning your gun right away, here is the recommended cleaning kit for the Mossberg MC1 SC Pistol.


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About Ryan Cleckner

Ryan is a former special operations sniper (1/75 Ranger) and current firearms attorney, firearms industry executive, university lecturer, and bestselling author of the Long Range Shooting Handbook.

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  1. I have the Mossberg MC1 I really like it a lot. The action is smooth the trigger is typically an upgrade on other brands. I am S&W person and that is predominantly what I have in my collection. This firearm was fun to shoot and dead on accurate. We shot over 200 rounds the first day, no feed jams or ejection errors. I really like the take down and cleaning as well. The capacity could be problematic for some, especially compared to the market place but I am okay with it.

    1. When I found out Mossberg came out with this pistol, I had to have one. (They were flying off the shelves!) I live in a rugged, red western state where it is not wise to be unarmed because of common encounters with wild life. It’s not bear protection, I know, but it’s become my little go-to gun for a days outing.

  2. A+
    I have had one since they became available . I love the cross bolt safety …… I have shot a coyote off of a tractor with it bush hogging . I carry it all the time and love the fact that my model 43 Glock mags fit right into it . I really prefer full size service pistols but this is such a safe one , i could not be happier way to go Mossberg

  3. I’ve always been a Mossberg fan. The quality of shotguns produced through the years has been outstanding. Even the lower tier Maverick 88 seems to be an indistructable firearm. I was in the market for a subcompact 9mm, and we all know there are plenty out there. Came across some reviews on line, and most for the MC1sc were pretty damn good. However, I did notice a few that were not so flattering. Did some research, and found that the unflattering reviews were from the “Glock KIngdom”, lol. Smithies, and Glockies seem to bash other pistol manufactures for some reason? Hmm, I wonder why??? Anyway, I purchased the MC1sc for $340.00 out the door. The first thing that impressed me was the price, especially in this day and age. The second, was the build quality. Solid little gun with precise machining and much attention to detail. Slide manipulation with the front and rear serations is very easy on the hands. Defininitely one of the better slides out there. Love the flat face trigger, nice pull with an even better reset. Very tactical, and I’d venture to say a 4.5-5 lb. pull. Third, right out the box this thing was a nail driver. I’m no expert, but I was hitting 3″ groups at 10 yards, consistantly with some pretty average ammo. Finally, what people are always most concerned of, is reliability. I’ve now put 750 rounds throught his micro-beast, and it has never failed to feed or eject a single round. Note, it is a very small gun, and shooter error is inevitable. I did mange to ride the slide release a few times in the very beginning causing the slide not to lock back after the last round. Once again, shooter error. Very impressed, and I stress “very” with this more than affordable pistol!

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