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Posted: 2/12/2002 7:39:08 AM EDT
I AM GOING TO BUY A BROWNING BDA FOR MY WIFE TO CARRY. ANY PROS OR CONS THAT ANYONE KNOWS OF? IT IS ALSO KNOWN AS THE BERETTA 84. ANY THOUGHTS ARE APPRECIATED.
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 9:44:34 AM EDT
Not familiar with it at all, which leads me to believe it's a smaller caliber than 9mm. If it is meant to be a primary self-defense weapon, 9mm should be the absolute smallest caliber you should carry in my opinion...and many experts' opinion. The only argument to the contrary might be "anything is better than nothing."

Think of it this way...if a 200 lb. gorilla (read "bad guy") is going to attack you or your wife, do you want to STOP him...or just piss him off? In reality, a .40 S&W and higher is preferred as marksmanship in a tense situation is not guaranteed.

One of my favorite quotes from Clint Smith is (apologies to those tired of me saying it) "I guarantee that when it comes down to busting caps to save your life, you'll be thinking 'Don't they make a bigger gun?!?!?'"

Get her a Kahr MK9 or MK40...they're small and are 9mm and .40S&W respectively.

Link Posted: 2/12/2002 10:07:59 AM EDT
Gotta love it when people answer with "such and such is not good for defense"
Sure there are more powerful rounds than the .380, but it's a great round for a concealable handgun. Remember that in about 98% of all defensive uses of firearms, no shots are fired, so 'stopping power' is mostly irrelevant. So you look at the off chance that you WILL have to shoot. Sure, you want to carry the most effective weapon you can, but sometimes you have to compromise. It is better to have a .380 than nothing at all. If that's what you can carry comfortably, then do it. If you can carry a full size .45 or .40, do it.

M@
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 11:07:11 AM EDT
Is this a new model of gun?

I ask because the only Browning BDA I am aware of is an older model (15 yrs ago or so) and is the same thing as a Sig 220 in .45acp except it had the European heel type mag catch.

They are excellent guns but probably too large for most women to easily carry concealed.
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 12:13:37 PM EDT
I don’t mean to quibble, but the Browning BDA-380 is slightly different than the Beretta Model 84.

Granted, it is made by Beretta and is based on the 84. Differences include the slide-mounted safety, the shrouded barrel, the longer hammer spur and the different triggerguard.

That being said, I’d personally prefer the Browning over the Beretta 84.

The Browning (and Beretta) is certainly a high quality handgun. However, it is a bit large for a .380 and has a really fat grip. Unless it comes with hi-cap magazines, you’re not getting much for that grip. Also, the trigger is forward quite a bit in DA.

On the other hand, the size and grip should make it a pleasant gun to shoot.

While it wouldn’t be my first choice as a concealed carry handgun, it is certainly suitable for that role. Suggest you let your wife look at some single stack .380’s first, though.
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 12:22:56 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 12:30:13 PM EDT
To clarify some questions. The Browing BDA is a .380 medium frame auto. It can hold a 13 round clip. The pistol is made by Beretta for Browning. As far as the size of the caliber goes my CHL instructor was told by her DPS instructor that center body mass shots on a perp hopped up on dope will not drop him. Head shots will. She carries a .22 mag revolver and goes for the head.
http://www.davidsonsinc.com/consumers/subsites/inven_product.asp?dealer_id=250210&item=420562L
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 12:36:47 PM EDT
Let me add some extra info on this. My wife is 6' and 250# (am I close Fencer?) and has large hands. We went to the local wish store (McBrides) and she tried many but prefers the BDA over the Browning. I am 6'4 and this would be a pocket gun for me. My hands are 12" tip to tip. I carry a full size 1911. I had a Kahr 40 and it sucked at least mine did.
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 12:42:02 PM EDT
I sold one to a customer last week. I like the feel of the pistol overall. My wife really liked it but not as well as her Colt Govt. 380. I feel like the Browning is very bulky to still be a .380. On the other hand I recommended the Browning to this person since she was new to firearms. Carrying a cocked and locked 1911 style pistol wasn't for her. The Browning double action feature made it much more like a revolver and also the extra bulk and weight wasn't a problem since she carries a purse. No comment on the selection of caliber since that just feeds flames.
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 12:47:57 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 1:01:11 PM EDT
As a side note I have found a 30 round mag for this pistol.
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 1:03:38 PM EDT
I think it is a good choice. Quality pistol that will be reliable and accurate. To get all you can from the .380, I would go with MagSafe bullets. I also have a .380 and they feed and function perfectly and are pretty accurate to boot.
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 1:45:23 PM EDT
The .380 is adequate as a defensive cartridge, especially in a pistol like the BDA. It's not a 9mm, but some of the hotter loads in .380 are equivalent to standard pressure 9mm. COM and head shots will most certainly kill and the recoil, or lack thereof, makes fast, precision shooting very easy for even the greenest novice. Buy it. Make sure she shoots it a lot and is proficient.

