The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > Hogan's Alley > Handguns: The Semi-automatic Forum

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old March 15, 2008, 09:54 PM   #1
btefft
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 7, 2008
Posts: 181
Kel-Tec 3AT .380 vs Ruger LCP .380, which one to buy?

I know the books show the 3AT is a little lighter than the LCP - both are featherweights at under 10 ozs

I know the LCP can lock its slide back for easier cleaning, the 3AT can't.

I think Kel-Tec has the bugs worked out of the 3AT; the LCP is a brand new production, not sure I want to buy the 1st generation.

But other than that, which is the better gun, as it stands now?

How much faith does one put in the LCP just because its a Ruger?

Is there anyone out there who has owned, or currently owns, both pistols.

I've owned the 3AT (traded up to a PF9 - for the 9mm) and never had a moments trouble from it. And I loved the ability to drop the 3AT in my front pocket - and almost be forget about it.

Hack

Last edited by btefft; March 16, 2008 at 12:05 AM.
btefft is offline  
Old March 15, 2008, 10:03 PM   #2
CraigC
Junior member
 
Join Date: November 28, 2001
Location: West Tennessee
Posts: 4,300
Good question. I've been wanting to upgrade from my P-32 to the .380 version, just haven't got around to it. The Ruger appears to be a more refined design but like you, I'm not real nuts about buying anything out of the first production run of a brand new model. If the Ruger passed initial inspection, I'd be likely to take a chance on it. Although my KelTec has been a good one.
CraigC is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 07:17 AM   #3
Oz_Shadow
Member
 
Join Date: February 8, 2007
Posts: 62
I would expect a higher quality fit and finish from Ruger. A more refined and polished design overall.

We shall see.

Certainly looks promising for the Ruger's future. Could put a dent in Keltec's sales of that model.
Oz_Shadow is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 07:20 AM   #4
trigger happy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 6, 2006
Location: Pensacola
Posts: 759
Ruger makes a .380 ACP?
__________________
"You cannot invade mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind each blade of grass" Admiral Yamamoto
"You have enemies ? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life" Winston Churchill
trigger happy is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 07:21 AM   #5
Kreyzhorse
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 12, 2006
Location: NKY
Posts: 11,453
I too am leary of a first production series of a new gun. I am in the market for a mouse gun as a BUG, and the Ruger has caught my eye. I'm even tempted to pick up a Kel-Tec but figure I'll wait out the Ruger LCP and see how it fares before pick up one or the other.
__________________
"He who laughs last, laughs dead." Homer Simpson
Kreyzhorse is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 07:57 AM   #6
btefft
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 7, 2008
Posts: 181
trigger happy, Ruger does now. It is a brand new production and is a whole lot like the Kel-Tec 3AT, but is not a clone.

Hack
btefft is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 11:29 AM   #7
shamus005
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 2, 2005
Posts: 526
Quote:
I think Kel-Tec has the bugs worked out of the 3AT
Yeah, they've got it down to just a 50/50 chance of getting a lemon. Phbbbt. :barf:


I'd take a first generation Ruger LCP over a Kel Tec. I'm sure Ruger can get you a better shot at reliability coming out of the gate than just 50/50.
shamus005 is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 03:35 PM   #8
Sixpak
Member
 
Join Date: February 4, 2008
Location: N.E.Ohio
Posts: 39
I have one of the newer Kel Tec 380s and have no issues with it. I ran my 500 rounds thru it and now shoot a clip thru it maybe once a month if not less just to stay in tune with sighting it in. To me they were built as light weight, highly concealable weapons basically for back up purposes. Its not fun to shoot either of them.
If you read some of the other Forums people are trying to make them something they are not. Neither the Kel Tec or the LCP were built as a range guns. They just will not stand up to that. They are $250 guns. If your looking for a full time carry gun I would not suggest either. Look at A Kahr CW9 or similar. JMO
__________________
Have a Great Day,
Sixpak
Sixpak is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 04:03 PM   #9
qwert.380
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 23, 2004
Location: central indiana
Posts: 127
bersa thunder .380 reliable fun to shoot and fits in the back pocket nicely for 200 bucks

just an alternative
qwert.380 is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 05:41 PM   #10
IdahoG36
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 24, 2006
Location: Boise, Idaho
Posts: 2,779
I usually don't buy first run guns, but I really like the looks and features of the LCP, so I ordered one up. It should be arriving soon.
__________________
Sig Trailside .22lr, Springfield XDm 9mm 3.8, Springfield XDm .45 4.5, Ruger LCP, Kahr PM40, 20"Armalite/Rock River AR15, Remington 870 Tactical Magpul, Swiss K31 7.5X55
IdahoG36 is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 06:00 PM   #11
Shadi Khalil
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 23, 2006
Location: Alexandria, VA
Posts: 4,944
I fondled the Ruger and KT yesterday, side by side. If I was buying one of the two never have shot either but simply based on a fondling, the ruger hands down.
Shadi Khalil is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 08:15 PM   #12
woad_yurt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 15, 2008
Posts: 1,206
I recently bought a Kel-Tec P3AT. I knew the Rugers were about to come out but went with the Kel-Tec because any gun that size would be carried a lot but shot infrequently. Thus, the Ruger's finer finish level wasn't any advantage to me but Kel-Tec's lower price was. The Kel-Tec does weigh less, too. Now, if it was a range gun, I would run away from a Kel-Tec's rough edges.
woad_yurt is offline  
Old March 16, 2008, 08:28 PM   #13
Wuchak
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 1, 2007
Location: Shawnee, KS
Posts: 1,093
Quote:
Originally Posted by Qwert.380
bersa thunder .380 reliable fun to shoot and fits in the back pocket nicely for 200 bucks
Except that the Bersa looks huge next to the P-3AT. Not that the Bersa is huge, just that the P-3AT is really tiny. Other than the cartridge there is really no comparison between the two.

