Skip to comments.Vanity - Question about Bersa Thunder .380 (gun porn)
Posted on 11/29/2009 6:29:41 PM PST by Jonah Hex
Time for a Sunday night gun porn vanity. Now that .380 ACP is becoming more available, I'm considering another .380 ACP semi-auto for concealed carry/range plinking. I already have a Kel Tec P3AT, but a Bersa Thunder .380 caught my eye in the local funshop the other day. An Argentinian knock-off of the PPK, it looked and felt like a quality piece for the amount (about $299).
One down-side I see is the magazine disconnect. Any input from my fellow firearms enthusiasts?
I’d rather have the Ruger LCP going for about the same price. The one I handled at the gun shop had a nice smooth trigger pull right from the factory, better than my SP101 for sure. Lightweight and compact and it’s a Ruger, they are built to last.
It’s a very reliable, fun firearm! Not as small or light as your P3AT (as you know), but will give you years of reliable service. The magazine disconnect is really not an issue; I don’t know how many times you will fire the firearm without a magazine in place. Even an empty magazine in place will allow the firearm to go bang.
Definitely a cool little gun! I’m partial to Kel Tecs (having a pair of P32s for CCW, a PF9 for colder climate CCW, a SUB 2000 for my truck/kickaround carbine, and an SU-16A for longer distance issues), but the Bersas are also great. Lower cost, very well built, reliable.
The number one murder caliber in the US is the 22LR. A 380 is plenty potent to stop an incident... I’d much rather have you throw a 380 pistol or 1911 at me than fire a 32 ACP at me, let alone a 380 ACP. Especially when you consider that it’s the same diameter and more energy than most 38 Specials (you know, the firearm used for decades to bring down millions of bad guys).
All these nattering nabobs of negativity on 380s, I ask you,if these rounds are so anemic than volunteer to stand in front one, or a 22lR, or a .17.
Interesting you should post this tonight. I’ve been researching for awhile and struggling on what hand gun to get. Made up my mind last night, tomorrow I’ll be buying a Glock 19. For me, this gun with with the proper ammunition fits my need best.
I’ve had the Bersa, the Ruger LCP and the KelTec P-3AT. All were great little pocket pistols that gave me no trouble other than the recall on the LCP, However, I sold them all to friends that made me offers hard to refuse. In their place, I picked up a KelTec PF-9 in 9mm Luger that is a relatively inexpensive, 7-shot single stack, thin and lightweight pocket rocket that is very easy to conceal. I like that gun even more than any of the .380s I had. However, IF I were to get a another .380, I personally would lean towards the Sig P238 Nitron with Rosewood grips. Its a knock-off of the old Colt Govt. 380. Thin, lightweight and easy to hide. Two big drawbacks for most folks though is the price and it is a single-action only pistol. Single action doesn’t bother me as I’ve been a Colt fan for most of my life. The price though is over $5 bills...kinda high. Nice lookin’ piece though.
I don't have a CCW permit at this time, but if I decide to get one, I see the advantages of a pocket pistol over no pistol at all.
Ran into a guy at Walmart the other night looking for .380 ammo. He had just picked up his .380 and couldn’t find ammo for it anywhere.
If you buy one locally, make sure they can get you a supply of ammo that will cover your practice for several months.
B4 u buy, at least look at the Ruger LCP. I took a chance omn the LCP and I really like it for a CCW.
And if you put one between the goblins eyes it doesn't matter what you shot it with.
Kel Tec fans like to call the Ruger LCP the Little Copied Pistol. Take an LCP and compare it to the P3AT - the resemblances are more than coincidental...;) In fact, several people have taken parts from the P3AT and they drop right in to the LCP (the hammer/sear, the trigger, barrel, guide rod, and a few others).
As the original poster already has a P3AT, I don’t think he’s in the market for Ruger’s “interpretation” of that pistol!
For the record, I’m not anti-Ruger; I love my 22/45 Mk III pistol, it’s a verified tack driver. And the 10/22 I had for years was a blast...
The blow back action give a snappy recoil that may be irritating. Certain 9MM’s can actually have less perceived recoil in a smaller package.
9mm is minimum for a gun. .380 is something you throw at a perp and run. .357 SIG is good for a boot gun.
OK - I’m not a gun guy, yet.
But, is not a .380 a slightly larger diameter than a 9mm? Isn’t a .380 = 38/100 of an inch diameter, whereas a 9mm = 9/25 = 36/100 of an inch diameter? Doesnt that make the .38 a potentially deadlier slug?
I know the size of the charge makes a big difference as well, but all else being equal, isnt the .38 bigger than a 9mm?
I’d recommend you skip the bersa. It’s an ok little gun, but there are WAY WAY better little guns on the market nowdays.
check out taurus and cz
9mm, 380, 38special, 357mag, 357sig, 38super, and 9x23winchester are all nearly identical bullet diameters.
Ruger’s new products are very nice. The LCP and also that new AR 15 that uses a more reliable gas system to avoid the problems of other AR designs. The LCP looks like a bargain. Ruger’s are built to last and reliable as anything. They will never misfire even with junk reloads.