I have a Sig P232. It's a great little pistol, even smaller than the BDA (much smaller actually) and is very easy to shoot and maintain. The pistol has significantly less recoil than my model 60, is about the same size (but lighter), and holds 7+1 rounds as opposed to 5. It is also faster and easier to reload than the revolver. I don't feel disarmed when carrying the .380.
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 2:34:06 PM EDT
I can't remember the model number (92?) but Beretta makes a compact 92 of approximately the same size as the 84. There is a double and single stack version. For a defense gun a 9mm of the same size/weight seems a better choice. The compact 92 is a variation of arguably the most tested hangun design out there.
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 2:53:21 PM EDT
Green Locust,
I think that the Beretta that you are thinking about was the 92SBC. I don't know what the current model number for the short Beretta is now.My dad has one and the slide is shorter and the grip is shorter than my full sized 92FS. Yhe trigger guard on his weapon is also rounded with no "finger hook". The magazine also holds only 13 rounds. IIRC the single stack models ahve the designation "M" added to the end.

Hope this helps (and hope I'm correct!)
Karl
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 3:04:38 PM EDT
There are 3 types of BDA. The first is a Sig 220 type weapon with euro features, the next is the .380 beretta look alike, and last is the new DA/SA BDA 9mm.
GG
Link Posted: 2/12/2002 8:39:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/12/2002 8:42:55 PM EDT by JonnieGTyler]

Originally Posted By Gun Guru:
There are 3 types of BDA. The first is a Sig 220 type weapon with euro features, the next is the .380 beretta look alike, and last is the new DA/SA BDA 9mm.
GG



Thanks GunGuru,

Obviously, I've never stayed real current on Brownings handgun line.

edited to add: I remember the 9mm DA/SA. I guess I don't remember it being called a BDA. Oh well, so much for memory.
Link Posted: 2/13/2002 4:21:42 AM EDT
I know that there are 9mm, 45, and many other calibers out there but the original question was to basically give me an idea of .380 BDA. If had wanted a 9mm I would have asked for a 9mm opinion. If I wanted a .45 opinion I have one and enjoy it greatly. Its not so much the size of the bullet but the fact that someone has a firearm. The .380 is also called the 9mm short. The 9mm and .380 share the same bullet size.
Link Posted: 2/13/2002 4:42:48 AM EDT
I've had mine for 2 years, it's a great gun, after several hundred rounds it has only jammed once, and that was when it was brand new, I think it just wanted to be fired some. I am also a lefty and this gun has some ambi features. The size thing is an issue to some, I liked the size and you can always find high cap mags for it, so the grip size does come into play. Do a search on ebay for bda there is always some guy selling the pachmayr full grips for it for 9.99. The gun is much improved in my opinion with them and you can keep the nice wood grips frim getting marred. I just checked, there is a set out there now

http://cgi.ebay.com/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1803889550

Link Posted: 2/13/2002 4:58:56 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Redmanfms:
The .380 is adequate as a defensive cartridge, especially in a pistol like the BDA. It's not a 9mm, but some of the hotter loads in .380 are equivalent to standard pressure 9mm.



I carry a .380 fairly often, but I've never seen a .380 load remotely as powerful as 9x19.

Standard .380 loads develop about 200 ft-lbs of energy. The .380 +P loads I've seen (Cor-Bon) seem to be about 220 ft-lbs of energy. Winchester USA whitebox 9mm ammo is about 300 ft-lbs, as I recall. Cor-Bon's better +P loads are 450-466 ft-lbs.

