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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am looking for a handgun to replace my Ruger SR22, as I don't need a tactical-style .22LR for range-use. Regardless, looking for something that is for discrete, concealment purposes.

I would prefer an all-metal pistol that is easy to carry and handle - one that also looks good that will age well (classic styling preferred). Prefer Stainless but heard for concealment black/blued is better - not sure which one at this point.

Looking at:

  • Walther PPK
  • Sig Sauer P238
  • Sig Sauer P232

The only one that is readily available at local gun stores is the Sig P238 (picture below - it's the - I've held it and found it both felt and looked great.

Sig Sauer P232 is apparently rare around here (most stores never carried it or been months-years they had it in stock)

Walther PPK is hit or miss - one here or there every once in a while.

Please send any recommendations even beyond theses for use (Even 9mm, like the Sig P938 if you feel inclined).

 

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I can only comment knowledgeably about the Walther PP, PPK, and PPK(S).
These have the worst trigger action in the known Universe: heavier than necessary and grittier than necessary. Its problem is a built-in mechanical disadvantage, supposedly to promote "safety." But a too-heavy trigger really only promotes poor marksmanship. So, how is poor marksmanship "safer" for anyone?
Even the newer form of these pistols is designed to "bite the hand that owns it." If your hand isn't perfectly placed, either the pistol's slide or its hammer will "get" you. It comes with a guarantee: Blood will be drawn.

I have had just a little experience with the oldest iteration of the SIG P238, originally made for Colt's by one of the Spanish gunmakers (Star, I believe).
All things considered, it worked pretty well. Since the original was made in Spain, I could never quite trust it, but I have to assume that the SIG-built version is made to proper quality-control standards.

Since the P238 is quite small, and it fires the least powerful, acceptable self-defense round, proficiency is very important.
This means that you must put in much more practice with it than you would need, if you were shooting something bigger and more effective.
 

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If you're debating between a .380ACP and a 9mm and are not too concerned with a mouse gun, which your examples are not, then I would suggest going with a 9mm. A much more powerful cartridge with some excellent offerings in quality self defense loads in this caliber. As for guns in the subcompact category, I would recommend ones in DAO or striker fired SAO designs. I say this mostly because you mentioned pocket carry. You don't want a hammer to hang up on a pocket when trying to get that gun into action.

I'm not very familiar with Sig's lineup but I seem to believe that they offer some guns in this configuration. You might also take a look at Kel-Tec (quite a bit less expensive but not a bad choice at all) or the Kahr line, such as their PM9 or MK9 series.

There are others so don't stop there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Okay, so between the 9mm pistols which would be the best as far as carrying comfort, accuracy, and reliability?

- Keltec PF9

- Ruger LC9

- Sig P938

Dual vs Single Action with holster/pocket carry make such a huge difference? pros, cons?
 

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Okay, so between the 9mm pistols which would be the best as far as carrying comfort, accuracy, and reliability?

- Keltec PF9

- Ruger LC9

- Sig P938

Double vs Single Action vs Double Action Only with holster/pocket carry make such a huge difference? pros, cons?
Fixed it for you. Hope you don't mind.
 

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You need to read this: .380 ACP Pistols Compared (Includes the SIG SAUER P232, SIG SAUER P238 and Walther PPK) .

Personally I've carried a GERMAN-MADE Walther PPK-S as a secondary for the past 40 years. It has been absolutely flawless. The double-action trigger is, indeed, very heavy; but, nobody I've ever known fires a PPK-S double-action. It works a lot better when you cock the hammer on the draw.

I use a Pachmayr wrap around grip on mine; and, because of the small caliber, I always have, at least, one extra magazine on hand. El Paso Saddlery makes some very functional (and pretty) holsters for the PPK-S, too. I'm using a #88, 'Street Combat' holster with a separate dual magazine carrier.

El Paso Saddlery - Strongside
(I've got one of the older #88 holsters with a steel reinforced mouth - It's very fast!)

 

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SIg 232 is rather big for pocket carry. It's even bigger than the 9mm Shield.

Personally, I like the newest version of the Ruger LCP. It doesn't have the same Keltec trigger that they initially had (they sell a nicer version of the Keltec 380,m basically). The trigger has a shorter and lighter pull now.

As for the Sig 238 - I personally would never pocket carry a single action only gun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
For how much the Sig 928 cost, I could literally buy a Ruger LC9 and Mark III - giving me a good 9mm concealed and target pistol.
 

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Last year I was shopping for a pocket .380, and at SHOT Show I was able to handle and dry fire 19 of 20 (no Jimenez present). (For a complete list of what's out there, check out my pocket .380 roundup article here.) I came up with three favorites: The S&W Bodyguard 380, the Kahr P380 and the Diamondback DB380. I liked the Kahr's feel and trigger best, but it was the most expensive by a bunch. I did dig the Bodyguard 380, but the DB380 was quite similar to my Glock 19 (so I wouldn't have to learn new tricks), and it fit my budget better, so I went with that. I've run a few hundred rounds through it and carried it quite a bit in a cargo-pants pocket in a Remora holster, and I like it.

Since then, Kahr began producing the CW380, which is a much cheaper version of the P380. Probably would've gone that way if I could've.

Now, all three of these guns are on polymer frames, and you said you wanted metal. If you like the P238, also consider the Colt .380 Mustang and the Kimber Micro Carry and Micro CDP. Like the P238, these are 1911-style guns. The Kimbers reportedly will finally start shipping this month per a Kimber rep I spoke to at SHOT Show last week.

Another metal pocket .380 I kinda liked: the North American Arms Guardian 380. I recall it felt hefty in a good, solid way.

Also, two guns on that roundup list--the IO Hellcat II and the Masterpiece Arms MPA380 II Protector II--are no longer in production.
 

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Steve M1911A1: trarmstrong:
Regarding the PPK PPK(S)
"These have the worst trigger action in the known Universe"
Ain't that the truth! The only other .380 that I have is the Sig P238 HDW a beautiful little gun to be sure, but given it's single action design, In my opinion it would not be a good choice for pocket carry in the event that the safety becomes accidentally disengaged. I am not a fan of having any type of safety to disengage especially in a split second emergency. My favorite gun is the Kahr MK40 for all around carry because of it's size, caliber, and all stainless steel construction, they also make a .9mm version the MK9. They are not cheap. If I was dead set on a .380 I would seriously consider the North American Arms Guardian .380, I have the .32ACP version and I've never had any issues with it. I bought the NAA Guardian, Walther PPK/S and Sig P238 because I liked the looks of them, no other reason. I have a variety of handguns and find myself carrying the MK40 and a Glock G30 on a daily basis, and just bought a Springfield XDs .45 Duo tone which I've also been carrying. The MK40 and XDs in pocket holsters and the G30 in a belt holster. There are many all metal .9mm's on the market that are comparable in size to a .380 you'd be better off with one of those in my opinion.
 
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