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Thread: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

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    Slingshot
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    Question Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    Bersa and shooting newbie here so pardon the dumb questions. I bought the Bersa Thunder CC recently after a lot of research. I originally decided to buy the Walther PPK but then changed my mind in the final stages of the purchase decision. I opted for the Bersa not so much because of the price difference but moreso because of the negative comments I kept reading about the S&W Walthers (as someone told me, "they ain't what they used to be"). I'm still considering purchasing another handgun and I again find myself debating between the Walther or another Bersa Thunder (not the CC) - so here's the question(s): is the price difference between the PPK and the Thunder really justifiable due to tangible qualities (quality of workmanship or materials, accuracy, durability ...)? Or do you think the price difference is more about the Walther name and/or German labor costs vs Argentine labor costs?

    On my Bersa Thunder CC: I have put about 700 rounds through it - I enjoy shooting it and I am getting more accurate with each trip to the range. As I posted on another forum however, I am about to send it for some warranty work. I have the issue that the slide will not hold open when I release the mag. It locks back on the last shot but usually slams shut when I drop the mag. When it does stay open after dropping the mag, sometimes it slams shut with the slightest bump - such as placing it on the bench or tapping the rear of the slide.

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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    Welcome to Bersa Chat Canaima. I have never owned a PPK, so I can't speak to it's quality or reason it is so much more expensive. I do think that folks are finding out that Bersas are much better pistols than their price would indicate. Bersa isn't known for a great finish & that may be part of the price difference, although I find nothing at all wrong with the finish on my CC .380 or my wife's Thunder .380. It's the larger caliber Bersas that have had some really bad paint jobs & they seem to have gotten those straightened out.

    Someone that owns or has owned both should be along & be of more help.



    P.S. Out of curiosity, do you press the slide catch to release the slide to chamber the first round, or do you use the sling-shot method?
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    I would go with what feels the best in your hand. I am partial to the BT380 as it was my first handgun. It just felt right when it was in my hand. I then looked at warranty and options. I liked lifetime warranty and the safety options. So that is where I went. Bersa is just 100% satisfaction and an addiction.
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  4. #4
    Slingshot
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    Thanks - I use the sling shot based on advice the gun shop employee gave me when I purchased the gun. I have a Glock 19 where I usually chamber the first round using the slide stop because I found, with the Glock, that I jammed the round about 30% of the time when sling shotting. But with the Bersa, this never happens when I sling shot. One thing though: this issue with the slide closing did not occur on my first two trips to the range (I was sling shotting) - so I wondered if it could have been something I did during cleaning (?).

    Regarding the finish - I notice that the metal is already showing on the slide where it travels through the rails (not sure the technical name) - is this normal? I use a small amount of gun lube/grease in the slide rails.
    Last edited by Canaima; 02-25-2012 at 09:47 PM. Reason: clarification

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    Administrator Michael T's Avatar
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    I have a old Interarms PPK/S. You can't run fast enough, to give me that S&W mess . The Walters PP came out in 1929 followed by the smaller PPK . Then the gun control act 1968 gave is the PPK/S as the PPK was as I remember a 1/16 of a inch to short in height to be imported. So Walther used the PP frame and fit shorter PPK barrel and slide. . This allowed inportation . Was named PPK/S
    In early 80's they started making in USA in Al . They did this for several years. Then S&W got the contract . They at first used up all the left over parts that Ranger had in Al. . So those are same as Interarms but have the S&W name. Those pistols are fine .
    S&W being the cheap so and so's they are. Looked over the pistol and decided they could make cheaper (no savings passed on to customer of course) So they made over 20 changes What you can see is the tang like the Bersa has and those horrible cut laser printing on the slide . They also left pistol sharp as a raso.r So you can shave with it also.

    They made several internal changes and thinned out the casting some. . Result , they had to recall ALL they made. A few years ago . The first time in History of the PPK/PPK/S it was recalled Thanks to S&W . Today their still hit and miss not worth the money. Buy a older Interarms or the German (high price for these) NO PPK or PPK/S was made in Germany after WWII all were made in France and proof tested in Germany. If you didn't know .

    Not here the difference The PPK/S or PPK have a 20lb trigger on DA and the SA about as much as the Bersa DA trigger . Bersa wins on trigger. Bersa has a take down lever. On the PP series you must pull the trigger guard down and hold to remove slide. Bersa wins. Bersa has better sights. Bersa is slighty thicker in back strap recoil doesn't hurt you hand like the PPKor /S . I can shoot maybe 30 rounds before my hand hurts from my PPK/S I have fired over a 100 from the Bersa . The Interarms blue or stainless are better finished and fit than the Bersa. S&W I think no better in finish . Accuracy toss up . For the money over all Bersa wins . Can come close to buying 2 Bersas for price of 1 S&W junker.
    Take away the 007image . Bond carried a PPK in 32 not 380. He never carried a 380 or a PPK/S You see people all time on net .I have a 380 PPK/S just like 007 WRONG !!! Just like dirty harry never carried a S&W 629 44 mag . He carried a Model 29 series 2 in blue . Only thing in common is their both 44 mag
    They 29 was had fit by craftmen and the 629 tossed togather by monkeys .

    Bersa better for over all. I bought a Bersa to practice with to save wear on my PPK/S . See where that has got me. I don't have time to shoot either.
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    The reason I asked about using the slide catch for chambering a round, is we had a discussion about doing that & why it might be a bad idea & was just wondering if your problem might be a result of it. Apparently, it wasn't. The slide closing when you remove a mag is not normal & a trip to a warranty center is in order. There is a list of them in the FAQs section. Reynerson's has gotten good reviews. Gander Mountain not so much, unless you know they have a good gunsmith on hand.

