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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I forgot how much I love my Cheetah! It really is a great gun, and if .380 ammo weren't so much more expensive than 9mm, I'd certainly shoot it more often. Recently, I got a Taurus PT-58S to go along with it, since they are sort of like long lost cousins, and This is how they compare.



For starters, let me clear up one discrepancy. This review is slightly unfair, as my 84F has wonderful Pachmayr grips on it. They really are fantastic. This unfairness is exacerbated by the fact that the PT-58S grips are extremely hard to find, and as far as I know, nobody makes aftermarket grips for them. So I guess this point still goes to the Beretta, since it is even possible to buy new grips for it. Now, on to dimensions.

As you can tell from the pictures, the Taurus is the bigger gun. Despite this, it holds only 12 rounds, vs 13. The 13th round will fit in the magazine, but the magazine won't lock into place this way without the slide back.



The overall length of the Taurus is about 7 inches, whereas the Beretta is a little over 6.5 inches. Slide thickness on the Taurus is 1.1 inches, and the Beretta is 1.06 inches. Overall height of the Taurus is 5.1 inches, and overall height of the Beretta is 4.8 inches. Grip width on the Taurus is 1.36 inches, and the Beretta (with Pachmayr grips) is 1.44 inches. This dimension surprises me, as the Beretta actually *feels* smaller in my hand, even though it is clearly not. I don't have a scale reliable enough to weigh them, but empty, the Beretta feels slightly lighter.

When I bought the Taurus PT-58S, I thought it was a Cheetah clone. While I'm sure it was designed to compete with the Cheetah, it is anything but a clone. Almost every component comes from it's big brother, the PT-92/99.



The grip comes from the PT-92C Compact. Ironically, the PT-92C can carry 13 rounds of 9mm, whereas the PT-58 in .380 can only carry 12. The slides are the same thickness. The grip is the same thickness. They have the same trigger. Same trigger bar. Same safety, slide release lever, slide release, hammer, magazine release... it really is a bit of a marvel that Taurus made such a different firearm with so many shared parts. The Cheetah, on the other hand, shares absolutely nothing with the Beretta 92. It is definitely the better engineered firearm, being completely designed from the ground up for .380, but Taurus achieved 85% of what Beretta did at half cost, that's quite something.

As for fit and finish, it's kinda hard to say, as the Taurus was made in 1990, and the Beretta was made in 1991. Both were carried, that is easy to tell, but the finish is more noticeably worn on the Taurus. Is that because it was carrier more? Hard to say, but the finish on the Beretta certainly seems thicker. Other than the finish, both guns are extremely well made. I'd trust my life to either one without question. So, how do they shoot?



Pretty much equal! I shot two magazines worth of the Beretta at the head of the target, and two magazines of the Taurus at center mass. The target was at 15 yards, and I shot relatively rapid, at about 1 shot per second. The grouping on the Beretta might be a little tighter, but the Taurus would get the job equally done. The biggest difference I noted was that the Taurus has a much sharper kick to it, whereas the Beretta shot very smoothly. The other major difference is that the PT-58S has no decocker, so it can be carried cocked and locked, whereas the 85F decocks when you apply the safety, making it impossible to carry cocked and locked. I'm not a huge fan of Condition 1 carry, as I eventually find the safety inadvertently off on every pistol I've ever tried it with, but I know others like it.

So, I got pretty much the same impression from the PT-58 vs 84F comparison as I got from the PT-99 vs 92FS comparison, being that Taurus is a great cheaper alternative to the Beretta pistol. Only difference being that I like the uniqueness of the PT-58. It's different enough from anything else in my collection that I plan to hold on to it, at least until I find a nicer version of it!

 

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Check this place for replacement grips:

https://www.shoptaurus.com/pistol-grips

You might also investigate the Bersa Thunder Plus. It's a 15+1 .380 that resembles a Walther PPK and is similarly priced as the PT-58.
 
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I had always thought the 58 was an 84 clone too. Thanks for the comparison.
 

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I have the nickel 85....the 7 rounder. Absolutely great shooter. Also have 2 of the Thunder Plus models (3 others). I probably carry a Thunder Plus more than any other gun.

