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Old September 18, 2005, 07:31 PM   #1
Super38
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Which .380 would you buy???

I know this has been done once or twice

But, I want to get the wife a .380 to carry. She practices with a Glock 19, but just hasn't found a 9mm she feels comfortable carrying. She has shot my PA-63 in 9x18 and likes it, but I wouldn't trust my wife or my life to it. We have narrowed the field to the following:

Sig P323
Berretta Cheetah
Walther PPK

Which would you folks recommend and why? The wife has shot all three and feels comfortable with them.

I don't want this to be another .380 bashing. I agree that it is a minimum. But it is a gun my wife can shoot. And shoot well, I might add.
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Old September 18, 2005, 07:34 PM   #2
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of your choices i would pick the walther...

if i could find one i would get a Colt Government .380 but they are out of production and costly when you can find them...

david
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Old September 18, 2005, 07:36 PM   #3
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Sig!
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Old September 18, 2005, 07:51 PM   #4
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I own both a Bersa and a SIG .380... and honestly, I like the Bersa better, the SIGs beaver tail just isn't big enough for me, so the slide's real close and its always biting my hand. The Bersa's tang keeps me good and clear of the slide.

Compare:

SIG P-232

Bersa 380
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Old September 18, 2005, 08:00 PM   #5
boing
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From your list, SIG.

But I've looked at a couple of Bersas, and have been very impressed. I'd buy one in a minute.

(It's a P232, btw.)
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Old September 18, 2005, 08:14 PM   #6
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I've had a Sig 230 for about 15 years. It's very accurate and carries very easily. I've fired more than 5,000 rounds through it and never had a problem.

The Sig 232 is almost the same as the 230. The changes are internal and have no real effect on how it shoots.

Two things I dislike about it are:

1. Lack of a slide lock. It locks open on an empty mag but it will not lock unless
an empty mag is inserted. (You can reach in and move the lever when holding
back the slide, but it's awkward and if the slide slips, it will hurt.)

2. I don't like the European/Heel mag release.

I've handled the Bersa but never fired one so I can't make a comparison. It felt good in my hand,

John
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Old September 18, 2005, 08:34 PM   #7
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Sig P232

I have a Sig in stainless steel and I love it. Never bites my hand, it's very accurate and quite pleasing to shoot. I agree that I don't really like the Euro mag release and lack of a slide stop, but that still doesn't come close to turning me off of it.
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Old September 18, 2005, 08:35 PM   #8
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Walther
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Old September 18, 2005, 08:52 PM   #9
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All are good choices. I personally like Walthers. Also, its not on your list but a Makarov is an excellent value and 9x18 performs very similarly to .380. And .380 is not a minimum, thats what the .32 is (also my carry gun).
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Old September 18, 2005, 09:21 PM   #10
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I would look at a Bersa before I bought anything, especially with the new CCW model coming out. I bought my wife a duo tone, and that little thing is a gem. Packs and feels good, shoots unbelievably straight. Good sights, good finish, the only downfall is the high cost of magazines (~30.00).

When the gun only costs 175.00 out the door, the high dollar mags dont hurt as bad, though.
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Old September 18, 2005, 10:06 PM   #11
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Sig P232.
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Old September 18, 2005, 10:08 PM   #12
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I like the Cheetah. Granted I carry the 86 not the 85 which is a little less bulky. But the 86 was my first pistol and it'll stay with me. It has good sights and is very reliable.

I've shot the Bersa and it has a pretty good trigger on it. I disliked the small sights and the mags were a little testy.

I don't have any input on the Sig, I've never handled one.
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Old September 18, 2005, 10:16 PM   #13
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If your wife has only shot one 9mm I would encourage you to let her try another one if you have any other range buddies. The 9mm is very managable for women and other guns may have a softer recoil. Reason being, the .380 is more expensive to shoot and you will have a much higher selection when a 9mm is considered. The makarov is a good choice as well and is neither 9mm or .380 but 9x18.
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Old September 18, 2005, 10:57 PM   #14
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The Browning BDA .380 is made by Beretta - very nice and fun to shoot
Walther PPK/S another great gun -

http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/...chmentid=14432
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Old September 18, 2005, 11:23 PM   #15
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Makarov.

