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Just how small can you go and still have a viable, reliable self defense tool. That is the question that drove me to try a small American made 32acp pistol. I have purchased a few 32acp's over the years and none of them seemed to be a solution to me. The Beretta Tomcat is an overpriced lead thrower, and I mean a lead thrower, much beyond 10 feet and the bad trigger and challenging ergo's make it a pretty, but not easy to shoot pistol. I tried the European versions of 32acp's , CZ 70, CZ50, and a PEG all have a similar design , long gritty triggers , overweight for the task and not that great for anyone who isn't very familiar with pistol shooting and has time to really practice. Of course the blowback design of those versus the locked breach of the Kel-Tec is worth considering. They are all reliable , except for the used/surplus magazines.
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My other metric for choosing the Kel-Tec is , I need my small caliber pistols to be easy to shoot for older kids, and ladies with small hands. I like to step up in size when training new shooters. We start with air soft, then BB, then 22LR, then move to centerfire pistols. This 32 makes a nice first step up, followed by 380 and so on. I had reservations about purchasing a Kel-Tec (note the Sub 2000 debacle that Texheim shared a few years ago, and the recent recall I posted up a few minutes ago) as well as lots of internet complaints in general. But the reviews for the P32 mostly are good. So when Sportsmans guide put them on sale for $169 I jumped.
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The first thing you should do is put a dab of white paint on the front sight, and get mag extensions. The combination of those two upgrades make this little wonder a decent range toy, and would help if ever used for self defense. I won't go into the debate about the usefulness of the 32acp round, better than a short stick for sure. It's performance today on my range was encouraging enough , that I would carry it in certain circumstances as a backup.
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This is how the P32 looked after 50 rounds of Fiocchi range ammo. Everything cleaned up nicely except the bore, that took what I would consider more work than it should have, Fiocchi ammo is kinda dirty so I will blame the ammo. So lets go over the specs:Unloaded weight is 6.6 oz's, loaded with 7 rounds of 73 grn ammo 10.1 oz's. Length is 5.1", height is 3.5", width is .75". The barrel is 2.7" long, and the stated trigger pull should have been 5lbs per their web page. I am not sure what Kel-Tec is thinking here, but after 50 rounds I measure the trigger pull average at 6.5 lbs. There is a 3/4 inch long smooth pull until you hit a spongy wall, but a good break. The reset is all the way out, but not hard to learn how to use it. I did not short stroke the trigger today.
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The P32 is a blast to shoot. Recoil is very light, ergo's using the mag extensions are pretty good. I could have shot it all afternoon , but alas I only brought out 50 rounds. There were no failures today, it just kept on chugging along.
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I was able to get a pretty good target run with it, thanks to the painted front sight and extended magazines. 7 yards is probably a bit long for accuracy, and it takes a bit to figure out where to put your trigger finger to get it to shoot POA. But it is doable. I enjoyed my time with this 32 cricket , and am adding it to my training stable. This Kel-Tec seems to be a good one so far....
 

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That's a great review and good points.
I've on occasion was going to go with the P32 and just went a different way due to personal choices. That is a fine pistol you have there.

There is a .32 ACP pistol contingent here at TaurusArmed.Net and they'll be jumping in momentarily. :) I'm on the .32 ACP bandwagon as well.
 

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I enjoy the PT132Pro, but it is quite a bit bigger. I would have liked to have a PT732, but those are few and far between on the used market. It's too bad they didn't make a .32 caliber pistol on the 708/709/740 Slim frame. It would have been great for your "older kids and ladies" (and, of course, me).

$169 is a pretty good price for a new gun. Maybe I'll look at a Kel-tec!
 

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One aside on the Taurus 732. Leave a search, wish list, or other note at gun online auction sites. That's how I got number two.

I also have the TaurusPT-132 Pro, two of those, a Beretta 81, and a CZ83....all in .32 ACP.

I still keep the Kel-Tec P32 in mind.
 

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silverstring- nice review and great points. Add me to the list of satisfied P-32 owners. Was EDC for me at one time. About the easiest thing to conceal and carry. Once I stopped carrying it EDC sold my pair off to fund other purchase.
 

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I will agree the P32 is a decent carry gun, I owned one for years. I had much better luck with the P32 than the pair of P3ATs I owned which were very prone to problems. The P32 at least worked reliably, I am not a fan of Keltec in general but the P32 was OK.
 

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Yes, a good review. Thanks. I was seriously thinking about the Keltec .32 because a local big store had one for $149.

I've had Keltec pistols before, and while I'm pleased with their functional quality (for such a low priced gun), I wasn't impressed with their durability. My P 11 9mm had too many broken parts and worn springs by 2000 rounds. The .32 might have better longevity though, because it has less power and recoil, so probably less wear and tear.

But I'm not sure I believe that the .32 is too low powered to be effective, as some people say. I also have the CZ 50 you mentioned, and it feels like it has some oomph. More than you'd think. Maybe not like a .380 or .38 special, but it's still going to do some damage at closer ranges.
 

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have both the P32 and PAT3. find both to be just what they are supposed to be. very concealable very light pistols that you have no excuse for carrying. The P32 was designed to chamber anything and in IMHO, succeeded. My P3AT may be a bit more ammo sensitive but not by much. shoot a couple magazines of what you want to carry to make sure the gun and magazines are happy with the ammo you decide to use.
Biggest issue is people buying one for their wife( and this goes for any of the small pistols), then finding the wife can't retract the slide. proper technique can often alleviate the issue, but i have had poor results with getting the women in my life to actually do the "grip slide with the left and punch with the right" technique. they also often treat the gun as something delicate instead of a robust tool that you can't break with your hands.
 
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