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I was getting the Bersa Thunder 380 itch then today I stopped at Walmart and checked ammo price....

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by saturno_v, Dec 3, 2017.

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  1. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    Alte Schule

    Have been thinking about getting a Bersa Thunder Plus .380 to take the place of my long departed Beretta Model 84. Agree with your observation that the Bersa Thunder .22s would make for a great little plinker but seem to be very hard to come by.
     
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  2. saturno_v

    saturno_v Member

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    The Bersa Thunder pistols are "pot metal" only in your imagination. They are steel (barrel and slide) and aluminum alloy for the frame. They are absolutely great guns for the money and then some.
     
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  3. gsbuickman

    gsbuickman Member

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    You'll like the Bersa Thunder plus, I miss the Thunder plus that I wound up selling a while back. I went on the hunt for another one but didn't have any luck and wound up buying the two tone Thunder that I have now
     
  4. Alte Schule

    Alte Schule Member

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    I looked into buying a plus model a couple of years ago and then forgot about it when I couldn't find one locally. Completely flew off my radar. Probably will be on the hunt for one after the holidays. What's not to like about a double stack .380?
     
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  5. Hokkmike

    Hokkmike Member

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    No sir, not in my imagination. Read all of the reviews on this pistol.

    Here is but one of many on the subject. This from Firing Lines Forum...

    "I purchased the gun on Monday and fired it for the first time today. I put 100 rounds through it and as much as I hate to say it, I'm not so sure about my purchase. At the back of the chamber over the trigger link there is already a chunk of metal broken out of it. The end of the barrel is worn and looks like it has been scraped against concrete. And about every 4 out of 13 rounds jammed. There is a corner of the chamber side of the barrel that is bent. I'm taking it back to the dealer first thing tomorrow to see what the heck is going on. I bought it for 415 because of high demand where I live. For another couple hundred I could've had a Springfield .45. I'm definitely semi-regretting my decision. If anyone could put my mind more at ease I would appreciate it. I only own revolvers up until this week and I am clueless."
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2017
  6. bnolsen

    bnolsen Member

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    I think you'll see stuff like this all the time about pistols. There are lemons. But this certainly doesn't describe the bersa 380 that I have. Take everything with a grain of salt.
     
  7. Hokkmike

    Hokkmike Member

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    Gotcha...good point. Thing is - I have read too many of these stories and studied a professional reviewers claims to poor construction practices/materials. So, if I pull a trigger and the thing is going boom in the proximity of my head I want to make sure it is safe. So let's just say, as the expression goes - "with guns and tires" (things that my life relies on) that I err on the side of caution. I really do not wish to continue to bash Bersa here. I just wanted to share the information that I came upon, being dismayed as well upon hearing it, and share it with the group. Thanks all.......
     
  8. bangbang01

    bangbang01 Member

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    Lots of people own a 380, but they're typically not a range guns that people shoot tons of cheap ammo through, as the majority of 380's these days are pocket guns. It is for this reason that a store such as Walmart probably sells 5 times the amount of 45 as they do 380 despite the fact that just as many people probably own a 380 as a 45 these days.

    Walmart used to carry the perfecta brand which sold for $11 bucks a box in my neck of the woods. Now the cheapest thing they got is Tula at $14 a box. I've seen steel cased 9mm as low as $6 a box when it's in.
     
  9. bangbang01

    bangbang01 Member

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    While the PPK is of much higher quality, I have to agree that the Bersa is a better shooter. It's also far more reliable and less ammo picky from what I've been told by people that have owned both.
     
  10. JimKirk

    JimKirk Member

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    I own several .380 small pistols ... and the Bersa is the most accurate of any of the them! I agree the Bersa is not as fine finished as some of the others, but I would also say that "Pot Metal" is a far stretch of words ... mine has over 500+ rounds though it with not one FTFeed or FTFire ... this is with several brands of ammo and several different reloads. It also has one of the nicest triggers also ...

    I also know that there are problems with most any brands of guns ... there are lemons made every day ... Maybe I was just Lucky and got a great one ...

    My wife carries the Bersa and I would hate to be on the other end of it ... she shoots it very well !!
     
  11. saturno_v

    saturno_v Member

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    You used a very specific term "pot metal" which is definitely not what Bersa Pistols are made of...lemons can happen and probably 20 years ago Bersa quality was not what it is today. Currently the only aspect where the Bersas are not very good (they are good but not stellar) is finishing.
    The positive stories about Bersa outweigh by far the negative ones, again the lemon can happen with a SIG too.
     
