I've never actually seen one up close. They're supposed to be as good as the regualar 380. Theres a good write up on www.gunblast.com about it.
This is a discussion on Bersa .380 within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I've read reviews about the Bersa Thunder .380 CC model. This model is smaller and lighter than the standard Thunder. Has anyone had experience with ...
I've read reviews about the Bersa Thunder .380 CC model. This model is smaller and lighter than the standard Thunder. Has anyone had experience with this model or seen it anywhere for sale? Have had zero luck trying to locate one.
I got one of the first ones to hit the market last May thru a "friend" who works for Bersa. I posted a review on the Bersa Talk forum, but I'll repost most of it here, along with some updated info. As for the gun itself, it gets good marks (mostly) and a few negatives. First the good..
The 380CC seems as well made as all the other Bersa's I've used and the fit & finish are excellent. It is tight (it doesn't rattle and all parts are tightly mated to one another) and all the parts are snug and well finished with no obvious tool marks. It's noticably lighter, has a smaller grip and is smaller over-all than my T-380. It came with one magazine along with a spare my friend included, a trigger lock and the usual paperwork. It has hard plastic grips vs. rubber, has only a raised notch at the front and goove at the rear for sights - think snubby S&W pistol type sights - and has a loaded chamber indicator. The barrel is about 3/4 inch shorter than the standard T-380. Most corners are now rounded off, the trigger is bobbed and the magazines are flat based instead of having a finger groove... they look like the base on my P-3ATmags. There are other minor differences, but they are mainly cosmetic. If you like the current T-380 and want something even lighter and a bit smaller, the CC should suit you. Now for a few negatives...
The magazine release button was too small/set too low for me to use easily, at least initially, though my wife seems to have no problems (probably due to her smaller finger). The original T-380's release button is about 1/16" longer and sticks out far enough to make it much easier to use. The one on the CC is also smooth, unlike the T-380's which has checking, requiring more effort to depress it fully. For someone with large hands - my hands are "average" and my wife's small - and fingers, this made it more difficult to eject the magazine, then reload a new one with any speed. I've been working with it and after a good cleaning (I removed it and cleaned off the excess oil) and ejecting the mags about 100 times, it did get easier to use. My wife actually thinks it's much easer to work than I still do, but she has smaller fingers and I guess it's easier for her to depress the button all the way in. With practice and use, I'm sure the mag release will be easier to use, but it could still be a bit longer/bigger. BTW, the original factory mag release button fits the CC and I'd recommend that if you have larger fingers, buy a T-380 mag release (they only cost a few dollars) and replace the smaller CC release with the longer T-380 button.
The only other "difficulty" I've had is with the safety/decocker. It was VERY tight when I first began to use it. I actually made a small blister on my finger trying to work it. I've seen this same problem with a few other Bersa's and most usually loosen up with use, so it may just be an individual gun quirk. Like the mag release button, it became easier to use after I cleaned the gun and worked the release lever MANY times. My wife wasn't able to work the lever at first it was so tight, but now she doesn't seem to have any problem with it, like the mag relase. Maybe I'm just doing something wrong or my touch isn't as "deilcate" as hers!
I've fired a bit over 150 rounds (156 to be exact) of the following mix... a) 100 rds of WWB ball, b) 20 rds of Federal Personal Defense 90gr JHP, c) 20 rds of PMC Starfire 95gr JHP, d) 16 rds of 95gr ball reloads. I've had 1 (one) malfunction, a FTFeed. It was rd #17, a WWB load. It hung up about half way into the chamber as it was being fed. I removed the round, reloaded it into the magazine, re-chambered the round and it fired with no other problems. There were no additional misfires, FTF/FTE or other related problems with the gun. At 10', the CC shot a few inches low and to the left of point of aim (POA). At 25', it shot about 1" low and left of POA. With practice, I'm sure I'll be able to do even better. All shot's at both distances were grouped in a 3"-4" area. The felt recoil was no worse than with the standard T-380 and it was just as easy to hold, even with the smaller grip. With some use, the CC mag release button has gotten easier to use, but it's still not as easy as the T-380 release button. The gun shows no signs of wear and looks just like new. For anyone who already has a T-380, the Houston holster and others I have for my regular T-380 also fit the 380CC model. Since the only real difference between the standard T-380 and the 380CC is in the slightly smaller barrel, sights and grip, there is no affect on the holsters ability to hold the gun.
I was able to use T-380 magazines in the CC if I depressed the ejection button while I pushed in the magazine. This was necessary with three (3) different factory T-380 mags I used, but they did work when installed and the extended finger grip of the standard magazine did make the pistol easier for me to control the gun. FYI, the CC magazines worked in the standard T-380 with no problem at all.
Anyway, aside from the tight safety/decock lever and magazine release (both HAVE become easier to use with a little time, a good cleaning and some use), my wife and I are both impressed with the over-all design and fit/finish of the T-380CC. As for the price, I can't give you a realistic amount on that. I got it through a "connection" at a substantial discount, so I wouldn't feel right saying what it cost me out of pocket. However, I did see one for sale this past weekend at a local gun show (4-5 Aug in E.Texas) for $239. It was the matte blue model.
My wife seems to like the CC model even better than the regular T-380 I have. It fit's her hand a little better due to the smaller grip, and is a bit lighter and smaller over-all than the normal T-380. Her main carry gun is a Lady Smith, 5 shot, .38spl she's had for MANY years. She's recently been looking for a gun about the same size, but with a greater bullet capacity to replace it. I think she now has her eyes set on the new 380CC as the replacement! If she is any indication, women should make up a large percentage of the future buyers of the CC.
The 380CC is not a target pistol, but is reasonably accurate - especially for a gun designed as a personal defense, close range weapon - and it's of a good size and weight. It's not too small, making it hard to hold and control like some of the "micro" pistols, but is small enough to be easily carried and concealed. It has a much more solid feel and is much easier to operate and field strip than the other popular 380, K-T's P-3AT, I own. So far, I am favorably impressed and have seen no major problems or design features that might cause a problem in the future other than possibly the need for a slightly longer/larger mag release button for people with larger fingers.
Last edited by rachilders; August 9th, 2006 at 12:11 PM.
"... Americans... we want a safe home, to keep the money we make and shoot bad guys." -- Denny Crane
Thanks for the replies, especally rachilders for the excellent info. This pistol is going to be for my wife, so your post helped alot. Thanks again.
What's your screen name supposed to mean??? I don't get it.
www.ubgholsters.com short wait times. Use 'defensivecarry' as a coupon code for a discount to your order.
Thanks for the link and the positive reviews!
I'm taking the day off and running down to Columbus tomorrow to buy a Thunder - we'll see, but I'm leaning toward the new CC.
(This has been in the works for a few weeks - the timing of this thread couldn't be more perfect! )
It's not about the caliber you carry, it's about how you USE it.
1988 DIE HARD 2008
Great post rachilders!!
Bersa 380 Thunder
...a few others
Texas XD Practical Shooters Association