So, I recently picked up a 1995-ish Ranger-made Walther PPK/S in .380 for $300. A decent deal, since you might get that in trade for 5he Interarms period PPKs. It was not the most comfortable gun to shoot, and they have a reputation (outside of the JB fandom) for being finicky Jam-o-matics. The one I bought, so far, has run through various round nose and hollow points without a single failure to feed or extract. As with the FEG knock-offs I’ve owned (great deals!), the accuracy from the fixed barrel is better than most large semi-autos, and the blowback action is…uncomfortable. This thing was designed to be a .32 (7.65mm), and the .380 is a bit robust for it.

I did immediately start having issues with the safety/decocker activating when shot. Not ideal in a stressful situation. “Excuse me, ol’ boy, but my safety keeps going on. Give us a mo’, would you?”. Not gonna happen. It was a common problem sorted by a Walther BBS search and a internet trip to Numrich for an extractor spring and detent kit and new safety lever. The problem disappeared. Then the light hammer strikes started.

A lot of folks don’t like the heavy double action trigger pull, because they haven’t figured out it’s a safety feature: as woth an old revolver, you don’t accidentally blow you bollocks off while pulling it put of a pocket (which is how you were likely to carry in 1929, when it was designed…) Cock it and shoot, or suffer through the first loooong double-action pull. Trust me, the adrenaline will get the trigger pulled. But a lot of users put in a lighter spring.

DON’T. It messes with the firing pin, and it makes the recoil more stout. Also, don’t cut your damned recoil spring (not a problem here.)

So while checking the trigger spring, I found it was very light. A Wolff spring at the factory 20 lb weight and a set of walnut Herrett grip to replace the plastic ones that broke taking them off, and Rolff (my PPQ is called Gunther) was ready to go back out to the range.

Rolff was fatter in the grip, but that and the heavier trigger spring mitigated a bunch of the harsh recoil. He also was pointing better. So my cheap $300 PPK now has another $150 in it, but it…was…flawless! Three different types of hollow point: no jams, superb accuracy, manageable and now non-painful recoil, and it still drops in my shorts pocket without printing.

Beats the pants off the S&W period PPK/S, which would bruise and cut my hand from the tail they put on it. I figure over the next year, I’ll do the rest of the springs and maybe have the local guy I know refinish him.

(Gunther and Rolff…sounds like a Bavarian confectionary shop.) I have to say that working on the pistol myself has been a good learning experience. The gunsmith I originally got to work on it did f*** all to fix it, so I got back in “company armorer” mode and tore it down after watching a few YouTube vids. It is much more complicated than a modern firearm, but it is beautifully designed and engineered. Going to replace a few more of the springs as I go, but right now, it lovely.