S&W PPK(/S) in my future

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Dangerman009, Oct 15, 2009.

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  1. Dangerman009

    Dangerman009 Member

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    Hello everyone,

    I've been pestered by a "problem" for a couple years now. At this point I have two handguns, a revolver and an autoloader. Both are very nice, reliable, accurate, etc. The problem is, I don't get excited when I look at them, handle them or shoot them.

    You see, just over two years ago I bought myself a new watch. Other people might think "ehh" about it, but I REALLY like it. It fits my style, I wear it everywhere (except for heavy yard work), and I like to look at it. I have other watches, but none I like as well as this one. In fact, I've thought of getting rid of all the others and just keeping this one. That's what I'd like from a handgun.

    At this point in time I don't have the desire or the space for more of a collection than I have. So, I'd rather have one that I REALLY like rather than two that are "ehh" to me.

    This brings me to the PPK(/S) (refers to both the PPK & PPK/S). There are several reasons I'm hesitant to buy a PPK(/S):
    1. I bought the revolver (almost four years ago now) for the wrong reasons. Being influenced by a movie character. I want to make sure I'm not being influenced again by a movie character or a series of movies for that matter.
    2. Ammunition. Is .32 easier to get than .380? Which is there more demand for? Which is more likely to be produced? I don't want to add to the ammunition frenzy. I don't get to shoot real guns that often right now anyway. The last time I shot my autoloader (CZ75 Kadet) was in August. The time before that was the previous August. The last time I bought ammunition was in February or March 2008. The most shooting I get in is in the back yard with my bb and pellet guns.
    3. Fun. I want a gun that's fun to shoot. I've never fired a PPK(/S) so I don't know. Ideally I'd like one in .22LR, but I'm a little hesitant about getting a collectible at this point. I want a gun to handle, shoot and have fun. This would effectively eliminate any PPK(/S) that isn't in production.

    That's about it. I do have questions about the S&W PPK(/S):
    1. On the PPK/S is the front to back dimensions of the grip area the same, or are the grip panels smaller?
    2. On the blued PPK(/S) are the markings on the left side of the slide stamped/engraved or is it painted on? It's hard to tell.
    3. What do I need to look for internally, machining marks, alignment of marks, etc.?
    4. Which (PPK or PPK/S, .32 or .380) is easier to shoot/control/hurts less? I'm not worried about stopping power.
    5. If I decided to carry it, do I need stainless? I really like blued guns.
    6. Can cold blue be applied to stainless?
    7. Are the frame edges as sharp on the blued guns as they are on the stainless guns?
    8. How difficult is it to "knock" the sharp edges off the frame?
    9. If I decide to, how difficult is it to reshape the extended tang?
    10. Is S&W manufacturing the PPK(/S) again?
    11. Am I asking too many questions?

    That should do it for now. For give the long post and the side trip about the watch, I thought it would explain where I'm coming from. Please, NO S&W PPK(/S) OR CALIBER BASHING. I'd like to hear from everyone with experience, especially the enthusiasts of the S&W PPK(/S).

    Thanks
     
  2. texas bulldog

    texas bulldog Member

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    you sure you're not being influenced by old james bond movies?
     
  3. Dangerman009

    Dangerman009 Member

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    Could be, I hope not. That's one reason I'm going to sit on this decision for a while before I "pull the trigger".
     
  4. Claude Clay

    Claude Clay Member

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    unless you reload ammo for 32 & 380 is pricey, and sometimes scarce.

    pretty ain't they?
    works of art??

    unless you get the 1 in 4 that runs proper, it will slowly, with each trip to the shop--lose its luster.

    if you can afford to have many guns than your perspective may be different than the person who has a few and wants them all to be always dependable.
    good luck.
     
  5. Schofield3

    Schofield3 Member

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    You could always get the PPK bb gun for about $60 :D - Extremely affordable to shoot

    walther-ppks-kit.jpg

    and since you're not worried about stopping power....
     
