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Questions about the Kahr P380

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by shootingthebreeze, Feb 15, 2011.

  1. shootingthebreeze

    shootingthebreeze Well-Known Member

    At this point, my decision on the Kahr P380 hinges on one troubling question.

    The Kahr P380, based on my research is a nice firearm. Their customer service is also good and quick.

    The toss up at this point is between the Kahr P380 and the Micro Eagle .380.

    The question I have about the Kahr P380 is this: Why would a gun manufacturer request a 300 to 400 round break in period before the gun is qualified for service? Logic tells me that its manufacture should be spot on and that a minimal firing should be required to get used to it at the range. What does Kahr anticipate by requiring such a huge amount of rounds fired through it before it is anointed for service?

    What I have read is that service is rapid and that those who experienced problems during the break in period had a fast turn around. However, my concern is that if a weapon is of such good quality then such a break in period should not be required because as I stated, its manufacture should be accurate and dependable right off the bat.

    Not many problems and issues are seen with the Micro Eagle .380. Though heavier, it seems to pass muster with overall satisfied customers.
  2. oneounceload

    oneounceload member

    Because of the lack of hand fitting and polishing, parts need some finalization where their surfaces meet to mate and align smoothly. This is accomplished by working the mechanisms. If they did it, your price would be higher
  3. RidgwayCO

    RidgwayCO Well-Known Member

    Kahr recommends at least a 200 round break-in period. This is not excessive. In fact, most professionals recommend you shoot at least 200 rounds of your planned carry load through any handgun before trusting your life to it. This isn't practical for me (at almost $1 a round), but I had no problem putting 200+ practice rounds (specifically my 12ยข/round reloads) and 20 Speer 90gr GDHP rounds through my Kahr P380 before I started carrying it. The good news is that it's yet to malfunction in any way. Plus it's much more comfortable to shoot, and more accurate, than my previous KelTec P3AT. YMMV.
  4. heeler

    heeler Well-Known Member

    Most of these small 380's require some breaking in and I have talked to several people who have owned any where from the following, Kel-Tec,Rugers,Taurus,Diamondback,SigP238,Colt Mustang,Kahr,etc and few if any got through the first 100 rounds without some sort of failure to feed,fire,or eject.
    It's more of a fact than not.
    By 100 rounds most have pretty much bedded in unless they are a factory problem child.
    I am breaking my Kahr PM9 in currently and certainly dont have an issue with that at all.
    While your breaking it in you get the chance to see just what it takes for you to shoot it accurately.
    Fwiw I would take that expensive Kahr over the Micro Eagle on weight and recoil issues alone.
  5. NG VI

    NG VI Well-Known Member

    Like one ounce said, it's just a good idea in general to expect any new gun to come into its own with a couple hundred rounds of operation. Let it work out its interactions the best way.
  6. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

    It has to do with expectations of fit.

    Generally higher quality guns are fitted tighter...there is the expectation they they won't be loose enough to rattle. That tightness is what needs to be burnished in...having the metal parts mate their surfaces. It is also this tight fit which allows them to last longer as the parts will not wear unevenly.

    Given that a 200 round owner test is generally recommended for a defensive handgun anyway, this recommendation allows Kahr to pass on the savings to customers of not having to do it at the factory and yet assures that their tight tolerances aren't too tight for reliable function
  7. cpirtle

    cpirtle Well-Known Member

    Nothing I can add to the Kahr discussion but..

    Have you fired or extensively handled the Micro Eagle? I held one when they first came out and just retracting the slide to make sure it was clear I scratched the web of my thumb and index finger (slide bite). I loved the ugly look of the gun and would own one by now but every time I pick one up my natural grip puts the web at least 1/8" into the slide path.

    I have large meaty hands with shorter figers, could be just me..
  8. Zerodefect

    Zerodefect Well-Known Member

    Drag your thumbnail down the outside of the Kahr P380 barrel. Feel that machined finish? It'll smooth out where it needs to after 200 rounds. My p380 ramp was allready polished when I got it.

    You could call the period where that finish is smoothing out: "Break in".

