New production, moderized Walther P38s

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Starbuck440, Aug 25, 2015.

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  1. Starbuck440

    Starbuck440 Member

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    I wish Walther would bring back their P-38. All they would have to do is modernize it. Imagine a P-38 offered in 9mm .357 SIG and .40 SW in a full-size or compact models. Night sights, a rail optional, and double stacked mags.

    I believe this pistol would put Walther in direct competition with SIG and Beretta. They are so slender with a decocker; it would be a breeze to CC. Plus its a heavy pistol, it would handle recoil well, and many people prefer steel pistols over polymer.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. bdrift10

    bdrift10 Member

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    Walther P4 / P38K?
     
  3. Antihero

    Antihero Member

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    "Heavy" and "cc" rarely mix
     
  4. Starbuck440

    Starbuck440 Member

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    Something more modern. Something that could win LE contracts. The only thing that seems to hold it back is mag capacity. The weapon's inner workings are modern enough to compete with SIG and Glock; and in some ways superior to some contemporary hammer fired weapons. If Walther was able to increase capacity, add night sights, and add push-button mag release and a rail; it would be a formidable competitor in the market
     
  5. Starbuck440

    Starbuck440 Member

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    Folks pack the good ole 1911 as cc; it's big and heavy, and a much larger profile than a P38.
     
  6. Schlegel

    Schlegel Member

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    I would be shocked if Walther ever makes a new all metal gun again. BTW, they did make a modernized p-38. The P5. But it's a single stack.
     
  7. bdrift10

    bdrift10 Member

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    Wouldn't the Beretta 92 be considered "like a modernized P38"?
     
  8. Grunt

    Grunt Member

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    Yup, the discontinued P5 was the "modern" P38. I too doubt they will make them again. It's a good enough pistol especially considering it's age as well as made an excellent villains gun in the 60s and 70s movies! :) I like mine well enough but the design does have some quirks. Can't adjust the rear sight and windage adjustments are made on the front which is odd. Another odd feature is the leftward ejection pattern. Also, the heel catch magazine release is a turn off for most American shooters.
     
  9. Starbuck440

    Starbuck440 Member

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    I'm surprised some of those quirks didn't catch on. The barrel hanging out of the frame reduces the size of a pistol, without compromising barrel length. It ejects to the left for whatever reason, but on a pistol that doesn't really matter.
     
  10. Panzerschwein

    Panzerschwein member

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    Why not just bring back the true P38?

    I think that would sell better. Go the whole nine yards, even make some bakelite grips to go with it, also some black grips as an option.

    I think trying to add all those modern things to the P38 is a bit goofy, the gun would see better as a reintroduced throwback retro pistol. I certainly would be interested.
     
  11. Ed Ames

    Ed Ames Member

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    Convince someone in the Philippines to make them in a parkerized finish for around $400-$500 and they would sell quite well, I would guess.
     
  12. Starbuck440

    Starbuck440 Member

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    No doubt they would sell. Walther has to know that too. The PPk sells well enough.
     
  13. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator Emeritus

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    The models I've shot were sure not much fun. The P1 version I played with last had a trigger pull that seemed to suggest you were supposed to use two fingers, or maybe your foot. I'm sure that would be fixable, but a lot of the other negatives (heel mag catch, slide mounted decocker, general dated/jagged form, weight) would probably really not make it worth the effort for all that redesign. They've already got their lines busy making modern designs that are selling modestly well and re-tooling to make a more antiquated gun would be a hard sell from a business perspective.

    Like a lot of re-issues of famous vintage designs, the costs to design and tool up and start producing them are hard to recoup from the fairly limited pool of serious potential buyers. Sure "everybody" wants one, but when it comes time to buy, only 1 in 100 of that "everybody" actually parts with the cash. And the few folks willing to buy one, mostly want an original and/or are looking for a deal on a used/surplus gun.
     
  14. HammsBeer

    HammsBeer Member

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    If Sig is reintroducing the P225 with some minor tweaks, then I don't see why the P38 couldn't be reintroduced. I for one think the P38 has beautiful lines, I just haven't learned enough about them to pick a good one yet.
     
