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[RKBArms Blog] Bersa Thunder 380 Duo-Tone Review
07-21-2011, 04:30 PM
Post: #1
[RKBArms Blog] Bersa Thunder 380 Duo-Tone Review
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Bersa Thunder 380 Duo-Tone Review

I picked up a Bersa Thunder 380 DuoTone in October. It's a fun gun and I see why Bersa owners love this gun. Here is my review:

Pros
This isn't a pocket gun like the Kel Tec P-3AT but it's definitely a gun small enough to carry concealed. It's all metal frame makes it on the heavy side weighing 24 oz with magazine unloaded. It has a 3.5" barrel and is 1.3" thick. There is little recoil. Shooting tight groups is easy and fun.

There are so many safety features on this gun: integral safety system (key lock), manual safety, decocker lever, firing pin safety, and magazine disconnect safety. You really need to learn this gun and become familiar with all the safeties. Even though I like the straight forwardness of revolvers, Glock's, and the XD, you feel very safe about accidental discharge with the Thunder 380.

I fired 500+ rounds of Winchester White Box, Federal Champion, Magtech, PMC Bronze, Hornady Defensive Rounds, and no malfunctions. The gun feels better and loosens up the more rounds shot. The Thunder 380 is DA/SA, so the first round has a long DA trigger pull then all succeeding rounds are a short SA pull.

You can't beat the price for these guns. Brand new, you can find them between $230-$280 depending on the finish.


Cons
This is a heavy gun at 24 oz. for a .380 ACP. The Glock 19 weighs as much and it's chambered in 9mm. I keep thinking, "I might as well carry a 9mm if I'm going to carry this."

The standard magazine is a single stack that holds 7 rounds. For the weight and size of the Thunder 380, I'd expect a larger capacity.

The manual safety lever takes more effort to disengage than others. It does not protrude enough to easily disengage or engage. I took a tactical CCW class where we would draw from concealment, disengage manual safety, fire, engage manual safety, holster, and repeat for an hour. My thumb never saw so much torture. A couple times I wasn't able to disengage the safety on the draw because my thumb slipped off the lever. This isn't acceptable for me and I don't feel practice would solve this problem. The safety lever just isn't big enough for my thumb.

Conclusion
Naysayers can't say the Bersa Thunder 380 isn't a quality made firearm. I would trust this gun to properly fire if my life depended on it, as long as I could disengage the manual safety. That being said, it's not the EDC gun for me because of design of the manual safety lever. At this gun's weight, I feel I should carry a larger caliber than .380 ACP or have more than a 7 round capacity magazine.
For a .380 ACP BUG, I'd prefer a smaller and lighter gun for concealment like the Kel-Tec P-3AT or Ruger LCP.
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