Edit: always wanted the 58....never found one when I had moolah.
 

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Time to start hand loading when your favorite rounds are priced too high. The adoption of the 45 ACP started me on my journey.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Check this place for replacement grips:

https://www.shoptaurus.com/pistol-grips

You might also investigate the Bersa Thunder Plus. It's a 15+1 .380 that resembles a Walther PPK and is similarly priced as the PT-58.
Thanks for the tip! I ordered a set of these for my PT-58:



I used to have the single stack Thunder .380. It was a great gun, but I sold it to help fund my Beretta 84F purchase. I still have a soft spot in my heart for the Thunder .380, but I don't think I'll be buying another one. The Plus would be an ideal .380 carry pistol, but my Sig P938 and Remington R51 have that position covered in spades. My next carry gun will almost certainly be the Sig P365.

I have the nickel 85....the 7 rounder. Absolutely great shooter. Also have 2 of the Thunder Plus models (3 others). I probably carry a Thunder Plus more than any other gun.

Edit: always wanted the 58....never found one when I had moolah.
I want to get a Surplus Beretta 85F eventually. My Beretta 87BB fit's my hand perfectly, so the 85F likely would as well.


Time to start hand loading when your favorite rounds are priced too high. The adoption of the 45 ACP started me on my journey.
I have everything I need to start reloading but the dies. And time. Time is the big one. =\

This begs the question....does a PT92c magazine fit in the PT58???
Great question! But I would definitely bet no. The PT-58 magazine isn't long enough to load a 9mm bullet into, and the mag well of the PT-58 is cut to accommodate the .380 magazine.
 

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Nice side by side comparison. I always assumed that the PT58 was a straight up clone of the Beretta 84, so seeing them compared side by side was educational as well as interesting.

I'm rather fond of the .380 ACP cartridge, but never quite warmed up to the modern Micro .380 pistols, and prefer older designs which provide a full grip. Most folks say that older .380 pistols are too big/heavy for the cartridge and make the argument that there are modern 9mm pistols of equal size/weight, but testing I've seen performed between the .380 ACP and 9mm Luger out of similar sized pistols left me underwhelmed, so I just couldn't see buying a whole new firearm for what appeared to be a marginal increase in performance.

Still, I can see the appeal of a smaller 9mm pistol, and if I didn't already own a .380 pistol that I was satisfied with, then I might even go for something like a Ruger EC9. I chipped in to get my brother a new lightweight carry pistol to replace his current carry gun, a S&W Model 10, (which while it is a gorgeous, reliable, and adequate firearm for carry, is undeniably big/heavy) for Christmas this year. I walked into my favorite gunshop intending to get him a .380 pistol like an LCP, but ended up walking out with a lightly used LC9S because it just plain fit the hand nicely, and at 17oz it's more than light enough for EDC. Needless to say, my brother loved it, and I honestly like it too. It's about the same size as my PPK/S in .380 ACP, but it's significantly lighter, and chambered in a more potent cartridge. Still, I'm satisfied with my PPK/S for now. That said, if Ruger were to make say an LC/EC40, (i.e. an LC9/EC9 chambered in .40 S&W) then I could see getting one as replacement.

Oops, guess I went off on a bit of a tangent there... Sorry. What I was trying to say is that I prefer a .380 pistol which is big enough to get a full, firm grip on, even if they are rather big/heavy, ergo stuff like the Beretta 84 and even the larger PT58 appeal to me.
 

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Nice comparison OP! I don't have the Taurus version of your comparison, but I do have the Beretta...mine was made in 1993, and it is a great shooter, but I don't carry it much for I don't want it beat up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I just remembered another important comparison between the two guns! Especially if you are looking for a full frame .380 for your wife. As anyone who has owned one knows, the Beretta 84F is a bit of a bear to pull the slide back, but the PT-58C is the same as pulling the slide back on a 92.
 

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Excellent review and comparison. I have been eyeing a surplus 84F for awhile, may go ahead and take the leap now.
 

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This begs the question....does a PT92c magazine fit in the PT58???
That is an excellent question. I do know they share the same grips.

