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  #1  
Old 05-06-2008, 08:38 AM
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380 single action


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Does anyone know of any small light single action pistols that are easy to carry with good triggers, it seems like all the small pistols are doulble action with poor triggers like the kel tec line. I hear llama make a micro max 380 that looks intresting. i owned a colt gov 380 and it never cycled properly so i dont know what other choices i have. i would even consider 9mm or something else. Thanks for any ideas.
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  #2  
Old 05-06-2008, 08:52 AM
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You might check out the new Ruger, though it's a double action I think. From my point of view the best small carry gun is a small frame 38 special snubby wheel gun. Great single action trigger and most have a pretty good double action trigger. I carry a Taurus Ultra-light 38 snubby and with an Uncle Mikes pocket holster, it just disappears in a jeans front pocket.

The best double action trigger on a semi-auto I've ever used is Para-ordnances LDA and they offer a compact version for a carry gun.

I don't think I'd like a semi that I had to cock a hammer to fire the first shot and though the 1911's are fairly safe cocked and locked most of the small single action semi-autos probably shouldn't be carried that way. Small revolvers are safe carried with the hammer down and a first shot is just a trigger pull away, no safety's, no cocking a hammer and it's always ready.

There's a learning curve with every weapon and at self protection ranges you don't need match target or long range hunting accuracy, just practice enough to be proficient.
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  #3  
Old 05-06-2008, 10:17 AM
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I have to agree with Bob, the 380 IME does not have the ability to penetrate as well as the 38 Special and it is marginal at best IMHO
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  #4  
Old 05-06-2008, 11:06 AM
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The Llama is a neat little pistol, but whether or not the one you might get will feed reliably is a bit of a crapshoot, and the triggers, although SA, are in general nothing to brag about. I've owned several thru the years, the best being one that was part of a contract for the Saudi airforce. They're also a bit large in the role for which a .380 is best suited, in my opinion -- as a deep-concealment or backup piece. Really, for that use a KelTec or the new Ruger KelTec clone is a better gun. If I wanted a gun the size of the Llama, but more reliable, I'd probably opt for a Makarov in .380 or a CZ.
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  #5  
Old 05-06-2008, 03:20 PM
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My preference would be a DAO in 9mm if I didn’t carry a S&W 442. Then I would carry a Kahr PM9, light and powerful. I load it with Speer Gold Dot Ammunition. See Link Below.
http://www.firearmstactical.com/briefs9.htm

Last edited by metrotps; 05-06-2008 at 03:40 PM. Reason: Bad grammar
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  #6  
Old 05-06-2008, 05:52 PM
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I carry a Sig P230SL (now superceded by the P232). It's a light, slim .380 that carries quite well and points superbly. I like the DA/SA feature - you can decock it for safe carry, then either just pull the trigger for a first shot DA (succeeding shots are SA), or cock and shoot in all single action mode. Trigger seems decent for a carry gun (a little heavier than I would want for accuracy work, but good for carry). My son will soon be getting a Walther PPK .380 for defensive carry. Looks like a comparable pistol, but I have yet to see it to know how it stacks up.

Of the .380's out there, the new Ruger LCP is far and away the lightest, but I sure like the quality, look, and feel of my Sig. I don't mind carrying a .380, even as much I would prefer something bigger if I knew trouble was coming. As others have noted, the small size makes it more likely I'll have it with me, and I doubt the bullets will bounce off anyone!
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  #7  
Old 05-06-2008, 06:12 PM
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best ...

try looking at the browning 380 double single action... functions and shoots great..
dk
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  #8  
Old 05-06-2008, 06:36 PM
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I agree w/ Red Pepper, I carry a Sig P230. It is easy to hold on target, and empty the mag in under 2 seconds. The trigger is superb in SA, not bad in DA. Great little carry piece. JP
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  #9  
Old 05-07-2008, 04:19 PM
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i too like the to cock and fire .. but to get what i have in the kel-tek ive adjusted it
padded the grips and adjusted myself.. as to the 38 snubby verses the .380 ..
penetration and expansion protection rnds were no real difference..
one thing i have found, is that to get sure reliability and the max stop..the
corbon dpx 80. is so far the one that i have total confidence in.. not that others won t work in the gun but in protection rds this one is the one that id recommend.. the flat nosed winchester is a sure rnd also..
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  #10  
Old 05-08-2008, 05:26 AM
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One of the variations of the Colt Govt 380 is a alloy framed mini-sized gun they called the Mustang that I used quite a bit. Very accurate. Probably expensive now. It worked 100 per cent with ammo it liked. Beretta also made some SA auto pistols.

