What is the lightest moderately priced .380 ACP you would trust fo SD ?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Gun Master, Mar 4, 2017.

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  1. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    Wrong
    The lcp is an affordable lightweight piece.
    Like it or not.
     
  2. SC Shooter

    SC Shooter Member

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    Although I don't have one, the Sig P238 comes highly recommended. As I do own a Sig P938, which I really enjoy, I would certainly be comfortable with the P238
     
  3. JohnBiltz

    JohnBiltz Member

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    So you go to the range and put a couple of hundred rounds through it all the time?
     
  4. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    Oh sorry, I didn't realize he was asking for suggestions for a range gun to shoot hundreds of rounds when he said:

    But I do own, carry, and shoot weekly a Ruger LCP that is lightweight[lightweight] and cost only $209[affordable].

    BTW. This is my last post on the matter.
     
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  5. entropy

    entropy Member

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    As long as you can rack them, the two you already have are better choices. The weight of the 1908 makes the recoil tolerable, though it is a long gun to carry. I had one for a while, and had no qualms with carrying it, as well as the CZ24 I had. I've shot a few Bersas, recoil is a liitle more, but they are far easier to shoot than, say, an LCP or P3AT. I think your best bet is carry the CZ-82.
     
  6. Armybrat

    Armybrat Member

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    Thanks. That Remington belonged to my wife's grandfather - he was a prominent builder in Taylor, Texas from about 1905 until the early '50s. He started carrying it sometime in the early 1920s - hence there is no finish left on the slide.
     
  7. Sauer Grapes

    Sauer Grapes Member

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    What he said ^^^^^^^ I bought it for the wife. Like the fact it actually has real sights on it. I wouldn't hesitate to carry the G42. The only time I carry it, is usually as a back up in a ankle holster.
     
  8. Zonamo

    Zonamo Member

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    A little more expensive and out of production, but you may want to see if you can find a Beretta 86 Cheetah. The main benefit for someone struggling with arthritic hands is that it has a tip-up barrel so racking the slide is not required. And while it is blowback, the large steel frame absorbs a lot of the recoil. It's actually the largest tip-up barrel pistol made.

    The LCP is as light a spring as you are going to find at 9 lbs but can be harsh to shoot. The Kimber Micro .380 is the lightest factory weight spring of the Mustang/Micro/P238 lookalikes at 8 lbs, but is a bit pricier than the other two. It will be softer to shoot than the LCP.

    Another option might be to switch from a gun that requires racking a slide to a double action only revolver with a tuned trigger. Should be able to get it down to 7 lbs. and still be reliable.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2017
  9. ritepath

    ritepath Member

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    LCP every time....
     
  10. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    The least expensive .380 I would trust, the Kel-Tec P3-AT.

    The nicest but not inexpensive, the Sig P238 hands down.
     
  11. Acera

    Acera Member

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    If for some reason I could not carry my Rohrbaugh, I would carry my RM380. Same size, same holster, same basic feel, etc.
    (That is if I could get it back from the family member who has absconded with it :p) We went to one of the ladies nights at a local range where they were letting the women shoot a variety of small handguns for free, the Remington beat out the Ruger, Kimber and the Sig for her. Those were the only ones we shot.

    .
     
  12. cc-hangfire

    cc-hangfire Member

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    I have been on a quest to find two handguns - one for home & one for carry - for my wife who is a small women, mid 50's, with lower hand strength. Racking the slide, recoil & hand size are her issues; that may not translate to the OP's issues with arthritis, but I'll pass along what I've found.

    From the favorites to the also-rans that we have tried:
    -Walther PK380 - she likes it best despite my reservations; it has its faults; easiest slide rack.
    -Glock 42 - easy to shoot, not so easy to rack the slide -- a G43 in 9mm should be similar since the polymer frames flex to reduce felt recoil.
    -SIG P238 - cock the hammer & it's easy to rack; a sweet shooter with its SA trigger; I really like this one, but my wife will need to train with the 1911-style safety; the P938 would be the 9mm alternate
    -Walther PPK/S - fits her hand, and the recoil is snappier being a blowback
    -Remington RM380 - best of the pocket pistols with regard to recoil & racking the slide; it has its faults, but I like it
    -maybe CT380 - I have a CT9 (& CM9); it's thin yet has a longer grip than the CM9 = more comfortable to shoot; the CT380 should be similar

    Also-rans that don't make her cut:
    -CZ83 - likely too large & heavy for carry; more recoil than I'd expect due to being a blowback; I like the capacity
    - Makarov IJ70A in .380acp- also heavy for my wife; I love this gun, to me it's a sweet shooter

    I have the LCP & P3AT, & they're fine for me (cause I just like guns in general) but I imagine arthritis could make these truly painful to rack & to shoot. My 6'-3" grown up son doesn't like shooting them either.

    One last thought: I have a Kel Tec P32, & it is easy to rack & has light recoil. I seldom use it for EDC because the .380's that size are the same size & work for me. If you trust the .32acp for defense, it's an option. A higher quality .32 would be a Beretta 3032, but get the stainless/Inox model to avoid the frame cracking issues. I have a blued version, & recoil to me is more than I'd expect but it has the tip-up barrel so you never have to rack the slide (my wife didn't like it, I think it's neat).

    Hope this helps, and best of luck!
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2017
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  13. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    Have you fired one with a Hogue grip wrap? My grand-mother-in-law (if that's a thing) shoots an LCP at 87yrs old, after two surgeries to add mobility back to her hands, severely bent from a career in the typing pool.
     
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  14. GRIZ22

    GRIZ22 Member

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    I've been carrying a S&W BG 380 for a few years. It has usable sights and I shoot it about as well as a J frame. I don't know if the DA trigger will bother you.
     
