CZ-83 in .380 for the wife?


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ETXhiker
October 2, 2006, 10:09 PM
I know that wifeguns are a popular thread this week, but I have a question. My wife has only recently shown an interest in shooting and obtaining a CCW. She has shown good concentration and basic shooting skills, but has rejected my compact 9mm's (S&W 3913, Kahr K-9) and J-frame .38 airweight due to perceived recoil and muzzle blast. I know I should probably just buy her a good .22 and let her work her way up to something big enough to carry, but I feel like a good, heavy .380 might be something she might take to and maybe become her concealed carry weapon.

Without naming any brands, I don't care much for cheap pistols. I've only owned one (back in the '70's) - a "Targa GT" .380 made by Tanfoglio Guiseppe of Italy. It had a cool Beretta vibe, but jammed a lot. The deal breaker was when I discovered that if you pulled hard on the trigger, that single action auto would drop the hammer while on safe. Yikes.

I hear a lot of talk about the CZ-83. My wife has small hands - the pistol looks like it would fit a ladies hand, but I haven't seen one in a gunshop lately. Anyone have personal experience with this model? Should I just bite the bullet and buy her a Sig 232?

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ugaarguy
October 2, 2006, 10:16 PM
ETX, I shall give you my standard reply. I am not a woman, so I am not qualified to answer. However, THR moderator Pax is a woman, and she's got this great website www.corneredcat.com. On her site she has written an article, http://www.corneredcat.com/ForMen/BuyForWife.htm, that adresses the question you pose. Now obviously some parts of this article don't apply to you becase your wife already has started shooting, but it's a good article, and there's a ton of other good info on...well everything, on her site.

wally
October 2, 2006, 10:16 PM
Main issue with the CZ83 and most blow-back .380s is the recoil spring is too stout for many women to be able to rack the slide.

My wife couldn't rack the CZ83, but otherwise really liked the gun when she shot mine. Ended up getting her the Beretta Cheetah with the "tip up" barrel so she never has to rack the slide. Big for a .380 and broke my heart to pay $460 for a .380, but she really likes it.

--wally.

Geronimo45
October 2, 2006, 10:20 PM
The CZ 83 is equivalent to the Beretta 84(or is it 85? don't recall) in .380. Same dimensions, a holster that fits one should fit the other.
You probably won't see one in the store long because it's priced so much cheaper than guns of similar quality. NIB rarely goes over 400.
The model in .32 is somewhat picky about ammo (some different dimensions between european and US ammo, I hear) the .380 or 9x18 mak are regarded as being very reliable and very accurate.
You might want the one in Makarov - the ammo tends to be cheaper - and is probably about the same recoil.
The HK USP compact is close to the same size - much more expensive, though. The Sig is overpriced for a small pistol.
If you want a holster for it, try Ken Null - he makes holsters for CZ guns, and has a nice selection:
http://www.klnullholsters.com/

atblis
October 2, 2006, 10:34 PM
They're an excellent little pistol. If she likes it, no reason not to buy one.

The 82 is selling for $250 right now.

pax
October 3, 2006, 12:07 AM
I know I should probably just buy her a good .22 and let her work her way up to something big enough to carry, but I feel like a good, heavy .380 might be something she might take to and maybe become her concealed carry weapon.
"Most of us ask for advice when we know the answer but we want a different one." -- Ivern Ball ;)

Seriously, a gun that she will use and practice with and get good at shooting beats a gun she won't use, every time.

Think about it...

pax

usp9
October 3, 2006, 07:46 AM
The CZ83 is not a bad choice for a woman sized hand. Even though the mags are double stack, the grip is not real wide. The CZ83 in .32 has very low recoil, making it a very enjoyable gun to shoot. In .380 it has slightly more recoil, the Mak feels the same as the .380 to me.

It is true the Beretta 85/84 is identical to the CZ83/82. The difference is that the Beretta 85 has a narrow grip, (single stack), but to me still feels about the same as the CZ. Both the CZ and the Beretta weigh the same at about 23 oz. The Beretta 84 has a double stack mag and is much thicker in the grip.

The Sig232 has a great grip, single stack, is very light, at about 18 oz. and very slim. If your wife has an interest in CCW, this may be the pick of the litter, followed by the Beretta 85. I rank them only because of the weight...both are exceptional guns. If you want a range gun for fun and teaching, I recommend the CZ83 in .32 caliber.

FWIW I own both CZ82 and 83, Beretta 84 and 85, and the Sig 232. Sold a Bersa .380 because it was inferior, INHO, to these others. These are all fine handguns with slightly different uses and strengths.

Onmilo
October 3, 2006, 09:00 AM
Sooner or later I will find a CZ-83 in .32 acp and I will buy it.
I am very impressed with the CZ-83 in general.
That said and on topic, my wife owned a Chinese Type 59 Makarov for a while.
She liked it but decided she liked my Target Hand Ejector .38 Special better.
(Probably because she doesn't have any money in the Smith and she kept the cash from the sale of her Makarov!)

