Walther PPK .32 -- Opinions?


April 29, 2003, 09:35 PM
Thinking of getting the Walther PPK in a .32 for the range and possible carry. Anyone own this gun? I'm concerned about a few issues:

1. cost of ammo
2. trigger pull
3. recoil

Appreciate any feedback on it's accuracy and reliability. Thanks.

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April 29, 2003, 09:41 PM
Just ask James Bond ;-) ;-)

April 29, 2003, 09:58 PM
Thanks...but I was hoping for a better response than asking Bond. I'd get as much info asking Superman...:rolleyes: Anyone own this gun? I'd appreciate hearing opinions from people that have used the .32.

April 29, 2003, 10:17 PM
I had a PPK-S once upon a time.

Cost of ammo was reasonable, about what commercial 9mm was running at the time.

Trigger pull was ok. Not at all as good as the Sig Pro, the best pistol trigger I've ever seen. Not by any stretch of the imagination. Not as good as the Kel Tec P-32 either.

Recoil was merciless. I have no reason why but the felt recoil is much much more than a Kel-Tec, the only other .32 I"ve ever shot. This is really eerie and to all logic the Kel-Tec would have more recoil but it doesn't feel like it. In many ways the narrow sharp frame of the PPK-S adds to the felt recoil but in truth the Kel-Tec is just as narrow. Maybe magic? I dunno. Maybe the KT plastic absorbs recoil?

Also the fact that the PPK-S slide tends to nick the thumb web and make the hand bleed about every fourth shot might have something to do with it. Then when you get the position right, it tends to knick the knuckle of the OTHER thumb! I supppose if you had very small hands it might be less bloody, but then you'd have to deal with the torque and recoil.

April 29, 2003, 10:25 PM
PPK's are nice collectables. They generally have horrible triggers and most are picky about hollow-points (remember, they were designed before hollow points enjoyed widespread use). They are heavy, have a lot of sharp edges, and rudimentary sights.

There are far better choices. If you are looking for a .32, I'd recommend the Kel-Tec. Light, inexpensive, and mine has been 100%. There is a Kel-Tec forum, do a google for the address.

Stepping up in power to a 9mm, you can go with a kahr PM-9. It's lighter, more reliable, designed to feed hollow-points, has better sight, and is less expensive.

Lastly, the PPK is a DA/SA pistol which, to quote Col. Cooper, is an ingenious solution to a non-existent problem. It also follows the silly Euro convention of putting the safety on the slide which is difficult to operate under stress. It does not contain a hammer block, so it can discharge if dropped if the safety is not in the "on" position. Both the Kel-Tec and the Kahr have hammer blocks and so can not discarge if dropped.

The consistent trigger on both the Kahr and Kel-Tec is much easier to shoot well.

April 29, 2003, 11:00 PM
From what I've observed and read, the PPk is a hand biter that tends toward the sharp side in recoil. Uncomfortable to shoot, there are also considerable reasons to doubt that .32 is a consistently reliable man stopper. Perhaps you would like to consider a Makarov in 9x18mm. Very user friendly, extemely reliable, 8+1 capacity, decocker safety and simple take down. Tough as nails, accurate and inexpensive ($200 for a Bulgarian), this all steel pistol is similar in size to the Walther, packs a bigger punch and is less than half the cost. See makarov.com for more info.
Hope this helps.

April 29, 2003, 11:05 PM
Appreciate all the info. Thanks folks.:D

Andrew Wyatt
April 30, 2003, 12:03 AM
i'd get the .380 PPK, since that's a more suitable caliber for self defense than .32.

April 30, 2003, 01:14 AM
Come to think of it, a Colt Government .380 may be a good choice, too, if they are legal in Beantown and obtainable. They fire from a locked breech, like a mini-1911, and have the consistent trigger of a SA auto.

April 30, 2003, 10:04 AM
I have the PPK's slightly bigger brother, the PP. I haven't found recoil to be remarkable in any way. A .380 PPK that I shot had sharper recoil, but still not much compared to a snub .38 with Cor-Bon + Ps.

The PP does bite the hand that feeds it however.

David S
April 30, 2003, 11:28 AM
i have small hands first of all so bite has not been a problem............

i have a manurhin made PP in .32.......and within a day or so i should have the PPK in .32 that i ordered..........the PPK is a german made (1964ish) in good condtion.