That was one thing the gun shop employee warned me about, the LCP kicks pretty hard, because of the size and weight. But, I doubt it kicks as hard as my SP101 with full-power 357’s. That thing is brutal with both recoil and muzzle blast at that level. I keep it loaded with 38 +P’s at the house. Not nearly as nasty.
Kel Tec makes some great guns too.
I've got a 1911 in .45 and an XD subcompact in .40, but I can take the PF-9 almost anywhere, wearing almost anything.
My little pistol, loaded, weighs less than ANY UNLOADED 9mm on the market, and is smaller than my wallet. The pistol and two 10 round backup magazines makes for a very compact, lightweight CCW setup that I can wear with literally any clothes, including a pair of gym shorts (no T-shirt - in the pocket).
As the saying goes, the mouse gun in your pocket is much more effective than the hand cannon at home on your nightstand. Having a tiny, light, but potent firearm makes it so convenient to always grab and go; simply slip in a pocket just like your keys or wallet.
9mm is a firearm or pistol caliber. 20mm is the minimum for a gun.
Not everyone can carry a 9mm pistol without patterning. I have yet to find one that I can conceal without wearing a snowsuit. .380 tiny pistols work for me. Accuracy and frangible ammo do wonders.
One Bersa model holds 13 or 15 rds as opposed to the usual 7 or 8 plus.
I like the Taurus PT 145, polymer frame, 10+1 rds of .45 ACP, about $350 new, $250-$300 used.
I have a Sig model 230, a Colt Govt., a Colt M1908 and a Kel-Tec in .380, they’re all fun to shoot.
Whatever you get, practice!
I have owned three Bersa .380 pistols. The first one had an odd take down which you squeezed the front of the frame which was hinged to remove the slide. I did not like that feature tho it worked perfectly well.
In my life, I have probably owned at least 50 pocket pistols ranging from Jennings to several Walthers. I condsider he Bersas as among the best ever made by anyone.
Nothing particularly stands out about them but they work perfectly and are quite a bit more accurate than most. In fact that early one with the odd take down would basically put all shots into one large hole at around 10 yards, that is if I was really careful and used a rest.
Simply put they are great guns, especially for the money and they would be great guns even if the price were more. BTW I think I only paid $89 for my first one.
Bought a Glack 19 about a month ago, haven’t had time to go the firing range yet.
Was going to get a Beretta 92fs but the Glock was cheaper.
We don't aim - we just point and shoot. Where the red dot is - is where the bullet goes.
It's all about energy. The 9mm Luger has a more powerful charge. A .357 Magnum is a vastly more powerful round but it's a smaller bullet. The 380 is a relatively anemic round. A 38 special is better, a 9mm is better than that. A a 357 magnum is probably the best "man killer" as more powerful rounds like the 44 magnum, .460, .480 etc. over penetrate. Shot placement is very important and I wouldn't want to get hit with any of that, but with enough winter clothing a 380 or a 32 might just piss off a big guy.
Single hole accurate at 7 to 10 yards. Works for me and it fits in the front pocket of my carpenter jeans. Only thing is, when I’ve tried 7 + 1 it stovepipes on the first shot every time so I carry 6 + 1.
There was a study done of actual single-shot firearm deaths (as opposed to theoretical gelatin studies). Seems the little old 9mm was right up there with the .357 and came out even better than a .45.
Of course, accuracy of the shooters probably was the reason.
I have one of these and the reason I bought mine was because it has the dual action firing of the first round. You merely pull the trigger and it acts like a revolver. Of course it has to be chambered first but it doesn’t have the hair trigger action of a single action firing model.
Having said that, I think probably a revolver is still the best home weapon and if one wants an extremely accurate weapon the Ruger bull barrel .22 is fantastic and of course the ammo is cheap and you can fit these easily with a laser sight. The .380 ammo is expensive and hard to find. The thing that caught my eye was its small size. I believe I paid about $270 at a local gun store with two clips. And I got a box or two of ammo at the time.
It’s worth the money but not necessarily what you need. You’ll have to determine what you are going to use it for. It definitely is not for plunking tin cans on a fence rail unless you have deep pockets.
As to the 9mm guns. I once owned a 92FS Beretta and couldn’t hit the side of a barn. I wound up selling it back to the dealer. If you really, really want to stop the bad guys I can’t imagine anything more you would need than a .357 magnum. That would probably bring down an elephant. It all depends on what you need.
Of all the guns I have owned, and they have been relatively few, that Ruger .22 is by far the best I have owned. I’m a relatively lousy shot but that bugger is darned accurate and the ammo is a darned sight easier to load in the clips as well. My $0.02.
The Bursa 9mm looks very similar,is not much larger or heavier and is not much more expensive. A 380 may be OK for self defense but a 9 is a more reliable stopper.
Both the .380 and 9mm use bullets of .355 inch diameter. The .38 special uses the same .357 diameter bullets as the .357 magnum.
Great graphic, Chasaway....I really like it!!