I will have to dig out a mag and post some measurements for the 92C mag if someone will do the same with the 58.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
Excellent review and comparison. I have been eyeing a surplus 84F for awhile, may go ahead and take the leap now.
Grab it! If I could only own one, it would still be the 84F, but I’m glad I can own both. :D Mine was a third hand surplus, far cheaper than a brand new one, and still has about a 95% finish, so if you get the right one it’s a killer deal. There are a lot of 85F surplus pistols floating around too, for less than $400. I’ve been insanely tempted to get one, but other projects, and impulse purchases like this one, have been consuming most of my money

This begs the question....does a PT92c magazine fit in the PT58???
That is an excellent question. I do know they share the same grips.

I will have to dig out a mag and post some measurements for the 92C mag if someone will do the same with the 58.
I’ll be glad to post up the measurements of the 58C magazines for comparison. While I don’t think they’ll fit, I’d be glad to be proven wrong. 🙂
 

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That is an excellent question. I do know they share the same grips.

I will have to dig out a mag and post some measurements for the 92C mag if someone will do the same with the 58.
PT92C mag dimensions as promised. 4.5" X 0.808" X 1.258" The length is from the top of the mag to the base plate measured from the back.
 

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Yeah I believe those grips would look better on my PT92C. Good job.
 

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Nice comparison OP! I don't have the Taurus version of your comparison, but I do have the Beretta...mine was made in 1993, and it is a great shooter, but I don't carry it much for I don't want it beat up.
?????

Why buy something you won’t carry? I’ve got > $1100 invested in my Sig UltraCompact 1911 .45 ACP; this includes the gun, CT LaserGrips and a nice OWB leather holster. This is the most I’ve got in ANY gun I own but I carry it nearly daily (6 out of 7 days of the week, at least) because “it’s a great shooter, it’s accurate if I do my job, it feels good in the hands and isn’t so heavy that it presents an EDC burden”. If it gets a nick here or there - that’s OK. It bought it (as I do nearly ALL my Handguns) with the intent to carry it. And I have zero intent to ever consider trading or selling it. If I’m involved in a defensive shooting, and survive, and it’s confiscated for evidence - that’s OK, too. It means it worked as intended. In previous posts I’ve compared the money I have invested in it, and all my guns that I carry often, to premium payments for life insurance . . . . or homeowners insurance. We recently made the last payment on our home mortgage; if something happens to the house, it’s a lot cheaper to replace/rebuild via insurance than to start over with that again. Not meaning to come across as preachy - just inquisitive as to how you decide what to carry.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
?????

Why buy something you won’t carry? I’ve got > $1100 invested in my Sig UltraCompact 1911 .45 ACP; this includes the gun, CT LaserGrips and a nice OWB leather holster. This is the most I’ve got in ANY gun I own but I carry it nearly daily (6 out of 7 days of the week, at least) because “it’s a great shooter, it’s accurate if I do my job, it feels good in the hands and isn’t so heavy that it presents an EDC burden”. If it gets a nick here or there - that’s OK. It bought it (as I do nearly ALL my Handguns) with the intent to carry it. And I have zero intent to ever consider trading or selling it. If I’m involved in a defensive shooting, and survive, and it’s confiscated for evidence - that’s OK, too. It means it worked as intended. In previous posts I’ve compared the money I have invested in it, and all my guns that I carry often, to premium payments for life insurance . . . . or homeowners insurance. We recently made the last payment on our home mortgage; if something happens to the house, it’s a lot cheaper to replace/rebuild via insurance than to start over with that again. Not meaning to come across as preachy - just inquisitive as to how you decide what to carry.
I buy lots of guns I will probably never carry. Heck, most of the guns I buy aren't for carry. :dunno:

Though I must say, if you want a Cheetah for carry, you're better off buying a surplus for <$400 versus a new one for >$700.
 

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I have an 84BB and an 85, both israeli surplus guns in excellent condition. The seller of the 84 listed it as "good-very good", but with a little cleanup (It was beyond nasty), it looks great, about 95% of the original finish and the only thing I did was replace the recoil spring in both of them. I always thought the PT58 was an 84 clone, too.
 
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