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Old 06-24-2019, 01:53 PM   #1
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Hrcnsfan .22
PPK Interest but which generation?

Hello all. New member here from North Carolina. The PPK is just one of those pistols I want to add to the few firearms I already have. Will probably use at as an occasional carry weapon so Iíve been doing a lot of searching and reading.
Iíve come acrross some discussion threads where some have claimed that the S&W pistols have/had some reliability issues like fte and ftf. If my memory is correct, it seems that most of those discussions were maybe 10+ years ago making me wonder if those supposed problems have been corrected. Iím also looking in the used market so I have nothing against an older Interarms pistol but I like the new ones as well. Keeping my options open.
Anything I should keep in mind while I continue my search?
Thanks in advance.
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:42 PM   #2
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TheWatcher .22
Couple of questions for your decision. What caliber and what is your budget?
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:44 PM   #3
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DukeIronHand .22
To me (and this is only me) you have to decide if you’re a shooter or a collector.
Was a collector in the old days but am now a shooter in that the only reason I have a particular gun is to use it, shoot the hell out of it, carry it, and probably bang it into stuff or drop it. Shooter needs a gun he’s not afraid to get scratched up so I would get a newer one. Tip top shape and covered by Walther.
For the gun collector and the gun to be doted over and gently handled (because of history and resale value) I will let the pros speak to that.
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Old 06-24-2019, 03:46 PM   #4
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halfmoonclip .22
Good answer from the Duke. What do you want to do with the gun? Carry it, perhaps in harm's way? Chance dropping it (likely) or in an evidence locker? Then you want current production, a Smith, or even something else, designed in this century.
Safe queen? Older, more minty is better.
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Old 06-24-2019, 03:49 PM   #5
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03hemi .22
I'm both a shooter and collector of firearms, I carry and shoot my S&W PPK/S all the time and have never had any FTF's or FTE's. I confidently stake my life on it all the time, it's in my rotation of carry guns. I also carry some of my "collectable" guns too (mainly .45acp, 9mm & 10mm), all that matters is that it goes bang when needed. If it winds up in an evidence locker, so be it, my life and my families life far out value any gun I have in my collection. Life's too short to carry an ugly gun. fwiw

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Old 06-24-2019, 05:38 PM   #6
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I’ve got a S&W version of a .380 PPK. I really like this gun, bought it used. I had a lot of issues with it from day one and had to send it to Walther three times. After the last trip it has been great.
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Old 06-24-2019, 06:46 PM   #7
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Hrcnsfan .22
Thanks for the reponses. At least the first PPK I get will be a shooter and carry gun. My wife actually likes the idea of buying a WWII era pistol but that’ll come later. So, for now, I guess I’m looking for consensus that I can buy a current production PPK with confidence or should I look for an Interarms PPK.

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Old 06-24-2019, 06:50 PM   #8
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DE Pistole .22
The S&W Walther pistols I've owned have all functioned perfectly. However, regardless of what variant you obtain, it's key you fully understand the functioning of a PPK or PPKS, before you take it to the range, to avoid initial discouraging experiences with the pistol:
-- Because the PP series are blow back pistols, they require a firm grip to function properly. However, a firm grip does not include getting any part of your firing hand in the travel path of the slide. Any Walther, even those with extended tangs, will give you slide/hammer bite if your grip them too high. Once you get your Walther, grip it with the slide locked to the rear so can see how little margin of grip error you have before getting slide/hammer bite. On the range, adjust your grip at the very first hint of slide contact with your skin. Additionally, flat bottom mags allow you to curl a finger under the grip which tends to pull your grip down. Some users recommend gloves to avoid slide/hammer bite, but gloves will not encourage you to learn the proper grip.
-- If you load a mag into the pistol with the slide forward, you'll need to ensure the mag is fully locked in place because locking the mag with the slide forward requires enough pressure to overcome the mag spring. Looks can be very deceiving, so ensure you feel the mag lock in place. (When in doubt, you can even try to pull the mag out without pushing the slide release button.)
-- Know your Walther variant's ammo preferences. Regardless of variant, I recommend you use 95 grain FMJ ammo on your first of couple trips to the range. (If you obtain a pre-S&W pistol you may likely find that they function best with FMJ.)

Last edited by DE Pistole; 06-24-2019 at 07:36 PM. Reason: refinement
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Old 06-24-2019, 07:20 PM   #9
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Hrcnsfan .22
Thanks for your post, DE Pistole. Some good info to keep in mind.
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Old 06-24-2019, 08:41 PM   #10
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1917-1911M .38
I don't see many older PP pistols for sale around this neck of the woods. And when I do they are PPK/S or PP versions. Due to the GCA '68 it seems PPK versions are much rarer. Regarding slide bite....how big and meaty are your hands Hrcnsfan? Mine aren't large and my skin is tight....I cannot make the slide hit my hands...but if you have meaty hands the Smith or New Ft Smith versions might make you happier. Shoot one of these if you get a chance....they kick like a mule...even in 9mm/k.

And don't be like the guy below. Bought a used Bobcat today for a good price. Had my suppressed .22 and asked one of the guys I knew if he'd like to shoot it. He didn't have time but the seller of the Bobcat/company owner said he did. He was grinning ear to ear. Asked me if I knew anything about pistols. A little bit I said. He told me he bought a new Kimber 9mm six months ago and has been carrying it everyday. Then about a week ago he decided to shoot it. It was good for one shot, then a stoppage. Clear, one shot, stoppage. He went and got it....brand new, small 1911ish pistol.

I didn't see anything wrong with it visually and asked him to explain exactly what it was doing. He didn't have a clue....well, is the spent case ejecting. Not sure. When you retract the slide does an empty case fly out? Not sure. Well describe for me exactly what is happening, for example is a round jammed under the feed ramp, standing straight up.....he didn't know. Do you have a second magazine? Yes. Did you try it? No. What ammo. Don't know. I suggested getting a couple of varieties of 9mm including fmj, firm grip, try both magazines and if it won't cycle to call Kimber. A pistol will give you a lot of clues as to what might be wrong......but one of the first rules is don't carry a new pistol without shooting it a couple of hundred times to make sure it functions properly. Good luck with your search. Beautiful little shooters PP pistols are. 1917
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