AMT Back Up 380 Acp
AMT BACK UP 380 ACP
Hello everyone, I'm a new member here, glad to be joining Defensive Carry forums.
I recently inherited a bunch of short and long guns from my father.
This was one that he used to carry in the small of the back in and inside the pants Uncle Mikeís number 10 holster.
He was mostly a revolver man, and this is the only semi-automatic pistol that I knew him to own. I would like to know more about this piece as I havenít seen it in any catalogue.
I do remember shooting it in the country house where we had a range of sorts, when I was ten years old.
The legend in the slide is a little confusing for me, as I grew up hearing my father call all common pistol calibers ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol).
This one is marked as ďCAL 380 9mm KURZĒ
The name is "BackUp" made in Irwindale, CALIF.
It has a circle on the slide's left side and on the frame's right side with the letters AMT.
The frame is marked with Irwindale, CA, and the slide on the right is marked Stainless MADE IN USA.
The pistol takes five cartridges in the magazine. One of the magazines (I have three) has a little finger extension.
The magazine catch is at the bottom of the grip (European style). I have seen the same catch in .25 caliber Browning pistols.
This one has a long grip safety and an internal hammer. The sights are quite small, but their visibility had been enhanced with some white compound that looks like liquid paper (or white-out).
The pistol was fully loaded with one in the chamber and five Winchester ball ammo in the magazine. The one in the chamber was also Winchester, but a silvertip with a big hollow point. The absence of more silvertips in the magazine tells me that my father probably didnít trust the silvertips with their mini-flying ashtray hole to operate properly from the magazine.
The pistol fits tight in the inside-pants holster. There is another holster for it in chamois leather, which seems to have been used a lot.
The pistol is in great shape, properly lubricated and with a clean barrel. Tt seems that for disassembly, it is necessary to remove a roll pin that captures the breech block. This breech block houses a firing pin and also in top. The extractor, the high back of the slide, gives me the idea of a hammer inside the pistol to strike the firing pin in the breech block.
I am curious to know more about this pistol as I donít have any idea for how many years he owned it nor how old is. Also, was this a piece for export from Europe (because the 9 mm and Kurz printed on the slide)?
I carried one back in the 1980s. Not a bad little piece. Keep it cleaned and lubed and it may feed Silvertips. 9MM Kurz is .380 ACP.
Do a Google search on AMT Backup and you'll find a lot of info on the little gun.
IIRC, Arcadia Machine & Tool pieces were well-made back in the day. The gentleman who founded the company passed away perhaps a decade ago. I believe the nameplate has been revived by someone (Kahr, possibly) lately. That older Backup should perform well within the limits of the .380 ACP.
I am no expert on the company, but I have never heard that they imported anything from anywhere.
What a coinkydink! I just ran across one of these for sale and was not even looking for one... Was browsing through for any used basic 1911's when this thing paged by... However this one is in a more popular cartridge size of .45 ACP. Bet this lil somebeach kicks!
Here it is at Buds Gun Shop if anyone might be interested in this oddity. Could be cool to have.
I had the .45 version once. I couldn't hit a barn with it. The trigger pull was so stiff that I used one finger from each hand.
Originally Posted by cphilip
Hehe! Sounds like you couldn't even THROW it and do some hurtin!
Wow, I've never seen one with a grip safety. Also, what is the control, where a mag-release would be on a 1911?
I had two, and they were both straight DAO with heel mag releases set flush in the frame...
My father had one of these things. After he died my brother wanted me to show him how to shot it. took it to the range and and could not get it to fire, only had a slight firing pin dent on the primer. Got it home and reverse engineered it to take it down and found the firing pin hole was plugged with pocket lint from concealed carry, glad dad never had to us it in anger. First point, be sure you maintain your carry piece, detail strip it routinely and function test it at least quarterly even if it means buying range time. Second point, strictly opinion, there are much better designed and constructed economical carry pieces in this caliber and size range. I have disected and repaired 5 AMT products for friends over the years and am not favorable impressed with them several hours of hand finishing the product with diamond stones and prussian blue to gauge fits can make a world of difference as far dependable functioning is concerned on these firearms, should have been done at the factory.
I have one of these in my right front pocket as I type this. In my opinion, it is a fantastic gun. Certainly isn't one of those guns that you will wind up shooting 100 rounds at a time through, but with the right lubrication and cleaning, it will feed just about anything you throw at it. I have had mine for almost two years, and have never had issue with the gun.
Arcadia Machine and Tool (AMT) made these things like tanks. Your description of how to disassemble this gun is right on.
To answer the question posted by Rob72 it is a thumb safety. Up for on, down for off (mine usually stays off when it is in my pocket).
I have only detail cleaned it once. The only other cleanings it gets is a little compressed air and a little oil (running an experiment of sorts). It has gone bang every time I have shot it. The channel sights leave plenty to be desired, but this gun isn't intended to be a bullseye gun either. It is a close range, "Get off me" gun.
Just about everyone I have let shoot the thing has a hard time of it because of the way it ejects mostly. They wind up holding it the way you would normally hold any other gun and get pinged in the head with the brass. That and the little gun lets you feel every bit of recoil the .380 can muster.
I like my little AMT, and don't plan to part with it even though I have been offered as much as $300 for it. The guy was utterly amazed that I didn't take the offer considering he knew that I have a whole $60 tied up in the gun.
Had mine since 1985, and carry it off-duty every chance I get. Fits easy in the front pocket in a "Pager Pal" holster. I shot about 500 rounds, with Win Silver Tips, Mag-Safe, and other HP's without a hitch. Great little BUG to have when I don't want to carry my Sig .40, or the Kahr P45. One thing you might consider is to change all the springs inside. You can get the springs from Numrich Gun Parts.
AMT are good quality firearms. Some have experienced Stainless to Stainless galling problems. That is an issue that can easily be solved by using the more modern and "slightly heavier than oil" Anti-seize lubricants on the rails.
I would suggest Jardine's Extreme.
Nice little gun. Congrats on getting it.
I'm on my third AMT Backup II. I picked my first one up back when I really wasn't old enough (legally) to carry. Acquired it as a gift from my Dad out of a pawn shop. I had to adjust the magazine lips because it didn't feed properly. After that it ate up the ammo. Sold it and regretted it.
So, I picked up another after about 2 years. Great little carry gun. Just disappears. Left it with an ex-girlfriend after we split. Wanted to ensure she stayed safe. Regretted losing it to her through, not necessarily losing her.
Fast forward about five years and I really wanted to find another. This was right before the Kahrs came out. Ran across one in a pawn shop in GA. Snatched it up and haven't let go this time. I don't carry it much anymore, especially since I have Kahr PM9, which is about the same size. But, I won't let go again. It's nice to have around.
This one was really a shooter the last time I shot it. I could pop cans with it easily at 5-7 yards. It is a solid little pistol and if it functions properly it will definitely do its job.
I use to carry it in an Uncle Mike's IWB or in the back pocket of my jeans behind a check book. I also ankle carried it a few times. It may end up with one of my girls when they get older unless I decide to buy them something else, which I most likely will do. Great little gun though.