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Old 05-12-2007, 02:07 PM   #1
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Walther vs. S& W pistols - compare / contrast for me

In the absence of any stocking Walther dealers in my area I was considering a full-size and a compact S&W99 that is on the used board of my local gun store. I never have understood the relationship between Walther and Smith and Wesson and how these lines crossed with the S&W version of the P99.

Should I expect the same performance from the S&W version, or is it somehow inferior?

I recall that the finish from the two gun makers is similar, but not exactly the same ? can someone qualify this for me?

The ?Walther? markings on the S&W are confusing ? is it the case that some parts are made by Walther and some by S&W? This doesn?t seem to make a lot of sense, but I would like to know the story.

Since I am already set up with holsters and magazines for full and compact P99s, is there any reason (other than brand loyality to Walther ? some call this snobbery) why I should not buy either of the S&W pistols, provided I can get a good price on them?

These two S&Ws have been in stock for a while and I suspect the M&P has completely bowled over the market for S&W polymer pistols. This store is promoting the M&P heavily as well.

Your thoughts and assistance in putting this all in perspective and comparing / contrasting the two similar products from two makers would be much appreciated.
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Old 05-12-2007, 02:53 PM   #2
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Walther has contracted with Smith and Wesson as its agent in North America for marketing and sales of some of its coomercial pistols.

Walther P99 pistols and all the S&W P99 series of pistol frames are made in Germany and imported here. The S&W pistols get slides and barrels made by S&W.

Federal law requires any firearm imported into the U.S. to be stamped/marked with the name/city/state of the importer. There are two importers in the U.S., one is S&W [that is why you see Smith markings on the forward right side of the slide. The other is Earl's Repair Service [ERS] in Tewksbury, MA. ERS does import other Walther weapons and the P99.

Different people have different opinions. I feel the quality is the same. Many denigrate the Smith guns because of the Clinton agreement or the allure of an imported gun, but I have seen no demostrative difference.

The metal treatments are a different process, but both equally good. The S&W slide is stainless steel.

The Walther P99 series didn't make a big impression in the L.E. market and Smith came out with the M&P to regain the L.E. market from Glock.
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Old 05-12-2007, 03:54 PM   #3
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Your comment about the metal finishes is particulary interesting to me. Living here in the sweaty South I have a serious horror of things rusting. Would you say the finish of the S&W and the Walther are comparable to that on the Glock pistols? I always considered that the gold standard of hard and corrosion resistant finishes on a firearm.
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Old 05-12-2007, 04:38 PM   #4
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Walther's are teniffer treated.... which is not a surface treatment but will intermix with the metal and acts as a rustinhibitor.....

S&W's are made of SS and then treated.... forgot the term they use.....

I think with propper care you would not need to worry about either finish starting to rust....
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Old 05-12-2007, 05:09 PM   #5
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FWIW:

Can't speak for "long term issues" regarding the P99/AS and the SW99, but I can give you my opinion based on a short term comparison between the two.

I've had a P99/AS (and a P99c/AS) for several months now, and my buddy has had his SW99 for approximately the same amount of time.

He and I shoot quite often behind his home (we live in a rural area) and for all practical purposes it seems both pistols are about equal in performance. I like the Walther because I like Walthers, but he's completely happy with his SW99..

I like his lifetime warranty better than I like the one year warranty on my Walthers, but my experience has been that if a problem is likely to show up it will do so within a year.

The only problems I've had with my Walther P99's is that I get frustrated when I cannot take advantage of the inherent amazing accuracy of the pistols. I've never owned a pistol, or pistols, as accurate right out of the box as both of my Walther P99's.

I think you would be well served with either a P99/AS or an SW99.

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Old 05-12-2007, 06:06 PM   #6
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The finishes are almost identical on the metal slide - S&W uses melonite - which is just the american version of tennifer basically.

I like the looks of the Walther more - but I too first bought a SW99 in 2005 when I couldn't at first locate a P99 A/S.

I hard chromed all of my polymer 99s - Here is a pic

(no more holster wear now)



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Old 05-12-2007, 09:30 PM   #7
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Darn!

Looks like all S&W has anymore is the W&W990L compact with 'short double-action trigger'. Sounds like QA?

http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/w...category=15708

Ant they want $750 for it!

Russell
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Old 05-12-2007, 10:27 PM   #8
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Its not $750 - MSRP is always $200 or more than street value.

There is a SW990L in my town for sale for $575. That is still too high.

Yes - the SW990: is S&W's version of the QA - it just has NO decocker at all.
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Old 05-12-2007, 11:08 PM   #9
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Hi ShipWreck,

Here in the PRK I think of the 'street' market as illegal underground gun dealers. Of course I won't go there. All the licensed shops seem to like prices close to MSRP. Case in point: a P99-QA or AS lists on Walther America for $665 and the only outlet within driving distance wants $642 and has only the QA.
The only thing more outrageous than Kalifornia firearm laws is how much our residents are willing to pay for one.

Russell
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Old 05-15-2007, 06:25 PM   #10
 
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P99 Compact - Holsters?

Does anyone know the correct application for a Fobus holster or really any brand that will fit a P99 "C" (Compact)?????
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