  6. Dangerman009

    Dangerman009 Member

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    I was thinking about getting one of those too. If I just got that, I think sooner or later I'd want the real thing.
     
  7. Schofield3

    Schofield3 Member

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    Yep, I have one of these I picked up at a Big5; and same thing I would like to own the actual PPK, but the ammo they feed from is a major turn off...
     
  8. obiwan1

    obiwan1 Member

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    If you're looking for purely a practical CCW, I'd go for a 9mm - not a .380 or .32. It's a better stopper and CHEAPER TO PRACTICE with! I'd look for a Kahr K9. Approx the same size as the PPK. If you MUST have a PPK because of the mystique then go for it. Remember that they can be finicky (mine requires hot ammo or it stovepipes - I didn't change the recoil spring).
     
  9. benderx4

    benderx4 Member

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    Good luck finding 380 ammo. Gander Mountain had everything in stock today ..... except 380.
    Also, hopefully you don't have big, fleshy hands because the PPK is famous for ripping off chunks from the area between your thumb and index finger. Sexy gun though.

    One more thing, even my little NAA Guardian 380 (simple blowback) was easier to shoot than that little PPK. In short, it was a total b*tch to shoot. I don't expect BUGs to be enjoyable at the range, but that PPK was a total bear to shoot - very rough on your hands and trigger finger. Real nice to look at though.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2009
  10. searcher451

    searcher451 Member

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    I've carried a S&W-made PPK/S for the past three years. The gun is as reliable as any PPK/S that I've carried through the years: German-made, French-made, or Interarms/Ranger-made. I have always found the PPK to be a perfect fit for my hand and eye; it is dependable, easy to conceal, and as accurate as my aim allows. I have not sent it back to S&W for the current recall because of the butchery that is currently going on in Houlten these days; I also can't induce the gun to fail, despite numerous attempts to do so, and am not concerned about it as a result. I've also found that the .380 supply is loosening up, at least in my neck of the woods. Two gun shops I frequent currently have more than adequate stocks on hand -- a far cry from the situation we faced in the summer.
     
  11. 38snapcaps

    38snapcaps Member

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    I owned a Stainless PPK/S for a whole month. It sure was a beauty but to shoot it was Very unpleasant! Mine was a .380 and the recoil was one of the worst of any small gun I've fired. The sharp edges on the back of the grip were digging into my skin and leaving parallel cut marks. I didn't experience the slide cutting me tho, I have thin hands. I think I went thru two boxes of ammo and couldn't stand it any more.

    I wanted to keep it but then it started misfiring, as in- pull the trigger and nothing happens. That was the final straw.
     
  12. 6x6pinz

    6x6pinz Member

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    I have the ppk/s in 380 and 22lr (looking for a 32). While the ppk/s in 22lr is definitely fun to shoot it is no target pistol. It all depends on what you intend to do with it. If you want to go knock cans around at a relatively short distance it will serve you well. I like my 380 version and carry it often.
    If you like the style of the ppk/s but don't want to drop the cash there are many options. The FEG22lr Mark II has proven to be very reliable and no where near the cost of a 22lr ppk/s.
     
  13. Dangerman009

    Dangerman009 Member

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    Depends on what your definition of short distances is, but that's my favorite type of shooting.

    My reservations about the .22lr versions are:
    1. The price/collectible factor
    2. Availability of magazines
    3. Spare parts

    Right now, I don't want a collectible. Not that I'm going to tie it to a cord, toss it out the window of a bus and drag it down the road. I just don't want a gun I feel I need to baby.

    Are the frame edges of the blued versions as sharp as the stainless ones? Is .32 less as plentiful and less expensive as .380?
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2009
  14. JHK94

    JHK94 Member

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    If you like the style, but want something cheaper that shoots ammo similar to .380 (but is a lot cheaper), you might want to look into a surplus Polish P64, chambered in 9x18 Makarov. I really like mine, which I carry a lot, and shoot better than any of my other handguns. However, they have their problems as well. While super reliable, the trigger pull is kind of heavy unless you change the springs (which is easy).