  15. Tirod

    Tirod Member

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    Arthritis and hand strength are related but its not like you can test for grip strength and come up with a pain index number.

    Light weight is something that is a current fashion but what gets missed in the pursuit for extreme light weight is that it increases perceived recoil by and large. The less mass a firearm has the sharper the increase in force that is transferred to the shooter's grip. While I never cared for the recoil of an LCP the equally light Kahr CW380 shooting the same ammo feels lighter and smoother - and that is controlled by the rate of unlocking determined by the cam and ramp of the barrel.

    On top of that is how long and what weight the trigger pull is has an affect. Another reason I gave up the LCP, I wanted a pistol I could shoot at the range enough to maintain some skill and the LCP was long and hard, forcing me to adjust my grip. Not good if you actually need to use it under stress. The Kahr was shorter and lighter. So are the newer LCP models - Ruger agreed and fixed their mistake. But with the LCP II, it's now a slightly bigger and a heavier gun. If I had waited I would have wound up getting something even more similar to the Kahr. It's been out for years, but Ruger seems intent on cycling designs quickly enough that there's another new design out before we actually get the last one refined and the problems corrected.

    Yet the legions of fans won't accept or even recognize what has been repeatedly reported in the forums for quite awhile. Seems to be an echo chamber of "Buy an LCP!" in the face of Ruger stopping production. Looks like it will wind up becoming Keltec's market again - and they invented the poly .380 and marketed it long before Ruger. Yet it's rarely mentioned.

    Weight of a firearm, arthritis, and grip strength aren't unknown to me but each human is uniquely different - what one can tolerate another will find horrible. It's not easy to pick a gun with additional challenges and frankly, getting advice over the internet about it isn't the best source of how it will actually fit and shoot. You have to go handle the firearm and when possible, shoot it to learn.
     
  16. Nanook
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    Nanook Contributing Member

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    Another vote for the Bersa Thunder. Recoil is not bad at all, and I also have arthritis in my hands. My wife is under 5' tall, and she shoots it easily as well.
    You can find them used for around $200.

    If I had to carry it, I wouldn't feel unarmed. I do prefer a larger caliber, but the .380 is better than no gun. It's an accurate gun and easy to shoot well.
     
  17. webrx
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    webrx Contributing Member

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    I have both the LCP and the Army Talo version of the Sig P238, also my wife has carpal tunnel, and her carry is a p238. She was able to shoot the $200 LCP, but she loves the lower recoil and easier to see sights on the 238.

    Even with the hogue grip, and the heavier 13# spring (and steel guide rod), which helps reduce the snap, the lcp still has some snap to it and is not as easy to shoot or rack (the heavier spring does make this harder to rack) as the 238. With the stock spring I think it racks pretty easy but snaps more (YMMV). I carry my LCP more than I carry any other pistol, it is so easy to drop in a pocket with a pocket holster. Even when I carry something on my hip, I often carry it as well. The LCP is a gun I carry when nothing else can be concealed it hides that well in a pocket or IWB.

    I have several Rugers, more than any other brand of firearm, but for someone with CT or Arthritis, I would recommend the 238 all day over the LCP. That said, her 238 was $600 new in box and mine was $500 used. The extended magazine was $42. My LCP cost me $200 out the door.

    Oh, and BTW, when I go to the range, I shoot a minimum of 1 box of ammo through each of my carry guns, LC9s, LCP, P238, LCRX. of all of these the p238 is the easiest to get through a box with. YMMV

    d
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2017
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  18. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    There are thinner grips for the CZ-82. I have some wooden grips which made my 82 easier to conceal.

    Gun Master: have you tried the .380 Russian Makarov?
    Russia produced many of these in .380 Auto (and many in 9x18) for their commercial export markets. My Maks are the .380 Russian plus the 9x18 Bulgys and EGs.

    There's always an expert out there who proclaims that "No Makarovs were chambered in .380...".
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2017
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  19. Tallball

    Tallball Member

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    LoL. I have a Russian commercial Makarov in 380 also. So much for the experts. I got it NIB for $89 in the late 80's. It is rock-solid dependable.
     
  20. Gun Master

    Gun Master Member

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    I like all the Mak pistols (except FEG).
    An original Makarov would be nice, but at my age, I am torn between, buy ONE more, or begin eliminating them so that my wife won't have to have an extra burden, of disposing them from the estate after I'm gone.

    I have the P-64 and CZ-82. The high end and the low end (weight, rounds, accuracy, recoil, concealability, etc.), so I figure I'm covered.
     
  21. Rex B

    Rex B Member

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    Walther PK380 is lightweight, easy to rack, shoots soft, is accurate, and sells new for $361 at Bud's I have seen them cheaper at gun shows
     
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  22. kokapelli

    kokapelli Member

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    How do you de-cock the Walther?
     
  23. camper

    camper Member

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    Have a lot of 380s, but always end up carrying the G-42. Also have arthritic hands.
     
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  24. C0untZer0

    C0untZer0 Member

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    I got an RM380 too. I don't really have a good base to compare it too since my basis for comparison is the R9.

    But I have bee shooting the heck out that little pistol and and I like it !
     
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  25. C0untZer0

    C0untZer0 Member

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    Actually its kind of a pet peeve of mine that holster manufacturers are just re-branding their R9 holsters as RM380. Remington added a bit of a beaver tail to the RM380 and when I see side by side pictures of back pocket holsters / wallet holsters, I see the the rear of the R9 is covered by the leather backing, and the RM380 sticks out.

    R9 RM380.jpg


    But anyway the reason I got the RM380 is because it is so close to the R9. I think it makes a great BUG if the R9 is your primary. The R9 is my primary...
     
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