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Old April 22, 2014, 04:12 PM   #1
simonrichter
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A bit of historical consideration: .32 acp - eventually outdated?

I'm not sure whether my observations are true, so I'm curious if any of you comes to the same conclusion:

- The .32 acp used to be quite a popular round for semiautos from the 1930ies onward, maybe not as much in The States, but nevertheless. Think of the PPK, e.g.

- It appears to me that it has been outshadowed by new developments in the 80ies and 90ies (wonder nines and the Glock hype). In the nineties, it had become a mere niche caliber, owing its survival again only to the PPK's fame.

- with the CC boom and again, new products (this time I have Keltec in mind), there was, as far as I observed, kind of a comeback in the early 2000s.

- nowadays, since many ultra-compact, mouse-gun-sized options are available in higher performing calibers as well (.380 measured up soon after the subcompact boom had begun, 9mm and .45 followed a little later), it has become quiet again as far as the .32 is concerned.

Any opposite views?
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Old April 22, 2014, 04:29 PM   #2
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I like the 32acp.
It's a fun round in my CZ72. I'd love an old Colt 1903 in 32acp.
I like it a lot better than a 25acp.
I used to have an old 1960's Walther (pre interarms) in 32 and regret the day I sold it to a very persistent neighbor.

I used to carry the CZ as my car gun because she isn't a beauty queen, I mean who wants to be shot 7 times in the face, even with a 32?
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Old April 22, 2014, 05:29 PM   #3
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I think you skipped or the SEACAMP.
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Old April 22, 2014, 05:57 PM   #4
PetahW
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.

The only reason the .32ACP became dated, prior to the recent development of personal defense ammo, was because modern medicine made it so.

Prior to modern/anti-septic medicine, getting shot with even a .22 was usually a death sentence, from wound infection.


.

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Old April 22, 2014, 06:07 PM   #5
lamarw
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I suppose you could be correct. I do know I like to hip pocket my wide slide Inox Tomcat from time to time.

I may have an imprint of it in my right buttocks as Forest Gump would put it.
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Old April 22, 2014, 06:09 PM   #6
Deaf Smith
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Due to small guns like the P32 Kel-Tec, the .32 as basically made the .25 auto totally moot.

The .32 is the new 'vest pocket' pistol.

And yes, my Kel-Tec 32 works amazingly well!

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Old April 22, 2014, 06:25 PM   #7
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There will be small guns and there will be people who can't handle a lot of recoil so I think the .32 stays a viable, niche cartridge.
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Old April 22, 2014, 06:32 PM   #8
SIGSHR
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IMHO the 32ACP was always more popular in Europe, was often the standard police round, the 9MMP was seen as a "military" round. Also in this country we were more "revolver" people until the last 30 years or so.
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Old April 22, 2014, 08:41 PM   #9
cocojo
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I carry a 32 all the time a Beretta Tomcat Inox. I think the new 25 acp of today is the 32 acp. The 32 is as small as I like to go. Not too many like the 25 and many prefer the 32 or the 22 calibers. I really don't think the 32 is going anywhere as long as you have guns like the North American Guardian, Beretta Tomcat, Kel tec P32 and more. Even the new Pico is to have a 32 conversion kit.
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Old April 22, 2014, 08:48 PM   #10
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I carry an old Walther PP in 32 acp. Love it.
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Old April 22, 2014, 09:20 PM   #11
Oysterboy
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Quote:
- nowadays, since many ultra-compact, mouse-gun-sized options are available in higher performing calibers as well (.380 measured up soon after the subcompact boom had begun, 9mm and .45 followed a little later), it has become quiet again as far as the .32 is concerned.
This is pretty much what happened. 380 and 9mm are now available in small package that the 32acp once were popular for.
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Old April 23, 2014, 03:25 AM   #12
simonrichter
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Don't get me wrong - I never wanted to imply that the .32 actually IS outdated, I just wanted to trace its history.

Making a good point saying that "the .32 is the new .25", yet there were even new .25 models coming out recently...
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Old April 23, 2014, 03:55 AM   #13
gyvel
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Quote:
- The .32 acp used to be quite a popular round for semiautos from the 1930ies onward, maybe not as much in The States, but nevertheless. Think of the PPK, e.g.
The .32 has been popular for a lot longer than the lifespan of the PPK. It was introduced by the FN Model 1899, and became the defacto cartridge of literally hundreds of pocket autos, many of which were made well into the 1980s (FN Model 1910/1922, etc.)

It still has a respectable incapacitating abiity due to its relatively low recoil, thus enabling a shooter to place repeat shots to the same area.

