I took my new Bodyguard 380 to the range today.


PDA






jon_in_wv
June 11, 2011, 10:06 PM
Well, you know how it goes, I stopped in to my local gunshop to buy some ammo and the devil behind the counter talks me into buying a Bodyguard 380. I bought it for 375 and he discounted a box of 380 and 45 for 20% off. Well, the wife was pretty cool about it anyhow. Today I had a chance to take it to the range for the first time. My regular BUG has been a Ruger LCP. Today I fired 50 rounds of Federal FMJs and a mixture of rounds I had left over from shooting my LCP. The BG ate everything perfectly. It was just as accurate as my LCP and I could even push the range a little further with the use of the laser. Recoil was a little less with the BG, not a lot but it was a little less. In comparison between the two the BG is only slightly larger than the LCP. In fact without the laser I'm sure it would fit in a couple of my LCP holsters. The Smith has second strike capability. The hammer is not partially reset by the slide. Triggers are comparable between the two. I think the trigger of the BG will be even better once it is broken in. The BG does feel a little more substantial in the hand, it has MUCH better sights, and the option of the laser. I'm pretty sure my trusty LCP is going on the chopping block soon.
When I took my BG apart I took apart the LCP to compare them side my side and really there wasn't a whole lot to comment about. One thing I did notice was the barrel of the S&W did seem a bit sturdier than the LCPs. In fact I measured the thinnest part of the barrel chamber and the LCP was only .03":what: whereas the BG was .05. I would feel a lot better shooting heavier ammo in my BG than in the LCP.
Another issue I took a look at while I was on the range is the issue of "smileys". The LCP does put a pretty nice smiley in almost all ammo it shoots including my lead reloads. In fact, I had about 20 rounds of Hornady 380 I don't find safe to shoot through my LCP because the stiffer jacket of the JHP cause setback when it strikes the feed ramp. I usually use Gold Dots for carry because the softer JHP deforms instead of setting the bullet back. My BG had NO smileys, NONE. It didn't appear to have the same issue AT ALL. The BG has not only the other things going for it but also I can shoot ammo through it I would not, or can't shoot through my LCP.
I'm still kind of torn about which I think is better. I'll shoot a couple hundred more rounds through the BG before its ready for carry. I'll let you know what I decide then. If you are in the market for a pocket pistol. These are things you might want to consider also.

If you enjoyed reading about "I took my new Bodyguard 380 to the range today." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
kokapelli
June 12, 2011, 09:18 AM
The LCP is such a close copy of the P3AT they even included the smilies.:D

Storm
June 12, 2011, 09:48 AM
While I only have 150 rounds through my BG380 It has performed without a hitch (so far with FMJ). Accuracy is much more than acceptable for the purpose of this pistol. The only issue that I have had is with the takedown lever which relases the slide when pivoted. That can be overcome by leaving an empty mag seated or to hold the slide back which is easy to do considering the size of the gun. As I'm not a lser fan the only use that I have for it is to give my cat some exercise. The ease of activating the laser can be improved by rotating the rubber buttons to the proper position. There seems to be one best orientation and the folks assembling the pistols don't always seem to be aware of it.

My only other viable pocket gun before now was a Kel .32. The BG380 is significantly larger, and presumably larger than the LCP, but it rides very nicely in my front pocket in a leather Galco pocket holster that is made for J frame snubbies.

I think that Smith has done a very nice job with this pistol. Before now I had resisted the pocket 380 bandwagon, but this one got my attention. I wish that I could have gotten it without the laser, but for the most part I just ignore it. The problem is that if it were to go on the fritz I would feel compelled to ship the gun back to Smith despite the fact that it's a worthless feature for me.

Mags around here are plentiful and run about $24 having both the flat and extended floorplate. Locally the gun can be had for as little as $329.

jon_in_wv
June 12, 2011, 01:06 PM
The Bodyguard is slightly larger than the LCP but the difference is slight.

usmarine0352_2005
June 12, 2011, 01:44 PM
.

I love my BG .380.



My friend, who has a BG .38 and I went to the range and loved it. He said he didn't need a .380 since he had his .38, after shooting the .380 he said that he wants to buy one now too.



The BG is so close to the LCP in size that it doesn't make a difference. The biggest advantages in it are the Second Strike Capability and real Sights. I like the laser too, but will probably never use it.


.

jon_in_wv
June 12, 2011, 05:35 PM
I agree. The laser is a nice option but I would have rather spent the extra money on a nice set of night sights. I'm giving the laser a chance though.

carbuncle
June 13, 2011, 12:42 AM
Glad you're enjoying yours, I love mine!

CraigC
June 13, 2011, 01:40 AM
Been without a pocket pistol since I traded my excellent KelTec P32 for an old lathe. Was planning on replacing it with a P3 or LCP and then started eyeballing the Bodyguard .380 in a local shop. I bought one last Saturday and have been heartily impressed with it. Relatively comfortable to shoot, surprisingly accurate and it has good sights. It might even convert me on lasers. Got another 100rds to put through it this week and a new Desantis pocket holster on its way.

jon_in_wv
June 13, 2011, 05:39 AM
One thing I didn't like is the way the manual said to set up the laser. I don't think it makes sense to set up the laser to co-witness with the front sight. If you do that at whatever distance you will shoot high any closer and low farther away. The farther away the lower. If you set up the laser below you point of aim about the same distance between the laser and the barrel you will always be slightly high until the round actually drops below that point and that is probably farther away than you are going to shoot. I think I prefer to set up mine that way.