Last edited by ironhead7544; 05-08-2008 at 05:28 AM.
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  #11  
Old 05-08-2008, 09:17 AM
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The Colt Mustang is the one SA 380 I can think of. It's not an exact copy of a 1911, but it does have a 1911 feel to it.
My limited experience with them is that if they don't have a good trigger pull out of the box, they can be made to have one easily.
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  #12  
Old 05-08-2008, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jumbo View Post
Does anyone know of any small light single action pistols that are easy to carry with good triggers, it seems like all the small pistols are doulble action with poor triggers like the kel tec line. I hear llama make a micro max 380 that looks intresting. i owned a colt gov 380 and it never cycled properly so i dont know what other choices i have. i would even consider 9mm or something else. Thanks for any ideas.
My $0.02:
For a carry gun, having a match trigger isn't terribly important. In the sort of situation where you'd be using it for its intended role, you probably won't be doing more than just pointing the gun and pulling the trigger, so the effects of a poor trigger won't be any worse than the effects of adrenaline and totally ignoring the sights.

If you're talking a pocket gun, IME, there's two kinds of triggers: heavy and poor. My Guardian's trigger is 10lbs and rather long. But, IMO, it's pretty smooth. The Kel-Tecs have light trigger pulls, but you already know they're not terribly great.

If you're not talking about a pocket gun, I'd go with one of the suggestions already mentioned. PPKs, P232s, etc, with DA/SA triggers.
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  #13  
Old 05-10-2008, 11:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by faucettb View Post
From my point of view the best small carry gun is a small frame 38 special snubby wheel gun.
If there was ever a better carry gun than a S&W M37, I never had it in my hand. It always works, shoots way better than most shooters can, and is light enough/trim enough to carry, even when you don't want to be bothered.

If 5 rounds of cast LSWC over a snappy dose of Unique etc. doesn't solve the problem for a regular citizen, you shouldn't have been there in the first place without your 870 and a tube full of buck.
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  #14  
Old 05-11-2008, 02:23 PM
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The LLama in .380 is actually called the III-A and is in the 1911 format. I was also attracted to the thought of a small 1911 for carry and found one at a show about 1 month ago - well about the most unreliable gun i ever fired- i went to numrich arms and rebuilt the gun as they have most parts for it and now after about 500 rnds it seems to run ok. I believe the LLama IIIa has a bad reputation on feeding- i would not trust my life to it.
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  #15  
Old 05-13-2008, 06:46 PM
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well I finally got that Walther PPK from Redpepper (thanks dad, and good thing I didn't check this thread a few days earlier) and I think that may be another option to consider, it is a DA/SA like the sig, the initial double action is a little stiff but the single action is pretty crisp. a great carry gun imo.
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  #16  
Old 05-16-2008, 03:39 AM
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Star also made a Model S, which was a smaller 1911-looking pistol like the Llama. The Star may, or may not have been somewhat better.

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  #17  
Old 11-07-2008, 07:19 AM
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Try these

I know this is an old thread, but it's one of my favorite topics.

SA mini-1911s in .380:

Star S or SS - Excellent pistols, perfect size, reliable and well made. You can still find like-new examples. New factory mags are $9.95 at CDNN. Some of the SS models are facory refubs and may give problems. It's worth the trouble to find a good one and hang onto it. Get some new wood grips from 'Star' or Gunboards.

FI Model D - Also a Star product, this was design with Colt to become the Colt Pony. Colt bailed, Star produced them under their own lable. About the size of a Keltec or Colt Pony.

Llama IIIA
- The ones built in the 1940s are true miniature 1911s. They are well-made, deeply polished and blued. they run like a Swiss watch. I found 5 of these over the last two years, 2 of them apparently mint, unfired. Also made in .32 ACP and .22

Should be able to buy any of the above for under $300.

Colt Mustang - 4 versions. The Pocketlites have aluminum frame. Nice guns, plastic triggers (replace it)

None of the above are in current production.
You'd think someone would look at the market for these and come out with one. Look how the EMP is selling.

Last edited by Rex B; 11-07-2008 at 07:56 AM. Reason: added photos
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  #18  
Old 11-07-2008, 08:08 AM
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I'm surprised no one has mentioned Bersa/Firestorm as a .380 pistol. They are just a bit bulkier than a PPK and a lot bulkier than a Kel-Tec .380 but have a very decent double/single action trigger. I much prefer that arrangement as it allows safe carry with hammer down on a loaded chamber, safety off, but still permits an accurate single action shot when time allows cocking the hammer. They also do have usable sights and grips which much better fit the hand than those of the Kel-Tec or Ruger.
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  #19  
Old 11-07-2008, 05:32 PM
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I agree, got one of those last month. It ended up in my wife's car to replace the DAO .380 that was there. She questioned the additional controls (safety), but I showed her how it works just like the DAO gun, with the difference that Bersa has a much better reputation for dependability.
Probably the best bang for the buck on the market. I paid $180 for like-new, used, 2 magazines. $200 is an everyday price for a used one.
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  #20  
Old 11-07-2008, 06:56 PM
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i have the full pull kel tec and like it but my gun is the snubby smithee.
if that keltec had been double single ,i don t know if id have looked any further.. but im glad i found my 60..i don t ever feel undergunned with this gun an my carry rnd..
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