    It is normal for some shiney areas to appear where the slide & frame rails run. That's where they are "mating" during break-in. If you see any deep gouges, that might be cause for concern.
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    I've had a WWII Walther PP. I loved it, but I love my Bersas even more. The only flaw the real Walther had, that I can recall is that heavy trigger pull. However, I am not only content with the Bersa, I'm obsessed with them. IMHO, Bersas are just as good, if not better, for half the price.
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    I sold my German Walther PPKS about 1982 for 475.00 then, don't even know how much one of those would bring today. Bought my first Colt National Match then. I have to say my mid 70's PPKS was not really spectacular. It carried very well but accuracy was mediocre, and ever once in a while I would get a FTE, using the best hollow points of the day. I liked the gun, but not 475 dollars worth, and was never sorry I sold it. A few years later I caught a deal on a 9mm German built P38 and it was a really outsanding gun, and never produced a malfunction. That's not a lot of experience, but my thoughts.

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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    As far as the price of the Bersa. Remember they are made in Argentina.. Where the US dollar is still strong.. Meaning its price state side is way less then if it was made in Germany using The Euro$ where the US dollar is weak. If Bersa's were made with Euro's rather then Argentinean peso's would be several hundred dollars more to purchase in the USA.
    I've spent 90% of all my money on Booze, Bikes, Babes, Bersas and Bullets..

    The rest of my money I wasted.


  10. #10
    Matchlock
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    20+ years ago my first gun purchase was a Walther PPK. Cop friends had them... so should I. I hated that gun....lol Uncomfortable to shoot, had that nasty back bite on my hand... didn't like it at all. Fortunately for me it broke...lol My friend let me trade it in on a New Bersa Model 83! One of the best gun decisions I've made yet. Still have the Bersa even though its getting some work done to it but I really enjoy that gun, the way it feels, shoots, and holds up. Bersa has only gotten better over the last 20 years so I highly recommend the Bersa over the PPK. Enjoy and keep us posted.

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    Slingshot
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    I think it all boils down to what you're buying the gun for. I am a novice with pistols and I just bought two 380cc. I too looked at the Walther and a number of other guns. Most cost considerably more than the Bersa. You can certainly buy guns that look and feel like better quality guns than Bersa. I almost had myself convinced that I should spend the extra dollars and buy a "better" gun than the Bersa until I stepped back and reminded myself why I was buying the gun.I wanted the gun for self defense. That meant it had to be reliable, accurate, safe to carry, and easy to conceal. When I compared the guns with those creiteria the Bersa came out on or near the top for a lot less money.

    If your reasons for buying the gun are different, you may come out with a different decision. But for what I bought it for the Bersa is hard to beat.

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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    My first impression of my Bersa T380 when I shot it was "wow". I have had it about 2 months now and I still have the wow feeling. My son in law shot mine- then he bought one. Then he bought a Plus last week- he is coming over today to shoot it for the 1st time. These Bersa 380 are great guns- period.
    I too, was looking at a PPKS stainless.....but they wanted $600 for it. When I held the Bersa I though that was it! And, when I shot it- I knew that was it. My next purchase will be a Bersa Plus. I suggest you put one in your hand before you buy the Walther.

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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    FXW's PPK... very very very bad gun.. Uncomfortable to shoot.. Has been sent back to S&W several times now.. I wish the damn thing would get air miles..

    MY BT.380s.. all very very very good.. Easy to shoot and very accurate. But unlike the Walther, they dont get to travel at all.
    I've spent 90% of all my money on Booze, Bikes, Babes, Bersas and Bullets..

    The rest of my money I wasted.


  14. #14
    Slingshot
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    Thanks for all the responses - there was some very useful information. I suspected that part of the price difference wasn't due to the intrinsic qualities of the gun but rather due to things like the Walther name and German labor rates (or foreign currency differences as someone pointed out). Your posts reinforce that the Bersa is a great buy and that the Walther is probably too little for too much. I think soon I am going to buy another Bersa - just have to decide which one.

    BTW: I returned by Thunder 380 CC today for warranty work on the slide catch. Once it is complete I'll probably post a new thread with the problem and the solution (and quality of the solution) for anyone referencing a similar issue in the future. The store where I purchased it is handling the warranty work (sending it out) and they were very responsive and accommodating (Shooter's Service - Livionia MI).

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    Rock
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    I had the same situation with the slide on my 380cc replaced the slide catch and also installed metal follower in magazine. Now all is well slide stays open when releasing magazine. Good luck on the warranty work and let us know what they find. It was easier for me just to order a new release from Eagle than to pay shipping.

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    Slingshot
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    Owned two other auto pistols - Beretta 92FS and Taurus 908. Shot 'em both a lot and liked them. I thought the 92 was a bit large, the 908 fit my a hand better and was actually a nice 9mm. I like my BT380 at least as much as those - the fit, finish, accuracy are excellent. Next one will be a CC.

    Good shooting.

  17. #17
    Slingshot coopercdrkey's Avatar
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    Re: Walther PPK vs Bersa Thunder - Price Difference

    I own a BT380 that is my very favorite, although Florida weather makes me carry a smaller pistol in the summer months.

    I showed it to a friend who owns two PPK's, (don't know yet the actual models or vintage), but his immediate question was, "Want to trade?" This without even firing the Bersa.

    I'm not sure if this is significant, but it is interesting....
    Bersa Thunder 380 Duo Tone
    Taurus 738 TCP
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