    A hammer forged barrel, like what's in a glock, comes out smooth and needs no breakin. But hammer forged barrel machinery is expensive. Really only makes sense on larger production scales than what Kahr usually does.

    My p380 likes hotter Corbon Powerball. Don't fret if yours gets a little cranky on plinking ammo like WWB. Mines been 100% on Corbon defensive ammo.

    Take a close look at the magazine base plate. If it hits the frame bottom you can trim the base plate a little for better clearance, more sure reloading.

    I carry mine in a Crossbreed Minituck IWB.
  9. kokapelli

    kokapelli Well-Known Member

    The Kahr is a locked breach action while the Micro is a blowback action so
    consequently the felt recoil on the Micro is much more severe.

    Another consideration is the significant difference in muzzle velocity between the two. The Kahr with it's longer barrel produces significantly higher muzzle velocity than the Micro.

    I have a Micro Desert Eagle and it is a very nicely built pistol and has been totally reliable with everything I have shot in it, but be warned the Micro is a punishing gun to shoot.
  10. verdun59

    verdun59 Well-Known Member

    Let me jump in, I had a Micro and it was brutal to practice with. As mentioned above it is a blowback design and it just reinforced with me why I dislike blowbacks. The Micro is well made but had some sharp edges around the trigger guard which had to be sanded down to make it comfortable ( and I use that term loosely). I had some FTF on some ammo, Independence, I believe. IMHO it is a nasty shooter which translates to less practice. Long story shot, it got traded and I subsequently got a Kahr P380. All the difference in night and day, I could practice all day and not suffer the punishment of the Micro. Don't be put off by break-in talk, the P380 is well made, has a great trigger, really will fit in your pocket, and is a soft shooter. I think it the best small 380 out there but I haven't tried the new Sig. Good luck....
  11. amygdala

    amygdala Member

    Why desert eagle?

    What would draw you to a desert eagle? Seems like a nasty gun with
    no redeeming properties.
  12. Paulgibs

    Paulgibs Active Member

    I pocket carry the Kahr P380 (when wardrobe does not permit the PM9). Both Kahrs required the full break in period. In my opinion, the P380 is a pleasure to shoot and practice is fun. This is an extremely reliable, accurate and comfortable gun. I'm keeping it forever.

    My wife carries and loves her Micro Desert Eagle. She is both comfortable and accurate with it, but she admits that it imposes a handful of recoil. I really don't enjoy shooting it for that reason. But I cannot recall a single problem with FTF or FTE. In our experience, there was practically no break in period for the MDE. It was good to go right out of the box.

    I hope you get a chance to shoot both before making a decision. My vote would be for the P380. Cyndy would still go with the Micro Eagle.
  13. wally

    wally Well-Known Member

    We've a pair of S&W Bodyguard 380 pistols both have been 100% out of the box, even with Wolf steel cased ammo. The Kahr 380 cost more that the Bodyguard and lacks the built in laser. Add in the cost of 200 rounds of 380 ammo for "break-in" and its down right ridiculous!

    S&W sets the standard for customer service.
  14. shootingthebreeze

    shootingthebreeze Well-Known Member

    Thank you, Verdun, and all for your input. I'm leaning more towards the Kahr P380. The grip actually is more comfortable, and it is a nice firearm and a lot lighter than the Micro. The Micro is well built, don't get me wrong I like its quality. I'm surprised that it kicks so much based on comments because it is a heavier firearm.
  15. kokapelli

    kokapelli Well-Known Member

    Any pistol that uses a"Blowback" action like the NAA, Micro Desert Eagle and the Seecamp are going to have significantly more felt recoil than a pistol with locked breach action.

    Here are Velocities from the more popular 380 pistols from Gunblast's chrono test.

    Cor Bon DPX 80 gr bullet.

    Micro Desert Eagle---854


    S&W Body Guard----1042

    Kahr P380-------------974

    Taurus TCP----------1033

    Sig P238--------------950
  16. shootingthebreeze

    shootingthebreeze Well-Known Member

    Yes, you trade off velocity with the Micro due to its short barrel. That's something to consider seriously. That would pretty much narrow the bullet to FMJ for maximum penetration with the Micro.

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