Shadow 7D
June 13, 2011, 06:38 AM
Second Strike is nothing but MARKETING BS
it lets you do the movie 'tic,tic,tic,tic'
when you should be doing a malfunctions drill

An improved trigger is always good, and the laser looks better than what is offered for the P3AT/LCP

PcolaDawg
June 13, 2011, 11:03 AM
Nice report. Thanks.

My Bodyguard 380 replaced my Kel Tec P3AT as my pocket carry gun of choice. Although I still keep and carry the Kel Tec when I really need the smallest weapon in my arsenal. So I recommend hanging onto your LCP.

But there are several things about the BG 380 that I like better than the P3AT (or LCP), including the new ergonomic design, and it is definitely become my auto pocket gun that I carry the most.

If you're looking for a good pocket holster that's made specifically for the BG 380, take a look at this one:
http://shop.talontraininggroup.com/Wallet-Holster-Smith-and-Wesson-Bodyguard-380-WH-RH-BK-22.htm
It ain't cheap, but it's well made, completely covers the gun, including the trigger, extended mag, etc., and I've enjoyed using it.

jon_in_wv
June 13, 2011, 09:54 PM
Second Strike is nothing but MARKETING BS
it lets you do the movie 'tic,tic,tic,tic'
when you should be doing a malfunctions drill

Not necessarily. The P3AT and the LCP are vulnerable to disabling the trigger if you short stroke it under stress requiring you to rack the slide and eject a live round. With the BG you only need to pull the trigger again. I agree that if the hammer falls and the round fails to go off, its clearance drill time.

JustinJ
June 14, 2011, 09:06 AM
Great review. These are the kinds of posts that contribute the most to the board. The only problem is now i'm thinking i'll have to sell my LCP. Gee, thanks!

crracer_712
June 14, 2011, 10:34 AM
Glad to hear some good things about the BG380. I've wanted one for awhile, but have passed because of all the negative reports. Looks like issues are worked out now from the sounds of it. I'm kind of a ruger fan, but I'm not on the LCP bandwagon. The BG380 has what I'm looking for and now maybe its a reliable and viable option.

Alicia
June 14, 2011, 10:49 AM
I was within seconds of buying a Bodyguard the other day when I spotted a Taurus I liked and decided to wait a couple days and look into both online. I was getting pretty discouraged with the Bodyguard reviews, although most were a year or so old. I'm also glad to hear the kinks may be worked out. I was worried since it's on sale they may be trying to get rid of the junk, but maybe that's not the case. Something about it looks a little bulky to me though - it carries concealed well?

CraigC
June 14, 2011, 10:56 AM
I was all set to get an LCP but after examining the two side by side, I could find no reason, other than price, to get the LCP over the Bodyguard.

jon_in_wv
June 14, 2011, 06:48 PM
The Bodyguard does look a little larger than the LCP but the size difference is negligible. (People who are saying it is closer in size to the LC9 or PF-9 than the LCP haven't had them side by side or are just being dishonest if you ask me.) The Bodyguard would literally fit in my LCP holsters if it weren't for the laser. The slides are nearly identical in size with the exception of the sights sticking up on the Bodyguard and the grip is a little bigger on the Bodyguard, which is just fine by me. To me, the sights, improved trigger mechanism, and the manual safety are big bonuses in the Bodyguards favor.

BTW. I know some people don't like the safety because they are worried it will accidentally be on when they attempt to shoot. I really don't see that happening. It is really positive to engage, read STIFF, it isn't going on my accident no matter how you handle it. If you choose to use it, however, it is pretty easy to "snick" off when you wan't too. Its a really well designed safety for a pocket pistol.

Buck Kramer
August 23, 2011, 06:12 PM
Just got one too. First day at the range and I loved it. I heard a lot of complaints about the trigger but it takes only a few mags getting used to it. It has a sweet spot that you can pull the trigger to right before it snaps, once you find that it shoots pretty accurately. No jams/ftf/fte which is more than I can say for any kel-tec Ive ever bought. It straight eats up ammo, right out of the box. Ive never been happier with a firearm purchase, and I have several AK's :)

Dogguy
August 25, 2011, 09:47 AM
I wish S&W would offer the gun without the laser at a reduced price. I have nothing against lasers but I think they should be optional. Without the laser, the Bodyguard .380 would be price-competitive with the Kel-Tec and LCP.

Get R Done Guns
August 26, 2011, 09:21 AM
The bodyguards are great. Glad you like yours. Been a pretty fun gun for me to shoot also. The are one of the best 380's on the market for sure.

tinygnat219
August 26, 2011, 09:27 AM
I don't see the value of a laser the way it's setup on the Bodyguard. First, the button is hard to push and it's in a location that needs to be conciously reached for. When one is rushing to draw and even thinks about how hard that button is to push and then use the trigger finger to push it on, the perps will have the drop on someone. Crimson Trace has it right where the laser turns on when the grip is grasped.

I'd be interested in a non-laser XS Big Dot night sighted Bodyguard.

ilivas
August 26, 2011, 12:01 PM
To get this or the sig p238

If you enjoyed reading about "I took my new Bodyguard 380 to the range today." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!