In Praise of the Astra A-100


April 10, 2003, 03:15 PM
I actually have a small collection of these all-steel pistols and have just added one in .45 which I will probably fire tomorrow. Many people know that this is a clone of the Sig 228, just slightly shorter than the Sig 226. These Astras weigh about 35 oz empty, but are narrow for their size, and have a relatively narrow grip. They come in 9MM, .40, and .45. I believe that all of the frames are identical and can handle a slide, barrel, and recoil rod and spring from any calibre. I know this is true of 9 and .40, haven't checked .45 yet. The 9mm and .40 take high cap original mags made by Mec-Gar. 15 or 17 for 9MM, 13 for .40. The .45 mag holds nine rounds. These mags are usually readily available for around $35, which is cheap for a high quality 17 round mag.

These pistols have a very nice decocker but no manual safety. Takedown is extremely easy and fast. I have seen five finishes on these guns: matte blued (with some polished surfaces), polished blued, matte nickel, polished nickel, and polished stainless. The polished versions are very attractive.

I have found these pistols to be fun and accurate to shoot. The rear sight is adjustable left to right and I think some of the front sights are also adjustable.

There seems to be a large supply of these pistols available, often in near new condition. Some of the surplus guns from Spain are quite beaten up, however. In excellent condition I consider these pistols a good value at about $300. The drawback is that the pistol hasn't been made in a few years, parts may be hard to find, and the steel doesn't seem to be terribly hard and may wear faster than that used in some other modern pistols.


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April 10, 2003, 05:45 PM
I just saw one sell for $190 on Auction Arms with 1-2 hi caps. I almost bought it but I have heard they are larger than SIGs. The Sig is about the larget handgun I can hold comfortably.

s&w 24
April 10, 2003, 05:48 PM
two of the guys I worked with at a gun shop carried them all the time and my sister got an A-100 9mm from me for her wedding. They all worked great and were very accurate. One guy kept breaking the de-cocking lever but the factory fixxed it every time as well.

April 10, 2003, 05:51 PM
The A-100 grip is smaller than that of the Sig. The Sig has an alloy frame and is therefore a few ounces lighter. The Astra is heavier than the Sig but about the same size. The Astra is somewhat smaller than the Ruger P-95. $190 for the A-100 with two high caps would seem to be a bargain.


April 11, 2003, 11:44 AM
My first handgun was an A100 in 9mm Luger. Got one with 3 high cap mags, right before the 1994 Crime Bill went into effect.

Only thing I question about my A100 is the finish. For some reason my A100 developed rust behind the takedown lever (on the side opposite from the lever). Can't figure out how to remove the lever to remove the rust so I suppose it will have to go to the gunsmith.

April 11, 2003, 12:09 PM
For some time, I owned an Astra A-75 in .40 cal. It was a nice, small (heavy!), reliable, accurate gun for its size. It was a good ccw firearm. However, after quite a bit of shooting, I noticed that the lockup places bagan to look battered and it began to wear some. I sold it. Good for 'carry a lot, shoot a little' it seemed to me. (It was docock only da-sa)

How much difference mechanically is there between the 75 & the 100? (I know there is a size difference)

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