This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
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If you will pardon the pun we wanted to start off our series reviewing firearms with a bang. To do this, we chose one of the most iconic small-caliber handguns around, the Walther PPK/S Cal 22 LR. This is the 22 LR version of the pistol that James Bond uses in most of the Bond movies. Just like the man of mystery himself, the Walther is compact, versatile, and useful in multiple situations.
As with all product reviews, we look at who is the ideal audience for the product. In our firearms reviews, we are categorizing these items into anyone (including first time owners), moderate experience, and experts. The PPK/S falls into the “anyone” category because of its ease of use, competitive prices, and safety features. This earns the PPK/S a 7.5 out of 10 for marketability.
Being a 22 LR pistol, the Walther PPK/S is a great gun to use to practice your skills with the pistol. The ammunition is cheap (relatively). This gives you plenty of ability to go to the range and learn how to shoot (along with getting training on how to properly handle and store your firearm). Therefore as a practice firearm, this gun is excellent.
When it comes to self defense, the gun still holds its own. Many people mock 22 LR as a self defense weapon; however, a 22 can stop an assailant just as well as a larger caliber. The difference is that you have to be more accurate with a 22 shot. This means that you need to practice with your firearm to make sure you can do what you need to do when the time counts.
With a profile of 6″x4″ (unloaded), the Walther PPK is a great gun to carry. With an empty weight of just 1 lb 4 oz (590grams), this is a lightweight tool. Even with a fully loaded clip, you add less than half a pound to the weight of the gun loaded. Even as a secondary (backup) firearm, this does not add much weight to your kit. 8 of 10.
Ease of Use
The PPK/S is a fairly easy firearm to use. The one catch that can confuse first time users is that the first shot is single action, meaning you have to cock the firearm to use it. The safety is right in line with your thumb, so it is easy to click on and off, but in a safe location where you wont bump it accidentally. Likewise, the magazine release is easy to reach and ejects the magazine quite well.
Now, there are a couple of drawback that you should keep in mind – nothing major – but items to think about nonetheless. First, the grip is quite small. If you have small hands, this may be nice for you, but for guys with giant honking hands, you have to watch out for slidebite. They do compensate for this with the curve, but one of our testers did say that it was a little close for comfort. The other concern is that the magwell is limited to the Walther 10 rd (9+1) magazine. This is not a big deal, but if you are a person who likes to go a long time between reloads, this may not be the gun for you.
When we took the gun to the range, it performed well, very well. (OK, I am done with the Bond puns.) Both shooters shot a pattern of less than 4 inches, with the senior shooter firing within a 3 inch circle at 25 feet. This was a cold fire shooting session. Both shooters put several in the black. This means the gun is easy to use and intuitive, 8 out of 10.
Walther makes Walther stuff. That means when you are looking for aftermarket parts, there are not a whole lot out there. This is not a Hi-Point or Glock where everyone and their brother has one; Walther is a little more refined. This means it can be hard finding accessories, like right now during the crunch mags are between $45 (Walther back order) and $125 (Ebay).
If you want to make your PPK/S look a little more like the spygear (looks not use), you can get the threaded barrel attachment for $30-$40. This allows you to put a suppressor or a fake suppressor on the gun for display. Please remember, if you are putting a suppressor on your firearm, check your local laws.
There are no railse to speak of on this gun. The iron sights are nice, but if you feel the need to put popups on it (which would look silly) you would need to have serious skill or go to a gunsmith. When I was at the store, they did have frame lasers for the gun, but with no lower rail, the cheaper lasers will not go on the gun. Overall, it is a great gun on its own, but if you want to customize, there is not a lot of room there. 5 of 10.
When it comes to the world of guns, Colt, Remington, Winchester, Glock, SigSaur, and Walther are in a league of their own. Each of them have their own claim to fame. With Walther, it is clean lines, a sleek look, and a legacy of being a top of the line firearm. The PPK/S lives up to this reputation and is one of the coolest small pistols you can have. 9 of 10.
The Walther PPK/S is a great little gun. With a score of 37.5 out of 50, it is a great firearm for personal carry (backup) or for going to the range. This is a good gun the way it is built, but with limited customization options, you get what you buy. The gun is great for men and women alike and easy to carry with you. With the price of ammo these days, it can be worth it to pick up a 22 pistol just so you can keep up your range time. Definitely recommend this firearm.