  12. Hokkmike

    Hokkmike Member

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    You are correct. I should have used another term. I borrowed it from a gun writer who explained why he would never buy one of these.
     
  13. MedWheeler

    MedWheeler Member

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    I would not put much credence in anything written by a purported "gun writer" who doesn't know what "pot metal" is with regards to firearms manufacture. I wonder what his other reasons were, since he got that one wrong.
     
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  14. Tallball

    Tallball Member

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    "If you want a really nice fun to shoot 380, get a Colt Government 380..."

    That's my favorite. My Russian commercial Makarov, Beretta 85, and CZ83 are also excellent. The latter two are also easily available as military surplus for rock-bottom prices - less than a new Bersa.
     
  15. saturno_v

    saturno_v Member

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    Exactly...that is a huge mistake....
     
  16. Delford

    Delford Member

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    I wish my friend had a better experience with Bersa. I know many work properly. His 2 yr old Thunder has been at the Bersa Gunsmith in Ohio for a year. Thanks to forum suggestions a fix may be able to be done. Forgive the first shooters poor safety. He knows better and usually doesn't keep his finger on the bang switch.

     
  17. WVsig

    WVsig Member

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    The cost of 380 auto is simple supple and demand economics. With the growth of concealed carry there was a huge growth in the pocket carry small format concealed carry gun market. Most of these guns were chambered in 380 auto. People paid whatever the manufacturers asked for the ammo to feed their guns. This along with raw material cost and 2 simultaneously wars caused ammo prices across the board to rise. The 380 market proved they would pay $15 for a box of 50 rounds so why would the ammo manufacturers lower the price.

    To the OP and the quality of the Bersa they are ok guns. For the money if you get one that runs you have a good gun that will outlast you but if you get a lemon then you have bought yourself a lifelong headache. I owned one when they could still be had for under $200. I think I paid about $169 for the tutone I used to own. At that price it was OK at todays prices there are better 380 auto options IMHO.
     
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  18. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

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    The double stack Thunder Plus would be great. Strangely enough, I have never seen one in person. The .22 LR Bersa, I've actually seen in store inventories once in a great while.

    I wonder if anyone here at THR has the Thunder Plus?
     
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  19. saturno_v

    saturno_v Member

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    Bersa customer service is excellent, if you get a lemon they will make it right.
    My full size Thunder 40 was $320 (new) in 2006 and in accuracy ed ergonomics I put it against my S&W, Beretta and SIG. It runs absolutely great and it is a joy to shoot....among my full size pistols, is my favorite for Carry piece.
     
  20. ttarp

    ttarp Member

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    I do! Sorry, its not for sale. Other than the wider frame for the double stack magazine, the only other noticeable difference is the magazine button was moved down by the trigger guard.
     
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  21. Hokkmike

    Hokkmike Member

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    He was making a point, not being literal! I'll try to find the article for you. It was in a review of .380's.
     
  22. Alte Schule

    Alte Schule Member

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    Went to my go to LGS yesterday to see if they could order me a Thunder in .22 LR or the Thunder Plus double stack. None of their distributors had one in stock. Manager said he would keep looking every couple of days and give me a holler if he came across any. Quoted me a price of $265 for the .22 and $325 for the Thunder Plus which I believe to be fair.
    Houston Gun Collectors Association has a show the last weekend of next month at NRG. May wander down there and take a look see.
     
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  23. jonb32248

    jonb32248 Member

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    I bought a Walther PPK/S .22 cal for my wife the other day and wow what a nice gun. It's in nickel finnish and it's something she can handle due to pains in her shooting hand. Don't think you'll get for what I was able to get it. Black Friday deal I guess, $277., normally $407. Did someone say steal? From Buds Gun Shop.
     
  24. jonb32248

    jonb32248 Member

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    that's enough for me, don't want one.
     
  25. Hasaf

    Hasaf Member

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    I have both, a .380 Colt Government Modal and a Russian Makarov in 9x18. Of the two, the Makarov is more accurate; however, the Colt is significantly smaller and lighter. They are so different that it would be hard to compare them. That being said, Yes, the Colt is a very pleasant and enjoyable gun to shoot.

    Back to the thread topic. Yes, .380 ACP can be expensive; but it doesn't have to be. Keep an eye on the various discount ammo finders and you can find .380 cheap enough that it will make you question the value of reloading it.

    All the same, save your brass, you may decide to reload it if the ammo price ever goes back up.
     
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