Times are tight. But in truth, that’s nothing new. A restricted shooting budget is a reality for some of us, if not all of us, at some point or another. Whether its college tuition, a new baby or a less-than-stellar pay grade at work, a skinny wallet may seem like an imposing barrier to obtaining a reliable defensive handgun. Sometimes folks think they have to settle for a cheap, possibly unreliable handgun until their luck changes. Fortunately, that’s not the case.
A variety of gun manufacturers provide affordable, yet reliable, carry gun options. They may not be the fanciest guns on the shelf, and some of them will not last through the thousands of rounds some of the more expensive guns can handle. However, the guns here will fill a pocket, purse or holster, and will provide personal protection at a reasonable price.
- The Bersa Thunder is a self-defense gem that maintains a quiet, but loyal, following here in the United States. It's an impressive pistol for the price, showing excellent craftsmanship and reliability often lacking in affordable imports. It is a better gun than some similar models that cost two or three times as much. The Thunder is a traditional double/single action with an exposed hammer, steel slide and an aluminum alloy frame.
So why should you consider a compact 7+1 single-stack .380 ACP that tips the scale at 20 ounces when tiny little pocket models are available? The Bersa Thunder exhibits such good ergonomics and recoil management. While pocket-rocket .380s can be almost painful to shoot, this pistol is comfortable and easy to manage with plenty of grip to hold on to, not to mention the easy-to-use sights and the smooth, crisp trigger pull.