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· Premium Member
153 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings from the Northwest Corner—

It has been a long time since my last range report. In fact, it had been several months since I was last at the range. Fortunately, the right combination of events occurred and I was able to go shooting twice in the past couple of weeks.

First, my Steyr report. Some of you may recall that I decided to not clean my Steyrs until they talked back. So, I took both the M9 and the S9 right out of the box and started shooting. About 1200-1300 rounds later (I lost exact count) the M9 continues to tick along like the well-made machine it is. It has never even smelled Hoppes, and has never faltered. What’s more, it is just plain fun to shoot.

The S9, on the other hand has around 600 rounds through it without cleanup, and until a week ago, had never stumbled. Did I mention I just love these guns? They hit what I point at, and because of their ergonomics, make shooting a pleasure. But last week my S9 coughed. I had one FTE in the middle of a hundred round series. After a little fuss and bother, I was able to clear the brass and continued shooting without further problems.

Are these Steyrs some kinda guns or what!

More recently, my wife decided she wanted to explore changing to a semi-auto from her Colt .38 Detective Special. She took the NRA defensive handgun course with the .38 and is more than capable with it, but she wonders whether she would be happier with a shorter trigger pull.

So off we go with a whole panoply of semi-autos and a bunch of lead.

I have a Colt 1908 .25 Pocket Pistol that she was interested in because it is small and kind of cute. But after a couple of stove pipes and fighting with the European style magazine release, she decided her chosen gun would have to be more than cute. Dependable counts, as well.

She definitely does not want my NAA .32. Although it is accurate enough for its purpose, it is a hand-eater of the first order. It is a true belly gun, and in the right circumstances the hand pain wouldn’t be an issue. I carry it in my back pocket to church or social events where accidental showing might be a problem.

My Colt 1911 is too big for her to carry, although she loves its crisp trigger break, big boom, and satisfying hole punching. My son tried to convince her that his Makarov .380 would be the perfect gun for her, but for whatever reason she didn’t like it.

What she did like is my Walther PPK. It is a bear for her to cycle the slide, but she loves its solid feel, its absolute reliability, and its accuracy. It just so happens that I am getting a little nervous about this turn of events because the Walther is my outdoors gun. It is stainless and has survived countless dunkings while whitewater canoeing, has been wet frequently while backpacking, hiking, and cycling (if you want to go outdoors in the Pacific Northwest you WILL get wet), and was my carry gun for several years. I apparently have an emotional attachment to this gun and am already experiencing separation anxiety.

Although she has shot my Steyrs in the past, I didn’t take them along for this trip because they MIGHT need cleaning. I can see the hour of reckoning is at hand and I will have to clean the Steyrs for our next outing. I have a suspicion that the S9 may end up in different hands at the end of the day. If she wants easy slide cycling, short trigger pull, low recoil, good ergonomics and reliable accuracy, I can’t think of a better choice.

Any other suggestions for a woman’s carry gun? My wife is 5 foot 10, fit and athletic, so she could conceivably carry on her person, although I suspect she would be happier carrying in her purse. She can pretty much have what she wants. What do you think?


keep an eye out for a good bargain on another PPK, or a SIG232, or a Bersa Thunder (actually since those run about $230 new it won't really take any watching out).

Nothing wrong w/ a good da/sa .380, very easy to conceal and with the right load can be a quite respectable carry piece.

Also there is the whole family of officer's model 1911"s

but you will probably lose your S if you let her shoot it.

I would point her to to do some reading on gun selections for women.

· Premium Member
5,090 Posts
I'll second the Thunder .380 idea - I love mine. Lighter weight, better trigger than the walther, absolutely reliable, bigger beavertail to correct the problem of the Walther bite, can be had under $200 NIB. I picked mine up at a gunshow new for $195 OTD - definitely one of the best values around!

· Registered
211 Posts
If she liked the 1911, why not have her check out some of the smaller 1911's being offered. "Most" (if not all) of the companies that make 1911's make compact versions, both in single stack and double stack, and Para Ord also has their LDA trigger if she is unsure about the SA set up.

There really are so many good options out there right now it's tough to recommend something without knowing her (and her likes and dislikes)
If you narrow your choice(s) down to a specific caliber or two it might be eaiser to make suggestions.

I also second FlaChef's suggestion on checking out
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