I have no problem carrying a .32 pistol for self-defense, although I generally carry a .380 of the same size.
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Old April 23, 2014, 06:39 AM   #14
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I have at least 15 .32/7.65 pistols in the safe and shoot the fun little cartridge often. Modern defensive ammo helps a lot if you carry one for your protection (I certainly would not like to have a hole poked in me by a .32) however I just shoot FMJ should I have one concealed. There are a very wide variety of large and small pistols in that caliber floating about your gun shops and often at reasonable prices.
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Old April 23, 2014, 07:07 AM   #15
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I remember a surplus of European police trade in .32 pistols at cheap prices available in the 1980's, as police forces there updated their armament. The Seacamp brought the .32 into the tiny gun catagory. It was designed specifically for the Winchester Silvertip round. They were rarer than hen's teeth and outrageously expensive if you could find one. NAA later produced a more affordable copy, but it was Kel Tec that brought the inexpensive .32 pocket pistol back to the masses. My brother bought one. It is so thin and light you could literally carry it in a shirt pocket. Of course, it wasn't long before the slightly larger .380 appeared. The weight difference between the Kel Tec .32 and .380 is less than 2 oz. The flood of mini .380s has pushed the .32 back to .25 status. Having said that, I own and still occasionally carry an FN 1910/55, even though it's larger and heavier than my Kimber Solo 9mm. After all, the .32 cal 1910 was Mr. Browning's favorite pistol and he carried one until the day he died. You can't get a better recommendation than that.
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Old April 23, 2014, 10:42 AM   #16
g.willikers
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With more people deciding to get carry guns, the .32 should still be a viable option.
Like older folks, especially those who suffer hand and wrist joint problems.
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Old April 23, 2014, 11:36 AM   #17
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The .32 generates such little recoil its a good choice for light guns. I wish we could legally own full auto defense weapons, I have a feeling if we could, that it'd be a much more popular round.

http://youtu.be/_iokVmSi37g
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Old April 23, 2014, 11:57 AM   #18
RickB
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I occasionally carry a Colt '03, and while larger calibers are more comforting, sometimes I still go for comfortable.
The .32 ACP is the original compact auto round, chambered in the FN/Browning model of 1900. That gun was so successful, that early in the last century, Europeans called any small auto pistol a "Browning".
As long as guns are proportional to their power, I think all cartridges can fill a niche. When guns get big or bulky enough that you could step up to a more powerful cartridge without sacrificing portability or handling, most will go with the more powerful round.
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Old April 23, 2014, 01:08 PM   #19
RX-79G
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There's nothing else between .25 and .380, unless you place a lot of faith in .22 Magnum.

When the currently macho "9mm or nothing" attitude ebbs a little, people are likely to rediscover truly tiny guns, and .32 will pop up again (along with .25). No one has ever made a Browning Baby size gun with modern safeties, and when they do it will sell.

However, .32 ACP is a semi-rimmed case, which causes far more problems than it solves. We could use a better cartridge, like .32 Super or 7.62x17 to offer a hair more power and better feed characteristics.
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Old April 23, 2014, 05:43 PM   #20
SIGSHR
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How many 32ACP pistols have been produced in this country in the last 100 years? Again, until recently the revolver was the handgun of choice.
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Old April 23, 2014, 06:45 PM   #21
Bill DeShivs
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A whole lot of .32s have been made here in the last 100 years! Savage, Remington, Colt, and S&W made them. Recently, Keltec, Seecamp, Beretta, Taurus, North American Arms make them.
Where have you been?
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Old April 23, 2014, 07:02 PM   #22
Doc Intrepid
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Beretta Tomcat love...

I'm another fan of the Beretta Tomcat/Alleycat wideslide 3032 pistols. With Winchester silvertip ammo it's a viable pocket gun you can carry nearly year 'round.

Just MHO, but I don't think the .32 ACP is going anywhere real soon...

As a BUG or a pocket gun its reliable and useful.

YMMV.
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Old April 23, 2014, 07:04 PM   #23
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We 3032 fans also like the tip-up barrel.
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Old April 23, 2014, 07:13 PM   #24
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.32 was the issue weapon to Generals until 1974. All those old Bogart movies, he was pointing a .32 Colt at the bad guys. It is "Automatic Colt Pistol". Not much more American than that.
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Old April 23, 2014, 11:30 PM   #25
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The Colt, Remington and Savage were all pre-WWII, the others seem to be fairly low production, most of the 32ACPs I have seen for sale have been GI bringbacks. IMHO the 32ACP is like the 41 Magnum-enjoys enough a following as to make it profitable to make ammunition for, not so much as to make new guns and ammo types that worthwhile.
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