Yep. PF9 for me on any and all of my deep conceal needs. Sometimes, I just fall back to my old Smith snub nose .38 revolver too. At the cost of self-defense (SD) litigation these days, I’d probably just walk away from a SD event where there were no witnesses and take all my empty cases (in the revolver) along with me.... ;)
PF9 is just hard to beat for an all-round conceal/pocket gun IMHO. I keep mine loaded with 125 grain Speer Gold Dots and have a Arma-laser mounted on it. Its a just a great point and shoot machine that does the job well.
P3AT = American Express card!
My last ditch carry is a Walther PPKs in stainless purchased 32 years ago. It gets fussy after you’ve run three mags through it, but Lordy is it accurate. First shot always goes exactly where I want it to. Works the same way for the missus. That all-important first shot is always the game-changer. There’s just something about that weapon’s handling that works for us - and that’s the real point of all this. Get what works for YOU. Same with knives. The Cold Steel Recon tanto handles like nothing else in my hands. It’s a knife that I can definitely fight with.
That's another one of those old sayings, "A 25 is good, if you don't have a real gun."
I have owned maybe 8 or 9 Walther pocket pistols. Most of them Model PP in .32 as they were sold very reasonably as police surplus at a time when I had plenty of money. Also a couple of American made PPks .380s in stainless. Also an American made TPh in .22LR. Also several real copies made by Manurhin in France and close copies made in Hungary.
I have also had a couple of target model PP (actually I think the call them Sports models) made by Manurhin (who most people know actually made nearly all the post war Walther PP. PPK models and shipped them to Germany where they were stamped “made in Germany).
Anyway, all every single one was accurate. I had one U.S. Made stainless .380 which would rarely jam and the TPh, also made in America was a real jammer, tho oddly when it did fire it was very accurate.
Yep, it's about the same size as my Samsung i760 phone! I can completely cover it with my hand. And it's only 2 ounces more than the cell phone. Just don't accept to have better than 10" accuracy at 10 yards, rapid fire. But considering the average man is 16" wide, it'll get the job done for most critical distances.
My pockets always contain an SOG Flash II - as quick as a switchblade to open and nearly indestructible (interestingly, switchblades are illegal in the State of Washington, even if you have a CWL; even CA allows CWL holders the right to carry a switchblade!).
I love the Kel-Tec designs. George Kelgren is a genius! And I’m waiting for the new PMR-30 to be released; 30 rounds of 22 WMR in a full-size semi-auto pistol. I know many will scoff at the 22 WMR, but the reality is that the 22 WMR is as powerful as the 5.7mm from FN, the same caliber used to kill 14 at Fort Hood. Yes, you may need more than one shot, but if you miss, you have 30 more tries to get it right. THAT is an amazing thing!
That’s a very nice pocket pistol. In my case, the Walther PPKs in stainless was one of the best availaable at the time. Mine has the Interarms stamp on the slide, but if I recall correctly, they were merely the importer. The slim profile made it very easy to conceal - a valuable trait considering that I was living in the SF Bay area at the time.
I had a CCW permit and had a Colt Pocket Ponylite 380 in my front pocket at an ATM machine when 5 “youts” with identical red bandannas on their heads and with lots of gold bling pulled into the handicapped parking spot directly behind me and began arguing about who would “get’im”. All I thought about was I’ve got this little 7-shot pistol in my pocket and I had a Glock 30 45ACP back in the car. I think shot placement on humans is more important than caliber so a larger capacity 380 wuld have made me more confident with potentially 5 opponents. As it worked out the machine was dispensing my money and ATM card which I grabbed and sprinted back to my car. Before I could grab the Glock they pealed out of the parking lot and were gone. All that happened in Florida. I had several potential self defense situations with predatory humans including a home invasion when I heard it all happening and the BG ran when he saw I had retrieved my 44 SPL revolver.
Now I live in the Colorado Rockies west of Denver and have not had a single human incident. That has been replaced by black bear incidents. In town there is always the human predator danger, but when I get home I could encounter bears, elk or moose. Two aggressive bear encounters in 10 years. Looking at either 10mm or 4-inch 41 magnum as something tha could handle both threat types.
Yeppers - that SIG would be my choice if I didn’t already have the PPKs. Good thing I boight a bunch of ammo for it before it got scarce. Looks like supply is starting to catch up, though.
You’re obviously a man of taste. Wish I had had the money back then to collect like that. My PPKs has the Interarms stamp - I think that they wer the importer, not the manufacturer. Bought mine back in what - 1974. I think? At the San Francisco Gun Exchange, of all places. That would make it 35 years old, not 32. How time flies...
I've had a .32 and a .380 and it's just not fun for me. I don't want to have to stick it in their ear to damage them. I was a medic in the Army and witnessed an autopsy on a wino with a .32 about 1 inch into his brain. His hair was singed so it was fired point blank. He walked to the ER before dying. I shot my own .380 and it bounced off a telephone pole more than once. .32 ricocheted every time off the pole.
I agree that being shot with a .380 wouldn't be pleasant, but I just personally prefer to do more damage with one shot. Sometimes that's all you get. Without a brain shot, I think many perps would just keep coming. Especially if they are on meth.