Shooting the Beretta Model 85F


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Stephen A. Camp
July 15, 2008, 01:21 AM
Hello. Though not a devotee of the .380 ACP, I do think some of the pistols firing the round are interesting. One is Beretta's single-stack Model 85F.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y171/hipowersandhandguns/BerettaM85Fcap001-1.jpg
This pistol was slightly used when I purchased it at a good price. I may never use it for any "serious" purpose but that doesn't mean that others would make the same decision.

With its 8-round magazine and one in the barrel, this conventional DA/SA pistol is capable of 9 shots before reloading is mandatory.

Thus far, the gun has proven itself reliable with a number of factory loads from 95-gr. FMJ to various JHP's from Federal Classic 90-gr. JHP to Corbon's 80-gr. DPX and others.

The pistol is not the most compact in Mr. Browning's pocket cartridge but to me it is one of the more comfortable. Felt recoil, admittedly a subjective quantity, is by no means excessively sharp, heavy or any of the other negative descriptors sometimes assigned blowback actions...at least not to me.

The pistol's mechanical accuracy was quite satisfactory and two typical groups are shown on a single target below.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y171/hipowersandhandguns/Ammunition/BerettaM85Fcap009.jpg
The two groups here were fired slow-fire and single-action from both 7 and 15 yards. I had my wrists braced and was in a sitting position at a bench. No effort was made at speed for these shots. At the closer distance POA was close enough to POI that I just aimed dead-on. At 15 yards, I found that a six-o'-clock hold kept the POA from being a tad too high. Shots fired at 7 yards are marked with a single-line. Those fired at 15 yards are circled. Most of the two groups overlap. Obviously, the spread & flyers are due to human error...mine!

Next I tried some more "practical" drills including a version of Mr. Higginbotham's standard controllability test for handguns.

If interested, a more detailed report is here:

http://hipowers-handguns.blogspot.com/2008/07/shooting-beretta-model-85f-380-acp.html

Best.

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Pilot
July 15, 2008, 09:34 AM
Great report Stephen. I own the exact same pistol which I bought new a few years ago. The guy at Sportsmen's Warehouse tried to talk me out of it saying there are more powerful and compact pistols out there. I explained I had a plethora of other pistols at home, but always wanted the little Beretta. Its now my summer carry as I find it slim, relatively light and I can hit what I aim at. Nine rounds of Corbon .380 +p is fine for me.

My experience with the Beretta M85FS is similar to yours. Reliable, accurate and for me easy to carry in a little Bianchi belt holster.

Stephen A. Camp
July 15, 2008, 09:38 AM
Hello and thank you for the kind words; glad the post was of interest.

Best.

Pilot
July 16, 2008, 05:15 PM
The other thing is they are just cute little buggers.

Air,Land&Sea
July 16, 2008, 05:26 PM
How do you like it, in general, compared to a new S&W PPK or PPK/S?
Thanks.

Pilot
July 16, 2008, 05:35 PM
How do you like it, in general, compared to a new S&W PPK or PPK/S?


I have a Walther PP. It was a given to me by my Dad. It is a decent pistol, but not in the league of the Beretta 84/85 series. It hurts my hand when I shoot it, it bites me and its not as accurate as the Beretta. I don't like the fact that it doesn't have a slide stop.

Stephen A. Camp
July 16, 2008, 06:03 PM
Hello. I own an older PP and while I really like it as a classic pistol, I prefer to shoot the Beretta and others. I shot one of the newer S&W versions of the PPK and while I didn't get "bit" as much, I still prefer the Beretta and others. This is subjective and I speak only for myself.

Best.

usp9
July 16, 2008, 06:32 PM
I too prefer the Beretta over the PP and PPK/S. All three are classic, great designs, but the Beretta wins in the comfy to shoot department. The Beretta is one of the few really flawless pistols IMO. Of the .380s I currently shoot, the Beretta is pick of the litter, but this is a caliber filled with fine pistols.
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i186/ripley16/My380s.jpg

Pilot
July 17, 2008, 04:53 PM
usp9,

You pretty much have the market cornered on fine .380's. Nice collection. Another nice .380 I have is a Russian Commercial Makarov in .380. Its one of the brushed nickel models imported by B-West back in the good ole days.

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