Quote:
The makarov is a good choice as well and is neither 9mm or .380 but 9x18.
Makrov.com has .380 barrels on their webpage. They drop right in and use the .380 mags.
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Old September 19, 2005, 05:30 AM   #16
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CZ 83 is my choice.

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Old September 19, 2005, 06:11 AM   #17
blume357
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same thoughts

I had the same thought... weapon my wife might be willing to use in a gun class to learn to shoot... as well as something I could carry... and possibly her in the future.

I had narrowed it down to either a Walther PPK or Sig 230/232... went to the gun show last weekend and couldn't make up my mind and so bought both...

I had never shot a 380 auto before.. I expected it to be somewhere between a 22 auto and a light 38 revolver round. Both autos kick like a mother... the Walther is worse than the Sig. I'm not sure my wife will like either... I think I'm going to go with a small 357 mag and have her shoot light 38 loads.
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Old September 19, 2005, 07:58 AM   #18
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It seems as though Sig and Bersa are close, with the Walther right behind. I am surprised to see the Beretta so far behind. We looked at the Browning BDA, but I have seen smaller 9mm's. I like the 9x18 round, but ammo choices are limited. We had a CZ 83 in 7.65 Browning (32ACP) and liked it, but it had magazine feed issues. I'm not sure I would buy another. In fact I think it is still at CZ (about 5 weeks now ) But the wife liked it immediately and shot it well right out of the box. Maybe a CZ 83 in .380?

One very good point someone mentioned is the cost of ammo. But like I said she practices with the 9mm. So when she shoots the .380, she should not feel much recoil. Kinda like practicing with a 50lb. hammer and using a 25lb on occassion.

It's all still up in the air right now. We aren't going to buy until this weekend so you never know. I like the Kahrs but wife says their a bit heavy. But she hasn't seen some of the lighter model I have read about.

Bersa hmm? What's the warranty on those?
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Old September 19, 2005, 08:19 AM   #19
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The locked-breech Colts, like the Government Model .380, and the Mustang, are nice. While out of production, there were many made.

The locked-breech reduces recoil much better than a blow-back action. They are small, hold 6-7 rounds depending on Model, and quite reliable. Accuracy is on a par with the Sig.

I believe that the Beretta line of .380s is being pruned of several models. I see the Model 84 at CDNN for decent prices. The Browning BDA .380 is the Model 84.

About the only high-capacity .380 left, if Beretta drops theirs, will be the CZ83. I guess that the idea of a 12 shot .380 just never caught on in areas that didn't restrict the ownership of "military calibers".

Taurus at one point manufactured a 14 shot .32 ACP semi-auto for sale in Brazil. The Model 57. The Model 58 was sold in the U.S. until the AWB. That one was a 12 shot .380. I bought one when they first came out, and it's been a fun weapon to shoot, but a bit large for a .380 CCW. The later versions were also available in SS, and all were decocker equipped.
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Old September 19, 2005, 10:32 AM   #20
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Quote:
Makrov.com has .380 barrels on their webpage. They drop right in and use the .380 mags.
My dad has a commercial IJ70 Makarov that he bought several years ago that came from the factory in .380. He paid $150 for it then but then Clinton halted their importation. The last one I saw went for $300 . Oh, and 9x18 and .380 both use the same mag.
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Old September 19, 2005, 10:47 AM   #21
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Oops.

Good call. I meant to type "makarov magazines". I had .380 on the brain as I am getting ready to purchase one also.

Sorry guys and girls
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Old September 19, 2005, 10:50 AM   #22
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Bersa .380

ONE more for BERSA. Mine shoots great, light weight and very dependable. New under $200, sometimes overlooked........
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Old September 19, 2005, 10:53 AM   #23
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I would cet the Walther RRK or PPK/s.
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Old September 19, 2005, 11:47 AM   #24
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Its too bad Glock wont sell the model 28 in the USA, the sub-compact 380 would make a great carry gun for someone not wanting the recoil of the 9mm.
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Old September 19, 2005, 01:16 PM   #25
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I would go with Beretta's Cheetah. The Cheetah has the american magazine release and external slide stop. The Cheetah is also the cheaper of the three it's quality is on par with the Sig. Sig's P232 is an excellent pocket popper but expensive. The Walther PPKS' reliability over the years has been hit and miss.
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