    EDIT: also, the recoil is pretty intense, and isn't the best gun for putting several hundred rounds through at a time.


    http://www.p64resource.com/
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2009
  15. Dangerman009

    Dangerman009 Member

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    Thanks for the suggestion, looks interesting.:scrutiny: I appreciate it, but I'm really only interested in information about the S&W PPK(/S) line.:)

    That's a problem. I don't know about several hundred rounds at a time, but if I did, I know if I wouldn't want my hand reminding me about it for a week or more afterward.;)
     
  16. MedWheeler

    MedWheeler Member

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    I had one by Interarms, and liked it as an OD/BU gun. It shot well, but it was not enjoyable to shoot by any means. I let it go during some tough times, and many years later got a Bersa Thunder. Similar in styling, much more comfortable to shoot, comes with a slide-lock, and about 60 percent of the price. It is a little bigger than the PPK/S, though, but you get an extra round to go with that size.
     
  17. NMGonzo

    NMGonzo Member

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    The Bersa would be an option.

    Is the bastard child of a PPK and a Beretta.
     
  18. HisSoldier

    HisSoldier Member

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    My S&W PPK/S go to the range often, and is still beautiful. One does want to learn to hold it a bit high in the hand or the bottom of the slide will bite. Very accurate little gun.
    Llama2007.jpg
     
  19. MICHAEL T

    MICHAEL T Member

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    I have a Interarms PPK/S carried for years Been a reliable pistol I my self can't stand that tang on the S&W S&W have modified a few internal parts from older Interarms and German guns In other words cheapened it out Hence the recall. I also dis like the laser printing My self I wouldn't walk across the street for a S&W PPK'S if was free
    Also cold blue doesn't work on stainless A gun smith can fix the sharp edges in a few min. Or you can pack some shaving cream for the quick shave before your next mission.
     
  20. mm6mm6

    mm6mm6 Member

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    I'm a big Walther fan. Have been since seeing my first James Bond movie way back when. The Walther PPK fits my hand like a glove. When I became a police officer, I bought a stainless steel Interarms .380 as my back up/off duty weapon.

    The Walther PP came out in 1929. The PPK came out in 1931. The PPK has a shorter barrel & slide. It also has a shorter grip (PP holds 7 rounds of .380, the PPK holds 6). In addition to the shorter grip, the PPK has wrap around plastic grips. The PP has a steel backstrap and two grip panels that screw on to each side. The PPK eliminates the steel backstrap which saves a considerable amount of weight.

    The Gun Control act of 1968 created a points system for importation of small firearms. The PPK did not pass the system so it could no longer be imported into the US. Walther then created the PPK/S (for Special). They took a PPK barrel/slide and mated it to the bigger, heavier PP frame. That's how we got the PPK/S.

    When Interarms began production of their licensed Carl Walther guns here in the US (at the Ranger plant in Alabama), they could make the PPK again since it was not being imported, but made here.

    I have always preferred the PPK grip to the PP or PPK/S. I have never understood why anyone would want a PPK/S over a PPK if they were going to use it for concealment.

    I just bought 100 rounds of Reminton .380 ball ammo at Wal-Mart for $31.97 and I don't think that's unreasonable. I also bought Hornady's excellent new Critical Defense .380 ammo for $25 (for 25 rounds) at Bass Pro Shops. It's excellent self protection in .380 caliber.

    .380 ammo has been scarce because of all the Ruger LCP, Sig P238, Taurus, Magnum Research, and Walthers that are selling like hot cakes with all of the Concealed Carry States. Many people got their CCW and carried the guns they already had. Then, after a few months, they get tired of carrying a big and heavy gun and look for a smaller .380...so they then need .380 ammo.

