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I chose the .380 over the .32 because it is a larger, more powerful round, and as such has a bit more stopping power.

In my opinion...
9mm is the smallest true self-defense round.
.380 is just under that, but may be OK if used well.
.32 and smaller is just too small to trust for self-defense, unless you have no other choice.
 

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Hard to answer "other than caliber" when caliber is the biggest part of it.

To me, they are practically the same weapon (size, price and design). The little extra's like a slide stop or more rounds don't make up for the difference in caliber.

Kind of like someone buying a first SD gun in a glock. If they wanted a sub-compact I could not understand buying a 26 instead of a 27. But that's just me.

-Scott
 

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i have owned both calibers and bigger is better, buy i think the 9mm. is a better choice , not much
bigger in size, if you use the correct amno the .380
cal. is ok .if you need a smaller pocket pistol. i'am looking at making one of these my next cary gun wnen i can't carry my 1911..
GI45... ::) ::)
 

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mkgarrison5 said:
just curious...  what are the differences other than caliber?? snappy recoil??
I miss the slide lock on my first Kel-Tec, a P-32, but the cost of ammo (locally) and the chance of rim lock made the .32 caliber unattractive.

I was also not impressed with the power of the smaller round. Yes, the .380 is relatively low power compared to .45 ACP or even .40 S&W, but the my P-32 could hardly penetrate light sheet metal, let alone any of the obstacles in the real world.

Still, a P-32 is better than no gun at all. ::)

TucsonMTB . . . who doesn't mind the recoil of a .380
 

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my feeling is that you should carry the largest caliber COMFORTABLY...i front pocket...the 380 is a perfict fit for size/weight....i would do 32naa, given the chance.... ;D...gpr
 

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mkgarrison5 said:
i have been looking at the 3At's used.. what kind of issues have plagued this style? i know the peening but there is washer that corrects this right? how much??
The peening issue is new, or at least I saw no mention of it until recently, so an older, used P-3AT probably does not have this problem, but look anyway.

Before Kel-Tec started doing it at the factory, many people polished or filed a concave surface into the face of the feed ramp.  If the one you buy shoots well and does not beat up the front edge of the magazine or put severe "smilies" on your bullets, you can ignore that too.

In general, most "problems" have been the result of not holding the pistol firmly enough to prevent muzzle flip from interrupting the ejection process.  Because the gun is so small, you and your hands are an important part of the firing system.  This is usually a learning process that concludes about the time the gun is broken in.  Suddenly, it becomes 100% reliable to the new owner's amazement.  ::)

Lubrication is also an important part of the frequent cleaning regimen most of us follow.

You can find reference to all these issues in old posts here.  It's fun reading too, so look around.  8)

TucsonMTB . . . who owns two reliable P-3AT's
 

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One advantage of the P3AT over the P32, you can swab the barrel with a twisted paper towel, where the P32 bore is a little small and harder to do so.
 

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Differences:
Size: No noticeable difference
Wgt: No noticeable difference
Carry: No noticeable difference
Function: 3AT does not have a slide stop. 32 does.
Recoil: 3AT has noticeable recoil. 32 does not.
Cost: Guns about the same at the same dealer. .380 ammo cheaper.
Power: 3AT about double muzzle energy compared to .32
Misc: .32 HP ammo subject to rim lock.
 

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FWM said:
.380 ammo cheaper.
Power: 3AT about double muzzle energy compared to .32
Misc: .32 HP ammo subject to rim lock.
I agree with everything else.  I find 32 cal just about the same price as 380.  Certainly 380 is no where near double the muzzle energy of 32 cal.  Rimlock is not an issue really.  If you carry JHP, use a Flyerwire or KT spacer.  Another good option is a JHP in the chamber and another on top of the mag, followed by FMJ rounds.  This loading does not risk rimlock even without a spacer.  It also hedges your bet somewhat.  

In addition to the slide stop, the P32 has a 7 rd mag with a +1 option giving you 9 in the small package.  While not available for the P3AT, the P32's 10 rd mag is nice at the range or also if you carry a spare mag, that would be a good one.  And yes, there is that slide lock.

The VAST majority of the parts for the two guns are shared.  I think the P32 is a little kinder and gentler on them.   8)

Here are the Corbon standard JHP rounds for 32 acp and 380 acp + the DPX round in 380.

32 AUTO
60 GR. JHP  
1050 FPS
147 FTLBS
2.5" barrel

380 AUTO
80 GR. DPX
1050 FPS
196 FTLBS

380 AUTO
90 GR. JHP  
1050FPS
220FTLBS
2.5" barrel

I can't recall ever walking around with my P32 thinking, gee, I feel under-gunned.  I wish I had my P3AT.   ;)

Can you tell I like the P32?
I like the P32NAA too.   8)

32NAA
60 GR. JHP  
1150 FPS
176 FTLBS
2.5" barrel  
 

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"I can't recall ever walking around with my P32 thinking, gee, I feel under-gunned. I wish I had my P3AT."

For some reason that strikes me as pretty funny.
 

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With the hammer spring having broken on my P3-AT last week and KT a bit slow in sending out a new one, I for one do feel a bit undergunned with my P-32. The impression that the P3-AT is much harder hitting is undeniable when you shoot both side by side. 220 ft lbs. is 67% more than 147 ft. lbs.

I've been carrying the P-11 in a JIT slide for the past week but it is certainly not always convenient to do so.

Anxiously awaiting the little yellow envelope from KT CNC.
 

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GMax said:
220 ft lbs. is 67% more than 147 ft. lbs.
220 is for the old 90 gr Corbon JHP.  I don't think too many folks are carrying that these days.  Most 380 rounds tend to be in the 200 ft lb range, or less.  The DPX (very popular) is only 197 ft lbs... not so a huge difference.  Personally, I think most bad guys are going to cease and desist if shot with anything.  I doubt the difference between 32 and 380 would matter to many who were hit with a few shots placed COM.  But then, shoot me with a good BB gun and I'l leave.   ;D
 
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