Grayrider
October 3, 2006, 09:30 AM
My one observation is that recoil from blowback pistols (as opposed to delayed blowback) can be harsher than the caliber would seem to suggest. I find that a Kahr in 9mm is easily handled and has less felt recoil than many .380 caliber blowback pistols. That and the better performance of 9mm made me pass on .380 as a defensive caliber. I would suggest any of the small 9mm pistols out now as an alternative, model depending on your preference for features. If she shoots a .380 that recoils harshly you may find it hard to convince her later to move up do a more powerful round.

Of course my wife prefers a 45....

;)

GR

cookekdjr
October 3, 2006, 09:38 AM
I'd consider the CZ in 9mm Mak b/c they are such good deals right now. I like the added power of the Mak round (every little bit helps :) ).
Also, I carry a SIG p232 right now. Fits in a pocket holster, and I can carry it unnoticed when I'm out running errands. Not quite as concealable as an alloy j-frame, but it still works and it holds 7+1 rounds. Very accurate, eats all ammo I've tried. If you shop around you can easily find a used p230/p232 for under $400. I'd also consider the Beretta w/the tip-up barrel.
-David

mr.trooper
October 3, 2006, 10:22 AM
They're an excellent little pistol. If she likes it, no reason not to buy one.

The 82 is selling for $250 right now.

Thats jsut what i was about to suggest. The 82 is esentialy the same gun but in 9mm Mak. Actualy, i think you can still special order the 83 in 9mm Mak, so it is simply the military version of the gun.

After i got my CZ-75, i want more CZ pistols! An 82 and 52 are bolth on the list!

armoredman
October 3, 2006, 11:13 AM
http://www.jgsales.com/product_info.php/cz-handguns/cz-83/p/cz-83-blued-380acp-/cPath/260_75_81/products_id/97

I think cdnninvestments.com has the CZ82 for dirt cheap. Large for the caliber, but the CZ83s I have fired were accurate enough to write with...oops, checked thier latest catalog, no CZ82s...but they still have Star BMs for cheap!

American By Blood
October 3, 2006, 12:37 PM
Start hitting the gunshops and any ranges that rent weapons. See what she likes.

That way you can ask her what she'd like to carry instead of asking us.

ETXhiker
October 3, 2006, 01:03 PM
Thanks for all the good advice. Maybe we'll load up the car and go to Dallas this weekend to a gunshop that has a bigger selection. Not much to pick from in my little town. Ultimately, I think it's true that she'll bond with a pistol better if she picks it out herself. The only pistol she has ever commented on in a gun case was a PT-22 and I'm afraid I was quite dismissive of the dinky little gun. This time I'll keep my mouth shut and she what she goes for. Unless it's a brand new Kimber - then we either split the cost, or share joint custody. ;)

Jim Watson
October 3, 2006, 02:02 PM
Agree with Blood, her choice is all that should matter.

I will say that I have found the various blowback .380s to be hard kickers for the power they deliver. The Makarov is worse, just a nasty little thing.

My Colt Gov't .380 with locked breech is a mild mannered shooter and I find a Kahr K9 9mm P to be softer to shoot than Colt Pocket, Walther PP/PPK, Sig-Sauer P230, Mauser HSc, Makarov, etc. .380s. But I haven't tried a CZ83.

foxmoor
October 3, 2006, 09:31 PM
I have the CZ83 in .32ACP and it is a great gun - accurate and easy to shoot. A quality gun with ambi controls at a good price. I like the .32ACP as the gun is heavy for the caliber and easy to shoot.

Onmilo
October 4, 2006, 09:11 AM
Don't forget that 15 .32 acps in the CZ83 magazine are nothing to scoff at either,,,,,,

jagdpanzer347
October 4, 2006, 11:13 AM
AIM has CZ83's in .32acp in stock for 239.95. I picked one up in 9mm Mak a couple of months ago and it is quite nice.

-jagdpanzer

Dave T
October 4, 2006, 11:19 AM
Unless it's a brand new Kimber - then we either split the cost, or share joint custody.

Give some thought to how much your wife's life and wellfair is worth to you. I bought my wife an $800 Kimber...because she is worth it!

Dave

usp9
October 4, 2006, 01:09 PM
Sooner or later I will find a CZ-83 in .32 acp and I will buy it.