  15. DPris

    DPris Member Emeritus

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    Comparing the P-38 with its quirks & warts to the 225 is not realistic.
    The 225 is a much better defensive pistol.

    Not enough market to keep the last of the commercial alloy-framed P-38s going when discontinued, wouldn't be now.
    And I say that as the owner of one.
    Denis
     
  16. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    I don't think there would be as much interest in an updated tactical version of the P38/P1 as there would be if Walther made a re-issue of the original pistol. Never have been a big fan of the DA trigger on the P38 (and I have had enough of them to confirm that); still I like the overall design and consider it to be a classic from a bygone era.

    068_zpst2tsmsuk.gif
     
  17. HexHead

    HexHead Member

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    Especially a 92 Compact.
     
  18. RON in PA

    RON in PA Member

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    Don't expect it to happen, the market isn't there. Folks want a hi-capacity handgun nowadays and preferably a striker fired gun with a polymer frame. Change happens, even in the conservative world of guns. Frankly, while my 1980s P1 is interesting, it isn't a PPQ (a superior pistol IMHO). Why do we have all those P1s, because the German military went to a more modern hi-cap.
     
  19. Starbuck440

    Starbuck440 Member

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    As far as a marketing standpoint goes, police departments seem to be either SIG or Glock departments. Far more departments use the P226 and P229 than the P99, so there is still a market for all metal pistols. The P38's profile is much smaller than a P226 and a Beretta 92 because of the exposed barrel design. If Walther could only increase the mag size, they could pack a lot of pistol in a smaller area than competing sellers without affecting accuracy by shortening the barrel. Maybe the P38 being modernized is not the answer, but the exposed barrel design is something to look into in the future.
     
  20. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator Emeritus

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    Perhaps, but I don't think history is showing that the bulk of the side and dust-cover of an auto is a place that needs slimming down. Of all the places on a gun which might be bulky or protrude, or add unwanted weight, out at the end of the barrel really isn't it.
     
  21. Starbuck440

    Starbuck440 Member

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    But, without cutting mag capacity or cutting the barrel that would affect performance somewhat, where else can a designer cut bulk other than the slide? To me it seems prudent to pack as much weapon in as small a space as possible.

    Also a redesigned P38 would stand out from its competitors. If it could be modernized, the user would have DA/SA, a good day/night loaded chamber indicator, a significantly smaller profile great ergonomics; and a well documented combat pedigree only rivaled by the 1911; and that's how they are now. Now, imagine the same pistol with a 15 round magazine, redesigned mag release, nights sights and maybe a rail attached directly to the barrel.

    Now I know folks will say, "that's the Beretta 92." The 92 a good pistol, but IMO does not point, or feel as natural as s P38 and is a bit unwieldy feeling.
     
  22. Edarnold

    Edarnold Member

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    The sad fact is, the "modern" features that make the Beretta 92 the P38s successor, are the features that make it less natural pointing and unwieldy. Unless you have large hands, a double-stack grip is never going to feel as good as as a single-stack. My first pistol was the first U.S. 9mm, the S&W model 39, and the grip for me is in the same class as the P38: just right. The M39s "modernized" successor, the double-stack model 59, is a clunky thing by comparison. Same thing with the iconic HK P7: great handling single-stack original, and the clumsy and unsuccessful double-stack M13.

    The much reviled heel magazine release works every time when you want it to: the "modern" push-button release can easily drop your magazine accidentally, exactly when you need it most. Hanging a rail off of the P38 barrel strikes me as the definition of abomination.

    Sometimes you just need to accept that something you like is as good as it's going to get, and I think the P38 is as good as it can get.
     
  23. lechiffre

    lechiffre Member

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  24. Fishbed77

    Fishbed77 Member

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    Why a new P38? It's not that hard to find solid originals in the $600 range.

    Walther already has this pistol. It's the P99AS. Except it's not steel. But neither are the SIGs or Berettas (which have an aluminum alloy frame).
     
  25. Fremmer

    Fremmer Member

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    They should make it a striker fired pistol with a 15 round mag. I'd buy one!
     
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