Shadow Systems Foundation Series: Serious Use Guns By: Kat Ainsworth


Handguns made specifically for self-defense applications and concealment can be a fantastic addition to your gun safe. The Foundation Series from Shadow Systems is a good example of a quality line of purpose-driven pistols. Three pistols of varying sizes are offered through the series and each has features to recommend its use.

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Shadow Systems Foundation Serie
The Shadow Systems Foundation Series guns are made for serious use. All three are chambered in 9mm and each design fulfills a specific niche. (Photo credit: Shadow Systems)

Shadow Systems provides details of the series:

Nothing great can be built without a solid foundation. The Foundation Series by Shadow Systems developed out of conversations between old-school gun guys, the type who aren’t fussy about aesthetics and want only the essential features. Built on the same frames as all Shadow Systems pistols, the Foundation Series touts sleek ergonomics, real-world shootability, and bet-your-life reliability.

Shadow Systems Foundation Series 9mm pistols
The Foundation Series pistols were created to be durable, reliable, and versatile. (Photo credit: Shadow Systems)

Features of the Foundation Series


According to the manufacturer, these guns are built on what they deem a world-class frame. The guns have optimized wrap-around texture for superior control during rapid fire without feeling uncomfortable against the user’s body during concealed carry.


The slide is nitrided with pocket-cut serrations and comes equipped with the patented Shadow Systems multi-footprint optic cut which allows most major manufacturers’ optics to be directly mounted to the guns. The manufacturer states the screws used on the slide’s optics cut are the longest and most durable in the industry. Each gun ships with iron sights in the form of a plain, black, serrated rear sight and a white dot front sight. This allows a 1/3 co-witness with most optics.


The match-grade, smooth-finish, unthreaded barrel also has a nitride finish for durability, performance, and resistance to wear. It is conventionally rifled and is rated for +P ammo use.

Trigger and internals

The internals of the guns include a carbon steel guide rod and a drop-safe, safety-blade, polymer trigger. Trigger pull is set at the factory between 4.5 and 5.0 pounds. Shadow Systems states it has a crisp, clean reset.


Each Foundation Series gun ships with two Magpul magazines.


All guns are backed by Shadow Systems’ lifetime warranty.

Check out the video to learn more about these guns:

All three of the Foundation Series guns are chambered in 9x19mm Parabellum. Models are the MR, XR, and DR:

  • The MR is a compact 9mm pistol with a 15 +1 capacity. It’s designed to fit Gen 4 G19 holsters.
  • The XR is a crossover 9mm pistol made with a full-size frame and compact slide. It has a 17 +1 capacity and fits holsters for the Gen 4 G19 and G19X.
  • The DR is a full-size, 9mm duty pistol with a 17 +1 capacity. It’s designed to fit Gen 4 G17 holsters.
Shadow Systems Foundation Series 9mm pistols: compact, crossover, and full-size
The Foundation Series includes one compact pistol, one crossover pistol, and one full-size pistol. (Photo credit: Shadow Systems)

MSRP varies by model and starts at $679.00.

Which gun is your favorite? Tell us in the comments.