My time and opinion of the Kahr CW380
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Thread: My time and opinion of the Kahr CW380

  1. My time and opinion of the Kahr CW380

    I purchased my Kahr CW380 in April of 2014 to not only fill my love of small handguns, but primarily as a deep concealment gun with a locked breech and compromise between size and caliber.

    I will not go into the prep and other things about the gun, but I will go into what I found.

    First and foremost, the gun is a light recoiling gun for a small package. It is very accurate.

    In firing about 1000rds of various loads, the gun had many failures to chamber, mainly failures to feed with bullets nose diving in the magazine, or getting hung up on the ramp to the chamber. A handful of lightstrikes. A less important note, the gun repeatedly would not lock open on an empty magazine.
    On a critical note, after about 700 rds, the striker broke.
    I was determined to like this small gun, but it just wasn't reliable for defense at all. More concerning than the feed issues, was the fear of the striker breaking again at a critical time.
    Well I set the gun aside, but I didn't give up hope. The broken striker issue was not an isolated incident to my pistol alone. Several people had the striker break. Kahr Arms just shrugged off the issue. In my mind, it was curtains for the little gun. This, in my opinion poorly designed striker, made of (MIM metal injected molded) material was an undeniable Achilles Heel. The gun was to be relegated to range status, or more than likely to be sold off.
    I was pretty bummed, as I had high hopes for this accurate little pistol.

    I almost wrote the Kahr CW380 off completely, but while surfing the net I came upon a part that would be exactly what I wished for. A small company redesigned the two pieces that make up the critical parts of the striker, fixing the critical flaw, and this time, the parts were made not from liquid metal, but from S7 steel, and for under $40.

    I couldn't believe it. The parts that arrived looked like works of art.

    I began working with the pistol again. I found that the feeding issues, at least in my pistol's case are due to bullet shape. Round or flat nose bullets feed only so well, while conical shaped bullets feed flawlessly, as they provide little friction in the magazine, and are better suited to chamber from the offset feedramp.

    Holding my breath, the gun ran 50, then 100rds without an issue, well other than the now occasional failure to lockback, but the gun runs as I had hoped in the beginning. My primary carry load is 95GR HPR conical hollow points.

    Once again I feel confident in the reliability of this tiny pocket gun.

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  3. I have the Kahr 380 and had considerable issues with rounds not fully seating in the chamber, I used a dremel and polished the feed ramp and barrel several times, now the rounds seat properly and the slide closes as it should. Who is the small company the made the "two pieces that make up the critical parts" ????
    The gun is really accurate and easy to carry.
    Divelight
    NRA Endowment

  4. Quote Originally Posted by divelight View Post
    I have the Kahr 380 and had considerable issues with rounds not fully seating in the chamber, I used a dremel and polished the feed ramp and barrel several times, now the rounds seat properly and the slide closes as it should. Who is the small company the made the "two pieces that make up the critical parts" ????
    The gun is really accurate and easy to carry.
    Divelight
    NRA Endowment
    I did not want to seem like my thread was an advertisement for them so I didn't include the name. They are LakelineLLC. It's funny, when Kahr showed no interest in resolving the issue other than sending me a new MIM striker, I had little hope of anyone making an aftermarket improved striker. When I heard about the Lakeline one, I thought it would be $75-$90. I have been presently surprised all the way around. I was shocked it was only $35.
    I have not polished anything yet, but I think that new recoil springs every 500rds would be a good idea.

    I reload .380 acp and have been looking into just buying conical bullets to load. The Hornady bullets are what are used in the HPR hollow points that I have been buying from Sportsman's Warehouse for $29/ for 50rds. Great performers for a good price in my opinion for defensive rounds. I have a ton of brass though for range practice. I may load up some conical bullets.
    I still shoot general FMJ and WWB, but expect the feed issues described in my former post.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    North Western Oregon
    Posts
    139
    Well I have one and did not fire it much. I fired 14 rounds of PMC Bronze with surprising accuracy, also Geco and Underwood worked well, but it hated Fiocchi, I have not been back to shoot it again after cleaning and relubing it. It was comfortable to shoot compared to my two LCP's, but the LCP's are pretty accurate and eat everything reliably. I will try to find this new striker too. (Edit found and ordered it, thanks) I don't reload, but the Underwood ammo used Hornady XTP bullets, a conical design. Meanwhile I have ordered a new Ruger LCP II
    Last edited by Pandaz3; 10-14-2016 at 10:39 PM. Reason: Add info

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    North Western Oregon
    Posts
    139
    I did install the new striker and Guide rod in the CW-380. It still does not like Fiocchi ammo, but it shoots any carry ammo I have tried. Now I only need find my spare magazine to return it to a carry gun. I am confident in it. I also got the new LCP II and like it. Not a huge leap from my LCP Custom but yet a good improvement.

  7. I have the cw .380 probably 5 or 600 rounds through it without a real problem... A couple misdeeds when it was dirty but nothing significant. Don't carry it much since I got the lc9s pro.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    North Western Oregon
    Posts
    139
    I am willing to carry my CW-380 now (But no Fiocchi) I believe it is reliable with my carry ammunition, but so is my LCP II. The CW-380 is slightly softer shooting and slightly more accurate than the LCP II. The LCP II eats anything.

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