I must have missed the hot .380 loads. Won't you tell us where to get a .380 round that delivers 300 ft-lbs of energy? It would sure increase MY confidence in .380.
Link Posted: 2/13/2002 5:02:44 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/13/2002 5:03:26 AM EDT
Note I said the same bullet diameter, I made no mention of powder capacity. But a head shot from a .380 would more than likely have the same effect as a head shot from a 9mm
Link Posted: 2/13/2002 5:05:53 AM EDT

Originally Posted By 45srock:
Let me add some extra info on this. My wife is 6' and 250# (am I close Fencer?) and has large hands. We went to the local wish store (McBrides) and she tried many but prefers the BDA over the Browning. I am 6'4 and this would be a pocket gun for me. My hands are 12" tip to tip. I carry a full size 1911. I had a Kahr 40 and it sucked at least mine did.



If cost is a consideration, and you want a .380 that is not particularly small, why not a Makarov, either in .380 ACP or 9mm Makarov? These are bulky by my standards (Colt Mustang), but a bit smaller than the BDA, I think. New, they are about $180 in .380, a bit less in 9mm Mak. (These prices are at Heritage Firearms in the Anderson Mill area, not McBride's.)

The Makarovs are reliable, solid guns, if not really pretty.
Link Posted: 2/13/2002 5:29:45 AM EDT
I bought my wife a Browning BDA .380 about 10 or 11 years ago. She likes it and I can live with that. It's small enough that she will take it with her. 13 rounds is comforting, even though it's a .380, hyra-shok alternated with mag safe should be effective. I carried a Ber. 92 for years and it operates the same way, that's why I choose it over the Beretta 84. The mags interchange and I've get several. Very slight of recoil, familiar operation, and she thinks it's pretty! FWIW I've also got a Beretta 92 C, and Custom Carry type M. The BDA is easier to conceal than the compact 13 shot model but I think the Type M is flatter, but a little longer.
Link Posted: 2/13/2002 8:05:35 AM EDT
I have owned 2 of them. Great little guns. My wife liked shooting mine. I am not crazy about a 380 but with 13 rounds to back up the first it was hard to beat. Oh and mine was very accurate. I was surprised. If you get one let me know. I have an extra set of pachmyer grips I will give you if you will pay to ship them.
Link Posted: 2/13/2002 4:34:39 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Tinker:

Originally Posted By Redmanfms:
The .380 is adequate as a defensive cartridge, especially in a pistol like the BDA. It's not a 9mm, but some of the hotter loads in .380 are equivalent to standard pressure 9mm.



I carry a .380 fairly often, but I've never seen a .380 load remotely as powerful as 9x19.

Standard .380 loads develop about 200 ft-lbs of energy. The .380 +P loads I've seen (Cor-Bon) seem to be about 220 ft-lbs of energy. Winchester USA whitebox 9mm ammo is about 300 ft-lbs, as I recall. Cor-Bon's better +P loads are 450-466 ft-lbs.

I must have missed the hot .380 loads. Won't you tell us where to get a .380 round that delivers 300 ft-lbs of energy? It would sure increase MY confidence in .380.



Actually, I was comparing velocity. I guess I should have been clear on that. Out of my Hi-Power S&B 115 gr. hits about 975 fps 10ft. from the muzzle. The Sig P232 will shoot Cor-Bons up to 950 fps and a handload (one of Ken Waters' handloads, can't remember the exact load now, but I can look it up in my journal) that skates on the danger line to 995fps (deviation was 10 fps if I remember correctly). Of course, I forgot to factor in bullet weight when comparing the 9mm to the .380 because I rarely sit down and figure out the energy of a cartridge I'm loading. The handload was using 90 gr. JHPs, much lighter than the 115 gr. FMJ in the S&B 9mm loads.
Link Posted: 2/13/2002 7:00:45 PM EDT
I have a Browning BDA-380. Bought mine used with pachmyer grips and (2) 13rnd magazines. I feel this is an undervalued pistol at this time. I see these for sale for about $200. I picked up an additional (2) magazines (13rounders) for $15 each at a gun show about a year ago.

OSA
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