Pawn Shop Circuit: Bad Guns
Today, I swung into Kenny's Pawn Shop to see what was on the shelves. He had a Smith & Wesson M&P (the new plasticky kind) a couple of Glocks, and a Springfield XD compact. Among his little guns was an Iver Johnson 25 caliber pistol that resembled a Walther PPK, and a well worn Charter Arms Undercover for $129. What grabbed my interest though was a stainless AMT pocket pistol, the AMT Back-Up. I remember years ago when these were a staple among the police. I looked it over and asked Kenny if it came with an extra magazine. It did not. One mag only.
I'm not too interested in shooting another caliber, and the pistol would not carry any easier than a J frame in my pocket, or my Colt Defender on my hip. Three-eighty is some expensive ammunition to practice with too. I got rid of my .380 pistols years ago. I am not that familiar with AMT, but I have not heard a lot of good things about them. In fact, the usual range cussing would be the opposite. Still, it was a classic back-up gun. Kenny was wanting $239 for the flat little pistol, but I decided I should do a bit of research first.
When I got home, a quick Google search revealed my suspicions. Here is a sampling from The High Road, from people I correspond with and respect:
The early guns had SERIOUS safety flaws, in that the safety was "off" after the lever had moved less than 10% of its entire length of travel.
As far as AMT goes, let me just say that during the last 40 years well over 300 guns of various makes and models have passed through my collection. Only two stand out in my mind as truly BAD guns. One was the original 380 Backup (SA) and the other was the 45 Backup (DAO). Both were such total POS that throwing them into the Atlantic Ocean could be considered environmental pollution.
If it says AMT on the slide, there's a 50/50 chance that the gun will be either trouble-free or not run at all. The AMT Backup seems to be the worst offender of the line.
At $169, that AMT 380 is about $170 over priced! If it was thrown in with a trade or came along w/ some cash, maybe! It would depend on the main gun in the trade, what I was giving up & how much cash!Sorry Kenny, I won't be back after that one. Maybe the Undercover...... If the price drops.
AVOID IT! AVOID IT! AVOID IT!
Labels: Pawn Shop Circuit