I currently carry a keltec .32 as my "all the damn time" gun..........but the PPK may take over as a dress up CCW............

my P99 is my duty weapon when i am on duty (sheriff reserve)

David S
April 30, 2003, 05:26 PM
well just came in today!! heres a thread i did on the walther forums

Apple a Day
April 30, 2003, 05:41 PM
I am sure to catch flack for this one but:
A friend of mine has a PP. I hate it. I have big hands and it's just not comfortable for me.
I used to own a CZ-70, sold it to my brother because he loved it so much. It's pretty much the same thing but rougher and a wee bit more comfortable for a larger hand. If you are looking specifically for a .32 ACP then give it a think. It isn't fancy and it ain't as pretty as a Walther but if you are looking for a range gun/carry anywhere gun then it's worth considering. They are inexpensive to boot. Plenty of stuff for them at makarov.com if you want to accessorize.
Flame Away!!!

David S
April 30, 2003, 09:46 PM
check that link again i just added this nice pic to it...........this thing DISAPEARS in this High Noon holster....

English John
May 1, 2003, 09:07 PM
The .32 PPK lives in the safe.
The KT .32 lives in my pocket.
YMMV, but if you can test fire both.
Then pick what works for you.

David S
May 3, 2003, 09:29 AM
i stated this in another thread, but ill reiterate here...

Since the few days i have had this gun, it has become my favorite carry peice.
technically my Keltec p32 is the same package; same ammo type , same capacity, and at over half the weight and size. but i PREFER to carry the Walther because it just feels like more gun.

it even feels like MORE to shoot to because of the blowback action , you feel more recoil with the PPk than the P32.

As a good friend always tells me (hes a sniper ex mil) "The best gun in the world is the one you feel most comfortable with and can hit with the best".

May 4, 2003, 09:27 PM
I have a Walther PPK in 32, and it is very accurate; however, I shoot it at the range only; on my ccw is my Sig P239 in .40 and my Sig P232 in 380. My Sig P232 carries easily in a Kramer pocket holster, and I use a Galco paddle for the P239. The European mag release is second nature for me.
I am more confident with the P232 than my PPK, possibly cause I shoot it much more often, and my latest version is the SS model with night sights making it more useful in the p.m. I have been carrying the P232/P230 for 15 years; in the same time I have bought and sold 4 PPKs and one PPK/S before I finally spent the big bucks on a German made PPK, 1968. It will shoot ball ammo all day.

May 4, 2003, 09:47 PM
I just got a Manurhin PP and shot it last weekend.

It did fine with MagTech 71-grain JHP and with ball.

I did not like the bakelite grips, so I got a set of Secret Service rosewood grips for it. It looks much better with those.

So far, so good.


David S
May 5, 2003, 12:42 AM
where did u get these grips? link please?

May 8, 2003, 03:24 PM
First of all, my apologies-I've been out of town and just got back today, so have not responded timely.

My mistake-they're Eagle Grips, not Secret Service grips. They're made of Indian rosewood and are very nice-looking on the Walther.

Here's the link: http://www.eaglegrips.com/firearms1.htm

Good luck....


David S
May 9, 2003, 06:06 AM
nice, i wouldnt mind a pair of ebony ones possibly. could you post some pics?

BTW, did you get checked?

May 10, 2003, 05:14 PM
I read your replies in complete amazement. Surprising a number of you commenting on a gun you don't even own.

Mastrogiacomo I'm sorry I didn't see this earlier but I'll answer your questions.

1. cost of ammo

Ammoman.com sells .32 Auto Federal Classic for $99 per 500 rounds. Not cheap but the cheapest source out there I've found.

2. trigger pull

Trigger pull on the PP, PPK or PPK/s series is generally firm - in the 10 pound area DA and 7-8 pounds in SA. It is generally smooth and crisp with no creep. They are easy guns to do a trigger job on and I have 3 PPK and 2 PPK/s that have trigger pulls that are 8 pounds DA and 5 pounds SA. They break like ice. Keep in mind that these are compact guns and as such, even a fairly light pull feels heavier due to the smaller frame.

3. recoil

Recoil on either the .32 or .380 versions of the PPK or PPK/s is moderate.

Comments regarding slide bite are misleading. Generally, people that have a problem with slide bite have over-sized hands and are trying to use a gun that's simply too small for them or inexperienced shooters. I've been collecting, shooting and carrying PP, PPK and PPK/s arms for many years and have yet to be bitten. My wife carries a PPK/s .380 which she shoots regularly and she has never had a problem.

The German Walthers are ultra-reliable if they're properly maintained. I can remember a single FTF due to a stove-pipe I had. It was caused by a dropped magazine in the dirt. I thought I had it cleaned up but didn't.

