The Phoenix Arms Raven .25 ACP Pistol: A Fantastic Pistol I NEVER want to Carry!

The Phoenix Arms Raven .25 ACP Pistol: A Fantastic Pistol I NEVER want to Carry!
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The Phoenix Arms Raven .25 ACP Pistol: A Fantastic Pistol I NEVER want to Carry!

Phoenix Arms: A Brief History

Phoenix Arms entered the firearm scene in the late 20th century, emerging from the remnants of Raven Arms, a company known for its inexpensive, small-caliber handguns. Raven Arms, founded in 1970 by firearms designer George Jennings, gained fame for the MP-25, a compact .25 ACP pistol popular for its low cost and basic functionality. However, after a devastating fire in 1991 that destroyed Raven Arms' factory, former employees and associates of Jennings regrouped to form Phoenix Arms, carrying forward the legacy of affordable handgun production.

Introduction to Phoenix Arms and the Raven Pistol

Phoenix Arms, a relatively modern firearms manufacturer, has established a reputation for producing affordable, compact handguns tailored for personal defense and target shooting. Among its lineup, the Phoenix Arms Raven .25 ACP pistol stands out as a noteworthy model that combines reliability with affordability. This article delves into Phoenix Arms' history and explores the features, performance, and legacy of the Raven pistol.

The Raven .25 ACP Pistol

The Phoenix Arms Raven is a direct descendant of the Raven Arms MP-25, retaining much of its design philosophy while incorporating improvements in safety and reliability. Chambered in .25 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol), the Raven is designed for close-range self-defense and offers a compact size that is easily concealable for everyday carry.

Key Features:

  • Caliber and Capacity: The Raven is chambered in .25 ACP, a small but effective cartridge for self-defense situations, with a magazine capacity of six rounds.
  • Design: The pistol features a simple blowback action, a fixed barrel, and a magazine safety, making it straightforward for both experienced shooters and novices to operate.
  • Construction: Made with a zinc alloy frame and a steel slide, the Raven is lightweight yet durable, designed to withstand the rigors of regular use.
  • Safety Features: The pistol includes several safety mechanisms, such as a magazine disconnect safety, which prevents the gun from firing without the magazine inserted, and a manual safety switch.

The Phoenix Arms Raven .24 ACP pistol compared to a 9mm with actual stoppin' power!  It's TINY!

Performance and Use

The Raven .25 ACP is appreciated for its ease of use and reliability, given its price point. It's favored by those seeking an affordable option for self-defense or a backup firearm. While its stopping power is modest compared to larger calibers, its compactness and concealability make it a viable choice for close-range encounters. However, the underpowered .25 ACP cartridge leaves a lot to be desired regarding stopping power.

Like most of the novelty “Saturday Night Special” firearms in my collection, my example of the Phoenix Arms Raven was purchased as a project in deplorable condition. I won this particular firearm from a auction for roughly $10! After throwing an inexpensive parts kit at it and refinishing the slide and frame in Brownelle’s Alumahyde II, I have a functioning firearm that, surprisingly, shoots pretty well and hasn’t malfunctioned.

The Brownell's Alumahyde II went on a little thick and chunky, possibly due to the thick and chunky South Florida humidity it was applied in!

All refinished and ready to assemble with a parts kit!

While my particular restored example of the Raven functions without issues, it is an extremely simple pistol lacking safety features AND stopping power.  This is purely a range toy as the .25 ACP round is on the weak side.  Also, the Raven lacks a drop safety, so carrying one of these with a round in the chamber is not advisable.  

How about a little Before & After action?  I received my Raven as just a slide and lower receiver and they were rough!

Legacy and Impact

The Phoenix Arms Raven symbolizes the enduring appeal of small, affordable handguns for a segment of the population prioritizing self-defense. Its production reflects a continuation of the philosophy initiated by Raven Arms, focusing on providing economical firearms to the market. While the Raven, like any firearm, has its critics, its significance lies in democratizing access to self-defense tools.


The Phoenix Arms Raven .25 ACP pistol embodies simplicity, affordability, and practicality. As the spiritual successor to the Raven Arms MP-25, it continues to serve those seeking a compact and reliable handgun for personal defense. Through the Raven and its other models, Phoenix Arms reinforces its commitment to providing accessible firearms, contributing to the broader conversation about self-defense, gun ownership, and accessibility.

The Phoenix Arms Raven 25 ACP Pistol - A Fantastic PIstol I NEVER Want to Carry!
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