    There are many who love their S&W PPK pistols. I would not hesitate to buy one new since they have a good warranty.

    However, the Interarms pistols have an excellent reputation for reliability. Mine was carried for 20 years and I qualified with it once a year at least and it's never jammed on me.

    I retired my PPK when I bought a Ruger LCP for even deeper concealment. I totally understand why you would want a Walther and I don't blame you at all. For the reasons you mentioned your watch, I feel the Walther PPK is just like a fine watch. It can be appreciated for its engineering and design execution.

    You may wish to look into an Interarms or pre-War Walther. The pre-War PP and PPK pistols will never lose their value. They will only climb as an investment. Whichever you choose, you will like the gun.

    Good luck!

    This is my pre-WWII Walther PPK .32:

    WaltherPPK32003.jpg

    This is my West German 1966 Walther PPK .380:

    WaltherPPK004.jpg

    This is my 1967 Walther PP Sport .22 target pistol:

    Walther008.jpg

    This is my 1988 Interarms Walther PPK .380 after I retired it and treated it to 75% coverage American Scroll by Michael Gouse ( www.mtart.com ):

    WaltherCamilllus003.jpg

    On the subject of watches, here is my Colt 1908 Vest Pocket Hammerless .25 with my wife's old Doxa:

    GW008.jpg

    ...and my S&W Model 40-1 with my Doxa Automatic dress watch, a pair made for a Saturday night on the town:

    Doxa002.jpg

    My Colt Combat Elite with my Doxa SUB300T Professional:

    ColtDoxa009.jpg


    -Steve
     
  21. Dangerman009

    Dangerman009 Member

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    Beautiful Guns and Watches!

    Steve,

    Beautiful guns and watches!:D I especially like the 1966 West German PPK and the stainless engraved (beautiful) PPK. Do I sense DOXA fans? My watch is not as exotic as a DOXA, but I like it.

    Seiko.jpg

    Seiko SKX173. It's just fits my style. I saw a vintage Seiko diver on ebay and really liked it. Instead of getting a true vintage one (watch folks would say the older ones are made better, and maybe they are), at that point I didn't want to mess with a watch that had an unknown-to-me past and a collectible status (if it's collectible I'd be hesitant about wearing it). That's why I decided on this one. It had the looks, it was new and the price was right.

    The situation with the S&W PPK(/S) is it's parallel. While one of the older guns would be wonderful, I want a shooter that I won't be going, "Oh no! Another scratch! Where did that come from?! Why did this happen to me!!??!!:banghead:" You see, that's the situation I want to avoid.
     
  22. Dangerman009

    Dangerman009 Member

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    Since I didn't get an answer before, I'll ask again. Does anyone know if the frame edges on the blued S&W PPK(/S) pistols are as sharp as on the stainless pistols?
     
  23. KBintheSLC

    KBintheSLC Member

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    I wish I had better answers to your questions, but I don't. You see, I only had my S&W PPK/S .380 for about 2 months before I gave up on it. It was the worst auto I have ever owned. Sexy as it was, I wouldn't trust my life to one. If only looks could kill...

    Perhaps I might have had better luck going with a vintage original rather than a S&W or Interarms version. I traded it back after trying many things to get it reliable enough to carry. It was poorly machined, misaligned, and generally sloppy. All I can say is be very careful when shopping for a brand new PPK/S.
     
  24. Dangerman009

    Dangerman009 Member

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    Is S&W shipping the PPK(/S) again? My local dealer isn't able to locate any. Does anyone here know of any good deals?
     
  25. gringolet

    gringolet Member

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    if choosing between ppk and ppk/s go with ppk,, the ppk/s is hard on hand...
    and gains you little over the shorter grip version with a finger rest magazine.
    I prefer the older Interarms models to the S&W..and recommend if you want it for defensive carry ship to Cylinder & Slide for the throating and reliability work and
    be happy.
     
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