If you're looking for a gun to carry, I would suggest you consider something with a little more horsepower. In the Walther PP series, you might consider a .380. .380 Glaser Safety Slugs and Federal Hydra Shoks make it a potent rounds. You'll also find ammo much cheaper in .380.

Overall, the German models are good guns - I can't speak of the US [Smith's] models because I have no practicable experience with them.

In the same price range of the Walther is the SIG P230, P232 [.380's] and the P239 in either 9mm, 357SIG or .40 S&W. Perhaps a better alternative than the PPK .32 for personal protection.

Hope this helps.


Steve Aikens.

May 10, 2003, 07:40 PM
I just traded off a Manurhin PP in .32. A well made handgun. Being a all steel gun she was doing quite well considering she is 50 years old (a early model). Due to my hand size it had a tendency to bite back every now or then. The trigger pull was heavy, but no heavier than most DA/SA pistols. I had no issues with any FMJ, Silvertips, or Fiocchi JHP that I shot. Since it is a all steel gun it's not as light as the alloy or polymer models on the market today, but in a good IWB holster I would just about forget it was on my hip. The .32acp may not be considered the ideal choice in a defensive caliber today, but in the past it was a very popular cartridge. It is even more effective today with the better bullet designs offered.

May 14, 2003, 03:56 AM
I have a Manurhin PPK in .32 ACP, and that is my daily carry piece, home defense gun, hiking gun, etc etc.

It has never jammed.
It feeds the following: Silvertip, Gold Dot and Fiocchi HP's, Winchester and PMP FMJ's.
It never bit my hand, and I have big meaty hands.
In my subjective opinion the recoil isnt much, although stats show otherwise.
Trigger pull for the DA shot does not feel heavier than my Astra snubby. I prefer DA/SA, so I dont mind that system.
It is very flat, so it is easy concealable.
It is heavy for it's size.
It's quality is simply excellent.
It's sights ar miniscule, fitting the purpose it was deisgned for. I painted both sights and that improves it a lot.
It is accurate.

June 6, 2003, 10:36 PM
I have the PPK .32 stainless. Nice little piece. It does have a bit of a bite to it, but if you hold it a tad lower it's not an issue, I find. I buy the UMC .32 ammo at Wal Mart f/$11.95 for a box of 50.
It shoots wonderfully, no problems at all. I'm told that the .32 stainless is somewhat unusual. Have any of you folks run into many of them?

June 17, 2006, 12:02 AM
I have a Walther .32 PPKS. I don't think it or the PPK is unusual. At GunBroker.com, you will see lots of Walthers in .32

1 old 0311
June 17, 2006, 06:14 AM
Get the S&W version of the PPK, PPK/S. They solved a lot of the Walther issues. The PPK is a QUALITY pistol. Kel Tec's look, and act, like someone made them in a garage. Don't trust your life to junk.


Ala Dan
June 17, 2006, 08:20 AM
Greeting's Laura My Friend-

I just put a NIB Walther PPK in .32 ACP out on display. Besides the price
of $479.88, the weapon is a bit heavy for concealment purposes. Like a
previous poster stated; the trigger pull is horrible, and the sights leave
a lot too be desired. Its place in history is better served in remembering
that its a "James Bond" gun~!:eek: :D

Now, if you want a very desireable .32 ACP look no further than Larry
Seecamp's excellent little pistol- the LWS .32. Smaller, lighter (13.25 oz),
top quality craftsmanship (NO sharp edges), and very dependable. I own
one that I purchased NIB; and have not regretted it one bit.

June 17, 2006, 10:46 AM
I wonder if she ever bought one, considering she posed her question over 3 years ago? She probably passed on it for another snubby. :D
Laura, you out there?

Ala Dan
June 17, 2006, 01:10 PM
Greeting's Harbinger My Friend-

You bring up a good point, as I don't know if the Walther PPK is even on
the Mass. approved list?

June 17, 2006, 01:26 PM
I don't remember seeing Laura here for quite awhile!!

June 17, 2006, 02:07 PM
Dan, is that PPK you speak of stainless or blued? If its stainless do you know if S&W still makes a .32 PPK with a blued finish? Thanks.

June 17, 2006, 04:30 PM
I own an S&W ppk/s in stainless, .380 auto. It's a great gun and fun to shoot, although I have been having some trouble with it, but from what I've learned here, it's really rare to have the problems I'm having. Altogether, a well manufactured weapon. I'd also say go with the .380 for self defense. Good luck! :D


June 17, 2006, 08:14 PM
You bring up a good point, as I don't know if the Walther PPK is even on
the Mass. approved list?

Dan! Long time no see, how are you my friend?