I have an early second gen P-3AT that has been 100% after a trip back home to Florida. If I was buying new today I would get the LCP based on looks and the trigger pin design improvement.
Wuchak is offline  
Old April 27, 2008, 06:02 PM   #14
tenusdad
Junior member
 
Join Date: April 27, 2008
Posts: 396
Ke-Tec

I've been looking at the 3AT. I have the P32 and old P11. They both work fine with factory ammo. At least for me it has to be light or it gets left at home or the car. I know there is minimal stopping power, etc. but at least I will really carry it. Heck if I knew I was going to get in a gunfight I would take a 12 guage; but for the beach, it's the Kel-Tec - nothing is as light and easy to carry. I have many more expensive and heavier guns but they all get left behind in the real world.
tenusdad is offline  
Old April 27, 2008, 06:22 PM   #15
David the Gnome
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 5, 2007
Location: Lexington, KY
Posts: 3,092
I had the pleasure of holding and examining the P3AT and LCP side by side last week. The LCP feels and looks like it costs 3 times what the P3AT does. It was so much nicer in fact that I had to order an LCP for myself. I would have bought the one there but it already belonged to the shop owner.
David the Gnome is offline  
Old April 27, 2008, 06:31 PM   #16
rantingredneck
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 12, 2007
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 4,728
I've owned a P3AT and it always felt cheap. I ended up trading it away. As my Guardian was what I trusted more. I just got an LCP and it is a much higher quality pistol. The basic design may be very similar (near identical) but the execution and the materials used are much higher quality. Fit and finish much better too.

I've now got my Guardian listed for sale if that tells you anything.
rantingredneck is offline  
Old April 27, 2008, 06:35 PM   #17
Playboypenguin
Junior member
 
Join Date: February 27, 2006
Location: Great Pacific Northwest
Posts: 11,515
The LCP has not been around long enough to establish a track record yet but initial reports are favorable and Ruger has a reputation of producing a quality item.

Kel-Tec has been around a while and has a very mixed reputation and has actual proven to me, based on my own personal experience, that they are not a quality nor a reliable item.

I would say go with the Ruger LCP.
Playboypenguin is offline  
Old April 27, 2008, 06:36 PM   #18
rogertc1
Junior member
 
Join Date: December 17, 2004
Location: Maquoketa
Posts: 1,335
Don't buy yet...magazine problems, peaning of the frame...bet they recall them soon as they did the NEW 9MM
rogertc1 is offline  
Old April 27, 2008, 06:43 PM   #19
BLUEZ4U
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 4, 2007
Location: midwest
Posts: 138
I'll hang on to my Guardian 380.....proven reliability......
__________________
Freemason 1988
Colt & Springfield
Browning
North American Arms
BLUEZ4U is offline  
Old April 27, 2008, 06:45 PM   #20
rantingredneck
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 12, 2007
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 4,728
I'll sell you mine and you can have one for each pocket .
rantingredneck is offline  
Old April 27, 2008, 07:32 PM   #21
p89ruger_9mm
Member
 
Join Date: April 16, 2008
Location: Lexington, KY
Posts: 79
Ruger

Ruger makes a much stronger firearm. When I started reloading, all my reload manual said if you load hot use a Ruger
p89ruger_9mm is offline  
Old April 27, 2008, 11:19 PM   #22
Bill DeShivs
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 7, 2006
Posts: 7,013
The Ruger .380 is no stronger than the Keltec. They are the same design, and same size.
__________________
Bill DeShivs
www.billdeshivs.com
Bill DeShivs is online now  
Old April 27, 2008, 11:30 PM   #23
cbailey
Member
 
Join Date: October 28, 2007
Posts: 68
Quote:
Ruger makes a much stronger firearm. When I started reloading, all my reload manual said if you load hot use a Ruger
I think the loading manuals are referring to Ruger revolvers, especially those in the "cowboy action" calibers, where hot loads would certainly be too much for vintage or replica revolvers.

That said, the Ruger sure looks to be better made. Still early, though.
cbailey is offline  
Old April 28, 2008, 12:41 AM   #24
Playboypenguin
Junior member
 
Join Date: February 27, 2006
Location: Great Pacific Northwest
Posts: 11,515
Quote:
The Ruger .380 is no stronger than the Keltec. They are the same design, and same size.
I do not know about stronger, but after looking one over it definitely appears better built...which would most likely mean more durable too.
Playboypenguin is offline  
Old April 28, 2008, 01:08 AM   #25
Bill DeShivs
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 7, 2006
Posts: 7,013
I have compared them also. The Ruger is a slick little gun.
My friend held the first one he got in for me. I didn't like it well enough that I bought it, though. I have 2 P3ATs and 3 P32s. The Ruger was not different enough to buy it. I probably will get one someday, but other things have taken priority.
__________________
Bill DeShivs
www.billdeshivs.com
Bill DeShivs is online now  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:02 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.13245 seconds with 9 queries