Saw one here yesterday for $360. Give 'em a call.

http://www.shootersparadise.com/newweb/

Zeke Menuar
October 4, 2006, 02:58 PM
CZ-83 in 32acp
http://www.aimsurplus.com/acatalog/Czech_CZ-83_.32acp_Pistol.html

Same gun in 9mm Mak
http://www.aimsurplus.com/acatalog/Czech_CZ-82_9x18_Pistol.html

ZM

bearmgc
October 4, 2006, 04:29 PM
The CZ-83 is a quality handgun. I do not have any problems pulling back the slide and don't think the recoil is harsh in .380. I'm glad the CZ-83 in the different calibers hasn't gone up much in price, so that it is more accessible. Its worth the price and more.

CZF
October 4, 2006, 08:00 PM
Interesting to see how this thread has progressed. I owned a early model
blued CZ83 for about 5 years. Like myself,The women who shot it didn't find any issues with the recoil, pleasant with ball .380 and not harsh with Jhps.
The addition of PT Nites made it an even better carry piece.

This was my Summer gun until the RAMI appeared.
http://onfinite.com/libraries/1009642/2b7.jpg

Having also owned a 9mm MAK 83 for a few months. I found the recoil to be more pronounced. Ammo was hard to find in my area so it went away for a 97B.
http://onfinite.com/libraries/1009641/2b7.jpg
While the grip of the CZ82/83 is what I call unisex..fits most everyone, especially the ladies. Although...The 83 is safe and accurate, it is just a bit heavy for some to carry.

WE never hear of any problems with them and they just work very well everytime.

I'd buy one at these low prices now. If she decides that she doesn't want it.
You can always sell it on CZF, or keep it for yourself.

I even have a new CZ83 .380/MAK 10-round magazine, should you live in CA.
http://onfinite.com/libraries/938139/418.jpg



More CZ83 info here:

http://www.angelfire.com/id/projectsafestarsap/cz83.html

Buck Nekkid
October 5, 2006, 02:25 AM
I truly love my CZ 83 in 9 x 18 Mak. It's a satin nickel jewel, similar to the one above, but with the factory plastic grips.

It is a heck of a lot of gun for the money, I just wish that CZ would update it's looks some and make it appear more like the CZ compacts.

Onmilo
October 5, 2006, 09:42 AM
jagdpanzer347, I placed an order today.
Thank you for the heads up.

usp9
October 5, 2006, 11:37 AM
jagdpanzer347, I placed an order today.
Thank you for the heads up.



Just be aware some of these used CZs are crap...some are fine, but there have been both complaint and praise. Hope yours turns out OK. Mine was crap.:cuss:

jagdpanzer347
October 5, 2006, 11:42 AM
Onmilo, always glad to help out a fellow THR member.

USP9, sorry to hear your CZ is a POS. Not sure where you got it, but I know AIM is very good about taking care of any problems with their products.

-jagdpanzer

40jjb
October 5, 2006, 03:36 PM
CZ is a great gunbut to big, try kel tec p3at.

usp9
October 5, 2006, 04:13 PM
USP9, sorry to hear your CZ is a POS. Not sure where you got it, but I know AIM is very good about taking care of any problems with their products.

-jagdpanzer

It came from SOG and the POS is the second one they provided...you should have seen the first one that I sent back! :cuss: I decided to keep this one, cut my losses, and turn it into a project to hone my weak gunsmithing skills. Can't screw it up any more than it already is.:rolleyes:

jagdpanzer347
October 5, 2006, 04:30 PM
USP9, when I picked my CZ up, the first one had a fair amount of finish wear on the muzzle and a loose left hand grip. I checked out another and it is almost perfect. Of course, I snapped that one up. Shortly after I bought mine I noticed AIM started advertising "grade 2" CZ's for about 30.00 less. Who was the importer of yours? Have you had other problems with SOG? AIM gets the vast majority of my surplus business, and they always take really good care of me.

-jagdpanzer

Mark F
May 13, 2008, 06:58 AM
These are excellent and durable autoloaders, especially for the price. I keep a CZ-83 consealed in my truck along with 3 magazines of JHP's. I have probably put a thousand rounds through mine and it has never FTF or FTE. It is a little too big for pocket carry during summer months (but great in winter). I carry a Kel Tek P3AT during the summer.

I bought a CZ-75B 40 S&W about 2 weeks ago, and it's AWESOME. That's my Home Defense prefered gun now... even though I still keep a 12GA handy.

http://tech.flygsw.org/CZ-75B.jpg

Mark F
May 13, 2008, 07:14 AM
Your choice of a CZ-83 for your wife may be a really good one. I have a CZ-83 for my wife, and it fits nicely in her hand. You'll find the .380 ACP version has a mild recoil and it's VERY accurate.

Owlnmole
May 13, 2008, 08:08 AM
Other options among quality all-metal .380 ACP autos include the Bersa Thunder, a little cheaper than the CZ, and the Walther PPK (also in .32 ACP), Sig 232 and Beretta Cheetah, all substantially more than the CZ. That said, I have heard good things about the CZ, but I agree that the best thing is to take her to a range and let her try a bunch to decide what she likes.

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