The Walther PPK and PPK/S-1 are all on the Mass approved list, in .380. Do they even make it in .32 ACP any more? That was not on the list. But used guns in the state are exempt.

But there always seem to be a few Walthers floating around. Laura lives near Four Seasons which is probably the best gun store in this God-forsaken Commonwealth. If Carl can't get one, no one can.

Take care and shoot straight.

June 19, 2006, 01:26 AM
I've got a Manurhin PP and with my small hands it feels very good. I also have a Kel Tec P32 which is my daily carry and a Markarov. All 3 are fine shooters. The PP and in some regards the Markarov are "old style" pistols but still function ok.

June 19, 2006, 08:07 AM
I've owned a pre-war PPK .32, a late 60's PP .32, and a (early 70's ?) PP in .22LR. My experience with them is as follows:

Lots of cool factor.
Well built.
Very easy to disassemble/clean.
Reasonably accurate.
Heavy trigger.
Ammo finicky/sensitive.
Snappy recoil (.32).

Bottom line, I prefer my 1930 Colt 1903 Hammerless....:D


Ala Dan
June 19, 2006, 11:19 AM
Greeting's To All-

To answer a few questions-

Frosty My Friend- I'm still around, and have posted here on many
occassions. I've looked at several threads that I would have thought
that you would have responded too; but to my surprise, NO SEE SEN'OR.

Yes, the new Walther PPK that I put on display was a .32 ACP caliber
weapon fabricated from stainless steel by Smith & Wesson. I don't know
if this weapon is going too be available in the standard blued gun or not?
That's a very good question, and I will be sure and ask our S&W rep the
next time he happens by~!:uhoh:

Denfoote- you are correct, I haven't seen Laura here in a long, long time.
I know she frequents TFL a lot, as I have seen recent post over there.
I must admit, I don't get over there much anymore; as I use THR as my
"home base".:D

June 19, 2006, 01:21 PM
I have a pre-WWII PPK. I really enjoy shooting it. Cost of ammunition? Been a while, but the last time I bought ammo for it, I spent around $8 for a box of 50 S&B FMJs. DA trigger is probably around 12 pounds. Single action is real light and crisp. Probably between 3.5 & 4 pounds. Of course, with my particular example there's no telling how many rounds have been through my particular gun. Recoil is easily managed. Not nearly as much as the .380. Mine is totally reliable with FMJs, haven't tried HPs (it's not a carry gun).

June 19, 2006, 02:02 PM
Frosty My Friend- I'm still around, and have posted here on many
occassions. I've looked at several threads that I would have thought
that you would have responded too; but to my surprise, NO SEE SEN'OR.


I've been spending most of my time on a more local forum, NorthEastShooters.com. Not quite as broad as THR, rather it concentrates more on New England related issues, both firearms and social. I still try to monitor THR as well but time is my enemy.

Next time I go past the Smith & Wesson store I'll try to remember to ask them about the .32 ACP PPK/S. But knowing how certification goes (or doesn't go) in Massachusetts I am not going to hold my breath.

Flame Red
June 19, 2006, 03:09 PM
I have a S&W PPK/S and it is my main carry peice. When I first got it, I was thinking of selling it - but after a bit of work it is definately a keeper.

1. The wood grips that S&W put on it did not fit properly and caused interference with the magazine that caused FTF. A new set of grips fixed that right up. The ones from S&W with the plastic grips do not have this problem.

2. I got the SS gun. It is very easy to give a quick deburr - which is most definately needs. A bit of 400 & 600 grit sandpaper take off the sharp edges.

3. A trigger job is easy. Replace the hammer spring with a 16lb Wolf spring and the DA trigger is much better.

4. Otherwise, is quality built, very accurate and totally reliable. Shoots anything I feed it.

5. It is not a great range gun. The blow back design makes you hand hurt after 50 rounds. But in a GF - having this in your pocket is better than any 45 in a safe. It will go bang when you need it to.

6. It does not like having a round chambered except via the mag. Do it anyother way and it will FTF. This is a PPK idiosyncracy I hear.

7. The S&W one does not bite as bad as the original Walther ones with the bigger beaver tail.

8. Practice with it a lot until you totally get used to it. It takes a while to get accurate with it. But once you do will hit your target well.

Great pcoket peice!

June 19, 2006, 04:29 PM
I like PPK/S so much I just put a 2nd Interarms on lay a way. I won't buy the S&W Don't want beaver tail, laser printing, or to support S&W(lock issue) I can buy a used Interarms for a lot less and it doesn't shoot I belive I can get it right. With min. expense.

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